In today’s Daily Telegraph, I have some choice words about Mike Baird and Sydney’s lockout laws — and why it is about more than just the right to party into the wee small hours.
FOR the past week Sydney has debated a question that has been burbling under the surface for months if not years: Namely, have officials from the Lord Mayor all the way up to the Premier gone too far in protecting us from a good time, all in the name of public safety?
It’s an important discussion. Somehow the line has become widely accepted that there is something in the air in the Sydney Basin that makes people raving, violent two-pot screamers in need of a security regime that in comparison makes boarding an El Al flight with a Yemeni passport seem pleasant.
The fact we are even having this discussion really should raise questions beyond what time bars should close.
Given that the current regime of lockouts — along with rules on what time you are no longer trusted with an actual grown-up glass and need a plastic sippy cup, and restrictions on buying a bottle of wine after 10pm — started under Barry O’Farrell and have been strengthened under Mike Baird, it is fair to ask just how “liberal” is the present NSW Liberal-National government.
Certainly the Baird government is keen to point to its record of fiscal management and is proud of fixing the state’s books, as well as holding on to that shiny AAA credit rating.
But most Liberal voters, it can safely be assumed, vote on more than just the state’s pocketbook.
The whole thing is here.
Also, make sure to have your say and put in a submission on the lockout review.