The NSW Leader of the Opposition, Peter Debnam is reported in today's press (20-July-06) as saying that on [the day after the NSW election in 2007] he would, if elected, direct NSW police to arrest 200 "Middle Eastern thugs" whose car registrations are known.
Mr Debnam seem blissfully unaware of the concept of "Separation of Powers", as was a former conservative Premier of Queensland. The Separation of Powers concept is really very simple: there are 3 arms of the State: Legislative (politicians), Executive and Judicial (police, courts & legal system). Each of these is independent and not subject to interference by the others. While this concept appears to not be included in the NSW Constitution, it has operated in practice and is a cornerstone of strong, liberal democracies around the world.
The Separation of Powers ensures that power is NOT centralised and subject to corrution by a very few politicians or government.
This rather extreme concept of political activity in the arrest and trial of citizens has been mostly seen in totalitarian states, of both extreme left and right, not in the Commonwealth of Australia.
Much has recently been written about the "religious right" in NSW politics, and the Liberal Party, in particular.
Is this type of extremist statement by Peter Debnam a reflection of the rise to power of the new right within the NSW Libearl Party? I think voters should be very wary.