Home opinion-and-analysis Whiskey Tango Foxtrot Senator Conroy says "I'm not into opting into child porn"

The hypocrisy is breathtaking.  After listening to two years of unambiguous opposition to the Internet filter proposal, Senator Conroy invariably falls back on the paedophile defence.  Shame on you Sir, shame on you.

This morning, Senator Conroy, Minister for Broadband, Communications and the Digital Economy, visited Neuroscience Australia to announce a proposal to use the Nintendo Wii as a remote rehabilitation device for stroke patients via the National Broadband Network (NBN).

"Stroke patients in regional or remote areas find it difficult to access rehabilitation services," said lead researcher Dr Penelope McNulty from Neuroscience Research Australia (NeuRA).

"This project will assess the feasibility of offering high-quality, remotely-monitored rehabilitation where access to therapy is currently restricted or non-existent."

As part of the event, Sen. Conroy undertook a media doorstop to answer a few journalists' questions.  Judging by the positioning of the microphone in the shot, it would appear that the principal questioner is from the ABC. 

The transcript of the Q&A session is both enlightening and depressing.  Questions asked of the Minister homed in on two topics - the recent agreement between the NBN and Telstra and the proposed Internet filter.

The transcript below focuses on the filter questions (time stamps as they appear in the video - watch it before continuing) the text has been cleansed for clarity only; content and meaning have not been modified.

Q: Steve, we've seen a change in Prime Minister, are we going to see a change in the Internet web filter policy?

Conroy: We have got an election commitment to deliver.

Q: The Greens are saying it's been shelved though'¦

Conroy: I'm saying to you, we have an election commitment. Just because Scott Ludlam says it's been shelved, doesn't make it true.

More on the next page.

Q: Will the legislation make it before the next election?

Conroy: Ah, depending exactly when the next election is, and I don't actually know'¦ We said we'd bring the legislation forward.  We'd hoped to have finished all of the consultations that have taken place, it's taken a little bit longer than we'd hoped with bringing the legislation forward in the second half of the year; the timing of the election is something that ultimately the Prime Minister, Julia, will possibly decide on.

Q: Have you had any indication from Julia Gillard about how she would consider the opt-out or opt-in amendments to the filter that Senator Ludlum has put forward?

Conroy: We have an election commitment that we will deliver on.

Q: What's your personal view of the opt-out and opt-in provisions that could be added to the filter legislation are they a possibility or a good idea or'¦

Conroy: I'm not into opting into child porn.

Excuse me?  Is that still your primary statement of support for the filter, Senator Conroy?  You offer us a filter with a very uncertain means of management and yet you continue to stress the importance of child porn?

It is a very petty, a very small man who falls back on such weak, tired statements to defend his position and this writer would have hoped for better, much better from someone occupying such an important position in the Federal Government.

It seems that opponents of the filter are continually forced into defending their morals; Senator Conroy - we're sick of it, we are no greater supporters of illegal behaviour than your are.

And still we refuse to support the filter. 

And we vote.




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David Heath

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David Heath has over 25 years experience in the IT industry, specializing particularly in customer support, security and computer networking. Heath has worked previously as head of IT for The Television Shopping Network, as the network and desktop manager for Armstrong Jones (a major funds management organization) and has consulted into various Australian federal government agencies (including the Department of Immigration and the Australian Bureau of Criminal Intelligence). He has also served on various state, national and international committees for Novell Users International; he was also the organising chairman for the 1994 Novell Users' Conference in Brisbane. Heath is currently employed as an Instructional Designer, building technical training courses for industrial process control systems.






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