The Senate in dire straits
Coa:34 ALP:31 Ind:2 Grn:9
God save the Queen
- Federalism loses a defender in Canberra
- Exposing GetUp!
- ALP to stitch-up students
State President’s Report
Federalism Loses A Defender In Canberra
Hon. Stephen Wade, MLC
My Government The Leviathan: Lessons From Hayek
Annual Tonkin Dinner 2011
Photos From Tonkin Dinner & State Convention
Senator the Hon. Eric Abetz
Hard Working Students The Ones To Lose Out
SA’s Sex Laws: Socially Regressive And In Need Of Reform?
Populism Is Not Leadership
DISCLAIMER: The opinions expressed herein belong solely to the respective authors and do not
necessarily reﬂect the views of the South Australian Young Liberal Movement or the Liberal Party of
2 Ad-Lib - Winter 2011
State President’s Report
Ladies and Gentlemen, welcome to the Winter edition of Ad-Lib. Once again congratulations to Travis
Munckton for this editorial efforts and thank you to those individuals who have made a contribution to Ad-
I would like to take this opportunity to provide an update on the Movement’s recent activities.
On the 21st May, the SAYLM held a special session of Young Liberal Council to discuss and vote on the most
comprehensive reforms ever presented in the Movements history.
The proposed reforms passed with overwhelming support from Council delegates.
The key reforms include measures to:
• Enable better grass roots participation through the abolition of Young Liberal Branches;
• Increase participation through the granting of voting rights to all eligible members of the Movement to
Young Liberal Council;
• Encourage only genuine membership participation through a minimum 12 months membership
qualiﬁcation period for AGM voting rights and electoral requirements;
• Increase Movement activity through the formation of a Social Committee and a Campaign Committee.
These structural reforms of the Movement will increase participation and accountability of the both the
Young Liberal Executive and the Movement. These reforms will also bring the Movement in line with
Women’s Council and Rural and Regional Council and are aimed at reducing the negative inﬂuence of
factions within the Young Liberal Movement.
Reform, especially Constitutional Reform is never easy for any organisation, however, I believe the reforms
that the Young Liberal Council have passed will ensure that the Movement will remain a strong, active and
cohesive political organisation well into the 21st Century.
It has been a pleasure in seeing the above reforms pass the YLC and at times a real challenge. However I
would like to thank all those individuals who made submissions to the Review, to the Hon. Robert Lawson
QC, Hon. Caroline Schaefer and our State Director, Bev Barber for their constructive input into the Review
process and ﬁnally in conjunction with the Young Liberal State Executive, thank Stephan Knoll, Chris Browne
and Dan Cregan for their hard work and perseverance.
Also on the 21st May, the Young Liberal Movement held its annual State Conference. This year we were
lucky enough to have Greg Sheridan, Foreign Affairs Editor of The Australian as the conference key note
speaker. It was fantastic for the Movement to have someone of Greg’s calibre address the Movement. Other
key speakers at the Conference included; Senator Michaelia Cash, Kristy Wildy - Business Development
Manager at Anglicare and Senator Hon. Nick Minchin. I would like to thank Brendan Clark, SAYLM
Development Director for organizing one of the best State Conferences in many years.
Saturday 9th July is the date for this years Young Liberal Ball. As always, the Ball is one of the highlight
social events of the calendar year for the Movement, and this year’s Ball at the National Wine Centre will be
no exception. I hope to see you there.
Ad-Lib - Winter 2011 3
Federalism Loses A
Defender In Canberra
Hon. Stephen Wade, MLC
When Senator Nick Minchin retires at the end of While only 24 of the world's 193 countries have
June federalism loses a key defender in Canberra. federal political systems, federations host 40
per cent of the world's population. The fact that
During the Howard years, former Treasury eight of the 10 world's largest countries by area
Secretary, John Stone wrote “A friend of mine, a are governed by federations, including Australia,
person high in Liberal Party circles, recently said highlights the relevance of federal structures to
to me that he believed that the only member geographically diverse nations.
of the Cabinet who had any genuine belief in
federalism was the Minister for Finance, Senator Historically, it is true that most federations
the Honourable Nick Minchin”. developed where previously separate entities came
together to form a federal government; we think of
The Canberra disease of centralisation infects more the United States colonies, the Swiss cantons and
than a few of our Party in spite of our Federal the Australian colonies. The constituent entities
Platform assertion that “we believe … in a federal normally keep some powers, but others are
system of government and the decentralisation of transferred to the federal government. But more
power, with local decisions being made at the local recently, we are seeing signiﬁcant developments
level”. in previously unitary countries which are adopting
federal structures. They often do so as a way to
Particularly through the aggressive expansion of its maintain a common central government whilst also
taxation powers at the expense of the states, the empowering regional self-determination; we think
Commonwealth has far greater ﬁscal resources, of countries such as Spain, Belgium and South
which it has used extensively to distort the federal Africa.
balance. We have seen in federal Labor's bungling
of service delivery programs, such as the Pink Federalism allows the recognition of both diversity
Batts and school building programs, that the and common interests, including geographic
Commonwealth is often not well-placed to deliver diffusion. In fact, some of these countries,
services on the ground, particularly if they have a although in relatively recent experiments, are
Labor government at the helm. Another example progressing federal models more creative than the
we are seeing at the moment is gambling reform, traditional federal model. I am thinking particularly
where a federal government is determined to raid there of Belgium. It was founded as a centralised
state powers as part of a desperate attempt to state, based on the French model, but in recent
hang on to power federally. decades (I understand, since the 1970s), they
have developed a federal state, however, more
These realities are a warning to the Party, the recent developments see Belgium taking on
states and the community to remain active to elements of confederation.
maintain a healthy federal balance.
Even Australia's mother country, the United
There is a bit of a view amongst the Canberra elite Kingdom, one of the bastions of unitary
that federation is an anachronism. governments, is moving towards federation.
In recent years, national assemblies, such as those
Our path to federation was indeed through the in Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland, have
union of a group of British colonies, but the facts taken on signiﬁcant governmental responsibilities.
of the world today show that federalism is not Whilst one should not refer to an entity such
merely an historical accident. as the European Union as a federation (it is a
4 Ad-Lib - Winter 2011
senator the honourable nick minchin
fmr leader of the government in the senate & minister for finance & administration
supranational organisation), in terms of its political • Democratic participation - federalism takes
operations, some observers note that, after 50 government closer to local people, creating
years of institutional evolution, the European Union higher levels of democratic participation
does possess some attributes of a federal state. and government more closely reﬂecting the
people’s wishes and regional needs.
The Liberal Party was founded as a federalist party.
Our organisation reﬂects that character – so does • Innovation - federalism allows for policy
our platform. experiments, so that governments can learn
from each other’s successes and failures and
We do not see federations as merely a colonial can compete with each other for citizens and
anachronism; they can be just as relevant to business by offering the best possible policy
meeting the challenges of the modern world. frameworks.
Our Federal Platform afﬁrms three particular While a signiﬁcant minority may never be able to
aspects of federalism thus: muster a national majority to embrace a reform,
they may be able to carry the day in a state or
• Specialisation - while some tasks of territory and the success in that jurisdiction may
government are best performed nationally, foster support beyond. Constant comparison and
many responsibilities are better carried out by benchmarking between states serves to drive
other spheres of government. Liberals strongly improvements.
Australia is an evolving nation – our federation
Even when aspects of some governmental has and will evolve. As Liberals, we should work
responsibilities need to be coordinated beyond the to reform federalism and appropriate the beneﬁts
State level it is too often assumed that that means it offers rather than simplistically dismiss it as a
a Canberra-led response when cooperative action vestige of a previous age.
between the States and Territories may be more
effective. As we thank Nick Minchin for his illustrious
contribution to our federation and nation, I look
The development of intergovernmental forward to other Liberals stepping up to defend
decisionmaking bodes such as the Council of federalism in the Federal Parliamentary Party.
Australian Government and ministerial councils so
often end up being vehicles of the creeping control
of the Commonwealth.
Ad-Lib - Winter 2011 5
Lessons From Hayek
We all know government can solve only the most Keynes was, almost at once, Hayek's hero,
practical community problems: so why do we still detractor and mentor. By the 1930s Heyak had a
ask it to do more? sound reputation and was teaching at the London
School of Economics. He was not afraid to admit
In summer 1975 Margaret Thatcher attended the that Keynes' critique of the harsh terms imposed
Conservative Research Institute conference. on Germany by the peace settlement had inspired
She had been Opposition Leader for three months. him as a student in Venice.
Interrupting a speaker she thumped a copy of
Friedrich Hayek's The Constitution of Liberty on the Yet, shortly after the publication of Keynes'
table and said "this is what we believe." Treatise on Money, Hayek responded with a
powerful critique. Flatly, though not without some
Learning of Thatcher's enthusiasm, Hayek must respect, Hayek said Keynes had misunderstood
have been as surprised as conference delegates. Knut Wicksell's economic precepts. Since Wicksell's
Despite even a Nobel Prize - which he modestly precepts were published in German, it is almost
attributed to the Cold-War practice of balancing certain Keynes did miss much of the subtlety. And
prizes between the left and right - Hayek was not Hayek, in a straightforward and very Austrian way,
the frequent subject of political adoration. set about correcting him.
And though by the time of Thatcher's outburst Keynes took the criticism poorly. In a scholarly
he was well known, he would not himself have review he described a separate book by Hayek as
comfortably taken to an English conference ﬂoor. "scarcely a sound proposition." He added without
The truth was that, despite being a naturalised charity "It is an extraordinary example of how,
British subject, his Austrian accent made him starting with a mistake, a remorseless logician can
almost incomprehensible. But as Bruce Caldwell end up in Bedlam." It wasn't the review Hayek
said of Hayek: "We are talking about academics had been hoping for. Over dinner at Cambridge
here, and of course nothing impresses ... like [an University, Keynes’ College fellows told him he had
academic] being mostly incomprehensible but gone too far. One described the Keynes' review as
occasionally clear". bodyline bowling.
Whatever his shortcomings, Hayek had over It would not be long before Keynes had a chance
the course of his career been astute enough at redemption. In the early days of the Blitz,
to know that participation in the popular press Peterhouse College at Cambridge agreed to house
complemented permanent tenure and academic the London School of Economics in buildings left
success (as did being on the right side of Nazism). empty by students at war. Hayek found himself,
To that end, he often contributed to newspapers, still a lecturer at the LSE, only a short walk from
sparred openly with Keynes and had the good Keynes rooms at Kings College. Keynes, older,
fortune to tutor wealthy socialites like David richer, tenured and inﬂuential, arranged rooms for
Rockefeller. Hayek at Kings: living in each others pockets, at
least they could agree on the need for huge war
But it was his conﬂict with Keynes which ﬁrst spending.
brought him to the attention of anti-Labour
politicians like Margaret Thatcher.
6 Ad-Lib - Winter 2011
The truth is Hayek was still a long way from being But it was also Hayek's instinctive understanding
Thatcher's favourite capitalist, or anybody else’s of the place of property rights in a free society
if it came to it (perhaps his wife's, but that ended which Thatcher seized on. She wrote "… the rule
in divorce). Not until the publication of the The of law still had a very English, or at least Anglo-
Road to Serfdom in 1944 did Hayek's reputation Saxon, feel to it. It was later, through Hayek's
bloom. After the sale of 30,000 copies Hayek masterpieces ‘The Constitution of Liberty and
had established himself as an anti-socialist, anti- Law’ that I really came to think this principle
Keynsian icon. as having wider application." Nothing inspires
a lawyer - Thatcher had read for the bar - like
Popular success was assured when Readers' Digest a good defence of property rights. And as John
published an abridged version of the Road to Locke had emphasised many years before, liberty
Serfdom at the end of the War. Even then, English is inseparable from ﬁxed property rights, perhaps
academics - who felt fascism was a capitalist even dependent on it.
response to the Bolshevik Revolution - did not
make much room for Hayek in their philosophy Thatcher's emphasis on Hayek's dedication of the
courses. Instead, he was promoted by clubs, Road to Serfdom to the “socialist's of all parties”
societies even private industry (General Motors is telling. It was a speech by a colleague on the
published a pamphlet explaining his ideas to their 'middle way' in British politics - that Thatcher saw
workers, such was their fear of Communism). as obsequious and inclined only to assist the left -
that she interrupted at the Conservative Institute
Importantly for Thatcher, it would be a private conference in 1975.
political club that brought her into contact with
young professionals who supported Hayek. Their Thatcher's policies of lower personal taxation in
fervour legitimised for her the public appeal of favour of wider indirect taxation, privatisation
Hayek’s philosophy. Put another way, it was then of state monopolies and government spending
that she understood his ideas could be safely limits were inﬂuenced by Hayek's dictum that the
promoted to the middle class. "more the state plans, the more difﬁcult planning
becomes for the individual." And in Thatcher's
In 1993 Thatcher explained her early enthusiasm reorganisation of English School Boards and
for Hayek: "Our inspiration was less Rab Butler's the welfare state she closely embraced another
‘Industrial Charter’ than books like Colm Brogan's of Hayek's immutable truths: “There is all the
anti-socialist satire, Our New Masters … and difference in the world between treating people
Hayek's powerful Road to Serfdom, dedicated equally and attempting to make them equal.”
to 'the socialists of all parties'". Such books she David Cameron’s plan to radically curb the cost
said "gave us the feeling that the other side of English government – by amongst other things
simply could not win in the end." Writing in 1995, withdrawing universal welfare – is a contemporary
Thatcher added: "the most powerful critique of example of a government attempting to resist
socialist planning ... which I read at this time, and waste and embrace Hayek. I will return to this in
to which I have returned so often since [is] FA an Australian context.
Hayek's ‘The Road to Serfdom’."
But it is Keynes private letter to Hayek on the
publication of The Road to Serfdom that tells us
most about the power of Hayek’s neo-liberal ideas.
Keynes wrote "You will not expect me to accept
quite all the economic dicta in it. But morally and
philosophically I ﬁnd myself in agreement with
virtually the whole of it; and not only in agreement
with it, but in a deeply moved agreement." To
deeply move our detractors to agreement is the
best any of us can hope for.
Ad-Lib - Winter 2011 7
Of course, because Hayek has been claimed as the that existed in the market before government
favourite capitalist of conservatives like Thatcher intervention did fail. They had been enticed to
and Reagan, even George Bush Snr. ("Hayek is purchase large quantities of stock to service the
one of the great thinkers of our age") he is seldom lucrative government market (yes, “the more the
identiﬁed for what he is: a true, hard, small- state plans, the more difﬁcult planning becomes
government Classical Liberal who understood for the individual”).
that massive government spending was always
cruel, never kind. Instead, Hayek knew that the The pink-bats scandal illustrates that governments
production of wealth and happiness is best served which do not respect Hayek’s Classical-Liberal
by an efﬁcient and limited government. And principles swiftly encounter, then ignore, what
although this article could go further by untangling Milton Friedman later termed the 'free lunch
all Thatcher's policies which are said to be inspired problem'. He said:
by Hayek but were not, the point is that he was a
Classical Liberal. A kind of almost agnostic Liberal "There are four ways in which you can spend
who is interested in the efﬁciency of liberty. money. You can spend your own money on
yourself. When you do that, why then you really
Hayek knew that the efﬁciency of liberty meant watch out what you’re doing, and you try to get
legislative coercion, even for an assumed the most for your money. Then you can spend your
positive purpose, could rarely be justiﬁed. Worse, own money on somebody else. For example, I buy
intervention and coercion always produced a birthday present for someone. Well, then I’m not
unintended consequences, whatever the objective. so careful about the content of the present, but
I’m very careful about the cost. Then, I can spend
There are many Australian examples of the somebody else’s money on myself. And if I spend
unintended consequences of government coercion somebody else’s money on myself, then I’m sure
and intervention. It was clear enough to any going to have a good lunch! Finally, I can spend
Hayak/Milton Friedman reader that grossly somebody else’s money on somebody else. And
distorting the home insulation market, as the if I spend somebody else’s money on somebody
Federal Government did in 2009 by subsidising else, I’m not concerned about how much it is,
home insulation, would lead only to government and I’m not concerned about what I get. And
waste and business frustration - we all remember that’s government. And that’s close to 40% of our
how an insulation scheme ‘industry’ of charlatan national income."
installers ﬂourished on easy tax money.
In Australia, even in the face of regular and
Insulation businesses alarmed by the abrupt wholesale government waste we continue to
cancelation of the scheme acted rationally in maintain that ordinary workers should give
their self interest - and demanded help from one dollar in three to government. Having an
government (which was in part available effective 30% tax rate for most is the same as
through general welfare anyway). Of course, saying we expect men and women to work for the
the government obliged. But good businesses government until Wednesday morning – or four
months of the year.
8 Ad-Lib - Winter 2011
The socialists of both parties have allowed So what about whole of government reform? The
government to become a tax-spend machine. The Department of Defence, of Education, Resources
machine rolls on of itself, collecting then spending, and Tourism, Sustainability, Environment, Water,
uninformed by the true cost of its illusory and Population and Communities, Innovation and
conﬂicting goals: ‘equality’ and ‘fairness’. Of course Industry, Tax, Treasury, Justice – huge bureaucratic
Hayek knew a government machine of this type ediﬁces – all lunch buyers with somebody elses’
– attempting to make people equal through large- money for somebody else (and in the case of
scale and inefﬁcient wealth redistribution – meant Defence and of Sustainability and Population, lunch
we would not all be equal before the law. He said with somebody elses’ money for somebody else in
“Equality before the law and material equality are the future – how unaccountable can you get?).
therefore not only different but are in conﬂict with
each other; and we can achieve either one or the The truth if we admitted it might be that we are
other, but not both at the same time.” For example, timid and inconsistent in the way we approach
progressive taxation explicitly asks the law to treat reform of government: some policy areas are ‘safe’
people differently because it taxes some more than for reform, such as welfare or health, whereas
others – you cannot treat people equally if what others are not.
you really want is material equality. This is why
Liberals talk about equality of opportunity instead By setting aside only some areas of government
of simple equality. for reform, we engage in a type of small target
politics. It is the type of small target politics that
What we cannot do is pretend, as we did even leads us to believe that cracking down on single
after many terms of the Howard government, mothers – to keep my example – is actual reform.
that we live in a ‘fair’ or ‘free society’ when tax Whereas real reform would instead be changing
rates look like theft and government remains the the meaning of welfare and the role of government
size of a standing army. Don’t misunderstand itself. In this way we lose sight of the fact that
me: wholesale income tax reform via the our values should always be small government,
GST, productivity gains on the waterfront and not small-target-politics (which often is small
elsewhere, the privatisation of Telstra and the mindedness anyway).
Future Fund were courageous Howard government
initiatives. But if anything, our taste for welfare By forgetting the hidden recesses of government
and wealth redistribution only matured under and its leviathan size, we tacitly admit that
Howard and Costello: family tax beneﬁt Part A government should be everything to us. In the
and B, baby bonuses, a continued reliance on quietness of our hearts we all know government
negative gearing to produce personal wealth, can solve only the most practical community
almost itself an admission of the absurdity of not problems: it can protect us against foreign
giving people their own money to invest in the ﬁrst aggressors and criminals, educate our children,
place. In short, government remained a colossus, build a road and provide adequate healthcare. But
answerable in terms of taxation only to itself. as PJ O’Rourke quipped, it cannot make us richer,
smarter or more beautiful in the same way that it
The problem, as Hayek and Friedman remind us, cannot train our children to be respectful, clothe
is that we rarely think of government as an entire them, buy us a house and ﬂatscreen TV, absolve
institution in need of reform. For example, we us of the responsibility to save for our retirement
focus on ‘welfare cheats’ or ‘single mothers’ (and or help buy and run our car. But that is exactly
after the last budget so does the Labor Party) what we do ask of government (ﬁrst home buyers
as if, in the context of the efﬁciency of liberty grants, family tax beneﬁts, payments for textbooks
and of government it truly matters overall. In and uniforms through tax concessions, car
fact, it matters no more to the tax burden that subsidies either directly or through trade policy).
single mothers are on welfare than it does that This is not the place of government because it will
manufacturing workers are. Only we choose to always administer peoples’ lives badly (‘the free
care about the cost of one ahead of the other. lunch problem’)
And that is to say nothing of the waste caused by
corporate and industry welfare through tariffs and
Ad-Lib - Winter 2011 9
Given that we know government can only do some In the end, what Hayek inspired in Thatcher, and
things well, we should not ask it to do things at inspires in others today, is the realisation that the
which it will fail. waste of government becomes the waste of the
talent of generations, generations not swaddled
So what should government do that it can also do but taxed (from cradle) to grave.
well? And in what order? Government should do
only six things. First, provide adequate and free At a drabber, much more English level - what
secondary education by, above all and everything truly appealed to Thatcher’s conservatives was
else, providing well paid excellent teachers who Hayak’s reﬂexive seething at the inefﬁciency of
themselves did well at school (look at the cut-off government; the staggering hopelessness of
scores for teaching and you will know what I mean government coal mines and municipal control
– the scores are inversely proportional to salary). boards, the government egg board; his revolt
Second, provide ﬁrst world healthcare. Third, against the mentality of post-war rationing and
provide good quality infrastructure. Fourth, provide controls that Thatcher's free market night-riders
a Defence Force. Fifth, arrange for police and later tore down.
Courts. Sixth, provide a frugal and basic safety net.
But of course, Hayek was a philosopher, not a
A government that concentrates its resources politician. While he had no need to compromise
on these six things is at once fairer – because his principles he also had no need to hide them:
it takes less in tax. And by concentrating on he was bashfully honest about political dogma:
education and health, at the expense of doing "probably nothing has done so much harm to the
‘everything’ elsewhere, it provides actual equality liberal cause as the wooden insistence of some
of opportunity liberals on certain rules of thumb, above all of the
principle of laissez-faire capitalism.” This caveat
We must campaign for smaller, ﬁtter government was important and controversial: Hayek supported
not only because it is right but because we public health, education and the regulation of the
know it is right. Nothing is more liberating than equities market.
being a member of a party that campaigns for
what it actually believes. That is what Thatcher Hayek's caveat on laissez-faire capitalism was
meant when she threw down The Constitution considered by his critics so startling as to bring his
of Liberty and declared “this is what we believe”. philosophy into disrepute – but we must keep in
And what we believe is that we need to change mind the context of Hayek's experience.
our expectations of government. Of course this
means being prepared to confront the bi-partisan In proposing his ‘laissez-faire’ caveat in the
orthodoxy that government will do everything. Constitution of Liberty, Hayek knew that the
Great Depression coincided with a twig-snapping
But Hayek reminds us that comfortable orthodoxy reduction in US money supply – this was a topic
always stands in the way of evidence based policy that consumed a great deal of his attention.
development. It is perhaps for this reason that we Herbert Hoover’s administration believed
continue to ask – against the face of all evidence government needed to be as frugal as households
and at great cost – that government be our in a recession and put all government money to
omnipresent, ever-ready benefactor. reducing debt. It was the economic orthodoxy of
**** Hayek thought that the decision to reduce
money supply so quickly was driven not by
Since this is an article about Hayek as much as it is an appreciation of the economic subtleties of
an article about the need for smaller government government debt reduction or even the discipline
in Australia, I want to address Hayek’s legacy, his of economics itself, but by devotion to a particular
contradictions and the importance of ‘evidence policy calibration beyond all balance and against
based policy’ to Classical Liberalism. the face of evidence. He set out to take on that
orthodoxy in economics and elsewhere.
10 Ad-Lib - Winter 2011
Annual Tonkin Dinner 2011
The Young Liberal Movement (SA Division) held the 3. Know your audience: your base, your swing
11th annual Tonkin Dinner on 14th April 2011 at and those you will never persuade.
the Hackney Hotel.
4. To win those swingers, you need discipline – a
We had the opportunity to have as our guest focused message, a clear strategy, a timeframe
speaker Lynton Crosby, AO. Mr Crosby is a former and, above all, a determination not to be
Federal Director of the Liberal Party, Co-Founder of distracted. Understand what truly motivates
Crosby/Textor and most importantly a Life Member people.
of the Young Liberal Movement. This was an
incredible opportunity to hear Lynton speak about 5. Never stop campaigning. A campaigning
his past 30 years within Australian and European approach emits energy, purpose, discipline,
politics. focus and simplicity to any organisation.
We heard about Lynton’s extensive experience with Amazing and invaluable advice for all those
successful Federal Campaigns and role as Federal involved in Campaigns for the Liberal Party going
Director of the Liberal Party between 1997 and forward.
2002, and as 2008 Campaign Manager for Boris
Johnson (Mayor of London). We were also told We had over 100 people attend and it was a great
of some entertaining and sometimes confronting night had by all. There was such a vast mix of
stories relating to other campaigns he has worked people attending including: current and former
on Fiji, the European Union, Asia, Iraq and politicians both Federal and State, current Young
Zimbabwe. It was a wonderful insight to Lynton’s Liberals and a large contingent of Norwood Young
impressive career. Liberals from the 70s. Some of these Norwood YLs
from the 70s were actively involved in Movement
Lynton provided us Young Liberals, as potential with Lynton.
future candidates, with 5 wonderful points of
advice: Congratulations to all on the executive for the
wonderful work they put in, especially to President
1. Stay simple, clear and relevant. Sam Duluk and Michael Healy.
2. Be true to yourself and play to your strengths.
Ad-Lib - Winter 2011 11
annual tonkin dinner
12 Ad-Lib - Winter 2011
Greg Sheridan Sen Michaelia Cash
Kristy Wildy Sen the Hon Nick Minchin
Ad-Lib - Winter 2011 13
Senator the Hon. Eric Abetz
In emails to members, in statements on its and Chair, Amanda Tattersall, has outlined how
website and in public, GetUp! states that it is GetUp! was conceived in league with a Unions
“independent”. But it isn’t – far from it – and, so NSW campaign, to interconnect individuals
long as it participates in election campaigns, it committed to speciﬁc campaigns to a broader, anti-
should be prevented from claiming to be. business, anti-Coalition purpose. Evan Thornley
diagrammatically illustrated GetUp!’s role as a
GetUp! is a union initiated front for the beneﬁt of “mass movement” designed to assist Labor win
Labor and the Greens. How do we know this? elections by rebuilding its community links. Anne
Coombs has said how “GetUp! invested such
We know that unions have given GetUp! at least extraordinary effort and passion into defeating the
$1.2m, maybe more. Kathy Mark in The Monthly Coalition government…”
refers to GetUp! receiving “start-up funds from
trade unions”, while GetUp! board member, Anne GetUp!’s occasional criticism of Labor – but never
Coombs, has said GetUp! was started with “some the Greens – is part of its modus operandi and
union money”. a means of attracting non-Labor people. Lately
GetUp! has been working at the margins to shore
We know too that GetUp! was founded and up the Labor-Green alliance by backing the pet
“conceptualised” by Unions NSW ofﬁcial, Amanda agendas of the independents, Rob Oakeshott and
Tattersall, together with Jeremy Heimans Andrew Wilkie. At the NSW state election GetUp!
and David Madden whose company, Purpose assisted the Greens by producing an ad telling
Campaigns, boasts that it works with “the people not to waste their vote by failing to allocate
Australian and US labor movements”. preferences – thereby letting “extreme crazy cats”
gain the balance of power.
We also know that former GetUp! board member
Evan Thornley has stated that “by working closely Presently GetUp! is campaigning to secure a
with the ACTU, the founders of GetUp! are funding boost for mental health in the federal
ensuring similar capacity is built within the union budget. The Coalition has just released an
movement itself.” excellent mental health package. I challenge
GetUp! to acknowledge that the Coalition’s mental
GetUp! has so far escaped being deemed an health policies are superior and that anyone
Associated Entity of Labor and the Greens by the concerned about mental health should vote for the
Australian Electoral Commission, partly because its Coalition at the next election.
issues-focussed operating model has been taken at
face value as not favouring particular parties. In the ﬁnal analysis, at elections, GetUp! never
advocates voting for the Coalition.
But GetUp! takes up issues in part to identify
concerned individuals and groom them to vote for We have now twice seen GetUp!’s sneaky approach
Labor and the Greens. Its claims of independence to federal electioneering.
mislead people who may join particular campaigns,
without realising the ulterior political goal. In 2007 the AEC warned GetUp! that, unmodiﬁed,
its personalised how-to-vote card generator -
GetUp! board members have testiﬁed to GetUp!’s www.HowShouldIVote.com.au - could breach
political agenda, to which its issues-based the Electoral Act by misleadingly always placing
campaigns are subordinate. GetUp! founder Coalition candidates last.
14 Ad-Lib - Winter 2011
In 2010 GetUp! campaigned on the issues of In 2010 GetUp! ran 700 television ads and ﬁelded
climate change, refugees and mental health. The 3,000 booth-workers. The scale of its operations
Coalition had an excellent mental health policy. and focus on marginal seats has the potential to
In the last few days of the campaign, GetUp! affect election outcomes.
distributed 1.1m “scoresheets”, purporting to rank
the parties on its issues of concern. But on this The Electoral Act should be amended to prevent
scoresheet, GetUp!’s three campaign criteria had Third Parties which incur electoral expenditure
miraculously expanded to fourteen. The Greens from claiming to be independent, non-partisan,
got “the tick” on every issue, Labor more ticks than impartial or not to back any particular party, or
crosses and the Coalition more crosses than ticks. such like. This would not affect bona ﬁdes Third
Parties and would go some way towards limiting
The message was clear – vote for the Greens, or the new phenomenon of ulterior campaigning
failing that, Labor. by groups like GetUp! Indeed Third Parties are
generally understood to be representing sectional
Emailed to GetUp! members as an “independent interest and don’t claim to be independent.
guide… from an independent, non-partisan
source,” this scoresheet was inserted in major The only organisation involved in federal election
newspapers covering key marginals and handed campaigns able to claim independence should be
out by GetUp! booth-workers who were heard the AEC.
telling voters it provided an “independent”
assessment of the parties. (Synopsis of a submission to the Joint Standing
Committee on Electoral Matters’ inquiry into the
Such activity renders Labor and the Greens 2010 election, dealing with the activities of the left-
massive assistance by effectively advocating on wing activist group GetUp! The full submission is
their behalf. At both 2007 and 2010 elections at: http://www.aph.gov.au/house/committee/em/
GetUp! ﬁelded 7,000 volunteer campaigners. elect10/subs/Sub098.pdf )
Grassroots group? More like astroturfers for the greens and alp!
ED: For a good laugh have a look at The Chaser’s take on GetUp!
http://www.youtube.com/ and use the KeyWords: GetUp Chaser
Ad-Lib - Winter 2011 15
Hard Working Students
The Ones To Lose Out
Within the new budget, the Labor Government is encouraged to go into large amounts of debt with
planning to cut the discount for students repaying the perspective that it doesn’t matter until after
their HECS debt upfront by half. As it currently graduation.
stands, the discount offers 20% off HECS fees to
students when paid prior to the University census This attitude will inevitably result in less early
date. The changes will bring this down to just payments and will succeed in restricting a source
10%. As a result of this, the incentive for students of income for the government, with the added
to pay upfront is dramatically minimised. drawback of more students joining the workforce
for the ﬁrst time with thousands of dollars of debt.
In 2009, the government paid $2.8 billion in
HECS-HELP and FEE-HELP, and in 2008 it paid $2.4 Group of Eight Executive Director Michael Gallagher
billion for students1. The reduction of the discount has come out against the discount cut stating “it
will act as a disincentive to students to help pay off is inconsistent with reducing the budget deﬁcit
the nation’s HECS debt. because it denies a revenue ﬂow to government
from those who can afford to pay.2” This cut is a
The Government are justifying the cut based blatant display of the economic ignorance of the
on a view that only students from ‘afﬂuent’ government, where due to the depreciation of the
backgrounds pay upfront, however this is not dollar 80% paid back now is going to be worth
the case. Senator Mason has spoken out that a more than 100% paid back in 20 years time, where
number of the students who pay the fees upfront HECS debts accumulate the government no extra
are “students who study and work part time or money in interest.
full time, making a tough decision to pay their
HECS debt upfront.”But this notion of ordinary but Perhaps instead the government should be
hard-working students doesn’t sit as well with the encouraging more students to be similarly as
concept of an increase of up to $1500 annually to ﬁscally responsible of their future in taking
the Students who pay upfront. advantage of the discount in place, and rewarding
the ones who do pay their debt upfront.
The students who work part-time jobs during
semester or work full-time over the holidays to However, that would not help to generate instant
save to pay the HECS upfront are the ones who money to subsidise the government’s new spending
will be hurt by the discount cuts. While many so much as chopping away parts of higher
students opt to spend their money saving for education systems will.
overseas holidays or at the bar, some make the
tough decision to repay their debt early. Some Despite Gillard stating “it will be a tight budget,”
chose to make sacriﬁces now, to be better off in there have been numerous new spending measures
the future. It is these students, the hard-workers announced such as the $200 million boost in
who will be disadvantaged in the new system. funding for education of students with disabilities
They are not only being penalised for exercising or special needs, and the $425 million program to
ﬁscal responsibility, but are at the same time being reward successful teachers with pay rises.
16 Ad-Lib - Winter 2011
Not to be forgotten is the announcement of
extending the Family Tax Beneﬁt part A to include
parents of students aged up to 19 years, provided
the child is studying or training. The Australian
public can’t help but be confused when glancing
between the increases in funding to schools while
at the same time cuts to the discount, leading to
the increase of up to $1500 annually for students.
This confused method is best described by Shadow What this means for students: you will no
Treasurer Joe Hockey as “penalising one part of longer receive a notable discount for paying early.
education to pay for another.” So instead, don’t pay your debt now, go to the bar
with your savings and spend yourself into debt
National Union of students president, Jesse now; it’s your future-self’s problem.
Marshall has been quoted as saying the Union
would support the measures such as cutting the
discount “as long as they resulted in improved
quality in other areas.” However, the Gillard-
Government Budget has not shown the savings
would be put back into the University system,
leaving a gap where the Students have lost.
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Ad-Lib - Winter 2011 17
SA’s Sex Laws:
Socially Regressive And
In Need Of Reform?
State Labor MP Stephanie Key has renewed the The debate regarding prostitution may not rate
call to reform the legislation governing prostitution as a “priority” amongst economic or health
in South Australia. She has been backed by the issues; however, it is disappointing when our MPs,
Sex Industry Network, whose manager Ari Reid particularly some female MPs, fail to contribute to
described the current legislation as outdated the debate on this crucial social issue, considering
saying "The laws governing sex work in this state the overwhelming majority of workers affected by
haven't changed in more than 60 years." the sex industry in SA are women.
According to SA Police Commissioner Mal Hyde, Ms Key’s proposed reforms to decriminalise
the current SA law (which makes the buying and the sex trade would ensure prostitutes operate
selling of sex illegal) “…is really quite archaic... ”. without fear of prosecution. However, in an
Highlighting the outdated nature of the current industry so often characterised by exploitation,
legislation, Mr Hyde pointed to the fact that “it substance abuse, sexual assault and trafﬁcking,
was illegal to receive money in a brothel, but you the decriminalisation or legalisation of prostitution
were able to pay with a credit card.” Commissioner remains a vexed question.
Hyde supported reform but emphasised that “any
new laws must be workable, and must prevent the In drafting legislative reform for South Australia,
exploitation of women.” our MPs should consider the experiences of our
neighbouring state, Victoria.
Whilst Ms Key is pushing to decriminalise the
buying and selling of sex, few parliamentarians In her analysis of the legislation governing
have publicly contributed to this critical social prostitution in Victoria, Melbourne-based feminist
debate. Mary Sullivan, an activist at the Coalition Against
Trafﬁcking in Women, Australia, states that
The silence of the Minister for the Status of the Victorian Government’s rationale for the
Women, Gail Gago, on this issue has been legalisation of prostitution “…to contain the
particularly disappointing, as has been the rampant growth of the highly visible brothel and
indifferent attitude from women of all major street prostitution trade…”, has in fact, had the
political parties. opposite effect.
18 Ad-Lib - Winter 2011
Rather than curbing the lucrative sex trade, Given that the overwhelming majority of sex
Sullivan argues that legalisation in Victoria has workers are women, legal regulation of “the trade”
“gifted” pimps with legal status as “respectable (like in Victoria) would only further reinforce the
business entrepreneurs”, who subject women and “status” of women in our society as sexual objects,
girls “to be treated as commodities to be bought who can be purchased, consumed and disposed of
and sold like any other marketable product... ”. by men.
Furthermore, Sullivan states that legalisation in We must ask ourselves the question: is this just?
Victoria has seen the number of women involved
in the sex industry rise to over 4,500 “in the legal In considering legislative reform of prostitution,
sector alone”, on top of the estimated thousands of South Australian MPs should adopt the model
unregistered sex workers. successfully ﬂagged in Sweden in 1999, which has
been adopted in neighbouring socially progressive
In What Happens When Prostitution Becomes countries Norway and Iceland.
Work? Sullivan concludes that in legalising
prostitution, the Victorian Government “made The rationale underpinning the “Swedish model”
it acceptable for Victorian men to purchase sees all forms of prostitution as violence against
women for sexual gratiﬁcation” and that legalised women. Rather than targeting the supply
prostitution has normalised “…the violence and (mostly vulnerable women) the “Swedish model”
sexual abuse” sex workers experience. targets the demand (mainly men) and sees the
government fund “exit programs” for sex workers.
Canberra-based women’s rights campaigner and
writer Melinda Tankard-Reist, echoes Sullivan’s The selling of sex is decriminalised but the buying
views regarding the Victorian “experience” of a of sex is a criminal offence.
legalised sex trade.
The “Swedish model” is consistent with Ms Key’s
Tankard-Reist argues that despite the Victorian call to protect sex workers from prosecution.
Government’s claims that legalised prostitution However, unlike what occurs in jurisdictions where
would solve the many problems associated with prostitution is legalised, the “Swedish model”
the sex trade “such as drugs, crime and violence avoids injustices, where the state gives legal
against women…”, in practice, the opposite has sanction to and collects tax revenue from, the
occurred, with Ms Tankard-Reist stating: trade and sexual objectiﬁcation of humans. This is
also consistent with Commissioner Hyde’s plea that
“What did materialise…was millions of dollars of reforms must stop exploitation.
proﬁts for the (Victorian) state and the Australian
sex industry…the normalisation of prostitution…and Prostitution is a reality and as the oldest profession
social legitimacy of business activities that derive (or oppression?) in the world, it won’t disappear
their proﬁt from individual women being used for anytime soon.
the sexual gratiﬁcation of men... ”.
However, the “Swedish model” would address two
The issues which South Australian MPs must crucial aspects which current SA legislation fails to
consider in legislative reform of prostitution are not do.
only those of workplace safety and rights, but also
of morality and justice. It would regulate the industry and protect
sex workers from prosecution, but far more
For the state to legalise or decriminalise importantly, it would send a clear message to men
prostitution outright would be to give legal that no dollar amount can ever be placed on the
sanction to the commoditisation and trade of value of a woman.
Ad-Lib - Winter 2011 19
Since the dawn of man (and woman) there has The feminist movement followed this and sought
been an evolutionary process to how men and to bring about true equality. This movement has
women interact and fulﬁl their gender roles. From achieved much in a relatively short space of time:
hunter gathers, to the specialisation of labour, Strong harassment laws, equal pay, more family
to World Wars that brought women into the friendly work conditions, a greater emphasis on
workforce, to the feminist movement and now female education and much more.
to the modern day there has always been (albeit
sometimes glacial) progress. With the great many advances achieved over
the past 40 years we now need to revaluate
The origins of inequality lie in our evolutionary where society is at. At the centre of the feminist
past. Women were traditionally the gatherers and movement was the idea that women need to beat
men were the hunters. This came from physical men at their own game. A greater focus on careers
differences between the genders and best utilized over family has led to a welcome confusing of
the different skill sets. The physical superiority of gender roles over the past 20 years this has lead
men was used as a basis for the suppression of to the creation of the modern woman as well as
women. the modern man. A man that tried to become the
house husband, the metro sexual and all manner
As we have evolved as a race, we have become of other guises to try and understand his new
inﬁnitely more specialised in our use of human place.
labour and as such our gender roles have also
progressed. Moving from nomadic to settled Women are equal but different from men. Many
cultures lead men to go out and forage, hunt and immediate differences are physical in nature,
farm; leaving women to attend to chores in the however many go deeper than that. The difference
home. in our hormone make up leads us to act differently
and from this gender generalisations evolve.
Further specialisation during the industrial These differences are real and often consistent.
revolution changed things again with more and This is not to say that all men and women ﬁt into
more tasks being completed by machine instead stereotypes and in fact there are a great many
of man (or woman). This advancement then who defy this but they nevertheless exist. These
crashed into two world wars that took away many differences should not form the basis for inequity
able-bodied men and brought women into the or for restricting opportunity; they should be
workplace in a way that was not seen previously. acknowledged and celebrated as bringing diversity
Not content to simply go back to the household and richness to life.
after the war, women began to increasingly see
their worth as more than just a basic education, Our modern economy is making these differences
getting married and living a contented home more difﬁcult to dissect. The economy is now
life, Women sought fulﬁlment in the joys and made of service-based jobs and highly skilled and
satisfaction of paid work and the ﬁnancial freedom less laborious manufacturing jobs that can be done
that came with it. equally by men or women. Modern technology has
20 Ad-Lib - Winter 2011
decreased the amount of time needed to maintain this to ensure that we create true freedom and
a household and that again has blurred the lines of not merely change the imaginary goalposts that
distinction. feminism has set for all women.
In today’s society even though women still lag We should as a society promote the role of
well behind men in terms of participation in the parents. A strong family unit is one of the
workforce, women are seen in the vast majority fundamental underpinnings of our economy
of cases as equal and as deserving of paid and society and this should not be in anyway
employment as men. diminished by the feminist movement.
This new female identity was meant to free women The end game of the feminist movement is for
from the shackles of the housewife but has now, women to have true choice without stigma within
in many cases, created an even more burdened society. I see the difﬁcult choices that the women
and stressed woman. The idea that women in my life have made about the priorities that they
have to have it all, raise three kids and become have. In modern society it is not the glass ceiling
the chairwoman of BHP at the same time is as or promotions that are roadblocks but rather it is
restrictive now as being trapped in the house was stigma attached to the role of women who choose
50 years ago. to stay at home and care for their children. This
is seen by feminists as a betrayal of all that those
The feminist movement has failed because it tried pioneering women who have come before have
to engineer the wrong outcome. Women should fought for. We as a society should move past this
not try and beat men at their own game. The idea and respect the roles that both women and men
that women need to become men ignores the choose for themselves. The choice to stay at home
unique differences that each can bring to society. and raise children should just as valid as women
Certainly the feminist and suffragette movements choosing to focus on a successful career.
have helped to promote the cause of women.
Discrimination was real and a genuine inhibitor to Women and men will only truly be at peace with
women being able to participate fully in society. their roles within society when their choice is truly
But in the 21st century we need to look beyond free and without stigma.
The State Executive of the Young Liberal Movement of Australia (SA Division)
requests the pleasure of your company at the annual
Young Liberal Cocktail Ball
Saturday, 9th July at 7:30pm
The Gallery, National Wine Centre, North Terrace, Adelaide
Dress: Black Tie RSVP details attached
Ad-Lib - Winter 2011 21
Populism Is Not
Leadership has become a buzzword; an objective accordance with these virtues. However, there
to which many aspire, and a virtue without are two without which they simply cannot exist:
which human society would descend into chaos. conviction and the courage to stand by those
Its intricacies continue to engage the pens of convictions, come what may.
countless authors, and yet it is a quality which,
when possessed, is instantly recognisable. Without conviction, a leader is akin to a
rudderless ship, travelling wherever the wind
We live in an age where leadership has become a blows. Such vessels, and their passengers, are
commodity, but where true leaders are rare. Each bound for disaster. We have a word for this type
year, conferences lure hundreds, if not thousands, of rudderless political leadership – populism.
through their doors with the promise of revealing Populist politics is nothing more than the betrayal
the art of leadership. Effective communication, of principle for the sake of procuring votes. It is
conﬁdence building and the art of engaging an short-sighted and misguided. History demonstrates
audience with charisma; these take-away offerings that leaders who act contrary to their convictions
are all for sale to the paying pundit, yet while forgo all credibility, and are consequently not worth
certainly valuable assets in the arsenal of any following.
successful leader, something is missing from the
messages espoused by these conferences and Consider the former Prime Minster, Kevin Rudd.
bestsellers; something absolutely indispensable – a Having claimed that climate change is the ‘greatest
focus on character. moral challenge of our time’ and having repeatedly
stated that Australia must take action immediately,
Remarkable leadership- the kind worth believing in his dumping of the CPRS for political expediency
and following- comes from strength of character, cost him his credibility, and played a signiﬁcant role
rather than the ability to make a memorable in his demise.
speech. Think of the celebrated leaders in history.
They have one distinguishing feature in common: On the other hand, Sir Winston Churchill was
character and the integrity to be true to it. True, a remarkable leader precisely because he
they were master orators and could capture the courageously stood by his convictions, no matter
attention and imagination of their audience, but the cost. Early in his political career, he cut ties
words, no matter how well communicated, will with his beloved Conservative Party because they
rapidly fade into oblivion if spoken by an empty were pursuing a Protectionist policy when he
vessel. Remarkable leaders can capture, and hold, ardently believed in the Free Trade cause. During
the faith of their followers precisely because they World War II, his conviction that Britain never
offer a vision in which to believe, with the resolute surrender to a tyrant meant that he was able
character – and therefore credibility - to back it up. to inspire his countrymen to ward off the Nazi
What, then, is character? According to the
dictionary, character is ‘the aggregate of features The point is simple: true leadership is about
and traits that form the individual nature of making decisions based upon conviction and
some person or thing’. Intuitively we know that principle, and having the courage to stand by
a good character is comprised of noble qualities those convictions. It is this type of leadership that
and virtues, such as courage, honour, integrity, will echo throughout the ages.
compassion, and self-discipline. Like everyone
else, remarkable leaders do not always live in
22 Ad-Lib - Winter 2011
“Your representative owes you, not his industry only, but his judgment; and he betrays, instead of serving you, if he
sacriﬁces it to your opinion.” said Edmund Burke to group of electors in Bristol in 1774. Burke’s words spoken over
200 years ago should be read to every parliamentarian as they take their seat.
The Member for Dennison, Andrew Wilkie, recently asked the government in particular to ﬁnd their moral
compass. While no disciple of Mr Wilkie’s, he makes a valid point. What drives the members of the Labor minority
government? It’s hard to tell, but Senator Faulkner (a well regarded old hand of the left) gave us an insight when
he delivered the Neville Wran lecture last week, “[there is something] deeply wrong when we use polling to
determine our party's policies and even our values”.
I think the good Senator would agree that the point of view he proffered in his Wran lecture has been borne out
(ironically) in current polling. Indeed, Faulkner was also quoted as saying that the public value authenticity over
“the message” and the “appearance of harmony”.
Policies and causes that the Federal Labor leadership advocated prior to the Rudd era have been conveniently
ignored for political opportunism. Once upon a time we heard that mandatory detention is unworthy of Australia
and were given lines like, “another boat, another policy failure” from PM Gillard when she was opposition
spokesman for immigration. Now we have Admiral Gillard obfuscating on the issue by taking to the seas, with
marginal seat-holder David Bradbury no less, to inspect border protection immediately prior to the last election. I
had no idea that Bradbury’s seat of Lindsay had moved from Western Sydney to the Arafura Sea!
There are many other examples of where Labor has abandoned its principles, but that would take several pages.
More interesting is what they’re using to govern in the stead of their principles and values.
At the moment, the left ﬁeld of politics has outsourced their political beliefs and convictions. They’ve taken their bat
and ball and gone home. Someone else has taken the ﬁeld – professional astroturﬁng outﬁt, GetUp!
The ALP is very lucky indeed to have had the ACTU establish GetUp! to make up for their deﬁciency in conviction.
That such a pathetic impression already exists is even further reinforced when Labor backbenchers are giving press
conferences in the parliament’s courtyards with GetUp! banners behind them.
All too often Labor MPs that want to speak out on issues are quickly silenced. It seems that Labor NSW Senator
Dougie Cameron is justiﬁed in fearing that caucus could become a place for “lobotomised zombies”.
I look forward to Simon Sheik and the ACTU’s GetUp! delivering Labor their next narrative – heaven knows they’ll
It would be impossible not to acknowledge the support that Mr Chris Browne has given to this magazine. Chris’
expertise in the area of desktop publishing has been invaluable. I’d like to personally thank him for all the time he
has put in to assist with the design of this publication.
The editorial in the ﬁrst edition of Ad-Lib this year predicted that Sam would lead the Movement to one of its
most dynamic and successful years yet. With the level of support shown by Young Liberal Council for the reforms
proposed by SAYLM executive (and later passed overwhelmingly by YL Council), we can see that the proof of the
pudding is in the eating. Reform is often a very testing task, but successes in those endeavours are the just rewards
– this case was no different. The SAYLM Executive has greatly beneﬁted from Sam’s leadership as President and his
stewardship of the Movement as a whole is something he handled with great aplomb.
Ad-Lib - Winter 2011 23
Senator the Honourable Alan Ferguson Senator the Honourable Nick Minchin
fmr. President of the Australian Senate fmr. Leader of the government in the Senate
[Senator for South Australia 1992-2011] & Minister for Finance and administration
[Senator for South Australia 1993-2011]
Mr Sam Duluk
President of the Young Liberal Movement of Australia (SA Division)
Level 1, 23-25 Leigh Street, Adelaide SA 5000