Wednesday, August 11, 2010

On concessions

Tony Clement's language question walkback looks to reflect my earlier theory that the Cons would figure to give in to anybody who asserts a plausible rights claim in order to preserve their gutting of the census when it comes to matters of mere good governance. But it's worth noting that the move still involves a couple of highly significant concessions which can only strengthen the hand of the civil society backlash that's come together over the past month.

One of those has already been pointed out by Greg: by moving the additional language questions from the voluntary survey to the census, the Cons are effectively admitting that the survey doesn't provide sufficient data quality to allow for the enforcement of language (or any other) rights.

The other point worth noting is that Clement's announcement also shatters the Cons' attempt to pretend that it's too late to make changes. Indeed, the move only serves to highlight that both the deadline presented by the Cons and their determination to stick to their initial decision were subject to change - and that should only encourage those of us who care about having an accurate picture of our country to keep pushing the issue.

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