Australian Left Review


Gavan Butler


On April 30, 1981, the Prime Minister presented the Ministerial Statement on the Review o f Commonwealth Functions to Federal Parliament.1 The review is the report of the committee chaired by Philip Lynch and known generally as the Razor Gang. Many of the decisions which it covers have already been embodied in legislation. The preamble to the details of the decisions set out in the report employed the rhetoric of the "new conservatism", to which subject the last set of Economic Notes was addressed. It is clear, however, that — for all the rhetoric — the Razor Gang recommended only limited and very selective de-regulation. That has raised the possibility that the report is really a facade, that behind what can be immediately detected there lies a hidden agenda for the Fraser government.



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