The Age: “Go now, go decently”

Around the nation on October 15, 1975, many newspapers editorialised against the Whitlam government.

Later the same day, Malcolm Fraser announced that the Opposition would block the Budget with the aim of forcing the removal of the government.

It is now known that Fraser talked with newspaper editors prior to October 15.

The editorial in The Age is the most well-known. The newspaper’s editor, Graham Perkin, died the following day, at age 45.

The Age

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Text of editorial in The Age, Wednesday, October 15, 1975.

Go now, go decently

We will say it straight, and clear, and at once. The Whitlam Government has run its course; it must go now, and preferably by the honorable course of resignation – a course which would dispel all arguments about constitutional proprieties, historic conventions and “grabs” for power. It must go because it no longer has the degree of public support and acceptance that permits Governments to govern effectively. There are now too few people who will accept its policies, no matter how virtuous or commendable those policies may be. The Government is discredited. If integrity in government means anything, if competence in government is important, resignation would be the decent and responsible final step for a Government so haunted by the ghosts of its past follies that no current proclamations of good intentions, of rising hopes can dispel the furies. [Read more…]