A Miscellany is a collection of various, miscellaneous items brought together in a single volume. With answers to intriguing questions such as why a bill is read and whether the Governor-General should really open Parliament in the Senate, There Being No Objection provides insights to some of the parliamentary puzzles that have long mystified Australians.
... In more than a century since the Senate first sat in 1901, senators, officials and other analysts have written extensively on the work of the 'Red Room' and its procedures. But there is also another tale to be told: a story behind the story, of anecdotes, myths, facts, and figures that do not always feature in the official commentaries,
In an organisation where procedure is important, it is understandable that parliamentary officers have long been keepers of history. But not everything is as arcane as it may seem. And Senate officials also have a proud record of being debunkers of myth and the invented past.
This Miscellany reveals some of the cogs and gears of the machine that is the Senate; a machine that can constantly reinvent itself, jettisoning the bits it no longer finds useful and welding on extra parts to respond to the changing demands of the senators and the society they represent. It contains insights to some of the procedural nuts and bolts that hold the place together as well as the words of senators, faithfully recorded for posterity in Hansard, but which very rarely make it beyond the red ochre of the Senate chamber carpet. It is another more whimsical perspective which nonetheless still holds an important place in the Senate narrative.
Published by the Department of the Senate, Canberra December 2014
Size: 150x210mm soft-cover book
Length: 176 pages