It’s ‘Blow-torch to the belly’ time

Guest Blogger: Sheryl Gwyther –  author

In case you missed it, the fight against Parallel Imports on books has hit the front page of  The Australian newspaper. And if you dip into the Inquirer section, their National Correspondent, Lenore Taylor has written a spirited defence of the Restrictions.

“… I think the risk of paying for for books is well outweighed by the risk of not having the range of locally published books available to buy.

That’s why I hope Rudd listens to Keneally, Tanner listens to Flanagan and the cabinet listens to the grassroots of its party, as reflected in the findings of its special committee. Even free-traders need to acknowledge there are some things every nation should protect. Surely high on that list should be its own culture in all its complexity, its own ideas in all their diversity and the people and industries to tell and disseminate them.’  Lenore Taylor.

While it seems as though the battle is almost won and the ‘coalition for cheaper books’ and their mouthpieces might be dragging out their white flag to wave, I urge all anti-Parallel Import supporters to not become complacent during these last two weeks we have left to make a difference. This fight will on go to the bitter end.

We have had success in gaining the ear of many politicians and many book-loving Australians, but NOW is the time to apply the blowtorch to the belly of the Productivity Commission’s report and to those who support it so ferociously.

Write to Competition Minister, Craig Emerson; to the Treasurer, Wayne Swan; and to Financial Services Minister, Chris Bowen (addresses on our site).

Better still, make an appointment to talk to them if you can. They must recognise the depth of concern we have for our local publishing industry.

There are still many Australians who think this is all about cheaper books for them and that’s all that matters. But they do not know of the repercussions of lifting the Restrictions on Parallel Imports.

If they do, and they are true lovers of Australian books how could they support this threat to the industry?

REMEMBER TO SIGN THE ONLINE PETITION ON THIS SITE if you haven’t already signed the paper one. (See side bar)

REMEMBER to collect signed petitions and post them back to the given address on September 1.


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