NONSENSE ON STILTS
RESCUING HUMAN RIGHTS IN AUSTRALIA
Paperback, 156 pages
“This book will disrupt the mindset that has produced a rights infrastructure that is distorted, expensive, and frequently out of step with community values.”
The end of human rights?
In the eighteenth century, Jeremy Bentham famously described natural rights as nothing more than nonsense on stilts. Almost two centuries later, Bentham’s natural rights provided the foundation for human rights. Today, it is less common for human rights to be based on natural rights, but the concern that human rights is at risk of becoming nothing more than nonsense on stilts remains as live as ever.
In Nonsense on Stilts, six essayists including the Liberal Party’s Tim Wilson and the Labor Party’s Terri Butler, respond to Damien Freeman and Catherine Renshaw’s proposals for rescuing human rights in Australia. The collection offers a number of perspectives on what it means to recognise and protect human rights in Australian law and politics today.
“a significant contribution to the perennial Australian discussion about the desirability of a national Human Rights Act or how best to enhance public conversation, law, and policymaking without one”
Damien Freeman is the editor of the Kapunda Press – the imprint of Australian Catholic University’s public policy think-tank, the PM Glynn Institute.
Catherine Renshaw is a professor of law at Western Sydney University and a fellow of the PM Glynn Institute.