Despite all of the very obvious defects of the imperial honours system, it did at least have remedy to address a circumstance when a knight or lady betrayed the trust placed in them by their monarch.
In simple terms, their title was forfeited and where appropriate, suitable further punishment was doled out.
The recently concluded ICAC inquiry into the NSW coal industry and the less-than-vigorous action of the governments in response provides a text book example of how our honours system could learn from the imperial system.
We can only assume the failure of the Abbott government to even make comment about a possible recall of the honours given to individuals now deemed by the ICAC inquiry into alleged corruption to have stolen millions of dollars from the people of NSW that the Australian honours system has no power to recall.
Therefore NSW citizens can quite reasonably ask the following questions of the Abbott administration: “Is there a legislated means of taking back an Australian honour from unworthy recipients?” If not, then why not?