Whither the Left: Part 1


A History Lesson: the revolutionary period

My politics was moulded in the late 1960s, a great time in my view for the Left. The ’60s (into the ’70s) was dominated by revolutionary and liberation movements around the world — an era when Africa was completing its decolonisation. For want of a better phrase, I was an ‘armchair revolutionary’, although I was active in sit-ins and demonstrations. I drew my inspiration from the Black and Celtic liberation movements: the ANC in South Africa, the Black Panthers in America, the IRA in Ireland, ETA in the Basque country and the MAC in Wales (as tiny as that last group was). I accepted that violence was a legitimate means to counter the violence of the State. Yes, the ‘terrorism’ of the time but as was said in 1975 (admittedly in a novel) ‘one man’s terrorist is another man’s freedom fighter’. (I would like to point out that the ‘terrorists’ of the time usually tried to avoid or minimise civilian casualties, unlike current terrorists who specifically target civilians.)

From 1960, Africa’s process of decolonisation proceeded rapidly. Seventeen countries gained independence in 1960, a further fifteen in the rest of the decade, and nine in the 1970s, but the process was not easy. Decolonisation proceeded on the basis of boundaries that had been imposed by the colonial powers, often simply lines drawn on maps in European capitals that bore little relationship to the different peoples who made up the ‘nations’ within those borders. In 1967, for example, the Biafran war commenced as the people of eastern Nigeria sought their own independence (I supported Biafran freedom) and in 1976 Western Sahara was granted independence but was immediately seized by neighbouring Morocco (which has led to a continuing conflict).

In South Africa apartheid was in full flow, leading to the Sharpeville massacre on 21 March 1960 in which 69 died and 180 were seriously wounded. The following year MK (Umkhonto we Sizwe, ‘Spear of the Nation’) was formed by Nelson Mandela as the militant arm of the ANC. When passive resistance was met by violence, some in the ANC thought that a violent response was the only answer. Initially the MK’s targets were infrastructure and government installations which led to the charge of sabotage against Mandela at his trial in 1964.

In America, the civil rights movement had been campaigning since the 1950s (the Montgomery bus boycott in 1955). The first Civil Rights Act was signed by President Johnson in 1964, but civil rights demonstrations were still being attacked by state troopers in 1965; Malcolm X was also assassinated that year. The Black Panthers formed in 1966. Race riots in Newark and Detroit in 1967 each began as a result of police actions in Black areas. As well as police, the National Guard responded in both instances: in Newark after six days of rioting 23 people were dead, 725 injured and almost 1,500 arrested; in Detroit from five days of rioting, 43 died, 1,189 were injured and over 7,000 arrested. These were but a curtain-raiser to the massive rioting across America following the assassination of Martin Luther King Jnr in April 1968.

In Ireland, the official IRA was in decline and would be effectively replaced by the Provisional IRA in Northern Ireland from 1969; in Wales, MAC (Mudiad Amddiffyn Cymru, ‘Movement for the Defence of Wales’) carried out a number of bombings between 1963 and 1969; and in the Basque country ETA (Euskadi Ta Askatasuna, ‘Homeland and Liberty’) began its bank robberies and shootings during the 1960s and became more active in the 1970s.

Students had already played a major part in the civil rights movement in America. The Student Non-violent Coordinating Committee was formed in 1960 but from 1965 adopted a more radical stance drawing on the ideas of Frantz Fanon and Malcolm X. Even in Biafra, it was university lecturers and their students who formed the basis of the Biafran army. While many of these movements had their genesis in the previous years it came to a head in 1968 with student risings around the world.

In Mexico, student unrest began in 1967 and escalated prior to the 1968 Olympic Games: one of their key demands was that more should be spent on domestic needs rather than the Games. The government response, however, led to bigger demonstrations and student strikes culminating in police occupying two tertiary institutions in September 1968. About 14,000 people, mostly students, rallied at the Plaza de las Tres Culturas (‘Plaza of the Three Cultures’) in the suburb of Tlatelolco in Mexico City on 2 October. The police and the army moved violently on the rally: although the number of deaths has never been confirmed, it has been estimated at anything between 40 and 400. It became known as the ‘Night of Sorrow’.

In Brazil, Rio de Janeiro students rioted for two weeks in March after a student had been killed by police. Three more students died and schools were closed and Rio occupied by the army. Riots spread throughout the country and continued until 1,240 students were arrested in Sao Paulo in October.

In Argentina, 23 students were shot dead in May 1968, and 400 students occupied the University of La Plata in Buenos Aires on June 12 in protest at the government's repression. Exactly three months later, a student strike in the capital erupted into a bloody clash with police.

In Japan in June of 1968 students occupied the medical school of the Todai University in Tokyo — considered the most prestigious in Japan. The occupation was not lifted until January 1969 after a three-day battle with police.

In Italy, during 1968 most universities were taken over by students and run by democratic assemblies. This trend started at Turin in 1967, spread to Rome early in 1968 and then, as the student revolt in France revealed itself, spread with sit-ins and student strikes and increasing contact with workers’ movements, culminating in a strike two million strong in 1969.

In West Germany, the SDS (Sozialistischer Deutscher Studentenbund) was the dominant radical student organisation. A student was killed by police in a demonstration against a visit by the Shan of Iran in June 1967: 20,000 marched in his funeral procession. At the annual Easter peace march in 1968, 300,000 marched in the midst of upheaval caused by the attempted assassination of Rudi Dutschke (‘Red Rudi’), one of the principal spokespersons of SDS. Further demonstrations followed the shooting and the Bundestag (parliament) was preparing emergency laws to control the social unrest. That itself led to larger demonstrations and strikes against the laws. On the day the emergency laws were passed, 20 May, demonstrations blocked traffic in Berlin, Cologne, Hamburg and Hanover; in Munich, the tracks at the central train station were blocked by thousands of people; and in Bonn, 100,000 marched in protest. The Left in Germany took a more militant direction in the form of the Red Army Faction and the June 2 Movement but as a mass movement it began to decline after internal disagreements and a fear of ‘Left fascism’.

In France, the disturbances began at Nanterre University in March, initially about university issues. It was the heavy-handed response of closing the university in May that helped trigger the wider revolt. The violent police response to the subsequent student street marches and barricades brought support from workers and a General Strike was called for 13 May. On that day 800,000 to 1,000,000 demonstrators marched in Paris. Having earlier closed the Sorbonne in response to student protests, the Government reopened it after the 13 May strike, but it was then occupied by students and declared an ‘autonomous people’s university’. Workers also began occupying their factories — managers were locked in their offices at the Sud Aviation plant. By 20 May 1968, ten million workers were on strike. Eventually De Gaulle responded by calling a new election and threatening a state of emergency — 20,000 troops were being prepared for the occupation of Paris. Workers won improved pay and conditions and drifted back to work. Police retook the Sorbonne on 6 June. Student demonstrations were banned on 12 June. De Gaulle overwhelmingly won the election later in June and a bill reforming higher education was passed soon after.

In addition to the above examples, student unrest occurred in countries as diverse as Uruguay, Spain, Poland, Yugoslavia and Pakistan.

It was also the year of the birth of ‘liberation theology’ within the Catholic Church in South and Central America.

It had been American students who pioneered the ‘sit-in’ and ‘occupation’ (of buildings), starting at Berkeley in 1964. In 1968 student unrest continued in America, such as the ‘occupation’ at Columbia University, protesting the university’s involvement in weapons research and also local racism. Police broke up the sit-in in a five-hour battle in which 150 people were injured and 700 arrested. This, and events such as the Chicago Democratic Convention riot in August, led to the radicalisation of the student movement and some militant groups, for instance ‘The Weathermen’, were formed.

American student unrest, however, actually reached a peak two years later in May 1970.

The 1970 student protests were widespread. They started in April at Yale University with support for the Black Panthers, demanding the release of Bobby Seale, but at the end of the month Nixon announced the invasion (called an ‘incursion’) of Cambodia and the two issues melded. By mid-May more than 500 colleges and universities were directly involved with strikes and protests and by the end of May the number climbed to about 900. George Katsiaficas in his book The Imagination of the New Left, described the response to the May demonstrations like this:

During May, over 100 people were killed or wounded by the guns of the forces of law and order. Besides the four murdered and ten wounded at Kent State on May 4 and the two people murdered and twelve wounded at Jackson State on May 14, six black people were murdered and twenty were wounded in Augusta, Georgia; eleven students were bayoneted at the University of New Mexico; twenty people suffered shotgun wounds at Ohio State; and twelve students were wounded by birdshot in Buffalo.

The ‘Prague Spring’ in Czechoslovakia was an event of a somewhat different kind. Student protests against the leadership of Novotny in October 1967 contributed to his replacement by Dubček in January 1968. In response to Dubček’s reforms the Soviet tanks rolled into Czechoslovakia on 20 August. Students were again involved in the passive resistance that followed. They avoided confrontation (even the Government ordered the small Czechoslovakian army to remain in its barracks) so as to give no excuse to the Soviets for military action. Dubček was taken to Moscow on 23–26 August and agreed to water down the reforms in return for remaining in power, but resistance continued until Dubček was replaced in April 1969 and the new government cracked down on protests.

Why were students at the forefront of these protests and demonstrations? In simple terms, they were youthful, without the responsibilities that may have held back their elders and they were partially segregated on campuses which gave them a critical mass for action. And in an important sense they were continuing the struggles of the working class. They were not really a new middle class, as some have claimed, but an emerging new working class. Following WW2, intellect was being commodified and added to the production process.

The role of college training is increasingly important for the functioning of industrialized societies. Large-scale industry needs more technicians within its offices to coordinate space-age production, more managers to administer it, more psychologists to find ways of keeping employees working, advertising specialists to market the goods of the new consumer society and sociologists to maintain the system's overall capacity to function.

The radical students and those who followed are often referred to as the New Left, but what was new about it? It was inspired by the writings of people like Frantz Fanon and the speeches of Malcolm X; it utilised Che Guevara’s theories of guerrilla warfare, not to wage war, but to organise in new ways; it rejected not only the capitalist system but the bureaucratic and totalitarian nature of Communism. And although there were political elements to their demands, many demands questioned basic social assumptions of the time —‘the cultural conformity of consumerism, the oppression of women, discrimination against minorities, and the segregation of youth.’ Human rights and the human condition were often central to or underpinned their demands. The students challenged governments for not living up to social ideals.

The movements were not successful, owing primarily to massive repression by the State — the number of deaths throughout the world testify to that. The workers who were involved often returned to normal work as unions reasserted control by negotiating improved wages and conditions.

The integrity of the New Left's vision and the high hopes of movement participants were some of its chief strengths, but with the assassination of Martin Luther King, the failure of the near-revolution in France, the Soviet invasion of Czechoslovakia, the pre-Olympic massacre of hundreds of students in Mexico City, and the election of Richard Nixon, the hopes of the New Left were dashed against the hard rocks of reality.

Another crucial factor in their failure was internal dissent, as debate centred on the way forward. As the State reaction was violent some leaned towards responding in kind. But many women in the movement turned away from that, seeing it as a ‘macho militaristic’ stance. There were internal inconsistencies within the movements.

The world has changed. Since then there have been successful people’s movements such as the ‘Velvet Revolution’ in Czechoslovakia and the ‘Orange Revolution’ in the Ukraine but these occurred in the wake of the break-up of the Soviet Union when the respective States were less willing to intervene with force.

At a political level, thanks largely to Thatcher and Reagan, economics has come to dominate political discourse. The old idea of an equitable society has been subsumed, even within centre-left political parties, by the idea that equity cannot be achieved without a strong economy. There is some validity to that but the debate has moved too far in that direction. Those espousing social change are drowned out by the economists.

We also suffer from the fact that many revolutionary movements these days are in the Middle East among Islamic societies and they tend to be right-wing, especially with the fervour of the Islamic fundamentalists – that does not provide any sustenance to the Left in the West. (Although I note as a late addition to this piece that the Ukraine is at it again and more power to them!)

So where does that leave us? Part 2 to follow – A New World for the Left.

What do you think?

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TPS Team

2/03/2014This week, Ken Wolff gives us an insight into political stories and struggles of the 1960s and 70s: a potted history of the revolutionary period, and the emergence of the Left from that time. A mixture of the political and the personal, Ken explores his political ‘moulding’, while reminding us of the game-changing events which shaped the views of a generation. The article reminds of us the catalysts for change - minority rights, women’s emancipation, anti-war sentiment, nationalistic fervour and the struggle against authority. Ken also considers the outcomes of each ‘revolution’, what was achieved and at what cost. By taking us on a tour of the political hotspots of the time, including Ireland, France, Sth Africa and the US, Ken describes the genesis of the Left, in a prelude to his examination of where we are now, which will form Part 2 of this piece. From West Germany to Brazil, we can remember the role of the student activist and universities in bringing about change, sometimes at a heavy cost. Looking forward to Wither the Left Part 2, to discuss what happened next - did the students prevail, and create a new world? It’s a fascinating journey and we look forward to your comments.

Ad astra

2/03/2014Ken What an extraordinarily lucid and comprehensive historical account you have given us of the period of revolution through which we older ones have lived! We can remember the events you describe, some in more detail than others. You have vivified those memories. Thank you. What you have done so cleverly for us is to connect these events, to expose the common threads that characterized them. You have highlighted the dilemma progressives have faced, and still face, as they strive for equality, fairness and social justice in the face of resurgent neo-liberalism perpetrated by hard-core conservatives, energized by ultra-right wing think tanks. It is they who have dominated the economic discourse; it is they who have framed the economic debate so brilliantly, to the dismay of the progressives, who seem so often to be off the pace, trying to catch up after the caravan has passed. Thoughtful observers of the contemporary political scene acknowledge the difficulties Labor is experiencing in formulating its core principles lucidly in the rapidly and continually changing global economy; in refining a cogent message built upon these principles; and in taking the initiative in framing debates to match its agenda. The Coalition and its strategists have been brilliant in framing the debate on the ‘carbon tax’, the ‘mining tax’, ‘debt and deficit’ and ‘asylum seekers’ in a way that habitually forces Labor onto the back foot. Why is it, for example, that the economic ‘burden’ of the ‘carbon tax’ is highlighted by the Coalition and the commentators, while the fact that the intent and the effect of the ‘tax’ (placing a price on carbon) is to reduce dangerous greenhouse emissions and thereby slow global warming and its devastating sequelae. [b]The price on carbon is directed towards saving the planet for future generations.[/b] Yet how often do we hear that from Labor? Practically never! While presenting no convincing evidence to support their position, conservatives and self-interested businessmen and industrialists tell us day after day how awful this imposition is, and how it is killing small and large business, devastating competitiveness, and destroying jobs. Any ‘save the planet’ message is thereby drowned out. The ‘validity’ of the their position is tacitly accepted by the electorate, who have no other counter argument to consider. Labor has given them none. I look forward to Part 2. There is an answer to the dilemma progressives and the Labor Party here in Australia face. We need to reveal what it is.

jaycee

2/03/2014Well done Ken...you have hit the nail on the head with "IDENTITY"...in past times, the left had definate connections to social change and aspirations...in some areas they have succeeded, in others, the rise of the right wing has seen many aspirations taken back and societies ruined by "free market" robbers. While it may seem boring for the left-wing govt's to be harping on about equalities, THAT is the meaning of life or death for many poor people in the world...that we here in Aust' take such rights for granted is a condemnation on our apathy and denial of Union activity to get such rights for the majority of the public..The last govt' of Labor pushed many damn decent policies through for the good of the majority, only to see a fooled electorate vote in a foolish right-wing bunch of barbarians. There is no such thing as a Liberal Party anymore. Not in name, ideology, substance or pesonel. The Liberal Party of Bob Menzies has, like the "Colonel Sander's, Kentuckey Fried Chicken" corp', morphed into nothing more than a acronym, just as the Colonel's pride and joy morphed into "KFC."...so has the Liberal Party morphed into the LNP. a few letters representing nothing identifiable to anything in reality...a collection of letters representative of the beigeness of their aspirations...."junk food" becomes as "junk politics" is!

TPS Team

2/03/2014Please note: Those who have previously been banned from posting at this site will continue to have any and every post deleted immediately without being read. If you've previously been considered, for very good reasons, not to be allowed to post here, The TPS Team will enforce such decisions.

jaycee

2/03/2014And talk about bastards!..:That old MSM. suckole ; Murphyroo is bangin’ on about Bolt over on The Guardian…click-bait surely?….Though it did lure me in for a comment or two (can’t resist!) I have to admit that being more a student of anthropology, commenting on such a beast may be more in the line of a zoologist !…although, if one gives it a degree of thought, the fact that we have a simian for a PM. voted in by what must have been an affiliation of like-minded gibbons…I guess it is legit for me to make free to draw conclusions about a parrot named “bolt” !….but then again, what can one say, except : “Polly want a cracker?”

Ken

2/03/2014thank you Ad and jaycee I can't take all the credit. Although I also lived through those times and remember much of it, when writing the piece I had to find something which gave me more detail. The book that is referenced there by George Katsificas was the best I found for a detailed overview of those years. There is much more I could have said but I had to trim my words. It was a time, as you say jaycee, when a major emphasis was on social change and that I remember clearly. Something happened in the succeeding years to dampen that spirit for change and we lost something in the process. It was not only the succeeding generation(s) but even some of those who had particiated in those times went on to become the entrepreneurs and wheelers and dealers of the '80s - abandoning the principles for which they had once stood (that is another whole story in itself). I hope the next parts can live up to your expectations.

jaycee

2/03/2014I think a big hole that Labor has dug for itself is that there is too much 'cross-pollination" going on between right and left politicians and ideals...now we have Martin Ferguson crossing over to the dark side and we have seen the Labor govt' implement refugee policy that was much more suited to the right-wing. It could be attributed to that old quote of (I think) the elder Beasley..that "once the Labor Party was full of the cream of the working class, now it is full of the worst of the middle-class!"

Catching up

2/03/2014Well, it seems that the disability pension is to be collapsed to Newstart whatever that means. The two have nothing in common. One is a temporary benefit, to tide one over, until one gets about the job, the other, is likely to be for life. One has to have a permanent disability to get it. When is the madness going to cease?

2353

2/03/2014Ken - Those that don't remember history are bound to repeat it. The current practice by both sides of the political fence in Australia where someone 'enters' the workforce working for a politician and then has a tilt at an unwinnable seat - followed by the reward of a seat in parliament is in my view is a significant part of problem. I look forward to you expanding on the theme you have started here.

Casablanca

3/03/2014 [b]CASABLANCA'S CACHE. Monday, 3 March 2014: 36 items[/b] ENTITLEMENTS + FIDDLES +RORTS + RESPONSIBILITY 1. Cadbury tales: Nash, Furnival and Abbott's sticky fingers Ash Ghebranious The sticky tale of Fiona Nash, her food lobbyist staffer and Abbott's generous Cadbury subsidy has an unmistakable whiff about it. http://www.independentaustralia.net/politics/politics-display/cadbury-tales-nash-furnival-and-abbotts-sticky-fingers,6228 INDUSTRY WARS 2. Wealthy need to share the spoils of automation Paul Malone Everyone knows we're losing manufacturing jobs in Australia; it's common knowledge that the US and European countries are losing them too. What's less well known is that in China manufacturing's share of employment also appears to be declining, and it's not simply because jobs are going to even lower-paying developing countries....Other developing countries are not reaching the high levels of manufacturing employment Britain and the US achieved during their industrial revolutions, raising questions about whether they will be able to significantly lift their standard of living. http://www.canberratimes.com.au/comment/wealthy-need-to-share-the-spoils-of-automation-20140301-33sp6.html#ixzz2uivoFvN1 CULTURE WARS 3. The pathway to cultural leadership is still through education Ken Gelder On the ABC’s Q&A earlier this month, the federal ALP’s deputy leader Tanya Plibersek paid a sentimental tribute to Australia’s “attachment to egalitarianism”. It came out of wartime experiences amongst the diggers, she said, and was an “intrinsically Australian” characteristic. But another panellist – Cassandra Goldie, CEO of the Australian Council of Social Service – was sceptical. “This is how we would like to see ourselves,” she said, “but I think we’re at a bit of a crossroads in [terms of] whether or not we are prepared to practise what we espouse.” http://theconversation.createsend1.com/t/r-l-phlgc-trhltityg-q/ 4. Class on a global scale: the emerging transnational capitalists Andrew Self It is this....shift in capitalist accumulation that has created a new, transnational capitalist class. The formation of this class has evolved from the opening up of national economies and global integration since the Thatcher and Reagan era. Capital has become more mobile. This means that class formation is less and less tied to a particular nation-state or territory. The transnational capitalist class is a global ruling class. http://theconversation.com/class-on-a-global-scale-the-emerging-transnational-capitalists-22940 POVERTY WARS 5. Green Army to be paid less than minimum wage, Environment Minister Greg Hunt confirms ABC The Federal Government has confirmed it will pay thousands of young people as little as $300 a week to work on conservation projects as part of its so-called Green Army. When it is fully rolled out, the Government expects 15,000 people aged between 17 and 24 will work up to 30 hours a week under the program. The program is one plank of the Coalition's "direct action" climate change policy, and is expected to cost $300 million over a four-year period. http://www.abc.net.au/news/2014-03-02/green-army-to-be-paid-less-than-minimum-wage/5293518 6. The dawning of the Age of Unpleasantness Brian Matthews Joe Hockey's idea of an age of entitlement is shallow and facile. Announcing the end of an 'age' is just another way of obscuring the truth that you haven't the faintest idea what the hell is going on, or that you suspect what's going on but not how to influence, redirect or stop it. So you fall back on this persuasive notion of a great shift in the times. The next 'age' for those whose entitlement is disappearing will be marked by unpleasantness. http://www.eurekastreet.com.au/article.aspx?aeid=39039#.UxIALIAQ9ZY POLITICS, SECRECY, HYPOCRISY, DECEPTION 7. Real issue is lost amid testosterone Bianca Hall The bloke-ification of federal politics had infected the national debate everywhere we turned last week. Why, it had become a veritable sausage fest - from Immigration Minister Scott Morrison claiming Labor senator Stephen Conroy keeps showing ''how small a man he is'', to Liberal backbencher Stuart Robert's repeated demands Conroy ''man up'', and Prime Minister Tony Abbott's defence of Morrison as being ''strong'' and no ''wimp''. http://www.canberratimes.com.au/federal-politics/political-opinion/real-issue-is-lost-amid-testosterone-20140301-33soa.html 8. Controversial star rating system for food packaging may not go ahead, says AMA expert Amy Bainbridge A member of a team overseeing the star rating system for food packaging says there is a risk the system could fall over. Professor Geoff Dobb is on the Front of Pack Labelling Oversight Committee, which meets on Monday. Earlier this month, a website with the details of the project was taken down after the Assistant Health Minister Fiona Nash personally intervened just hours after it went live. It has since been revealed that she was lobbied by the food industry on the day the website went live and told that publishing the website was premature. Despite the website still not being up, a new Oversight Committee is taking over from the existing Steering Committee as planned. http://www.abc.net.au/news/2014-02-28/key-group-to-meet-on-vexed-issue-of-food-labelling/5287908?WT.mc_id=newsmail 9. The Liberal’s worst week Bob Ellis Un-Australian and unhinged, and not doing well in the three big states, the Liberals are seeing the doom of their house... By now, it is reasonably clear Alan Joyce does not understand what Qantas means. It is the flying billboard of Australia, proclaiming our national triumph over gravity, distance and the curse of time; one executed by Australian genius over seven decades, a genius now being decimated by one who, though a Harvard graduate and an Australian citizen, is seen by some as a blithering Irish munchkin, and a fool. http://www.independentaustralia.net/politics/politics-display/the-liberals-worst-week,6234 10. The #Ashbyappeal decision: @boeufblogginon explainer Joan Evatt In a majority decision of the Full Court of the Federal Court of Australia Justices Mansfield and Gilmour granted James Ashby the leave to appeal and upheld that appeal thereby overturning the decision of Rares J. A minority decision by Siopis J granted Ashby leave to appeal and then dismissed the appeal. All three judges denied Michael Harmer leave to appeal. Lawyers will always tell you that there are two key components to any case that must be met if a disaster is to be avoided. The first is a lawyer striving to provide that hook upon which a judge can hang his hat. The second is a minefield for the unwary. It won’t necessarily be the law that will bite you in the butt, but rather the procedures required and strategies employed during the progress of a court case. http://nofibs.com.au/2014/02/28/ashbyappeal-boeufblogginon-report/#sthash.nvyZX9pI.dpuf 11. Ashbygate Snakes and Ladders Ashbygate Trust A split Federal Court has sent the Ashby versus Slipper case back to square one, to be reheard by a new justice. The Ashbygate Trust reviews the decision. http://www.independentaustralia.net/politics/politics-display/ashbygate-snakes-and-ladders,6227 12. Ashbygate, Mal Brough and the Furlernator Ashbygate Trust The Sunshine Coast Daily believes the Ashbygate Trust owes Mal Brough an apology after Thursday’s Federal Court judgement. The Trust responds. http://www.independentaustralia.net/politics/politics-display/ashbygate-mal-brough-and-the-furlernator,6232 ECONOMICS + BUSINESS 13. Skills shortages evaporate Posted by Houses and Holes From the Australian Department of Employment: The Australian labour market softened over 2013 and skill shortages continued to abate. Employers recruiting in 2013 generally filled their vacancies with ease and had large fields of applicants from whom to choose. In 2013, employers filled a higher proportion of vacancies than they have at any time in [...] http://macrobusiness.createsend4.com/t/i-l-fkkkhk-dtyueir-jj/ POLITICAL IDEAS + ACTIVISM + COMMITMENT 14. Whither the Left: Part 1 Ken Wolff A History Lesson: the revolutionary period. My politics was moulded in the late 1960s, a great time in my view for the Left. The ’60s (into the ’70s) was dominated by revolutionary and liberation movements around the world — an era when Africa was completing its decolonisation. For want of a better phrase, I was an ‘armchair revolutionary’, although I was active in sit-ins and demonstrations.. http://www.thepoliticalsword.com/post/2014/03/02/Whither-the-Left-Part-1.aspx#comment 15. What makes a good leader? Kaye Lee The supreme quality for leadership is unquestionably integrity. Without it, no real success is possible, no matter whether it is on a section gang, a football field, in an army, or in an office. Dwight D. Eisenhower Whatever ethical plane… http://theaimn.com/2014/03/01/what-makes-a-good-leader/ 16. Are the political ideologies of today suited to address the problems of tomorrow? johnlord2013 Before we can even begin to answer that question we need to have a clear understanding of just what they are. But we have to keep in mind the often subtle (or not so subtle variances) differences and interpretations that… http://theaimn.com/2014/03/01/are-the-political-ideologies-of-today-suited-to-address-the-problems-of-tomorrow/ 17. “Hi Pot, this is Kettle” – Miranda Devine screams hypocrisy on behalf of the right James Roy Miranda Devine’s piece “The hypocrites of the left” in the The Daily Telegraph opened the floodgates of abuse towards anyone who sits to the political left, unsurprisingly, of Tony Abbott. You may wish to peruse the readers’ comments but I warn you, please brace yourselves.The response from those of us who do sit to the political left of Tony Abbott has been somewhat less hysterical http://theaimn.com/2014/02/28/hi-pot-this-is-kettle-miranda-devine-screams-hypocrisy-on-behalf-of-the-right/ MEDIA MANIPULATION + BIAS + GROUPTHINK 18. ABC News corrupted by News Corp views Barry Tucker While News Corp maintains its criticism of the ABC, claiming it is infested with Left wing journalists, commentators and programs, News Corp journalists frequently appear in ABC news and public affairs commentary. http://truthinmediaresourcecentre.wordpress.com/2014/03/01/abc-news-corrupted-by-news-corp-views/ 19. War on ABC continues Barry Tucker (1 November, 2013) Mary Kissel is in Australia to speak at the Public Knowledge Forum on the state of the news media. She is not a fan of publicly funded news organisations like the ABC. That’s not surprising. She is on the editorial board of the Wall Street Journal, owned by Dow Jones & Co, a division of Rupert Murdoch’s News Corp. Murdoch doesn’t like the publicly funded BBC or the ABC either. http://truthinmediaresourcecentre.wordpress.com/2013/11/01/war-on-abc-continues/ 20. ABC provides taxpayer funded platform for Murdoch manipulators to mislead Alan Austin Why should taxpayers foot the bill for a news service that repeats the same lies as the commercial media? Alan Austin looks at the ABC's meek surrender to News Corp ideology. http://www.independentaustralia.net/business/business-display/abc-provides-platform-for-murdoch-manipulators-to-mislead,6233 21. How to report on politics Andrew Elder Journalists from still-large and once-proud media organisations insist that only they can provide that combination conducive to consumer trust that comes from both the busywork of journalist activity and the stolidity of reputation, fact-checking, and a well-staffed pool of lawyers. Self-deception is always sad and an appreciation of this must temper the brittle assertiveness with which this self-evident truth simple fact hollow bullshit plea is made. http://andrewelder.blogspot.com.au/2014/02/how-to-report-on-politics.html HUMAN RIGHTS 22. Still we are making welfare hells Jack Waterford ''We will make you, or we will break you,'' one welfare officer was said to have told a girl at Parramatta Girls Home. By ''break you'', the person did not necessarily mean rape and sexually abuse the child: this was an unspoken extra. It required rather that the inmate be submissive, obedient, respectful and appreciative, not cheeky or inclined to stand up for her rights...Decent people flatly repudiate either argument. But decent people will deserve the condemnation of their descendants if we, by confining our disapproval to mere tuts, allow the situation to continue. http://www.canberratimes.com.au/comment/still-we-are-making-welfare-hells-20140301-33sp8.html#ixzz2uj0rrqIK GENDER EQUALITY 23. Judge Ruth McColl warns gains on gender threatened by about-face on diversity Michaela Whitbourn A senior NSW judge has warned there are ''worrying signs'' the Abbott government is winding back measures to promote greater gender diversity on the bench and called for vigilance to ensure hard-won advancements for female lawyers are not lost. Ruth McColl, who has served on the Court of Appeal for more than a decade, said changes introduced by the former Labor government to improve the transparency of the appointment process for federal judges appeared to have been scrapped by the Coalition. http://www.canberratimes.com.au/federal-politics/political-news/judge-ruth-mccoll-warns-gains-on-gender-threatened-by-aboutface-on-diversity-20140227-33mfv.html ENVIRONMENT + ENERGY 24. The breathtaking hypocrisy of Environment Minister Hunt – an update Michael Taylor I concur with British peer Lord Devlin that the Abbott Government’s approach to climate change is “so unintellectual as to be unacceptable”. The good Lord Devlin, however, is undeniably better placed than me to offer that assessment; the former Conservative politician now heads Globe International, a legislator body that annually assesses laws to combat climate change. http://theaimn.com/2014/03/02/the-breath-taking-hypocrisy-of-environment-minister-hunt-an-update/ 25. The nature of Abbott’s game Michael Taylor The government’s “green army” – further details of which were announced today – will: . . . target indigenous Australians, people with disabilities, gap-year students, graduates and the unemployed. Ignore the program, instead, it is the word “target” which is… http://theaimn.com/2014/03/02/the-nature-of-abbotts-game/ 26. When is A Job Not A Job? rossleighbrisbane Have you heard the joke about Abbott’s Green Army? Answer: They’ll be working for half the minimum wage, but to make up for that they’ll be exempt from Commonwealth workplace laws, including the Work Health and Safety Act, the Fair Work… http://theaimn.com/2014/03/02/when-is-a-job-not-a-job/ 27. Tony Abbott's green army will be paid half the minimum wage Bianca Hall A ''green army'' of 15,000 young people will be paid as little as half the minimum wage, as fresh details emerge of the federal government's plan to create Australia's largest environmental workforce. The plans have attracted the ire of the ACTU, which says the workers will be excluded from protections granted by federal workplace laws and says the program threatens to reset youth wage rates sharply lower...green army participants - who will be aged 17 to 24 - will work up to 30 hours a week. The scheme..will be an alternative to work-for-the-dole programs...Those enlisted will do manual labour, including clearing local creeks and waterways, fencing and tree planting. http://www.canberratimes.com.au/federal-politics/political-news/tony-abbotts-green-army-will-be-paid-half-the-minimum-wage-20140301-33st7.html 28. Nothing direct about Direct Action Fiona Armstrong The Direct Action plan uses taxpayer funds to pay companies to reduce their emissions. The Abbott government needs to shed its mindless opposition to carbon pricing and embrace a policy that actually has a chance of addressing climate change, unlike Direct Action... Sadly there is little that is 'direct' about the Direct Action Plan, as it is largely about using taxation revenue to funnel, through complicated administrative schemes, subsidies to polluting industries for emissions reductions they might make anyway. It reduces any incentives for long-term emissions cuts due to a short program time frame. http://www.abc.net.au/environment/articles/2014/02/28/3953659.htm ASYLUM SEEKERS 29. Welcome back to White Australia Richard Ackland Before our eyes, day by day, Scott Morrison becomes the hollow man. His face tightens and twists, his eyes are dead, and his words strangled with jargon...This is what happens to human beings who believe the ends justify the means. Ends that are wretched will invariably produce bad means... Maybe, in decades to come, we will look back at this time and regard it as one of the worst stains on our nation. More awful than the White Australia Policy and up there with the stolen generations. A time when our nation had a dark heart. http://www.canberratimes.com.au/comment/welcome-back-to-white-australia-20140227-33m4w.html#ixzz2uafp4Ain 30. Let’s fix this mess Kaye Lee In 2012–13 a total of 50 444 people lodged applications for asylum under the offshore component of the Humanitarian Programme. The Labor government increased the intake to 20,000 and granted a total of 20 019 visas, of which 12 515… http://theaimn.com/2014/03/01/lets-fix-this-mess/ 31. Stephen Conroy was targeting politics in play, not Angus Campbell Gavin Mount Stephen Conroy’s outburst was offensive but it was not questioning the integrity of Angus Campbell...Clausewitz warned that while military force was but one of the many instruments of power at the disposal of the state, any decision to use it must be rational and fully cognisant of the brutal realities of warfare...The military should stand apart from the political process to avoid real or perceived risk of creating a coup culture or military junta...When our political elite request the services of the military, they assume political responsibility for this burden and are obliged to justify their policies to the citizens that elected them to office. http://www.canberratimes.com.au/federal-politics/political-opinion/stephen-conroy-was-targeting-politics-in-play-not-angus-campbell-20140227-33mjj.html#ixzz2ubQFVNPV 32. Liberal lies and military manipulations Alan Austin 15 February 2014 February [has] delivered several reminders of an insidious force at work in Australia’s political life — Coalition governments and military chiefs conspiring to lie and deceive. http://www.independentaustralia.net/politics/politics-display/liberal-party-liars-and-military-manipulators,6173 33. Time for Labor to disown PNG solution Tony Kevin Over the past week of Parliament, we have seen the strange and distressing spectacle of Labor timidly criticising the Government's handling of the events on Manus Island. If it were brave enough, Labor could use these events as a trigger for policy change. To call for the Manus centre to close, and for detention and processing centres in Australia to reopen, would be the moral policy for Labor at this point. http://www.eurekastreet.com.au/article.aspx?aeid=39047#.UxH_f4AQ9ZY 34. Breaking the Australian government's silence on stopping the boats Peter Hartcher The untold story of how the Australian government has really been stopping the boats. Tony Abbott and Scott Morrison banged the "stop the boats" drum long and loud in opposition. So it seemed baffling, even outrageous, when they fell suddenly silent in government. http://www.canberratimes.com.au/federal-politics/political-opinion/breaking-the-australian-governments-silence-on-stopping-the-boats-20140228-33r3b.html 35. Big bills and tax havens: The business of immigration detention Ben Butler and Georgia Wilkins The sacked operator of a controversial immigration detention centre at Manus Island, G4S, paid no Australian tax in 2012, Fairfax Media has learnt. Financial reports filed with the corporate regulator show the ATO in fact paid G4S a cash refund of $2.2 million. http://www.canberratimes.com.au/business/big-bills-and-tax-havens-the-business-of-immigration-detention-20140228-33pmh.html 36. Taxpayers lumped with $13m bill for Manus Island detention staff's floating hotel Bianca Hall and Rory Callinan (February 23, 2014) Taxpayers are footing a bill of more than $73,400 a night for detention centre staff to stay in a floating hotel moored off Papua New Guinea's Manus Island....government contracts show the immigration department will spend more than $13.3 million to temporarily accommodate staff aboard the Bibby Progress, over seven months to May 30. According to the website of Bibby Maritime, the British company contracted to provide floating accommodation for detention centre staff, the Bibby Progress boasts a large bar, restaurant, gym and roof terrace. http://www.canberratimes.com.au/federal-politics/political-news/taxpayers-lumped-with-13m-bill-for-manus-island-detention-staffs-floating-hotel-20140222-3396n.html OOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO

Casablanca

3/03/2014CASABLANCA'S CACHE. Monday, 3 March 2014 [b]Abbott turning Australia into a neo-con's playground.[/b] Posted above and at: http://www.thepoliticalsword.com/page/CASABLANCAS-CACHE-2014-03-03.aspx

Michael

3/03/2014Re The Green Army... With the gumnint so hot to run a ‘pink batts’ inquiry they might like to consider how many things can go wrong out there planting trees, etc. The number of deaths and injuries in the agricultural sector are constant. If ‘on land transferees’, the unemployed and the disabled (as distinct from ‘on water transferee’ asylum seekers), are exposed to even routine potential injuries that arise when working in the field(s), 15,000 potential cases of injury or death with ministerial accountability attached are on the cards. The under-trained, the under-workplace-supervised, exposed to danger and injury right up to fatality, with no workplace protection or injury coverage? Ring any bells, Prime Minister? But please, DO talk about this in Cabinet since you have made Cabinet confidentiality a quaint and foregoable tradition in this country.

jaycee

3/03/2014This govt’ will have no choice but to implement some nasty policies this term of government. If you look to the line-up of the front bench, a parody surely, of Leonardo’s “Last Supper”…the obvious paucity of intellectual depth (a wet tounge suppressor would be enough to drown them!) demands they enact outrageous policy that detracts attention from their bereft personalities. Too depressing to isolate any one or two or dozen personal and iQ. failures for individual attention, when a glancing examination would analogise the entire crew with any “family’ of career petty crims’ …pick-pocket, larceny and pathetic alibis being the favoured modus operandi…led by a combination of delinquant parents more suited to the manufacture of “Sweeney Todd Pies and Pastries” than govt’ management! Six months in and the absurdity has reached “Fawlty Towers” proportions, while the current threat in the Crimea has our “fearless leader” (just how far IS Russia from Aust’?) scanning Warner Bros’ cartoons for suitable diplomatic dialogue and has come up with dire threats worthy of ‘Drip-along Daffy” promising President Putin : “…to fix his little red wagon!”…..Ahh!…How long has the rabid-right waited for a military messiah the capacity of our illustrious leader to come along….When pilgrims of a future age crane their necks to view the saracophagi of great soldier / leaders, there, placed amongst perhaps..Alexander, Caesar, Hannibal, Churchill…will be Aust’s humble contribution of the current PM’s remains alongside other examples of failed authoritarian despots…: a hessian sack loose collection of bent and twisted bones bearing evidence of a lot of arse-kicking as example of “How NOT To Rule”!

Catching up

3/03/2014It appears that Morrison has mislead the house with his personal explanation. True numbers released in the Senate. There are more than the numbers in the newspaper article. Senator Ludwig. Documents been tabled, am backing up his assertion.

jaycee

3/03/2014One has to wonder just how much “respect” these positions of authority that we are always beseeched to “respect”, deserve?….I mean, you’re in a court of law and it’s “all rise for…’ or in local govt and the mayor comes in with his robes of office and it’s “all rise for…” churches, parliament, the GG. any visiting royalry….yet they seem just as powerless as the rest of us plebs when it comes to this mob of scum destroying our nation and way of life…..so why the “F” should we “respect” them?…on what grounds?..tradition?, habit?..what’s the point…the lowest bastard born has trashed our Parliament and he gets away with it…so who the hell are these so called “authoritive people” who oversee our institutions, our constitution?….are they hopeless, gutless and useless?…they bloody well seem to be! If they are that useless, they are either colluding with these anarchists or they are powerless against them and therefore not deserving of the respect of their office. They may as well be a night-soil collector for all the use they are.

Catching up

3/03/2014How is sending jobs offshore, good for the Australian economy. By the way, the PM deeply regrets. Qantas, not happy.

Michael

4/03/2014Abbott displays his usual economic, social and political erudition when he declares that Virgin airlines is no less 'Australian' than Qantas. He uses the Aldi argument. "I reject ... this idea that Qantas is Australian and Virgin isn't because let's face it, Virgin is employing Australians and it's serving Australians." Got that? Employ Australians, serve Australians, you are Australian. Who knew Apple, Google, Nestle, Zara... are actually Australian? At least he didn't go to who are the "goodies and baddies" on this one. He's saving that for whatever develops in Ukraine, no doubt. Fair dinkum, isn't it wonderful to be led by a Philosopher Prince?

Pappinbarra Fox

4/03/2014ooooohhh I am suffering withdrawal symptoms. Casa where are you? OK I hope. Philosopher Prince - I like that - nicely full irony.

jaycee

4/03/2014If it is now ok to sell off the Aust' icon in airlines, then surely it is ok to sell off aust' agriculural land enmasse to oversees investors?

jaycee

4/03/2014I watched Q&A for a little while last night, up until the "Stephen Conroy affair" was broached...Now, for the record, I back conroy to the hilt...when the three-star refused to give clear and concise answers to the Senate Inquiry, he made a decision to "side" with his preffered political party against the Senate ; the upper house responsible to the Australian people. In choosing to work WITH a political party, he chose to work against he Parliament of Aust' So when Conroy was attacked on Q&A. last night, I was very suprised to hear Jason Clare washing his hands of Conroy.....It was then that I walked out of the room.....and indeed, I feel like "walking out " on the Party, for it appears to me that they are still chasing opinion rather than forming and directing opinion. I further observe that one young questioner had Frydenberg boxed into a corner looking panicked only to be baled out by Tony Jones reframing the subject just when the foam was forming on Josh's lips!

jaycee

4/03/2014Tick the boxes…: So far the LNP. bully-boys have : The MSM …on board. Big / small business….on board. High Church authority..on board. Fed., state police, asio et al…on board The military….compliant. Academia…..compliant. Judiciary…compliant. Public opinion….who cares?

TalkTurkey

4/03/2014Hi Comrades Been in Broken Hill for the last 4 days, visited our Gypsy gal too, but have had a migraine most of the time: scotoma (sparkly visual disturbance), headache, vomiting, gastric stasis (feels like extreme 'butterflies in the stomach' and general feeling of nausea. That's about the full gamut of symptoms, and it's enough. Sorry not written anything yet on [i]Whither the Left?[/i] but hope I'm not "Looking forward to [i]Wither[/i] the Left Part 2" as suggested in TPS Team's introduction because I want the Left to burgeon! :) Back to Adelaide later today.

Casablanca

4/03/2014 [b]CASABLANCA'S CACHE. Tuesday, 4 March 2014: 28 items[/b] ENTITLEMENTS + FIDDLES +RORTS + RESPONSIBILITY 1. In the half-light of insider politics John Warhurst The general lessons from the conflict of interest that claimed Alastair Furnival, chief of staff to Assistant Health Minister Senator Fiona Nash, are about the often-hidden world of political insiders. The numbers of Coalition aligned lobbyists has grown greatly, and include many former senior Howard Government ministers. But Labor supporters should not feel smug. There are plenty of examples on that side of politics, too. http://www.eurekastreet.com.au/article.aspx?aeid=38974#.UxUFfoAQ9ZY 2. George Brandis in firing line for role in gongs list Mark Kenny Attorney-General George Brandis has been criticised for personally involving himself in the impartial selection process for awarding Australian honours, allegedly using an honorary position to back nominees seen as Coalition-friendly. http://www.canberratimes.com.au/federal-politics/political-news/george-brandis-in-firing-line-for-role-in-gongs-list-20140303-340i7.html CULTURE WARS 3. How the cottage industries in class ideology did themselves in Chris Peers What we Australians so neatly clump together as neoliberalism is a kind of intellectual debate marked by an over-dependence on statistical evidence and a gross incapacity to engage in critical self-analysis. Strangely enough, the label should apply equally to small-l liberals and conservatives. What is absent from social analysis as promoted by the prevailing intellectual elite is an ability to balance the redundancy of socialist thought with the obsolescence of utopian philosophy. To drive a middle path between what remains of the left and the prevalence of the right, it may be necessary to consider more carefully the prevailing wisdom for traces of moral and philosophical bias. http://theconversation.createsend1.com/t/r-l-phrhydy-trhltityg-c/ 4. Why poor kids continue to do poorly in the education game Stewart Riddle We like to pretend that social class doesn’t matter in Australia, but the reality for children from low socioeconomic backgrounds paints a very different picture when it comes to education. Why is talking about social class considered taboo in Australia? http://theconversation.createsend1.com/t/r-l-phjlytk-trhltityg-s/ 5. School Principals in Revolt John Kelly One interesting characteristic of an undersea earthquake or a tsunami is that, for the most part, it is silent until it reaches land. Using that as an analogy one could say an undersea earthquake has erupted within the ranks of… http://theaimn.com/2014/03/03/school-principals-in-revolt/ POLITICS, SECRECY, HYPOCRISY, DECEPTION 6. Cabinet confidentiality: privilege, accountability and public interest Gabrielle Appleby It was revealed last week that prime minister Tony Abbott personally authorised the disclosure of the former Labor government’s cabinet papers in response to a summons by the royal commission into the… http://theconversation.createsend1.com/t/r-l-phjlytk-trhltityg-n/ 7. Releasing cabinet papers sets up paybacks that hurt our democracy Malcolm Fraser A long-standing principle in Australian politics, one derived from Westminster and British experience over hundreds of years, is that incoming governments do not use the confidential discussions of cabinet… http://theconversation.createsend1.com/t/r-l-phjlytk-trhltityg-p/ 8. Human rights chiefs divided on racial discrimination act Michelle Grattan Members of the Human Rights Commission are sharply at odds over plans to water down the Racial Discrimination Act. Race Discrimination… http://theconversation.createsend1.com/t/r-l-phjlytk-trhltityg-x/ 9. Qantas stalemate as Abbott and Shorten butt heads over the Flying Kangaroo Michelle Grattan If Qantas "bleeds" at the hands of the Senate who would get the blame? It’s passing strange to hear Tony Abbott advancing the gung ho “dry” argument that Qantas must not be treated as a special case. But after he crossed that line in the sand by rejecting aid for SPC Ardmona and any attempt to rescue the car industry, his position on Qantas was a logical extension. Not an automatic one, however. Qantas is an iconic Australian company. http://theconversation.createsend1.com/t/r-l-phjlytk-trhltityg-jr/ 10. Repealing the carbon tax won’t help Qantas Kaye Lee The whole of question time today was devoted to the government saying “If you want to help Qantas then repeal the carbon tax.” Has everybody forgotten what happened to Qantas before we had a carbon tax? This is from May… http://theaimn.com/2014/03/04/repealing-the-carbon-tax-wont-help-qantas/ 11. The Ministry for Misinformation and Wealth Protection Kaye Lee The AIMN has obtained a copy of a draft proposal circulating the Coalition party machine. In an attempt to better use available resources, state and local governments will be abolished. All federal and state ministries, departments, advisory bodies, and their… http://theaimn.com/2014/03/03/the-ministry-for-misinformation-and-wealth-protection/ 12. Small shift in Senate right-left divide at stake in $20 million "byelection" Michelle Grattan As federal Labor backbencher and former state minister Alannah MacTiernan tweeted after Friday’s announcement that Western Australians will go to the polls on April 5 for the re-run Senate election, “Game on! For the next five weeks WA will be the centre of the national stage.” http://theconversation.createsend1.com/t/r-l-phrhydy-trhltityg-yd/ 13. We are all Matilda, betrayed by Tony Abbott Jenna Price We have a government which isn't standing up for us. It's standing with the overdog. It's using the excuse of red tape and overlegislation. It's removing protections of all kinds. And it's not as if we can individually stand up for ourselves. You can't fight big by yourself - you need governments to stand between innocent citizens and greed machines. http://www.canberratimes.com.au/federal-politics/political-opinion/we-are-all-matilda-betrayed-by-tony-abbott-20140303-340mj.html 14. Australia ordered to cease spying on East Timor by International Court of Justice Tom Allard Australia has been ordered to cease spying on East Timor and its legal advisers, in a landmark decision by the International Court of Justice relating to a bitter dispute between the two countries over $40 billion of oil and gas reserves in the Timor Sea. 'Australia shall not interfere in any way in communications between Timor Leste and its legal advisers'. The court also ruled that the Australian government must seal documents and data seized in an ASIO raid in December. The ICJ is the United Nations' top court, and its decisions are binding on members. http://www.canberratimes.com.au/federal-politics/political-news/australia-ordered-to-cease-spying-on-east-timor-by-international-court-of-justice-20140304-hvfya.html ECONOMICS + BUSINESS 15. Hockey's unexpected success at the G20 Mungo MacCallum Of all the major international organisations, the G20 is by far the best we've got, so Joe Hockey should be given full credit for recognising its importance, writes Mungo MacCallum. Suddenly the G20 is seriously big deal. http://www.abc.net.au/news/2014-03-03/maccallum-hockeys-unexpected-success-at-the-g20/5294624 16. Time for the G20 to invest in gender equality Susan Harris Rimmer IMF chief Christine Lagarde left Sydney commenting that the “two genders” will have to contribute if the G20 was to achieve its aim of lifting economic growth targets by 2%. Critiques of that growth target… http://theconversation.createsend1.com/t/r-l-phjlytk-trhltityg-z/ MEDIA + BIAS + GROUPTHINK 17. Is press freedom a licence for unfair and unbalanced coverage? Denis Muller The Sydney Daily Telegraph’s reaction to an Australian Press Council ruling that it breached the council’s “fairness and balance” principle raises concerns about the council’s relationship with the big… http://theconversation.createsend1.com/t/r-l-phjlytk-trhltityg-m/ 18. Australian media's Super Saturday: will readers be the winner? Andrea Carson At a time when the print media in Australia is under intense economic pressure the weekend proved to be a super Saturday of change with the revamping, rebadging and launching of major mastheads. Fairfax… http://theconversation.createsend1.com/t/r-l-phrhydy-trhltityg-k/ ENVIRONMENT + ENERGY 19. Stories of extinction Tim Flannery "A good death is often envisaged as a slipping away, in advanced age, surrounded by family. In such circumstances, society goes on undiminished. We can think of a good extinction in similar terms. A species slowly flickers out, surrounded by newer, better adapted species. This is not the kind of extinction that is occurring at present." http://www.themonthly.com.au/issue/2014/march/1393592400/tim-flannery/stories-extinction 20. On climate, these guys know their stuff Sara Phillips When Australia's two top scientific institutions release a report stating our summer heatwave wasn't caused just by natural variability, we can be confident they've got it right http://www.abc.net.au/news/2014-03-04/phillips-on-climate-these-guys-know-their-stuff/5296346?WT.mc_id=newsmail 21. Australia's climate: time to act on rising heatwaves and fires Neville Nicholls The State of the Climate 2014 report, released today by the CSIRO and the Bureau of Meteorology, confirms that Australia is heating up. It has warmed by 0.9C since 1910, with more in store thanks to the… http://theconversation.createsend1.com/t/r-l-phjlytk-trhltityg-g/ 22. Australia has warmed by 0.9C since 1910, with more in store Michael Hopkin Australia is almost a degree warmer, on average, than it was a century ago, according to the State of the Climate 2014 report… http://theconversation.createsend1.com/t/r-l-phjlytk-trhltityg-w/ 23. Human global domination began with fire, not factories or farms Andrew Glikson The era in which humans have had the power to alter the conditions for all life on Earth is widely thought to have begun with the Industrial Revolution 250 years ago. This era has been dubbed the “Anthropocene… http://theconversation.createsend1.com/t/r-l-phjlytk-trhltityg-yd/ 24. Great Barrier Reef authority argued against dredge dumping, FOI reveals Bridie Jabour Disposal of 3m tonnes of spoil an unacceptable risk, said draft report to environment department before permit was issued. http://www.theguardian.com/environment/2014/mar/02/great-barrier-reef-authority-argued-against-dredge-dumping-foi-reveals?CMP=ema_632 25. Let's dump Great Barrier Reef dredging myths: authority chief Russell Reichelt The Great Barrier Reef Marine Park Authority’s recent decision to allow 3 million cubic metres of dredge material to be disposed of 25 kilometres off Abbot Point in north Queensland has attracted passionate… http://theconversation.createsend1.com/t/r-l-phrhydy-trhltityg-h/ 26. Visualising Australia’s carbon emissions David Holmes Being able to visualise the impacts, the process and causes of climate change is not easy. Taking on board the abstract scale of the changes is challenging. Sometimes we need to refer to images from our past, such as borrowing a nuclear metaphor to imagine global warming progressing at four Hiroshima bombs per second. http://theconversation.createsend1.com/t/r-l-phrhydy-trhltityg-yk/ ASYLUM SEEKERS 27. Australia's asylum seeker persecution: How the media create a myth Marilyn Shepherd Since the Refugee Convention was ratified and came into international law in 1954, it has been totally legal for anyone to arrive in Australia and seek [...] http://www.independentaustralia.net/australia/australia-display/australias-persecution-of-asylum-seekers-how-the-media-create-a-myth,6239 28. 'We saw them go in with machetes': Manus Island guard contradicts report Michael Brissenden An Australian employee of the G4S security firm on Manus Island says PNG police stood back and allowed locals to break into the compound last month, did nothing to stop them beating detainees, and in some cases participated in the violence and intimidation. http://www.abc.net.au/news/2014-03-04/g4s-employee-contradicts-png-police-report-into-manus-riot/5295740?WT.mc_id=newsmail OOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO

Ken

4/03/2014TT Well spotted. I had missed that although it also happened in e-mails when the piece was being prepared and edited. Mt title 'Whither the Left' was deliberate, partly for that reason - the homonyms, whither and wither. That is the question for the Left - whither or wither.

Casablanca

4/03/2014CASABLANCA'S CACHE. Tuesday, 4 March 2014 [b]Abbott's vision thing: Rescind, Ridicule, Renege, Revenge. [/b] Posted above and at: http://www.thepoliticalsword.com/page/CASABLANCAS-CACHE-2014-03-03.aspx

Casablanca

4/03/2014Pappinbarra Fox @ 07:46 AM said [u]ooooohhh I am suffering withdrawal symptoms. Casa where are you? OK I hope. [/u] Thanks, it's nice to be missed! I was suffering extreme sleep deprivation and went to bed early. Feeling much restored now. :) Hope the Cache that I have just posted is absorbing and restorative for you. As usual, some great articles from the Fifth Estate and non-MSM writers.

2353`

4/03/2014Your trawling is always absorbing Casablanca. Thanks.

Michael

4/03/2014Here http://www.abc.net.au/news/2014-03-03/rising-company-profits-indicate-economy-not-all-gloomy/5295532 where Australia's top companies are reported to be in 'astounding' good health, the lies of Abbott and Hockey and co about the Australian economy tanking are again revealed. Revealed as both national wellbeing negative and 'astoundingly' politically motivated. Good thing, though, is that with all these companies doing so well, and thus paying commensurate levels of tax, the gumnint won't need to slash services to the citizens of Australia. Yeah, in a pig's eye.

Casablanca

4/03/2014 Here it is in pictures how you can tell whether govt ministers are lying or not it's so easy to tell now: https://twitter.com/Iam_Dan_/status/438136065396703233/photo/1

42long

4/03/2014They used to say "their lips move". But a little more seriously a lot of them have idiosyncracies/mannerismz that give them away. Hawke used to tug his ear lobe. the monk shakes his head when he talks from side to side, but he seems to NOT TELL the TRUTH almost ALL the time. He has almost got to the point where the only way he could speak the truth is to say "I'm lying, you know".

Casablanca

5/03/2014 [b]CASABLANCA'S CACHE. Wednesday, 5 March 2014: 32 items[/b] ENTITLEMENTS + FIDDLES + RORTS + SUBSIDIES 1. The rorts are all we have Posted by Houses and Holes I must say, I have to chuckle as I read the growing rhetorical movement in support of cutting back Budget excesses. John Freebairn and his highly admirable advice on how to fix the budget is an example: ”You can access your superannuation at age 60. You can access the age pension at age 65. The age [...]It is all true. The handouts are destructive to our long term wealth. But, that is long term, and one has to ask where has this thinking been during the boom times? By extension, we should also ask if it is wise to undertake such a vociferous campaign to eliminate the rorts during the tough times? The answer will shape the economic cycle that we are in. http://macrobusiness.cmail1.com/t/i-l-furtrl-dtyueir-ti/ 2. This is the ending of the Age of Entitlement . . . for some Kaye Lee “This decision says something significant about this government. We do not believe in government by chequebook . . . We don’t believe in any normal circumstances that government should be playing favourites between private businesses.” When Tony Abbott made this statement... I thought to myself hang on...“The Federal Government spends over $10 billion per year on subsidies that encourage the production and use of fossil fuels. About $65 million per electorate or, if you want to make it really personal, $430 per taxpayer each year.”... “Australia’s richest woman Gina Rinehart and fellow billionaire Andrew Forrest shared in more than $100,000 worth of taxpayer-funded handouts in their companies under Royalties for Regions last financial year. http://theaimn.com/2014/03/04/17956/ INDUSTRY WARS 3. Open for business or over a cliff? Peter Wicks 86 The Abbott Government has been in power for less than six months, but rather than creating employment and business confidence, the nation appears to be in economic decline... ANZ reported to its clients that business investment may drop up to 11% and described the financial implications of the new direction the country has taken since the "grown-ups" took over as: “Over the cliff we go." What is eye-opening though is that mining industry investment is also forecast to be down a colossal 25%. [...] http://www.independentaustralia.net/politics/politics-display/open-for-business-or-over-a-cliff,6240 4. The carbon price should be closing down these industries Simon Copeland Importantly, each time the left has been backed up. Look again at QANTAS and Alcoa and there is clear evidence that the carbon tax has had little to do with their losses and closures. Alcoa even put out a statement arguing the carbon tax had nothing to do with the closure of their aluminium smelter in Geelong. Each closure has been due to other factors – the rising dollar, internal competition etc etc. http://ausopinion.com/2014/03/04/the-carbon-price-should-be-closing-down-these-industries/ POLITICS, SECRECY, HYPOCRISY, DECEPTION 5. Labor party complains government has run out of legislation to debate Lenore Taylor ‘I’ve never known a government that has so little legislation to debate,’ says manager of opposition business Tony Burke... According to Burke, “departments always put up routine legislation … the only place a logjam could occur that leaves the parliament with so little to do is in the prime minister’s office”. http://www.theguardian.com/world/2014/mar/03/labor-complains-government-run-out-legislation 6. Company profits defy media's economic 'doom and gloom' Michael Janda Economists at a major share broker say profit reporting season shows most major Australian companies are in rude health... CommSec's chief economist Craig James says he has been surprised by the strength of corporate profits. "The profit-reporting season has been astounding and clearly the earnings results stand in marked contrast to the doom and gloom portrayed about the economy in the media," he noted in the report... Craig James says this reflects the stronger trading conditions in the second half of 2013, and most large firms seem well-placed to continue growing this year. http://www.abc.net.au/news/2014-03-03/rising-company-profits-indicate-economy-not-all-gloomy/5295532 7. Political risk in testing national attachment David Crowe THIS is an enormous political risk for an unlikely policy gain. Tony Abbott is betting that Australians are ready to abandon their sentimental attachment to Qantas and let it operate like any other airline. After sending signals in recent weeks that the company needed a “level playing field” with others, the Prime Minister has put that idea to the ultimate test. If the federal cabinet decision is legislated, there will be no special treatment for Qantas at all. In theory, Qantas could split its operations and bring in a big foreign airline to own about half the international division. http://www.theaustralian.com.au/national-affairs/opinion/political-risk-in-testing-national-attachment/story-e6frgd0x-1226844232155 8. Personal responsibility won’t solve Australia’s obesity problem Gary Sacks and Adrian Cameron Almost two thirds of Australians are now overweight or obese. In fact, obesity and unhealthy diets now contribute to more disease and illness in Australia than smoking. This makes finding solutions to… http://theconversation.com/personal-responsibility-wont-solve-australias-obesity-problem-23723 9. Political rats: The buck stops here David Horton Why do former Labor Party politicians, but not old Liberals, turn on their Party once they leave politics. There are, it seems, quite a number of Labor people who, but for accidents of family or history – sliding doors – could have comfortably been Liberal all along. The reverse, however, never very frequent, is now impossible. http://www.independentaustralia.net/politics/politics-display/political-rats-the-buck-stops-here,6236 ECONOMICS + BUSINESS 10. Australians pay more for health care than France, UK, report says, amid Medicare co-payment debate ABC Australians are paying much more for health care than people in France and the UK, consumer advocates say, amid debate over a proposed Medicare co-payment. http://www.abc.net.au/news/2014-03-04/australians-paying-more-for-healthcare-than-french-british/5296356?WT.mc_id=newsmail 11. On the budget and the economy, Joe Hockey is faking it Michael Pascoe It's getting harder and harder for the Treasurer and Minister for Gloom, Joe Hockey, to keep faking it. No matter how much he scowls, the evidence keeps mounting that his MYEFO (mid-year economic and fiscal outlook) forecasts were a crock. http://www.canberratimes.com.au/business/comment-and-analysis/on-the-budget-and-the-economy-joe-hockey-is-faking-it-20140304-341qf.html GENDER EQUITY 12. Country for old men: Little diversity in Abbott's picks Bernard Keane Some of its appointees are highly competent. But this is a government with less diversity and greater age than John Howard's last ministry in the cabinet as well as a predilection for old white male figures to review and investigate things. News Corp is controlled by a geriatric billionaire, with its Australian newspaper editors and commentators almost exclusively middle-aged and old men, an eternally raging PROSTATARIAT. http://www.womensagenda.com.au/talking-about/opinions/county-for-old-men-little-diversity-in-abbott-s-picks/201403033671?utm_source=Women%27s+Agenda+List&utm_campaign=1c43a19768-Women_s_Agenda_daily_04_03_2014&utm_medium=email&utm_term=0_f3750bae8d-1c43a19768-30634093 13. Is Tony Abbott a feminist? He thinks so Jordi Roth Prime Minister Tony Abbott has used a parliamentary International Women's Day breakfast in Canberra to label himself a feminist and declare women in Australia have smashed just about every glass ceiling. Pointing to former prime minister Julia Gillard and governor-general Quentin Bryce (who steps down from the post this month) as evidence of the cracks in the ceiling, the PM also noted his wife told him that having three daughters helped turn him from "an unreconstructed bloke into a feminist". "Anyone who is in Australian has won the lottery of life and if you look at our country and the deal that it gives to women; it is obviously pretty good. 14. Why is the government cutting back gender reporting rules? Melinda Oliver (Feb 25, 2014) Reporting requirements for gender equality in the workplace could be relaxed for small businesses as part of the Abbott government's mission to slash $1 billion of red tape. Under a new system being considered by Employment Minister Eric Abetz, only companies with over 1000 staff members would need to provide detailed annual reports on gender balance, The Australian Financial Review reports. http://www.womensagenda.com.au/talking-about/top-stories/why-is-the-government-cutting-back-gender-reporting-rules/201402243628 15. Why won’t the government disclose how many women procure small business contracts? Women's Agenda According to the World Bank women procure just 1% of all contracts even though they own around 40% of businesses and, in the lead up to International Women's Day, the Australian Women Chamber & Commerce Industry has launched a national campaign calling for change. Governments and business leaders must start using their purchasing power to support women in commerce... http://www.womensagenda.com.au/talking-about/top-stories/why-wont-the-government-disclose-how-many-women-procure-small-business-contracts/201402253641 16. Gender pay gap declines, but not by much Women's Agenda (Feb 20, 2014) Despite plenty of focus on the national gender pay gap over the past 12 months, new figures released today by the Australia Bureau of Statistics shows that the gap between men and women's full time earnings has fallen only slightly since last year. The gender pay gap now sits at 17.1%, down slightly from 17.5% as reported in August 2013. But it's not all bad news as figures show that women's earnings have increased at a higher rate than men's over the past 12 months, from 3.5% compared to 3%. http://www.womensagenda.com.au/talking-about/top-stories/gender-pay-gap-declines-but-not-by-much/201402203609 17. The X factor: The path to a female president Jill Lepore "Women don't make better politicians than men, or worse. They don't constitute a party or even an interest group. They ought to serve in equal numbers for the simple reason that one-half of the people ought not to be ruled by the other half. But in politics, as in much else, there exists what the political scientists Jennifer L. Lawless and Richard L. Fox call an ambition gap." () http://www.newyorker.com/talk/comment/2014/03/10/140310taco_talk_lepore 18. The women at the top Marcia Angell "They make up roughly 15 to 20 percent of working women in advanced countries, or about 70 million women worldwide... I’ll call them 'upper-middle-class,' although that is not very precise either. Whatever the term, if you are reading this, the chances are that you are one of these women or living with one.".. The rapid ascension of women to the most influential sectors of society—occurring in all advanced Western countries—is likely to have profound implications for public policy, and perhaps even more for the way families construct their lives and raise their children. http://www.nybooks.com/articles/archives/2014/mar/20/women-at-the-top/?insrc=hpss SOCIAL MEDIA + MEDIA LAW 19. The tweet that cost $105,000 Michaela Whitbourn A NSW school teacher has made legal history after a former student was ordered to pay $105,000 for defaming her on Twitter and Facebook. Media law expert David Rolph, an associate professor at the University of Sydney Law School, said: "This case just reinforces that even private individuals are subject to defamation law on social media and should be careful about what they say." http://www.canberratimes.com.au/technology/technology-news/the-tweet-that-cost-105000-20140304-341kl.html 20. A TV journalist's honest account of online bullying Whitney Fitzsimmons When I began my career as a television journalist, I had no idea just how helpless you can feel when being attacked by someone who gives you no room for reply, writes Whitney Fitzsimmons. Bullying is very serious. Sometimes it's so serious that by its very nature it brings about such a heavy level of shame on the target that nothing is ever done. The victim suffers in silence because of that shame. It creates a paralysis. Nothing is ever said. Nobody ever knows. The perpetrator walks away and the target is left wearing a deep and invisible wound. It is lonely and isolating. That is what happened to me. http://www.womensagenda.com.au/talking-about/opinions/a-tv-journalists-honest-account-of-online-bullying/201402263649 21. Twitter opens a new world of abuse aimed at women Julia Baird Trolling is a particular kind of evil: the rationale is inconsistent, the victim often random, the motives unfathomable to any decent person. But the vast majority of the targets for obscene, violent abuse are female. The evidence is rapidly accumulating: teenage girls are three times more likely to be targeted than teenage boys. Three out of four who report being harassed and stalked online are women. And, according to Pew Research Centre, 5 per cent of women online said they had been put in a position of "physical danger'' because of an internet activity. http://www.canberratimes.com.au/comment/twitter-opens-a-new-world-of-abuse-aimed-at-women-20140214-32qyf.html#ixzz2uzomii9M MEDIA BIAS + GROUPTHINK + DRIVEL 22. Who your mates are Andrew Elder The relationship between China and Japan is more fraught than it was under Howard, Rudd, or Gillard. The incumbent government, the alternative government, and journalists who report on government, should all be alert to that. Peter Hartcher should know this. He should report current events in light of broader developments. What he is doing instead is buttering up the incumbent Australian government in order to keep his job. He is playing his employers, and readers, for mugs. http://andrewelder.blogspot.com.au/2014/03/who-your-mates-are.html 23. Tony Abbott takes Aussie spirit of mateship to Asia Peter Hartcher The trade negotiations with China and Japan both appear to have gained impetus from the success of the deal with South Korea. As for publicly ranking countries, Dastyari is right. It's gratuitous and juvenile. But if the Labor Party detects an Abbott "pivot" away from China, it's more upset about it than Beijing itself. Labor should wish Abbott a successful trip. In the national interest. http://www.canberratimes.com.au/comment/tony-abbott-takes-aussie-spirit-of-mateship-to-asia-20140303-340cz.html#ixzz2v0JZpgSs FREEDOM + LIBERTY 24. Two Freedoms: Freedom of expression and freedom from racial vilification Dr Tim Soutphommasane Alice Tay Lecture in Law and Human Rights 2014: The focus of my lecture is on two freedoms – freedom of expression and freedom from racial vilification. But I should like to say something first about the basic concept of freedom. When I was a post-graduate student in political theory at the University of Oxford, the first topic which we were taught was that of liberty or freedom. This was how it was done in Oxford. The first tutorial for students of political theory – and indeed, of Philosophy, Politics and Economics at the undergraduate level – would inevitably be about liberty. https://www.humanrights.gov.au/news/speeches/two-freedoms-freedom-expression-and-freedom-racial-vilification 25. These elitist hate-speech laws erode democracy James Allan Neil Brown, QC, a Liberal minister in the Fraser government, has counselled Tony Abbott not to repeal our section 18C hate speech laws. He says doing so risks ''giving the green light to racists''. Instead, he suggests a convoluted compromise that basically leaves in place the ''you can't offend me'' legislation. Well, not to put too fine a point on it, but Brown and all the proponents of hate speech laws that legislate against ''offending'', ''insulting'', ''humiliating'' or even ''intimidating'' are wrong. They're wrong on the facts. They're wrong when they look overseas. And they're wrong about what is needed in a healthy, well-functioning democracy. http://www.canberratimes.com.au/comment/these-elitist-hatespeech-laws-erode-democracy-20140302-33ttw.html#ixzz2uzbbiyCE 26. Hate speech ignores victims' ability to respond Letters to the Editor There is one vital point that James Allan ignores: the power relationship between abuser and victim (''These elitist hate-speech laws erode democracy'', March 3). His naive claim that the victim can respond by saying why the abuser is wrong ignores the fact that shock-jocks or other media commentators, without such laws, are free to trade in insults without allowing their victims any opportunity to respond. Nor will a racist on a bus, screaming abuse. What would he be prepared to do to enforce the right of reply? http://www.canberratimes.com.au/comment/smh-letters/hate-speech-ignores-victims-ability-to-respond-20140303-340gg.html#ixzz2uza0NtLW ENVIRONMENT + ENERGY 27. Gas price surge sends wrecking ball through energy markets Giles Parkinson The relentless surge of gas prices that are bound to occur as Australia ramps up its new LNG export capacity on the eastern seaboard has barely begun, but already it is having a devastating impact on the country’s electricity markets. http://reneweconomy.com.au/2014/gas-price-surge-sends-wrecking-ball-through-energy-markets-19541?utm_source=feedly&utm_reader=feedly&utm_medium=rss&utm_campaign=gas-price-surge-sends-wrecking-ball-through-energy-markets-19541 28. Protest marched - Leard anti-coal crusaders ordered to vacate camp Ross Tyson Protesters waging war against mining companies operating in the Leard State Forest could be evicted from their new headquarters after complaints from residents... in relation to the increase in traffic, dust and noise”.. “It’s outrageous now that they are choosing to harass us – and the property owner does consider it harassment – and that we’re finding out about this from the media. “This is just another chapter in the ongoing circus that Narrabri Shire Council is trying to create against community protest.” http://www.northerndailyleader.com.au/story/2125569/protest-marched-leard-anti-coal-crusaders-ordered-to-vacate-camp/?cs=159 29. Apple, eBay, Gap, Intel throw weight behind Climate Declaration BusinessGreen Staff A group of 140 California firms have reiterated calls for legislators to deliver ambitious action on climate change with the release of a new declaration signaling their support for policies that serve to cut emissions and drive investment in clean tech. The group last week issued an updated version of the Climate Declaration, orchestrated last year by the Ceres group of sustainable investors and Business for Innovative Climate & Energy Policy (BICEP) group and backed by 750 U.S. companies. The declaration asserted that the U.S. must undertake a "coordinated effort to combat climate change" if it is to "maintain our way of life and remain a true superpower in a competitive world." http://www.greenbiz.com/blog/2014/03/03/apple-gap-intel-throw-weight-behind-climate-declaration?page=full ASYLUM SEEKERS + THE PSYCHOLOGY OF HATE 30. The psychology of hate: How we deny human beings their humanity Nicholas Epley From slavery to genocide, society has shown a terrifying ability to disregard the personhood of others. Here's why http://www.salon.com/writer/nicholas_epley/ 31. The Inside Story Dr David Corlett Inhumane conditions, self-harming and mismanagement… we’ve heard the claims about life inside the Nauru and Manus Island detention centres. Now SBS Dateline has the evidence of what’s really going on there. In a special investigation, new video and photos reveal unsanitary and overcrowded conditions, plus there are damning accounts and leaked documents from whistleblowers. They’ve spoken in detail to Dr David Corlett, host of SBS’s award-winning Go Back To Where You Came From, to highlight the conditions facing asylum seekers trying to reach Australia. Among the string of allegations, he hears of women being denied underwear, security guards taunting asylum seekers and the fabrication of welfare notes. http://www.sbs.com.au/dateline/story/about/id/601816/n/The-Inside-Story 32. The boats have ‘apparently’ stopped, but are any of us actually better off? Carol Taylor What issues are important to Australians? I don’t speak for all people but I’d suggest that if I said the issues included rising unemployment/job security, education, health, income inequality, aged care, climate change, the cost of living, adequate infrastructure, essential… http://theaimn.com/2014/03/04/the-boats-have-apparently-stopped-but-are-any-of-us-actually-better-off/ OOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO

Casablanca

5/03/2014 CASABLANCA'S CACHE. Wed, 5 March 2014: [b]News Corp (+ Abbott Government): 'the eternally raging 'PROSTATARIAT'*' [/b] Posted above and at: http://www.thepoliticalsword.com/page/CASABLANCAS-CACHE-2014-03-03.aspx * with acknowledgements to Bernard Keane, see item 12.

TalkTurkey

5/03/2014Just to lift the spirit! http://www.youtube.com/embed/xn7CYzPMf2o

Ad Astra

5/03/2014TT That YouTube clip was magnificent. We ought to make that stirring piece our TPS theme.

Casablanca

5/03/2014 I am a Girl: 21st-century lessons from 1970s feminism Andy Ruddock, Monash University [b]Tonight at 8.35pm [u]ABC2[/u] airs I am a Girl.[/b] Rebecca Barry’s documentary introduces us to six young women from around the world. They hail from Cambodia, Cameroon, Afghanistan, Papua New Guinea, the USA and Australia. The doco features girls such as Kimsey, a 14-year-old sex worker who supports her entire family, and Katie, a wealthy, middle-class student getting ready for exams. Their lives may be different but they all share a common dilemma: they live in a world where it’s dangerous to be a girl. http://theconversation.createsend1.com/t/r-l-phtijiy-trhltityg-x/

Ad Astra

5/03/2014Folks This is a reminder that Part 2 of Ken Wolff's 'Whither the Left' will be posted this evening

jaycee

5/03/2014For three years we, the public, witnessed the Abbott oppn's frenzied passions of impotence thrash and trash our parliament , blind hate and anger in the face of moderation in Labor governance...finally gaining power after a gluttony of media feeding and inflaming. The cruel irony of now having to view the sneering, vicious vengeance of such impotence from the LNP. ,as it enacts it's owner's demands, again greedily assisted by the same owner ; Murdoch in the MSM.... showing the disdain they feel for NOT being excised from their favoured position in the press-gallery, that now allows them to pursue even MORE vigorously their campaign of absurd hatred against what was a perhaps too lenient Labor govt' .

Casablanca

5/03/2014 [b]Senator Ludlam welcomes Tony Abbott to WA [/b] http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=dtqrfiEV8Gs&app=desktop This video has had almost 50,000 hits so far. The Australian Greens 1 hour ago After the amazing response to this speech, Senator Ludlam will be having a Reddit AMA tonight - 6pm in WA, 9pm EDT http://www.reddit.com/r/IAmA/comments/1zlr1n/iama_greens_senator_scott_ludlam_up_for/

Patriciawa

5/03/2014Ad Astra and TT re the Bolero - [i]Here! Here![/i] or should that be [i]Hear! Hear![/i] or maybe [i]Hear! Here![/i] Whatever - it was magnificent listening and viewing.

Catching up

5/03/2014http://cartoonmick.files.wordpress.com/2012/03/140305-ww3-locked-forests.jpg?w=700&h=

Catching up

5/03/2014Today, Abbott freed the true conservationists and the trees. Yes, it appears we have too many national parks and conservation areas. Did not hear, if he sent them his regrets.

Catching up

5/03/2014Watching Dateline on SBSshould be compulsory watching. It appears to have access to ample sanity pads, is a fire hazard. Yes, they can be used to start fires.
How many oranges do I have if I have 3 oranges and take ONE away?