Archive for the ‘Politics’ Category
This is so embarrassing to watch. It’s like an episode of The Office or maybe Peep Show.
Judging by the actions of the NSW government, Catholics are so thin skinned that they need extra police protection. Police have been granted special powers to deal with people who confront attendees of the WYD with ideas the Pope doesn’t agree with. According to some observers, wearing slogans or handing out condoms at WYD could get you in trouble. Group Think will probably be OK.
Thank God the media is on the case.
From the Age : http://news.theage.com.au/national/youth-day-protesters-to-offer-condoms-20080701-2zlj.html
Powers approved by the NSW government allow for people who continually annoy or inconvenience pilgrims during the event, to be staged in Sydney from July 15 to 20, to be arrested and possibly fined $5,500.
From the ABC : http://www.abc.net.au/news/stories/2008/07/01/2290617.htm
Draconian, repugnant and unnecessary. These are just a few of the criticisms of special regulations coming into force for the upcoming Catholic World Youth Day event in Sydney.
Civil libertarians and legal experts say the regulations could see situations such as someone deemed to be wearing an offensive T-shirt being arrested and given a hefty fine.
New South Wales Police say the measures are designed simply to ensure that World Youth Day is a peaceful and happy event.
From the BBC: http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/asia-pacific/7482696.stm
Lawyers in Australia say that police powers introduced for a major gathering of young Roman Catholics later this month will undermine free speech. Under the powers, police will be able to arrest and fine people for “causing annoyance or inconvenience” to participants in World Youth Day.
From News.News.News.News.com: http://www.news.com.au/story/0,23599,23951245-5016937,00.html
NSW POLICE have been given extraordinary new powers for World Youth Day, including being able to arrest and fine people for “causing annoyance” to participants and conduct partial strip searches.
Critics say the new powers have the potential to make wearing a T-shirt with a slogan, a protest like handing out condoms or a Chaser-style stunt a crime, while civil libertarians believe the powers are more extreme and than those used during last year’s APEC summit.
Sent an Email to Jenny Macklin — I wonder if I’ll get a reply?
I am writing to you to express my concern about recent coverage of Aboriginal health, education and welfare and to offer a simple suggestion which I believe will make a great difference in the race to improve quality of life and educational outcomes in Aboriginal communities.
I believe the introduction of school provided meals for breakfast and lunch, free of charge and of high quality, could go a long way to achieving several important outcomes:
- Improved health
- Improved school attendance
- Improved ability to concentrate, leading to better academic performance
- Exposing children to what should constitute a proper diet ( There is evidence that adult dietary patterns are learnt in childhood )
- Allowing parents to focus on self improvement, by needing to provide 10 fewer meals per week.
- Reducing financial load on families.
A recent article on Aboriginal welfare, highlighted nutrition as a key problem. Providing proper meals helps meet the foundation of Maslow’s hierarchy of needs. Once these basic needs are met, focus can be moved to other community problems.
Finland, consistently one of the highest performing countries in educational results has provided free school meals to everyone since 1948. A key point is that all students should be provided meals — providing meals to only those in dire need has a stigmatising effect.
This is by no means a complete solution, but could provide immediate improvement in quality of life for young Aborigines. Providing free meals to Aboriginal students could be considered as a pilot program, as it is my opinion that, in the future, all Australian schools should provide all students with a free lunch.
At the crossroads? lsdjf
It’s hard to not be impressed by this guy. I find it annoying that I care what happens in the US elections, but it affects us so strongly, and this guy says so much that makes sense.
Great interview with the founder of the Swedish Pirate Party.
What was remarkable was that this was the point where the enemy — forces that want to lock down culture and knowledge at the cost of total surveillance — realised they were under a serious attack, and mounted every piece of defense they could muster. For the first time, we saw everything they could bring to the battle.
And it was… nothing. Not even a fizzle. All they can say is “thief, we have our rights, we want our rights, nothing must change, we want more money, thief, thief, thief”. And shove some poor artists in front of them to deliver the message. Whereas we are talking about scarcity vs. abundance, monopolies, the nature of property, 500-year historical perspectives on culture and knowledge, incentive structures, economic theory, disruptive technologies, etc. The difference in intellectual levels between the sides is astounding.
Apparently, family values are being threatened!
THE State Government is indulging in social engineering in giving lesbians and single women access to fertility treatment, giving lesbian partners legal recognition as parents and allowing surrogate mothers, the leader of a Jewish, Christian and Muslim committee said yesterday.
Heaven’s above! Whatever shall we do! Who’s responsible for this degradation of the moral fabric of our time?
Rabbi Shimon Cowen said planned changes announced by Attorney-General Rob Hulls before Christmas showed that secularists had hijacked fundamental values and were changing accepted morals.
Bloody secularists. Next thing they’ll be telling us that owning slaves is “wrong” and that “gays” should be allowed to walk the street with you and me.
This is a text book example of religion retarding the advancement of society. A bunch of old men who’ve climbed the “holier than thou” ladder of internal church politics presume to tell us that we’re not living by the standards of their sacred books.
The Rudd team isn’t all bad apparently — along with getting on board Kyoto, religion will hopefully have a smaller role in our new government:
The Rudd team is not only younger than the Howard ministries of recent years. Despite Rudd’s acclaimed commitment to Christianity, the Godless of Labor’s front bench outweighs the God-fearing if a propensity to take an affirmation rather than an oath is a guide. Only 19 of the team, including Rudd, held the Bible, while the other 23 opted to affirm their loyalty. The Howard folk were Bible-bearers almost to a person.
Perhaps they’ll drop ludicrous ideas like School Chaplains.
I was introduced to an excellent website by Ian – howshouldivote.com.au. Nice simple design, simple premise well executed. Answer twenty questions on various issues with multiple choice style, “Agree Strongly” to “Disagree Strongly”. Your results are then compared to candidates in your area ( once you put in your postcode ) and a percentage match is given for the candidates who have answered the survey themselves. You get to see their answers to compare them to yours.
Apparently the Democrats are the closest match ( Not all candidates have completed the survey ) for me – which I suspected.
The questions asked are themselves interesting in predicting what issues are important. This question:
Overall economic growth is less important than reducing the gap between the rich and the poor.
Was answered “Strongly Agree” by the Greens, and “Strongly Disagree” by the Democrats. This one seems to be a trick question – surely we should be focused on making the poorest of us better off, rather than reduce the gap between Rich and Poor? What difference does it make if the gap is big or small? If the gap shrinks, that provides no information about the living standards of the poorest amongst us. Here’s another political fluff question:
The Australian Government should say ‘sorry’ to Indigenous Australians for past injustices.
Saying “Sorry” is a symbolic gesture, it costs nothing, it achieves nothing. It’s astounding that we’re focused on it – surely we should be focused on having a country with no one left behind? A country where we protect and encourage those that need our help? Focusing on a symbolic gesture, rather than focusing on improving the outlook for Indigenous Australians is just another way to ignore the problem and focus on the “Feel Good” stuff.
Well, not quite yet. Currently my folks are on 16% of their water allocation. They normally require the full 100%. Avocados use a disproportionate amount of water, so they’re gone — bulldozed a few weeks ago. The Victorian government has known since at least 2001 that they’d over allocated the Murray’s water. They promised that it didn’t matter and that they’d manage the water so that they never ran out. Typical politicians.
So what can be done? In the short term, farmers with annual crops ( grasses and grain ) could be paid by the government to go without using their allocation, whilst permanent plantations citrus, avocados and vineyards receive their allocation. A year or two without water will do no harm to annual crops, but will kill off permanent plantations which take around 5 years after replanting to become productive.
Longer term solutions include government purchasing water rights ( at market rates ) from willing sellers. Replacing channels with pipes to reduce water wastage. Building dams.
Non of these solutions will be any help to the farmers who’ve relied on the Murray for water for the last 100 years.
Here we have some lovely green leafy avocado trees.
Here we have some dirt.