(by Ray Dixon ~ your thinking man’s blogger)
Opposition Leader Bill Shorten probably had no choice but to make some kind of public statement following Police confirmation that no charges would be laid over the allegation that he raped a 16-year-old more than 25 years ago.
But I reckon he might yet regret his words (or lack of them), and especially these ones:
“The allegation was made by someone that I knew briefly at that time.”
Put yourself in the “someone’s” position. How would you feel being described like that?
Shorten, by omission, has basically confirmed that he did have sex with the girl but then refers to her dismissively as “someone that I knew briefly”?
Making matters worse, his substitution of the pronoun “who I knew …” with “that I knew” effectively describes her as an animal or object.
And hell hath no fury like a woman scorned.
Think AFL player Stephen Milne, who in 2004 was also initially cleared by Police of rape, only to be eventually charged years down the track following the alleged victim’s persistence.
Don’t be surprised if we haven’t heard the last of this.
I am actually sorry that I was MIA for last night’s QandA but I had an engagement with my son to play a game for the evening. However Palmer is certainly proving what a clown he is. What a shameless fool who sadly has the money (or access to funds) to make manifest some wild and crazy schemes the latest of which is his bonkers climate change conference where he plans to invite a whole swag of former world leaders to his dinosaur park for an utterly pointless chat fest. I am of course only guessing but I doubt that anyone with any real gravitas will attend but what is the bet that Clive’s new Bestie Al Gore is getting this stupid conference as payment for Clive’s road to Damascus conversion to the Green religion a few weeks ago? Palmer is as predictable as the plot of a $2 porno.
that said What Comrade Yale has to say as the post script to his post can not be seen as anything but the most amusing satire.
AND ANOTHER THING: One thing the Fairfax press is prepared to cover this morning is the plan by Palmer to establish his own national news publication; pitched as a “newspaper competitor” to Rupert Murdoch, Palmer has registered (or is in the process of doing so) the names The Australasian Times, The Australian Times, and Australian News.
There always seems to be a high-profile target wherever these “initiatives” by Palmer is concerned; not merely content to attempt to destroy a Prime Minister and a Premier, it now appears Palmer fancies himself to knock the most powerful media proprietor in the Western world down a few pegs as well.
Given the way he has conducted his political activities to date and what seems to be his conviction that the rest of us share his obsession with himself, it will be fascinating to see what passes as Palmer’s version of “unbiased news” — if this latest hare-brained scheme ever amounts to anything.
My guess is that even if it gets off the ground, it will find very limited favour with the news-consuming public; having spent 20 years in and around media companies and having acquired a firm grasp of what is involved in running them, my guess is that such an enterprise will haemorrhage money from Palmer’s fortune for as long as he is silly enough to persist with it.
Should it ever come to pass, Murdoch will be laughing — literally — all the way to the bank.
Not only will Murdoch be laughing but so too will the many washed up ex Fairfax journalists who will undoubtedly be lining up to sell their souls, and arses to Palmer for a few pieces of silver, even if the arse in question is pock marked with anti TB injections.
Palmer is a Joke who has worn out our ability to laugh at him these days its just a tired sigh from me at any of his antics but one thing is certain and that is we can be sure that the only thing that Palmer is interested in is having his ego massaged continually by making himself the center of every possible issue in Australian politics. Sadly we may have to put up with his pulsating blubber for some time to come because the happy ending that the public dream of won’t come soon enough and in the mean time we have to endure something that is almost too horrible to countenance no matter what side of politics you lay on.
As a psychiatrist who visits jails, I see a lot of overlap between locals who are lured towards terror and many clients from Middle Eastern backgrounds I see in the legal system.
While the cries for calm and cohesion are laudable and the fears among the Muslim majority of being tarnished by a tiny minority appropriate, there remains a wholesale denial within sections of the Muslim community that the bad apples have any connection to the apple tree. Khaled Sharrouf was not an isolated individual, but a man with a family which was linked to a community.
There remains a marked difference in the way males are raised within some Lebanese groups which predisposes them to greater acts of anti-social behaviour. It is a fairly specific segment of the Lebanese community and a result of the migration of poorer farmers and lower-class Lebanese Muslims after the civil war in 1975. Their numbers and concentration are greatest in southwestern Sydney.
There is a rampant anti-social character to some youths from this segment which stems in part from unsuccessful child rearing. The horrific moves towards terror acts can be seen as an ideological extension of a propensity towards bad behaviour, combined with an unshakable victim mentality.
There are clear trends in the clients I see from Arab groups in jails. They come from large families. The fathers were often absent while they worked unskilled jobs trying to provide. The mothers lacked the extended family support they may have had in their ancestral lands. Parenting focused on the daughters, for in the world the mothers knew girls needed more discipline and attention for opportunity and marriage to beckon. The men were placed on a pedestal with few behavioural limits. The relatively absent fathers, who might have disciplined the sons, compounded the problems.
I see further key psychological differences among these groups, particularly the Lebanese or the children of refugees from Iraqi or Afghan backgrounds. They are likely to see anger in different ways to Westerners or migrants from more educated ethnic groups. While expressions of anger and threats are a quick way to lose face in polite Western society, it is more acceptable within Arab groups. At its worst, calm, measured responses to conflict may be seen as weak.
This is outlined by Danish psychologist Nicolai Sennell’s groundbreaking work visiting Muslim criminals in jail, where he makes reference to the Arab notion of “holy anger”, which is completely foreign to English.
Another key difference is the psychological idea of “locus of control”. This refers to whether we believe our lives are driven primarily by internal or external factors.
Western thinking teaches that we have some control of our destinies. In its most optimistic forms, it is the basis for the self-help industry. Applying these kinds of ideas to my Muslim patients, particularly first-generation or less educated migrants, is extremely difficult. There is simply no such concept in Arab cultures.
What Arab cultures have are strict external rules, traditions and laws for human behaviour. They have a God that decides their life’s course. “Inshallah” follows every statement about future plans: if God wills it to occur. They have powerful Muslim clerics who set directions for their community every Friday. These clerics dictate political views, child-rearing behaviour and whether to integrate into Western societies.
In societies shaped under Islamic influences there is little emphasis on guilt and a greater likelihood to demand that society adapt to one’s own wishes.
Muslim youths have unique difficulties in coming to terms with their identity, especially when they have conflicting value systems at home compared with school or work. This can produce greater deviance, a point better measured in Britain where South Asian youth suffer from mental illness at three times the rate of the general population.
But there are Muslim youths from many different countries living in Sydney. Other Arab Australians from Egypt, Jordan or Iran do not have the same problems. If you meet them, they will be quick to point out that their community’s migration was from a more skilled base. They had smaller families, focused on their children’s education and integrated more easily.
There is no doubt Muslim communities throughout the Western world have been under the pump since the age of terror unleashed itself this century. But for all the interfaith work, awareness building and cries for tolerance, there continues to be a significant tendency to externalise all blame.
Reproduced here under the terms if its creative commons license originally published here
(by Ray Dixon – not a “poor person” just a fairer [and more honest] one than Hockey)
Joe Hockey’s “poor people don’t drive cars or don’t drive far anyway” disproved – by FACTS.
The truth is out there and Joe Hockey knew it all along. He lied about the figures.
Or, at the very least, he misrepresented the truth and did not use the data (the more relevant data) that was at his disposal, which is the same thing as lying – by omission.
Joe Hockey clearly deceived the public with his ludicrous claim that high income earners were the group “most hurt” by fuel excise increases.
Hurt? They’ll hardly even notice it.
In fact most high income earners don’t even care how much they pay for petrol and don’t need to.
Joe Hockey deceived the public. He is a disgrace and should resign.
Here are the real FACTS:
… as a proportion of gross income and weekly spending, fuel bills hit lower-income families harder.
Census data and research from independent experts shows that people on lower incomes have enough cars and drive far enough to feel the impact of raising the fuel tax more than those on higher incomes.
Mr Hockey’s statement is misleading.
The other key and relevant point that’s been overlooked in all this is that Joe Hockey’s “high income” earners mostly do not even pay for their own petrol.
It’s paid by their employers.
Who then go and claim it as a tax deduction – ie an effective 30% rebate. The employer also claims the 10% GST as a credit. Same goes for many self-employed and business owners.
Whereas lower – middle income earners cannot generally make any such tax claims and just wear the full price. Plus excise. Plus GST.
Joe Hockey is the most deceptive and arrogant Treasurer this country has ever seen. He even surpasses Costello on that score … and that’s quite a feat!
He has to go.
“I think the studies, and I think they date back from the 1950s, assert that Eric Abetz is still living in them”
(by SockPuppet ~ a real 70s guy when chicks and booze were cheap)
I dunno about you but I bet that Senator Eric A Bet was having a bet eachway when he tryed hard to get out of what he said on Channel Gen Ys cutting edge The Project show last night:
‘I was cut off': Eric Abetz blames Mia Freedman for reports he linked abortion to breast cancer on The Project
“I think the studies, and I think they date back from the 1950s, assert that there is a link between abortion and breast cancer.”
Now yous on the far right wing side where Eddie ‘I bet’ Abetz sits too will no doubt sprung to his defences position no doubt you will.
And yous on the left side of the far right wing will just say:
“Hes a dickhead from Tasmania”
which would then actuallymakes him a double dickhead because Tasmanians have Two heads.
(studies from the 1950s say so).
I on the other hand I am above politics and like the Buddha Zen deity I say this:
I think my post heading sort of says itall.
Comment away (God f*cken knows we need it)
Labor’s NBN is damned by the latest review:
“By contrast, with NBN Mark I, the public policy process for developing NBN Mark II was rushed, chaotic and inadequate,” it says.
The plan got just 11 weeks’ consideration and “there is no evidence that a full range of options was seriously considered”.
“There was no business case or any cost-benefit analysis, or independent studies of the policy undertaken, with no clear operating instructions provided to this completely new government business enterprise, within a legislative and regulatory framework still undefined, and without any consultation with the wider community,” the report says.
In other findings, the audit says full cabinet did not consider the policy until very early on the April 2009 morning it was announced, and its role was to “rubber-stamp” a decision by the strategic priorities and budget committee of cabinet.
It also revealed that public servants had “difficulty” in having their “voice” heard on many of the most important policy matters related to Labor’s NBN policy, often finding their advice was ignored or that they were excluded from contributing.
Ah How I remember the many minions of the left were singing the praises of the NBN MK2, the problem for them was/is that what they were really praising was the idea and the dream of super-fast internet even though the reality had turned into a nightmare of confusion and delay that would vex any engine.
(by SockPuppet ~ working for the dole @ Chez Hall)
Prime Minister Tony Abbott is not a brain surgeon or Einstein but he is still smart too and he has said it is not unreasonable to ask job seekers to make 40 job applications a month despite complaints from business that it would increase red tape and be a burden on businesses:
”What we want is job seekers who are active, not passive,” Mr Abbott told 2UE radio.
”It is not an unreasonable expectation or aspiration that we have … we want to ensure that people on unemployment benefits really are serious in looking for work, but we don’t want to unnecessarily burden small business,” he said.
Now I am not good at arithmetic but I have a brother who has a calculator he brought at Woolies for $5 (see
So I asked him to run some numbers and he says it tells this:
550,000 dole bludgers X 40 = 22 million mostly useless job applications per month
22 million X 12 = 264 million (mostly useless) job applications per year
And I am not Einstein either but I reckon there are nuthing like 264 MILLION jobs being offered in Australia every year.
Not even close.
My brother says its probably less than HALF A MILLION and that his Woolies $5 calculator says:
264 million divided by halfa million = 528 applications per job
I will say it again:
Tony Abbotts plan means businesses will get an average of 528 applications for every job.
Or even more because most dole bludgers will not be applying for top paying jobs like:
- CEO , Rocket Scientist, Brain Surgeon, Computer Genius, Nuclear Physicist, Head Chef at the Hilton, Malaysian Airlines Pilot
Or even not-so-top-paying specialist jobs like:
- Train Driver, Lion Tamer, Teacher, Social Media Expert, Senior Writer @ The Age, Lawyer, Adventure Activities Instructor
No, most dole bludgers would be looking at low-paid and low-skilled jobs like:
- Laborer, Factory Hand, Clerk, Shop Assistant, Waiter, Council Worker, Vic Roads Sign Holder
And this means most jobs could get up to 1000 applications.
And that is alot of work and might even create morejobs just to sort out the duds from the real and the shit from the clay sorta thing.
Is that Tonys plan? Create a whole new type of job called:
Job Application Shit Sifter
Or does as I think Tony Abbott needs a $5 calculator just to bring him up to speed?
He can borrow my brothers.
I’ve been watching the minions of the left have conniptions about the proposed changes to the way that Job seekers are expected to show their willingness to find work. On one hand you have the Government suggesting that the Unemployed should be willing to make 40 job applications a month and on the other side you have people insisting that its too much to ask.
I sort of think that both sides are right and wrong here.
Its very clear that in some parts of the country there simply are not enough jobs for the people who need them. and no amount of badgering the unemployed to make more of an effort is going to make thee needed jobs magically appear. Frankly the mad drive to import every more people is not helping either because every new arrival is going to be competing for that scarce commodity,namely a job. Further the march of the technology that is so beloved by our Latte sipping friends is only going to make things worse. Take the example of your local supermarket. Have you noticed they all now have the self serve checkouts? well do you realize that those self serve checkouts only have one person watching say six units in use and to help customers make their purchases? That represents the loss of five jobs right there. Now while working in retail may not be that glamorous it is an honorable profession that has sustained many workers, (mainly women) in the quest to provide for their own and the sustenance of their families. This sort of automation is happening in every aspect of our society. Its in the your library, its in your bank its every where and the trend is accelerating. The trend simply means that no matter how many more people we have the machine of our economy needs fewer people to run it. Likewise I draw the attention to those cute little robot vacuum cleaners that are endlessly advertised on TV and ask you to consider how long will it be the case business will be using them to replace cleaners in their offices?
On the other side of the ledger the obligation to make 40 approaches for those ever decreasing job opportunities will probably not be that hard to meet if a Job seeker digitizes a generic application letter and their resume that they send out to any business or potential job source entity. It does not even need to be customized for each instance that it is sent. Now I’m guessing (because I’m not personally playing this game) this on top of checking any jobs that are actually advertised would meet the obligation. How long till someone develops an app to do precisely that? However having made the obligation more onerous and punitive it hardly going to make the lives of the unemployed any easier. Worse yet it will turn every job seeker into something of a Spam merchant and if my friends in small business don’t just mark all of the extra job applications as “spiced ham” I would be very surprised indeed.
The other aspect in play is the old “work for the dole” which I have some serious reservations about. Mainly those reservations concern the amount of time that individuals will be obliged to work each week and the effective hourly rate that they will be working for. Its just manifestly unfair that any work people are obliged to do should be anything less than the going rate for such work. On top of that just what work are these people going to be asked to do and who is going to manage organize and supervise such work? Further I have concerns about the possibility that participants may be subject to bullying by those who run any “work for the dole” schemes. Finally there is the issue of cost, these schemes will cost more to run than any potential savings in the welfare budget so will it really be about the savings?
In conclusion though we can’t escape the fact that all of these proposals will require legislation to be made to happen and I just can’t see the current Senate passing many of these proposals which means that when the rubber hits the road what we will see will be somewhat diluted from what is currently being discussed. Sadly what neither it nor any alternative from Labor is going to address the clear structural issues that the march of technology is going to pose for humanity without that in the mix neither side of politics and certainly not the ordinary people are going to be winners. The Politics of this are pretty obvious though The Government is playing to its most hardline economic neoCon demographic who believe that welfare is just a waste of taxpayer’s money and that the poor or unemployed are just an inconvenience and generally a cohort of bludgers. The simple truth that conservatives like me recognize is that our welfare system is a necessary bulwark that ensures that we have a truly civil society and not one where the underclass is driven to a life of intrusive criminality to sustain the necessities of life Maintaining that bulwark at a cost that our economy can afford is the trick of it and on this score both sides of our politics play the “cruel to be kind” game (remember Gillard’s treatment of single parents?) Taking the longer view I am going to reserve my judgement on this whole thing until I see just how it comes out in the wash.