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Should Hicks be allowed to keep the money from his book?

Ok, just a quicky this morning, hands up all of those who think that Hicks should be allowed to keep the money from his book?

In clause 2d of his plea agreement, Hicks agreed to assign to the Australian government any proceeds he may be entitled to, in connection with any publication or dissemination of information relating to the illegal conduct with which he had been charged.

When questioned by the US military commission, Hicks said he understood that the agreement meant he would not “circumvent this assignment to the government of Australia”.

He agreed when it was put to him that if he failed to assign any book profits to the Australian government, it would provide a basis for civil action.

Senator Brandis said the commonwealth Director of Public Prosecutions should be taking legal action against Hicks under the Proceeds of Crime Act.

Attorney-General Robert McClelland was last night considering Senator Brandis’s remarks.

 

Personally I think that every cent of any money Hicks  is given by the publishers for his self-serving book should be forfeited to the crown, in the first instance because he is seeking to profit from his vile  past and secondly because he willingly entered into a contractual agreement with the government to do precisely that.
Cheers Comrades

 

 


27 Comments

  1. Indi Warrior says:

    Seriously dumb question.

  2. Iain Hall says:

    well then you should have no trouble actually answering it then IW 😉

  3. Indi Warrior says:

    Then its a Yes from me.

  4. Iain Hall says:

    IW
    Why do you think that ?

  5. bingbing says:

    Agreed – on both counts.

    Also, Hick’s getting all this public sympathy is ridiculous. He trained with Al-Qaeda. He served with the Taliban. What this bloke wanted would serve no one well, especially someone who’s progressive.

    Do lefties fully understand that? From comments above, it appears that’s a No.

  6. gigdiary says:

    These lefties live in this country, enjoy the privileges and freedoms this country offers, and then support faux-causes like this traitorous worm.

  7. Ray Dixon says:

    Hi GD, that statement about “these lefties” might have some validity … if it were not for the fact that when Hicks went stupidly on his ‘boys own adventure’, September 11 2001 had not happened and we were not actually engaged in fighting the Taliban. At that stage it was more like a civil war and while it’s pretty clear that the Taliban were ‘the baddies’ you can’t say a lot for the other side of that conflict either.

    I think you’re sufferring from a bad case of ‘failing to give the benefit of the doubt’ here. After all, Hicks did pay a pretty big price for his ‘crimes’ and I think that “these lefties” you refer to are merely exercising what is commonly called human compassion for someone who was terribly misguided and maybe, just maybe, was in the wrong place at the wrong time.

    Don’t tar us with the same brush as you tar real jihadists with please, just because we think Hicks should be given another chance.

  8. Iain Hall says:

    Ray
    even I have been willing to support Hicks having an opportunity to make a new life but I see his attempt to make a quid out of his notoriety as rather despicable,and you have not answered the core question here, which is do you think he should be able to keep the money?

  9. gigdiary says:

    Hi Ray, I do appreciate your even-handed rationale. Your opinions often sway mine to a more PC outlook. Yes, Hicks does deserve a second chance. A second chance means being able to resume life in Australia, as a citizen, a worker or whatever it is that he does when he is not parading with MK-47s. That should be it.

    Profiting from such a dissembled account of his time in the Middle East, and refusing to acknowledge that he was in error in venturing there in the first place, makes it hard to swallow for the average Australian citizen. He is thumbing his nose at us, and our government. We don’t need cretins like this, who leave their family to join the Taliban, much less to profit from a book about their experiences.

    Shame on Random House for publishing this, and shame on Hicks for his total denial of the situation.

  10. Ray Dixon says:

    Do you even know if he’ll make any, Iain? And does anyone know for sure that he plans to keep any proceeds? I can’t imagine it’ll be a big seller. As for the “core question”, let the courts decide – I’ll go with whatever they rule, if it comes to that.

  11. Ray Dixon says:

    GD, Hicks copped the plea and, in so doing, effectively admitted that he was “in error”. I’m not sure why you think he’s obliged to keep acknowledging that. These ‘I was a victim’ books are always penned in a self-serving manner (look at Howard’s!) but I don’t think that means he’s “thumbing his nose at us, and our government”. I reckon you’d be just as against him if he’d described himself in the book as public cretin#1, but who does that? No one reckons he’s a hero; he was an idiot.

  12. Ray Dixon says:

    Btw, we do still have free speech in this country don’t we? You’re not advocating that the book be banned, are you? Look, if the contents are within the law (i.e. if it’s not like, a book on paedophilia or on how to make a bomb, etc) there is no impediment to it being published. Nor should there be one. Readers will decide for themselves how credible it is – I won’t bother though.

  13. gigdiary says:

    Comparing Howard’s book with Hicks’ just shows how askew Left thinking is. One bloke led Australia for eleven years, successfully, over many elections, the other is a miserable worm. Hicks should be recanting for the rest of his life as far as I can see. In the past traitors weren’t treated so leniently.

    Common decency says that he should keep his head low and suck up the welfare payments that he is no doubt now receiving. Any other other course of action is a slap in the face to law-abiding citizens.

  14. Ray Dixon says:

    I wasn’t comparing Howard’s book with Hicks, GD, and I think you know that. The point was that self-penned stories nearly always gild the lily.

    Once again you’re only too quick to jump in and condemn what you call “left thinking”. My opinion on this (like most things) is not based on any groupthink, political-leaning or predisposed mindless disposition – it’s just based on “thinking”, full stop.

    As for your last paragraph, thankfully we live in a free society where even David Hicks is entitled to have his say. And even John Howard acknowledged that.

  15. gigdiary says:

    And my point Ray, is that while he is entitled to write his story, it is offensive that he profits from it, no matter how small the takings.

  16. bingbing says:

    Ray, the book is selling well. It’s #4 in the Dymocks non-fiction list.

    :S

  17. Ray Dixon says:

    It might well be “offensive” to many people, GD. Lots of things are offensive.

    I find The Chasers “offensive” and it shits me that those under-grad, unfunny goons profit from it. But ………

  18. Ray Dixon says:

    Prediction, Bing Bing: It’ll be on the bargain table within a month. But, as I suggested, if he profits by it I’m happy to let the legal system deal with the matter of whether or not he keeps the dough.

  19. mumbles says:

    Simple enough the contract he signed, he should be held to it.

    In clause 2d of his plea agreement, Hicks agreed to assign to the Australian government any proceeds he may be entitled to, in connection with any publication or dissemination of information relating to the illegal conduct with which he had been charged.

    David Hicks is a terrorist and no rewriting of history changes the fact that he pleaded guilty.

    I agree that he should not profit, but there is no suggestion that he should not publish.

  20. bingbing says:

    Publish? Fine. We’re not into burning books, right? But as mumbles said, legally, the case is pretty clear.

    Morally, it is crystal.

  21. Ray Dixon says:

    Then we’re pretty much agreed then? It’s a matter for the civil courts to decide when, and if, it gets to that. We can all play bush lawyer but I think you’ll find there will be strong argument on both sides. It’s only a contractual matter.

  22. bingbing says:

    Pretty much. Now test that in a court of law, lol!

  23. bingbing says:

    The term “pretty much” in this context.

    It was a joke…

  24. Ray Dixon says:

    It was “pretty much” a joke?

  25. mumbles says:

    Update

    the whole question is thrown into doubt again with this legal opinion from skeptilawyer that does not change my opinion but certainly sheds some light on the Brandis pronouncements. Brandis must have been aware of the repealed provisions, (i was not) and it would seem that his argument may be misleading rather than a statement of principle in this matter.

    As Sir Humphrey would say, courts action is a courageous move Minister. However, as some one who argued for Hick’s repatriation and trial in Australia very early on, I for one would be very interested to understand the process and US OZ relationship regarding this matter that a trial, as skepti says, may then see the light of day.

    The equivocality of the US Military Commissions along with US extraterritoriality is a long held concern of mine and how it should apply now and in the future with allies could do with some clarification, particularly in the light of our extradition agreements.

    I continue to hold the view that Hicks is a terrorist and a tool, both colloquially and of the left.

    Skepti link here
    http://skepticlawyer.com.au/2010/10/30/disgorgement-of-profits-and-david-hicks-2/

  26. Iain Hall says:

    I think That Katy (Legal Eagle) has a very good grasp of the legal issues involved here and I suspect that Labor are rather vexed on this issue because they are running so scared of losing support to the Greens that they don’t really want to go for the proceeds of Hicks’ book

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