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We live in a secular age and in this country we expect that there should be a well defined separation between church and state, however when the government of the day “gets religion” which encourages them to set up a huge edifice to promote the tenets of their faith who would be surprised that the shear cost of the instrumentality and its lack of any immediate benefit for the billions it is costing should lead them to consider shutting it all down to help a budget bottom line that is in a rather perilous state for a plan due to be delivered just prior to the next federal election:
The thing that I find amusing about this is that it actually a wise move politically for the government to contemplate this sort of departmental pruning on a number of different levels.
Firstly the staff in this department will not be missed by the public because the work they do is pointless anyway
Secondly you can bet that as a recently created instrumentality that the majority of the staff are employed on short term contracts which would make them easier to sack/dispense with
Thirdly those public servants have been on notice since the rise of Tony Abbott that they are going to be gone as soon as he gets the lodge so being sacked by Labor won’t be much different to what they were expecting anyway.
Fourthly Most work in Canberra which is a solidly Labor town so their votes would still be mostly delivered to the government anyway because you can bet that most who work in the department are likely to be Greens supporters.
Fifthly it will save lots of money on the expenditure side of the Ledger which is desperately needed to try to balance the budget to recover Wayne Swan’s economic credibility.
Then on the other hand the Coalition must be delighted at the prospect of the Gillard government wearing all of the political pain for doing that which they will be planning as one of their first items of business after September 15. They will be able to achieve the abolition of this monument to leftist hubris with out being blamed or daemonised for doing so during the election campaign. The beauty of it all just sends a shiver down my spine , further it lends a fair bit of weight to my prediction that in a post Gillard parliament a very much chastened ALP will not oppose any bill to dismantle the Carbon Tax et al because they will be so despairing about the issue that they will just want to get it behind them and move on .
As for the Greens, well I expect that they will be rather like that Shakespearean storm, all sound and fury signifying nothing.
My friends form the left seem to be utterly terrified that this man will shatter their delusions about the nature of Islam and I just can’t help thinking that this fear is an example of a the sort of intestinal fortitude deficit that saw Neville Chamberlain declare that there would be “peace in our time” just prior to WW2. If a man receives death threats and requires substantial and constant protective efforts to ensure he remains alive isn’t that an indictment of the faith that he criticises and proof that it is no religion of peace?
I expect that the marriage of convenience between minions of the left and Islam will manifest itself in the form of claims the Geert is a “racist” and an Islamophobe (cue: Damian Doyle)but I can’t see such claims as anything other than those same minions being willing butt boys for a religion that is antithetical to all of their claimed belief in the rights of the individual to the inalienable right to autonomy of thought and a right to criticise all religious dogma. The left are total quislings when it comes to any criticism of the ideology of Islam they have been utterly cowered by the threats of violence, both explicit but more from the implicit threats that the promised violence that has been focused upon Wilders will be visited upon any here who speak up against the “religion of peace”.
Its all well and good to be tolerant of all of the many ways that people seek to personify the deity but in my view our obligation to be tolerant ends the moment that followers of any faith threaten or visit violence upon their critics.
I also note that there will be no Brisbane appearance, which is very disappointing to me personally…
- Ha Ha Islamophobia (iainhall.wordpress.com)
- Is Islam a Religion of Peace? No. [Part 2] (thegreatantagonizer.wordpress.com)
- Guess how many Islamic terror attacks since 9/11 (wnd.com)
- News From The “Religion of Peace” (mundabor.wordpress.com)
- “Islam the Religion of Peace” (jpfinn7.wordpress.com)
- Why Islam means peace? (abdulruff.wordpress.com)
- Neville Chamberlain Did the Right Thing? June 5th Debate at Intelligence Squared (winningreview.co.uk)
- Obama’s Indifference to Aggression (bokertov.typepad.com)
There are so many boats arriving that they barely rate a mention on the news these days but the swelling numbers in immigration detention surely does. With demonstrations from a distressed public in South and Western Australia showing that the public are clearly concerned that our government has both lost the plot and lack any idea where to go on this issue. Gillard and Labor have well and truly snookered herself on this issue because no matter how many claimants are rejected as asylum seekers they still require those claimants to agree to leave after their claims are rejected. Hence we have an ever increasing number of people in indefinite detention all of whom no doubt think that if they hold out long enough will eventually be allowed to stay. Thus we have Gillard trying to offer bribes to these failed claimants so that they will agree to leave without a fuss.
The Government hopes the payment, worth up to $4000 a person, will also reduce the chance of a failed asylum seeker returning to Australia by sea if they could return to their country in a sustainable and dignified way.
Britain and other European countries offer similar assistance through the International Organisation for Migration.
It is the first time the Rudd or Gillard governments have offered to pay for failed asylum seekers to return home.
The Howard government offered a three-year “reintegration assistance” package worth $5.8 million in 2002, but Labor’s then immigration spokeswoman Julia Gillard said it was not a real solution.
While the scheme will cost $5 million, the Government believes it will save if it can persuade people to leave expensive detention centres and it is cheaper than the cost of a forced return.
Opposition immigration spokesman Scott Morrison said the Government had no clear strategy to stop arrivals and was struggling to deal with the “major gridlock” in crowded detention centres.
“This appears to me to be very much an afterthought. It does not amount to a serious returns policy or repatriation strategy,” Mr Morrison said.
Its kind of pathetic that Labor is so lacking in intestinal fortitude on this issue because it seems to me that if there should be no problem deporting failed claimants the day after their last appeal has been rejected and if their lack of consent to being removed from the country is an impediment to that actually happening then Gillard could surely get support from the opposition to change the law so that their consent to removal upon failure of their final appeal was deemed to have been implicit in their appeal.
Its all well and good to claim that we have an obligation to provide protection to those who meet the criteria of the UN convention but such claims have clear (and incredibly broad) criteria so when those criteria have not been met by claimants even the most compassionate lefties have to accept that our obligation to accept the rejected claimants is non existent. However its clear to me that the true agenda of the bleeding heart left is that this country should have entirely open borders but that is a recipe for social suicide.
I have been known to mock Damian Doyle (aka Toaf) because he seems to spend an inordinate amount of time looking for one new disaster or human tragedy so that he can suggest that we should all either feel terrible guilt that we are living in plush western affluence, or a deep shame that we don’t automatically divest ourselves of all worldly possessions and give money till it hurts. I like to suggest that his interest in world wide suffering makes him a fan of “disaster Porn”.
Personally I tend to think that charity begins at home and I am far more inclined to support causes that are more local. Yet it is the malaise of the modern left to think that their guilt chips can be made quiet by the constant giving of alms.
So I found the piece in today’s age rather interesting it rather neatly lays out the dilemma inherent in our interconnected world, caused in part by the 24 hour global news cycle. Not a week goes by without there being news of some new natural or man made disaster. I think that it is only natural that we all eventually become rather immune to the images of suffering on the TV. Likewise I have absolutely no time for the constant calls from charity organisations seeking donations I have developed a standard replay along the lines of “As a matter of policy I do not donate to any organisation who cold call me” and it seems to give them the message with out being too nasty that I don’t appreciate their begging. Anyway this ramble is by way of an introduction to the OP Ed piece that I found in today’s age by Maria Tumarkin:
But wait, should you be giving money to the Pakistan appeal when you walk past homeless people in your city every day, when eight young indigenous people killed themselves in the Northern Territory recently, and when traumatised children have been exposed to intolerable levels of anxiety, distress and self-harm in detention centres?
Actually, should you be giving money to strangers (assuming a part of your donation reaches those strangers in the first place) when your own sister cannot pay rent or your own grandparents are struggling on a government pension? Is this not the height of hypocrisy to look away from the needs of those closest to you, to judge them less pressing and serious than the needs of people on the other side of the world?
AND I am not even going into the serious critiques of foreign aid as a whole, such as the one recently put forward by economist Dambisa Moyo in her book Dead Aid (Oprah loves it!). Moyo is hardly the first to argue that societies become trapped in aid dependency, which perpetuates disempowerment and endemic corruption, and gives rise to more poverty and dependency still. (In the same way Noel Pearson, love him or hate him, has argued that welfare dependency has trapped and poisoned indigenous communities across Australia.) In his recent public lecture Against Charity, philosopher Slavoj Zizek proclaims that in the West charity has been swallowed whole by cultural capitalism (see, for instance, the rise of the so-called philanthrocapitalism) and altruism has been subsumed by consumerism so the two can no longer be pulled apart – buy Starbucks coffee and support free-trade coffee producers; choose organic and save the planet; shop here and say a decisive no to child labour.
In my younger days there were probably no fewer natural disasters, no fewer wars and definitely no more instances of individual suffering its just that the news of events and the vision of that disarray and the faces of the starving are there in our living rooms day in and day out. Oh I know this is sort of the opposite of the “If a tree falls in the Forrest“riddle because we hear the sound of suffering so much that so much we no longer seem to notice any individual instance of pain.
Anyway Maria Tumarkin’s column is thought provoking and worth reading