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All you need is love

By 2353NM

The Beatles released ‘All you need is love’, written by John Lennon and Paul McCarthy, 50 years ago this month during the first global satellite television broadcast, Our world. June 1967 was the summer of love where it is claimed that up to 100,000 people congregated in the Haight-Ashbury neighbourhood in the city of San Franscisco. The two events are related as far as The Beatles by that stage were a studio only band and seeking alternative lifestyles.

While the words and motives of All you need is love might be seen as idealistic in 2017, with the bombing of a pop concert in Manchester and a gunman shooting 28 Coptic Christians in Egypt both occurring in the same week, on the face of it there isn’t a lot of love in the world at the moment. Perhaps there should be more love used to retain law and order, rather than the current approach of using a bigger stick.

Various news reports in the days after the Manchester bombing have stated that the British are ‘stoic’ people and will overcome the justified sorrow and questioning that occurs after events like the bombing. They probably will, considering the British people have a history of living with domestic terrorism that precedes the current fanatical claimed Muslim extremists, or the fanatical Irish Republican Army of the late 20th Century, the bombings of World War 2 and potentially also before the days of Guy Fawkes and his co-conspirators attempting to blow up the houses of Parliament in 1605.

However, when confronted with some form of rebellion (be it internal or external), the authorities seem to always resort to the use of a bigger stick. For example, when the USA and the USSR both developed nuclear weapons in the 1950’s; they boasted that if attacked, they would retaliate. In a concept known as mutually assured destruction, by the 1980s

. . . the Soviet Union had many more warheads, and it was commonly said that there were enough nuclear arms on Earth to wipe the planet out several times.

Clearly there is only one earth – so having the capability to destroy the planet more than once is wasteful and frankly ludicrous. In a similar way, there is logically a limit to the size of the stick. Larger and more complicated weapons designed to kill and maim probably makes millions for those who design and manufacture the implements, but at some point, there has to be a practical limit.

Guy Fawkes was seeking religious freedom, eventually granted in England, Rudolf Hess (Hitler’s second in command) flew to Scotland in 1941 to, in his mind at least, negotiate a peace treaty with Churchill and the IRA finally agreed to cease terrorist action when a negotiated power sharing arrangement was implemented.

Deputy Prime Minister Barnaby Joyce was interviewed by SkyNews on 25 May and, as you would expect given the timing of the interview, he was asked for his opinion on the bombing in Manchester. After the usual (and correct) condemnation of the attack, Joyce went on to say (as reported by The Guardian):

These people have always been around and every religion has them at their periphery. I’m Catholic, in Northern Ireland we had the IRA, who decided they were going to change the world by murdering people. I don’t agree with that. These people believe they are going to change the world by murdering people. We have seen it in Buddhism, we have seen it in Hinduism. It’s murder. It’s wrong and we have got to make sure as a nation, people can go to the cricket, can go to the rugby, go down the street, go to the park, enjoy life, be Australian and leave other people alone to have their beliefs because they are probably different to yours. Don’t change the world by violence, change the world by argument, cogent argument.

Joyce went on to suggest

People say it all sounds a bit old fashioned but it’s not. If you really had an empathy for other people around you, you wouldn’t want to blow them up. You would say they’re just like me. Leave them alone.

Joyce makes a good point. Rather than using a bigger stick to alter people’s behaviour to something that suits your norms, why not try empathy.

Sean Kelly, writing for The Monthly on 26 May reports of an exchange between Senator Hanson and the head of ASIO, Duncan Lewis during the recent Senate Estimates process. When asked by Hanson about the threat of terrorism being introduced by middle eastern refugees,

Lewis, widely respected within his field, made the factual situation very clear, “I have absolutely no evidence to suggest there’s a connection between refugees and terrorism.”

Hanson asked about the burqa, to which Lewis said, “We’ve made it plain on a number of occasions, senator, that we have no security reason to be concerned about the wearing of a burqa – other than the requirement for individuals to identify themselves to authorities, and there are regulations in place for that.”

Hanson also asked whether all attacks and thwarted attacks since 2014 had been perpetrated by Muslims.

Lewis replied, “Of the 12 … thwarted attacks, one of those, indeed, involved a right-wing extremist … So the answer is they have not all been carried out by Muslims … But I’ve got to stress, senator – this is very important – ASIO does not make its inquiries or its assessments on the basis of somebody’s religion. We are only interested in people who are exhibiting or offering violence, and to the extent that there is violent extremism – which is very frequently inspired by a warped version of Sunni Islam – that’s when our interests are invoked.”

Duncan Lewis deals in facts which apparently do not support the claims of Hanson et al. In a similar way, we have the current Immigration Minister, Peter Dutton, claiming that refugees who were settled in Australia and not yet completed formal documentation processes are ‘fake’ and will be deported if their claims are not formally lodged by October this year (while reducing the ability of staff to process claims).

Joyce seems by contrast to be on to something.

In a headline that really is quite chilling; Cops in this City haven’t killed anyone since 2015. Here’s one reason why: Huffington Post describes the de-escalation process employed by Salt Lake City Police in the USA.

The officers being trained in de-escalation are encouraged to communicate and empathize with suspects, take stock of the factors contributing to a confrontation, and consider ways to disengage before the situation spirals out of control, leading to the use of force.

The Salt Lake City Police have identified 37 occasions where de-escalation has worked in preference to the use of lethal force in the past 18 months.

It would be a huge step for the Hansons and Duttons of this world to use empathy rather than try to wield the bigger stick. Unfortunately, I have a better chance of winning Lotto tonight. Australia has been fortunate that there have been no large scale terrorism attacks in our country since the Port Arthur event some years ago. Negotiation and giving some ground has been much more effective than ‘the bigger stick’ to solve disputes across history, as witnessed by the Truth and Reconciliation system in South Africa, the power sharing arrangements in Northern Ireland and the re-unification of Germany.

As the Salt Lake City (and other) police forces around the world are demonstrating, empathy and de-escalation are useful tools to reduce injury and death while permanently resolving conflict. Barnaby Joyce has a point, just as The Beatles did 50 years ago. Rather than Hanson’s racist rhetoric or Dutton’s ‘fake refugee’ comments, when will we learn the lessons of history?

This article was originally published on The Political Sword

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  1. Kaye Lee

    Pauline’s latest facebook post:

    “While authorities reduced the terrorism threat in the UK, they were busy coming up with a new slogan to release during the next terrorism attack.

    As the London Mayor said in September 2016, Terror attacks are “part and parcel of life in a big city.”

    Sorry Sadiq Khan, I don’t agree!

    We must stop radical Islam numbers from increasing here in Australia. Islamic immigration must end in Australia.”

    My reply

    You seem incapable of understanding the causes of problems. You are doing EXACTLY what foreign terrorists want just like Howard did.

    Despite being informed many times by those that actually know what is going on that hatred and exclusion is what provides fertile ground and that the Australian Muslim community have been enormously instrumental in keeping us safe, you choose to foment fear of the innocent.

    Prosecute the criminals. Provide haven for those fleeing the violence. Work together.

    Your ignorance, your lack of ability to understand, your arrogant certainty, are populist politics at its most vile. You and Trump have been played like puppets.

    “Message from London: political point scoring is the absolute, LAST thing we need right now.”

    Trump has been described as “a cheap hustler occupying an office that you don’t understand” and an “Opportunist-in-Chief”. How very applicable to you Pauline. You know not what you do.

  2. Adrianne Haddow

    Great article.
    Thanks for showing sanity and humanity in these times of nationalistic, xenophobic madness.

  3. Zathras

    I can imagine how internally pleased Hanson must be about this latest London incident – another “told you so” opportunity, like the Party room celebrations that used to happen in the Liberal Party whenever another refugee boat came over the horizon under Rudd’s watch.

    It might make up for how she immediately and incorrectly labelled the recent Bourke Street driver rampage a Muslim event.

    However, was it a terrorist event or does that only apply to certain groups? Blowing up Mosques and random street assaults in the UK aren’t flagged as terrorism in our media, nor was the knifing of three men by a white supremacist who came to the assistance of a harassed Muslim woman in Oregon last week.

    According to their own data and definitions of what constitutes “terrorism” the official figures in Europe and the USA for Muslim-inspired terrorism are between 6 and 10% of the total incidents but over 90% of media coverage (and 99% of Hanson’s attention).

  4. Freethinker

    Reading in the Australian news what some of our idiot politicians are saying make me really upset .
    Cory Bernardi:
    “When I first warned that Britain and Europe were committing cultural suicide many years ago, the media, Liberals, Greens and Labor were all competing in rush to condemn the truth,”
    Pauline Hanson:
    “The people of Britain have been let down by their leaders. It’s so frustrating to see fools like Bill Shorten making the same mistakes.”
    “Labor started this under Whitlam, Fraser was almost as bad. Rudd & Gillard opened the borders. Bill Shorten will make the same mistake.”

  5. townsvilleblog

    It appears that all you need these days is love and a black belt in karate and to walk around with a sub machine gun to protect yourself from Islamic terrorism, at least in England , France and Belgium.

  6. townsvilleblog

    The English experience has been allowed to happen by tory budget cutbacks when May was the Minister responsible for homeland security, as the Australian tories are cutting government expenditure on everything related to everyday Australians except of course defence , which the taxpayer (everyday working people) will pay dearly for. Sadly our tory federal government like the tory UK government places “people” and their welfare at the bottom on the priority list.

  7. havanaliedown

    Leftists Enable, Encourage and Excuse Islamism. Islamism damages the West, so they are happy to enable their allies.

  8. freefall852

    Is it just a coincidence that the more Right-Wing a western govt’ is, the more they are “attacked” by radicalised terrorists..even / or most often at election times when the Right-Wing needs a “spot of terrorism” the most. It is almost as if a false flag operation was in has to wonder what is the real motivation of these killers or at least those who “manage” the killers.

  9. Michael Taylor

    havanaliedown, the only thing I was able to extract from you statement is that you have a closed mind.

  10. freefall852

    I suppose all “management” has to do once there is fanatical radicalism of the persons, is to up-the-ante on them at any given selected time (think Cronulla / A.Jones et al) and leave the fanatics do the rest..a bit like football hooliganism..

  11. havanaliedown

    Quickly before I go to work, Michael, the West will never repair the damage it has wreaked militarily, or repay them to theirr satisfaction, nor will we make the Islamic world our friend. “Kill the Infidel”… heard of that?

    The best we can do is seal off their world from ours. We have nuclear energy, coal and natural gas – we don’t need anything else from them, and we can’t help them other than let them swamp us. How’s the glorious “multiculturalism” working in England?

  12. freefall852

    ” The best we can do is seal off their world from ours.”…GREAT idea! a wall, you mean?…say..why hasn’t humanity in all it’s glorious intellect, with the likes of havana-l-d’ given this a teensy bittsy bit of thought in the past..HELL!! There’s so many places this could be done..Thankyer thankyer thankyer, havanaliedown…you’re a effing genius…now…off to work you go..

  13. Freethinker

    I should control myself and refrain to reply to havanaliedown, my English is not “rich” enough to do it with justice.

  14. freefall852

    Of course, I blame the left-wing intellects and their adoption of Postmodernism for all this trouble..With the acceptance of there being “many-faceted explanations” for answers to any given problem, the “left” has lowered the drawbridge and let “inside the tent” every and any half-arsed blundering, opinionated-w/-no-idea-on-the-subject poster like the above “H-liedown” and others to be able to show us their best “pair-of-duces” informative as grandad’s Winnabago holiday slides to Merrimbula and back.
    It’s all been a gross mistake…will the future generations ever forgive us?

  15. Terry2

    Must be some substance to the One nation tapes as The Australian reports that Hanson has asked Communications Minister Mitch Fifield to get the Australian Communications and Media Authority to investigate whether the ABC using the tapes is legal, as the party prepares to seek a court injunction to prevent the ABC from reporting any more. Hanson wants evidence that the ABC considered the legality of publishing the recordings. Under legislation in Queensland — where the tapes were recorded — it is legal to record as long as one of the parties to the conversation consents, and it is legal to publish if it is considered to be in the public interest.

    This could prove interesting and certainly, exposing the potentially criminal activity of One Nation, is in the public interest.

  16. Kronomex

    Hanson is too dumb to come up with their revolting version of the “London Terror Alert”. It smacks of an Ashby stunt, he just whispered in her ear (and accounting for the echo) like the nasty little demon he is and planted the idea.

  17. Zathras

    “Labor started this under Whitlam, Fraser was almost as bad. Rudd & Gillard opened the borders. Bill Shorten will make the same mistake.”

    No, the White Australia Policy (apparently beloved by Hanson) was ended plus the first waves of large-scale immigration were under way well before Whitlam even came to power and it was Fraser who formalised the Vietnamese refugee programme.

    The Prime Minister who contributed most toward creating terrorism and militant extremism would have been John Howard, due to his blatant USA “deputy sheriff” brown-nosing plus our active military participation in the creation of the mess we have today.

    Like the “no WMDs in Iraq” he also ignored the “we may win the war but we will not win the peace” warning as well.

  18. Matters Not

    Terry2 . while legislation related to ‘recordings’ tends to differ on a State to State basis, Queensland is one of those Sates that tends to favour those who record such happenings, particularly when they don’t include the ‘phone’. Sure phone conversations with journalists are often recorded but that’s often for ‘security’ purposes – so that they can placate the editor when stories are subsequently denied by an irate ‘whoever’.

    Seems to me that Hanson has a real problem. That she is trying to supress same suggests that they contain damaging material. Indeed she doth protest too much.

    The sad part is, that her supporters won’t see her sins, but will simply see it as another outrageous attack on her character. One wonders how many more tapes are available. Who ever has them seems to be politically astute. Slow, persistent drips are always harmful.

  19. Kyran

    Sooo, wait a minute. Banana’s is now the lucid voice of reason?
    “Don’t change the world by violence, change the world by argument, cogent argument.”
    The sort of well reasoned, cogent argument he offers to parliament? To justify his unreasonable, incoherent edicts?
    It’s not as if he had to justify himself to the Australian people, other than every few years. It’s not like parliament would ever be considered the ‘people’s chamber’.
    “Joyce went on to suggest
    “People say it all sounds a bit old fashioned but it’s not. If you really had an empathy for other people around you, you wouldn’t want to blow them up. You would say they’re just like me. Leave them alone.”
    Will he argue the same way, whilst his government pursues a policy devoid of empathy? Whether they be refugee’s, asylum seekers, our First People, social security recipients, our young, our elderly, our ill. The list is now nigh on endless. Our government doesn’t want to blow them up. In its own peculiar, empathetic way, they would prefer not to blow people up (other than those in the ME). This IPA governments modus operandi is to simply ignore the problem until it goes away. If they die in the meantime, they die. No harm. No foul.
    At least we don’t blow them up. That would be far harder for MSM to conceal.
    By way of idle observation, ‘All you need is Love’ was released as a single at the same time as ‘Sgt Pepper’s’ was released as an album. Check out ‘Fixing a hole’, or ‘Getting better’, or ‘A day in the life’, or ‘With a little help from my friends’.
    50 years ago, hey? In 1963, their main album was ‘Please, please me’.
    It was some four years after ’67 that Lennon wrote and performed ‘Imagine’.
    That’s how banana’s becomes a voice of reason. We focus on him (Please. please me), not Lennon.
    As for hanson and Dutton, or what they say. I may be alone, but who else gives a shite?
    Thankyou 2353NM and commenters. Take care.
    PS Matters Not. The only Act that I’m familiar with is the Victorian version. The Surveillance Devices Act. Due to Mutual Recognition legislation and COAG obligations I’m pretty sure that there is no restriction on taping a conversation when you are a participant. The leaks from One Notion are all from a party to the conversations. No harm. No foul. Pass the popcorn.

  20. Ross

    Problems in the world are the result of a lack of empathy or, rather, a lack of access to the boundless and natural empathy that is at the core of each one of us. Good for Barnaby Joyce and others for taking up the message that an empathetic approach needs to be tried.
    ‘All You Need is Love’
    The Beatles interest in Indian philosophy lead them to a meeting with the transcendental meditation teacher Maharishi Mahesh Yogi on his UK tour in 1967, the same year ‘All You Need is Love’ was released. After the meeting, Maharishi said “They are the ideal of energy and intelligence in the younger generation”.
    Empathy is synonymous with realised being. Understanding how empathy gets buried under a thick coat of worldly afflictions and finding out how to unburden the individual offers one solution.
    How empathy fits with shooting terrorists in London recently? As far as I can see, the police did what was required on the day and saved lives, just not those of the suicidal ones.

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