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Category Archives: AIM Extra

Time to tick a few boxes on MSM ‘treason’

I have railed long and loud on blog sites with accusations of treason leveled at certain members of the MSM. I have been deadly serious about these claims and I do believe action must be taken against the most egregious culprits who first sought to demoralize and destroy the Gillard government in the eyes of the public and are still intent on blocking the democratic process of debate and discussion by censorship and/or distortion of political activities.

I am still serious about the action needed to bring these culprits to a court of law to plead their case. Others have been more reticent, some to the point of dismissing such a charge as delusional or frivolous. I hope to argue the case here for due consideration to action for the future security of our democratic country.

(As for the legal definition of treason in Australia, Google “treason: defunct” or “treason; dormant” or “Treason: Adam Richards”).

There being so many loop-holes that a whale could swim through. Let us take the common accepted meaning, ie “An act of betrayal to a foreign interest against the interests of the nation and it’s peoples” as accepted and argue the rhetoric. Of course, there is “high treason” in a time of war and what I see as “common treason” in a time of relative peace. I am not interested in seeing those MSM journalists charged, being hung-drawn-and quartered and their carcasses being strewn to the four corners of the country for “high treason” (pollution is already a major problem!). But, there will come a time after Labor regain office, which I expect them to at the next election, unless of course and I fully expect, some sort of election delay tactic from the present incumbents (after all, when has it ever been otherwise that a swarm of locusts or a plague of vermin do not proceed to the “hardwire” instructions in their DNA?). It is a truth of historical experience that certain personality types should not be left in charge of a bladed letter opener, let alone the ship of state! (but that is topic for another article). I expect no less than a judicial inquiry that must adjudicate on the behaviour of members of the fourth estate in the time of the Gillard government … and continues to this day. This must be done.

Let us proceed.

I doubt very much that a law could be found anywhere to convict a foreign national operating in their country of citizenship to use what ever tools at their control to demonise, disrupt or bring down a foreign government. If there were, many oligarchs would by now be languishing in extradition prisons – or worse – all over the world. (The actions of individuals and corporations toward the South American nations are a familiar example). In the same breath, I would have to doubt there is any nation that doesn’t have laws against its own nationals using the tools and finance of a foreign national or corporation to demonise, disrupt or bring down their own democratically elected government, for if there were no laws against such sedition, there would never be any sort of stable government at all..

So considering the “blind-Freddy” logic of the above, I want someone to tell me the behaviour by certain members of the MSM toward the elected government of Julia Gillard leading up to and including the “Rudd reincarnation”, was not an act of treason against both the state and its people. I want someone to tell me that receiving payment from, acting with instructions and tactics from, in a wholly owned media platform from and at the behest of a foreign national, in the personal interests of that foreign national, for the vested interests of that foreign national for the sole purpose of profit for that foreign national against the interests and well-being of their own nation is not treason. It’s not so hard, it’s as simple as that! Take away the offended spluttering, the cautious coughing, the old school tie loyalty and the “drinking mate” camaraderie and you have the nub of the charge; treason, pure and simple.

Sure, there are those journalists who are now singing a different tune, seeking to evade the charge of “cowardice under fire”. And didn’t Judas first accept the offer of silver before planting the kiss of betrayal? They will claim in defence that they too acted as they did because they believed the same principles as their paymaster … nothing to do with it … nothing at all. I am certain “Lord Haw Haw” felt similar toward his paymasters. Any of us could claim sympathy with a foreign power and with levied moneys from that power set up and promoted the overthrow of our democracy. Many of us do have sympathy with different politics or ideologies. That is the beauty of maintaining our democracy, so we can express our beliefs without fear or favour. But we do not have the right to inflict personal bigotry or ideological preferences upon at least half the population to the detriment of the population by using a mainstream media platform and the public broadcaster to demoralize, plain lie, and collude to bring down that democracy. We do not! Not one of us has that right!

And if they did have a legitimate barrow to push, why not, like so many more of us, take to blogging on social media? Start your own blog. It’s free! Bring those valued opinions that they so treasure to the general public so we can all comment upon them. No, it’s too cowardly, and better to hide behind the litigious bullying of a cashed-up mogul and with dribbling spittle and sing the praises of “M’lord”.

If those journalists were the “innocents abroad” that they like to portray themselves as, we could forgive them. Some are nothing but bumbling buffoons armed with a thesaurus and a vocabulary, but of the others … no. Well we remember the “curled lip” of scorn in their commentary, as equal in vicious drop the sourness of their personalities. Well we remember the repetitive mockery and obfuscation of the serial liar in their “on-air” voices and well we recall that soul-less “mark of Cain” in their eyes as they sunk to the depths of depravity requested to please their paymaster and instructor. Cowards who feared more the ‘woe betide” repercussions of their slave-master than the metered justice of their fellow citizens!

So the bringing to court and making those members of the MSM who worked for, received payment from, and colluded with that foreign national – whilst sheltering under the protection of their own national passport – explain their actions to their fellow citizens is an imperative for the next Labor government. The free-press commentary, indeed the entire fourth and fifth estate depends upon it, for with this shadow of fear of media harassment, false accusation and condemnation way beyond the bounds of reasonable criticism, the nation will forever be at the mercy of any grudging mogul and his obsequious employees, seeking to destroy any government not personally approved and no nation can nor should operate under such a tyranny.

Let the scales of a justice “that must be seen to be done” weigh their actions.

Einstein, Eddington, and public understanding of Science

By John Barker

A very long rave. I’m getting quite anxious about “things”.

My Sunday was book-ended by two “science experiences” that spoke volumes about the future of our civilisation: how can we survive if we don’t know what we’re doing?

The morning bookend was David Stapleton, an Adelaide-based “science communicator” presenting on ABCRN’s program Ockham’s Razor, which has been a staple of mine for many years. Stapleton was talking about communicating science to the public, with much of what he was saying relating to “stimulating interest”.

The night book-end was the 2008 movie Einstein and Eddington. Somehow, I have missed seeing it for more than a decade. I think that it is a pretty good movie, despite a few factual errors, portraying the way that science and politics can collide.

Stimulating stuff, indeed, but my particular interest is in the extent to which people in the general community “understand” science. That “general community” is about 95% of the total population, who haven’t studied any science beyond high school level.

Importantly, I distinguish between “understanding” science and “appreciating, accepting and believing” science. When you understand science, you are enabled to make up your own mind about the various science-related claims that are conveyed in the media or by friends and acquaintances- ranging from climate change to solar energy to genetic engineering.

Of course, very few can become expert in these areas, but a basic understanding of the principles involved can make a world of difference in one’s ability to make decisions involving these things.

On the other hand, “appreciating, accepting and believing” science means placing trust in scientists to be sincere and truthful. So if they are engaging, humorous and talking about things that are relevant to everyday living, we are more likely to accept their “scientific findings” that we don’t actually have any capability to examine or contest. In other words, we want to accept science on the same terms as everything else- including politics, health and religion.

As a test of my approach, I asked my very intelligent, but non-scientist partner Di whether she understood any more about Einstein’s theory of general relativity after watching the movie than she did before. She replied that she thought that the movie wasn’t really about explaining general relativity, but about trust and integrity. Indeed, she was right, but, to me, Eddington’s use of a tablecloth, cake and apple as as model to explain gravity as as space-time distortion was brilliant. Well, as a physicist, I appreciated the explanation, but clearly, it was seen rather differently by a non-scientist it enabled Di to accept the sincerity and competence of the scientist.

There have been quite a few mainstream movies recently that have tried to explain a bit of science  or advanced mathematics, including Interstellar (wormholes in space-time), The Theory of Everything (Grand unifying Theory), The Imitation Game (computing), to name a few, plus Neil DeGrasse Tyson’s remake of the TV series Cosmos. I’m not really sure where TV comedy The Big Bang Theory fits in. But I have seen nothing to indicate that any of this science has stuck in the public mind, although maybe they have engendered a greater trust and acceptance of science.

So what’s my problem? My real concern is that while the tree of knowledge has brought forth the fruits of science which have nourished our society for 400 years, those fruit may contain the seeds of its destruction. Knowledge, separated from reason, soon becomes technique, which morphs into ritual and blind belief. Thus disconnected from its roots, it is prey to attack by those who prefer power to arise from brute-force and money.

This ritualising of science gives rise to “Priests” – or “Celebrity Scientists” – and as “celebrities” they are pitched against charismatic or outrageous politicians, reality show hosts and the Kardashians. Their ability to convince the community of important issues like climate change and vaccination will depend more on their ability to entertain than the force of their reasoning. It’s doubtful that science would ever win this battle.

What can we do? Certainly, all these depictions of science are fine; science should not be exempt from comedy, drama, or simple entertainment. But, if we are to continue to eat Newton’s apples, then we have got to nurture the apple tree itself-not just pick the fruit from its ageing boughs.

Not everyone can become a scientist, but it is my firm belief that everyone can be “a bit scientific” in the way that we approach the world. Thirty years ago I set up Scitech – the interactive science centre in Perth with this in mind – to be “enjoyable” (a cerebral sensation) – not just “fun” (a visceral sensation). I wrote “Warming to You – Falling for Me” as an attempt to explore the difference between “science appreciation” and “scientific explanation”. But to what avail.

That 5% of the population who are well-versed in science is unlikely to grow much, despite our efforts. But the bigger problem is that there is not a “long tail” of people who have some grip on science – you’re either a “scientist” or a “non-scientist” – and the “non-scientists” are divided between “believers” and “non-believers”. “Beliefy-ness” prevails over “reason”.

We have got to grow that “long tail” of scientific understanding, or, as we have seen from the idiotic, furious, ongoing anti-scientific revolution in the USA, that by tomorrow, the Enlightenment will signify nothing.

Does all of this seem reasonable?

If we seriously want to tackle climate change, why are we not building compact electric vehicles in Australia?

By Keith Davis

Let’s combine two facts and see where that takes us:

Fact 1: Our car manufacturing factories are closing down. Their multi-national owners are falling over themselves to desert our shores. All our car manufacturing workers, engineers, vehicle designers, and component add-on personnel are scrambling about for any sort of new employment or manufacturing opportunity.

Fact 2: On 12 June 2014 Elon Musk, the CEO of the Tesla Motor Company in the US released a media statement. And this is what he had to say:

“Tesla Motors was created to accelerate the advent of sustainable transport. If we clear a path to the creation of compelling electric vehicles, but then lay intellectual property landmines behind us to inhibit others, we are acting in a manner contrary to that goal. Tesla will not initiate patent lawsuits against anyone who, in good faith, wants to use our technology.”

The combination of those two facts begs a very obvious question. How come we aren’t building little electric buzz-boxes in our soon to be defunct car factories, and exporting them by the millions to China, India, and to anybody else who wants them?

As an innovation nation (according to our politicians) how come we aren’t scaling down Musk’s technology from his expensive Model S Electric Sedan and fitting it into a much smaller and cheaper Hyundai sized two or four door electric hatch?

But what would happen if we did? Well, our politicians would certainly leap onboard like lemmings and sprout the wondrous job creation opportunities that such a re-tooling of our car manufacturing factories would represent. Unfortunately they’d be dead wrong, and they’d totally miss the point, because hardly any jobs would flow if we innovated ourselves down this path. It is not about jobs, it is about the creation of Sovereign Wealth.

The only way we could export small electric vehicles to Asia from our newly re-tooled factories would be if those factories were almost completely automated. In other words robots would have to build the cars. The vehicles would need to be stamped out like cheap green widgets in order to keep the costs down to about $15,000 per vehicle. A huge economy of scale would need to be the underlying principle.

But would we realistically be able to do any of this?

Well I for one believe that we have many intelligent and innovative people here in Australia. I believe that we have the engineering and manufacturing smarts to scale down Musk’s electric vehicle technology and bang out a small exhaust-less buzz box which would happily sail around Asia’s incredibly crowded and polluted streets by the millions. They could sail around our city streets as well.

Many people will say that if it does not create a huge number of jobs for our populace then it is probably not worth doing. I so disagree with such thinking because a manufacturing challenge like this is about creating sovereign wealth for our nation, it is not about making even more dollars for those who are already awash with the stuff.

I am suggesting that the Government step in, take over or buy the factories before they totally disappear, and manufacture these small electric vehicles under a nationally owned enterprise. I am suggesting that we break with the kind of tradition that saw us woefully blow the sovereign wealth generated by the last two mining booms.

And what are the benefits if we are quick enough to take Musk up on his offer?

  1. Sovereign wealth for our country. The current argument that we can all be re-trained up to rocket-scientist ‘future jobs’ level is just so much facile political hogwash. We will need this sovereign wealth because the nature of work is changing fast, automation and AI are going to put many more of us out of work, and we will soon need some variety of Universal Basic Income which will need to be sourced out of a healthy sovereign wealth fund.
  2. Saving our global environment. Compare the benefits of millions of small non-polluting electric vehicles whizzing about Asia’s mega-cities against the current air/climate killing effects of millions of internal combustion engined vehicles whizzing about the same streets. Instead of just talking hot air about the need to do something about climate change – we could actually do something. Australia could actually do something on a grand scale.

I see this Musk (Tesla) offered opportunity as beyond political. At best I would like to see our politicians from all sides pull solidly behind this idea, and at worst, I would like them to at least not get in the road of it. Perhaps South Australia would be a tad interested in the venture?

And … as we all know … opportunity only ever knocks once!

The ‘future-proofing’ of the Australian ‘community’

The object of community in creating and maintaining a stable social and commercial environment for healthy living standards to thrive hangs on the slimmest thread of collective “desire” for such a community to exist. All the best deeds and intentions in the world will be to little avail if there is no desire on the part of people within the neighbourhood to “give the nod” of approval to works and programs that are needed to sustain and repair both the environmental and civic standards required for a comfortable lifestyle.

The Community as an “Individual Collective”

There is a certain conservative intellectual mindset that continually falls back on the “rights of the individual” to justify all policies from education/choice to social security/responsibility to entrepreneurial speculation/public ownership all the way to the uber-loopy NRA (National Rifle Association) of the USA. and gun ownership. Such “intellectual thinking” is regressive thinking, as it falls back heavily on the Darwinian principle of the “strongest survive”. This is in my opinion – and I would argue, in a rationalist sense – a disingenuous misinterpretation of the honest appraisal of Charles Darwin’s truism.

The principle of “the strongest survives” does not, in reasonable opinion, apply to the individual personality by itself, but rather to the “individual collective“; the tribe or society. An individual by themselves, no matter and perhaps even because of, their strength, dexterity and cunning tend to differentiate themselves to such a degree that they become isolated from their kindred and in the ancient tribal collective, a dangerous “loose-cannon” and exiled from the group. One reads of young, individual indigenous “warriors” in many nations becoming unmanageable in the tribal group and being driven out to live a lone existence of rapine and secretive trekking and raiding even toward their own tribe. There is no example in history outside of risible mirth of the “individual” having the capacity or the ingenuity to establish a one-person-state. It just cannot happen.

There are some political parties here in Australia who have run this “individualism” line to justify their most extreme suppression and to promote their most lax surveillance of speculative opportunism (think conservative government promotion of the “self-managed super-fund” … “C’mon, give the share market a go..it’s going gangbusters!”) which has allowed a legion of unscrupulous financial carpetbaggers to rip off the most vulnerable and aged in the community, leaving the “collective” to pick up the tab. And one has to wonder just who purchased all that government gold that was sold at bargain basement prices. (I didn’t get any! Did you?). And then, of course, we have the likes of the mining magnates; the “individual done good”. Even the “Fraudband” NBN policy of the government is a lame attempt to justify a private sector takeover and distribution with exorbitant cost to the individual (“it’s your choice!”) for what will be a necessity for the whole community in the future.

This “regressive thinking” is spoken of by some commentators where they say that conservative individualistic politics has no progressive philosophies, so it becomes obsessed with the left-wing progressive ideas. And if one was to closely examine such right-wing policies, they are mostly in reaction to the collective social policies for the community: “Workchoices – Collective negotiation”; “Privatisation – Secure community employment/wages”; “End of Entitlement – Community safety-net welfare” … and so forth.

This mistaken adaptation of the “cult of the individual” has created many problems in any society where the collective agreement toward law and order has been challenged by right-wing renegades even intruding into our very parliament! I do have suspicions that a variety of religious self-righeousness has cribbed into the debate. I proffer this statement: “If a devout person is prepared to forego the most basic and proven reasoning toward a choice of religious against scientific analysis and can comfortably excuse an irrationality as being a certainty, then perhaps (and I use that word sensitively) one is also prepared to adopt a deceipt as a reasonable policy.” This could explain the steering of our nation toward religious right-wing government.

The sword of religious morality that helps frame the lie about “the lie” of the Prime Minister, falls softly on the crimes of many denominations. But the biggest enemy of the religious right, and I include all denominations in this, is the natural awakening of a sense of atheistic rationalism that through observation and personal experience coupled with the hard-learnt lessons of history … a history finally collated and analysed against the opposition of many religious factions, has demonstrated the somewhat-sad but also relieved realisation that there is no ecclesiastical governing body to “look after us and or condemn us” and we, as a collective society of many individuals must make deliberate and reasoned decisions to stabilise and manage what is left of our finite Earth.

So while we may bask in our self-glory of perceived “individualism”, we ought to give a thought to the very real social safety nets that smooth the path of our everyday lives: Law and Order, Sanitation and Water, Energy and Transport not to mention a legion of services both government and non-government organisations that make our lives here in Australia so much better than a host of other less fortunate nations.

We must give consideration then to our community. If nothing else, to give a positive thought so that when we see or read of programs that lean toward making the environment or the civic amenities better and more healthy, we will be better able to judge fairly that which serves both the community and the individual within the community.

The first drink was “on the house” – the last was on the floor

I like the Australian cultural habit of telling yarns … and general bullshitting. There is a certain skill in attitude, demeanour and voice-timing to get a good story across. Of course, the oral tradition is the best way for such a personality to tell a yarn, but with the loss of the front-bar culture, where working people would gather and the bullshit would fly, those days of the casual yarn are over. But I would like to share a couple of those characters with you if I may … just for the fun of it.

Mrs Wright and Glenn

Did I ever tell you about Mrs Wright and Glenn? No? Well, they were two “locals” down at the Seacliff Hotel – back in the old days – some of the last of that “war generation” that were retired or on the point of when we younger folk came along and taught them how to drink!

Mrs Wright was a widower, retired teacher who drove what I reckon was one of the last registered Humber Super Snipes – a big black beast she parked in her “reserved” spot just out the front of “the ‘Cliff” when she went for a quiet drink at night … almost every night. Looking back on it, and her being a local, I wonder if she bought that Humber off the deceased estate of Mrs Herreen. Now there was a tartar … a wealthy widow who lived opposite the primary school I went to. I know she was a widow because she always wore black and wealthy because she was chauffeured around in a big black Humber Snipe. She donated large sums to the convent school I attended and in return, she was sometimes given “control” of a class for an afternoon. She would stalk up and down the aisles of us fifty-odd kids swishing a cane into her cupped hand and looking threatening. She had the physique of Hatty Jaques and the eyes of Myra Hindley. But I’m getting off the subject.

Glenn was a council employee, whose job for the last years of his working life was seated on the council’s ride-on lawnmower – all day every day – out in the sun, which is why he got such a ruddy complexion … and more melanomas cut off his face so he looked like a pottery paste-up sculpture (though there was a rumour that it was all to do with his affection for “poor-man’s port”). He was a very tall bloke who developed a kind of stoop which some tall people get from leaning down to people and perhaps a self-conscious compensation to not look too obvious.

Now, you wouldn’t think two such diverse characters would meet and become a “unit”, but they did. It happened like this:

There came to pass that Don Dunstan put a tax on beer which raised the price of a ‘pony’ glass beyond what Mrs Wright (we’ll call her “Betty”) could budget in her retirement. BUT, there was salvation! Ron, the barman, informed her that there was no extra tax on wine, therefore the price of a “hock, lime and lemon” was now cheaper than the “pony” of beer she was used to having.

“Righto,” she decided “I’ll give it a try.” The first drink was “on the house” said Ron (a kindly chap) and she liked it and would have another thank you very muchly!

Of course, wine is a very different alcoholic beast than beer, and so by the twitching hour of ten o’clock, Betty was seen sitting, glazed eyed on the bar -stool, a cheroot-cigar stub hanging loose in her fingers. Eye-witness accounts state that the cheroot first slipped from her fingers, did several somersaults to the bar-step in a spray of sparks. A close acquaintance stooped to pick it up, but was stopped in his action by a “teacher’s command” to “LEAVE-IT!” … which were the last words she spoke that evening as she then slid ever so gracefully off the stool, gathering her heavy skirts modestly around herself and sunk to the floor.

Ron, the barman witnessing this – to him so familiar; the “float to oblivion” – leapt across the bar in what must be termed “the Barman’s Flop” for it was equal to an Olympian effort and calling for assistance carried her “wheelbarrow style” out to place her on the back seat of her Humber to sleep it off. It must be mentioned that Ron took her arms while the only other sober-able bodied man in the front bar; Glenn took her legs, “in a kindly and gentlemanly way” as Betty later assured all who would doubt otherwise.

When Glenn retired, they sold up their respective houses and moved to Kangaroo Island. Betty drove with the Humber and a huge trailer of their possessions to take the ferry across. Glenn, waving goodbye to all his mates, set sail in his restored clinker-built fishing boat to “chug-along” to the island. It was a long afternoon in the front-bar while he said his farewells. It was a long “goodbye” drinking toasts to all the good times … and it was noticed that one particular old mate, “little Johnny”, the SP bookie, in a teary moment, slipped a ruddy flagon of “Rovalley Rich” (poor-man’s) Port into the prow of the boat before he set off “in case it gets a tad chilly in the ‘passage’ (Backstair’s Passage)” he comforted … then Glenn set off for Kangaroo Island … a delightful island just off the coast of Flerieu Peninsula, approximately 90 miles long facing the mainland. You can’t miss it. It did get chilly out on the water … Glenn did consume the entire flagon and fell asleep on the bottom of the boat and was swept through Backstairs Passage, where the tide goes out like a river … and missed Kangaroo Island, to end up on “The Pages” … the last stop between South Australia and Antarctica. But that’s another story.

 

Gaziur (Gazi) Rahman – the brutal treatment of a worthy New Australian.

By Keith Davis

“I have never had to flee my country in order to save my life. How lucky am I? I have never had to fear being returned to a country where the likely consequence of such an unwanted move would be my death. How lucky am I?”

I wrote those words many months ago in support of my friend Gaziur (Gazi) Rahman. Since that time I have moved away from the Gympie region, where Gazi lives, and I have returned back to the Sunshine Coast.

The time and distance thing – it is easy to forget isn’t it? It is easy to turn inwards and only focus on issues that affect one’s own personal welfare. Well, because of Gazi’s circumstances, and the humility of his approach to battling adversity, I refuse to forget, and I refuse to turn inwards and away from him.

Here is a little of what I wrote a while ago:

“Once a week here in Gympie a group of us blokes get together over a coffee to support each other through the usual regional malaise of social isolation. We all, for a million different reasons live alone-type lifestyles, and it is good to get together with other men and have a chat about everything from cars to the meaning of life.

A few months ago a new bloke by the name of Gaziur Rahman joined the group. Naturally, being Australian, we all called him Gazi. He was quiet, didn’t say much except about cricket, but he kept coming back.

And over time, out came the facts of his life.

Because of political issues he fled Bangladesh in fear of his life in 2012. Then he did what anyone of us would do if we were fleeing to save our lives, he jumped on the first available mode of transport, which happened to be a boat, and arrived in Australia in 2013. Yes, just like my European ancestors, Gazi was a boat person. Mind you, my ancestors were convicts, he wasn’t.

After the usual detention centre reception Gazi found work in Nolan’s Meatworks here in Gympie. From all accounts he was a valued and hardworking employee. I imagine that at that stage he was simply very thankful to have survived, and to have found safety, refuge, and a job here in the local Gympie community.

As life does, in 2014 life threw Gazi one heck of a curve ball. It involved his bicycle and a car, and Gazi did not come out of the collision all that well. One of his legs was incredibly mangled.

Recuperation from such a damaging event takes time, and Gazi was not able to return part-time to work until early 2016. Good on Nolan’s Meatworks for standing by Gazi I say because that is the true measure of the nature of Gympie people.

Then came the further curve balls. Gazi was denied a Work Visa and forced, against his and just about everybody else’s will, to give up his job at Nolan Meatworks in January 2017. He cannot receive any sort of income support because he does not have a Visa.

Now I can tell you this, we here in the group are just a normal collection of blokes. We do not have financial or political power. But we do have one thing. We have a very clear understanding of what is Right, and what is Wrong. What is currently happening to Gazi is very definitely Wrong.

Gazi is a decent man and he has proven his worth. He has paid his way and contributed to the local community. We want him to stay. If he is forced to go back to a very uncertain fate then that would just about have to be the most un-Australian thing I have ever seen in my life.”

Since I wrote those words Gazi has had to endure yet another operation on his leg. The recuperation is painful but he barely mentions that. Gazi has never asked anybody else to speak on his behalf, but I would like to say this.

Gazi has been, and is still being, treated in an appalling manner. He is hardly what I could call fully ambulatory, and as far as I understand it, WorkCover has informed him that he is now cleared to return to work.

So … one Government Department revokes his work visa and cuts him off from any sort of social welfare support through Centrelink … and another Government Department says back to work you go old son even though you can barely stand and even though we are fully aware that our friends over the hall have revoked your work visa.

In a very bad way it reminds me of the English show Yes Minister. That show was not just a comedy series – underneath the intelligently glib lines lay an expose of the brutality and viciousness inherent in some governmental policy implementation.

What is happening to Gaziur Rahman is vicious, brutal, and totally undeserved. Essentially he is being told to either return back to an uncertain fate … or stay here and starve.

I am beyond ashamed with the actions of our government.

What is wrong with our doctors?

By Christopher Kennedy

It does not surprise me that young doctors have mental problems at twice the rate of the general population. It was only one hundred and twenty years ago that doctors figured out what the heart did. Two hundred years ago they were also the town barber and surgeon. They had no idea. Doctors may look confident and capable but it has not been very long since they figured out, what looks like to us now, some fairly simple deductions.

Another example is the washing of hands between births. A young doctor come up with the idea in Germany in the 18th century but it took thirty years before the bloody-minded mainstream medical establishment agreed with him that some sort of basic hygiene would save the lives of now millions of babies. That is thirty years of needless deaths of infants. Let us be frank, the medical establishment is not particularly enlightened quite often.

Let us take vaping and e-cigarettes. I vape. I am fifty years old and my friends are starting to die of cancer and I want to try other options. So I tried vaping. My teeth are now clean, as is my fingers, I have my breath back, I am doing more exercise. All good, I have a much better life. Yet the doctors are demanding that I give up that because they don’t like any type of cigarettes. To justify this they argue that anyone can give up cigarettes. They support a large and well-funded anti-smoking lobby; I have yet to see another schizophrenic give up cigarettes, though all have tried very hard. The medical establishment doesn’t give a toss about that though either.

Another contentious area is cannabis. The argument put up by the head of the AMA recently was that cannabis had not been tested in controlled experiments. If one in six people are smoking pot in this country then the doctors must either be blind or neglectful if they can’t see it in their own patients.

One morning I went to the psychiatrist and noticed that the files for patients he was seeing that day laid out on his desk. On the files where the names of a group of people I shared some cannabis with that morning. I pointed out to the psychiatrist that he was in for an easy day. Like me they where going to come in, grab the script for their medicines and get the hell out of there as soon as possible.

This particular psychiatrist, a very good and empathetic healer in my and my friends opinions, was pushing a rock up a hill trying to stop people from smoking cannabis.

As for the theory linking schizophrenia and cannabis, don’t make me laugh. The increase in cannabis use has been so widespread that the number of schizophrenics would go through the roof. But it hasn’t changed. As for them going mad after a joint they are mad to start with and they are simply mad and stoned when they have a joint. They are alright but their carers tend to get annoyed. The stoned schizophrenic sit in their rooms laughing to themselves. I should know, this complex I live in has seventeen schizophrenics in it.

It’s simply the cheapest and most effective drug around for many ailments. For some people it may not be suitable but no one has died from trying it. And the fall in opoid addiction rates and the general well-being of people where it has been legalized is becoming more and more newsworthy.

I would like to get this medicine, which is fairly tame compared to the anti-psychotics I am on, proscribed to me with an intelligent discussion from a doctor outlining what the suitable levels of CBD and THC (the active ingredients in cannabis) are for my anxiety and depression are. Buying off the street you have no control over that. Yet every doctor in Western Australia refused to undertake training in medical cannabis. This has no medical basis; it is a political statement. The rot has set in.

How far has this rot gotten? Take a story on the second page of the West Australian newspaper from last year which caused a ruckus among the pro-cannabis group. A professor from the University of Western Australia, associate Professor Stuart Reece, announced that cannabis caused inter-generational genetic defects. This is a professor from what I use to think was a good institution, however once you put his name into the computer you find that in “September 1999 he was raided for his reckless naltrexone, addictive benzodiazapine and faith healing caper. Threatened with closure he claimed that the QLD government would have blood on its hands if he did not get his way. 20 months later, 25 patients where dead …. He was raided and closed down again.“ This is quoted from the website “Losing in the Lucky Country” written by Paul Gallagher.

Heaven knows what department of voodoo Dr Reece runs and how he came to be running it but a professor is supposed to be a medical leader. I cannot see how he got to be an associate professor. Mind you, this is the university that was going to give a chair to a climate denier in return for a government grant (but that is a whole other story). Definitely the department of voodoo.

So we are faced with the same bloody-minded mainstream medical establishment, which as far as I can tell doesn’t give a bugger about our predicament. So much for the medical establishment but I cannot say I hope the doctors enjoy their brushes with mental illnesses, as it serves them right for pretending to be God, but rather feel pity for those young doctors who are being put under so much pressure by such an unyielding establishment.

 

A work of art, or the art of work?

The motivation for this article came from four packets of ladies’ cotton lace handkerchiefs. I had bought them some years before at a garage sale for the princely sum of fifty cents each. One was from Nothern Ireland, two from Switzerland, and one from China. Looking at them in their flat boxes, with the delicate lace folded into diamonds and squares, the brilliant whiteness and small embroideries of flowers, folk images or other set-patterns around the edges and in the corners, I thought they were too, too beautiful for their intended use so I made four frames and placed those “art of work” behind glass to be admired rather than soiled. I could imagine the girls and women (for that would be the reality) sweating over those pieces of cloth. Pieces of work became pieces of art, hence the title of this article.

Another excuse for this article comes from a dispute I am having with a writer on the whys and means of artistic licence. In my calculation, the presumption of “art for art’s sake” is a modern affectation that cannot be justified except in the market place for commodity exchange … the historical creation of what we call “art” was once the work-a-day depiction of cultural hopes and activities. The coincidence that such hieroglyphic imagery has a pleasing appearance to human senses and sensibility is more accidental purity of line and length combined with colour and pleasing perspective.

Certainly, there were some plundering tribes that made use of cultural depiction to amaze and frighten the opposition and then in the more sophisticated societies, the wealthy commissioned artisans to depict statuary and icons for decoration. But these were restricted to the wealthy and state propaganda, the rise of “art for art’s sake” was still a long way away.

I am an artisan (tradesman carpenter). My father was an artisan (stone-mason/bricklayer). The people who made those hankies were (or are) also artisans. A multitude of people producing, constructing, molding, knitting and on and on and on are artisans (from the French: ‘without art’). Getting back to my father the bricklayer (you were wondering why I put him in?) … my father came to Australia from the north of Italy before the 2nd world war. Back in Italy he was a stonemason. Out here where there was not much call for ‘stonies’, he worked under the more familiar nom de plume of bricklayer. But in his employment around the city and suburbs he built quite a few stone walls and such. One was the long weather-wall along the foreshore at Glenelg (in Adelaide). He told me years later that if I was to look at a certain place on that wall, I would see – shaped within the stonework – a map of Italy with all the provinces in varying shades of stone built cunningly into the wall (a stunning,no; a cunning stunt!). Artisan becomes artist!

It stands to be proposed: When and who stationed “artists” and “artisans” in their prospective environs? What are the boundaries of these environs, ie; when does artisan become artist and vice-versa? Who adjudicates on works that can be either? What can be done to redress the problem of “artistic” excess?

Image from www.123rf.com

Perhaps the first true “artist”, that is, the first person who deliberately constructed a feeling for the sheer pleasure of it, was, perhaps, the person who, seeing the drabness of the cave so depressing, went outside and gathered up a handful of flowers, took them inside, placed them strategically and well, the rest is history! Many a person has gilded their drabness with a “bouquet of lilies” and received just reward for their initiative!

There is another boundary, a rather more insidious thing, a political thing … a class thing, hardly more ‘enforced’ than now, at this point in time, where the “artist” must be “educated” into the hierarchy, or be politically “in tune to the current needs of the populace!” This has polarized creative works into “Creative art” and “Marketable art”.

This combination of evils – being class-controlled by nurture – locks the more industrious of the producing class out of the race, being, as their ancient forebears, too busy “gutting the mastodon” to have time to become ‘illuminati-ed’ into the “mysterious paths of creativity”, it has come to the point of my mocking. It’s just that I cannot abide the pretentious waffling of the “artistic” clique that claim unique ability to sway or impress upon the collective desires of the populace such mundane predictability.

There are no boundaries. “Art” does not exist in itself, but rather as an adjunct to physical experience and cultural existence. It is not a separate construction of the imagination. If it was, every wicked deed, every insidious act must also be construed as a “work of art” alongside sublime desire. No longer do we aspire to the heroic deed or moment as depicted in Odyssey or Aenied, easier to descend to the lowest common denominator. Elitism in “art” has created a dearth of imagination in the population. So now we are indoctrinated to accept an “image” of the “artist”, the falsely constructed behaviour, the “fop”, the contrived personality ponceing around with those two inseparable companions: angst and ecstasy.

Art has a social obligation – a social objective – but it has been perverted by a market mechanism. There is a serious distortion of our perceptions of achievement within the realms of creativity once we accept the lie of “art for art’s sake”. This is a postmodern prescription and debasement of a noble act. We have given over both riches and recognition to those who ill deserve and abuse both and we receive (unlike our cave-dwelling ancestor) little or no representations of our collective struggles in return. The progression to true artistic depiction is a one way street: The artisan has every qualification to aspire to true art (by “true art”, we mean creative art, including that which is esoteric or aesthetic) because of their connection with physical activity or cultural ambition. The skill needed to envisage, conceive practicalities, collect materials and thoughts and then to “mold” all this plasma into a cohesive design, makes experience in the practical work-fields an essential qualification for the undertaking of an artistic project. That and the emotional trysts of success and failure, strength and weariness, love and loathing of the work involved, gives the artisan all the training needed for creating a “work of art”. The “artist”, conversely, rarely – very rarely – becomes artisan … they just do not have the skills.

Which leads us to ask; who judges on what is a “work of art”? Who indeed! This leads us back to my statement concerning class boundaries. Invariably, it is in the interests of a certain class to maintain “ownership” and therefore set a “monetary value” on pieces of “art”. The judges, therefore, tend to be those who collect, contract, earn a living by, or just generally set commercial boundaries to Objets d’art, whatever material they be.

This narrow-minded presumption confines the creation of beautiful objects or imaginative constructs of the mind again to those “qualified” to create!

A parable: A builder engaged in the construction of a room decided to enhance a window with a little Australiana scene carved from wood and fixed on the surface of a window so that when the sun shone through it formed a “three-dimensional-silhouette”. A rather pleasing effect! A visitor, admiring this scene asked the builder (ignoring the possibility that they could create such a work):

“Who made the carving?”
“Oh, we got a bloke in to do it,” the builder replied.
The visitor then asked the owner:
“Who was the person that did the carving?”
“You’re looking at him!,” the builder said.

The visitor raised one doubting eyebrow in query and had to be reassured by the owner. The insinuation is there. And that, I presume, is where the artisan is expected to remain.

 

No Pasaran!

“No Pasaran! The cry went out, the Fascists are about! “No Pasaran! And so the war began.”

That is the start of an early draft of what I hoped would be a rousting piece of rhyming poetry I wanted to write just these last couple of days. You can see by the syllabic construction of that phrase: “No pasaran” that it has a natural “beat” a rhythmic sequence like a marching foot-fall or the beat of a drum. Perhaps, if it were loud enough, the beat of a human heart. It is a natural for building on … almost like a Sousa march.

No Pasaran!

Credit for that (no pasaran) goes to the fiery Spanish Communist party leader Dolores Ibárruri (1895-1989), whose popular nickname was “La Pasionaria” (“The Passion Flower”).

On July 18, 1936, mutinous Spanish Army troops led by Generalissimo Francisco Franco invaded the Spanish mainland from Morocco, with the goal of overthrowing Spain’s elected Republican government. This was the beginning of the bloody Spanish Civil War.

The next day, July 19, 1936, Ibárruri made a brief but eloquent speech on Radio-Madrid.
She urged her fellow citizens to put aside their other political differences and join together to fight against Franco’s Fascist forces.

“Young men, prepare for combat!,” she said. “Women, fight alongside your men in order to defend the lives and freedom of your sons. All workers, all anti-fascists must now look upon each other as brothers in arms.”

It was to be built on the words spoken by that Spanish lady; “La Passionaria” … “No Pasaran!” (They shall not pass!) in the time of the Spanish civil war. But while I had the words almost down pat in my head, the rhythm kinda sorted and the rolling theme just about right. I could not put it down on paper. I started, but I bulked at the actual printing out what I had now questioned in my mind the veracity of the honesty of the poem.

Because of course, Franco did break through their barricades. He did “pass” their fighters and their walls with the help of the other fascista in Germany and Italy. Franco’s only hope, the fascist cowards only hope of success is to “gang-up on their opposition … they did break through the barricades and take control of the country … and they mocked and sneered at the cry of resistance of “No Pasaran!” The right wing still mock and sneer at what they disparagingly call “leftie rantings” … but they do not, cannot know the real meaning behind those words; “No Pasaran” … they do not have the depth of understanding the cultural collective of the working people of not just one country, but the entire world..the entire span of human recorded history. “No pasaran” strikes a deeper cord in the worker’s heart than just a cry of resistance with arms..it is a barricade against the attempted conquest of all vulnerable peoples, a cry of resistance to reject the tyrannical fascist/corporate mindset from the very heart of a people. It is a rejection of the selfish, oafish, cruel nature of exploitation that would set citizen against citizen, brother against sister, one ethnic group against another and use religion, that over-arching drug-of-least-resistance to enact violence and hatred against all.

No Pasaran!

No Pasaran!…They will not pass! They will never be part of our lives! They will never be accepted into our hearts!

But there now is a weakness in the wall … a blind-spot that the right-wing has found and is exploiting to entrap the more gullible and naive of the working class to trust them to lead the nation. The entrepreneurial middle class has taken a leaf out of Greek mythology and used a “Trojan Horse” to break through the innermost defence to plant their disease of divide and rule within the heart of the nation. It has used the stupid to attract the stupid, much like one uses a cut piece of bait from the one fish to attract and catch another of the same species. The right-wing has used those now familiar fools so clumsy in their knowledge of politics and social needs, but so rat-cunning in their use of phrasing of tongue so that it appeals to the most gullible … the almost incoherent imbecility as appealing to the most uneducated knowledgeable group as also to the most educated knowledgeable “don’t-want-to-see” group, one may be more savvy than the other, but in the end both as dangerous and as gullible as each other.

I penned an article calling for; “A Revolution against the Middle-Classes” in which I claimed that history has shown that once the Entrepreneurial/Speculative (mark that; The Entrepreneurial/Speculative ) middle-classes gained control of political governance, it spelt the beginning of the end for not only the economy of a nation, but of the nation itself! I do not demur from that claim..unfortunately, a few folk seemed to take such a accusation on a whole class as a personal attack upon themselves. Why? I can only presume some sort of personal interest in the claim, perhaps as a kind of “gate-keeper” of that philosophy. But whatever it was, it has cost me in blogging cred with some people. I expect no better with this article, and it tells me just how far the middle-class virus has penetrated into our everyday lives when a large section of the voting public will trust, without question, a lying, tax avoiding wealthy dilettante to rule the nation.

There was an interview with Richard Flannigan on ABC tele a while back. It traced his career as a struggling and now successful writer. I admire Richard Flannigan immensely. I like his honest approach to his art and also his social conscience that he infuses into his writing. He spoke in answer to a query on a career in writing; “if the writing out of his stories diminishes the writer inside?” He answered in the affirmative, quoting F.Scott Fitzgerald in his piece called “The Crack-up”, who reiterated his thoughts, but there is another angle to that “emptying of the spirit” … there is another “breaking of the heart” of anyone who creates art from their heart.

There is a moment in the creation of art, where the artist, of whatever skill or ethnic group, of whatever genre, must ask themselves ; “For whom am I creating this?” they must ask themselves that or they might as well keep the image or process to themselves and go their way (for the “true artist”, the “honest artist” creates their art for their fellow peoples; “everything comes from without, not within”), leaving the vacuum to be filled by some other nature. Of course, the problem for the creative artist is that driving urge to create that forces one to go to the workshop and produce that piece just to stop it rolling around inside the head like a ball-bearing in a tin-can … to, as Henry Lawson once said; “I had to write it down or burst!”

For myself, an amateur at best, a scribbler at worst, many times I have asked that question of myself … which brings me back to the start of this piece where I stated (and I have to say that there have been many times lately) where I have not wanted to put down created characters and incidents..not wanted to share those experiences with my fellow citizens. And when I have pushed myself to do that, I have felt a great disappointment in “exposing” the characters that I do love (even when at times fictional) and the situations that I do treasure. I have felt I have let them down or used them in a most venal way. I feel “dirtied” by the experience. Quite disappointing.

But, of course, there are many others who must feel the same way. I would call them friends and I would willingly, gladly share experiences with them … for they too, would, I suspect like myself, hold true to their hearts that universal cry of revolution that has rung down the ages, despite many attempts to be smothered by a suffocating “mummyism” of middle-class servility.

“So raise the Scarlet Standard high
within its shade we live and die
though cowards flinch and traitors sneer
we’ll keep the red flag flying here.”

No Pasaran!

Sekisui: Under the spirit of the Uluru Statement, return the Yaroomba land to the Traditional Owners.

By Keith Davis

The ‘Uluru Statement From The Heart‘ is a very powerful document. It re-affirms Indigenous spiritual connection to land and nature, and explains how Indigenous people possessed this continent under their own laws and customs.

Our Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander tribes were the first sovereign nations of the Australian continent and its adjacent islands, and possessed it under our own laws and customs.

This sovereignty is a spiritual notion: the ancestral tie between the land, or ‘mother nature’, and the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples who were born therefrom, remain attached thereto, and must one day return thither to be united with our ancestors. This link is the basis of the ownership of the soil, or better, of sovereignty. It has never been ceded or extinguished, and co-exists with the sovereignty of the Crown.”

The Yaroomba Beach Sekisui Development Site has many hectares of vacant land which are currently tied up in a Development Application proposal to Sunshine Coast Regional Council. Eventually there will be a public consultation process and Council will ultimately vote to accept or reject the proposal.

Under non-Indigenous Australian Law, Sekisui (Japanese development giant) has every right to submit a proposal, Council has every right to assess that proposal, and the local Yaroomba Community, in their droves, has every right to stand firm against any modification to the current Planning Scheme.

But there is another set of Laws pertaining to that largely vacant Sekisui owned plot of land at Yaroomba isn’t there? There is another group of people, First Nations’ People, who also just happen to have the right of vacant possession under their own laws and customs, don’t they?

Modern Australian law is a very nimble thing and it generally precludes First Nations’ People from submitting any sort of Native Title claim over freehold land.

 

 

Because of all that the Kabi Kabi First Nation’s Native Title Claim QC2013/003, which covers a reasonably large area and includes Yaroomba, seeks to claw back some rights but does not seek to throw anybody out into the street. Our ancestors may have pinched the land, and we might be the beneficiaries of that pinching, but the Claim does not seek to wind the clock back. The Native Titles Act ensures that, except in exceptional cases, freehold land remains immune from claim.

Which brings us back to the Sekisui Development Site at Yaroomba. The land is just sitting there patiently waiting for a bureaucratic planning mill to go through certain motions, make certain decisions, and ultimately say yay or nay to the possible ingress of tsunami waves of high-rise concrete over that beautiful largely vacant plot of land.

And that brings us back to the Uluru Statement From The Heart, and that notion of a sovereignty that was never ceded or extinguished. It is Makarrata time.

“Makarrata is the culmination of our agenda: the coming together after a struggle. It captures our aspirations for a fair and truthful relationship with the people of Australia and a better future for our children based on justice and self-determination.”

I feel very uncomfortable with the notion that this land – this land currently owned by Sekisui, and all of the living things that it contains – is seen as no more than an exploitable product by wealthy people seeking to increase their own wealth even further. It borders on the obscene.

This particular area of land has endured a chequered history of being horse-traded, bequeathed, sold and re-sold, and generally being treated as a plaything of one too many groups simply seeking to profit from it. It is nothing short of amazing that this land has survived all that and largely remains intact and pristine.

I believe that this land represents one of those rare exceptions allowed under the Native Titles Act. Returning it will not place any of the rest of us, or our property, at risk.

Sekisui is a very large and wealthy firm. The return of this land under the spirit of the Uluru Statement From The Heart would not be too hurtful financially for them. It would allow Sekisui to exit Yaroomba with some grace and dignity.

In my view this block of land, this exceptional block of land, should be returned by Sekisui on our behalf to the Traditional Owners so that they can exercise their own historical rights and interests over it.

 

Polls that ‘count’

You will have noticed the reader’s polls at the bottom of our articles. The intentions of the polls were to provide reader engagement and give us the benefit of your valued opinions. Plus we thought they’d be a bit of fun. Nonetheless, they were only intended to be temporary while we determined if they were worthwhile keeping.

Judging by the response, they have been a huge success. The readers certainly are engaging with them. The only drawback – which we are working on – is that the polls can be slow to load on a mobile device or tablet (thanks, Malcolm).

One poll, by the way – the one asking if you support the Cashless Welfare Card – has had over 1200 votes in less than a week. (Incidentally, 96% of respondents were against the card).

Most of the polls come up randomly, so there might be a poll that has nothing to do with the article, but time permitting we can add a particular poll to an article if we feel it fits in perfectly with the article. If the polls are random, you might see a different poll at the end of an article if you refresh the page or come back to the article a second thine, and so on.

Like anything, however, ideas for new polls can dry up or we miss the opportunity to create a poll on whatever could be topical at the time.

This is where you can help.

Is there a poll you’d like included? Do you have a question to ask that might be of interest to other readers? If so, leave them in the comments section of the article, or you can email them to us at theaimn@internode.on.net. We’d love to see them.

PS: You may have noticed that with a simple click you can even share your poll results on Facebook or Twitter. (That too has been a great hit – the Cashless Welfare Card poll has so far be shared just under 250 times by our readers).

 

An advanced society? Surely not.

By freef’all852

In his book The Road to Serfdom, Freidrich Hayek asserts that the economic freedom of capitalism is a requisite of political freedom … with continual growth being the mechanism that feeds such “economic freedom”.

So we have to propose the question: What makes an “Advanced Society”?

Could it be that as proposed by Hayek above? Or is it something more basic, more durable, more sustainable than the capitalist notion of continuous growth or continuous consumption? Can it be presumed that a technological advanced society holds greater ethical dominance and therefore deserved racial dominance over the more stable tribal structures that once were spread throughout the Australian environment for tens of thousands of years?

Consider these examples:

Eucalyptus Largiflorens (Black Box) : Distribution and occurrence: Local community dominant, in grassy woodland on heavy black clay soils in seasonally flooded areas.

In this area of South Australia it is primarily restricted to what were once swamplands. This tree, like many that have evolved to an environment-specific location can be found near my residence in the Mallee. Like the Mallee trees everywhere, it has evolved in a stable, static environment over many thousands of years. Indeed, you can see that a multitude of trees and understory in the Mallee bio-forest were reliant on such a stable environment for them to spread so wide, so far in such profusion. Any extreme disruption of climate or landscape would have changed the appearance and bio-diversity of the entire forest and its denizens that is a “given”. We have to accept that the very existence of such a bio-forest system proves beyond argument that the geography where they settled, took root and evolved, was stable, static and sustainable for a very long period of time.

This is an important point to my argument; we have to understand and accept that the Mallee bio-forest, from the dry lands to the swamplands, from the canopy to the forest floor is a unique interconnected species specific/environment specific entity that relies upon a stable, static geophysical situation to maintain it’s integrity. Certainly, that integrity has been corrupted over the last two hundred years since settlement to the point where we cannot truthfully claim that pristine Mallee exists anymore at all. It has become a victim of “continual economic growth” … and one has to logically conclude that in the last resort of sustainable life; if the environment fails, then so too will the society that killed it.

Likewise, if we look at the Indigenous peoples who lived and thrived for many thousands of years along the Lower Murray and The Coorong in South Australia, I will not even attempt to disassemble the complex tribal structures that existed along the lower Murray River. It would be presumption on my part and liable to insulting error. Enough to point out that settlement is proven for many thousands of years. Indeed, carbon dating of one site of middens (discarded mollusc shell-heaps along The Coorong) alone put it back to 2.500cal BP (2.500 years old) … so we have evidence that of the many sites scattered along the seaward-side of The Coorong there was regular gathering and consumption of a reliable food source by the Indigenous peoples for thousands of years. I saw these middens many years ago. Scattered amongst the site were numerous camp-fire circles, denoting the practice of stopping, gathering, cooking and consumption of the food and presumably the social intercourse that accompanies such moments.

For such feasting to have taken place (these middens are huge!), would prove the reliable, regular supply of the molluscs and the reliable, regular harvesting by a group of peoples familiar with and capable of attending to such a chore on a continual basis for thousands of years. I know the geography of The Coorong well: On the seaward-side we have bountiful harvest of shell-fish, on the landward-side we have bird and mammal life, and the evidence of Indigenous people’s fish-traps on The Coorong, indicate regular harvesting of food there. The abundance of fresh water from the natural South East drainage system then in place guaranteed the presence of kangaroos, emus and sundry wildlife for food and clothing. In all, one must admit, that along with the temperate climate, not a bad place to reside. Indeed, it could be considered almost an idyll – and reside here people did – undisturbed for many thousands of years. Mark that! Food, clothing, shelter of a quantity and quality that remained in situ for many thousands of years, exploited but not over-exploited, harvested but not depleted, lived with but not dominated … and perhaps it could have gone on for time immemorial … like it already had … if not finally destroyed by the kind of “advanced society” lauded by Mr. Hayek at the start of this article.

So tell me: What constitutes an advanced society? Is it the one who uses its developed technology to invade, subjugate, desecrate and finally, perhaps, annihilate that very environment it relies upon for its life? Or is it the other who, with astute observation recognizes a “line” between sustainability and destruction, and by managing its population, refuses to be tempted by the possibility of a gluttony of temporary riches and maintains a judicious, salubrious lifestyle and culture for many thousands of years, visiting the same locations for food, clothing, shelter without desecration nor selfish accumulation?

So you tell me: Who has the most “advanced society” ?

This article was originally published on freefall852.wordpress.com.

 

On one side the night so dark

By freef’all852

South Australia was founded on the philosophic ideas of a degenerate, financed by the money of an opportunist, bailed out by the taxpaying British public and eventually prospered on the money of speculating aspirants. What sort of government would eventually grow from such riff-raff? Answer: An LNP government.

When it comes to choosing what type of person is suitable to govern a nation at election time, we are presented with a variety of choices, and if we look closely at those choices, it appears that the “preferred option” is a well-educated (as in private school/sandstone university), well-spoken (as in good English), well-dressed and morally reasonable personality. A bit of a “rat-bag” (Katter?) is OK, as is a “English as a second language” migrant – as long as they can get their message across – but one thing is noticeable by it’s impressionability, and that, at least amongst the males – and I would imagine similar with the women – is the “suit”.

We seem to luurrrve the “man in the suit”, be he the biggest bullshit artist in the country (Turnbull), the biggest con-artist in the country (Turnbull), or even the most mealy-mouth bastard in the country (Turnbull; 3 out of 3!). As long as he has “university cred” (preferably Oxford or Cambridge – but Harvard will now suffice – for the agile aspirants!) and an inherited or self-made fortune which gives the impression that he is not in the job for the money …

BULLSHIT!!!! Complete bullshitt with the double “t”.

nam dives qui fieri vult, et cito vult fieri“: for the one who wishes to become rich quickly (Juvenal).

We have fallen for this old chestnut again and again. Why? Because it is the “image perfect” for the “lady and gentleman” we, as a nation of aspirants seem to aspire to be: the image of success. God it’s horrible to watch … like a train wreck in slow motion. Let me tell you of the establishment of the colony of South Australia as an example.

Edward Gibbon Wakefield … a man who disgraces the first two names in his identity. The man was a disgrace all ‘round. A swindler, liar, fraud, pedophile and crook. It is of no wonder he was adopted by the aspiring men as a shining example of their class to write the formulae for the establishment of a “free enterprise” colony.

In 1829, the very year in which Thomas Peel’s colonists were being dumped down at Fremantle, West Australia, a man of thirty was busily writing in a room in Newgate Prison, in London. He was in prison because he had through a devious ruse: abducted a school-girl and “married” her at Gretna Green. But he was not treated like a convict. He could obtain books and pens and paper, as influential prisoners could in those days. He was writing a little book which was published in 1829. He called this book “A Letter from Sydney”, (although he had never been near Sydney, nor out of Europe). But he wrote so well and so brightly, including little bits of goss’ and “racy tales” that many people thought his book was the work of a man who had been living in Sydney for years, and who knew a great deal about Australia.

He proposed starting a new colony built on the idea of speculation and aspiration, with the proposition that:

“You must never sell land in a new colony except at a fairly high price. He called it a ‘sufficient price’. And he meant a price sufficient to prevent labourers from buying it easily. This would secure a supply of labour. When any land was sold—either to labourers who had saved money, or to emigrants who possessed money—the proceeds were to be used to bring out more labourers. No more land was to be given away, or granted cheaply, as in Western Australia.”

You start to get the idea … sounds familiar, doesn’t it? The object being that a labourer (and that title in those days included everybody who earned money for their work), if he had enough money to by his little piece of land when he reached the colony, would not be available to work for a “gentleman” for a measly wage, but would work his own land, and: “… his master would be left servantless. So the kind of life that an English gentleman loved—with plenty of (cheap) labour at hand—was impossible in Australia”.

This is the sort of bastard sets the example of those “born to rule”. Enter;George Fife Angus.

In 1834, an Act of Parliament was passed, which carved 300,000 square miles out of New South Wales, and established the colony of South Australia. But the British Government would not finance the new colony. Indeed, it might have well been a still-birth had not a wealthy financier. George Fife Angus stepped up and was appointed to a “Board of Commissioners”. He put up a surety of 200,000 pounds and the South Australia Company was formed with a prospectus enticing investors to buy into the project.

Eventually, two shiploads of ill-informed, ill-equipted “colonists” found their way to land at Kangaroo Island. The hopelessness of that as a colony capital was soon established. There was absolutely no information on the location suitable for settlement save Captain Charles Sturt’s notes on his Murray River trip. The whole fiasco was a gamble … a speculation … I leave the readers imagination to create the scene upon those two ships when the “investors” started to realise just who was in charge of their lives and fortunes in this strange land.

Fortunately, Colonel William Light – the surveyor with the party – reviled by the authority (Governor Hindmarsh), chose the present site of Adelaide as the best location to set up shop. He was chastised and challenged all along the way by those most incompetent Commissioners, and as Don Dunstan explained when he too was vilified by the “Powers that be” of also being a ” Melanesian half-caste bastard”, but he held fast and the site was settled. Eventually after a number of conflicts, a new Governor was sent and he (Governor Gawler), tried to organise the colony. However, no sooner had land been surveyed and sold, there began a chaos of land speculation:

“They had guarded against the lack of labour by sending out work-men, and by keeping up the price of land. (Later it was raised from 12s. to £1 per acre.) What they could not guard against was the desire of people to get rich quickly. Land was sold and the money was sent to England. More people came out and wanted to buy more land. But they wanted to buy it close to Adelaide and not far away from town. So the people who had bought land near the town sold it again for higher prices. Then began a wild rush of buying up land, not to cultivate, but to sell it again at a higher price. This is what is called speculation, or, sometimes, ‘a land boom’. We have had many outbreaks of it in Australia and nearly always it has resulted in misery and unemployment. But it is very hard to stop. With no farming going on, the immigrant labourers could get no work, and so they flocked to Adelaide and demanded food from the Governor. But food was hard to get. Very little of it was being grown in South Australia, and it had to be brought from New South Wales and Tasmania …”

Now we are getting into very familiar territory; the chaos of free enterprise.

The upshot of it all was that there being no farming done to employ or sufficiently feed the labourers. Governor Gawler put the men to work on civic construction – roads and buildings. – but with an empty treasury, he had to write out “promissory notes” (rubber cheques) to cover wages and goods. These notes, once presented for payment back in England were promptly dishonoured, and Gawler pissed off back home and the British Government was forced to honour the nearly 300,000 pounds owing and to take control of the colony just six years after it was formed. But that is how entrepreneurial speculation inevitably ends; the project is a disaster and the taxpayer is forced to pick up the tab either through gross incompetence or manipulative politics.

And there is where we will leave those floundering colonists..luckily the discovery of large tracts of copper ore saved the colony from bankruptcy..the gamble paid off…an early example of the “just in time” principle of survival capitalism which is then, through sheer blind luck claimed as “well planned management”.

And here we are in the twenty-first century, with another cycle of colonisation … not by an imperial power, but by mega corporations … with an administration called the “LNP Government” run by the same sort of gormless fools that ran the first … with the same principles but instead of depriving the Indigenous peoples of their lands, they now are in the process of depriving all the citizenry of their sovereignty. It is a colonisation of a different kind with the taxpayer still picking up the tab. And you can pin epaulets on their shoulders, gold-braid and medals upon their chests … you can string a long line of letters after their names and call them “sir” or “lady” … but they are still f#ckers and dickheads!

The selection of who to represent us in Canberra must no longer be chosen from the stupid, the fraudsters, the treasonous who received their coaching from the most exclusive schools and universities. They have betrayed their obligations. The future leaders must be chosen from the skilled trades and practical professions like nursing and engineering etc. We cannot risk our future with unskilled fools and speculating criminals from that class of degenerates who most believe they are “born to rule”.

They must be sent back to be retrained for at least something useful.

This article was originally published on freefall852.wordpress.com.

 

 

On the rim of a far horizon

By freef’all852

We are all aware of that old maxim: “Those who cannot learn from history are doomed to repeat it.” But are we here in Australia, particularly South Australia aware of just how close we stand to the sculptured pediment of ancient history? I suspect not … so allow me a moment of condescension and I will tell you a tale of many lives over many years.

I will point out that this is the first or two posts I hope to do with this on the subject of competency to govern by the so called “Born to rule” class. This post describes the style of “management” of governance by what can be best described as the most useless, incompetent, gutless collection of f#ckwits that ever were put in charge of administration. The second part will point out how and why we need to change the selection process … if not the descriptive adjectives!

Given the limitations of time (on the reader’s part) and space on the length of what constitutes a “readable post” on a blog-site, I have decided to forego detailed acknowledgement of my sources and steam headlong into the guts of my thesis. If you want details, you will just have to ask.

Where I live in the South Australian mallee, there is a massive amount of unrecorded history. Not in the nuts and bolts of who, what and where, but in the why and by whom … of population settlement in the district. For this area contains the “overflow” of the early German migrants who first came to South Australia as part of George Fife Angus’s recruitment program of cheap-labour from that pool of eastern Germans newly incorporated into the greater German republic in the 1850s with the annexation of the eastern states of Europe; beyond the Oder River and around the Vistula River of what is now Poland.

“Trees don’t pay taxes” was the catch-cry of the commissioners of the South Australia Company.

Those peoples, mostly Slavic in ancestry were compelled to Germanise their names, religion and culture as part of the new Republic or suffer the consequences, hence the migration of entire villages replete with pastor to Australia in the 1850s onwards until the end of the century. These eastern Europeans were known mostly to themselves as ‘Wends’ or ‘Sorbs’. And unlike the other two waves of Germanic migration – the persecuted middle-class from the German cities who settled and brought culture to Adelaide and the proletariat industrial workers from the cities, who brought trade and industrial skills to the state – they held their culture and themselves to themselves and their pastors. Hence the close-knit settlements around the Barossa Valley and Kapunda/St Kitts/Stonefield areas of South Australia. And right up to the late 1950s, English in their homes was a second language.

I have noted the many unrecorded efforts of many of those families while they battled with Angus’s swindle of their hard labour and their dedication to hold onto their land that was impossible to farm successfully; hopelessly small plots of land that in many cases were left destitute and broken by what must have been a deliberate plan to use them to clear-fell those sections of the mallee most suitable for cropping. The same as happened to many “Soldier Settlers” on the Murray Plains around Pinnaroo after the 2ndWW. When they were sent into the bush with little more than axes, picks and shovels and the remnants of their khaki uniforms to carve their fortunes and fates out of the hardy mallee, and in the end only broke their backs succeeding in clear-felling their selections for the local bush aristocrats to pick them up when they went broke or shot themselves in despair, such as …

Bachelor Bill.
“He was a bachelor, you see.
He was a soldier-settler
Out in the mallee scrub…
And he died…
Father went through his things
But he couldn’t throw these out…”
She “thumbed” out the pockets of her breeks.
“They have his army number on them, see !
He was a lovely old man , my Uncle Bill.”
But I have seen a few “Uncle Bills”,
Spurned or turned from a woman’s embrace.
Uncertain and clumsy in affection
Toward sisters or brother’s children…
“The breeks were army issue,
Part of the “deal” for soldier-settlers…
God only knows how he struggled out there.”
A soldier-settler alone in the mallee.
“God only knows.”

“Trees don’t pay taxes,” the commissioners said.

The plots of land “leased” on a strange time-payment plan to the Germans with the proviso that all produce was to be sold through Angus’s company were too small and lacked deep topsoil and water to maintain fertility past the first few years of clear felling and wind storms that decimated a land totally unsuitable for continual farming, the like of European soils. Even as soon as the early years of the twentieth century, super-phosphate was being used to fertilise the “gutless” soils. So the intrepid pioneers cleared their little plots from fence-line to fence-line trying to maximise their output … to no avail, and many had to walk away from the land and trek to distant places more fertile; places like Hamilton, Victoria, the SA Riverland, the Adelaide hills and such places, scattered to the winds along with the breaking up of families and culture, the untold story of lost dreams of so many vulnerable folk under the tyranny of a dominant culture and capital-based society.

See also: Haunted by History

When many of the East Germans arrived in the later years of the nineteenth century, many made their way north to the lower Flinders Ranges; to places like Hammond, Craddock, Gordon, Farina and others even more lost in the sands of time..

“Rain will follow the plough” they told the settlers who established themselves in those first good seasons, but then the dry set in and it all went to shit; the land collapsed, the farms went dry as dust, the people walked off their properties and the towns collapsed into rubble and then sunk back into the earth they so wearily rose from.

“Rain will follow the plough” they said, and so the ploughs went back south to Stonefield, Sandelton and Sedan – hard mallee country – with a slender top-soil and below, a layer of “calcrete” so hard every vibrating crowbar strike would ring “Gibraltar!”, and so they drained and farmed the swamps and the hilltops and the stoney flats, picking up the stones by hand and throwing them into piles from the back of the dray … they farmed them with wood and iron and steel ploughs ’til the tynes and shares were worn to a slither or blunt as a gibber. They farmed the wind-blown flats ’til their families died with the diphtheria or in harrowing births gone wrong, attended only by young girls too frightened by the ghastly complications of childbirth to do little but cry in shock of what could very soon be their own fate, or they died in fires and accidents too frequent to collate in a doctors surgery, too far from a doctor’s assistance and left buried in sad, lonely cemeteries, serenaded only through the fall of time by sighing sheoaks around the perimeter of the church yard.

This is how far they came from the Vistula River, from the deep soils of the Danube and the Oder. This is how far they brought the remnants of their culture. Here; to the rim of a far horizon.

“Trees don’t pay taxes”, the likes of Henry Ayers and George Fife Angus proclaimed from their seats in the new parliament.

And many left for greener pastures – more profitable trades – but the Lehmans stayed and made wine; the Saegenshnitters stayed as did the Rosenschwietzs; and the Krugers and the Greatzes and the Kochs. They stayed and worked the land or in the towns and built their churches and fought amongst themselves. They stayed, but forgot just exactly where their ancestors came from, and forgot why their culture mattered.

Local historian Reg Munchenberg, now deceased, wrote of the origins and the land titles held in the Stonefield area of those hardy Germans; those Wends/Sorbs, and he told of how, when many of the third generation here had retired and desired to go back to “the old country” to find their roots, many were shocked to find they had to go into Poland, them believing they were pure German stock. When in all the time they were both reviled by the Western Germans as a people who came from the east to take their jobs or later as potential Bolsheviks who they hunted down and killed with pogroms in the industrial areas of Danzig … and then upon return to their homeland after the war to find the Polish hated them for being “German” and their ancestral graveyards and records were destroyed by an angry, vengeful people.

And so we come via a circuous route back to the Roman Empire when they fought the Venerdi and the Seubi; The Wends and the Sorbs, back across the Danube, back into Germania, back into the future to await their next awakening here in South Australia, where once again they will become a part of a history they will not write, they will not control … for it is the victors who write the histories, we are told, and this area of the mallee, between the eastern hills and the Murray River is one fertile history that has yet to be written.

This article was originally published on freefall852.wordpress.com.

Clinton’s Walk For Justice is in Melbourne – March for Justice on June 6

Time:   Tuesday, June 6, 5pm (March at 5:30pm)
Location: Begin at Parliament Gardens, march to Flinders St Station
What:   Supporters March with Clinton’s Walk For Justice

 

On the evening of June 6, Clinton’s Walk For Justice will join the Warriors of the Aboriginal Resistance in a march through Naarm (Melbourne), beginning at Parliament Gardens.

Clinton Pryor, a Wajuk, Balardung, Kija and Yulparitja man from Western Australia has been on his Walk For Justice since leaving Perth in September last year.

Clinton and the Walk For Justice Team are headed for Canberra, where they will deliver strong messages on behalf of the people and communities the team has met with right across the country.

Clinton says two messages are coming through very clearly from Aboriginal communities right now:

“First – our sovereignty was never ceded and our rights as the first nation peoples of this land should be recognised and respected as sovereign.

And also our elders should be given back control over our communities.”

So far Clinton and the team have travelled through the dryness of the Gibson desert, all the way to Uluru and on through the blistering heat of summer to Coober Pedy, Port Augusta and Adelaide city.

As they move through country, the team take part in traditional welcoming ceremonies and meet with local community members to hear their stories, discuss issues and take on their messages.

Now the team have crossed the border into the cold Victorian winter, and are rapidly approaching Melbourne before heading on to Sydney.

Clinton’s Walk For Justice began out of a need within Clinton to do something about the forced closure of Aboriginal communities, and that strong theme continues.

Clinton’s walk is about working together and building mutual respect between Aboriginal people, and between ALL people living on Aboriginal land here in Australia.

To hear more about Clinton’s experience and what he and the team have learned as they walked right across the country, join Clinton and the Walk For Justice team on June 6.

Quotes attributable to Clinton Pryor:

“I started this journey walking from Perth to find the truth and find a new way for Aboriginal and non-Aboriginal people in Australia.”

“I have never been to Melbourne before, so I don’t know what is going to happen yet, but we do know it be something to remember. Melbourne will be big.”

“In Canberra I want to bring Aboriginal leader an elders from a cross this country together, also none Indigenous people, to meet and talk about the issues our way.”

Website: http://www.clintonswalkforjustice.org

 

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