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Compassion – you’re kidding

By 2353NM  

In October 2019, this website discussed the fate of the Murugappen family who were forcibly removed from their home in Biloela, Queensland by Border Force. At the time we questioned how someone who claims to have a fundamentalist Christian view of the Bible as the absolute truth (despite the ‘over 700 inconsistencies’ listed here) could justify his Government’s callous treatment of people while his Christian beliefs apparently direct him to do unto others as you would have them do unto you.

Since then, the Murugappan family have been detained as the sole inmates at the Christmas Island Detention Centre – costing you and I as taxpayers an estimated $6million. The political need for proof that the Coalition Government is ‘tough’ on falsely claimed ‘queue jumpers’ or ‘illegal immigrants’ has, to borrow a phrase from former Treasurer Joe Hockey, turned the Murugappan family from lifters – as they had jobs, paid their taxes and were active in the Biloela community – to leaners that have soaked up literally millions of dollars with no hope of a return to the ‘investment’. And it’s not the family’s fault – the Morrison Coalition Government is entirely to blame.

We all know the outcome here. The younger daughter, 3 at the time, was airlifted to the Perth Children’s Hospital with her mother on 7 June after her parents had been advising Border Force’s contracted medical staff she was unwell. After a week of continual requests for medical assistance, young Tharnicaa was transferred to the Christmas Island Hospital where doctors unrelated to Border Force determined she had a blood infection, possibly septicaemia. As reported on the 9 News website, Tharnicaa’s father and sister were relocated to Perth a week later for the mental health of both of the sisters. The Morrison Coalition Government relented to public pressure and granted the family temporary approval to stay in Australia with Immigration Minister Alex Hawke claimingIt is the right decision, a compassionate decision.

What complete and utter rubbish. A compassionate decision would have been to leave the family in Biloela some years ago and let them get along with their lives. The Morrison Coalition Government’s hounding of this family have ensured that all members of the family have physical and mental health concerns that they will have to live with for a lifetime.

 

Cartoon by Alan Moir (moir.com.au)

 

And while we’re speaking about ‘compassion’, let’s look at the Morrison Coalition Government’s mandating the ‘cashless welfare card’ for social security recipients in certain ‘trial’ areas around Australia. We also discussed the Morrison Government’s punitive social security system in October 2019, questioning the implied claims that those on welfare couldn’t manage their measly payments without ‘big brother’. While it is probably true that some who collect social security do act in a manner that the Pentecostal Christians in the government consider inappropriate, it’s also true to say that Australians didn’t elect any Government to be the sole determiner of individuals’ moral or ethical views. If this was the case, the Marriage Equality legislation would never have been voted on, let alone passed by Parliament.

The Saturday Paper recently highlighted another concerning aspect of the ‘cashless welfare card’ – the potential dangers of those subject to domestic violence or coercion having ‘big brother’ telling them what they can spend ‘their’ money on

Dr Karen Williams, a psychiatrist who specialises in treating post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) and works with many women who have survived long-term abuse, says the cashless card, “mimics exactly what a financial abuser and coercive controller would do”.

Williams points out that women fleeing abuse are at high risk of poverty and homelessness, and that these things in themselves can be used as reasons to take a woman’s children. She says that the welfare system, far from supporting women to leave abusers, is “actively working to keep marginalised women in the relationship while gaslighting her by telling her she should leave.”

Morrison’s Coalition Government has promoted assistance to those who need to escape violent or abusive relationships. The assistance includes $1500 in cash, $3500 in goods and services and a $2000 no interest loan. Women who subsequently are deemed eligible for the single parent payment and live in the ‘wrong’ postcode are made to go onto the ‘cashless welfare card’ – which according to a number of sources is almost impossible to get off (even if you move away from the ‘trial’ areas). As observed in The Saturday Paper

There is a contradiction here. Australia is spending $1.1 billion to help women escape violent and abusive relationships, the country is moving towards legislating against coercive control. Yet if a woman lives in a cashless welfare trial site and manages to leave her partner, she can find the abuse replicated by the very government that claims to want to help her.

Considering these trials have been running for 14 years with little evidence that they achieve their original purpose – preventing welfare recipients spending their money on alcohol, drugs or gambling – it’s hard to see why so many vulnerable women are still being forced to use the cards.

Potentially the reason why vulnerable women are being forced to use the ‘cashless welfare card’ and the Murugappan family are still detained at the ‘pleasure’ of the Minister is the Coalition’s predilection for punitive punishment rather than working with people to achieve mutually beneficial outcomes. Making the assumption that those on various social security payments in certain areas of the country are all ‘up to no good’ despite the lack of hard evidence that should easily be apparent in a ‘trial’ that has lasted 14 years to date is criminal and has potentially cost the lives of some women who haven’t been able to escape violence financially. The hospitalisation of a 3-year-old girl with serious health issues despite the parents seeking assistance from contracted staff with claimed medical qualifications working for the government is a horrible indictment and stain on our national history. To claim that these measures are in place to stop tragic outcomes is duplicitous at best and certainly not evidenced in the reality.

Neither side of politics can honestly claim to be above blame here. Both the Coalition and the Labor Party have played their part in the increasingly inhumane immigration and welfare practices imposed in the name of ‘compassion’. Both side of politics have weaponised human lives. It needs to stop.

What do you think?

This article was originally published on The Political Sword

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25 comments

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  1. Patricia

    I think that the LNP government and Morrison particularly has kicked an own goal in this instance.

    One of many.

    They, and he, say that they are doing what they are doing to the Biloela family to show others (not those others who are men who are afraid that if women succeed that they, the men, will somehow have to fail), people smugglers or those poor souls who are fleeing their countries because they fear for their lives if they stay, that Australia will not tolerate people coming to this country “illegally”, even though it is not illegal to seek refuge from another country, including Australia, no matter what means they use to get to that country, and that they will never be able to make Australia their permanent home.

    The own goal is that had the LNP government given this family resident status and left them alone no one would have been any the wiser as to how they got here. No one would have ever heard of them. He would have kept working and paying his taxes, his wife would have continued to give of herself to the community that has welcomed them, the children would have grown, gone to school, even to university and become valued members of the wider Australian society.

    The own goal is that the LNP government has brought to the forefront of most Australians minds the fact that this government is willing to pay millions to hold four people in prison while also telling us that they have to tighten the purse strings by cutting funding to services that the poorest and the least able in our society depend upon.

    If this was their only own goal, one might, if one was hard hearted enough, just forgive this government for these actions, but it is not.

    It would be hoped that all of the own goals that this government has delivered to itself would wake up even the most uninterested voter to the fact that this government does not govern for the people of Australia, that another three years of this government will only mire the country and its people in a deeper morass than it has managed to do so far.

    But hope is a dangerous thing and it is often the thing that finally brings us undone.

  2. pierre wilkinson

    at $10,000 pa to administer the Indue card, all delivered to an ex Liberal whose company apparently donates to the Coalition, this represents a tacit money laundering business which promises to expand exponentially if the Lib/Nats get re-elected
    just think of that, $10.000 to administer a card that cedes $14,000 in welfare
    $6 million to save us from Mum, Dad and two little girls
    and they say good fiscal management is in their DNA

  3. Mark

    One wonders why, when referring to government, it’s the TAX lens that’s invariably brought to bear.

    Last year, BHP and Rio paid about $4.2bn apiece in income tax. Hancock Prospecting and Forrest’s Fortescue were also enormous taxpayers. The big four Banks are huge tax payers and have been for years and years.

    Yet the really big taxpayers (mentioned above) can’t vote. They can’t elect governments. Thus they have no say in how government funds are spent via the electoral process.

    No! Governments are elected by citizens whether they are taxpayers or not. Further all citizens are equal when it comes to the right to vote. One citizen equals one vote.

    But so many punters choose to define themselves as taxpayers (rather than equal citizens) even when they are clearly taxpaying minnows.

    Guess we are our own worst enemy.

  4. Mark

    Yes Patricia, one can be reasonably sure that if Australian Citizens were asked to decide, the family in question would be back in Bilo. Indeed, again, if we lived in a functioning democracy, the family would never have been removed.

    But we didn’t get the chance to decide. We were never asked the question.

    Lots of talk about our (supposedly) failing democracy but the truth is we never had anything more than a pale shadow. Just look at the armed conflicts we’ve had over the years – from Vietnam to Iraq – and consider how many would have been prevented if we, the Citizens, had been asked to decide. The lives saved. The devastation prevented.

    Then there’s global warming, etc, etc. Now reduced to standing on corners with banners.

  5. Andrew J. Smith

    Worse, is that while many LNP voters do not approve of the treatment meted out to this family, they are complicit by voting for the LNP and then neither questioning ethics nor morals of the same and delivery of services (and happens with Labor too); comfortable in a form of autocracy.

    Which suggests a question, where do these policies come from? Take for example ‘hostile environment’, welfare cards etc. are Anglosphere and transnational, based upon the old eugenics movement and libertarians playing off immigrant vs. native card masking an attempt to control ‘welfare’ or govt. spending…… and tracking individuals too.

    Political forms came from the US from the ’70s then peaked with immigration restriction groups round the Trump White House including FAIR, NumbersUSA and CIS (Center for Immigration Studies) with attitude towards immigrants, refugees and ‘the lower orders’ on IQ etc..

    Informed by the late white nationalist John ‘passive eugenics’ Tanton and promotion of such nativist and/or eugenics based policies could be linked to promotions of Migration Watch UK and Population Matters UK, while SPA in Oz can be too (former head hosted Tanton in Canberra some years ago).

    Couple of years ago Open Democracy UK investigated in ‘Big Brother says ‘No’: surveillance and income management of asylum seekers through the UK ASPEN Card.

    The imposition of the ASPEN Card on those who are marginalised and unable to resist is no accident. It enables the UK Home Office and those they work with to test and develop new forms of surveillance.’

    https://www.opendemocracy.net/en/digitaliberties/big-brother-says-no-surveillance-and-income-management-of-asylum-seekers-through-the-uk-aspen-card/

  6. Carl Marks

    Massive, MASSIVE control freakery.

    Back awhile such people, tight arsed and straight-laced, were described as “WASP” (check Funk and Wagnalls), but these day we just refer to the pathology as control freaking by control freaks.

    Morrison, Xtian Porter, Dutton etc here, the likes of Mitch McConnell and Pat Robertson in the USA…

  7. Kathryn

    If there was an Olympic Games for callous inhumanity, mind numbing ineptitude, self-serving corruption and short-sighted stupidity, the regressive, incompetent and unspeakably cruel and depraved Morrison/Dutton regime would attain Gold, Silver and Bronze in EVERY event. Truly, the current version of the right-wing-extremist LNP are, undeniably, the WORST pack of sadistic, totally incompetent and brutal sociopaths ever seen mismanaging our nation into oblivion!

    The bone-idle smirking, sanctimonious bible-thumping hypocrite, Sloth Morrison and his sadistic, ferocious attack dog, Peter Dutton, are using, abusing and torturing this desperate Murugappen family – and their two innocent little girls – (who were once contributing members of the Biloela community), as political “footballs”; abusing their autocratic power to score cheap, disgusting and immensely unpopular political “points” in their transparent, cowardly and inhumane attempts to show how “tough” this repugnant government are on “illegal” asylum seekers! The point is that there is NO SUCH THING as an “illegal” asylum seeker – the fact is that, in accordance with international laws and the Universal Declaration of Human Rights (UDHR), every asylum seeker has the absolute right to be able to seek asylum from persecution (Article 14). The FACT is that EVERY refugee or desperate asylum seeker who is facing persecution in their land of origin, has the LEGAL right to seek protection and asylum in another country.

    For this horrific pack of smug, corrupt, self-serving pack of rorting sociopaths in the LNP to call this family “leaners” is breathtaking hypocrisy considering that the non-achieving, bone-idle Sloth Morrison is now the FIFTH highest paid politician in the world and that so many members of his regime have become multi-millionaires in office INCLUDING Dutton who now has a personal net worth exceeding $300 MILLION! Morrison now has a personal net worth of more than $45 MILLION and here is a man who expends far more energy getting OUT of work and delegating 99% of this federal responsibilities to the hapless State Premiers! When NSW was suffering from the worst bush fires in living memory, we all remember how Morrison cowardly went AWOL and was found hiding behind a banana chair in Hawaii! WOW! Now we are confronted with Morrison, the Minister for relentless Public Announcements, seeking undeserved public attention for his publicity-seeking, sanctimonious lectures whilst he delegated the ONLY two important jobs of the year: the vaccination roll-out and a viable, efficient quarantine program! The result? EPIC FAIL.

    Remember when Morrison was caught grinning like a Cheshire cat and hugging his two daughters so that he could “play the role” of the doting father? Hmmmm, it seems that HIS two girls may be under his paternalistic protection BUT the two defenceless, traumatised little Murugappen girls can be left eeking out their tragic lives alone with their parents, locked up indefinitely behind razor wire on Christmas Island without ANY facilities much less proper schooling, socially isolated and denied the right to mix with other little children their own age and refused their right to live the normal, healthy life that the Morrison girls enjoy! This situation is BEYOND evil, BEYOND cruel and BEYOND what any compassionate, intelligent and reasonable Australian would consider to be acceptable!

    Australians must now STAND UP and DEMAND that the little Tamil Murugappen family – who have committed NO CRIME except to apply their international right to seek asylum in Australia from certain persecution in Sri Lanka – be RELEASED back into the Bileola community who love and support them! Australians must WAKE UP and ask themselves: “What TYPE of government do we want ruling our nation?” … the barbaric, skirt-lifting misogynists, greedy self-serving rorters and callously inhumane sociopaths that line the cabinet of the WORST, most undemocratic regime in our political history, ie the lying, conniving and hearless LNP, are – most definitely – NOT the type of people we want representing Australians on the international stage! The LNP have brought nothing but shame, scorn, embarrassing international ridicule and worldwide condemnation to our door!

  8. GL

    I can almost see Saint Scotty of the Marketing using the Murugappen family as a pathetic ploy to try and bolster their “compassionate image” and allow them to move back to Biloela after he calls the election date.

  9. wam

    For most religious rabbottians, women don’t count outside their god given trinity.
    As for tax paid, there are hundreds of companies who pay no tax and the mining mob get billions in subsidies to negate any tax paid.
    As for indue cards a royal commission, including investigating share holders, would expose rorts?? But the cost is immaterial when christine gave them unlimited cash what counts to scummo’s girls and boys is privatising and cutting public service jobs.
    For half the $12k cost an Aboriginal corporation could be employing local Aboriginals to monitor the business/welfare interactions.

  10. New England Cocky

    Now all you contributors are very naughty thinking that Scummo and the Hell$ingers Choru$ are in fact religious when all the evidence suggests that at best they are self-serving hypocrites scamming the Australian Tax Office for all the benefits of tax free status.

    The first rule of the Hell$ingers is that money has no value so you throw it around with impunity, like spending about $6 MILLION on bullying the Murrugappen family. Besides how can any self-respecting White Supremacist unChristian charlatan pass over the perfect opportunity to demonstrate the maximum abuse of the power of political office to pro up their personal character inadequacies.

    Expect Scummo and his racist mates to have a ”Road to Damascus Moment” as the next feral election is about to be announced, expecting the Australian voters to recognise the mercy of the Liarbral Nazional$ fascist COALition and expecting to be returned to office with majority larger than the present one (1) seat.

    NOT WITH MY VOTE !!!!!!!!

  11. Keith

    The LNP have a very strong history of lack of compassion or humanity as displayed by the Robodebt disaster.

    Asylum seekers are still being emotionally tortured.

    The Murugappan family have been severely abused.

    We are told that the “government” has no intention of placing more people on the Indue card. That is the wish as clearly shown by Rushton. Paternalistic and abusive, the LNP can’t even handle their own matters in a professional manner – quarantine and rollout of vaccines.

    These are NOT the kind of actions that can be expected in a functioning well administered country.

  12. Henry Rodrigues

    Mark..

    How much tax did Murdoch and his putrid media empire pay ???

    How much taxpayer money was squandered by Scummo and his band of thieving bastards by means of handouts for sports purposes and carparks, almost exclusively in Coalition held seats ???

    How much taxpayer money was gifted to the fossil fuel industry, the miners and rich creeps like Twiggy and slob Rheinhart ?

    How much taxpayer money was handed to private media companies like Foxtel, and the commercial TV channels, and how much money was taken away from the Australian Broadcasting Corp owned by the taxpayer ?

    How much taxpayer money was squandered by Scummo and his spud like minister to demonise two little girls and their parents ?

    When you’ve finished focusing on these questions, send your reply to the taxpayers association, the real taxpayers, that is.

  13. Pete Petrass

    Not to forget the government’s own report into the Indue card which provided clear evidence that it does not work, and which (of course) the government refuses to release.

  14. wam

    very funny GL I cannot believe my catholic women friends who believe that god is a man and I will risk condemnation by forwarding it. But the christianity trinity, in relation to women, is the hole twixt wind and water, the nipples and the mouth. Even the egg doesn’t count till the sperm haploid enters and we have man’s creation..

  15. BB

    Compassionate Morrison is an oxymoron.
    He’s a conceited nasty lying selfish prick!

  16. Bill

    Compassion begins where the love-hate dichotomy ends. I don’t blame those who don’t have much compassion but it’d be better if they were nowhere near the levers of power. It’s up to the public to vote them out. Looking at how this covid drama is playing out, there is so much stupid. I wonder if we’re being run by malicious adults or simpletons.

    The PCR test was never designed to detect infection. The vaccine is in a trial, yet despite 10s of thousands of deaths and more than a million adverse reactions worldwide, empty heads in media-gov-medicine still claim it to be ‘safe’. Viable treatments are ignored because, you the know, the ‘narrative’. All to keep lobbyist benefactors happy.

    Following the work of German lawyer Reiner Fuellmich and USA Patent attorney Dr David Martin, it’s easy to see what is happening.

  17. DrakeN

    Excuse me, Bill, your gullibility is showing.

  18. Bill

    DrakeN, gullibility should be the word of the year, its champion Dr Norman Swan.

  19. DrakeN

    And your actual expertise in matters medical and epidemiological is precisely what?
    I have no doubt that you have listened to/watched Dr. Swan very closely and chosen to ignore much of what he conveys on grounds of “fake news”.
    I suppose that you imagine that the interview with Donald Trump by Dr Swan’s son Johnathan was also “faked”.
    Your credibility is on a par with that orange faced idiot.

  20. New England Cocky

    @Hnery Rodrigues The Australia newspaper has NEVER paid tax thanks to all the lovely credit available from leading US banks and the Australian tax system.

  21. Henry Rodrigues

    NEC…. I was waiting for Mark that warrior for the Liberals to take a deep breath and come back at me. But he’s obviously too shy to bare his fangs at me.

  22. leefe

    Bill: *citations required

    ie: actual scientific evidence of that many adverse reactions and that many deaths directly caused by the vaccines. And that does not mean another factless claim by Children’s Health Defence.

    NEC: The (un)Australian has never paid tax because it has never turned a profit. Not even without all the usual corporate creative accounting.

  23. Bill

    DrakeN, anyone who can read English can find medical journal articles to suit their level of understanding. That is my ‘expertise’ – I read some journal articles and comprehend some expert analysis. The question then becomes, which experts are funded by Big Pharma, which are independent and sticking with science. I listen to Dr. Swan give his opinion if I happen across him. He seems to have a soft spot for the official narrative and his pile-on Catalyst medical journo Anne Demasi after her expose of sugar and EMF a few years back informs my view. The UN gave him an award. Anything the UN or WHO is involved in is suspect imo. If you watch the recent Covid Cartel interview of WHO whistleblower Astrid Stuckelberger with Del Bigtree you will see why I say that.

    leefe “actual scientific evidence of that many adverse reactions and that many deaths directly caused by the vaccines” – everything to do with vaccines is coincidental.
    Just ask Big Pharma.

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