Tuesday 31 November
1 I have a family member who is convinced that I am anti-American. I am not of course. I have a lot of American friends on Facebook. I love their music. Jazz in particular, and of course some of their sport.
I dislike their gun laws and their foreign policy but at the same time understand the difficulty in being the world’s policeman. I once admired their political system for its bi-partisanship until a bad actor stuffed it up and gave it over to religion. Yes, there is much I like and dislike.
The following list illustrates the force the USA uses in other countries in order to further its own interests.
Puerto Rico 1950.
Iran 1953 installed the Shah.
Guatemala 1954 after US Business nationalized.
Cuba 1961 invasion, to prevent the canal being nationalized.
Indonesia 1965. CIA assisted coup.
Dominican Republic 1965-66, troops land to secure election result.
Chile 1973, CIA overthrow of Allende.
CIA assists South Africa rebels.
El Salvador 1981-92.
Nicaragua 1981-90, aid to the Contras.
Grenada 1983-84, phoney excuse to invade to rescue students.
Libya 1986, air strikes to help topple the government.
Panama 1989, 2000 killed in canal protection.
Haiti 1994, blockade and troops to prop up Aristide.
Sudan 1998, bombed a pharmaceutical factory. The illegal war in Iraq.
Yes, the USA is often unfairly placed in the position of world policeman but we should understand that it would always place its own interests above all other considerations.
2 Many years ago it was considered unfashionable, once defeated, to utter advice to incumbent PMs or indeed, governments. Today it is commonplace. Fraser, Hawke, Keating, Rudd, Gillard and now Abbott often offer gratuitous advice about anything that takes their fancy. Yes, it is a free country and everyone is entitled to a view. But is it wise? The only one in my view who offers sound advice on policy is Keating. You might disagree, of course.
3 Why is it, unlike his predecessor, does the Prime Minister not refer to Asylum Seekers as illegals? Perhaps he knows the law.
4 World leaders and country representatives at the Paris climate talks would do well to remember that they are faced with a decision of universal consequence. None more serious in world history.
For more than 20 years the world has been struggling to tackle a collective problem that costs a huge amount to solve but immeasurably, unthinkably more to leave unattended. The talks are not about saving capitalism but the future of our home.
5 Australia’s budget deficit to blow out by additional $38bn by 2019 according to Deloitte Access Economics. They blame the Chinese economy, and the Senate. I’ll bet the Coalition blames Labor.
6 Some good news. Australia has signed-up to a multi-billion dollar global innovation plan that will require it to double the government’s investment in clean energy research and development over the next five years.
Australia joins 18 other countries – including the US, China and India – as part of the clean technology push to be launched at the Paris climate summit.
7 Some bad but unsurprising news. There’s a revolt with the National deniers urging Turnbull not to sign a United Nations treaty pushing to speed up the removal of fossil fuel subsidies.
8 This is an extract from a piece by Sid Hickman in On Line Opinion 25 Nov. 30, 15
“The lack of any substantial membership base is becoming a real weakness. The funding situation looks bad, with unions in trouble and business losing interest as the prospect of an ALP government in the next decade disappears. Some state branches are very weak and getting weaker. In WA the extreme left unions dominate the Party, as seen in recent preselection nonsense, because they have money and all other forces are struggling.
After two decades of fretting about membership and union domination, and reports written by ‘wise elders’, nothing of significance has been achieved. The problem is a lack of leadership. The Party needs a new political direction, new structures and new power relationships. Someone must stand up and convincingly redefine why the ALP exists now and why it should still be here in twenty years’ time. That would mean overturning the rather primitive religious and economic beliefs of some key powerbrokers so don’t hold your breath waiting”.
9 Morgan Poll yesterday has Labor on 44% and the Coalition on 56%.
MY THOUGHT FOR THE DAY
“Telling the truth should not be delayed simply because we are not sure how people might react to it”.
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