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The house wins

While everyone reels from the worst budget ever, a lot of other very insidious work is flying under the radar.  One of the most blatant examples of STUFF YOU from our current government came from our Social Services Minister, Kevin bloody Andrews.

In the days after the 2010 election, Tasmanian Independent Andrew Wilkie was a very popular man.  In a bid to obtain his support to form government, Tony Abbott offered him $1 billion to build a hospital.  Wilkie regarded this as an irresponsible bribe which made him wonder about Abbott’s suitability for the job.  He chose instead to back Julia Gillard who promised poker machine reform.

The industry responded with a multi-million-dollar public lobbying campaign run by club lobby group ClubsNSW, and its pub counterpart the Australian Hotels Association, which targeted and turned wavering Labor MPs against the so-called Wilkie Reforms, and eroded parliamentary support for harm-reduction measures, such as mandatory pre-commitment, of which polls suggested most Australians approved. Mandatory pre-commitment would have required punters to nominate how much they’d lose in a given session, and then be locked out when they hit the limit.

And they didn’t limit their action to advertising.  AFTER the 2010 election, the AHA and ClubsNSW gave more than $1.3 million in donations for the final quarter of the year. By an overwhelming margin these were directed at the Coalition.

In an ignominious backdown. Gillard reneged on the deal giving in to the power of the hotel and gambling lobbies, watering down the promised reforms and only committing to a limited trial in the ACT.  I was disappointed with this decision and Mr Wilkie was rightly furious, but at least his integrity had begun the process of reform with the passing of the National Gambling Reform Act in November 2012.  The Acts set out key requirements for voluntary pre-commitment on poker machines, dynamic warnings and $250 daily ATM withdrawal limits in gaming venues (excluding casinos).

And then along came Kev, who, disguised as a mild-mannered Christian from the extreme right, fights a never ending battle for donations, “normal” families, and the financial backers’ way.

A brief reminder of Kev’s previous form:  He is against euthanasia, RU486, stem cell research, abortion, equal opportunity, affirmative action, refugees, homosexuality, and sex education.  He is a member of many religious organisations which benefit from government funding and in 2011, said of the Greens that their agenda would threaten the “Judeo-Christian/Enlightenment synthesis that upholds the individual”.  He was responsible for introducing Workchoices, and for the illegal victimisation of Dr Haneef.  He is also a member of the Credlin led Star Chamber.

In December last year, less than three months into his term in office, this moral crusader introduced to the House of Representatives a bill repealing almost all of the gambling harm-minimisation measures passed by the Gillard Labor government in November 2012.  He even changed the name to National Gambling Measures Act.

Australians are amongst the most prolific gamblers in the world.  A 2013 report by the AMA studied the health effects of problem gambling making the following observations.

An estimated 2.5 per cent of Australians experience moderate to severe problems caused by gambling. For every person with a gambling problem, it is estimated that an additional 5 to 10 people are adversely affected by their gambling. This means that up to 5 million Australians feel the health, social and financial impacts of problem gambling, including friends, families and employers of people with a gambling problem.

Problem gamblers experience high levels of comorbid mental health disorders and substance abuse, and they or their families may experience stress-related physical and psychological ill health as a consequence of their gambling activities. Other adverse effects include family breakdown, domestic violence, criminal activity, disruption to or loss of employment, and social isolation. Additionally, problem gambling may compromise the capacity to afford necessities such as adequate nutrition, heating, shelter, transport, medications and health services.

Problem gamblers have a higher than average number of visits to a GP, and experience an increased incidence of  illnesses such as hypertension, insomnia, migraine, depression, anxiety, stomach upsets, headaches, and other stress-related symptoms of physical and psychological ill health.

As gambling activities have expanded and diversified, particularly with the introduction of interactive gambling, so too have the ways in which gambling is marketed to different sections of the community. Young people and other vulnerable populations are increasingly exposed to messages from a broad range of media that endorse, promote and normalise gambling.

The expansion in gambling activities has not only increased the prevalence of problem gambling, but has also entrenched governments’ dependence upon gambling taxation. For state and territory governments, their dual role as regulator and beneficiary poses a structural conflict and obstacle to achieving gambling policies and regulations that prioritise public health and consumer protection objectives. If the expansion of gambling and its associated harm is to be reduced, it is imperative that governments’ reliance upon revenue from gambling is overcome.

The adverse consequences of problem gambling are not distributed evenly across the population. The prevalence and impacts of problem gambling are most pronounced among socially and economically disadvantaged individuals and communities, including Aboriginal people and Torres Strait Islanders, those with poor literacy, people with pre-existing mental health problems, certain cultural and linguistic communities, and people living in regions or metropolitan suburbs with high levels of unemployment and economic hardship.

Young people are at a heightened risk of developing problems with gambling and, the earlier the onset of gambling behaviour, the more likely problem gambling will result and continue into adulthood. Gambling during childhood or adolescence is typically associated with risk-taking behaviours, reduced educational performance, and mental health problems, including depression.

Gambling researchers say heavy financial losses are likely to be one of the most important causes of suicides among problem gamblers.  Problem gamblers often have substance-abuse problems and other mental-health issues, but debt has been identified as the factor most likely to push them over the edge.  Victoria’s State Coroner Judge Ian Gray has released a report showing 128 people took their own lives in Victoria in the past decade because of a gambling addiction though, due to the secretive nature of problem gamblers, the true figure is undoubtedly much higher.

In 2010 the Productivity Commission illustrated Australia’s gambling obsession in extraordinary figures: that Australians lost about $19 billion per year gambling, and that much of this — some 41 per cent, in the case of poker machines — drawn from problem gamblers.  And a few more statistics.

•The social cost to the community of problem gambling is estimated to be at least $5 billion a year.

•Only around 15 per cent of problem gamblers seek help.

•One in six people who play the pokies regularly has a serious addiction.

•Some poker machines can be played at extremely high intensity – a gambler could lose more than $1,500 in just one hour.

•Young people (18-24 year olds) spend more on poker machines than any other age group. Many adult problem gamblers report having developed gambling problems during their teenage years

•Three-quarters of problem gamblers have problems with poker machines. It’s even higher for women – in 9 out of 10 cases poker machines are identified as the cause of problems for women

•Problem gamblers are six times more likely to be divorced than non problem gamblers

•Problem gamblers are four times more likely to have problems with alcohol and four times as likely to smoke daily than non problem gamblers

•Children with parents who are problem gamblers are up to 10 times more likely to become problem gamblers themselves than children with non gambling parents

With all this irrefutable evidence available, it is plain to see that our political parties are more interested in keeping their donations rolling in than in addressing this most costly, avoidable, evil of social diseases.

The 2012-13 annual financial returns from political parties and donors, shows the Liberal Party’s total revenue was $73.1 million last financial year, compared to Labor’s $54.7 million. The Nationals further bolstered the Coalition’s haul with $8.3 million. The Greens recorded $8.1 million in revenue.

Roslyn Packer, the widow of billionaire Kerry Packer, and mother of casino mogul James Packer, gave the Liberals $580,000 in 2012-13.  The Australian Hotels Association gave Labor $150,000, which successfully neutered their gambling reforms, and hedged their bets, giving the Liberals $372,500.   Given the cut-off for the disclosures was June 30, these figures do not include money taken by parties during the 2013 election campaign.

It just remains to say, Kevin Andrews, you are a moralising self-serving hypocritical political whore who is willing to sacrifice the health and well-being of the citizens of our country to serve your wealthy masters.  I have no respect for you.

74 comments

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  1. DanDark

    Kaye
    Great article once again
    But this will be my last comment
    The kobymacs and trolls are ruining it now
    They have long rambles, lies, going back to the past
    We get attacked now on regular basis, for not loving Tone’s
    So good luck, keep up the good work
    God bless you all at AIMN 🙂

  2. Yani

    A brief reminder of Kev’s previous form… He was responsible for introducing Workchoices, and for the illegal victimisation of Dr Haneef.

    You better go over this as it is wrong. I stopped reading after fact checking the 2 points abouve as wrong.

  3. Kaye Lee

    Yani,

    As Minister for Immigration and Citizenship, Andrews attracted controversy after he revoked on character grounds the visa of Dr Mohamed Haneef, who had been granted bail on charges of aiding terrorists. After the Director of Public Prosecutions dropped all charges against Haneef, Andrews refused calls to reinstate Haneef’s visa, stating that his personal evidence was still valid. Andrews’ justification of his decision, on the basis that he had a reasonable suspicion that Haneef had associated with suspected terrorists and therefore failed the test of good character that a person must pass to keep a visa, was rejected in the Federal Court, and the revocation of Haneef’s visa was overturned. However in November, e-mails released under the Freedom of Information act appeared to indicate that Andrews’ office had a plan to revoke the visa before the case went to court, in the case that bail was granted.

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Kevin_Andrews_(politician)

    February 23 2006 – In a Melbourne speech to the Australian Retailers Association Victoria Kevin Andrews, Minister for Employment and Workplace Relations, focused on the Workchoices Act due to come into effect in March.

    http://www.hrmguide.net/australia/relations/workchoices-andrews.htm

    Which part do you find inaccurate

  4. Lee

    The most powerful being in the universe uses the likes of Abbott, Pyne, Hockey, Bernardi and Andrews to be his advertisement. *facepalm*

    Crikey. Even some of the god-bothering founding members of Family First are very anti-gambling. Their Christian values are far more Christian than those found in the LNP.

    Andrews hasn’t got any more credibility left to lose after that photo of him and his wife sitting on a sofa holding hands appeared a few weeks ago. They looked like the most disconnected couple I’ve ever met. If that’s what his brand of relationship counselling does, I’ll give it a wide berth.

  5. Lou

    Yani must do his fact checking via the LNP website….

  6. Lee

    The Workplace Relations Amendment (Work Choices) Bill 2005 was introduced into the House of Reps on 2/11/2005 by the Minister for Employment and Workplace Relations, Kevin Andrews.

  7. Kaye Lee

    How do you convince people who prefer beliefs to facts and when presented with facts, they choose not to read them? I really feel for climate change scientists.

  8. Ross Sharp

    As someone once noted, “If your neighbour comes over to shake your hand and tells you s/he is a Christian, brand your calves immediately.”

  9. John Kelly

    Kevin Andrews is the member for Menzies, my electorate.
    If a grass roots community can change a safe conservative seat like Indi into an independant seat that would be a true voice of the people, why could it not be done elsewhere? Target 2016: Menzies. Dare to dream. Unseat Kevin Andrews.

    Would it be possible to convince 15000 voters who supported the Kevin Andrews in the electorate of Menzies in 2013 to change their vote in 2016 in favour of an Independant candidate who would be a truly independant voice for Menzies? Dare to dream.

    The voters of Indi broke the model. Can the voters of Menzies do the same?
    An independant Menzies? Dare to dream.
    There is nothing more powerful than an idea whose time has come (Victor Hugo).
    What needs to happen:
    15,000 votes change
    18% swing
    We need a high profile candidate with no baggage
    No preference deals
    An impossible task?
    On a hiding to nothing? Yes, so who will come forward and get the ball running?

  10. Keitha Granville

    With Andrews,Morrison,and Pyne in the Reps and Corey Bernardi in the Senate we are back in the Dark Ages – I feel ill. Women need to feel very afraid. If you have daughters, I recommend emigrating to anywhere else.

  11. Florence nee Fed up

    We now have Abbott overseas. Overseas at a time his buget and government is in strife.

    He is on a campaign to rewrite history. Yes, Abbot believes that DD is more important than Gallipoli to Australians, I doubt whether he celebrations for victory in the Pacific, later this year will get his attention.,

    Yes, he believes that DD is where we should be. This in spite of us only having 3000 servicemen present art the original. In spite of the fact, our armed forces were fully occupied, on the other side of the world, in the Pacific.

    Why has Abbott has taken off at this time, in such a haste, that he even forgot about his promise to visit Indonesia at the first opportunity. The visit yesterday, was added at the last moment. I suspect the President asked him why, leading to a change in travels.

  12. Florence nee Fed up

    We women, according to the polls are waking up quicker than the men.

  13. John921Fraser

    <

    @Florence nee Fed up

    The boys just love war stories.

    The new Governor of N.S.W. will be able to tell a few.

    More ex military in the "Liberal" ranks.

  14. Matters Not

    Most people who have superannuation are therefore likely to be in the gambling business but many aren’t aware of the extent. Most funds have a ‘default’ option covering the vast majority of contributors and those ‘default’ funds ‘gamble’ on the share market(s) at ever opportunity. My ‘balanced’ fund, for example, has about 40% in equities currently (sometimes 75%) and this financial year to date is returning about 13% with a five year return of 10.05%.

    So gambling isn’t necessarily a bad thing. Of course some people keep their money in the cash option, currently returning 1.93% with a five year return of 3.41%. Such allocations are really not a gamble but if they are, then they are a rolled-gold losing gamble. People slowly bleed to death financially and given inflation, sometimes the slow bleed becomes quite rapid.

    Having said that, my wife likes to play the ‘pokies’ and I go along to observe what happens. (My gambling, apart from super, is on the local share market.) There is absolute no doubt that for many people ‘playing the pokies’ is a curse both for individuals and their families. People, including pensioners, bet way beyond their means and suffer accordingly, particularly long term.

    Seems to me this ‘pre-commitment’ concept simply won’t work. Not sure how to keep people from harming themselves but we must try.

  15. Wayne T

    And I wish I, wish I knew the right words
    To blow up the pokies and drag them away
    ‘Cause they’re taking the food off your table
    So they can say that the trains run on time

    Tim Freedman (The Whitlams)

  16. James

    Matters Not – unlike the pokies, super annuation actually is safer. The odds of coming out even when you use the pokies are miniscule, the odds for coming out ahead are even smaller. To play the pokies is like giving money to the venue for your entertainment, because if you think you are winning their psychological tricks are working.

    The science behind pokies is scary, everything about their appearance and sounds is designed to attract and hold your attention. The computer driven non-randomised “wheels” have the win ratios set firmly in the favour of the house.

    Here’s an excellent explanation of how it works.

    http://www.abc.net.au/unleashed/2733166.html

  17. Lee

    Gambling is a tax on the mathematically illiterate.

  18. abbienoiraude

    Another well argued, factually based article written by a clear and comprehensive Kaye Lee.
    Thank you.
    I think ‘Yani’ is now walking around with her fingers in her ears going ‘la la la’ like most Conservatives. Sad, because you have so many facts in all your articles, Kaye.
    Thanks.

  19. Florence nee Fed up

    John921Fraser, we seem to be getting rid of those tiresome women, replacing them with acceptable army types.

    Well, I suppose with a military background, they know how to obey orders without question

  20. Florence nee Fed up

    Turnbull up, giving a wonderful dramatic performance. So much so, he is red in the face, like Barnaby, Now we have Barnaby

  21. Kaye Lee

    Oops. Just got a chance to proof read. (I do have to work occasionally). For those who have already commented, I left out an important paragraph which has just been edited back in. (learning to use new site, slowly).

    “In 2010 the Productivity Commission illustrated Australia’s gambling obsession in extraordinary figures: that Australians lost about $19 billion per year gambling, and that much of this — some 41 per cent, in the case of poker machines — is drawn from problem gamblers.”

  22. Matters Not

    James, thanks for your link but I have a fairly good idea as to how it works.

  23. Nuff Said

    I’ve got $50 that says we won’t see Yani again ….

  24. Kaye Lee

    Nuff Said,

    I’ll hold that bet provided Yani can turn up under another name, though that is so hard to tell since they parrot phrases from such a limited script.

  25. John921Fraser

    <

    @Kaye Lee

    Gee thanks for proof reading and throwing in that god awful statistic.

    Kill me now, dig me up and kill me again.

  26. Michael Taylor

    Who the hell was Yani?

  27. Stephen Tardrew

    Worked with gamblers. What a nightmare some needed to have joint accounts where I would sign to prevent them starving or steeling. Real nature nurture problem where abuse can and does lead to gambling. There is evidence that early abuse leads to fundamental changes in the brain. Some clients would play just to escape the world and their past. One fellow with serious father violence issues was a lovely and cooperative guy yet put him in front of a poker machine and every cent would disappear. He was also in the armed forces which didn’t help. I even took this fellow to the hotel early in the morning to an empty room to try systematic desensitization and the manager threatened to throw us out and call the police. Pulled his bluff because of my work I knew the locals well. Its amazing how many ordinary likeable people are caught by the bug and destroy their families and lives. While governments make a killing from gambling they are not going to promote the evils of gambling. I thoroughly support your post and the need for action as this is a really serious issue.
    The Australian Medical Association link is spot on.

  28. Stephen Tardrew

    Michael:

    Yani is, and was, was the ninety ninth incarnation of Blogger Joe.

  29. Stephen Tardrew

    Wassat? Soming wrong here too many ways to too many was.

  30. Lee

    Oh FFS why do we always have to find excuses for people who make poor choices? Gambling uses intermittent reinforcement. It has been very well documented in the scientific literature for decades and its success has nothing to do with abuse. I use it in a good way to train my dogs.

  31. Lee

    I mean its effect has nothing to do with abuse. Success or otherwise depends on one’s perspective.

  32. Kaye Lee

    I have a wonderful group of girlfriends from school days. They are very strong women and the usual saying is “just deal with it”. When I was on the phone to one of them, bemoaning the fallibility of another person we knew, she said “not everyone is as strong as us and very few have the support we give each other.” I drew breath, realised just how lucky I am, and agreed with her.

    Yes people make poor choices. And the best thing we can do is to help those who have done that (all of us at some time or another), show them hope and a way forward rather than vilifying them and punishing them. The staff at a homeless youth refuge I was involved with introduced a rewards based program. The results were amazing. Sure we had failures, but the successes far outweighed them. I like the Buddhist idea that one small act of kindness reverberates around the world.

  33. Stephen Tardrew

    They are not excuses there is always a causal set of contingencies that lead to dysfunction. Organisms do not chose behavior they are the result of a complex series for biological and sociological contributors to behavior. Invariably opinion gets in front of the science because the science is not based upon opinion but experimental methodology. There is a large body of research on gambling that follows the causal contributors and the sociocultural contributors. A very complex field of complex contributing factors.

    http://www.gamblingresearch.org.au/

    http://www.helpguide.org/mental/gambling_addiction.php

    http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC1495100/

    http://www.pc.gov.au/projects/inquiry/gambling-2009/report

    http://www.responsiblegambling.vic.gov.au/getting-help

  34. Lee

    Don’t have a problem with kindness, only bullshit excuses. If a person has their head filled with “you have this problem because your father abused you as a child” how does this help them to recover? It just gives them an excuse to justify their behaviour, it takes away their control and makes them powerless. To get the best from a desensitisation program, it is more helpful to understand the underlying science. Knowing how it works gives power back to the addict.

  35. Lee

    Correlation does not equal causation.

    I have a friend who is an alcoholic. His father was an alcoholic. The father dealt with his problems by drinking himself into oblivion to avoid them. The son has been raised with this poor role model and has not learned any other way to deal with his problems. Consequently he drinks to avoid them too. He’s got it stuck in his head that his alcoholism is genetic and there is nothing that can be done about it. I’ve identified some cues that initiate his drinking but he won’t even attempt a behaviour modification program because he is convinced that it’s in his DNA and there is nothing he can do about it.

    Making excuses keeps these people trapped in misery.

  36. Kaye Lee

    It isn’t making excuses. The causes are far too varied to pin down – could just start from being bored, or one big win on a fun night out. I disagree that just saying “stop making excuses” works. Problem gamblers feel bad about what they do already. it’s like saying to an anorexic just eat will ya.

  37. Lee

    Kaye, that’s a straw man argument. I never said to just say “stop making excuses” will work. I said making excuses keeps them trapped and powerless. Explaining to people what is happening and teaching them how to deal with the problem has nothing to do with casting judgment upon them or making them feel bad. It’s giving them the tools to fight the problem.

  38. Kaye Lee

    Lee,

    I can see you want to help and are ready to lay out a path for them as to what they must do to be successful in changing their behaviour. That is one approach. Sometimes people aren’t ready for the help you are offering.

    A different approach that I have seen gain success is to, in simplistic terms, ignore bad behaviour and reward good behaviour. It works so much better when they decide to make the change themselves (with support of course).

  39. John921Fraser

    <

    @Lee

    Such a simplistic view has been discredited often and in detail.

    Darwin disproved a similar theory.

  40. Kaye Lee

    I learn so much from my girlfriends one of whom was the deputy at a tough high school, meaning the worst behaviour breaches were sent to her. This was one of her strategies.

    A kid would arrive, usually angry. She would let them wait a little while, not to make them stew, but to let them calm down. When she invited them into her office she would say “What happened?” If the kid was belligerent or swearing she would just say “You’re not ready to speak to me yet. Sit down there and put a few pieces in the jigsaw puzzle for me.” (comfy chair, low table, big jigsaw). She’d just do work until the kid put a few pieces in (hopefully – it’s amazing how gratifying it is to get one in) and then ask again “What happened”. When she got the kid’s version she wouldn’t say that’s not what the teacher said or anything like that. She wanted to know how the kid felt, knowing it mightn’t be an accurate account. She then would ask them if they could think of a better way to have dealt with the situation. They would often realise they overreacted and usually would come up with their own suggestions. Some were just thugs and bullies and they were eventually expelled. But her approach to kids (and staff) has taught me a great deal.

  41. Lee

    Kaye, you’re jumping to conclusions. I have not said anything about forcing a program on people. I have stated before that people who are not willing to help themselves cannot be helped, so there is no way I would simply tell someone what to do without them inviting my assistance.

    I’m very familiar with the ignoring of inappropriate behaviour and reinforcing appropriate behaviour. I’ve used the technique many times very successfully. It does not involve making excuses for inappropriate behaviour either.

  42. Lee

    “Such a simplistic view has been discredited often and in detail.”

    Is that right? Yet I’ve known addicts who have turned their lives around when the power is placed back into their own hands.

  43. Decaf

    Hey Kaye Lee.

    Just want to say how credible and essential you are to keeping so many eyes on so many elements of this Abbott farce.

    As soon as any LNP policies are prodded with a blunt spoon, they collapse. They hide their truth through diversion and many, many lies.

    In optimism we are only dealing with one term. Sadly, I feel this time frame will still afford Abbott too much opportunity to damage our understanding and feelings about ourselves.

    He needs to be removed. This present time is a dark, cancerous stain on our country’s understanding of itself. I’m exhausted.

  44. John921Fraser

    <

    @Lee

    Then i'm pleased for those people you know.

    Do you think you know 0.1% of the population using heroin Lee ?

    How about 3.2% of the over 14 year olds who have used ice/amphetamines ?

    If by chance you answer "No" …. then your view is simplistic.

  45. Lee

    No I don’t know everyone on heroin. Neither do you.

    I have Asperger’s and with that comes behaviour issues. It’s not in the slightest bit helpful to think that I cannot do anything about those issues because I was born a certain way. Understanding the triggers and finding constructive ways to deal with them has been of enormous benefit to me. The most helpful guidance has come from people who do not make excuses for aspects of my behaviour that are sometimes upsetting to others. I take full responsibility for my own behaviour and since coming to understand exactly what is happening, I’ve had an enormous improvement in my quality of life because I’ve been able to take back control. So it matters not that you think it simplistic, [or that Darwin supposedly discredited something about behaviour when that wasn’t even published in his lifetime] because I’m living it every day.

  46. Lee

    I just had a discussion with a friend who has a Masters degree in Psychology and who has worked with gambling addicts for many years. He said it is counter productive to make excuses for inappropriate behaviour.

  47. John921Fraser

    <

    @Lee

    One of my friends has son has autism and by a (reasonably) strict childhood she has produced a boy any mother would be proud of.

    A relative had cerebral palsy and he lived on his own for 40 years.

    My Surveyor has a son with severe ADHD and with help from the community his family manages.

    I have enormous respect for people who cope, but that doesn't mean people who do not cope should be belittled because of their failings.

    Its not an excuse to be beaten as a child, not an excuse to be bullied, its not an excuse to be held back because a person is "different".

    Its just understanding that not everyone can be categorised or pigeonholed.

    For the record this "Commenter" neither confirms or denies that he has inhaled a variety of puff, experimented with coke, amphetamines or LSD.

  48. Lee

    John921Fraser, that is a straw man. I have never said people should be belittled because of their behaviour.

    Kaye’s example of her teacher friend is a good one. There is no excuse made for the inappropriate behaviour. There is a subtle message that the behaviour was inappropriate – and it was done in a kind way, no belittling or making the student feel bad. The discussion of alternative ways to react provides the student with a more appropriate way to respond in the same situation next time.

  49. Florence nee Fed up

    What does one mean, by saying working on how one got to where they are, looking at abuse, or causes is giving excuses.

    One needs to know why they got themselves in the mess they are in,., Does not give then the excuse, then to do nothing.,

    If one understands why things are not working, they can then begin to turn things around,

    Yes one can say, yes that was bad. How do you feel, Then, what are you going to do about things.

    That is usually how it works. One will or cannot changer, until they want to, until they are ready,

    All the tough love in the world will not change that.,

    Making one feel a failure leads nowhere.

    In fact, there are no easy or simple answers. If there were one would not see addicts of any kind.

    This governments belief, that they can pull all the nations misfits, misfits in their eyes by being tough have a lot to learn., Will learn it quickly/

    Most of what they are doing was began by Howard and found to fail. Will do again.

    They need to be aware, they are in danger of forming a new sub culture of poor, that will go underground,. Something we have been lucky enough not to see in this country.

  50. John921Fraser

    <

    @Lee

    Sorry it was your friend with the Masters degree who said " it is counter productive to make excuses for inappropriate behaviour".

  51. John921Fraser

    <

    @Florence nee Fed up

    Abbotts/Andrews plan for unemployed to be denied assistance for 6 months is a perfect example.

    Notice they have put aside something like $250 million in case it doesn't work out.

    Currently there is approximately 300,000+ in the 15-24 age group.

    If 200,000 applied for the money available it would last about 6 weeks.

    That's not an inconceivable proposition.

    But according to the Abbott gang they are "leaners".

  52. Lee

    “@Lee
    Sorry it was your friend with the Masters degree who said ” it is counter productive to make excuses for inappropriate behaviour”.”

    He isn’t suggesting that people be belittled for their behaviour either.

    Here’s an example – A teenager acts out and damages some property. Somebody decides that he can’t help it. He has no appropriate coping skills because he was raised in an abusive environment. Someone else pays for the damage and the kid faces no consequences to his actions. [We see these types of examples all the time in our courts when excuses are made for violent people and they are essentially let off with a good behaviour bond.]

    The teenager may be a victim but that does not excuse his behaviour. Lots of people have bad childhoods and they don’t grow up with violence or addiction problems. His behaviour is unacceptable. Some form of punishment fitting the crime is appropriate, e.g. give up his allowance to pay for the damage and apologise to the owner of the property. He needs to learn that actions have consequences. Provide some assistance to help him develop more appropriate coping skills for whatever set him off in the first place.

  53. John921Fraser

    <

    @Lee

    Never heard of education then ?

    Big on punishment though.

  54. Matters Not

    Kaye Lee June 5, 2014 at 5:22 pm said:

    have a wonderful group of girlfriends from school days

    And Kaye Lee June 5, 2014 at 6:24 pm said:

    learn so much from my girlfriends

    Interesting. All these ‘girlfriends’. Not that there’s anything necessarily wrong with that.

    But I well remember Mary Kelly (then President of the QTU) giving me a verbal backhander when I spoke about the ‘girls’ (self identified) who worked on the floor.

    In similar vein, scaper talks about being a Cranbrook ‘boy’ and more recently about the Noosa ‘boys’ plotting against the price on carbon.

    Simply, when do girls become women and boys become men?

    Perhaps it matters not?

  55. Lee

    @John

    What do you think assistance to develop appropriating coping skills is if it’s not education?

    Your bleeding heart attitude contributes to the mess that our society is in. Let’s pat everyone on the head and make excuses for them. All behaviour has consequences. That’s the way of the world and that is how we learn. If someone deliberately set fire to your house do you think we should just ignore the behaviour? Better yet, let’s ignore the pyromania and give them some more drugs for free. Don’t expect an apology because that is punishment and punishment is oh so bad.

  56. John921Fraser

    <

    @Matters Not

    I know your dilemma.

    I just avoid using the term "girls" with adults.

    Its a well known fact that "boys" will always be "boys".

    As in ….. the boys are out to get Turnbull.

    No wait a minute thats not right.

    The shock jocks and extreme right are out to get Turnbull.

  57. John921Fraser

    <

    @Lee

    So pyromania is now a cause of drug taking.

    Keep digging.

    You complete lack of empathy was why I originally said "your view is simplistic".

    I'm turning off my computer now because i've had a gutful of evangelical extreme right wing crap for 1 day.

  58. Lee

    “You complete lack of empathy was why I originally said “your view is simplistic”.”

    Once again that is your assumption and once again you are wrong.

  59. Florence nee Fed up

    Also teaches them how to rely on charity and work the system. Charities have long moved on from the concept of handing out bandies and money, They have move onto giving people really help by developing skills, giving them the tools to not only survive, but grow.

    Think they would look back in history to the poor houses, and how they failed.

  60. Florence nee Fed up

    At least the Chinese and others, were more honest with their retraining and education camps. They were clear, that the aim was to make all conform.

  61. Kaye Lee

    Language is interesting. We have largely been successful in eliminating racist terms from our everyday language but gender based language (and age in the case of ‘girlfriends’) is a little harder. I was pulled up for using the term “unmanned drones” in one of my stories for example. The term girlfriends is more descriptive that any alternative I can think of. We are all female and share an intimacy that is better portrayed by that term than say, female friends or women friends. We were girls when we met but that isn’t why I find the term more appropriate. We look on each other as sisters. We don’t live near each other – one travels from interstate for our regular get togethers – but we have been friends for over 40 years. I actually was in kindergarten with one of them. They will still be my girlfriends when we are sitting in the nursing home quilting together.

  62. John921Fraser

    <

    @Kaye Lee

    You might want to listen to some of the excellent stories here … http://themoth.org/ …. while you are quilting.

  63. geoffreyengland

    Lee
    There is nothing more off putting than one person hogging the comments section.
    I think we all get where you are coming from.
    How about a bit of time out?

  64. Lee

    Oh ok, only certain people have the right to comment here. If you don’t want to read what I write, why don’t you be a mature adult and just delete it? I read no shortage of irrational tripe here and I don’t complain about it.

  65. Kaye Lee

    john,

    Lesa’s quilt is amazing. The girlfriend I spoke of who is now a school principal is really into quilting. I keep telling her I will take it up one day – she makes the most beautiful things. My handbag broke…next time I saw her she had made one for me 🙂

  66. Kaye Lee

    Lee,

    I am far more of a comment hog than you. Your thoughts are welcome. And I apologise to others for my rants. I know I carry on at times but my family is very happy I am venting elsewhere 😉

  67. Lee

    I don’t think you’re ranting at all, Kaye. I spend a lot of time reading online news sites and I don’t have the time to put together as much as you do, so I can only imagine how long it takes you. It’s important to get the information out there. Plus there’s a certain amount of satisfaction knowing that it must annoy the hell out of Rupert. 😉

  68. DanDark

    I second that Lee
    Rupert would be annoyed
    You can tell how annoyed he is
    by the front pages of his rags
    the more annoyed, the nastier they get 😉

  69. John921Fraser

    <

    @Lee

    Read up on the Liberal Party.

    Pretty sure your views will not be tolerated there.

  70. Lee

    “@Lee
    Read up on the Liberal Party.
    Pretty sure your views will not be tolerated there.”

    Why would I care? I’ve stated previously more than once that I’ve never voted Liberal in my life and I never will.

    Perhaps you should spend less time constructing straw men, resorting to ad hominem attacks and branding everyone who disagrees with you as a right wing nutjob and spend a little more time developing your reading comprehension skills, because they are severely lacking.

  71. John921Fraser

    <

    @Lee

    Gee Lee I am so sorry.

    Can I book a session with you friend with the Masters degree ?

    The one who says " it is counter productive to make excuses for inappropriate behaviour".

    Your extreme right wing views might then start to make sense.

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