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Legitimising hatred and misinformation

You know you have really crossed the line when that champion of free speech, Andrew Bolt, says you should have been “booed off the stage.”

Yet this is exactly what he said of Larry Pickering’s performance at Kirralie Smith’s fundraiser to pay for the defamation case ensuing from her false assertion that halal certification funds terrorism.

Why should I care what Bolt, Pickering, or the pretty blonde trying to out-hate Hanson to also join the political gravy train have to say?

Mainly because several politicians, past and present, are championing Smith’s cause, appearing at two fundraising dinners organised by the anti-Islam Q society to help fund Ms Smith’s defence which is expected to cost $1 million. That is a very dangerous precedent in my opinion – using your parliamentary status to back someone facing a defamation suit.

Aside from the odious Pickering, we had Ross Cameron, Angry Anderson, George Christensen and Cory Bernardi all taking part to offer their personal support.

Thursday night was hosted by Angry Anderson with Pickering and Cameron both giving rambling diatribes peppered with Muslim and gay bashing.

Cameron, who was at pains to reassure us that he was heterosexual, said “the thing I love with Kirralie Smith, the first time I saw her on television I thought there could not be a more authentic expression of the goodness of Australia than Kirralie Smith.”

Reading the transcript is tortuous. I doubt Mr Cameron will be getting too many gigs on the speaking circuit.

He constantly mentioned homosexuality in his speech.

He spoke about the classical philosophers, who valued reason over orthodoxy, and said Socrates “might have had a bit of same-sex attraction”.

He said the Roman emperor Hadrian had a young male lover who “fell off the back of a barge. I’m sure he was snorting coke at the time.”

In front of two Sydney Morning Herald journalists, who were in the room, he called the paper the “Sydney Morning Homosexual”.

“Trigger warning for the Herald, there are some heterosexuals in this room. I don’t want you to be offended by that, but there are some males who are attracted to females in this room,” Mr Cameron said.

“Now, I know, the NSW division of the Liberal Party is basically a gay club. I don’t mind that most of our parliamentary class is gay. I just wish, like Hadrian, they’d build a damn wall. That would be my preference.”

Pickering’s contribution was predictably despicable.

“I can’t stand Muslims,” he said. “If they are in the same street as me, I start shaking. But they are not all bad, they do chuck pillow-biters off buildings.”

On his website, Mr Pickering later said his remarks were nothing more than “the sort of bullshit banter exchanged between holes on a golf course”.

Pickering donated for auction one of his own works depicting the rape of a woman in a niqab by her son-in-law – the cartoon fetched $600. Another Larry Pickering cartoon auctioned depicted an imam as a pig, being roasted on a spit, with a “halal certified” stamp on its rump. A case of wine called “72 Virgins” was also up for grabs.

This caused Andrew Bolt to call on defenders of free speech to condemn Pickering.

When a Pickering speaks so fouly, we must say so. We must condemn. We must with our good speech damn the bad.

To fail in this is to give the cops-calling Left their excuse to say we’ve been exposed: that what we really seek is not the freedom to speak but the freedom to vilify, free of even the restraint of any goodness.

And that, Andrew, is the consequence of unleashing the hounds. You may consider your motives pure but they embolden others who make false accusations, whose irrational hatred and fear is being stoked by the media and, even worse, legitimised by the support of currently serving politicians. This gives them an extraordinary platform to spread their discontent which grows like ripples in a pond.

Cory Bernardi and George Christensen both attended another fundraising function the following evening.

Christensen said, “I attended the ‘defending freedom’ event because I believe we are slowly seeing the erosion of free speech with the myriad of anti-discrimination laws we have in this country and the threats of violence from Islamist and leftist groups like [anti-fascist] Antifa.”

Senator Bernardi told the $150-a-head fundraiser that those there were described in pejorative terms as “hard right” but were actually just normal “people with concerns”.

I find it farcical that they called the evening defending freedom when what they want to do is take away freedom from Muslims. But Ms Smith is good at casting the wrong people as victims. Apparently the media should stop picking on Larry and Ross.

“I felt in the context of his speech and his dry humour he had every right to say those things at a dinner defending freedom of speech. His walk through history and his dry, sharp humour highlighted the danger we now live in when the media elite and political class censor, abuse, deride and isolate people because they hold a different view. The SMH article was actually a perfect illustration of how when the media don’t like something they throw their full weight behind whipping up offence and shutting people down without engaging in debate,” she wrote.

So much for the freedom to criticise which, in Ms Smith’s world, only goes one way.

Australians must resist this attack on our social cohesion and help defend the constitutional right of our Muslim brothers and sisters to live as they choose without Kirralie Smith telling them what they can eat, what they can wear, and how they must worship.


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  1. helvityni

    “I can’t stand Muslims,” he said. “If they are in the same street as me, I start shaking. But they are not all bad, they do chuck pillow-biters off buildings.”

    How does Pickering know what religion people are practicing when he sees them on the streets; they can be Muslims, Hindus, Buddhists, Christians, not believing in any gods….

    If he sees me and on the street can he tell me that I have been baptised Lutheran, can he detect that my partner is a lapsed Catholic….

    Oh, to have those powers that our Liberals possess…!

  2. Kate Ahearne

    Thanks, Kaye. So much to be agitated about! On a first reading, this bit sort of floated to the surface of the cesspool for me: ‘ “the sort of bullshit banter exchanged between holes on a golf course”.

    I am reminded of the ‘pussy’ remarks by Mr Trump. You know, just guys having a few laughs together, and the ‘pussy’ marches, millions strong.

  3. Kaye Lee

    The event was emceed by singer Angry Anderson, who kept the crowd amused with a constant patter about his ex-wife (“She said I was a violent man because I ate red meat, but that’s a story for my next book…”).

  4. Kate Ahearne

    Kaye, Thank goodness that girl is ex. I hope she’s doing OK now.

  5. Pilot

    Stone the bloody crows!!!! Was this a meeting of the Australian chapter of the KKK? What a bunch of shmucks!!! I played Australian football with Pickering for several years on the NSW Central Coast, and never, EVER did he speak like this. Absolutely appalling. Indefensible and utterly wrong. As for the others, well, we know most of them as vile scumbags, but geez louize….

    And Bolt rallying against their tone? WTF?? The bloke’s a bigot and a racist speaking against bigots and racists? I bet it won’t last long, once he gets them on his show.

    An utter disgrace that Australia has sunk so low.

  6. Terry2

    The legal action is a civil action for defamation – I don’t think there are any criminal charges (?).

    To quote the Guardian :

    “Mohammed El-Mouelhy, the head of one of Australia’s largest certifiers, Halal Certification Authority, began proceedings in the New South Wales supreme court last month against senior members of the Melbourne-based Q Society and Kirralie Smith, who runs the website HalalChoices.

    The statement of claim alleges that two videos featuring Smith, one recorded at a Q Society event, portray El-Mouelhy as “part of a conspiracy to destroy Western civilisation from within” and “reasonably suspected of providing financial support to terrorist organisations”.

    Kirralie Smith, to use Malcolm Turnbulls’ choice of words, is a sycophant* in the true sense of the word, busting a boiler to get into the Senate and join her friends and mentors Bernardi and Christensen and, of course, get on to the gravy train of politics that is so popular with people who can’t otherwise fund the lifestyle – and retirement – they believe they are entitled to.

    Appalling people !

    * a person who flatters someone important in order to gain favour

  7. slowly they get it.

    what utterly horrible people.

  8. Kaye Lee

    You are right Terry.

    Defamation is not a crime, but it is a “tort” (a civil wrong, rather than a criminal wrong). A person who has been defamed can sue the person who did the defaming.

    I will adjust the article accordingly. Thanks.

  9. Johno

    Good article Kaye. Disgusting behaviour.

  10. nurses1968

    I think the whole bunch are sickos but, Kaye Lee, could you tell me where the “Pickering donated for auction one of his own works depicting the rape of a woman in a niqab by her son-in-law” description of the artwork{?} came from?

  11. Kaye Lee


    and here

    and here

  12. Ricardo29

    I am surprised I haven’t seen any comment about Bolt’s appearance on one-on-one on ABC TV on Thursday evening (?) I only saw tail end but he was surprisingly … what? Humble, modest.. talking of his self doubts. I think he should go home and watch the whole thing, I will.

  13. Miriam English

    Spoiled children enjoying daring the picked-on kids. They’ll keep prancing around, being nasty until a picked-on kid hits one of them back. Then, screaming outrage, they’ll call for a parent to punish the picked-on kid for retaliating.

    Stupid, stupid, stupid. They don’t seem to understand the concept of getting along together in a society. What appalling excuses for human beings.

  14. MichaelW

    Wow…. Yep, lets repeal 18c, then they can tell us what they really think.

    What a bunch of scumbags. Not only are these retards wasting our oxygen, they are allowed to vote, and become politicians.

  15. Keitha Granville

    Hateful nasty self-serving poor excuses for human beings. Their behaviour is beginning to look more and more like early Nazis. If they an hurl enough abuse at one section of a society eventually they will begin to persuade more and more of the public that what they are sayng is true.
    And then the fascism truly begins.
    Our only chance is a government that will stick up for everyone, the marginalised, the migrants, the refugees, those of different faiths, those of no faith at all, different colours, races and sexual prefernces. All of these groups make up the people of our country. All of these people have every right, EVERY RIGHT, to live in peace and harmony.

    We must continue to speak up, to call out the bullies and the bigots, to resist the politics of hate.

  16. silkworm

    Pickering has outed himself as pro-murder.

  17. Jennifer Meyer-Smith

    It will be very interesting to see how the defamation case against Kirralie Smith eventuates.

    If she loses, it’s a pity it isn’t a criminal case because her political career would be over before it started.

  18. nurses1968

    Kaye Lee
    The reason I asked, the artist {?} himself said “contrary to Fairfax, this is not a cartoon of “a Muslim raping his mother-in-law”. It’s a cartoon intended to highlight the anonimity of the burkah.”
    Seems one source can embellish for impact and the rest run with it.
    Bad enough as originally titled but I guess a bit of “fake truth” doesn’t hurt the opposition cause

  19. kerri

    Cameron is surely certifiable ! His outrage and outbursts scream imbalance and desperate paranoia.
    Pickering has reached that age where he really deosn’t care what he says. He needs to be prosecuted! He is pushing the boundaries as hard and as fast as he can and it is time for the law to push back!
    Please don’t refer to Kirralie Smith as “a pretty blonde” no one with a heart that black exhibits attractiveness to a balanced normal person. There could not be a more authentic expression of ignorance than Ms Smith!
    Let the bigots throw their money behind this outspoken and innaccurate bogan. she deserves all she gets.

  20. billshaw2013

    Critisising the Pickering and Hanson’s of this world solidifies their support base and they thrive, however not to critisise defiles decency.

  21. Kaye Lee

    I have seen the cartoon. It is despicable. You can call it fake news if you want nurses but it DOES show a Muslim man raping his mother-in-law. The intimation is that the guy couldn’t tell it wasn’t his wife. It is disgusting as is everything Pickering produces.

    Pickering reportedly only has months to live and it seems he doesn’t give a shit who he hurts.

  22. silkworm

    For Pickering’s information, Muslim women do not wear the veil inside the house.

  23. Gangey1959

    @ Keitha.
    I don’t think the nazi’s would let them join. Not the ones I was watching on the history channel last night anyway.

  24. nurses1968

    Kaye Lee
    I agree the cartoon is disgusting but who decided the male was “the son in law” as the artist{using the term loosely} does not say that and it seems it was an invention of Fairfax
    All I was pointing out was everyone seems to be running with the worst possible description for added impact.
    as the artist NEVER mentioned “son in law”
    “DOES show a Muslim man raping his mother-in-law.” again I ask, where did you get the mother in law bit from?

  25. Kaye Lee

    I am not going to argue with you nurses. The man is raping “grandma”. Does that leave any room for understanding? Is there an acceptable interpretation of that?

  26. stephengb2014

    School yard bully boys and bully girls, never grew up,to become well adjusted citizens.

    These displays of a narcissistic, priviledged, born to rule mentality comes from unchecked school yard bullying tactics, aimed at those that can’t or don’t defend themselves.

    When it continues into their becoming adult, they are attracted to the easy way that allows them to continue woth their self delusion.

    These people are ill, and quite frankly I believe that anyone who supports their views are just as ill.

    Simplistic I know but its the way I feel.

    My schooling was destroyed by these bully boys who went around in gangs picking on anyone who was different, spoke different, wore spectacles, were shorter, and yes diffent colour or creed.

    In my case I am a shorter than average, wore thick specticals through put by childhood, and spoke without a noticable accent. I hated school it was a trial. As an adult I learnt the cowardice of these people and self taught myself to catch up with my lost schooling, but I was luck, many people are not and become the scapegoat for the adult bullies who are rampant in our society.

    I see the tell tale, bully boy/girl, attitudes in so many Australians in leadership and even rampant in the Right side of politics. For me these people are to be pitied but not ignored and must be held accountable for the misery they inflict on so many and the damage they do to our society, indeed the world in which we live.


  27. Johno

    The poor bigots will have to take pasta off their menu as pasta is a muslim invention.

  28. Steve Laing -

    Nurses – do you really not understand that cartoon? It is pretty obvious that it is supposed to represent that the chap believes he is having sex with his wife, when she walks in the door to let him know that her mother will be visiting (who is clearly over the kitchen table). If it weren’t the mother-in-law (and hence son-in-law), why would the cartoon be “funny”?

    The fact that Pickering tries to pretend that he is being misrepresented (of course) is par for the course. He is purposefully odious, and believes he is smart.

  29. Kaye Lee

    stephen, too many people share your story and for that, I am ashamed and truly sorry. We must all fight this hatred in our society. The standards we walk past are the standards we accept.

    Steve, that is what astonishes me. The abusers cast themselves as victims.

  30. Jennifer Meyer-Smith

    Hear, hear SGB.

  31. Kaye Lee


    “Please don’t refer to Kirralie Smith as “a pretty blonde””

    I totally understand where you are coming from and agree entirely. I try never to refer to people’s physical appearance but did so this time, admittedly with my own reservations similar to yours, because I think she is exploiting the pretty blonde thing and Ross Cameron particularly seems enthralled.

    Amongst my wonderful girlfriends, all approaching 60, we have a saying – “ever more beautiful every day”. The more we learn to be tolerant and compassionate, the more we actively help those who need it, the more we show leadership in bringing people together, the more beautiful we are.

  32. LOVO

    Kaye Lee, people at Pickerings low IQ club have been talking about you and this post. I read through some of the comments ?..what an ugly bunch they are…’birds of a feather’ etc.

  33. Kaye Lee


    Interesting to know that his followers visit the AIMN. They tend to be scared and angry. I hope, if they stay a while, we might be able to allay some of their fears.

    They are scared that migrants will import hatred but they import their hatred from things that happen overseas.

    They are scared that Muslims will impose their way of life on us all while they try to impose their way of life on Muslims.

    Our society is far from perfect, we have things to work on, but we would do better to work together than to look for blame and revenge.

  34. Terry2

    They say that migrants do the jobs that others won’t take on : two of Trump’s wives were migrants – there you go, empirical evidence that even Malcolm Roberts wouldn’t dispute.

  35. Jennifer Meyer-Smith

    “Interesting to know that his followers visit the AIMN. They tend to be scared and angry. I hope, if they stay a while, we might be able to allay some of their fears.” Good comment, Kaye Lee.

  36. Roswell

    I wrote an article about Pickering a couple of years ago and it attracted the most hate-filled comments from Pickering’s fan club that this site had ever experienced, apparently.

    Be prepared, Kaye. They will come.

  37. Kaye Lee

    We need to build bridges not walls. If they come, all I ask is that they try to be civil and factual.

  38. Jennifer Meyer-Smith

    If they can’t be decent and see sense, then don’t despair for “…we shall fight on the seas and oceans, we shall fight with growing confidence and growing strength in the air, we shall defend our Island, whatever the cost may be, we shall fight on the beaches, we shall fight on the landing grounds, we shall fight in the fields and in the streets, we shall fight in the hills; we shall never surrender…”

  39. susan

    Does anybody else think that churches are the main places where dislike of “other” people is fomented and false stories are spread? I think churches appeal especially to people who are afraid to travel and step outside their tight circle.

  40. Kaye Lee

    “Australia is much further down the path of political correctness than most people realise,” Q Society president Debbie Robinson told the 160-odd guests, gathered at the North Ryde RSL.

    “People are beginning to wake up. Brexit and recent results in the US and Europe are indicative of the rise of conservatism.

    What we are doing is right and we are righteous.”

    righteous: morally right or justifiable.

    Explain to me how profiting from Pickering’s statements and cartoons is “morally right or justifiable”? Explain how defaming an Australian businessman is “morally right or justifiable”? Explain how imposing your dictates on other Australians is “morally right or justifiable”?

    She thinks political correctness is the greatest danger facing the world? Pretentious seems more apt than righteous. Debbie and I have different priorities and very different ideas on what needs addressing and how to do it.

  41. Florence nee Fedup

    He isn’t getting much support from his workmates at SKY.

  42. Florence nee Fedup

    Kaye, she reserves the right to say what she likes. Doesn’t believe she should be accountable when someone objects.

  43. kerri

    Kaye Lee as a fellow “approaching 60” I agree with you and your friends mantra.
    It seems as we age we go one of two ways. The angry, closed, sniping, jealous attitudes of those like Pickering and Cameron or the open minded, accepting peaceful ways of most who post and/or comment on the AIMN.
    Til the day I die I will never understand how the fears of these ignorant twerps drive them to treat others in such a derogatory manner and how they actually derive pleasure from doing so. Smith is an early starter and an unapologetic bigot. I would love to see her take residence in another country. Except for Canada. Canada is my destinatiin if things don’t improve here.

  44. Zathras

    I’ve always wondered what a failed tomato farmer one-time fraudster, a retired conservative politician, a halal-paranoid housewife and an embarrassing ageing one-hit rocker would have in common.

    It’s nice to see them encourage each other to slowly stew in their own hateful bile.

    It’s also a good thing for all those people to be proudly out in the open these days.

    Only a few generations ago they would have been hidden under white hoods and planting burning crosses on front lawns.

    However I think at least one of them needs some psychiatric counselling for anger management and sex obsession.

  45. Matters Not

    Went to Broadbeach (Gold Coast) for a week to experience first hand the financial void left by the demise of regular visitor and ‘big spender’ Ms Sussan Ley and read this headline in the local Gold Coast Bulletin:

    Plans lodged with council for Gold Coast’s first Sikh temple to be built .

    I noted also that no objections had been lodged to date. But more concerning was this statement from Surjit Singh who is leading the project.

    “I want to make clear, this is not a mosque and it will be inclusive for everyone and anyone who wants to come in and we welcome them.”

    Got that, Surjit Singh – apparently without being asked – was quick to point out that this is not a mosque . Nothing like a bit of solidarity is there? Sad! Very sad!

  46. Vic

    You leftie snowflakes want to have a good look at yourselves. Brainwashed morons the lot of you. And you lot call yourself tolerant. Every protest worldwide has descended into violence and wilful damage all because you dont agree with someone else’s opinion. Why arent you lot outaged at the treatment of women in middle eastern countries. Why arent you outraged at seeing a woman publicly flogged for talking to a male in Indonesia. Why arent you protesting those issues over there. Because you have no spine and you are nothing but a pack of hypocrites. Go Trump. Go Larry. Go Ross. Go Pauline.

  47. Kaye Lee

    Well mainly because we live in Australia where those things don’t happen.

    And you no doubt are aware of the recent women’s march which saw millions of women march peacefully for human rights for all.

  48. Vic

    Kaye Lee, When did you become an expert in Right and Wrong ????? Because someone’s idea of humour doesnt suit you, it becomes offensive, racist, bigotted, islamaphobic and whatever other reason you need to cry about. Next thing you and your lot will be protesting outside Larry’s house. Get a life, the lot of you.

  49. Terry2


    You are spot on, we should support Trump, Larry (Pickering), Ross (who ?) and Pauline (Hanson) as they campaign for women’s rights in the Middle East and Indonesia………Oh , wait a minute they don’t give a stuff about women’s rights !

    You are a fraud !

  50. Vic

    March peacefully………….what planet do you live on. Do you call the women holding signs that had repulsive language written all over them the same as you call Pickering or is that different. Pickering drew a cartoon. Women paraded the streets with vulgar signs for the world to see…including children but thats ok with you. Like I said Hypocrites the lot of you.

  51. Vic

    Terry, Tell me again what it is you are doing about the abuse women suffer in other countres ……………….thats right nothing. And it’s Ross Cameron. Champion of a bloke.

  52. LOVO

    ….and so it begins 🙄

  53. Roswell

    You was the wise sage who predicted they will come?

  54. Jennifer Meyer-Smith

    So Vic,

    please enlighten me of the ways you have spoken up for women’s rights when you’ve heard your male peer group denigrate women, and you’ve seen women’s rights to self-determination in employment, education, reproduction etc diminished by bad attitudes and bad institutional processes?

  55. Vic

    Thats right LOVO. You people refuse to hear anyone else’s opinions because they dont fit with your values. I pity your children growing up to be like you lot. God help the next generation with people like you lot raising kids.

  56. kerri

    Don’t you find the anti same sex marriage and the likes of Cameron and Pickering overly and overtly obsessed with sex?? Seriously? What you do in your bedroom, so long as all parties are consenting adults, is no-one else’s business. Pickering’s penis obsession, as evidenced in his cartoons, is quite disturbing.
    One wonders if he considered the priesthood?
    What is it with their pre occupation with sex and how other people enjoy it?
    I mean, my god? Grow the f**k up and get your head out of your crotch?
    Go look at Pickering’s page?
    Or alternatively b**ger off!

  57. Vic

    JMS, Well I’m really proud of Pauline Hanson & Kirralie Smith and would stand up for them in an instant but that wouldnt count in your eyes because there bad bad women who dont agree with your values. My boss is a woman who is not only a great person but a great boss aswell and she doesnt expect any different treatment because she’s female. Some of my closest colleagues are women and I’d stand up for them in an instant too. Next question, Snowflake ?

  58. Vic

    Hello Kerri, I’m actually a regular reader and contributor of Larry’s blog. Thats how I found this pile of lefty shite website. I’m having a good time here so I might stay if thats ok or am I not welcome because my opinion is different to yours.

  59. Roswell

    Vic, not being welcome here has nothing to do with differing opinions. It’s more to do with your lack of courtesy.

  60. Jennifer Meyer-Smith


    good that you have women in your life, who you would stand up for.

    On what problems and issues would you stand up for them?

    I’m asking, as no doubt you would understand, coz I want to know whether you understand the depth of commitment I would respect and expect from anyone, who says they care about how women are treated in any part of the world and in any circumstances.

    I’m sure you’ll understand.

  61. Kaye Lee

    Vic, do you think it is ok for other people to try to impose their values on you? Do you think it is ok to lie about someone’s business?

    I haven;’t as yet, heard you express an opinion other than you a list of people you support. I am just wondering if you feel it is alright for a woman to start a crusade to tell other people what they may eat, what they may wear, and how they must worship? Surely that is anathema to those who are supposedly “defending freedom”?

  62. LOVO

    Vic, Projection…much. 😛
    One only has to go to the pickering post to see how fair dinkom Vic and co. are in regards to their thoughts on womens rights.
    I, for one, feel sorry for Vic and crew….after all Larry won’t be around soon….the poor buggers must be hurting.
    Anyhoo, I’m off to buy a bottle of Champagne…… 🙂

  63. Jennifer Meyer-Smith

    What a sad, sad, lost person,

    poor, sick, ageing Larry must have always been!

    Now, close to Death, he’s become even nastier for wanting payback on life coz he thinks it owed him more.

    What a waste of time feeding greater anguish to his followers such as Vic.

    Makes me wonder, if Larry gave his soul away to Rupe and Co early on, why he never saw a way to get it back.

    What about you, Vic? Will you be duped the same way?

  64. Kaye Lee

    So you found the signs on the women’s march offensive but Larry’s cartoon is just fine. Women protesting against abuse are offensive but you are right behind the man who said he grabs women by the pussy and they love it because he is famous, It’s so hard keeping up with who is allowed free speech.

  65. LOVO

    Vic is Victa at the PP, his last comment there was that he will see us here tommorrow for a spot of fun 😯 ….oh goody, mayhap we can play ‘The Epitome of Sycophant’……a game he seems to know well. 😆

  66. Kate Ahearne

    Vic, which signs in particular did you find so offensive?

  67. Jennifer Meyer-Smith

    Poor ole Vic has retreated like his cowardly Larry Pickering brethren do by habit.

  68. LOVO

    Mods, ‘do’ what you ‘have’ to ‘do’…all good. I will understand. 😉
    I’ll just blame Roswell 😛 😛 😛

  69. Kate Ahearne

    I reckon they must have drawn straws over at the Pickering Fan Club, to decide who’d come over here and do a bit of trolling – and Vic go the short straw. It was a suicide mission!

  70. Jennifer Meyer-Smith

    I would do the thumbs up symbol to you, Kate,

    if my feeble female mind could remember how!

  71. Kate Ahearne

    Hi Jennifer, My miniscule female brain doesn’t know how to either. But I sure do know how to make an eye-catching placard. Learned that way back in the anti-Vietnam War days. Me and a whole bunch of other HUMAN BEINGS saved the lives of many a young lad by forcing the withdrawal of our troops.

  72. Jennifer Meyer-Smith

    Hear, hear Kate.

  73. LOVO

    JMS – Kate, allow me to help yooze out….ya poor feeble luvvies 😯
    Raise your arm…..extend thumb… extented thumb on end of nose…..wave fingers around….easy 😆

  74. Kate Ahearne

    Thanks, Jennifer. Hear hear to you, too. And to all he very sane and sensible people here who know crap when they see it, and who know how to behave.

  75. Kate Ahearne

    LOVO,That’s not thumbs up, you sausage. (Bonus Freudian slip entirely unintended.) That’s called thumbing your nose where I come from. But you’re right to bring it to our attention. If Vic has the courage/temerity/foolishness to return, we can all do that grown-up, eloquently dignified thing.

  76. LOVO

    😆 ….it doth sound like you followed instructions

  77. Kate Ahearne

    LOVO, Just one more item for your consideration. There’s also the thumbs in ears thing. You stick your thumbs in your ears and do the finger-wiggling as you have described for the nose thing – and there is the option of doing blurty stuff with your mouth, or you can just say, Lalalalala’ rather loudly . It works a treat.The true power of this one is the way it so elegantly metaphorises ‘Not listening to your crap!’ Love your work.

  78. Kate Ahearne

    Sorry, LOVO. Our ships seemed to have passed in the night. I didn’t see your addendum until I’d already posted my drivel.

  79. Jennifer Meyer-Smith

    Well said, LOVO and Kate.

    Looks like we brave trio scared that little weasly Vic off outa here!

    I’m going off to sleep now but I hope if any of Trumps frumps want to join the party, they realise I’ll be only too happy to rejoin the celebrations in our time next morning.

    Good night Progressive Comrades.

    To all others, time to make amends!

  80. Kate Ahearne

    Nighngh Jennifer, but it wasn’t just we three. I think the really hard work was done while I was having my afternoon nap. Kaye, Terry, Kerri, Roswell, Yourself. I hope I haven’t missed anyone. We might have won the skirmish, but we haven’t won the war.

  81. kristapet

    I am appalled, horrified and sickened.
    Larry Pickering’s visual imagery is awful enough to make one, want, to, vomit.
    Obscene is not funny – vilification, NOT funny, and then, morally indefensibly, cavalierly and insouciantly, auctioning these drawings to fund raise!!
    Both artist and buyer are morally bankrupt.
    So is anyone who would applaud this!
    Not funny, is their gross lack of RESPECT, and, spreading encouragement of hatred and fear
    Yes, and the fundraiser meetings and the other Liberal social gatherings, do sound very KluKluxKlan-ish , as does their vitriol and horrible utterances.
    One Notion and other Muslim bashing – practitioners, should be more honest, and truly fly the KKK banner, wear the robes, because their beliefs and attitudes amount to being very similar
    What saddens me the most of all, is the lack of critical thinking applied to, the “whom” people are choosing to vote for, in terms of, character, moral fibre, and integrity quality, of the people seeking and standing to represent us.
    Desperation is no excuse for choosing those, whom cynically purport to represent voters, and, while campaigning, make out they are listening, and will change the world to make conditions better – help those less fortunate, yet, abdicate all promises, as soon as they are elected.
    We need less divisiveness, and more social equality and cohesion, based on respect, understanding and fairness
    It should be very clear now, that, not one of the Racial Discrimination Laws should be changed, certainly not made weaker, but made more stringent, and should include cyber bullying, and cyber defamation, to stop the likes of Pickering, Bolt, Ross Cameron, senior members of the Melbourne-based Q Society, Kirralie Smith and Pauline Hanson and others who bully, stalk, discredit by lies, hoaxes and misinformation

  82. Vivienne

    Larry Pickering is in for the shock of his life, two of my friends have gone to the media about his antics it will be on A Current Affair mid March. Watch as they stich Pickering up – they owe Pickering no favours, he has banned them from his bias blog too many times. They are out for revenge and they will get it.

  83. Miriam English

    Weird to see Vic (whoever he was) pop in, let fly with a bunch of insults then disappear as quickly. I wish he hadn’t left so hastily. I’d have liked to see his responses to Kaye’s questions.

    Kaye’s point is spot on. I have to wonder why Vic thinks he believes in free speech when he is so quick to denounce others’ access to it.

    Why does he think some of the women’s march signs are hurtful to his delicate sensibilities? He even seems to consider them violent! Yet Pickering’s coarse cartoons and hateful speech (approving of murder, no less) are perfectly acceptable???

    Why does he think it’s okay to tell other people what they should wear and what they should eat, but that we shouldn’t be able to tell the racists that that their irresponsible statements are going to hurt people or even get people killed?

    Why does he think that he should be able to tell lies about someone, branding them incorrectly as a terrorist, but that we shouldn’t be able to tell the truth about Vic and his nasty buddies being racists?

    It is rather hypocritical.

    A question to Vic, in case he returns: I understand your desire for free speech. If you are in a crowded theatre should you be able to yell “FIRE!!!” without repercussions when several people die in the resultant stampede?

    Just in case you don’t quite understand, let me put it this way:
    You are in a crowded theatre with your wife and child ready to enjoy a show you’ve been looking forward to, when someone toward the back of the theatre with a strong foreign accent you can’t immediately identify yells “FIRE!!!”. There is a mad scramble to get out of the theatre in which your child is trampled to death and your wife badly injured. The fellow who yelled fire is apprehended. Do you say to the security guards that he should be released because he has the right to free speech?

    Why am I asking you this? Every time racists vent about people who are different innocent people get threatened, beaten up, and often killed. That this happens so quickly after the hate speech makes it clear that there is a connection. It is like shouting “FIRE!!!” in a crowded theatre.

  84. Matters Not

    Miriam English, yes the ‘fire’ analogy has been around for decades and is useful in demonstrating that ‘free speech’ is not, and should not, be an absolute value. Those in ‘power’, for example, while advocating ‘free speech’ are often quick to begin defamation actions. Apparently, they have ‘reputations’ that are ‘valuable’, and therefore worthy of defence while lesser mortals, particularly those in minority groups, should be ‘fair game’ – all in the name of free speech of course.

    Nevertheless, I am also attracted to the view that those who want to ‘vomit’ should be allowed to (encouraged?) so do. Perhaps it might be better to have it out in the open so we know what we are up against.

    No easy answers here.

  85. Miriam English

    I’m in favor of free speech too, and prefer to tolerate people, but with racists tolerance only works in one direction. I think we should cut it off. I’ve come to feel we should tolerate all things except intolerance. The paradox should keep it safe because if it accidentally persists past its intent then it becomes intolerance for its own sake and has to be shut down itself.

    I’ve thought long and hard about the point so often made for having it out in the open, but have come to the conclusion that racism is like a disease. The contagion is a public menace. Until we become smarter (perhaps teamed up with AIs) we need to prevent its spread.

    Darn. I was patting myself on the back, thinking I’d thought up the ‘fire’ scenario myself. I must have unconsciously absorbed it some time in my past.

  86. Matters Not

    Miriam, Oliver Wendell Holmes, Jr.’s opinion in the United States Supreme Court case Schenck v. United States in 1919 did explore such limits.

    But the point that absolute values has many problems remains valid – I believe.

  87. paulwalter

    Just stumbled across it.. what a bunch of ratbags.

  88. wam

    kaye ‘…telling them what they can eat, what they can wear, and how they must worship.’ doesn’t compute. She wants labels?? Burqa, niqab these are not religious requirements so there are no rights in their use in places where face covering is not acceptable by law or convention. As for worship is it not legitimate to object to Australians worshiping a god that rewards killing or, for that matter, a god who forgives men who murder?

    Surely religious slaughter caters for all the animals. This dummy see no difference between muslim or jew slaughter or christian(minus the priestly incantations) pig blood collection, So why not labels?
    muslims jews and christians between them have the complete animal throat cutting business all sewn up. So what is the hang up call the meat kosher, halal or christian killed, who cares?

  89. Kaye Lee

    Donald Trump’s state visit will be greeted by the biggest anti-racism protest in British history no matter where in the country the Government moves it to, campaigners have said.

    “President Trump with his hateful and divisive rhetoric, policies and Muslim ban is not welcome here.”

    Kerry Jenkins, Labour councillor for the city’s Hall Green Ward, said Mr Trump was a “racist and a misogynist who is using his power to divide”.

    “If these rumours are proven I will be calling on all colleagues and citizens to stand together and demonstrate as we have done many times before in our great city when far right politics has reared its ugly head,” she said.

    Owen Jones, writer and co-founder of the group, said: “Donald Trump’s state visit will be marked by the biggest protest against racism and hatred in our country’s history.

    “It doesn’t matter where he goes. We will march in our millions against him, and our government’s collusion, in every town and city in Britain.”

  90. Johno

    This is good news.

  91. Miriam English

    wam, why would it matter if the burqa, niqab, etc are religious requirement or not? (They’re not, as you mention.) What would you think if I agitated to have men’s ties and women’s high-heel shoes banned? Both ties and high-heels are ridiculous items of clothing, utterly unnecessary, but I would be infringing greatly upon others’ rights to prevent them wearing these absurd items. It’s similar with Muslim clothing (though headscarves have great utility). Much of it is not traditional dress and has been inherited from a desert tribe, but if the women wish to wear the stuff then that’s their right. Nobody should have the ability to force them to wear it, or not to wear it.

    Halal is just what’s permissible food. It isn’t just restricted to pig meat. When I had a Muslim neighbor years ago she helpfully showed me a list of halal foods and haram foods (haram are forbidden foods). The list was rather silly, as you’d expect would be any 2,000 year old list made from religious rules. I don’t see why the big deal either for it or against it. If they want to eat it then that’s entirely their business. Having seen the list I expect they’d actually be more healthy than the average Australian (cakes, sweet biscuits, etc are prohibited food).

    As for killing animals for food — anybody killing animals for food — personally, I’d love to ban that, but I wouldn’t ever attempt to do so.

  92. Harquebus

    “take away freedom from Muslims”
    Being indoctrinated and usually at a very young age, they are never free.

  93. Kaye Lee

    Harquebus, many of us had religious upbringings, me included. It did not preclude me from exercising my free will. It, in fact, allowed me to make informed decisions.

    I agree with Miriam. It is all about the freedom to choose provided your choices do not negatively impact others.

  94. nurses1968

    The quickest way to get rid of Burqa, niqabs etc or whatever else you call all that regalia would be to force Muslim blokes to wear them as well.
    I bet some “scholar” would soon find a quote from a prophet that banished them
    “wam, why would it matter if the burqa, niqab, etc are religious requirement or not? (They’re not, as you mention.)”
    They may not be compulsory but in some countries it would be a pretty good way to cop a beating or beheading for not wearing them

  95. Kaye Lee

    nurses, there are a great many Australian women who cop a beating, or worse, from their partners. All women in Australia should be protected from subjugation and coercion.

    I do not understand why people want to import hatred from overseas. It isn’t the migrants doing it, it is those who fear difference so they talk about what happens in other countries and bring that hatred and fear here. Why? Australia is a different environment where all people should be free to make their own choices on how they live their lives.

    If they choose to be vegan, ok. If they choose to wear silly clothes, ok. If they choose to waste time and money on worship, ok.

    If they try to tell me I cannot eat what I want or wear what I want or I have to be a Christian, then not ok.

  96. nurses1968

    Kaye Lee
    ” It is all about the freedom to choose”
    Now, even you couldn’t believe that Muslim women have that?

  97. Miriam English

    nurses1968, in some countries it would be a pretty good way to cop a beating or beheading for not wearing them
    That’s why I said “Nobody should have the ability to force them to wear it, or not to wear it.” All bullies are bad.

    Harquebus, yes, all religion severely compromises people’s thinking. I’d love to find some way to immediately end all religion, but I can’t imagine any way to do it that doesn’t involve invoking the thought police — a very dangerous encroachment upon people’s rights, and something that would likely do more damage than religion. But we really don’t need to; all religions are losing great numbers of believers as it is. We just need to wait. It would help if in the meantime we abolished tax exemptions for religion and refused to teach religion in school. Enforcing laws against religious discrimination helps too, because religions tend to hate each other far more than they hate secular society, so if we take that away from them religion kinda slowly dissolves away.

  98. nurses1968

    ” Australia is a different environment where all people should be free to make their own choices on how they live their lives.”
    I live in the Illawarra and on hot weekends and holidays we get a lot from Western Sydney zoom down the F6 to the Lake foreshores as it is a quicker trip than to Sydney beaches.
    You would be astounded at the number of Muslim men, resplendent in budgie smugglers closely followed by the missus in full regalia, loaded to the hilt with bags and a couple of kids heading off to find their little patch where poor old mum sits baking all day
    “Illawarra Stormchasers
    Weather Outlook – SUNDAY February 12th 2017
    Some ridiculous temperatures in western Sydney today. 46.9 at Penrith – that is 116F on the old scale.”

    Didn’t bother male Muslim though as he swam in the lake

  99. Miriam English

    nurses1968, why do you assume that Muslim women in Australia don’t have freedom? It would seem to me that you don’t know any Muslim women. I have lived in a Muslim-dominated suburb and so came to know a few Muslim women. I found them no less free than the Christian women friends I’ve had.

    Even if you talk about Muslim women overseas, many Muslim countries have more women doctors, engineers, and politicians than we have in Australia.

  100. Kaye Lee


    In Australia Dr Ismail said that the reasons women wear veils of all kinds vary widely and take in influences from culture, fashion as well as religion.

    “Some women wear it because they strongly believe it is their religious obligation,” she said.

    Dr Ismail does concede that some women may be pressured into covering themselves.

    “There is a possibility that some husbands would tell their wives ‘please wear the niqab, I don’t want any other men to see you’ which is possessive,” she said.

    “When it comes to that, the problem is not the niqab, it is being married to someone who is possessive and oppressive.”

  101. Jaded

    I was a regular poster on pickering post. We are not all the same, in fact there are a few there that challenge the racist crap that happens. Yet they seem to be the ones that are silenced. If you don’t agree with the masses there. If you aren’t a sheeple that follows him and what he says, then you have a problem.

  102. Harquebus

    Kaye Lee
    Try exercising your free will if you are a Muslim. Many women bear the facial scars of attempting to do so.
    I do not support the faith based thinking espoused by religious leaders and exampled by most politicians.

    Miriam English
    I agree. I would like to something like an R rating on religion and perhaps with political indoctrination as well. It ain’t gonna happen and we will instead, as usual, have to learn to deal with consequences.


  103. Kaye Lee

    “Try exercising your free will if you are a Muslim. Many women bear the facial scars of attempting to do so.”

    In Australia many women bear scares inflicted on them by controlling men. To pretend that it is a Muslim problem is disingenuous.

    Try telling your Catholic parents that you are not having your children baptised. Once again, drumming up numbers is not just a Muslim issue.

  104. Kate Ahearne

    Arundhati Roy — ‘Coercing a woman out of a burka is as bad as coercing her into one. It’s not about the burka. It’s about the coercion.’

  105. Matters Not

    It would be very helpful for all concerned, if contributors could draw a distinction between ‘culture’ and ‘religion’. For example, the QUR’AN, which guides the Muslim religion does not ‘demand’ that women wear burqas, niqabs, hijabs or whatever. Rather, it requires that women dress ‘modestly’. Further, and most importantly, it has exactly the same requirement for men. Indeed Muslim scholars tell me that the QUR’AN, in the two references made to ‘dress’, does not draw any distinction between the sexes. Both must dress ‘modestly’.So that’s the religion out of the way.

    As for ‘cultural’ practices, traditions and the like, then that’s another story.

    An aside – a school group from New Guinea visiting Queensland, who performed cultural dances (among other pursuits) earned some extra funds at a ‘watering hole’ who were impressed with their ‘performances’. That the young women were unashamedly ‘bare breasted’ was an added attraction apparently.. Nothing like ‘culture’ to explain behaviour(s) – theirs and ours .

    Sort of caused a storm in a D-Cup at the time.

  106. Johno

    I would have to agree with Miriam and Kaye on this.
    Miriam.. I have never heard of the yell ‘fire’ analogy either.

  107. nurses1968

    Why Don’t Feminists Fight for Muslim Women?

  108. Rinaldo

    Jews demand Sharia law for non Jews –
    ………..“Sephardi Chief Rabbi Yitzhak Yosef said Saturday night that many non-Jews should be forbidden from living in the Land of Israel according to Jewish law. In a recording of Yosef’s weekly Saturday night lecture obtained by Channel 10, the rabbi can be heard saying, ‘According to Jewish law, it’s forbidden for a non-Jew to live in the Land of Israel – unless he has accepted the seven Noachide laws.’
    “If he’s not willing to accept one of them, [which is] not to commit suicide, if he’s not willing to accept this, you send him to Saudi Arabia.’”[5]
    If he is not willing to go to Saudi Arabia, then you have to eliminate him. Yitzhak adds that once that non-Jewish person is eliminated, Israeli soldiers don’t have “to be concerned by the scrutiny of the High Court or the army chief of staff on the matter.”[6] Obviously because Yitzhak thinks that Rabbinic

    Benjamin Netanyahu Continues to Morally Fall Apart

    Talmudic Doctrine: Non-Jews are not Human

    The Talmud specifically defines all who are not Jews as non-human animals, and specifically dehumanises Gentiles as not being descendants of Adam.
    Moses Maimonides:
    Advocate of Extermination
    The rabbinic teacher Moses Maimonides called the “Rambam” by the Jews, is revered in Judaism as a supreme “sage” of the highest stature.
    “Moses Maimonides is considered the greatest codifier and philosopher in Jewish history. He is often affectionately referred to as the Rambam, after the initials of his name and title, Rabenu Moshe Ben Maimon, “our Rabbi, Moses son of Maimon.”
    According to the introduction to the book, Maimonides’ Principles, p. 5, Maimonides “spent twelve years extracting every decision and law from the Talmud, and arranging them all into 14 systematic volumes. The work was finally completed in 1180, and was called Mishnah Torah, or “Code of the Torah.”
    Here is what Maimonides taught concerning the saving of the life of a Gentile or Christian, and even Jews who dared to deny the “divine inspiration” of the Talmud:
    “Accordingly, if we see an idolater (gentile) being swept away or drowning in the river, we should not help him.”
    Maimonides ruled that it is a Jewish court – or a court appointed by Jewish authority—that enforces obedience and passes judgment on Gentiles, as well as promulgating legislation by court order for that purpose. Maimonides further decreed that any non-Jewish nation “not subject to our jurisdiction” (tahaht yadeinu) will be the target of Jewish holy war.
    These courts are to be convened allegedly under the “Noahide Laws” (proscriptions against idolatry supposedly based on the covenant with Noah). But there is nothing in the Bible to support this claim. This claim is a preposterous FRAUD – and a sign of the anti-Christ!
    Prof. Easterly of the Southern University Law Center, a Jewish legal expert, has diabolically compared HJ Res. 104 to the “first rays of dawn” which “evidence the rising of a still unseen sun.”
    The Jewish Encyclopedia envisages a Noahide regime as a possible world order (One World Government) immediately preceding the “universal reign of the Talmud.” A terrifying prospect, indeed!
    These provisions of the Talmud, the same Talmud that is the source of the Noahide laws, make very clear why the proponents of HJ Res. 104 used the subterfuge of obtaining the passage of this legislation without any debate or a recorded vote. HJ Res. 104 was fraudulently and deceitfully passed by “unanimous consent” when no one was around to consider and discuss the provisions of the Talmud. If these had been brought to the attention of the members of Congress, HJ Res. 104 would never have been passed.
    The Chabad Lubavitch falsely claims that God gave the Seven Noahide Laws at Mt. Sinai with the intention that the Children of Israel should keep them and teach them to the Gentiles. This is a deliberate lie!
    There is absolutely no support in the Bible for this fraudulent claim.
    The Source of these Seven Noahide Laws was NOT, as the Jews have claimed, directions from God to Adam – or Noah – or Moses. Their source is the Oral Traditions of the Pharisees that began in Babylon after the Israelites were captured in 586 BC.
    Over 600 years later, after the Pharisees had killed Christ and the Temple in Jerusalem was destroyed in 70 AD, these Oral Traditions were written down and became the Babylonian Talmud.
    The Noahide Laws: Straight From The Talmud

  109. Miriam English

    I followed Matters Not’s link to the wikipedia article on shouting fire in a crowded theatre. It was very interesting. I was especially challenged by Christopher Hitchens’ talk linked to in the References section of the article. He is something of a hero of mine, so I was surprised to find myself half-disagreeing with him.

    Hateful prejudice is damaging and actually does hurt people, physically as well as mentally. Allowing it to spread contagiously is irresponsible, I think. If it was a bacterial or viral disease we wouldn’t tolerate infected people walking into our midst and deliberately coughing on us. Why do we permit it with an equally contagious an harmful infection of the mind? I know some people panic and say that it is the slippery slop to totalitarian thought police, but is it really? Does quarantine of people with measles bring about a physical totalitarian state?

  110. Miriam English

    Rinaldo, I’m baffled as to what you are trying to achieve with your antisemitic rant.
    I have always had a lot of Jewish friends and I must say they have always been among the smartest and most tolerant people it’s been my pleasure to know. Oops. 🙂 Rinaldo’s gone. Good.

    nurses1968, why do you assume that feminists are not fighting for Muslim women’s rights?
    You do know that there are many, many Muslim feminists, right? I’m not kidding. I think you may be echoing the brainwashing racist politicians and media. My advice would be to get to know the people you’re criticising.

  111. Harquebus

    Kate Ahearne
    I am off to visit other places and just wanted to thank you for your efforts during the Vietnam anti-war demonstrations. I was too young at the time to participate but, I do remember them clearly. It was when I first started to question authority and have been influenced by them ever since.
    Many thanks.

  112. Miriam English

    (Dammit! I gotta get another keyboard. This one keeps dropping letters.)

  113. Kaye Lee

    nurses, I have heard Ayaan Hirsi Ali speak before. This is a good article in rebuttal to her hatred of Islam which, once again, stems from other countries.

    It is increasingly apparent that no-one can find any reason for Australians to be concerned. Our Muslim community is doing their best to help us fight against extremism and we should thank them for it.

  114. Kate Ahearne

    Harquebus, On behalf of the thousands and thousands whose commitment resulted in Australia’s withdrawal from Vietnam, “You’re welcome’. I began as a student at Monash in 1967. Those were heady times at Monash, and you couldn’t help but be drawn into some kind of political awareness. Most of the students in my faculty were young men who would soon be turning 20, and whose birthdates would go into the ballot for conscription.

  115. Robert G. Shaw

    I agree with your question and can only offer this by way of quick explanation. The Left, in its admirable, yet hopeless, efforts to afford everyone on the planet equal rights, becomes entrapped in the internal paradox of its logic.
    To wit: to the Left we ascribe these general positions,
    – defenders of free speech and equal rights : yet the Berkeley issue for example, saw some of us, do our violent utmost to trample free speech and equal rights and then legitimise that action in the name of free speech!
    – defenders of the poor and disenfranchised, yet the recent US election told us in a historic moment of blinding clarity, that we in fact not only ignored their concerns. but actively, publicly, humiliated them!
    – defenders of gender rights, yet turn a blind eye to, and at times, believe it or not, rationalise, the struggles of Islamic women and the profound religious and cultural horrors they endure.
    – defenders of……..the list is substantial nurses and it’s the reason, I would argue, for the current fog of disillusionment that permeates our discourse and practice.

    The Islamic/Muslim question at the heart of this new conversational thread is the most obvious and topical expression of that fog.
    I see many here groping about in the darkness.

    That’s my view,
    despite the apologetics of those like Carla Power, who contrary to their impeccable credentials, actively avoid the concrete and consequential questions at the heart of Islam.

    May I offer this instead: I’ve linked this interview just recently. It was one that made a tremendous impression on me.
    I hope you too get something out of it.

    Thanks for your kind and supportive words earlier.

  116. Jennifer Meyer-Smith

    Before any of us dismisses one of the most important rights for any People: the right to Equality, we need to identify who purports to speak for it. Many would purport to represent the Left but are merely self-entitled, elitist centrists, who enjoy the prestige of a political stronghold but also the prestige of being identified as different from the Right, which anybody with any self-respect would want.

    Progressives are the new luminaries and can back up true Left luminaries, who do see a nuanced difference between defending free speech and equal rights and restricting the rights of extreme groups which abuse that right to hurt and confine other groups.

    As for the poor and disenfranchised, they are everywhere. They are under our noses every day throughout Australia and not just in the rust belt of America. They are the ever growing impoverished and diminishing middle class, so any political luminaries should identify the gross discrimination imposed on them.

    That is why I am constantly advocating better rights for the vibrant, under-privileged unemployed and under-employed who are the ever-growing demographic of many faces and backgrounds. They demand Australian parties and people on the Left of politics for equitable support to acquire reasonable welfare and conditions and access to meaningful employment opportunities from diverse homegrown industries, or at least the universal basic income.

    As for defenders of gender rights, who said true People from the Left turn a blind eye to Islamic women and the horrors they endure?

  117. Red Leaf

    Jennifer Meyer-Smith, all over the internet anyone who speaks out against the negative aspects of Islam, for whatever reason, including their innate misogyny, domestic violence, child ‘marriages’, and homophobia are always shouted down with the label “racist” or “bigot”. We are constantly told that we must be more ‘tolerant’. Nothing will ever change for those poor people who suffer under Islam because for some reason Islam gets a free pass. I won’t bother waiting for the inevitable name-calling I get whenever I mention anything at all bad about Islam.

  118. Matters Not

    Want to see the interaction between ‘religion’ and ‘culture’ then visit St Peter’s Square, particularly on a day when ‘canonisation’ is to be conducted. Many, many nuns from across the world – presumably with the same religious (Catholic) views – yet the garb they wear varies considerably. Some outfits rival those who wear the burqa while some are dressed in much the same way as hundreds of other tourists. Same religion but different cultural backgrounds.

    As an aside. The number of canonisations has grown exponentially in recent years. Pope Leo XII canonised zero as did his successor Pius VIII. Pope Benedict XV (1914 – 1922) only performed three. John Paul 1 (1978) canonised zero – not surprising because he was there only 33 days. His successor John Paul II (1978 – 2005) really got the ball rolling, canonising 482. Pope Benedict (2005 – 2013) only managed 45. The current Pope – Francis (2013 – ?) has to date managed 838. Quite a score and presumably there’s more on the way.

    Just demonstrates that we live in very holy times with lots of ‘miracles’ here, there and everywhere. (Or maybe not.) That it’s great for the tourist industry and fills the coffers of the Vatican is just a mere coincidence.

  119. Jennifer Meyer-Smith

    I don’t doubt what you say Red Leaf. Those who call you a “bigot” or “racist” for calling out the inhumanity of “innate misogyny, domestic violence, child ‘marriages’, and homophobia” are persecution enablers themselves and if they don’t see that then they are ignorant.

    However, if such criticisms apply to Islam in some parts of the World, we should also be prepared to identify such criticisms apply to Christianity and other religions in parts of the World, as well as to many of those who call themselves agnostics and atheists.

  120. Alan Baird

    Boy, what a run around a speed dating of opinion. Religion is a step back from reality in an attempt to place over that reality a set of assumptions that may or may not have ANYTHING to do with that reality. Human society has since been building all sorts of organisations with their rules that have the sure and solid foundations of a cathedral in Christchurch. Some of the best quality earthquakes occur in muslim and christian places. Cynical but unfortunately for those of a “flower child” mentality, terrooo… No wonder I have such trouble tolerating the religious who are all about us, afflicting the world with their twaddle. You don’t HAVE to be stupid but it still helps. Don’t go along with it. “Build on the rock, the rock that ever stands…” went that awful doggerel hymnette: the polar opposite of reality… replace “rock” with “crock”.

  121. Roswell

    Jennifer, I was going to write something in response to Red Leaf, but then I saw your comment and your second paragraph, in particular, said it for me.

    I can only add that people seem to be bending over backwards to find a reason to justify their hatred of Muslims. Look hard enough and they might find a reason to hate any religion.

  122. Ella Miller

    Kaye Lee, Roswell,
    Please forgive me I am not trying to hijack the conversation BUT I feel I must let you all know,
    CODY received a reply to his letter from the PM.

    Just to remind you all he asked two questions;
    1. Why don’t the rich pay more tax ?
    2. Why is the LNP gov making life so hard for those that can not find a job or “make money”.

    I will now type the reply date 6/2/2017

    Dear Cody,
    Thank you for writing to me.
    I always enjoy hearing about what is important to young Australian like you.
    Our democracy rests on the idea that every individual counts and everyone can have his or her say on the issues that matter most to them.

    I really appreciate you taking the time to share your thoughts with me.

    I send you my best wishes.
    Yours sincerely
    Malcolm Turnbull.

    So my questions are;
    were Cody’s concerns answered?
    were Cody’s honest worries allayed by his answer?


  123. DJT

    JMS – these are long held practices of Islam practiced in “some parts ” of the world including Australia Christianity and other religions do not have these practices as prescribed behaviour.

  124. Kaye Lee

    Red Leaf,

    Misogyny, domestic violence, and homophobia are rampant in the predominantly Christian Australia. Why do you choose to single out Muslims?

    There are dreadful things done throughout the world but we have the chance in Australia to be different and we can only do that working together.


    Sadly, Cody learns young what it is like to be patted on the head. Now he must learn persistence. I would suggest a follow-up thanking the PM for acknowledging his existence but could he please answer the question.

  125. Roswell

    Ella, thanks for letting us know.

    It doesn’t sound like anything was answered at all. It was nothing more than a statement.

    By the way, who signed the letter?

  126. Kate Ahearne

    Ella, that’s great. I agree – maybe Cody could thank the PM and ask him to actually answer the questions.

  127. Jennifer Meyer-Smith


    I am no authority on Islam and any supportive statement I may make is more through the lenses of human rights and equal rights, which means if we are going to criticise one religion, we should be prepared to criticise others where questionable religious teachings exist.

    I am more interested in addressing human rights issues for Muslims with or without religion.


    Regarding Cody’s letter, I agree that Cody could do a follow-up letter demanding specific answers to his questions. If Malcolm Muck or his ludite offsiders don’t oblige, then Cody might consider publishing the letter.

  128. Kaye Lee


    “Christianity and other religions do not have these practices as prescribed behaviour.”

    “A woman should learn in quietness and full submission. I do not permit a woman to teach or to have authority over a man; she must be quiet. For Adam was formed first, then Eve. And Adam was not the one deceived; it was the woman who was deceived and became a sinner.” (1 Timothy 2:11-14)

    Psalm 137 “Happy is he who repays you for what you have done to us / He who seizes your infants and dashes them against the rocks.”

    “In the same way also the men, giving up natural intercourse with women, were consumed with passion for one another. Men committed shameless acts with men and received in their own persons the due penalty for their error.” Romans 1:27

    Ephesians 5:22, “Wives, submit to your husbands as to the Lord”; and similar advice for slaves in 1 Peter 2:18: “Slaves, submit yourselves to your masters with all respect, not only to the good and gentle but also to the cruel.”

    Aristotle, one of the greatest philosophers of all time, wrote treatise on ethics, the arts, physics and mathematics which have shaped Western thinking, but he also wrote that “the female is a monstrosity, a deformed male”, and that “the male is by nature superior, and the female inferior; the one rules, and the other is ruled.”

  129. Ella Miller

    I can’t read the signature but the last name ends in LL
    I will see Cody during the week , give him his letter, ask him some relevant questions and point out to him that it is polight and important to reply.

  130. Ella Miller

    Jennifer Meyer-Smith
    ” I am more interested in addressing human rights issues for Muslims with or without religion”

    Hannah Arendt wrote this about human rights …and I quote

    “Since there is no political authority above that of sovereign nations,State governments have little incentive to respect human rights when such policies conflict with national interests.
    This can be seen most clearly by examining the treatment of refugees and other stateless people.
    Since the refugee has no state to secure their civil rights , the only rights they have to fall back on are human rights…..

    Is there such a thing as human rights if these rights are not realisable?”

  131. Matters Not

    addressing human rights issues for Muslims with or without religion”

    What are the defining characteristics of a Muslim without religion ? Just had to ask.

  132. jimhaz

    [Reading the Ross Cameron transcript is tortuous]

    I actually enjoyed it. Sure it was a bit too rambling on paper but the essential point that ideas should be given a proper hearing was fine. He did make a point that he was not entirely on board with the likes of Pickering or Bernardi, but supported them for being prepared to stick up for what they believed.

    You are actually doing exactly what he was complaining about. Dismissing outright and tagging him with negative status words such as homophobic, racist, sexist and so on – when all he was doing was making a point in a masculine manner.

    I agree with this point – although both sides are guilty. Some in the left however like to pick up on every little verbal indiscretion and make a massive deal out of it. This really irritates ordinary people used to having more freedom to say things the way they are used to – bluntly.
    So he made a few homosexual references – big deal. They were mild (and partly positive) compared to Pickering. Perhaps in his work he has to mix more with the prissy/queenie type of gay who really can become quite irritating. He would be right about the NSW Libs.

    Ross is a friend of a friend of mine. I once spent a somewhat intense afternoon on the grog with Ross and quite enjoyed it. He wanted to know what I thought about everything and was a good listener. We both agreed that allowing higher numbers of muslims into Australia would not be a good thing and that PCism had gone too far.

    The one fellow I’ve lost all respect for is Latham (never had any for Bernardi or Pickering). I can’t support anyone who wants the top tax rates reduced and supports nuclear energy.

  133. Zathras


    I think you completely misunderstood my remark about sex obsession.

    I was specifically referring to the personal obsession of Pickering and his cartoons – in particular the deplorable way he used to depict Julia Gillard.
    I’ve never bothered with him since but I can imagine he hasn’t changed.

    The people at that meeting are the ones who want to condemn and interfere in the private lives of individuals – not me – and I fully support the the rights of LGBTQI community for equality.

  134. Kaye Lee

    I think Ross Cameron thinks he’s on a winner. From his speech…

    “I want to say to this audience here, my self-interested remark that, just between us, you know – don’t tell anyone – but The Outsiders, in its third-ever edition ranked, because of you, the number one show on Sky.

    I do say that sort of seriously, because The Outsiders – Rowan Dean, Mark Latham, Ross Cameron, three deplorables – it exists because the audience of Sky really demanded it. And I walked in on the day after the first episode, and all of these young staffers at Sky were basically saying Ross we are shocked that by the end of that show, the emails started coming in to Sky like someone had just hit the jackpot at the RSL and it was going ‘bing bing bing bing bing bing, more of this, more of this, we want more of this’. And that’s because of you. I know there’s tens of thousands of you out there supporting Kirralie and Debbie and other good causes on Facebook and Twitter and elsewhere. I just want you to know, on behalf of certainly me and Mark and Rowan, we appreciate the fact that you have created us, and we couldn’t do it without- now Sky has got no choice but to leave us on. Even if all their fair instincts are saying [exhales loudly].”

    The only explanation I can come up with for Cameron’s continual bizarre references to homosexuality at a dinner to raise funds for anti-halal campaigners is that he felt homophobia would appeal to the same crowd….understandable with Bernardi and Christensen there.

  135. jimhaz

    [Larry Pickering’s visual imagery is awful enough to make one, want, to, vomit]

    l’m completely indifferent. Certainly not at all disgusted by the muslim having sex with an ‘unknown person’ cartoon. Its just like the stuff I used to see in magazines like Pix 30 years ago. It is dated sort of sarcastic low level humour.

  136. Miriam English

    Red Leaf, I’m the first to condemn Islam. It is a detestable religion, but then pretty-much all of them are. BUT people still have rights. Bigots who slander and advocate violence against people because of the stupid religion the believe are much, much worse than the Muslims they condemn.

  137. DJT

    jh – I don’t think you saw any copulation in Pix 30 years ago

  138. DJT

    ME – I don’t think any other religions are as detestable as Islam. Apostacy, taqiyya, FMG, underage marriage, jihad and the total intolerance of all other religions resulting in a world of Islamic based terrorism. What is the thinking in this country that wants to tolerate a religion that will not do likewise?

  139. Kaye Lee

    Do you see any of those things in Australia DJT, other than the religious intolerance shown towards Muslims? You do realise that most of the things you mention are cultural rather than religious practices?

    I agree that there are many bad things happen overseas but what I repeatedly ask is why do you insist on importing hatred? Talk about Australia rather than other cultures.

  140. Kaye Lee

    Change happens with time

    “until 1961 the marriageable age in Australian states and territories was the same as the age of consent: 14 for men and 12
    for women (some states had higher ages)”


    “The same historical disruptions that have produced the horrors of Al Qaeda and ISIL have also produced increasingly confident Muslim activists and scholars, who are working to square their understandings of the Quran’s divine message with universal human-rights norms.

    Unlike bombs or beheadings, these gentle disruptions don’t make the news. Earlier this year, the conservative scholar Mohammad Akram Nadwi reversed his acceptance of child marriage – a practice generally allowed in medieval Islamic jurisprudence – after two of his female students told him of the ways they’d seen the practice ruin girls’ lives. He also found a fatwa from an 8th-century scholar denouncing the practice. In other words, he found ways to change his understanding of his faith from within.”

    Whilst we concentrate on the bad messages groups like ISIS send, the internet also helps to educate people. There are many Muslims who also campaign against barbarism.

  141. DJT

    KL – they are religious and they are alive and well in Australia. Why do you turn a blind eye? I have no hatred. I just acknowledge and face a problem when I see it. It’s better than hoping it will go away.

  142. Steve Laing -

    DJT – if you take the trouble to look, you will find that there are many sects of other religions that have equally intolerant practices – indeed mainstream Catholicism used to be one of the finest (and one might say, given what has been unearthed in the recent Royal Commission, still probably is) largest sexual abusers of young people in the world. But that doesn’t seem to bother you when you can have a pop at Islam? What about some of the odd Christian sects in the US that allow polygamy and child brides? What about the systematic male circumcision in the Jewish faith, some of which is carried out by the Rabbi using their teeth (with cases of babies getting STDs from the process – and this is in the US, not some backwater)? And if you want to witness cultural intolerance to others, I’m guessing you’ve never visited Israel. That certainly opened my eyes, and I know my experience is not unusual.

    So go on, try opening your eyes a bit. Nastiness abounds, particularly in the name of God. I’m no big fan of many of the cultural habits that SOME people who happen to be of Muslim faith follow, but suggesting all people of that faith/culture support the same is drawing a very long bow. You might find that most people of all cultures are fundamentally just decent, normal folk. However there are people out there that are hell bent on trying to convince you otherwise. Consider why that might be?

  143. Miriam English

    DJT, while I agree Islam is horrible, so is Christianity. It is the cause of much oppression of gay folks, people of different skin color, and different religions. It was the rationale behind slavery. Christianity actually condones genocide in Deuteronomy 13:12, 16.

    It says, horrifyingly, that if you find a city of people worshipping another god then you should murder every man, woman, and child, and even all the cattle, then burn the city to the ground totally trashing it and everything of value in it — all for your god’s pleasure. Finally you should make sure nothing is ever built there again.

    So, no. I don’t think Islam is much worse that Christianity. Islam at least puts a lot of store by charity.

    Don’t get me wrong. I hate that the Koran is riddled with references to killing non-muslims. It is not a good religion, but neither is Christianity. If we can grit our teeth and put up with Christian churches all over the goddamn landscape surely we can put up with a few lone mosques. We need moderate Muslims. They are our best defense against extremists.

  144. jimhaz

    [I agree that there are many bad things happen overseas but what I repeatedly ask is why do you insist on importing hatred?]

    Why do you insist on setting up the circumstances where hatred may very well occur in spades in the future. Why not minimise this risk by cutting future immigration from many muslim countries and making muslim refugee attempts far, far less an option ?

    Why do you have no respect for people who rationally do not want this influence to have any real power in Australia.

    No one knows what is going to happen next in the clash of civilisations. It is too risky just to hope that the religion will modernise over the next couple of decades.

    We are entitled to feel safe in our own well-off country (a muslim issue) and we are also entitled to protect access to or power over resources, including land and jobs (an excessive immigration issue, not muslin one).

    These are the two bottom, thus most necessary, levels in Maslow’s Hierarchy of Needs. People feel threatened, thus vote for awful people like Trump to try and change the trend. It does not make any difference how justified those fears are – If they exist they exist. What underlies them is not based on fantasy but demonstrably real – there have been attacks on Australians and immigrants are rapidly taking over ownership of that which enables us to survive and to survive well. I for example will have to move out of Sydney when I retire because demand from immigration has made housing prices rise too much. I already had to move from Manly some time ago for the same reason.

  145. Miriam English

    Oh good grief, jimhaz! If you’re going to blame someone for housing prices at least blame the right people. The immigrants have zero effect on house prices. The LNP’s rules on negative gearing and their rich mates investing in houses are what are driving the housing bubble. When it comes crashing down we will still have the same number of immigrants (almost certainly more), but housing prices will be lower. It isn’t the immigrants.

    As for the other fear-inspired dribble about muslims, read what has been repeated over and over and over again… it just doesn’t seem to get through your head.

  146. Sir ScotchMistery

    @Pilot – no. Not utterly disgusting we have sunk so low.

    Utterly predictable.

  147. Robert G. Shaw

    Anyone trying to push the line that Islam equals Christianity is, I suspect, playing mischievous rhetorical games and is more interested in deceit and bias, than facts.
    Here’s why: there is no argument, not a single contrary syllable, offered to contradict the wildly unremarkable statement that both religions have committed unspeakable horrors throughout history.
    None whatsoever.
    Not a peep to dispute that fact.
    From any sensible person.
    So let’s rid ourselves of that ridiculous, deceitful straw-man immediately.

    The difference between the two religions now is that one of them, Christianity, has undertaken a profound, critical and at times bloody reckoning with the key tenets of its teachings; from the despicable shackles placed on the human mind, to the blood stained passages of Canon Law, Christianity passed from the Old Testament to the New. And by doing so shed its immanent horrors and placed in their stead the wonders of latitude, sensitivity, and forgiveness.
    Christianity, for all of its historical, and present day horrors, and there are many, still allows me recourse to the cardinal statues of the Enlightenment – liberty, equality, freedom, justice.

    Islam has undertaken no such journey.
    And continues its strict codification of inequality and violence, it’s ruthless suppression of free speech and the free expression of one’s life.

    I argue that there is no comparison between the two religions along these fundamental trajectories.
    I am yet to hear or read an argument to the contrary.

    But am more than happy to read one now, should it be forthcoming.

  148. Miriam English

    jimhaz, Why do you insist on setting up the circumstances where hatred may very well occur in spades in the future

    You could completely eliminate Muslims from Australia and you could still have an outbreak of violence between Christians. It was only a short time ago that generations of Christians — Catholics and Protestants were murdering each other in droves, mostly in Ireland, but elsewhere too. My own great, great, great grandfather (I think that’s the right number of ‘greats’) was knighted by the Queen and given land and an abbey for having murdered so many Catholics.

    Catholics today go on rampages in many countries around the world murdering gays and transexuals, not to mention ensuring the deaths of young raped girls forced to carry pregnancies to death-dealing births. Catholics are largely responsible for the spread of AIDS in Africa and the USA because of suppression of condoms and making people think it a disease of gays (it is actually predominantly a heterosexual disease, and lesbians — homosexual women — are the social group least likely to catch it).

    Eliminating Muslims from Australia, even if it was possible, wouldn’t even prevent any attacks from Jihadists. But since we do have Muslims here we need the moderate Muslims to work to prevent Jihadists doing bad things.

    Even given all that, you are more likely to die from falling off your chair than from a terrorist attack. Are you calling for the banning of Western legged chairs and replacing them with Japanese-style cushions? Why not? It is because you’ve let irrational fear blow it completely out of proportion.

    One last thing. Calling for hate against Muslims is easily the best way to ensure that there will be an attack in the future. You isolate young Muslim men who then are more easily cultivated by extremists who capitalise upon their anger.

    For crying out loud, jimhaz. Wake up!

  149. nurses1968

    Miriam English
    I have come to the conclusion housing prices are being driven up simply because young couples and first home buyers are setting their goals too high
    I went to auctions with the bosses daughter on the weekend
    A 3 br brick veneer ex Dept of housing, 3 br, 1.b.1 t. garage went for $390,000 and there were a dozen people, mainly investers I was informed.
    The next one, in a select suburb, 2 storey 4br, 2b, 2t. pool, $725,000 and there were about 100 there,mainly young families.
    Seems status is what gen X, y or whatever generation they are, is what they are shopping for

  150. jimhaz

    Bla bla bla
    [The immigrants have zero effect on house prices]

    What a total load of bollocks. Of course they have an effect – particularly when we import people who already have wealth. It means more people will demand the better locations, thus drive prices up there which has a flow on effect on all prices.

    The tax side is certainly important – but not as important as the above.

    [As for the other fear-inspired dribble about muslims, read what has been repeated over and over and over again… it just doesn’t seem to get through your head]

    Well clearly you people are not saying enough that is rational for me to change my mind. That being the case your side is never going to be able to compete with Hanson.

    I personally don’t physically fear muslims (much less than drunk or drugged up bogans of any nationality), here at present in Australia, particularly when my home suburb has a very low percentage. Many aged people do however, such as an aunty who did not want to travel overseas as a result. My fears relate to how they will negatively change Australia’s declining psyche.

  151. Miriam English

    nurses1968, there is something in what you say.

  152. Miriam English

    jimhaz, Australia’s declining “psyche” and reputation will mostly be sunk by the racists and bigots, not the vanishingly tiny percentage of Muslims here.

  153. jimhaz

    [Eliminating Muslims from Australia, even if it was possible, wouldn’t even prevent any attacks from Jihadists]

    Once people are here then they are included in my “Australian” group. Severely limiting future muslim immigration shouldn’t affect them much. If they had plans to bring more family members here – bad luck, they’ll get over it.

    Muslims currently cost a lot more than the average Australian in terms of intelligence gathering, without which there would certainly have been a lot more attacks. We can only do this because the number of newish Muslim migrants from troubled countries is not high.

    [One last thing. Calling for hate against Muslims is easily the best way to ensure that there will be an attack in the future. You isolate young Muslim men who then are more easily cultivated by extremists who capitalise upon their anger]

    On this one I’m not sure. I think it may even out more than we suspect. There would be those never drawn into it for fear of being ostracised, those who would just prefer to get along with their good Australian lives, and there would be those drawn to it for pay back revenge. With small numbers we can monitor those drawn into it.

    Gradually those, with lower immigration more will modernise and terrorism will decrease.

    I’m not calling for attacks – other than a policy of no burgas in public places, which would be sen as an attack. My argument is to limit future immigration, preferably as unspoken policy. The LNP might even being doing this now.

  154. nurses1968

    There is something in what you say but with Chinese investors.
    The boss sold 7 units off the plan for between 5%-7% above market price to all Chinese buyers in a project in QLD.
    All sold well before completion

  155. jimhaz

    [jimhaz, Australia’s declining “psyche” and reputation will mostly be sunk by the racists and bigots, not the vanishingly tiny percentage of Muslims here]

    Well, globalisation, unchecked capitalism, modern technology and excessive immigration are together ripping it to shreds (unless one is well off). Immigration from 1st world countries (from which practically all muslims come) is making matters worse – you’ll find many of the businesses that treat staff the most appallingly are run by people from much areas.

  156. Miriam English

    jimhaz, fair enough. I didn’t realise you were only calling for lessening immigration numbers. I thought you were attacking the ones already here. My mistake. I apologise for my frustrated reply. I still disagree with you, but more gently. 🙂

  157. jimhaz

    [There is something in what you say but with Chinese investors.
    The boss sold 7 units off the plan for between 5%-7% above market price to all Chinese buyers in a project in QLD.]

    They are looking for capital gain because they know it is low risk while-ever Oz has a large immigration intake. Asians don’t mind living in units that much.

    Many of those investors are using dirty money – it might be legal but you can be assured it was obtained by mistreating others.

  158. nurses1968

    “Many of those investors are using dirty money”
    looking back over the records they were Chinese families buying them for their spoilt kids to live in while they studied here

  159. jimhaz

    My rural living brother is a Hanson supporter. When I said to him that Hanson’s policies were too punitive on Muslims already here, he actually agreed and he said something like “yeah, they’re (PHON) doing something about that”. He is not political so I don’t know where that came from.

    He also agreed that many white Australians are not particularly good employees for low skill physical labour. We are getting too slack.
    Even if I got my way and immigration was savagely reduced, at the back of my mind there is always a concern that “affluence” is going to be a problem we might have trouble rising above. I’m assuming natural demand and supply will gradually up the pay of the jobs mostly only migrants will do – but we could still have a problem there.

  160. Sir ScotchMistery


    I rarely resort to ad hominem, since most recipients wouldn’t understand it, as primarily they are RWNJ’s putting up their version/s of “alternative facts”. Like you just did.

    Muslims currently cost a lot more than the average Australian in terms of intelligence gathering, without which there would certainly have been a lot more attacks. We can only do this because the number of newish Muslim migrants from troubled countries is not high.

    Can you please put up one single example of “surveillance/intelligence IN AUSTRALIA, which has stopped an attack? Just one mind you dear. Not 2 or 3. Just one.

    Lindt Cafe nut job was known about by the “intelligence” community for 3 years. Didn’t stop him. Were they surveilling him? Who knows?

    The whole of your post/s on this subject are indicative of a mind on the edge of unraveling.

    Pop down to your mates house on the harbour and make him a nice cup of tea. That way at least you will have found in some small way, a way to be useful to someone, because you are completely useless here.

    @RGS – we don’t really need xtians here mate. We tend to think for ourselves.

  161. DJT

    ME – please refer to the post of Robert G Shaw above – says it better than I could. Just a couple of points – Muslims are not a “race” – to question the validity and the objectives of a religion does not equate to ‘hate’.

  162. Robert G. Shaw

    Scotch, I’m not a Christian.
    I’m using the example of Christianity to punch a hole in the argument of those who persist in
    pushing the infantile line – “Christianity is really really really bad too. The same as Islam, you know?”

  163. Robert G. Shaw

    Thanks you DJT.
    You are of course correct – critique has no logical connection to ‘hate’.
    Unfortunately some here find that a difficult concept.

  164. jimhaz

    [Can you please put up one single example of “surveillance/intelligence IN AUSTRALIA, which has stopped an attack? Just one mind you dear. Not 2 or 3. Just one.]

    I suppose there are some in this article, which I’ve not read. Don’t need to as I have heard of enough arrests. Now I know there have been far, far more arrests than charges, but that doesn’t make all of those not charged into pure citizens. Without being spotted by intelligence agencies some of them would have be far freer to program down the path of terrorism.

    [Lindt Cafe nut job was known about by the “intelligence” community for 3 years. Didn’t stop him. Were they surveilling him? Who knows?]
    Surveillance just increases the likelihood of detection, but there is no chance of stopping all wrong doings. It is a bit like the old Y2K campaign being a review of software – without it disasters could have happened.

    [The whole of your post/s on this subject are indicative of a mind on the edge of unravelling]

    Umm, I’ve never found you to be overly perceptive, so I’ll just ignore that.

    [Pop down to your mates house on the harbour and make him a nice cup of tea. That way at least you will have found in some small way, a way to be useful to someone, because you are completely useless here]

    You’re the sort of old gay goose that makes Ross Cameron’s comments quite pertinent. Because hold an opposing view you throw out the entirety of my arguments and do not open your mind to them at all. You’re treating me like a Hanson supporter treats a muslim.

    [@RGS – we don’t really need xtians here mate. We tend to think for ourselves]

    I’m just applying the same sentiment to muslims, but for some reason that’s out of bounds.

  165. Kaye Lee

    I would suggest that you cannot make such sweeping statements about Islam. It is practised differently in different cultures.

    “liberty, equality, freedom, justice.” are also different in different countries. Education and poverty also play a part.

    My beef, as I continue to point out, is that we should make policies here that reflect the situation in Australia, not in response to what is happening in other countries. Australian Muslims are being unfairly targeted for the crimes, or even way of life, of people in other countries.

  166. LOVO

    “The management of kaos” here is just riveting…… ?
    One wonders ‘are we being played’?.. and are ‘they’ winning?

  167. DJT

    KL – Are you aware of the attacks and killings in the name of Islam that have taken place in Australia? Are you aware of the terrorist actions that have been stopped by the AFP? Are you aware of the involvement of certain mosques in terrorist actions? Are you aware of the hate preaching of Hizb ut Tahrir in Australia.? Australian authorities are very much aware of Islamic activities in this county. To pretend there is not a problem here is to have your head in the sand.

  168. Terry2


    I have been trying to find out the audience numbers for The Outsiders but surprisingly difficult to track – are they ashamed ? – the pilot before Christmas only got 21,000.

    Even if it was ten times that, it would still be well below half of the Insiders audience at 529,000

  169. Terry2


    Why don’t you come to the table with some facts !

    Oh, and don’t include the backpacker hostel murders in Qld last year – as Trump did.

    Just the facts, please.

  170. Kaye Lee


    Are you aware that the day after the Lindt cafe a woman in Cairns killed eight children aged between 18 months and 14 years?

    Are you aware that Curtis Cheng’s family have very specifically objected to his death being used as part of the Muslim-bashing and anti-immigration campaign. They recognised it was an isolated troubled kid fired up by cowards who have been prosecuted.

    Are you aware that the intelligence agencies and police have said the Australian Muslim community is instrumental in keeping us safe and it has been they who have alerted the police to possible danger?

    Hizb ut-Tahrir has about 300 members in Australia. No I am not aware of mosques involved in terrorist activities. Could you provide proof please?

    “Australian authorities are very much aware of Islamic activities in this county.”

    Absolute crap.. They are watching for criminal activity, not “Islamic activities.”

    “To pretend there is not a problem here is to have your head in the sand.”

    To pretend it in any way compares to the problem of domestic violence or pedophiles in the Catholic church is to have your head in the sand.

  171. Jennifer Meyer-Smith

    Ella Miller @ 12.10pm

    even stateless people have human rights. They are humans first and foremost.


    MT @ 12.21pm,

    fine. So do you agree we should call non-religious people from Muslim countries, Arabs?

  172. Kate Ahearne

    Jennifer, I didn’t really understand what you meant by this most recent remark. Might need a bit more explanation.

  173. Kate Ahearne

    I’m wondering whether there are some things we can all agree on, so I’ve started a list of things we might be able to agree that we don’t want in Australia – in no particular order.

    • Child marriage
    • Female genital mutilation
    • Polygamy
    • Terrorist attacks
    • Unaffordable housing
    • Homelessness
    • Significant rates of unemployment
    • Lies from our politicians
    • Lies from our media

    And some things we do want.

    • Peace
    • A harmonious society
    • Full employment
    • A reversal of climate change
    • A sustainable energy future
    • Honest, transparent government
    • Support for our most vulnerable citizens
    • Honesty and decency from our media
    • Universal health care

    I’ve just dashed this off. Hoping we can add to it. Hoping we won’t need to subtract anything.

  174. Kaye Lee

    The top four on your list are illegal in Australia already. The at-risk community is dealing with FGM (a cultural hangover for some) through education from victims and health professionals.

    FGM is found mostly in what Gerry Mackie called an “intriguingly contiguous” zone in Africa – east to west from Somalia to Senegal, and north to south from Egypt to Tanzania. As of 2013, 27.2 million women had undergone FGM in Egypt, 23.8 million in Ethiopia, and 19.9 million in Nigeria. Egypt is heavily Muslim, Ethiopia is majority Christian, and Nigeria is roughly evenly divided.

  175. Kate Ahearne

    Thanks, Kaye. Yes, those top four items are illegal in our country. The vast majority of Australians probably agree that those things ought to be illegal. Personally, I do hope we can leave it to the law (and education as you suggest) to deal with these illegalities. I’m just looking for where there might be areas of agreement that we could use to build a dialogue.

  176. Kate Ahearne

    And, as an aside, Female Genital Mutilation is common in Christian communities in those zones.

  177. Kate Ahearne

    So, Kaye, what do you think about the other items on the two lists? Anything that you would add? Anything that you would subtract?

  178. LOVO

    Bill of Rights
    A Treaty and Constutional Recognition
    Taxation Royal Commission (headed by Bill Mitchell..of course )
    Universal Dental health Care
    The real NBN
    More funding for LandCare
    Recognition of Broken Hill as Australia’s first Heritage City…………oh wait 😉

  179. Matters Not

    Perhaps we ought to be aware that FGM is practised in approximately in 27 African countries. Perhaps we should also be aware that in reference to FGM:

    in Sudan the prevalence is highest among Muslim women … In Kenya, by contrast, prevalence is highest among Catholics and Protestants compared with other religious groups

    Got that, FGM in Kenya the prevalence is highest among Catholics and Protestants .

    So FGM is a cultural practice rather than a religious practice? Any takers? Or as the link will assert: there is no unequivocal link between religion and prevalence with respect to FGM.

  180. Kaye Lee

    And a plea for tolerance

    What really pisses me off is that we could be making significant progress on all these things if politicians weren’t so interested in finding differences to exploit for their own political gain.

  181. Jennifer Meyer-Smith

    Hear, hear KL.



    human rights are human rights regardless of whether they are under attack by culture or religion or otherwise.

  182. Kaye Lee

    I will stress again that Australia is different to many countries in that we have a well-organised resettlement network to support people when they first arrive and to help them heal and adjust to a new place – at least that’s what we used to do.

    Both my parents taught primary school at Villawood and my dad taught English to adult migrants at night. I taught at Birrong near Bankstown. I went to school in the western suburbs of Sydney. I just don’t understand why people are so scared. Is it a lack of personal experience? Do they just listen to Pickering and Hanson?

    I will also stress again that our economic woes are due to government legislation rather than migrants. Wealthy people everywhere will exploit lack of government regulation.

  183. Matters Not

    don’t understand why people are so scared.

    Yes FEAR and the exploitation of same is what it’s all about.

    As for me, I am not in the business of defending Islam or indeed any religion. I think they are all a load of crap but I do get annoyed that people have no understanding of Islam and yet swallow so many untruths about same.

    Strawmen are created, then demonised, and the average punter buys the crap.

  184. Sir ScotchMistery

    @Kate Ahearne

    What about we put your excellent list in the order they have some chance of happening/being made possible by dummies who see terrorists around every corner like dear old Jimhaz.:

    • Unaffordable housing (already achieved)
    • Homelessness (already achieved)
    • Significant rates of unemployment (already achieved)
    • Lies from our politicians (already achieved)
    • Lies from our media (already achieved)

    And then

    • Child marriage (Rare but it happens occasionally)
    • Female genital mutilation (Kids are sent to Africa to have it done as I understand the situation).
    • Polygamy (We have mormons already)
    • Terrorist attacks (3 so far actual-several reported as avoided but no proof available of the actual situation – it’s just what we are told).

    And some things we can dream about since they won’t be realised until we have an honest media since it is the Murdochs who are screwing us, not Muslim extremists…

    • An honest media (Not in my lifetime)
    • A harmonious society (A good dream)
    • Affordable housing (Ask the Murdochs)
    • Full employment (Ask the shareholders)
    • Less off-shoring of entry level jobs (Ask the shareholders)
    • A reversal of climate change (Not in our lifetimes- too many oil “magnates”)
    • A sustainable energy future (Not while Joe Hockey feels wind farms are unattractive)
    • Honest, transparent government (In my dreams)
    • Honest, transparent government (In your dreams)
    • Support for our most vulnerable citizens (Ask the Murdochs)
    • Honesty and decency from our media (Ask the Murdochs)
    • Universal health care (Ask Medicare)

    Interestingly, the possibility of being killed by or as a result of a terrorist act in Australia – 1 in 12.5 Million.
    Hit by lightening – 1 in 6.25 Million
    Killed in a car crash – 49 in 1 Million
    Hit by a train 1 in 1 Million
    Run over by a bulldozer (Not great)
    Squashed by an elephant (Even less)

    Shot by a cop – 14 in 25 Million..

    So why are we afraid? Why is vigilance always needed? Who should we be afraid of?

  185. Kate Ahearne

    Gosh, this has gotten really messy really quickly. I’m taking it that Kaye agrees to the first 4 things on my list of things we all agree that we don’t want here. I’m not sure about Matters Not. Reading between the lines, I’m guessing that she agrees that we don’t want Femaie Genital Mutilation in this country, although she hasn”t actually said so. Not sure about LOVO either. Does he really mean that bit about Broken Hill? I’m assuming that he’s having one of his little jokes about BH. He’ll let us knowi if he’s serious. Anyhow, this is how the lists look now,
    • Child marriage 1
    • Female genital mutilation 2
    • Polygamy 1
    • Terrorist attacks 1
    • Unaffordable housing
    • Homelessness
    • Significant rates of unemployment
    • Lies from our politicians
    • Lies from our media
    And some things we do want.
    • Peace
    • A harmonious society
    • Full employment
    • A reversal of climate change
    • A sustainable energy future
    • Honest, transparent government
    • Support for our most vulnerable citizens
    • Honesty and decency from our media
    • Universal health care
    • Bill of Rights 1
    • A Treaty and Constutional Recognition 1
    • Taxation Royal Commission (headed by Bill Mitchell..of course ) 1
    • Universal Dental health Care 1
    • The real NBN 1
    • More funding for LandCare 1

  186. Deanna Jones

    Some of the quotes from those speakers, freakin’ hell, I thought I knew how bad these people were.

    That old chestnut about feminists in western countries not doing more to help women in ‘other’ countries has been used by conservative men for at least thirty years; it’s a classic silencing strategy and it means nothing, it serves only to obfuscate, that’s the point of it. Women in all countries are fighting their battles and it really stinks of deeply ingrained racism that white men resort to this ‘argument’.

    I know lots of Muslim women. Some wear the headgear, some don’t. For some it’s about their religion, they way xtian women might wear a crucifix. For others it’s a cultural traditional dress. Nobody seems to find it a hardship. One of my Muslim friends recently went on a cruise with two non Muslim women. The Facebook pics are like any other person’s holiday pics. Some of you need to get out more.

    Robert is trying to say that Christianity is nowhere near as awful as Islam. Freakin hell. The several centuries of witch burnings were presided over by Christian churches. Some of us are very aware of this period of gendercide.

  187. Kate Ahearne

    Thanks, Sir. Let’s do the ordering thing a bit later on. We’re getting a bit ahead of ourselves. I’m doubtful about adding your votes to anything, because I’d really just be guessing big-time. Why don’t we just tick off on those things we can agree on. After that, we can do all that other stuff.

  188. Kaye Lee

    • Child marriage (Rare but it happens occasionally)
    • Female genital mutilation (Kids are sent to Africa to have it done as I understand the situation).

    Any case of child marriage in Australia will see the adult participants prosecuted and it would be far rarer than sexual abuse by Catholic clergy.

    Yes, I have heard of similar cases of people being sent back to Africa…and then I have also read about the girls, victims, who have come here and been enabled to help campaign against this practice.

    If you want to change cultural practices, help them. Don’t block their access to education and a better life. They don’t want us to suffer what they have. They just want to be safe like us. And they often then want to help others be safe. Do we want to stop human rights abuses against all, or just build a wall and abrogate all responsibility to help?

  189. Kate Ahearne

    Sir, I’m adding this one from your list to my list: ‘Less off-shoring of entry level jobs.’

  190. Sir Scotchmistery

    @silkworm – Pickering outed himself as someone who is no longer relevant.

    Well known for his capacity to work with dicks, little has changed except we now listen to the dicks, rather than attach importance to his depiction of them after, one is forced to say, much sampling, testing and perhaps finally, tasting.

    Abbott has the same problem. Psychologically it is lost importance syndrome.

  191. Matters Not

    Some of you need to get out more.

    Perhaps. But it’s a bit of a risk. Or maybe, one not worth taking? And at so many levels. Think of the downside.

  192. Jennifer Meyer-Smith

    Seems to me that most people on this site, if not all, share the same values but feel obliged to put up defensive arguments pointed at individuals in order to make their own points, to put the other on edge, and to put others on notice not to have an easy go at them.

    if people are truly interested in contributing to psyche challenges, it would be well to make your points without offensive challenges against obvious allies.

  193. Kaye Lee

    Education has always been, and will always be, very important to me. I remember having an argument with my mother when the Taliban were at the height of their power in Afghanistan, girls weren’t allowed to go to school, war is exploding all around, and refugees were heading our way. Mum said we shouldn’t be taking these people. I said to her, imagine if we were Afghani – wouldn’t you do anything to get your daughter out?

  194. Sir Scotchmistery

    @KL I suspect the use of catholic clergy to delineate a “rare” occurrence needs rethinking. Over 7% of the entire group were/are abusers. It appears to have never been rare. Merely not reported.

    @Jennifer I agree but I apologised for the ad hominem before launching on that self satisfied liberal twerp.

  195. Jennifer Meyer-Smith

    Actually Scotch,

    I wasn’t necessarily referring to you on this occasion coz I noticed your concession.

    This discussion like just about all the others just become reduced to one on one or two on one tit for tat bullshit instead of some collaborative resolutions that could be the products of our discussions which could then be presented to the so-called powers-that-be.

  196. Sir Scotchmistery

    But aren’t we the “powers that be”?

  197. Jennifer Meyer-Smith

    You wish Scotch and I wish too.

    I’m talking about getting our collaborative, progressive heads together, so that we can present a united set of expectations and policy ideas to The ALLiance made up of forward thinking Labor, Greens and other Progressive national leaders, who we elect and expect to represent our best Australian interests.

  198. Kaye Lee

    Sorry to interrupt an important discussion but they just said Piers Ackerman would be on Q&A next week. FFS if we want to talk about banning hateful idiots I thought the ABC had already made that call. The sooner the ABC is shed of Michelle Guthrie the better off all Australians will be. Her imposing her Murdoch agenda on OUR national broadcaster that WE pay for is making me REALLY angry.

  199. Jennifer Meyer-Smith

    What is the opposite to a fan club? When we decide what that is, count me in as No 1 member of the anti-Michelle Guthrie variety.

  200. Matters Not

    KL, I am watching Q&A (from QLD). An hour behind. No more surprises please.

    Particularly of the outrageous variety.

    Lambie is just a Pauline with different orientations and values. Certainly it’s a strange world we live in.

  201. helvityni

    Tonight Lambie, next week Akerman, to be followed by Hanson, Bernardi, Christensen…

    Yet another ABC show not worth watching anymore…sigh.

  202. LOVO

    One wonders which bits of the ABC Rupes will put in the stable and which bits he’ll break up…the service bits (fire,flood warnings etc)will just languish until they choke to death or are turned into a paid for app. …i.e. user pays or you burn to death.
    I imagine, like all of Rupes ’employees’, Michelle only gives a stuff about Michelle… 🙄

  203. Kaye Lee

    Hmmmmm…I am having an interesting experience..

    I recently wrote an article

    The death of Malcolm’s idealism, if any such thing ever truly existed

    When I tried to access the link shown in the article to Malcolm’s speech “Republican virtues: Truth, leadership and responsibility”. I got this message

    Access has been blocked.
    Your IP [***.**.***.***] has been identified as spam

    Protected by: AVH First Defense Against Spam

    Sorry cyber police, it is still easily available via google. If their idea of defence is blocking me from something I can see if I google then it doesn’t auger well for cyber security.

  204. Kaye Lee

    The plot thickens.

    Google provides the following link.

    “My speech at the 2012 George Winterton… – Malcolm Turnbull …”

    Except if you try to click on the link on Mal’s facebook page link to article you get (or maybe just I get)

    “Page Not Found

    There has never been a more exciting time to be on my website but you appear to have innovated the wrong URL.

    Be agile, click here to return to my homepage.”

    Very witty Malcolm. Glad you are having fun. But the truth is still out there 😉

  205. LOVO

    Don’t worry about it Kaye….just blame Roswell if/when you hear the knock on the door.. 😆
    …..who’ll blame Michael
    . ..who’ll blame Bacchus
    . …who’ll blame
    ……oh shite I’m in strife. ?
    ..or it maybe just a glitch mm.

  206. Kaye Lee

    LOVO, if I type ‘bananas’ the white van has pulled up outside. Send help.

    Whilst they quoted my IP number, if it can be explained as a glitch, I will reset my paranoia meter.

  207. Miriam English

    Kaye, I’m having the same problems.

    Joke’s on smarmy Mal. His page is still available for all time on at

    The facebook link is broken for me too. (So much for his much vaunted innovation and agility). It seems it’s been broken for a year or more, looking at, but I found it in the version stored in 2012:

    Dog bless

  208. LOVO

    …..and to think he invented the interwebby thingymawhatsit. 🙄
    They tried the same thing with the Csiro HIP papers…disappeared them….but not for long..thank Cod, the great big fish 8n the sky

  209. Kaye Lee

    How very interesting Miriam. It seems, as the government directs its attack on Bill Shorten as being a man who says one thing and does another, they are trying to erase the evidence of MT’s megacapitulations. For those of us with memories longer than goldfdishes, that is a very gutsy political strategy to adopt which will involve a lot of internet editing and blocking of insignificant people like me.

    And as Julie Bishop tries to tell me to fear a Labor-Green Coalition, we are watching a Liberal/James Ashby’s One Nation Coalition developing apace. Which scares you more?

  210. Robert G. Shaw

    Deanna Jones @ 8.54pm

    Freakin hell?
    Freakin hell indeed!

    When you see a Methodist toss acid in the face of his daughter for allegedly having a boyfriend, let me know.
    When you see a Presbyterian push a gay man off a high building, let me know.
    When you see an Anglican father stone his daughter to death for alleged adultery, let me know.
    When you see a Catholic whip his daughter publicly for leaving her home unescorted, let me know.
    When you see a Protestant girl lashed to death after being raped by her cousin, let me know.
    When you see an Orthodox brother butcher his sister for holding hands with a man, let me know.
    When you see a Lutheran offer his prepubescent daughter for marriage, let me know.
    When you see an Episcopalian beat his wife to death for wanting a divorce, let me know.

    When you see any one of these acts occur within the absolute sanction of the prevailing law, you let me know.
    Did you hear me Deanna – “within the sanction of law”.

    Till then go spout that equivalence nonsense elsewhere.
    No one is listening, least of all the teenage acid victim with no face.
    You could however try and convince her by recounting stories of 16 century witch burnings and other examples of gendercide.
    See how that goes.

    And to anyone else here, I can see a few, who insist on this contemptible equivalence, don’t.
    Just don’t.
    It’s perhaps the single most insulting thing you could offer on the plight of all those who suffer at the barbaric hands of a faith still bound by some lunatic Medieval law, and inextricably bound culture, and custom.


    And again, a wry smile spread across my face last night as I watched Q&A.
    I saw Yassmin Abdel-Magied declare, with a straight face, this prized chestnut,
    “Islam to me is the most feminist religion”.

    This is the bizarre Alice in Wonderland world we’ve arrived at: where once unthinkable bedfellows – me and Lambie – stare agog at the blatant idiocy and odious rationalising of such statements.
    Abdel-Magied’s insult to those suffering, in their millions, tens of millions, must be unbearable.
    Shame on her.

  211. Kate Ahearne

    Well, I had to go to bed early last night. but I see this morning that my little experiment into finding out what we could agree on was a roaring fizzer. We can’t seem to agree on anything, and/or we’re not interested in finding out. It seems that we’d rather proselytise than find common ground. Still, that in itself is useful to know.

  212. Kaye Lee


    When you see any of those things happen in Australia, let me know.

    The “equivalence nonsense ” that I see being spouted is that all Muslims are the same.

    “When you see any one of these acts occur within the absolute sanction of the prevailing law, you let me know.”

    What a crock of shit. In case you were unaware, all of those things are very much illegal in Australia and Sharia law states that you must live by the laws of the country. Yassmin Abdel-Magied doesn’t look too downtrodden to me.

    Stop importing your hatred.

  213. helvityni

    How many lives have Catholic priests , men of Christian God, ruined, driven teenagers to suicide, drugs / alcohol…

  214. Harquebus

    How many children, brainwashed since they could listen, get to decide their religion which, in the case of Islam, dictates how one must live every aspect of their lives? That is not freedom.
    All religions are about control and is why they meld and integrate so well with politics.

  215. Johno

    I am agreeing with Kaye, Deanna and Helvityni on this one. The institutionalised sexual and emotional abuse in the church has been and still is widely prevalent. And that’s just one example.

  216. Kaye Lee

    For some reason, those who accuse others of having their head in the sand refuse to address the actual real problems we have in Australia – domestic violence and a Catholic clergy that enabled pedophilia for decades.

  217. Robert G. Shaw

    To Kaye, when you comprehend the context of my post in SPECIFIC relation to Deanna’s statement (and the clear and numerous other posts on this SPECIFIC question) then perhaps I might take what you say with a modicum of seriousness.
    As it is now all you’ve demonstrated is your lack of comprehension.

    To helvityni, I repeat my response to Kaye, and add this: in this country, under these laws, there is a redress for crimes. They may be late in coming, but there is ultimately some form of justice that says, loud and clear, this is against our law.
    In most countries operating under Muslim/Islamic law that redress is absent.

    To Johnno, if you want to draw up a catalogue of “abuses” of any description, I believe you’ll find that Western Christian law and society, despite its myriad horrors, is STILL the more receptive to a human beings notions of freedom, liberty, and equality.

  218. Miriam English

    Robert Shaw is trolling to get response. I’m not sure even he believes the crap he spouts.

  219. Roswell

    Harquebus, your last sentence resonates with me. You hit the bullseye with that one.

  220. Roswell

    Miriam, he won’t be getting a response from me.

  221. Kaye Lee

    When you comprehend the context of my article Robert, you will understand it is about Australia, not “countries operating under Muslim/Islamic law.”

    Gawd you’re pretentious.

  222. Sir ScotchMistery

    @ KA – I also went to bed rather than throw a newly steel heeled Windsor Smith at the TV.

    Lambie just needs a good root. Even she has said that. “He needs a thick wallet and a big package”. Quote.

    The positions comparing various sects of Islam’s practices takes a bit of getting around.

    There is one country where young gay men are regularly executed. By the state that is, not by the locals. Iran.

    There is ONE sect of Islam (if they can be called a sect) and that is ISIS who throw gay people off buildings. Centred on the vacuum caused by USA invasion of Iraq. Extends into Syria.

    There is one country which at a state level chops off folks heads – our major trading partner Saudi Arabia.

    There are over a billion Muslims.

    So if we were to equate xtianity and their vile practices, with Islam and theirs, 7% of the “preachers” of the sect we call catholicism, alone, are child abusers. Based on over a billion Muslims, the percentage who indulge in vile practices (head chopping, hanging of kids, throwing of folks off buildings is nowhere near 7%. It would be a very small portion of 1%, though I haven’t put any time into the maths.

    Anyone who says xtianity is good and Islam is bad is like a dog walker with his animal off-leash. Not worth exchanging views with, since the time trying to evince some sort of change takes away whatever time you spend doing it from your life-line. It’s not worth the effort.

    In terms of living in fear – get over it.

  223. Miriam English

    In Australia the worst excesses of religion are controlled by our secular laws. In other countries religions routinely hurt and oppress the people. In Sri Lanka the Buddhists attack and murder Muslims. In India Hindu fanatics have been known to murder Christians and Muslims. In some Muslim countries apostates are murdered and women heavily oppressed. In some Christian countries today women are also heavily oppressed and various members of society are routinely murdered (such as LGBT people, people accused of being witches, etc).

    Religions are mostly horrible nonsense (except Jainism, which is nice nonsense). Where countries have enlightened societies it is no thanks to religion. It is all about the secular laws that stop religion going crazy-axe-murderer on its people.

  224. Kate Ahearne

    Sir, It’s one thing for Lambie to say she needs ‘a good root’ and quite another for you to say it.

    You seem to be confusing me with someone else. And by the way, it’s the people who are fleeing the regimes you mention who are applying to us for refuge.

  225. DJT

    Since dipping my toe into this site I notice there is a thread of defence that accuses those with a contrary view to be either trolling, fearful or spreading hate. One poster even suggested because there were right wing invitees coming onto Q & A it might be another ABC show not worth watching – hello. Q & A , that bastion of left wing group think adequately supported by an appropriate moderator and audience which most of us stopped wasting our time on years ago.

  226. Sir ScotchMistery

    @KA – just positing that if all else fails, she has a step-back position, which she placed in front of us some years ago.

    Maybe I mis-spoke in terms of what I wrote. I am fully cognisant of where the refugees come/came from. Doesn’t change the numbers, one iota. The refugees turn up here after dreadful physical and mental tests, all passed, only to find we treat them as criminals.

    In terms of mistaking you for someone else, no, I was beginning a reflection on going to bed early. The comments were related to your decision, and shortly thereafter, mine, to go to bed rather than get angry. Lambie was on Q&A is all. I have been over most versions of that “show” for a couple of years, though I do occasionally watch bits of it, and occasionally tweet at them.

    Apologies if something I said seemed to reflect on you. It wasn’t meant to.

  227. silkworm

    Miriam, that’s one of the best descriptions of the universal madness of religion I’ve seen.

    Catholics have committed far more and far worse atrocities in Australia than Muslims could ever hope to.

    PS. Lambie’s meltdown on Q&A last night was a sight to behold. I think she’s been chewing on the halal bacon.

  228. Kaye Lee

    I always find it interesting when people comment about shows they don’t watch. DJT, do you get your opinion of the ABC from that bastion of impartiality, the Murdoch press?

    The ABC has been, as Crikey put it, reviewed more times than Cats.

    A half-century of the government trying to undermine the ABC

  229. jimnhaz

    [Sharia law states that you must live by the laws of the country]

    Bullshit propaganda. There is an important caveat.

    “They must, therefore, comply with the laws of their country of residence without, at the same time, disobeying Islamic Law”

  230. Miriam English

    DJT, at times people here (as with people pretty-much everywhere) will react angrily or dismissively to people with views opposed to their own, however it doesn’t always happen that way, and I think you’ll find the rudest, most dismissive responses here are considerably more polite than opposing views on right-wing sites. Of course, that doesn’t excuse dismissive or rude responses, it merely puts them in perspective.

    One of the things I like about the people here is that many of them here will actually change their minds and even apologise to others, which I find refreshing after seeing how many right-wing sites conduct themselves.

    If you were referring to my comment about Robert Shaw being a troll, please notice that he espouses a broadly left-wing view, so I wasn’t calling him a troll for having an opposite political view. I consider him a troll because he appears to make deliberately inflammatory statements to get a rise out of people. That is what a troll does.

    As for Q&A, I can’t comment. I gave up watching TV some time back. I’m surprised that you comment on it, given that you seem to be saying you don’t watch it. I can’t remember who said that Q&A was becoming unwatchable due to the list of upcoming guests, I think perhaps they were referring to those future guests as being renowned bigots and liars, so making those episodes wincingly unwatchable.

  231. DJT

    KL – you have missed a crucial phrase “stopped watching” . That means we once watched until we formed and opinion and then ceased to watch. That may not mean we stopped watching 100%. It may mean we drop in from time to time to see if anything has changed. I was fortunate to drop in when Malcolm Roberts was giving a very sound assessment of the ‘scam’ to which the self assured Brian Cox responded by throwing a wad of doubtful graphs at him. The ditzy Lilly Scerna piled on with “Oh shut up Malcom”. Then it was the turn of the audience to applaud enthusiastically………..really.

  232. Kate Ahearne

    Sir, Apology accepted.

  233. DJT

    ME – it was helvityni who mentioned upcoming invitees would be Ackerman, Bernardi, Hanson and Christenson. Bigots and Liars or realists?

  234. Kate Ahearne

    DJT, You say, ‘I was fortunate to drop in when Malcolm Roberts was giving a very sound assessment of the ‘scam’ to which the self assured Brian Cox responded by throwing a wad of doubtful graphs at him.’ For goodness sake! Brian Cox is a world-renowned scientist. Where on earth did you get the idea that the information he produced was ‘doubtful’? By the way, what does DJT stand for? Dingbat Junkyard Troll? Or maybe Dillbrain Joke Tosser?

  235. Jaded

    DJT is a poster from pickering post. Under the name BKEngineering. A big supporter of Liberal and a know all about nothing.

  236. Kaye Lee

    Malcolm Roberts has been a serial pest for years. I have read his report and the debunking thereof. He asked for proof. The CSIRO took the time to provide the same but Roberts refused to accept it, immediately after the meeting stating there was no proof that humans are affecting climate change. That is just not true. Roberts was a coal miner. He formed his views years ago and has not let science change them in any way. You don’t get credit for having an opposing view when it is not based in fact. The consequences of not taking urgent action to address climate change are too great.

    “Ackerman, Bernardi, Hanson and Christenson. Bigots and Liars or realists?” How many quotes do you want me to provide to show it is the former.

    eg “We’re bringing in people from South Africa at the moment. There’s a huge amount coming into Australia, who have diseases; they’ve got AIDS,” Ms Hanson told AAP. “They are of no benefit to this country whatsoever; they’ll never be able to work.”

  237. Kate Ahearne

    Jaded, Thanks for that. It was pretty clear he was something like that.

  238. helvityni

    DJT, I found Lambie’s behaviour totally silly, irritating, and to my knowledge she is not a rightwinger. James Patterson is a Liberal Senator, I don’t agree with his views, but I have no problems with his behaviour.

    Silkworm, once bitten, twice shy… 🙂

  239. Kaye Lee


    It is not opposing views that we discourage – we just try to keep the conversation civil. People do get passionate at times but we don’t often have to intercede. Most people realise when they may have spoken intemperately.

    We also like facts so you can expect to be challenged to support your statements. That is what it is about.

  240. Kate Ahearne

    Red Leaf, Can’t help noticing that you ignore all the other thousands of Australian women who have been killed by their partners/husbands for exactly the same reason – they didn’t obey The Man.

  241. Terry2

    Interesting to hear how some folk avoid or enjoy TV programs. Personally I enjoy Monday nights on ABC. Generally I find Australian Story, Four Corners and, my favourite, Media Watch, to be informative and frequently absorbing.

    Q&A have quite clearly tried to accommodate a broad spectrum of political tastes and whilst I could do without IPA or NEWS Ltd spruikers I have to accept that there are some out there who relish the views of Jaquie Lambie, James Paterson, George Brandis and Piers Akerman but there you go.

    The alternative – we surrendered our Pay TV subscription some time ago as being a waste of money – that seems to have attracted my fellow Australians in increasing numbers are : MKR a scripted cooking show : I’m a Celebrity Get Me Out of Here (strangely we don’t seem to have any celebrities in Australia) and Married at First Sight which seems to be about getting a bit on the side with no commitment (I may be wrong ).

    Each of these presentations are regularly attracting well over a million viewers who may or may not be a demographic dominated by fourteen year old girls. Although I note that a boofhead dressing up as Paul Hogan in the 1970’s has not taken off but still rates around a million.

    We are a weird mob indeed !

  242. Kaye Lee

    And in each of those tragic cases people were prosecuted were they not? Unfortunately we will never be able to stop all people from breaking the law. Red leaf, very isolated incidents do not constitute a reason to punish all people who follow a certain faith.

    Domestic violence is a great concern but to pretend it is a Muslim issue is just wrong. Have you seen the movie Once were warriors?

  243. Kate Ahearne

    Red Leaf, That child marriage case came before the court. Australian law supersedes any religious law. Your reference to domestic violence is behind a paywall Guess you’re a Murdoch subscriber.

  244. DJT

    KA – didn’t take long for the personal abuse to start. It’s easier to write someone off rather than exchange different points of view, I guess. Jaded – good try but wrong – I am not BkE from Pickering. I do post on PP and a number of other blogs both Left and Right.

  245. helvityni

    Terry2, I enjoyed last night’s Four Corners.

  246. Miriam English

    Red Leaf, notice how they can’t get away with calling it a part of their faith here in Australia? They fall afoul of our secular laws. It’s the same with a Christian man who tries to excuse beating or killing his wife because she didn’t obey him as instructed by the Bible.

    As for having sex with children, yes, reprehensible. It’s a good thing the guy was clobbered by our secular laws. It’s a damn pity we’re having so much difficulty pinning down the weasels in the Catholic church who have sex with children — they can’t even point to their holy book as giving them license. Unfortunately, with so many religious nutters in our government, Christians are getting away with worse than Muslims, as you yourself have shown. Thank you.

  247. Kaye Lee

    I have been attempting to exchange views DJT but you don’t respond to points made. You seem eager to criticise but less willing to debate.

    The following is an interesting report.

    “The evidence presented in this report shows that Australian Muslims in general are young city dwellers who are optimistic about life in Australia. They are bringing up children, enrolling in higher education, and embracing the English language and an Australian identity. Unfortunately, though, there is still evidence of widespread discrimination against Muslims both face-to-face and through employment practices and the criminal justice system. Muslims are more likely to be unemployed, living in poverty or in prison. Despite their high levels of education, Muslims are less likely to work in the professions and less likely to be granted a job interview than the average Australian”

    ‘While they share a common religion, Australian Muslims are a culturally and linguistically diverse group. Around two-thirds were born overseas in countries such as Lebanon, Turkey, Afghanistan, Bosnia-Herzegovina, Pakistan, Indonesia, Iraq, Bangladesh, Iran, Fiji, Cyprus, Somalia, Egypt and Malaysia. Despite the stereotype that all Muslims are of Arab or Middle-Eastern background, less than 20% of Australian Muslims were born in Middle Eastern or Arab countries. A significant number come from Asia, Europe and Africa.

    According to a Pew Research Center (2015) projection, in 2050 Australia will no longer be a majority Christian country. The religious composition of its population of 29 million people is predicted to be 47% Christian, 40.4% unaffiliated, 4.9% Muslim, 3.1% Buddhist, 2.3% Hindu, 0.9% followers of folk religions, 0.5% Jewish and 1% other religions.

  248. DJT

    KA – there you go again – writing Red Leaf off as a Murdoch Subscriber. It may surprise you that many people form their own views by accessing a variety of sources. Your willingness to categorise someone so you don’t have to deal with their argument seems to be your hallmark – good luck with that.

  249. Kaye Lee

    Once again, you just criticise but don’t engage. KA was just pointing out that she cannot access the article. Do what you are asking of others and address the topic.

  250. Sir ScotchMistery

    @DJT since others suspect you are just a troll anyway, can you just FTR point out the personal abuse KA hurled at you please? I appear to have missed it among the requests for proof of the twaddle you are cutting and pasting from someone else.

  251. Robert G. Shaw

    Kaye, I’m not speaking to YOUR article; I’m speaking to Deanna’s comment SPECIFICALLY.
    You chose to insinuate your emotion and paltry comprehension skills into that response.

    I would have thought me prefacing my remarks with the customary notation,
    “Deanna Jones @ 8.54pm” would have made that crystal clear.

    Apparently not.

    Gawd you’re foolishly malevolent!


    Miriam, I believe it most sincerely.
    I am still to hear an argument to the contrary.
    The very best you’ve got is “he’s a troll”.


    I would like to kindly ask AIM to remove silkworm’s ridiculous slander.
    Silkworm, personal slander is not an argument. I know its the best you’ve got, but it’s still not argument.


    I notice no one, especially the woman here, pick up on Yassmin Abdel-Magied’s declaration, “Islam to me is the most feminist religion”.

    Yes, there are plenty here to comment on Lambie, but not one, NOT ONE, will go near that one.

    I wonder why.
    It’s got me beat.

  252. DJT

    KA – “Brian Cox is a world renowned scientist” Yes he is and a very good one. I watch his excellent shows about the Universe. Flannery is a scientist. Neither are Climate Scientists. In this area of climate discussion Flannerys utterances and predictions are bizarre . Cox refers to models, predictions and graphs, all of which have been refuted by experts in the field. Another red herring which you hang on Roberts – that “humans are not affecting climate change. ” Roberts, the famed 97% of climate scientists and 100% of the dreaded “deniers” all acknowledge that humans effect the climate. The contentious issue has always been the “degree” of their effect on climate” I note once again KL writes off Roberts as a “coal miner” and “serial pest.” It seems a bad habit on this blog to write off the person and not deal with the argument. Also KL, I may not respond in your timeframe as I am retired and never been so busy. This stuff is just a fairly non stimulating diversion.

  253. Harquebus

    Robert G. Shaw
    My ears pricked up on that Yassmin Abdel-Magied’s feminist religion statement as well. If we ever need an example of the damage that religious brainwashing can do, she is it.

    Brian Cox might be a well renowned scientist but, in my opinion, he is not a very good one. More of a showman.


  254. jimnhaz

    [Once were warriors?]

    That movie did not help me with racism against Islanders. I was living in Manly at the time and there was an islander family next door who always seemed to be having DV issues.

    [QandA watching]

    I only occasionally watch it – when the pollies are not on the show. Sometimes I’ll have look at the transcript.
    I got tired not just of the right but of the left….and I suppose weak or boring moderates like ALP ministers. Discussions almost never got to the depth needed for the issue.

  255. Kaye Lee

    I have heard many women speak about their reasons for wearing modest clothing and for some of them, they are saying judge me for who I am and what I do, not for my looks. Women in Western society are under enormous pressure to look pretty. Look at the billions spent on the beauty industry.

    Muslim majority countries “have produced” several female heads of state, prime ministers, and state secretaries

    During the early days of Islam in the 7th century CE, reforms in women’s rights affected marriage, divorce and inheritance. the general improvement of the status of women in Arab societies included prohibition of female infanticide and recognizing women’s full personhood. Under Islamic law, marriage was no longer viewed as a status but rather as a contract, in which the woman’s consent was imperative. “The dowry, previously regarded as a bride-price paid to the father, became a nuptial gift retained by the wife as part of her personal property. Women were given inheritance rights in a patriarchal society that had previously restricted inheritance to male relatives.”

    “At the time Islam began, the conditions of women were terrible – they had no right to own property, were supposed to be the property of the man, and if the man died everything went to his sons.” Muhammad, however, by “instituting rights of property ownership, inheritance, education and divorce, gave women certain basic safeguards.” Haddad and Esposito state that “Muhammad granted women rights and privileges in the sphere of family life, marriage, education, and economic endeavors, rights that help improve women’s status in society.”

  256. Kaye Lee

    “Cox refers to models, predictions and graphs, all of which have been refuted by experts in the field. ”

    Not one that isn’t being paid by the fossil fuel industry. Seriously – not one.

    “I note once again KL writes off Roberts as a “coal miner” and “serial pest.” It seems a bad habit on this blog to write off the person and not deal with the argument. ”

    You are new here DJT so would be unaware that I have researched Malcolm Robert’s writings at length and written about them on several occasions. I was looking at his work long before he joined One Nation. from 2013

    and then more recently but before his seat was assured

    Meet Malcolm Roberts, Pauline Hanson’s “expert” on climate change.

    Here is one of the many articles debunking Robert’s claims.

    I didn’t mean to sound bossy. Take your time in replying.

  257. Miriam English

    DJT, Brian Cox is more than a scientist, he is also a science communicator. It requires him to be knowledgeable in multiple fields. This is what makes him such an unusually good science communicator.

    Tim Flannery began by studying mammals and paleontology. He developed a background of studying the effect of climate change in the past and his interest in what was happening to the present climate grew out of that. He has been Professor of Climate Risk Concentration of Research Excellence at Macquarie University, and became the head of the Climate Change Council.

    Malcolm Roberts is a former coal miner and mining industry consultant, worked as the volunteer project manager for the Australia-based climate science denial organisation The Galileo Movement.

    Malcolm Roberts denies all science that indicates we have been altering the climate. This puts him at odds with virtually all climate scientists. He continually uses debunked data to try to support his claims, either unaware that it has been proven to be wrong or not caring, and attempts to promote insane conspiracy theories that the bankers (code for “Jews”) are behind it all.

  258. Sir ScotchMistery

    My question is why a lawn bowls player would even bother coming here. Most of us have views which we develop on our own or in concert, over time with others of a questioning position. He just seems to spout party lines.

    I just don’t get it and likely never will. Another who’ll be gone in 2 weeks I guess.

  259. Kaye Lee

    The Jewish bankers in cahoots with the UN have formed a cabal with climate scientists to dupe governments out of money and impose ….drum roll please….Agenda 21!!!!!! A NEW WORLD ORDER. The real issue here is that even talking about sustainability gets those who make their obscene wealth from deregulated capitalism very nervous so they employ the same propagandists who told us smoking is not harmful. Even after they have been exposed, the lie just keeps on keeping on perpetuated by scoundrels like Roberts who has the best experts available to advise him but thinks he knows better.

  260. Steve Laing -

    Harq – what is your definition of a good scientist, given you believe Brian Cox isn’t one? You do know that being filmed doing “real science” would be inordinately dull, and hence doesn’t really make good tv? On tv I do believe he puts his “presenter” hat on, and communicates in a manner appropriate to the targeted audience, which by and large are not particularly scientifically literate.

    Also, Yasmin Abdel-Magied, just by her very appearance and involvement in the show, revealed that the standard stereotypes of Muslim’s held by most white people are exactly that. Stereotypes. Looking back over my career, I’ve realised that over the years I have worked with (and employed) a number of Muslims over that time, and guess what, they were by and large just like everyone else. Sure, they never had a beer at the pub (well, some of them didn’t), and most of the women didn’t wear any kind of head covering. Did you not like her because she was outspoken? Or because she was clearly intelligent and opinionated? And unlike Ms Lambie, had the decency to apologise for her behaviour. I’m genuinely interested as to why you think she has been religiously brainwashed and in what way that was manifest, given apparently Muslim’s treat women as second class citizens.

    DJT – Roberts is not a scientist. He badly abuses scientific terminology so that he appears to sound plausible, but his work simply doesn’t cut it. Without proper peer review it is simply opinion. If you don’t think industrialisation has had a significant impact on the climate, you simply are refusing to look into it with an open mind. We are in a period of unprecedented species extinction, akin to a significant asteroid hitting the earth. But you still aren’t sure of the cause? If it isn’t man, could you, or Roberts suggest what it might be due to? Because that is how science works. It is not proven (and indeed probably never will be) that industrialisation with the associated readmission of underground carbon into the atmospheric carbon cycle, but it is by far and away the most likely hypothesis that we have. Or maybe its just God?

  261. jimnhaz

    @ DJT

    Flannery was an opportunist and an exaggerator – but Roberts is NOT a scientist. It does not matter if he has a degree in science or not – he does not use scientific method. His links to miners makes him someone one should have zero trust in their veracity.

    In your earlier post – I was thinking you were OK, not any more. Your thoughts spring mostly from emotions in much the same way as the Activist Egalitarian/Progressive Cosmopolitan’s here. You don’t want to believe in substantially human caused GW, so you do not.

    Those terms come from this SMH article:

    I’m a Disillusioned Pessimist.

  262. Kaye Lee

    BTW Robert, I watched the video and really enjoyed it. To me it showed the vast array of thinking in the Muslim community, particularly from Muslim women, who didn’t seem to me to have any trouble expressing their different views. Everyone had valid points and continuing education and debate is very healthy. It underlined my point that not all Muslims are the same.

  263. DJT

    ME Yes Cox is a very good science communicator in his field of expertise. In the field of climate science I would prefer to listen to Michaels, Carlin, Happer, Giaever, Crichton, Dyson, Curry, Lindzen, Pielke, Plimer, Christy, Lomborg, Ebell and Itoh who are all sceptical experts on the subject. After all the basic tenet of science is always scepticism. As for Flannery you have given an impressive rundown of his titles but failed to mention his predictions. If Flannery was to be believed it wouldn’t be raining and Perth would be in dire straights by now. I notice the propensity on this site to use the term “denier”. There is nothing that is proven to “deny”. There are just many questions to be answered and theorem to attract scepticism. Roberts “At odds with virtually all climate scientists” Suggest you update your sources. “Sir”? you’ve got to be kidding. Doesn’t warrant a response.

  264. Sir ScotchMistery

    @Steve Laing, recently I visited a very small town where I plan to curl up my toes, in Western Queensland.

    I went to try my plot in the cemetery out for size (it’s under a nice bottle tree), and lay down on a banana lounge to listen to the space. It was a very Zen moment for me.

    Any old how, I was rudely awoken by a burping noise from beneath the lounge and upon looking I found, to my great surprise a pair of echidnas whiling away their afternoon, and one had farted. Lord above the odour! Dreadful business.

    I have discovered, I believe, the cause of global warming. Echidna farts.

  265. Kaye Lee

    Lomberg????? An expert???? What is your criteria for expert?

    Plimer has been a director of numerous mining companies including Ivanhoe Australia, a subsidiary of Bob Friedland’s Ivanhoe Mines, CBH Resources, Kefi Minerals, Silver City Minerals, Ormil Energy Ltd, TNT Mines, Niuminco Group and Lakes Oil.

    Plimer was appointed to the boards of Roy Hill Holdings and Queensland Coal Investments by mining magnate and climate skeptic promoter Gina Rinehart on January 25, 2012.

    As non-executive Director and Deputy Chairman of Kefi Minerals, Plimer owns over 5.4 million shares (as of January, 2016) in the mining company.

    Ian Plimer is listed as a “Founding Member” of group named Climate Exit (Clexit) led by climate change denier Christopher Monckton. According to Clexit’s founding statement (PDF), “The world must abandon this suicidal Global Warming crusade. Man does not and cannot control the climate.”

    He is also listed as a member of Mrs Rinehart’s Australians for Northern Development and Economic Vision (ANDEV) lobby group, which has taken strong positions on corporate taxation and climate change initiatives.

    Here’s a whole page devoted to the scientific debunking of everything Lindzen has ever said

    Must I go on?

    Credibility of your sources is extremely important and you are listening to paid charletans.

  266. DJT

    jimnhz. I believe in MMGW. The subject is not as simple as you might wish. There are eminent climate scientists who believe in MMGW but question the following: 1) Modelling – the extent of MMGW predicted 2) Whether the MMGW is the prime cause of GW 3) Whether the warming is excessive 4) Whether warming is a problem or a positive for the planet. 5) The effect of MMGW on extreme weather events. To approach this subject on the basis of being an “alarmist” or a “denier” is not worthy of kindergarten mentality. The late Bob Carter wrote an excellent book (in conjunction with others) called “Taxing Air” which is just one subjective text. I am sure like everyone else you have scoured YTube for the opinion of all the experts. The only sin I admit to is that I am still taking in evidence.

  267. jimhaz


    This section paints a picture closer to the truth if you ask me.

    Personal law

    One of the major areas of scholarship and campaigning for Islamic feminists are aspects of sharia (Islamic law) known as Muslim personal law (MPL) or Muslim family law. There is dispute that the use of sharia law is oppressive because they are based mainly on “man-made misinterpretations of the sacred texts” and are not based in Islam.[58] Some of the thorny issues regarding the way in which MPL has thus far been formulated include polygyny, divorce, custody of children, maintenance and marital property. In addition, there are also more macro issues regarding the underlying assumptions of such legislation, for example, the assumption of the man as head of the household.[58]

    Muslim majority countries that have promulgated some form of MPL include Saudi Arabia, Afghanistan, Pakistan, Libya, Sudan, Senegal, Tunisia, Egypt, Indonesia, and Bangladesh. Muslim minority countries that already have incorporated MPL into their own law or are considering passing legislation on aspects of MPL include India, Israel, and South Africa.

    Islamic feminists have objected to the MPL legislation in many of these countries, arguing that these pieces of legislation discriminate against women. Some Islamic feminists have taken the attitude that a reformed MPL which is based on the Quran and sunnah, which includes substantial input from Muslim women, and which does not discriminate against women is possible. Such Islamic feminists have been working on developing women-friendly forms of MPL.

  268. Roswell

    DJT, you left Monckton off your list. An oversight, perhaps.

  269. Kaye Lee

    1) While there are uncertainties with climate models, they successfully reproduce the past and have made predictions that have been subsequently confirmed by observations.

    2) Empirical evidence that humans are causing global warming

    3) & 4) The consequences of climate change become increasingly bad after each additional degree of warming, with the consequences of 2°C being quite damaging and the consequences of 4°C being potentially catastrophic.

    5) The data and research aren’t conclusive as to whether climate change is increasing extreme weather damage costs. However, many types of extreme weather are becoming more intense and/or frequent, and disaster costs from extreme weather events are rising.

    And here are the lies that Bob Carter told debunked.

    You sound very much like you get your information from George Christensen.

  270. Kate Ahearne

    DJT, ‘KA – didn’t take long for the personal abuse to start.’ Which abuse would that be? Calling you a troll? You earned it.

    ‘Cox refers to models, predictions and graphs, all of which have been refuted by experts in the field.’ No, they really haven’t. And Roberts with his ridiculous conspiracy theories proves nothing except his own foolishness.

    ‘KA – there you go again – writing Red Leaf off as a Murdoch Subscriber. It may surprise you that many people form their own views by accessing a variety of sources. Your willingness to categorise someone so you don’t have to deal with their argument seems to be your hallmark – good luck with that.’ I will repeat, the link Red Leaf gave was to a PAYWALL PROTECTED SITE. You have to be a SUBSCRIBER to access it!

    Robert, I notice no one, especially the woman here, pick up on Yassmin Abdel-Magied’s declaration, “Islam to me is the most feminist religion”.’ ‘I didn’t see Q and A but I did see that quote from Yassmin in an article I read this morning, Quite frankly, I would prefer not to give the woman oxygen by even noticing her ridiculous self-promoting nonsense. She’s a pest, and a terrible advertisement for any cause she chooses to espouse. I suggest you google her and check out her history, especially her outrageous behaviour over Lionel Shriver’s speech at the Brisbane Writers Festival last year. IMO, she’s a self-promoter of the most odious kind. Being a Muslim woman is no guarantee that you’ve got any sense any more than being called Robert is.

  271. helvityni

    Sir Scotch, thanks for the laugh, we had a country property for awhile situated at a bend of a river; my Zen moment was when I saw a platypus, nobody in the family ever did and that was my one and only time too.I think it was before the drought hit the area…

    We had Echidnas, and often had to stop car when they were crossing the dirt road…I did not hear or smell them..

  272. DJT

    KA – Can you explain to me what a troll is? I’ve never understood the term. The name calling is quite childish but if the best you can do is Dingbat Junkyard Troll and Dillbrain Joke Tosser it says more about you than me.

  273. jimhaz


    [I believe in MMGW. The subject is not as simple as you might wish]

    Actually it is far more simple than you think. There is a strong risk of great harm to life on this planet, caused by human activity, that we must do something about.

    [There are eminent climate scientists who believe in MMGW but question the following:….]

    Sure, but for what purpose are they doing this?

    Some of it is just pure attention seeking.

    They will produce theories that people who only care for themselves will utilise as propaganda for their own purposes.This is clearly what has happened to date. Nearly all deniers are sponsored now by these types.

    I do understand that science has the same problems as any other enterprise – our herd/group mentalities can sometimes mean they get it quite wrong – they draw the wrong conclusions from the data. It is possible that GW has some other element involved that is being understated or ignored. I just don’t see that it matters in this case. The earth/solar system is a partially closed system and no one would ever convince me that the level and range of human activity is not affecting the climate – it MUST do so. We see the negative effect of humans in everything else in the environment so of course we affect the climate as well.

    The speed in which we are changing the climate is just too fast to argue for decades about what I see as just diversions.

    [To approach this subject on the basis of being an “alarmist” or a “denier” is not worthy of kindergarten mentality]

    I’m afraid both sides exist so we have to deal with it.

    [I am sure like everyone else you have scoured YTube for the opinion of all the experts. The only sin I admit to is that I am still taking in evidence]

    Actually, I lost interest many years ago. I’m neither a climate scientist or scholarly – so what is the point. Whenever I look at the debunking deniers sites I see that the deniers constantly misuse data.

    This is not like some abstract physics theory that might help future technology, CGW matters in a big way in the present.
    . It is blatantly obvious that fossil fuels with the projected 9b of us have a very limited time span. So for me the sooner we work to make renewables equal or better than CO2 producing energy the more opportunity this will give humanity to work on other problems such as general overpopulation, the other forms of environmental destruction and resource usage and neoliberalism/unchecked capitalism/plutocracy governments. We have so many other problems we need to get energy sorted out ASAP and this can only be done via renewables.

    Get on with the program – join the risk reduction plan to give your kids, kids at least some hope.

  274. Kate Ahearne

    DJT, Not that you need any explanation, but this is the Wikipedia definition of a troll: ‘”Someone who posts inflammatory, extraneous, or off-topic messages in an online community, such as a forum, chat room, or blog, with the primary intent of provoking readers into an emotional response or of otherwise disrupting normal on-topic discussion.”’ this is from Lifewire: ‘ Trolls can hide behind their shiny computers, screen names and avatars when the go out trolling for trouble, and after they’re all done, they can carry on with their real lives without facing any real consequences. Trolling makes a lot of cowardly people feel stronger.’

  275. DJT

    Thanks KA – no I’m not a troll. I thought I was putting forward fairly logical views.

  276. DJT

    jimhaz – you are obviously convinced in your beliefs.

  277. Kate Ahearne

    They all say that, DJT. And they all insist that they’re putting forward logical views. When you do put forward some logical views, I, for one, will be delighted.

  278. Robert G. Shaw

    Steve L to Harq – 1.42pm

    “given apparently Muslim’s treat women as second class citizens”

    Where on earth does this “apparently” come from?

    Steve, it’s just that one word, that single little adverb, that connotes a whole world of possibility that has no real connection, concrete and lived, to this world. It perpetrates a doubt, insinuates then states an uncertainty to the clause, and lures the dimwitted toward a conclusion neither researched nor critiqued.
    Look at its synonyms – possibly, allegedly, supposedly, seemingly, probably – not one of them analogous to surety or experience, reality or fact.

    There are millions of Muslim woman and girls today that are enduring the real world consequences of your bourgeois and flippant “apparently”.
    That there are million of Muslim woman and girls today that are NOT enduring the real world consequences of your bourgeois and flippant “apparently” DOES NOT excuse, diminish, or annul that fact.

    See that one word Steve?
    In it you will find the infinity that separates my politics (moral and social) from that of yours.

    Thank goodness for that.


    thank you for that courtesy.
    I’m glad you liked it.
    The only woman comfortable with expressing their views were those clearly already on the outer with Islam. Every other questioning or contrary voice was met with a polite shake of the head by the Imam. We can only imagine what the consequences of voicing such contrary opinions would have been outside the studio and on the streets of Pakistan, Saudi, Aceh, Egypt, Morocco, Jordan, Libya, Morocco, Syria and Tunisia, to name but a few.

    As for the response to Irshad’s invaluable critique?
    Sorry Kaye, hardly a surprise.

    To your underlined point: I don’t believe that anyone on this forum has expressed the view that “Muslims are all the same”.
    I certainly haven’t.
    Neither have jimhaz, DJT, Harq, or Red Leaf from my readings.
    What your statement does is reduce the question, opened up by several others, to a useless binary: yes, Muslims are all the same/no, Muslims are not all the same.
    I don’t think that tactic is helpful, nor do I think that those among us who are broadly critical of Islamic law are deserving of the epithets tossed our way.

    What I am saying is that Islamic law is antithetical to the key and profound principles of the Enlightenment: reason, liberty, equality.
    Sharia law is an affront, should be an affront, to every living soul on this planet.

    I was unfortunate enough to witness its barbaric expression one fine day in Faisalabad.
    There is no greater threat to Woman’s Rights on this earth than the strict codified laws of Islam.


    I know who she is. I even wrote Shriver lending my support to her argument.
    My point however was to draw attention to the myopia that inflicts some on this site.
    Her outrageous comment went unnoticed, it seems, and many were more than happy to pump oxygen into Lambie’s fool lungs.
    The hypocrisy made me smile.
    The idiocy of it all made me grimace.

    If I were looking for sense Kate, I’d hardly find it at a place where “troll” is considered a missing chapter of Aristotle’s Poetics.


    To Kaye & Roswell,
    Might I ask that you delete silkworm’s post that referenced me in a most pathetic and desperate way. I don’t appreciate it. Most of the normal rough and tumble of conversation is par for the course, but this slur moves into AIM’s disclaimer of rules, particularly
    “Comments containing language or concepts that could be deemed offensive”
    “Comments that attack a person individually or are considered defamatory”

    Thank you.

  279. Sir ScotchMistery

    I’m devastated to announce that I actually, clearly, fully agree with Kate Ahearn.

    On both levels – troll and vacuous “research” into MMGW.

    Now I don’t actually agree with Kate re Yassmin. I actually like her young, developed and thought provoking position on several issues around GW, as an issue, and whilst I may not fully agree that Islam is a feminist religion, which one really is? They all appear to be run by old white men with an agenda which frequently involves upending children and then being protected by their “colleagues.

    I also think we have a lot to learn from Xiuhtezcatl Tonatiuh from who was last week on Q&A and provided a deep insight into what he and his climate warriors are concerned about. The main point there is of course, his is the generation which will actually prove whether Monckton et al are right, ore whether the 97% of scientists have it. None of us here IMHO will be alive when it finally bites. My only self-serving point is I did what I could.

    I’m also impressed with how well this thread is going with both ends – climate change and Islam, with a little salt and pepper from trolls.

    Well done folks – and no bitchiness.

  280. Steve Laing -

    Robert – if you go pretty much anywhere in the world you will find there are women being treated as chattels by men. This is very common in Australia too – the “wifebeater” being an accepted part of vernacular (which to me is really, really disturbed). This is not a religious thing, although you are trying very, very hard to make it look like it is because that ties in with your view on Muslims. But you will also find that within their households, Muslim women generally hold the real power, and the husbands to what they are told (indeed just like many other cultures).

    So get off your hobby horse of righteous indignation and try getting to know a few Muslim women, and you’ll very quickly find out that they aren’t bullied by their husbands, and like us, they certainly aren’t fooled by your faux concern about women’s rights.

    By the way, I think you may need some help getting that Thesaurus removed from your colon.

  281. DJT

    KL – Is there a reason your sources in your response come from the one website? There are many and varied sites giving many and varied opinions. That is why I do not direct people to sites. We all know where they are and we can all spend infinitum researching both sides of the argument and cherry pick for whatever argument we are trying to support..

  282. Kaye Lee

    I could link directly to the scientific papers if you would prefer but that presumes you have a great deal of time and expertise. Skeptical science is an invaluable resource in answering any questions you have. It isn’t written by one person with an agenda, It links to all the peer-reviewed scientific research.

    It presents answers at different levels of understanding to all the arguments the deniers have raised.

  283. Kaye Lee

    “What I am saying is that Islamic law is antithetical to the key and profound principles of the Enlightenment: reason, liberty, equality.
    Sharia law is an affront, should be an affront, to every living soul on this planet.”

    Once again Robert, we are talking about what happens in Australia so the fact that Muslims aren’t all the same is extremely relevant because it goes exactly to the whole point of this article – people like you are importing fear from other cultures, other countries, which is causing great distress to peaceful Australian Muslims who have either been here for generations or fled the oppression that you are talking about.

    You cannot tell Australian Muslim women that they are oppressed when they very strongly say they are not. No doubt some women are but I say again, that is by no means confined to Muslims.

    Your absolute refusal to admit the influence culture plays makes your comments disingenuous.

  284. Kate Ahearne

    Sir, Thanks for your sort-of approval of some of what I’ve said. If it was devastating for you, as you say, maybe it was all the more worthwhile for that? I don’t know enough about you to have formed any firm impressions.

    But as for Yassmin’s remarks about Islam being a feminist religion, NO! Yassmin is like everyone else who seizes every opportunity to display their own brand – sometimes she does espouse a cause or say something that none of us can take exception to. But she’s bare-face lying about Islam as feminist, and about women’s rights in Islam. She was born in Sudan, but grew up in Australia. Maybe she just doesn’t know! I have lived and travelled in Muslim societies, and I can assure you that I saw nothing of the sort. That doesn’t mean that this feminism doesn’t exist somewhere – just not anywhere I have been.

    Anyhow, as Kaye has pointed out more than once, her article is about Australia. She must be frustrated fit to burst by now!

  285. Miriam English

    Ugh! I feel like I have to wash my eyeballs. I was reading the replies and one became increasingly revolting. I thought, “Who is this utter dick?” so I scrolled back to the name and it was that tiresome twit Robert Shaw. I ceased reading that comment at that point, but feel compelled to note that while misogyny shows its disgusting face all around the world, it is more common in more religious societies. The more religious a society the worse its misogyny, in general. Even so, there are shining examples who stand against it in all societies.

    In the Muslim world one very prominent example is Muhammad Yunus, who pioneered micro-lending. He ensures most micro-loans go to women because he has shown that helping women to lift themselves out of poverty has a disproportionately greater impact on improving society. He made sure that housing improvement loans only go to families where the home is put in the name of the woman so that it changes the underlying structure of patriarchy.

    It is particularly annoying to hear Robert Shaw fake concern about misogyny when he has nothing but scorn for the women on this site. Why the hell are you here, Robert? You clearly hate the place.

  286. Kate Ahearne

    Miriam, Thank you.
    ‘Why the hell are you here, Robert? You clearly hate the place.’ I think a few of us have been wondering that. I mean, its not as if he’s convincing anybody to change their minds about anything. Why bother?

  287. Deanna Jones

    Robert, you are a pompous buffoon. Spare me the selected examples. Daily I speak to women from all cultural and religious backgrounds who experience violence from men of all cultural and religious backgrounds. It’s my job and I know this issue much better than you do. Violence against women and children is not a cultural or religious behaviour, it’s a male one, hence the defensiveness when it’s raised with white men seeking to redirect blame to men of colour.

    Silkworm, the syntax and the nerve grating pomposity are familiar but that could make him one of a number of men from that site.

  288. paulwalter

    Deanna Jones: “Robert, you are a pompous buffoon”.

    That is not a very nice name to call Robert.

    However, I suspect that Robert, who is as much a troll as a buffoon and likely thick-skinned, will remain unabashed at your severe rebuke.

    Having a bung head I am not here for long, I see three hundred comments up and can barely manage a few, but guess this latest explosion is borne of the unlovely comments emanating forth from Jackie Lambie on QA last night, directed at young Yasmin Abdel Magied last night.

    These presented an ugly side to Lambie that obliterated the good work she had done earlier with her excellent comments re social policy and Centrelink.. tragic, really.

    I see Robert’s whimsical nonsenses have been debunked en masse, both vertically and horizontally, but remained deeply disturbed at how the minds of Australians with up to middling intelligence have been perforated by a morass of folklore from previous generations married to hard core modern propaganda employed to justify Western colonialism and resource wars elsewhere in the world inplaces like Australia that live in an information vacuum and consequent reality bubble.

  289. Deanna Jones

    Ah paul, ‘pompous buffoon’ is almost a term of endearment in this context, which I understand you have not read. Robert is currently reaping what he has sown, and I don’t mean wild oats.

    There’s also the whole human rights discourse around the globes’ women and children, to which Robert likes to add his spurious voice in suppressing. It’s kind of a big deal for some of us. Sorry to harsh your buzz, hope you are otherwise well.

  290. Kyran

    Ms Ahearne @ 6.52, not off topic at all. Flynn was the architect of the ‘non Muslim’ Muslim ban. One of his detractors was Ms Yates. A lowly female, despatched easily. The rest of the story will undoubtedly feed out in the next few days. There are a couple of good articles on ABC;

    Can you imagine a security advisor giving a security briefing in that fashion? As for the ‘Washington Post’ getting a transcript of his phone calls with the Russians, somebody in the White House seems to have taken exception to the fact the White House did not act immediately. I gather he had the job for 24 days. His urgent proclamation of a clear and present danger, devoid of facts, was accepted by an administration hungry for a group to vilify. Just like the Queer Society.
    If you want a real giggle, David Petraeus is being canvassed as one of the possible replacements. Seriously, you just can’t make this stuff up.
    Thank you, Ms Lee, and commenters. “My people skills are just fine. It’s my tolerance of idiot’s that needs work.” Can’t remember where I read that. Take care

  291. Kaye Lee


    “That is why I do not direct people to sites.”

    Unless you give the source of your information it is fairly useless in my opinion. People can and do say a whole host of rubbish. The only way to sort the wheat from the chaff is to check the validity of sources. For example, if you did just a tiny bit of research on all those people you mentioned as “experts” you would find they are being paid to come up with objections in a very concerted campaign of disinformation. Their theories are deliberately posited to create doubt and even though they have been proven wrong, they are still perpetuated by the fossil fuel industry.

    PS Jo Nova is one of those who deliberately misinforms.

  292. paulwalter

    Deanna Jones, many thanks for solicitations. In fact, the writer currently suffers from a headache and regrets any focus whatsoever upon the bright glare of a computer monitor or tv screen.

    Re Jo Nova, another serial pest, Jennifer Marohasy, has a piece up at Online Opinion, denying the supposition that a link exists between the recent heat waves and anthropomorphic climate change.

    I mean, what?

    No chance at all?

  293. DJT

    KL – I have done plenty of research on the people I have mentioned and many others and it takes little effort to connect to their views. They are all eminent climate scientists and for you to suggest that because their opinion does not gel with yours they must be spreading disinformation is very revealing. The blinkers are obviously down. Good luck.

  294. Jennifer Meyer-Smith


    ‘research’ is an overused word these days of post-truthism. Both you and I can claim to have done ‘research’ by looking up what Dr Google shows up for us with a simple search.

    I suspect much of your so-called ‘research’ has been undertaken that way.

    Hence, you have been fed misinformation that CC deniers want to give you and who refute human-induced CC and the devastation that will continue if we don’t do something about it.

    Have you seen the northern and southern hemisphere glaciers melting?

    Have you seen plants in your own garden that normally would thrive but now tend to swelter under a hot sun and dry conditions?

  295. Matters Not

    In the field of climate science I would prefer to listen to Michaels, Carlin, Happer, Giaever, Crichton, Dyson, Curry, Lindzen, Pielke, Plimer, Christy, Lomborg, Ebell and Itoh who are all sceptical experts on the subject

    Really? That’s your preferred list? No wonder we have a problem with ‘fake news’.

    BTW, you missed Bolt, Pell …

    All eminent climate scientists. All published basic, primary research ..

    Just love the way non-scientists do scientific ‘research’. Hilarious.

  296. Kaye Lee

    I am not suggesting that at all. I am saying that their theories have been scientifically disproven (that is the ones that actually have done any peer reviewed work on climate change).

    “They are all eminent climate scientists”

    No they aren’t. Their work has, in most cases, been discredited. For basically all of them, their links to the fossil fuel industry have been exposed.

    Bjorn Lomborg spent a year as an undergraduate at the University of Georgia, earned an M.A. degree in political science at the University of Aarhus in 1991, and a Ph.D. degree in political science at the University of Copenhagen in 1994. How does that make him an expert on climate science?

    You really need to start checking on the credibility of your sources DJT. If you shared them might help so we could see where you are getting your information from.

  297. Kate Ahearne

    Deanna, thanks for your succinct observation: ‘Violence against women and children is not a cultural or religious behaviour, it’s a male one…’

  298. Matters Not

    thanks for your succinct observation: ‘Violence against women and children is not a cultural or religious behaviour, it’s a male one…’

    Succinct it may be. Useful , it’s not.

  299. Steve Laing -

    Deanna/Kate – it is unfortunately a sad truth. And one that too many men simply refuse to accept, or don’t know how to deal with.

    DJT – “because their opinion does not gel with yours they must be spreading disinformation”. Science isn’t about “opinion”. Its about evidence. Lomborg doesn’t do evidence, he does opinion, ergo he is not a scientist. Indeed I don’t think he considers himself one, but he is quite happy for other to proclaim he is.

    paulwalter – enjoying your input. I salute you.

  300. Miriam English

    DJT, “They are all eminent climate scientists”.
    No, they truly are not. You haven’t done your research.

    Richard Lindzen is a mathematician who has been receiving large sums of money from ExxonMobil to spread disinformation.

    Michael Crichton was a science fiction writer, but trained as a doctor. He died some years ago, but when he was dying he wrote his worst ever novel, “State of Fear”, about climate change being a conspiracy. He was either really sick at the time or perhaps it was ghost-written and he simply put his name to it, because it is an awful story, lacking the masterful writing of all his other novels.

    Patrick Michaels is the closest thing to a proper climate scientist here, but he gets paid large sums by the petroleum industry to say what they want. He has a history of being corrupted by money as he’s worked for the tobacco industry before, trying to promote the notion that it is harmless.

    Alan Carlin is an economist, whose thinking on climate appear to have been corrupted by the vast amount of money he receives from ExxonMobil and the Koch brothers.

    Will Happer is a physicist who is corrupted by money he gets from petroleum and coal companies. He was busted by undercover reporters when he said he would tailor articles to suit the fossil fuel industry for $250 per hour and that the money could be laundered through an organisation he’s associated with.

    Ivar Giaever is a physicist who worked on electron tunneling in superconductors. He has no background in climate science at all.

    Bjorn Lomborg is an economist. He is a laughing stock in scientific circles because his writings have references that make them look authoritative, but if you follow them up you find they don’t say what he quotes them as saying, and often say the exact opposite. He receives enormous amounts of money from the fossil fuel industry.

    I couldn’t be bothered listing any more.

  301. Matters Not

    Miriam English, any list of climate scientists that doesn’t include reference to the writings of James Hansen (not related in any shape or form to Pauline Hanson) reveals deliberate selective, scientific reading.

    A bit like trying to understand educational ‘philosophy’ without reference to Plato, Dewey and all the variants in between.

    But I am not surprised. If you have the ‘theory’, then there’s any number of ‘facts’ you can select to bolster same.

  302. silkworm

    “I would prefer to listen to Michaels, Carlin, Happer, Giaever, Crichton, Dyson, Curry, Lindzen, Pielke, Plimer, Christy, Lomborg, Ebell and Itoh…”

    I recognize half the names on this list: Michaels, Curry, Lindzen, Pielke, Plimer, Christy and Lomborg – all liars (in the sense of deliberate purveyors of falsehoods) – and Crichton, a deceased science fiction writer. Lomborg is not even a scientist, but an economics statistician.

    Ah, I see Miriam has beaten me to the research on these charlatans.

  303. silkworm

    DJT has listed the works of charlatans. If he doesn’t know this then he is a fool, and if he does know this then he is a charlatan himself.

  304. Robert G. Shaw

    Ahh the inverted logic of the dim apologist: unperturbed by an acid attack on a 14 year old Pakistani girl for venturing outside her house without permission, but mortally offended by a thesaurus.

    I’ll make a deal with you Steve, you try and contain yourself to only a handful of platitudes per post and I promise to use words of three syllables and less.
    Whaddya say?.

    Remember that infinity I mentioned?
    Well, it just got……bigger!

    I am in no way neglecting the cultural aspects of Islam. If you recall my very first statement to Florence, “we are very lucky in Australia. Other countries, other cities, communities, places, not so.”
    I also referenced it yesterday in my post to Steve where I spoke of ‘half the woman….do not excuse the other half” ( an argument it’s clear he’s incapable of understanding).
    And it was also a major undercurrent of the video I posted – the complexity of interpretation; in text, in society, in culture, in the individual.
    So no, I don’t accept that my posts are without consideration of the cultural aspects of this debate. Any such conversation that doesn’t have culture as a prime mover isn’t worth its name.
    If you would like to have that conversation then by all means, let’s have it.
    However I don’t believe that the larger question can be bound by a “Australia only” approach. I simply don’t. Whilst your comments, here and elsewhere, are convincing to some, I remain, for the large part, unmoved by your thesis.

    My single point however is the one I’ve already mentioned and speaks directly to the larger issue of Islam, and to my Left principles of equality, freedom, and reason, paramount to the positive experience of life itself, that I believe are most cruelly and unjustly curtailed by Islam’s strict codification of what I would call barbaric law.

    As I said before, that’s my position. If anyone cares to mount a contrary argument, then please do so. Until that point I refuse to have my position twisted into some caricature or misrepresentation by those incapable of address beyond the words ‘troll’, ‘faux’, ‘dick’, ‘whimsy’.


    why on earth would I even consider a single word you write after you were exposed as someone who doesn’t read full sentences, or understand the value of punctuation marks?


    To Deanna, Miriam, Paul, Kate:
    your responses demonstrate one thing only; an inability to construct an argument.

    Paul, you see ‘my whimsical nonsense as being debunked en masse’.
    Perhaps you could direct me with timestamps, because I can’t see a word.


    I don’t have ‘scorn for woman’ ( do you ever write without recourse to fallacy??) I have scorn for idiotic arguments, baseless ‘troll’ insults, and posts that contain, ‘what a dick’.
    Sound familiar?
    The author,s gender is irrelevant.

    Every time you throw the ‘troll’ slur out you surely must realize that all it does is signal your inability to construct a counter argument.
    It’s just a tactic you’re using Miriam, one that you hope will get you off the hook of an actual serious mature response.
    Who here is convinced by it?
    It’s just an ad hominem Miriam, a pathetic, self defeating rhetorical device that contributes not the conversation but to your continued shame.


    you ask ‘why bother?’
    I could ask the same.


    To Deanna & Kate,
    Kate AhearneFebruary 14, 2017 at 10:15 pm
    Deanna, thanks for your succinct observation: ‘Violence against women and children is not a cultural or religious behaviour, it’s a male one…’

    “….aided and abetted, FORMALISED and CODIFIED most strenuously in this case, by strict Islamic Law”.

    To this specific question: attack the patriarchy all you want, there’s enough ammunition to last a lifetime, but any consideration of power without reference to, in this case, Islamic law, is negligent at best, just plain useless, at worst.

    To the larger question: attacking the patriarchy without due consideration of those immense power dynamics at work in our society – gender relations, religion, power structures, secular institutions – is an impossible and pointless task.

    Simply saying that “violence is not cultural or religious behaviour but just a male one”, ignores those factors and sounds more like misandry than considered opinion.

    You could certainly try and mount the argument. I for one would be most interested to read it.

    But that’s an offer I suspect you won’t be taking up.


    To Kate, finally.
    I just saw your comments at 6.39pm.
    Thank you for acknowledgiing Abdel-Magied’s deceit.
    A welcome show of honesty.

  305. Kaye Lee

    Here is a prime example of what deniers do.

    Lord Monckton writes that “54% of Australians don’t agree that “humans are largely causing it” and states the CSIRO as his source.

    When you click on the link it actually goes to an article by Jo Nova where she states “The devastating result of the latest CSIRO survey: 54% of Australians don’t believe the experts at the IPCC, and are not convinced that humans are the dominant cause of climate change”

    54% of Australians skeptics of man-made global warming, 80% don’t donate to environment or vote for it

    She also quotes the CSIRO as her source and gutsily links to it. Gutsy because when you look at the CSIRO report it says….

     A large majority of people think climate change is happening, and are more likely to attribute climate change to humans than to natural fluctuations in Earth’s temperature. Just under 80% of respondents thought climate change was happening. On average, respondents estimated that human activity accounted for about 62% of changes to the climate. Those who think climate change is not happening still attribute a third (34.6%) of climate change to human activity.

    People are inaccurate when predicting the views of other Australians. The prevalence of the view that climate change is not happening was overestimated by people of all opinion-types. On average, respondents predicted that 23% of Australians were of the opinion that climate change was not happening, when fewer than 8% of our respondents were of this opinion.

    And this is one of my faves. Lord Monckton presenting science for Australians who he obviously thinks are dumb as a post. It’s worth a look just for the cringe value

    “A plain-English service to science and truth by the Lord Monckton Foundation 1 January 2014”.


    Australia’s fave Lord puts the bedwetting profiteers of doom at the failed Climate Council straight about global warming.

    Bullsh*ttin’ bedwetters

  306. Robert G. Shaw

    To Kaye & Roswell,
    thank you.

  307. Kaye Lee

    You’re welcome and in return I would ask that you show a little more courtesy to your fellow commenters.

  308. Kate Ahearne

    Robert, why don’t you take your own advice and keep your posts to ‘only a handful of platitudes per post’? I think I can safely say that we’d all appreciate it. If you were to apply some discipline by keeping your posts to a reasonable length, they might be more comprehensible. As it is, it is often almost impossible to decipher your meaning amongst the forest of words. And if you could attend to the tone of your remarks, we’d all be appreciate that, too.

  309. Roswell

    And as soon as I am able to locate it I will be deleting Robert Shaw’s offensive comment towards Silkworm.

  310. Harquebus

    Steve Laing
    “communicates in a manner appropriate to the targeted audience, which by and large are not particularly scientifically literate.”
    Thank you. I needed to know that.
    In regards to Q&A, there were 5, I think, panelists and the host Tony Jones. All six are idiots and my opinion of Yasmin Abdel-Magied as biggest of the bunch was formed before she admitted to being a Muslim.
    My thought was, “That explains it.”. I could be wrong. Maybe she is just a natural born idiot.

    The program did not help my pessimism of society’s abilities to solve problems.

    “Bonobo females form fighting alliances to protect themselves from male bullying, but in all other great ape species, including ours, women lose out to men.”

    How burning biomass made us human

    “There is a great deal of human nature in people.” — Mark Twain


  311. Johno

    Why is the so called “green agenda” so threatening to many people, hence denialism.

    “One of the things that Corey Bernardi finds most attractive in Trump is an aversion to environmentalism and the science of climate change, which they both see as part of the “green agenda”

  312. Kaye Lee

    I don’t understand the ill will against Yasmin Abdel-Magied. She is a passionate young woman who is at least trying to change things. I think it is important for people to see that Muslim women do not fall into any stereotype. I don’t have to agree with everything she says but I admire her involvement. I can empathise when she said “my frustration is that people talk about Islam without knowing anything about it.”

    Johno, I can’t answer you. They seem to prefer the burnt earth coal black agenda. Cory is dumb as a post with arrogant religious certainty mixed in – a bad combo.

  313. Kate Ahearne

    Kaye, Here’s part of what Yassmin said on and A: ‘ Excuse me, Islam to me is the most feminist religion, right. We got equal rights well before the Europeans.’ A bare-faced lie. You might be unaware of her outrageous behaviour with regard to Lionel Shriver. I followed that debacle very closely because I have been very concerned about the ‘cultural appropriation’ debate that’s been gathering steam in recent times. Her behaviour on that occasion was a calculated exercise in self-promotion.
    ‘…trying to change things…’? With friends like Yassmin, Muslim women don’t need enemies.
    Lots of people are passionate about lots of things. Passion is no guarantee of anything.

  314. Kaye Lee

    Kate, there is some historical basis for Yassmin’s statement as I mentioned before. Obviously it was a simplistic over-reaction shouted in anger but talking to Jacqui Lambie would do that.

    I have read up on the Shriver incident. I am not so sure about the self-promotion judgement. Perhaps more a political statement as the Greens did when Hanson spoke in Parliament or as Aboriginals did to Brendan Nelson’s Apology reply – I don’t want to legitimise this by listening to it kind of thing. I can understand the feelings expressed by both sides of the argument and don’t see it as a reason to dismiss either woman’s views.

    I think having a young Muslim woman with such a public profile is helpful in destroying stereotypes and promoting inclusion.

    At age 16, she founded Youth Without Borders, and she sat on the Australian Multicultural Council, the Board of the Queensland Museum and the Design Council. She was Head of Media on the organising committee of the 2014 Youth G20 Summit and currently sits on the Boards of ChildFund, The Council for Australian-Arab Relations (CAAR) and the domestic violence prevention organisation, OurWatch. She is the Gender Ambassador for the Inter-American Development Bank and has represented Australia through multiple diplomatic programs across the globe.

    That is a pretty active contribution for one so young.

  315. Kaye Lee

    Whilst people discuss the subjugation of and violence towards women in other countries…..

    On average, at least one woman a week is killed by a partner or former partner in Australia. ​
    One in three Australian women has experienced physical violence, since the age of 15.
    One in five Australian women has experienced sexual violence.
    One in four Australian women has experienced physical or sexual violence by an intimate partner.
    One in four Australian women has experienced emotional abuse by a current or former partner.
    Women are at least three times more likely than men to experience violence from an intimate partner.
    Women are five times more likely than men to require medical attention or hospitalisation as a result of intimate partner violence, and five times more likely to report fearing for their lives.
    Of those women who experience violence, more than half have children in their care.
    Violence against women is not limited to the home or intimate relationships. Every year in Australia, over 300,000 women experience violence – often sexual violence – from someone other than a partner.
    Eight out of ten women aged 18 to 24 were harassed on the street in the past year.
    Young women (18 – 24 years) experience significantly higher rates of physical and sexual violence than women in older age groups.
    There is growing evidence that women with disabilities are more likely to experience violence.
    Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander women experience both far higher rates and more severe forms of violence compared to other women.

  316. Kate Ahearne

    Kaye, About Yassmin. I’ll just make a couple of points. “an active contribution’ is not the same as a good and useful contribution. We could say, for instance, that Tony Abbott has been making an active contribution since he was very young.

    Yes, she does have a huge public profile, but she is also a hugely privileged Muslim woman. As such, her profile gives the public an unrealistic idea of what the vast majority of Muslim women have to put up with, and what they can hope to achieve. Is this really helpful in destroying stereotypes? Or is it giving the lie to the experience and the prospects of millions of women? I think we need to be very careful to distinguish between a stereotype on the one hand and the majority experience on the other.

    Kaye, I have only lived in two Muslim societies, and travelled in others, but I can assure you that the rights that Yassmin told the Q and A audience about simply do not exist in those societies. And I don’t care how exasperated she was – what she said does a great disservice to the experience of millions of women living without those rights that Yassmin assures us they have had for yonks.

    As you have clearly read both Shriver’s speech and Abdel-Magied’s article, you will have noticed that Abdel-Magied had decided to walk out before Shriver’s speech even began.

    Finally, there is the obvious comparison between Yassmin and Malala.

  317. Miriam English

    Kate, actually, if you look at the Koran women are given (some) equal rights. A thousand years before European women achieved something approaching equal rights, women in Islamic nations had property rights and the right to earn and keep money.

    Here in the West we forget how recently we have been allowed things like that. The Suffragettes in English-speaking countries had to fight hard for any kind of rights (and we still don’t have true equality). Even here in Australia, as recently as the 1950s and perhaps even the 1960s, it was customary that women weren’t able to make any large money transactions without the confirming signature from a man (father, husband, brother). And we still don’t get equal pay for equal work and still tend to get the thin end of justice.

    Many (most?) Islamic societies seem to have fallen from that high point since then, but not all. Some Islamic nations today have far more women in university and professions than we in the English-speaking nations. Detestable though I consider Islam to be, I have to admit the repellent oppression of women isn’t so much a feature of Islam itself; it is largely cultural. You can see this in the way some Christian nations are just as misogynist, or even more so.

    All that said, the Koran does keep to the usual nature of pretty-much all religious texts and writes everything from the man’s point of view, and does constantly belittle women, describing them as filthy, that a woman is worth half as much as a man and that they’re to inherit half as much as a man, and that it is a man’s right to beat a disobedient woman into submission (the Bible grants the same right to men).

    Religion! Disgusting and weird.

  318. Kate Ahearne

    Kaye, Thanks for those horrible statistics about violence against women in Australia.

    Matters Not, You have quoted me: ‘thanks for your succinct observation: ‘Violence against women and children is not a cultural or religious behaviour, it’s a male one…’

    And went on to remark: ‘Succinct it may be. Useful , it’s not.’ Are you saying that men of no religion do not commit violence against women?
    (I don’t remember who made the original remark, and now I can’t find it. Apologies for that.)

  319. helvityni

    Kaye, I agree , she is achieved plenty, and she only 25. I don’t think it has been easy for her being a Muslim, and I believe she’s from Queensland ,not the most progressive part of Oz…

    Australian born writer of Afro-Caribbean background Maxine Beneba Clarke writes how much she suffered from racism here…When I saw her interviewed by Jane Hutcheon, I thought she was just another Australian with an Australian accent; she just happened to be black…

    I believe she also had some disagreement with Lionel Shriver.

  320. Kate Ahearne

    Miriam, Which are those Islamic societies where there are far more women in Universities and professions than we English-speaking societies have?

  321. helvityni

    Miriam English writes above:

    ” A thousand years before European women achieved something approaching equal rights, women in Islamic nations had property rights and the right to earn and keep money.”

    An older Muslim woman (?) on the Drum only few days earlier said the same, so does my Muslim friend, a lawyer from Egyptian background.

  322. Kate Ahearne

    Whatever rights might have existed in the past for Muslim women have got nothing to do with the situation now.

  323. Kaye Lee

    “you will have noticed that Abdel-Magied had decided to walk out before Shriver’s speech even began.”

    No I didn’t realise that. She said it was 20 minutes into the speech.

    Malala is an amazing young woman whose life has been very different to Yassmin’s privileged existence but I think they have different goals.

    Malala is fighting for those in the countries of which you speak against the horrors that others have mentioned. Hers is an international role and she shows great intelligence, dignity and determination. She is one of those very rare people whose contribution will be remembered in history. She may very well change the world.

    Yassmin is fighting for an Australian Muslim identity and for successful multiculturalism here. She is also fighting against domestic violence here. A narrower focus and lesser ambition but nonetheless worthwhile.

    “Around the world, Muslims have struggled with identity, with the challenge of reconciling living in the West with being Muslim, and with being the first generation of a particular culture. I don’t think that we, as Muslims growing up in Australia, have a good idea of what an Australian Muslim identity is. Yes, it’s going to be hard to create that identity. Yes, we’re going to have to spend a lot of time explaining, but rather than seeing it as a burden we should see it as a blessing and an opportunity. We have a blank slate where we can build whatever we want, and hopefully we will build something that is positive.”

  324. Miriam English

    I should also note that in the great tradition of religious texts the Koran also contradicts itself by saying that men and women are equal.

    It is interesting that although the Bible contradicts itself in hundreds of places, I don’t remember it saying anywhere that men and women are equal, and the Bible explicitly puts the blame of the “original sin” on Eve and all women who must suffer the pain of childbirth as punishment. So Christians tend to hate Islam, but their own Bible is more repulsive about women, in my opinion. Thank dog that we’ve largely shed Christianity in the developed nations. I look forward to the day other nations shed their religions. It is happening. I do wish it was quicker though.

  325. Kate Ahearne

    Kaye, it’s clear from her article that she always intended to walk out. Quite honestly, I am heartily sick of the woman, so I’ll try very hard not to take the bait and make any more remarks about her on this thread.

  326. Harquebus

    “The Kingdom has been keen to combat terrorism based on its conviction that terrorism has no identity and no religion, and from its belief that the terrorists are committing these acts stemming from their deviant ideologies and evil thought. All negative religious, political and social ideologies that use religion as a tool throughout human history, do not reflect the absolute truth about religion”

    “the absolute truth”. Can’t argue with that, it’s not allowed.


  327. Kaye Lee

    I am sorry Kate, I am certainly not trying to bait you. It is ok for us to disagree. I think it has been a valuable discussion and I respect your point of view. and personal experience which would naturally lead you to look at the bigger picture.

    My focus has been on how Australia is different.

  328. Kate Ahearne

    I’m sorry, too, Kaye. I worded that remark rather carelessly. I didn’t mean to suggest that you were trying to bait me, but rather that the topic itself is a bait for me.

  329. Miriam English

    Kate, I’m struggling to remember which Muslim countries have considerably larger numbers of women professionals and uni students than we do. I wanted to include them in the comment I made above, but my memory fails me. I’ll do a search later, but Afghanistan used to be one, until USSR and USA used it for ideological football. I’m pretty sure Syria is still one, though if the same battle between Russia and USA completes itself there that may go backwards too. I am certain there are others, but I’ll find them later. Sorry about that.

    “Whatever rights might have existed in the past for Muslim women have got nothing to do with the situation now.”

    That’s true. It’s more or less what I was saying. Most of the Muslim world has gone backwards. I think in all countries women gain rights as religion weakens. It doesn’t matter what religion; it seems to be true of all of them.

  330. Miriam English

    Harquebus, yeah, you know what absolute religious truth is. We all know what it is. Every one of the thousands of mutually incompatible religions knows with utter certainty what absolute religious truth is. 🙂

  331. Kate Ahearne

    Thanks, Miriam. It might be Syria. Before the war, Syria had a powerful and comfortable middle class. I remember reading some commentators arguing that this was the reason the rebellion went sour – the middle class were on a really good wicket under Assad, so they didn’t join the rebels. That allowed the rebellion to become compromised by various terrorism-inclined groups. And so on…

    I think the bottom line in all of this discussion is the fact that women all over the world are not equal, and many, many millions are not free, not able to access opportunities that are available to men, not free of the threat of physical violence. and that millions of women don’t even have access to the IDEA that they are victims of injustice. In Australia, even with all the opportunities that many Australian women do have, we still do not have equality.

  332. Kate Ahearne

    Harquebus, I’m guessing that your most recent contribution was ironic? Saudi Arabia? The Kingdom of Justice?

  333. Jennifer Meyer-Smith

    Kate Ahearne @ 10.37 am sums it up. This is the starting point and the ending point of any discussion on equality issues between women and men in any part of the world.

  334. Miriam English

    Kate, I have a feeling one or more North African countries have very good rights for women too. I have to go out shortly, so it’ll be later. You’re absolutely right that we in the First World aren’t there yet, neither are the Second and the Third World.

    Yep, that was Harquebus joking. Despite our disagreements on some topics I do kinda like the guy and often enjoy his humor.

  335. Sir ScotchMistery

    There is a thing happening here that doesn’t happen often, but it gets annoying and compromising to the general run of high quality thought-provoking posts around here at the moment.

    Since the arrival of DJT and RGS, this thread has descended into something we rarely see, and that is off-topicness.

    The thread started by looking at serial nut jobs Bolt and that dumb blonde from the LNP who is suing someone or other over halal stamps on vegemite and other staples.

    Now it’s climate “science”, Muslims and Islam and truth in linking in stories/articles.

    I am so disappointed we don’t have on site an identified Muslim woman who, like Abdel-Majeid the other night, can set records straight. But TTBOMK we don’t, though if there is a lurker, feel free to stick your hand up.

    DJT you get so riled about being accused of trolling, but I have no idea WTF else you can call 90% of your posts, which offer unanswered questions and broad statements of opinion, rather than researched bases for your opinions.

    RGS your view of Islam is just that. A view. Nothing else. You obviously have no real idea how any of Islam really works but you don’t see people decrying catholics for the actions of a large number of their priests, and that is as it should be. My/our general view here, and it isn’t universal, merely general, that the need for a cleric to support your views is probably not all that good a sign as to one’s capacity for structured, uncluttered and unbiased thought. That is a view, not a fact.

    To both of you, if you are serious about engaging here, do so, without introducing trolling issues. If you think Monckton is a genius, say it, but don’t then apportion to him godlike status for us to swallow. The general opinion is that anyone paid by petrochem is owned by petrochem and will say as they are told to say, much as the current inhabitant of the PM’s chair in parliament does, in terms of coal, pharma, banking and so on. In other words, everyone who owns him.

    Now get back to work, the lot of you.

  336. Kate Ahearne

    Thanks, Jennifer. It’s only 11 o’clock in the morning, and I’m already exhausted. You’ve given me a dose of oompapah! And thanks to all of those here who are looking for the truth of things rather than looking for support for beliefs they already hold and will never relinquish. Kaye and Miriam in particular, but not only.

  337. Steve Laing -

    Robert – ahh, the faux concern for women comment hit a nerve? And I’m not offended by a thesaurus, I’m just amused that you seem to be addicted to one in order to try and make yourself look smarter. A hint – it’s not working. Please share with us your work on improving the lives of women around the world, other than taking a pro-christian/anti-Muslim stance, and perhaps I’ll take your apparent concern seriously. Otherwise my opinion that you are just a blowhard stands. I am not, nor have ever, condoned the behaviour that your smarmy comments insinuate, but I certainly won’t fall into the trap of generalisation and stereotyping that you very obviously have. Almost all religions abuse the human condition in order to manipulate people, yet people still keep signing up for it in droves. Go figure.

    Harq – if you consider what we know and compare it to what we don’t know, we are all idiots. She at least had the smartness to admit that she was wrong. A rarity these days. But you are right. We are, from an evolutionary perspective, no more genetically evolved than most other mammals. Most of our species “development” is social, and it is very easily, and quickly stripped away, particularly when the amygdala takes over (as in me responding to Robert whilst knowing that it is simply a total waste of my time). Just wait till Climate Change really kicks in and it won’t be long before its back to the law of the jungle taking over. Our social smarts will have very little value then.

    Kate – I’m not entirely surprised she walked out on Shriver. The topic she came to talk on was purposefully contentious and could be interpreted as the literary equivalent of putting on blackface. Her article about the experience is worth reading I don’t say I fully agree with her perspective, but I can see where she is coming from. History can easily be rephrased using fiction, culturally becoming the new truth. We allow the same to be done here with boat people, painting them as scroungers, illegals, economic migrants, queue jumpers, potential terrorists, when the reality is that many are simply fleeing from war zones and persecution, hoping for a better life. We punish them for having the same aspirations that we have, but we don’t want to share.

  338. Jennifer Meyer-Smith

    Well said, Scotch

    … and Steve Laing.

  339. Kate Ahearne

    Steve, I’m disappointed that you have chosen to respond to my remarks without reading them, and without apparently having at least read Shriver’s actual speech.

  340. Kate Ahearne

    Sir, I might be wrong, but I suspect that this might be one of the most interesting threads that has ever developed on AIMN.

  341. Harquebus

    Kate Ahearne
    Yes. A repressive regime terrorizing its neighbor with bombs and missiles and who is regularly accused of supporting ISIS, receives an award for combating terrorists.

    Miriam English
    Thanks and same. To others as well.


  342. helvityni

    ..and I second your comment, Jennifer.

  343. Kaye Lee

    Steve has a point when he says “History can easily be rephrased using fiction, culturally becoming the new truth.”

    Another speaker had this to say

    “When a figure like Shriver makes light of a concept that has catalysed discussion about ethical responsibility, it robs that idea of its political impetus. Cultural appropriation does have the potential to be oppressive because, as Abdel-Magied has pointed out, for the marginalised, identity is sometimes all we have. Our idiolects, our dance moves, our art and artefacts – these are means by which to make ourselves belong amid a system that has made us feel unwelcome. It’s never “just words” or “just a sombrero” or “just a Hollywood film”; to dismiss cultural sensitivity’s seriousness is to disempower those it seeks to safeguard, especially as Shriver and her ilk are speaking from positions of privilege.

    Last column, I cautioned against militant identity-politicking, which can certainly stunt political discourse if left unchecked. At the same time, protection from being “called out” rests on us – as artists, as communicators, as consumers – taking responsibility for our actions. When faced with the choice between safeguarding others from potential hurt, or risking it just so each of us can “do what I want”, surely it’s better – even if it involves extra effort – to opt for avoiding harm? Words and ideas are weapons; we need to wield them, not just with skill, but with care.”

    The last sentence is one we should all remember even when commenting here (not looking at anyone in particular she says whistling)

  344. Kate Ahearne

    Kaye, Please read Shriver’s speech. I thought you already had. Can you really justify a couple of students being victimised for throwing a Mexican-themed party with tequila and sombreros? And that’s just the start. What Shriver is saying, in a nutshell, is that fiction writers must be allowed to write from perspectives that are not culturally their own – you know, walking a mile in the shoes of ‘the other’. A thin person creating a fat character, a male creating a black teenager? Yassmin says no, that’s not permissable. Her attack against Shriver brings us to the essence of the ‘cultural appropriation’ argument, and it goes to the core of creativity itself, and to the massive right and responsibility that we all inherit – Understand others as you would have them understand you.

    Sorry, I know, I swallowed the bait. I must have been fooling myself about that. It’s a very, very vexed argument, Maybe it’s another argument for another thread.

  345. Harquebus

    Steve Laing
    Thanks. I posted the bonobo quote because I think that this is one solution that might help in some cases. Women banding together for protection will, I think, become a necessity. Emergency services are already struggling to cope.

  346. Kaye Lee

    I did read Shriver’s argument and, as I said, I see merit in her point of view. I think it important to listen to the feelings of both sides. I think the sombrero case is an extreme example to make a point. Was Bill Leak’s cartoon acceptable?

  347. Kaye Lee

    Harquebus, are you suggesting men are incapable of acting decently?

  348. Sir ScotchMistery

    KA – It may not have come across in my post, and I suspect that I could have added the following, to ensure you didn’t think I felt it was a waste. I will add the couple of bits of clarification here..

    “This is probably the most thought-provoking thread we have ever had, however, it devolves into baseless accusations and nitpicking, if we don’t manage our thoughts/writing to keep the basic element of the thread, which revolves around ‘legitimising hatred’, not specifically that Muslim = bad xtian = good, since anyone with an ear, knows how polarising that argument is in our society, and has been since Tampa”.

    I didn’t say and don’t think that this thread is anything if not interesting and thought-provoking.

    It has not polarised us as a group in terms of the thread, however. It has polarised us as personalities, trying to make a point, only to find that the making of the point becomes the next subject, rather than the actual point being made. That is to say each post almost derails the whole thread’s starting concept of ‘legitimising hatred’ as the subject.

    Several folks have joined the forum (not just the thread) and I for one value the input, as long as it is reasonable and reasoned. To join and then add nothing of ‘grunt’ seems trollish. If it isn’t, mea culpa, but I can’t help feeling it’s pointless.

    The holding up of Monckton et al as “experts” on damn near anything, is a waste of valuable energy, since the lie is given to every word they utter, based on who pays the piper, and to ignore the payment, is to ignore not just the veracity of what they say, but the ethics of why they say it.

    Also another writer suggested the amount of grunt in this fora is substantial and would make an interesting politics in the pub evening somewhere. Adjunct to that, Google Meetup has released #Resist space for anyone interested.

  349. Harquebus

    Kaye Lee
    No. Single women will become even more vulnerable as time progresses and government services continue to erode. My immediate neighbors, four in my unit complex, are elderly and frail women. I help them often and wonder how will I be able to when things get serious. Any suggestions?

    Sir Scotchmystery
    That gives an opportunity to teach by example. Reasonable people here outnumber the unreasonable so, it shouldn’t be that difficult.


  350. Steve Laing -

    Kaye – careful with the false dichotomies! I don’t believe Harq is suggesting anything of the sort. The banding together of anyone feeling threatened is a natural approach, but is worrying because it suggests that our “protectors” are failing to do their job.

  351. Kaye Lee


    I understand what you are saying and we have certainly drifted around a lot of topics. It is interesting to note that those who ‘hate’ Muslims also tend to be climate change deniers and against marriage equality – not always I hasten to add, but the three often tend to go together with a common thread of a fear of change.

    I do get to every now and then bring it back to Australia importing and legitimising hate. We are different here and we must resist those who would make us less tolerant, those who seek to misinform, those who import hatred. We are far from perfect but we are better placed than most to address our social problems.

  352. Kate Ahearne

    No, Kaye, it wasn’t an extreme example. It was typical. She could have used any one of hundreds of examples.

  353. Kaye Lee

    H and SL,

    I agree my comment was flippant.

    H, I applaud your efforts in helping your neighbours. I guess what I meant is that the men in my life are wonderful. I am not so despairing as to think we can’t improve as a society and make violence the dreadful exception rather than the all-too-easily accepted norm.

    We certainly need moire community help, not just in crisis support but in prevention, early intervention and education on coping strategies. We need more mental health support services too.

  354. Kaye Lee

    Kate, people wear sombreros at the cricket all the time. My son wears one when he goes fishing. As far as I am aware, no-one gets in trouble for doing so which is why I suggest that was an extreme example.

    We can probably agree that the British Museum’s refusal to return all the things they stole from the rest of the world is causing rightful angst. We can probably agree that Bill Leak’s cartoon caused hurt – he is profiting from depicting another group’s lived experience in a derogatory simplistic way viewed through his prism. We can probably agree that white rock and roll singers profited from recording black music because record companies preferred whites.

    As with so many things, it is a matter of where do you draw the line and I think both sides are overstating their case and ignoring the other’s valid points. (I mean them, not us – I think we are doing well listening to each other)

  355. jimhaz

    [Harquebus, are you suggesting men are incapable of acting decently?]

    I wrote more or less the same comment in a draft post a couple of days ago, which I never got around to posting.

    What I predict is that when the GW problem really starts to bite, that masculinity will probably start to dominate again, and it won’t be pretty. When the need arose in the past for men to step up, such as the 1st and 2nd world wars, that was at a time when women were valued as a whole group for their feminine ways – it may not be the same with GW. A lack of resources will lift testosterone levels and create aggression.

    Bye bye all the oversensitive power play stuff like your arguments in relation to cultural appropriation for example. Bye Bye anything Clementine Ford or Van Badham write about.

  356. Steve Laing -

    Kate – in response to your comment before – sorry. You are right, I haven’t read her speech, though I did listen to it on the radio and I may have forgotten some parts. The problem as I saw it were in two parts. Sombreros and tequila Ok, but how about slapping on blackface? Its easy to dismiss issues about the former as ridiculous, but if you don’t think of that in the context of the latter, then you are not really thinking it through entirely, and Shriver seems simply dismissive of those who are of that opinion.

    In one novel Shriver wrote about a child who committed an atrocity, of a kind that is now prevalent in the states (and was then turned into a film, which a friend of mine produced as it happens). But are the general public now (unconsciously perhaps) drawing false conclusions about the kind of people who become child mass killers from it? Because people do draw very false conclusions from films/fiction – just look at our attitude to sharks following Jaws. So whilst fiction will always involve authors writing from the perspective of characters who aren’t them, it isn’t a bad idea to be at least mindful of the perspectives of others – an open-minded attitude that Shriver just doesn’t appear to have, or that she uses “I’m a writer so I have special privileges”, and this always worries me a little. But not knowing her personally, I could be completely wrong.

  357. Sir ScotchMistery

    Harq – it’s rarely difficult to impart some level of a learning experience, here or anywhere, but it is a learning thing, IMO rather than a “teaching” thing.

    My SWMBO has a PhD in information systems, and claims to have never “taught” a moment in her life. She describes her role as that of a “learning facilitator”.

    I truly hope that the considered minds of the new folks, which we are seeing in much of what they are saying, and raising the “disjointed” level of the discussion, will be tempered as they join our journey here, and that they will stay and recognise the “already learnt” state of many here who disagree with unquestioningly accepting the thought bubbles of those sent to confound our logic and insert mystery and distrust into our dealings with the outside world, specifically mining, oil, pharma, chemicals, coal and environment, in their race to have us accept them at face value and not question the veracity of their published statements of “alternative facts”.

    Does anyone want to learn how not to be afraid of snakes?

  358. Kaye Lee

    And getting back to my article, are the cartoons that Pickering auctioned ok? They seem a prime example of cultural appropriation.

  359. Steve Laing -

    Scotch – would that be Brown, Tiger, or the One-eyed Trouser variety? Joking aside, that’s an interesting one as it involves temporarily circumventing the amygdala to access the cortex. I suspect that it’s a technique that might also stop people being fearful of “others”.

    Kaye – would those be the ones that 18C and 18D are apparently denying our rights to see so we must change the law? Pickering’s attitude seems very similar to that of Shrivers…

  360. Kaye Lee

    On the other side of the cultural appropriation argument, I used to go and see two Aboriginal women – sisters from the stolen generation who reunited as adults and offered spiritual advice to others. They are amazing women who look on their life experiences as an opportunity to build bridges.

    Anyway, they knew I wasn’t into the spiritual stuff so much which they accepted acknowledging that we are all different but they took me out into the bush and talked to me about connection to country, about what they call ‘seeing’ which kinda means listening to what the land is telling you. I was not excluded from this as a whitie. They said anyone who lives here has connection to country and a custodian’s obligations.

  361. Steve Laing -

    Kaye – that was my turn for being flippant 😉

    But regarding your experiences, I hear you. “Seeing” as I understand it, also means giving total attention to – and not being distracted by other matters, which is something we whitey’s really aren’t very good at. Our cultural perspectives on time are so different to those of aboriginals – we think in minutes, hours and weeks they in seasons and generations. And again, I’ve heard and agree with the same message regarding connection to country and obligations as custodians. The aboriginal perspectives offer some incredible insights, but I suspect that few of us will have the patience or commitment to even scrape at the surface of, because we simply don’t know how to due to our own cultural blinkers. So many of the “solutions” we prescribe are all about “being like us”. Which is akin to shouting at a French person thinking it’ll help them understand what we are saying. Its why I doubt that someone like Shriver could ever write a book with an aboriginal character that could be close to being authentic, and in doing so would be highly misleading.

  362. Miriam English

    Pickering makes an occupation out of being confronting and causing offense. For him to say otherwise is disingenuous.

    I often write my stories from the point of view of a black woman, a male, an android, a refugee from a muslim country, a christian, and probably others I can’t remember just now. Is it cultural appropriation? Perhaps. It it well intentioned? I try very hard to be respectful and fair. Can I be faulted for doing so? I hope not, but if anybody ever pointed out errors that I make I do alter them. That’s the good thing about publishing online — I can continuously edit and update my stories if need be. Are my stories any good? I have absolutely no idea. Tell me please.

  363. Miriam English

    Words and ideas are weapons; we need to wield them, not just with skill, but with care.
    — Kaye Lee

    Brilliant! Straight into my quotes folder.

  364. Kaye Lee

    Miriam, I wish I could take credit but the quote is from Adolfo Aranjuez’s article.

  365. jimhaz

    You first have to choose which skirmishes and battles are really worth fighting.

    I’m reminded again of Monty Python and the The People’s Front of Judea and perhaps What have the Romans ever done for us

  366. Kate Ahearne

    Kaye, I apologise for letting so much time go by before replying to your remarks about ‘cultural ‘appropriation’. I’ve had things to do.
    You say, ‘Kate, people wear sombreros at the cricket all the time. My son wears one when he goes fishing. As far as I am aware, no-one gets in trouble for doing so which is why I suggest that was an extreme example.’ Actually, it’s not true that ‘no-one gets into trouble for doing so’, and that’s why Shriver used the example. This is from her speech:
    ‘Let’s start with a tempest-in-a-teacup at Bowdoin College in Brunswick, Maine. Earlier this year, two students, both members of student government, threw a tequila-themed birthday party for a friend. The hosts provided attendees with miniature sombreros, which—the horror— numerous partygoers wore.

    When photos of the party circulated on social media, campus-wide outrage ensued. Administrators sent multiple emails to the “culprits” threatening an investigation into an “act of ethnic stereotyping.” Partygoers were placed on “social probation,” while the two hosts were ejected from their dorm and later impeached. Bowdoin’s student newspaper decried the attendees’ lack of “basic empathy.”

    The student government issued a “statement of solidarity” with “all the students who were injured and affected by the incident,” and demanded that administrators “create a safe space for those students who have been or feel specifically targeted.” The tequila party, the statement specified, was just the sort of occasion that “creates an environment where students of colour, particularly Latino, and especially Mexican, feel unsafe.” In sum, the party-favour hats constituted – wait for it – “cultural appropriation.”’

    This case has since become quite famous,and many other similar incidents have occurred, including the banning of sushi from student dining rooms, which is another corker. More recently, models, singers, fashionistas are being accused of cultural appropriation for wearing cornrows or braiding or dreadlocks.

    Of course, it IS a matter of where you draw the line. I would certainly draw it well before sending helicopters to film secret native gatherings, including native American tribal dance ceremonies, which has actually happened.

    But what Shriver was principally concerned about was the growing trend in literary circles for certain people to try to prevent fiction writers from creating characters which are not from the writer’s own cultural background. You don’t have to take this demand very far at all before it becomes verboten to write anything but memoir, as Shriiver, herself points out in her article.

  367. Kate Ahearne

    Kaye, later on you say, ‘And getting back to my article, are the cartoons that Pickering auctioned ok? They seem a prime example of cultural appropriation.’ Maybe, but I’d be inclined to just call them out-and-out examples of bare-faced racism. Pickering doesn’t ‘appropriate’ culture, so much as depict stereotypes that promote lies about culture. And the blackface that Steve mentioned, which is so offensive to many black people, is often used by those accusing others of cultural appropriation – this might also fall more clearly into the ‘racism’ category. Skin colour is not primarily about culture, but about race.

  368. Miriam English

    Kate, wow. I had no idea this kind of insanely over-inflated political correctness on steroids was going on. No wonder we get nasty assholes like David Leyonhjelm using anti-PC reaction as a leverage point to allow racism. Those kinds of rulings practically invite it.

    I’m reminded of the Koran’s injunction against idolatry — not to worship images — and the subsequent Muslim extremists who completely misinterpret the intent by killing cartoonists who draw Mohammed because they see his image too holy to draw. They completely miss the point to not make images holy.

    Preventing people writing from the point of view of another (if they ever succeeded in preventing it) would be like making empathy illegal.

    The super-PC idiots are hurting people on the off-chance that someone might feel offended. It doesn’t make sense… especially when it makes people want to throw out genuine political correctness that is designed to actually prevent harm.

    Humans are so weird.

  369. Kate Ahearne

    Miriam, Yep, humans are so weird! I have a google alert for ‘cultural appropriation – I could give you many, many ludicrous examples. They turn up in my inbox on a daily basis.

  370. Kaye Lee

    Kate as I have mentioned several times already I am fully aware of the sombrero case and Shriver’s use of it and I still say that is an extreme example. Telling me about it over and over won’t change my mind. It was madness but you cannot surely be suggesting that it is a regular occurrence.

    As for the cartoons, my point is that they are doing what Shriver defends. They are profiting from presenting their view of a race or culture as seen from their perspective regardless of how it may make others feel.

  371. Kate Ahearne

    Kaye, The sombrero incident is only one of a myriad of similarly ludicrous incidents.

    Shriver would never defend those cartoons. And she would certainly not agree that she is defending people ‘presenting their view of a race or culture as seen from their perspective regardless of how it may make others feel’. A character in a novel is not a race or a culture, nor even a representative of a race or a culture – one person or one character, or even a dozen people or a dozen characters do not make or represent a culture or a race. (Unless, of course, in the case of Pickering’s cartoons, it is your intention to do that. That’s where stereotyping comes in.)

    If Shriver is wrong, then we need to get rid of fictional literature altogether. Let’s begin with Shakespeare.

  372. Kate Ahearne

    Miriam, It’s taken me all day to catch up on my Inbox, but here’s today’s really silly cultural appropriation story. A 19-year-old Brazilian girl called out for wearing a turban of the sort that is usually worn by black women in Brazil.
    ‘A white Brazilian teen fighting cancer, who has been accused of cultural appropriation for wearing a turban to conceal her baldness, is firing back back at her critics: “I’m so angry with this whole cultural appropriation thing … this is called cancer, so I use what I want!”.

    Thuaune Cordeiro, 19, is a teenager in Brazil. She was diagnosed with cancer and chemotherapy treatments left her bald. To hide her lack of hair, she sports colorful turbans when leaving the house.

    After posting on Facebook pictures of her wearing turban, she was accused of cultural appropriation, because in Brazil, most turban-wearers are black.

    But the 19-old-teen then fired back at her critics by sharing a story on her Facebook page in which she was called out on the street by one black woman for wearing a turban while being white.

    Home Culture Wars
    By Lukas Mikelionis | 9:28 am, February 14, 2017

    A white Brazilian teen fighting cancer, who has been accused of cultural appropriation for wearing a turban to conceal her baldness, is firing back back at her critics: “I’m so angry with this whole cultural appropriation thing … this is called cancer, so I use what I want!”.

    Thuaune Cordeiro, 19, is a teenager in Brazil. She was diagnosed with cancer and chemotherapy treatments left her bald. To hide her lack of hair, she sports colorful turbans when leaving the house.

    After posting on Facebook pictures of her wearing turban, she was accused of cultural appropriation, because in Brazil, most turban-wearers are black.

    But the 19-old-teen then fired back at her critics by sharing a story on her Facebook page in which she was called out on the street by one black woman for wearing a turban while being white.

    “I’ll explain what happened yesterday so you know why I’m so angry with this whole cultural appropriation thing,” she wrote. “I was at the station with this pretty turban, feeling like a diva. And I started to notice that there were a lot of black women around, beautiful by the way, who were looking at me funny, like ‘look over there the little white girl appropriating our culture.’”

    “Anyways, one of them came over to tell me I shouldn’t use a turban because I’m white,” she continued.

    “I took off the turban and said ‘are you seeing this bald head, this is called cancer, so I use what I want! Bye.’ I grabbed my turban and walked off leaving her in shock #EverybodyWearsTurbans”

    I tried to follow back to her FB pge, but it’s all in Portugese, so no cigar.

    This might not be a true story. I have no way of knowing, but this is the kind of thing that’s coming into my Inbox, day in day out.

  373. Robert G. Shaw

    Kate, read my posts or not, the choice is yours. But I will not change my style or the length to accommodate the reading comfort levels of some here.

    I applaud you for this,
    “but I can assure you that the rights that Yassmin told the Q and A audience about simply do not exist in those societies. And I don’t care how exasperated she was – what she said does a great disservice to the experience of millions of women living without those rights that Yassmin assures us they have had for yonks”.

    and this,

    “Whatever rights might have existed in the past for Muslim women have got nothing to do with the situation now”.

    Well done.


    Abdel-Magied & Shriver,

    I side, I will always side, with the notion that it is perfectly legitimate for literature, art, architecture, drama, music, poetry, to contain elements of Abdel-Magied dreaded and barely understood idea of “cultural appropriation”.

    I suggest she first think on the word “fiction” – what it is, what it does, why it does it, how it does it.
    Claiming that only those who experience a condition – culture, identity, gender, race, religion, marriage, trauma, a broken arm, mental breakdown, love, despair….(insert noun here) – is perhaps the most ludicrous notion ever to have been uttered.

    I am therefore in full accord with the thrust of Kate’s trenchant argument.
    “Let’s start with Shakespeare”, then move onto Milton, Cervantes, Faulkner, Orwell, Flaubert, James, Hardy, Lawrence, Tolstoy, Dostoyevsky, Swift, Austen, Joyce, Woolf, Kafka, Camus, Beckett, Bellow, Naipaul, Carey…..

    Who here wants to follow the logical endgame of Abdel-Magied’s disgraceful politics of gesture, so giddily popular with the infantile PC set intent on craven displays of victimhood and confected outrage and in the process reject the intellectual heritage of humankind?


  374. Jennifer Meyer-Smith

    Well said, RGS.

  375. Miriam English

    This is the problem with overdoing political correctness. It has a good and important origin, but people are taking it too far which allows foolish people to dismiss political correctness entirely (e.g. Shaw’s “infantile PC set intent on craven displays of victimhood and confected outrage”).

    The astonishing thing about the story you related, Kate, was the way political correctness, which is originally intended to prevent racism, can be used to bolster racism. Telling someone what they must or must not wear on the basis of their skin color is racism.

    We need the caution that political correctness brings to interactions, but taking it too far is just as dangerous as not having it at all. Why do people so often want things all-black or all-white? What is it about humans that makes us so unable to handle shades of gray?

    One thing Shaw said correctly, is that we shouldn’t allow anything to cause us to reject the intellectual heritage of humankind.

  376. Kate Ahearne

    Robert, for once in a very rare while we seem to have found some common ground. I’m breaking out the champagne. (That’s a fiction, tee hee. I’m actually breaking out an ultra-cheap bottle of not-too-sweet white.)

    I do have a worry about your last para which does descend into that labelling, name-calling thing that you so often do, and which always undermines your position when you do it. But putting that aside, Yes, you’re talking sense. Once you accept the argument of the ‘cultural appropriation’ warriors, there’s really nowhere short of nonsense for the line to be drawn.

    I find it helpful to make a distinction between ‘cultural appropriation’ and ‘cultural misappropriation’. That way I can cheerfully demand the return of the so-called Elgin Marbles, the Vatican collection of Egyptian mummies, and any Aboriginal remains that might still be held in museums – just for starters. I can also cheerfully enjoy burritos, suchi, coq au vin, curry, coffee, tea. Like Kaye’s family at the footy or off on a fishing trip, I can wear a sombrero without feeling at all uncomfortable about it.

    I also think we need to be very clear about making a distinction between stereotyping and cultural appropriation. It might look like a fine line, but there’s a universe of difference, and I really do believe that we need to make the effort to make this distinction.

  377. Deanna Jones

    Steve Laing, thanks for your input, I do appreciate it, comrade.

    Epic thread, Kaye. Nice.
    As far as the topic, I think the diversion of the thread into the boilerplate arguments about Muslim women being so much more oppressed than the white ladies, could still be considered a form of cultural appropriation. White men hijacking the ‘othered’ culture for the purpose of self-interest? That could be considered appropriation.

    Kate, no worries. Things become a bit Orwellian when the topic of male violence is raised.

    MN, if we can’t name the problem we can’t address it can we? Or is that the whole point? Is male violence doubleplus good?

  378. Jennifer Meyer-Smith

    Ditto, KA.

  379. Kate Ahearne

    Thanks, Miriam. I think we need to let go of the term, ‘political correctness’. It’s a loaded term. It belongs to the Dark Side, and they use it against people like you and me to shut us up.

  380. Kate Ahearne

    Deanna, I’m sorry, but I don’t get what you’re trying to say. could you expand a little bit? – the para about ‘boilerplate arguments’?

  381. Deanna Jones

    Kate, I’m not ‘trying’ to say anything. I’m actually saying it, and there is nothing terribly complicated about that paragraph, particularly for anyone who has been present the entire thread, as you have.

  382. Kate Ahearne

    Thanks, Jennifer.

  383. Kate Ahearne

    Deanna, Well I;m a dumb-bum because I really didn’t hear what you were trying to say. Scratch that, I didn’t understand what you were saying. I hoped you might expand .

  384. Deanna Jones

    White people, members of the dominant culture, need to be very cautious about how we presume to construct the struggles of ethnic minorities. Good on us, having the privilege and power to determine when they ‘go too far’ in their fight for their own human rights.

  385. Kaye Lee

    The term cultural appropriation is way too broad for sensible discussion in my opinion. I feel likewise about the term political correctness. They mean different things to different people and there will always be people who want to go to extremes in both directions which I think both Abdel-Magied & Shriver have done and, dare I say it, you too Kate with the ban Shakespeare line.

    Common sense, good manners, empathy and respect are far better terms in my opinion.

    This is not just about people writing fiction. Both those terms go way further than that. Whilst I empathise with the story about the girl with cancer, I still don’t consider either of the examples you have given demonstrative of widespread behaviour. There will always be idiots around and, in the two examples you have mentioned, they came to the fore. I remember my boss asking me if I was pregnant again. I wasn’t. That has nothing to do with culture, just with being inappropriate. We should be able to work out what is appropriate or not without labels and we should consider how our words may affect others, particularly if we are writing about their culture or life experiences. Really that’s all it boils down to.

  386. Jennifer Meyer-Smith

    Very true, Deanna.

    Race and sex power imbalances are the two worst examples of discrimination. Always have been and will be until we change the circumstances.

    However, I take on board the opposing points of view expressed re so-called culture appropriation.

    I’m a proud white white woman who also dares to reach out to people of all races and genders. I also want to write about what I see fit to write or talk about. I maintain my right to do so, as long as I am culturally sensitive and respectful.

  387. Steve Laing -

    RGS – having reread much of Orwell recently, I’m not seeing much evidence of cultural appropriation in any of his work. Most of the other authors you mention are of an era where cultural appropriation wasn’t common either, and most wrote largely within their own culture. So its an impressive looking list of authors, but doesn’t really enlighten the discussion – which I suspect was entirely the point. Indeed from the remarks in his more autobiographical works, particularly with regard to homelessness and poverty, I suspect Orwell would have been very disappointed with any author who attempted to depict a character in such a position inaccurately. Like other great authors, it is their empathy with their characters that distances them from the rest, because they don’t create lazy caricatures as you very clearly want to do about Yassmin and those who might agree with her.

    The more people are oppressed, the more it appears that they fight for whatever culture they have left, even when it may not even be real or of great value. So I can empathise entirely with Yassmin’s position, as I’ve seen it very strongly in my own culture. Now as I have got older, been able to reflect, and can manage my own emotional response more effectively, I can see that the situation is rather more complex, and also that I am less tied to any specific culture than I was. However many feel so very strongly about their culture they have all sorts of extreme reactions, whether that is to authors portraying people from their culture inappropriately or people burning their flags, whilst happily supporting others who wear flags of other countries as underwear.

    Calling her actions “disgraceful politics of gesture, so giddily popular with the infantile PC set intent on craven displays of victimhood and confected outrage and in the process reject the intellectual heritage of humankind?” just underlines that you consider yourself superior and that your Emotional Intelligence is sadly lacking. She is 25. Were you so worldly at that age that you feel the need to rubbish her? How does that make you feel? Given the choice I would far rather have her round for dinner than yon Patterson fellow, or the completely ungracious Lambie.

  388. Kate Ahearne

    Thanks, Deanna. Now I can agree with you – your first sentence, at least. As for your second sentence, I agree that there IS privilege and power that ‘goes too far’. Not just too far, but too far in the wrong direction.

    We all make mistakes. Let’s agree on that, if we can. Because if we can do that, we can call out, not only our own crap, but any
    Crap when we see it. Crap is not specific to cultures.

    How do you sanitise President Zuma, as a ‘for instance’? We say nothing because we’re white? I really wish it could be as simple as you suggest. If it were that simple, I could be an ordinary, privileged, elderly white lady. I’d love that.

  389. Robert G. Shaw

    I’ve been looking at, reading, researching, writing, arguing, this question of “insanely over-inflated political correctness on steroids” for over 10 years.

    By your own admission your knowledge amounts to,

    “Kate, wow. I had no idea this kind of insanely over-inflated political correctness on steroids was going on.”

    It would appear from 2 of your posts to Kate that you had no idea, none whatsoever, as to the range and depth of the “PC crowd’s infantile predilection for craven displays of victimhood and confected outrage”.

    And you call me the fool?

    Miriam, you delight in more ways than you can imagine.



    what you might term, ‘labelling’, or ‘name calling’, in the pejorative, doesn’t make it so.

    Certainly not for me.

    What I’m doing is offering rubric – yes, I am ‘labeling’ because that’s we human do; we name things; ideas, feelings, intuitions, convictions.

    What I saw on Q&A was a gross misrepresentation offered as desperately hopeful argument closer. What I saw was deceit posing as fact. What I saw was deception hiding under the gloss of (cultural) authenticity. What I saw was outrage, confected and pompous, at the suggestion that someone, anyone, other than herself, could make comment on Islam.

    What I saw at the Brisbane Festival was the cold calculation of a wannabe culture starlet. What I saw was the confected outburst of one primed to play cultural victim. I saw gesture. I saw theatrics. In her subsequent Guardian response I saw an infantile account of that most complex term – cultural appropriation. I saw it whored about for the sake of her grandiose and intellectually impoverished account of a ‘how dare they’ victimhood. I saw a disregard for nearly every logical implication of her screed. I saw in her arguments a near contemptuous pose against humanity as a group and society, and the manner by which it may author its own stories, its own accounts, its own imaginings.

    Yes Kate, they are my labels. I don’t disown them simply because you or someone else is affronted by their conviction. I will argue those labels, defend their accuracy, with sincerity and passion till each example of her brand of intellectual and imaginative poverty stands exposed before its own lack.

    I have seen far too much of this cancer within the Left; the PC, this relativism, the cultural Marxism, to play the soft card here.

    One need only examine the practice of student unions and Left groups in the universities of the US and the U.K. to see the ugly, dangerous, and the deeply troubling reactionary underbelly of our political movement.

    Yassmin Abdel-Magied’s just one more showy bit player intent on taking our cause backwards.
    Confronted by such people I’m not really interested in euphemisms.
    I’m interested in the exposure of their deleterious words and actions.


    it’s very clear from the first few sentences of your piece that you haven’t understood my post. So keen were you to construct some sort of attack on me you forgot to actually read the words I’d written and consider them in their rightful context (as a response to Kate).

    You went off, half cocked!

    Not to worry.

    It’s not the first time you’ve done that.

    I doubt it will be the last.

  390. Kate Ahearne

    I’m sorry folks. It truly grieves me, but I need to sleep. A couple of glasses of cheap white wine haven’t helped. But no-one is safe. I will return (as Arnold once said.) Be afraid. Be terribly afraid.

  391. Kaye Lee

    Yassmin has received death threats since the Q&A program. In Australia, it is Muslims that have reason to be afraid, and that is terribly sad.

    “I spent most of my teens … in the public space deeply, desperately avoiding being the Muslim girl,” she said.

    “But now I’m like wow, mate, not that many people are talking about being a Muslim and defending our right to exist.

    “I guess the battle came to me. I don’t really have any other choice but to accept it and to roll my sleeves up.”

  392. Steve Laing

    Kaye – why am I not surprised. But of course, such behaviour isn’t terrorism, is it.

    Robert – if your banjo playing is as good as your trolling, it’s as well you are retired. Your inability to stay on the topics you started are breathtakingly amusing. Just what are you going to impress us with next I wonder? Your favourite artists, or perhaps composers? You’re not George Brandis by any chance?

  393. Deanna Jones

    Jennifer and Kate, I was referring to the current discussion on this thread about Yassmin Abdel Magied supposedly ‘taking political correctness too far’. I think this shitstorm that she is the centre of is racism and white supremacism in action and it’s really ugly. I did not mean my comment in any general broader sense, but I do find it disturbing to see how easily rattled us whities are by any suggestion of abusing privilege. A proud white white woman, Jennifer? What’s to be proud of?

  394. Robert G. Shaw

    Kaye, the threats against Yassmin Abdel-Magied are indeed a horrific indictment on the kind of anti Muslim sentiment swirling within some elements of our community.

    I hope that every single one is found, arrested and charged.

    But I must raise the question of Abdel Magied’s role: falling prey to Q&A’s transparent ploy of ratings via confrontation she played her part in that little drama with aplomb.

    Her credentials set after Brisbane’s shame, she donned her defender of faith masque and met Lambie head on.

    You don’t fight Lambie, or Hanson for that matter, with slanging. You don’t match their histrionics with pompous, passionate brain explosions of your own. What was needed, for all to see, was a cool, confident, sensitive response to each of Lambie’s points. Instead of diffusing with clear explanations, she mimicked Lambie: shouting, haranguing, spouting lies and half truths, and hot temper. She came across as Lambie’s counterpoint; the two faces of the same shrill coin.

    In my view, she was equal architect in that debacle. That in no way is meant to rationalise the threats against her. I repeat that for those with suspect comprehension skills, that in no way is an apology for the threats. Remember too Kaye, that in this argument, this febrile and most delicate conversation, it isn’t just the Abdel Magied’s that receives death threats. Lambie has received them for years. It’s just that no one really cares (to mention them).

    What does that tell you about the way we view the respective interlocutors?

    One more thing whilst we’re on the subject: and a warning in preface – to anyone here that likes to read into things other than the words written, look away now. To anyone here more comfortable with the slur ‘troll’ than with clear comprehension and conversation, look away also. To anyone here who see’s every word I write through the fallacious lens of ad hominem, could you also turn your gaze.

    The broad argument – anyone practicing Sharia law should be deported – has, with a few caveats, my support. Australia is governed by a suite of laws that this society has deemed fair, equitable, and hard won. It was be anathema to me personally to find one of those laws, any one of those laws, distorted into the barbaric lunacy of Sharia. Every liberal principle, every legislative gain, for equal rights, for the deep ethical reference for human rights, for equality before the law, that underpin our society, I would seek to protect from any threat whatsoever. I really don’t care what that threat is – Sharia, Martians, smallpox, an ant infestation – it makes no difference to me.

    This legislative secular grid of laws I view as essential to the happiness and fulfillment of (one’s) life itself. Anything short of that I see as injurious compromise on that potential.

    So there you have it Kaye, in an argument where the two combatants shouted straight past each other you will find me sitting, pondering over the crux of the argument, all but forgotten in the melee, as to the nature and future of our civic law.

    Sitting, therefore, closer to Lambie that Abdel-Magied.

    Reaffirming my cardinal Left principles, by sitting closer to Lambie.

    How’s that for a paradox this beautiful sunny morning?


    Steve, you make a fundamental comprehension error. I call you out on it. Because acknowledgment and apology are beyond your capabilities you default to the Socratic Method so very popular here at AIM, ‘you’re a troll’.
    Who am I, but mere mortal, to withstand such convincing argumentation?

  395. Kaye Lee

    Yassmin was the first to admit that she “lost it” just as Brian Cox did with Malcolm Roberts. Listening to an implacable fool spout rubbish can test a person’s patience. I can only imagine what it must be like to have to defend your very existence every day of your life, to feel unwanted in your own country. It would be very hard, day in day out, to have to justify yourself because others don’t approve of how you dress or what you eat or how you worship or the colour of your skin. I doubt I would deal with it as well as Yassmin does.

    As for Sharia (btw saying sharia law is a tautology), it very clearly states that you must be governed by the laws of the land. You seem to have firmly implanted in your head atrocities that you witnessed overseas. Only a handful of very conservative Muslim countries engage in horrible punishments – they don’t happen here. I remember one case a while ago where four guys whipped another guy for drinking alcohol. They were all charged with assault.

    I really do think you need to acknowledge that Australia is a very different place to Afghanistan or Saudi Arabia and that Sharia is practised differently in different places.

  396. paulwalter

    Steve Laing, thanks for kind words.

    Re Lambie, what compounded the disappointment for me as to her meltdown, was the quality of her earlier attack on the government’s current welfare pogrom, some thing well supported by others on the panel.

    But this only made the attack on Yassmin Al Magied the more baffling.

    I wondered, “This what has happened to her for associating with Hinch”? It’s very sad to see examples of brainwashed psychosis re “other” people.

    To Robert J Shaw et al, that the younger woman eventually returned fire is pretty much a secondary issue, given the unexpected and unwarranted ferocity of Lambie toward this 25 year old person. But I think at some time in the future, an older, sadder, wiser Lambie will look back and rue her intemperance of last Monday night.

  397. havanaliedown

    I love seeing Leftists argue on behalf of “Sharia” and other backward practices. Rarely do I see them comment on “Honour” Killings, clitoris removal, encouraging men to marry multiple wives, and the fact that women are forbidden to drive in Saudi Arabia. Oh but they do try the convoluted reasoning of why being covered with a black sack is somehow “liberating”. Right-on sistas!

  398. Kaye Lee

    Death threats towards anyone are despicable and I too hope they track down the culprits and prosecute them.

    Lambie has attacked all Muslims suggesting they should be deported, or at least made to completely change their way of life. She has cast suspicion on innocent people. She is the one trying to impose her choices on others not the other way round.

    Yassmin is just asking for the same right we all have to to choose the way we live and to be accepted and valued for who we are and what we do.

    havanaliedown, I will say again, WE LIVE IN AUSTRALIA!

  399. Robert G. Shaw

    Sharia can be practiced in one of three ways:
    Full sharia – personal and legal (Iran, Iraq, Pakistan, Saudi, Qatar, Aceh, plus others)
    Partial – personal issues, and regional interpretations (Egypt, Morocco, India, Jordan, Indonesia, Malaysia, Lebanon, plus others)
    Or, not at all.
    I favour the latter approach.

    In each application – full or partial – there is, to my mind, a gross and often barbaric neglect of basic humanist principles.
    I know that Australia is different to these countries. I’m well aware of that Kaye. I’m simply making the point that the argument (of Lambie) is legitimate.

    Here it is, articulated more sensibly than she could ever manage, and with sound redress,

  400. Karl Young

    Most avid anti gay men secretly feel and fear they are gay and fight it like crazed dogs to prove they aren’t as did the Tough man Colonel Frank Fitts portrayal in the movie American Beauty.

  401. Kaye Lee

    But you are making arguments based on other countries. That makes absolutely no sense when discussing Australia. Can you tell me what “humanist principles” are neglected by Australian Muslims?

    I started reading your article and found it does not agree with what Australian Muslim scholars say. Perhaps Ann Black should have spoken to some Muslims.

    Do Australian Muslims want Sharia law to be implemented into the Australian legal system? According to Dr Krayem, that answer is a resounding no.

    “The current assumption that Muslims want a separate legal system that is called ‘Sharia’ – that’s simply not true,” she told SBS.

    “What might surprise most Australians is that most Muslims live according to Sharia everyday of their lives. They live harmoniously. They’re not living in defiance of the Australian law. They’re not seeking to set up a parallel legal system.”

    Dr Khrayem said the idea behind the desire to accommodate Islamic principles in the Australian legal system is so the system can be culturally appropriate for people with an Islamic faith.

    “I don’t think anyone is standing there saying we want some special preferential treatment of setting up our own legal system or accommodating our own set of laws. No, the reality is that: we’re part and parcel with a multicultural society that is Australia. And it’s necessary for the legal system to think about how it responds to the people within it.

    “It’s not imposing anything external; it’s not sacrificing Australian values. Not at all.”

    “And in the research that I’ve completed – in speaking to many of our Imams in Australia – when asking their views about the applications of Sharia in Australia, the first thing they often tell me is that as Muslims, we abide by the law of the land.”

  402. Kate Ahearne

    havanaliedown, You obviously haven’t read too much of what gets discussed here. Yep, we’ve covered the lot. And as far as the current debate about cultural appropriation and Abdel-Magied’s role in it, I don’t see how insisting on what a novelist can write about is at all Leftist. Looks more like Fascist to me.

    Jennifer, I agree with Deanna on this point – What’s to be proud of? The colour of your skin is something you’re born with, not something wonderful that you have achieved. When black people and gay people, for instance, say they are proud, aren’t they pointing to achievements they have made in spite of their disadvantages? So I’d probably be OK with you being proud as a woman. But proud to be white?

    Deanna, We have been talking about two quite distinct shitstorms, both involving Abdel-Magied. We do need to distinguish between the two.

    Kaye, ‘Yassmin is just asking for the same right we all have to to choose the way we live and to be accepted and valued for who we are and what we do.’ Except fiction writers.

  403. Harquebus

    Kate Ahearne
    Yassmin Abdel-Magied has been told her whole life how to live and what to believe. I doubt that she had a choice.

  404. Kaye Lee


    As you would be aware, Yassmin is not alone in how she feels. Nor is it a predominant theme in her work which is about creating a Muslim Australian identity.

    “All the writers who spoke to Guardian Australia say they believe that discussing the issue of cultural appropriation is crucial, but the tenor of that discussion matters. They say that making a mockery of marginalised people’s concerns about representation and appropriation does not constitute a constructive discussion.”…..and that’s what Shriver did wrong in my (and others’) opinion.

    “Maxine Beneba Clarke, an Australian-based writer of African-Caribbean descent, believes consultation is crucial, but so is examining your own impulse to write from the perspective of another. “What does it mean to be a writer who is not a minority writer and wanting to diversify your literature? How do you do that? I think that was the opportunity for conversation that was missed [in Shriver’s speech] … How do we feel about writing each other’s stories and how do we go about it? What’s the respectful way to go about it?

    I don’t know what the answer is but I can understand both perspectives. But I think what I absolutely can’t understand is disregard for any kind of consultation and an inability to understand when people of colour are outraged.”

    Remember how we felt when Tony Abbott crowned himself Minister for Women?

  405. Kate Ahearne

    Kaye, who’s the quote from?

    Sorry, I was reading on the previous page. I’ll have a look now.

  406. Kate Ahearne

    Kaye, is this a quote? “All the writers who spoke to Guardian Australia say they believe that discussing the issue of cultural appropriation is crucial, but the tenor of that discussion matters. They say that making a mockery of marginalised people’s concerns about representation and appropriation does not constitute a constructive discussion.”…..and that’s what Shriver did wrong in my (and others’) opinion.’

  407. Kaye Lee

    The bit in quotation marks is a quote from the linked article. The last phrase was mine. I think it was more Shriver’s total dismissal of any legitimacy of the other side of the argument that got up people’s noses. That and the fact that she was supposed to be speaking about “community and belonging”‘ but hijacked the event to push her own barrow “fiction and identity politics”.

  408. helvityni

    Harquebus, how do you know about what Yassmin has been told…

    Waleed Ali’s thirteen year old daughter doesn’t want to wear a headscarf to school, parents don’t force her.

    There all kinds of Muslims, there are many kinds of Christians.

  409. Kate Ahearne

    Kaye, I think my problem about the quote I asked you to clarify has arisen because there is a quotaion mark at the beginning of the para, but there’s not one at the end. So are they your words?

  410. jimhaz

    [Instead of diffusing with clear explanations, she mimicked Lambie: shouting, haranguing, spouting lies and half truths, and hot temper]

    lol…9 out of 10 Muslim representatives on TV shows act that way. That is party why Waleed Ali is so very respected – he keeps a cool head.

    Doesn’t everyone who sticks their head out in an aggressive manner get death threats nowadays. No biggie.

  411. Harquebus

    Point taken.
    Please let me rephrase. “may have been told”.

    I am grateful to my mother took me out religious instruction at the age of five. Although I believed for some time after in the Almighty and did go to Sunday School for a couple of years, I chose apostasy in my teens and it was liberating with no punishment or ostracizing attached.

    I don’t blame children, they will believe anything as I did but, when they are not given the “free” choice upon maturity that I had, it riles me. It is hard for me to accept “believe or die”.


  412. jimhaz

    [I started reading your article and found it does not agree with what Australian Muslim scholars say. Perhaps Ann Black should have spoken to some Muslims]

    Too often they lie – “Islam being a religion of peace” is a prime example. It is not – what is the case is that most personalities desire peace.

    What they often do is pat down situations with the words they now know we wish to hear. They put on a show. I’m not suggesting they believe in terrorism but there would be things we would find to be anti-free that if given free reign they would implement.

    [Jennifer, I agree with Deanna on this point – What’s to be proud of? The colour of your skin is something you’re born with, not something wonderful that you have achieved. When black people and gay people, for instance, say they are proud, aren’t they pointing to achievements they have made in spite of their disadvantages? So I’d probably be OK with you being proud as a woman. But proud to be white?]

    Deanna is the most racist person here – against whites. She is real piece of work that one. Look at her hysteria above.

    [Yassmin Abdel-Magied has been told her whole life how to live and what to believe. I doubt that she had a choice]

    Clearly it did her no harm considering her sports activities. It really could not have been too bad.

  413. helvityni

    jimhaz, but why be aggressive, belittling, be it here or in ‘real’ life. Why not behave civilly, treat people with respect…

    I have lot time for people like Kaye Lee, Steve Laing, paulwalter… they say their bit, express their views ,but do not attack their fellow bloggers.

  414. helvityni

    Harquebus, your clarification is very much appreciated…Those bloody boring Sunday schools.. 🙂

  415. Harquebus

    Robert G. Shaw
    Thank you for that aifs link. I learned a few things.

    Sports activities are just circus events and provide no real benefit to society that can not be attained by other better means.
    Off topic and not going there.

    Sunday School had a lot to do with my decision. It couldn’t match the science that I was learning at the time.


  416. jimhaz

    [imhaz, but why be aggressive, belittling, be it here or in ‘real’ life. Why not behave civilly, treat people with respect…]

    Frustration builds up and gets released via aggressiveness. Such frustration may be combination of many issues. Erroneous PCism and excessive levels of femininity act as blockages letting out a flood when the blockage is removed by anger.

    Outside of those with a natural easy going temperament, or low testosterone levels, most people do not experience the conditions that would train them to be able to hold back better. I mean arguments with family and friends don’t necessary teach these skills – often a long term academic environment is required.

    I do not assume anger and aggressiveness are all bad – we need some release and it is far better that it is verbal rather than physical or underhanded.

  417. Kaye Lee

    Kate, I can see quotation marks at beginning and end of quotes?

    I wrote the first paragraph.

    and then this …..and that’s what Shriver did wrong in my (and others’) opinion.

    and the last sentence about Abbott.

    I think context is important in a few of the conversations we are having. The original article is about attitude to Muslims in an Australian context, not in Saudi Arabia or Pakistan or anywhere else where the situation and problems are completely different. Take the sombrero incident. In America, many look down on Mexicans so there is anticipated tension and perhaps more cultural sensitivity around stereotyping which led to an overreaction. Here a sombrero is just a damn sensible item of clothing to deal with our burning sun.

  418. Jack Straw

    helvityni ! Harquebus and jimhaz are one and the same !

  419. Kaye Lee


    The way your comment reads is that you are frustrated that those annoying women and people of colour are getting uppity.

    “Outside of those with a natural easy going temperament, or low testosterone levels, most people do not experience the conditions that would train them to be able to hold back better.”

    What rot. It’s called self-control for a reason.

    Jack Straw, no they aren’t.

    And just for the record, I loved Sunday School. I went for years.

  420. Kate Ahearne

    Thanks, Kaye. I didn’t want to address the issues that concern me about that para without knowing who I was addressing.

    I do understand your concern about the parameters of your original article. But those parameters have been well and truly breached, that horse has bolted, that ship has sailed and all that. Having said that, though, I can well understand why you might want to bring the discussion back within those parameters that your original article did set – the big reason being, as you have often said, THIS IS AUSTRALIA.

    I’ll need to come back to that para of yours. I would rather not be slapdash about it, and I do have stuff that I need to do now.

  421. Kaye Lee

    I have no problem with the discussion developing but the context point is still relevant to the expanded discussion.

  422. Jack Straw

    jimhaz There definitely must be an outlet for your anger. I don’t have trouble with most peoples anger, Passive Aggression can be more evil and it seems to be far for rampant these days.

    And my deep deep apologies to Jimhaz re Harq

    And I knew there was something odd about you Kaye . A goody 2 shoes no doubt ,Re Sunday School

  423. Zathras

    People simply seem unable to discriminate between religion and culture. Considering the majority of the world’s Muslims live in 4 countries (Indonesia, Pakistan, Indian and Bangla Desh) and two of those countries at one time had non-burqa-wearing women as their leaders it’s a bit unreasonable to extrapolate the practices of a small minority to represent them all.

    If not then I should be free to say that all Christians picket the funerals of dead soldiers, carry around “God Hates Fags” signs and ride around in buggies wearing black hats. Furthermore, the practice of female genital mutilation occurs in majority Christian African countries too so it must be part of their religious practices.

    I also noticed that Lambie insisted she was both a self-proclaimed Patriot as well as a Nationalist but these are two different things.

    A patriot is proud of his country for what it does, the nationalist is proud of his country no matter what it does.
    One is inclusive while the other is aggressive and exclusive.
    George Orwell said “The nationalist not only does not disapprove of atrocities committed by his own side, but he has a remarkable capacity for not even hearing about them”.

  424. Kaye Lee

    What can I say….it was fun. Singing, cutting, pasting, colouring, collecting those little cards of saints and such, learning to think of others (eg give your friend the bigger piece of cake), learning bible passages (which I was the bestest at), later on ringing the church bells, seeing friends, going on camps. I chose to go…my parents didn’t go to church. I actually came dux in the intermediate exam, mainly because there were hardly any of us left by then. I got a bible readers’ concordance which I have used a lot.

    I don’t know that I qualified for goody 2 shoes but I have always loved learning pretty much anything. I also did brownies, physical culture and played netball (which was called women’s basketball in those days). That pretty much exhausted the activities available to young girls.

  425. Robert G. Shaw

    There are elements within the Muslim community that, despite their alleged fringe status, have clearly vocalised their desire for elements of Sharia to be adopted within their community. Such a call runs counter to the well worn adage “law of the land”.

    – Please also click the related article with the UK reference to look into the future that so troubles those like Lambie, and to a degree, those like myself.

    To you point about “humanist principles” let me ask you in return:
    In our Australian context, do you support the implementation of Sharia on say, a young girl, whose punishment is something from the hudud?
    Remember, in the Australian context – hudud in suburbia.
    Do you support such an action?

    Re: your Shriver comments @10.03am

    I’m not quite sure that that Beneba Clarke, despite being a writer herself, understands the nature of “fiction”. I don’t mean that in an arrogant way, I mean to suggest that the call for “consultation” or even “conversation” as an integral part of the art of fiction is a mistake.
    Fiction is a creative, imaginative process, not a consultative one. It speaks to the complex set of relations between author and the world their art describes; an imagined world of possibility.
    To be sure, it certainly can be consultative; it can incorporate those strategies of consultation and reference, but to suggest that it must is not only prescriptive but also profoundly authoritarian.
    Rather than being an activity of personal imagination, artistry, of inspiration and creativity, it becomes literature by committee.
    Can you think of a more lifeless pursuit?
    I can’t.

    I’ve read the attendant arguments from both sides and as I mentioned earlier I’m of Shriver’s view.
    I seriously doubt that Abdel-Magied has an inkling as to the implications of her very public incursion.

    Harq, you’re welcome.

  426. jimhaz

    @ Kaye

    [The way your comment reads is that you are frustrated that those annoying women and people of colour are getting uppity]
    Why wouldn’t I, when it is about petty things?

    It is a simple fact that white people have evolved more in an ORGANISATIONAL sense and that is why so many wish to migrate to historically white countries. I’d love to send this Yassmin Abdel-Magied (never trust a person with a hyphenated name, assume excessive egotism) back to Nigeria (in an uneducated state, as being western educated would give her too much advantage) for a few years to see how she likes it.

    In relation to feminist issues for Australian women – they often have too many unrealistic expectations. Here we have that and some over-mothering and overprotectiveness of migrants.

    This whole idea of western whites giving away what they have been lucky enough to obtain just for the sake of equality idealism is just pathetic entitlement based lunacy. Such as expected by black actors in Hollywood for example. It is not fair. One does not build to have it taken away by others. Too many moderate governments succumb to this rubbish bit by bit for vote reasons….and Abbott/Trump type govs are a result.

    Yes, I know it is far more difficult to build when there is already an existing industry developed and owned by whites. But really that’s just bad luck – it does not mean we should give what we built away…and this includes the power to control future directions for the culture.

    [“Outside of those with a natural easy going temperament, or low testosterone levels, most people do not experience the conditions that would train them to be able to hold back better.”

    K: What rot. It’s called self-control for a reason.]

    So says a person who has had an entire life experience where such skills would be needed and thus developed. I’m sure you’d provide excuses if they were aboriginal or migrant wouldn’t you.

  427. Jack Straw

    Kaye Going exploring on your bicycle and catching frogs now that was fun. Sunday School and Religious Instructions was awful

  428. Kaye Lee


    The future is what we make of it and I see a much better chance to achieve social harmony through tolerance and inclusion than marginalisation and exclusion.

    There will always be weirdos calling for extremes. I include those calling for the expulsion of all Muslims in that category.

    “do you support the implementation of Sharia on say, a young girl, whose punishment is something from the hudud?”

    What a silly question. I will let the Australian Muslim Women’s Association answer you,

    “there has been no general call on behalf of the Muslim community for the establishment of Sharia as a parallel legal system or for the introduction of Islamic criminal law at all.

    However, there are a few‘fringe radicals’ in the Muslim community who are loud and conspicuous in their demands that Australia adopt sharia as its legal system. ‘Sharia4Australia’ is one such splinter group, promising Australians that one day “they won’t be able to drink their beer…because one day they know they will be controlled.” The prospect of being deprived of beer is calculated to strike fear into the heart of the Australian masses whatever they might think of other proposals.

    Response from Muslim community and religious leaders has been muted or non-existent. There is a need for rational and well-informed dialogue on this issue, a voice for Australian Muslim women, leadership from those who hold themselves out as religious or community leaders, and hopefully, a strong government supported campaign to inform the general public of the true meaning of Sharia in the Australian context. Information of this kind should reduce misunderstanding and banish unnecessary fear in the public mind.

    A question for all – what is the best way of convincing the Australian public that Muslims are not trying to impose Sharia on everyone and that, in fact, there is nothing to fear?”

  429. Kaye Lee

    “It is a simple fact that white people have evolved more in an ORGANISATIONAL sense and that is why so many wish to migrate to historically white countries”

    Name one “historically white country”. We ALL started out black. Could I also point out had it not been for the Arabic scholars we would have lost most of the knowledge from antiquity. Not to mention Japan and China.

    “This whole idea of western whites giving away what they have been lucky enough to obtain just for the sake of equality idealism is just pathetic entitlement based lunacy. ”

    Oh brother. You want to talk colonialism and slavery and dividing up the world between yourselves to rape, pillage and plunder? You call that luck?

    As for your excuses as to why you can’t be civil, total copout. And no, I don’t accept rudeness based on someone’s ethnic background. Family circumstances may provide explanations, not excuses. Only you can decide you will treat people with respect. I can assure you it isn’t a function of a university education.

  430. Kaye Lee


    I didn’t own a bicycle but I did go exploring with my friends all the time. I loved going out in the rain to build dams and collect snails and put the poor creatures in those clear-topped shirt boxes we used to get or collect silkworms in a shoe box and watch them turn into moths. We also went to the beach and the movies and ten-pin bowling and such. I wasn’t cloistered away with a bible.

    I chose to leave the church because of their preoccupation with worship which I consider an enormous waste of time and money. I still would join them for volunteer work in the community though.

  431. paulwalter

    Kaye Lee, the readership here is sophisticated enough to understand where some are trying to lead the conversation. We understand tawdry early nineteenth century Spencerian Social Darwinism when we read it and would assure some folk that their ideas are a full century out of date.

    All they have done is lift my respect for Kaye Lee through the roof and for them, below the gutter.

  432. Jennifer Meyer-Smith

    Deanna Jones,

    yes I am proud. I’m proud of me and mine and I happen to be white. That does not make me superior to any other people from other ethnic backgrounds and it doesn’t make me lesser either.

  433. Kaye Lee

    Thanks paul. The respect is mutual but as my husband would quickly tell you, she is not the Messiah she is just a very naughty girl. I certainly don’t have all the answers but civil dialogue is a good start.

  434. Kaye Lee


    The thing that greatly frustrates me is that most of our problems could be easily solved but politics, religion and greed get in the way. We have some very smart people in Australia. Sadly none of them are the decision makers.

  435. Miriam English

    jimhaz… oh brother! You’ve well and truly swallowed the white supremacist kool-aid.

    As Kaye said, without the Islamic world saving all the past knowledge and carrying on developing science, there probably wouldn’t have been an Enlightenment. We’d probably still be stuck in the Christian Dark Ages which lasted a thousand years! They could well have lasted another thousand.

    There was a series of accidents that led to white-skinned people lording it over the others. It isn’t because we’re better at “organising”.

    Rome absorbed many different people, allowing them to become citizens. This gave them a more and more multicultural society which let them apply different ideas and technologies. If they hadn’t been poisoned by lead and Christianity they might have continued to grow.

    Britain was invaded over and over again by different people, leading to a mix of cultures and knowledge. That early multiculturalism did well by them too. Being an island nation required them to apply that knowledge gained from mixed cultures to making ships. Eventually their ships enabled them to exploit people all around the world, stealing from everywhere to support a ravenous empire. With all those resources how could they fail to dominate everything. But they did fail. Britain still thinks it is great, but it is all delusions of grandeur now.

    USA split off from Britain due to increasing religious intolerance (that blasted Christian religion again). Early on they decided they wouldn’t make the same mistake Britain did so they set up a constitution that ensured they could never become a theocracy. They declared that all were welcome, and the flood of immigrants from different cultures made USA a ferment of culture and knowledge, giving them extraordinary technology, especially when the Germans threatened all the Jews who fled to USA, bringing all their knowledge with them. The Jews had been discriminated against by almost everybody. For a long time in Europe they were prohibited from owning land, so they had to survive by skills and knowledge. These skills and knowledge flooded into USA, which benefitted greatly from it. Now USA is dying as they are becoming a theocracy again (the constitution was not strong enough) and Christians are once again using hate to eject and block other cultures.

    Australia followed on Britain’s coattails for a while until they decided to scrap the White Australia policy and welcome immigrants from everywhere. Then an amazing explosion of science and culture took place with Australia suddenly punching well above its weight in science and the arts. Now we are seeing the rise of the Christians in our government trying to instutite a theocracy (bloody Christians again!) and promote hate and fear of people from other cultures.

    Now, if you really want to see a culture that was a prime example of organisation, look at the Chinese. They’ve had a civilisation that has survived for more than 7 thousand years. Europeans were living in caves back then! The Chinese even survived the attempt by the British to destroy their nation using opium.

    The Japanese civilisation can be traced back more than 10 thousand years, perhaps even 14 thousand years.

    In India they were building cities and astronomical observatories and making great advances in mathematics around 10 thousand years ago. Their civilisation probably extended quite a bit further back.

    Accidents play a ridiculously important part in the dominance of cultures. What makes a culture great seems most often to come from absorbing other people, cultures, and knowledge — multiculturalism.

    There are a number of other civilisations I haven’t touched on, Persia, which grew and fell and grew again, Aksum (Ethiopia), Egyptian, Thai and Cambodian civilisations, and more. The idea that whites are somehow destined to dominate is laughable. It is kinda sad when you see that multiculturalism played a great part in White dominance, yet all around the world Whites seem determined to expel those on whose backs they grew to power. It’s like corals expelling their symbiotic algae.

  436. Kate Ahearne

    Kaye, You wrote, “All the writers who spoke to Guardian Australia say they believe that discussing the issue of cultural appropriation is crucial, but the tenor of that discussion matters. They say that making a mockery of marginalised people’s concerns about representation and appropriation does not constitute a constructive discussion.”…..and that’s what Shriver did wrong in my (and others’) opinion.

    We need to acknowledge that the writers quoted in the article were not chosen at random. They were chosen by the author, Stephanie Convery, and so the agreement that you point to is hardly surprising. She wasn’t going to choose someone who might say something different, was she? And we need to also acknowledge that Abdel-Magied’s article was published before Shriver’s speech became available, which suggests that The Guardian had immediately taken a position on the matter, and published Abdel-Magied’s article knowing that their readers could not access the original speech. I’m a big fan of The Guardian, but they made a mistake in that instance.

    Shriver does not, in fact, make ‘a mockery of marginalised concerns about representation and appropriation’. What she does do is to object to being told what she, as a fiction writer, can write – in particular, the characters she can create.

    Nor was Shriver’s speech a ‘celebration of the unfettered exploitation of the experience of others’, as Abdel-Magied insisted that it was. What Shriver was arguing for was the freedom to create her own characters, be they black, white or brindle. She does make the point that of course she can exploit her own characters, make them do what she wants them to do, say what she wants them to say and so on, But exploiting characters in the way that every single fiction writer does, is not the same as exploiting people. As for ‘unfettered’ – at no point does Shriver insist on her right to be free of the fetters of decency. At no point does she demand to be allowed to spread hatred and vitriol, as Pickering’s cartoons do.

    At the time of the Shriver debacle, I read with great interest everything on the subject I could find, and I noticed that a huge volume of words were put into Shriver’s mouth – words that she never said, including plenty of words from Abdel-Magied.

    The problems faced by writers from minority cultures cannot be fixed by telling white men and women what they can write and what kinds of characters they are allowed to create. If there are not enough opportunities, then it makes much better sense to address the lack of opportunity.

    If you would like to see just one of the very many articles that disagreed with Abdel-Magied, you might like to check out Peter’s Craven’s article.

  437. jimhaz

    [There was a series of accidents that led to white-skinned people lording it over the others. It isn’t because we’re better at “organising”.]

    But it is the case here in the now, is it not? otherise we would be the ones wanting to migrant.

    All that history you stated, is why I used the term luck in the following sentence.

    “This whole idea of western whites giving away what they have been lucky enough to obtain”

    Here was my reply to Kaye, which I had decided not to bother posting due to being hesitant about the last para.

    “It is a simple fact that white people have evolved more in an ORGANISATIONAL sense and that is why so many wish to migrate to historically white countries”

    [Name one “historically white country”]

    Clutching at straws there aren’t you!

    Most of the OECD countries.

    [Could I also point out had it not been for the Arabic scholars we would have lost most of the knowledge from antiquity. Not to mention Japan and China]

    Clutching at straws there aren’t you!

    It makes virtually zero difference where a small part of the technology came from. It is the way a society evolves its organisation so that technology can be made use of that counts. Such differences are probably why China did not cut England out of the international power market many centuries ago .

    Oh brother. You want to talk colonialism and slavery and dividing up the world between yourselves to rape, pillage and plunder?]
    Clutching at straws there aren’t you!

    As far as I can tell those things are now mostly in the past, though the latter still exists via borderless capitalism.

    I’m not aware of any imperialistic expansion from western countries for many decades. None of the countries the US has been accused of stuffing up say by the CIA have actually been taken over. There is rape, pillage and plunder by the 1% in the purchase of mineral resources for too cheap a price, but that applies in western countries as well.

    [As for your excuses as to why you can’t be civil, total copout. Only you can decide you will treat people with respect. I can assure you it isn’t a function of a university education]

    Yeah well, the uni thing was badly worded, it was more of an example life experience that would aid in remaining polite under stress, rather that the sole reason. I keep expecting people to ‘get my intended meaning’ like Robert Shaw probably does.
    Was I making excuses? I wasn’t thinking of excuses when responding to Helvityni. At the present time I don’t feel I have anything to make excuses about. Sure I’ve been giving the oldies a bit of hard time with (single post) criticisms but that’s because the forum felt oversaturated with femininity and too much of a self-congratulating hens club rather than a place to battle complex ideas. I was making a stand against what Helvityni (as an example only) thinks should be the standard of politeness, which would include not saying certain things to save offence to others.

  438. Kaye Lee

    Kate I have read extensively both sides of the debate. The Guardian purposely chose ethnic minority authors to interview for an obvious reason.

    “knowing that their readers could not access the original speech”

    You are really stretching the conspiracy bow here. They had every right to publish Yassmin’s article as a reaction to the speech and probably no permission to reprint the speech which should have been up to the Festival organisers to do. As you are aware, the speech soon became available.

    I agree that fiction writers cannot possibly be confined to personal experience. I do not agree that they should so cavalierly dismiss the concerns of those who wish to discuss how to do this with respect and sensitivity if their novels are depicting real situations in history and society.

  439. Roswell

    Keep being a very naughty girl, Kaye. ?

  440. Kaye Lee

    jimhaz, you can’t dismiss the past because it led to the present. For example, imagine if all those station owners had paid the Aboriginal stockmen a real wage. Would life have been different for their children and grandchildren if they too had been able to purchase some of the land we stole from them?

  441. Kate Ahearne

    Kaye, ‘… if their novels are depicting real situations in history and society.’ But that’s not what the debate has been about.

    Shriver was not dismissive of any genuine concerns. She was dismissive of some very silly ones. Being a member of a minority group is no guarantee that you are a sensible human being, or that you hold sensible views on all subjects.

  442. jimhaz

    [jimhaz, you can’t dismiss the past because it led to the present]

    I can in this case. Those were “starter” factors, but there was all the change as a result of those initiators that occurred in the meantime. You dismiss all that.

    With your argument I can say that Islam has lead to a demise in expressed intelligence and peaceful organisation or a lack of future social evolution, ever since Mohammed.

    I can also say things like aboriginals have lower IQs (relative to fitting into western society) as for 40,000 years they did not have the large populations that cause the mind to more rapidly evolve.

  443. Roswell

    “I can also say things like aboriginals have lower IQs (relative to fitting into western society) as for 40,000 years they did not have the large populations that cause the mind to more rapidly evolve.”

    I. Am. Speechless.

  444. Kate Ahearne

    jimhaz, Your ignorance is gob-smacking. The Aboriginal Peoples had enough IQ to live in harmony with the land for 40,000 years. Do you think it is IQ for us to be bombing the bejesus out of other countries, as we are currently doing in the Middle East? Is that progress? Are YOU an example of progress?

    I’m not going to be replying to any more of your comments. I’m utterly ashamed of you. No more oxygen for you from me.

  445. jimhaz

    You people can be really cretinious. All emotion and no perspective.

    What do you think this part means?

    “(relative to fitting into western society)”

  446. Kaye Lee

    Kate, I agree that some people take it way too far, the sombrero example being one such case. They ain’t taking MY sombrero away!

    But everything I have read from Shriver has been totally dismissive. I have not heard her concede that there is any validity in concern from the other side. Of course that’s not to say she hasn’t – I just haven’t seen it in all the articles I have read.

    When people are dismissed and their voice not listened to they can get very frustrated and overstate their case, not listening because the other side isn’t listening. We saw that with Yassmin and Jacqui. But I have to say, I would probably end up yelling too if I tried to have a conversation with Jacqui. There is not one iota of nuance in her. Whatever is written in those copious notes they give her before letting her out anywhere she will stick to like glue. She is not a listener.

    With Shriver, I get the impression that she is so very impressed with herself that the rest of us are just expected to fall into line with her opinion.

  447. helvityni

    jimhaz, it was not just women, but men as well including our very much male moderator, Rosswell ,who found your comment about Codi’s letter insulting, unnecessarily harsh. John Lord wanted to know about it and Harquebus was interested in passing it further.

    You don’t need to see every exchange as a battlefield. I know some posters here from other blogs, and know better than to get involved in every bit of nit-picking.

    Rather than abusing someone why not just move along, move to the next battle/exchange/discussion whatever…we are here at the mercy of our moderators, and just as well.

    Thank you, Michael and Rosswell.

  448. Kaye Lee

    jimhaz, how’s your IQ relative to fitting into Aboriginal society?

  449. helvityni

    Kaye lee, totally agree with your last post, you are saying what I’m thinking, and so much better…

    (The post about Shriver..)

  450. jimhaz

    [jimhaz, how’s your IQ relative to fitting into Aboriginal society?]

    Hopeless in the physical sense, but yet again you bring up an irrelevant point, its too hypothetical thus meaningless.

    Aboriginal society is very much a minority power and there is no present cause that would force me to live in a primitive state (I’m too old for GW to be a big problem for my own life).

    I’d probably be killed for being too rebellious and lol so would you – being an outspoken woman your partner would likely have bashed you, perhaps to death. Unlikely you’d get the choice of partner, but would be taken in a raid.

  451. Kaye Lee

    It may come as a shock to you but not all Aboriginals “live in a primitive state”.

    And you are no doubt right about me not meekly accepting what the tribe says. That’s why I refuse to join a political party – I’d be chucked out for speaking my mind.

    Whilst you keep dismissing the points brought up by others, I do hope they have made you think just a little bit.

    As far as my partner bashing me is concerned, he might do it once but he would NEVER have an opportunity to do it again.

  452. jimhaz

    [It may come as a shock to you but not all Aboriginals “live in a primitive state”.]
    As far as my partner bashing me is concerned, he might do it once but he would NEVER have an opportunity to do it again]

    Sorry, I geared my response to aboriginality as it was in the Sydney area around the time of the First Fleet (as observed by Watkin Tench) to exclude the influence of western society.

  453. jimhaz

    @ helvityni

    [Rather than abusing someone why not just move along]

    What, so you can have a lovely little place to chat within a group of clone thinkers, revelling in confirmation bias.

  454. Kate Ahearne

    Kaye, I think we have to agree to disagree. Shriver is dismissive of (what I also believe to be ) the very stupid demand that she and fiction writers in general should desist from creating characters from outside her/their own cultural background. (This demand is aimed particularly at white writers creating characters from minority groups.) That’s the demand she is so dismissive of. That’s what her speech was all about. You don’t find anything wrong with that demand, and I do. And what’s more, I think it needs to be resisted with great vigour.

    Shriver doesn’t accord that demand any validity because it HAS no validity. She is not saying that writers from minority backgrounds don’t need more opportunities. She’s not saying that she has a perfect right to misrepresent minorities or to create or reinforce stereotypes. She’s not refusing to consider reasonable points of view. She is not trying to stop minority writers from telling their own stories.

    (Incidentally, this debate had been going on for a long time before she gave her speech in Brisbane, and these demands have been made on and off for the last decade or so. Her exasperation didn’t just pop up in a vacuum.)

    And just an interesting aside, Shriver makes the point that if fiction writers were to bow to this demand, there’d be nothing left for them to write except memoir. Shriver has published 13 novels. Yassmin has published one book so far ‘Yassmin’s Story’ – a memoir.

    As I said before, if we were to accept this ridiculous demand, we’d have to take nearly all of the canon of fiction off our shelves.

    Sometimes it’s helpful to look at another, parallel example. Should we forbid cartoonists from depicting Aboriginal or Muslim characters because one cartoonist (Pickering) has used his cartoons to spread hatred and vitriol? Isn’t it the hatred and vitriol that we need to address rather than the right of cartoonists to depict characters from minority cultures?

    If Shriver writes a book that belittles or stereotypes a minority group, let’s take her to task for that.

  455. Kaye Lee

    See that is exactly what I am talking about. I wrote the article. You have just said I would probably be kicked out of any tribe because I am NOT a clone thinker. helvityni has often been a voice of reason when some of us have taken argument too far, including me. You unfairly misrepresent her advice and react aggressively and dismissively.

    You talk about confirmation bias in a long thread where many people have expressed different views. That is a misrepresentation of the discussion.

  456. Kaye Lee

    Kate I don’t find anything wrong with that demand because absolutely no-one has made it. You totally misrepresent the discussion. No-one to my knowledge has suggested that “fiction writers in general should desist from creating characters from outside her/their own cultural background.”

    As Yassmin said…..

    “My own mother, as we walked away from the tent, suggested that perhaps I was being too sensitive. Perhaps … or perhaps that is the result of decades of being told to be quiet, and accept our place. So our conversation then turned to intent. What was Shriver’s intent when she chose to discuss her distaste for the concept of cultural appropriation? Was it to build bridges, to further our intellect, to broaden horizons of what is possible?

    Her tone, I fear, betrayed otherwise. Humility is not Shriver’s cloak of choice.”

    Just to give an example, I have been taken to task for using gender-based language. On one occasion it was because I said unmanned drone. I thought that was a bit unfair but, as the commenter pointed out, the word drone makes the unmanned bit unnecessary. Since that encounter, I have been more aware and tried to avoid offending those who feel strongly about the issue. It has made me more creative in my vocabulary.

  457. Kate Ahearne

    Kaye, I’m not going to continue this discussion about cultural appropriation here. It’s frustrating and ultimately pointless. That demand has indeed been made, and Shriver’s entire speech is about that demand.

    ‘Because the ultimate endpoint of keeping our mitts off experience that doesn’t belong to us is that there is no fiction. Someone like me only permits herself to write from the perspective of a straight white female born in North Carolina, closing on sixty, able-bodied but with bad knees, skint for years but finally able to buy the odd new shirt. All that’s left is memoir.’

    .She concludes her speech with this: ‘We fiction writers have to preserve the right to wear many hats – including sombreros.’

    And as for Yassmin’s remark: ‘Humility is not Shriver’s cloak of choice’. A little bit of projection going on there, wouldn’t you say?

    So, please feel free to have the last word. I’m over it.

  458. jimhaz

    [helvityni has often been a voice of reason when some of us have taken argument too far, including me. You unfairly misrepresent her advice and react aggressively and dismissively]

    Each to their own. I‘ve only ever seen helvityni adding minimal conceptual value or none at all.

    “Rather than abusing someone why not just move along”

    My comment was no more aggressive than the above pointing the bone.

    Didn’t you say something yesterday about older women being tougher than I might think – I don’t see that shown here.

    [You talk about confirmation bias in a long thread where many people have expressed different views. That is a misrepresentation of the discussion.]

    Was I talking about the entire discussion in my response to helvityni. That’s news to me.

    She wants this to become like Ellis Tabletalk where anyone with an opposing view was kicked out, leaving only the “friendlies”.

    [You have just said I would probably be kicked out of any tribe because I am NOT a clone thinker]

    Well have we progressed or not when it comes to group behaviour. It looks like not.

    Almost always, someone with an opposing view here will be given suggestions to move along. Their personal shortcomings such as Robert’s superiority complex will become the focus, not what he is saying. I’m certain he understands the world better than most here.

    [Whilst you keep dismissing the points brought up by others]

    8 out of 10 prolific posters here dismiss my points – particularly contextually. Nothing mentioned in this thread has changed my viewpoint.

  459. paulwalter

    Yes..Kate Ahearne moves it on a bit.

    Ta, Kate.

  460. Scott

    I saw Bolte kissing/sucking religious at the same time as declaring himself agnostic. Now thats a sycophant

  461. Kaye Lee

    “So, please feel free to have the last word. I’m over it.”

    That’s unfair Kate. Perhaps you don’t mean it like it sounds. I had thought it a good discussion rather than an exercise in one-uppmanship. I am sorry if you perceived it that way.

  462. Kate Ahearne

    Kaye, I don’t know what it sounds like. I offered you the last word. One-upmanship? No, I didn’t perceive it that way. I just didn’t want to go on and on, and was happy to have the second-last word.

  463. Deanna Jones

    Jimhaz, white people did not evolve at all. White men appropriated the land of this planet by extremely violent means, for no other purpose but self interest and greed. This is primitive behaviour. Whites are still bombing people back to the Stone Age then calling their culture inferior. Your commentary about our First. Nations peoples is wrong and disgusting and don’t bother to reply because I’m embarrassed to even be seen talking to you. Your presence degrades this space.

  464. Jennifer Meyer-Smith

    So what are your thoughts about white women, Deanna?

  465. Deanna Jones

    Miriam at 3:02, awesome posting.

  466. Deanna Jones

    Which ones, Jennifer? Be patient, I’m still reading back.

  467. Steve Laing -

    Jimhaz – I’d highly recommend you read a book by Jared Diamond called Guns, Germs and Steel. Its basically about how the world has been populated over history. Its a very fascinating tome, and highly readable. Spoiler alert – one of the main reasons that the Europeans managed to colonise much of the world is largely down to geography. Not racial superiority, not genetic superiority, but effectively through being in the right place.

    Aboriginal Australians are the only people who have been able to survive on this continent reliant purely on native plants and animals. Whitey couldn’t. Whitey is only able to survive because he brought in foreign species. Moreover for all our “genius” we appear to be on track to destroy the ecosystem as we currently know it. If this is the measure of our “success”, it will be somewhat short lived.

  468. Jennifer Meyer-Smith


    Any white women because as you would agree white women are diverse and should not be pigeon-holed into the same generic boxes.


    Steve Laing,

    just coz jimhaz has disgraced himself yet again by racist and sexist monologues, you don’t need to denigrate my people by calling us “whitey”. Maybe this is where Hanson’s demographics see their cause is righteous in protecting their own identity.

  469. Deanna Jones

    Jennifer, “whitey” would only be derogatory in a world where the dominant culture was black and black people were privileged at the expense of white people. There is no such thing as racism against whites in a world where white supremacism reigns. It doesn’t ‘go both ways’. Racist slurs against people of colour help to prop up a vast system of oppression against people of colour, but no parallel system oppressing white people exists, therefore terms like ‘whitey’ are just words without any political punch behind them.

    I say a similar thing to men who complain about ‘reverse sexism’.

  470. Jennifer Meyer-Smith

    No doubt you are correct, Deanna on the question I asked Steve Laing, but what about the question I asked you?

    If Steve responds to the question I asked him, I will be interested if he or anyone addresses my reference to why so many Hansonites might feel disenfranchised.

  471. Kaye Lee

    Hansonites are looking for someone to blame for the inequality caused by the neo-cons that they continue to vote for because they care not about policy, just finding a scapegoat, and it is so much easier to pick on people who are different, particularly when politicians and the media are telling you it’s all the fault of _______ (insert minority du jour). They are angry people who are too lazy/tired/overwhelmed to inform themselves of the real reasons why houses are unaffordable and unskilled work is disappearing.

  472. Jennifer Meyer-Smith

    While I probably share your harsh judgement of the fact that Hansonites have scurried to Hanson for representation of their needs, I don’t appear to totally agree with your blanket explanation.

    Yes, they are angry and possibly lazy but more likely tired and overwhelmed people, who until now have not felt that the major parties have addressed their growing fears and uncertainties, and who for good reason or not, feel that to have expressed their anguish in their white personas would not have raised any particular attention.

  473. Deanna Jones

    Jennifer, I thought my response to your comment to Steve might have covered off what you are asking of me. I hold grave fears for all women, but white women losing ‘cultural identity’ is not one of them, and I don’t care about Hansonites too much although Kaye’s answer about sums it up. They would rather indulge their hatred than get a clue.

  474. Jennifer Meyer-Smith

    So next time Deanna, when you question my comments based on me and my cultural identity, as “a proud white, white woman” …

    … and not a white man …

    you presumably won’t be surprised, if I expect you to differentiate what goes for white women and white men.



    sex equality is the primary goal before any other. Race equality comes next.

  475. Kaye Lee


    I’m not sure I agree that there is a pecking order in dealing with discrimination. The whole concept of discrimination, whether on the grounds of gender, ethnicity, religion, sexual orientation, age or health/disability is just something we must strive to eliminate.

  476. jimhaz

    Re: Deanna Jones post to me

    [Jimhaz, white people did not evolve at all]

    Lol. You can measure human evolution by the degree of change, including the use of tools. We do the same determine animal intelligence.

    You can also view a nation as being like a species, with culture and some racial attributes being the differences that define each species.

    A species would be considered to be going through a positive evolutionary phase if it is changing in a manner that aids the survival of the species – such as an increased desire for cooperation – or even just in becoming more complex.

    [White men appropriated the land of this planet by extremely violent means, for no other purpose but self interest and greed. This is primitive behaviour]

    Note that above I said nation, which does not include that nation’s relationship with the rest of the world, when viewed as a species trying to survive as well as it can. All species will aim to utilise all resources they need within the limits of their power.

    It is only recently that we evolved the tools, that expands, for every member of the ‘nation species’, our inter-species competition to the entire globe.

    Its still early days and we are still going through the fighting stage. The nature of the existing world of competition is that cooperation is often not viable – because different countries are at a different point in the human evolutionary phase.

    I do agree that it is primitive behaviour, but only relative to evolutionary phases we westerners are yet to go through, whereas actual primitive cultures are even further behind.

    You seem to make the assumption that if non-whites had the same circumstances as the western world that they would be much nicer about it. Sorry, that is not how things work. It is correct to say that ones environment creates the nature of the species.

    Now I would agree that our western evolution has come with costs to the individual. As a whole species we have evolved, but at the individual level in some aspects have also regressed. Unfortunately that is what occurs as a species grows into very large herds/hives. It can only do so if it increases cooperation between members, but the cost of this is a loss of the relaxed contentment that many isolated tribes seem to possess. Complexity creates mental stresses that primitive peoples don’t have.

    We have access to vast stores of things of interest, so knowledge wise we have evolved quite a bit, but this knowledge comes with a loss of innocence which harms our ability to feel the joys children experience when they encounter something new.

    Still what we see in non-western people is a desire to pick and choose from western society. Across the whole globe they want we have – easier and longer lives, better medical treatments, comforts, western entertainments, western transport etc etc.

    What this shows is that they judge the west to be more evolved than their nation is. To me it also shows that they would have acted no different to us given the same circumstances.

    Your viewpoint is a left based post-truth fantasy.

    [Whites are still bombing people back to the Stone Age then calling their culture inferior]

    And non-whites do not have wars?

    [Your commentary about our First Nations peoples is wrong and disgusting]

    Rubbish. Sometimes the truth is just distasteful.

    Aborigines have never lived long lives on average. One part of the many reasons for that, was inter tribal conflict both fighting and stealing women. In many areas, they often hated other nearby tribes, in the same way a racist does, due to competition for resources. I’m just saying this for comparison, not judgement – what they did they did because of evolution. There was a need to keep numbers low and as a result of the conflict males had to be dominant over women.

    [and don’t bother to reply because I’m embarrassed to even be seen talking to you].

    I’m explaining my position, for people not as racist as you. Actually its probably not racism, but misandry towards white males due to past highly negative experiences.

    You’ll keep having highly negative experiences if you feel intense hatred for every white male with opposing opinions to you, though. Negativity attracts more negativity, which as a pessimist myself I know quite well. I just find the most objective truth to be more important to not care for the conformity of viewpoint expected here.

    [Your presence degrades this space]

    So very bitter.

  477. Jennifer Meyer-Smith


    how would you describe your political stance?


    Kaye Lee,

    sadly I disagree …

    … with your first sentence.

    Naturally, your explanatory second is acceptable.

  478. Deanna Jones

    Jennifer, I did not question your ‘cultural identity’, I asked you what is there to be proud of in being white. You haven’t bothered to answer this question, yet you appear to be a bit agitated in general and very demanding of me to answer your questions. I think us whities need to learn a bit of humility. Even white women benefit greatly from white supremacy.

  479. Jennifer Meyer-Smith


    by questioning my cultural identity, you raised doubt on why I should be proud to be white.

    It’s not that hard! Questioned answered.

    Whether you identify as white or not, your blanket derogation of white people, as having advantage is sadly outdated.

    By what measures, are you making these judgments?

  480. Kaye Lee

    “The nature of the existing world of competition is that cooperation is often not viable – because different countries are at a different point in the human evolutionary phase.”

    When one country develops a bigger and better weapon than another country has and uses it to steal the resources of the other country or to obliterate them, do we call that evolution?

    “Across the whole globe they want we have”….or perhaps what we have taken from them through colonisation and the free labour of slaves.

    “Aborigines have never lived long lives on average. One part of the many reasons for that, was inter tribal conflict both fighting and stealing women. ”

    Not the diseases brought by the white invaders? Not the alcohol, cigarettes and sugar they brought with them when they invaded? Not the poverty inflicted on people who had their land stolen from them as they were herded away from any productive land?

    “There was a need to keep numbers low and as a result of the conflict males had to be dominant over women.”

    I don’t understand that comment at all???

    “misandry towards white males due to past highly negative experiences.”

    Or perhaps a recognition of the patriarchal dominance that white males have inflicted on a world where they feel entitled to take all for themselves?

  481. paulwalter

    Kinda agree with Kaye Lee, 730, yet don’t..A lot of people were brainwashed into taking on board certain expectations and then have had the rug pulled, as has happened with neo liberalism; is it not be expected that some anger at least would be then manifest?

    It is hard to believe that many people are not brainwashed after watching Lambies incoherent ‘”Sharia” rant the other night… she got it right re Centrlink, then blamed Muslims rather than the corrupted system and its elite.
    I think it is more nuanced that just saying many are “lazy”, it ignores the coma imposing affects of popular culture imposed by the oligarchy…consent manufacture, Stepfording, you name it.”.. must blame these perhaps a bit as well as the victims.

    Btw, saw the term “cultural appropriation” employed, hope I ascribed the sense In which I took it to the right person.

    When you think about it these conversations have been going on since John Locke when it comes to propaganda and colonisation on different levels, which is perhaps why Roland Barthes was so happy to take on social Darwinism in his “Mythologies” essays, eg the Black Soldier ( Intrinsically foolish enough to be?) defending the Empire

  482. Jennifer Meyer-Smith


    you’ve got it right in your 1st and 2nd paragraphs.

    4th paragraph escapes my learning.

  483. jimhaz

    [just coz jimhaz has disgraced himself yet again by racist and sexist monologues]

    The far left deserves the scorn it gets. The left uses ‘racist’ like a racist uses ‘nigger’.

    Your not going to achieve equality when you apply those labels to things that many find to be true by direct observation, by what actually is, not what ought to be, then you are being intellectually dishonest and you are the one that should be disgraced.

    Truth is a very tricky beast. At the very least you should accept that what each of us observes is subjective. A pessimist seeks out and stores observations differently to an optimist. A person with overall negative experiences in an area will have a different value system than someone who has not. A person who can gain something from having a certain view will often come to a different opinion than someone who does not gain.

    As for sexist. To deny differences is some kind of fantasy. If there are differences then there will be areas where attitudes will differ – thus open to opposing value systems and thus criticism will ensue. At times, this forum is just too feminine, which actually includes some males, and I’m kind of fighting that. Much of the political content is too valid and important for this forum to be limited to just soft hearts.

  484. jimhaz

    [how would you describe your political stance?]

    I support the prevailing opinions of this forum, apart from MMT. I differ on a fair few social issues, though to left of the middle ground, not the right.

  485. Kaye Lee

    paul, I can certainly understand people being angry. I just wish they would direct the anger at the lying bastards that are conning them as they rip us all off.

    Pretending coal will provide jobs and cheap power into the future is just bullshit. Giving our money to Gina Rinehart’s buddies is unconscionable.

    Pauline sure is good on the whinging part but has she ever offered a viable solution to anything? To me she seems horribly ill-informed and dreadfully naive which leaves her open to exploitation by the likes of Ashby. She is trying to run candidates everywhere but does no vetting so she has attracted the greatest collection of miscreants I have ever seen.

    The latest example…..

    “A One Nation candidate receiving Liberal preferences in the West Australian election once advocated killing Indonesian journalists, and attacked “poofters”, Muslims and black people on his now-deactivated Twitter account.

    Richard Eldridge, a real estate agent contesting an upper house seat in the South Metropolitan region of Perth, called Muslims “little sheet heads”, derided gay relationships as “poo games” and advocated taking up arms against “extreme Muslims”.

    And it only gets worse as you read the article further.

  486. paulwalter

    Gotta to be fair to JMS here. The thing is metalanguage.. it is “normal” that a naive looking young black soldier looking adoringly at the French flag ( after all, he is “black” and childlike and dependent of “civilised “people, to the extent of wanting to guard them at the cost of his own life) and for “us” to consider this as the normal state of being..they are vindicated through suffering as are we vindicated through our passive and oddly fortunate role of being the protected subject.

    The graphic emphasises the message, it is really difficult to tear through Myth, that normalises as possible false conclusion through fabricated and arranged “evidence”, what well may be highly abnormal.

    Its like the Cosmic noise. Is been there since birth so how would you know it was there when it was part of your cognitive landscape.

    Any one reading this, please consider these musings against the evidence of Lambie’s Sharia rant and her appearance as it was delivered. what was considered “given”and through that what was or was not challenged that could have resulted in a different conclusion to the “Wicked Islam” one (eg us colonising then bombing them back to the Stone Age and a resentful ideology derived of suffering thus emerging, due to the historical conditions in play)

  487. jimhaz

    [When one country develops a bigger and better weapon than another country has and uses it to steal the resources of the other country or to obliterate them, do we call that evolution?]

    Unfortunately, yes. Evolution is not always a long term advantage. Technology is technology. We can only hope we survive its insanity. The thing is like nukes SO FAR, the very existence of the technology causes us to investigate the downside.

    [“Across the whole globe they want we have”….or perhaps what we have taken from them through colonisation and the free labour of slaves]

    Not in the spirit of my comment, which was to say they choose to seek out western technology.

    Btw, the way, I don’t really see it as western technology – but what would have occurred at some point if no westerners existed. I see it as the destiny of the application of intelligence.

    [“Aborigines have never lived long lives on average. One part of the many reasons for that, was inter tribal conflict both fighting and stealing women. ”

    K: Not the diseases brought by the white invaders? Not the alcohol, cigarettes and sugar they brought with them when they invaded? Not the poverty inflicted on people who had their land stolen from them as they were herded away from any productive land?]

    No. The natural world would have killed many off to make the average age of death more or less the same as now. Childbirth, falls, fighting, lack of food, cold, curable sicknesses etc etc.

    I have little doubt they had happier lives, however that is irrelevant. As soon as the right technology was invented, some other mob would have done much the same.

    [“There was a need to keep numbers low and as a result of the conflict males had to be dominant over women.”

    K: I don’t understand that comment at all???]

    When you don’t have agriculture you have a population limit, so it was natural to divide into tribes. Once that occurred conflict was destiny.

    This inter-tribe conflict means the males had to be strong and prepared for violence, and have a desire for domination. Women being the weaker physical sex would be a sort of practice object and if stolen from another tribe be scared of absconding. This would not have been the case in all males of course – all peoples have some form of bell curve of both temperament and intelligence.

    [“misandry towards white males due to past highly negative experiences.”

    [K: Or perhaps a recognition of the patriarchal dominance that white males have inflicted on a world where they feel entitled to take all for themselves?]

    A desire for domination and power is in all races and more prominent in males.

    Do women like to shop? To accrue many pairs of shoes?
    Women were complicit until circumstances meant they did not have to be. This only occurred via our technological evolution – otherwise emmacipation would have occurred much earlier. It’s not as if you didn’t have the brains to work out how to get around men – you just couldn’t afford to.

    To blame males alone is quite sexist.

    The left must stop constantly applying today’s values on non recent events. It creates false thinking. I mean as an example – convicts were treated very harshly. Lashes that cut to the bone. Expectations that many would die in transit – until more knowledge evolved to lessen that. Irish convicts/migrants had some invasion issues of their own.

  488. Jennifer Meyer-Smith

    Bullshit jimhaz.

    It’s the patriarchy that I’m identifying and I’m also identifying every male who has benefited and is still benefiting over every female in the workforce or in the home or in any socio-economic scenario such as superannuation benefits, land ownership, historical recognition, political representation, bureaucratic leadership, and you name it, I’ll add that to the list too.

  489. paulwalter

    Jimhaz: short answer, you try to get a perspective from the contexts history provides, not employ history as justification for a view that ignores certain realities for subjective reasons, as Lambie did the other night.

    I do agree that blaming “men” is an example, but only one or two do it here, most contributors realise that men are as conditioned and as frustrated with life as women are, in order to be fitted with icomodification.

    This stuff starts from birth and is often cultural and subceptional.

  490. paulwalter

    whoops writing above same time as JMS..oh well, read both and balance them out.

  491. Jennifer Meyer-Smith

    I can quite understand why I may well appear to be a radical extremist when it comes to sex equality and all its societal ramifications.

    I do apologise to my kindly male compadres for appearing bitter and twisted but the sad reality is you guys have generally reaped better benefits than your female counterparts. To dispute that is to be disingenuous.

    However, I do not apologise for confronting the bleeding obvious, which has become taboo to tackle in our post-modernist world where things that are not discussed in ‘nice society’.

  492. jimhaz

    [It’s the patriarchy that I’m identifying and I’m also identifying every male who has benefited and is still benefiting over every female in the workforce or in the home or in any socio-economic scenario such as superannuation benefits, land ownership, historical recognition, political representation, bureaucratic leadership, and you name it, I’ll add that to the list too.]

    Subject to GW and things like world economic turmoil, then its destiny for those areas to equalise further.

    Never forget that there will be a downside. Women will progressively become as overtly selfish as men. DV will increase. Were going to need robots as we will lose women to status envy. There will be too few willing to do the jobs that are dominated by women now. Until then it means more immigration from poor countries to blow up the worlds population.

  493. Jennifer Meyer-Smith


    so why do you perpetuate the myth that sex equality is not warranted?

  494. jimhaz

    @ paul

    [I do apologise to my kindly male compadres for appearing bitter and twisted but the sad reality is you guys have generally reaped better benefits than your female counterparts]

    The difficulty is that in equality equations it’s not all about money. I have a belief that more women have happier lives than is the case for men. A value must be attached to that.

    I also suspect the full equality they seek will make more women unhappier. I think it has already.

    Time for me to get off this device.

  495. paulwalter

    As I said, I’m not sure most men are any happier with the outcomes derived of their conditioning than women. We are talking about a power system that rewards the pathological, rather than a conscious or,personalised attempt or conspiracy by all men to confound all women, pehaps?

    Really, it isn’t a universal plot…rather it is like the structured job market, with high unemployment as a given, where immigrant and local workers fight over the spoils of defeat while the few run the flea-circus. except that the sexual division of labour pits women against men in a system derived in changes to the means of production that bust the old balance between men and women in more organic communities.

  496. Jennifer Meyer-Smith

    No gentlemen,

    it’s not a convenient plot planted at one point of time in our human history, It is the vertical and horizontal unfolding of a patriarchal system that continues to favour one lot against another lot with a few mediocre amendments along the way that may appear to attempt some redress.

  497. Jennifer Meyer-Smith

    Anyway, I’ve said my bits for tonight. I shall retire to my SBS On Demand viewing. Goodnight.

  498. Miriam English

    jimhaz, what you keep saying amazes me. How can any reasonably intelligent, moderately well-educated person think those things? And the poison that you infuse the word “left” with… amazing.

    You think the white-skinned people somehow deserve their dominant position, yet the ridiculous thing is that if a few trivial things were altered at various points in history the dominant people would have other colored skin.

    To assert that aborigines have a lesser IQ for Western lifestyle is pure rot. Have you looked at the $50 note? The guy it depicts is David Unaipon. He was a prolific inventor, wrote numerous articles for newspapers, and published a few books. He was an authority on ballistics and was mathematically gifted. The fact that he was able to achieve all this proves that access is everything. If people of any skin color are given opportunity they can do anything any other people can, because in reality, there is no such thing as race. Human beings have almost no genetic variability at all. We are dangerously lacking in genetic diversity.

    But I expect nothing will convince you. You’re well and truly stuck in a dismal worldview in which race means something.

    It will be interesting to see what you think when this kind of race-based view of the world causes USA, UK, and Australia to implode and China to dominate the world. It is already beginning. You see it in the language of Trump and those fond of him; Hanson, Bernardi, Abbott, and Christensen and those who believe them; the Brits who voted for BREXIT on racial grounds. Your language is part of the problem. It is in the way you think and speak about this. It blinds you.

    I notice in the discussion above that trying to argue with you is like trying to pick up soap in the bath, or nail jelly to a tree. You’re cheating yourself. By never conceding any mistakes it guarantees you’ll remain wrong, unable to change. And you really are wrong — not for any touchy-feely reasons, but because the superiority of any race over any other is an illusion. Race is an illusion. We are genetically in great danger from our lack of diversity. It makes it possible for a disease, or parasite, or predator, or environmental change to have 100% mortality, or close enough to 100% as to destroy our species.

  499. Harquebus

    Jennifer Meyer-Smith
    “you guys have generally reaped better benefits than your female counterparts”
    It appears that it has mostly always been so.
    “but in all other great ape species, including ours, women lose out to men.”
    My post at February 15, 2017 at 7:59 am has the link.

    Indian Chief ‘Two Eagles’ was asked by a white U.S. government official, “You have observed the white man for 90 years. You’ve seen his wars and his technical advances. You’ve seen his progress, and the damage he’s done.”
    The Chief nodded in agreement.
    The official continued, “Considering all of these events, in your opinion, where did the white man go wrong?”
    The Chief stared at the government official then replied, “When white man find land, Indians running it, no taxes, no debt, plenty buffalo, plenty beaver, clean water. Women did all the work. Medicine man free. Indian man spend all day hunting and fishing; all night having sex.”
    Then the Chief leaned back and smiled, “Only white man dumb enough to think he could improve system like that”. — Newspaper clipping source unknown

  500. Deanna Jones

    JMS “…blanket derogation of white people…”

    Jennifer, I don’t ‘identify’ as white, I am white. We can withstand a bit of derogation, even if that’s what I’m doing.
    You say sex equality before race equality. I can recommend the works of some black feminists who explain the problems with that idea better than I can. I think the evidence is well and truly in that women of colour cop the worst that a patriarchal system has to dish out, as far as rates of violence, poverty, homelessness, poor health, incarceration etc.

    Paul, you might be interested in the work of Jackson Katz, who often talks about what men can do. I half agree with you that men don’t seem exactly happy either, but the difference is that men don’t seem to be too concerned with changing anything, and we only hear about their grievances when we ask them to stop killing us. On many levels men seem to intuit that even though the deal is not great, they still benefit more than women do from it. Raewyn Connell wrote about the ‘patriarchal dividend’ that is paid to even the poorest black man. Katz talks a lot about toxic ideals of masculinity and how they harm men too, but everywhere I turn I see men not only not shunning these ideals, but celebrating them through their culture, art, media, sport, everything. So until men are prepared to really stand with us and challenge the crappy system, I don’t have much patience for hearing how men are just as unhappy as women. It’s not like women are murdering on average, one man per week in this country. The refuges are not turning away hundreds of men each day, fleeing for their lives with their children, because their female partner is likely to kill them. Please think about that.

    “Do women like to shop and buy shoes”

    Why does this drivel go unchallenged? It’s a stereotype. Men write narratives into their entertainment media about women drooling over shoes, and so it is written in stone. A universal truth. Behold. It’s patronising garbage. Most people wear shoes. Some women internalise the prescriptions that patriarchal society feeds them.

    However, women do still perform the bulk of the drudge work in society, and this includes planning and shopping around feeding people, and clothing them, maintaining a comfortable living space by doing that invisible free labour that enables other people to be able to do paid labour. Of course, patriarchy turns this expectation into something we are magically hard-wired to want to do. The sociology of housework is well documented and very well supported by consistent statistics and empirical data.

    Have a nice day, people.

  501. Jennifer Meyer-Smith

    Deanna Jones,

    you might be surprised that I agree with you about how black women sit in the pecking order. My point is that when we discuss inequality my view is that it should start on sex equality principles because the world is roughly 50% women and 50% men divided. That makes the call for sex equality of primary importance.

    Race equality is of course important too on decency, human rights, socio-economic and geo-political grounds and fits within the primary importance of sex equality.



    when I speak my mind about the continuing discriminations against all women in most walks of life, I try to be mindful of the discriminations that men from certain socio-economic spheres experience. I also try to moderate my language in recognition of the many men of compassion, intelligence, courage and inspiration.

    I’m sorry, if that is not always apparent to the men on this site most of whom I respect in our discussions.


    To whoever said that stupid comment about women liking shopping and shoes, maybe or maybe not for some. Big deal. Keep your sexist put-downs to yourself.

  502. Robert G. Shaw

    Kaye, @February 16, 2017 at 12:50 pm

    The question is hardly silly.
    It’s absolutely germane to this discussion.

    I understand why you won’t answer it, why you can’t answer it.

    I also understand why the link you provided was unable to answer it, despite your deflection “I will let the Australian Muslim Women’s Association answer you”.
    They didn’t.
    Hardly surprising.
    What’s perhaps more surprising is the idea that you thought they might!

    As for me, I can answer it – no, I do not support Sharia practiced in this country in any way, shape, or form. I don’t support it practiced within Muslim communities, I don’t support it being considered for partial or personal status issues, I don’t support any submissions, at all, that have as their core the prime tenets of Sharia.

    And no, this is NOT a question best left to the Muslim community. This a question best left to all Australians of every nationality.

    From your link,
    “there has been no general call on behalf of the Muslim community for the establishment of Sharia as a parallel legal system or for the introduction of Islamic criminal law at all”.

    What to make of this then (from the ABC link I posted. A link you clearly didn’t read!)
    “The Australian Federation of Islamic Councils wants Muslims to be able to marry, divorce and conduct financial transactions under the principles of sharia law.
    In a submission to the Federal Parliament’s Committee on Multicultural Affairs, the Federation has asked for the change.
    It argues that all Australians would benefit if Islamic laws were adopted as mainstream legislation”.

    Kaye, if we’re unwilling to engage what you call the “silly” questions, then we’re unable to address the hard ones.
    If you’re unable to stare down hypocrisy and confusion (like the one above), unable to critically negotiate between language and intent, between possibility and action, then I ask you to desist from your strained apologetics.


    To Kate A,
    it has been my pleasure to read your argument regarding the Shriver issue. Your prosecution; manner and substance, found especially in your latter posts, I found a near perfect amalgam of clear opinion, articulate expression, and discipline (remaining, always, on specific point).
    Such a rare combination in blogland.
    I thought your grasp and expression of the pivotal issue – the nature of fiction and the creative obligation(s) of an author – demonstrated a most keen appreciation of Shriver’s argument.
    You understood and identified the questions posed (by Kaye) and addressed them critically.
    Despite my at times previous distaste for your style of argumentation, I acknowledge and applaud your efforts here.
    Well done.
    Again, a most rare sight.

    To paulwalter and Deanna,
    I read over your posts this morning with dismay.
    And am reminded of Pope,

    “A little learning is a dangerous thing ;
    Drink deep, or taste not the Pierian spring:
    There shallow draughts intoxicate the brain,
    And drinking largely sobers us again”.

  503. Roswell

    “… I ask you to desist from your strained apologetics.”

    Robert Shaw, I don’t think you’re in a position to dictate who says what on this site.

  504. Robert G. Shaw

    It’s not a literal request Roswell; it’s an expression, a comment, on the manner of her argument.
    If she can’t be bothered to read the links that propose one set of arguments, the set of arguments I’m using to build my case, then she deserves little consideration of hers.

    Without careful consideration of other people’s arguments we quickly descend into the quagmire of turmoil, disorientation, and temper that so prominently afflict discussions of this type.

    Was that so hard to understand that it required your martinet intervention?

  505. Kaye Lee

    Robert, you have completely misrepresented what was in your article that you wrongly accuse me of not reading. It in fact states exactly what was said by the AMWA. Did you even read it yourself or did you just google for a headline?

    Ikebal Patel, president of the Australian Federation of Islamic Councils, agrees the very word sharia could invoke notions of a fierce, unjust, male-dominated legal code.

    “Short of trying to really find or use another word, really I would like to suggest that what the Muslim community at least in Australia has to do is to try and explain that there’s no aspect of sharia that is being tried to be introduced here,” he said.

    Law lecturer Ghena Krayem, who has researched the issue of legal pluralism, says the Islamic community does not want a parallel legal system set up.

    “[We] found that there’s no evidence from any community leaders of any desire to set up a parallel legal system and I think to pose the question in that way presupposes this assumption that the Muslim community wants an alternative or parallel legal system,” she said.

    I don’t think you have a clue what Sharia means in an Australian context Robert. Of course your question was silly. You asked me if I though young girls should be physically punished. Did you expect me to say yes? Hudud is only practised in a few extremist Muslim nations so to bring it up as an Australian issue is being deliberately sensationalist and factually wrong.

    You are possibly the most pretentious person I have ever spoken with. Get over yourself. You are not the suppository of all wisdom but you sure are a PITA.

  506. silkworm

    “A little learning is a dangerous thing ;
    Drink deep, or taste not the Pierian spring:
    There shallow draughts intoxicate the brain,
    And drinking largely sobers us again”.

    There’s that love of alcohol coming to the fore.

    Alcohol damages the brain. The more alcohol, the greater the damage.

  507. Robert G. Shaw

    Kaye, there was no misrepresentation on my part.
    My question was simple. In an effort to avoid clear address you referred it to your AMWA link in the hope of a distraction.
    It wasn’t.
    Not only did they fail to address my question but their statement, which you used as rationale,

    “there has been no general call on behalf of the Muslim community for the establishment of Sharia as a parallel legal system or for the introduction of Islamic criminal law at all”.

    but it was clealry contradicted by the statement and submission from the Australian Federation of Islamic Councils found in my link,

    “The AFIC wants Muslims to be able to marry, divorce and conduct financial transactions under the principles of sharia law”.

    What you’ve done here is cherry pick what Patel/Krayem have said in an effort to address the question.
    That effort is clearly unsuccessful.
    Not because of MY argument, or MY politics, or MY morality, or MY intuitions, but because of the AFIC’s submission.

  508. Robert G. Shaw

    Could you please stop with the re-writing of your posts!
    Your additions, in this case your final sentence, is irrelevant to the argument.
    If you want to start name calling then we’ll be here all day.

    I’ll stop drinking, if you stop smoking dope, and plagiarising from economic websites.

  509. silkworm


    I don’t smoke dope, so now you have to stop drinking.

    Of course you won’t. Addicts never keeps their promises.

  510. Kaye Lee

    FFS What don’t you understand? Hudud is NOT practised here so your question was just bullshit scare tactics. How can I address something that isn’t real?

    “Could you please stop with the re-writing of your posts!” The quotes weren’t my posts – they were from the article you accused me of not reading. They just happened to back up exactly what was said in my link.

    You accuse me of cherry-picking but it is you who is doing that.

    Talking about finances……

    “Under the global financial crisis that we had the established market, the sharemarket sector, the products that are there suffered very badly,” he said. “Whereas the sharia-compliant investment funds did tremendously well and that’s been identified by the financial community around the world.”

    and marriage/divorce….

    “some of the processes around legal matters such as divorce and inheritance could take on board Muslim notions of dialogue and alternative dispute resolution, but the law should service all community members alike.”

    All they are talking about is other options that could be looked at/incorporated. No-one is talking about cutting off hands or stoning as you seem so keen to try to say!

    And for you to suggest that I have not addressed your arguments is flabbergasting considering how much time I have wasted on you.

  511. Möbius Ecko

    I attempted to find it but don’t know what ABC Religious and Ethics Report piece mentioned this.

    They interviewed a guest who made the point that the extremism being accredited to the Muslim religion has nothing to do with the religion, but to do with culture that uses religion to continue their extreme long standing cultural practices.

    He cited a few examples of where the religion favours women and gives them high status, but certain male dominated cultural groups ignore that and say the religion states women are to be subjugated.

    As to genital mutilation, he again cites this is cultural practice and uses examples such as an Ethiopian Christian sect that practice it whilst using their Christian religion to justify it. Before Christianity they used other religious symbolism and beliefs to justify it.

  512. Kaye Lee

    In terms of growth, the Islamic finance industry, including Islamic capital markets, has grown, on average, by 17.5 percent since the onset of the global financial crisis in 2008 (Ernst and Young, 2015). investors are not only concerned about what is profitable but also what makes their investments ethical.

    Responsible investment is an approach to investment that explicitly acknowledges the relevance to the investor of environmental, social and governance (ESG) factors, and the long-term health and stability of the market as a whole. It recognises that in order to generate long-term sustainable returns, we require stable, well-functioning and well governed social, environmental and economic systems.

    I see nothing to be frightened of there and perhaps a few lessons to be learned.

  513. jimhaz

    Regardless of whether it is religious or cultural do we really want people here who view women in that fashion. It is essentially done for the same purpose as the burqa – the desexing of women.

    We should take a leaf out of Kaye’s book – if it’s not much of an issue in Australia we can completely ignore it. Yes, I’m having a dig.

  514. paulwalter

    Good one from Mobius Echo.

    However, I discover that Robert G Shaw has read my latest postings “with dismay”.

    What can I say? Shuts down computer, heads for door, feeling you don’t know what.


  515. Robert G. Shaw

    Great, I don’t drink either!
    All that’s left for you now is to stop plagiarising.
    Of course you won’t. Fools never think for themselves.


    Kaye, where to start with this?
    My question was specific in the sense that I sought to determine your feelings on Sharia in Australia. A simple enough request I thought.You however avoided it because you imagined I was after a piece of “sensationalism”.
    I wasn’t.
    I was after something very specific, something very crucial, to this discussion.
    But thinking that I was being “sensational” helped you to distract from the point.
    You therefore linked the AWMA in the hope it would satisfy me.
    They didn’t.
    In fact they helped our argument and your evasion not a jot.
    They only served up their claim, repeated ad infinitum, that there was no interest in implementing Sharia in Australia (we can deal with the minutiae of that claim later if need be).
    I then linked a claim, from the highest Muslim authority in Australia, who made a specific submission to the Australian government.
    That claim CONTRADICTED those made by the AWMA.

    There we have it.
    That’s the question right there.
    I hope that clarifies the alleged “misunderstanding”.

    Now to the specifics of my agenda.
    I wanted to know your thoughts on Sharia because it was of interest to me to understand the rationale opposed to mine. Sharia is a complex set of broad based laws that govern in varying degrees every aspect of a Muslim’s life depending on faith, culture, and region.The complex relationship to our current liberal society of such is question is therefore not hard to determine. How are we to reconcile the tenets of Sharia with our Australian laws? The two are at odds on a whole range of issues. Are we to establish parallel legal systems? Are we to condone practice antithetical to our laws? Are we to allow subset judiciaries to operate?
    From here the questions multiply:
    – which elements of Sharia?
    -what impact on our own laws?
    -what about Sharia creep?
    -what of woman’s rights?
    -what of enforcement?

    Etc, etc, etc, etc……….

    This was the direction I was headed with my example.
    If we allow Sharia to operate, for example, only in issues of personal status, do you realise that the bulk of those tenets, the overwhelming bulk, are contrary to the rights and dignities of woman? Are you happy with this development? Are you happy that the AFIC submission includes such principles?

    I’m not.

    So no Kaye, let’s remove your nod to sensationalism, your smelly red herring, “cutting off hands or stoning” off the table and look at what’s ON the table.
    Are you happy with the AFIC’s proposals?
    Yes or No?
    Or better yet, are you happy that today’s denigration of woman’s rights on the personal status issues might in fact transform into tomorrow’s Hudud 10 straps of the whip in some suburban home, far removed from our liberal eyes, of a teenager who transgressed some 7th century decree?

    This is the kernel of the question I posed to you, and not your fallacy or evasion.

    I leave you now with this small but sweet delicacy:

    “considering how much time I have wasted on you”

    and you call me pretentious?!?

    It does not get better Kaye Lee.
    Or sillier.
    It does not.

  516. Kaye Lee

    jimhaz, if you are under the impression that Australian men treat women well then let me disabuse you of that fantasy. I doubt there would be one woman commenting here that has not been sexually harrassed by drunken footballers or lecherous work colleagues. Far too many of them could recount their own stories of physical, mental and sexual abuse at the hands of their partner. And there are many more who will never tell their story because they were murdered.

    Look in the mirror and stop pretending that domestic violence and the objectification/subjugation of women in Australia is somehow a Muslim problem.

    Robert, “That claim CONTRADICTED those made by the AWMA.”. You can bullshit all you like Robert but it won’t make it true.

    “are you happy that today’s denigration of woman’s rights on the personal status issues might in fact transform into tomorrow’s Hudud 10 straps of the whip in some suburban home, far removed from our liberal eyes, of a teenager who transgressed some 7th century decree?”

    My mother used to hit me with Dad’s belt. Many Aussie kids used to “get the strap”. Thankfully this practice seems to have diminished. What have the Catholic clergy done “far removed from our liberal eyes”? One of my mother’s earliest memories was she and her siblings hiding under the kitchen table while her mother stood between them and their father with a pot of boiling water threatening to use it if he came any further.

    Anyone who assaults another person is committing a crime. Teachers have a legal duty to report child abuse and let me tell you, I had to do that on several occasions and none of the families were Muslim. Of course you are being sensationalist. Child abuse is a real problem here and for you to pretend it is a Muslim issue is extremely damaging. Not only does it wrongly accuse innocent people, it allows other culprits to avoid scrutiny. The “fallacy” is yours Robert.

  517. Steve Laing -

    Jennifer – I use whitey as a whitey. It is intentionally a self-denigrating term intended entirely to knock the pomposity of those who don’t understand that genetically, despite the colour of skin on the outside, we are pretty much identical. White, black, brown, yellow. I really don’t care. It is also to say that whilst those of European origin currently believe themselves the dominant culture, this is very likely to change. Just as it did for the many civilisations before who I am sure all considered themselves unassailable and totally wonderful. If the future does contain mankind, it will be those who still know how to live a simple life off the land who are most likely to survive. When the Roman empire finally went, it took till about 1750 till we had about the same level of technology they had.

    Kaye – I’m just ignoring that particular closed minded troll. He apparently knows everything, and believes we all need to know it. Life is just too short. As Carlin said, “Never argue with an idiot. They will only bring you down to their level, and beat you with experience.”

  518. helvityni

    Yes, let’s look at our own domestic violence victims. The numbers are high, the women have nowhere to go, where are the safe houses…?

    Women and children are forced to stay with their torturer; more deaths will follow.

  519. Kaye Lee

    I know you are right Steve but if we allow the bullshit to pass without objection it spreads.

    The standards you walk past….

  520. Möbius Ecko

    So jimhaz as there are Christian sects that practice child abuse and subjugate women, should all Christians along with all Muslims and the all the peoples from any other religions where subgroups do these things be banned from coming to Australia?

    What do we do with the many single passport Australians who carry out child abuse and denigrate women, ban them from Australia?

  521. jimhaz

    [jimhaz, if you are under the impression that Australian men treat women well then let me disabuse you of that fantasy. I doubt there would be one woman commenting here that has not been sexually harrassed by drunken footballers or lecherous work colleagues. Far too many of them could recount their own stories of physical, mental and sexual abuse at the hands of their partner. And there are many more who will never tell their story because they were murdered

    Look in the mirror and stop pretending that domestic violence and the objectification/subjugation of women in Australia is somehow a Muslim problem.]

    The non-argument you are using is somewhat like a person who needs to go on a diet but can’t beat their addition to fast food, so they just have more of it. You’ve an addiction to apologizing for people from less advanced societies. “Ohh I’m so fat already, I might as well just eat more”

    I’d love know how much more prevalent DV is in migrant groups within Australia. Seems hard to find the info, as the PC brigade hide such information.

    No doubt some of the worst offenders would be the Asian/Russia bride types, as they are often people who just should not have a partner, but I suspect women from African countries and middle eastern muslim countries would still have the highest ratios. A lot of it would go unreported. It is actually harder for culturally mixed communities to report DV – a lot of the time you don’t really know what is going on.

    Perhaps some muslim women wish to wear burqas to hide DV. How would one know? (I’m kind of just stirring with this last comment – but all the same there could be small number who do)

  522. Steve Laing -

    Kaye – it is an entirely new dilemma, isn’t it, thanks to the internet. I remember sending letter to the editor of the West Australian about a decade ago (when that was still the only opportunity to comment) and thence receiving weird religious material sent to me – despite only my suburb appearing – so I was clearly tracked down. So whilst I agree that we shouldn’t allow bullshit to pass, I’m not sure if stoking it up and giving it a credible voice is the best approach either – because you will never succeed in changing their perspective. Ever. I came to the conclusion is that the best approach is simply to cut them off at the knees, because they aren’t having a discussion, you are just inadvertently providing them a platform (which you would be denied if you went to “their space”, despite their profession of “free speech”) for them to repeatedly state their entirely closed perspective. I believe our aim her is to find common ground on issues that are often complex and difficult. We don’t always agree, but we still respect each others perspectives, and are prepared to apologise when we get things wrong (even if it was inadvertent or just clumsy use of language). I’ve got no time for people whose only perspective is my way or the highway, and when that doesn’t match with the vast majority of those who are in this community, then I’d say we introduce them to the highway and let them find a new place to rant. This was a great subject (as evidenced by the number of comments), but its now self-repeating due to those whose fall back approach is to grind you into submission. Personally, I’d just both figuratively and literally knock them out.

  523. jimhaz

    @ Mobius
    [So jimhaz as there are Christian sects that practice child abuse and subjugate women, should all Christians along with all Muslims and the all the peoples from any other religions where subgroups do these things be banned from coming to Australia?]

    Were I a benevolent dictator yes I would ban the subgroups that apply undue duress on it believers or who not do let people leave the religion easily. This also applies to some evangelic groups who seem more interested in income collection that anything else- ie Hillsong.

    Religious groups already here would have to prove that they do not this or they would not receive charity status and no form of government assistance and would be raided frequently. You could expect a few Waco situations.

    [What do we do with the many single passport Australians who carry out child abuse and denigrate women, ban them from Australia?]

    Depends on the situation. RE Child abuse only – some would be jailed for life (if involving murder), some would have forced electric shock treatment or castrated (if the science research pointed to that preventing further harm in a majority of cases) and the majority would be treated as they are by the legal system now.

    There would be no penalty for ‘denigrating women’ if outside the current DV or sexual harrassment/assault laws. For multi million dollar case of sexual harassment – any amount awarded, after deducting a few 100,000 and costs ,would go to government DV support, not the victim.

    No-one would be deported if they were a citizen or grew up here. It’s our responsibility.

  524. jimhaz

    [Personally, I’d just both figuratively and literally knock them out]

    So Steve name the people your wish to include in this “go back to where they came from” scenario where ‘alien’ thinkers are not tolerated.

  525. Steve Laing -

    jimhaz – actually, I don’t include you in this statement. Whilst I don’t agree with some of your viewpoints, particularly when you oversimplify or generalise, I do think that you make some valid points, you seem sometimes prepared to adjust your perspectives when you have a chance to reflect. I’m objecting to people who come here to tell others, but aren’t prepared to listen. I welcome different perspectives if they are open to reflection, and are honest in their intention, because diversity produces the best solutions (scientifically tested and proven).

    However that diversity must be willing to be open to the fact that they aren’t always right, and that if they are in a minority that they accept the position of the majority (and by that I mean a REAL majority, not the fake mandates that political parties proclaim as giving them rights to do things when in actual fact they don’t have anything like a majority). Its about being open rather than closed minded. If you believe you know everything and are always correct, even when people clearly disagree with you, then you are close minded and thus are no longer contributing. People like that truly add nothing here, and they aren’t contributing to the discussion, they are just infinitely repeating their dogma. Nobody benefits other than that person’s self-aggrandisement.

  526. helvityni

    I don’t hear of Hudud(s) happening in Aussie suburbs when read or listen to daily news, I hear though of inhumane treatment of youngsters at Don Dale detention, also many innocent asylum seekers on Manus/ Nauru has been driven to depression, despair, and even to suicide.

  527. Roswell

    jimhaz, I think I know who Steve was talking about and it ain’t you.

    I don’t always agree with what you say, but that’s fine, we encourage a diversity of opinions.

    You’re not on a high horse, you don’t belittle people, and your not self righteous.

  528. Robert G. Shaw

    Kaye Lee,
    I take back what I said about it not getting funnier, or sillier.

    Caught in one web, you spin another.
    Simply amazing.
    Aside from your “contradiction” myopia, how dare you drop this into the conversation – “Child abuse is a real problem here and for you to pretend it is a Muslim issue is extremely damaging”.

    “For me to pretend”?!?!
    How dare you!
    I’ve done nothing of the sort. You know that. So would anyone reading these threads.
    Why would you lie about such a thing?

    It demonstrates only your desperation.

    And with that lie, I’m out of this thread.

  529. Kaye Lee

    “The non-argument you are using is somewhat like a person who needs to go on a diet but can’t beat their addition to fast food, so they just have more of it. You’ve an addiction to apologizing for people from less advanced societies. “Ohh I’m so fat already, I might as well just eat more””

    I think you are entirely missing the point I am making. The problems you describe are not confined to the Muslim community. If we can identify groups that are high risk then surely it should not be beyond our society to help them yet we seem to fail dismally.

    I will never make excuses for violence regardless of who it comes from. Of course there are Muslim men who do the wrong thing. I am just saying they aren’t the only ones. If a Muslim women is being oppressed here she probably has a better chance of getting help than if she was in Saudi Arabia but we should be doing so much more. We know our Indigenous community suffers enormous comparative disadvantage but we seem to have little appetite to allow them to be part of the solution.

    These are complex problems that do not lend themselves to scapegoating or passing the buck or stereotyping. As those that work in the industry can tell you, domestic violence rears its ugly head in every sector of society so we must address this male dominance idea. We are partners.

  530. jimhaz

    Thanks Steve. That’s a relief.

    Actually, I recall a couple of months ago I even told someone who seemed troll-like to get lost after only 1 post – I have my moods. I think it was an anti-GW dude. A couple of times I’ve posted a link to an AIMN article in the SMH – and you never know whom that might attract.

    To be honest though, over the last week I’ve found I don’t mind Robert that much (before that I didn’t give him any attention – too much bitchiness) as long as one just concentrates on his main points and ignores how he makes his arguments. I suppose that is because we do have some viewpoints in common.

    PS – I’ve read parts of Jared Diamonds book. I got it out of the library a decade or so ago and didn’t have time to finish it. In what I read, I don’t recall anything I objected to. I didn’t see him as an apologist type – but as a good scientist.

  531. jimhaz

    @ kaye,

    Ok, I’m not really missing your point, but I’ll let that go. The thread has reached it end point.

    I’m more on the same team as the majority here than some of these discussions make it appear to be – but I only want to play half the games you folks do. This aint so bad as 25 years ago I would not have had anything in common with the team here.

  532. Steve Laing -

    Jumped before pushed. At least perceptive enough to recognise that, but not without a last pompous hurrah.

    jimhaz – I’d try and read again, and persist. It makes even more sense now, given how quickly the world is changing. I’ve got a background in agricultural plant science, so can endorse much of his conclusions on how the species available to domesticate (both plant and animal) have had a significant impact. European’s had largely developed significant herd immunity to animal diseases such as small pox etc due to our close association with cows, sheep, etc, but when they travelled to new continents they took said diseases (either inadvertently, or in the case of Australia purposefully) to the local natives who had no such resistance. The effects were often catastrophic, and possibly had greater impact than our “superior” technology. Aboriginal Australians had long been able to live in symbiotic balance with the land; a trait we westerners have completely failed to do. Which will prove superior in the long run?

  533. Deanna Jones

    Jennifer @9:11. What if you fall across both categories? And other categories besides? Why can’t we address inequality in a holistic way? Black women and women of colour, First Nations women experience the system of sexism a little differently to us, and First Nations women are saying they want to preserve their culture AND not have to put up with a misogynist world.

    Steve, I agree about not feeding trolls or legitimising their commentary. But I also think they must be seen to be challenged and discredited, particularly when they are posting harmful, erroneous myths, the promulgation of which has real consequences in real people’s lives, not to change the troll’s perspectives, but for the benefit of others reading/listening.

    I also think we could learn a lot from the traditional custodians of this land.

  534. Jennifer Meyer-Smith

    Of course Deanna, all your examples apply.

    I’m simply and staunchly saying all measurements of sexism start with the 50/50 divide of women/girls and men/boys.

    All other categories fit within those perimeters.

  535. Jennifer Meyer-Smith

    Might I please clarify my previous comment as …

    I’m simply and staunchly saying all measurements of discrimination start with the 50/50 divide of women/girls and men/boys.

  536. Steve Laing

    Deanna – absolutely! I’m happy to hear a full variety of views, but when they are simply repeated ad infinitum and are full of unbending generalisations, there comes a point… I used to have similar discussions on Facebook with one particular person, and when I started getting other friends sending private messages asking if the other person was “all there” I realised the futility. So I just unfriended them. I rarely go on Facebook now for that reason – full of highly opinionated people who are unable to apply reason or logic to the world.

    We could learn so much from the traditional custodians of this land, but have a long, long way to go before they will trust us with much. Just from a few interactions I realise they have very deep knowledge built over millennia – but if I were them I’d be deeply sceptical about sharing it with people who would likely just over exploit it, as seems to be our want.

  537. Kaye Lee

    Update: Mr Cameron wrote in a tweet that the state executive of the party suspended his membership for 4.5 years.

  538. Miriam English

    That’s good new Kaye, though I wish they’d gone further. I bet he still gets his income from them, so it amounts to a paid holiday. Not much punishment for helping to cause dangerous rifts in Australian society.

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