A couple of items in the news that caught my attention in an ever changing and sometimes confusing world :
Coalition to stop using Orwellian Doublespeak [for the time being]
In his novel, 1984 George Orwell introduced political doublespeak – using language that deliberately obscures, disguises, distorts, or reverses the meaning of words to disguise the truth. Examples include the Coalition’s Ensuring Integrity Bill that has been languishing in the Senate.
Scott Morrison told the Canberra Press Club that the government has decided it “will not pursue a further vote in the Senate” on its Ensuring Integrity Bill.
He also told the Press Club that the coalition had not abandoned its commitment to “lawful behaviour of registered organisations”, and it would reconsider the “simplest, fairest and most effective statutory form” to give effect to that in the future – there’s another example of doublespeak.
So, in effect he has not abandoned the union bashing legislation but as he can’t get it through the Senate without Jacquie Lambie’s vote he has withdrawn it until another statutory format presents itself : Lambie was unlikely to support the coalition on this one having been dudded by Dutton on the Medevac repeal law – once bitten twice shy is our Jacquie.
There are still several dozen refugees and asylum seekers locked up on one floor of the Mantra Hotel in Preston, Vic. in indefinite detention limbo after receiving urgent medical attention under the Medevac law – they’ve been there for six months.
Off to Court – maybe !
The Israeli courts have found that former Melbourne teacher Malka Leifer is fit to stand trial for extradition to Australia, where she is wanted on paedophilia charges.
The ruling in the Jerusalem District Court came after a long legal battle to get the ex-principal, who is accused of sexually abusing students, returned to Australia – she was spirited out of Australia in 2008 after accusations were made against her.
Ms Leifer, 52, faces 74 charges of sexually assaulting female students during her time at the ultra-Orthodox Adass Israel school in Elsternwick in Melbourne’s south-east.
Leifa has used every trick in the book to avoid justice including her own mental capacity to stand trial. All have now been quashed by the court but that doesn’t necessarily mean that she’s on her way back to Australia to face justice : the extradition application has yet to be approved.
No doubt our own Kathy Jackson has been watching this news with interest as she considers her next move in trying to further delay her day in court on criminal charges of having allegedly misappropriated union funds from the Health Services Union (HSU) where she had been national secretary between January 2008 and February 2015. In a civil action mounted by the HSU in August 2015, Jackson was found to have misappropriated union funds and was ordered to repay $1.4 million in compensation – that cheque is still in the mail evidently.
Jackson has already tried the mental health excuse to delay the criminal case against her as well as the the dog ate my homework [in this case a flood damaged documents apparently]. She also needed to apply for legal aid having transferred her assets to her partner after the civil case – and having petitioned for bankruptcy. Then she called for a further delay whilst she instructed a new lawyer for her defence. With jury trials now having been suspended due to COVID-19 matters, it is unlikely that she will see the inside of a courtroom this year.
They say that justice delayed is justice denied and there is no doubt that our Kath has tested the patience of our justice system. The question is, will she succeed in getting the case permanently stayed because she and her sixty-eight witnesses have been prejudiced due to the six year delay even though the bulk of the forensic evidence had already been uncovered by the civil court and the delays have been largely part of her tactics. Or will the long arm of the law eventually catch up with her ?
Twitter has decided to flag Tweets from President Trump (and others) that are either defamatory or outright perversions of the truth.
It came to a head when Trump Tweeted misleading and deceptive information on the California election arrangements for mail-in voting – much like the postal voting system in Australia. Trump is opposed to postal voting as he considers it puts him and Republicans at a disadvantage. Too much democracy is not good for the Republicans it seems.
The Twitter policy was introduced on 11 May and applied hours after Trump’s tweets initially went out because they violated Twitter’s “civic integrity policy”. The integrity policy bans users from “manipulating or interfering in elections or other civic processes”, such as posting misleading information that could distort the voting process and in some cases discourage people from participating in an election.
Trump responded with a pair of tweets that repeated his false claims about voting and accused Twitter of “interfering in the 2020 Presidential Election”. “Twitter is completely stifling FREE SPEECH, and I, as President, will not allow it to happen!” he wrote.
The question is : can you think of another global media outlet that will publish and disseminate right-wing lies and ideological perversions without question ?
It’s in the Bag !
On 8 May NSW Police Commissioner Mick Fuller received an $87,000 pay rise taking him to $649,500 a year and one of NSW’s highest paid public servants. Yesterday (27 May) NSW Premier Gladys Berejiklian announced a twelve month pay freeze for all public servants in the state.
If I were Mick, I’d buy a Lotto ticket, he’s on a run.
So there you go !
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