Wednesday, February 20, 2008

Well done, Kevvy!

Hokey "apology" now an excuse for mob violence by blacks

PRIME Minister Kevin Rudd's national apology to the stolen generation has sparked a spate of racial violence in Darwin. Five people had to be admitted to hospital after one brawl. The Caucasian men were attacked by a group of 10 Aboriginal men, who demanded that their victims "say sorry".

A 28-year-old Territory woman watched helplessly as her friend was king-hit and kicked to the ground outside a Darwin 24-hour eatery on Sunday morning. She said three men ran at them from across the road, when they looked at the group yelling at two women. "They just started king-hitting him. They got him on the ground and then two others came over and started kicking him," she said. "They kept screaming that we were not sorry at all - 'Say sorry to us'. You just couldn't stop them."

The woman said three more men grabbed another Caucasian man and punched him in the middle of Smith St. "That's when I called the police. He managed to roll into the gutter but they kept on kicking him," she said. They and her friend ran to the Mitchell St police station, where they met up with other victims of the racial attack.

"The police officer said since the sorry apology on Wednesday, it had been completely out of control."

The woman said there were four other victims of racial violence in the emergency room at Royal Darwin Hospital. Her friend had fractured ribs and bad bruising. Others had head injuries and bruises. "I don't know why they did it," she said. "They're just making it worse for everyone. It was gutless. It doesn't have to be this way."

Another big brawl occurred at Fairway Waters in Palmerston on Saturday night. Police said witnesses and victims of the "series" of assaults on Sunday were being questioned. Senior Sergeant Steve Martin warned that "thugs" and "troublemakers" had no place in Darwin. "Police take a zero tolerance approach to violence and antisocial behaviour and any assaults of this nature will be thoroughly investigated," he said. Constable Michael Lunney, officer-in-charge of the investigation, said he was confident police would find the men responsible for the attacks.


Hundreds of active police transferred to political correctness and bureaucratic duties

Among the roles expanded were "gay and lesbian liaison" officers. Sexual abnormality gets you special privileges these days

VICTORIA Police yesterday admitted transit and traffic police numbers had been cut, and that it hadn't been made public. But Deputy Commissioner Simon Overland said the size of the cuts was not as great as claimed by former assistant commissioner Noel Ashby. And he denied the cuts were secret, saying nobody had asked for the information.

The police union said yesterday hundreds of officers could not be accounted for and an audit was urgently needed. "On the force's own admission there are 655 operational police officers missing from the front line," union legal manager Sen-Sgt Greg Davies said. "And yes, non-operational areas have increased under the current Chief Commissioner." ...

Mr Ashby said he'd be prepared to name those figures to a royal commission or permanent anti-corruption body, which was needed to examine what he believed was probable prior knowledge by the Government of the OPI probe and of a government-police force plot to oust Sen-Sgt Mullett. "The relationships between the State Government, Victoria Police, the OPI and the Police Association are murky and suspicious," he said. ...

Sen-Sgt Davies yesterday backed Mr Ashby's call for an independent inquiry or permanent anti-corruption body. He said Sen-Sgt Mullett had tried to use last year's OPI hearings to publicly air similar allegations to Mr Ashby's, "but every time he ventured towards that sort of ground he was cut off and stymied".

Mr Overland said there had been a 14 per cent cut in transit police and a 4.5 per cent cut in traffic police in the past eight years; Mr Ashby alleged cuts of 28 per cent and 13 per cent. "I stand by my claim," Mr Ashby said yesterday. Mr Overland denied Mr Ashby had raised concerns about cuts. "When Noel actually stayed at executive meetings, I didn't actually hear him say anything of the sort," he said.


Tasmania: Parents are too dumb to be told all the facts

That is the elitist and typically Leftist attitude we see below, anyway

EDUCATION Minister David Bartlett has rejected a call to make league tables of school performance available to parents.

Liberal education spokeswoman Sue Napier yesterday called on the Government to release more data to help parents compare schools. Her call comes after the Mercury revealed that government schools were developing a new series of key performance indicators to measure and improve their results in areas such as literacy, numeracy, attendance and retention. "This is exactly the sort of information to which parents are entitled, particularly after 10 years of a state Labor government during which time the performance of our students in many key areas has actually gone backwards," Mrs Napier said. "This is about transparency and accountability and the desperate need to boost education standards in our schools."

But Mr Bartlett said he would not allow the Opposition to use figures to stigmatise struggling schools. "Every Tasmanian school already reports directly to its parent body about its performance on literacy and numeracy and a number of other benchmarks," he said. "Every single individual school produces an annual report to its school community with relative figures of literacy and numeracy and improvement or otherwise and I think that's very important. "That data is being used already for school improvement and, as I've said, in a disaggregated fashion most of that data is already publicly available. "What I won't ever stand for is people like Sue Napier using this data for political purposes to berate or run down particular schools."

Mr Bartlett said there was already sufficient information for people who needed it. "What we're talking about here of course is my goal to empower principals to make more local decisions about their school that reflect the aspirations of their school community," he said. "The public has access to data already ... and they can research that data and compare schools as they see fit."

Mrs Napier said the current push to implement performance indicators was "hardly rocket science".


Prosecutor pushes for tougher sentences

Not a moment too soon. The courts seem to think that it is their role to keep people OUT of jail. They seize on the weakest of excuses to do so

VICTORIA'S top prosecutor will challenge the Court of Appeal to set tougher sentences for drug traffickers, murderers and frauds. Director of Public Prosecutions Jeremy Rapke, QC, is planning a series of "test case" appeals where he believes sentences have not met the expectations of lawmakers or the community. Mr Rapke said he believed some crimes had been "devalued" by light sentences.

He was particularly concerned by sentences in some serious drug cases. "That's one area which we're looking at very carefully to try and pick our mark for the appropriate case to test this on. "You've got people convicted of trafficking large commercial quantities of drugs, where the legislation says that's life imprisonment, and they're getting suspended sentences. "The Parliament says you can go to jail for life and they don't go to jail for one minute. I can't work it out."

The longest maximum sentence in Victoria in the past five years for large commercial drug trafficking was 16 years. The longest total effective sentence, including related charges, was 23 years with a 17-year minimum.

Mr Rapke also revealed:

THE recent decision that some sex cases would in future be heard in the Supreme Court would also work in reverse, with some other offences traditionally heard in the top court transferred to the County Court.

WORKING parties and management consultants were looking at ways to reduce delays in court hearings.

DELAYS in forensic testing were still resulting in bail being granted in serious cases.

HE will continue to speak up on behalf of victims despite the furore over his recent comments about the insensitivity of some judges towards sexual assault victims.

Mr Rapke said sentences for some murders and major frauds were likely to be among cases he would take to the Court of Appeal. "Our argument will be that some sentencing courts are having insufficient regard for the maximum penalty imposed by the legislature," Mr Rapke said. "What they tend to look at is what other courts have imposed in this type of case, rather than what they could have imposed." He said the Sentencing Act required sentencing judges to take account of the maximum penalty set by Parliament. "I think that's lost sometimes," he said.

Sentencing Advisory Council statistics show the longest sentence in the past five years for rape (maximum 25 years) was 20 years; the longest for armed robbery (25 years) was 11; for manslaughter (20 years) 15; and for fraud (10 years) six.

Mr Rapke has already lodged an appeal in the case of Cody Hutchings, 5, beaten to death by his mother's partner, Stuart John McMaster. "McMaster got a minimum of 10 years, which was then the longest manslaughter sentence for that type of crime ever handed down in Victoria," Mr Rapke said. "But I took the view that if the legislation says you can get 20 years for that, and this is in the highest category of that type of offence, why shouldn't the courts be looking at that as a guide? "One might say the offender 'got the tariff', but I'm trying to persuade the Court of Appeal that the tariff needs to be reviewed," he said. "I've taken the view in some cases that although the sentence being imposed might be said to be the current tariff, the current tariff may be said to be inadequate."

Mr Rapke succeeded Paul Coghlan, who launched more than 40 appeals in his last year as DPP before being appointed a Supreme Court judge last year. "I'm not keeping figures and I'm not interested in them, because I just view each case that comes to me entirely on its own," Mr Rapke said. "But I am trying to look for, one might say, test cases in a variety of different fields to see whether or not we can persuade the Court of Appeal to re-look at what has been regarded as the traditional tariff."


Hospital "planner" deservedly fired: "A senior planning official has been stood down over design faults at Bathurst Base Hospital, NSW Health Minister Reba Meagher says. Ms Meagher said following detailed briefings with health department heads and the health infrastructure office, she was not satisfied that the project had been handled appropriately at the local level. "The director-general of NSW Health has advised me that a senior planning official from the local area has been removed from their position," Ms Meagher told reporters today. She did not identify the official or say where he or she worked"." [Rare but pleasing to see an incompetent bureaucrat fired]

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