Saturday, April 18, 2009

Australian Federal police say the recent easing of laws lures people smugglers

Hot air the only response from Rudd. He is furious that people respond to the incentives he has put in front of them. Fancy reality interfering with his cosy Leftist dreams! Reality interferes with all cosy Leftist dreams eventually

THE Navy is moving to intercept another boat of suspected asylum seekers, as a report comes to light warning Australia has become a magnet for people smugglers. The latest boat is thought to be carrying at least 100 people, twice as many as the boat that was intercepted and later burned earlier this week. It was expected to be intercepted overnight or sometime today. Indonesian authorities have also arrested 68 suspected asylum-seekers from Afghanistan, who were believed to be bound for Australia.

The latest arrivals came as it was revealed Australia's elite police force warned the Government that softer border protection laws would make the country a magnet for people smuggling. The secret intelligence briefings prepared by the Australian Federal Police were recently delivered to senior government ministers. The Courier-Mail understands the AFP also expressed serious reservations last year as the Rudd Government wound back John Howard's tougher approach to immigration detention.

Minister for Home Affairs Bob Debus last night refused to disclose details of the AFP intelligence. But the revelations are likely to harden the Opposition's claim that Labor's softer stance on border protection has contributed to a surge in the lucrative people-smuggling trade.

Prime Minister Kevin Rudd yesterday hit out at the Opposition's accusations, saying people smugglers should "rot in hell" and were the "absolute scum of the Earth". "People smugglers are the vilest form of human life," Mr Rudd said. "They trade on the tragedy of others and that is why they should rot in jail and in my own view rot in hell."

On the defensive, Mr Rudd said Labor's immigration policies were hardline, tough and targeted. He said his Government had dedicated more resources to combat people smugglers than any previous Australian government and would "continue to match the resources necessary as the challenges unfold".

But the AFP warnings to the Rudd Government were based in part on intelligence picked up by officers in Indonesia, which has become a key base for the people-smuggling trade.


Public hospitals that can't even get simple basics right

If putting the correct ID armband on a baby is too hard for them, what does that say about more complex things that they do?

NEWBORN babies in Queensland are being regularly mixed up and wrongly tagged, with some errors taking days to fix. In one case, a mother had to have HIV and other tests after being given the wrong baby to breastfeed. The blunders have more than doubled in three years, with staff blaming distractions, poor communication and increasing workloads.

Newborns are supposed to have three tags for accurate identification but documents obtained by The Courier-Mail reveal there were 57 bungled identifications last year. Parents or Queensland Health staff found almost half of them had no tags or all three tags with the wrong name, mother's name or patient number.

In the breastfeeding case at the Royal Brisbane and Women's Hospital last October, a mother had to have hepatitis and HIV tests after being given the wrong baby. "(The) wrong baby was taken to the mother," the report obtained under Freedom of Information laws found. "Baby's arm bands were not checked. Baby was fed by wrong mother before mistake was discovered."

Another case took four days to solve after a baby was transferred from Townsville Hospital to Cairns Hospital. The baby arrived in Cairns with no tags and weighing 160g less than when it left after staff in Townsville failed to conduct routine ID checks for three days before the transfer. "The baby has been identified as certain as possible at this point in time," staff said on October 2, 2006, after checking every baby at both hospitals. The identity was finally confirmed on October 5.

Queensland Health child safety director Corelle Davies yesterday defended the increase in cases, saying the bungles were always rectified before the babies went home. "Accurate patient identification is fundamental to the provision of safe health care and is taken seriously by staff in all Queensland Health facilities," Ms Davies said. "Staff are trained and work hard to ensure babies have correct identification. Very stringent guidelines are in place to ensure baby name tags are checked by both the mother and staff."

However, Australian College of Midwives state executive officer Jenny Gamble said the errors were a result of an understaffed system requiring urgent restructure. "Every man and his dog is involved - midwives, nurses, different sorts of allied health staff -- but no one is there all the time like two or three midwives could be," she said. "We need it to be much more personal."

The FOI documents show the number of cases reported jumped from 27 in 2006 to 55 in 2007 and 57 last year. In a typical case at Toowoomba Base Hospital last October, a staff member bathing a newborn discovered the baby had no identification. "When I undressed the baby to do a demonstration bath, I discovered that the baby had no identification bands and no identification tape on her back," the staffer said in a report.


Pesky! Antarctic ice growing, not shrinking

Greenies shriek about the bits of ice that break off but ignore the overall picture. I noted just such an instance of Greenie bias on 6th., when I referred to a Green/Left blog post as "an amusing exercise in unbalanced reporting". The author of the post, Tom Yulsman of CEJournal, was outraged and said he was just doing his best to set out what was happening. See the comments he left on my blog post. I hereby challenge him to report the findings below. That should show what he really is

All the Warmist agonizing about the Antarctic is just an attempt to con the gullible anyhow. The average temperature of the Antarctic is around minus 40 degrees C from memory so the few degrees of warming that even Greenie extremists predict are not going to bring that temperature anywhere near the melting point (zero degrees) where ice turns to water. But the Warmists have GOT to get that ice to melt in order to have the sea level rise that they crave -- so basic physics is totally ignored and the scientific ignorance of the general public is relied upon instead

ICE is expanding in much of Antarctica, contrary to the widespread public belief that global warming is melting the continental ice cap. The results of ice-core drilling and sea ice monitoring indicate there is no large-scale melting of ice over most of Antarctica, although experts are concerned at ice losses on the continent's western coast.

Antarctica has 90 per cent of the Earth's ice and 80 per cent of its fresh water. Extensive melting of Antarctic ice sheets would be required to raise sea levels substantially, and ice is melting in parts of west Antarctica. The destabilisation of the Wilkins ice shelf generated international headlines this month. However, the picture is very different in east Antarctica, which includes the territory claimed by Australia. East Antarctica is four times the size of west Antarctica and parts of it are cooling. The Scientific Committee on Antarctic Research report prepared for last week's meeting of Antarctic Treaty nations in Washington noted the South Pole had shown "significant cooling in recent decades".

Australian Antarctic Division glaciology program head Ian Allison said sea ice losses in west Antarctica over the past 30 years had been more than offset by increases in the Ross Sea region, just one sector of east Antarctica. "Sea ice conditions have remained stable in Antarctica generally," Dr Allison said.

The melting of sea ice -- fast ice and pack ice -- does not cause sea levels to rise because the ice is in the water. Sea levels may rise with losses from freshwater ice sheets on the polar caps. In Antarctica, these losses are in the form of icebergs calved from ice shelves formed by glacial movements on the mainland.

Last week, federal Environment Minister Peter Garrett said experts predicted sea level rises of up to 6m from Antarctic melting by 2100, but the worst case scenario foreshadowed by the SCAR report was a 1.25m rise. Mr Garrett insisted global warming was causing ice losses throughout Antarctica. "I don't think there's any doubt it is contributing to what we've seen both on the Wilkins shelf and more generally in Antarctica," he said.

Dr Allison said there was not any evidence of significant change in the mass of ice shelves in east Antarctica nor any indication that its ice cap was melting. "The only significant calvings in Antarctica have been in the west," he said. And he cautioned that calvings of the magnitude seen recently in west Antarctica might not be unusual. "Ice shelves in general have episodic carvings and there can be large icebergs breaking off -- I'm talking 100km or 200km long -- every 10 or 20 or 50 years."

Ice core drilling in the fast ice off Australia's Davis Station in East Antarctica by the Antarctic Climate and Ecosystems Co-Operative Research Centre shows that last year, the ice had a maximum thickness of 1.89m, its densest in 10 years. The average thickness of the ice at Davis since the 1950s is 1.67m.

A paper to be published soon by the British Antarctic Survey in the journal Geophysical Research Letters is expected to confirm that over the past 30 years, the area of sea ice around the continent has expanded.


Big climate backdown coming? Might be best to dump ETS, says Green guru

Professor Ross Garnaut says it's lineball whether the scheme in its current form is worth doing. He urged senators to make substantial changes during a committee hearing today. Prof Garnaut, an economist, was hired by the federal and state governments to advise them on what to do about climate change.

"If there were no changes at all it would be a lineball call whether it was better to push ahead or say ... we'll have another crack at it and do a better one when time is right,'' Prof Garnaut said. He set out the three major changes he wants to the scheme, which is the main way to tackle climate change and is due to start next year.

Prof Garnaut wants a deeper cut to greenhouse gas emissions. The scheme will cut emissions by five to 15 per cent by 2020; Prof Garnaut wants the upper limit increased to 25 per cent, conditional on other countries taking similar steps.

He wants the Government to commit more money for new, green technologies. And he's worried the ETS gives too many free permits to industry. He wants an escape clause which would make it easier to stop the free permits.

Prof Garnaut said he was agonising over whether it was better to bring in an imperfect scheme or hold off and try for a better one later. The global recession meant "it is not a good time for good policy''.


Useless West Australian police

No juicy opportunities for corruption that time, I guess

A JUDGE has slammed police for their handling of a long-running domestic dispute which ended in the brutal murder of a Perth woman. Anthony Thomas Evans, 32, was jailed today for a minimum of 14 years for killing his partner, Alana Dakin, 33, with a knife on November 13, 2007. Evans cut her arm to the bone then, as she lay on the floor abusing him, he slashed her chest and severed her jugular vein at the home they shared in Girrawheen. Her other arm was in a cast – an injury from a previous domestic dispute - while she was being butchered. Justice Narelle Johnson said Evans had pressed down on her chest to increase the flow of blood from her wounds as she was dying.

Evans was previously found guilty of murder. He appeared in the WA Supreme Court today for sentencing. Justice Johnson was highly critical of the way police dealt with the five reported cases of domestic disputes between the two. “I have real concerns with the police case, they just accepted everything he told them,” she said. “I don’t see the police reaction as being indicative of the informed explanation of what happened. “He (Evans) was treated as the victim, while she is the one who has ended up dead.”

She said one police officer had suggested counselling to Evans, while telling Ms Dakin that it was an unviable option for her. She said on one occasion Ms Dakin spat on attending police, who then accepted Evans' version of events “despite her being the one who was constantly injured”. “You were being treated like the victim,” she said. She said that in one police report Evans was described as fine, calm and cooperative and that his version of self-defence was accepted.

Justice Johnson said Evans' state of mental health was a mitigating factor, but it did not contribute significantly to his actions. She said Ms Dakin’s alcoholism would have been difficult to live with but “she did not deserve the amount of violence perpetrated on her”.

Ms Dakin has a son, Zebediah, from a previous relationship. He turns six on May 3, and is being cared for by her parents, Marius and Rose Dakin, both 56. “We are happy with the outcome and that man got what he deserved,” Mrs Dakin said outside court alongside her husband. She said her daughter would be alive today if the police had handled the situation differently.

Ms Dakin’s close friend Jane Maton said the murder was preventable “if police had acted the way they should have”. “I find it devastating that he was given life yet will be eligible for parole in 14 years,” she said. “I hope he rots in that jail cell and feels the pain he has caused every second, every minute, every day and every night and even that won’t be enough.”

A victim impact statement from Mrs Dakin said Evans’ family had prevented her from collecting her dead daughter’s belongings. Mrs Dakin described it as “the loneliest night of her life” when she went looking for new clothing to dress her in. “She tried to find something for her daughter to wear or she (Mrs Dakin) would have found a sheet to cover her body,” Justice Johnson said.


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