Monday, November 26, 2012

Disgusting "child safety" bureaucrats

They knew they were at fault so decided that the best defence is attack

A MOTHER fighting Child Safety to get justice for her son says she has been overwhelmed by public support and no longer feels she is a "bad parent".

The woman, who cannot be named by law, is suing Child Safety for failing to tell her that her foster child - who has been accused of allegedly raping her eight-year-old boy - had a history of sexualised behaviour.

After The Courier-Mail last week revealed her story, readers relayed their condolences to their family, urged her to keep fighting.  A Brisbane barrister and psychologist also offered to represent the family for free.

The mother is now urging other families who have been let down by Child Safety to come forward and tell their stories.

"I'm so overwhelmed. So many people are supporting me, it's unbelievable," she said.  "Thank you very much. I feel so relieved.  "I'm not the only one who thinks that the system needs to be fixed."

The mother, 36, is suing Child Safety for negligence, but in a cruel twist, the Department has sent her legal documents stating she was to blame for any alleged abuse because she failed to appropriately supervise her 15-year-old foster son.

The mother said she felt better after supporters questioned how it was possible to constantly supervise children.  "I'm not a bad parent. You can't supervise 24/7.  "You have to at some point (let foster children) be part of your family and show them trust.

"We should have been told (about the foster boy's history). If we knew we never would have let him into our house."

Despite asking on two separate occasions about the foster boy's history, an internal Child Safety review found officers told the mother that he only had problems with aggression and stealing.

They did not tell her that they had records stating he had a history of sexualised behaviour.

Meanwhile, when the Commissioner for Children and Young People and Child Guardian Elizabeth Fraser was asked whether she believed Child Safety was not being honest with carers about the history of foster children, she referred The Courier-Mail to her 2010 report that found staff were not doing their job properly.

"The Department's records demonstrated low compliance providing) proposed carers with information about a child, to assist carers make an informed decision about whether to agree to a placement.

" The Departmental officers are not adequately recording on departmental files whether proposed carers are being provided with information about a child, to assist carers make an informed decision about whether to agree to a placement."


Climate skeptics equated to pedophiles on ABC

This morning on the “science” show Robyn Williams equates skeptics to pedophiles, people pushing asbestos, and drug pushers. Williams starts the show by framing republicans (and skeptics) as liars: “New Scientist complained about the “gross distortions” and “barefaced lying” politicians come out  with…” He’s goes on to make the most blatant, baseless, and outrageous insults by equating skeptics to people who promote pedophilia, asbestos and drugs.
“What if I told you pedophilia is good for children, or that asbestos is an excellent inhalant for those with asthmatics, or that smoking crack is a normal part and a healthy one of teenage life, to be encouraged? You’d rightly find it outrageous, but there have been similar statements coming out of inexpert mouths, distorting the science.”

“These distortions of science are far from trivial, our neglect of what may be clear and urgent problems could be catastrophic and now a professor of psychology at UWA has shown what he says is the basis of this unrelenting debauchery of the facts…”

What the "professor of psychology at UWA" (Stephan Lewandowsky) said:
“They were rejecting the science not based on the science... but on other factors… what we basically found was the driving motivating factor behind their attitudes was their ideology.  People who endorse an extreme version of free market fundamentalism …  They are also rejecting the link between smoking and lung cancer, and between HIV and AIDS…

Ladies and gentlemen it’s time to get serious. Both Williams and Lewandowsky are ignoring the scientific evidence, denigrating their opponents, destroying rational conversation and honest discussion before it can even start. We can’t let them get away with this.

They are paid public servants who use taxpayer funds to push their personal ideology. It has to stop.

Robyn Williams, what you do is not science. It’s crass tribal warfare.

Stephan Lewandowsky, skeptics base their arguments on evidence. You are in denial. We don’t deny AIDS or that smoking causes cancer, and we never have. Your tactic of deliberately seeking out a few nutters (or fakes) to interview, then besmirching the names of serious commentators is blatant, obvious and  documented.

Name-calling in order to suppress debate

The class of people who use regulations to control others, rather than persuasion and voluntary competition, have resorted to name calling for years to suppress the free and fair debates that they cannot win. Now they are employing that technique in other areas.

What they road-tested on skeptics, they  now use in the wider political debate against their political opponents — such as Tony Abbott and Alan Jones. With each success they are becoming more loud, aggressive, and obnoxious.

The mainstream media makes this cheap tactic successful.  As long as they promote these anti-science, baseless smears as if they were serious commentary the media is the problem.


Official prediction:  Solar and wind to be the cheapest sources of energy

Just dreams.  I wonder what the heck they are on?  Sounds like potent stuff. 

Nothing comes close to brown coal for cheap energy.  Even "Green" Germany is building more brown coal power plants

SOLAR and wind could become the cheapest sources of energy and almost exclusively power the country in coming decades as carbon prices climb, the Climate Commission says.

A report, to be released today by chief commissioner Professor Tim Flannery, notes the vast potential from sunlight and wind and "solar PV and wind could be the cheapest forms of power in Australia for retail users by 2030, if not earlier, as carbon prices rise".

Prof Flannery said improvements had driven down the cost of renewable energy so much that Australia's uptake had increased more than a decade faster than earlier imagined.

He said people might find it hard to believe communities could one day be powered almost entirely by renewable energy, but people would never have believed they would one day carry around little computers in their pockets.

"It's like anything, computers or mobile phones, they started off expensive and over time the cost just declines and we've seen that with wind and now with solar," he said.

But the report The Critical Decade: Generating a Renewable Australia has no detail around how renewable energy and fossil fuel prices might compare in the future. Prof Flannery said technology moved so quickly, it was impossible to form concrete predictions.

Renewables currently make up 10 per cent of Australia's energy mix and the report says growth was subject to innovation, community acceptance and regulation.


NT Govt in the dark on illegal arrivals

THE Territory Government has yet to be told how many asylum seekers to expect following a decision to hand out 8000 bridging visas.

Chief Minister Terry Mills said he had been "left in the dark" on the issue.

"What we do know is police, fire and ambulance services have already been under strain since the detention centre opened," he said.

The Federal Government is to allow asylum seekers who have arrived in Australia since Canberra announced a return to offshore processing to stay on temporary visas without the right to work.

The new visas will also cover future arrivals and will apply even if a person's refugee claim is successful.

Immigration Minister Chris Bowen said people could expect to be on the visas for up to five years

The Coalition yesterday said it would overturn the decision if elected next year...


Proposed 17-storey tower will leave St John's Cathedral in its shade, opponents say

I think "heritage" claims are often overdone but St. Johns is a magnificent building.  You feel like you have time-travelled  into the best of the middle ages when you walk into it.  Nothing should be allowed to detract from such a rare gem. It took 100 years to build.  I usually go to the sung eucharist there on Christmas day

A DEVELOPMENT battle looms over a 17-storey high rise proposal that will tower over Brisbane's heritage-listed St John's Cathedral.

The Anglican Church and National Trust oppose the project, saying it contravenes the City Plan which limits buildings to four storeys in that area.

They say a building of that size is too close to the church and will destroy its vistas, which should be protected.

The site is separated from the cathedral by two smaller church buildings, one of which is also heritage listed.

National Trust president Stephen Sheaffe said the application would have a detrimental impact on the best cathedral of its type in the nation.

"The last thing you'd want is a building like the cathedral surrounded by high rises and not being seen from any angle," he said.  "This is an important community building and should be looked after."

Cathedral dean, the Reverend Peter Catt, said St John's was designated one of Queensland's 150 architectural icons during Q150 celebrations in 2009 and its heritage value to the state would be impacted by the project.

National Trust executive director Stewart Armstrong said the high rise would block all views of St John's as people travelled up Ann St and lessen its stature as one of the state's major heritage buildings.

"The City Plan and City Centre Master Plan clearly limit any development on this site to three to four stories," he said.

Consolidated Properties managing director Don O'Rorke, who owns the site, was not available for comment.

Brisbane City Council neighbourhood planning chairwoman Amanda Cooper would not reveal where she stood in the dispute but said the cathedral and its heritage would be protected.  The council would make a decision after final submissions were lodged this week.

Cr Cooper said the site was important because people passed along Ann St as they travelled into the city centre which meant any building must reflect the CBD's overall aesthetic.

"As such, we made provisions in the 2006 Neighbourhood Plan to ensure that any surrounding developments reflected the character of the cathedral," Cr Cooper said.


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