Monday, October 13, 2014


In his latest offering, conservative Australian cartoonist ZEG draws our attention to the struggle for democracy in Hong Kong

Algerian Muslim attacks an African guard on a Brisbane train

Isn't multiculturalism wonderful?

A SICKENING racist attack on a security guard by a man on a Brisbane train which was filmed and posted on the internet is being investigated by police.

The outburst came after the guard asked the man to take his feet off a seat.

The passenger, who appears to be intoxicated, can be heard repeatedly calling the guard a "n***er” and a "black c***”.

"Learn some f***ing English, because this is Australia, c***, I can’t understand you,” the young man yells.

The tirade continues with the man saying: "Do you even have a citizenship, you f***ing n***er?”

The security guard remained calm during the entire five-minute ordeal.

He continues to berate the security guard with racial slurs, as well as abusing other train users during the five-minute rant. he also challenges the guard to a fight.

Other passengers can be seen looking on in disgust throughout the video, with two men stepping in to try to get the man off the train.

The man then turns his anger on them, before his friend who filmed the whole incident manages to drag him off of the train.

The video, which was uploaded to Youtube on Saturday, has sparked outrage.

On Saturday night a Facebook page in the name of Kader Boumzar posted an apology for the incident.  "I was just drunk couldn’t remember shit so stop over reacting (sic), but I am proud to be white! OWS STAND STRONG!”

He later posted: "I’m really sorry to everyone that was affected by the video I really cannot remember anything out of all honesty the post made before was someone else I know this is no excuse. But can you all see fromy (sic) my point of view that I was a F***ing idiot and I’m really sorry.”

Police said they had not yet received a formal complaint, but are investigating.

Queensland Rail praised the guard for his cool behaviour during the "appalling” incident.  A spokeswoman labelled the incident "appalling” and said the rail company would assist police investigations to potentially bring about the prosecution of the attackers.

"We are disgusted at the anti-social behaviour of this passenger towards our contracted security officers,” the spokesperson said. "We strive to provide a safe workplace for our people to see this occur is appalling.  "We congratulate the security officer on his response and attempt to safely de-escalate the situation.  "We have contacted the security company to offer our support to the guard.”


The Algerian and his mate have now been charged. The younger man has been charged with various offences including assault occasioning bodily harm. The 18-year-old has been charged with creating a nuisance on a railway.

Paring back ‘overcrowded’ national curriculum a government priority

PARING back the national curriculum to focus on fewer subjects, particularly in primary school, will be a priority of the federal government as it seeks to overhaul what children learn at school.

In its initial response to the review of the national curriculum released this morning, the government nominates the overcrowded curriculum as the most urgent reform required.

"Overcrowding means that teachers are finding it difficult to implement the Australian Curriculum and cover all the content in each subject,” it says.

"It also means that students are not necessarily getting the right amount of time devoted to the content in each subject that they really need — for example, literacy and numeracy in the early years of primary schooling.”

The final report by the reviewers Queensland University professor Ken Wiltshire and education consultant and former Liberal government adviser Kevin Donnelly contains 30 key recommendations for improving the curriculum, as well as changes to each subject.

The report says the national curriculum is overcrowded, particularly in the primary years, with teachers struggling to teach all the content included in each subject.

It says some aspects of the curriculum are too complicated and should be reconsidered, and it also identifies gaps in the content in some subjects.

The controversial decision to embed cross-curriculum priorities of indigenous, sustainable and Asian perspectives in every subject should be dropped, with those issues taught as separate subjects.

The review also criticises the national curriculum for being too complicated for parents, failing to adequately cater for students with disabilities, and lacking an overall vision.

Releasing the report, Education Minister Christopher Pyne said a strong national curriculum was a foundation of the top-performing education systems around the world.

"The review confirms what all education ministers are hearing from parents and teacher, that there’s simply too much to try to learn and students and teachers are swamped,” he said.

The report was critical of Western civilisation and Australia’s Judeo-Christian heritage being demonised in the curriculum. It recommended scaling back focus on indigenous history and Asian studies.

Mr Pyne said the original curriculum architects might have "gone too far in one direction”.  "We don’t want any politics in schools ... we want our children to be focused on learning,” he said.

Opposition education spokeswoman Kate Ellis acknowledged the curriculum implemented under the previous Labor government was not perfect.

But she accused Mr Pyne of playing a "game of distraction” to mask broken promises on the six year Gonski school funding deals. The Abbott government has only committed to the first four years. The bulk of the funding was set to come in years five and six.

The Australian Education Union said tinkering with the curriculum would not change the disparity between well off and disadvantaged schools.

Greens Senator Penny Wright said the review reignited the the "culture wars”.  "(The) review seems to be suggesting we can just put Aboriginal culture and history in a box, bring it out once a year, and forget about it the rest of the time,” she said. [Why not?  Aborigines rarely impinge on the lives of most Australians]

Queensland Premier Campbell Newman said the education system should help create well rounded members of a liberal democracy.

The report also raised concerns about teachers’ poor grammar and punctuation.  "It’s hard to expect teachers who have never been taught grammar, to teach it,” Mr Pyne said.

School curriculum is the responsibility of state and territory governments and Mr Pyne will need to enlist the support of his state counterparts for any desired changes when they meet in December.

Some findings:

* Grammar and punctuation training for teachers

* Greater focus on literacy and numeracy in primary school

* Back to basics in literacy - phonics

* More emphasis on western canons of literature especially poetry

* More focus on Western civilisation and Australia’s Judeo-Christian heritage

* Scale back focus on indigenous history and Asia

* Sustainability is overused


Tony Abbott blasts Bill Shorten on carbon

LABOR leader Bill Shorten said yesterday he planned to take a market mechanism for carbon control to the next election due in 2016, on the grounds it was still the best way of dealing with emissions, but it would not be a carbon tax.

Later in Tasmania, Prime Minister Tony Abbott mocked Mr Shorten’s statement on climate change, saying "nothing had changed”.

"What’s the one idea he’s come up with in 12 months as leader? Bring back the carbon tax,” Mr Abbott told the Tasmanian Liberal Party state conference in Launceston yesterday.  "Well, nothing’s changed. It’s still the same old Labor.”

Environment Minister Greg Hunt said it did not matter what name the opposition wanted to give its emissions plan for climate change, it was a carbon tax.

"It’s a carbon tax. He knows it, we know it, the Australian people know it,” Mr Hunt told reporters in Launceston yesterday, saying a carbon price was a cost to families.  "He should at least be honest and call it for what it is.”

But Mr Shorten said yesterday it was "important we use the market … to help set a priority in terms of tackling climate change... "So we will have a sensible policy on climate change. We do want to tackle carbon pollution, but we won’t be going back to what you saw in the past,” he said.


Stubbing out Carmen leaves smokescreen on money-go-round

The WA Opera this week decided to axe its planned production of the famous opera Carmen because it may glamorise smoking, and the opera company has a significant sponsorship deal with Healthway.

While the decision leaves opera-lovers and anti-nanny campaigners shaking their heads in disbelief - and possibly checking they hadn't become part of some Gilbert and Sullivan farcical comedy - the incident also illuminates something else: the convoluted conduits of government funding.

Healthway is an independent statutory body that answers to the Minister for Health. Its sole purpose is to provide sponsorship for events and causes that promote healthy living, and to this end, it received $21.4 million from the WA Government in 2013. This represents approximately 94% of Healthway's total income.

The WA Opera also receives government funding. It received $1.8 million in 2013 from the West Australian government through the Department of Culture and the Arts, and received a further $445,422 from the federal government through the Australia Council.

Seen this way, the $400,000 two-year sponsorship deal between Healthway and the WA Opera is a drop in an ocean of government funding. But it's also not immediately clear that it's government funding. In the WA Opera's annual report, which isn't itemised, the funding is likely accounted for under 'private and corporate support'. It beggars belief that a sponsorship deal with an organisation that receives the vast majority of its income from the government-and thus from taxpayers-is considered 'private' or 'corporate' support.

The entire saga is instructive, as it suggests that while government sticks its fingers in enough pies in a manner that sufficiently obfuscates what is happening, absurdities such as this one can be met with a shrug of the shoulders, and a belief that it's an isolated bout of insanity.

This, of course, masks the truth. The decision to cancel Carmen to avoid 'glamorising' smoking isn't a decision made by a private organisation to protect its funding from another private organisation.

The WA Government also funds theatre, ballet and the orchestra in Western Australia. Perhaps we can look forward to cancelled productions of Romeo and Juliet due to its 'promotion' of underage sex and suicide, or West Side Story for 'promoting' gang violence.

With so much government money sloshing around, censoring the arts for fear of promoting something unsavoury is inevitably a political decision - and one that should be seen for what it is.


1 comment:

Paul said...

While he may have been an Algerian, White Anglo-Saxons are clearly to blame, just like when Samoans or Africans attack Indians for their cell phones.

Its all because of White racism.

(questions won't be taken, thank you and goodnight, fellow Greens)