Friday, July 31, 2015
A Leftist martyr is born
Attempts to stop people booing aggressive part-Aboriginal football player Adam Goodes have backfired. An attempt was made to suppress the booing by branding it as "racist". That caused great offence among the many who simply thought Goodes was a bad sportsman. The outcome was a wave of statements in reply about Goodes being offensive --e.g. here.
I think I should mention that AFL legend Jason Akermanis got booed a lot in his day. But unlike Adam Goodes, Akermanis is white. So, you know. Not racist booing. Akermanis has in fact called Goodes a "sook", which translates fairly well as "unmanly" -- a very bad image in football.
The criticisms have now got to Goodes and he appears to have departed football. After being accused of being racists, the fans would undoubtedly erupt into a storm of booing if ever Goodes stepped onto the field again. His position really is untenable.
Goodes seems to me to be less than half Aboriginal in terms of ancestry but, if he were a tribal Aborigine, a wave of disapproval would certainly weigh heavily upon him. Tribal Aborigines can be, and still are, "sung" to death. The singing consists of the men of the tribe sitting down together and chanting disapproval of the person for hours on end. The target of such chanting will simply die. So it is probable that Goodes is feeling very distressed by the turn of events.
The Left however will see Goodes as a victim and see his eclipse as proof that all Australians are racists. He will be celebrated in song and dance for decades as a Leftist hero. There will undoubtedly be Horst Wessel songs about him. That he might have deserved his eclipse and that he might be to blame for his own downfall will not be considered
As it has been revealed AFL star Adam Goodes has been granted indefinite leave over the controversy involving 'racist' fans who boo him, the mother of the girl he first called out has demanded an apology and said he should 'man up and take' the abuse.
The woman, identified only as Joanne, said the abuse Goodes receives from fans on a weekly basis stems from how he treated her daughter - who racially abused the player in 2013 when she called him an 'ape'.
'If he hadn't have done it he wouldn't be having the problems he'd be having now,' according to the Sydney Morning Herald. 'He probably should apologise because maybe he should have picked his target a little bit better.
'I don't think Julia was treated fairly at all. It was the way he carried on on the ground that made them do what they did. If he hadn't have carried on like a pork chop it wouldn't have mattered.'
The woman also accused Goodes of being too sensitive when it comes to abuse he receives, and said he needs to 'man up and just take it if he wants to play the game'.
The comments come after Sydney announced Goodes would miss at least this Saturday's game with the Adelaide Crows, in a statement released on Wednesday evening.
Swans CEO Andrew Ireland said the decision to grant the premiership champion a leave of absence from the club was made due to the damage the scandal is doing to his mental well-being.
'Adam is sick and tired of this behaviour. It has been happening for too long and it has taken its toll,' Mr Ireland said. 'As a club we are working with Adam and those close to him and supporting him through what is a really difficult time. 'We will give Adam all the time he needs. We will keep supporting him and he will return to the Club whenever he is ready.'
The announcement comes after the debate over fans heckling of the Indigenous star was reignited last weekend following a tribute paid to the star during Sydney's clash with West Coast.
After kicking a goal, Lewis Jetta - another of Sydney's Indigenous players - performed a tribal dance, which he later dedicated to his friend and mentor. The dance included a spear-throwing action, which was directed by Jetta at fans who had booed Goodes throughout the match. Goodes performed a similar dance during a game in June during the AFL's Indigenous round.
On Tuesday, the Swans slammed fans who boo Goodes as 'racist'. 'Should anyone choose to deride Adam through booing, then they are part of something that is inherently racist and totally unacceptable,' Mr Ireland said. 'The people involved in this behaviour can justify it any way they like. Our Club calls it racism.
'Adam is sick of it. He is tired and drained by it. It is something that has weighed down on him for some time. 'He is frustrated that he is constantly the face of such negativity.'
The club's statement came amid reports Goodes was on the verge of walking away from the sport entirely as a result of the abuse he has endured.
The AFL Players Association released a statement on Tuesday, calling for an immediate end to the attacks on Goodes.
We believe that Adam has been vilified for calling out racism, for expressing his views on Aboriginal issues, and for celebrating and promoting his proud cultural background. This is not something for which Adam should be vilified – it is something for which he should be celebrated.'
The race row around Goodes dates back to May 2013, when he pointed out a person in the crowd during a game at the Melbourne Cricket Ground for calling him an ape. The supporter was removed from the ground.
The person who made the comment turned out to be a 13-year-old girl, who Goodes later spoke with to discuss how her comments hurt him because of his Aboriginal background.
Critics of Goodes said he called out a minor who was too immature to take responsibility for the comments, and suggest fans boo him because they dislike his on-field behaviour and not because of his race.
Goodes has played 365 games for Sydney since debuting in 1999, and has twice won the Brownlow Medal - the award given to the league's best player. He was also named Australian of the Year in 2014. [So was the crooked Tim Flannery]
Student guild angered as University of Western Australia axes three arts majors
The University is trying to ease out "Studies" courses, which are notoriously lightweight and propagandistic
The University of Western Australia has been criticised by its student guild over the proposed dismantling of three arts majors.
UWA plans to abolish its Gender Studies, European Studies and Medieval & Early Modern Studies majors from next year.
The university will instead teach the subjects as units within broader, more popular majors, such as English and History, in an effort to increase the number of students enrolled in those courses.
But the change has angered the UWA Student Guild Council, with a petition so far amassing 300 signatures against the proposals.
The guild's Emma Boogaerdt said two of the subjects had previously been abolished before being re-introduced.
"Students are feeling that they are continually unfairly targeting these majors," Ms Boogaerdt said. "Students are going to be less likely to take them up because they're not sure if they're going to be continued.
"Having majors that are brought back and cut is a really unsustainable way to run a faculty, and a really unsustainable way to keep the constant student cohort going."
Ms Boogaerdt said cutting Gender Studies as a major in its own right also sent the wrong message to students. "It sends the message that learning about the history of women's oppression is not valued, it shows they think it's a niche issue and the university doesn't think it deserves its own place," she said.
In a statement, a spokesman for UWA said it remained committed to teaching the three subjects, and it was planning the changes because only a relatively small number of students enrolled to study the existing degrees.
The spokesman said students had been consulted throughout the process, and those currently studying the subjects would be able to complete their majors as planned. UWA said there would not be any staffing changes as a result of the process.
The guild is expected to raise the issue with the UWA Academic Council next week.
Ms Boogaedt said she was open to a compromise. "I think an acceptable medium would be if the university said, 'all right, so far we haven't had adequate student consultation on this issue, let's take it off the chopping block for the moment and take it back to the drawing board'."
Bias against rich people
Brighton is a wealthy Melbourne suburb
I LIVE in Brighton. I’ve grown up in Brighton my whole life and I went to a private school. There, I’ve said it, loud and proud. Have you already summed me up? Let me start by saying this, I’m not the “typical Brighton girl”.
Yes I like nice things — who doesn’t? But I’ve had to work for every single one of those “Brighton” items — whether it was my car, a handbag, or a new coat for work.
Why is it though, when people ask where I’m from, I become awkward and end up lying? “Oh, do you know Bayside? Yeah, I live around there kinda, um, Sandringham, Black Rock way.”
I found, going through university and now in full-time work, Victorians can be quick to judge.
First impressions are everything and society likes to make up its mind in about five seconds.
When I was at university, in the first class of each semester the teacher would make us go around the class and introduce ourselves.
First year uni, I was a novice. I didn’t understand society’s quick judgment. “Hi, my name is Cassie, I’m studying journalism and I live in Brighton.”
I remember the initial reaction of one of my tutors: “Oh we’ve got a Briiiighton girl in the class!”
I didn’t know what he meant. Should I be offended? Embarrassed?
By third year, I knew how to avoid the unpleasant looks and reactions. I didn’t want people to treat me differently, or think I had it easier than them. So I lied. “Hi, my name is Cassie, I’m studying journalism and I live around the St Kilda area.”
But what my fellow students, teachers and society didn’t sum up in the five seconds of the first impression was how my family got to be where they are. How we came to live in Brighton.
When my grandfather was 14 he fled Greece for a better life. He came here alone.
When he arrived in Australia, he taught himself English, working 70 hours a week in a family cafe in Richmond until he eventually married and took over the cafe when his uncle died.
My mother’s parents had a fruit shop in Black Rock. My mum, and her two sisters, lived in the back of the shop until her parents could afford a house.
My grandparents on both sides struggled. They struggled to send my parents to school, to put food on the table, to give them a life they deserved. But they did it.
My mother and father are dreamers. They have huge, crazy, unimaginable goals but they work hard to achieve these goals — which is how they’ve raised me and my younger brother.
I live where I do because of their sheer hard work, their sacrifice for us. Why do people judge that?
My parents have taught us, if we want something in our life — whether that’s a career, a holiday or a home — it’s not impossible, nothing is impossible. It just comes down to pure hard work.
It hurts when people want to stereotype us and jump to conclusions, ridiculing us for striving to be successful.
I’m not saying everyone who lives in Brighton is like my family, but Bayside is made up of 100,000 different people, each with their own histories and dreams for the future.
Society should not be so quick to judge.
Merger and acquisitions boom largely bypassing Australia, thankfully
There have been a lot of losses associated with mergers and acquisitions in the past
Bankers and lawyers around the world may be on the cusp of the seventh merger and acquisitions boom, but activity in Australia so far this year has fallen short of bumper levels, according to King & Wood Mallesons.
In a briefing to clients and employees, KWM partner David Friedlander said conditions globally in 2015 were similar to previous cycles of frenetic M&A activity, experienced six times in living memory. Those included the technology boom, the heady days of 2006-07 and prior to the sharemarket crash in 1987.
"What we have now is the start of a possible seventh," he said of mega-deals and activity levels globally. "This year, it has been sheer bravery and fear that if you don't run hard someone will come at you."
According to Dealogic, announced global M&A amounted to $US2.28 trillion ($3.09 trillion) in the first six months of 2015, the second highest half-year volume on record behind the same period in 2007. There were 31 transactions of more than $US10 billion ($13.5b) announced, underscoring the trend for large consolidation plays spanning industries including healthcare and pharmaceuticals, health insurance, energy and gas, and technology and communications.
Activity levels in the US are leading the charge while the Asia Pacific region has seen a rise in the proportion of global volumes it accounts for and Europe a decline in its share.
Large local deals this year have included offshore-based tilts for companies including Toll Holdings and Asciano, and the marriage of Federation Centres and fellow retail landlord Novion Property Group.
"For Australia it's actually been a disappointing market for M&A," Mr Friedlander said, noting that even so large infrastructure deals would likely keep the total deal values at reasonable levels.