Thursday, July 07, 2016

ABC suspends junk science reporter

The woman should have known better. There must have been some personal reason for the BS.  The effect of electromagnetic radiation on health has been a big boogeyman for many years but the contrary evidence is huge. A scare that a few alarmists are trying to keep alive is that the radiation from your mobile phone will give you brain cancer.  Yet from the early days of mobile phones until now there has been no upsurge in brain cancer.  Now that mobiles are very widely used, we should be swimming in brain cancer cases by now.  But we are not. High or low levels of mobile phone use and the resultant radiation makes no difference. It's all just attention-seekers big-noting themselves

Isn't she gorgeous?  I suspect that it is her looks rather than her scientific ability that has got her prestigious jobs.  It happens

A CONTROVERSIAL ABC program about the health effects of Wi-Fi has led to a presenter being suspended, after it breached impartiality standards.

ABC presenter Dr Maryanne Demasi from the popular science program Catalyst has been suspended until September this year, after a review of the episode titled “Wi-Fried” was conducted by the ABC’s independent Audience and Consumer Affairs (A&CA) Unit.

Adelaide-born Dr Demasi completed a doctorate in medical research at the University of Adelaide and worked for a decade as research scientist at the Royal Adelaide Hospital.

She has also worked as an adviser to the South Australian Government’s Minister for Science and Information Economy.

The “Wi-Fried” episode was broadcast in February this year and contained information about the safety of wireless devices such as mobile phones.

In a statement released by the ABC, the investigation was initiated after the ABC received complaints from viewers about the episode. The ABC informed readers of its findings after the show aired on Tuesday night.

The A&CA found the episode breached the ABC’s editorial policies standards on accuracy and impartiality. “The A&CA Report found several inaccuracies within the program that had favoured the unorthodox view that mobile phones and Wi-Fi caused health impacts including brain tumours,” the ABC’s statement said.

“ABC TV is reviewing the strategy and direction for Catalyst with a view to strengthening this very important and popular program.

“Further, ABC TV is addressing these issues directly with the program makers and has advised the reporter, Dr Maryanne Demasi, that her on-air editorial assignments will be on hold until the review is completed in September 2016.”

ABC Director of Television, Richard Finlayson said the investigation had been thorough.  “Catalyst is a highly successful and respected science program that explores issues of enormous interest to many Australians. There is no doubt the investigation of risks posed by widespread wireless devices is an important story but we believe greater care should have been taken in presenting complex and multiple points of view,” he said.

The finding comes just two years after a separate investigation was launched into a Catalyst program about the use of cholesterol-reducing medications.

“ABC TV takes responsibility for the broader decision-making process that resulted in the program going to air and acknowledges this is the second significant breach for the program in two years,” the ABC stated.

“The ABC accepts the findings and acknowledges that errors were made in the preparation and ultimate approval of the program.”

The “Wi-Fried” program will now be removed from the Catalyst website.

Information about A&CA’s findings will be added to the Catalyst website, and the A&CA’s investigation and findings are on the ABC Corrections page.


Exclusive Brethren MET school gets record funding

Australian church leaders normally advise people to vote Leftist.  So when in 2004 the Brethren recommended the conservatives, there was huge media outrage.  The Brethren have been in the sights of the entire Left ever since then.  Below is their latest discvovery.  I don't have time to look into it but I note that ALL private schools in Australia receive extensive Federal funding

An exclusive private school run by an "extremist cult" that warns children to stay away from the outside world and bans its graduates from physically attending university receives more in government funding per student than up to a third of the state's public schools.

Data obtained by Fairfax Media from the MySchool website reveals that a school run by Protestant religious sect, the Exclusive Brethren, receives $800 more in public funding per student than Homebush West, which has been forced to ban children from running in its playground due to overcrowding.

At the same time, the school receives just $3 less in public funding per student than one of the state's poorer public schools, Liverpool Public.

The Liverpool school has a significantly lower ICSEA, or socio-educational advantage rating compared to the Brethren's MET school in western Sydney and receives $10 million less in donations every year. 

The religious group, which has 15,000 members in Australia and 40,000 worldwide has been in the spotlight since June after Fairfax Media revealed the group had covered up instances of alleged child sexual abuse. 

Brethren members are prohibited from eating or socialising with "worldly" people, and those who leave the church are banned from seeing their families, including their own children.

The sect first made headlines on the political scene after it funnelled hundreds of thousands of dollars into former prime minister John Howard's re-election campaign in 2004, and was later referred to in Liberal Party documents as "friends."

After winning office in 2007, Labor leader Kevin Rudd described the group as "an extremist cult that breaks up families," but continued the pattern of increasing funding to its schools.

In total, more than 600 public schools across the state receive less public funding per student than the Brethren institution, which has been rebranded as part of the Plymouth Brethren Christian Church.

Successive NSW and federal governments have continued to fund the 1000-student, 11-campus school at record levels of more than $10,000 per student despite parents and brethren businesses bolstering its coffers through up to $10 million in gifts every year - three times the amount of income it receives in school fees.

A ruling from the Australian Tax Office in 2005 found that offsetting fees through tax free donations would be illegal.

In a statement through public relations firm Wells Haslem, the church said it has never accepted donations in lieu of school fees and that comparing private school funding with public school funding was "misleading and irrelevant." The way government schools and non-government schools are funded is quite different and can't be compared," the church said. .

In defending its income stream, the school said "as a relatively new school" it had spent more than $4 million on facilities in 2014. The Brethren school was established 23 years ago.

A former Brethren school principal, David Stewart, said in 2007 that the sect's school system had been set up "to prevent the children from being corrupted" by things such as reading novels, and world leader Bruce Hales said in 2004 that the school system, which "the government has given us", would "deliver the young people from the world".

Private schools that receive a similar level of public funding, such as Emmaus Catholic College in Kemps Creek, have one-twentieth the level of private donations.

The combination of a high level of donations and public funding has meant that the Brethren school has been able to guarantee funding of up to $22,000, per student per year, more than many private schools secure through student fees, according to MySchool data.

Within its own postcode, the Brethren school outstrips public funding per student for two public schools, Burnside and Parramatta East.

Its school funding platform has drawn criticism for more than a decade, but taxpayer payments have continued to increase at record levels.

Recently re-elected federal senator Nick Xenophon called for an investigation in 2011 after describing the arrangement as a "tax lurk of biblical proportions".

In June, Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull said he had "no criticisms or complaints" to make of the controversial Brethren and was happy for the extremist Christian sect to continue donating to the Liberal Party.

The comments came after it was revealed its leader, Bruce "the Elect" Hales, who has been known to transport himself in a private jet, advised a young follower to "finish yourself off" with arsenic rather than communicate with excommunicated members of his own family.

In a statement, the NSW Department of Education could not explain why the school was receiving funding equivalent to that of some of the state's poorest public schools despite having a donation base five hundred times their value.

"State funding levels recognise the level of resources available to each school based on fees, charges and parent contributions. Schools must be registered and not operate for profit to be eligible for state funding," a spokesman said.

The federal Department of Education has refused to answer how the Brethren school received more public funding than other comparable schools despite receiving $10 million in donations per year.

A spokesman for the department said funding was allocated on a number of factors including the number of students from a lower socioeconomic background, who have a disability, are of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander background, have a low English proficiency, and the school's size or location.

But MySchool data shows the MET school has no Aboriginal students, no students of a language background other than English and an average socioeconomic background.

The department would not comment on whether it had any plans to investigate the funding arrangement.


Federal election 2016: Cory Bernardi forms conservative political movement

Cory Bernardi has announced the formation of a new cross-party political movement, the Australian Conservatives, to gather proponents of “limited government, traditional values” and “plain old common sense”.

The conservative South Australian senator today warned that, after repeating the mistakes of the Rudd-Gillard Labor Party, the Turnbull Liberals had ushered forth a hung parliament that put Australia “right back where we were in 2010” and they must “learn from the experience”.

“In my youth I was told that the definition of madness was doing the same thing over and over and expecting a different result. That axiom has borne out once again,” he wrote in his weekly email to supporters.

“As of writing, over 1.7 million votes were cast for right-of-centre or conservative parties rather than the Liberal Party. From my perspective, that was the Liberal base expressing their unhappiness with past events.”

Senator Bernardi announced the “formalisation” of a new movement, the Australian Conservatives, to “help change politics and to give common sense a united voice”.

“It’s more important than ever that we unite Australian Conservatives, who share many views, regardless of their party affiliation,” he wrote.

“If you believe in limited government, traditional values, defending our culture and heritage, lower taxes, a stronger nation, a stronger economy and plain old common sense, then you have a lot in common with millions of others. Now is the time to gather together.

“It’s the next step in making sure our voice is never taken for granted again.”


Queensland Aboriginal school closed down after principal was threatened with an axe will open again with extra security

Teachers who take jobs there must be desperate. 

A remote school that was closed down after its teaching staff were forced to evacuate due to violence will reopen with increased security and offer years seven and eight.

The Cape York Academy primary school in the troubled remote community of Aurukun, in far-north Queensland, will begin providing classes again following a review of education and security at the school by the Queensland Government, according to ABC.

Teachers were evacuated on two occasions in May after school principal Scott Fatnowna was attacked and carjacked twice in two weeks.

The first incident caused the evacuation of the school's 25 staff and the arrest of six people after Mr Fatnowna was attacked with an axe as he tried to stop people breaking into the homes of two teachers. 

The review made 27 recommendations, all of which will be adopted by the Queensland Government.

As part of the recommendations, new fencing, lights, security systems have been built and personal distress alarms have been issued, according to the report.

The town currently has 23 police officers, but will receive a further eight security personnel in line with the construction of a new teacher housing area.

Queensland Education Minister Kate Jones told ABC that classes will be provided for Year 7 and 8 students and distance education will be available for later years.

'They also want a greater focus on the Wik language, particularly for the transition of early years where English is often a second language for young people,' she said.

'That will ensure that we are providing that balance between Wik language and English in the school curriculum.'

Some teachers have chosen not to return to the school, but all positions have been filled, Queensland Teachers Union president Kevin Bates said in the report.

Queensland Premier Anastasia Palaszczuk told the remote indigenous community in May that the state government was making every effort to ensure the town's long-term education needs were met.

'We all know how important education is and it is indeed my priority to ensure that all children receive a good quality education,' Ms Palaszczuk said in the town square.

'I don't care where they live in Queensland, every single child deserves the best education.'

Ms Palaszczuk and Education Minister Kate Jones spoke to around 200 people in the town square following a tour of the town and meeting with the Aurukun Shire Council.

Aurukun elder Phyllis Yunkaporta told the premier in May she was opposed to the school being closed, but put the responsibility back on the community's parents.

'Children who are running amok and are not getting an education have to be home with their parents, their grandparents,' she said.  'We need to show love to our children.'

Shocking footage from Aurukun emerged in May of a group of women brawling in front of police.

The video shows a number of young women throwing bare-knuckled punches as onlookers stood by.


Posted by John J. Ray (M.A.; Ph.D.).    For a daily critique of Leftist activities,  see DISSECTING LEFTISM.  To keep up with attacks on free speech see Tongue Tied. Also, don't forget your daily roundup  of pro-environment but anti-Greenie  news and commentary at GREENIE WATCH .  Email me  here

1 comment:

PB said...

what's the point of having a school in Aurukun?