Thursday, July 06, 2017

Australia's leading Leftist antisemite opens up

As a former State Premier, foreign minister and Senator he is an influential figure on the Australian Left. He is however a bit of an oddball.  He was actually a pretty good NSW Premier but has always been very Green. He never learned to drive and is married to an Asian woman

Former Labor foreign minister Bob Carr has spoken out against Israel’s “cruel” and “foul” occupation of Palestinian land, and its “ruinous path” in rejecting the creation of a state of Palestine.

Leading a push for the ALP to give Palestine immediate state recognition, Mr Carr has also backed the Israeli opposition’s condemnation ­of a new law ­allowing further property seizures as amounting to “war crimes” if families are forced off privately owned land.

The comments were delivered by Mr Carr, who served as Julia Gillard’s foreign minister, last week when he appeared as a “special guest” of Labor frontbenchers Anthony Albanese and Tony Burke, joint hosts of a NSW ALP federal electorate council meeting in Sydney. A recording of the event has been ­obtained by The Australian.

Now head of the Australia China Relations Institute at the University of Technology Sydney, Mr Carr has been accused by pro-­Israel opponents in his party of acting behind the scenes to ­orchestrate passage of a resolution at this month’s NSW ALP conference that “urges the next Labor government to recognise Palestine”.

The resolution by the ALP’s largest state branch, which looks set to pass with majority support from right and left factions, would be the precursor to federal Labor supporting recognition of Palestine at next year’s national party conference. Such a move would mark a dramatic break with 40 years of unqualified ALP support for ­Israel, and create unwanted ructions for Bill Shorten in the lead-up to the federal election due in 2019.

Census data released yesterday shows that key NSW Labor seats such as Watson, held by Mr Burke, and McMahon, held by ­opposition Treasury spokesman Chris Bowen, have among the largest populations with Arab ­ancestry. Mr Burke’s Sydney seat has 18 per cent of voters with Arab ancestry while Mr Bowen’s has 13.2 per cent. The seat with the largest proportion of voters with Arab ancestry is Blaxland, held by NSW right figure and Labor frontbencher Jason Clare, at 19.5 per cent.

In contrast, the seat with the largest Jewish population is held by Malcolm Turnbull — Wentworth, in Sydney’s east, at 12.5 per cent of its population. The seat with the second-highest concentration of Jewish people is Melbourne Ports held by Labor’s Michael Danby, who has been a trenchant critic of the push for Palestinian recognition by the NSW ALP.

Mr Carr, who was NSW Labor premier for a decade before his stint in Canberra, acknowledges the attending head of the ­Palestinian delegation in Australia, Izzat Abdulhadi, as “His Excellency, the ambassador of Palestine”.

In the recording he praises Mr Albanese and Mr Burke for accepting, like him, that “now is the time to recognise Palestine” at an ALP state and federal level.

Mr Carr speaks highly of them and other former colleagues — Mr Bowen and now-retired minister Craig Emerson — for standing “one by one” with him against Ms Gillard in 2012 when she tried to pressure her cabinet into accepting a “no vote” by Australia opposing UN observer status for Palestine.

Mr Carr, who said he was aware the recording was being made, castigates his successor, Liberal Foreign Minister Julie Bishop, for failing to criticise Israeli settlements on Palestinian land that are “all illegal” and growing in such numbers they are “planted in areas never contemplated”. Her unquestioning support “just encouraged Israel to be more aggressive and chauvinist’’.

Quoting Israeli critics, and then agreeing with them, Mr Carr says the left-leaning Tel Aviv-based Haaretz newspaper had “correctly” called Israel an occupying power — but the occupation was “getting crueller”.

“The regularisation bill … confirms everything I’ve said about the foulness of this occupation, and about the poisonous effect it is having on Israel, and yes, it confirms ... the suffering of Palestinians which must be first and foremost in our concerns,” he says.

Mr Carr interprets comments by Israel’s Labor opposition leader Isaac Herzog as equating the new legislation with a “war crime”, and notes politician Benny Begin, son of the former Likud Party prime minister, calling it “a looting bill”.

A Palestinian family’s property could be seized by the Israeli state even if it had land title going back to the days of the Ottoman Empire, Mr Carr says.

He says Palestinians had stories to tell that had been “blotted out” until Israeli historian Danny Morris checked defence archives and found Palestinians were expelled when Israel was set up as a Jewish state in 1948. “There were massacres,” Mr Carr says in his speech. “And that feeds into the stories you’re familiar with; of Palestinians having to flee their houses, leave their houses behind, and flee for the borders.”

He says the people of Gaza are refugees with links not to that area but with the homes, real or imagined, inside Israel’s borders of 1948. Mr Carr berates Israel’s continued occupation of territories as a “cruel” and “hateful thing” that forces more suffering on Palestinian people.

He recounts one Haaretz report about “apartheid” coming to an ancient swimming pool used by Palestinian children, who were booted out by authorities for a group of touring Israeli settlers.

Federal Labor’s current policy on the Israel-Palestinian issue was publicly endorsed this week by Mr Shorten’s deputy Tanya Plibersek, serving as acting party leader, despite her own harsh criticism of Israel in the past, and her long factional alignment with Mr Albanese.

The current ALP policy supports a two-state solution — but only commits the party in government to “discussing” joining like-minded nations in recognising a Palestinian state if there is no progress in peace talks.

Jewish leaders in Australia consider the proposed change not only odious but potentially “dangerous” because of the encouragement it could give Palestinians to pursue their cause without concessions, including a pledge to end hostilities.

Mr Shorten, politically close to Mr Danby, is known for his own pro-Israel sympathies and good relations with Melbourne’s Jewish community. Mr Shorten has shown no sign of resisting the ALP policy shift, possibly aware he is in the minority with the party’s pro-Palestinian left faction now dominating national conference numbers, and backed by the NSW right on this issue.

Mr Carr was unequivocal in saying he wants Labor support for a Palestinian state “now” during his speech at the Canterbury-Hurlstone Park RSL Club.


‘I won’t be lectured by grumpy old white men’, says leading Greenie

Racism, sexism and ageism all in one sentence.  The bigotry on the Green/Left bubbles to the surface

Greens leader Richard Di Natale defended Sarah Hanson-Young’s decision to take her daughter on a $4000 taxpayer funded whale watching excursion, but refused three times to answer whether the trip passed the “pub test”.

This morning, Senator Hanson-Young told the ABC to “cry me a river” after a high-profile presenter accused her of “reverse racism” for describing critics of her taxpayer-funded whale watching trip as “grumpy old white men”.

The South Australian senator has been dogged by controversy after The Australian on Monday revealed she and her daughter took an overnight trip to the Great Australian Bight in September to “see the whales” at a cost to taxpayers of $3874.23.

She defiantly declared yesterday she had no regrets about the trip and had no choice but to take her 11 year-old daughter, who she said was “sick” at the time.

She sparked a further backlash among voters by telling Sky News on Tuesday her critics were “grumpy old white men deciding what is best for my family”.

The senator did not breach any parliamentary travel rules.

This morning, during her weekly appearance on an ABC radio panel alongside fellow SA senators Penny Wong and Simon Birmingham, she was challenged over the racist nature of her comments by host David Bevan.

“That’s an interesting choice of words — ‘grumpy old white men’ — by her,” Bevan told listeners of Adelaide’s top-rating breakfast radio show.

“Why the language? Why are you talking about grumpy old white men?

“You wouldn’t put up with that language if somebody was talking about an old grumpy black man, would you?

“You hear this language (about white men) a lot. We heard it when we went to a conference in Sydney in the ABC where they were talking about old pale males — this is a reverse racism, it’s getting around, isn’t it?”

But a defiant Senator Hanson-Young was immediately dismissive, saying “oh, cry me a river, I mean, seriously.

“When you have got some big bloke standing up telling people how to be a mother, what’s good for my daughter, I am not going to stand there and take it, and I am going to hit back, and that’s what I did.”

Bevan responded: “And you hit back using racial terms”.

Senator Hanson-Young said, “these people who want to complain and tell me what is good for my daughter, how to look after her and what my job is as a mother and how I manage that as a senator, I am not going to take it.

“I am not going to resile from doing my job as a senator ... and hearing men like Cory Bernardi tell me how to be a mother, how to manage my family affairs.”

Labor Senator Penny Wong, who was on the ABC panel with Senator Hanson-Young, said the term “grumpy old white men” was “not the language I would use”.

“A public figure would not use that language,” Senator Wong said.

“I have made clear over many years in public life that I do not use language around race in the way you’ve just described.”

But pressed as to why she would make the “personal decision” not to use such language, Senator Wong repeatedly refused to provide an explanation, telling Bevan, “I am not getting into this”.

Senator Birmingham, who also was on the ABC radio panel, said he would not use the racially charged language chosen by Senator Hanson-Young.

“My approach is always to deal with issues before us, do it in a straight way,” he said.

“I don’t really think age or colour or gender or sex or sexuality or religion or any of those matters are really relevant points.”

Senator Hanson-Young this morning on ABC radio also appeared to change her story, claiming she wasn’t on a “whale-watching” trip, despite posting photos of herself and her daughter undertaking a whale watching tour and telling The Australian on Sunday that the “whole point” of the trip was “see the whales”.

The senator, who wants a ban on oil and gas exploration in the Bight, said she had a range of meetings with stakeholders over two days.

“I did see the whales at the head of the Bight, invited on there by the local indigenous people, they were lobbying me for money to build a new eco-tourism hub ... there was no whale watching holiday,” she said.


Tony Abbott criticises Liberal Party, pushes Christian values as guest speaker at Liberal Party branch

Despite the Liberal Party continuing to clean up after Tony Abbott’s recent comments, including the fact the party is “haemorrhaging members”, the former Prime Minister is at it again — and atheists and Malcolm Turnbull are the prime target.

“Just at the moment, I’m not always the person that every Liberal wants to associate with,” Mr Abbott said, the audience laughing in return.

Using his guest appearance at a Liberal Party branch meeting on Monday night, Mr Abbott used the opportunity to explain the reasons surrounding his recent controversial comments, including lashing out at Australia’s submarine program and calling for an overhaul of policy and Liberal Party reform in a radio interview with Sydney shock jock Alan Jones.

“One of the reasons why I’m speaking out is not because I think we’ve got to change the personnel but because I think we’ve got to just move the direction a little bit,” he said in leaked audio obtained by the Sydney Morning Herald.

Branch members were invited to the event organised by assistant treasurer Michael Sukkar, whose electorate the event lay in.

“He is definitely on the war path,” a source told journalist Michael Koziol.

“I have never seen him speaking so well or looking so good.”

Members were offered “a rare opportunity to join former Prime Minister Tony Abbott to discuss how to navigate the political sphere as a Christian and ensure legislation supports family values”.

Mr Abbott’s Christian values were core at the speech, in which he lamented the crumbling values of Christian society and said Australians had put up with those that did not share the same values for too long.

“For too long, the good people of our country have been too tolerant of people who do not share some of the fundamental values that have made us who we are.

“As Michael [Sukkar] said a few moments ago, a majority that stays silent does not stay a majority,” Mr Abbott said.

Mr Abbott is refusing to remain silent despite warnings from senior conservative Liberal MPs that the party needs to “move on” from its bitter infighting or lose government.

In his most recent speech, Mr Abbott challenged supporters “to fight so that the existing government, the existing cabinet and the existing prime minister are as good as they possibly can be”.

“Just at this moment, let me tell you, we’re at a bit of a low ebb.”

Mr Sukkar defended Mr Abbott’s appearance on Sky News yesterday, describing it as a “pretty routine branch meeting”.

“It was reasonably well-attended, but as most members of parliament would know, your local members get a little bit sick of just hearing from their own member time after time, so it’s very routine for us to get guest speakers in to speak to our branches and this was a longstanding commitment of Tony’s to visit and speak to my electorate conference, so in that sense it was a very routine meeting but we had a really good turnout and volunteer organisations like the Liberal Party only thrive when we have an engaged membership and it’s one of the things that I try and do, and having guest speakers in aids that objective.”


Leftists outspending Libs

The Liberal Party is being warned of a $200 million “democratic ­deficit” that could topple the ­Turnbull government, as its ­enemies raise more cash to fight the next election.

Senior Liberals have issued an alert over the “cashed-up cabal” of rivals spending about $300m a year on campaigns, as incoming party president Nick Greiner acknowledges the government is the “underdog” in Australian politics.

As the party’s peak council gathers in Sydney, Malcolm Turnbull and his colleagues will today be warned of the weight of spending by Labor, the Greens, the ­unions, progressive think tanks and activist groups such as GetUp!.

“This is a major imbalance in Australian politics — let’s call it the democratic deficit,” acting ­federal director Andrew Bragg will tell the council.

“This deficit will widen by over $100m in the next 10 years.”

The warning is based on calculations from the Menzies Research Centre, the think tank linked to the Liberal Party, and is based on documents lodged with the ­Australian Electoral Commission on donations and campaign spending.

Mr Bragg warns Liberal candidates will have to fight off $300m in spending by their rivals on phone canvassing, polling, ­billboards, Facebook advertising, pamphlets and postal vote applications. “Like we do, they talk to the media, but they also talk directly to voters through an elaborate group of co-ordinated bodies.”

Behind the warning is a ­growing concern that the Liberal Party has been left behind by ­modern campaign tactics, as Labor and the Greens mobilise donors and ­volunteers on issues ranging from same-sex marriage to bans on gas and coal.

With party members divided over leadership and policy, the Liberal Party is undergoing an overhaul as Mr Greiner takes over from outgoing president Richard Alston while three out of four vice-presidents retire and Andrew Hirst is installed as new ­director.

The Menzies Research Centre calculates the “anti-Liberal” campaigns include $26m in union spending, $78m in political party outlays, $10m in declared GetUp! spending and $192m by sectoral interests that oppose the government. That compares with $78m in spending by the Liberals and ­Nationals and other “pro-enterprise” parties, $32m by business groups and $9m by think tanks.

“Our opponents are formidable but beatable. Beat them we must, for they want to radically change Australia,” Mr Bragg will tell ­Liberal members.

Mr Bragg outlines how political rivals were using their money to defend secret deals for union ­bosses, attack free-trade deals that boost exports, ­prevent development by blocking mines and ­punish small businesses by opposing tax cuts.

Mr Bragg also cites the attempt by construction union boss John Setka to intimidate building ­inspectors as an example of a union that does not believe in the law and threatened to “hunt down” opponents. “We must ­prepare to fight the extremes, Greens and unions, which are deliberately opaque in corporate structure, but never hard to spot.”

He also cites the appointment of a GetUp! deputy chairwoman Carla McGrath as a board member at the Australian Press Council as another attempt by the activist group to “march through every ­institution” to wield influence.

While Liberal chiefs warn about slow membership growth, GetUp! is claiming more supporters who will fund its campaigns or volunteer their time.

GetUp! chief Paul Oosting told The Weekend Australian the group had more than a million members and was growing. “Like most modern organisations we reject the old-school ­notion of excluding people from participating by ­imposing an ­exclusive system where only those that can afford to are able to participate and join,” he said. “In 2016, over 61,000 people gave to GetUp!. The average amount given over the course of the year was $50.”

In his opening remarks to the federal council last night, Mr Greiner conceded the Turnbull government was a “slight underdog” to win the next election and he acknowledged the Liberals were suffering from mistrust and division.

Mr Greiner, a former NSW premier, also recognised the factional deals in the senior appointments for party positions but vowed to provide leadership in uniting the Liberals at all levels.

In a pre-recorded address to the Liberal council meeting in Sydney Mr Greiner said he was aware of the financial challenges facing the party as well as the divisions at all levels. “There are also challenges in ensuring a culture of trust, openness and co-operation between all Liberal stakeholders, federal and state parliamentary and organisational,” he said in the video recorded in Europe where he is on a trade mission to the EU.

“I am equally conscious of the challenges in strengthening the ­financial and continuous campaigning capacity of the federal secretariat in the prevailing ­difficult political climate here and ­indeed for incumbent governments around the world.’’

The sudden elevation of Mr Greiner to the federal presidency heightened concerns over the ­factional control of top positions, along with similar deals over four vice-presidents.

The NSW and Victorian ­branches are riven by disputes over reforms and personality clashes and in Queensland ­tensions are mounting over the Liberal-­Nationals amalgamation.

Party memberships are falling, financial support is drying up — to the extent Mr Turnbull had to ­provide $1.75m of his own money during the election campaign — and factional infighting has been made worse by the ­removal of Tony Abbott as leader.

Mr Greiner acknowledged the deals and said his involvement in the selection of positions was ­“appropriate” and promised to visit all states to listen to views ­before holding a meeting of the new Liberal executive.


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

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