Thursday, August 31, 2017

Schoolboy sex articles spark review of gay ‘health’ website

HEALTH Minister Greg Hunt has ordered an urgent review of a federally funded gay health website that has published articles about schoolboy sex with men.

The Australian reports the Health Minister was unaware of the Emen8 website, which was established with a federal government grant intended for health promotion.

It recently published an article titled “Who’s the perfect daddy for you?” which provides an analysis of the relationships that can occur between mature and younger men.

The article asks: “Does your fantasy include some condomless after-school action with your papa”, despite the site being restricted to adults.

Other articles reportedly feature tips on picking up at the gym and reviews for kinky sex toys.

Another recent article appears to be at odds with national health guidelines on safe sex. The article titled ‘Australian Opposites Attract study: condomless sex with an undetectable viral load is safe sex’ reports on recent study that found HIV-positive men with an un­detectable viral load were extremely unlikely to transmit the virus to a HIV-negative partner.

The study found no instances of HIV transmissions between more than 300 partners it tracked. It warned however that the “true transmission rate” could be higher at up to 1.56 per cent a year.
The article does not mention the warning and conclude “condomless sex with an undetectable viral load is safe”.

It also does not mention other sexually transmitted infections could be contracted through unprotected sex.

A spokesman for the Health Minister said The Australian that any associations with “underage or unsafe behaviour” was “utterly inappropriate”. “Any funding provided by the Australian government for health education should be used for health education and must be in appropriate context,” the spokesman said.

“This grant was provided in 2016 for health education. Minister Hunt was not aware of the website and has now ordered an urgent review.”

ACON Chief executive Nicolas Parkhill yesterday defended the site.  He told The Australian the organisation was confident it was in accordance with the original tender specifications.“In  rder to effectively target this at-risk population group, the tone and voice of some articles on the site need to reflect their culture, interests and behaviours; the language resonates,” he said. “The content integrates sexual health messages that are familiar to a range of gay men.”

The site was established through money from the Prevention and Service Improvements Grants Fund, which aims to tackle bloodborne viruses and STIs in priority populations.

ACON and the VAC, both majority-funded by their respective state governments, were successful in a joint application to develop resources for “gay men and men who have sex with men”, receiving $1.6m over two years.


Winter rain fills Perth dams to highest levels in decade

Greenie guru Tim Flannery once prophesied that Perth would become a ghost city through lack of water

LATE winter rains have spared the cash-strapped State Government from a potential billion-dollar upgrade to the water network after boosting the city’s dams to their highest levels in almost a decade.

Just weeks after the Water Corporation warned it may have to fast-track a major new source of drinking water amid plunging dam levels, heavy rainfall in July and this month has helped avoid the need for an expansion.

Figures from the Water Corp show there has been 62.8 billion litres of “stream flow” into the city’s reservoirs so far this year after a surge of more than 50 billion litres in the past month.

The run-off has left the dams at 41.6 per cent capacity — or holding 262 billion litres. This is 73 billion litres (or almost 40 per cent) more than at the same time last year.

While the run-off into Perth’s dams is still only broadly in line with the city’s post-1975 average, it is the highest level recorded by the Water Corp since 2009.

The dam boost has prevented the need to bring forward a major new drinking water source such as a desalination plant to prop up supplies.

Under the Water Corp’s planning, the State-owned group still assumes it will receive at least 25 billion litres into the dams every year to ensure it can meet demand from customers.

The corporation said that despite the relatively wet end to winter, Perth’s rainfall levels for the season were still below their long-term average.

Spokeswoman Clare Lugar said the long-term decline in Perth’s rainfall meant its dams were still only at a fraction of their capacity.

In a bid to further bolster supplies, the Water Corp will launch its latest efficiency campaign this weekend, when the winter sprinkler ban ends. “While it may feel like we’ve had a lot of rain this winter, we are still only just above the year-to-date average,” Ms Lugar said.

“As our catchments are so dry following nearly 20 years of abnormally dry weather, we’d need to get double the average rainfall for years on end to fill our dams again.”

‘We are still only just above the year-to-date average.’


Australia Day debate: reclaim history instead of distorting it

By historian Geoffrey Blainey

The move to disown Australia Day has become a minor stampede. Curiously, it comes not from Canberra or Darwin but from gentrified suburbs in the southern cities of Fremantle, Hobart and Melbourne.

Many Aboriginal activists view the national day as a reminder of a painful event, but many others don’t. At the big Garma festival in Arnhem Land earlier this month, the main message sent south was not about Australia Day.

Aboriginal leaders hope for a significant change to the Constitution, and ABC journalist and author Stan Grant is becoming a central spokesman. Some critics wonder about his blunt observations, not realising that he is enlarging on dubious statements in textbooks and some university lectures.

This week he soared into fantasy. He lamented that indigenous people are “a postscript to Australian history”. In fact, an enormous amount of money and talent has gone into researching and teaching Aboriginal history in the past half century, thus increasing Aborigines’ knowledge and self-respect. He laments that Aborigines, “excluded” from the Constitution, were not even worth counting, but in fact a determined effort went into doing so, census after census.

Grant deplores the “belief in the superiority of white Christendom that devastated indigenous people everywhere”. Maybe he forgets that polygamy blighted the lives of countless Aboriginal families, and Christians did more than any group to curtail that practice. Of course, in the past two years Grant has also made valid points, expressing them powerfully.

Until we realise that the initial confrontations between Aborigines and the British were perhaps the most difficult and puzzling in the recorded history of the world, we will minimise the problems faced by those who arrived and those who had long lived here. Some obstacles are still here, 229 years later. Both sides deserve blame and praise.

One of the advantages of Australia Day is that it often throws these important topics into the debating ring. However, the latest move against Australia Day, often led by suburban Greens, is unexpected. At a time when there is a widespread fear that the nation could be weakened by the hidden circles of Muslim terrorists, more social cohesion is essential. And yet the Australian people are now selected as a major cause of disunity. Apparently their failure, visible every Australia Day, is to be ignorant of their nation’s history.

The city council in Yarra, which contains about 90,000 people in Melbourne, hopes to convert January 26 into a day of “community education” about Aborigines. It will run an “education workshop” for young Aborigines (will they attend?). It will abolish citizenship ceremonies for that day and translate a correct “information sheet” into the six main foreign community languages spoken in the Collingwood-Richmond-North Fitzroy area. It hopes to organise a smoking ceremony followed by a “culturally sensitive event”.

There is a hint that, if successful, it will try to smoke out the word Australia from the national day. It claims that January 26 is for many a day of mourning “and the beginning of generations of trauma and suffering”.

Without doubt, most Australians favour the present type of Australia Day. In contrast, the Yarra City Council, after a local poll, insists its residents think differently. But its poll contacted fewer than 300 people, many of whom did not reply. A nearby municipality, Darebin, conducted an even smaller poll.

The fact remains that many Aboriginal people do have a deep sense of grievance. They describe the planting of the British flag in Sydney Cove on January 26, 1788 as “invasion day”. I myself have used the phrase to cover the first Aboriginal settling of the land 60,000 years ago and then the later European inflow. For a whole continent to be embraced by two such distinct inflows — perhaps without parallel in the world’s history — deserves a powerful descriptive word.

Today the word “invasion” is often imagined as denoting a long-term British military conquest of Australia. In fact, the event was usually accomplished by a few civilians and only occasionally by British regiments. It was sometimes supported or carried out by Aboriginal people. In Queensland, the native mounted police killed other Aborigines on a large scale.

In the first decades after 1788, it was not envisaged that the inflow or invasion would cover most of the continent. But in the end it did. Devastating and dislocating, it caused far more deaths through new diseases than through firearms. Alcohol — which was new to Aborigines — strongly increased the death toll.

This sequence of events has sometimes been magnified by the rewriting of indigenous history in recent years. The rewriting, often by television producers and Aboriginal expositors, depicts a peaceful paradise that flourished in the millennia before Europeans arrived.

Aborigines are now depicted as living in peace and harmony, with each other and with nature. In truth, they were human beings: they fought one another. From time to time they invaded neighbouring territory, killing and maiming children and women as well as men. But the words “invasion” and “massacre” are rarely used to describe these Aboriginal attacks. The evidence of their frequency has multiplied in the past quarter century.

Some Aboriginal leaders promote this new interpretation of old Australia. Impressive politicians, they frequently out-argue federal and state leaders. In time to come, various historians, looking back, may well argue that of the 10 most effective national politicians in the early 21st century, perhaps three were indigenous. These champions have no seat in parliament — probably to their advantage.

While they argue, with truth, that many of their kinsfolk are still suffering deeply, it is also true that in many ways Aborigines have gained from events since 1788. Most indigenous people live in cities, large and small: NSW that holds the highest population of Aborigines. They are part of mainstream Australia.

Their success is not often reported in the media, but in each Australian state about 35 to 45 per cent of urban Aborigines are paying off their own houses. They increasingly occupy places in more or less all the professions: perhaps 13,000 of the young are now enrolled in universities. These points are briefly set out in my recent book, The Story of Australia’s People.

The typical indigenous families — and they live in urban Australia — have gained enormously from advances in medicine. Their life expectancy is higher than mine when I was born. Of more relevance, most Aborigines are now, materially, better off than if they had still been living in their traditional hunter-and-gatherer society, with all its distinctive merits as well as its weaknesses.

In contrast, a substantial minority of Aboriginal people today are living in wretched conditions in the outback. Perhaps they constitute one in four or five of all the people who are called indigenous. They love to be close to their own heartland and relatives; they wish for the old freedoms; and they resent the intrusions of officialdom. Some control the use of alcohol on their lands. But the prospects for their children are low — infant health and attendance at school are poor and violence is widespread.

These families pay the high penalty for their determination to live in tiny settlements where civic amenities, health and police services, and even running water are usually deficient. Though out of sight, they are widely seen as a grim advertisement for Australia.

Nothing does more to cloud a discussion of the state of the nation and the role of Australia Day than the existence of two such contrasting indigenous groups. There is even a third, with a very different history and background.

Torres Strait Islanders traditionally do not speak of “invasion day” but rather of the Coming of the Light. Their special day annually commemorates the arrival of the London Missionary Society and its Pacific Islander evangelists in the early 1870s.

On the other side of Australia, in the Pilbara, the Torres Strait Islanders were famous for their feats as railway builders.

Meanwhile, what could we create in place of Australia Day and its genuine but generally subdued patriotism and overall popularity and acceptance?

It would be risky to transfer the day. It is more successful than it has ever been, but real success has come only since the 1990s. When I was a child, Victoria did not even call it Australia Day, preferring the name of the ANA (Australian Natives Association) weekend.

In 1988, the bicentenary of the founding of Sydney, the nation’s leaders did not agree on what they should celebrate. Even Jonathan King’s bold venture in organising a replica of the First Fleet — it sailed into Sydney Harbour on Australia Day — aroused strong official opposition in Canberra.

Some critics even wondered whether Anzac Day, April 25, should become the real celebration. But the original Australia Day at last began to triumph in its quiet way, and is now widely accepted, though it has legitimate critics.

It has been suggested that the day be renamed. I have no objection, so long as the new name has wide public support. After all, it is the Australians’ day.

We have a long history of renaming days and places. Three east coast colonies, now called states, each adopted a new name in the 1850s, and the exotic name of Van Diemen’s Land was one that disappeared. Henry Parkes, NSW premier and the father of federation — what a magician he was — believed that New South Wales could change its name to Australia. In living memory, Uluru has replaced Ayers Rock.

One fact is certain. Aborigines need to celebrate more effectively their own contribution to early Australian history. While some complain about the statue and status of Captain Cook, they have failed to erect a striking monument or memorial in honour of their distinguished heroes, the unknown discoverers of this continent. They made the discovery before the great rising of the seas separated Australia and New Guinea, but it is still the momentous event in the long story of our nation.

A national report in 1975 first suggested a special monument be created. It has been recommended again and again, including by me. The money could easily be found. Nothing has been done. Aborigines must ask themselves: Why?



CONGRATULATIONS to the leading doctor and lawyer who had the intellectual independence and personal courage to condemn the coercive tactics being used by proponents of homosexual marriage.

Those of us who haven’t made up our minds on how to vote may take some guidance from paediatrician Robert Hardwick.

He became the second medic to resign from the Australian Medical Association, claiming its support for same-sex marriage “completely overlooks the best and largest studies that have documented considerable long-term adverse outcomes for children raised in same-sex marriages”.

Hardwick said yesterday the AMA’s position was “flawed, deceitful, unscholarly and unscientific”.

“They have only referenced very poor quality, biased studies to back up their claims,” said Dr Hardwick, who is a specialist at the Sydney Adventist Hospital.

His resignation comes soon after Chris Middleton, a former president of AMA Tasmania, ­renounced his life membership in the national body’s roll of fellows because of a lack of consultation on the issue.

And Sydney solicitor Robin Speed has picked a fight with the NSW Law Society for issuing a press release suggesting 29,000 solicitors supported same-sex marriage.

Speed has given the Law Society a ­deadline of 4pm on September 8 to make it clear that the legal ­profession “is not in unison on the issue and may vote as they choose”, The Australian reported. He may take legal action.

So not all doctors and lawyers have jumped on the same-sex marriage bandwagon.

It seems to me the only organisation is the country in full agreement on same-sex marriage is the ABC.

I suspect that voters who have no dogmatic views on same-sex marriage may vote “No” just to protest at the terribly one-sided debate.


Hundreds of asylum seekers will be booted off Centrelink and out of taxpayer-funded housing

The federal government is moving to cut welfare payments to hundreds of asylum seekers who are temporarily in Australia to receive medical treatment.

The move will slash $200-a-fortnight payments and public housing to up to 400 asylum seekers, forcing them to work or face being sent back to Nauru, Manus Island or their country of origin.

A Department of Immigration document said income support would cease from Monday and a 'final departure Bridging E Visa' would be issued, giving many just three weeks to find their own accommodation.

'What we're saying to these people is that until you leave, we do not want you continuing to be a burden on our welfare system,' government minister Dan Tehan told Sky News.

Greens leader Richard Di Natale said the party was seeking advice on whether the policy can be overturned when the Senate returns in a week's time.

'This announcement from [immigration minister] Peter Dutton is just unspeakable cruelty. We're talking about people who are traumatised, people that are vulnerable,' he said.

'We do call on members of the crossbench and the Labor Party to support us in doing everything we can to stop this unspeakable cruel act getting through the Senate.

'If this is a disallowable instrument, it simply requires a majority of the Senate to stop it. So the question is for Bill Shorten and Labor - will you end this cruelty?'

Opposition Leader Bill Shorten said it was a new low for the government of Malcolm Turnbull.

'Malcolm, this is not strong. This is cowardly and cruel. It's your weakest move yet,' he said in a Facebook post.

Human Services Minister Alan Tudge could not confirm the precise number of asylum seekers at risk, but said there wouldn't be any further provision of taxpayer support in Australia.

Mr Tudge said the move was consistent with the principle that anybody who arrives by boat would not be settled in Australia.  'They will be settled elsewhere. That's what this is about,' he said.

He did not think it was unreasonable to withdraw taxpayers support if they refuse to return back to Manus or Nauru.

Human Rights Law Centre executive director Hugh de Kretser said the asylum seekers in question have been prevented from working. 

'And now, completely out of the blue, with no notice whatsoever, they've been told tomorrow, you have no income we're taking all of your income away and in three weeks time we're taking your homes away,' he said.

Advocate Natasha Blucher said the asylum seekers were 'very, very employable' and wanted to work.

But with their history of trauma and the short notice, getting on their feet in 'this time frame is absurd and it's impossible and it will end with children homeless.'


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:

Paul said...

"Advocate Natasha Blucher said the asylum seekers were 'very, very employable' and wanted to work."

There appears to be very little evidence of this out in the real world, unless you count home invasion and drug dealing as work.