Monday, February 05, 2018

Will Anzac Day be used to honour Aborigines killed by white settlers? Government survey asks if they should be commemorated alongside diggers in April 25 marches

What a lot of rot.  I can imagine what the old diggers will say about this

The Victorian government has sparked controversy after surveying citizens about their thoughts on honouring Indigenous people killed by early white settlers on Anzac Day.

Premier Daniel Andrews' department canvassed opinions to see if Aboriginals who died fighting British colonisation should also be recognised alongside Australian and New Zealand soldiers who lost their lives in Gallipoli in World War I, the Herald Sun reports.

The carefully-worded survey itself questioned if: 'The period between 1790 and 1930 where Aboriginal Australians defended their lands, kinships and customs from European invasion/settlement should be reflected in the Anzac Day ceremony.'

One third of the 504 Victorian participants showed strong support for the statement, while 19 per cent strong disagreed and half expressed no opinion.

A follow-up report uncovered by the publication revealed a large portion of respondents were 'reluctant to recognise the frontier conflicts as part of Anzac or Remembrance Days, as they felt this would politicise the day', while some said they did not want to feel 'guilty' on a day they want to feel pride.

The RSL and the Institute of Public Affairs have since slammed the survey and have spoken out in opposition of honouring Indigenous death on Anzac Day.

'Around Anzac Day and Remembrance Day, I think because of their particular significance and the days that they represent, it's probably not appropriate ' RSL state president Dr Rob Webster said.

Evan Mulholland, of the Institute of Public Affairs, described the survey as nothing more than another 'left wing ideology' attempting to tear down another national holiday.

Despite one-third of survey participants expressing support for Indigenous recognition on Anzac Day, the state government confirmed it had no plans to change the existing program of commemorative events on April 25.

The report also noted the survey results were indicative of a general 'goodwill' towards Indigenous people and their experiences.

While participants were reluctant to explicitly honour Aborigines killed by white settlers, some expressed support for adding extra activities in the afternoon on Anzac Day after the sacred formalities are over.

It follows fierce dissension surrounding Australia Day and the 'Invasion Day' campaign to change the date from January 26.

Australians were divided in celebration and mourning on the day as activists flooded streets across the country in protest of the public holiday.

Yarra City Council, a branch of the Victorian government, also took the extraordinary step of forbidding staff from referring to the day as 'Australia Day' in a bid to avoid causing offence to the general public.

The 1000 employees - which included childcare workers, librarians and even gardeners - were instructed to call it 'January 26 public holiday' when with customers and clients.


UN does not like Australia's climate policies

Oh, Goodie!

Australia's climate policies are "a decade behind" other rich nations, according to a United Nations investment official, leaving the country exposed to risks of a so-called "green paradox" when carbon emissions will have to make a precipitous retreat.

A phasing out of coal and other fossil fuels is the centrepiece of four recommended investor goals to be unveiled by the UN's Principles for Responsible Investment unit in New York on Thursday morning, eastern Australian time.

Fiona Reynolds, UNPRI's managing director, said investors needed to take the lead in forcing companies to reveal their exposure to fossil fuels and to step up pressure on governments to meet their Paris climate commitments.

"Investors have a huge, huge role to play on climate change," Ms Reynolds told Fairfax Media, citing their ability to influence the companies they own, including steering them away from fossil fuels to renewable energy. "This a really urgent issue."

While countries in Europe of all political persuasions were tackling the need to switch to a low-carbon future, the debate in Australia 10 years behind, she said.

"Australia keeps battling about the downsides and not the opportunities that could be available to the country in this transition," Ms Reynolds said.

The Abbott government's scrapping of a carbon price in 2014 - and the kryptonite reaction to another policy since - went against the global trend.

Some 40 nations had introduced some form of carbon pricing and major international investors were generally supportive, Ms Reynolds said.  "They say, 'As investors, we work in market-based systems. We need carbon pricing,'" she said. "It's a high priority."

Josh Frydenberg, the environment and energy minister, said the Turnbull government won't support a carbon price: "The last time Australia had a price on carbon it was Labor's $15.4 billion carbon tax which was a disaster that sent electricity prices up and made us less competitive."

Pricing carbon, though, received support this week from European researchers who say putting a price on emissions would be a key method to avoid a "green paradox" that had implications for nations such as Australia.
'Nightmare scenario'

In a paper published in Nature Climate Change, the researchers looked at the possibility that fossil-fuel owners, in anticipation of future carbon curbs, would accelerate extraction rates to maximise profits - contrary to the object of those restrictions.

"Strong and timely signals" from climate policy-makers are necessary to counter the incentive to expand output of fossil fuels in the short term, they said.

Nico Bauer, a modeller from Germany's Potsdam Institute for Climate Impact Research and the paper's lead author, said Australia faced the "grass paradox" because of its fossil fuel wealth, including about 13 per cent of the world's coal reserves.

A "serious carbon price" would affect use of coal in Australia and promote faster take-up of renewable energy, Dr Bauer said.

Australia faced being "a victim of a blame game" if the Paris goal of a 2-degree warming limit is exceeded, a prospect that should serve to motivate climate action, he said, adding "the carbon price would be economically the most efficient instrument".

A delay also increased the likelihood of a "carbon bubble" emerging that would end up being popped rather than deflated if governments resorted to a "climate policy shock" to get emissions down to the required rate of reduction.

"This, however, is a kind of a nightmare scenario for financial regulators, because they figure out a financial crisis scenario and they fear something like a fossil-fuelled Lehman Brothers event," Dr Bauer said.


Brave mother-of-three battling terminal cancer chases thieves out of her home and down the street after waking up to find them 'stealing her car keys' as Melbourne's African gang crime wave continues

A terminally ill woman chased off three African thugs who allegedly invaded her home and attempted to steal her car in the early hours of Wednesday morning.

Kellie McElligott, 48 - who has ovarian cancer - woke to find the alleged intruders of African appearance in her Ascot Vale home, in Melbourne's inner north-west, about 4.30am.

The mother-of-three said the group were after her beloved Mercedes, which her husband Gerard McElligott gifted her only three months ago, 9 News reported.

'I'm suffering from cancer, he decided to buy me one because I wanted it all my life,' Mrs McElligott said.

'I’ve been through chemotherapy and I've opted not to go through anymore now. So there's no more really that they can do.'

Mrs McElligott said she yelled at the group and called her husband who helped her chase them out of the house and down the street.

She added: 'It's just amazing when adrenaline kicks in, what you can do.'

The alleged offenders hopped into a getaway vehicle with a set of stolen keys in hand, police said.   

Mr McElligott said the family has 'been through enough' and he was 'annoyed' by the alleged attempted theft.

About an hour later, another aggravated burglary took place at a home in nearby Essendon, police said.

The same group allegedly entered the home stealing phones, purses and the keys to a Holden Commodore.

The car was then reversed out of the driveway and driven 10 kilometres to an address in Collingwood.

Police tracked the group by tracing an iPhone that was allegedly stolen from the Essendon home.  

A 17-year-old and 15-year-old were arrested and charged with home invasion and theft of a motor vehicle.

Both were remanded in custody to appear in children’s court at a later date.  


Doing it wrong: Peter Van Onselen, free speech and Australia Day

By Bernard Gaynor

I’m surprised that the climate change lot haven’t kidnapped Peter Van Onselen.

He’s so chock full of that warm inner glow of moral righteousness, hypocrisy and smarmy new age smugness that I’m sure that if it could be bottled it would power several smaller countries (or even a larger one at that) without burning any fossil fuels at all.

Unfortunately, it would also come with a toxic dose of hot air. So, unfortunately, the effect on global warming would probably be negligible.

Anyway, in the lead up to Australia Day, he penned this self-righteous statement in The Australian:

"Free speech is important, so much so that opponents of Section 18C of the Racial Discrimination Act want it amended to allow humiliating and intimidating rhetoric to prevail. But many of those same free speech warriors now want to shut down debate about whether Australia Day should move to another date.

That can’t be right, can it? Hairy-chested defenders of free speech turning into shrinking violets offended by heady debate over a change of date for our national day? Is the idea really so controversial that even indigenous advocates for change shouldn’t dare speak of such things?"

Pete loves nothing more than sticking the boot into the anti-18c crowd.

And over Australia Day he thought he found a chink in their armour. Apparently, it was a debate ‘free speech’ warriors were trying to ‘shut down’.

I’ve seen no evidence of that. But I’m going to assume that what Peter means by this is that some of us have said that we don’t want the date shifted. As a result, it appears that PVO has concluded that we’re ‘stifling’ debate.

So he jumped in headfirst with his ridiculous diatribe.

But if Peter was really interested in the debate over free speech and if he was really interested in a debate about Australia Day and the broader issues relating to those with Aboriginal ancestry, rather than just searching for his next dose of feel good moral vanity, he might stop for a second to consider:

* You can burn the Australian flag and 18c won’t do anything.

* You can burn an Aboriginal flag and 18c will.

Indeed, you don’t even have to burn an Aboriginal flag at all to cop the wrath of 18c.

All you have to do is say something that is deemed offensive by an Aboriginal activist. Van Onselen would do well to remember the wrath faced by his fellow contributor to The Australian, Bill Leak.

Further, burning flags is not really the best example to use. Peter might get the idea that I’m somehow building a shadowy army equipped with lighters and ladders.

For the record, I’m not. Here’s a better scenario. If you decline an invitation to attend the workplace Australia Day function, 18c and associated laws will protect you from discriminatory ‘retribution’.

But if you refuse to take part in the now obligatory ‘Welcome to Country’ ceremony, these same laws will allow you to be sacked, denigrated and dragged before a Commissar of the Thought Police to answer charges of racial hatred.

So in these circumstances it’s a risky business to enter into the debate over Australia Day unless you have pale black skin.

Oops. Did I just say that?

The ‘debate’ that Peter’s so lovingly jeered is not a free debate at all, precisely because of laws like 18c.

On one side, there are those who are calling for this nation to be burnt to the ground. This is not merely rhetoric. It actually incites violent and destructive behaviour, promoting vandalism of our nation’s heritage.

And on the other side are those who seek to preserve our nation’s history and recognise the achievements of the past (which, I might add, include the achievements of Aboriginal people).

But it is hard for the latter side to properly argue their case. They cannot really speak freely about the benefits of settlement for Aboriginal people because it implies that there were limitations within Aboriginal society prior to settlement.

These implications, whether spoken or unspoken, are exactly the kind of ideas that laws like 18c silences.

And they are increasingly forced to participate in made up ceremonies celebrating the ‘repressed’ culture and spirituality of Aboriginal activists, even if they don’t want to.

If you can’t even make a comment about the segregationary nature of Aboriginal-only computer rooms without being dragged before a court, it’s gonna be kind of risky to even speak about flaws in Aboriginal culture or the problems facing some dysfunctional communities today.

These are the issues that 18c opponents want to discuss openly and freely. They are part of the backdrop of the ‘debate’ around Australia Day and this nation’s past, present and future.

We certainly are not interested in vile abuse. And 18c has not stopped that anyway. Indeed, because of the inherently hypocritical nature of these laws, they actually protect racist speech.

A court ruling has determined that 18c is not designed to silence vile statements made against ‘white people’.

That’s why the face of the ‘burn Australia to the ground’ mob can say this:

"Watching @GetOutMovie in the cinema with a bunch of white people. Fuck this. Get me out of here"

And that’s why the tribe she fronts can say this:

"Fuck Australia. Fuck your land theft, your child stealing and your state sanctioned murders. Fuck your governments, your military and your police"

Because 18c is designed to protect racist speech from one mob and to prosecute reasoned arguments from the other, it is rubbish for grand-standing new age moralists to claim that proponents of free-speech are trying to shut down debate over Australia Day.

Because of 18c there has been no real debate at all. It’s time Peter Van Onselen acknowledged that.


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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