Monday, April 01, 2019

Pauline Hanson as Australia's Trump

Angela Mollard (above) rightly compares Pauline to Donald J. Trump below.  She could equally have compared Pauline to Ronald Reagan or Joh Bjelke Petersen. It was the Gipper who was first described as a "Teflon" politician -- one who did everything wrong by the Left-dominated standards of the media world but who somehow remained mystifyingly popular.  None of his "gaffes" hurt him. Sir Joh was an outstanding Australian example of that.  He and Reagan tied for the biggest percentage of the popular vote -- 59% -- ever achieved by a political leader in a Western democracy.

Angela is a generally sensible lady of a rather conservative disposition so she shows some understanding of the popularity but she misses the main "secret" of those three figures.  It is simple: 

All three seemed to a lot of people to be speaking commonsense in a world gone mad.  Immigration is a prime example of that.  To a lot of people in Western countries, immigration seems out of hand, with lots of undesirables -- such as Middle-Eastern Muslims -- pouring into the country who bring us nothing but harm.  And yet all other politicians of both Left and Right seem paralysed when it comes to doing something about it.  So someone who DOES speak out against a crazy consensus -- Reagan, Trump, Petersen, Hansen -- will be loved no matter what. He/she becomes what the Bible calls "A Pearl without price". Appreciation of such people is so strong that gaffes on other issues are instantly forgiven.

It is that simple.  Too simple for most politicians to admit

For any other politician it would go down in history as a disastrous week.

A party leader seen to be suggesting the Port Arthur massacre was part of a government conspiracy.

Her chief of staff and Queensland state leader captured in secret recordings discussing softening the party’s gun control policies in exchange for cash from America’s most powerful lobby group, the National Rifle Association. (This, of course, as across the Tasman thousands gathered at a remembrance service to honour 50 people killed in New Zealand’s worst terrorist attack.)

Then a bumbling press conference by said leader that was more ramble than rhetoric and will be remembered by some for the multiple errors and the red tick mark on the speaker’s cheek.

Anyone else would slink away hoping that the news cycle this weekend might throw up some other great scandal or disaster so that the past week’s shenanigans might be superseded by something worse.

Not Pauline Hanson. She’s emerged from the scandal more powerful than ever.

It must be galling to those who’ve had their careers nosedive on a poorly sourced fact or a clumsy utterance to see the flame-haired, Phoenix-like Hanson rise from the rubble yet again. So what’s her secret? Has she been spray-coated like Donald Trump with a substance to which nothing sticks? Or are her supporters so rusted on that she can do anything.

For Bronwyn Bishop, it took just a careless taxpayer-funded jaunt in a helicopter to see her turfed from office. Meanwhile Hanson can spout conspiracies based on some unnamed “blue book” and claim her colleagues are the victims of a “sting” and she’ll doubtless live to tell another hundred badly articulated tales.

The truth is that if her followers accept her making racist comments based on fear rather than fact, they’re hardly likely to turn on her for her recent comments.

In any case, they’re members of a club bound less by what they value and more by what they hate: namely latte-sipping inner-city wankers. Hanson’s supporters, like those of Trump, see her as anti-elite. They don’t care if what she says is sexist, racist, bigoted or stupid as long as their leader is annoying the media or urban sophisticates who wouldn’t know one end of a shovel from another.

When Hanson is criticised by the media, regardless of the substance, her supporters see it as evidence of the elite attacking “the deplorables”, the name Hillary Clinton so memorably ascribed to her detractors and a misjudgment that enabled Trump to trampoline straight into office.

Hanson’s supporters, like those of Trump, see the media as part of a political machine that is out to suppress the aspirations of “ordinary Australians” who “are living in the real world”. They’re the battlers and the underdogs and they’re driven by the belief there’s a cultural, economic and political elite who look down on them.

Hanson’s press conference on Thursday was Kool-Aid to her fans. They don’t care if she’s incoherent or short on facts. To them, she’s a maverick with a microphone who eschews brevity and big words. She speaks as her supporters talk to each other and so her dialogue – irrespective of what she’s actually saying – is familiar and reassuring. Like them she sees herself as a victim of both the establishment and a media riven with bias. As she told her fans in the 18-minute diatribe, there were some nice journalists and some nasty ones. Obviously Al Jazeera are the nasty ones even though, as she admitted, she hadn’t watched the full investigation.

Nevertheless, she still claimed the footage was dubbed and heavily edited.

Long before Trump came up with the concept of fake news, Hanson has claimed the media has been out to get her. When One Nation was wiped out at the federal election in 1998 she blamed it on Rupert Murdoch, falsely claiming he ordered News Corp Australia newspapers to attack her.

What is accurate is that the issue of preferencing One Nation will now consume the political debate in the lead-up to the election.


Boardroom bandits only too quick to shoot messenger

Janet Albrechtsen

Hell hath no fury like a woman outed as a member of a cosy, lucrative little boardroom club.

Spare a thought for former competition tsar Graeme Samuel, who this week pointed out that the walls built around an exclusive group of female board members were so impenetrable only a nuclear bomb could blow it open to other women. Going by the hysterical over-reaction and silly indignation from members of a women’s club who get appointed to multiple board seats across the country, this bloke must have hit one heck of a sensitive nerve.

The truth is that a Norwegian phenomenon has come our way. In Norway, a small club of female directors was so tight after the government mandated a 40 per cent quota for women on boards, it became known as the Golden Skirts. Between 2007 and 2010, after the quota came into effect in 2006, four times as many women as men held 16 board positions, and twice as many women as men held between 13 and 16 board positions. That is busy. And lucrative.

Well, the gig is up. In Australia, even without a quota law, women have masterminded their own Golden Skirts club. For too long, discussion has only ever been behind closed doors, by both men and women. Experienced women trying to break into senior boardrooms have watched the club in action, gathering more board seats. Experienced men have been told by headhunters drawing up shortlists of board candidates that if they are not wearing a skirt, don’t bother applying, no matter how qualified you are.

Proxy advisers will tell you, again only privately, that there is a small group of women who, how shall we say this, are “very busy” and “getting busier”.

Never mind the silence; the numbers give the game away. Research by governance firm Ownership Matters shows that at the end of last year, 38 female directors in Australia held three or more ASX 200 board seats. There were 25 men in the same position. At the end of last month not much changed, according to data gathered by the Australian Institute of Company Directors, with 32 women holding three ASX 200 board positions compared with 26 men in the same position. Whereas four women held four board positions, only one man did.

Samuel did not ignore the men’s club. But there is a glaring difference. Many more qualified men make up the men’s club, which means when you pick a member of that club, you don’t know in advance that he may end up being rather mediocre in the role. By contrast, targets to get 30 per cent or 40 per cent of women into board seats within a short timeframe, mean that corporate Australia is institutionalising female mediocrity.

When you appoint a woman, you knowingly risk choosing a less qualified woman to fill a female-targeted seat. Unless you pick from the few very experienced female board directors. And, hey presto, that dilemma means members of the Golden Skirts club get busier and richer still.

The Golden Skirts don’t want to talk about this difference between the directors’ clubs of men and women. In fact, there is much that miffed Golden Skirts would rather we not mention. Hence the scorn poured on Samuel by Sue Morphet, president of Chief Exec­utive Women, chairwoman of National Tiles and a director of Noni B and Asaleo Care. She said she had to check the date because his comments were so “last century”.

Samuel is not a dinosaur. His language may have been in search of a headline but, as the country’s former competition regulator, he can spot a lack of competition — be it in the boardroom or between supermarket titans.

Other women with multiple board positions, such as Rebecca McGrath and Nicola Wakefield-Evans, piled on Samuel too. McGrath accused him of stoking the “gender wars”.

The ploy is twofold. Shame Samuel so others will not dare speak the truth either. And to paint any discussion as illegitimate, all part of a war, for goodness’ sake. Peace on their terms means we don’t discuss the club.

The Golden Skirts want to control the conversation about their good fortune, the power and riches that come from their multiple board seats. They imagine they can lay down the boundaries of what can be said, indulged by obsequious nods from men such as those Male Champions of Change who flock to promote women because it gives them a public glow of goodness. Men such as Gordon Cairns, who came out swinging in support of the status quo, joined the founding champions in 2010.

You don’t need to have the nous of a former competition tsar to notice how the cosy women’s club in Australia came about, bolstering the careers of the Golden Skirts at the expense of other women. In 2015, the AICD called for ASX 200 companies to fill 30 per cent of boards seats with women by the end of 2018. Last year, Wakefield-Evans pushed for 40 per cent targets for women on boards by 2022.

Similar targets over the years have two critical components.

First, the targets are aimed at getting women into non-executive board seats rather than into jobs at the executive level of companies. Targets at the executive level, across the long term, would have been much more productive for many more women and better for companies in nurturing talent from a wider pool. But targets at the executive level would take longer, involve careful planning and training of women, and would not help create a cosy women’s club of non-executive ­directors.

The Golden Skirts understand supply and demand in a capitalist world. Targets for female directors turned the existing small pool of qualified female directors into highly sought-after boardroom commodities, delivering power and riches through sheer scarcity.

It did not suit the women’s club to throw support behind targets for women in executive roles. That was too long term. It would rob them of their chance to cash in. Worse, it would mean a pipeline of a highly skilled class of women with real executive experience who would compete with club members in due course. Better to set boardroom targets, pick up a suite of swanky board seats and waft around like a role model for women.

The second way the women’s club entrenched their positions was by attaching tight deadlines to targets, exacerbating the scarcity issue and driving up the economic value of the existing pool.

The combination of these two factors has been a huge disservice to the cause of other women. It has meant that in a short time, the wrong kind of women get pro­moted, and they keep getting promoted as their LinkedIn profiles grow. If targets had started at the executive level, it would have cultivated, across the long haul, a group of women with chief executive or C-suite experience, providing a larger pool of competent women with line experience appointed to boards in their 50s.

Instead boardrooms include a batch of women who are too young, overcrowded with lawyers, investment bankers and management consultants, and lacking real-life corporate experience.

The Golden Skirts in Australia have shown that they did not need quotas to entrench their power and boost their bank balances at the expense of other women, which is why they piled on Samuel this week to denounce him for saying the bleeding obvious.

Even if you believe that targets are needed to get women into the nation’s boardrooms, the way it has been done has turned a small group of existing female directors into boardroom bandits at the expense of deeper, more effective change for a broader group of women.


Man wrongly jailed for 32 days after wife’s fake rape claim sues government

"Believe the woman" bias in action, most probably

A man who spent 32 days in jail after his paediatrician wife faked a rape claim against him is suing the NSW Government.

A Sydney man is seeking more than half a million dollars in damages from the NSW Government for maliciously prosecuting a false rape claim made against him by his North Shore paediatrician wife.

A jury acquitted the man, who cannot be identified for legal reasons, of rape, domestic violence, assault and other charges in 2017 after Sydney District Court Judge Mark Williams issued a rare Prasad direction.

A Prasad direction allows a jury to find a defendant not guilty any time after the close of the Crown in cases where there is insufficient evidence to justify a conviction.

On legal advice, the man had pleaded guilty to two counts of domestic violence — relating to an email and damage to his then-wife’s mobile phone (after discovering explicit text messages between her and another man) but the judge dismissed those charges without recording a conviction.

The man spent 32 days in jail on remand, an “extraordinarily difficult” experience given he had no criminal record and one that continues to haunt him to this day.

“I was never far from ending it all after my release from prison,” he told yesterday. “The actions of police were so deliberate and savage that it made me doubt everything.”

The judge slammed the case against the man as “most unsatisfactory” and said prosecutors had failed to take into account “cogent and consistent objective evidence” that backed up the man’s claim that the sexual encounter at the heart of the rape charge was in fact consensual.

Defence lawyer Greg Walsh told the court the man and his legal team took photographic evidence that corroborated his story and discredited hers to the police, but it was ignored. “Was it ideological, was it wilful blindness? I don’t know,” Mr Walsh said. “All the evidence pointed to the fact that this was an innocent man who should not have been charged.”

“Cops worked on this case for two years,” the man told

“Judges, courts and jurors were used. It probably cost the tax payers over a million dollars in man hours alone. What a huge waste of time and money.”

She claimed she was raped another two times shortly afterwards. But it was all an elaborate lie and the defence proved it by tendering photographic evidence from a security camera in the home which showed the sex to be consensual.

“I had installed cameras in the house a day earlier but she didn’t know that when she went to police,” the man told

A text message exchange between the pair the following night in which she wished her husband a “safe flight” hours before he flew to Europe on a work trip was produced in court.

Four days after he left the country, the former wife walked into Gordon Police Station on Sydney’s North Shore and made claims of rape, assault and domestic violence that would ultimately be dismissed by a judge.

When he returned, police were waiting for him at Sydney Airport, arresting him in a dramatic swoop in full view of fellow travellers.

The basis of the man’s legal claim is that police and the DPP went ahead with the charges against him despite having been alerted to evidence that proved the so-called victim was lying.

That included video footage of the sexual encounters on June 15, 2015 which proved they were consensual.

In issuing a Prasad direction and dismissing proceedings against the man, Judge Williams acknowledged the case should never have gone to trial.

The man’s statement of claim, obtained by, lists the defendants as the State of NSW (Commissioner of Police), the NSW Director of Public Prosecutions and his ex-wife, who remains employed as a paediatrician at a Sydney hospital.

The man told that his legal team have yet to put a final figure on the compensation he will be seeking but estimated it would be in excess of $500,000.

That included an estimated $200,000 in lost income, $110,000 in legal fees plus damages stemming from his horror month in jail.

While Judge Williams awarded the man court costs following his acquittal, he was only able to recoup just over half of his mammoth $270,000 legal bill.

“They accepted $260,000 of that and then they applied the government cap which meant I received $160,000, leaving a $110,000 shortfall,” the man told

The statement of claim describes the man’s dramatic arrest at Sydney Airport on August 20, 2015, which saw police seize his laptop, iPod and hard drive.

“The Plaintiff was refused bail at Mascot Police Station (and) remained in custody for thirty two days until he was granted conditional bail,” the document states.

Under his bail conditions, he was required to surrender his passport and report daily to police, making it impossible to travel overseas for work commitments, resulting in a significant loss of income.

“The arrest and imprisonment of the Plaintiff was wrongful, whereupon the Plaintiff has suffered loss and damages and is entitled to damages, aggravated damages and exemplary damages,” the document states.

“The arrest and imprisonment of the Plaintiff caused him severe mental anguish and distress.”


ISIS sympathiser Saeed Noori - who mowed down pedestrians in Melbourne in 2017 while shouting 'Allahu Akbar' - has been sentenced to life behind bars

The thanks we get for taking in Muslim refugees

Saeed Noori, 37, had previously pleaded guilty to one count of murder, 11 counts of recklessly causing injury and five counts of reckless conduct endangering life.

Noori was sentenced in the Supreme Court of Victoria on Thursday, and will spend 30 years behind bears before being eligible for release on parole. 

The Afghanistan immigrant will be 60 by the time he's eligible for parole, after killing a grandfather and mowing down 15 pedestrians outside Flinders Street Station in December 2017. 


 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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