Sunday, November 10, 2019

Kapow! Take that, campus feminists!

By Bettina Arndt

Great news - Senator Amanda Stoker has fired another round. I reported last week on her blast at TEQSA, our university regulator, for failing to protect the legal rights of people, usually men, accused of sexual assault on campuses. Last night she was speaking to Peta Credlin on Sky News and brilliantly exposed many of the flaws in the appalling university regulations governing this issue.

Here’s the link to the Sky program -

Please help me circulate this, particularly to people working in higher education and those who can spread the word about what’s happening here.

Amanda Stoker is a former barrister and criminal prosecutor and was able to spell out the lack of procedural fairness in current regulations, explaining that the basic rights of the accused person are being “completely squashed” under the current system which offers none of the normal protections available in criminal law courts.

Stoker listed those missing protections, namely that the accused had no access to evidence against them, there was no effort to ensure the reliability of that evidence, no power to call evidence in their own defence, no legal representation, no presumption of innocence, no right of appeal.

A secretive, unsupervised committee would determine guilt on the balance of probabilities with power to impose serious penalties including expulsion from the university. As Stoker pointed out this means students thus punished have wasted money and time invested in their degrees and are likely to be excluded from chosen professions – all penalties not found in the criminal justice code.

We should be really troubled by this, said Stoker explaining that universities established these unjust rules in an effort to make sure women feel safe. But the resulting one-sided procedures are resulting in gross injustice, she said.

She added an extra serve for TEQSA which is supposed to be responsible for making sure universities are well governed. “They have entered the fray ..gone out on a limb to endorse a set of processes that are really unbalanced.” And they have done this “in circumstances where it is their job to ensure they are delivering balance and fairness as the corollary of public funding and public support that goes to our universities.”

TEQSA is supposed to provide the checks and balances but instead “they are jumping on one side of the argument to the unfairness of others. That’s just not right.”

Wow, those squirming bureaucrats must be still smarting from Stoker’s treatment last week and now she piles on this lot.

Well, as you can imagine I am absolutely delighted to have Stoker out there fighting the good fight on the issue I have spent the last year trying to get onto the public agenda. My campus tour was aimed at drawing public attention to this feminist tilting of sexual assault regulations to favor the victim and ensure more rape convictions.

My only concern is Stoker is offering to help TEQSA “work through the principles of natural justice….and deliver fairness.”  But how will we ever know whether these unsupervised, secretive committees of untrained people are offering fairness to the accused?

It’s far better that we persuade universities to get out of the rape adjudication business and leave that to the criminal courts. No doubt this former criminal prosecutor is capable of getting the higher educator sector to see reason and vacate the territory.

Via email from Tina:

'She only heard praise' Woman whose patchwork quilt of 24 Golliwogs won top prize at a country show has no idea she's been slammed as a racist

The woman whose patchwork quilt of 24 Golliwogs won top prize at a country show has no idea she's been slammed as a racist, because she's off making more quilts.

The design by quilter Helen, which depicted golliwogs from 24 countries around the world, won first place in the Whittlesea Show's quilt category in northern Melbourne last weekend, and was widely criticised.

Helen's design was called 'offensive' by the chairman of the Anti-Defamation Commission Dr Dvir Abramovich, but Helen's husband said she received 'only comments of praise of the work' at the show.

Helen's husband Michael appeared on Melbourne's 3AW radio on Friday afternoon to tell the story of how the golliwog quilt came about.

'A very elderly lady had that quilt and she had that in her house for such a long time and she was visually impaired and suffered from arthritis, she asked Helen to put it together for her, which she obliged,' Michael said.

'Her quilting friend suggested she enter it into the show because it was such fine work and we're very sorry that people are offended by it.'

Some of the dressed up golliwogs on the quilt include a a Spanish matador, an English Beefeater, a golliwog doing the haka and an Egyptian pharaoh. 

Dr Abramovich suggested the quilt was celebrating racist images, but Michael said that wasn't the intention of the artist.

Michael said that Helen was over the moon to have won the top prize at the show, but hadn't been able to speak with his wife about the criticism of her work because she was busy with another piece. I haven't spoken to her 'cause she's quilting!' Michael said.

The golliwog was originally a character in an 1895 children's book but has since been associated with the racial stereotyping of black people. The word 'golliwog' has also increasingly been seen as racist due to the term 'wog' being used as a racial slur for foreigners.

The design follows the Royal Adelaide Show being forced to remove three dolls from a display last year which were accused of being caricatures of African-Americans.


Muslim trouble again

They're so full of themselves

Sarah Aslan, 23, her new husband Muhammed and 20 of their wedding guests were booted off flight JQ36 from Bali to Melbourne on Monday night.

They claim they were unfairly targeted by 'racist' crew because of their 'beards and headscarves'.

But Jetstar says some members of their group were being abusive and were kicked off for safety reasons because they refused to take their seats while the plane was taxiing.

The disruption started when one wedding guest complained to staff that his entertainment screen was not working.

The argument became heated and resulted in members of the wedding party refusing to follow crew instructions to take their seats and put on their seatbelts, a witness told Daily Mail Australia.

At one stage in the argument, some members of the wedding party 'played the race card,' the witness said. 'Is it the beard? It feels like it might be,' one man asked a flight attendant, according to mobile phone footage.

A Muslim flight attendant then told the group she was not being racist and she was of the same faith. According to multiple witnesses, one member of the party called her a 'bad Muslim'.

'The flight attendant was encouraging them to comply with safety procedures but she was racially vilified,' a witness said.

A passenger told Daily Mail Australia the attendant was shocked by the comment. 'She was denigrated for being a "bad Muslim". She moved to the front of the plane and was quite visibly upset,' the passenger said.

'The party members were arrogant and entitled and disrespected staff simply doing their job,' the passenger added.

The group, including a four-month-old baby, was escorted off the plane by security guards to the cheers of other passengers who were eager to get home.

They were put on another Jetstar flight to Melbourne via Sydney at no extra cost the next day.

Mobile phone footage shows some members of the group arguing with staff in the airport lobby after they were kicked off.

'I didn't do anything. I don't need you to speak to me like this, do you understand?,' Mrs Aslan can be heard saying in video.  Possibly referring to the flight attendant who was allegedly called a 'bad Muslim', she said: 'Where's the lady that started this s*** before?  'This is very racist,' she added before a staff member said: 'She's crying'.

Speaking to 9News, Mrs Aslan claimed members of her group were mistreated because of their religion.  'Personally, it did feel like we were being attacked for looking ethnic and being Muslim,' Mrs Aslan said.

Selim Tutunca, one of the 22 passengers escorted off the plane, claimed the group was unfairly targeted. 'We were racially, verbally and physically assaulted by both Jetstar crew members and Bali airport officials. We have footage of all of this,' he wrote on the Jetstar Australia Facebook page. 'We were kicked off the flight even though we hadn't even spoke a single word to the crew members.'

Mr Tutunca said he and his young family, including a seven and a three-year-old, were stranded in the terminal and that his children 'were put through hell'.

A Jetstar spokesman told Daily Mail Australia: 'Whilst taxiing to the runway a number of customers became disruptive and failed to follow crew instructions. 'The safety of our customers and crew is our number one priority and we do not tolerate any kind of disruptive or abusive behavior.

'We take these allegations extremely seriously and are investigating the matter, however our crew dispute the claims made by these passengers.' 


Time frame set for ban of exported recyclable waste from Australia

Recycling is costly and is about to become more so.  For a time a useful cost minimization strategy was to pay poor Asians to recycle the stuff. But they have recently become embarrassed by that role so are now refusing to take the waste

The bulk of recyclable waste is sent from Australia to other countries for processing at a huge cost, but not for much longer.

Australia will ban the export of recyclable waste from its shores, with a phase-out of the expensive and controversial practice beginning in July next year.

A meeting of federal, state and territory environment ministers today has devised a timeline to cease sending plastic, paper, glass and tyres internationally.

Prime Minister Scott Morrison flagged the ban after the last Council of Australian Governments (COAG) meeting in August, and today’s agreement has set in stone a staggered process to allow jurisdictions time to adjust.

“Ministers will further test the timetable with industry and local government, while also developing response strategies and undertaking independent market analysis,” the agreement states.

At present, when households and businesses put rubbish into recycling bins, just 12 per cent of that material is processed in Australia.

The remainder has been shipped to other countries – until recently most of it has wound up in China and Indonesia – at a hefty cost.

Last year, China banned imports of Australian waste and Indonesia has sent back shipments that were contaminated with non-recyclable waste, including soiled nappies and food.

From July 2020, glass waste will be banned for export, followed by mixed waste plastics the following year and all while tyres in December 2021.

All remaining waste products, including mixed paper and cardboard, will be banned no later than June 30, 2022.

“This timetable reflects the unique challenges of each jurisdiction, and the preparedness of some jurisdictions to complete the phase-out ahead of schedule,” the agreement states.

“All jurisdictions acknowledged resourcing, from Commonwealth, states and territories, and ndustry will be required to effectively implement the ban.”

Today’s agreement also committed to an ambitious waste reduction target under a new National Waste Action plan.

It aims to make Australia a world leader in waste management and recycling and includes an 80 per cent recovery rate of material across all waste streams. “All ministers have committed to identifying any significant procurement opportunities over oming months such as major road projects that could use significant amounts of recycled material,” the agreement states.

“The Commonwealth agreed to take a leading role. This reflects a wider commitment from the Commonwealth and states to drive procurement strategies for recycled material.

“The Commonwealth Government will prioritise work with states and territories and relevant industry and standards bodies to develop engineering specifications and standards to support

the use of recycled materials in building, construction and infrastructure development, for use across all jurisdictions.”


Andrew Cooper on the absurd bureaucracy threatening to prosecute him

As of midnight on Tuesday, I am subject to referral to the Australian Federal Police, who may charge me with criminal offences that attract up to six months’ jail. My crime? Well, I haven’t committed one. The best way I can ­explain it is that I’m in some cruel trap — one that’s been legislated into law, utilised by bureaucrats and sprung upon me out of nowhere with seemingly no chance of escape.

Trouble started on the morning of October 22, more than two months after my not-for-profit think tank LibertyWorks hosted the successful Conservative Political Action Conference in Sydney — CPAC as it is known. A strange email landed in my inbox that day. It was titled “Foreign Influence Transparency Scheme” and included a s45(2) notice. No, I hadn’t heard of it either. I often dismiss emails like this — they can be spam — but one line raised my eyebrow: “Criminal penalties apply for a failure to comply.”

Inside was coercive language and just 14 days to comply with extraordinary demands: “I write to require … LibertyWorks to give ­information and make and produce copies of documents to ­satisfy me as to whether LibertyWorks is liable to register under the Foreign Influence Transparency Scheme.” To satisfy me!

The documents requested relate to a perceived arrangement between LibertyWorks and our co-hosts, the American Conser­vative Union, a prominent Washington think tank that handles the famous US version of CPAC.

The letter does not ask “is there an ­arrangement” but demands all documents, emails and understandings between ourselves and the ACU, ourselves and speakers and delegates at CPAC and, perversely, between the ACU and speakers and delegates at CPAC.

When I first read this, I couldn’t comprehend it. They want us to obtain, reproduce and send them copies of ACU’s correspondence to all speakers? That would include ACU’s correspondence to CPAC speaker Nigel Farage, leader of the Brexit Party in the UK. It also would include correspondence with US congressman and CPAC speaker Mark Meadows.

This is why I am in a trap with no means of escape. I cannot ­obtain communications between the American ACU and a US congressman — the ACU would not produce that material for fear of breaking US laws.

And so the trap is sprung. They have sent me a demand for documents, they have threatened me with imprisonment if I do not provide them and they have given me 14 days to do so.

There is no natural justice in their requirements — if this is the law, then the law is an ass.

At midnight, the clock expired and I am now liable for referral to the AFP for arrest and criminal prosecution. As a happy coincidence, I am flying to the US as the deadline passes and I would be lying if I said there was not some small relief in that.

I want this to go away. I don’t want the stress, the prospect of legal fees, of a criminal conviction or of going to jail. But I feel a certain burden of responsibility to draw a line in the sand for all of us, to protect the next citizen in the sights of the unelected modern-day Stasi.

Tony Abbott, when rejecting an invitation to register under the scheme, said: “We have got ­ourselves into all sorts of predicaments over the years because reasonable people have been too accommodating to unreasonable people.”

I’m a single father who has tried to explain this predicament to my girls aged 15 and 12, but struggled to find the right words. So I simply asked them what they would think if their father had to choose between a difficult and risky path that was in keeping with his values and principles, or an easy path that sold out on those. Their response was swift and heartwarming: “Stick to your principles, Dad.” So that’s that.

I am now in breach of the s45(2) notice and if the AFP await me upon my return in a couple of weeks then so be it. I will take my day in court and will find a way to test the validity of this great illiberal leap into authoritarianism. I have been asked to kowtow in front of bureaucrats who no longer see themselves as servants of the people but controllers of the people. I now await their wrath.


 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...

"Anti-Defamation Commission Dr Dvir Abramovich.."

Crocodile tears from the Chosen Ones, who hate Blackie more than I ever could.