Friday, October 22, 2021

Huge backlash to essay by Pru Goward suggesting some poor people lack discipline and are 'appalling' housekeepers

She has been condemned for something she didn't say. She said SOME poor were like that, not all. And that is simple realism

A former Liberal MP and the mother of model Tziporah Malkah [Kate Fischer] has been blasted in Parliament for suggesting poor people lack discipline and housekeeping skills.

Pru Goward, who until 2019 was the NSW minister for community services and social housing under former premier Gladys Berejiklian, has been widely condemned for an opinion piece in The Australian Financial Review about social divides.

The 69-year-old former ABC journalist and federal sex discrimination commissioner said she 'understood poor people' growing up as the daughter of a shopkeeper.

But Ms Goward recalled there was an underclass among the poor who 'behaved differently' and in her mother's words were 'not very nice', especially to social workers. 'Of course, they are always seen as a deficit,' she said.

What Pru Goward said:

'Social workers, traditionally good young men and women who thought it would be nice to be kind for a living, despair of their appalling housework, neglect of their children and, notably, their sharp and unrepentant manner when told to lift their game by the patronising do-gooder'

'Their children languish in the growing number of behavioural support classes in general high schools where they learn little and teachers itch to send them to the local TAFE to do some form of home-schooling and get them off their books'

Premier Dominic Perrottet condemned his former cabinet colleague. 'I completely disagree with it. I thought the entire premise of it was terrible,' he said on Thursday.

One Nation's New South Wales leader Mark Latham said Ms Goward's column was a 'slurring of all the children' from families that live in outer south-west Sydney.

'It's disgraceful that Pru Goward would write this generalisation, writing off a whole generation, not knowing these success stories,' he told the Legislative Council on Thursday. 'So out of touch, so arrogant, so condescending, so elitist.'

Mr Latham, who lives in south-west Sydney near where he grew up, likened Ms Goward to a Jane Austen novel from the early 19th century. 'You've written an article that is sort of out of Pride and Prejudice, sitting there like someone in a Victorian-era parlour room sneering at the poor,' he said.

In August 2019, Western Sydney University appointed Ms Goward as Professor of Social Interventions and Policy, which Mr Latham said should be reviewed. 'She shouldn't be at that university and she should actually be removed from that position,' he said in Parliament.

Ms Goward's column saw Mr Latham heap some rare praise on his old Labor Party, which he led from December 2003 to January 2005 when he was the federal member for Werriwa.

He gave a special mention to former state Labor housing minister Craig Knowles, who held the overlapping electorate of Macquarie Fields for more than a decade and oversaw the successful redevelopment of public housing at Minto.

'It's a great tribute to that former Labor government and the member Craig Knowles - the Minto project showed the way forward,' he said.

'Because of the renewal of the public housing estate and uplifting of the school, Minto Public, which parents had avoided, now had out-of-area enrolments.'

Mr Latham, who used to campaign against Labor's left faction at party state conferences, found common ground with left-wing state Labor upper house MP Rose Jackson, who had campaigned to have him expelled from the ALP.

'"They are damaged, lacking in trust and discipline, and highly self-interested." No, former NSW Govt Minister Pru Goward isn’t talking about politicians, it turns out this is what Liberals really think about poor people,' Ms Jackson said.

Ms Goward's daughter Tziporah Malkah was previously a model known as Kate Fischer and was the product of her first marriage to Adelaide-based economics lecturer Alastair Fischer. The mother and daughter have had a strained relationship.

Her second husband David Barnett was a press secretary to former Liberal prime minister Malcolm Fraser.


So Australia wants to welcome migrants again? Good luck with that

Suddenly everybody’s talking about immigration. As Australia opens up and emerges from almost two years of global isolation due to the COVID-19 pandemic, federal Treasurer Josh Frydenberg warns our record low population growth – due to closed borders – will act as a handbrake on the economy in coming decades. The Australian Chamber of Commerce is calling for a big injection of skilled migrants. And Premier Dominic Perrottet wants a “big NSW”. Bring back the migrants, reignite the economy!

Well, good luck with that, Australia.

Already there is evidence that people overseas looking to migrate are considering countries such as Canada and the United States over Australia. The US, Canada and Britain were already in stiff competition with Australia to attract the best and brightest, but this competition is only set to increase.

I fear the damage done during COVID through the lack of goodwill shown to temporary migrants, a critical source of skills in the Australian workforce, will undermine any renewed efforts to welcome much-needed people from overseas. Prime Minister Scott Morrison told non-citizens living in Australia to “go home” and the government denied financial assistance to temporary migrants, forcing many to rely on donations.

Australia has lost its sheen.

COVID-19 has been a natural experiment of sorts, proving the importance of immigration and the valuable contributions of migrants for the nation. A lack of labour in the horticultural sector has resulted in produce being left to rot rather than being picked and sold in national and international markets. Amid the crushing economic pressures of the global pandemic and industries being frozen by public health measures to keep the nation safe, our local skills and workforce have been insufficient to meet demands.

Additionally, the COVID-19 population experiment has demonstrated that migrants are not inflating housing costs, do not steal local jobs and nor do they suppress local wages. Net overseas migration is expected to be minus-77,400 this year and yet house prices, say Westpac economists, will surge 22 per cent. Meanwhile, we’ve had lower-than-expected unemployment and low wage growth, all while the borders have been shut. With this arsenal of evidence, you’d be forgiven for thinking immigration could recommence without public opposition and return to pre-pandemic levels without delay.

Recent commentary about a bigger Australia has prompted discussion about a migration-led population boom to kickstart the national economy. The federal Treasurer and minister responsible for immigration have both signalled the importance of immigration and the need to get the borders open. The Labor opposition is seemingly taking a more cautious approach to immigration and has been busy talking about reincarnating local industries with roots in the 1950s, such as car-making, to secure local jobs. But both major parties know the socio-economic importance of immigration.

I would like to see immigration feature in a post-pandemic recovery. I’m all for immigration that compliments the local demographic needs. And Australia needs more working-age people to get the country going again.

Huge migrant shortfall prompts warning surge in temporary workers could dent wages

But Australia will struggle to meet the demand for immigration and necessary skills in the short-term. Australia’s diplomatic tensions with China and COVID pressures in India will constrain the flow of migrants from the two largest source countries. Canada is the No.1 preferred destination for international students, followed by the US and Britain. Australia takes out fourth place.

If the projections of the federal government’s 2021 Intergenerational Report are anything to go by, Australia’s population growth and migration intake are going to be slower and lower, and neither will fully recover to pre-COVID levels. This is the short and medium outlook.

Australia needs to reset after the devastating economic and demographic impacts of COVID. Call it our post-pandemic rebuild, and it will be a watershed. Immigration will necessarily feature. But I don’t anticipate immigration increases will occur in the near future, not for want of trying on Australia’s part but because it has lost its sparkle.


Black American Police officer who fatally shot Justine Damond sentenced to less than 5 years in jail

Minneapolis: A Minneapolis police officer who fatally shot unarmed Australian woman Justine Ruszczyk Damond has been sentenced to nearly five years in prison – the maximum allowed for manslaughter -- after his murder conviction was overturned.

Mohamed Noor was initially convicted of third-degree murder and manslaughter in the fatal shooting of Damond, a 40-year-old dual US-Australian citizen and yoga teacher who was engaged to be married.

Damond had called police to report a possible rape happening behind her home in the US in the 2017 incident that led to her death.

The Minnesota Supreme Court tossed out Noor’s murder conviction and 12½-year sentence last month, saying the third-degree murder statute didn’t fit the case because it can only apply when a defendant shows a “generalised indifference to human life,” not when the conduct is directed at a particular person, as it was with Damond.

On Friday (AEDT) Judge Kathryn Quaintance, who also presided at Noor’s trial, granted prosecutors’ request to impose the maximum sentence called for by state sentencing guidelines on Noor’s manslaughter conviction, 57 months. In doing so, she brushed aside the defence’s request for 41 months, which is the low end of the range. With good behaviour, Noor could be freed on supervised release by the middle of next year.

“Mr Noor, I am not surprised that you have been a model prisoner,” Quaintance said. “However, I do not know any authority that would make that grounds for reducing your sentence.” She cited Noor “shooting across the nose of your partner” and endangering others the night of the shooting to hand down the stiffest sentence she could.

Noor, who was fired after he was charged, has already served more than 29 months. In Minnesota, inmates who behave well typically serve two-thirds of their prison sentences and the remainder on supervised release.

Noor testified at his 2019 trial that he and his partner were driving slowly in an alley when a loud bang on their police SUV made him fear for their lives. He said he saw a woman appear at the partner’s driver’s side window and raise her right arm before he fired a shot from the passenger seat to stop what he thought was a threat.

He was sentenced to 12½ years on the murder count and had been serving most of his time at an out-of-state facility.

Noor’s appeal of his murder conviction was watched closely for implications in the case of Derek Chauvin, the Minneapolis police officer convicted of the same charge in George Floyd’s death. After the state Supreme Court overturned Noor’s third-degree murder conviction, experts said they expected the same eventual result for Chauvin but that it would likely have little impact because Chauvin was also convicted of a more serious second-degree murder charge in Floyd’s death. Chauvin was sentenced to 22½ years.

Noor’s attorneys, Tom Plunkett and Peter Wold, sought 41 months at the resentencing, citing Noor’s good behaviour behind bars and harsh conditions he faced during many months in solitary, away from the general prison population.

Plunkett said on Thursday that much attention had been given to the victim as a kind and giving person – “all true,” he said. But Plunkett said there is “similar goodness” in Noor. He said Noor had always sought to help people around him, and recapped Noor’s good behaviour while in prison.

Assistant Hennepin County Attorney Amy Sweasy, meanwhile, asked Quaintance to give Noor the longest possible sentence. She said the case “is worse than typical” because of who Noor is. “The most serious sentence this court can impose is required,” she said.

Damond’s parents, John Ruszczyk and Maryan Heffernan, also asked the judge to impose the longest sentence. In a statement read by prosecutors, they called Damond’s death “utterly gratuitous” and said that the Minnesota Supreme Court’s overturning of a “poorly written law” didn’t change the jury’s belief that Noor committed murder.

“Our sorrow is forever, our lives will always endure an emptiness,” they said.

The victim’s fiance, Don Damond, gave his statement via Zoom. He started by praising prosecutors for their “sound application of the law” and criticising the state Supreme Court for its reversal, which he said “does not diminish the truth that was uncovered during the trial”.

“The truth is Justine should be alive. No amount of justification, embellishment, cover-up, dishonesty or politics will ever change that truth,” he said.

But Don Damond also spoke directly to Noor, saying he forgave him and had no doubt Justine also would have forgiven him “for your inability in managing your emotions that night”.

Noor, wearing a suit and tie and donning a face mask, appeared impassive as the victim’s loved ones’ statements were read. He later addressed the court briefly, saying, “I’m deeply grateful for Mr Damond’s forgiveness. I will take his advice and be a unifier. Thank you.”

Damond’s death angered citizens in the US and Australia, and led to the resignation of Minneapolis’ police chief. It also led the department to change its policy on body cameras; Noor and his partner didn’t have theirs activated when they were investigating Damond’s 911 call.

Noor, who is Somali American, was believed to be the first Minnesota officer convicted of murder for an on-duty shooting. Activists who had long called for officers to be held accountable for the deadly use of force applauded the murder conviction but lamented that it came in a case in which the officer is Black and his victim was white. Some questioned whether the case was treated the same as police shootings involving black victims.

Days after Noor’s conviction, Minneapolis agreed to pay $US20 million ($26.7 million) to Damond’s family, believed at the time to be the largest settlement stemming from police violence in Minnesota. It was surpassed earlier this year when Minneapolis agreed to a $US27 million settlement in Floyd’s death just as Chauvin was going on trial.


China, Islam threats to democracy force changes to Australian history classes

School kids will be taught that Australia is the “greatest country on earth‘’, in a new cutback curriculum with a focus on phonics and times tables.

Year 2 students will no longer be asked to identify “racist statues’’, federal Education Minister Alan Tudge will declare on Friday when he reveals that the draft national curriculum has been more than halved from 3281 to 1443 pages.

Warning against the rise of Communist China and fundamentalist Islam, Mr Tudge said Australian children should be taught more about the importance of democracy, freedom and patriotism.

“We should expect our young people leaving school to have an understanding of our liberal democracy and how it is that we are one of the wealthiest, most free, most tolerant and most egalitarian countries in all of human history, which millions have immigrated to,” he will tell the Centre for Independent Studies.

“If they don’t learn this, they won’t defend it as previous generations did. “We must do more to impress upon young Australians how extraordinarily lucky we are.’’

Mr Tudge said a “negative view of our country, our history and our future” was harming children’s mental health.

“Ultimately, students should leave school with a love of country and a sense of optimism and hope that we live in the greatest country on earth and that the future is bright,’’ he said.

“If they are constantly fed a negative view of our country, our history and our people, then we will exacerbate existing problems. “Let us be positive about our country.’’

Mr Tudge will reveal that the draft curriculum has been changed so that seven-year-old students will no longer be expected to “assess the morality of historical statues”. “How that ever got into the draft (in April), I do not know,’’ he says in his speech.

The revised curriculum will teach students that “our democracy is based on our Christian and Western origins, with a reference to the importance of the values of patriotism and freedom’’.

“The influence of authoritarianism and communism is growing in the world, particularly with the rise of an assertive China,” Mr Tudge said.

“Fundamentalist Islam remains a dominant force in any countries, as we are seeing in Afghanistan.

“There has not been a more important time to teach children the origins, values and singular greatness of liberal democracy since the 1940s.”

Mr Tudge said the curriculum was still too “long and deeply bureaucratic’’ compared to New Zealand’s school curriculum which has just 120 pages, and the UK’s 306-page document.

The original draft, released in April, would have forced teachers to wait until Year 4 to teach the times tables, but the new document reinstates the maths rote learning to Year 3.

It will also put more focus on teaching children to read and write using phonics – learning the sounds of letter combinations.

Mr Tudge said the revisions meant the curriculum had “gone from an F to perhaps a C, but Australian students deserve an A+.’’ “With education standards in decline in Australia over the last twenty years … it must aim higher,’’ he said.




1 comment:

Paul said...

You know that Blackie can do no wrong because he be like all oppreshed n'sheeit.

Always remember, he dindu nuffins.