Tuesday, September 06, 2022

Judge admits a plague of domestic violence towards Indigenous women

Aboriginal men are hard on their women and children. I have seen it myself

In a speech to a group of female lawyers this week, Justice Judith Kelly said false claims of individual and systemic racism detracted from the search for solutions to the far higher rates of domestic violence in Indigenous communities. “Talking honestly about the problems that exist and encouraging honest and open public debate would have to be a good start,” Justice Kelly said.

“And by speaking honestly about the problem, I mean not self-censoring for fear of being branded a racist by the ideologues of the new ‘anti-racism’ religion.”

Justice Kelly said people and institutions, including the legal system, were casually and inaccurately labelled as racist without any evidence.

“The underlying assumption of this ideology appears to be that Aboriginal people must exist in a permanent state of victimhood, an assumption that is in fact deeply racist,” she said.

“Further, among those in thrall to this ideology, labelling someone or something ‘racist’ seems in many cases to be an end in itself – not a prelude to remedial action, but a substitute for it.”

Justice Kelly earlier this year spoke to The Australian about an “epidemic of violence” plaguing Aboriginal women in the NT at the hands of their partners.

Those comments drew criticism from the NT’s Australian of the Year, Leanne Liddle, at the Garma Festival. Justice Kelly said while Ms Liddle, as director of the Aboriginal Justice Unit, had said many useful and positive things, her comments at Garma were not among them.

“Ms Liddle invited the audience to reflect on what might be meant by ‘people’ and she was quoted as saying: ‘I feel strongly that such language reflects an undercurrent of racism – an othering of Aboriginal people that exists within our society’. I am sorry Leanne feels that way so let me make my meaning clear,” she said.

“By ‘people’, I meant ‘people’ – not ‘people other than Aboriginal people’. I want all the people of Australia in cities, towns, the bush and bush communities to know what is happening so that, just maybe, something might be done about this terrible scourge.”

Justice Kelly noted that in the past 22 years, two Aboriginal men had been shot by police. In the same period, some 65 Aboriginal women were killed by their partners. The police shootings received massive media coverage, but the deaths of those women were barely noted.

She described two instances where Aboriginal women were killed by their partners in front of numerous witnesses who did nothing. Other victims, she said, were actively discouraged from reporting violence and may be punished for doing so.

“Everyone is willing to talk about the over-representation of Aboriginal men in prison. It has been called Australia’s shame and so it is,” she said. “But … the stream of Aboriginal men going to prison is matched by a steady stream – a river – of Aboriginal women going to the hospital and to the morgue.”

She said false claims of individual and systemic racism detracted from the search for solutions.

“The causes of this epidemic of violent abuse are multiple and complex … unemployment and passive welfare dependency; lack of access to adequate education, health and mental health services; lack of adequate housing and consequent overcrowding; substance abuse; dispossession and loss of culture,” she said. “And one that deserves a stand-alone mention – the ‘rivers of grog’ that run through our communities.”


Fascist Victoria

image from https://spectatorau.imgix.net/content/uploads/2022/09/victoria2.jpg

Fascism was Leftist from its inception

In late August 2020, pregnant mum, Zoe Buhler, was charged and handcuffed in her own home by Victoria Police, accused of inciting a protest in breach of public health orders.

Her great ‘crime’ was to put a message on Facebook promoting a ‘peaceful protest’ – with social distancing measures and masks – to ‘end lock downs’ and ‘stand for human rights’.

The Assistant Police Commissioner, Luke Cornelius, alleged Ms Buhler had ‘engaged in serious criminal behaviour’. He referred to those objecting to lockdowns as ‘batshit crazy’.

How serious was this charge, given it has been dropped weeks away from a state election? Surely a serious charge should be pursued fully through the courts?

‘Clearing the political decks’ is how some cynics might view it.

Many Australians, and others across the world, are familiar with the vision of Zoe Buhler being handcuffed by police in her kitchen. It is the unfortunate stuff of Covid legend.

On Tuesday, police withdrew the charge. It took police two years to do the right thing. Many questioned the validity of such so-called crimes that turned ordinary citizens into criminals for things like … walking outside.

During this time, Victorians experienced things they never thought they would in a free country, one in which democracy and respect are fundamental tenets of our peaceful way of life.

Other than Black Lives Matter gatherings, Victorians observed their right to protest being annulled with pepper bullets and tear gas. Citizens were filmed running from police officers who used batons and a bravado in clips that went viral worldwide.

Had these crowds been assembling in the streets to riot, to burn buildings, to loot, to murder, to wreck, or to create mayhem, then Victorians would have understood such aggression by the police.

But these crowds had gathered for freedom.

They gathered for the right to go to work, the right not to be forced to take vaccines, and the right for their children to go to school or playgrounds.

They rallied for democracy, for the return of the Parliament to make decisions, and against the absolute authority of emergency power contained in the Premier.

It was under Labor’s watch that the police chased protesters, hurried on grandmothers from park benches, handcuffed a pregnant mother, held elderly men on the ground, and kept Melbournians locked down for 23 hours a day unable to travel – or even walk – further than 5 kilometres from their homes.

The Premier offended many Victorians during this time, locking them out of their state. They were stopped from being with their dying parents or attending their funerals. One of his most offensive statements was, ‘We had no choice.’

Let me be very clear: the police had a choice about whether to charge Zoe Buhler.

It is why Labor must apologise to Ms Buhler for their contempt of individual rights and why their government must explain to the Victorian people why police were instructed to act so aggressively.

An explanation as to why it took two years for the charge to be withdrawn would also be welcome.

The Police Minister should now consider sacking the Police Commissioner and his Assistant, Luke Cornelius, the same officer who sympathised with Black Lives Matter protesters and their right to gather.

It seems apparent that, like much of the Victorian bureaucracy, Victoria Police has been politicised and the law has been used to hush citizens who disagree with the government.


Million Australian ‘teen robots’ on path to illiteracy, OECD warns

A global education leader has criticised Australia’s shallow school curriculum for producing “second-class robots’’, as damning new data reveals a million teenagers are on a track to illiteracy over the next five years.

Andreas Schleicher, education and skills ­director with the ­Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development, has warned that Australia has “made learning often a mile wide, but just an inch deep’’.

“I would say that is one of the real challenges in Australia,’’ he says in a speech prepared for the National Catholic Education Conference next week.

“The challenge is to teach fewer things at greater depths.

“If you look at the top-­performing education systems, that’s what they do. They often focus more on deep conceptual understanding rather than just surface content.’’

Mr Schleicher called for more rigour in the curriculum to teach children to think for themselves and collaborate, instead of educating “second-class robots, people who are good at repeating what we’ve told them’’.

“We have made students passive consumers of a lot of learning content,’’ he said.

Mr Schleicher oversees the world’s biggest comparative school test, the OECD’s Program for International Student Assessment (PISA), which has revealed a startling slide in achievement among Australian 15-year-olds compared to students from 75 other industrialised countries over the past decade. Since 2003, Australian students have dropped from 11th place in maths to 29th, from eighth place in science to 15th, and from fourth to 16th in literacy.

Criticism of the national curriculum – which was simplified and “decluttered” in April following a two-year review – coincides with warnings of alarmingly low literacy levels among students.

The most recent PISA test, involving 14,000 Australian students in 2018, found one in five teens reads at the lowest of seven levels of proficiency – a level the OECD regards as “too low to ­enable them to participate effectively and productively in life”. Only 60 per cent read at a “proficient standard’’ of level three.

Learning First chief executive Ben Jensen has extrapolated the data to calculate that 800,000 Australian students have substandard literacy levels. He predicts that will soar to a million by 2028, unless they are given help to catch up with reading and writing.

“Translated across the school system, that means a million students, out of just over four million, who cannot read well enough to have a productive career and a full life,’’ he writes in Inquirer on Saturday. “The evidence shows that when students who are behind are taught clearly identified and sequenced knowledge appropriate to their grade level, using high-quality instructional materials, they can accelerate … learning and make up huge ground.’’

Dr Jensen also criticised the new national curriculum, which the Australian Primary Principals Association has declared “impossible to teach”. He said Australia’s curriculum is “not high-quality and knowledge-rich’’.

“It does nothing to guarantee the knowledge students are supposed to learn,’’ he said.

“It fails to provide teachers with comprehensive, high-quality instructional materials.’’

The Australian Curriculum, Assessment and Reporting Authority, which released the new curriculum in April, has withheld the 2022 NAPLAN results until year’s end. Last year’s testing of a million children found one in five teenage boys is semiliterate, with one in 10 girls and one in five boys failing to reach the minimum standard for writing in Year 9.

Mr Schleicher, a physicist and statistician who studied in Australia for his masters in science from Deakin University, is special adviser on education policy to OECD secretary-general ­Mathias Cormann, Australia’s former finance minister and special minister of state. He said that in PISA’s reading literacy tests, “Australia has gone backwards’’.

“I’m not saying that Australian students learn less necessarily but when it comes to those advanced knowledge management skills, this is where they increasingly struggle,’’ he said.

Mr Schleicher said the curriculum must teach children to out-think robots, and “think for themselves and collaborate with others’’. He said top-performing education systems “look at the realm of human knowledge, the realm of ethics and judgment, the realm of political and civic life, the realm of creativity, aesthetics, ­design, of physical health, natural health, economic life’’.

“(They teach) those fundamental concepts that make us different from the artificial intelligence that we have created in our computers. Teaching fewer things at greater depths is really one of the key challenges.’’

Mr Schleicher said the most successful countries in education used “rigour, making sure that students are challenged in every moment of their learning’’.

“It’s about focus, teaching fewer things at greater depths.

“Success is about remaining true to the disciplines, helping students understand the ideas, the foundations of a discipline.’’


Dispelling myths about water in Australia

Ron Pike

The myths about water are many. They range from Australia being the driest continent on earth, to all of our rivers dying from overuse, right up to the government being required to return water to the environment.

Most of these myths are rooted in ‘environmentalism’, a political movement which has become a form of religious belief that fosters a sense of moral superiority in the believer but does not burden him with adherence to scrutiny or veracity.

These particular environmentalists arrogantly believe their cause is so important that they should not be questioned or challenged in scientific debate. Have you ever heard an environmentalist explain what the environment is, or where it resides?

For many years now I have used municipal flood records to refute the oft falsely repeated claim that since we invested in water conservation and irrigation, we have had fewer over-the-bank flows (floods) than in the century previous.

In reality, we have had many more, and you do not need a degree in anything other than common sense to work out why.

Environmental bureaucrats continue to argue against these truths, and other indisputable facts, and use their error to justify the iniquitous Murray-Darling Basin Plan.

But here are some not-so-well-known facts that should be shouted out in the present flood of misinformation about our water resources.

Australia has more precipitation per head of population than most other countries on Earth.

Some examples; expressed in megalitres per person: Australia: 140, Brazil 130, USA 33, Japan 6, United Kingdom 4.

Of our precipitation, about 13 per cent runs to the sea and this amounts to about 290 million Megalitres per year from the mainland and 50 million megalitres from Tasmania.

While the amount we use for all mankind’s purposes varies from year to year, it rarely exceeds 5 per cent of this huge volume.

How then is it possible for anyone and most of all Politicians, to argue that our rivers are over-committed?

How can the federal government justify overriding Section 100 of the Constitution to return water to ‘the environment’ when the people of Australia only use 0.4 per cent of the precipitation that falls from the heavens?

Surely federal action via the MDB Plan is an act of extreme incompetence and a depravity against the Australian people?

Politicians, if they are to regain any credibility, must recognise that the bulk of our runoff is between Adelaide and Cairns, which is right where we need it. All we must do is conserve these huge flows in times of excess and where necessary divert westward.

Mankind has yet to develop a better water conservation system than the building of dams. Doing so will massively grow our economy, generate a huge growth in jobs, and if practically managed, stop most of our flood damage.

But flowing from this revelation of where our water resources are, is a much bigger and more important truth that has been buried by those not saddled with a commitment to truth.

The Australian river with the largest run-off by a very large margin is the Murray River. As Sturt rather boldly stated when he progressed from the Murrumbidgee to a river he called the Hume, ‘I have found Australia’s Mississippi.’

This is not surprising when we consider that the Mighty Murray has a catchment of one million square kilometres which includes most of Australia’s snow country, a fact overlooked by our dishonest environmentalists.

The outflow from the Murray most years is more than double our next biggest river, which is the Clarence.

Now consider this before we look at some historical Murray outflows. The total storage capacity for all dams in the MDB including the Snowy Scheme is 29 million megalitres. Measured at Euston these are some of the historical flows in the Murray River.

1956 120,000,000 megalitres
1957 2,400,000 megalitres ( a very dry year)
1962 36,000,000 megalitres
1963 35,000,000 megalitres
1964 36,000,000 megalitres
1969 24,000,000 megalitres
1974 60,000,000 megalitres
1975 72,000,000 megalitres
1984 36,000,000 megalitres
2022 estimation 70,000,000 megalitres

During the dry years of the Millennium Drought, the flow past Euston only dropped below 2,400,000 megalitres. in one year.

The flow past this point in 2010 and 2011 which ended this drought is believed to be over 30,000,000 megalitres. each year and outflows have remained around this and above every year since.

So why is the Murray-Darling Basin Authority releasing around 2,400,000 megalitres of stored water every year into an already swollen river? It is an absurd waste of a needed resource. The lower Murray is always awash with more water than we can possibly use and this is why we can never successfully manage this resource until we build Chowilla Dam.

While reliable details for all years are not available, I believe the picture painted by the facts we have, clearly show a system not overburdened by irrigation extractions and a system that would hugely benefit from more storage.

What should be screamed is that the system is over-regulated by multiple bureaucracies; from Canberra, the states, and local government and is not over-committed for irrigation.

Recent debate about our water resources has been appalling to watch, and any rational arguments have been drowned out by the politics of perception. Truth as expressed above has been washed away by media-generated emotion of ‘dying rivers’, a water-starved environment, and dead fish.

How is it possible to argue that we, the people, are depriving ‘the environment’ of water when the people are only using 0.4 per cent of the total precipitation and around 5 per cent of runoff?

The lack of truth in public discourse relating to our water resources has not only killed off rational debate, but has undermined our human decency that flows from acceptance of that truth and unpins our respect for one another.

As a result, previously thriving communities built on the abundance of our water resources and a respect for one another’s ambition and enterprise are regressing.

The management of our largest water resource, the Murray-Darling system, is a sin against the people of Australia and if Prime Minister Albanese is serious about job and wage growth he must take the breaks off the peoples ‘Tools of Trade’, which are Water, Power, and Fuel.


Also see my other blogs. Main ones below:

http://dissectleft.blogspot.com (DISSECTING LEFTISM -- daily)

http://antigreen.blogspot.com (GREENIE WATCH)

http://pcwatch.blogspot.com (POLITICAL CORRECTNESS WATCH)

http://edwatch.blogspot.com (EDUCATION WATCH)

http://snorphty.blogspot.com/ (TONGUE-TIED)


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