Afghanistan is teetering on the brink of an almost unimaginable disaster. The withdrawal of US and allied forces, scheduled by President Joe Biden to be completed by September 11, threatens to precipitate the unravelling of the most pro-Western government in Southwest Asia.
Source: On the brink of disaster: how decades of progress in Afghanistan could be wiped out in short order
Yesterday, Canberra again promised that we’ll be vaccinated by Christmas. Yet, three months into the rollout and only 1.9% of NSW has had both doses.
Source: Less than 2 per cent: The real numbers of the vaccine rollout – » The Australian Independent Media Network
Is adversarial politics damaging our democracy?
Those who despise adversarial politics find it to be contemptible, a damaging affliction on our political system. They resent the stifling impediments it places on governing, on governments carrying out what they promised the electorate they would do. They see it as focused on ‘winning’, on gaining a political advantage, rather than telling or establishing the truth, or contributing usefully to the discourse. It sets the teeth of the electorate on edge, which ‘turns off’ in despair. Voters would prefer politicians to be open and upfront, more focussed on the good of the nation, less willing to corrupt the usually-worthy principles that brought them into politics in the first place. At least our PM and Opposition leader are now cooperating well during the COVID-19 crisis.
What can we ordinary citizens do?
We might be able to bring about change if we, who pay our politicians’ wages via taxes, raise our voices against the use of exaggerated, depreciatory, derogatory and dishonest language by politicians, commentators and columnists. While the media might miss the theatre and the ‘newsworthy’ copy adversarial politics provides, the public would applaud a more measured approach, free from adversarial behaviour – so wasteful, so unproductive, so distasteful. We could write to our parliamentarians individually. Responders to this piece may have other suggestions. Sadly though, if history tells us anything, any change for the better is probably a vain hope.
via Is adversarial politics damaging our democracy? – » The Australian Independent Media Network
Dutton blames the victims. He is Australia’s Shame, (ODT)
Source: This family is not ‘playing funny games’, Mr Dutton. You are
All Aboriginal people suffer in every aspect of their lives from racism. The denial of self-determination is racist (12). Racism is evident in the education system, the legal system and the political structures of Australian society (13). It exists at the legislative and bureaucratic levels and weaves down into public opinion. Aboriginal people have had to contend with the European attitude of white supremacy. The issues I have discussed are all bound together with racism (14).
These major issues indicate that a history of racist views and policies began in Australia in 1788 and still manifests society today. History books account of the struggles of Europeans to claim this continent as their own, whereas a curtain of silence has shielded generations of students from recognising how European expansion swept away the land rights of the original inhabitants.
In the advancing colonisation the Aboriginal people were conveniently treated as part of the country’s past. ‘History,’ proclaimed an old uni lecturer of mine, ‘treated Aboriginal people as little more than impediments standing briefly in the way of inevitable white progress across the nation’ (15).
via What do the major impacts on Aboriginal people today tell us about the history of Australia? – » The Australian Independent Media Network
1) Why is there even a plea necessary?
2) Is Israel’s exceptionalism such a stand out they just might be as guilty as?
via ICC rejects Morrison Gov’t plea for Israeli exemption from war crimes prosecution
News Corp has certainly been fuelling Sinophobia as it did Islamophobia and anti African sentiments yet we have Racial vilification laws and the goverenment simply stands by and watches. (ODT)
Here are some recent examples of racism outbreaks:
people who appear to be Asian in origin being abused at supermarkets;
a Malaysian student being denied rental accommodation;
the Chinese being blamed for the virus;
Chinese restaurants seeing a marked drop off in patronage;
students at some schools being mocked as “Coronas” in the playground (my son has witnessed this personally);
my niece – of Indian ancestry – and another young girl being abused on a train in Melbourne — the abuse was about them “being the problem” that led the abuser to have to take his children out of school;
snide remarks being made to people of general “Asian” appearance; and
talkback hosts allowing these comments to go to air without regard for community outcomes.
via Collateral damage in the time of COVID-19
Back to the days of cutting pigtails and yelling Two Wongs don’t make a White. We haven’t moved very far. (ODT)
Racial remarks, misinformation and fearmongering in workplaces, on public transport, and on social media.
via Chinese-Australians Facing Racism After Coronavirus Outbreak | HuffPost Australia
Here we see the LNP Treasurer quoting Wayne Swan when the LNP tore into him for saying this same thing back in 2008 and saved us from the GFC. How hypocritical are these jerks claiming “saving the country” is ok for them when it wasn’t ok for the ALP. Back then The Australian and News Corp didn’t give the government support but just criticism. Andre (ODT)
“Let me make it very clear on the budget that we believe the budget in surplus is important because we believe it gives the nation the opportunity to respond to circumstances like these when they arise,” he said.
“And [while] we do believe that these are exceptional circumstances and why we would love to see the budget in surplus, we would not like to see it in surplus at the expense of these local communities.”
via Australia fires: Treasurer warns surplus at risk as economy hit
Is it any wonder the LNP Government and it’s media arm News Corp find it urgent to tear this girl apart and try to save Angus Taylor? 9ODT)
Madrid: Business and political leaders are misleading the public by holding negotiations that are not leading to real action against warming temperatures, which she referred to as a climate emergency, teen climate activist Greta Thunberg says.
“The real danger is when politicians and CEOs are making it look like real action is happening, when in fact almost nothing is being done, apart from clever accounting and creative PR,” the Swedish 16-year-old said on Wednesday in a speech at the plenary of the ongoing UN climate talks in Madrid, or COP25.
via Governments, business ‘misleading’ on climate, teen activist Greta Thunberg said
The nation thrills this week to the riddle, wrapped in a mystery inside an enigma of the Morrison government, a puzzle, that includes Lambie’s Faustian bargain, Angus Taylor’s war on both Naomi Wolf and Clover Moore with Gladys Liu’s to-do tipping the government’s weekly balance from hyper-partisan warfare and union thuggery into utter skulduggery.
The one-time trombone-playing former teacher’s aide and ex-chemist-shop proprietor cannot keep mum forever about her Brighsun or Liberal associates, nor they about her, especially as she now has cause to ask for her money back.
Any sensible, practical government would demand the resignation of both Gladys Liu and Angus Taylor. Given his form so far, Scott Morrison is likely to find fifty shades of grey evasion including blaming Labor and Wolf to avoid taking any decision.
There is no individual, no institution nor any emerging crisis so big that this government cannot find a way to look past it.
via “No emerging crisis so big the government can’t find a way to look past it.” – » The Australian Independent Media Network
When Javed Badyari was 19 years old, the prime minister at the time, Kevin Rudd, announced that no asylum-seeker who tried to reach Australia by boat would ever be allowed to settle in the country.
In the years since then, Badyari, now 26, has studied medicine, moved from Sydney down to the seaside city of Wollongong, started work as a doctor, and become engaged to medical student Hannah Clements.
While Badyari was finding his feet as a young adult, hundreds of people spent the same six years in a state of permanent uncertainty, held in detention camps on small Pacific islands.
The conservative government that unseated Rudd in 2013 built on his hardline policy, leaving hundreds of asylum-seekers in indefinite detention on Papua New Guinea’s Manus Island and the tiny nation of Nauru. Hundreds remain there today, unsure what their future holds and increasingly suffering ill health.
via Wollongong Doctors Are Protesting Refugee Policy With An Indefinite Sleepout Against Indefinite Detention
Many people grumble about paying taxes, but if you look around the world, most of the citizens of the most heavily taxed countries are also the most contented. They willingly trade some of their earnings to ensure that everyone has a safety-net, there are no beggars, the sick get necessary treatment, education is available to all and necessary assistance in finding work is available.
This is not socialism in its derogatory context. It is essential humanity – which is MIA in Australia!
via Why are so many so unaware of the needs of others? – » The Australian Independent Media Network
Peter Dutton has used his preferred diplomatic channel, 2GB, to mightily piss off our biggest trading partner by saying that the policies of the Communist Party of China are “inconsistent with those of Australia.”
Further wading into the mire, he proclaimed that “Australia is not going to allow university students to be unduly influenced by China, the theft of intellectual property or the hacking of government or non-government organisations.”
The reaction from the Chinese was predictable, calling his comments “irrational”, “shocking” and “baseless”.
via The Dud strikes again – » The Australian Independent Media Network
Death by Trump (ODT)
Before he was deported, Jimmy Aldaoud had never stepped foot in Iraq. Born in Greece to Iraqi refugee parents, he immigrated to the United States with his family via a refugee resettlement program 40 years ago, when he was just 15 months old. He considered himself American and knew hardly anything of Iraqi society. Still, on the afternoon of June 4, he found himself wandering the arrivals terminal of Al Najaf International Airport, about 100 miles south of Baghdad, with around $50, some insulin for his diabetes, and the clothes on his back.
via Deported From the Streets of Detroit to Death in Iraq
As a consequence, Australia now has one of the highest wholesale broadband prices in the world.
via Telstra and the second rate NBN: The gloves are off
Here’s a word of advice to Prime Minister Scott Morrison. Unless he wants to risk a smudge on his reputation of the sort that accompanies John Howard to this day: don’t get involved in conflict with Iran beyond limited naval engagement in a Gulf peace-keeping role.
via Acting on Iran has painful shades of joining the US in Iraq
A trickle of misinformation about Labor policy became a torrent on Facebook as the campaign unfolded. A Guardian investigation has tracked the course of the death tax scare, revealing alarming implications for Australian democracy
Lenore Taylor: It’s not 2007 any more. We need new tools to fight election lies
via ‘It felt like a big tide’: how the death tax lie infected Australia’s election campaign | Australia news | The Guardian
Apply this to the offences Indigenous Australians are incarcerated for. We are worse than the US (ODT)
“Now we have presidential candidates, senators, bragging about their pot use while there are kids who can’t get a job because they have a nonviolent offense for doing things that two of the last three presidents did,” he added.
While he declined to name them, both Harris and Sanders recently attracted attention for joking about their past use of the drug during interviews with “The Breakfast Club,” a nationally syndicated radio show.
the gross disparity in the way that rich and poor users are currently treated by the criminal justice system makes it no laughing matter. “The privileged can break laws and not have to worry about it. There’s no difference between blacks and whites for using marijuana, or even selling marijuana, but blacks are almost four times more likely to be convicted,” Booker said.
via Cory Booker Scolds Kamala Harris for Joking About Pot Use