Ali Abunimah Rights and Accountability 2 May 2018
Shooting practice at an Israeli school: targets set up by police depicted figures wearing the Palestinian kuffiyeh headdress.
Israeli police planned to teach children how to shoot at Palestinians as part of a training exercise in a school.
The incident in the Menashe Regional Council, near Haifa in northern present-day Israel, was brought to light in recent days when Palestinian citizens of Israel took photos of what was happening.
Jamal Zahalka, a member of the Israeli parliament from the Joint Arab List, is demanding an investigation into the training sponsored by the Israeli police and the education ministry, which he said “prepares students psychologically to kill Arabs.”
One photo shows a person – most of their body blurred with a black marker – using a paintball gun to fire at cutouts of men and women wearing checkered kuffiyeh headscarves that are associated with Palestinians.
Professor Hamilton’s book has been flippantly dismissed as nonsense by those he named as agents of influence for China, but none of them have produced any proof that what he has said is untrue. The proof that Professor Hamilton has provided, however, is quite overwhelming, and other western countries have now begun to follow Australia’s lead in resisting Chinese subversion of our political and social systems.
What a load of alarmist rubbish. Demographically China has an aging problem where some 25% of it’s youth and energy will be devoted to the singular purpose of supporting a non-productive population. Australia in fact most of the world is faced with this problem other than India which is not only moving towards a productive youth-age but is being brain drained by the global corporate world to run the world’s biggest corporations. India is positioned to be the productive power house and management on the planet via simple demographics and a necessary revolution in it’s Education systems. It’s easier today for Indians to get fully paid scholarships to Harvard than to get into its own ITTs Indian Technical Teaching Services . 50% of India’s population was under 25 five years ago. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kcW4ABcY3zI
The argument that ‘our school has no Aboriginal students so Aboriginal content is not relevant’ is grossly inaccurate and irresponsible. How can learning the original history, culture and language of your homeland ever be irrelevant? A comprehensive knowledge of traditional Aboriginal society and colonial history are vital to fully understand Australia’s social, cultural and political evolution and the ongoing legacy of this today in terms of Reconciliation and addressing Aboriginal disadvantage.
Stephen Keim discusses Kevin Donnelly’s use of a discredited IPA study as a benchmark for university education content and the advancement of the Right’s long march into privilege, tyranny and ‘universal truth’.WHEN an opinion piece, starts by citing an Institute of Public Affairs’ (IPA) “forensic analysis of how history is now taught in our universities”, it is probably a good signal that I should read no further.
As the details of Malcolm Turnbull’s “new” announcement to “stop the arguments” about school funding emerge, it is worth revisiting how we got into this position. On August 29, days before the 2013 election, Christopher Pyne said ”you can vote Liberal or Labor and you’ll get exactly the same amount of funding for your school”. By…
By Brian Morris Religious institutions will feel a pressing need to regain the initiative following damning revelations from the Royal Commission into Child Sexual Abuse. With renewed calls for a parliamentary conscience vote on marriage equality — and foreshadowed legislation on voluntary euthanasia in three states — one may assume the churches will resume their…
The revolutionary Australian book Young, Gay, and Proud made waves in the late ‘70s, and the coverage should look awfully familiar.
A Harvard graduate’s inspiring commencement speech has been called “one of the most powerful, heartfelt student speeches” by Harvard University. Donovan Livingston, a master’s graduate from the university, performed his spoken word poem “Lift Off” for the Harvard Graduate School of Education student speech.
Despite years of Jewish education, much of which focused on Israel, this young American Zionist was still ignorant of Israel’s occupation of the West Bank. By David Sarna Galdi The Israeli occupation of the West…
A study finds a quarter of Australian school students are not finishing Year 12, and completion rates are much worse in remote and economically disadvantaged communities.
The New York inmates not only trounced the US debating champions, they demonstrated the benefit of education in an environment entirely suited to it
IN GORILLA society, power belongs to silverback males. These splendid creatures have numerous status markers besides their back hair: they are bigger than the rest of their band, strike space-filling postures, produce deeper sounds, thump their chests lustily and, in general, exude an air of physical fitness. Things are not that different in the corporate world. The typical chief executive is more than six feet tall, has a deep voice, a good posture, a touch of grey in his thick, lustrous hair and, for his age, a fit body. Bosses spread themselves out behind their large desks. They stand tall when talking to subordinates. Their conversation is laden with prestige pauses and declarative statements.
The big difference between gorillas and humans is, of course, that human society changes rapidly. The past few decades have seen a striking change in the distribution of power—between men and women, the West and the emerging world and geeks and non-geeks. Women run some of America’s largest firms, such as General Motors (Mary Barra) and IBM (Virginia Rometty). More than half of the world’s biggest 2,500 public companies have their headquarters outside the West. Geeks barely out of short trousers run some of the world’s most dynamic businesses. Peter Thiel, one of Silicon Valley’s leading investors, has introduced a blanket rule: never invest in a CEO who wears a suit.
Yet it is remarkable, in this supposed age of diversity, how many bosses still conform to the stereotype. First, they are tall: in research for his 2005 book, “Blink”, Malcolm Gladwell found that 30% of CEOs of Fortune 500 companies are 6 feet 2 inches or taller, compared with 3.9% of the American population.
People who “sound right” also have a marked advantage in the race for the top. Quantified Communications, a Texas-based company, asked people to evaluate speeches delivered by 120 executives. They found that voice quality accounted for 23% of listeners’ evaluations and the content of the speech only accounted for 11%. Academics from the business schools of the University of California, San Diego and Duke University listened to 792 male CEOs giving presentations to investors and found that those with the deepest voices earned $187,000 a year more than the average.
Physical fitness seems to matter too: a study published this month, by Peter Limbach of the Karlsruhe Institute of Technology and Florian Sonnenburg of the University of Cologne, found that companies in America’s S&P 1500 index whose CEOs had finished a marathon were worth 5% more on average than those whose bosses had not.
Good posture makes people act like leaders as well as look like them: Amy Cuddy of Harvard Business School notes that the very act of standing tall, with your feet planted solidly and somewhat apart, your chest out and your shoulders back, boosts the supply of testosterone to the blood and lowers the supply of cortisol, a steroid associated with stress. (Unfortunately, this also increases the chance that you will make a risky bet.)
Besides relying on all these supposedly positive indicators of fitness to lead, those who choose bosses also rely on some negative stereotypes. Overweight people—women especially—are judged incapable of controlling themselves, let alone others. Those who “uptalk”—habitually ending their statements on a high note as if asking a question—rule themselves out on the grounds that they sound tentative and juvenile.
The rise of the giant emerging-market multinationals has yet to make much difference to all this stereotyping. Such firms’ bosses often suffer from the corporate equivalent of a colonial cringe. They wear Western business suits. They litter their conversations with Western management-speak. And they pack their children off to Harvard Business School, where they will learn how to look and sound like Western-style managers. High-tech companies merrily abandon Mr Thiel’s rule once they reach a certain size and recruit a besuited outsider as CEO. Female leaders have reacted in different ways. Some have defined themselves by wearing power suits and working long hours. Others have celebrated motherhood: in her book, “Lean In”, Sheryl Sandberg, Facebook’s chief operating officer, writes about delousing her children aboard a corporate jet.
Posing for powerCan anything be done about this predisposition for promoting people of a certain type? Ideally, those selecting a new boss would conscientiously set aside all the stereotypes, and judge candidates purely on their merits. However, given a plethora of candidates, all with perfect CVs, selection committees continue to look for the “X” factor and find, strangely enough, that it resides in people who look remarkably like themselves. Another solution is to introduce quotas for CEOs and board members. But the risk is that this ends in tokenism rather than a genuine equalising of opportunity. So, some management experts suggest we just accept that stereotypes and prejudices cannot be wished away, and simply help those born outside the magic genetic circle project a sense of power and self-confidence.
Ms Cuddy gave a talk on “power poses” to the 2012 TED Global conference which has since become TED’s second most downloaded talk. In her recent book, “Executive Presence”, Sylvia Anne Hewlett of the Centre for Talent Innovation in New York urges young women to lower the register of their voices, as Margaret Thatcher did, eliminate uptalking and other vocal tics, and look people in the eye when giving presentations. She advises every would-be manager to work out regularly and look as fit as possible. This may sound like a bit of a cop-out. But the evidence is strong that candidates for top jobs can still be undermined by superficial things like posture and tone of voice. More than a century ago, Oscar Wilde quipped: “It is only shallow people who do not judge by appearances.” Unfortunately those who choose leaders still seem to think this way.
Fleurieu Milk and Yoghurt Company loses $50,000 Emirates deal after bowing to pressure to drop Halal certification
An aggressive social media campaign pushing for a boycott on Halal products has forced a South Australian company to drop the accreditation and ditch a deal that was worth $50,000 a year.
The Fleurieu Milk and Yoghurt Company came under fire last week on its social media page with people suggesting the fee it paid to become Halal-certified was being used to fund terrorism.
Sales and marketing manager Nick Hutchinson said because of the campaign and a wish to avoid negative publicity the company decided to end its yoghurt supply deal with Emirates on Friday.
“The publicity we were getting was quite negative and something we probably didn’t need and we decided we would pull the pin and stop supplying Emirates Airlines,” Mr Hutchison said.
“Ninety per cent of it has been social media, but I have received calls from people that are quite unhappy, I guess, about our decisions and so forth, and [we have also received] a lot of emails.”
While many of these complaints came from interstate, and overseas, Mr Hutchinson said the company was worried the negativity would affect local customers.
“When our small customer base in South Australia are reading this and starting to question us we thought, yeah maybe the negatives outweigh the positive,” he said.
Our farmers, they are just trying to be viable. They don’t deserve this hate mail, and neither do a lot of the other businesses that are getting it.Nick Hutchinson, Fleurieu Milk and Yoghurt Company
The company began about eight years ago, and about two years ago was presented with the opportunity to begin supplying Emirates with yoghurt.
But in order to secure the contract the company had to pay a $1,000 fee to become Halal certified.
“We thought this was a great coup for the company, it would bring great publicity, great advertising and we decided to go ahead with it,” Mr Hutchinson said.
“It’s been quite successful for the company, but unfortunately over the last few days, a lot of negative publicity has come in about this Halal certification and where this money, where we are paying fees is being spent.”
Mr Hutchinson found the criticism quite harsh and said local businesses did not deserve to be bullied by these social media compaigns.
“The social media laws are quite hard to police,” he said.
“You can get on there and say whatever you like in fake accounts, but what we are trying to put across is these business that you are approaching, in our case, our farmers, they are just trying to be viable.
“They don’t deserve this hate mail, and neither do a lot of the other businesses that are getting it.”
Losing Emirates deal will have financial impacts
Losing the Emirates deal will impact on the business financially and Mr Hutchinson said some employees may lose some hours.
However he hoped the company could save its deal with Emirates, as its products do not contain gelatine.
I’ve received a lot of feedback to say they’re disappointed we’ve caved in to this kind of thing. We understand that, people are going to have their own opinion I guess, unless you’re in the shoes we were in.Nick Hutchinson, Fleurieu Milk and Yoghurt Company
“Milk as a dairy product does not have to be Halal certified by law, and neither does yoghurt, which we were supplying, unless it contains gelatine,” he said.
“Now our yoghurt doesn’t contain gelatine so we can definitely argue the fact that it doesn’t need to be certified for Emirates [but] they play it safe. Anything that goes on their planes needs to be certified, so if they’re asked, they can automatically answer ‘yes’.
“What we are going to try and do is get our products tested, get some certificates that prove that our products don’t contain gelatine and try to continue to supply Emirates, if they’ll give us permission without the certification, but I mean that is unlikely.”
Now that the company has announced it will drop its Halal accreditation, Mr Hutchinson said he had received feedback from people who were disappointed the company had “caved in” to social media bullying.
“I’ve received a lot of feedback to say they’re disappointed we’ve caved in to this kind of thing,” he said.
“We understand that, people are going to have their own opinion I guess, unless you’re in the shoes we were in.”
Attacks fall under ‘Islamophobia’
The Islamic Society of South Australia, which provides companies with Halal certification, say the attacks against Halal products fall under the banner of “Islamophobia”.
The society’s Dr Waleed Alkhazrajy believed more explanation of Halal would ease the negativity.
“We are happy as well to help these companies engage in discussion or explanation for these members of the community that send these negative remarks and we say ‘look this is what it is, this what the process is’ and I’m sure that will alleviate their concerns or misunderstanding,” Dr Alkhazrajy said.
Dr Alkhazrajy said he did not think the attacks would take hold, and had not seen many companies drop their accreditation because of the anti-Halal campaigns.
“In fact, to a certain extent there is a boom because of the export of Australian products to south-east Asia, especially to Indonesia and Malaysia,” Dr Alkhazrajy said.
“Malaysia is taking a lot of food products from Australia and the companies that are exporting to these regions, they have increased their request for certifying their products.
“I don’t think there has been an increase in negative sentiments to these companies.”
Halal, in reference to food, is the dietary standard set out for Muslims in the Koran.
It governs food preparation techniques, as well the foods and ingredients that can be consumed under Islamic rules.
If there was one thing our former PM Julia Gillard was passionate about it was education, but like so many other great reforms of the previous 6 years, the Abbott government seems determined to vandalise our education system as well. As if its well publicised attacks on higher education weren’t enough, the coalition has just published a report recommending greater emphasis on ‘morals, values and spirituality’ and ‘the contribution of western civilisation’ in the national curriculum. As a student of history this fills me with dread. The word ‘fascist’ is often used loosely, but the early indoctrination of children is quite literally straight out of Mussolini’s playbook
Not only Mussolini’s but akin to the Islamic Madrasas of today that simply teach a heaven based ideology that requires little more than rules to achieve Nirvana.
Of course moral crusaders of the calibre of Bernardi and Abetz probably see themselves as having a mission to uphold the moral standards of our society, even as they go about trying to degrade our real values. Tolerance, understanding, generosity, and egalitarianism are things of which we all should be proud, both as a nation and as individuals. These are the true moral standards we should be teaching our young. Instead we have a government which encourages bigotry, divisiveness, racial hatred and fear. Pathetic, ignorant and cruel are but a few adjectives which come to mind.
If we could rid ourselves of war within a generation by giving children everywhere a sound, publically funded, secular, science-based education which promotes humanist values. While social engineering on this scale is well out of the ambit of this (or any) government’s short sighted vision, it’s wholly unsurprising that Abbott, Pyne and co should want to shift the emphasis in education away from critical thinking and back to the ‘three r’s’, anyway from human geography and back to physical geography, away from multiculturalism and back to Judeo-Christian orthodoxy.
Some will argue that wars are always waged by the rich and fought by the poor, and certainly there is evidence that the military industrial complex exists to serve its own ends anyway (or that of the bankers). But what happens when soldiers refuse to fight? Notwithstanding the horrors of a war which claimed 10 million lives and left 20 million casualties, it’s worth remembering that WWI might have been fought to the last man had the Kaiser’s troops not mutinied. Imagine if they’d all refused to go to war in the first place? There is no greater threat to tyranny than a well informed and educated populus.
THE CABIN ANTHRAX, MURPHY, N.C. (CT&P) – After analyzing the results of a new Pew Research Center poll conducted just last week, experts have concluded that the United States is not yet ready for a democratic form of government. The finding is particularly troubling considering the midterms are less than one week away.
“It looks as if we are in real trouble,” said Dr. Frank Black, who headed the Pew Research team. “There are just too many people out there who don’t possess enough innate intelligence to function in everyday life, much less determine their own fate by voting for their own representatives.”
“We found that only 32% of Americans believe that evolution is ‘due to natural processes such as natural selection,’ and fully one-third of Americans are so stupid that they utterly reject the theory of evolution and believe instead that humans ‘have existed in their present form since the beginning of time.’”
“And that is only one example,” continued Black. “The American public’s lack of basic scientific knowledge is mind-boggling.”
“Only 20% of Americans believe in the ‘Big Bang,’ only 50% believe in climate change, and an overwhelming number of Americans want to ban incoming flights from Africa because of the Ebola crisis when most American citizens have no fucking clue what a virus even is.”
“Hell, do you realize that fully 40% of Americans think that they are going to be lifted up into heaven in some sort of Rapture event? It’s really depressing.”
“The state of affairs is equally miserable when it comes to progressive government policy. America has had to be dragged kicking and screaming into the 21st century as regards gay marriage, equal pay for women, immigration, and sane firearms policies.”
“Given the recent track record, whole swathes of the United States should really not be allowed to vote,” said Black. “The rise of the Tea Party to prominence in recent years should make that obvious. Take Texas and Florida for example. When a one state elects a dolt like Rick Perry and the other an ancient Aztec snake god as governor, we have real problems.”
Dr. Black suggested that since America was not yet ready for any type of representative government that possibly the best alternative would be some form of benign dictatorship.
“If we could get someone in the White House who would dissolve Congress and ratchet up public education to at least Third World standards, then that would be a good start,” said Black. “The money is there if we could just redirect it. Instead of invading Muslim countries every other week, we could use some of those trillions to teach our offspring some basic science, civics, and history. It will be a long, hard slog, but I think the future of North America depends on it. After all, do we really want half of our kids believing that we are being observed by aliens in UFO’s? I don’t think so.”