Tag: Policy

Pulled the wrong rein there – » The Australian Independent Media Network

It’s not just the government that intentionally “fosters” the suspicion of “other” Murdoch has team of professionals who have built their careers on it and children haven’t been excluded. (ODT)

The Coalition have deliberately fostered suspicion of “others” be they Muslim jihadis, African gangs, second or third generation Lebanese Australians, Chinese university students, Tamil families. Gays asking for equality have “an agenda” that will undermine society. Unemployed people will be drug tested. Indigenous people asking for some say in their own affairs are engaging in bleeding heart “identity politics”. Environmentalists are anti-job ecoterrorists. Anyone who believes climate scientists is a weak as piss bedwetter.

Why do this? Why divide us? Why seek to marginalise people? Why dismiss people?

It must take a certain amount of ego to run for politics but what seems to be lacking is the actual confidence to be able to say we got that wrong.

Pulled the wrong rein there – » The Australian Independent Media Network

Democracy Isn’t The Problem, Ignorance Is! – » The Australian Independent Media Network

The miracles that come with Ignorance (ODT)

There’s always going to be a problem with the fact that a large number of people aren’t politically engaged and make their decision based on things like the Clive Palmer ads or what someone posted on Facebook, so maybe there’s no simple answer. But it would certainly help if the media made sure that at least those paying attention weren’t misled by simple slogans that don’t reflect the reality of policy at all.

via Democracy Isn’t The Problem, Ignorance Is! – » The Australian Independent Media Network

Tony Abbott’s Latrobe Valley cycle timed for Turnbull’s Newspoll black day – ABC News (Australian Broadcasting Corporation)

Tony Abbott cycling

One Liberal moderate bluntly characterises the “Monash Forum”, which burst into the energy debate this week, as “the deplorables trying to give themselves a credible front”.

Whatever else it might be, the so-called forum is Tony Abbott’s latest weapon in baiting the Turnbull bear.

via Tony Abbott’s Latrobe Valley cycle timed for Turnbull’s Newspoll black day – ABC News (Australian Broadcasting Corporation)

The Media’s Final Email Flop, A Fitting End To Journalism’s Troubled Campaign Season

“Whatever message Hillary Clinton is putting out, all people hear is ’email’” –Washington Post writer Chris CillizzaAnd just like that, the latest Clinton email controversy evaporated on Sunday. FBI Director James Comey announced that recently discovered emails that “appear[ed] to be pertinent” to the bureau’s investigati

Source: The Media’s Final Email Flop, A Fitting End To Journalism’s Troubled Campaign Season

If Australia had its current refugee policy in 1939, we wouldn’t be alive today | Alyx Gorman and Rick Kuhn | Opinion | The Guardian

My grandfather’s family came to Australia to survive, make a life, get work and make significant contributions to society. The refugees on Manus and Nauru want to do the same

Source: If Australia had its current refugee policy in 1939, we wouldn’t be alive today | Alyx Gorman and Rick Kuhn | Opinion | The Guardian

Australian Govt. Financial Woes: Legalize Cannabis and Tax It; 300M Surplus AnonHQ

The legalization of cannabis debate has been renewed in Australia after new laws were introduced this week, making cannabis legal for the treatment of medical illness’. Now, a crossbench senator has announced in Canberra, that to legalize marijuana use for everyone would see a massive …

Source: Australian Govt. Financial Woes: Legalize Cannabis and Tax It; 300M Surplus AnonHQ

The post-traumatic moment in Australian politics – The Drum (Australian Broadcasting Corporation)

Malcolm Turnbull is riding the tidal wave of relief that is washing across the country, and at this stage the polls are showing nothing more than the fact that he isn’t Tony Abbott.

Source: The post-traumatic moment in Australian politics – The Drum (Australian Broadcasting Corporation)

Cruelty is the worst policy

Image from Amnesty International

So much for that quintessential Australian phrase ‘a fair go for all’. It doesn’t exist in the minds of our policy makers, writes Jennifer Wilson.

In general, it’s always seemed to me that when governments or individuals take an increasingly hard, harsh and inhumane stand on an issue it’s a clear signal that they’ve actually lost the battle, and are on their way to losing the war.

In a political sense, I’m thinking of the current situation in detention facilities on Manus Island. New Immigration Minister Peter Dutton is promising to maintain Scott Morrison’s “hard-line” against asylum seekers who have resorted to self-harm and protest, methods which are, in reality, their only means of expression, as the Australian government has virtually denied them access to legal process and natural justice.

This hard-line against asylum seekers protesting their fate began in Woomera and Baxter detention centres in 1999, at the instigation of the Howard LNP government. It was maintained by the ALP governments led by Julia Gillard and Kevin Rudd. Sixteen years of both major parties taking a hard-line against waterborne asylum seekers has achieved absolutely nothing any of us can be proud of, and it won’t.

Similarly, the hard-line threatened by the Abbott government against the young unemployed that will see them starving and homeless as they are denied benefits for six months will achieve nothing any of us can be proud of, and will ruin lives for a very long time and likely permanently.

Taking a hard-line is very rarely necessary, and very rarely useful. A hard-line shouldn’t be the default position. Instead negotiation, mediation, conversation, and communication are civilised and humane methods of approaching difficulties. When all else fails, by all means try the hard-line, but to do this first is cruel and inhumane, and shows a lack of intelligence, imagination and skill.

Human beings have a tremendous capacity for good will and understanding. It’s a great shame our leaders don’t value this capacity, and instead believe our strength lies in brutality. It doesn’t. It never has and it never will. ‘All cruelty springs from weakness’, as the philosopher Seneca noted.

If governments and individuals are too weak and cowardly to sit across a table from other human beings in an effort to resolve difference and difficulty, they will inevitably resort to cruelty of one kind or another. Ignoring another human being in need is just as cruel as taking direct and punitive action against him or her. There are countless stories of asylum seekers achieving success and making considerable contributions to Australian society when they are given the opportunity. Instead we destroy them because our governments believe the destruction of human lives and human potential demonstrates political strength and determination.

Peter Dutton may well congratulate himself for emulating Scott Morrison’s abhorrent tactics against those legally seeking asylum in Australia. But emulating a bully is no great achievement. Australian governments have for sixteen years now proved themselves to be capable only of bullying behaviour towards human beings in the greatest distress and need, be they asylum seekers or their own citizens. Cruelty is not a strength. It is the most appalling, base and destructive weakness.