Archive for June, 2012


“….towards a more obedient Australia!

We need an Australia where people DO WHAT THEY ARE TOLD TO DO… not the  sort of wishy washy  do what you feel place of unecessary joy and looseness.

Let us drill down, as an illustration, on our brethren. Dutton… Yes, it was a young Peter Dutton who grasped ‘opportunity to win’ with both hands. Both hands, firmly….Quite frankly, Peter’s steely determination and moral courage saw him become a proud Australian home owner by the time he turned 12. Taking the lead from the example of certain morally courageous US counterparts, young Peter took a job. He “got on his bike,” quite frankly literally and…errrr, metaphorically…He got on that bike of his…fellow Liberals…he got on that bike of his and went door to door. Door to door, delegates, look, door to door ironing bibles. Ironing bibles for $11.50 an hour!

We will achieve this lofty goal by moving forwards with opportunity to win…moving forwards with opportunity to win on a united front!!!….

Fellow Liberals, let us look now at Scott. The indefatigable…le…Scott Morrison. Heck, so who said mobile hair dressing is for wimps?..t’was a young Scott who took to the scissors, delegates, he….”

 

Amidst the hoopla of the London Olympics, a new report by the (Amnesty International award-winning) Bureau of Investigative Journalism reveals that men in the more deprived parts of London are living up to 12 years less than those living in the wealthier boroughs.

The shocking disparity was revealed in a Bureau investigation into male health in the capital. It showed that a man in Queen’s Gate, in the borough of Kensington and Chelsea, lives to the average age of 88.3. But in Lewisham Central, South East London, life expectancy is only 70.8.

The poor life expectancy figures for men living in some parts of the capital was in sharp contrast to female life expectancy. In almost two-thirds (61%) of London’s wards, the gap between men and women’s life expectancy is wider than the national average of 4.1 years.

The national average of women’s life expectancy is 82.3 years;  for men, it is 78.2 years – just over four years shorter. However, in London, the average life expectancy for men is 77.1 years, and for women it is 81.7 years – a wider gap of 4.6 years.

The gap is most notable in the more deprived parts of the capital, where women out-live men by more than 12 years.

In one ward in the heart of the city: Cathedrals, in Southwark, the Bureau found that women live on average 12.72 years longer than men. Men’s life expectancy there is 73.75 years, while women live on average until they are 86.47 years old. That’s worse than the average disparity between men and women in Russia, the country where relatively, men live the world’s second shortest lives compared to their female counterparts.[1]

June 25th, 2012 | by Dan Bell and Emma Slater @ The Bureau of Investigative Joirnalism –

[1] Source: WHO 2009 Life expectancy at birth (years) datahttp://apps.who.int/ghodata/?vid=710#

Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Social Justice Commissioner Mick Gooda has expressed concern about mentally ill people being kept in jail after they have been ruled unfit to stand trial.

Four mentally disabled men are being kept in prison near Alice Springs, even though they have not been convicted of a crime.

Mr Gooda says there needs to be appropriate facilities and support outside of the prison system.

“People get caught up in a system where they are unfit to plead and therefore get immersed in things like the Mental Health Act,” he said.

“Because there are no appropriate places outside jail that is where they end up.

“There has to be support on the outside of prison systems to cope with this, but also there has to be some law reform around the Mental Health Act.” (ABC News 26/06/12)

[1] ‘Prisoners in Australia’, ABS 2007; ‘Population Distribution, Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Australians’,

Read more: http://www.creativespirits.info/aboriginalculture/law/aboriginal-prison-rates.html#ixzz1yxOpa1Hg

This week, the Greens are introducing a bill into Parliament to prevent media ownership changes unless they pass a public interest test. Labor Communications Minister Stephen Conroy is supportive of the idea — but the media moguls are already attacking the proposal — and without his support, the bill will die. But if we give Conroy our backing now, we can push Labor to side with the public and stop the runaway consolidation of our media.

The media used to serve the public as a check on government; now these corporate media barons are using it to control government.

Sign the petition to Minister Conroy now to ensure Labor backs the bill to stop them and send this to everyone: 

http://www.avaaz.org/en/australia_media_reform/?bBdLddb&v=15489 

Here at the interpretOr, we support Avaaz as an independent, member-driven group that has been instrumental in building the foundation for media reform. From pushing for this year’s independent inquiry, to submitting thousands of public comments onto the public record, our influence has made a crucial difference.

This is our chance to begin building the kind of media our democracy so desperately needs. 

Banish the image of a classic classroom from your mind—chalkboard, desks and all. The future of education has arrived, and next-era classrooms look like, well, call centers: students seated at individual corrals, some with headphones on, being taught and drilled on quadratic equations while a teacher monitors their progress from behind her own computer. (A nightmare in the making? ed)

That was the picture painted by Rupert Murdoch when he spoke late 2011 at a two-day conference in San Francisco hosted by former Florida Gov. Jeb Bush’s education reform outfit. Murdoch was there, he admitted upfront, as “a businessman” ready to move into the education market. Murdoch’s News Corp. has been quietly developing virtual-learning and technology-driven products for K through 12 schools, and with his address Murdoch made his first large public splash into an arena he’s valued at $500 billion. For entrepreneurs big and small, American public school reform has become a prime business opportunity.  ( ColorLines.com )

nope…

Retiring Archbishop of Canterbury, Rowan Williams, lets rip at Old Etonian Cameron Toryism in his new book, Faith in the Public Square, excerpts of which are appearing in the Observer newspaper (UK):

“Practically speaking, at the individual and the national level, we have to question what we mean by growth. The ability to produce more and more consumer goods (not to mention financial products) is in itself an entirely mechanical measure of wealth.”

“By the hectic inflation of demand it creates personal anxiety and rivalry. By systematically depleting the resources of the planet, it systematically destroys the basis for long-term wellbeing. In a nutshell, it is investing in the wrong things.”

Afghan refugee, Arif Ruhani, shared his harrowing story with me in 2009. In April of that year there was a burning boat near Ashmore reef that reignited debate on refugee policy and responses. Then Prime Minister, Kevin Rudd, acknowledged that deteriorating conditions, particularly in countries like Afghanistan and Sri Lanka, were causing people to flee their homelands. 

Perhaps we need to ask ourselves as human beings, what would it be like for us if we awoke to the armies of the night? What would we do if we were no longer safe due to sporadic acts of violence, murder on our doorstep? What steps would we take to try and survive the carnage? What would we do to protect those that we love? We may find answers to some of these fundamental human questions in Arif’s candid and courageous account:

Arif Ruhani’s story begins in Afghanistan in 2001 when the Taliban seized control of Oruzgan Province. This was not a unified event as Mujahedeen factions were fighting between each other  for power and populations were being murdered. His family became homeless and were displaced from village to village.

“We were trying to lead a ‘normal life’ after the Taliban came in to power and then the whole thing changed. The threat to our life was more imminent. They were killing people for no reasons, oppressing people and trying to make everyday life harder and harder. That was causing my family to choose for me to flee Afghanistan.”

The family pooled money for Arif to escape…”there was not even a single office in my area of any international government or organisation. Impossible.” His father made a deal with people smugglers on the ground in Afghanistan. Arif was then taken with a group of people to Pakistan and “from there my journey starts.”

Traveling under a false passport, he flew to Indonesia where he spent three months in hiding before boarding a small boat bound for Australia. Suitable for 20 people, but with 80 on board, the boat’s engines stopped working after 6 hours at sea. It was night and the vessel began taking on water. Two of his friends drowned before reaching land.  Arif returned to Jakarta where other Afghan asylum seekers were arrested by Indonesian police. While there, he became aware of the Tampa Affair where in 2001, 400 asylum seekers were picked up from their sinking vessel by the Norwegian container ship Tampa and then refused entry to Australia. He also learned of the Howard Government’s Pacific Solution, which saw those refugees set offshore to places including Nauru.

“We heard the news about the Pacific Solution, about the (Australian) Government trying to stop people coming by boat, but    we still had no choice. We couldn’t go   back to Afghanistan”

After a month in hiding, he boarded another small boat that was soon intercepted off Christmas Island by a large Australian Customs vessel. Women and children were taken aboard the customs ship, while Arif and many other men were detained aboard their boat for 13 days…

“This was a really difficult part of my journey coming to Australia. We were prisoners. The fishing boat was very cramped. They didn’t allow us to move freely and we were watched the whole time. We even had to wait for permission to go to the toilet…some people that spoke out were then sleep deprived. It was like torture.”

The Australian authorities tried to fix the boat to send it back to Indonesia, but it started leaking and was deemed too dangerous. The remaining passengers were transferred to the customs ship and after two days, they were detained at Christmas Island detention centre, which was still being built at the time. After two months on Christmas Island, they were transferred to Nauru, arriving on December 22, 2001. They were initially interviewed by the Australian Department of Immigration and refused refugee status. Many people were wrongly classified as Pakistani, reportedly due to inept interpreters working for the Australian Government. Arif too was initially classified as Pakistani.

Many of my friends were sent back to Afghanistan and were killed.”

So began a long period of detention on Nauru that was to last until June 2005. Over this period, Arif and other detainees had no access to telephones or the Internet; in fact, no access to the outside world. Arif estimates that there were over 100 children also in detention, ranging in age from 1 to 17 years old. One young boy was detained on Nauru, his mother had died and he was separated from his father who was in Australia under a Temporary Protection Visa (TPV). After three years, the boy was repatriated with his father.

The detention centre on Nauru was funded and administrated by a body called The International Organisation for Migration (IOM) and Chubb were contracted for security. Arif said he and others were told repeatedly by Australian authorities (during the Howard years):

“If you don’t go back to Afghanistan, we will send you back by force.” 

“We were living in constant fear of being deported by force”, said Arif. Many detainees arrived on Nauru with chronic PTSD (Post Traumatic stress Disorder), while others also developed other severe psychological problems and had no access to treatment. Hunger strikes were also symptomatic of people’s acute distress.

The Office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) was finally able to visit detainees an Nauru in 2004. This prompted the Australian Department of Immigration to interview individual detainees – Arif was among 29 Afghan asylum seekers whose cases were rejected. He was told by Australian officials that they had reached a new agreement with the Afghan Government whereby he and other remaining Afghan refugees would be sent back. After an agonising delay, Arif was later told that he would be accepted after all, and gained entry to Australia under a TPV, arriving in June 2005. Under the terms of these visas, refugees were denied the right to travel and there was no right of even temporary family reunion.

Arif was granted permanent residency in 2008 and lives in Perth, where he talks of the relationships he has made with local people:

“I am very thankful to them: they have helped me a lot. I will be thankful to them forever.”

Asked about his experiences and the plight of other refugees, Arif Ruhani said:

“It is very difficult to express how I feel. I would definitely say to anybody who will read this, please, please help these   people. These people are putting their lives at risk for a safe life, for peace and for freedom.”

source: UN, Al Jazeera (2012)

‘In February 2008, two newspapermen debated on Today, the BBC radio program that starts the day and sometimes sets the political agenda. One was Nick Davies, aGuardian reporter of the good old-fashioned kind who diligently ferrets out stories, the latest of which was “phone hacking,” by journalists and others. There had been rumors of tabloid reporters clandestinely accessing voicemails on the mobile telephones of public figures well before something happened to the cell phones of the young princes William and Harry in late 2005. Numerous messages on their cell phones and…’

Jeffrey Wheatcroft’s extensive article on ‘Dial M for Murdoch’, including background and chronology of hacking, political influence and more, can be freely accessed here at The New York Review of Books

Lang Hancock thought journalists were either “socialists” or “communists”. Gina, too, is deeply scornful of the press. Very few reporters…

Nick Bryant’s piece @ the mOnthly continues here and is freely available by clicking this line.

For the Norb Fones perspective on the concentration of media ownership, please click below:

Norb Fones: good morning ‘stralia and welcome to Stomurdhart

fearfax or rinedigi, Lord Chwissie…what do yooo think? asked Gina.

Gina, dear, dear Gina…how the devil are you? Smeashing to hear from you, all the way down there in Auwsstraylia. Super doops!

Well, Lord Chwissie….fearfax or rinedigi?

I, I, I, I wather like fearfax. Look, they’re both inspired, on message. Ehhumphh…the former wolls off one’s tongue and has a wather clever bwand pwoposition…ya know, my gal, keep the trogledites in line, what? What? Hahahh…

Lord Chwissie wissie…yooo are just my soooper doops pair of eyes and ears in Blighty…you’re kinda like an extention of my bwain!

Heavens, heavens…tell me my dear, dear Gina. Tell me…is it weally twue about Harridan and flegship editorship opps?

Ben’s packing his bags as we speak. He’s a fowern editor of such, such, such…

Mowal couwage? 

Yes, thet’s the expression I was searching for…that and of wepute! My hirsute, sandled Ben!!!

And Norb Fones and Flinty are getting a pwoper look in too…look in too with your new toys? Ahumphh, dear Gina?

Oh yesss, yesss….it’s all mine. All of it…It’s just blooody well ALL MINE!!!

(source UN & Al Jazeera 2012)

Tartus (Arabic: طرطوس‎ / ALA-LCṬarṭūs; also transliterated Tartous) is a city on the Mediterranean coast of Syria. Tartus is the second largest port city in Syria (after Latakia), and the largest city in Tartus Governorate. The population size is 115,769 (2004 census).[2]

During the 1970s, similar support points were located in Egypt and Latakia, Syria. In 1977, the Egyptian support bases at Alexandria and Mersa Matruh were evacuated and the ships and property were transferred to Tartus, where the naval support base was transformed into the 229th Naval and Estuary Vessel Support Division. Seven years later, the Tartus support point was upgraded to the 720th Logistics Support Point.[9]

(source: AFP & Wikipedia)

The first Earth Summit was held 20 years ago – greenhouse gas concentrations continue to spiral upwards – this week will see 50,000+ people converge on Rio de Janeiro for the UN Conference on Sustainable Development, aka RIO+20 Earth Summit.

Here at the interpretOr, we’ll be sharing Al Jazeera infographics on a daily basis in the run up to RIO+20:

(source U.N. & Al Jazeera 2012)

“An advocate of freedom of expression is necessarily also a practitioner. The basic law for those who want to defend freedom of expression is that they must demonstrate their commitment by practising what they preach. When we speak out for our right to freedom of speech, we begin to exercise it. When we write about our right to freedom of expression, we begin to practise it. There can be no theoretical advocacy of these freedoms, there can only be practical, practising advocacy.”

Aung San Suu Kyi is leader of the National League for Democracy. She was awarded the Nobel Peace Price in 1991 and collected it in Oslo 16 June 2012.

According to Hannah Krakauer in New Scientist, North Carolina legislators have found a novel way to ameliorate climate change.

They plan to stop climate change in North Carolina by legislation. By creating legislation that bans the current method of calculating sea level rise and replacing it with a linear method of calculation that gives inaccurate but  much lower level outcomes, they hope to save millions of dollars in reparation.

Hannah Krakauer reported that :

The 8-inch model, based solely on historical records from the last 100 years, flies in the face of modern climate science. Sea level rise is due to a combination of climate-driven factors: warmer temperatures cause ocean water to expand, and rising temperatures are melting the Arctic and Antarctic ice caps. The combined feedback makes for exponential – not linear – growth. Yet the North Carolina bill states: “Rates of sea-level rise may be extrapolated linearly to estimate future rates of rise but shall not include scenarios of accelerated rates of sea-level rise.”

“This is unprecedented,” says Orrin Pilkey, professor emeritus of geology at Duke University in Durham, North Carolina. “It’s the first time a law has dictated the shape of a curve.”

NC-20, the group behind the bill, has argued that incorporating the 39-inch predictions would be an enormous economic burden on coastal communities. “The legislature has declined to face the problem of what we’re going to do about it, and instead has attacked the science,” contends Pilkey.

http://www.newscientist.com/article/dn21934-north-carolina-tries-to-outlaw-climate-models.html

To celebrate this miraculous occasion I have created a new but nostalgic anthem for North Carolina.

Carolina Climate Anthem

Wishing is good time wasted,

Still it’s a habit they say;

Wishing that swimming I had mastered

That’s what I do all day.

But speaking of wishing I’ll say:

Maybe there’s nothing but fishing but

Chorus

Nothing could be finer than to float round Carolina in the morning

No one could be wetter than my paddling red setter when I feed her in the dawning.

Where in the morning dories

Sail around my door

I love to hear the stories

Of when we lived onshore

Throwing out my burley but the water is too swirly in the morning

Butterflies still flutter up to kiss the salty buttercups but there all drowning

If I had Aladdin’s lamp for only a day,

I’d make a wish and here’s what I’d say:

Nothing could be finer than to float around Carolina in the morning

Though everything could be better and we’d be less wetter if we listened to the warning

Dreaming was meant for night-time

I live in dreams all the day;

I know it’s not the right time,

But still I dream away.

What could be sweeter than dreaming,

Just dreaming and drifting away.

(Repeat Chorus)

Apologies to Gus Khan and Walter Donaldson

*theinterpretOr is looking at an alternative melody based on Frank Zappa’s “Carolina Hardcore Ecstasy”


http://www.newscientist.com/article/dn21934-north-carolina-tries-to-outlaw-climate-models.html

Julian Assange is Dead!

This morning at nine o’clock while writing a post titled “Some Australians are More Equal Than Others”, that deals with issues relating to the deportation of Julian Assange, I was interrupted by a message that lasted for only a second or less.

My post was replaced by a deep blue screen with a smaller bordered message in the centre.

The message simply stated “He’s dead Jim”

The message instantly disappeared and my computer shut down.

At first I struggled to work out what had happened and why. On reflection I thought someone or some large organisation must have been responsible. How did they know my name or that I use the shortened version Jim, while my co-blogger also named James always uses his full name?

They, whoever they are, must also have considerable surveillance resources because I was only part way through my blog when the message flashed on my screen.

Who would have the technical ability to so quickly override my computer?

Despite its clarity and simplicity, the message has an ambiguity that needs to be considered. It was not saying I was or would be dead. The tone did not seem overtly threatening to me. It was almost like friendly advice or a simple statement of fact.

So was the message an implied threat? Or was it a whistle-blower warning me of the certain fate awaiting Julian Assange?

The certainty of the message “He’s dead ..”, would imply that the author strongly believes or knows that Assange’s future is fait accompli.

Perhaps that now Assange has lost his appeal, everything has been arranged for his extradition or rendition to the USA with the active support of Sweden and the compliance of the Australian Government.

So who would intercept my blog and send me such a message? There are a number of possible suspects who might have an interest but few with the resources, and all of these are linked to Governments.

We at theinterpretor would like to know if anyone else has had the same or a similar experience?

 Some Australians More Equal Than Others

Australian Prime Minister Julia Gillard and her ministerial team have chanted a well-rehearsed mantra when questioned about their lack of assistance to Julian Assange, who faces extradition to Sweden even though he has not been charged or found guilty of any offence in Sweden.

 The mantra used is “We are providing the same level of consular support that we provide for every other Australian citizen who is facing difficulties overseas.

When asked if her government has asked the USA Government  if it intends to apply for Assange to be extradited to the USA from Sweden, Julia Gillard and her Ministers give exactly the same answer that “they have not provided us with that information”. Clearly she is avoiding the question because the true answer would be unpopular with the electorate which strongly supports Assange.

Do we compare Assange’s “equal treatment” to that given to David Hicks who was illegally incarcerated in Guantanamo Bay where he was brutalised and put through an illegal kangaroo court process. Or can we compare it with Mamdouh Habib who was left to rot after he was seized by the US forces and sent to an Egyptian prison where he was incarcerated without trial and tortured.

In each case the Howard Government made no complaint against their illegal and brutal treatment or even demanded that they be given a fair trial. Prime Minister Julia Gillard proclaimed Assange as being guilty even though he has not been charged with any offence in Australia or abroad.

The current government is too ashamed to allow the truth of its position to be known. Following freedom of information requests from Australian Greens Senator Scott Ludlam for documents recording discussion between the Australian and US Governments relating to Julian Assange’s extradition; Senator Ludlam was provided with FOI documents that had so much of the printing blacked out “for security reasons” that no sense could be made of the information.

Perhaps Senator Ludlam would have learned more if he had asked Anonymous.

Contrast the above treatment of Australian citizens with that of Melinda Taylor, an Australian lawyer working for the International Criminal Court, who has recently been imprisoned in Libya. The Australian Government has made strong public and consular statements in support of Ms Taylor.

 The Foreign Minister Bob Carr was quickly sent to the Middle East to pressure the Libyan Government to in turn pressure the local officials holding Ms Taylor to set her free.

Our ambassador is working closely with his international counterparts, with the ICC and with Libyan authorities to seek full consular access to Ms Taylor and a swift end to her detention,” Senator Carr said.

This great variation in the level of protection provided to Australian citizens can be only be explained by looking at who is imprisoning them. In the case of Hicks and Habib it was the US military and with Assange it is likely that the final destination is again the US military who would like to silence him. At no stage did an Australian Minister intervene or even complain about their torture.

Ms Taylor while unfortunate to be caught up in a power struggle between the central government and local officials is lucky that she is detained in a small newly created “democratic state”, rather than by a large superpower so powerful it can ignore international law, and the concerns of the rest of the world with impunity.

The implications of a failure of courage by middle sized countries to stand up to the excesses of the superpowers has worrying implications for the future of everyone on the planet. We will not have a world free from conflict and tyranny unless all of us stand up for justice without regard to whom it applies.

If we are silent about the rendition and imprisonment of those who expose the truth of such tyranny and injustice, we are choosing to live in a world that will become our own prison.

Rupert Murdoch joined in an “over-crude” attempt by US Republicans to force Tony Blair to accelerate British involvement in the Iraq war a week before a crucial House of Commons vote in 2003, according to the final volumes of Alastair Campbell‘s government diaries.

‘The fact that Kim Kardashian’s marriage lasted only 72 days can have a longer-lasting impact on the news in America than any environmental policy initiative. High gasoline prices (in the US “high” means that a liter of gasoline costs the equivalent of €0.77, or less than half the price of gasoline in Germany) are so important to so many people that they could decide the election. The fact that 52 percent of Republicans in Mississippi believe that Obama is a Muslim, or that 46 percent of Americans believe that man was created precisely as is written in the Bible can make political debates extraordinarily tedious…’

The President of Disappointments: How Obama Has Failed to Deliver click through to Der Spiegel

By Ullrich Fichtner, Marc Hujer and Gregor Peter Schmitz

Go on then Fones, put it to the test then, if you’re so damn sure! Go on, you potato of a man. Wretched, viscious…potato…bastard.

Ohhh, what vile scum duth I hear before me? Just crawl back to your microbiotical vegetable garden and yer…and yer friggin’ mung beans, you, you…

So to what, exactly, do you attribute global warming, ehh? You overpaid, foul-mouthed bigot, you…

Foul mouthed, foul mouthed?? I’ll let you jolly well know, that by MY calculations, human beings produce a mere, trifling 0.000001% of carbon dioxide – ya know – ceee ohhh tooo – in the earth’s atmosphere. 0.000001 percentile points…

Yeahh, right. And I’m a banana.

That you may be. Climate change…climate change is caused by the seasons. The SEASONS, man. Autumn, summer…err, errr…

Have you totally lost it, Fones?

Winter. Winter and autumn. Look, don’t you know WHO I AM. I’m Fones, NORB FONES!!!!

( for more Norb Fones: Norb Fones: mOnster of talkback… “well, hello Tony” )

Christmas 2010, David Cameron had a festive lunch at the home of Rebekah Brooks,  also in attendance was her  then boss, James Murdoch…oh, and Elisabeth Murdoch and Matthew Freud too. Cosy…(see earlier interpretOr circa mid 2011)

June 2012 and Old Etonian, ex Carlton Communications PR man, David Cameron PM is before the Leveson inquiry.

Just how was that lunch, David Cameron?

Fear-trade ambassadors, arms dealers, ‘logistics profiteers’ and associated disaster capitalists now have their own chain of C21 luxury hotels in conflict zones, according to German news magazine ‘Der Spiegel’:

‘Enclosed by towering concrete walls and barbed wire, the sand-colored building is surrounded by lush green lawns and manicured flower beds — a haven of luxury amid chaos. Snipers patrol the roofs, and entry, strictly controlled, is subject to numerous security checks. Guest are patted down, while their baggage is scanned twice and sniffed for explosives by large dogs…’

click here for the full story @ Der Spiegel (English)

Afghan photographers shoot to glory – Features – Al Jazeera English.

(Reuters) – Former British Prime Minister Gordon Brown flatly contradicted media tycoon Rupert Murdoch at a judicial hearing on Monday, suggesting the News Corp chief had misled the government-sponsored inquiry into press ethics under oath.

click for more on this story @ reuters

“This country is a soft touch, that’s the problem,” said Tony Abbott recently in regard to asylum-seekers.

As an immigrant to this country, I’m very reassured through meeting other Australians that the toxic views of Abbott and his cronies are very much those of a minority. A man ‘leading’ a party that tries to make political capital from the agony of the world’s most vulnerable human beings is disgusting.

Here at the interpretOr, we think it’s timely to repeat an earlier posted question:

Tony Abbott, what would you do if you and your family were awakened by the armies of the night? Would you not seek sanctuary and shelter?

His position is as illogical and spiteful as demonising the victims of accidents or natural disasters. Actually, perhaps it’s even worse. That victims of war and oppression are burdened by the scorn and intolerance of people in relatively free, wealthy countries is odious and craven.

FORMER Deputy Prime Minister Lord Prescott (UK) has accused the Tory Cameron government of exploiting cheap labour. It came after unpaid workers were bussed into London for the event and left stranded in the middle of the night.

The former deputy prime minister said there had been a “complete disregard” for the conditions of the stewards.

They were forced to sleep in the cold under London Bridge in the early hours of Sunday morning.

He also warned the incident could set the tone for the treatment of workers during the Olympics.

Speaking to BBC Radio 4’s Today programme, he said: “It raises many questions on the provision of unpaid labour in these kind of positions, not only on the Jubilee event, but also particularly for the coming Olympic ones.”

source & more @ The Scotsman 

 

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…and a few of the above too.

audience source: WordPress.com for the interpretOr (as of June 2012)

June 2012

… Greece heads for exit; EU in denial;Poland’s ailing east; US healthcare, decision time; Mississippi, republican and poor; Israel, prison as a means of control; Sudan’s contentious pair; Nicaragua, Ortega backs down; Burma’s Chinese border struggle; the UN at work; refugees special report…and more…

Le Monde Diplomatique is informative, broad and freely available by clicking below…

@ http://mondediplo.com/tag/open-access

LMD provides a cool, reasoned, different view of the world’s most pressing issues”
New York Review of Books

’72? I must have been around 4, 4 or 5. Still toddlerish, for sure. I was taken one day to this seemingly strange place – it felt a bit like a clinic of some sort…big and weird, anyway. I guess at that tender age, I didn’t yet have any meaningful reference points…playgroup, nope. It just seemed unfamiliar, bit kinda cold…

I think one of the men, maybe more, had a beard. A beard and some sort of overall, bit like a house painter or a technician. Look, what I really remember very clearly – lucidly even – was the marshmallow bit. I’ll come back to that in a sec….

“So, Keith…we seem to be getting closer. We’re back at Stanford, by the sounds of it….”

Back at…at Stanford, yes. Hhhhhh…look, I can’t escape it. Ever. I mean 40 friggin’ years haunted by a friggin’ marshmallow. Come on…!

Keith, I can hear your rage…maybe more exposure therapy, you know, systematic desensitization…??

I know, I know. Look, Stella, I really know that everything you’re doing is for the best. For me…It’s just…it’s just that it’s been all over the news again. The big FOUR O…

Keith, I’m aware of that. The Gladwell book, Z’s recent appearances…

I mean…part of me feels that I was almost kinda “arrested” at Stanford. Almost like part of my development was cryogenically frozen. Heck…why? I just wanta…to know WHY?

Look, the original Mischel study, of which you were a part…

…reluctantly, in retrospect. Errr, a toddler. Please remember Stella, a TODDLER. Fourish, no consent. Well, only that handed over by “them”…

Them? Oh yes, them. And how are “them”?

Stop trying to derail me here. I’m not here to discuss “them”…

My intention was not to derail or diminish your experience, Keith. Please…maybe we can explore the marshmallow?

Ok, ok, ok. I’d like to do that. The marshmallow. I mean, what would any other sane, hungry toddler do? You tell me, huhhh? Nearly an hour prior, sitting in the back of their car. Bored. Probably thirsty too. Then a strange place with creepy people – that marshmallow was my only sensory escape. It was comforting. Comforting and delicious…

Keith, how did you feel as you ate it? Ate the marshmallow…

Relieved. It was my salvation. I loved it.

You loved it…

Yes…

But it didn’t last?

Of course it didn’t last. I ate it and the bearded fxxxxxs wouldn’t gimme another one. Not…even…one…more. I mean, one more! How hard is that? I’m four and in a university of repute, in the psych department and all I wanted was one more friggin’ marshmallow. Ahheuuuu….phneurr…

oh, Keith…

(jamesh 2012)

summer montage fOr kita…

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