Archive for September, 2012

The Australian Prime Minister, Julia Gillard, recently lost her father. An Australian shock-jock, Alan Jones, has just said “The old man died a few weeks ago of shame.”

Well, …are you listening, Jones? the interpretOr,  and millions of other people in Australia and beyond, would like to respond to your foul and despicable comments by stating that you, Alan Jones, are…A BILIOUS, BIGOTED BULLY OF A BUFFOON.

Regardless of one’s political position, it would be fair to say that Australia’s first ever woman PM has demonstrated throughout her recent and devastating loss more decency and courage than you have bile…To bully the bereaved demonstrates to the world what a contemptible, cowardly and nasty little man you so obviously are.

Norb Fones: mOnster of talkback… earlier piece here+ just enter norb fones in our search window (top right of screen)

“‘k folks, let me just punch in some stuff into the remote…”…Roger standing in his sitting room, holding a clunky grey plastic remote control that has solid number pads, a bit like a 1980s push dial phone, and he punches in a series of digits…there’s a pause of a few seconds and then we can hear a mechanical grinding noise above us…and clunks on the ceiling of his sitting room that we’ve gathered in… as his satellite dish rotates into position for the CNN material that’s being beamed up via satellite from the field of conflict in Kuwait and the Iraqi border…early ’91…

“…alright, here’s the CNN feed…it’s essentially what they’re sending across from the Gulf to Atlanta…they’ll top and tail it and do god knows what else…we’ll click back to CNN proper…on air… in about 20 mins, but let’s look at this stuff that’s going across…it’s raw footage…rough stuff in more sense than one…cheezuz..the barrel of that tank is almost on the horizontal…that’s very close quarters action…how much of this will pushed back up through CNN is hard to determine…so often there’s just a total disconnect from the content and meaning of what the Frontline camera guys are capturing and the sanitised, condenced shite that’ll make it to air…a whole new meaning to ‘final cut’…

…Right, there’ll be a sat transfer to White City shortly…the BBC book regular spots…there’s a limited timeframe, ya know…window… and there’ll be new material coming across that’ll form part of an update that’ll be broadcast on the 9 o’clock news…that’s if the feed’s not fucked up…”

Next up was footage that can only have been shot from a helicopter – the camera is pointing down to the ground from the air – an aerial overview of what appears to be a motorway…but hang on, the cars and trucks are all aligned in the same direction on both carriageways…weird…oh, hang on a sec…shit, shit, shit…looks as if some of the traffic’s on fire, there’s smoke bellowing from cars and trucks…the camera angle rises to show a perspective of a vehicle strewn motorway, stretching far into the horizon, the vanishing point…the scene captured in this sequence was hell on earth…imagine the M25 at rush hour being incinerated…this was original ‘raw’ footage of the Road to Basra…intercepted by Roger’s clunky rooftop dish…perched above his flat in ladbroke grove…

Current Wikipedia entry on the Road to Basra, aka HighWay of Death:

The Highway of Death refers to a six-lane highway between Kuwait and Iraq, officially known as Highway 80. It runs from Kuwait City to the border town of Safwan and then on to Basra.
During the United Nations coalition offensive in the Gulf War, retreating Iraqi military personnel and others escaping Kuwait were attacked on Highway 80 by American aircraft and ground forces on the night of February 26–27, 1991, resulting in the destruction of hundreds of vehicles and the deaths of many of their occupants. The scenes of devastation on the road are some of the most recognizable images of the war, and were publicly cited as a factor in President George H. W. Bush's decision to declare a cessation of hostilities on the next day.


 Many Iraqi forces however successfully escaped across the Euphrates river and the U.S. Defense Intelligence Agency estimated that upwards of 70,000 to 80,000 troops from defeated divisions in Kuwait might have fled into the city of Basra.


The road was repaired during the late 1990s, and was used in the initial stages of the 2003 invasion of Iraq by U.S. and British forces, and previously it had been also used during the 1990 Invasion of Kuwait by the Iraqi armored divisions.


Funky, pre-gentrified Ladbroke Grove, West London,  was a fascinating place to live in the late 80’s and early 90’s…an eclectic population of  West Indian, Portuguese and boho English…street markets selling dried chillies, cheap daffodils, addictive custard tarts, scratched records, pre-loved books…a soundscape of dub-reggae-doorstep ghetto blasters, laughter, arguments, spruikers…little underground drinking dens and a local gypsy-cab service that would home deliver ‘erb and pizza from dusk ’til dawn…”Errr, dat you egain Roger? Ok, ok…Winston back at ya in twenty, innit…layters…”

I was lucky enough to live amongst and befriend a few of the ladbroke grove crew, including ‘resting’ photojournalist, unassuming dude and ‘erbalist, ‘Roger’. He’d spent a chunk of the early ’70’s working for Der Spiegel and also Stern magazine, war-reporting from Vietnam under a pseudonym – he took a bold decision to break away from the constrained, rather conformist press pack and went off track and seriously undercover to Laos, with nothing but his cameras and a local guide. They stumbled upon a series of jungle helicopter bases and photographed uniformed military personnel loading and then flying around bales of…opium…this interpretOr saw his pics and Bolex shot Laos footage (I was, coincidentally, doing post-grad at the London College of Printing at the time), and Roger’s material the real deal…more on this in future interpretOr posts…

Anyways… ‘ladbroke-grove-rOger’s’ satellite news service emerged around the time of Gulf War One…very, very pre-Wikileaks…the US government was feeding news agencies, including the rapidly ascending newcomer CNN, with its then startling innovation, the VNR…short for Video News Release. Essentially, VNRs were manufactured, manipulated and often sanitised video footage reels that were dispatched on a daily basis to the newsdesks at CBS, NBC, ITV et al.

One evening, Roger and I were chatting with my Kuwaiti girlfriend and we were all very worried about her family and the paucity of info on what was actually brewing in the Gulf. The ‘VNR’ derived coverage was nothing more than crappy propaganda and Roger had a startling brainwave that was to lead to a very local solution to a rather global problem…and ‘ladbroke-grove-rOger’s’ satellite news service was born…

…click below for…

‘ladbroke-grove-rOger’s’ satellite news service: part twO


Keynote address by:

BARONESS SUSAN GREENFIELD CBE conducts research on novel mechanisms of neurodegeneration at Oxford University, and recently served as Chancellor of Heriot Watt University (2005–2012). Susan has received 30 Honorary Degrees from British and foreign universities. Other awards include the Michael Faraday Medal from the Royal Society (1998), Honorary Fellowship of the Royal College of Physicians (2000), L’Ordre National de la Légion d’Honneur (2003), American Academy of Achievement Golden Plate Award (2003), Honorary Fellowship of the Royal Society of Edinburgh (2007), and the Australian Medical Research Society Medal (2010).

To find out more go to:


“…The crudest exponent of Romnesia is the Australian mining magnate Gina Rinehart. …

“…Remembering her roots is what Rinehart fails to do. She forgot to add that if you want to become a millionaire – in her case a billionaire – it helps to inherit an iron ore mine and a fortune from your father and to ride a spectacular commodities boom. Had she spent her life lying in bed and throwing darts at the wall, she would still be stupendously rich…”

click here to go to George Monbiot’s fabo piece in its entirety

Alternet’s  Nancy L. Cohen:

 “One winter day, far along into her pregnancy with her second child, 21-year-old Peggy Hayes received a phone call from Willard Mitt Romney. He wanted to talk to her, he said. Could he come over?

Hayes, the divorced, unmarried mother of a 3-year-old daughter, was struggling as a nurse’s aide in a working-class suburb of Boston. She had little in common with the successful Bain executive, but the request wasn’t as odd as it might seem. Hayes was a Mormon. Romney was her bishop. Romney walked into her small apartment, made small talk and then commanded her to give her baby up for adoption after it was born. He was her bishop, and as she knew, Mormonism disapproved of single motherhood. Hayes said no.

“Well, this is what the church wants you to do, and if you don’t then you could be excommunicated for failing to follow the leadership of the church,” Romney said, according to Hayes in an interview with Boston Globe journalists Michael Kranish and Scott Helman .

Romney denied he made that threat, although he did not dispute the incident.

click here for more on this story…

This interpretOr would like to add that broadsheet Boston Globe not given to flights of fancy or sensationalism…a Romney presidency would be a catastrophe for humanity…it would be like Dubbya on steroids…another sheer bloody nightmare…WAKE UP, AMERICA…

An interpretOr heard Wayne Swan say this on RN (Oz) a few weeks back….

“Changes start long before they 

become statistics”

Coming from the Oz Treasurer, quite a refreshing contrast to the voodoo-economic bull and conformist, fear-twaddle peddled by the Opposition and the Sheridan, Christopher Cheeseman chorus in the ghastly Caucasian

Concerned about US Republican “cranks and crazies”, Swan’s seemingly not too taken with the book of Mor(m)on either…Paul Krugman and Joseph Stiglitz may be more his thing… come to think of it, he’s shown a bit of oomph on Gina-greedy-guts and not-so-‘fair’-dinkum Andy too…wonder if he’ll join some of us in our efforts to send Sheridan, Howard, Blair et al to Guantanamo, via the ICC in the Hague? Now, that really would be a change.

more here @ the book of Mor(m)on: a histOry

Plans to open up a new Australian “coal export rush” would turn a single Queensland region into the seventh largest contributor of carbon dioxide emissions on the planet, undermining international efforts to keep global warming below 2C, a new report has warned.

Nine proposed “mega mines” in the Galilee Basin would, at full capacity, result in 705m tonnes of CO2 released into the atmosphere, according to a Greenpeace Australia analysis. This level of emissions would surpass those of all but six nations in the world. By comparison, the UK emitted 549.3 million tonnes of CO2 from all sources in 2011.

more of this story here at the Guardian, (just click)

Gina needs yet more dOllar…

Everyone has the right to freedom of opinion and expression; this right includes freedom to hold opinions without interference and to seek, receive and impart information and ideas through any media and regardless of frontiers.

Article 19. The Universal Declaration of Human Rights

The Universal Declaration of Human Rights, which was adopted by the UN General Assembly on 10 December 1948, was the result of the experience of the Second World War. With the end of that war, and the creation of the United Nations, the international community vowed never again to allow atrocities like those of that conflict happen again. World leaders decided to complement the UN Charter with a road map to guarantee the rights of every individual everywhere. The document they considered, and which would later become the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, was taken up at the first session of the General Assembly in 1946.

on religiOn…

on religiOn…

“I conceive some scattered notions about a superior power to be of a singular use for the common people, as furnishing excellent materials to keep children quiet when they grow peevish, and providing topics of amusement in a tedious winter-night.”

Jonathan Swift, An Argument Against Abolishing Christianity, (1708).

Every minute, eight people are forced to flee war, persecution or terror.(UNHCR)

If conflict threatened your family, what would you do?

Built for iOS and Android, ‘MY LIFE AS A REFUGEE’ lets players contemplate the same life-changing decisions refugees make in a true-to-life quest to try to survive, reach safety, reunite with loved ones and re-start their lives.

Ready to get started? Download now!

The interpretOr today reveals that the British firm suing French magazine ‘Closer’ over the publication of topless pictures is none other than London-based Woyals…it’s emerging that far from universally adored in their chosen country of residence, the firm actually has an extensive history of courting publicity.

For more on this story, we go across now to our European correspondent, Len Spart…

Morning all…there are several issues in the mix here…scale, privacy, money…Woyals spokesperson, Sir David Flounce (OAP), has released a statement on the thorny issue of their ‘wedding-summer-special’ of 2011 – it concedes that this event was indeed  deliberately televised and may actually have achieved global audience figures circa high millions…even nudging a billion…

Len, we need to check in with you on these earlier wedding pics and their err, remuneration aspects…how big was the 2011 summer special yield..and how much..MONEY..CHANGED HANDS?

Well crucial questions, Nick…we’re actually across footage of summer 2011, and it’s pretty full on…the nuptuals of Woyals rising star Bill Windsor and his beaming bride, Katie Milton-Keynes, closed large areas of West London and the firm’s event was financed almost entirely – not by the private sector, as you may have imagined – but from the British public purse…Flounce (OAP) has also conceded that the Woyal’s held the luctrative and exclusive media rights on this event…I guess, one could add…somewhat like the recent London Olympics…so conservative estimates on the Woyals return on the PUBLIC investment are enough to turn a Goldmen Suck’s director, green…with…envy…

For perspective on the ‘Closer’ topless pic scenario, we go across now to Conservatives for Conservatives spokes person, and former Woyals Asia-Pacific sales manager, Tony Abbo……………….

The Nation / By JoAnn Wypijewski

Every once in a while, a situation arises that so completely captures the spirit of the time—in this case, the horror moving like an amoeba under the surface of our pleasant days, our absurd distractions, our seemingly serious politics—that ordinary assumptions, ordinary arguments and their limited conclusions serve only to obliterate honesty, and so any hope of grappling with the real. Such is the case of Julian Assange now.

“With Assange, the political context is the totalizing immorality of the national security state on a global scale.” 

click here to the piece in whole @ alternet….

The interpretOr adds that the New York Times, Boston Globe and other US broadsheets reporting that the offensive video that has been the catalyst of this weeks anti-American riots across the Middle East was “promoted by a shadowy assortment of right-wing Christians in the United States” and linked to book burning Florida pastor, Terry Jones.

Wag the Dog?

An app that uses the Bureau of Investigative Journalism’s covert war data , to alert people to the far reaches of the US government’s secret wars, has been blocked from Apple’s app store.

Drones+, the creation of NYU student Josh Begley, was meant to be a simple way of notifying users whenever US drones struck somewhere in the world. But Apple decided this was not acceptable for its customers. After rejecting the app on the grounds of its design and functionality, the US tech giant finally took exception to its content.

The interpretOr would like to add that the Bureau of Investigative Journalism has great credibility, and works in collaboration with other news groups to get its investigations published and distributed.  To date, BIJ have worked with BBC File On Four, BBC Panorama, BBC Newsnight, Channel4 Dispatches, Channel4 News, The Financial Times, The Daily Telegraph, The Sunday Times, Le Monde and numerous others.

In correspondence seen by the Bureau, the US tech giant told Begley that apps that ‘present excessively objectionable or crude content will be rejected.’ The company added:

‘We found that your app contains content that many audiences would find objectionable.’ 

Apple’s decision did not come as a surprise to Begley. ‘I think their position is often just they don’t want to let anything through that could be seen by anyone at any particular table that could be seen as controversial,’ he said.


PsyCh Journal, China’s first international psychology journal has just launched and describes itself as the “flagship journal of the Institute of Psychology, Chinese Academy of Sciences” – the only national psychology research institute in China – and is freely available during 2012 – read it online here….

The interpretOr understands that PsyCh J is looking for submissions from both within and outside of China. It’ll be interesting to see if the scope and range of this new J includes reporting on issues related to human rights, such as ethnic stereotyping, conformity and obedience to authority…could be that there are counterparts to Milgram, Zimbardo et al. just waiting to break through…we live in hope.

The September issue of The Psychologist magazine, with a special focus on traffic and transport psychology, has been made entirely open access – get PDFs of all the articles, or read it via the Issuu web platform.

The Psychologist is published by the BPS (British Psychological Society) of which an interpretOr is a member…it’s succinct, eclectic and thought-provoking.

an interpretOr’s impression of silvio the clown‘s very own vip grotto…


more pics @ the Guardian (click here)

The remaining non-imprisoned members of Pussy Riot condemn Putin and his attack on feminism and whilst abseiling down a building.

This short was produced for MTV Video Music Awards but… pulled from the show over “concerns with corporate policy.” So, here we have corporate america capitulating to the dictates of the profit motive and the Mor(m)ons…Ed Creepbuhmlicka jnr. was unavailable for comment.

MTV: soft-power…gutless…twaddle….? MTVMendacious and Totally Vapid…

Media Mesmerised by Wealth

The words of Gina Rinehart during her recent speech at the Sydney Miners Club have been reverently reproduced by the Australian media almost as though they were reporting on Moses’ sermon on the mount.

Gina claimed that mining companies will invest in Africa rather than Australia because of Australian mining and carbon taxes, and because, “African workers are happy to work for less than $2 a day”.

It would appear that Gina is using Tony Abbott to do her research because in the days preceding Gina’s statement 34 striking miners at the Lonmin mine were shot dead by police while protesting at their starvation wages. To my eye the miners on my TV screen were not looking happy.

It should be noted that the miners who have on average 8 dependants want their monthly wage to rise from 5400 to 12500 Rand and have been on strike for weeks.

The strike is rapidly spreading to other African mines including Lonmin’s Karee mine where manager Jan Thirion said that if workers get their way “….we might as well shut down mining in South Africa”. Despite the low wages, rising costs and lower commodity prices many African mines are struggling to operate at a profit and African mining share prices have dropped by around 20% in some sectors.

It would appear that Gina Rinehart is not only wrong about mining investment pouring out of Australia and into South Africa, the reverse is true. My first question is why would she distort the truth about mining investment in Australia?

Clearly Ms Rinehart was having a go at two targets. The first being Australian workers who refuse to leave their homes in NSW to work in the Pilbara whereas “Africans are happy to work for less than $2 a day”.

The second target is the Gillard Government for imposing taxes that compensate Australians for the value of minerals that miners are extracting from Australian soil, as well as the pollution damage caused by the extraction process.

My next proposition is, if Gina truly believes mining companies are moving to Africa to take advantage of Africans working for starvation wages, or to benefit from not having to pay taxes to compensate for the minerals extracted or the damage to the environment, would we not be better off without such cruel morally corrupt companies in Australia?

It would seem that Gina would be ill advised to move her mining operations to South Africa where the mining industry is in chaos due to ongoing and spreading riots over poor pay. It would also appear that low wages has not made African mines more profitable or productive. The only positive for the miners is that the police seem prepared to kill striking miners to force them back to work.

Le Monde Diplomatique: September 2012

Syria’s other war; Mali under extreme threat;China special report: challenge of empire, secretive party gamesVenezuela, another term for Chávez? Panama’s M-10 protest against Barro Blanco dam; Spain, a failure of leadership; rise and rise of The Economist;museums, return those objects of art! supplement For democracy; supplement Liège…and more…

(just click on the date above to go though to LMD)

With a history of plagiarism and consistent lack of compassion, it is hard to determine whether Julie Bishop’s stance may be attributable to sheer ignorance or zero empathy, but heck, maybe they’re not mutually exclusive in this particular case? The civil war in Sri Lanka endured for 25+ years and the situation in northern areas may still be fraught and perilous, particularly for the Tamil minority.

This interpretOr reported on the plight of Tamil refugees in May 2008 (from Australia), in conjunction with David Gray of news agency Reuters who was on the ground in north eastern Sri Lanka and one of the few Western journalists behind the lines with hundreds of thousands of trapped largely Tamil CIVILIANS.

One of Gray’s pieces touched on:

“An estimated 450,000 people have been displaced in the 25 year old Sri Lankan civil war. Since 1983, well over 70,000 people have lost their lives.”

My research led me to uncover that the majority Sinhalese population had to a significant extent systematically disenfranchised the Tamil minority since independence from the UK in 1948, evidenced by Sinhalese being imposed as the official language and the genocide that was unleashed when the first ever telephone directory was released in the capital, Colombo, readily identifying NAME, ADDRESS, PHONE NUMBER of anyone with a TAMIL surname.

DIAL M FOR MURDER, julie bishop?

Archbishop Desmond Tutu has called for Tony Blair and George Bush to be hauled before the international criminal court in The Hague and delivered a damning critique of the physical and moral devastation caused by the Iraq war.

for more: story in full @ the Observer (UK) 

An early piece on the  interpretOr touched on Times newspapers (UK), contrasting scenarios pre and post Rupert Murdoch’s takeover – Times Up?  (hence the lack of an apostrophe).

We’re delighted to flag that Murdoch’s nemesis, Harold Evans – “a brave and conscientious editor of The Sunday Times when it was a great, compelling and fearless Fleet Street newspaper” shares new perspectives on the Thalidomide case in today’s Observer:

Justice delayed is justice denied. We know that too well. But how do you wrestle with your conscience when the injustice you have perpetrated has destroyed the lives of children and left thousands of thalidomide victims still enduring pain and suffering, without adequate compensation?”

(please click here to go straight through to the story @ the Observer…)

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