Episode 227 – Don’t trust Scomo, 4 Corners or Pinker

Our Orwellian Prime Minister has accused protesters of being … Orwellian. And in other news, we look at hidden agendas and BS artists.

2:29 The Melbourne Cup

A surprising number of people bet regularly on horse races.

4:29 Mt Warning

Activists who’ve campaigned for years to end climbing at Mt Warning saying the recent closure of Uluru has given them the momentum they need to make it happen.

8:58 Scomo turns Orwell on his head

From The Courier Mail

SCOTT Morrison has delivered a withering criticism of modern progressivism, claiming radical activists using the title wanted to attack the liberties of Australians.

Wandering from his prepared notes, Mr Morrison said “progressivism” sounded like a “lovely word you can cuddle up to” to get a “nice warm glow”, but in reality was like a form of propaganda from George Orwell’s dystopian classic 1984.

“Those who claim this title want to tell you where to live, what job you can have, what you can say and what you can think and tax you more for the privilege of all of those instructions that are directed to you”.

“I am very concerned about how this new form of progressivism, a newspeak-type term, intended, intended to get in under the radar, but at its heart would deny the liberties of Australians, and particularly in this state, of pursuing the life that they want to live, the town they want to have, the jobs they want to pursue and the futures that they’ve decided for themselves.”

24:55 Trump is so smart

We play a clip from a recent press conference.

38:55 Who is Nick Goiran?

First, what is a filibuster?

From Wikipedia

A filibuster is a political procedure where one or more members of parliament or congress debate over a proposed piece of legislation so as to delay or entirely prevent a decision being made on the proposal. It is sometimes referred to as “talking a bill to death” or “talking out a bill”[1] and is characterized as a form of obstruction in a legislature or other decision-making body. This form of political obstruction reaches as far back as Ancient Roman times and could also be referred to synonymously with political stonewalling. Due to the often extreme length of time required for a successful filibuster, many speakers stray off topic after exhausting the original subject matter. Past speakers have read through laws from different states, recited speeches, and even read from cookbooks and phone books.

Both houses of the Australian parliament have strictly enforced rules on how long members may speak, so filibusters are generally not possible, though this is not the case in some state legislatures.

From The ABC

In April he filibustered the Surrogacy Bill

The surrogacy bill, which would give single men and same-sex couples access to the technology, had flown largely under the radar until Liberal MP Nick Goiran stood up in the Upper House to begin one of the longest speeches seen in WA Parliament.

All up, Mr Goiran spoke for 22 hours across several sitting days — uttering 150,000 words and filling more than 200 pages of parliamentary transcript. … For some context on how long that is, two of the three books in the Lord of the Rings trilogy contained fewer words than Mr Goiran’s speech.

… it worked in the end.

With the stalemate frustrating all sides, enough MPs sided with Mr Goiran to send the bill off to a committee and delay a vote by at least four months.

… just the warm-up act.

Now, the Assisted Dying Bill is up for debate …

Opponents of a voluntary assisted dying (VAD) bill in Western Australia face fresh accusations of filibustering after a Liberal MP moved hundreds of amendments to the proposed legislation.

The 64-page list of amendments also includes changes proposed by other MPs, …

What happened to the surrogacy laws?

From June 29 in The Australian

Planned new laws in Western Australia that would allow gay men to have children through surrogacy have been dealt a blow after legal advice suggested the bill discriminates against women.

WA Health Minister Roger Cook has urged parliament to pass the bill, which he said would end the “discrimination” under state law in which same-sex male couples and single men cannot enter surrogacy relationships.

He says the reforms will give men the same access to surrogacy and assisted reproductive technologies that women and heterosexual couples have had since 2009.

But in a report sent to a WA upper-house committee, leading barrister Greg McIntyre SC said the bill itself was discriminatory because it could prohibit two women in a same-sex relationship from accessing surrogacy.

This is because WA’s surrogacy laws require women who want to enter a surrogacy arrange­ment to have a “medical reason” for being unable to conceive­ or give birth to a child.

Mr McIntyre said the bill therefore treats gay men more favourably and must be amended so it does not clash with the federal Sexual Discrimination Act.

47:03 The 4 Corners Report titled “Red Flags”

I watched the 4 Corners report wanting to change my mind so I could demonstrate that it is ok to change your mind and admit you made a mistake or were uninformed. I failed.

Cyber-attack on ANU. Yeah, so who would be surprised?

Pro and anti-Chinese protests at a University. Students protesting. What would you expect?

Pro-Chinese activists. No doubt there was government influence but plenty would be purely voluntary. Many students are very proud of the Chinese government.

Contrast Ramsay Centre and Confucius Institute. The Confucius Institute does not design the course or deliver the course.

Academic left UQ and went back to China to work on surveillance technology. What about private enterprise?

Who was speaking? What is their agenda?

What is the best way to protect Australia? Have lots of Chinese here and lots of their money.

Who were the commentators?

We had Ross Babbage described as a “Senior security adviser for the Australian Government”. But google his name and he works for The Center for Strategic and Budgetary Assessments (CSBA) which is a think tank which is funded by unspecified U.S. Defense Department agencies and corporations and focuses on U.S. defence and budget policy.

We also heard from Alastair MacGibbon the former head of the Australian Cyber Security Centre. The Australian Cyber Security Centre (ACSC) is an Australian Government intergovernmental and interagency hub responsible for cybersecurity including analysing, investigating and reporting cyber threats and coordinating national security capabilities and operations for incidents of cybercrimecyberterrorism, and cyberwarfare. The ACSC is hosted by the Australian Signals Directorate but based at the Australian Security Intelligence Organisation headquarters in the Ben Chifley Building. The Centre is led by the National Cyber Coordinator, overseen by the Cyber Security Operations Board, and is the joint responsibility of the Minister for Defence and the Minister for Home Affairs.

Clive Hamilton.

We heard from Professor John Fitzgerald of the (leftish) Ford Foundation. He was the least critical of the so called critics. He said our research is being directed at stuff that China wants to work on not us.

There was a lot of commentary by  Alex Joske and Dr Samantha Hoffman of the Australian Strategic Policy Institute.

Who is the Australian Strategic Policy Institute?

Do we trust John Menadue?

From his article dated the 6 December 2017 in Michael West’s blog.

Michael West – Agents of influence, presumably Chinese, are in the news. But the really important agents of influence are organisations linked “hip to hip” to the US and its military/industrial complex. One of these is the Australian Strategic Policy Institute which is an enthusiastic supporter of  almost all things American. It pretends it is an independent think tank.  John Menadue updates his post on this subject from September 6, 2016.

John Menadue:

Menadue quotes Bob Carr:  Yesterday, Bob Carr commented that ASPI and the US Studies Centre at the University of Sydney both express “consistently pro American positions” while receiving funding from “US corporations including armaments companies”.

In an earlier blog, (Military/Security takeover of Australia’s foreign policy) I described the pervasive influence of the “Australia/US Defence and Intelligence Complex” (AUSDIC).

ASPI, based in Canberra, is dependent on Department of Defence and defence supplier funding. It is an enthusiastic member of that “complex”.

On the 15th anniversary of ASPI, Hugh White, formerly Deputy Secretary, Department of Defence, and the Inaugural Executive Director of ASPI, wrote:

“ASPI’s primary purpose wasn’t to contribute to public debate about defence policy, but to provide an alternative source of policy ideas for government.”

He went on to say that this purpose, to contribute to policy debate has now changed. He added

“the quality of defence policy [has] slumped and demand from government for independent policy advice largely evaporated. ASPI’s focus inevitably swung around to contribute to public debate not good policy making.”

We have seen several recent and unfortunate forays of ASPI into the public debate. Its Executive Director, Peter Jennings, recently told us incorrectly, that China was responsible for bringing down the Bureau of Statistics website at the time of the recent census; that Chilcot was extremely naïve about the way countries e.g. UK go to war and that the Australian Parliament should not hinder the prerogative of the prime minister and the cabinet to take Australia to war e.g. Iraq. Only last weekend in the Sun Herald an ASPI “expert on Chinese military modernisation” warned us that the H-6K Chinese bombers based in the Spratly Islands could threaten Australia and we had to consider stepping up our missile defence, with the help of  US Patriot missiles. With a viewpoint and mind set like that he is incapable of considering whether the way we have locked ourselves into the US alliance so fully is in in our best interests. His response was that we had to work even more closely with the US. That would entrap us even further.

ASPI’s pro-American and anti-Chinese views reflects the attitude of the “Australia/US defence intelligence complex” (AUSDIC). Its views on China have been reflected in the sloppy 2016 Defence White Paper and the debacle over the French submarine involving the purchase of a large conventional submarine at a huge and exorbitant cost and naively supposed to operate in the South China Sea to deter China. With its large fleet of nuclear submarines the Chinese must be smiling at our ineptitude and waste!

Our relationship with the US and China are critical issues. How do we get the balance right between the risks and benefits in this dramatic change in our region and indeed the world?

By its performance, it is difficult to see how ASPI is equipped to help us develop a new architecture to advance and manage our relations with China and the US.

More importantly ASPI is not in the habit in recent years of speaking truth to power. It has seriously departed from the original charter that Hugh White explained.

It acts  like a foreign entity.

The Fist:

So the point is, a program on the secretive, pervasive and growing Chinese influence was really a program about the secretive, pervasive and growing influence of the Us military industrial complex.

Australia China Foreign Affairs Generally

See this article by John Menadue

1:18:09 Steven Pinker

Friday breakfast and an article by Waz are the straws that have broken The Fist’s back.

I’ll read fucking Pinker and call out his BS and I’ll be criticised for being biased and not approaching it with an open mind. You can make up your own mind based on the facts and ensuing arguments that I intend to present.

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