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Friday, 6th February 1998
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The Australian Council for the Arts issue.

We are still waiting for that promised email apology from Michael Lynch the general manager of the Australian Council for the Arts to Pauline Hanson. As I said yesterday I remain very sceptical about senior bureaucrats - what they promise and what they actually do.

Seems like my scepticism is well placed in this case.

Day by day history of this shocker:

Sunday 1st February 1998
Monday 2nd February 1998
Tuesday 3rd February 1998
Wednesday 4th February 1998
Thursday 5th February 1998

Quotable quotes from the Constitutional Convention.

"We don't want a populist type republic," Malcolm Turnbull.

"This is not a Au$50 million frolic to indulge Mr Turnbull's fantasies."

Update on News Corporation "Screwing the tax system".

All the latest reports on this company that does not like paying tax.

"A confidential Tax Office report obtained by the Australian Financial Review, describes the ATO analysis of Australian companies that were “thought to represent significant FSI (Foreign Sourced Income) risks”.

“The analysis that was done resulted in News Ltd being classified as high-risk”, the memo of May 1996 said."

A timely report that they did not cover although the following headed up News Limited's Courier Mail's business pages today:

"Strong US business, weak Aussie boost News interim profit 30%":

Here is this multinationals latest interim profit thanks to the way in which they screw the Australian tax system (estimated to have cost Australian tax payers about Au$2 billion or a cost of more than Au$100 per man, woman and child in this country.




$8.946 billion

$7.062 billion

Operating Income

$1.241 billion

$896 million

Net Profit

$895 million

$690 million

Dividend (ords)



Dividend (prefs)



However, what is even more disgusting about this unethical, diabolical company is the manner in which it uses its media clout to distort the news and our perception of politicians and politics day after day.

I can say this without any question based on the comprehensive web page The Four Corners of Australia's Trojan Horse.

In short News Limited is not a good corporate citizen it is headed up by a greedy tyrannical corporate crook - Rupert Murdoch.

Comment at an ACTU meeting on the MAI

The people "down under" are rising up against the MAI! - STOP MAI Australia, 4th February 1998
(Richard had spoken personally with Opposition Leader Kim Beazley last year and noted his support for the MAI.... The media attention that Pauline Hanson's One Nation Party had lately received with respect to this issue was dealt with by the re-affirmation that in fighting MAI we are caring not only for our own country but for the whole world - especially the poor majority.

Aborigines try to block out new "biased" High Court judge.

A legacy of all that is wrong in Australia is the Hindmarsh Bridge fiasco which has been going on for several years now.

We first reported on this Aboriginal claim in South Australia in 1995. The fiasco has taken another turn with the Ngarrindjeri people now saying that they will call for the Full Court to rule on whether new High Court judge Ian Callinan QC should be allowed to take up his position on the High Court to hear the case. Callinan has said he would take up his post to hear the case.

Jim Spigelman QC, a new age lawyer creaming it off native title, told a special hearing that Justice Callinan's relationship with Defence Minister Ian Maclaghlan and a legal opinion he gave the Federal Government on the legislation's validity enabling the construction of the Hindmarsh Bridge validity led to a perception of bias by the High Court judge.

McLachlan's seat takes in Hindmarsh Island - he had earlier opposed moves to stop construction of the bridge.

The ALP's Aboriginal spokesman that little man Darryl Melham said, "He was retained by one side on this very matter the High Court is hearing."

Of course the ALP and the Aborigines know that Callinan brings a sense of balance back into the High Court following years of electing politically correct bleeding heart High Court judges through successive ALP governments in the 1980s.

Princess "precious" attends booklaunch of "Princess Di"

Well what does it take to get a page two lead story in News Limited's Courier Mail... a simple formula of two "princesses" - one being the late Princess Di and the other (Cheryl Kernot) being tagged "Princess Precious" by the Australian Labor Party (ALP) delegates at Hobart last month.

The Courier Mail have called Kernot "Princess Petal" her new nickname among some journalists it would appear.

The book, "Diana the Hunted" was written by Diana Simmonds.

The article also mentions that 800 ALP members are expected to attend a dinner at South Brisbane's Greek Club. This was the club that recently accepted, but then turned down a booking by One Nation for a similar dinner because of concerns about the ALPs hired thugs.

This is one of the most significant stories of 1997 that went untold because of the Courier Mail's blatant bias towards the ALP.

Bill Gates get creamed.

What a sight for sore eyes - Bill Gates getting cream pies thrown in his face as he arrived for a function.

The roar of collective approval from millions of screen heads all over the world could be heard reverberating around this global office.

World Bank Draws Fire In Indonesia.

Extract from the Washington Post:

JAKARTA, Indonesia, Feb. 4—World Bank President James D. Wolfensohn came under sharp criticism today by community leaders and democracy advocates who said the bank's past lending here had ignored rampant government corruption and the lack of democratic development. Wolfensohn replied by acknowledging that "we didn't get everything right in the past."

The exchange came during an unusually feisty, closed-door breakfast forum between the bank president and dozens of local activists in a hotel ballroom. Wolfensohn is on a trip to assess the social impact of the Asian economic crisis, and to unveil new funding and programs to help fight increased unemployment and urban poverty being caused by the regionwide meltdown.

Changing the Earth's Climate for Business The World Bank and the Greenhouse Effect .

Extract from the Multinational Monitor:

DHEN KANAL DISTRICT, INDIA -- As the sun rises on the eastern Indian state of Orissa, women balance brass pots on their heads, and make their way to the banks of the Nandira River. Rather than dip their pots in the river water, as they have for generations in this small fishing village, they dig with their bare hands several feet from the sandy shore until they can scoop water, handful by handful, into their pots. In front of them flows a gray, lifeless tributary, the banks coated with a thick coat of ash. Fish -- once plentiful -- no longer swim in these waters.

Upstream, in Talchar, stands the pride of the World Bank: a newly built coal-fired power plant, at 3,000 megawatts one of the largest in Asia. The World Bank loaned $375 million for this facility over a 10-year period, most of which went to multinational energy companies. In 1989, BBC of West Germany was awarded the turbine generator contracts, and Stein Industrie of France supplied two boilers. Hinudstan Brown Boveri, the Indian subsidiary of ABB, was responsible for the assembly and installation of the generators. Electricité de France also provided technical services. Among the foreign investors hoping to own and operate this plant is Genesis Energy Systems of Los Angeles.

The plant's coal washeries, the millions of gallons of water used by the cooling towers for coal burners and the water demands of heavy industry have combined to rob villagers of a once clean and abundant water supply. As coal ash ponds overflow, and as chromium, fertilizer, chemical and heavy water facilities dump a toxic stew of waste, the Nandira turns from blue to black. In a country where rivers are revered for their sacred qualities, the death of the Nandira, which flows into the mighty Brahmani, is particularly poignant.

Making the news" -
an indepth exposé of media and political collusion at the highest possible levels in Australia.


So Much for Democracy and the People!

Yesterday at the Constitutional Convention, the Reverend Tim Costello (Real Republic) made it quite clear that his version of democracy differed from that held by the common herd.

Talking about the nomination of candidates for a popular election for Governor-General, he said. "I am worried about the selection model, even with a threshold of 1% of the population being able to nominate, in so far as they will give platforms to Pauline Hanson, the Shooters and a whole range of people who actually can get 1% threshold and run national campaigns."

Well, I don't know what Pauline Hanson, whose declared support is running at 5.5% nationwide, would say about that, but if it was half as salty as the remarks later used by the delegate for the Shooters' Party, Mr Eric Bullmore, it would be most unladylike.

Pauline received 48.6% of the first preference votes for the seat of Oxley, and the candidate for the Australian Indigenous People's Party only got 0.6%, but I have no doubt at all in my mind that the Reverend Tim would be quite happy to allow an Aboriginal Australian to be nominated for election as Governor-General, but would be appalled if Pauline Hanson, 78 times as popular, were to throw her hat in the ring.

So much for democracy. Elected Governors-General, in the minds of rabid republicans, may not be chosen from the people, but from the ranks of politically correct candidates, acceptable to the political elites controlling the process.

Patrick O'Brien (Elect the President) had highlighted this point earlier: "It was the unanimous opinion of the working group that the process of nomination is in many ways as important as, and in some ways more important than, the actual process of election, because whoever controls the nomination process really has great influence over who shall get appointed to any position. This applies whether it be parliamentary committees or whatever."

He went on to mention Josef Stalin, who rose to power by appointing his supporters to key positions in the early Soviet Union.

At a stroke, Tim Costello had destroyed a compromise position between the two-thirds Parliamentary election favoured by the ARM and the popular model favoured by the Direct Presidential Election Group. If the nominations submitted to Parliament are subject to the "funnelling process, the sifting process" mentioned by the ARM's Mary Delahunty, then some Australians will be "filtered" out as unsuitable.

Tim Costello's Real Republic stablemate, Moira Rayner, tried to smooth over the damage by pointing out to Tim that in a democracy every group was entitled to be represented and given a fair go, but her heart wasn't in it.

Another nail in the republic's coffin. It is obvious that delegates have a clear view of who exactly would be suitable to occupy the position of Head of State. A majority think that Queen Elizabeth II is not good enough for the single reason that she is a Pom. Tim Costello ruled out Pauline Hanson and shooters, and indicated that he thinks other Australian citizens are equally unpalatable to his blinkered taste. A wide range of delegates have tried to nudge the choice in the direction of their kind of people, whether they be female, indigenous, ethnic or possibly all three.

Not only do they try to pre-select the Governor-General, they also try to ensure that the selection committee is made up of the "right kind of people". The model for "Popular election with open nominations" (Working Group A in convention-speak) has four lines of text stating that any individual may nominate for the top job, and thirty-nine describing how the "Presidential Nominating Council" may whittle down the presumably vast list of nominees to between two and five candidates.

This model would enshrine in the Constitution the right of named organisations such as ACTU, ACOSS, ATSIC and the Students' Union of Australia to supply delegates to the whittling-down team. Bruce Ruxton predictably joined in this idiocy by attempting to add the RSL to the list of approved bodies.

If this model emerges as the preferred option of the convention, the constitutional lawyers and the monarchists will have a field day pointing out its numerous errors, and it will have died long before being buried at a referendum.

The attempt at consensus with the monarchists on the other side, first proposed by Professor Greg Craven on Wednesday, is also doomed to failure. The so-called "hybrid model" takes the two-thirds Parliamentary majority for nomination and election and uses a council of three wise men for dismissal.

Each element will find strong opposition, and the prospect of setting down the requirements as to who, exactly, are the three wise men, and under what circumstances should they be convened to gather and deliberate on the dismissal of a Governor-General are likely to tax the resources of the constitutional lawyers sparsely sprinkled around.

Another problem, seemingly invisible to all, is that most of the republican models mention the role and duties of the Prime Minister in some way. Unfortunately the Prime Minister does not get a mention in the Constitution, so it would have to be spelt out who, exactly, was the Prime Minister, not as simple a task as might be imagined.

All this detail adds complexity to the number and size of the various amendments to be put to the people at a referendum. Going by the sorry record of previous attempts at constitutional amendment, it is hardly worthwhile trying to sell any change which is complex, does not enjoy bipartisan support, and is the subject of a scare campaign.

Malcolm Turnbull, who began the Convention strutting around like a senior statesman, leading what he boasted was the largest group of delegates, is finding the smiles increasingly harder to come up with. His strategy is plain, to keep his cherished two-thirds Parliamentary election model, and throw out sops of popular nomination to the radicals, and the McGarvie Model "three wise men" method of removal to the conservatives.

This, as Bruce Ruxton would say, is "snake oil from the snake charmers". Too clever and complex by half.

It's day five now, and most of the delegates would be finding the Convention unexpectedly complicated. Certainly the voting procedure to "whittle down" the number of proposed republican methods was confusing. It took an hour and a half of sheer hard slog in the late afternoon to refer every single one of the resolutions on for further consideration.

As former teacher Janet Holmes A'Court pointed out after the voting had finished, "If we locked the doors now and had a test, I don't think any one of us would get a 25% score on what had just gone on." She pointed out that having two pieces of scrappy paper in hand was no way to make vital decisions affecting the future of the nation, especially during a voting process that was poorly understood and relied entirely on the eyesight of Ian Sinclair. Nobody actually counted the votes.

I had the pieces of paper in hand. One was the list of resolutions developed by the working parties, another was a list of suggested amendments, ranging from hand-scrawled gibberish to laser-printed shorthand. Not one of them resembled another in either form or substance, and my hot-off-the-copier consolidated list bore only a passing resemblance to that available to the Chairman. The computer texts put up on the big screens were different again.

Any chance that the non-politician delegates had of understanding what they were voting on was swept away in the frenzy of finishing the proceedings before a reception at Government House began. Ian Sinclair did a magnificent job of jumping on anybody seeking clarification or attempting to support or oppose a particular motion. I think it was Ms Glenda Hewitt who confessed that she had abstained at every vote, and she was by no means alone.

I suspect that the problem lies in the sheer diversity of delegates. Initially hailed as a demonstration of the wide-ranging inclusiveness of the occasion, this has ensured that there are a large number of delegates with their own individual barrows to push. Not only that, but it seems everyone sees someone else's barrow as containing a load of steaming bull refuse.

Neville Wran had begun the day by declaring that this was an historic opportunity and that we should "Seize the Day!". There was a genuine desire for consensus and progress, and Greek-born delegate Stella Axarlis was cheered to the echo when she expressed a desire for progress, but I'm afraid that this fourth day escaped very much unseized.

email the editor

You say:

Subject: How wrong they were.

Dear Sir,

I have just spent the early morning hours ploughing through the archives of the mainstream online newspapers. I am particularly interested in what "Our Leaders" have had to say about Pauline Hanson over the past year or so. While I had read all these articles when they we so-called "news", it was rather refreshing and uplifting to go back and read them all again in view of the world developments during that period.

My memory was jogged to recall the time that the Chinese Community were going to join Pauline Hanson's One Nation en-masse and vote Pauline out of the Leadership role. It didn't happen.

The Chinese again were going to have Pauline Hanson's One Nation declared a racist organisation and so have it deregistered as a political party. It didn't happen.

There were numerous stories by the likes of Howard, Beazley, Evans, Vanstone, Abbott & Costello, Fischer and many more, predicting that Asian tourism would drop off as a result of Pauline Hanson's comments. It didn't happen (in fact, it rose)

The same lot blamed Pauline Hanson for the reduction in the number of Asian student enrolments in Australian schools and universities. At the same time another article explained that because a number of Asian countries were at last building their own learning institutions, Australia could expect a drop in Asian enrolments. It didn't happen though, for the reasons our pollies gave.

Then of course there was the predictions that any person other than a white anglo-saxon was in danger of being bashed in the streets and racially vilified. It didn't happen. In reality, every time a story broke about street violence, Pauline Hanson's name was trotted out as the reason for the act, but by the time the facts came out, the real perpetrators were Asians bashing Asians, Aboriginals bashing Aboriginals, Aboriginals bashing Asians and so on.

Children of ethnic background were at risk of being bashed in the school playground purely on racial grounds incited by Pauline Hanson. It didn't happen. Kids have been getting bashed in school yards since school yards were invented and race doesn't enter into it. I copped a few bashings during my school career as did lots of others. I don't recall by whom and for what reason and it doesn't really matter as I am still here.

Then of course there was the great predictions that our trade with Asia would suffer because of the talk by Pauline Hanson. It didn't happen. Recent events may have knocked the trade figures around but for totally different reasons and certainly not through any actions of Pauline Hanson.

Pauline Hanson was being blamed for using Asians and Aboriginals as scapegoats for the terrible state of our economy, high unemployment etc. It would appear in light of the above material that in fact, the people who are responsible for the terrible state of our economy, high unemployment etc, are using Pauline Hanson as a means of diverting the people's attention away from the real story. The real story of course is not a "conspiracy theory" but "conspiracy fact". The bastards are selling and in some cases giving away our country from under our noses to International Big Business and Finance.

Pauline Hanson is owed an apology but I doubt that it will be forthcoming. When it is all said and done, only those with honour and decency have the ability to say I'm sorry.

Allan W. Doak

How about we start an on-line "SORRY" book for the way mainstream Australians have been treated in this country - with a foreword by Pauline Hanson?


Subject: re: work for the dole

In reply to the "Work for the Dole" letter. (5thFeb)

Your son does not get "paid" to sit at home. His benefit obligates him to look for a job. It used to be called Job Search but is now called Newstart. There are many ways to fill in a day by job hunting so tell him to start looking.

As for Working For The Dole, there's nothing wrong with that as long as the hours worked are in accordance with the relevant award rate for the work that is done.

SE Wagger

Personal trivia, from the global office:

Another beautiful day in paradise.

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