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Helen Pluckrose and James Lindsay have produced a Manifesto Against the Enemies of Modernity. There is much to agree with in it but at least one part is thoroughly misconceived, which is the attack on libertarianism.
Such an attack is a strange thing to read in such a manifesto, for if any ideology seems a product of modernity it is libertarianism, an intense form of liberalism. The heroes of libertarianism are very much modern figures, with the earliest thinker being regularly invoked being C17th philosopher John Locke. Some of the more historically minded might cite the Salamanca School, but for their economic reasoning, and perhaps some of their natural law reasoning, not their Catholicism.
Indeed, the most potentially fruitful lines of attack on libertarianism would be to accuse it of being a particularly autistic manifestation of modernity. Dissident right blogger Zman lets loose with a blast along those lines here.
Yet Pluckrose and Lindsay line up the libertarians (or at least a significant strain of such thought) with the premodern right:
Premodernism valorizes simplicity and purity that it imagines in terms of Natural roles, Laws, and Rights. It feels these have been subverted by the growth of institutions and complex social structures. It also deeply distrusts expertise for a wide variety of complicated reasons, including a certain self-assured and yet self-pitying resentment of sociocultural betterment, the undermining of Natural roles, the questioning and challenging of traditional values, and engineering in the social, cultural, and political spheres.
In the case of libertarians, particularly, a major influence is the political theory of Friedrich Hayek, who saw the increasing centralized regulation by government in the more recent Modern period as a gradual return to serfdom which threatens to bring about totalitarianism. In The Road to Serfdom, he argues, mirroring the postmodernists, that knowledge and truth...
Two letters to The Oz yesterday responding to a column from the day before. There is nowhere in the world like Australia, but we will ruin ourselves if we do not understand that a One Australia Policy is the only policy that will keep us whole. Heres the first letter.
Maurice Newman (Assimilation must be part of the deal for new citizens, 21/2) blames multiculturalism for division, growing intolerance and diminished national pride.
He is not entirely right. As an activist in the Chinese community since 1984, my conclusion is that the commodification of the ethnic vote is the real culprit. I have lost count the number of times I cringed when I heard politicians at Chinese New Year functions telling the assembled how they respected our culture and how we had every right to preserve our culture, with one saying that she had been a practising Confucian without knowing it.
Worse, they confer grants for cultural festivals under the guise of multiculturalism, but in reality for no other purpose than harvesting votes and political donations. Then there are the multicultural awards, paid directorships on government owned corporations, and sinecures in state upper houses, all to lock in votes. This commodification of ethnic votes has bred a whole class of ethnic leaders who stridently call for ethnic rights to buttress their personal support in their ethnic group, at the cost of sabotaging the natural gravitation of migrants towards assimilation to gain economic and social progress.
Such ethnic leaders do not seem to question why few of their Aussie-acclimatised children care to be part of their glorious make-believe fiefdoms.
And then this is the second.
Maurice Newmans timely article reminded me of a very perceptive comment made in John Howards autobiography in the closing chapter: Multiculturalism is not our national cement. Rather, it is the Australian achievement, which has many components. One of them has been, successfully, to absorb millions of people from numerous lands into the mainstream of our nation. It is no surprise that those on the left who are quick to criticise any suggestion regarding curbing immigration themselves tend to dwell in the trendy inner-city suburbs, where social diversity manifests itself primarily in a decision between eating Thai or Vietn...
We received a disgruntled phone call followed by two grumpy emails (one of which is at the bottom of this story) from a Mr Roderick Campbell of Manuka, ACT, after exposing TAIs fake claim that the mining industry paid just 15 per cent corporate tax on a $498 billion profit the last ten years.
The empirical and theoretical basis for cutting company taxes is weak, writes Griffith University Professor Fabrizio Carmignani. read now...
The Pacific Labour Scheme (PLS) was announced in September 2017. Its a welcome initiative to allow greater access for Pacific Island workers to the Australian labour market. While currently capped at 2,000 (and its not clear if that is per year or in total), it has huge potential. As the PLS fact sheet says, it will enable citizens of Pacific island countries to take up low and semi-skilled work opportunities in rural and regional Australia for up to three years.
For all its potential, there are some odd aspects to the PLS. One is the hands-on role of DFAT, which will have primary responsibility for screening prospective employers for participation in the program. Thats the Department of Foreign Affairs. Pre-approval for the Seasonal Worker Programme (or SWP, which allows Pacific Islanders to come to Australia to work on farms typically for up to six months) is the responsibility of the Department of Jobs and Small Business. It is widely perceived not to have sufficiently promoted the SWP, and to have taken a very risk-averse approach. Perhaps DFAT will do a better job.
Another oddity is the initial focus on Nauru, Tuvalu and Kiribati. These are certainly three remote and relatively isolated countries. But Nauru is at full employment due to its processing centre. Tuvalu, like Nauru, is tiny and has some access to the New Zealand labour market. That leaves Kiribati, perhaps the most remote, but also a relatively small and one of the least healthy of all the Pacific island countries. At least one of the Melanesian countries such as Vanuatu or Solomon Islands should be added as pilot source countries.
An odd and worrying aspect of the scheme is the restriction that workers will not be able to bring their families with them. This isnt mentioned in the fact sheet, but was made clear when the scheme was explained at the recent Brisbane Pacific Labour Mobility Annual Meeting.
This is odd because the closest counterpart to this new scheme is what used to be called the 457, now the Temporary Skill Shortage visa. That visa now provides work rights for a two- or three-year period. Under it, workers are allowed to bring their families.
The PLS ban on family entry is worrying because surely it cant be a good thing to separate families for three years. More so because presumably workers will be allowed to return for a second or third stint. So the separation might be not for three years but....
Friday 23 February 2018 There was a time in Australian politics when ministerial conduct was important. So significant was trust that Ministers could lose their portfolio for the simplest misdemeanour. In John Howards first term as Prime Minister he lost 7 Ministers after introducing a Ministerial Code of Conduct. The code required members to divest
The post Day to Day Politics: Its a matter of trust. But would you? appeared first on The AIM Network.
Like Casablancas Captain Renault, who was shocked, shocked to discover gambling was taking place at Ricks nightclub, the Democrats on the US House of Representatives intelligence committee have barely been able to contain their outrage at evidence of Russian interference in the 2016 presidential election.
The New Daily reported that Emma Alberici has succeeded in getting the ABC to repost her analysis of the Turnbull governments tax cut plans with the help of lawyers. Essentially, the ABC has had to concede that Ms Albericis article was factually correct and that, by removing it, they have impugned her reputation. The latest Alberici
The post Higher wages and lower cost-of-living do not follow from increasing company profits appeared first on The AIM Network.
Ok, while many of you see Barnaby Joyce as an example of idiocy triumphing over competence and thats just in the battle of his own thoughts in the race to his mouth Oh, now Ive lost my train of thought maybe I, too, could be one of the leaders of the free world Anyway, Barnaby
Now Spartacus is not an energy policy expert. Perhaps Alan Moran will deconstruct the details better in the coming days. But it appears that the SA Pest Party and their Dear Leader, Mr Nick Xenophon have announced their energy policy.
The arrogance of the man and his party drip like the fat off a roasting chicken.
Get this (as reported in the Australian). Mr X-Phon does not want to be part of the executive government, yet he has proposed a half cooked policy which he expects whomever forms government to implement. And if, whomever is supposed to implement this policy fails to achieve a 20% reduction reduction is prices, they should resign. How do you like them apples?
Apparently Mr X-Phon also said:
There is nothing like focusing the mind of a government if they think they are going to lose office by not delivering on a core promise
Oy Nick. Listen up. The 20%/2 year promise is not theirs. Its yours!
How about this as an alternative. Whoever wins sufficient seats to form a government implements their policies (for better or for worse) and you, Mr X-Phon, resign.
What a joke. As part of his policy, Mr X-Phon has proposed :
the creation of a member-based, not-for-profit electricity retailer to be named the Community Electricity Trust of SA that would provide power to households with an annual below $75,000 and small businesses with power bills under $20,000.
Ok. Lets just assume for a moment that this retailer can properly run as a not for profit (BIG assumption). What are you going to do about the cost of generation and the cost of distribution (the poles and wires)?
The cost of generation has gone through the roof thanks to the renewable energy target that you support and advocate for.
Perhaps there should be a 4th party for South Australia, the SA Mortein Party. That would be a perfect counter to the...
Little reported in Australian media, the NAB has come in for serious criticism in the British Parliament as a bank that engages in unethical practices. read now...
It is well documented that the Australian Labor Party sent staffers to work against Donald Trump in the 2016 campaign.
The story was well documented and raised a bit of a stink in Australia because the operatives were funded by Aussie taxpayers.
When will Dirty Cop Robert Mueller indict these foreign
This makes the Russian influence pale in significance.
In February 2016
Project Veritas released video of Australian Labor Party
activists assisting Democrats in the US. The activists are seen
assisting the Bernie Sanders campaign.
This is a clear violation of FEC laws.
Will Robert Mueller indict this foreign interference with US
The Australian Labor Party was fined $14,500 over their US election interference in January 2018.
By Jon Chesterson Open Letter: Opposition to The Electoral Legislation Amendment (Electoral Funding and Disclosure Reform) Bill 2017 Dear Susan Templeman and the ALP, As a constituent in your electorate and an Australian citizen I wish to draw your attention and the whole of the Australian Labor Party, Australian Greens and Independents to vote against
The Queenstown Lakes District Council wants luxury homes to be exempt from the government's foreign buyers ban.
Some expensive homes owned by the exeptionally wealthy may not sell if they are only available to New Zealanders, it said in its submission on the bill.
The council said the district had benefited "significantly" from people who have purchased in the luxury home market.
"Not only have we seen traditional investment in local business, but we have seen the launch of ground breaking social enterprises and incredible impact investment," the submission said.
That part of the housing market attracted high net worth people to the country who help the economy by bringing expertise, connections, investment and philanthropy, it said.
Last year, the Palmerston North City Council
voted to ensure Mori representation with Mori wards. Now,
thanks to a visting band of
out-of-town racists whipping up hate, we're going to be
forced to have a referendum on it:
Petitioners opposing a decision to guarantee Mori seats on the Palmerston North City Council have succeeded in forcing a city-wide poll on the matter.
Organiser Don Esslemont, whose campaign has been supported by Hobson's Pledge, presented nearly 4000 signatures to the city council on Wednesday afternoon.
Only 2727 signatures needed to be verified as those of registered voters to require a referendum.
Council officials confirmed about 7.20pm on Wednesday the threshold has been reached and the poll would be held on Saturday, May 19, by postal vote and using the first-past-the-post system. The result will be binding.
More grist! From an article of mine in The Australian on the politically induced crisis in Australian energy, its causes and its solutions
The catastrophic outcome of government energy market interventions is palpably clear. As the latest new regulatory body, the Energy Security Board, diplomatically puts it: Fifteen years of climate policy instability (have) left our energy system vulnerable to escalating prices while being both less reliable and secure.
Australia has seen electricity prices double since 2015 and the once reliable supply is now suspect. From enjoying the worlds lowest cost electricity a decade ago, Australia now has among the most expensive.
The main cause has been subsidies and regulatory favours to renewable energy chiefly wind that have forced the closure of reliable coal-fired generators, particularly Northern in South Australia and Hazelwood in Victoria. Without these subsidies, costing about $5 billion a year, there would be no wind or solar. Not only are customers and taxpayers slugged with the subsidy costs but the outcome also has been to raise prices and reduce reliability.
The ESB has been tasked with creating an electricity market blueprint that marries lower carbon dioxide emissions with lower costs and greater reliability. This is an impossible task and would require massive new regulatory interventions.
The ESBs proposals would add new dimensions of complexity to electricity supply, bringing a further proliferation of administrative resources within the bureaucracy and the industry.
We can restore our latent competitiveness in cheap energy only by abandoning all the intrusions and distortions that are in place. Donald Trump has achieved success from such an approach and we may have to await full recognition of this before our politicians adopt similar deregulatory policies.
In the same issue, Rupert Darwall has a very fine piece today in Quadrant.
Surprise, surprise! The health system in Auckland is
collapsing due to underfunding:
Auckland health bosses have revealed a picture of a health system at breaking point from underfunding and population growth.
Reporting to MPs at Parliament yesterday, they spoke of a wave of unprecedented demand for acute services and staff who were extremely stressed at having to cope with more and sicker people.
"Our staff were working unexpectedly long hours and became increasingly stressed about not just how hard they were having to work but about the numbers of extremely unwell people they were having to look after," the head of Manukau Counties District Health Board, Gloria Johnson, told the health select committee.
"The problem we have at the moment, particularly over the last 18 months, [is] we've become overwhelmed by demand."
Pope Francis has sparked uproar with inflammatory comments on capitalism and markets based on his passion to help the poor and his experience of crony capitalism in Argentina. He has called for a dialogue on building a compassionate society and the Independent Institute has responded with a high powered collection of papers led by the late and great Michael Novak who wrote the Foreword not long before he died in February last year. The book is Pope Francis and the Caring Society.
Many of the contributors are Christian believers of various kinds and they have bent over backwards to embrace the dialogue (an awkward posture) on the assumption that Pope Francis is genuine in his humanitarian concerns and in the hope that he might be prepared to learn some economics like the great Polish Pope John Paul. Economic issues are thoroughly treated, especially the power of markets to liberate the poor if only there is a framework of law and property rights and a vibrant civil society. Several contributors pay attention to the Popes wayward and scientifically illiterate views on the environment and ecological issues.
Spartacus suspects that he will be slammed for expressing the following view, and so be it. But the time has come for Tony Abbott to ride off into the sunset. Mr Abbott. You had a chance to be the leader you wanted to be and should have been, yet you blew it. You failed to convince, you failed to explain. And rather than dealing with stuff that mattered, you instead deployed Knights and Dames.
This is not a commentary on Mr Abbotts policy views, many of which Spartacus strongly agrees with. But if Mr Abbott wants to be a pundit, he needs to get out of the Parliament. And in as much as he may respect and admire Howard, Menzies and Churchill, he is not Howard, Menzies or Churchill. Sorry Mr Abbott, there wont be a second act for you.
Earlier this week, Mr Abbott spoke at the Sydney Institute and among other things, suggested that there be a reduction in immigration in Australia. He suggested that the levels of immigration were putting pressures on house prices, public infrastructure and wages. These are all fair observations.
Now dont get me wrong, Spartacus believes that such matters of public policy should be discussed. Absolutely positively. For one, when it comes to immigration, Spartacus does not have a view on quantity, but does have a view on quality; in that Australia accepts too many low skilled and older migrants who will likely be a net drain on the community. The subject of immigration should be discussed, as should any matter of public policy. No matter of public policy should be quarantined from debate.
However, the way Mr Abbott goes on about this matter and other matters, including renewable energy, you would think that he was a humble back bencher hungry for a chance to get into the executive. For heavens sake Mr Abbott. You were the Prime Minister for 2 years. And to suggest now, as he did on Andrew Bolts show earlier in the week, that he was constrained by a difference of opinions in Cabinet is just disingenuous. He had no problem making a Captains picks on his economically insane paid parental leave scheme, but to touch the equally economically insane renewable energy scheme apparently required cabinet consensus. Please.
Mr Abbott. You are crowding out other younger, hungrier conservative back benchers. And for what purpose? No matter the virtue in what you propose, it will always be seen from the prism of a Turnbull-Abbott dispute meaning that no matter how bright or brilliant an idea you propose, it will unlikely be implemented for political reasons. Much as for the same reason that the Prime Minister probably did not support the Warringah Motion because it came from your Warringah bran...
ballot for four Member's Bills was held today, and the
following bills were drawn:
For the second week in a row, ABC Media Watch has misled the Australian public this time whitewashing Turnbull Government interference in the editorial policies of the public broadcaster. read now...
I just heard the news that Billy Graham died. Perhaps the greatest evangelist of history, I was one of millions who were profoundly influenced by his ministry. My mother was on the organising committee for the 1979 Billy Graham Crusade, held at Randwick racecourse. This meant that our household was swept up in the fervour of those crusades. I was 14 years old. I cant remember whether I attended every night of the crusade or not, but I can recall the surging emotions; the energy of a large crowd; the tension rising within me as Billy Graham led us to a sense of moment in which we perceived we stood face to face with the God who created the Universe at a point of decision that would reverberate into eternity; the delirious joy and sense of holy moment as thousands of people responded to the invitation to signal their embrace of Christ by leaving their seat and walking to the stage.
My faith has changed much since those crusades, but today is not the day to critique but to remember that they were part of an era that imparted to me the breathtaking news that the God who called the universe into being is filled with a love for creation, and for me as part of that creation, that is wider, deeper and stronger than I can imagine.
And I remain inspired by the humble integrity of Billy Graham. As one might expect, everybody wanted a piece of Billy Graham. The expectations of the Christian world were laid upon his shoulders. There were some who thought he should have aligned himself more intentionally with the great civil movements for justice that marked the last half of the twentieth century; there were some who thought his embrace of groups outside the confines of conservative evangelicalism were unacceptably compromised. Yet whatever one might make of these things, Billy Graham spent half a century as a high profile world Christian leader without scandal. He did not take advantage of his position to amass obscene amounts of wealth; to solicit sexual favours; or to play power politics. He dies at 99 a man who is widely respected as a decent human being of deep personal faith and exemplary character.
Rest in peace, good and faithful servant.
The Australian Bureau of Agricultural and Resource Economics and Sciences (ABARES) has published a report comparing the performance of workers under the Seasonal Worker Programme (SWP) with Working Holiday Makers (or backpackers).
Commissioned by the World Bank, the report extends a previous small-scale ABARES study carried out in 2013. Its findings are based on data collected from horticultural employers using seasonal workers and/or backpackers over three years.
The report asks two questions: what difference does labour choice (backpackers v seasonal workers) make to productivity; and what difference to profitability? Unfortunately, it only provides a satisfactory answer to the first.
The main finding of the report is that seasonal workers are considerably more productive than backpackers: by 20 percent on average.
Even first-time seasonal workers are more productive than backpackers, but returning seasonal workers are more productive still, on average by 15 percent. The second time around, the unproductive workers are weeded out, and/or the returning workers are more experienced.
It is important to note that productivity here is measured simply as wages per hour. All employers on which productivity calculations were based used piece rates. The more productive workers filled more bins, and therefore earned more dollars per hour.
It is also important to note that the samples for these conclusions are very small. Only three employers provided wage spreadsheets which allowed comparisons of backpackers and seasonal workers. Nevertheless, the finding confirms the earlier 2013 ABARES study, which found that seasonal workers were 22 percent more productive than backpackers. It also confirms anecdotal evidence from farmers who use the scheme.
So much for productivity. What about profitability? Should higher productivity push employers to hire seasonal workers? Here, things are not so simple.
The report finds that non-wage labour costs are significantly higher for seasonal workers than for backpackers: $1,620 v $134 per worker. For example, employers have to help with seasonal worker transport costs, whereas backpackers just turn up. Recruitment and administration costs per worker are also much higher under the SWP. However, the average seasonal worker works for almost six times as long on a farm as the average backpacker, so the cost....
Thursday 22 February 2018 On Wednesday 2 August 2017 I wrote what follows as a result of Barnaby Joyces inappropriate drunken outburst in a Shepparton hotel. It is but one of many examples of why he should not be the Deputy Prime Minister of Australia In a beery-voice filled with the local liquid amber, in
Indonesia looks set to begin exporting mangoes to Australia for the first time, after a trade deal was advanced between the two nations in Melbourne last week.
According to Indonesian media, the first trays of Indonesian mangoes are due to arrive in October, putting them in direct competition with the Australian harvest.
While plenty of growers have told the ABC they are angry about the deal, Australian Mango Industry Association chief executive Robert Gray remains calm.
I dont think its a major concern for Australian growers, because Australian mangoes have secured a very strong position in the marketplace and the Australian-grown product is the consumers mango of choice, he said.
Indian mangoes, Pakistani and Vietnamese mangoes have all been given access to Australia in recent years, and experience has shown they have all struggled to capture any foothold in our marketplace, because our industry has been very good at delivering great mangoes to the market.
Mr Gray said Indonesia had been pushing to get mangoes into Australia for about 25 years, with negotiations beginning in November 2015 to work on a protocol for the fruit.
The federal Department of Agriculture confirmed in a statement that Indonesia was seeking market access for mangoes through the irradiation treatment pathway, and an approach had been agreed to during an Australia-Indonesia meeting in Melbourne last week.
It is expected the systems and procedures for this treatment pathway will be in place in time for the upcoming mango export season expected to commence in September, the department said.
Government silent on imports
If trade is a two-way street, then the Federal Government seems determined to only talk about one lane.
Following last weeks trade forum in Melbourne, federal Agriculture Minister David Littleproud happily announced that seed potato farmers across South Australia and Victoria will be celebrating after todays breakthrough in securing new market access to Indonesia.
According to the Minister, more than 300 seed potato farmers could now export their product to Indonesia but at what cost to Australias mango and dragon fruit industries, which will now face competition from imports?
Mr Littleproud flew to the Northern Territory on Friday and visited a mango plantation near Darwin where, according to local mango growers, he did not mention the Indonesian deal that had been signed the day before.
He kept saying he was there to help us and didnt mention anything that would destroy us, one ma...
A wealthy Chinese developer is pushing the New South Wales Government to overhaul its plans for billions of dollars in infrastructure around Badgerys Creek Airport to make way for a bold development proposal.
The 344 hectare parcel of prime land north of Elizabeth Drive at Badgerys Creek is owned by accused murderer Ron Medich and his brother Roy.
The site is the subject of a confidential commercial arrangement with property development company Boyuan Holdings Limited (BHL).
BHL lodged a submission in December to the Greater Sydney Commissions Western Sydney District Plan, Greater Sydney Region Plan 2056 and Future Transport Plan 2056.
A Chinese developer is pushing for a billion-dollar infrastructure overhaul near Badgerys Creek airport.
The proposal is for a Bold Vision for the site where the developer wants the government to realign the $3.6 billion dollar planned M12 motorway which will link the new airport to the M7 at Cecil Hills. BHL also suggested making the proposed North-South rail line from Rouse Hill to Narellan an underground metro with a station on their land.
The developer also proposes flexible zoning which would allow for 88 hectares of homes for 22,250 residents....
Jerry, were not just going to
give you seven hundred and fifty
What the heck were you thinkin?
Heck, if Im only gettin bank
interest, Id look for complete
security. Heck, FDIC. I dont
see nothin like that here.
Yah, but I okay, I would, Id
guarantee ya your money back.
Im not talkin about your damn
Fargo is primarily a movie about promises, implicit and explicit. It asks whether we will keep our promises to others, even against our own self-interest. What makes the movie fascinating is that many of the promises arent backed by the court system, for very good reason the deals are illegal. Fargo asks if we can trust each other even if there is no government force making us comply. In other words, can we make contracts in the state of nature? In 1651, Hobbes argued that we couldnt:
If a covenant be made wherein neither of the parties perform presently, but trust one another, in the condition of mere nature (which is a condition of war of every man against every man) upon any reasonable suspicion, it is void: but if there be a common power set over them both, with right and force sufficient to compel performance, it is not void. For he that performeth first has no assurance the other will perform after, because the bonds of words are too weak to bridle mens ambition, avarice, anger, and other passions, without the fear of some coercive power
In other words, we need some external mechanism to enforce our promises, to make it so that other people can depend on our commitment. Making credible commitments is the foundation of business and society in general. Like Hobbes, we tend to assume that the governments coercive power is the only way to create contracts. Nobel Prize-winning economist Oliver Williamson called this view legal centralism, the assumption that the legal system enforces promises in a knowledgeable, sophisticated, and low-cost way (Williamson, 1996, 121).
Williamson and other Nobel laureates, such as Elinor Ostrom, built their careers on proving this assumption wrong. In many instances, the court system is costly and time-consuming, and sometimes corrupt. Moreover, people are often surprisingly able to enforce promises and maintain order in their own communities without government.
Reputation is extremely useful in small communities with repeated transactions....
Senior editor Michelle Pini interviews Wayne Swan to discuss his retirement, political motivations and thoughts on neoliberalism. read now...
It has been remarked upon recently that how is it that the member for New England, after all his bad-judgement, all his family, spouse, community standards betrayals and not even mentioning the many reported rorts and deceptions he has played out on the State, he still is supported by many in both his party and
The Fall of the Ottomans: The Great War in the Middle East, by Eugene Rogan
In this book, Eugene Rogan tells the story of the Great War in the Middle East not from the side of the Great Powers, but from the side of the Ottomans.
He begins with the story of his great-uncle, Lance Corporal John McDonald. His great-uncle was born in a small Scottish village. Along with his friend, Charles Beveridge, McDonald enlisted with the 8th Scottish Rifles (the Cameronians) when war broke out.
They said farewell to friends and family on 17 May 1915, headed to the eastern Mediterranean. They arrived at the Greek island of Lemnos, the staging post for British and Allied forces, on 29 May one month after the fighting on Gallipoli had broken out. By mid-June they sailed onward to the peninsula.
Passing some who had returned from the fighting, the fresh-faced recruits would shout out: Are we downhearted? No! In reply, some Australian wag shouted back, Well you damned soon will be.
On 14 June, the battalion was safely ashore, and four days later they were headed up Gully Ravine to the fighting. On 28 June, following two hours of bombardment from the sea, the 8th Scottish Rifles came out of their trenches and attacked. Within five minutes, they were wiped out. McDonald died in the camp hospital; the body of his friend Beveridge was never found, assumed to be in the unidentifiable conglomeration of remains buried in a mass grave only after the war.
The author, Rogan, went to Gallipoli in 2005 to see firsthand this place of infamy and the site of his great-uncles death. He was accompanied by his mother and his son, the first family visitors in nine decades. While trying to find the Lancashire Landing Cemetery, they took a wrong turn and ended up at the Nuri Yamut Monument a memorial to the Turkish war dead of the same battle in which his great-uncle died.
While my great-uncles unit suffered 1,400 casualties half its total strength and British losses overall reached 3,800, as many as 14,000 Ottomans fell dead and wounded at Gully Ravine.All the books I had read on the Cameronians treated the terrible waste of British life on the day my great-uncle died. None of the English sources had mentioned the thousands of Turkish war dead.
It was this Ottoman front...
A volcanic eruption on the island of Sumatra has thrown a colossal ash cloud into the sky above western Indonesia.
A plume of volcanic debris measuring more than four miles (7km) in length sprang from the mouth of Mount Sinabung on the northern part of the island on Monday afternoon, sparking widespread travel disruption amid an aviation red notice and airport closures. The alert prohibits airlines from flying over parts of the country with significant amounts of ash in the atmosphere. No casualties have yet been reported.
The Australian Bureau of Meteorologys Volcanic Ash Advisory Centre (VACC) has issued maps showing the ash cloud moving out in three separate directions from Sinabung to the north, northwest and south-southeast. Sinabung is around 47 miles south-west of Kualanamu International Airport in Medan.
Speaking to Reuters, a spokesman for Indonesias National Disaster Mitigation Agency said a four-mile exclusion zone had been set up around the crater, and that the public are being asked to watch out for weather warnings.
Mount Sinabungs most destructive eruption occurred in 2014, killing more than a dozen people and displacing thousands of others. The volcano had been thought to be dormant, having last erupted around four hundred years ago.
Mount Agung, on the island of Bali to the south, has also been active for a number of months. Indonesia sits on the Ring of Fire, a 40,000km horseshoe-shaped area covering the circumference of the Pacific Ocean where a large number of earthquakes and volcanic eruptions occur.
Reprinted from RT News.
I have a piece in Crikey (possibly paywalled) looking at the gyrations of our political leaders on climate policy in general and Adani in particular. I suppose what matters is that you end up facing the right way: on this test, Shorten does reasonably, Turnbull fails miserably and Abbott is laughable.
That's the view of
Chief Ombudsman Peter Boshier:
The chief ombudsman says local democracy is being undermined as councils fail to meet obligations to release public information.
Peter Boshier said councils are not meeting their responsibilities under the Local Government Official Information and Meeting Act and that some councils seem to resent having to be held accountable.
"The performance of many councils is disappointing. Local government is absolutely fundamental to democracy, and in that respect the need for accountability and supply of information is just as strong as it is with central government, and yet many local councils don't see it that way.
"We will commence a better process of publicising our data on complaints, giving better guidance and encouraging an earlier dispute resolution process so ratepayers who often have legitimate complaints can get to the end of the journey earlier than before."
Oh look -
Spain still has an archaic lese majeste law:
Spain's Supreme Court confirmed Tuesday rapper Jose Miguel Arenas, known as Valtonyc, will serve three and half years in prison for insulting, slandering Spain's monarchs and "exalting terrorism." Arenas was found guilty by a national tribunal on Feb. 7.
Valtonyc had argued he was exercising his right to free speech and artistic creation, but the court dismissed his defense saying the songs he wrote and published via internet include support of terrorist groups and attacks against the king and his family.
The level of youth interest in university republic clubs refutes claims young Australians are uninterested in an Australian Republic. read now...
My issue is not immigration; its the rate of immigration at a time of stagnant wages, clogged infrastructure, soaring housing prices and, in Melbourne at least, ethnic gangs that are testing the resolve of police.
Okay. I think sensible individuals can agree that this particular list of complaints is a fair summary of what (some) people are talking about.
It seems to me, however, that everything on that list is due to government. Government is to blame for stagnant wages. Government is to blame for clogged infrastructure. Government is to blame for soaring housing prices. Government it blame for ethnic gangs testing the resolve of police.
The solutions to those problems include:
To be fair to Tony Abbott, a lot of that involves both the commonwealth and state governments getting off their bums and actually doing stuff. But quite frankly, until he starts talking about actual solutions to real problems, all this anti-immigration talk is just a waste of everybodys time.
Coming from the area of the social sciences that had made its name on its one key insight, that individual private-sector decision-making is the key to wealth, growth, employment and prosperity, but now to find that virtually the entire profession believes that wealth, growth, employment and prosperity are driven by demand, and particularly government spending, none of this comes as a surprise: According to a survey of members of the American Political Science Association, Donald Trump is the worst president in American history. Meanwhile his predecessor a man of no known accomplishments (or at least good ones) is ranked eighth. Its a clowns world out there.
This is discussed at Powerline: Is Trump the worst president ever? The final words:
Academia has pretty much abandoned America, and vice versa. There simply is no credibility left in soft fields like political science.
As for the economists of the world, I imagine you would get the same ranking in an American Economics Association survey, although they might make Herbert Hoover even lower since he was also a Republican. FDR would, however, rank first even though he prolonged the Great Depression in the US by around eight years. Everyone else was in recovery by 1932-33. In the US it took until around 1940-41. They are all socialists at heart, which is where the social sciences now largely are.
That's the only way to describe Ministerial Services, who are
incapable of paying MPs and Ministers the correct amount of
Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern and deputy Prime Minister Winston Peters were both mistakenly paid over $21,000 for accommodation they didn't need.
The pair put out a press release on Tuesday afternoon explaining the overpayment, which resulted from the Department of Internal Affairs (DIA) continuing to pay them an accommodation allowance despite each moving into an official residence.
Ardern received $12,082.19 while Peters received $9123. They have both repaid the amount in full and received an apology for the error.
"As soon as we were advised of the error, we both immediately took steps to reimburse the money. That has now happened," the pair said.
"The error occurred when the DIA's Ministerial Services continued to pay each of us a Member of Parliament's Wellington accommodation allowance after they had moved us into official accommodation, at which point payments should have stopped."
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