Sunday, April 28, 2013

Sun Apr 28th Todays News

Ideological rot is why ALP is losing touch

Piers Akerman – Sunday, April 28, 2013 (1:00am)

THE ALP has long regarded itself as the political party of arts and letters - a reputation as flawed as the party itself.


Honouring Gen Y’s Diggers

Miranda Devine – Sunday, April 28, 2013 (1:11am)

ONE of the striking things about Anzac Day this year was that the streets and the pubs were full of impossibly young looking men and women in uniform with chests full of service ribbons. 


Gwyneth Paltrow is beautiful: No need to hate her

Miranda Devine – Sunday, April 28, 2013 (1:13am)

GWYNETH Paltrow has just been named the world’s Most Beautiful Woman for 2013, an honour she played down with characteristic diffidence.
“It’s like obviously not true.”
It’s that kind of aw-shucks attitude that had the 40-year-old actress top a different kind of list earlier this month, Star Magazine’s annual Most Hated Celebrities Poll.
Paltrow, whose modesty is regarded as fake, is most reviled, followed by pouty Kristen Stewart and Jennifer Lopez.
Once a favourite hate figure, especially for green-eyed women her age in the Australian media, Nicole Kidman misses out.
And Anne Hathaway, pilloried by the cybermob for being “annoying” at the Oscars, comes in at No.9.
“Annoying” is the it word for haters who can’t be bothered to justify their nastiness.
Under the anonymity of the internet they give full vent to schoolyard viciousness that turns much of the social media into a cesspit.
In Hathaway’s case, the bile was so ferocious it came to be known as “hathahate”.
Paltrow seems pleasant enough, if a little preachy on the nutrition front. She is still happily married to Coldplay’s Chris Martin, who makes nice music, and picks up her own children from school.
No matter. She is annoying. She is “cluelessly condescending”, a breathtaking narcissist, a “rich, white woman with an eating disorder turned into a branding opportunity”. Basically she “tries too hard”.
The People magazine crown will only further enrage the haters, who will no doubt devote endless blog posts to why Gwyneth is not the world’s most beautiful woman.
But why the perverse need to hate strangers? It may be hardwired into humans, according to a new book about the Amanda Knox case - the 20-year-old American acquitted of murdering her British flatmate in Italy.
“Experiments show that when some people punish others, the reward part of their brain lights up like a Christmas tree,” writes Douglas Preston, author of Trial By Jury. He says some people are born to be “punishers” and in our evolutionary hunter-gatherer past, they were needed to enforce social norms. Anthropologists call this “altruistic punishment”.
But when Preston was researching his book on Knox, he saw a sickness in all the hatred online, “not unlike the witch-hunts of medieval Europe ... Never in human history has a system developed like the Internet, which allows for the free rein of our punishing instincts, conducted with complete anonymity, with no checks or balances, no moderation, and no accountability. On the Internet, our darkest evolutionary biology runs riot.”
So maybe we should just congratulate Paltrow for being pretty and move on. 



Tim Blair – Sunday, April 28, 2013 (2:36pm)

The ABC seeks staffers who are alien to its culture
ABC News is recruiting for a new research and fact checking unit. This exciting project needs people who prize truth over spin, who can dispassionately test the claims made by politicians, business, unions and special interest groups. They will know how to find facts with skill and rigour and think, research and write with great clarity. The unit will produce material for TV, radio and the web.
We are after individuals with skill in finding dissecting and understanding complex information. Applicants need not be working journalists but must have forensic skills and must be able to write concise, unbiased copy. Capacity to analyse data sets and financial information is highly desirable. 
This could be hilarious. Hail the fact-checking unit!



Tim Blair – Sunday, April 28, 2013 (2:28pm)

Damian Thompson on the media circus that is not surrounding a certain trial: 
One of the most disgusting serial killers in American history is standing trial in Philadelphia at the moment – and, since it’s happening in the US, where reporting restrictions are light, the media are free to discuss his case.
Only they haven’t – at least, not until recently, and even when the crimes are reported, they haven’t merited many headlines. Which is horrifying, when you consider what the killer is accused of. I’m going to leave out the nastiest details – but, seriously, if you don’t want to feel sick to your stomach, look away now. 
Sadly, much of the media is following that exact instruction.



Tim Blair – Sunday, April 28, 2013 (2:22pm)

“The problem with Ben Elton is not that he has changed, it’s that he has stayed the same.”



Tim Blair – Sunday, April 28, 2013 (2:19pm)

Phillip Adams considers the Boston bombings
This must be a very, very dark time for American Muslims. 
Just a theory, but it may be a slightly darker time for American non-Muslims currently mourning their dead, having shrapnel picked out of the faces and bodies, or being fitted with prosthetic limbs. Further on these dark times from Mark Steyn: 
The Tsarnaevs’ mom, now relocated from Cambridge to Makhachkala in delightful Dagestan, told a press conference the other day that she regrets ever having gotten mixed up with those crazy Yanks: “I would prefer not to have lived in America,” she said.
Not, I’m sure, as much as the Richard family would have preferred it. Eight-year-old Martin was killed; his sister lost a leg; and his mother suffered serious brain injuries. What did the Richards and some 200 other families do to deserve having a great big hole blown in their lives? Well, according to the New York Times, they and you bear collective responsibility. Writing on the op-ed page, Marcello Suarez-Orozco, dean of the UCLA Graduate School of Education and Information Studies, and Carola Suarez-Orozco, a professor at the same institution, began their ruminations thus:
“The alleged involvement of two ethnic Chechen brothers in the deadly attack at the Boston Marathon last week should prompt Americans to reflect on whether we do an adequate job assimilating immigrants who arrive in the United States as children or teenagers.” 
Quite so. Americans should have given these kids educations and jobs and places to worship and … oh, wait.



Tim Blair – Sunday, April 28, 2013 (2:16pm)

“What’s the difference between a pyromaniac and the Richmond Football Club? A pyro wouldn’t waste 22 matches every year.”


Three Leftists on Insiders are nothing against Gerard

Andrew Bolt April 28 2013 (5:00pm)



Let Obama show you a film about a great actor

Andrew Bolt April 28 2013 (4:44pm)

I thought he had the world’s biggest economy to fix. But it doesn’t take much for this guy to devote himself to a project whose subject is, well, you know
Previous presidents also devoted time to impressing the White House correspondents at play. But at least they had a stronger line in self-deprecation. 


The Bolt Report today

Andrew Bolt April 28 2013 (4:42pm)

The rest of the clips of the show today will soon be up here.


28 APRIL 2013
ANDREW BOLT, PRESENTER: Rating agencies this week warned our AAA credit rating was at risk, unless the Government showed it could balance the books in a few years. But the Government won’t slash spending.
PENNY WONG: You don’t deal with it by cutting to the bone, because that’s not good for jobs, it’s not good for the economy.
ANDREW BOLT: And the Opposition is no longer promising a surplus in its first year in Government.
JOE HOCKEY: We were expecting a surplus. But unfortunately, like every other occasion, they got the numbers dead wrong.
ANDREW BOLT: Joining me is economist Professor Judith Sloan, former Commissioner at the Productivity Commission and now columnist on ‘The Australian’. Judith, first, how much danger is our AAA rating in, and does it matter?
JUDITH SLOAN: Well, the ratings agency, or at least one of them, has essentially put Australia on notice, and has made the point that unless there is a credible process of fiscal consolidation – in other words, getting the Budget back into surplus over a reasonable time frame – then, you know, our AAA credit rating is at some risk, and so, you know –
ANDREW BOLT: How does it hurt us?
JUDITH SLOAN: Well, it hurts us in two quite considerable ways. First of all, the Government, the taxpayer, would have to pay more for the Government debt. And secondly, it would have a spill over effect onto the financing costs of our banking system. So it would affect us all. It’s definitely something to be avoided.
ANDREW BOLT: Now there’s some debate now on how we got to this position, right? The Reserve Bank figures show that in the last five years of the Howard Government, it earned just over $1 trillion, but spent about $80 billion less than that. But in the five years past years, Labor collected $1.5 trillion, yet still spent nearly $200 billion more than that. Is the problem that Labor’s getting too little money, or is it just spending too much?
JUDITH SLOAN: Well, I guess it depends on where you sit. But, I mean, I think what happened is that the GFC, which can I point out is now five years ago, created the rationale for this Government really lifting Government spending a great deal. And there are many economists that would go along with that strategy. The real trouble is that they haven’t been able to pare it back, they haven’t been able to, or haven’t been prepared to step back. And so essentially what we’ve got is we’ve got spending running at too high a rate, relative to the revenue flow. 


Time our top crime-fighters got back to chasing criminals

Andrew Bolt April 28 2013 (4:23pm)

Makes sense to me. I’d really rather our top crime body chased bikie gangs than athletes who take (legal) peptides:
THE Australian Crime Commission would be directed to stop investigating drugs in sport under an Abbott Government so it can chase “serious criminals” instead, the Opposition’s justice spokesman Michael Keenan says.
The body used its extensive powers, like the power to phone tap, in a wide-ranging investigation into drugs in sport that found wide-spread use and pointed to organised crime being involved in supply and match-fixing.
The findings led to anti-doping body ASADA’s current focus on NRL and AFL clubs.
But Mr Keenan said it was now time for ASADA to take over and for the powerful Crime Commission to get back to chasing bikies and “crime kingpins”.


Bad for Libs, bad for Labor?

Andrew Bolt April 28 2013 (3:30pm)

Take your pick on which report makes best sense of a by-election in a Labor-held seat so safe for Labor that the Liberals ran no candidate:
The Age:
The Napthine government’s tenuous grip on power has weakened, after Labor won the Lyndhurst byelection and picked up an extra seat in the Victorian Parliament.
The Australian:
VICTORIAN Labor has suffered a double-digit hit to its primary vote in a by-election in a heartland state seat of Lyndhurst.

The result sparking immediate concerns about the ALP brand and the performance of the Gillard government.

Labor’s primary vote dived by about 10 points in the south-east suburban electorate of Lyndhurst, amid a poor voter turnout and high informal vote.
(Thanks to reader Tom.)
Odd. Having been told by The Age they’ve had a big win, Victorian Labor carry on like they’ve just been clobbered:

With more than three-quarters of the total vote counted, Labor’s primary vote has been reduced by almost 15 per cent on the 55 per cent result achieved in Lyndhurst at the 2010 state poll…
[Opposition Leader Daniel] Andrews, asked if federal Labor’s woes played a part in the dip in primary votes, said it was naive to suggest there were not challenges for Labor in a “brand” sense.
“We understand things are tough,” he told reporters on Sunday.
“We don’t for a moment underestimate how much work’s ahead of us on how big a challenge there is for us to win back the trust and support and confidence of our state."…
Mr Pakula said he was under no illusion about how hard it was to maintain a high primary vote.
“We’ve seen the issues with Labor’s primary vote across the country,” he said.


Abbott vs the New Class

Andrew Bolt April 28 2013 (9:30am)

Tony Abbott’s attack on the New Class gives much hope that he understands it even better than did John Howard, and may well do more in the long run to cut its influence:

Australia is a ‘lucky country’, said Donald Horne in his celebrated book, ‘run mainly by second-rate people who share its luck.’ By contrast, The Lucky Culture, Nick Cater’s counter-thesis, holds that we are over-influenced and over-analysed by second-rate intellectuals who are incapable of counting their blessings…
As Cater sees it, there’s a powerful new commentariat, dominant in the media, academia and public administration, that is every bit as condescending as the aristocracy he left behind in Britain. In contemporary Australia, the worst snobbery is not directed towards people of lower status, he says, but towards people of different opinions. He thinks that this ‘my opinion must be better than yours’ conceit is putting at risk the egalitarianism that’s at the heart of Australians’ sense of self.
What distinguishes this group from every other influential sector of society is its unshakeable conviction in its moral superiority. Everyone who disputes its thinking is not just wrong, but inferior. Critics of the politically correct consensus are not just bad thinkers but verge on being bad people, as those who are cautious about gay marriage are starting to discover…
Happily, the book’s subtitle, ‘the rise of an Australian ruling class’ is not entirely substantiated. Cater correctly identifies the cultural self-doubt verging on self-loathing that permeates much of our media and higher education. As he abundantly demonstrates, though, most Australians are cheerfully resistant to these national and civilisational neuroses. Australians are even less deferential to the thought police than they are to the ones wearing uniforms. They routinely vote into office governments that those whom Howard labelled ‘self-appointed cultural dieticians’ would vociferously deplore.
Luckily, for those who think that a farming region is no less valuable than a national park, a mine an important contributor to prosperity (at least if it’s done right), and successful businesses just as necessary for civilisation as a human rights bureaucracy, politically correct critics don’t constitute an Australian ruling class at all. They are certainly influential and often have a corrosive influence on public morale, but they rarely seem to disturb Australians’ preference for facts over conjecture, actual experience over mere theory, and material progress over new class respectability. 


Left furious the ABC can no longer take down Abbott

Andrew Bolt April 28 2013 (5:55am)

I’ve noted the emergence of the new Abbott - polished, confident, articulate and level-headed. He’s so frustrating the Left that they’re turning on their own in the media:

Tony Abbott is ...  feeling pretty chuffed about putting in a decent performance on the ABC’s 7.30 program last Wednesday. He was on message, disciplined and, as usual, pretty light with details.
The same can’t be said of the rabid social media commentators who took it upon themselves to critique not Abbott’s performance, but that of the show’s presenter Leigh Sales.
As interviews go it was somewhat pedestrian - no killer question or knockout punch. Yet because Abbott emerged from the 13-minute conversation unscathed, some blamed Sales
What was alarming about the Twitter debate following Abbott’s appearance was its ugly tenor.

Elements of the left thought it just fine to describe Sales in abusive and sexist terms because her grilling of Abbott did not meet their expectations.


Big deficits tipped, but easy tax rises resisted

Andrew Bolt April 28 2013 (5:46am)

The nation’s economists seem in general to be pessimistic, but reasonable:
Amid predictions the budget will be in deficit for a decade, News Limited asked some of the nation’s top economists to nominate where the budget savings are hidden.
The economists expect a budget deficit of about $20 billion this financial year, and about $10 billion the next.
They want the government to focus on cutting spending and closing tax loop holes and are hesitant about increasing tax rates.
Terry McCrann says the Government lied its way to a deficit we shouldn’t have:

Budget spending next year will be about $390 billion. In the last (Peter) Costello budget it was $270 billion. That’s an increase of 44 per cent.
Revenue next year will be up nearly $100 billion on the last Costello budget. That’s about the same increase that Costello got in his last six budgets, and every one of them was a surplus. A real one.


Killing girls

Andrew Bolt April 28 2013 (5:39am)

Not every abortion today is requested with heavy heart and deep thought:
Dr Mark Hobart revealed a Melbourne couple had asked him to refer them to an abortion clinic after discovering at 19 weeks they were having a girl, when they wanted a boy.
Dr Hobart said he refused to give them a referral and reported the specialist, who later terminated the pregnancy, to the Medical Board.
A weak response from the funding authority. Would a more appropriate one risk blunting the attack on Tony Abbott?

A spokesman for Health Minister Tanya Plibersek said surgical termination of a pregnancy was a “clinical matter”.
“As with all other clinical matters, it is a matter for the professional clinical judgment of a doctor in consultation with a patient,” he said.


Bolt Report tomorrow

Andrew Bolt April 27 2013 (9:17pm)

On the show tomorrow - Channel 10 at 10am:  Judith Sloan, Niki Savva and Michael Costa. Plus whichever of the following Labor Minister have replied to this week’s invitation: Julia Gillard, Wayne Swan, Penny Wong and more.
A little word about a certain scandal involving the Prime Minister. And the word lie is mentioned in another context. 


Singo blasts Gai & Son

Andrew Bolt April 27 2013 (9:10pm)

Damaging stuff for two people, neither of them called Singleton:

JOHN Singleton has been involved in a spectacular race-day blow-up with trainer Gai Waterhouse after the flop of super mare More Joyous.
Singleton made the sensational claim that Waterhouse’s bookmaker son, Tom Waterhouse, had told “good friends of mine for 20 years’’ on the Friday night that More Joyous couldn’t win the Group 1 All Aged Stakes (1400m).
More Joyous drifted in betting from $2.50 to $3 and finished seventh, beaten nearly four lengths by All Too Hard.
A ropeable Singleton could only shake his head in the mounting yard and immediately declared he would be sacking Waterhouse as trainer of all his horses.
The More Joyous saga then took a further twist when Waterhouse informed stewards that the wonder mare had pulled up with heat in her neck on Thursday morning, and her blood readings weren’t 100 per cent.
An unhappy chief steward Ray Murrihy wanted to know why Waterhouse didn’t bother to inform him there had been a hiccup on the eve of a $400,000 Group 1 race…
Waterhouse walked towards jockey Nash Rawiller in the mounting yard, but refused to look at Singleton. Singleton glared at Waterhouse, waved his hand and shouted: “Goodbye, Gai.’’
Reader Jack has no tears for Singo:

a) More Joyous was inspected by two vets on race morning and passed fit. One of those was John Singleton’s vet.
b) Tom Waterhouse backed More Joyous and has posted a picture showing that All Too Hard was a loss.


Monet's Garden in Giverny

"There is something else down there..." Join us as we take a sneak peek behind-the-scenes of 'Journey to the Centre of the TARDIS' in this exclusive video:

A Wonderful Life: Jimmy Stewart, Actor and B-24 Bomber Pilot

“It may sound corny, but what’s wrong with wanting to fight for your country? Why are people reluctant to use the word patriotism?” ~ Jimmy Stewart

Assyrian/United Kingdom memorial project update.
The design of our monument is a replica of another Monument built by Agha Petros and the British commandant of Baqubah in 1919 to honor Assyrian casualties; this was later destroyed by Arabs and no trace of it can be found today.This design having historical value to the Assyrians is so far accepted as meaningful and cost effective by the Assyrian Levies Association, the RAF Regiment, and the Arboretum.The date for unveiling will be the United Kingdom’s Armed Forces Day, Saturday 24th June 201, The Head Stone will be four sided as the original; the changes to the original will be in Text, Carvings and material.
All enquiries to;

I have had lots of you ask me to re-post this, so here you are! BE SURE TO SHARE THE POST SO IT WILL SAVE TO YOUR TIMELINE!

I always wondered-- now I know!!!


Alt + 0153..... ™... trademark symbol
Alt + 0169.... ©.... copyright symbol
Alt + 0174..... ®....registered ­ trademark symbol
Alt + 0176 ...° symbol
Alt + 0177 ...± ­-minus sign
Alt + 0182 ...¶.....paragr­aph mark
Alt + 0190 ...¾....fractio­n, three-fourths
Alt + 0215 ....×.....multi­plication sign
Alt + 0162...¢....the ­ cent sign
Alt + 0161.....¡..... ­.upside down exclamation point
Alt + 0191.....¿..... ­upside down question mark
Alt + 1.......☺....smiley face
Alt + 2 ......☻ smiley face
Alt + 15.....☼.....sun
Alt + 12......♀.....female sign
Alt + 11.....♂......m­ale sign
Alt + 6.......♠.....spade
Alt + 5.......♣...... ­Club
Alt + 3.......♥...... ­Heart
Alt + 4.......♦...... ­Diamond
Alt + 13......♪.....e­ighth note
Alt + 14......♫...... ­beamed eighth note
Alt + 8721.... ∑.... N-ary summation (auto sum)
Alt + 251.....√.....square root check mark
Alt + 8236.....∞..... ­infinity
Alt + 24.......↑..... ­up arrow
Alt + 25......↓...... ­down arrow
Alt + 26.....→.....r­ght arrow
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Alt + 18.....↕......u­p/down arrow
Alt + 29......↔...lef­t right arrow

more good stuff>>



Snow Spa, Gothenburg, Sweden



These Sugar Cookie Tacos with fresh fruit and whipped cream look so yummy

Sugar Cookie Tacos
1 Package 18oz refrigerated sugar cookie dough
2 tablespoons cinnamon
1 cup whipping cream
1/4 cup sugar

2 cups of your favorite fruit cut-up

1. Preheat oven to 350. grease 2 baking sheets. Cover rounded forms such as rolling pins or cardboard tubes from paper towel roll with aluminum foil.

2. cut cookie dough into 16 half inch thick slices. Press each slice on a slightly floured surface into a 3 inch round sprinkle with cinnamon.

3. Bake cookies until lightly golden, but still soft, 7-9 min. Gently remove cookies from baking sheet and IMMEDIATELY drape over rounded forms (I found it easier to invert the forms, instead of laying it on top of the rounded form I put 2 rolls next to each other and draped the tinfoil over them pushing down in the middle, then I place the cookie in the middle, they did not break that way.... Clear as mud???? sorry)

4. Cool cookies until firm about 2 min. gently remove.

5. Beat whipping cream and sugar in large bowl with mixer on high until stiff. Fill each cookie with about 2 tablespoons and your favorite fruit



Plans for the weekend? Wish you could do a scenic flight over Hill Inlet and Whitehaven Beach?



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It's Doctor Who Day! And we're going deeper than we've ever gone before...

Don't miss 'Journey to the Centre of the TARDIS' at 7.30pm on ABC TV Australia.


Thank you so much Hedy for wifi.

sharing this ~FurretTails:
I went to the mall, and a little girl called me a terrorist. 

My name is Ela. I am seventeen years old. I am not Muslim, but my friend told me about her friend being discriminated against for wearing a hijab. So I decided to see the discrimination firsthand to get a better understanding of what Muslim women go through. 

My friend and I pinned scarves around our heads, and then we went to the mall. Normally, vendors try to get us to buy things and ask us to sample a snack. Clerks usually ask us if we need help, tell us about sales, and smile at us. Not today. People, including vendors, clerks, and other shoppers, wouldn’t look at us. They didn’t talk to us. They acted like we didn’t exist. They didn’t want to be caught staring at us, so they didn’t look at all.

And then, in one store, a girl (who looked about four years old) asked her mom if my friend and I were terrorists. She wasn’t trying to be mean or anything. I don’t even think she could have grasped the idea of prejudice. However, her mother’s response is one I can never forgive or forget. The mother hushed her child, glared at me, and then took her daughter by the hand and led her out of the store.

All that because I put a scarf on my head. Just like that, a mother taught her little girl that being Muslim was evil. It didn’t matter that I was a nice person. All that mattered was that I looked different. That little girl may grow up and teach her children the same thing.

This experiment gave me a huge wakeup call. It lasted for only a few hours, so I can’t even begin to imagine how much prejudice Muslim girls go through every day. It reminded me of something that many people know but rarely remember: the women in hijabs are people, just like all those women out there who aren’t Muslim.

People of Tumblr, please help me spread this message. Treat Muslims, Jews, Christians, Buddhists, Hindus, Pagans, Taoists, etc., exactly the way you want to be treated, regardless of what they’re wearing or not wearing, no exceptions. Reblog this. Tell your friends. I don’t know that the world will ever totally wipe out prejudice, but we can try, one blog at a time.

Also, fat people are 2nd class citizens - ed


This incredible photo marks the end of Matador Torero Álvaro Múnera’s career. He collapsed in remorse mid-fight when he realized he was having to prompt this otherwise gentle beast to fight. He went on to become an avid opponent of bullfights. Even grievously wounded by picadors, he did not attack this man.

Torrero Munera is quoted as saying of this moment: “And suddenly, I looked at the bull. He had this innocence that all animals have in their eyes, and he looked at me with this pleading. It was like a cry for justice, deep down inside of me. I describe it as being like a prayer - because if one confesses, it is hoped, that one is forgiven. I felt like the worst shit on earth.”


Pink Floyd appeared at Mothers Club in Birmingham, England today in 1969, and parts of the show were used on the Ummagumma live album. BBC Radio 1 DJ John Peel said that the show sounded "like dying galaxies lost in sheer corridors of time and space". Here's a rare surviving poster from the show:




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Happy birthday to Jenna-Louise Coleman! We made her a soufflé, but it was too beautiful to live...


Selecta DNA Pistol System Product Launch 

A new tool that would allow law enforcement to prevent criminals from running away or disappearing into a crowd before arrest was highlighted last week at The SHOT Show in Las Vegas. 

The High Velocity DNA Tagging system by the U.K.-based security company Selectamark was introduced with police officers in a riot situation in mind. Coming in both pistol and rifle form, the tool would allow police to remain 30 to 40 meters from the target and tag them with a SelectaDNA High Velocity pellet that contains a unique DNA code to ensure the correct person is apprehended later.

DNA pellets used by law enforcement officers will tag individuals with a unique SelectaDNA code from a distance. “On contact with the target the uniquely-coded SelectaDNA solution leaves a synthetic DNA trace mark that will enable the relevant authorities to confirm or eliminate that person from their involvement in a particular situation and could ultimately lead to arrest and prosecution,”
Selectamark Managing Director Andrew Knights said in a statement.

Watch the product launch



Great honour to be given the privilege to give an address at the Vietnam War Memorial in Canberra today to mark the 38th Anniversary of the Fall of Saigon with my good friend Liberal Senator for the ACT Gary Humphries.

Following is a transcript of my speech. 

• Today we gather on the 38th anniversary of the fall of Saigon, to honour the more than 500 Australians and 250,000 South Vietnamese servicemen and women that sacrificed their lives for the principles of freedom and democracy in the Vietnam War.

• We also honour the many thousands more that were wounded or were victims of illness.

• And we further honor the families and the relatives of the many South Vietnamese, that following the fall of Saigon were deprived of access to the basic necessities of food, clothing, & shelter, and who found communist persecution so unbearable, that they took to the high seas in anything that floated.

• Now like all wars, the Vietnam War, was a war in which tragic mistakes were made – but we were fighting for a just and honourable cause.

• Therefore, it is to our nation's eternal shame, that confused by ‘protest rhetoric’, that we failed to give those who fought and served in Vietnam the due and proper recognition that they rightfully deserved when they returned home.

• And it is now with the hindsight of time, that it is now evident that those who served in Vietnam did in fact achieve the long-term strategic objectives that our nation set out to accomplish – to halt the spread of communism.

• And that success demonstrates that those Australians and Vietnamese did not fight or die in vain, and that our veterans of Vietnam War are deserving of honor and gratitude, and that the ideals of freedom and democracy were, and are, worth fighting for.

A battle within the Cold War

• For although Vietnam was a war with it all its horror, its bloodshed and its death - it was a battle in within the broader Cold War.

• A war that was fought to ultimately determine the question of; whether humanity’s best hope for peace and prosperity, lies with the authoritarian rule of a centrally planned communist state – or - ……… whether humanity’s best hopes lie with a free market democracy, with freedom on the press, freedom of speech, and freedom of movement.

A dangerous time

• So, it must never be forgotten, that when Australia first became involved in Vietnam, the world was in the midst of the Cold War, when the ideological confrontation with communism was at its height.

• It was a time when Eastern Europe was one great concentration camp - its people captives behind a concrete wall, topped with barbed wire and guards armed with machine guns.

• It was a time when the communists had taken control of the world's most populous nation—China.

• It was a time when Soviet Union imperialism was on the march, with the intent of dominating the world by using subversion or military power to convert countries to communism …….when Khrushchev had warmed the west; “We will bury you" The domino theory was real.

• These were dark days, days when the very future of; freedom, liberty and democracy were under the gravest of threats.

Strategy of Containment

• So Australia’s support for South Vietnam and our American allies was part of a grand strategy of containment - the goal of which was to hault or slow the spread of communism.

• And let us never forget, and we must be forever grateful - that this grand strategy was ultimately successful.

• And let us never forget that the success of containing the spread of communism, and winning the Cold War was not achieved through policies of appeasement.

• It was achieved by what became known as the ‘Kennedy Doctrine’: a promise to pay any price, to bear any burden, to support any friend, to oppose any foe - to assure the survival and success of liberty.

A holding action for democracy

• So the 10 years of Australia's involvement in the Vietnam War, when we fought alongside our American and South Vietnamese allies, was a ‘holding action’ fought for the survival of freedom and democracy in the war against the spread of communism.

• And during these 10 years, we played an important role in halting the communist advance, a time which allowed the Western democracies and other ASEAN nations to grow strong enough to outlast the enemy.

• For it was also during this 10-year period that the growing contrast in the standard of living between West German & East Germany - and North & South Korea became undeniable.

• The policy of containment gave Communism time to fail, fail because countries which followed an ideology of a centrally controlled economy, with inefficient planned manufacturing and collectivized agriculture, run by party bureaucrats concerned with protecting their own power and privileges - saw their economies stagnate.

• And Communism failed - because the individual freedom in Western democracies encouraged entrepreneurial activity – the driver of; innovation, experimentation, and fresh innovation - a system which produced the new medicines, the modern cars, the personal computers and new business models that created a growing prosperity – simply did not occur in centrally planned economies.

• It was that 10 years of containment of communist expansion during the Vietnam war that allowed time for the west to ultimately triumph in the global battle of ideas – the idea that mankind’s best chance for peace and prosperity lie in a free market democracy, with freedom on the press, freedom of speech, and freedom of movement is today globally accepted.

• So there was a 'domino effect' following the Vietnam war, but not the one that we rightly worried about in the early 1960s. The domino effect that occurred after the Vietnam War was when countries saw how their neighbors that had rejected communist ideologies and instead followed the principles of free and open markets prospered and grew strong — and those countries followed.

Today’s Vietnam

• So today we can celebrated that communist economic ideology has been rejected throughout South-East Asia and also the majority of the world. And we see the Vietnamese economy, having significantly departed from the old Stalinist-Maoist model, now prospering from free-market incentives through the encouragement of private businesses and foreign investment, which has lifted millions of Vietnamese out of poverty.

• For that we have our troops' service in Vietnam to thank for being a crucial part of an honorable and ultimately successful struggle for freedom and prosperity.

Jobs not yet finished

• However ‘free markets’ are only one half of the ideals of a true democratic society; ……. a free peoples, with free political expression, freedom of religion, and freedom of the press -are the other half – and over time, you can’t have one without the other.

• And although the Vietnamese leadership, out of necessity, has abandoned its Marxist-Leninist ideal of command and control economic collectivism. It still today continues to cling to political control - restricting freedom and democracy.

• And there can be no doubt that the principles of freedom have been grossly violated by the current Vietnamese communist regime.

• So the same vigilance & pressure that dragged Vietnam onto the path toward a market economy, now needs to be applied to weaken its grip on totalitarian authority.

• And I have no doubt, that one day soon, freedom and liberty will finally win, and the people of Vietnam will finally enjoy full freedom and democracy, peace and prosperity – and when that day does come, we will eternally gratefully to those that made countless sacrifices during the Vietnam War.

• Lest we forget.


Is time real, or the ultimate illusion? Most physicists would say the latter, but Lee Smolin challenges this orthodoxy in his new book, "Time Reborn" (Houghton Mifflin Harcourt, April 2013), which he discussed here Wednesday (April 24) at the Rubin Museum of Art.
Get ready to see God’s restoration in your life! Get a fresh revelation of Jesus and His finished work and experience restoration and rejuvenation as your heart is bathed in the warmth of God’s love. 

Click below to watch a short trailer of this powerful DVD resource. Be sure to click 'Like' and share this with your friends! Amen!
Today, Jesus wants to meet you at the point of your need. You don't need special seasons or circumstances for healing. You only need the Lord who is here right now to heal you (Jn 5:6–8).
For even the Son of Man did not come to be served, but to serve, and to give His life a ransom for many.—Mk 10:45

What God wants today is for you to draw from Him—from His fullness, riches and abundance. It is God’s delight to respond to your needs.

When Jesus came to Mary and Martha’s house (Lk 10:38–40), Martha served Jesus, attended to His needs and made sure He was comfortable. Yet the Bible says she was “distracted with much serving”.

Mary, on the other hand, simply sat at Jesus’ feet and listened to His Word, and what did Jesus say? That Mary had “chosen the good part”.

God wants you to choose “the good part” today. He wants you to come expectantly to Him for your needs today. See Him ready to pour His abundance out for you. See Him rejoicing when you call upon Him.

As you see His heart of love that always wants to give to you, you will find the provision that you need—be it finances, healing or restoration—manifest!


Guillaume Schnaebelé





[edit]Holidays and observances

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