Monday, August 22, 2016

Mon Aug 22nd Todays News

An open microphone had Obama promising Russia something if he got re elected. He was re elected, and it looks like Russia got Crimea. But if Russia getting Crimea was the promise of Obama, a cost was MH-17. There were lots of other costs too, but it is doubtful Crimea was a Quid Pro Quo arrangement. More broadly, Obama has created a cold war situation with Russia and China so as to control smaller nations like Iran, North Korea and Syria. Cold War is effective, but a bad instrument, promoting injustice. The US glories in Olympic success, but it was achieved over denunciations of Russia, and to a lesser extent, China. The undermining of the Olympics was not instigated by Obama, but has his community organising footprints all over it. In Australia too, Turnbull was behind a lot of undermining of the Liberal Party he did not do on his own and he was not capable of organising on his own. The Age had smeared Andrew Hastie this time last year. In By election, which Turnbull flagged as a test of Abbott's leadership, Hastie got a 0.97% swing to him. In general election, with Turnbull as leader, the swing was 5.12% against Hastie. That is a measure of how bad a Liberal leader Turnbull is. A year ago today, Hastie said during an address to the Liberal Party on 22 August 2015, that soldiers under his command had acted with "honour and integrity" and strongly criticised Defence's handling of the incident, claiming that Defence has breached its duty of care to the soldier involved by taking nearly two and a half years to investigate the matter. Saliently, Turnbull has not acted as those men under Hastie's command. 

For some, at the moment, the Sex Party has more credibility.  
=== from 2015 ===
Smearing the former SAS Captain Andrew Hastie by The Age because he is a Liberal candidate? The incident the Age raises was not a war crime and was not perpetrated by Hastie. Some SAS had removed the hands of killed jihadists for identification reasons. Not as trophies and not to mutilate corpses. There is a glacially slow investigation into the incident where, when Captain Hastie was alerted, to it he responsibly referred it. But a reasonable person might not know that if they read The Age. The reasonable person (what reasonable person would read the Age?) would see the headline "Question of Conduct" over the Captain's face and the article doesn't explain he wasn't present or involved in the lawful act, until the last few lines. It is appalling, a low standard of journalism. Hastie, however, when challenged on it answered well and saliently.  

ABC smears Royal Commission judge Dyson Heydon. They broadcast that the judge had released false or doctored documents over half an hour after it had been retracted. Because it had been demonstrated he hadn't. The Royal Commission into union corruption is important because unions control the ALP. They even demoted a talentless female hack in Tasmania and promoted a talentless male unionist hack. 

Greens strangle development while mining unions are silent at the loss of work. The mines are not really closed for environmental concerns. Activists are paying locals to complain. Activists whom are often funded by welfare. 

Jihadists attack on Paris Amsterdam Train and on Bangkok show that Obama has failed after withdrawing troops from conflict and cutting military spending. Two off duty marines were heroes on the train. One was badly wounded. 

Pope campaigns on borderless world but fails to responsibly limit the harm caused. People will die from the irresponsible call. They won't die free. They will be exploited by people smugglers and lose all the promise God had blessed them with their life. 
From 2014
Sometimes it is salient to look at last years issues and see what has changed. With the impending election last year, Rudd was working to 'preserve the furniture' and the way he did that was enlightening. He hurt a little boy. He refused to apologise or address his killing of desperate poor people who wished to migrate to Australia, but rather declared it was impossible. He placed trust in the failed policies of his treasurer. He claimed he addressed the issue of a Carbon Tax. He made more spending promises regarding disabled people and education. People supported him, but it was hard for them. In one desperate act, 18 girls photographed their vagina for a Honi Soit university magazine cover. Following that expose, one girl outed herself further, showing her name and face too. But more puzzling was the Liberal Party campaign which seemed to demarcate and allow ALP to retain furniture in safe ALP seats. Some really bad ALP members were not exposed, and today, one might look at the closeness of developers to Liberal Party candidates in safe ALP seats which fell in '11 to the State party. The Liberal candidates were not competent either. But they seem to have had connection to Tripodi through the developers. It is an echo of Brian Burke who compromised the Liberals in WA through his corruption that had not been addressed by a judicial system leary of addressing corruption in the ALP. The issue is for democracy to be strong, both sides have to be capable of addressing hard questions, but the media and judiciary are neither fair nor fearless, and who can concentrate on the politics when girls are making such statements those pictures made .. evil is he who evil thinks .. Honi soit, qui mal y pense. Rudd would save furniture, but the present government is gummed up now because of decisions made then. And still the ALP leader has no policy addressing urgent national needs. Andrew Bolt has praised Martin Ferguson as being an adult in the ALP. However that so called adult supported every single bad, murderous policy the ALP passed in six years of government. No ALP member today has the ability of the compromised Mal Colston. None of them should be in parliament. 

Last year Obama was considering bombing Syria in favour of helping those who are now hitting Iraq. This is because chemical weapons of the type developed by Saddam Hussein were used on Syrian peoples by their government. Stupidly, desperate Christians keen to prevent bloodshed praised the murderous regime of Syria as 'not being that bad.' Yet again another reason why religion has no place in politics. Had Obama acted correctly last year, and used troops on the ground, the problems of this year could have been avoided. But, Russia said 'no.' Obama agreed to Russia having benefit if he was reelected, and he was. We don't yet know what that was, but it looks like Crimea. If Crimea was the price of a reelected Obama, then MH17 was the cost. America needs to muzzle her President. 
Historical perspective on this day
Not done
=== Publishing News ===
This column welcomes feedback and criticism. The column is not made up but based on the days events and articles which are then placed in the feed. So they may not have an apparent cohesion they would have had were they made up.
===
Thanks to Warren for this advice on watching Bolt
Warren Catton Get this for your PC or MAC https://www.foxtel.com.au/foxtelplay/how-it-works/pc-mac.html Once you have installed it start it up and press Live TV you don't need a login to watch Sky News!
===
I am publishing a book called Bread of Life: January. 

Bread of Life is a daily bible quote with a layman's understanding of the meaning. I give one quote for each day, and also a series of personal stories illustrating key concepts eg Who is God? What is a miracle? Why is there tragedy?

January is the first of the anticipated year-long work of thirteen books. One for each month and the whole year. It costs to publish. It (Kindle version) should retail at about $2US online, but the paperback version would cost more, according to production cost.
If you have a heart for giving, I fundraise at gofund.me/27tkwuc
===
Editorials will appear in the "History in a Year by the Conservative Voice" series, starting with AugustSeptemberOctober, or at Amazon http://www.amazon.com/dp/1482020262/ref=cm_sw_r_tw_dp_dVHPub0MQKDZ4  The kindle version is cheaper, but the soft back version allows a free kindle version.

List of available items at Create Space
Happy birthday and many happy returns Matt GranzDwight Le and Annie Wang. Born on the same day, across the years, as Frederick II, Elector of Saxony (1412), Denis Papin (1647), Claude Debussy (1862), Dorothy Parker (1893), Leni Riefenstahl (1902), Ray Bradbury (1920) and Norman Schwarzkopf, Jr. (1934). On your day, Feast Day of the Queenship of Mary (Roman Catholic Church); Madras Day in Chennai, Tamil Nadu, India
1485 – Lancastrian forces under Henry Tudor, Earl of Richmond, defeated Yorkist forces under Richard III of England at the Battle of Bosworth Field, decisively ending the Wars of the Roses.
1711 – Queen Anne's War: A British attempt to attack Quebec failed when eight ships wrecked on the Saint Lawrence River.
1851 – The yacht America won the first America's Cup race near the Isle of Wight, England.
1910 – Japan annexed Korea with the signing of the Japan–Korea Annexation Treaty, beginning a period of Japanese rule of Korea that lasted until the end of World War II.
1989 – Nolan Ryan of the Texas Rangers struck out the Oakland Athletics' Rickey Henderson, becoming the only pitcher in Major League Baseball to record 5,000 strikeouts. You have your roses. 
Quebec is free and safe. The cup is where the world can enjoy it. Korea belongs to Koreans .. some of them sensible. You don't have to be sensible on your day .. but you should have the sense to enjoy it.
Deaths
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UNARMED AND UNSAFE

Tim Blair – Monday, August 22, 2016 (9:42pm)

In 1992, Koreans in Los Angeles were attacked by black rioters: 
With an uneasy peace settling over the city after hundreds of their businesses were destroyed, the Koreans stood armed inside their shattered store windows …
Defending the armed response of the Koreans, Mr. Rhyu said, “If it was your own business and your own property, would you be willing to trust it to someone else? We are glad the National Guard is here. They’re good backup. But when our shops were burning we called the police every five minutes; no response.” 
In 2016, Chinese in Paris are attacked by … well, you’ll never guess: 
Thousands of angry Chinese immigrants demonstrated in a Paris suburb yesterday to demand police protection from muggers who they say prey on them because they are seen as easy targets.
The death of a 49-year-old Chinese tailor after being badly beaten in a robbery earlier this month has lent new urgency to the long running complaint that Asian immigrants are systematically attacked and robbed in the French capital …
Community workers say many muggings are committed by members of other minorities living in the area, generally of Arab or African origin. 
It seems these attackers are racially profiling their victims, who really should consider adopting Korean tactics. Hugh Fitzgerald has more.
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PREDATOR PRANK

Tim Blair – Monday, August 22, 2016 (9:32pm)

It’s the old put the crocodiles in the high school trick: 
Three malnourished female saltwater crocodiles were found dumped at Taminmin High School on Sunday morning.

Intruders smashed their way into the rural school’s front office about 30km south of Darwin leaving the unexpected packages ranging in size from 1.5 to 2m. 
Pro tip: this is more effective on a weekday morning.
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LUCKY ACADEMIC

Tim Blair – Monday, August 22, 2016 (8:53pm)

Research project: “Is luck important in the lives of animals?”
Taxpayer funding: $337,400
Via Gina. Further here.
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DISTRESSING IMAGES

Tim Blair – Monday, August 22, 2016 (7:34pm)

One day after a child suicide bomber killed 51 people at a Turkish wedding, another potential child suicide bomber is safely defused
These harrowing images show the moment a distressed young boy has what is suspected to be a suicide belt removed from his body by police officers.
Security workers can be seen grappling with the young boy, who is visibly emotional.
The images were taken of the boy in Kirkuk, Iraq, this evening as four men apprehended him. 
For some reason, this news item carries an alert: 
WARNING: Viewers may find the following images distressing 
Yep. There’s nothing more distressing than a junior jihadi missing out on his 72 virgins.
(Via Observa.)
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THEOLOGY AND GEOMETRY

Tim Blair – Monday, August 22, 2016 (6:02pm)

A charming documentary about John Kennedy Toole, author of A Confederacy of Dunces.
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LONG TERM HIGH RISK INVESTMENT

Tim Blair – Monday, August 22, 2016 (4:29pm)

In Germany, the bill is due
Young refugees accepted by Germany since the beginning of last year will cost the country an extra 67 billion euros ($100 billion) to educate and train, according to a new assessment of the bill for the migrant influx.
The new school year is getting under way with calls for 25,000 more teachers and reports that thousands of migrant children will be denied a classroom place because schools are full …
Angela Merkel, the chancellor, is expected to face a backlash at her home state’s elections next month in the latest opportunity for Germans to give their verdict on her decision to allow so many asylum seekers into the country, putting a huge strain on resources. 
The bill for 2016 alone is estimated at euros 15 billion.
(Via Andrew R.)
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ONE JOB

Tim Blair – Monday, August 22, 2016 (3:48am)

Besides ridiculous levels of fitness and superhuman devotion to training, there is another important difference between average human beings and the athletes returning from Rio with gold medals in their luggage.
That is their ability to concentrate — to focus entirely on the moment, excluding all possible distractions.
It’s an extraordinary talent and a difficult one to maintain. Former Australian Test cricket captain Greg Chappell used to consciously set himself several levels of awareness and concentration while batting because holding complete focus all the time was so draining.
He’d reserve absolute concentration only for the moments when he was facing a delivery. In a similar fashion, airline pilots train for circumstances that are extremely rare. When something goes wrong, and an ill-judged decision may result in disaster, that training and an associated intense focus are called upon.
For police, a terrorist siege is the equivalent of losing an engine at 12,000m. Many lives depend on each step taken thereafter. Talk to pilots and they’ll tell you that the key during any emergency is to remain in the present — not to be bothered with any distracting concerns about what might happen or could happen or won’t happen.
Some of Australia’s most senior police could learn from athletes and pilots.
Last week we discovered from the inquest into Sydney’s deadly Martin Place siege that senior police allowed themselves, even while the siege was in progress, to be concerned by fears of a backlash against Muslims.
Instead of maintaining a fixed focus on the 2014 siege to the exclusion of all else, they actually devoted time and thought to something that was never going to happen and in fact never has happened to any great extent. The “backlash against Muslims” is a modern myth. Yet here was NSW Deputy Police Commissioner Cath Burn last week explaining her siege strategy.
“I needed to emphasise community harmony while urging people to provide any information that could help,” she told the inquest.
“It was paramount that my messaging conveyed tolerance so as not to fuel anger which might have led to bias-motivated crime.”
(Continue reading One Job.)
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THROWER THROWN OUT

Tim Blair – Monday, August 22, 2016 (3:12am)

Before Saturday night’s showdown between the Adelaide Crows and Port Adelaide, Crows forward Eddie Betts’s young son Lewis gleefully predicted his dad would kick five goals. Lewis was right on the money, but the fifth goal was soured by a Port Adelaide fan who threw a banana at Betts.
That fan has since been identified by the club and had her Port Adelaide membership cancelled. Good. She should also be banned from attending all future Port Adelaide matches. 
===

LUXURY SPENDING

Tim Blair – Monday, August 22, 2016 (2:22am)

Good news, everybody! It turns out Australia doesn’t have any economic problems at all. Not a single one!
In fact, we’re so bursting with cash we continue spending millions of dollars on completely pointless vanity projects for academics. If that isn’t a clear sign of a robust and debt-free economy, I don’t know what is.
Surely a government that genuinely believes we have serious debt and deficit issues wouldn’t give more than $500,000 to the University of NSW for a project that “intends to address how the evolutionary phenomena of intra-sexual competition and intersexual conflict interact with economic circumstances to shape gendered behaviour and attitudes”.
It’s difficult to tell what’s meant by “intersexual conflict interacting with economic circumstances” but it’s probably something to do with taxpayers getting screwed.
Over at Canberra’s ANU, researchers have been handed $467,997 “to investigate warfare in the ancient Tongan state through a study of earthwork fortifications”. Apparently this will benefit Australia “by showing how changes to political systems are associated with phases of conflict and peace”.
Those ancient Tongans have so much to teach us. Also at the ANU, $414,000 will be wasted on a study that will “engage with one of the central debates in Tibetan philosophy concerning truth, realism and epistemic justification”. Does Tibetan philosophy say anything about closing worthless universities?
(Continue reading Luxury Spending.)
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PUNISHMENT IS A REWARD

Tim Blair – Monday, August 22, 2016 (2:15am)

Tough love from NSW premier Mike Baird
With the government lurching from debacle to disaster it seems fitting Premier Mike Baird should send around 70 of his most senior bureaucrats away to “reflect” on their performance.
Except nobody expected them to go on a three-day trip to an award-winning, 4.5-star, luxury Blue Mountains resort.
The extended weekender at the Fairmont Resort, which cost NSW taxpayers $80,000, comes in the wake of the greyhound racing ban, the tragic hospital gas mix-up and police anger over the Lindt Cafe siege inquest. 
Any further blunders and Baird will buy his staff Maseratis.
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WHAT DOES IT MEAN?

Tim Blair – Monday, August 22, 2016 (2:12am)

In a matter of considerable bafflement, French police say they have no idea what could have motivated a chap who shouted “Allahu Akbar” and then stabbed an elderly Orthodox Jewish man.
Police in Strasbourg told BBC News the attack was “not terrorist related”. Well, obviously. Also last week, two motiveless individuals were killed after attempting to murder Russian police. A video was subsequently released showing the attackers predicting further violence and shouting “Allahu Akbar”. Could there possibly be some connection?
Over in Albania, the city of Vlore recently heard the old “Allahu Akbar” cry from an utterly unmotivated fellow named Dijar Xhema during his repeated kidnap attempts. According to police: “These actions in public places were accompanied by cries of ‘Allahu Akbar’, ‘I’ve been sent by Allah’ and ‘I will kill you all.’ “
An online newspaper reported: “If it is established that Xhema was motivated by religious radicalism, it would be the first time an Islamist attacker has targeted people inside Albania.” Perhaps there’s a hint in Xhema’s words.
(Continue reading What Does it Mean?)
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On The Bolt Report and radio tonight - Eddie Betts and the rise of Tony Abbott

Andrew Bolt August 22 2016 (5:14pm)

On The Bolt Report on Sky News Live at 7pm tonight:
Editorial: Throwing a banana at Eddie Betts. Does that make us a racist country?
Guests:
Hedley Thomas on the “racial discrimination” case being used to punish three students who protested discrimination.
Former sex therapist and author Bettina Arndt on a government ad that fools you about domestic violence:
Peta Credlin: are journalists finally admitting Tony Abbott is not finished, after all?
On the panel, former Queensland premier Campbell Newman and former NSW Labor Treasurer Michael Costa.
Podcasts of the show here but also now on our Facebook page here

On 2GB, 3AW and 4BC with Steve Price from 8pm.
Listen live here. Talkback:  131 873.  Listen to all past shows here.
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Well, how about Kevin Rudd for mayor?

Andrew Bolt August 22 2016 (3:06pm)

Dumped as Prime Minister of Australia. Blocked from becoming UN secretary general. What next for Kevin Rudd?
Well, he’s now in the running in the August 30 election for mayor of Tombstone, Arizona:
(Thanks to reader Julie.) 
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What irritates him most is a racist being called out

Andrew Bolt August 22 2016 (2:08pm)

Excuse me?
THE woman at the centre of the banana-throwing incident at Adelaide Oval has been “demonised”, according to a man claiming to be her father, who claims “the racist card” is being played.
“Don” called in to Adelaide radio station FIVEaa this morning to defend his daughter, who has been identified and banned indefinitely by Port Adelaide Football Club after she threw a banana toward indigenous Adelaide star Eddie Betts on Saturday night…
“I accept that (throwing objects at players is wrong), but don’t demonise someone. The thing that irritates me the most is that we’re playing the racist card here. It was more an act of frustration than a racist act where she’s thrown a banana...”
“Don”, don’t be an idiot.  It’s not playing the racist card to give something its proper name. What should “irritate” you most is what your daughter did, not that others called it out. 
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Scaring students into silence over the new race politics

Andrew Bolt August 22 2016 (7:59am)

Free speech

This really is obscene. And even the university, while clearing one student, has nevertheless encouraged self-censorship over a form of apartheid which badly needs more debate, not less:
A student being sued for $250,000 in a section 18C racial hatred case was cleared of any wrongdoing three years ago by university executives over his Facebook post about his eviction from an indigenous-only study area…

University director of equity Mary Kelly, in an affidavit filed in the Federal Circuit Court, says a QUT letter to [Alex] Wood in 2013 did not admonish or warn him “because we did not believe he had breached the code”.
Mr Wood had written on Facebook on May 28, 2013: “Just got kicked out of the unsigned ­indigenous computer room. QUT stopping segregation with segregation?"…
Cindy Prior, an indigenous ­administrative officer in QUT’s Oodgeroo Unit, ...  later began legal ­action against Mr Wood and two other students under the Racial Discrimination Act’s section 18C, which makes it unlawful for anyone to “offend, insult, humiliate or intimidate” another person or group on the grounds of race, ­colour or ethnicity…

Mr Wood agreed to remove his “whole Facebook post from the public domain” as soon as it was raised with him by Ms Kelly, who told him in an email that some of the comments related to his post “are causing distress to the many indigenous and non-­indigenous staff and students"…
A formal warning was deliv­ered to another student because he posted what was determined by the university to be an offensive joke. His family made a confid­ential cash settlement.
Another student, Jackson Powell, is accused of racial hatred because of a post which he said was an attempt at sarcasm. He wrote: “I wonder where the white supremacist computer lab is.”
Yet we hear several of our “leading” journalists mock those arguing for a reform of the Racial Discrimination Act as people just wanting to racially abuse others.
UPDATE
Rowan Dean on the Turnbull Government’s disgraceful lack of leadership:
TREASURER Scott Morrison seems ignorant of the fact that freedom and capitalism go hand in hand; two sides of the same coin.
One reinforces the other. They are the twin pillars of our prosperity, our history and our extraordinarily bountiful lifestyle....
We’ve become used to fatuous comments from this Treasurer… But his comment last week, refusing to countenance amending or repealing Section 18C of the Racial Discrimination Act, hit a new low, even for him, of patronising smugness.
“(Amending 18C) doesn’t help me reverse the deficit, it doesn’t help me repay the debt, it doesn’t help me get one more person in a job, and it doesn’t lead to one extra company investing more in Australia, so you can appreciate that it is not at the top of my list,” he said.
This truly condescending comment was then echoed by the Prime Minister himself, revealing how carefully the lines had been worked on by spin doctors. “It’s an issue that, ah, I’ve certainly looked at …” said the Prime Minister, umm-ing and ahh-ing in his usual hesitant fashion, “…but with all due respects to the very worthy arguments surrounding it, it is not going to create an extra job, it is not going to ensure that … the … that your listeners get to work or get to the school … it is not going to build an extra road.”
I bet that’s reassuring to the three students at QUT whose reputations have been trashed, whose careers are on the line, and whose lives and future prosperity may well be destroyed by the disgusting 18C law and its sinister ramifications…
In essence, Morrison and Turnbull are saying they are happy to sacrifice these young Queensland men’s futures – and, by definition, yours and mine – because they’re too busy. This is depraved.
(Thanks to reader Peter of Bellevue Hill.) 
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Threat defied. Credlin to stay

Andrew Bolt August 22 2016 (7:52am)

What do you call a threat that achieves exactly the opposite result?
Tony Abbott’s former chief of staff Peta Credlin is set to extend her high-profile media career ...  as a political commentator on Sky News…
It follows revelations in The Australian that Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull gave Sky News boss Angelos Frangopoulos an ultimatum during the federal election: dump Credlin or he would not appear on the channel. 
It was actually one of Turnbull’s flunkies who made the threat, but Turnbull has indeed not appeared on Sky since. Ratings figures have soared.
PS
Credlin will be on The Bolt Report at 7pm tonight. 
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Islamist child murders 50

Andrew Bolt August 22 2016 (7:48am)

An astonishingly depraved kind of morality confronts us when this is both the desired means and desired result:
A suicide bomber thought to be as young as 12 killed at least 50 people when he blew himself up among people dancing in the street at a wedding party in southern Turkey…

In comments shown live by broadcaster NTV, Mr Erdogan also confirmed that 51 people had died in the blast, and 69 were wounded in the attack on the Turkish city of Gaziantep, about 40 km from the Syrian border.
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A deadly lack of leaders

Andrew Bolt August 22 2016 (7:37am)

Culture wars, Free speech, three

Is leadership now dead in Australia? Are our “leaders” now mere managers, just ticking boxes and following process?
Let me give two examples of this deadly managerialism from last week.
One shows the gutlessness of the Turnbull Government; the other is the astonishing revelation that NSW’s top police went home during the Lindt cafe siege.
First, the government.
The day Malcolm Turnbull challenged Tony Abbott to become Prime Minister he actually promised to be a real leader.
“We need a style of leadership … that respects the people’s intelligence, that explains these complex issues, and then sets out the course of action we believe we should take, and makes a case for it.”
I could not have said it better. Leaders are not corks on a river, drifting with the current. They are the river, sweeping others with them. They act, not react.
(Read full article here.) 
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Gardening book

Andrew Bolt August 21 2016 (10:08pm)

My book is on an odyssey, visiting the skulls of Montpellier, York Minster, Shanghai, Croatia, Ho Chi Minh City, Santorini, London, Lake Como, Ithaca, Scotland, the Bay of Naples, Dubrovnik, Fiji, Aileron, New Zealand, Sri Lanka, the Andes, the Northern Territory, the Whitsundays, Kalgoorlie and Condabri, Queensland, before invading Australia’s most Left-wing Parliament - an experience which convinced one reader at the Katharine River Mango Farm to try teaching even a donkey to understand what’s in it. Meanwhile, it attended a christening in Newcastle, checked in at a Penrith hospital and recuperated at the Moreton Bay Boat Club before sailing down the Murray.

Kevin is now showing it the Mt Annan Australian Botanical Garden - on the road from Sydney to Bowral:
To reward someone earthy in your life, order the book here.
BOLT BULLETIN
The fourth edition of the Bolt Bulletin, available to on-line buyers, went out last week.  The Bolt Bulletin will also be available to readers who buy Still Not Sorry on line. This reprint of my 2005 collection of columns and reflections, with a new preface, will be published over the next few weeks.  Pre-order here
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Latham lets rip

Andrew Bolt August 22 2015 (5:36pm)

But what did the Melbourne Writers Festival expect when it invited the former Labor leader to speak? Read from the bottom as Mark Latham gets interviewed by ABC presenter Jonathan Green:
Here’s the big joke. Most of the people listening to Latham would have once voted for him. 
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Your money, their rules

Andrew Bolt August 22 2015 (1:54pm)

It’s just your money, so why should they care?:
TOM IGGULDEN, REPORTER: [There] is the simple, one-page form that gives taxpayers accountability for the millions of dollars paid out to parliamentarians every year in entitlements. Parliament’s 320 members and senators are asked to sign it every six months to certify their entitlement claims are within the rules… Yet since the system was brought in in 2011, not once there has been full compliance among Parliament’s 320 members. 110 of them have failed to sign it at least once. 
Two have never signed it until Lateline began asking questions a few weeks ago ... Queensland MP Bob Katter [and] Labor frontbencher Stephen Conroy. It’s understood he signed four years’ worth of forms covering at least $1.8 million worth of expenses within the last two weeks after Lateline put in a Freedom of Information request.
The Finance Department contacted Senator Conroy’s office 23 times over the last four years, politely asking for his signature on the forms. 23 times, Senator Conroy ignored them… 
Senator Conroy also refused Lateline’s request for an interview, noting his certification was now up-to-date. Mr Katter ignored a similar amount of reminders and requests from the Finance Department, but he has still not signed the forms
(Thanks to reader Peter of Bellevue Hill.) 
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The Age’s front-page smear of a soldier and a Liberal

Andrew Bolt August 22 2015 (11:53am)


I don’t know how much lower The Age can go. This morning’s front-page hatchet job on the Liberals’ candidate in the Canning by-election is a disgrace.
We know The Age is desperate to destroy the Abbott Government, and we know it now sees Canning as its big chance. If the Liberals lose, Abbott falls.
Hence this attack on the Liberals’ candidate, once an officer in our elite SAS, risking his life to defend the likes of even Age journalists, safe at home to snipe:
The former SAS soldier standing as the Liberal Party’s prize recruit in a key federal by-election was the officer in command of a troop being investigated for chopping the hands off dead Taliban fighters in Afghanistan. 
Fairfax Media has learnt that the 2013 incident was carried out by one or more soldiers who were under the command of Captain Andrew Hastie, 32, who has been pre-selected as the Liberal candidate for the byelection in the West Australian seat of Canning. The hands of three Taliban fighters who had been killed in combat by the SAS soldiers were believed to have been removed for the purposes of identifying them by fingerprinting, sparking a defence investigation that has lasted more than two years and is still going on.
Only deeper in the story do we read this:
However, it is understood he was not present at the time of the incident but was rather elsewhere on the battlefield.
Only at the very end of the story do we read this:
Neil James, executive director of the Australia Defence Association, said the hand-chopping did not constitute a war crime because the soldiers were doing it out of military necessity… 
Mr James said he understood Captain Hastie was elsewhere on the battlefield when the incident happened and therefore was not responsible. “He was not the commander who made the decisions.

“Nor could he have influenced those decisions, because the rest of the unit was deployed somewhere else.”
For me, the question increasingly is not merely which party would best run the country if elected next year. It is what kind of vile conduct would we reward in the winner.
Labor today is smearing a fine judge to protect union corruption. Now its media allies are smearing a soldier.
Should the nation really be in the hands of such people?
UPDATE
Brilliant response by Andrew Hastie at the WA Liberal conference. Watch that and you’d vote for him - and against the smearers. Fantastic stuff. I’ll run some on the Bolt Report tomorrow.
These bare words barely suggest the power of his response, in which Hastie drew a distinction between journalists philosophising over freedom and those, like him, who fought for it:
“When I became aware, I did what I was required to do and promptly reported the incident up the chain of command,” he said. 
“I can say with great confidence that those soldiers involved directly with the incident were acting in what they believed to be the appropriate process laid out by Defence. “This matter was dealt with by an inquiry and my actions at the time were appropriate. All but one of the troops was cleared.”
More from Hastie’s powerful response:
“I have now left the Defence Force with a clean slate, having defended our nation against the Taliban and Daesh,” he said… 
“I have not lived my life behind a desk pushing paper and talking about the concepts of freedom and democracy. I have acted. I have put my life on the line for this country and for that freedom.’’…
Captain Hastie also revealed that an inquiry had found “my actions at the time were appropriate’’.
“All but one of the troops was cleared,’’ he said.
“The investigation was launched after the issues was raised up the chain of command and it was raised by me.
“The investigation into this single soldier has taken two years and four months and it hasn’t been finalised. As reported, there are differing views as to whether the incident constituted a breach of the rules of war.
“People who serve, put their lives on the line to protect our country. I have always stood up and fought hard to represent the troops I lead and if that requires ruffling feathers, I have done that and I will do that again now.
“Out of concern for the soldier involved, I am disappointed that my candidacy has brought this issue to the forefront of media attention.
“The least we can do for that honourable soldier is to ensure that the investigation into the incident is done fully and quickly.
“This issue has cast a shadow for almost two and a half years over this man’s life. I believe the Defence Force has a duty of care to finalise its investigation more quickly.” 
Read it again:
I have not lived my life behind a desk pushing paper and talking about the concepts of freedom and democracy. I have acted. I have put my life on the line for this country and for that freedom.
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Kick this clown out of Parliament

Andrew Bolt August 22 2015 (10:39am)

This buffoon is a member of Parliament, deciding on your future and the security of this nation:
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Unions dump Labor frontbencher

Andrew Bolt August 22 2015 (9:58am)

Yet another sign that the bruvvers rule. The unions pull Labor’s strings:
Labor leader Bill Shorten’s commitment to recruit and promote quality women within the parliamentary party has been contradicted by the decision of the rogue Tasmanian branch to demote one of the federal opposition’s brightest female stars in favour of a faceless male union official… 
Lisa Singh [is] arguably the state’s highest profile Labor figure… The telegenic 42-year-old frontbencher is a regular contributor to the national political debate and is a proven media performer in her capacity as shadow parliamentary secretary for the environment, climate change and water.
But quality and merit are have proved no defence against the factional warlords who saw fit in June to install the little-known Australian Manufacturing Workers Union secretary, John Short in the third spot on the party’s Senate ticket, behind the Left’s Anne Urquhart and the Right’s Helen Polley.
The factionally unaligned Senator Singh, who was the Hobart Citizen of the Year in 2004, was allocated the unwinnable 4th spot, signifying the end of her federal career unless the ALP’s powerful national executive intervenes to change the order.
Mind you, Singh strikes me as the epitome of the modern Labor MP, and not in a good way. Of the Left, an arts graduate who then become a union official, someone who never had to run a business or hire a worker, a closed-minded follower of every fashionable Leftist cause from global warming to the new tribalism.... No wonder the press gallery loves her.
(Thanks to reader a happy little debunker.) 
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Jihadist attack on Paris-Amsterdam train

Andrew Bolt August 22 2015 (9:43am)


More American blood spilled saving French lives - this time from one of the many apparent jihadists allowed into Europe:
A gunman opened fire with an automatic weapon on a high-speed train traveling from Amsterdam to Paris Friday, wounding three people before being subdued by two American passengers, officials said. 
French Interior Minister Bernard Cazeneuve, speaking in Arras in northern France where the suspected was detained, said one of the Americans was hospitalized with serious wounds…
French media reported that U.S. Marines overpowered the man. U.S. Marine spokesman in Germany Capt. Richard Ulsh told CBS News that “they can confirm that Americans subdued the gunmen” but he would not confirm whether they were Marines…
The suspect is a 26-year-old Moroccan… The suspect was armed with an automatic rifle and a knife…
A local reporter in Arras, Antoine da Silva, told CBS News’ Elaine Cobbe that he saw a well-built man taken out of the train station, covered in blood. He said the man, who spoke English with an American accent, was very calm, despite all the blood. Da Silva posted a photo on Twitter after another passenger confirmed to him that the injured man was a soldier… 
Belgian Prime Minister Charles Michel… called the shooting a “terrorist attack.”
UPDATE
And further evidence that the Bangkok bombing was indeed another jihadist attack:
THAI Police have named a man in connection with the Bangkok bombing that killed 20 people. Authorities have revealed they are searching for a Muslim man called Mohamad Museyin, The Times of London reported.
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On The Bolt Report tomorrow, August 22

Andrew Bolt August 22 2015 (9:17am)

On Channel 10 tomorrow at 10am and 3pm
Editorial:  Labor’s protection racket
My guest:  Finance Minister Mathias Cormann. On the war with unions and the Greens. And the Age’s vilification of a soldier standing as a Liberal candidate
The panel: Georgina Downer, former diplomat and member of the Victorian Liberal administrative committee, and Nicholas Reece, former advisor to Julia Gillard. On crooks, smearing judges and more. Plus the ACTU hands the Liberals a perfect ad.

NewsWatch: Sharri Markson, Australian media editor. On the loss of Mark Latham. But why is Clementine Ford still a Fairfax columnist?
And a soldier replies to the smears.
The videos of the shows appear here.
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Lawler fails to answer questions

Andrew Bolt August 22 2015 (8:33am)

Why is this man still vice-president of Fair Work Australia?
Documents underpinning this week’s Federal Court finding that now-disgraced union leader Kathy Jackson misused $1.4 million have revealed a string of banking transactions related to a mortgage that could tie her partner to questions of whether he benefited from money rorted from low-paid union workers. 
The Health Services Union told the court that the trans­actions represented a money trail wherein Jackson withdrew cash funds from union accounts and made mortgage payments on her home in 2008, which, when sold, formed part of the profits she later sank into a NSW south coast home she and partner Fair Work vice-president ­Michael Lawler share.
Lawler did not respond to questions yesterday on whether he was aware of the transactions. He also did not respond to questions on whether he had benefited, inadvertently or otherwise, from any funds Jackson was found to have misused. 
The Weekend Australian also asked ­Lawler whether he had ­accompanied Jackson on any part of a three-month long trip she took between June and October 2010, or any other holiday or trip cited in the Federal Court findings against her this week.
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Heydon falsely accused. ABC takes bait

Andrew Bolt August 22 2015 (8:25am)

Incredibly, the ABC radio news at 1pm yesterday reported this false and damaging allegation at length, and only at the very end of its report noted in one shorted sentence that the claim had been retracted (in fact 35 minutes earlier). Then why repeat it at all? Fairfax websites continued to promote the false claim for half an hour, pushing the smear:
UNION lawyers were forced into an embarrassing backflip at the Royal Commission today after accusing Commissioner Dyson Heydon of deliberately releasing doctored documents. 
For 12 long minutes Construction Forestry Mining and Energy Union lawyer John Agius, SC, claimed an email had been released with a line deliberately deleted to hide Mr Heydon’s support of the Liberal party. But after delivering his damning address he was forced to his feet to explain that actually the email was part of a chain, the “doctored” line had been dropped automatically and was on the original email.
UPDATE
Incredible. The ABC runs and runs with a false story, long disproved. Host John Barron, introducing a segment on Dyson Heydon on The Drum (see 10:32):
... and today Commissioner Heydon was accused of tampering with an email in an attempt to cover up his knowing that it was a Liberal function. 
Reader Peter of Bellevue Hill:
But nowhere in the entire segment (10:06 to 16:48) was it noted that the ‘doctored document’ claim had backfired terribly.The claim was shown to be false at around lunchtime Friday. The Drum aired on ABC1 at 5:30pm. Insufficient time for the ABC’s Fact Check frontman to stop a failed smear from going to air in his intro?
UPDATE
Judith Sloan on why the royal commission matters.
UPDATE
Here is the problem for the unions who yesterday demanded Dyson Heydon step down as royal commissioner for his seeming bias against them. The one thing the unions point to is that Heydon accepted - but then rejected - an invitation to speak at a Liberal function. But why would associating with Liberals indicate a bias against unions, rather than against just, say, Labor?
To explain, the counsel for the ACTU, Robert Newlinds, said something yesterday that reader stu reckons the Liberals can use in their election ads:
Second point is the union movement in Australia is not just inextricably, but it’s organically connected to the Australian Labor Party. The unions founded the Labor Party way back in the 1890s, I think after some shearing strikes and, as we know, because it’s a perennial debate within the Labor Party, continue to, by reference to the structure of that Party, have significant influence on the policy position of the Party on various matters and also on the very important matter of preselection and the like. And, indeed, I don’t think this is something that would require evidence during the period that Ms Gillard was Prime Minister; It was often said, and I certainly don’t put this forward as being the fact, but it was often said that she was a puppet or someone who was under the control of the union movement and that was put forward by the other side of politics, the Liberal Party, as a criticism of Ms Gillard. 
But the underlying premise that the unions have the ability to exert great control on the Labor Party ought to be taken as a given. 
UPDATE
Paul Kelly:
The campaign to discredit and destroy the Royal Commission into Trade Union Governance and Corruption has been a feeding frenzy of character assassination against the commissioner, Dyson Heydon… 
The ACTU position is explicit and ludicrous: because Heydon agreed to speak at a Liberal event the royal commission must be terminated. Makes sense, doesn’t it?
Forget the 26 union and ex-union officials who have been referred to public prosecutors or arrested, the evidence of criminal behaviour and the evidence of union special deals with employers to bolster their funds, often at the expense of workers…
The enduring image this week was Labor and the unions tied together. No matter what the cause, how ugly the tactic, how much Heydon’s character must be thrashed, this remains Labor’s political DNA under Shorten.
Abbott wants this fight. And the ACTU wants this fight. But Labor needs to be very careful. This week it went too far. It looked like a political lynch mob.... 
In attack after attack on Heydon, in the onslaught on the Australia-China FTA, in the sinking of any greater legal controls on the CFMEU, the Labor Party announces to the world that it will prioritise union interests and power over the public interest. It is the brazen nakedness of this position that is so striking.
UPDATE
Simon Benson:
The attacks on the royal commission have been constant but until Shorten was implicated, they had been devoid of hysteria in parliament. There are those in the Labor caucus who are concerned about unintended consequences of where the party is headed in terms of the “optics” — which will be re-enforced by Labor’s decision this week to also block laws to force union officials to be subjected to the same governance rules as company executives… 
Shorten has, in the pursuit of his own political survival, chosen a course which has the effect of highlighting again the minds of voters to the deep association and alignment with unions who may well see some of their officials end up in jail. 
(Thanks to reader Peter of Bellevue Hill.) 
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Bill Leak on just loving art without the instructions

Andrew Bolt August 22 2015 (8:04am)

wonderful and passionate speech by cartoonist Bill Leak on loving art - but hating the propaganda used to sell it:
[Art] exists in a sort of mysterious realm protected by an impenetrable barrier of spin, written in arcane but deeply politically correct language. And no one dares question it for fear of revealing they don’t know what it means. 
The spin doctors of art have been very successful at making the world of art an inhospitable place, inhabited only by the cognoscenti and shut off to everyone else.
Great paintings are a source of unadulterated aesthetic pleasure… The world is a confusing place, but there’s nothing confusing about the transcendental power of art. You never hear two people arguing about whether the sunset they’re looking at is beautiful; similarly, you never hear two people looking up at Michelangelo’s ceiling of the Sistine Chapel and arguing about whether that’s beautiful. Like the glimpse of the universe you get when you look at the sunset, the Sistine Chapel ceiling has the capacity to take your breath away. To make you go weak at the knees. To swoon.
You’ll swoon, too, if you go to the Frick Collection in New York and stand in front of a painting Turner did in 1826 of a boat arriving in Cologne… 

The mistake many people make is to make it complicated. Instead of experiencing paintings, many people try to read them. Picasso, whose work has been subjected to more interpretations and explanations than just about any other artist, once said: “People always want to know what a painting means. Why don’t they want to know the meaning of the song of a bird?” The trouble is, of course, we’re all being told that’s how we should approach paintings by highly qualified and internationally acclaimed art historians and academics.
Standing in the middle of the Simpson Desert and looking into the clear night sky is the sort of visual experience that can give you a sense of the numinous, to put you in direct contact with something too awe-inspiring to even begin to understand.
Standing in front of great paintings can be overwhelming, too. Looking at great works of art and wondering how they were created is like looking at the night sky and wondering how all the stars got there.
The difference, of course, is you know what you’re looking at was not created by an unimaginable God but by an almost — but perhaps not quite — imaginable human being.
There are plenty of academics and art historians who find it impossible to believe anyone could exist whose genius makes them seem rather dull by comparison. You wouldn’t want to argue with a bloke with a title such as the Charlotte C. Weber professor of art at Wake Forest University, North Carolina, David Lubin, BA, MA, PhD, now would you? He’s written more books and articles on art than I’ve had abusive letters from people who don’t think my cartoons are funny.
So, when he looks at a beautiful group portrait painted in 1882 by John Singer Sargent called The Daughters of Edward Darley Boit he doesn’t see four attractive young girls at home in a very comfortable Paris apartment like the rest of us. He sees “an unhappy psychodrama fraught with exploitation, anxiety and tension”.
Sargent, bless him, thought he was simply painting portraits. Instead, according to Lubin, “Portraiture was an acting out in sublimated form of the artist’s own sexuality. It was a means of declaring the otherwise indeclarable, a method of externalising and temporarily reconciling that highly unstable, even volatile, sexual difference that was felt within but not understood."…
After a break of 10 years from attending the Archi­bald exhibition I was hoping this year to see portraits that would make me feel positive about it and what it says about the state of art in Australia today. I am genuinely sorry it did not.
The trustees want to make sure there’s something for everyone who visits the show, so they throw in a smattering of paintings such as Peter Churcher’s exquisite portrait of his mother Betty and Robert “Alfie” Hannaford’s beautifully painted self-portrait as a sort of sop to boring old farts like me who think the artist’s statement is the one written in paint, not in the list of instructions next to it.
You might be forgiven for thinking Kim Leutwyler’s painting Start the Riot is just a portrait of a woman called Ollie Henderson if you didn’t read the accompanying notes that tell you that it is, in fact, an emphatic statement about “the fluidities and complexities of sexual identity” and “the unrealistic modification of images that set unattainable standards of beauty”. It’s not a painting, it’s a teaching aid, and Leutwyler painted it because you need to be taught a lesson.
You can also learn a thing or two if you read the notes first and then look at Tim Gregory’s Self-portrait as Ancestors. To ensure you have an educational, as distinct from a trans­cendental, experience when you see it you have to know that “white painters (particularly male painters) in Australia, and the white population more broadly, cannot contribute in any significant way to cultural, political or social evolution until we acknowledge that we are still a colonial country, absurdly and violently layered on top of the world’s oldest, continuous culture”. There you go. You’re a white supremacist and you should be ashamed of yourself because Greg­ory, who lectures in art at the University of NSW’s school of art and design and whose research focus is the spatio-political potential of pornography, says so.
As for Nigel Milsom’s winning portrait, I’m sure if I saw it anywhere other than in the context of the Archibald Prize I’d just think it was a really great painting and a damned good portrait of lawyer Charles Waterstreet.

The trouble is, in the context of the Archibald Prize it becomes something else. It becomes a statement spoken in a loud voice by the trustees of the gallery, who want you to know that they know you know the artist, Milsom, may have been jailed for bashing up a shopkeeper and robbing his convenience store in Sydney’s Glebe a few years ago, but they’re going to award the Archibald Prize to him anyway. That way, you see, they can demonstrate not only how compassionate they are but they can show you how transgressive they are, too.
They want to be seen as anarchic and progressive, the type who are willing to “push the boundaries”. I’d bet that if Milsom had gone to all the trouble of getting diagnosed with depression, getting a drug habit and getting caught knocking off a convenience store and then turned up with a portrait of Piers Akerman or Andrew Bolt he wouldn’t have got a look-in.  
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Green groups strangle our future: mine bogged in courts

Andrew Bolt August 22 2015 (7:51am)

This is dangerous - the price of green activism in a country strangled by green tape and overseen by courts too often staffed by activist judges cheered on by an overwhelmingly Leftist media:
Indian energy giant Adani’s $16 billion Carmichael mine is likely to be locked up in litigation until at least 2017, with a wave of looming legal action orchestrated by green groups as part of an anti-coal campaign. 
Despite the Abbott government moving to restrict conservationists from using the courts to stop major projects, the mega-mine in Queensland’s burgeoning Galilee Basin coal province faces three more Federal Court challenges and is awaiting the outcome of an appeal in the state’s Land Court…
An indigenous group, which is being bankrolled by conservationists and has a native title claim on the proposed mine site, has also filed for a judicial review of the National Native Title Tribun­al’s decision granting mining licences­ for the project…

A further judicial review is expect­ed to be filed if federal envir­onmental approval is given to expand Adani’s Abbot Point coal terminal to facilitate the expor­t of up to 60,000 tonnes a year to India.
The Queensland Resources Council warned that the wave of legal challenges was consistent with a plan drawn up in 2011 by green activists for litigation and protests aimed at disrupting and delaying the coal industry. 
“The signal sent to inter­national investors around the world is diabolical,” Trade Minister Andrew Robb told The Weekend Australian. “...this legal sabo­tage is going to deter billions of dollars of investment...” 
Where are the unions which allegedly represent coal miners? Why their silence? 
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I’ll take the Pope seriously when thousands of boat people are allowed to camp in the Vatican

Andrew Bolt August 22 2015 (7:01am)

The Pope does not believe in borders, except, of course, for the Vatican:
But for other countries the Pope has a message: let them come in. Welcome to your homes the uninvited who did not help to build them:
Pope Francis has been vocal about the treatment of immigrants since he became the head of the Roman Catholic Church in March 2013. Last year, he called the surge of Central American children crossing the border into the United States a “humanitarian emergency.” In a June encyclical letter on climate change, Francis noted the “tragic rise” of immigrants fleeing poverty. 
The Holy Father would enter the United States by crossing the Mexican border if he had the time, according to Cardinal Oscar Rodríguez Maradiaga, the head of a papal advisory group of cardinals, during remarks in March before a Georgetown University audience. 
That would have only one effect: to encourage more of what the United States is trying to stop:
About 135 unaccompanied children, on average, were caught illegally crossing the U.S.-Mexico border each day in July, according to the latest data released by U.S. Customs and Border Protection… 
According to the updated numbers, 30,862 unaccompanied minors have been apprehended at the border so far in FY 2015, which began on Oct. 1… On Monday, Customs and Border Protection ... blamed the uptick of UC apprehensions on “poverty and violence” that “continue to worsen” in Central America, as well as smugglers who “often use misinformation about current immigration policies and practices” to convince people to cross into the United States illegally. 
And the Pope would also “convince people to cross into the United States illegally”.
Same story in Europe, where the Pope’s demands encourage exactly the consequences he deplores. Where he seems good by recommending what actually leads to evil. In 2014:
Last Thursday some 300 Africans died while trying to smuggle themselves into Italy, and the Pope, hands seeming to shake with anger, railed: “The word disgrace comes to me.” 
He added: ‘’Let us unite our efforts so that similar tragedies do not happen again. Only a decided collaboration among all can help to stop them.’’…

And what “decided collaboration” is needed to end such drownings? The Pope did not explain, but the European Council for Refugees and Exiles did. 
It was as the Greens demand here: to give such migrants “an alternative to resorting to illegal means of entry through dangerous routes”.
The Italian navy and later a European one were deployed. NGOs sent rescue vessels. But instead of getting fewer drownings they got more, this week again:
The number of migrants asphyxiated in the hold of an overcrowded fishing boat off the Italian coast has climbed to 49 as the EU struggled to cope with “the worst refugee crisis since World War II,” with thousands making dangerous crossings to reach Italy and Greece… 
More than 103,000 migrants have arrived on Italy’s shores since the start of the year while nearly 135,000 have arrived in Greece. At least 2,300 people have died making the crossing, according to the latest figures issued by the International Organization for Migration.
That 2300 figure is for just this year alone. Last year another 3500 drowned. And 170,000 illegal immigrants crossed into Italy, creating a social problem that is unlikely to end well.
Take Kos this month, where boat people have overwhelmed the Greek island - as they will eventuall overwhelm other parts of Europe:
Or Macedonia this week, where police have deployed tear gas and stun grenades to stop an invasion of their borders:
Once again,the Pope’s reaction reminds me of Jean Raspail’s brilliant 1971 satire (or indictment), Camp of the Saints, describing how the Pope of a Europe frozen with self-loathing greets an Armada of one million boat people sailing in to help itself to the riches of the West. And in so many ways Raspail’s Pope resembles ours:

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Trade union preys on weak and guilt-ridden

Piers Akerman – Thursday, August 21, 2014 (7:29pm)

THERE was an outpouring of public sympathy for Down syndrome baby Gammy, abandoned in Thailand to be cared for by his surrogate mother, 21-year-old Pattaramon Chanbua.

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The big rush to rewrite history

Piers Akerman – Thursday, August 21, 2014 (6:44pm)

SINCE last year’s election, there has been an unholy rush by participants competing to get their versions of history into print. First out of the chute was Rob Oakeshott’s own explanation for the failure of the nation to find any beauty in the ugliness of Julia Gillard’s minority government he helped install.

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SILMA, FORMERLY ANNE

Tim Blair – Friday, August 22, 2014 (4:55am)

This interview is calm, polite, genial, and utterly chilling.
UPDATE. Peaceful Muslim Milad Bin Ahmad-Shah Al-Ahmadzai goes to jail after threatening to slit throats and break necks: 
Al-Ahmadzai had been under surveillance by ASIO for four years when he made threats over the phone to an ASIO officer and a police member of the Joint Counter Terrorism Team on May 2 and 10 last year.
Al-Ahmadzai told the ASIO officer in a phone call, “I’m going to crack your neck.”
“Come near my family again and I am going to slit your throat, you pig.”
Eight days later he called a police member of JCTT saying: “I know who you are, I know where you live, and I know what you do.”
He followed the phone call up with several threatening texts including, “just be careful”, and in another message described him as a “putrid dog and filthy pig”. 
Al-Ahmadzai will be released from prison in ten years in five years in one year in six months on November 19.
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LEFTIST LITERARY FEST

Tim Blair – Friday, August 22, 2014 (4:42am)

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HELP BOB

Tim Blair – Friday, August 22, 2014 (4:24am)

Labor idiot, ABC favourite and tax-funded leftist Bob Ellis considers the murder of James Foley: 
Beheadings occur routinely in Game of Thrones. And no complaint has been laid. Why then all the fuss? 
Commenters are invited to explain the difference between television programs and actual human beings. Use small words and simple language. Bob may be reading.
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HANG ON

Tim Blair – Friday, August 22, 2014 (3:02am)

Clown Shoe amount of power driving something that weighs only 220kg – just 15 per cent of a Clown Shoe:

That front tyre will last the life of the bike. It is barely ever in contact with the road.
UPDATE. In other velocity news, I have only 29 per cent of Jodhi Meares’s driving suspensions.
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The Bolt Report on Sunday, August 24

Andrew Bolt August 22 2014 (5:40pm)

On Channel 10 on Sunday at 10am and 4pm…
Editorial:  Tony Abbott, kick that clown Palmer off the stage.
My guest:  the literally indestructible Education Minister Chris Pyne.
The panel:  Michael Kroger and former Labor Minister Gary Johns.
NewsWatch:  Daily Telegraph columnist Piers Akerman.  Did the media protect Bill Shorten too much? Why the media ban on showing the beheading video? And a dial-a-quote discussed.

The videos of the shows appear here.
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How did the Liberals bring us to this?

Andrew Bolt August 22 2014 (9:25am)

The IPA rightly points out that our top tax rate is now far too high. Odd, that it took a Liberal Government to hike the top tax rate by another 2 per cent. 
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Save the children should not mean help the terrorists

Andrew Bolt August 22 2014 (9:03am)


By adding the words “end the blockade” - as in the blockade of weapons - Save the Children confirms its new campaign actually supports the war strategy of the Hamas terrorist group which controls Gaza and openly says it wants Jews dead.
“End the blockade” is in fact the key demand Hamas makes in exchange for ending its rocket attacks on Israel - for now:
Hamas has said it will not relent until the Israeli-Egyptian blockade on the Gaza Strip is lifted. Both countries view Hamas as a security threat and are reluctant to make sweeping concessions without guarantees weapons will not enter Gaza.
The blockade is primarily to stop Hamas from bringing in bigger weapons. So why has Save the Children sided with the terrorists?
(Thanks to reader Daniel.) 
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To repeat: sack the Press Council

Andrew Bolt August 22 2014 (8:52am)

Free speech

Yet more evidence that the authoritarian  Press Council is a menace to free speech. It has become a weapon for activists wanting to hound opponents into silence, knowing the council’s process is the true punishment:
AFTER seven months of passionate argument, formal hearings, quasi-litigation and wasted time, the Press Council is edging ever so slowly towards a final ruling on whether it will allow food writers to express an unqualified opinion in favour of eating kangaroos… 
But it also raises the question of whether the complaint-handling processes of the Press Council are too easily captured by activists seeking to punish journalists who express opinions with which they disagree…

The Australian’s food writer, John Lethlean, has been living with the kangaroo case ever since he wrote about his passionate belief that “wild” food such as kangaroo meat should be more widely consumed in Australia…
Enter the Australian Society of Kangaroos. By February, this organisation — which was not mentioned in Lethlean’s article — had persuaded the Press Council to launch its complaint-handling procedures…
Was Lethlean wrong to express his opinion? Should he, as asserted by the ASK, have included contrary views from those such as ... the ASK?
Were that argument to succeed, it could transform the way newspapers handle opinion by requiring the inclusion of contrary views. 
A typical “balanced” opinion could be: “I thought the play was great — but on the other hand it was terrible.” 
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End this wail about shale. We’re robbing ourselves

Andrew Bolt August 22 2014 (8:18am)

In the US:
The “gale of shale” is hitting the US and the world with surplus energy. In 2000, shale was 2% of natural gas supply; in 2012, it was about 37%; and will be about 65% within the next two decades. The US is poised for shipping out shale gas in liquefied form as net exporter of energy. American motorists are consuming less gasoline, thereby limiting the blend of biofuels like ethanol. 
But in Victoria:
A moratorium on fracking has been in place in Victoria since August 2012 while more information is gathered on potential environmental risks posed by the industry. The parts of Victoria with the highest potential for unconventional gas are the Gippsland and Otway basins. Notably, tight gas has been located near Seaspray in Gippsland but is not yet being produced.
In NSW:
NSW currently provides only 5 per cent of its own natural gas… NSW has some of the country’s toughest coal-seam gas rules, having banned wells within two kilometres of residential areas, and land containing vineyards and horse studs.
Peter Reith, who conducted an inquiry for the Victorian Government:
The lesson to learn from policy failures in NSW is that governments who abandon public debate soon find that scare campaigns and green activists fill the vacuum. And then the public debate is soon mired in false claims, partly because government has not ensured the public is fairly informed and because some activists have other political agendas. Sadly, instead of promoting increased supply of gas by constructively responding to genuine issues, decisions taken in Victoria with its moratoriums and NSW with various policies have encouraged and helped legitimise the green activists. 
Victorians should be under no illusions. Gas prices are already rising and will have a negative impact on Victoria’s manufacturing base… Victoria is not a rust bucket, not yet, but unless governments are prepared to fight for real reform to reduce costs then the prospects for Victoria are fading…
The political campaigns against the gas industry are principally all about scare mongering. The fracking debate is full of overblown nonsense. The greens have an ulterior motive. Green activists strongly oppose any fossil fuels even though gas has much lower emissions than brown coal… I have seen many scare campaigns in my time in politics but this particular campaign has been allowed to run for far too long and will have adverse repercussions for living standards and jobs… 
There are very few countries in the world that ban fracking because there is no reason to do so. Fracking was invented in the late 1940s; it is a new technology and more and more firms are turning to green fracking which is another innovation from the gas industry.
This is not the first time Australian governments have strangled useful industries by pandering to baseless green scares. We have virtually banned nuclear power. We banned lucrative nuclear waste facilities to take in spent fuel rods from overseas. We’ve hampered the use of genetically modified crops. We imposed a useless carbon tax on coal-fired power generators and helped to drive smelters out of business.
This is madness, and a lack of political courage and principle is to blame.
(Thanks to reader John.) 
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The church failed, but its accusers show no mercy

Andrew Bolt August 22 2014 (8:06am)

I do not doubt some priests were evil and the Catholic church seemed at times complicit.
I do not doubt that people have a right to feel very angry at their betrayal.
But the royal commission at times seems to have a lynch mob mentality, with the church’s accusers feeling licensed to hurl the most savage abuse. This seems at odds with the professed desire for healing and compassion:
Mr Foster said Cardinal Pell showed a ‘’sociopathic lack of empathy’’ when they met to discuss the case in the 1990s.... 
Earlier on Thursday, church lawyer Richard Leder told the commission that Melbourne Archbishop Denis Hart had ‘’strongly held views that every effort should be made to settle’’ the Fosters’ case.... His answer drew jeers from the public gallery.
More gleeful mockery in The Age:
The voice that has delivered a thousand sermons seemed unsuited to be that of a witness in the dock, even if it was a virtual dock. There seemed a defensiveness to it, and the jutting jaw left the viewer in a familiar, vain search for a gesture of humility… 
Here was a prince of the Church, good Lord, required to take a Bible in his hands and swear to tell nothing but the truth… Forty five minutes in, the video link failed and the Cardinal was frozen on the screen, jaw jutting. “He’s pulled the plug,” a cynic cried. 
Would any government dare call such a royal commission into Islam in Australia, and the links between some imams and, say, jihadism, genital mutilation, polygamy and subjugation of women? Would they risk this daily vilification of a faith and of its leaders? 
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Wayne Swan and the Marxism of resentful envy

Andrew Bolt August 22 2014 (7:53am)

Is Bill Shorten’s Labor smarter than Gillard-Swan’s? Has it learned from the mistakes of Wayne Swan’s politics of envious redistribution?
Mr Swan failed to seize the mantle of economic reform from the Hawke-Keating years and invest it with new energy and purpose… He never understood that business is the engine of the economy. He failed to appreciate that the modern enterprise class was created by the economic reforms of the 1980s and 90s implemented by a Labor government. Mr Swan bristled at the legacy of competitive capital, product and labour markets. He believed in redistributing a shrinking share of the economy rather than growing it for the benefit of all. 
In government, he lacked a program of economic reform. He shirked the big challenges. He blew the budget. When his big test came, the global financial crisis, the overall management of the government’s response was defective. The initial 2008 stimulus package and monetary measures were largely sound. But in 2009, during the second phase, too much money was spent and much of it was wasted. Business was an enemy, not a partner in reform. He wrote hollow screeds for The Monthly. He idolised multi-millionaire US rocker Bruce Springsteen. And he enthusiastically embraced a neo-Marxist mentality. We got it right when we labelled his policies as retrograde class warfare. The wiser heads in Labor such as Bob Hawke, Paul Keating, Simon Crean, Bill Kelty and Mr Ferguson have disowned this nonsense. The challenge remains for the Labor leadership team of Bill Shorten and Tanya Plibersek to demonstrate they repudiate it too.
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AMA makes the co-payment a fraud

Andrew Bolt August 22 2014 (7:43am)

The Government strategy was to get a compromise deal with the AMA and use it to somehow embarrass or convince Labor or crossbench senators to support the Medicare co-payment, too.
It hasn’t worked. The AMA compromise does concede the idea of a price signal but in fact guts the government’s plan:
… the Australian Medical Association sharpened its objections yesterday by declaring patients should not pay fees to finance future research… 
In a key step in the debate, the AMA yesterday endorsed the concept of putting a price signal on visits to the doctor to make the health system more sustainable but warned that the fee should be cut and million of patients — including pensioners and children — should be exempt. Health Minister Peter Dutton warned that the AMA proposal would wipe out 97 per cent of the $3.5bn to be collected in co-payments over the next four years while handing doctors a $580 million “windfall”. 
This turns a disguised spending cut into just another tax. 
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Of all the precious gemstones, opal is perhaps the most alluring. A unique mixture of silica and varying amounts of water, opal’s brilliant play of color is the result of tiny silicon spheres measuring several hundred nanometers in diameter, the same width as the wavelength of visible light. What makes an opal precious and another nonprecious is how those spheres are organized:

“In precious opal the glasslike molecules are stacked like billiard balls set out in neat rows, creating regular triangular gaps between them on the surface; ordinary opal is more like a disorganized school equipment locker, full of basketballs, soccer balls, and golf balls thrown into it in no particular order. When the surface of opal is even and ordered and the molecules are a set distance apart, the white light bounces off in wavelengths that give the appearance of bright colors. And just as the sky looks red when there are big molecules in the atmosphere, the red in opal is caused by the presence of larger spheres in the silicon gel; while the more common blue color appears when the spheres are small. But whatever the size of the silicon, if the surface has no order to it the light just bounces off in all directions, giving no sense of separate colors at all. It means that paradoxically it is order that causes the irregular iridescent flashes of color in opal; while it is chaos that makes low-quality opal a uniform gray,” (Victoria Finlay, Jewels: A Secret History, p. 1,959).

Once considered the most prized precious stones by European royals, opals were traditionally given as favors in the 1800s. Even Napoleon adored the stone, giving his wife, Josephine, a vivid red opal weighing roughly 140 grams. The first opal to be named, “The Burning of Troy” was aptly labeled since Napoleon had said that he gave her this stone because she was his Helen. In spite of such royal favor, the opal is the only one thought to bring bad luck. This notion swept the opinions of nineteenth-century Europe after the great success of the ghost novel Anne of Geierstein by Sir Walter Scott, in which a drop of holy water turns a supernatural opal talisman into a common pebble and soon after which the heroine dies. So convinced of this superstition was Princess Alexandra, wife of King Edward VII, that when Queen Victoria died, the new queen removed the “unlucky opals” from the diamond and opal tiara her mother-in-law had commissioned and replaced them with rubies from Ceylon, which remain there today (Finlay, p. 2,194).

Quite possibly the most famous opal in history was owned by a Roman senator named Nonius in 35 BC. Originating from the mines of Czernowitza, the only source for opals at the time, the fabled stone was only the size of a hazelnut yet was valued at two million sesterces, or enough to buy a villa in a nice part of Rome. So obsessed with the stone was Mark Antony that the amount of pressure he applied to Nonius, who had no intentions to part with the stone, to sell it to him caused Nonius to self-imposed exile, leaving behind all his property and taking only his precious opal. Even Pliny, the famous Roman author, called opal a gemstone which combines the best possible characteristics of the most beautiful of gemstones: the fine sparkle of Almandine, the shining purple of Amethyst, the golden yellow of Topaz, and the deep blue of Sapphire, so that all colours shine and sparkle together in a beautiful combination (via).

Today, roughly 97% of opals come from Australia, and of all the opal produced in the world 60% is white opal, 30% is crystal opal, 8% black opal and 2% boulder opal. The town of Coober Pedy, which means “white man in a hole” in Aborigine, produces a major amount of opal, however, the mines in Mintabie and Lightning Ridge produce the rarer, more valuable black opal. The ‘white’ or ‘black’ of an opal refers to the stone’s body color on which the ‘flashes of light and color’ play, with the black offering the most brilliant play of color. Much detail has gone into valuing black opals, even so far as differentiating the seemingly endless types of patterns. The more vivacious and bright the play of color, the more valuable the opal.

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NEW YORK -- Ichiro Suzuki said that he was "overwhelmed" to join a select group of professional hitters on Wednesday as the Yankees outfielder connected for his 4,000th hit between Japan's top professional league and the Major Leagues, a first-inning single off the Blue Jays' R.A. Dickey at Yankee Stadium.
The Yankees spilled out of the first-base dugout to celebrate after the hit, a line drive that sailed past diving third baseman Brett Lawrie into left field. Curtis Granderson was the first to reach Ichiro, enveloping him in a hug, and Ichiro bowed to the crowd to acknowledge an extended standing ovation.
"The game was stopped for me and the players came out to first base," Ichiro said through an interpreter. "I kind of felt bad that the game was stopped for me. At first, I was trying to stop them from coming, but it was just because I was so happy and overjoyed with the way they supported me.
"Obviously having the 4,000th hit was important, but what is going to make it a more special moment was the fact that my teammates came out. When I look back on this, that's what is going to make this very special."
The total includes 1,278 hits that Ichiro collected over nine seasons in Nippon Professional Baseball as a member of the Orix Blue Wave from 1992-2000, as well as the 2,722 he has logged in the Majors with the Mariners and Yankees since 2001.
"It's an amazing feat," Yankees manager Joe Girardi said. "It's a testament to how hard he's worked, how long he's been in the game, how he stays healthy, the way he goes about his business. He's a great player, and he's been a great player for a long time."
Ichiro joined Pete Rose (4,256) and Ty Cobb (4,191) as the only players to reach the 4,000-hit plateau when considering hits from the highest levels in the U.S. and Japan.
A great admirer of the game's history, Ichiro said he does not expect to see his hit total placed alongside those of Rose and Cobb.
"It is a record that is adding two leagues into one; those guys did it in one league," Ichiro said. "I don't think you have to put me in that same category as them."
The single off Dickey also moved Ichiro past Yankees legend Lou Gehrig (2,721) on the Majors' all-time list.
"Obviously I only know him by name, and I'm hoping to go to Cooperstown and learn more about him," Ichiro said. "I think that was a special moment, to be in this Yankees uniform and be able to pass such a great Yankee."
Dickey said that he would have preferred not to be involved in the milestone, but added, "That being said, what an incredible achievement, and the manner in which he has done it is equally as impressive.
"The longevity, the endurance, the durability, having played with him in Seattle -- it was a real treat to play with him, and it couldn't have happened to a more professional hitter."
The Yankees played a video tribute to Ichiro from Ken Griffey Jr. during Wednesday's game, and the Mariners released a statement which read: "On behalf of the entire Seattle Mariners organization and our fans across the Pacific Northwest, we offer our heartiest congratulations to Ichiro Suzuki for reaching 4,000 hits today.
"We are proud that Ichiro's remarkable career started in Seattle as American League MVP and Rookie of the Year in 2001, and that he collected 2,533 of those 4,000 hits while wearing a Mariners uniform for 11-and-a-half years.
"From Japan to the Mariners and continuing with the New York Yankees, Ichiro's historic milestone is testament to his position as one of the greatest hitters in the game of baseball."
As his career enters its latter stages, Ichiro still owns at least 150 hits in each of his first 12 seasons, a feat accomplished only by Paul Waner, Richie Ashburn and Albert Pujols in the live-ball era.
"After I got my first hit, if at that point I said to you guys, 'My goal is to have 4,000 hits,' I think everybody would have called me an idiot," Ichiro said. "Now, after years and years of just getting hits every day, I've come to this point. What is important is just going out there and doing what you can do every single day."
The argument has been made that if Ichiro's NPB stats are added to his Major League stats, then perhaps Minor League statistics should also be credited in tallying other players' hit totals. It's an intriguing point, and one that highlights Ichiro's accomplishments.
For the purposes of this exercise, only three additional players would then reach 4,000 professional hits: Hank Aaron (3,771 in Majors; 324 in Minors), Stan Musial (3,630 in Majors, 371 in Minors) and Arnold "Jigger" Statz, an outfielder who tallied 737 of his 4,093 pro hits with four big league teams from 1919-28.
"That's a lot of hits, man. It's pretty impressive," Yankees captain Derek Jeter said recently. "I don't care if it's 4,000 in Little League. It shows how consistent he's been throughout his career. It makes you look at how many hits he's got here [in the Majors] in a short amount of time. That's difficult to do, so Ichi has been as consistent as anyone."
Ichiro said that he does not have Rose's 4,256 on his radar, but now that 4,000 is crossed off the to-do list, Ichiro is free to focus on joining the 3,000-hit club in the Major Leagues.
"I get asked that a lot, but I can't have that as a goal," said Ichiro, who sits 278 hits shy of 3,000. "What happens today determines what happens tomorrow. I've got to perform every day in order to be in the lineup the next day. I don't make goals that are so far away; what I do is do what I can every single day and really build off that -- see where that takes me."
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Warp-drive technology, a form of "faster than light" travel popularized by TV's "Star Trek," could be bolstered by the physics of quantum thrusters — another science-fiction idea made plausible by modern science.
NASA scientists are performingexperiments that could help makewarp drive a possibility sometime in the future from a lab built for the Apollo program at NASA's Johnson Space Center in Houston.
A warp-drive-enabled spacecraft would look like a football with two large rings fully encircling it. The rings would utilize an exotic form of matter to cause space-time to contract in front of and expand behind them. Harold "Sonny" White, a NASA physicist, is experimenting with these concepts on a smaller scale using a light-measuring device in the lab. [Warp Drives and Transporters: How 'Star Trek' Tech Works (Infographic)]
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The claim
Penny Wong's claims about Tony Abbott's cuts are rated mostly false
Entitled Abbott's Cuts to Come, the homepage features a menacing-looking shot of the opposition leader alongside the question: "What Will You Lose if He Wins?"
Launching the site on Wednesday Finance Minister Penny Wong said it was "a snapshot of the cuts we know Tony Abbott plans to make should he be elected".
"We are being generous and we are using their numbers," she said.
"Australians will pay for Tony Abbott's signature scheme and his other unfunded promises through cuts to jobs, to services, to health, to education."
Does it stack up?
Rolling a cursor over photos of families, nurses, schoolchildren and workers on the site brings up claims of cuts that are sketchier than Senator Wong suggests.
Under the heading ''Health'' it says when Mr Abbott was health minister "the Liberals ripped $1 billion dollars from our health system – enough to fund over 1000 beds".
PolitiFact has previously found the claim to be false. Health spending climbed in each year Mr Abbott was minister.
Also under the ''Health'' heading it says: "Joe Hockey says 'no guarantees' on spending cuts".
It neglects to mention Mr Hockey's most recent commitment on Monday that "health and medical research is incredibly important and we have guaranteed that". (It is unclear whether Mr Hockey was guaranteeing not to cut funding for health as well as medical research or merely guaranteeing not to cut funding for research into health and medicine.)
Under the heading 'School Kids' it says: "Cutting billions from schools means that on average schools will have $2000 less per child".
It acknowledges that Mr Abbott has promised to match Labor's school funding commitment for the next four years, but says he has "refused to commit" beyond that.
Under the heading 'Jobs' it says: "Abbott will cut 12,000 jobs. That means families will lose their livelihood and local businesses will be hit."
It does not acknowledge that the 12,000 figure refers to the number of public servants Tony Abbott plans to lose through natural attrition over two years. The families of public servants who leave their jobs voluntarily are unlikely to "lose their livelihood".
A video on the site shows lights being turned out on pictures of workers in hard hats and fluoro jackets as a voice says: "Twelve thousand people will lose their jobs".
Hard hats are not typical of the clothing worn by public servants, and the video does not make clear that the 12,000 people who would "lose their jobs" are all public servants, all of whom would leave through natural attrition.
Under the heading: 'Those Depending on Penalty Rates' it says Mr Abbott "supports cutting penalty rates and overtime".
The claim pre-dates a commitment by Mr Abbott in Wednesday night's leaders' debate to protect both penalty rates and overtime.
The website is on safe ground on just three claims. Abbott would defer superannuation increases, abandon the low-income superannuation contribution and end the Schoolkids Bonus. Each is Coalition policy.
Finding
Senator Wong said the website was "a snapshot of the cuts we know Tony Abbott plans to make should he be elected".
The website is not a snapshot of the cuts Labor and Senator Wong "know" Tony Abbott plans to make. Most of the claimed cuts are suppositions, some of them erroneous.
A PolitiFact rating of ''mostly false'' applies a statement contains an element of truth but ignores critical facts that would give a different impression.
PolitiFact finds Senator Wong's claim "mostly false".

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The Psychiatrist and the Proctologist

Best friends graduating from medical school at the same time decided that 
in spite of two different specialties, they would open a practice together 
to share office space and personnel.

Dr. Smith was the psychiatrist and Dr. Jones was the proctologist; they
put up a sign reading: Dr. Smith and Dr. Jones: Hysterias and Posteriors. The
town council was livid and insisted they change it.

The docs changed it to read: Schizoids and Hemorrhoids. This was also
not acceptable so they again changed the sign to read Catatonics and High
Colonics - no go.

Next they tried Manic Depressives and Anal Retentives thumbs down again.

Then came Minds and Behinds - still no good.

Another attempt resulted in Lost Souls and Butt Holes - unacceptable again!

So they tried Nuts and Butts - no way. Freaks and Cheeks - still no good. Loons and Moons - forget it.

Almost at their wits' end, the docs finally came up with:

Dr. Smith and Dr. Jones - Specializing in Odds and Ends.

Everybody loved it!

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In this video introducing the Free at Last PAC, Louisiana state senator Elbert Guillory crushes liberal economics – in the most charming way possible.
He explains that the Republican party is more beneficial to black Americans than the Democratic party because the GOP supports capitalism over handouts. 
“Only capitalism can provide the upward mobility for the meekest among us to break the shackles of poverty and rise into the middle class.”
“[We must] reach into the black community and articulate those values that fuel the American dream. We will be silent no more.”
State Senator Guillory, who recently left the Democratic party and is considering a U.S. Senate run, is the honorary chairman for the Free at Last PAC. The group aims to present the Republican message in a way that attracts more black Americans to the party.
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For the first time, researchers have documented a behavior that had been thought unnatural, if not impossible: apes swimming.
The scientists captured on video two examples of apes that could swim quite naturally. The first was a young chimpanzee named Cooper, who not only figured out how to swim but could also dive underwater to retrieve items from the bottom of a swimming pool.
"We were extremely surprised when the chimp, Cooper, dived repeatedly into a swimming pool in Missouri and seemed to feel very comfortable," Renato Bender, a researcher at the University of the Witwatersrand in South Africa, said in a statement. "It was very surprising behavior for an animal that is thought to be very afraid of water." [8 Humanlike Behaviors of Primates]

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There are renewed calls for gun control by the Left after anAustralian student was senselessly killed in Oklahoma last Friday. Christopher Lane, 22, was shot and killed while out for a jog by three teens who allegedly told police after that they were "bored."
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TRUE COLOURS ………

This is what make-up artist and hair stylist Lily Fontana said about working on both Kevin Rudd and Tony Abbott for last nights televised debate…………..

"One of them was absolutely lovely, engaged in genuine conversation with me, acknowledged that I had a job to do and was very appreciative," she said on her page, which is public.

"The other did the exact opposite!”

"Oh boy, I HAVE NEVER HAD ANYONE TREAT ME SO BADLY WHILST TRYING TO DO MY JOB”

"Political opinions aside...from one human being to another...Mr Abbott, you win hands down."

http://www.theaustralian.com.au/national-affairs/election-2013/face-to-face-rudd-shows-his-make-up/story-fn9qr68y-1226701941993

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Mark Kenny in the Fairfax press thinks the bounce from Kevin Rudd's return as PM ended with his disastrous and ill thought out FBT changes. There was also renaming the CO2 tax and outsourcing increases to Brussels, the Bank Deposits Tax, and the endless new money grants without a thought about the massive debt he had built and the $250 billion he had wasted. 

But the clinch was his failure in the first debate to do what the media luvvies expected, that he would wipe the floor with Tony Abbott. On most accounts Tony Abbott was the winner of that first debate. Who wins and the debate itselfs is usually of no importance as the gallery almost always declares the left candidate the winner, and the "worm'' is rigged to fit. Similarly, The Brisbane debate was made useless by the string of mainly leftwing inner city whiny irrelevant questions.
The comment on Lily Fontana's FaceBook told us what anyone who knows either men is aware of:

" Just finished doing Kevin Rudd and Tony Abbott's makeup for the People's Forum at the Broncos Leagues Club.'''

"One of them was absolutely lovely, engaged in genuine conversation with me, acknowledge that I had a job to do and was very appreciative. The other did the exact opposite! Oh boy, I have ever had anyone treat me so badly whilst trying to do my job. Political opinions aside...from one human being to another...Mr Abbott, you win hands down.
@profdavidflint

Read more: http://www.brisbanetimes.com.au/federal-politics/federal-election-2013/how-hubristic-rudd-lost-the-car-keys-20130821-2sbgu.html

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When ever I have unexpected friends over and nothing to serve I turn to this recipe. I usually have all the ingredients in my cupboard. Serve it as it is or with some vanilla ice cream on the side. Yummi!
I especially love all the nuts on top of the cake. I have a crush for pistachios – fantastic color - they’ll get everyone’s mouths water running.
- See more at: http://www.maikenskitchen.com/#sthash.h0wzZXQx.dpuf
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Zaya Toma

<Thank you Premier Barry O'Farrell for so strongly supporting the recognition of the Assyrian, Armenian and Greek Genocide by the Ottoman Empire in the NSW Parliament. These three communities fought side by side with the Australians and other allied nations for the shared values of freedom and democracy. Turkey is a great modern country and should not be afraid of the truth, what happened 100 years ago is relevant today, because those who forget the past are condemned to repeat it. Whether you find your self agreeing or disagreeing with the Premier, one thing is for sure, he is a politician with courage.>
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THAT’S MY VAGINA ON HONI SOIT (NSFW)

I had my vagina photographed for the front cover of a student newspaper

By Lily Patchett on August 21 2013 - News

Last week, along with eighteen other young women from Sydney Uni, I had my vagina photographed to make a political statement on the front cover of Honi Soit, Australia’s oldest running weekly student newspaper.
We believe that the way the media represents women’s vaginas is neither realistic or fair, and causes women to feel uncomfortable about how they look. It also gives men a distorted idea of what a vagina actually looks like. Not enough people know what a real vagina looks like. Not a digitally-altered vagina, not a porn star’s vagina, a real one.
Soon after we had the photos taken, we were told that if our vaginas were published and released without censorship (the very thing we were supposed to be fighting), the SRC could be facing a legal battle it could not afford.
Honi Soit had no choice but to agree to censor the vaginas, in the process proving the importance of this project. Here were our vaginas in a completely non-sexual context, showing all of their beautiful diversity, and once again, no one was to see them.
The censored version of Honi Soit cover.
 
Until I saw the uncensored versions of the vaginas, I didn’t even realise myself how different they could be. The fact that as a woman with a vagina I didn’t know they could be so wonderfully varied from each other just goes to show the extent to which personal ignorance is forced upon us. It also demonstrates how accustomed we are to seeing only one type of vagina: neat, tidy and boring-looking.
But Australian law states that published vaginas must be healed down to a single crease, which means that almost every vagina you see in the media has been censored and/or airbrushed – you’ll never see any ‘bits’ hanging out. You can imagine that this leaves many women feeling like they are abnormal. As the uncensored cover of Honi Soit showed, no two vaginas are the same. But to avoid legal prosecution, Honi Soit censored every one of the 18 vaginas with a black rectangle.
However, when the magazine was released, a blunder was discovered. The black rectangles which had been added to cover the vaginas were far more transparent than was intended. The copies were quickly taken off the stands.
Honi Soit published a post on its Facebook page explaining the motivations that led to them pursuing the project:
We are tired of society giving us a myriad of things to feel about our own bodies. We are tired of having to attach anxiety to our vaginas. We are tired of vaginas being either artificially sexualised (see: porn) or stigmatised (see: censorship and airbrushing). We are tired of being pressured to be sexual, and then being shamed for being sexual.
The vaginas on the cover are not sexual. We are not always sexual. The vagina should and can be depicted in a non-sexual way – it’s just another body part. “Look at your hand, then look at your vagina,” said one participant in the project. “Can we really be so naïve to believe our vaginas the dirtiest, sexiest parts of our body?”
We want to feel normal; we don’t want to feel fearful when we have a first sexual counter with a partner who may judge us because of our vaginas.
Here they are, flaps and all. Don’t you dare tell me my body offends you. 
It makes no sense to me that in this day and age, vaginas are still held to mythical standards of beauty – soft, hairless, and white. The reality of vaginas is that some of them are hairy, sometimes prickly, sometimes dark, sometimes pinkish. Some women’s labia poke out, some don’t. But mostly, vaginas are always treated as some great, big, shameful secret.
As young women, we already have enough to worry about when it comes to body image.
Young women are growing up in a society which is so concerned about the way we look. We are expected to be thin, well-dressed, and perfectly made-up. Add to this the pressure to have a picture-perfect (ha!) vagina that we already feel too ashamed to talk about, and it’s no wonder so many young women feel insecure.
Honi Soit has admitted it did not foresee how big a legal issue the cover would become. The images have been deemed in breach of s 578C of the NSW Crimes Act because they are “indecent”.
But I don’t think a natural, normal-looking vagina is indecent. Not in the slightest.
Birdee believes that this image should be published, and seen by everyone. Here is a link to the uncensored cover which was tweeted byHoni Soit Editor, Lucy Watson.
Lily studies philosophy and sociology at Sydney Uni. She identifies as a vegan and feminist, and will probably be very quiet if you ever meet her because she tends to observe rather than engage. However, if you’re ever alone together, you will probably be bombarded with an intense array of questions, which may make you feel uncomfortable. But never fear – she swears it’s only for curiosity’s sake. People are fascinating. You can read more of Lily’s writing on her blog.
  • David Daniel Ball I’m a guy, christian and conservative, so I expect almost anything I might say will be booed .. but .. I’d like to encourage you. I don’t wish the images to be pervasive, but I feel at university everything should be for discussion and critical analysis. I don’t like people being judged for what they look like .. but then I’m an idiot so I don’t like being judged by my thoughts too. I can accept being judged by my actions, but prefer leniency too. I actually don’t really care what others think these days .. I’m kinda old .. and I now feel that it isn’t what others think about me, but how I can fit myself into the lives of those I meet .. I feel this way because I am a Christian, and know I have at times judged harshly when I shouldn’t, because God forgave me when he didn’t have to. Be well.

    Jason J-Fo Meh. Undergraduate leftist attention-seekers put vaginas on display as stunt. Not offended, just bored

    David Daniel Ball you don't want to play the face matching game?

    Jason J-Fo Is Kevin Rudd one of them? *Shudder*

    David Daniel Ball No .. I don't even feel the surface has been scratched here. There is an argument for deeper exploration of the issue .. who knows what could be raised? In the pursuit of knowledge, all the senses must come into play ..

    Jason J-Fo You really need to get out more David Daniel Ball

    오사렘 Aren't porn stars' vaginas real?? Dont judge a woman by her vagina.

    오사렘 How come vaginas are deemed indecent but not breasts publicly exposed, on both women AND men??

    John Tran Lol.. everything is up for experimentation in at uni.. they feel intellectually sophisticated when its done at uni. Show us your vagie! Its for a great cause and will convey a message..

    John Tran Men exposing their breast. Yes that's indecent!

    오사렘 Sometimes a little mystery goes a long way...

    오사렘 Why on earth would you think all vaginas look the same, just because you feel yours doesn't measure up, like all people would look the same. Unless they are twins. Then yes they would look the same & probably their vaginas too. People are always going to have low self esteem and hang ups about their bodies. What they should do is learn to embrace their physical appearance and not buy into the media's ploy of 'you must have this to be this blah blah blah'. Phfft no one tells me what to do, i do as i please. People should have evolved by now and be smarter than this. So it should be not survival of the fittest, but the smartest. But alas its often brauns over brains, beauty over beasts.

    Jason J-Fo Unless you're that Gok Wan guy from Target ads, I seriously doubt most men are spending their afternoons critiquing vaginas from a post modernist feminist-intellectual perspective. Most would be glad to see one and if they ever did put one down, there's the pinky finger comeback from the ladies.

    David Daniel Ball 'Should' is a powerful word. People should not judge .. but then .. think about what judging means .. multiple experiences in diversity. I never want to be so jaded by experience that a vagina is not of interest to me. But the issue here is not me or even men .. these girls 'feel' judged. I'm not responsible for their feelings, but I am responsible for my behaviour. I am certain there are experiences these girls have of being judged on their body. And that is sad. I'm not particularly interested in a relationship with any of those 18 women and nothing they have done will help them find someone worthwhile who is. But as experiences go, there is no harm .. and that is how it should be.

    Jason J-Fo Still prefer to meet a vagina of any physical appearance than not.

    David Daniel Ball .. yeah, that is what I said, in more words.

    Jason J-Fo Uh oh. Your wife won't take kindly to that last comment David Daniel Ball

    David Daniel Ball Much ado about nothing, my friend .. assuming we are in a metaphorical scape ..

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That's what the Twitterverse is saying after reports the singer performed to just 40 people in a 90,000 capacity arena at the Mandela Sports and Culture Day in South Africa on Saturday.
The American R&B star was the surprise guest at the FNB stadium in Soweto - the only problem was that no-one knew she was playing.
Tens of thousands of people had therefore left the arena before she arrived on stage.
"Brandy [just] performed to an empty stadium. With the stadium lights on," tweeted South African musician, Kabomo.
"People didn't know there was a concert after the games. No one knew Brandy was around. Maybe a 40 people audience ... She sulked after two songs and walked off.
"There are more people there on a random Tuesday... Depressing."
Added @My2_Melo: "I gave up the min I saw the empty stadium. Brandy performing for the chairs!"
While @dawn_ngwenya said: "Brandy is going to perform for herself and Mbaks only," referring to South Africa's minister of sport, Fikile Mbalula.
The singer reportedly walked off in embarrassment after just two songs.
The country's national TV channel SABC reportedly also ended their broadcast of the concert before Brandy could even emerge on stage.
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An archaeological dig in the City of David, an ancient site in Jerusalem, uncovered shards of pottery, clay lamps, figurines and a ceramic bowl with a 2,700-year-old inscription in ancient Hebrew, according to new research.
A layer of artifacts was found during a recent excavation of an area known as Gihon Spring, which was the main source of water for the City of David. The ceramic bowl, with its partially preserved inscription on the rim, likely dates back to about 600 B.C. to 700 B.C., said lead researcher Joe Uziel, an archaeologist with the Israel Antiquities Authority.
The inscription is likely the latter part of the name of an individual from the seventh century B.C., the researchers said. While Uziel and his colleagues are investigating the significance of the ancient inscription including possible links to the Bible the researchers say the meaning of the engraving is unknown so far. [In Photos: Amazing Ruins of the Ancient World]
"Since we only have part of the name, any direct connection to a biblical figure is speculative." Uziel told LiveScience in an email. "That said, if we reconstruct the first two letters as Z and K, we would have the name Zechariah Ben (the son of) Benaiah."
Zechariah the son of Benaiah appears in 2 Chronicles, chapter 20:14 of the Hebrew Bible, which states that Jahaziel, son of Zechariah, son of Benaiah, and member of the Hebrew tribe of Levi, prophesized before King Jehoshaphat before the nation went to war with the ancient kingdoms of Ammon and Moab.
Yet, there are still unanswered questions about this potential biblical link, Uziel added.
"Zechariah Ben Benaiah is mentioned in 2 Chronicles as a levite during the ninth century, although our bowl dates back to the seventh century B.C.," he said.
By closely studying the bowl, the researchers determined that the inscription was made before the clay was fired, which is a process in which clay is brought up to high temperatures and is transformed into ceramic.
Still, the researchers are unsure why the ceramic bowl was inscribed, but some archaeologists have suggested the bowl may have been used to hold an offering.
"It is difficult to say with certainty what the specific use of the bowl was," Uziel said. "Usually bowls are very typical and common vessels found, used similarly to plates today, as serving dishes to eat from. However, the name inscribed on the bowl prior to its firing (the final process of making the bowl) signifies that it may have been made for a specific intention, such as the presentation of a gift or offering to someone, where the name would reflect either the recipient or more likely the presenter."
The discovery of the bowl with the 2,700-year-old inscription will be presented at Megalim's Annual Archaeological Conference, which will take place on Aug. 29 in the City of David.
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August 22Feast day of the Queenship of Mary (Roman Catholic Church); Paryushana begins (Svetambar Jains, 2014); Madras Day in ChennaiTamil Nadu, India
Henry Dunant
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“By day the LORD directs his love, at night his song is with me— a prayer to the God of my life.” Psalm 42:8 NIV
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Morning and Evening by Charles Spurgeon

Morning

"He that watereth shall be watered also himself."
Proverbs 11:25

We are here taught the great lesson, that to get, we must give; that to accumulate, we must scatter; that to make ourselves happy, we must make others happy; and that in order to become spiritually vigorous, we must seek the spiritual good of others. In watering others, we are ourselves watered. How? Our efforts to be useful, bring out our powers for usefulness. We have latent talents and dormant faculties, which are brought to light by exercise. Our strength for labour is hidden even from ourselves, until we venture forth to fight the Lord's battles, or to climb the mountains of difficulty. We do not know what tender sympathies we possess until we try to dry the widow's tears, and soothe the orphan's grief. We often find in attempting to teach others, that we gain instruction for ourselves. Oh, what gracious lessons some of us have learned at sick beds! We went to teach the Scriptures, we came away blushing that we knew so little of them. In our converse with poor saints, we are taught the way of God more perfectly for ourselves and get a deeper insight into divine truth. So that watering others makes us humble. We discover how much grace there is where we had not looked for it; and how much the poor saint may outstrip us in knowledge. Our own comfort is also increased by our working for others. We endeavour to cheer them, and the consolation gladdens our own heart. Like the two men in the snow; one chafed the other's limbs to keep him from dying, and in so doing kept his own blood in circulation, and saved his own life. The poor widow of Sarepta gave from her scanty store a supply for the prophet's wants, and from that day she never again knew what want was. Give then, and it shall be given unto you, good measure, pressed down, and running over.

Evening


"I said not unto the seed of Jacob, Seek ye me in vain."
Isaiah 45:19

We may gain much solace by considering what God has not said. What he has said is inexpressibly full of comfort and delight; what he has not said is scarcely less rich in consolation. It was one of these "said nots" which preserved the kingdom of Israel in the days of Jeroboam the son of Joash, for "the Lord said not that he would blot out the name of Israel from under heaven." 2 Kings 14:27. In our text we have an assurance that God will answer prayer, because he hath "not said unto the seed of Israel, Seek ye me in vain." You who write bitter things against yourselves should remember that, let your doubts and fears say what they will, if God has not cut you off from mercy, there is no room for despair: even the voice of conscience is of little weight if it be not seconded by the voice of God. What God has said, tremble at! But suffer not your vain imaginings to overwhelm you with despondency and sinful despair. Many timid persons have been vexed by the suspicion that there may be something in God's decree which shuts them out from hope, but here is a complete refutation to that troublesome fear, for no true seeker can be decreed to wrath. "I have not spoken in secret, in a dark place of the earth; I have not said," even in the secret of my unsearchable decree, "Seek ye me in vain." God has clearly revealed that he will hear the prayer of those who call upon him, and that declaration cannot be contravened. He has so firmly, so truthfully, so righteously spoken, that there can be no room for doubt. He does not reveal his mind in unintelligible words, but he speaks plainly and positively, "Ask, and ye shall receive." Believe, O trembler, this sure truth--that prayer must and shall be heard, and that never, even in the secrets of eternity, has the Lord said unto any living soul, "Seek ye me in vain."
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Today's reading: Psalm 107-109, 1 Corinthians 4 (NIV)

View today's reading on Bible Gateway

Today's Old Testament reading: Psalm 107-109



Give thanks to the LORD, for he is good;
his love endures forever.

2 Let the redeemed of the LORD tell their story-
those he redeemed from the hand of the foe,
3 those he gathered from the lands,
from east and west, from north and south.

4 Some wandered in desert wastelands,
finding no way to a city where they could settle.
5 They were hungry and thirsty,
and their lives ebbed away.
6 Then they cried out to the LORD in their trouble,
and he delivered them from their distress.
7 He led them by a straight way
to a city where they could settle.
8 Let them give thanks to the LORD for his unfailing love
and his wonderful deeds for mankind,
9 for he satisfies the thirsty
and fills the hungry with good things....

Today's New Testament reading: 1 Corinthians 4

The Nature of True Apostleship
1 This, then, is how you ought to regard us: as servants of Christ and as those entrusted with the mysteries God has revealed. 2Now it is required that those who have been given a trust must prove faithful. 3 I care very little if I am judged by you or by any human court; indeed, I do not even judge myself.My conscience is clear, but that does not make me innocent. It is the Lord who judges me. 5 Therefore judge nothing before the appointed time; wait until the Lord comes. He will bring to light what is hidden in darkness and will expose the motives of the heart. At that time each will receive their praise from God.
6 Now, brothers and sisters, I have applied these things to myself and Apollos for your benefit, so that you may learn from us the meaning of the saying, "Do not go beyond what is written." Then you will not be puffed up in being a follower of one of us over against the other. 7 For who makes you different from anyone else? What do you have that you did not receive? And if you did receive it, why do you boast as though you did not?

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