Saturday, August 13, 2016

Sat Aug 13th Todays News

Tony Abbott's speech in Adelaide on Friday, where he says he should have pushed amendments to 18c of the racial discrimination act are welcomed by conservatives, many of whom do not admit why it was shelved. Politics is not an obvious sport. Manipulative persons have a habit of looking clean while forcing decisions that make the power broker look bad. Abbott was very much for free speech. But he needed to negotiate and compromise with many, including his communications minister Malcolm Turnbull. Turnbull forced Abbott to shelve the plans, even as Turnbull knifed him for doing so. Turnbull works to power, not to national interest. It suits Turnbull to not amend 18c, as it doesn't bother him, but upsets conservatives. I respect Andrew Bolt, but his criticism of Abbott when he was PM was overstated. Abbott hasn't changed. Bolt is choosing to listen. Turnbull doesn't want Abbott on the front bench because he knows what he would do from that position. But Turnbull has too much contempt for back benchers to know that the freedom he has given Abbott will only heighten his pre resignation humiliation. 

For some, at the moment, the Sex Party has more credibility.  
=== from 2015 ===
Australia is blessed with an internationally competitive education system as well as many natural endowments that make her a playmate for migration. Students come here and pay much. They are not all wealthy, but they all work hard. They aren't allowed, under travel Visa to work a lot to earn the money they need to pay for their education, but the promise is that if they work hard, earn their degree, they can then migrate to Australia. Many become model citizens. But Australia is not very kind to those she promises a future. These are not boat people who queue jump, but people exploited, sometimes working illegally and paid cash in hand, illegally. There is no minimum wage. 70 hour weeks at $10 an hour, living conditions that are beneath poverty levels. University fees that are 300% higher than their Australian classmates. Travelling on public transport without a ticket is a $75 fine in Melbourne. The ticket may have been bought, but if it can't be presented because of oversight then it can cost more than seven hours of work. But if the ticketless person is unemployed they can avoid paying the fine altogether through work for the dole measures which pays $50 an hour towards fines. We don't always highly value our best, in Australia. 

Greek compassion for illegal boat people is wavering. The truth is it isn't compassionate to drown people wanting to migrate. Press made much of the earlier claims of Greek hospitality for survivors of the people smugglers. But the riots on homeless peoples who survived people smuggling suggest the rosy picture is not an accurate one. 

ALP attempting to shut down royal commission into trade unions. It isn't a terrible mistake or error of judgement as some say. A highly respected judge who fronts the royal commission was scheduled to speak at a Liberal Party fundraiser. The arrangement is years old. The royal commission is recent. So as to avoid the appearance of bias, the judge has declined the event. Now the ALP claim that the judge, who has done nothing wrong and who has not even appeared anything but impartial regarding the royal commission, should step aside, and close down the royal commission. They have to say something, because the mounting evidence is damning. 

Turnbull's outspoken attack on government policy. Turnbull has previously said that speaking against government policy for a minister should be a sackable offence. But the Same Sex Marriage issue seems too important to let pass, for him. The important question Turnbull has not answered is does he feel that religious clerics who act on conscience should go to jail or be sued? 

Jimmy Carter has cancer. Hillary Clinton is fading. Bad days for Democrats regarding the Presidency because the incumbent is so bad and the next time isn't their turn. They will campaign for a stronger Congress position. But they will need to find a policy which somehow doesn't bankrupt the nation. 
From 2014
 Lauren Bacall died today. It is ok to die old and blessed. A link to the golden age of movies has passed. She was nineteen years old when she was cast opposite Humphrey Bogart. She was thirty one when he passed from cancer, leaving her a widow. She was a screen siren, and then an accomplished actress when she was older. A lifelong Democrat supporter, she once sang, sitting on top of a piano played by then Vice President Truman. She was first cousin to Shimon Peres. May she rest in peace. 

The casualty list for the Liberal Party in NSW looks appalling. The administration is making good decisions for the state and the opposition has yet to show a policy that is worthwhile. The criticism of the Liberal Party by a triumphant press is not proportionate to the accusations relative to the ALP in government. The NSW Libs seem to have fallen foul of a technicality regarding fund raising that doesn't appear to amount to much. Had the regulation not been to exclude developers from donating, no crime would have been committed. However, one of the many corrupt ALP figures is accused of misappropriating half a billion dollars. And when Obeid was in office, the ICAC turned a blind eye. The ICAC cannot pick and choose which laws it will investigate, or which party, if it is to be independent. However, I am uncomfortable that there is a suggestion that corrupt Libs were sharing with corrupt ALP former minister Tripodi. My issue is tied up with Tripodi and I want to know I have not lost my career, my home and my future because the Libs are in cahoots with my abuser who had been my sitting member. The ICAC ignored my submission in 2001, before Hamidur Rahman died. Did ICAC incompetence kill a school child? Are they covering up that neglect in their persecution of Liberal members? 

On this day in 29 BC, Octavian held the first of three consecutive triumphs in Rome. The Roman senate had ordered the closure of the Temple of Janus, signifying Rome was not at war for the first time in over two hundred years. This pleased Octavian who had had success against Antony the year before and was working hard to raise the name of the Roman Republic while also acquiring the powers of a dictator. Octavian had little choice but retain the dictatorial powers, many would have killed him to claim powers of their own. The previous year, 30BC had seen Gaius Cornelius Gallus quell an uprising in Egypt and set up monuments of himself within months the monuments had outlasted the future exile. In 554, Justinian I was so impressed with his public servant Liberius he reorganised Italy to give him extensive land. Liberius shares having had civic responsibility for Italy, Gaul and Egypt with Caeser and Napoleon. Some people called him the gangster of love, but in 582, Maurice became Byzantine Emperor. He was successful in facing off Persia so that Byzantium no longer needed to pay tribute in his reign. In 900, a petty squabble between a person who was not Duke of Loraine, Count Reginar I of Hainult was solved when he killed the bastard son of Carolingian Emperor Arnulf of Carinthia, Zwentibold of Lotharingia. In 1521, Cortes' long siege of Tenochtitlan was successful. In 1532, Brittany became part of France, but the language of the peasants remained so that by 1780, only 20% of France spoke French. In 1536 in Kyoto, Buddhist monks set fire to 21 temples in what became known as the Tenbun Hokke Disturbance. Michael Servetus was a polymath cartographer, theologian, physician and translator. He was the first to correctly describe the operation of the pulmonary arterial system. He was also denounced by both Catholics and Protestants and in 1553 was arrested as a heretic by order of Calvin and later burned at the stake. Today, Servetus' work would not be out of place in a theological school. 

In 1624, Louis XIII of France appointed Cardinal Richelieu as Prime Minister, and Richelieu began brilliantly centralising power away from the feudal system that was inherited, presaging Louis XIV. Before Germany unified, her states feuded, and in 1704 Bavaria squared off against Prussia and lost. Only they had allied themselves with common enemies, Bavaria with France faced off against Prussia with a Grand Alliance of England, Holy Roman Empire and Dutch Republic. Louis XIV had had a successful previous year in the War of the Spanish Succession, but in the Battle of Blenheim that reversed. Blenheim saw the rare example of a weaker force attacking a defended position and through a mixture of daring, good timing and General competence and collegial confidence the Grand Alliance had a stunning win, an amazing victory for Winston Churchill's ancestor. In 1779, the Royal Navy humiliated the US Navy's Penobscot Expedition which had set sail with the intent of preventing England from renaming Maine as New Ireland. The expedition wasn't successful, but Maine kept her name, ultimately. In 1792 King Louis XVI of France was arrested and declared an enemy of the people. In 1831, Nat Turner saw a solar eclipse, and decided it was a sign from God, he enlisted some seventy slaves to kill white people, of which fifty five were victim in Southampton County, Virginia. In 1898, a mock battle for Manila was held between the US and Spain, with Spain surrendering to prevent Manila from falling to Philippine guerrillas. In 1906 an ASADA type investigation was held into the shooting death of a barman and a police officer. A Black Army unit was blamed and fabricated evidence from local white townsfolk was given. The entire unit (167 soldiers) was discharged dishonourably despite exculpatory evidence. In the early 1970s, the unit was expunged of the charge, but no compensation was ever paid. In 1913, Harry Brearly began producing stainless steel in the UK. In 1918, the US army began enlisting Women. Also in 1918, BMW was established in Germany. In 1920, Poland defeated the Soviets in the Battle of Warsaw, starting on this day and finishing August 25th. In 1937, the Battle of Shanghai began. In 1942, the Manhattan Projects construction facilities were authorised. Also in 1942, Bambi was released by Disney. In 1961 East Germany closed her borders. In 1977, rioting by a group of people who would later form the EDL resulted in 214 arrests and 111 injuries. In 1978 150 Palestinians were killed in Lebanon. In 2004, 156 Tutsi were killed in a refugee camp in Burundi. In 2008, Russian units occupied Georgian Gori. In 2010 492 Sri Lankan Tamils docked in British Columbia on this day. 
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.
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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!
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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
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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 Keith DarleyWillyna LimBenny Milinkovic and Charlie Lu. Born on the same day, across the years, along with Annie Oakley (1860), John Logie Baird (1888), Alfred Hitchcock (1899), Felix Wankel (1902), Dan Fogelberg (1951), Danny Bonaduce (1959) and Piper Reese (2000). On your day, Qixi Festival in the Chinese calendar (2013)
1521 – After an extended siege, forces led by Spanish conquistador Hernán Cortés captured Tlatoani Cuauhtémoc and conquered the Aztec capital of Tenochtitlan.
1704 – War of the Spanish Succession: The Duke of Marlborough led Allied forces to a crucial victory in the Battle of Blenheim.
1898 – Spanish–American War: After a mock battle for Manila, the Spanish commander surrendered to the U.S. in order to keep the city out of Filipino rebel hands.
1954 – The complete version of "Qaumī Tarāna", the national anthem of Pakistan, was broadcast for the first time on Radio Pakistan.
2010 – After having been boarded by Canadian authorities, the MV Sun Sea docked and the 492 Sri Lankan Tamil refugee claimants on board were placed into detention. 
Your extended siege is over. It is all yours (indicates the curtains). No need for mock battles. The anthem plays, the ship has landed. The days is yours.
Deaths
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FEAR AND LOATHING IN THE BUNNINGS CAR PARK

Tim Blair – Saturday, August 13, 2016 (7:33pm)

I’m all for arresting ABC staff, just on general principles, but it appears that this particular journalist was wrongly detained by Brisbane police: 
Footage has emerged of Queensland police officers detaining ABC journalist Josh Bavas and accusing him of being “off his chops” on drugs during a visit to Bunnings in Oxley, Brisbane today.
“Mate, the fact that you’ve got pinpoint eyes and you’re looking directly into the sun and they’re not dilating due to the sunlight, I believe you to be under the influence of a dangerous drug,” the officer, who identifies himself as Senior Constable Richard Power, can be heard saying.
“For the moment I’m going to detain you for the purposes of a search.”
Sr Const Power then turns to a colleague.
“He’s off his chops on something,” he said.
The colleague replies to Bavas: “If we hadn’t hung on to you mate you’d float off into f***ing outer space.” 
Bunnings would be an odd destination for anyone hopped up on goofballs – but a perfectly sensible one for someone building a retaining wall, which was Bavas’s purpose. The matter seems to have been amicably resolved. Incidentally, Bavas happens to be a police and emergency services reporter. 
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LOVE KYRGYZSTAN OR LEAVE IT

Tim Blair – Saturday, August 13, 2016 (5:46pm)

Kyrgyzstan’s government recently launched a banner campaign against Islamic clothing
One side shows women wearing the traditional nomadic clothing of Kyrgyzstan, the other shows women in niqabs and burkas, the full veils worn by some Muslim women. The caption underneath said: “Poor people! Where are we heading to?” 
President Almazbek Atambayev, whose country is 80 per cent Muslim, now defends that campaign – and takes matters a step further: 
“Our women have been wearing miniskirts since 1950s, and they never thought about wearing an explosive belt.
“You can wear even tarpaulin boots on your head, but do not organise bombings. This is not religion. Let them wear even miniskirts but there must not be any blasts.”
He portrayed the wearing of some Islamic clothing as not only out of step with contemporary Kyrgyz national culture but also potentially dangerous.
“Terrorists are insane people,” he said. “Clothes also can change one’s thoughts sometimes. When we were searching for prisoners who had escaped a detention centre, Melis Turganbayev (the former interior minister) came to me and said that they had been eavesdropping on telephone conversations of wives and mistresses of criminals. Their wives and mistresses wore sacks on their heads and they wanted to organise bombings.
“If you do not like Kyrgyzstan you can leave our country and go wherever you want. We can pay your travel expenses, even to Syria.” 
Well said, sir.
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NATION ON THE MOVE

Tim Blair – Saturday, August 13, 2016 (5:31pm)

It’s all part of our plan for global conquest:
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JUDGE JASON

Tim Blair – Saturday, August 13, 2016 (3:01am)

Former English professor Jason P. Steed, now a Texas lawyer, takes issue with Donald Trump’s perceived joke about assassinating Hillary Clinton: 
I wrote my PhD dissertation on the social function of humor (in literature & film). 
Oh, God. You know where this is going. 
… and here’s the thing about “just joking.” You’re never “just joking.” Nobody is ever “just joking.”Humor is a social act that performs a social function (always). 
Er, OK. But what if someone is actually, you know … just joking? 
To say humor is social act is to say it is always in social context; we don’t joke alone. Humor is a way we relate/interact with others. Which is to say, humor is a way we construct identity – who we are in relation to others. We use humor to form groups. 
In Steed’s case, not a particularly large group. 
In short, joking/humor is one tool by which we assimilate or alienate. In other words, we use humor to bring people into – or keep them out of – our social groups. This is what humor does. What it’s for. 
Alternatively, we could merely be trying to make people happy. Just a theory. Please do continue, Dr Comedy: 
Consequently, how we use humor is tied up with ethics – who do we embrace, who do we shun, and how/why? 
Since you ask, I personally shun Dallas-area legal types from academic backgrounds and I do this by running them over in rented Corvettes. 
The assimilating/alienating function of humor works not only on people but also on ideas. This is important. 
Absolutely. This is the most important thing. Why, only the other day I ran to the aid of an elderly fellow who’d been stabbed in a street robbery. “Don’t worry about me,” the dying man gasped, “worry about the assimilating/alienating function of humor.” Oddly, despite being Australian, he spoke with American spelling. 
A racist joke sends a message to the in-group that racism is acceptable. (If you don’t find it acceptable, you’re in the out-group.) The racist joke teller might say “just joking” – but this is a defense to the out-group. He doesn’t have to say this to the in-group. This is why we’re never “just joking.” To the in-group, no defense of the joke is needed; the idea conveyed is accepted/acceptable. 
Steed is basically arguing that jokes should be treated as though they are not jokes – or, more precisely, that jokes from one side of the political spectrum should be treated as though they’re not jokes. As Rita Panahi recently observed, “only Lefties can mock or satirise. When conservatives do it the Left take every word seriously.” Let’s imagine if Steed’s “you’re never just joking” rule applied in the following cases: 
• Garrett Morris’s Gonna Get Me a Shotgun and Kill All the Whities I See sketch on Saturday Night Live
• Clementine Ford’s sarcastic comment about wanting to kill all men.
• Crista Flanagan’s perfectly-delivered gag about domestic violence.
• Richard Glover’s satirical column about tattooing climate change denialists
• Seinfeld‘s Elaine dismissing sexual molestation 
That’s quite a few people, across several decades, “never just joking” – at least so far as Steed is concerned. Back to our joke-opposing friend: 
So, when Trump jokes about assassination or armed revolt, he’s asking the in-group to assimilate/accept that idea. That’s what jokes do. And when he says “just joking,” that’s a defense offered to the out-group who was never meant to assimilate the idea in the first place.
Indeed, circling back to the start, the joke *itself* is a way to define in-group and out-group, through assimilation & alienation. 
Open mic night with Jason P. Steed must be an absolute riot. 
If “just joking” excuses racist jokes, then in-group has accepted idea of racism as part of being in-group. Same goes for “jokes” about armed revolt or assassinating Hillary Clinton. They cannot be accepted as “just joking.” 
The judge’s ruling is final.
(Via Iowahawk.)
UPDATE. Numerous fools – including Jason P. Steed – believed this satirical item was a factual piece. Steed wrote his PhD dissertation on “the social function of humor”, yet can’t recognise an obvious joke.
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HOWARD POWER

Tim Blair – Friday, August 12, 2016 (7:50pm)

Former Australian Prime Minister John Howard very briefly met my wife three years ago during a crowded event on Sydney Harbour. They chatted amiably for a short time, among several other guests, after which we all joined our various tables.
On Wednesday night my wife was seated next to Howard at a Quadrant dinner to celebrate the Brexit vote. Howard not only remembered her but also when they’d previously met. Now, granted, she’s a memorable gal, but that’s impressive.
Another at the Wednesday gathering was Quadrant staffer Daisy, who as it turned out once studied ballet under Howard’s daughter Melanie. Informed of this, Howard’s memory again kicked in. He immediately and fondly recalled Daisy’s parents and wider family by name and suburb.
The entire evening was a Howard recollection master class, involving individuals and events ranging from Jean Chretien and the 1957 Treaty of Rome to the Queen and Australia’s 2004 election. If you ever receive an invitation to anything featuring John Howard, just say yes. Besides coal, he might be our nation’s most valuable resource.
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Touch Bill Leak and it’s on

Andrew Bolt August 13 2016 (1:28pm)

I was at the News Corp awards night and heard several most excellent speeches - particularly from the head of News Corp, Robert Thomson, and the editor--in-chief of The Australian, Paul Whittaker, both defying the enemies of free speech and the trolls of PC. I also heard the applause given to cartoonist Bill Leak.
A word of advice to the Australian Press Council and the Human Rights Commission. Defend free speech.
PS: Is it not Orwellian that we should consider the Human Rights Commission today to be an enemy of free speech? 
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The ABS team pools its talent

Andrew Bolt August 13 2016 (12:58pm)

The great Rowan Dean:
Here at ABS Innovations Pty Ltd, our crack team of agile innovators (motto: “there’s never been a more exciting time to be a statistic") are delighted to share with you some of our recent successes:
The ABS Australian Census Website
Our $10 million data collecting system which we developed under the helpful guidance of specialist design team Hawke, O’Dwyer, McCormack, Kalish & Turnbull for the Australian 2016 Census is already proving a huge success. Built entirely around our unique, patented and ground-breaking Collection, Retrieval, Analysis, Privacy system (CRAP), the website has already revolutionised the way your personal data is safely collated and your elephant penis Jedi Hitler Elvis dung faeces fascist scumbag Pauline Hanson is right er, hang on there appears to be a slight glitch somewhere. UPDATE: ABS Innovations apologise for any inconvenience due to a temporary malfunction of the site. Rest assured heads will roll (but definitely not the ones that should).
The ABS Olympic Swimming Pool Hygienic Chlorination System
Our $US20 million water purification system which we developed under the special supervision of eco-designers Kalisch, McCormack & Turnbull is already proving a huge success at the Rio 2016 Olympic games. Built entirely around our unique, patented and groundbreaking Pool Innovative Sanitation Services system (PISS), the mechanism has already revolutionised the way the world’s top swimmers can express their individual talents and enjoy the purity and visual delights of crystal clear cough splutter gurgle shit my eyes are stinging help I can’t see a thing I can’t breathe I’ve gone blind where are my bloody goggles scratch that where’s my bloody lawyer? UPDATE: ABS Innovations apologise for any inconvenience due to a temporary malfunction of the service. Rest assured heads will roll (if they haven’t already choked).
The ABS Badgery’s Creek International Airport
Read on. 
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It’s not all about you, guys. Stop the posing and study the evidence

Andrew Bolt August 13 2016 (9:33am)

Kerryn Pholi in the latest Spectator Australia, in news agencies now, on the #indigenousdads campaign against Bill Leak’s recent cartoon, capturing beautifully the onanism of identity politics today:
A few intrepid souls suggested that the #indigenousdads seemed to be missing the point, while a hard-hearted few, myself included, saw the campaign as gobsmackingly narcissistic and callous.
Leak’s cartoon depicted the awful state of Aboriginal family dysfunction that far too many Aboriginal children live within, to which successful and prosperous Aboriginals responded with a series of smug, ‘look at me and my nice family’ selfies. What to make of this new vanguard of Aboriginal elites, who talk solidarity and shared suffering with ‘our people’ in remote and marginalised Aboriginal communities the one minute, and then mount a PR campaign to emphatically distance themselves from distasteful Aboriginal realities the next?
Here’s what I make of it. Their complaint that Leak’s cartoon somehow portrayed them in a negative light was patent rubbish and they know it. They chose to proclaim themselves as victimised, but not because they are genuinely worried that the world sees them as hopeless drunks and deadbeat parents, which they obviously aren’t. No, the biggest fear of Aboriginal elites is that the world doesn’t see them as ‘real’ Aboriginals at all.
Bill Leak is merely the latest ‘racist’ bogeyman invented as a means for middle-class Aboriginals to assert their increasingly diffuse identities. ‘Bill Leak says we are all drunks and bad parents’ they claim, ‘and we are proud to prove him wrong.’ Get real, fellas: You know, and anyone else with half a brain knows, that Bill Leak wasn’t talking about you at all.
Pholi demonstrates again why I think she will be a bright new talent in the commentariat once someone in the mainstream media has the sense to snap her up.

The brilliant Brendan O’Neill, also in Spectator Australia:
The puffed-up fury over Leak’s indigenous cartoon captures everything foul about PC. First there’s the illiberalism. People are demanding he apologise, by which they mean recant. They’re putting pressure on the Australian to rap his knuckles and warn him to stop riling the right-on…
The truth is, Leak’s indigenous cartoon was great. It’s profound; moving, even… Leak isn’t attacking indigenous dads; he’s attacking the cult of relativism that celebrates the depravities of indigenous community life as cultural diversity and then sometimes wonders, ‘Why won’t they behave in a more civilised way?’. That’s why his cartoon has so incensed the PC lobby: because it’s a swipe at them, and they know it. It shines a light on the tyranny of low expectations that many white, guilt-ridden progressives have of indigenous communities. That’s another nasty aspect of PC: it is designed precisely to suppress debate, to obscure reality itself. It’s a creed more offended by an image of the difficult lives some people lead than by the lives themselves. It’s profoundly uncaring, crushing depictions of the tensions in society, and in the process leaving such tensions untouched, undiscussed, and unresolved. Standing up for Leak is the duty of every Aussie who believes in freedom.
Brendan O’Neill is speaking about PC, freedom and other issues across Australia from 15 to 26 August. For more information, see brendanoneill.co.uk. 
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Turnbull the timid

Andrew Bolt August 13 2016 (9:15am)

Terry McCrann on the gutless believe-in-nothing populism of the Turnbull Government:
(C)onfronted with the largely media-driven hysteria over the so-called failure by the banks ... to ‘pass on’ the full 25-point Reserve Bank official rate cut, [Turnbull] folded like a cheap suit and moved indeed to place himself at the very head of the wave.
Even more shamefully — and worse, self-destructively both to good policy and good politics over the remaining, perhaps, 135-150 shabby and embarrassing weeks of this government’s life — the treasurer joined him as co-leader of the populism. Then this week, Scott Morrison doubled down with his rejection of the ‘yellow investment peril’. Maybe, almost certainly, Malcolm Turnbull thought it was ‘clever’ to join the bank-bashing and to promote another one of his ‘inspired (non) solutions’ — making the bank CEOs appear before the House of Reps Economics Committee just like the RBA governor — and so divert the opposition’s call for a Royal Commission.
What a smart PM supported by a competent, secure, treasurer would have — should have — done, was to emphatically call out the populist nonsense. That there was no 25-points to pass on; that it was entirely and legitimately for the banks individually to decide all their rates, both lending and borrowing…
Turnbull’s spineless populism in August 2016 is no more going to win him the election in 2019 than some robust rationalism now would have irredeemably condemned him then. He’ll win, more likely lose (if he makes it to polling day), on many more issues, closer to it.
But the message it all sent was both profoundly negative and far more permanent. And it was then rewritten even more emphatically in indelible ink by Morrison’s decision to reject the Hong Kong and Chinese bidders for Ausgrid. Now it might be true that Morrison made the “right decision for the right (national security) reasons”. The disastrous impact of the decision is in the way its seeming populism followed so closely on the heels of the real populism of the rate buckle; and so reinforced a whole series of negative memes which define the aimlessness and ineptitude of this government and this PM and to which the treasurer has willingly and wilfully signed up to.
The damage to our reputation and future is high:

Business is calling for greater clarity on what assets cannot be sold to foreigners, as the last-minute rejection of Chinese bids for NSW electricity assets jeopardises Australia’s reputation as a destination for foreign investment.
The former chairman of ­Infrastructure Australia, Rod ­Eddington, said he was perplexed by the decision to reject a bid by one of the world’s leading infrastructure ­operators, Cheong Kong Infrastructure, controlled by Hong Kong businessman Li Ka-shing.
“I cannot understand the Li Ka-shing decision,” the former chief of British Airways told The Weekend Australian…
The head of PricewaterhouseCoopers’ Asian practice, Andrew Parker, said sovereign risk fears were already being raised by ­investors from China, and even Japan, amid confusion in North Asia over which deals would trigger intervention.
“The process just looks shambolic and we leave ourselves wide open to charges of xenophobia and populism,’’ Mr Parker said…
Advisers to China’s government-owned State Grid and to CKI said yesterday they had not been given any information about why their bids for Ausgrid were rejected, with one commenting that Mr Morrison had set them up for failure by granting only a seven-day window to restructure their bids.
NSW Premier Mike Baird said he was frustrated because the ­decision should have been made “many months ago.
Shambles. And every single week brings new embarrassment.
(Thanks to reader Peter of Bellevue Hill.) 
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Book at Croatian beach

Andrew Bolt August 13 2016 (3:04am)

My book is living large, visiting Ho Chi Minh City, Santorini, London, Lake Como, Ithaca, Scotland, the Bay of Naples, Dubrovnik, Fiji, Aileron, New Zealand, Sri Lanka and the Andes, as well as attending a christening in Newcastle.
It has traveled on the Ghan, sailed in the Whitsundays and worked in 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.
Now reader Marcus Procopio takes it to Zadar, Croatia:
To reward the reader in your life, order the book here.  The fourth edition of the Bolt Bulletin, available to on-line buyers, will go out next week. 
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Abbott resumes battle for free speech. And Turnbull?

Andrew Bolt August 13 2016 (2:41am)

How interesting. Tony Abbott repents one of the decisions that cost him support of conservatives - and resumes a battle that many more Australians will now agree needs fighting:
Tony Abbott says his government should have pursued less ambitious reform of section 18C of the Racial Discrimination Act, in comments that will re-open debate in the conservative wing of the Liberal Party about changing the Act and potentially create a new headache for Malcolm Turnbull.

UPDATE
Abbott’s speech last night set out the fights he plans to have and the biiger lessons he has so far learned of his time in office.
It seems to me he is determined now to be a voice for conservatives as he sometimes failed to be in office, and to fight for freedom. That said, he is tempering that with his first acknowledgement that he was at times too hyper-oppositional.
I am liking this transition.
First, on free speech:
My second task is to confront a regrettable truth: these are vexing times for conservatives…

Take an issue that’s quite rightly exercised many here: section 18C of the Racial Discrimination Act that prohibits what might “offend, insult, humiliate or intimidate” on racial grounds. 
This is a troubling law. At its worst, it limits free speech merely to prevent hurt feelings….

After the successful prosecution of Andrew Bolt, I promised to “repeal it in its current form” but reneged after fierce criticism from Liberal premiers and a wall of opposition in the senate. ..
Perhaps the cause of free speech would have fared better if my government’s initial bid had been merely to drop “offend’ and “insult” while leaving prohibitions on the more serious harms. 
Still, as things stand, there’s no real prospect of change – even though several young Queenslanders are now facing official persecution merely for questioning reverse discrimination on social media and the Race Discrimination Commissioner is now itching to prosecute our best-known cartoonist. 
The decency and fair-mindedness of the Australian people will always be a better defence against hate speech than a law administered by ideological partisans – yet our parliament prefers to tolerate over-the-top prosecutions than to upset thin-skinned activists. 

Which rational person could disagree?
Then, the mea culpa:
Interestingly, while less than 50 per cent of the current government’s legislation has passed the parliament, almost 90 per cent of the former Labor government’s legislation passed without a division. 
I think the Abbott opposition was right not-to-oppose means-testing family tax benefits and meanstesting the private health insurance rebate…. Unquestionably, we were right to oppose the carbon tax …
I wonder, though, about the former government’s people swap with Malaysia.  The 800 boat people that could have been sent to Malaysia was less than a months’ intake, even then. 
I doubt it would have worked.  Still, letting it stand would have been an acknowledgment of the government-of-the-day’s mandate to do the best it could, by its own lights, to meet our nation’s challenges.  It would have been a step back from the hyper-partisanship that now poisons our public life. 

A dig at George Brandis and Malcolm Turnbull?
In the last parliament, I could invariably count on Bill Shorten’s support on national security issues.  On deploying the armed forces or strengthening anti-terror laws, there were cabinet ministers harder-to-persuade than the Leader of the Opposition! 
The challenge for the new parliament will be to be as sensible about economic security as the old one was about national security; because we can’t keep pretending that economic growth on its own will take care of debt and deficit…
All of us need to dwell less on what divides us and more on what unites us, and to have an open mind for good ideas…

And the great war defined:
There wouldn’t be a person in this room tonight – not one of you – who would say that our civilisation is more secure today than five, ten or twenty years ago. 
The new tribalism, the loss of civility, and reality TV politics is taking its toll across the Western world.  Yet for all our present discontents, there’d hardly be any one, here, unconvinced that Western civilisation, especially its English-speaking version, is mankind’s greatest achievement. 
I believe adversity has made Abbott more articulate in explaining what is to be done. 
===

GREEKS NO LONGER BEARING GIFTS

Tim Blair – Thursday, August 13, 2015 (7:55pm)

Refugee advocates Dimitria Groutsis and Diane van den Broek celebrate Greek compassion towards arriving boat enthusiasts, which contrasts with evil Australian selfishness: 
Given Greece’s economic troubles, you might assume its people would have little sympathy for the boatloads of migrants that arrive from North Africa, the Middle East and beyond. However, nothing could be further from the truth …
Many concerned residents of Kos also respond in kind to the crisis unfolding before them. Individuals assist in the nightly rituals of preparing and delivering some 400 meals to migrants …
It’s hard to understand why a country like Australia, which enjoys one of the best standards of living in the world, is not at the forefront of the humanitarian efforts. Why is it that a country that has not had a whiff of austerity or experienced the global financial crisis as acutely as many others did can remain so mean-spirited?
In many ways it is hard to understand why these two countries have responded to the same issue in such completely different ways: one, taking on, and nourishing, the cargo of the people smugglers, while the other allegedly paid people smugglers to “take them back to where they came from”. It defies both reason and compassion … 
That was last month. As arrivals continued, Greek attitudes changed
Police on the Greek island of Kos have used fire extinguishers and batons against migrants, as tensions boiled over in a sports stadium where hundreds had gathered to wait for immigration documents ...
The Mayor of Kos, Yorgos Kyritsis, said that police and coast guards are simply unable to deal with the huge amounts of people arriving in Greece.
Speaking on Greek TV, he said: “This situation on the island is out of control. There is a real danger of uncontrollable situations. Blood will be shed.” 
Over to you, Dimitria and Diane.
(Via Andrew R.) 
===

Ban Nick Kyrgios

Andrew Bolt August 13 2015 (5:37pm)

Why wasn’t this ratbag immediately disqualified?
Midway through the second set against world No. 5 Stan Wawrinka at the Montreal Masters, Kyrgios spat at the Swiss: “Kokkinakis banged your girlfriend. Sorry to tell you that, mate.”

He should at least be banned for a tournament or two. Might even save what’s left of the public’s respect - if there’s any left at all.

===

Blair pleads with Labour: do not make Jeremy Corbyn leader

Andrew Bolt August 13 2015 (4:15pm)

 Tony Blair begs even his haters not to make Jeremy Corbyn Labour’s leader:
It doesn’t matter whether you’re on the left, right or centre of the party, whether you used to support me or hate me. But please understand the danger we are in.
Blair spells it out:
The Labour party is in danger more mortal today than at any point in the over 100 years of its existence.... 
If Jeremy Corbyn becomes leader it won’t be a defeat like 1983 or 2015 at the next election. It will mean rout, possibly annihilation. If he wins the leadership, the public will at first be amused, bemused and even intrigued. But as the years roll on, as Tory policies bite and the need for an effective opposition mounts – and oppositions are only effective if they stand a hope of winning – the public mood will turn to anger. They will seek to punish us. They will see themselves as victims not only of the Tory government but of our self-indulgence. Jeremy Corbyn doesn’t offer anything new… These are policies from the past that were rejected not because they were too principled, but because a majority of the British people thought they didn’t work.... Even more so today, they do not think their challenges can be met by old-fashioned state control as the way to personal or social empowerment; they do not think breaking up Nato unilaterally is sensible; and they realise that a party without a serious deficit-reduction plan is not in these times a serious contender to govern them. 
Blair doesn’t even mention Corbyn’s history of friendship with terrorists:
Labour will also be in the extraordinary position of having as its leader a man with among the most extensive links in Parliament to terrorists, extremists and hardline regimes… 
Mr Corbyn, The Telegraph can reveal, has taken thousands of pounds in gifts from organisations closely linked to the terror group Hamas, whose operatives he once described as “friends”.
He has travelled to Tehran at the expense of a secretive British-Iranian multi-millionaire who has employed a number of other British parliamentarians as consultants to build business links with the country.
He has hosted, promoted and vigorously defended vicious anti-Semites and racists…
From the mid-Eighties, a decade before the IRA ceasefire, he worked hard to build links between Labour and the Provos, regularly hosting senior figures from their political wing in Parliament, calling for British withdrawal from Northern Ireland and paying tribute to deceased terrorists. His defenders call him ahead of his time; his opponents say that, by giving the IRA hope that the armed struggle was working, he and others on the Left actually prolonged the conflict.
These days, however, it is Islamist causes that claim more of Mr Corbyn’s attention. Others on the Left may support negotiating with Hamas, whose aim remains the complete destruction of Israel and which continues to kill civilians, but no other MP does so with quite the frequency and fervour of Mr Corbyn.
In February 2013, he and his wife travelled to Gaza thanks to a £2,800 gift from Interpal, a British charity banned by the US government as “part of the funding network of Hamas” and as a terrorist organisation in its own right…
Mr Corbyn and MEMO co-sponsored the visit to Britain and to Parliament of an Israel-based anti-Semitic extremist, Sheikh Raed Saleh, found by a British court to have spread the classic “blood libel” against Jews, the claim that they use the blood of gentile children to make their bread. Mr Saleh, who also describes Jews as “monkeys” and “bacteria,” claims that 9/11 was a Jewish plot and that the Jews employed at the World Trade Center were warned not to come into work that day. 
But he was strongly defended by Mr Corbyn, who congratulated him on defeating Government moves to exclude him from Britain, called him “a very honoured citizen who represents his people extremely well” and said he “looked forward to giving you tea on the [House of Commons] terrace.” 
Still happening:
Jeremy Corbyn is to share a stage with supporters of the Palestinian militant group Hamas – including an academic who has defended suicide attacks. 
The Labour leadership frontrunner will speak later this month at a London conference hosted by the controversial publication Middle East Monitor.
One speaker will be Palestinian-born Dr Azzam Tamimi, who once told the BBC that ‘sacrificing myself for Palestine is a noble cause… I would do it if I had the opportunity’.
(Thanks to the IPA, which has more.) 
===

Scrap this fundraiser now. Why let Labor and crooked unions off the hook?

Andrew Bolt August 13 2015 (11:06am)

This is a serious misjudgment:
The former judge charged with overseeing the royal commission into union corruption has been billed as guest speaker at a Liberal Party fundraiser.
The revelation could discredit the royal commission, which Labor has decried as a political witch hunt from the outset.
Justice Dyson Heydon is listed as the keynote speaker at the Sir Garfield Barwick Address on August 26 at the Castlereagh Boutique Hotel in Sydney. 
An invitation written on a Liberal Party letterhead obtained by Fairfax Media says the $80 cost should be made to the Liberal Party of Australia’s NSW division. It also calls for donations if people are unable to attend.
I don’t doubt Heydon’s integrity for a second. But I do think this is a stupid way to help Labor to discredit his commission.
UPDATE
Heydon has pulled out:
The Commissioner has since provided a statement saying he will not deliver the speech. 
In a written statement a spokesman said: “If there was any possibility that the event could be described as a Liberal Party event he will be unable to give the address, at least whilst he is in the position of Royal Commissioner”. The statement said Justice Heydon advised the organisers of the fundraiser before receiving media inquiries.
===

Tony Smith needs to borrow Bronwyn Bishop’s stick

Andrew Bolt August 13 2015 (8:41am)

As we discussed last night, new Speaker Tony Smith must have been kidding himself to think Labor would now play fair. Labor is instead walking over him and deliberately turning Question Time into a circus in a way that can only hurt the Liberals.
Stefanie Balogh:
As an L-plated Speaker, he is stuck in relief teacher mode. He appeared hapless yesterday as he spent the televised parliamentary session politely asking the naughty kids (actually highly paid political professionals) to be quiet. 
Parliament is not a playground, and it is up to Smith to enforce the rules.
The high-decibel hubbub was so bad ministers could hardly be heard. A house deteriorating into childish chaos, regardless of who is at fault, is always blamed on the government.
===

The incredible sinking Clinton

Andrew Bolt August 13 2015 (7:54am)

Hillary Clinton’s campaign is in danger of derailment:
As pressure builds on Hillary Clinton to explain her official use of personal email while serving as secretary of state, she faced new complications Tuesday. It was disclosed her top aides are being drawn into a burgeoning federal inquiry and that two emails on her private account have been classified as “Top Secret.” 
The inspector general for the Intelligence Community notified senior members of Congress that two of four classified emails discovered on the server Clinton maintained at her New York home contained material deemed to be in one of the highest security classifications - more sensitive than previously known.
That could expose Clinton criminal charges, although as yet the investigation is a not a criminal one:
The Justice Department originally characterized the inspector general letters as a “criminal referral,” but later reversed itself. The two inspectors general looking into the matter — at the State Department and the Office of the Director of National Intelligence — have said it was not a criminal referral but “a security referral made for counterintelligence purposes.”
But Clinton certainly faces accusations that she recklessly endangered national security by using her own email account and server. Right now she’s also suffering poll damage for seeming sneaky and dishonest:
Since news broke in March of her use of a personal email address on a server kept in her Chappaqua, New York, home, Clinton has insisted that she’s turned over all of her work-related emails to the State Department and deleted all others—but wouldn’t turn over her server to the government.
Sinking fast:
Democratic presidential hopeful Bernie Sanders has rocketed past longtime front-runner Hillary Clinton in New Hampshire, a stunning turn in a race once considered a lock for the former secretary of state, a new Franklin Pierce University/Boston Herald poll shows. 
Sanders leads Clinton 44-37 percent among likely Democratic primary voters, the first time the heavily favored Clinton has trailed in the 2016 primary campaign, according to the poll of 442 Granite-Staters.
===

If one then all: the confirmation bias of the tribalist Age

Andrew Bolt August 13 2015 (7:38am)

A former Democrat supporter insults a conservative TV host who asked him ”when exactly did you become a Republican”. That former Democrat supporter’s response angered Republican candidates. That former Democrat supporter is attacked by conservative commentators while the conservative woman is praised by The American Conservative.
Yet The Age offers this conclusion:
Donald Trump is too typical of conservative politics… Political discourse is diminished when conservatives continually denigrate women and their demand for respect in public life.
Confirmation bias. 
===

Abbott keeps Coalition together in same-sex marriage victory

Andrew Bolt August 13 2015 (7:35am)

Political things

 TONY Abbott’s victory in the same-sex marriage debate on Tuesday is a warning to his critics. He’s not dead yet. Far from it.
Forget the bad polls. This chronically underestimated Prime Minister has just nailed in place another critical part of his election strategy — one he’s convinced will work.
In doing so, Abbott also showed he’s much more in touch with his MPs than are his biggest rivals. There will be no challenge any time soon.
Abbott on Tuesday let more than 90 Coalition MPs speak during a marathon debate.
Two thirds backed him in resisting calls by Labor and the media class to break an election promise and let his MPs have a conscience vote on same-sex marriage.
Rival Malcolm Turnbull, though, was in the minority, demanding a free vote that would have ripped apart the party.
But Abbott didn’t “kill” gay marriage, as the hysterically angry Age newspaper screeched in a front-page headline.
(Read full article here.) 
===

Assange dodges justice

Andrew Bolt August 13 2015 (7:32am)

Hope his supporters are proud of how Assange weaselled out of these serious charges of sexual assault:
FUGITIVE Wikileaks founder Julian Assange could walk free from his diplomatic bolt-hole hide-out in London as early as next week with sexual assault allegations made against him set to expire
The 44-year-old Australian has been holed up at the Ecuadorean embassy in central London since June 2012 and was later granted political asylum there against extradition to Sweden to face questioning on three counts of sexual assault and one of rape alleged by two women.
He has remained in a back room of the embassy, next door to the Harrods department store loading dock, since then with British police armed with arrest warrants posted outside the building 24 hours a day at a cost so far of more than AUD$25 million. 
But Swedish authorities have now confirmed that next week three of the four charges against him will reach their five-year expiry date under Sweden’s statute of limitations and Assange will be automatically cleared.
===

Hiroshima was destroyed by Japan’s war, not one weapon

Andrew Bolt August 13 2015 (7:30am)

THE Hiroshima bombing was a terrible warning. But journalists and politicians now preach the wrong lessons.
ABC TV’s news reported claims that the destruction of Hiroshima with an atomic bomb 70 years ago last week was an American “war crime”.
The reporter added it started a nuclear arms race that brought the world “to the brink of destruction”.
Japan similarly prefers to cast the Americans’ bomb as the villain.
“As the only country ever attacked by an atomic bomb, we have a mission to create a world without nuclear arms,” Prime Minister Shinzo Abe said.
Typically, US President Barack Obama’s Administration indulged this blame shifting.
(Read full article here.
===

Turnbull provides the distraction he denounces

Andrew Bolt August 13 2015 (7:08am)

Communications Minister Malcolm Turnbull actually holds a press conference to attack his own Government:
The Communications Minister, a prominent advocate of same-sex marriage, warned the Prime Minister’s strong disposition for a public vote would become an incessant distraction for the Coalition in the lead-up to the next election and into the next term of parliament.... 
“The reason I have not advocated a plebiscite after the next election is that it would mean that this issue is a live issue all the way up to the next election and indeed at the next election, and if we are returned to office, it will be a very live issue in the lead-up to the plebiscite itself. “I want to be clear. I think it is an important issue, but particularly between now and the election, the more time I can talk about the economy, about jobs, about innovation, about digital technology and digital efficiency, the happier I’ll be.’’
Yet there is Turnbull making sure that what he predicts comes true - talking up divisions and distractions. 
===

Time to step it up

Andrew Bolt August 13 2015 (6:59am)

The Islamic State appeals to keyboard warriors as well as psychopathic ones. Result:
AUSTRALIAN defence officials, public servants and a member of Parliament have been placed on a frightening Islamic State hit list. 
Their personal details including phone numbers and emails have been shared on social media as the death cult claimed they had hacked American government and military computers.
Australia’s top IS fighter Neil Prakash, from Melbourne, sent the list to his 1100 followers and urged them to attack. 
One post he shared said: “Kill them where you find them and enslave their women.”
If we are not winning against the Islamic State we’re losing. And right now we’re not winning at all:
AUSTRALIA’S Hornet jet fighters should be unleashed to bomb Islamic State terrorists in Syria, according to an Abbott Government MP who heads a key security committee. 
The jihad-busting plan, if adopted, would significantly expand Australia’s military commitment, which currently limits the nation’s warplanes to attacking IS in neighbouring Iraq…
Liberal Dan Tehan..., the chairman of the federal Parliamentary Joint Committee on Intelligence and Security, said the international community was “ignoring the suffering of innocent Syrians.’’ 
“The time has come for Australia to join the military coalition seeking to destroy Daesh (IS) in Syria,’’ Mr Tehan writes in an opinion piece in the Herald Sun.
UPDATE
Now so common that the desensitised world barely notices:
The Islamic State group claims to have beheaded a Croatian hostage abducted in Egypt, posting a purported picture of the victim’s body on IS-affiliated Twitter accounts. 
The Croat, Tomislav Salopek, was abducted last month west of the capital Cairo. 
===

The race factor

Andrew Bolt August 13 2015 (6:32am)

The Washington Post doesn’t make clear in its report on the favorability ratings of the candidates just how much race trumps most other factors when courting the African American vote:
Neurosurgeon Ben Carson, charming and inspiring though he is, has about the fewest political qualifications of any of the Republicans battling for the presidential nomination. Yet among African American voters, he is the second choice. Carson is African American.
Two of the hottest candidates after Jeb Bush and Scott Walker are Ted Cruz and Marco Rubio, yet both men are among the least favored candidates of African Americans. Both are Hispanic.
Bobby Jindal, governor of Louisiana, is the least favored candidate of African American voters. Jindal is the son of Indian immigrants.
Coincidence or not, everyone with a non-Anglo surname, other than Pataki, is in the bottom half of the poll. 
===

Savva vs Sheridan

Andrew Bolt August 13 2015 (5:51am)

Take your pick from today’s Australian.
Niki Savva:
... almost half the Liberal Party has been locked into supporting something they believe should have been left to their conscience… Sometimes Abbott has trouble recognising what is in his own interests so trusting he would do what some think would be in the government’s and step aside is whimsical, to say the least… Abbott and his office persist with petty vendettas ... Abbott’s ability to impose his will on the Liberal Party has been compromised… His position remains fragile ... Abbott’s immediate survival relies on the support of his conservative base. He has done everything possible to preserve it, nowhere more obviously than in his handling of the marriage equality issue. He has scored a temporary victory without a clear resolution… What they also know is that important as it is, this debate has meant almost another week, after many, many such weeks, has passed without serious discussion of the economy, or tax or jobs or growth.
Greg Sheridan:
Despite countless tactical problems, and a good deal of mismanagement, looked at internationally the Abbott government is a roaring success.

On boats, the navy, greenhouse gas emissions and now same-sex marriage, the Abbott government has moved into strategic positions that represent good policy, manageable politics if done well and compare favourably in international terms… Labor has now given the Abbott government the ultimate seal of approval by endorsing its boats turnback policy… However, in doing this, Labor reminds us that absolutely everything it has said previously on this issue for a decade was wrong, and woefully wrong… 

Now the government has come up with a carbon emissions reduction target that is vastly more ambitious than anyone would have imagined of an Abbott government. The long-run objective of global carbon policy is to reach a certain per capita level of emissions around the world. Under these targets, Australia will cut its per capita emissions by half, more than any other nation… My criticism of this target is that it is excessive. Certainly it is utterly absurd to suggest it is insufficient…Finally, on same-sex marriage Abbott has kept faith with his conservative base but offered a way to change if that’s what people want. Activists who claim the issue should never go to plebiscite because plebiscites are hard to win are being dishonest and anti-democratic. 
I am completely confused by the criticism of Abbott by Turnbull and the unnamed party critics. Abbott on gay marriage is doing what most Liberals MPs say they want. If he ignored the majority view as Turnbull insists he would be acting the autocrat and risking a deep split in the party. He would break a promise and break faith with many Liberal supporters. He would outrage the Nationals, the Liberals’ partners in government. He would destroy his own base, embitter many Liberal supporters and delight Labor - exactly what Turnbull did, using similar arguments, when he backed Labor’s emissions trading scheme as Opposition Leader. Yet Abbott has at the same time offered same-sex marriage supporters exactly what they should want, given their claims to overwhelming public support - a plebiscite or referendum to settle the matter in the next term of Parliament.
UPDATE
Another pick between two columnists of the Australian.
Peter van Onselen claims Liberals are killing gays and don’t care:
Chris Kenny says Liberals are offering a vote on what same-sex marriage campaigners say they’d win:
UPDATE
Professor James Allan: 
The PM’s referendum offer is precisely how we ought to be moving. This way your consciences will count for just as much as those of all these MPs…
Be clear about this. A conscience vote is less democratic than either (a) having a party state its policy before an election, winning, and implementing it or (b) holding a plebiscite in which the votes of all of us ... all carry the same weight ... 
I think Mr. Abbott’s referendum offer on this issue is a great idea. In fact, if you’re against the idea then I’m keen to hear why you think some small handful of people’s consciences are better than your own.
(Thanks to reader Peter of Bellevue Hill.) 
===

ATROCITIES CONDEMNED

Tim Blair – Wednesday, August 13, 2014 (5:40pm)

From the Forum on Australia’s Islamic Relations:
Icon Arrow Continue reading 'ATROCITIES CONDEMNED'
===

HE DOESN’T WANT TO KNOW

Tim Blair – Wednesday, August 13, 2014 (12:36pm)

Miranda Devine explains news to an ABC journalist: 
With Sharrouf among at least 150 Australians taking part in the medieval horrors it’s all a bit too close to home to dismiss the looming threat to Australia as overstated or “Islamophobia”. But Australia’s moral relativists keep hiding from the truth.
Exhibit A: The ABC’s Jonathan Green, who objected to The Australian newspaper running the Sharrouf boy’s photo, albeit heavily pixilated.
“Will the Oz now comb life’s underbelly for further psychopathic atrocities?” he tweeted. “Or did this one just fit the narrative?”
No, it’s news. 
Quite so. Green offered further puzzling views during a Twitter chat:


Someone should tell him that if you click on the front page of a newspaper nothing will happen. Also: what “discussion”, precisely?
UPDATE. An ABC discussion.
===

LAUREN BACALL

Tim Blair – Wednesday, August 13, 2014 (11:56am)

Hollywood great Lauren Bacall has died at 89.

===

JOINT IS ON FIRE

Tim Blair – Wednesday, August 13, 2014 (11:43am)

sad day for hippies: 
The famed Rainbow Café, the hippy heart of Nimbin, burnt to the ground in the early hours of this morning.


“The place went up in smoke, the joint is on fire, there are plenty of puns you can make up, it is Nimbin,” Alan Salt said of the fire that destroyed the iconic Rainbow Café. 
The Nimbin Museum, Tribal Magic and Bring-a-Bong were also damaged or destroyed. The Hemp Embassy escaped harm, however.
===

Leftists say this image proves the badness of … Abbott

Andrew Bolt August 13 2014 (6:01pm)

ABC presenter Jonathan Green is furious at the publication of an image that destroys not innocence but ignorance - a deliberately cultivated ignorance about what’s really at stake:
But Guardian writer Katharine Murphy devises a truly mad excuse for looking at the picture and thinking about anything but evil and Islamism:
It can be a piece of simple iconography: here is the poster child of modern terrorism – this far barbarism, and no further. Or it can be an emblem of a really serious bureaucratic bungle on the Coalition’s watch. Take your pick.
Guess which pick is the lookaway Left’s?
A grateful Green seconds a vote of thanks to Murphy:
Pull back. So according to Murphy and Green, this picture could best be described as an image not of the evil of Islamism but the evil of Abbott.
These people are crazy.  
===

Could all the honest NSW Liberals MPs please step forward

Andrew Bolt August 13 2014 (1:12pm)

How many cleanskins are there actually left in the NSW Liberal party? What a sewer:
FORMER NSW police minister Mike Gallacher has been accused of orchestrating illegal donations from property developers, including businessman Nathan Tinkler. 
Hugh Thomson, who was Liberal Newcastle MP Tim Owen’s campaign manager in 2011, told the Independent Commission against Corruption that Mr Gallacher had arranged for media adviser Luke Grant to be paid by property developers. Mr Owen and fellow Liberal Hunter Valley Andrew Cornwell were yesterday forced to resign from NSW parliament after evidence to ICAC they took illegal donations from developers including Newcastle mayor Jeff McCloy, and Hilton Grugeon.
The allegations against Gallacher are, of course, unproven and the presumption of innocence must apply. That said, he did step down.
But, my God, already five Liberals sitting on the crossbenches after being named and shamed. A Premier forced to step down for “forgetting” about an expensive donation of Grange.  
===

ABC man clears Islam

Andrew Bolt August 13 2014 (1:08pm)

By the time the ABC’s James Carleton has finished discussing Khaled Sharrouf you’d think Islam had nothing at all to do what the man himself - and thousands of his fellow terrorists - say they are doing for Islam. 
===

Media Watch pretends a viciously anti-Israeli cartoon was just the ‘truth’

Andrew Bolt August 13 2014 (8:55am)

Media Watch’s whitewash this week of anti-Semitic slurs in the Sydney Morning Herald - and its astonishing attack instead on Jews - shows just how out of control the ABC now is.
I yesterday explained just how wickedly host Paul Barry had spun the issue to help his ideological mate Mike Carlton.
Today former Age editor-in-chief Michael Gawenda points out one more disgraceful bit of Barry spinning:
How pathetic then was the SMH [for not defending Carlton and the cartoon above his column], Barry implied. How powerful was a certain group in the community and a certain media organisation that a cartoon considered offensive to Jews gets so widely lambasted while an equally offensive cartoon by Leak about Palestinians is largely ignored and gets the support of his editor.
To reinforce all this Barry recalled the cartoon by Michael Leunig that The Age had refused to publish. He quoted Leunig at some length about how he has been abused and vilified by people who dislike his views on Israel and the Palestinians and how it was a pity that the SMH apologised for the fat Jew cartoon because such an apology makes it harder for cartoonists to tell the truths that some people do not want to hear.
Barry did not show the cartoon that The Age refused to publish, which I imagine made it hard for people to know what he was on about.
Well I was the editor of The Age at the time and I refused to publish the cartoon. I refused because the cartoon clearly suggested that the Israelis were dealing with the Palestinians the way the Nazis had dealt with the Jews. The Jenin refugee camp was the equivalent of Auschwitz.

Barry said nothing about this. One of his researchers had called me to ask why I refused to publish the cartoon. I told her I refused to publish it because suggesting Israelis (Jews) were the modern-day Nazis was not just factually unjustifiable, to put it mildly, but a form of vilification that no editor should accept. Clearly what I had to say was of no interest to Barry. Instead, he canvassed a few cartoonists who confirmed that they found it most difficult to draw anything about the conflict between Israel and the Palestinians.
Barry inferred this was because of the response they got to cartoons on this subject from …. well who knows?
It’s always the Jews, isn’t it?
Why isn’t the ABC board demanding the ABC live up to its charter and some basic standards?
(Thanks to readers John and brett tr.)  
===

Why would Israel cooperate with such a UN inquiry?

Andrew Bolt August 13 2014 (8:35am)

The United Nations bureaucracy is hopelessly Leftist - and hopelessly antagonistic to Israel.
The latest evidence:
A Canadian law professor chosen to helm a United Nations commission examining possible war crimes in Gaza scoffed Monday at charges he’s biased against Israel… 
“The suggestion that I’m anti-Israel is absurd,” William Schabas said Monday in an interview from Toronto, pointing out that he’s on the editorial board of the Israel Law Review…

Schabas, who currently works as an international law professor at Middlesex University in England, is one of three lawyers who will investigate any violations of international humanitarian and human rights law in Gaza.
“Absurd”? Watch and weep:
Asked why he called Netanyahu his “favorite” to indict at the International Criminal Court, instead of Syria’s Assad or Hamas’ Mashal, Schabas said he merely echoed the Goldstone Report. Except Netanyahu wasn’t PM then—and isn’t mentioned anywhere in the report! 
(Thanks to reader Kat.) 
===

A minority of Muslims, yes, but potentially very dangerous

Andrew Bolt August 13 2014 (7:36am)

SBS Insight last night rightly suggested that, yes, most Muslims were moderates horrified by the slaughter in the Middle East.
It also suggested that a minority of Muslims here are deeply troubling and potentially very dangerous, pledging their support for a murderous terrorist group which boasts of cutting throats and slaughtering infidels.
“Abdullah”, talking about his son:
I’m worried … he wants to go to Syria and join those groups and he kill some innocent people and he (might) die himself.
Abu Bakr, a 19-year-old Australian supporting the Islamic State and wearing its flag:
In order for me to be connected to the values here of Australia, the Australian government needs to stop picking on the Muslims here.
Mohamed Zuhbi, an Australian volunteer with the Islamic State:
I believe that they are the future of Syria and I believe that they’re the future of the Islamic empire to come. 
===

And we can’t even safely debate this

Andrew Bolt August 13 2014 (6:45am)


The politics of race are sure tricky. A racist organisation is accused of being racist in the wrong way:
A biracial woman has won her case against her former employer – the Black Educators Association – after human rights officials deemed she had been bullied by co-workers for being “not really black enough” to do her job.
No comment is safe, while section 18c remains. 
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‘Horseshit’ - criticism on Syria nettles Obama

Andrew Bolt August 13 2014 (6:32am)

I’m not sure arming the “good” Syrian rebels would have done much - other than to put weapons in the hands of people who could turn very nasty. But Obama’s lack of leadership has exposed him:
President Obama got angry at lawmakers who suggested in a private meeting that he should have armed the Syrian rebels, calling the criticism “horseshit.” 
The argument that America should have done more in Syria, made for years by foreign policy leaders in both parties and several members of Obama’s senior national security team, was brought back to the fore this past weekend. Obama and Hillary Clinton gave dueling interviews in which they publicly split on whether the security and humanitarian catastrophe in Syria could have been avoided if the United States had played a larger role. Obama’s outburst on July 31, one week prior, reveals the criticism was already getting to him, even before the White House tried to deflect Clinton’s remarks as pre-presidential political posturing.
Then there’s this:
The leader of the Islamic State of Iraq and al-Shams (ISIS,) Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi, was formerly held by the U.S. military at Camp Bucca in southern Iraq from 2005 to his release in 2009. 
Why such a dangerous man was slated for release in 2009, or who made the decision is not known. The Telegraph offers that “one possible explanation is that he was one of thousands of suspected insurgents granted amnesty as the US began its draw down in Iraq.”
Richard A. Epstein:
Yet there is no denying that Obama’s rudderless foreign policy has been a disaster. The international order has rapidly deteriorated since Obama entered the Oval Office. The current situation is so perilous that so long as Obama remains President, the phrase “presidential leadership” will continue to be an oxymoron. 
The President suffers from two fundamental flaws. The first is that he is unwilling to make decisions. He much prefers to play the role of a disinterested observer who comments on a set of adverse events that he regards himself as powerless to shape, of which Assad’s carnage in Syria is the prime example. The second is that he fundamentally misunderstands the use of force in international affairs. He handicaps himself fatally by imposing unwise limitations on the use of American force, such as his repeated declarations that he will not send ground troops back into Iraq… No one can claim that Iraq was at peace when George W. Bush left office, but the violence had been curbed. Since Obama has taken over, relative tranquility yielded to factional squabbling, followed by vicious aggression that caught the President woefully off guard. Iraq is not alone. The number of hotspots in the world—including Gaza, Syria, Libya, Nigeria, Ukraine and the China Sea—is increasing. The President wrings his hands over how difficult it has become to find credible allies in the world to address these problems without ever asking why no one trusts him. So he resolves to hold back on the use of American force overseas. Armed with that certainty, every tin pot dictator and terrorist group thinks it has an open field in which to run.
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Abbott won’t rule out troops for Iraq

Andrew Bolt August 13 2014 (6:23am)

Tony Abbott has developed a taste for international intervention:
PRIME Minister Tony Abbott has suggested Australia is prepared to send military forces to Iraq if that’s what is needed to prevent genocide by the “murderous hordes” fighting for Islamic State… 
“No one wants to stand aside in the face of a potential genocide,” the prime minister said following talks with the British prime minister, senior UK ministers and intelligence officers in London. Asked if that could include military action Mr Abbott replied: “Well we certainly don’t rule that out.”
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Don’t mention the Koran

Andrew Bolt August 13 2014 (12:09am)

A “Canadian theologian” usually suggests a self-hating Christian, but John Stackhouse on Q&A suddenly had enough of the deceptive pieties  of the wilfully blind Liberal Sussan Ley and even more wilfully ignorant “human rights” lawyer Jennifer Robinson, unable to explain just why she’s so sure Stackhouse is wrong:
SUSSAN LEY:  We must be really careful with the - we must recognise several things about Muslim Australians. One is that Islam is a religion of peace. It absolutely is… 
TONY JONES: John Stackhouse, listening to this, I’m sure you’ve had the same debates in Canada?
JOHN STACKHOUSE: Well, no, we don’t have a lot of Canadians who go fight overseas on behalf of Muslim movements elsewhere, so this is actually something that’s more Australian than Canadian… . But to keep our country safe, we do have to try to figure out who’s who and what’s what without being unrealistic and sentimental. I mean, I have to respectfully disagree. I’ve been teaching world religion for 25 years. Islam is not a religion of peace. They’ve tried to trademark that but it’s just not true. Islam is a religion that copes with the real world and in Islam, including in its holy books, there are provisions for warfare and there are provisions for defensive warfare and there are also provisions for the extension of Islam, which is why the whole history of Islam has been steady territorial expansion. Of course it’s a religion of peace, by which they mean the subjugation of other people under sharia and that’s peace but it is an imperial sort of peace and I’m not judging it. I mean, we Christians have done the same thing and lots of other religions have done the same thing as well.
TONY JONES: I mean, I beg to differ you. You do appear to be judging it?
JOHN STACKHOUSE: No, I’m simply correcting the record. I mean, as a matter of fact, the Qur’an and the sharia are very clear that the jihad can be both the internal, the greater jihad of subjecting myself to the will of God, and the lesser jihad is to subject the world to God. I mean there is only two realms. There is Dar al-Islam. There is the submitted part of the world and then there is the rest of the world that’s not yet submitted to God, the dar al-harb, the situation of war, the house of war. So it’s a pretty clear world view and while many of my Muslim friends are liberal and multicultural and love Canada and have no interest in the violent prosecution of their faith and I think it’s really important to understand, nonetheless, we just can’t make sense of world history if we suggest that Islam doesn’t have within it the legitimation of violence.
TONY JONES: Jen Robinson, I can see you wanted to get in there. 
JENNIFER ROBINSON: An eyebrow was raised. I am, by no means, a religious scholar but I think a lot of my Muslim friends would take great exception to what you’ve just said and I think there are many interpretations and I would take a massive point with that. I think we also need to actually ask the question and be real here about the real numbers. Is this a huge Australian problem we’re talking about? I think the numbers quoted were 150 people fighting overseas. Let’s not over-exaggerate this ...
She doesn’t know, but she’s sure he’s wrong. Reason? She simply does not want what he says to be true.
It is all very well to be nice. But to believe in these falsehoods is not the sign of a good heart but a cowardly mind. 
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Check the company Craig Laundy keeps. He’s a Liberal?

Andrew Bolt August 13 2014 (12:01am)

Craig Laundy was one of the Liberal MPs loudest in opposing the restoration of our free speech, helping to defeat the reform of the Racial Discrimination Act.
No wonder: 10 per cent of the voters in his seat are Muslim, and Muslim leaders demanded we keep our gag.
But maybe Laundy will argue that, no, he was against free speech out of principle, not cheap self interest.
In that case I invite other Liberals to check out the ideological company Laundy now keeps and to ask him precisely which Liberal values he represents:
Here is an example of Peter Slezak’s politics - and the anti-Israel bias of this advocate for sanctions against Israel.
Here is an example of Jake Lynch’s politics - and the anti-Israel bias of this agitator for sanctions against Israel.
Here is an example of the politics of Antony Loewenstein - and his anti-Israel activism.
Here is an example of Aftab Malik’s politics - and his anti-Israel polemics.
Here is an example of Peter Manning’s politics - and his astonishing anti-American bias:
I FOUND September 11 so shocking. But equally shocking was how quickly it became an iconic event ... But as I thought more deeply in the following weeks, I had some sympathy for boxer Anthony Mundine’s brutal response: “They brought the attacks on themselves.” 
Exactly where are “Liberals” like Craig Laundy taking the Liberal party? 
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Hezbollah, a profile
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Lovers of Big Government and apologists for debt like Paul Krugman have tried to paint Milton Friedman as a contradiction. They say that Friedman’s insight that more Fed intervention might have mitigated the Great Depression is inconsistent with his view that the Depression would have been less severe without the Fed.
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Four hundred American surface-to-air missiles were 'taken from Libya' during the terror attack on the U.S. consulate in Benghazi, a former U.S. Attorney who represents whistleblowers claimed on Monday. 
He added that the U.S. intelligence community is terrified they might be used to shoot down airliners.

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The party that has lost $13 billion in ten weeks, with a finance minister that has lost $107 billion are to be believed on? - ed

You have to salute the courage of Treasury secretary Martin Parkinson and Finance Department secretary David Tune. Under serious pressure from their next political masters to produce a set of numbers favourable to the Coalition, they have stood their ground.
The bottom line of their Pre-election Economic and Fiscal Outlook (PEFO) is effectively identical to the one published 11 days ago in the government's economic statement. Where it differs, the forecast budget outcomes over the next four years is actually $209 million better than the previous estimate.
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"What Ben Chavis and the American Indian Model Schools are really guilty of is creating academic excellence that shows up the public school system, both by this school's achievements and by the methods used to create those achievements, which go against the educational dogmas prevailing in the failing public schools."
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BEAT THE LEFT AT THEIR OWN GAME ON CIVIL LIBERTIES! They don't want us to be free to keep the fruits of our own labour! Courtesy of Gina Rinehart's father Lang Hancock in 1979:
"The strange fact is that while Australians are constitutionally free today to do almost everything that our cultural tradition has previously held to be immoral and obscene, the police powers of the State are being invoked against almost every aspect of the economic productive process, so no one is free to pursue those activities which will give them a rising standard of living or ensure the well-being of the nation."
[Source: http://economics.org.au/2013/07/lang-hancock-beats-the-left-at-their-own-game-on-civil-liberties/.]
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<Genuine intellectuals who are devoted to the pursuit of ideas and who understand the transformative potential of debate should reject the politics of insult. Instead of sneeringly declaring ‘they don’t get it’, a real intellectual should develop ideas in a way that would allow ‘them’ to get it. Indeed, it is the conviction that most human beings have the potential to grasp the issues facing their communities that underpins the ideals of democratic politics and popular sovereignty. The real problem today is not stupid conservatives, but people with multiple university degrees who ‘don’t get’ what it truly means to be an intellectual.>
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The United Nations’ refugee arm has launched an investigation into one of its top Jordanian officials after he posted on his Facebook page a “motivational” poster featuring Nazi leader Adolf Hitler.
Dr. Fares Haider, reportedly the dean of education at the U.N.’s Relief Works Agency’s (UNRWA) educational facilities in Jordan, posted on his “official” Facebook page a picture of Hitler saluting, along with a quote from the Nazi leader.
UNRWA, which is primarily funded by the United States, is responsible for the education of some 485,000 Palestinian children throughout the Middle East.
“Military rules for success … Assad Allah good morning all,” Haider wrote along with the picture, according to the Israel-based Center for Near East Policy Research.
The text accompanying Hitler’s image reads: “The two most important rules in order to be successful—the first: never give up. The second: remember the first rule,” according to a report and translation performed by pro-Israel blogger Elder of Ziyon.
The quote is attributed directly to “Adolf Hitler.”
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Attorney General Eric Holder announced today that he is changing Justice Department policy so that "low-level, nonviolent" drug offenders will no longer face mandatory minimum prison sentences. 

Aggressive enforcement of federal criminal laws is necessary, but "we cannot simply prosecute or incarcerate our way to becoming a safer nation," Holder said. http://tinyurl.com/l5rmtr5
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AUSSIES CHOKE: Australia’s Ashes campaign has been left in tatters after a humiliating batting collapse at Chester-le-Street.

At one stage, the Aussies were 1-147 chasing 299 for victory, but the team then went on to lose its last eight wickets for just 77 runs. England now has a 3-nil lead in the series.

We’ll have more on this story in our afternoon bulletins and in 9 News at 6pm on Channel 9.

‪#‎Ashes‬ ‪#‎cricket‬ ‪#‎9News‬
I think they have been as competitive and dignified as they can be. They have been outplayed by a better team. - ed
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Kenyan lawyer Dola Indidis argues that the trial was unlawful and is demanding that Israel and Italy be held responsible, The Christian Post reports.
Mr Indidis, a Roman Catholic, and former spokesperson for the Kenyan Judiciary, filed the lawsuit regarding Jesus' death with the International Court of Justice, the primary judicial branch of the United Nations based at The Hague in the Netherlands.
He filed the lawsuit against Pontius Pilate, several Jewish elders, King Herod, Tiberius (Emperor of Rome 42 BC-37AD), the Republic of Italy and the State of Israel.
Italy is under new management. Herod and Tiberius are dead. But I understand the UN are debating the issue of Israel's involvement. - ed
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Is American blood important to the American government?

Number 5 on the list of killers set to be freed by the gov't of Israel are the killers who murdered Freddie Rosenfeld, an American citizen
Steven Frederick Rosenfeld was born to Eugene and Ethel Rosenfeld in New York on 29 August 1941.
He immigrated to Israel in 1968 and volunteered at Kibbutz Masada, where he was injured when a truck he was driving hit a landmine. Followingrehabilitation, Frederick began working onarchaeological digs in the Ein Bokek area, where he met his wife, Rachel.
On Saturday, 7 June 1989, Frederick went on a hike in the hills near Ariel.

He encountered a group of shepherds who stole a knife that he had in his possession, stabbed him to death, and hid his body on the side of the path. A different shepherd who was passing through the area found the body the next day.
Frederick was 48 at the time of his death. He was survived by his wife and brother.
The killers were caught because Freddie took their picture as they attacked him and, in his dying moments, put the camera in his pocket...

At the time, our agency provided full news coverage of Freddie's murder for the foreign press based in Israel.

Since Israel's justice system has now failed Freddie Rosenfeld, perhaps the US justice system will come through.
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As CAMERA has documented in the past, fact-checking for his column is not Thomas L. Friedman's strong suit. But to make matters worse,The New York Times seems unperturbed by such blatant errors.===
The Israel Davis Cup team will be fined 10,000 euros for refusing to compete on Yom Kippur, it was reported Sunday.
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While the government claims that the murderers being freed as a “gesture” to the Palestinian Authority (PA) committed their acts before the Oslo accords were signed by then-Israeli prime minister Yitzhak Rabin and PA head Yasser Arafat,Arutz Sheva has revealed that this is in fact not true.
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IDF Civil Administration inspectors uprooted a Jewish-owned orchardMonday at Givat Haroe, near Eli, in the Binyamin region.
According to eyewitnesses, dozens of Border Police secured the location, which was declared a Closed Military Zone for the duration of the action. The operation was carried out following a High Court order, issued after judges determined that the orchard was planted on land that belongs to Arabs.

Will they stop the terrorism now? - ed
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Police allege 36-year-old Fadi Abdul-Rahman, who featured in Kevin Rudd's 2020 Summit in 2008 and has been a fighter for justice in western Sydney, was part of a commercial cocaine syndicate that was caught with 5kg of the drug hidden in a chess set.
Abdul-Rahman appeared in the Downing Centre Local Court on Tuesday, facing two commercial drugs charges after he was arrested during a police sting at Punchbowl in March. Abdul-Rahman's lawyer Brett Galloway told The Sunday Telegraph he would defend the charges.
"There are no facts which establish any of the offences. . . they are consistent with his innocence or that he was in the wrong place at a bad time," Mr Galloway said.
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The European Union has denounced the proposal for construction in Judea and Samaria and parts of Jerusalem beyond the 1949 Armistice Line. 
The EU insisted on Monday that Israel and the Palestinian Authority should "avoid any actions which would halt negotiations," according to AFP.
Michael Mann, spokesman for EU foreign affairs head Catherine Ashton, responded to the announcement for new housing tenders at a news briefing:
"Israeli settlements in the West Bank [Judea and Samaria] are illegal under international law and threaten to make a two-state solution to the Israeli-Palestinian conflict impossible."

Ironic given that individual EU governments are calling for Islamic migrants to conform. - ed
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I find it very ironic. Every week in my hospital we get several seriously wounded patients from Syria. This is besides the ones that go to Ziv, Poria, and Rambam. These patients are taken care of for free and brought to us by the U.N. since no one else will take care of them. So the U.N. knows Jews are the only ones who will help anyone no matter what background, yet they continue to bash us as Arab hating oppressors.”
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RAMAT GAN WELCOMES BABY ELEPHANT

LaBelle gave birth to a 200 pound elephant calf at the Ramat Gan Safari in Tel Aviv. The successful birth was uneventful for first time mom, who is part of Ramat Gan’s extensive animal conservation program. The female baby, yet to be named, is an Asian elephant and will likely join her mother and grandmother in the elephant breeding program when she is grown.

View more adorable images:http://www.jspace.com/news/articles/baby-elephant-born-at-ramat-gan-safari/14946

Read Jewish news at Jspace.com.

‪#‎BabyElephants‬ ‪#‎RamatGan‬ ‪#‎IsraeliZoo‬‪#‎BabyAnimals‬


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Maxi- mum whats the weather like today? Me- (looks out window) cold and windy. Maxi- how do you know, you didnt even ask siri?! Me- I did it the old fashioned way, I looked out the window! Kids these days.
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Pastor Rick Warren
Buying a more expensive watch won't give you more time, but paying for it will certainly cost you time that could be used in better ways. Your time is your life. Killing time is suicide. (The watch in this photo costs $1 million)
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Pastor Rick Warren
14 studies reveal patients with ‪#‎mental‬ illness get worse medical care from doctors than “normal” patients 
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Cardinal Armand de Richelieu
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“Do you not know that your bodies are temples of the Holy Spirit, who is in you, whom you have received from God? You are not your own; you were bought at a price. Therefore honor God with your bodies.” 1 Corinthians 6:19-20 NIV
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Morning and Evening by Charles Spurgeon

Morning

"The Lord reigneth, let the earth rejoice."
Psalm 97:1
Causes for disquietude there are none so long as this blessed sentence is true. On earth the Lord's power as readily controls the rage of the wicked as the rage of the sea; his love as easily refreshes the poor with mercy as the earth with showers. Majesty gleams in flashes of fire amid the tempest's horrors, and the glory of the Lord is seen in its grandeur in the fall of empires, and the crash of thrones. In all our conflicts and tribulations, we may behold the hand of the divine King.
"God is God; he sees and hears
All our troubles, all our tears.

Soul, forget not, 'mid thy pains,

God o'er all forever reigns."

In hell, evil spirits own, with misery, his undoubted supremacy. When permitted to roam abroad, it is with a chain at their heel; the bit is in the mouth of behemoth, and the hook in the jaws of leviathan. Death's darts are under the Lord's lock, and the grave's prisons have divine power as their warder. The terrible vengeance of the Judge of all the earth makes fiends cower down and tremble, even as dogs in the kennel fear the hunter's whip.
"Fear not death, nor Satan's thrusts,
God defends who in him trusts;
Soul, remember, in thy pains,
God o'er all forever reigns."
In heaven none doubt the sovereignty of the King Eternal, but all fall on their faces to do him homage. Angels are his courtiers, the redeemed his favourites, and all delight to serve him day and night. May we soon reach the city of the great King!
"For this life's long night of sadness
He will give us peace and gladness.
Soul, remember, in thy pains,
God o'er all forever reigns."

Evening

"The bow shall be seen in the cloud."
Genesis 9:14
The rainbow, the symbol of the covenant with Noah, is typical of our Lord Jesus, who is the Lord's witness to the people. When may we expect to see the token of the covenant? The rainbow is only to be seen painted upon a cloud. When the sinner's conscience is dark with clouds, when he remembers his past sin, and mourneth and lamenteth before God, Jesus Christ is revealed to him as the covenant Rainbow, displaying all the glorious hues of the divine character and betokening peace. To the believer, when his trials and temptations surround him, it is sweet to behold the person of our Lord Jesus Christ--to see him bleeding, living, rising, and pleading for us. God's rainbow is hung over the cloud of our sins, our sorrows, and our woes, to prophesy deliverance. Nor does a cloud alone give a rainbow, there must be the crystal drops to reflect the light of the sun. So, our sorrows must not only threaten, but they must really fall upon us. There had been no Christ for us if the vengeance of God had been merely a threatening cloud: punishment must fall in terrible drops upon the Surety. Until there is a real anguish in the sinner's conscience, there is no Christ for him; until the chastisement which he feels becomes grievous, he cannot see Jesus. But there must also be a sun; for clouds and drops of rain make not rainbows unless the sun shineth. Beloved, our God, who is as the sun to us, always shines, but we do not always see him--clouds hide his face; but no matter what drops may be falling, or what clouds may be threatening, if he does but shine there will be a rainbow at once. It is said that when we see the rainbow the shower is over. Certain it is, that when Christ comes, our troubles remove; when we behold Jesus, our sins vanish, and our doubts and fears subside. When Jesus walks the waters of the sea, how profound the calm!
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Today's reading: Psalm 84-86, Romans 12 (NIV)

View today's reading on Bible Gateway

Today's Old Testament reading: Psalm 84-86

For the director of music. According to gittith. Of the Sons of Korah. A psalm.

1 How lovely is your dwelling place,
LORD Almighty!
2 My soul yearns, even faints,
for the courts of the LORD;
my heart and my flesh cry out
for the living God.
3 Even the sparrow has found a home,
and the swallow a nest for herself,
where she may have her young-
a place near your altar,
LORD Almighty, my King and my God.
Blessed are those who dwell in your house;
they are ever praising you....

Today's New Testament reading: Romans 12


A Living Sacrifice

1 Therefore, I urge you, brothers and sisters, in view of God's mercy, to offer your bodies as a living sacrifice, holy and pleasing to God-this is your true and proper worship. 2 Do not conform to the pattern of this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind. Then you will be able to test and approve what God's will is-his good, pleasing and perfect will....

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Mark, Marcus

[Märk,Mär'cus] - a large hammer orpolite. John Mark was a Jew and a son of Mary, who was a leading Christian at Jerusalem.

The Man Who Recovered Himself


Mark was the Roman surname of this young associate of the apostle, while his first name, John, was his Hebrew name. Mark was an apostle but held no official position among the original Twelve. The first time we come across "John, whose surname was Mark," it is in connection with one of the most remarkable prayer meetings ever held. Herod, who had just beheaded James, had Peter under arrest. But the many friends of "The Big Fisherman" gathered in the home of "Mary the mother of John Mark" for prayer, which the Lord wonderfully answered (Acts 12:12).
Mark's mother was a godly, well-to-do widow in Jerusalem and her house was a favorite meeting place for the saints (Acts 12:12; Col. 4:10). Her brother, Barnabas, Mark's uncle, was a wealthy Levite from the island of Cyprus (Acts 13:1-5). In Barnabas, Mark had a staunch and gifted friend and counselor (Acts 11:24). While we are not told how or when Mark became a disciple of Christ, it is evident that he owed his conversion to Peter, since the apostle speaks of him as "Marcus, my son" ( 1 Pet. 5:13). Thereafter he became a close companion of Peter for about twelve years. Doubtless Mark had heard and seen Christ. Tradition identifies Mark as "the certain young man," who followed Christ when all His disciples forsook Him and fled (Mark 14:51).
Mark became an attendant of Paul and Barnabas when they set out on their great mission tour (Acts 13:5 ), and these two godly men must have had a formative influence upon the character of young Mark. However, our next glimpse of him is disappointing. In the early years of his service, Mark was guilty of vacillating (Acts 13:13; 15:38). The ploughman looked back. So full of promise, Mark failed Paul and Barnabas at a crisis and brought about a severance of friends. The fear of what lay ahead in arduous missionary enterprise moved Mark to retrace his steps (Acts 13:13; 15:38).

But Mark won his spurs again and recovered his place in apostolic esteem. The years the locusts had eaten were restored and he became a valued colleague of Paul (Col. 4:10, 11; Philem. 24). A further impressive testimony to Mark's reinstatement is found in Paul's tribute to Mark's usefulness (2 Tim. 4:11). The wound was thoroughly healed. In the eventide of his life, Peter could write affectionately of Mark (1 Pet. 5:13). Tradition says that Mark became a bishop and a martyr and that his body was removed to Venice and buried there. St. Mark's of Venice is dedicated to his fragrant memory. The Lion, the emblem of Mark's Roman Gospel, is emblazoned on the standard of the Venetian Republic.

As the ministry of Mark was peculiarly a Gentile one, he is recognized by his Gentile name. Writing specifically for Romans, who stood for power, Mark manifests Christ's power in service. Accustomed as Mark was to the might of Rome's legions, he exhibits the soldier's rapidity of movement and readiness to repel attack, and gives us in his shortest and simplest gospel, a progressive series of victorious conflicts. Vividness, compactness, direction, circumstantial evidence characterize his gospel.

The main lessons to be learned from the life of Mark are apparent:
I. The blessings of a godly home. The Christian Church owes much to "Mary, the mother of John Mark."
II. Much depends upon the choice of friends. Mark's life was lived in the company of godly men such as Peter, Paul and Barnabas.
III. The possibilities of life. A widow's son became an apostle and a great historian, and his name is upon the lips of men the world over.
IV. The reward for faithful service. We do not read of Mark preaching a single sermon or performing even one miracle. All that is said about him is that he was a helper of others. Such service never fails to receive its reward.
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