Yours not to reason why: Not Happy John Iraq Chapter #Chilcot

Democracy has proved itself a friend of peace. No fully self-governing country has provoked a war within a century’s memory . . . Democracy, being founded on the rights of the individual Citizens, concerns itself first and foremost with  the domestic well-being of its people . . . In the grim struggle between guns and butter, it prefers butter. It feels in its bones that war is a destroyer, and that conqueror and conquered may be at the end ’in one red burial blent’ Robert Menzies, ‘The Achievement of Democracy’, from The Forgotten People radio broadcasts, 1942 John Howard began 2003 by farewelling our troops, for what we all knew would […]

Time to be Alert … And a little bit Alarmed? – the @sarah_capper column

Yes, that’s right, last week Prime Minister Tony Abbott announced the Government was raising Australia’s ‘terror alert’ status to ‘high’.  While technically this means a terrorist attack on Australian soil is now regarded as “likely”, the PM was quick to clarify that “this does not mean that a terror attack is imminent. We have no specific intelligence of particular plots.” Fast forward one week as Australians woke to the news of police raids on houses in Sydney and Brisbane. Almost 900 police were involved with 15 people detained and at this stage, one charged with conspiracy to prepare an attack, another charged with weapons offenses. Based on media reports, the […]

Sssshhhh, don’t tell the media, but politics is changing from the ground-up, by @ariadne_syd

Ariadne Vromen, @ariadne_syd Source: The Conversation University of Sydney 21st March 2014 Political participation in Australia will soon be about hope – and the transformation of citizenship engagement in this country. Here is why. Traditionally, Australian political participation was centred on, and supported by, the electoral system, political parties and major political organisations. Most media commentators tend to focus on the electoral system as the main way of consolidating political support and bringing about change. They assume citizens make political choices to participate and/or express themselves based on rational, self-interested, often economic, calculations. When citizens have been mobilised it has usually been done by unions, political parties and environmental organisations. These have […]

Australia invaded Iraq by deceiving Australian people: 43 Australian elders

‘We must return stable, predictable, AND honest government to Australia.‘  Joe Hockey, May 23, National Press Club By Margo Kingston May 23, 2013 When I saw Paul Barratt’s tweets today on some momentous big Howard government lies, I remembered this letter, which Barratt signed in 2004. The government’s trashing of the elders who signed it triggered the decision of public servant Michael Scrafton to blow the lid on the children overboard lie. Thanks for the memories, Paul. And Joe Hockey, don’t talk about bringing back honest government, please. Your last government’s record does not allow it. Paul Barratt, AO, former Secretary Dept of Defence and Deputy Secretary Dept of Foeign Affairs and Trade (DFAT) […]

Murdoch’s war: 175 generals on song

By Margo Kingston February 19, 2003 Rupert Murdoch is pro-war, and thinks a lower price for oil after Iraq is conquered will be better than a tax cut. After those comments (see Murdoch: Cheap oil the prize), a reader sent me Their master’s voice by Roy Greenslade in The Guardian, which reports that all 175 Murdoch editors around the world just happen to agree with their boss. It begins: ‘What a guy! You have got to admit that Rupert Murdoch is one canny press tycoon because he has an unerring ability to choose editors across the world who think just like him. How else can we explain the extraordinary unity of thought in his […]