Episode 211- Live Streaming to a Brave New World
In this episode we attempted our first Livestream. We had a lot of problems with buffering but it worked very well once we switched over to tethering off our mobile phones so I’m declaring it a successful experiment.
2:06 Queensland – Cue banjo music
LNP state convention.
Liberal National Party leader Deb Frecklington says she would consider a resolution passed at the LNP state convention to establish an “Office of Science Quality Assurance”.
Are we living in some sort of dystopian novel?
5:46 It’s very Orwellian when the title is the exact opposite of the nature of the institution.
Remember 1984? The Ministry of Peace was concerned with War. The Ministry of Love maintained Law and Order. The Ministry of Truth concerned itself with news and entertainment.
Now we have the fucking Office of Science Quality Assurance!!!!
… Former state LNP MP for Hinchinbrook Andrew Cripps brought one such motion urging a future LNP state government to establish the science office, which would have the ability to ratify or reject scientific reports handed to the government.
“We want this passed so our parliamentary members can point to this policy and say this is how we are responding to the challenge of people with alternative views to make sure we’ve got good data to back up rational decision-making,” Mr Cripps said.
In particular, he was concerned about the laws brought before Parliament by the Labor government in February, which seek to tighten regulations around farming and mining run-off into Great Barrier Reef catchment areas.
Mr Cripps claimed the science behind the legislation was “flawed” and a science office would be able to “objectively” rule on scientific advice handed to the government.
Ms Frecklington said she wasn’t ruling out the idea.
“It is something which my parliamentary team are keen to have a look at and we will certainly be having further discussions,” she said.
8:06 Battle lines drawn as LNP faces internal struggle over control of the party
The LNP is in the midst of a civil war as the ‘religious right’ seeks to gain control of the party in the wake of the contentious abortion decriminalisation vote.
THE first real signs a civil war was brewing within the LNP became evident last year when about 100 unexpected faces turned up to the party’s Metro West AGM to turf out then chair Leigh Warren.
Her backers were blindsided.
It happened again just days later at the party’s Metro South AGM.
Many described it was the march of the “Christian soldiers”, those within the party who want the LNP to lurch further to the right on issues like abortion, euthanasia and religious freedom.
It was not until after this month’s North Brisbane AGM on Monday, July 1, however, that they were moved to act.
It was standing room only at the meeting at the Aspley Hornets football club as more than 100 new faces once again flooded into the meeting to replace newly appointed Brisbane councillor Tracy Davis as chair.
Those on the other side were ready this time, however.
They too ensured everyone who could attend was on hand to support their preferred candidate for chair – Lilley candidate Brad Carswell.
Such was the influx of voters that the meeting was delayed 45 minutes. Mr Carswell eventually won by a single vote.
It was these scenes that LNP president David Hutchinson slammed as “unedifying” on Sunday as he successfully moved to change the rules to “protect the future of the party” and head off future stacks.
New members already have to wait 12 months before voting in a preselection.
Now they must also wait 12 months before voting for – or seeking election in – office-bearer elections as well.
“In recent months we have witnessed the unedifying spectacle at party unit AGMs where an influx of new members arrive to cast their vote – in some instances with text messages that direct them where to go and who to vote for – and then leave the meetings as soon as the ballot is over,” Mr Hutchinson told Sunday afternoon’s State Council meeting.
“I have lived in that (Metro North) region for 36 years.
“I have been a member of this party for almost 20.
“I had to introduce myself to the room as your acting president because I did not know almost half of the room.
The New Tax Cuts
Treasury Laws Amendment (Tax Relief So Working Australians Keep More Of Their Money) Bill 2019
13:18 Morrison on Trump
He is a strong leader who does what he says he is going to do.
17:15 Morrison at Hillsong
Welcome to Day 48 of the Morrison theocracy.
Is there any more odious group than Hillsong?
On July 5, Prime Minister Scott Morrison and his wife Jenny stood on a stage beside Pastor Brian Houston, a Pentecostal religious leader censured last year by the Royal Commission into Institutional Responses to Child Sex Abuse for covering up the sexual abuse of a seven-year-old boy, abuse that continued for five years. The occasion was a Hillsong church conference, and Morrison used the opportunity to call for more love in Australia, and less judgement.
The abuse concealed from authorities by Houston was perpetrated by his father, Frank now deceased, also a pastor and a founder of the Hillsong church. The Royal Commission found that Houston the younger failed to follow the church’s own protocol on the abuse of children, did not support the victim, and failed to notify police of his father’s crimes. Indeed, Houston is reported to have told the victim it was his own fault for “coming on to” Frank.
In the last six months two former Liberal Prime Ministers, John Howard and Tony Abbott, publicly demonstrated their support for convicted child sex abuser Cardinal George Pell. This support included a glowing character reference to the court from Howard, and phone calls from Abbott to Pell in jail. Abbott also declared that Pell’s conviction was a “devastating result” for Catholics. Abbott has a long relationship with Pell, whom he has described as his “colleague and mentor.”
It is somewhat unnerving that three Liberal Prime Ministers have sought the counsel of men who are deeply involved in the sexual abuse of children, either as the perpetrator, protector of the perpetrator, or in Pell’s case, both. What is even more unnerving is that not one of the three Prime Ministers has seen fit to distance himself from the accused men, despite the allegations being proven in the case of Pell, and admitted in the case of Houston. None of the Prime Ministers appears to have the slightest compunction about acknowledging their long and ongoing personal relationships with these men, for whom they continue to profess admiration, respect and esteem.
Indeed, so comfortable with his mentor is Scott Morrison that he and his wife publicly prayed with him at a televised event.
What this deliberately public support implies is that the Prime Ministers do not believe the victims, or perhaps, even worse, they do believe the victims, but regard the crimes committed against them as irrelevant. Let’s not forget these are Prime Ministers we’re talking about, the leading legislators in the country. All three of them admit to having sought advice, political and spiritual, two from Pell and one from Houston.
20:30 Christian Porter our AG seeks to bring in Falou’s Law
Cases such as Israel Folau’s would be captured by the government’s proposed religious discrimination bill, according to the attorney general, who says the legislation will include a “powerful avenue” for people of faith who face “indirect” unfair treatment.
Speaking to Guardian Australia after briefing more than 20 government MPs in Canberra on Friday, Porter said the legislation would include a clause relating to indirect discrimination, mirrored on section 7b of the sex discrimination act. He believed this would prevent employers from putting in place a binding condition on all employees – such as occurred with Rugby Australia – that restricted someone from expressing their religious views.
“This would provide an overarching rule that places limitations on what an employer could do by way of general rules that affected all of their workforce, if those general rules, in an unfair and unreasonable way, had a negative – or what the legislation calls a disadvantaging – effect on a person of faith,” he said.
“A bill like this would provide a very powerful avenue for someone who believed that a general rule in their employment especially disadvantaged them because of their religion, to argue that that rule was contrary to the act and unfair.”
But surely this would protect a gay math teacher in a religious school? Unless there is a special exemption for schools.
The Religious Discrimination Act
But the AG is right when he speaks about drafting general rights.
“As soon as you say, ‘Here is a bill that says everyone has a right to freedom of speech, everyone has got a right to freedom of association, to freedom of religion’ they all start competing with each other, and eventually you get the circumstance that you have got in America where the highest court in the land decides what is more important: the right to free choice or the right to life, and then the decisions around how the boundaries on really, really sensitive public policy decisions are made get made by courts.”
25:50 1984 or Brave New World?
1984 by George Orwell (1949) warned of how language could be corrupted and weaponised.
Fahrenheit 451 by Ray Bradbury (1953) was about book burning but it was the population not the government that enforced it.
Brave New World by Aldous Huxley (1932) was perhaps even more prescient.
But what Orwell failed to foresee, says Stephens, was the rise of consumerist capitalism and its far subtler means of mass enslavement.
Writing more than a decade-and-a-half before the publication of 1984, Aldous Huxley envisioned a very different “negative utopia”.
Far in the future, the World Controllers have created the ideal society. Through clever use of genetic engineering, brainwashing and recreational sex and drugs all its members are happy consumers. Bernard Marx seems alone harbouring an ill-defined longing to break free. A visit to one of the few remaining Savage Reservations where the old, imperfect life still continues, may be the cure for his distress…
American media theorist Neil Postman (1985) observed:
Orwell warns that we will be overcome by an externally imposed oppression. But in Huxley’s vision, no Big Brother is required to deprive people of their autonomy, maturity and history. As he saw it, people will come to love their oppression, to adore the technologies that undo their capacities to think.
What Orwell feared were those who would ban books. What Huxley feared was that there would be no reason to ban a book, for there would be no one who wanted to read one. Orwell feared those who would deprive us of information. Huxley feared those who would give us so much that we would be reduced to passivity and egoism. Orwell feared that the truth would be concealed from us. Huxley feared the truth would be drowned in a sea of irrelevance. Orwell feared we would become a captive culture. Huxley feared we would become a trivial culture, preoccupied with some equivalent of the feelies, the orgy porgy, and the centrifugal bumblepuppy. As Huxley remarked in Brave New World Revisited, the civil libertarians and rationalists who are ever on the alert to oppose tyranny “failed to take into account man’s almost infinite appetite for distractions.” In 1984, Orwell added, people are controlled by inflicting pain. In Brave New World, they are controlled by inflicting pleasure. In short, Orwell feared that what we fear will ruin us. Huxley feared that what we desire will ruin us.
30:57 TPG and the NBN
TPG, a telecommunication provider, is offering to connect fibre to the premises enabling high speed Internet access. This service is only being offered in Australia’s capital cities in places with high
40:38 Opinion Polls – should we even bother?
Falou – What does the public think?
From Essential Report:
81% of over 55s agreed that ‘Israel Folau chose to share his religious views on social media, and should take responsibility for them’, compared to 66% of 35 to 54 year olds and 55% of 18 to 34 year olds. These groups were more likely to select ‘Don’t know’.
42:22 IPA Vs The Rationalist Society
The Fist has to side with the IPA.
This is from The Rationalist:
With friends like these … The IPA comes out again with an extreme and damaging interpretation of a reasonable aspiration: ”Proposals to insert race into our nation’s founding document are radical, illiberal, and a violation of all principles of racial equality.” Just wrong and illogical. We have all sorts of laws and institutions that are not STRICTLY equal. Think homes for the frail elderly; think schools for the blind. They may not treat people equally but they are FAIR.
47:04 A text message from Landon
Beer sponsors and patrons.
52:31 We will be relying on the IPA as Labor has capitulated
Labor’s Kristina Keneally has announced the Party’s backing of the Coalition’s religious freedom laws.
Keneally told ABC radio:
“We are willing to have discussions with the Government and work with the Government on a religious discrimination and freedom Act.”
53:44 Civilisation going backwards
A survey in the USA
The survey centers on a single question: Is it okay to refuse business to a person of [race/belief]?
and this one
An award ceremony for most annoying generation – won by Baby Boomers – has been marred by controversy, after the Millennials were not given a single participation trophy.
The Millennials were reportedly furious, saying they tried their best and deserved at least a certificate or ribbon. “It’s been my lifelong dream since last week to win this award. I’m so disappointed,” a spokesperson for the Millennials said.
A spokesperson for the Boomers said they would store the trophy in a spare room in the holiday house, “You know, the room down the second hallway – the one with the little ensuite”.
The spokesperson said the Boomers were not precious about the trophy and would be willing to rent it out to Millennials for $1,850 a week.
Generation X were totally ignored.
59:47 Look out Millenials
The Boomers are about to screw you again. This time over private health insurance.
Unlike car insurance, in which individual circumstances determine your insurance premium, the burden of any increase in healthcare costs is shared by all private health insurance members – rather than being dumped on members whose health care needs are more extensive.
This has been a boon to the baby boomers who are pushing the boundaries of active retirement with hip replacements and other expensive surgical procedures.
Older members are joined at the proverbial hip with the young and healthy under the assumption there is something in it for everyone. But no one is under the illusion that this tenet is holding up.
Younger Australians who do hold private health insurance are questioning its value, according to the latest data from Roy Morgan, a research firm.
1:05:03 Woman with disability wins NDIS funding for sex therapist in ‘precedent-setting’ case
The applicant, who lives with multiple sclerosis, applied for sex therapy for “sexual release” to be covered in her NDIS plan, but was refused. She appealed to the Administrative Appeals Tribunal (AAT) which decided in her favour.
Minister for the NDIS, Stuart Robert, said that ruling was out of line with community expectations.
“The National Disability Insurance Agency (NDIA) intends to appeal the recent decision,” he said.
1:07:35 Nuclear deterrence theory
Secondly, White’s arguments boost the deeply flawed notion of nuclear deterrence, the myth that these weapons deter acts of aggression. He says that China could use the threat of a nuclear attack to blackmail Australia. However, history doesn’t support this theoretical possibility. Translating a nuclear threat to actual military advantage has proven far more complex than a simple win to the player with the most obscenely destructive weapons. If it were so simple, the US would have won in Vietnam, Iraq and Afghanistan; the USSR would have won in Afghanistan, Argentina would not have invaded the Falklands, and the list goes on.
The third reason for alarm is the likely entrenching of the “nuclear apartheid”, whereby nuclear weapons are “allowed” for some nations and prohibited to others. If Australia might get the bomb, why not other nations, even those whose leaders we don’t trust? Would North Korea, surrounded by enemies, then be entitled to its arsenal? Then what about Japan and South Korea? Iran? Closer to home, how about Indonesia? And who’s going to make the rules?
1:18:45 Shoe Sponsors
On sponsorship, The 12th man thought the Nike shoe example was unrealistic. What about Kaepernick and Nike?
Nike has withdrawn a pair of shoes featuring an early version of the American flag that has been embraced by white nationalists, after former NFL quarterback Colin Kaepernick reportedly pointed out that the symbol was offensive.
The Sydney diocese won’t facilitate adoption to same-sex couples
This isn’t Alabama. Anglicare is an Australian taxpayer funded service. This is from the branch that provides services to Sydney.
Yep, your tax dollars are paying for baseless, harmful discrimination. Anglicare would claim it’s a “religious freedom” to choose who they work with.
Now legal in Victoria but Catholic hospitals will refuse to offer it.
If a patient wants to access VAD services, the hospital will release the patient or transfer the patient to another facility.
The Victorian act protects conscientious objection on the part of individual doctors. In addition, the Victorian Department of Health and Human Services has reiterated the reassurances made by the parliamentarians during debates about the bill in 2017; that is, that healthcare institutions will not have to participate in the provision of VAD services.