Is Integrity Dead in the ACT?

Is Integrity Dead in the ACT?

“You want me to respect the law? Then make the law respectable.” Violet Miller, Suffragette, 2015. Over the past two years Mr Mullins has walked his long dark night of the soul. He is only now just emerging to a new sense and understanding of the world, still Mr Mullins, but not. And the ACT Government, ACT Police and a nameless complainant are responsible. Mr Mullins has spoken many times ...

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A Time to Remember

A Time to Remember

To every thing there is a season, and a time to every purpose under the heaven:? A time to be born, and a time to die; a time to plant, a time to reap that which is planted;? A time to kill, and a time to heal; a time to break down, and a time to build up;? A time to weep, and a time to laugh; a time to ...

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Start as you mean to continue

Start as you mean to continue

Sunshine in Melbourne’s west has seen all manner of refugees in the past half century. The current mix includes a significant proportion of men, women and children from African nations. Many of these people will have suffered extreme abuse and seen horrors most people of Australian heritage would struggle to imagine. They have turned to the western world in search of respite and a better life, a chance to live ...

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The Bugmy family, Dada and a Quiche in the face

The Bugmy family, Dada and a Quiche in the face

“Dada is a virgin microbe / Dada is against life so dear / Dada / Corporation exploiting ideas / Dada has 391 different attitudes and colours, depending on the President’s sex / It transforms itself – asserts – says exactly the opposite at the same time – no importance – cries – goes fishing / Dada is the chameleon of rapid, self-interested change / Dada is against the future, Dada ...

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#Racism: Time to cease emulating the ostrich

#Racism: Time to cease emulating the ostrich

“He was a remarkably effective prime minister for a while. The most difficult time was in 1997 and, to give credit to the government, they tightened the supervision over the banking system. The thing I recall (however) is the introduction of race and racist attitude into the body politic, especially over refugees.” Former Prime Minister Malcolm Fraser, commenting about one his successors, John Howard, The Australian, 20 April 2013. Malcolm ...

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A fish rots from the head

A fish rots from the head

The most recent public airing of a racist attack on a Korean man and his aunt visiting from his homeland has prompted another round of self-reflection on the Australian psyche. Waleed Aly published his point of view a few days ago and whilst I agree that all nations battle issues of racism, the difference is that they acknowledge the problem exists, unlike Australia. The Israelis, Palestinians, Americans, Canadians, Kiwis and ...

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West Papua - time we were #idlenomore

West Papua – time we were #idlenomore

“We recognize international law …” Every country that is a member of the United Nations recognizes international law, Bob, at least as far as it serves their purposes. It seems to me that every nation also ignores any aspect of international law that puts some aspect of their own commercial or national value at risk. Every nation has at its heart not the rest of humanity, but it’s own nationalistic ...

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"May it ring for justice and change"

“May it ring for justice and change”

I like to learn how to say people’s names properly. Not that I have a particularly good memory for pairing names with faces, but I believe it is a sign of respect when you pay enough attention to learn to say – and spell – someone’s name correctly. Perhaps it’s a legacy of those elocution lessons at primary school … Mrs. Edie would be amused. I also like to learn ...

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Cradle to grave #racism - it's not just Sydney

Cradle to grave #racism – it’s not just Sydney

If you are neutral in situations of injustice, you have chosen the side of the oppressor. If an elephant has its foot on the tail of a mouse and you say that you are neutral, the mouse will not appreciate your neutrality. Desmond Tutu Jeremy Fernandez, I’m sorry your two year old daughter learned, so early, that the colour palette is not always one with which she may paint azure ...

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Pourquoi les coiffeurs or Wingnut v The Ranger

Pourquoi les coiffeurs or Wingnut v The Ranger

We all want to live by each other’s happiness, not by each other’s misery. We don’t want to hate and despise one another. In this world there is room for everyone and the earth is rich and can provide for everyone. The way of life can be free and beautiful. But we have lost the way. Greed has poisoned men’s souls – has barricaded the world with hate; has goose-stepped ...

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Statistics, lies and the #AFP

Statistics, lies and the #AFP

Thus Friend comforted me. I took great comfort from his counsel, and it seemed to me, indeed that he knew at least more than Reason did. But before he had finished his argument, which agreed strongly with me, Sweet Thought, and Sweet Talk came back, and from then on they stayed close to me and hardly ever left me afterward. But they did not bring Sweet Looks; I did not ...

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Magistrate Clisdell v Reality

Magistrate Clisdell v Reality

I have never looked upon ease and happiness as ends in themselves — this critical basis I call the ideal of a pigsty. The ideals that have lighted my way, and time after time have given me new courage to face life cheerfully, have been Kindness, Beauty, and Truth. Without the sense of kinship with men of like mind, without the occupation with the objective world, the eternally unattainable in ...

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Magistrate Clisdell and the NSW ‘just-us’ system

Magistrate Clisdell and the NSW ‘just-us’ system

It is sillier than the vain futile cawing of a senseless crow to try to talk to others about one’s own deep sorrow! (Wakayama Bakusai (1885-1928) trans. Robert Wood Clack) On Sunday afternoon while painting at Palm Beach, I received an email from my good friend Mr Julian Moti QC, the former Attorney-General of the Solomon Islands. Attached to Julian’s e-mail was one he had received from his friend and former ...

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Hypocrisy underscoring the ACT's Bill of Rights

Hypocrisy underscoring the ACT’s Bill of Rights

”Quite often before they get there they have done something quite serious. It becomes quite difficult because the offending behaviour is the first point that you’ve got to address and you can’t say that just because someone is Aboriginal they are excused from any criminal behaviour. Clearly that doesn’t work. You have to go back earlier, to why they are offending in the first place.” Chief Justice Terrence ...

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El-Masri v The Former Yugolsav Republic of Macedonia

El-Masri v The Former Yugolsav Republic of Macedonia

With the Inauguration of President Obama for his second term fast approaching (20 January, 2013) it is worth considering just how far the United States and indeed the West has fallen from the lofty ideals that underpin the West’s claim to moral, if no longer financial and technological, supremacy. This West’s claim to moral superiority has again been put to the test and has again been found wanting. I’m referring ...

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David Hicks and Lex Wotton – it’s all black and white

David Hicks and Lex Wotton – it’s all black and white

David Hicks and Lex Wotton, two of Australia’s notorious. No I’m not suggesting that they are members of that Sydney based pseudo-outlaw bikie gang allegedly connected with the Ibrahim family, rather I’m suggesting that these men have been outlawed for a very different reason, they challenged Australia’s systemic and entrenched culture of corruption. While Messers Hicks and Wotton may share a certain degree of notoriety based on their past actions, ...

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Liberty, Equality, Fraternity – but, only if you’re white

Liberty, Equality, Fraternity – but, only if you’re white

Liberté, égalité, fraternité; the national motto of France, indeed the emphasis on Fraternité during the French Revolution led Olympe de Gouges, a contemporary French playwright, political activist and journalist, to write the Declaration of the Rights of Woman and the Female Citizen shortly after the French constitution of 1791 was created. She was alarmed that the constitution, which was to promote equal suffrage, did not address, nor even consider, women’s ...

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Resistance is futile - like hell it is!

Resistance is futile – like hell it is!

I couldn’t resist writing this post. I just couldn’t. Because since well before the whole Destroy the Joint thing has started, Blak and Black has been fighting to draw attention to the plight of Ms. King, Australia’s most senior Indigenous female banking executive who was indecently assaulted in broad daylight in the political heart of the Australian Capital Territory, also know as Canberra in 2005. What happened to Ms. King ...

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A Contributing Life: the reality of Australia's first people

A Contributing Life: the reality of Australia’s first people

“… people with mental health problems want the same thing as everyone else. Even the disadvantaged should be able to lead a contributing life. This can mean many things. It can mean a fulfilling life enriched with close connections to family and friends, good health and wellbeing to allow those connections to be enjoyed, having something to do each day that provides meaning and purpose – whether it be a ...

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The rule of law and the democratic process

The rule of law and the democratic process

“No-one ever argues that governments should have less integrity, that elected officials should not be accountable, or that public servants should behave unethically. Broad statements of the value of integrity, transparency, accountability and ethics gain general agreement from all sides of politics and from all participants in public debate. But government integrity demands more than general expressions of goodwill. Enhancing transparency and accountability requires supportive structures as well as declarations ...

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