Our mystery future

Our mystery future

Mohamed is a friend with whom I have conversed now for several years. As a young Eqyptian, he was living in Europe when the Arab Spring uprisings commenced. In that time, he lost a close friend to the destruction of revolution. today, Mohamed lives in Egypt with his family, still hoping for the promise that the Arab Spring carried. He is a talented footballer and dreams of peace so that ...

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R. v. Ipeelee: Aboriginal sentencing and overrepresentation in the prison population

R. v. Ipeelee: Aboriginal sentencing and overrepresentation in the prison population

On Friday, The Australian Institute of Criminology (“AIC”) realest its Australian crime: Facts & figures: 2012 report, which provides sober reading for all those concerned about the on-going silent genocide of Indigenous Australia. Among other highlights, the report notes that there have been a further 325 indigenous deaths in custody since The Royal Commission into Aboriginal Deaths in Custody (“RCIADIC”) released its list of recommendations in 1991. The #RCIADIC, which ...

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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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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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Destroy the Joint, schmoozing and the hypocrites

Destroy the Joint, schmoozing and the hypocrites

The announcement of a Royal Commission into child abuse by clergy is as big an issue as was the Wood Royal Commission into police corruption, if not bigger. This is no ordinary review of process or legality, but a direct attack on the primacy of religious and canon law over that of the state. Such a thing would never have happened a century ago, because the place of the church ...

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A hypocrite for a Prime Minister, a hypocrite for a Chief Minister

A hypocrite for a Prime Minister, a hypocrite for a Chief Minister

Each man reaches perfection by doing his own duty; he worships god – from whom all beings come, by whom this universe was stretched forth – by doing his appointed work, with no desire for reward. You must do the work for its own sake and not for anything that it may bring to you. When pleasure and pain, gain and loss, victory and defeat are the same to you, ...

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Ain't I a woman?

Ain’t I a woman?

If I could share a meal at a table with a small group of people from any time in history, Isabella Baumfree would be one of them. Perhaps, just perhaps, she could tell me how to help find justice for the Indigenous women ignored by the Australian Federal Police in Australia’s capital, Canberra. Isabella was born the daughter of slaves, enslaved herself from the moment of conception. Sold at the ...

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Dialogue and spin: genocide on Australia’s doorstep, the West Papuan story

Dialogue and spin: genocide on Australia’s doorstep, the West Papuan story

Athenians: For ourselves, we shall not trouble you with specious pretences — either of how we have a right to our empire because we overthrew the Mede , or are now attacking you because of wrong that you have done us — and make a long speech which would not be believed; and in return we hope that you, instead of thinking to influence us by saying that you did ...

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Sir Gawain, moral accountability and the UN Security Council

Sir Gawain, moral accountability and the UN Security Council

Make we mery quyl we may, and mynne upon joye,  For the lur may mon lach when-so mon lykes Make we merry while we may, and think about joy,  For a man may have sorrow whenever he likes The Gawain poet Most readers of Blak and Black will be aware that the in March 2008, the then Australian Prime Minister Kevin Rudd announced that Australia would run for a non-permanent ...

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Anna Elisabeth Schmieg and the narrative structures of society

Anna Elisabeth Schmieg and the narrative structures of society

How much can we ever know about the love and pain in another heart? How much can we hope to understand those who have suffered deeper anguish, greater deprivation, and more crushing disappointments than we ourselves have known? Orhan Pamuk, snow Anna Elisabeth Schmieg of Hurden from the old County of Hohenlohe had a bad reputation with her fellow villagers. Anna’s reputation for drinking and brawling in taverns and for ...

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OUA and Australia’s culture of corruption

OUA and Australia’s culture of corruption

Before I launch into today’s topic I’d like to offer an apology for my long absence from Blak and Black. I have been helping a friend restore a 19th Century sailing boat. In the process he asked me to paint a mural of Scylla and Charybdis in the main cabin. For those of you who are unfamiliar with the Scylla and Charybdis myth, in Greek mythology, Scylla and Charybdis were ...

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YINDJIBARNDI ABORIGINAL CORPORATION MEDIA RELEASE

YINDJIBARNDI ABORIGINAL CORPORATION MEDIA RELEASE

  FMG ‘DECLASSIFIED’ THEN DESTROYED YINDJIBARNDI HERITAGE SITES Recent reports that, Fortescue Metals Group (FMG) is pushing ahead with the “low-cost Firetail deposit” at its Solomon Project, while scaling back other operations, have raised fears of a ‘heritage holocaust’ as FMG scrambles for cash flow to weather the freefall in iron ore price. These fears follow confirmation in documents released by the Department of Indigenous Affairs (DIA), under the Freedom ...

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Kristallnacht: Why human rights is everyone’s business

Kristallnacht: Why human rights is everyone’s business

Tell me who you are, what you stand for what you mean Tell me what the lines and whirls upon your hand do mean Show me plain the markings of the Jew, the black, the slave Then march in regiment formation ‘til the end of time and days. Mix not the seed of black with white or brown with yellow tones Lest men become confused and think that each is ...

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A lie by any other name does not make a truth, unless you’re the AFP

A lie by any other name does not make a truth, unless you’re the AFP

A new scientific truth does not triumph by convincing its adversaries but rather by the fact that these adversaries finally die, and a new generation grows up familiar with the new truth. Max Planck In 2003, the U.N. Secretariat surveyed member states to solicit information on the nature of links between terrorism and other forms of crime. Of the 60 responses received, many states indicated that terrorist groups were often ...

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The bureaucratic state – a destructive philosophy

The bureaucratic state – a destructive philosophy

Only one essential is missing from our happiness – pleasure through comparison, a pleasure which can only be born from the sight of the unhappy, and we see none of that bread here. It’s the sight of the man who isn’t enjoying what I have and ‘ho he is suffering that I know the charm of being able to say: I am happier than he is. Wherever men are equal ...

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The finger puppet of fickle fate

The finger puppet of fickle fate

Memory is a funny thing. When I was in the scene I hardly paid any attention. I never stopped to think of it as something that would make a lasting impression, certainly never imagined that 18 years later I would recall it in such detail. I didn’t give a damn about the scenery that day. I was thinking about myself. I was thinking about the beautiful girl walking next to ...

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The real problem with hypocrisy – it knows no honour

The real problem with hypocrisy – it knows no honour

The struggle of man against power is the struggle of memory against forgetting. Milan Kundera One of the first Communist texts I read, following the French edition of Quotations from Chairman Mao Tse-Tung, also known as, The Little Red Book, was Victor Hugo’s novel Les Miserables. For those purists among my colleagues who may object to me referring to Les Miserables as a Communist text, I offer the following in ...

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Dr Janice Harper: Just Us Justice

Dr Janice Harper: Just Us Justice

Dr. Janice Harper has graciously agreed to her paper being republished on Blak and Black, for which we are most grateful. This is the paper referred to in the post To fight the grizzly or run: a comparison of fortunes. More of Dr. Harper’s writing and insights can be found at the Huffington Post, her professional website and her blog The Chocolate Covered Kitchen. Please take the time to read this article and her ...

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