Oz Blog News Commentary
Red Bluff Friday, February 6, 2015 - 11:13 Source

The vigils continue for Myuran Sukumaran and Andrew Chan. My roundup for Global Voices of online reactions to the latest developments:Tony Abbott says he has done everything he can but will not engage in “megaphone diplomacy”, according to the Jakarta Post. Many are not convinced:

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Labor View From Bayside Monday, February 2, 2015 - 13:54 Source

Live tweeting @TonyAbbotMHR at the National Press Club - haven’t had this much fun since watching Asian Cup final and Queensland elections on Saturday night!

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Red Bluff Friday, January 30, 2015 - 18:10 Source

Six of the detained bloggers in Addis Ababa. Photo used with permission.Six of the detained bloggers in Addis Ababa.

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Damian Smith Saturday, January 10, 2015 - 14:13 Source

A colleague of mine, Theo, has the one of the most delicious turns of phrase (usually delivered just prior to doing something…risqué) - “fuck ‘em if they can’t take a joke”. Which, as far as distilled bon mots go, is just about perfect.

Fuck 'em if they can’t take a joke.

Something that most people don’t realise is that you don’t get to go through life without being offended. You have no sacred right to sail along without ever being presented with something that might upset you. That’s just…well life.

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Friday, January 9, 2015 - 10:11
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Red Bluff Monday, January 5, 2015 - 10:02 Source

The Asian Cup 2015 kicks off on Friday 9 January in Melbourne. Global Voices is covering the unfolding stories.The first post: Countdown to Asian Cup 2015 Hots Up in Australia

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The Sniper Sunday, December 28, 2014 - 18:05 Source

He admits, on global warming or climate change: “… I’ve been a bit of a weather vane”.

He flip-flops on policies, like a weather vane.

His hand-writing looks like this:

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Red Bluff Sunday, December 14, 2014 - 09:33 Source

My latest roundup for Global Voices Online: Australian Prime Minister's About-Face on Sexism, Two Years LateAustralian PM Julia Gillard at Antipodes Greek Festival - Melbourne  2012A tense moment between Prime Minister Gillard and Opposition Leader T

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Labor View From Bayside Thursday, December 11, 2014 - 17:29 Source

On the night of the Victorian State election 2014 local campaigners from the seats of Mordialloc and Sandringham gather in Mentone to celebrate Labor's victory. Candidates Tim Richardson and Christina Zigouras thank their supporters.

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Labor View From Bayside Wednesday, November 26, 2014 - 16:42 Source

A couple of Letters to the Editor in Melbourne's Bayside Leader local 'free' weekly newspaper.

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Labor View From Bayside Tuesday, November 25, 2014 - 12:41 Source

The people of Sandringham have been enjoying an unusual election season with a highly visible and focused Labor campaign and a strong independent candidate. ALP candidate Christina Zigouras’ energetic and responsive approach has been in stark contrast to Murray Thompson.

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Labor View From Bayside Friday, November 21, 2014 - 12:56 Source

There is already speculation about who will replace Denis Napthine as leader of the Victorian Liberals after the 29 November election.Our local Liberal member is rumoured to have had only one supporter for leader when Napthine was elected, himself. It is a pity that he did not choose to join Ted Baillieu by retiring this time. After 22 years of cruising in a so-called safe seat, he has become an invisible, unaccountable representative.

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Labor View From Bayside Wednesday, November 19, 2014 - 15:53 Source

It's always good to be published in a Murdoch paper, especially during a State election. So here's my letter to the Bayside Leader published 18 Nov 2014:Here's the digital version:

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The Sniper Monday, November 17, 2014 - 14:04 Source

Politicians lie to avoid telling the truth.

There seems to be a consensus that politicians lie in order to get elected. Those who tell the truth tend to lose elections.

The consensus theory says the electorate wants to be lied to because it does not want to hear the truth.

I challenge this theory. I can’t imagine anyone thinking ‘I want you to lie to me. Tell me there will be no income tax increase because I’ll vote for you and if you win and then increase my income tax that will be just fine. Thank you very much.’

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Red Bluff Sunday, November 16, 2014 - 12:49 Source

My latest Global Voices post: What World Leaders Should Discuss at Brisbane's G20 Summit

The G20 summit on 15- 6 November 2014 has done what terrorism has never managed to do – shutdown the centre of an Australian city, namely Brisbane. Just the arrival of Barack Obama has been a showstopper.

Watch this space.

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Thursday, November 13, 2014 - 11:36
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Labor View From Bayside Thursday, November 13, 2014 - 11:36 Source

According to the Herald Sun yesterday:

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Red Bluff Wednesday, October 29, 2014 - 10:03 Source

The Castan Centre for Human Rights Law has launched a new video series - Have You Got That Right?:

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Things Bogans Like Tuesday, October 28, 2014 - 08:50 Source

Adrift in an endless galactic sea, the bogan can sometimes feel so small. Not even bicep curls and a gigantic house can lend the bogan a sufficient sense of scale. Then there’s the minor problem of eternity. 24 months interest free is baaasically forever, but what about after that?

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Things Bogans Like Tuesday, October 28, 2014 - 08:50 Source

Adrift in an endless galactic sea, the bogan can sometimes feel so small. Not even bicep curls and a gigantic house can lend the bogan a sufficient sense of scale. Then there’s the minor problem of eternity. 24 months interest free is baaasically forever, but what about after that?

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Red Bluff Monday, October 6, 2014 - 17:23 Source

From my latest post for Global Voices Online: Burqa Banished Behind Glass in Australian Parliament

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Public Opinion Thursday, October 2, 2014 - 13:06 Source

The Abbott Government's rhetoric is that they are absolutely determined to stop the trajectory that Labor left, which is debt going to $667 billion in 10 years, which is $25,000 for every man, woman and child. They won't give up on doing what is right to address the legacy that Labor left. We are paying a billion dollars a month every single month just to pay the interest on Labor's debt. Without change, that is ratcheting up to $3 billion a month.

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Damian Smith Saturday, September 27, 2014 - 11:34 Source

Treebeard: Hroom, hmm, come, my friends. The Ents are going to war. It is likely that we go to our doom. The last march of the Ents. 


I turn 30 at the end of the year. A significant milestone some would say. But next week, something far more momentous is happening. The South Sydney Rabbitohs will be playing in the grand final. Momentous because, in my nearly 30 years of life, this has NEVER happened.

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Public Opinion Friday, September 26, 2014 - 13:07 Source

The first tranche of the Abbott government's new anti-terror legislation---the National Security Legislation Amendment Bill (No 1) yesterday passed the Senate yesterday with bipartisan support. This amends the ASIO Act 1979 by adding a new section 35P (amongst others) to extend existing state and federal prohibitions on the disclosure of information regarding policing for anti-terrorist purposes.

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Public Opinion Tuesday, September 23, 2014 - 09:58 Source

The Abbott Government continues to say that its intervention in the 3rd Iraq War is for humanitarian reasons. It is, the ministers say, a limited intervention to assist the Yazidi minority group in Iraq earlier this year after Isis attacked them. Now we have an estimated 100,000 Syrian Kurds fleeing Islamic State (Isis) advances across north-east Syria. Recall that the US armed IS to fight the Assad Syrian regime.

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Public Opinion Friday, September 19, 2014 - 12:27 Source

So we have a counter terrorism raid with over 800 police bursting into homes in Sydney, Brisbane and Logan, hovering helicopters, 15 arrested and detained, four charged. Oh, and the media were duly recruited and the major mainstream TV outlets supplied with footage of the commando-style operations, filmed and supplied by the police themselves. The police also helpfully supplied still shots of the action to the newspapers.

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Public Opinion Thursday, September 18, 2014 - 10:04 Source

In his ANU Policy Outlook 2014 keynote, "Public policy resilience and the reform narrative", at the ANU Ken Henry, the former Treasury Secretary, argues that policy reform proposals are unlikely to be implemented, and even less likely to prove resilient, unless accompanied by a compelling narrative.

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Grog's Gamut Friday, September 12, 2014 - 13:52 Source

Before I start, I think we should all pause to honour the many brave individuals who have taken to social media in the past few days to let everyone know they hate U2. Swimming against the tide is a very tough thing to do; I just hope their reputations can recover. But we should thank them as well – it’s not often social media in 2014 can take you back to 1988.

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Friday, September 12, 2014 - 13:52
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Damian Smith Thursday, September 11, 2014 - 12:00 Source

The Internet Slowdown is coming, and it's going to be huge.:

You guys know me. I’m all about causes and fighting for them but I usually do things my own way and fight on my own terms. But this one is big and we need numbers. Please, get on board because the ramifications are huge


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