Australian Politics 2016-10-24 15:52:00

Multiculturalism in Australia, success or failure?

David Forde, below, seems to think there has been some sort of success of multiculturalism in Australia.  Maybe there has been, though he offers no proof of it.  But the big success with immigrants to Australia has in fact been with assimilation.  People from all over the world have come to Australia and fitted in well with the mores of the host society.  And by and large, their children are indistiguishable from other Australians.  Not much multiculturalism there!

The ARE multiculturalists here but do we call African crime and Muslim hostility a success?  I can’t see it.  It’s true that not all Africans commit crimes and not all Muslims wage jihad against us but the crimes and the jihad clearly come from the alien culture of the offenders.  Not many Presbyterians wage Jihad and not many Han Chinese do breaking and entering.  The culture clearly makes a difference.  The assimilated Han are no problem but who would say that of the Africans?

David Forde’s big problem is that he has swallolwed the Leftist hokum that all men are equal. To him the Han and the Africans are all the same.  If only Africans WERE as civilized as the Han!  But he is quite incapable of discussing such differences. He relies totally on overgeneralizations.  He inhabits a world of mental fog.

As we read below, Forde thinks that if all are treated and made to feel equal within the rule of law, that will create “a sense of belonging and strengthening social cohesion”.  So how come it hasn’t?  There’s certainly no “sense of belonging and social cohesion” among members of the South Sudanese Apex gang members who are terrorising parts of Melbourne these days.  But they have all been treated equally before the law.

If we look at the detail that Forde cannot see, we have to conclude that assimilation is the answer to social cohesion, not multiculturalism

RECENTLY there has been a resurgence in negativity regarding multiculturalism.

As I see it, we have two choices. We can speak up in support of inclusion where all are treated and made to feel equal within the rule of law, thereby creating a sense of belonging and strengthening social cohesion.

Or, we don’t speak up and treat multiculturalism as a concept to be avoided or scapegoated. Thereby letting the negative control the narrative while creating a sense of exclusion, where people are more readily labelled and some are considered more Australian than others. As a result, we encourage division as people retreat into various ethnic groupings and put up the barriers as they seek a sense of belonging and acceptance from within.

It also creates an environment where the more vulnerable are left open to exploitation.

Yes, there are people who don’t want to, or don’t feel comfortable associating with people outside their own given identity – this is normal and applies to people of all backgrounds.

The important thing is that it’s not about everyone agreeing or being the same, that’s simply impossible, it’s about acceptance and a fair go where everyone is treated equally. Surely everyone is entitled to that.

There are too many Australians, including many born here, who feel excluded from society and continually have to justify their “Australianness”.

Every one of us is different, but as individuals we share more in common than we realise. One of those commonalities is that everyone, except our First Peoples, is of migrant stock; it’s just that some are more recent than others.

Currently more than 28 per cent of Australia’s population was born overseas. Australia is a multicultural success story.

So scapegoating the very substance that has delivered today’s Australia is not the answer. In fact it is completely counter-productive, not least for economic reasons around trade and tourism.

I have been very fortunate to call Australia home for the past 24 years and live in one of the most culturally diverse suburbs in Queensland. I have neighbours who originate from all parts of the globe. Despite this diversity – or because of it – we have a tremendous sense of community, not least when the community, be they from the local service clubs, mosques, churches, temples or just everyday community members, rally together to assist those in need.

Creating fear of the “other” or the unknown is very easy. But rather than rejecting or scapegoating Australia’s multicultural success story, we should embrace it; there are simply too many benefits.

Go out and meet your fellow Australians, engage and replace (politically motivated) fear of the unknown with curiosity.

This leads to one simple question. What sort of Australia do we want, a weak and divided Australia or a strong and inclusive Australia?

I know what I want and what is in Australia’s long-term interests.


Slow and steady on climate: Joyce

The Turnbull government will ensure the next phase of its climate policy meets Australia’s obligations under the Paris deal but isn’t “messianic”, Deputy Prime Minister Barnaby Joyce says.

The government will review its full suite of climate policies in 2017, as the emissions reduction fund exhausts its $2.55 billion budget and the coalition looks to other methods to cut carbon pollution.

Environmental groups have concerns the review will provide a smokescreen to drop climate action and respond to sceptics within the government and on the Senate crossbench who see it as a waste of taxpayers’ money.

Mr Joyce told reporters in Brisbane on Monday the government would ensure it met its Paris target – to reduce emissions by 26-28 per cent below 2005 levels by 2030 – which builds on its 2020 target of reducing emissions by five per cent below 2000 levels.

“We believe in our obligations as signed off by an international treaty in Paris and we’ll make sure we meet them,” Mr Joyce said.

“We are on target to meet them at the moment and we are doing it at a vastly more affordable way than the Labor party ever was.”

But he said the government would not achieve the target “by changing the whole world, like the ACT, to 100 per cent renewables – what a load of crock”.

“We are not going be a messianic figure out there by ourselves,” he said.

Labor leader Bill Shorten said he would like the review to be conducted in a bipartisan way.

“(But) we’re not going to get bipartisanship while Malcolm Turnbull has lost his spine on climate change,” Mr Shorten told reporters in Perth.

“He did have it once, no questioning that, but now he’s so keen to keep his job he’ll swap climate change policy for climate scepticism … he won’t take any real action in terms of the fundamental issues including standing up for renewable energy.”

Mr Turnbull’s deal with the Rudd Labor government on a carbon pollution reduction scheme ended with his own party dumping him in favour of Tony Abbott.


Self-righteous prick David Morrison

Miranda Devine

It’s not too late to say sorry, David Morrison. Many are still waiting to hear a few simple words

The visit to Townsville of former army chief David Morrison last week ended in humiliation when a savvy local reporter rocked him with a question about the Jedi Council sex scandal that launched his career as a gender maven at the expense of innocent officers.

“What a ridiculous assertion,” Morrison thundered at Townsville Bulletin reporter Kieran Rooney. “I’m surprised actually and disappointed you would take this opportunity, when I am here in a civilian capacity engaging with the business community in Townsville around diversity, to try and dredge up a matter that is years old.”

The outburst prompted the Bulletin to slap Morrison on its front page under the mocking headline: “Return of the Jedi”.

Townsville is a garrison town where Morrison is widely detested because of the egregious injustice done to one of their own, the former commanding officer of the Joint Logistics Unit North Queensland, Lt Col Karel Dubsky, sacked by Morrison for not reading emails containing sexist material cc’d to him.

That’s right: NOT reading. Not even opening.

Morrison’s logic was that Dubsky, as commanding officer, should have been across the entire contents of his inbox.

The reality was that, having made the thundering “standard you walk past” YouTube speech in 2013 which catapulted him onto the global stage as a feminist hero, Morrison had to justify his claim of systemic sexism in the Australian Defence Force.

The most senior scapegoat was the blameless Dubsky.

On June 13, 2013, two months after his YouTube speech, Morrison called a press conference to announce that a group of 17 Army officers were allegedly, “in production and distribution of highly inappropriate material demeaning women across both the Defence computer systems and the public internet.”
Former commanding officer of the Joint Logistics Unit North Queensland, Lt Col Karel Dubsky, was sacked by Morrison for not reading emails containing sexist material. (Pic: Supplied)

The group came to be known as the “Jedi Council”. Dubsky was not one of them.

Asked the highest rank of the men involved, Morrison replied: “There is one lieutenant-colonel who is part of this group”.

He didn’t name Dubsky but everyone in the Army knew who he was.

“There were not many Lieutenant Colonels in Townsville subjected to an Australian Defence Force Investigative Service office raid on June 5, 2013,” Dubsky recalled later.

“Then my name and image were released in the media. Despite knowing I had done nothing wrong, (Morrison) made no effort to protect my name… He embarrassed (me) on national TV.”

Army investigators trawled through every email Dubsky had sent or received and all they found were two private emails to two male friends, containing no images but with the words “DD boobs” and “shag”, which Dubsky admits was “inappropriate language” but hardly a hanging offence.

“Morrison tried hard to pin the Jedi Council on me but when he couldn’t, he sacked me from command because ‘I failed to remain aware of issues that affect me, my unit and Army’.

“… everyone thought I was part of Jedi Council. I was just dead man walking.”

Dubsky didn’t just lose his command, and an upcoming prestigious posting to the United States. He lost his reputation and his identity.

In October, 2013, he was officially cleared, in a letter from then Defence Force Chief David Hurley, saying “I accept… that you were not a part of the activities of a group styled ‘the Jedi Council’’.

Hurley also made the decision, against Morrison’s recommendation, not to terminate his service.

But by then Dubsky was a broken man. The father of two succumbed to PTSD, triggered by events in Afghanistan, was discharged from the Army medically unfit and has been in and out of psych wards ever since.

His pain culminated in a suicide attempt on Australia Day this year, while at home watching his TV in disbelief as the leader he felt had betrayed him was honoured as Australian of the Year.

So when Army people complain that Morrison has done nothing for veterans, there is a special sting in their accusations.

Vietnam veteran Tony Dell, founder of Stand Tall 4 PTS, a charity for post-traumatic stress sufferers, says: “It was an absolute travesty he was made AOTY. I travel around the country and talk to a lot of veterans and a lot of people in Defence and no one says a kind word about him.”

Veterans still fume about Morrison’s comment to the ABC last year that: “I don’t think that there’s a military solution to anything.” And they can’t forgive his attack on the Anzac legend as too male and “Anglo-Saxon”.

Dell says when he asked Morrison last year to appear at a PTSD forum to be held in Brisbane six months later: “Without a moment’s hesitation he said ‘I’ll be too busy’.”

Of course, by September Morrison had retired from the army, become chairman of the Diversity Council and embarked on a lucrative career as gender warrior.

As he nears the end of his AOTY post, in which his much ridiculed attempt to ban the word “guys” was the highlight, there is mounting pressure for an apology to Dubsky.

All Dubsky wants is official recognition of what the private letter from Hurley states, that he was not part of the Jedi Council.

“It galls me that Morrison does not understand that if you publicly accuse someone of something and then find out they’re innocent that you should then correct the record publicly.”

Just a few words would mean so much.


David Morrison’s Australian of the Year award brings many complaints

Political correctness has got him a long way — but few fans among the people

It was meant to be a widely ­applauded and unifying gong: the awarding of Australian of the Year to former chief of army Lieutenant General David Morrison.

He became a contender after achieving social-media celebrity status for a 2013 speech, about unacceptable sexism by servicemen, written for him by transgender senior military officer Catherine McGregor. She was rewarded with Queenslander of the Year shortly before Defence chiefs confidentially paid $25,000 in compensation in January to an army major who was criticised and mocked by Ms McGregor on ­social media.

But for bureaucrats in the ­Department of the Prime Minister and Cabinet, the choice of Morrison kept them busy with written explanations to placate disgruntled voters, a troubled senator — Queensland’s James McGrath, Assistant Minister to the PM, who questioned Ms McGregor’s award — and Liberal supporters expressing annoyance and bewilderment.

Documents released to The Australian by Malcolm Turnbull’s department after a Freedom of ­Information request show that a senior public servant replied to everyone in terms which carefully distanced the Prime Minister from any part in the selections by the National Australia Day ­Council.

A common theme of the letters and emails sent to the Prime Minister was that the selection was wrong, divisive and brought discredit to the awards. None of the missives were positive about the choice of Mr Morrison, whose first major speech in his new role promoted his view that Australia should be a republic. He has subsequently lobbied Australians to cease using the word “guys” to ­address men and women in the workplace, arguing the term is sexist and insensitive to females.

One of the documents released under FOI shows council chairman Ben Roberts-Smith — Australia’s most highly decorated soldier as the recipient of the Victoria Cross and Medal for Gallantry — wrote to Mr Turnbull in February and acknowledged the public backlash.

“You will be aware David’s ­selection has generated some healthy debate which isn’t unusual for someone who wants to challenge conventional thinking,” Mr Roberts-Smith wrote to Mr Turnbull.

However, Mr Roberts-Smith, also general manager of Queensland’s Seven TV network, did not believe the controversy was unique.

“This has happened many times in the history of the awards and I believe it simply reflects the significance of the program and that everyone seems to have an opinion on who should take the honour,’’ he added. He undertook to “factor into our annual review of the program” the public debate.

But senior sources said the 2016 awards had eclipsed earlier years for public and media protests. Senator McGrath, whose ministerial portfolio gives him ­direct responsibility for the ­National Australia Day Council, wanted to know how Ms McGregor became Queenslander of the Year — and an automatic finalist as Australian of the Year — when she had not lived in the state for about 30 years.

Ken Wyatt, the Liberal Party’s federal member for the West Australian seat of Hasluck, passed on to Mr Turnbull’s staff negative feedback from unhappy constituents, including one who wrote “to express my disgust at the appointment of the latest Australian of the Year”.

The National Australia Day Council was asked by Senator ­McGrath a series of questions ­including who prepared the shortlist in the Queensland Premier’s Department, who chaired and sat on the selection panel, and what guidelines had to be met for someone to win the state award?

The council’s then chief executive Jeremy Lasek told Senator ­McGrath: “After Catherine had progressed through the process, the NADC contacted Catherine to check that she was comfortable being considered for the award in Queensland, even though she had not lived there for some time. Catherine said she always identified as a proud Queenslander.”

Queenslander of the Year Catherine McGregor. Picture: Gary Ramage
Queenslander of the Year Catherine McGregor. Picture: Gary Ramage
Ms McGregor, who earlier this year criticised the choice of her former boss, Mr Morrison, as a “weak and conventional” choice for Australian of the Year, has felt pointedly ignored by the Queensland government for the past 12 months. She has been given no official ­duties by the office of Premier ­Annastacia Palaszczuk or any of her ministers, a senior source revealed yesterday. Her visits to Queensland for public events have been privately funded and organised by her and others.

Mr Lasek advised the Prime Minister’s department on February 1 that Senator McGrath “just called me direct in mobile. He says there is some concern in his home state about the Qld AOTY not having lived in the state for many years and how Cate McGregor came to be AOTY there”.

Most of the correspondence to explain the decisions was managed by Peter Arnaudo, assistant secretary at the Department of the Prime Minister and Cabinet, who repeatedly and prominently stressed that while Mr Turnbull presented the award, “he is not ­involved in the selection process”.

Mr Arnaudo and his staff workshopped internal explanations to send to citizens who criticised Mr Morrison for allegedly grandstanding and publicly shaming and ousting a small number of military men: the so-called “Jedi Council” who had exchanged emails about sex with women. Affected officers said the disciplinary and public action taken was overkill which destroyed careers and led to the attempted suicide of a respected ­officer who had done nothing wrong.

Typical of the tone in letters sent to Mr Turnbull was this: “I am aware that there is a small well-paid bureaucracy that beavers away to produce the recommendation to government. But in the end it is the government that makes the choice and must take the flack for an exceedingly poor choice.”

Another described the awards as a laughing stock and rebuked Mr Morrison for having sworn ­allegiance to the Commonwealth but now saying “he didn’t believe in that and wants a republic”.

One wrote: “The choice of David Morrison was a bad call by all involved. Mr Morrison took less than 24 hours to create an ­irreparable split in the Australian public with unnecessary utterings about both a republic and the Muslim issue.”

Another urged: “Dear Malcolm, please show some courage and heart and ask this man to stand down.”

One wrote: “Dear Mr Turnbull, I ask that the decision to award Mr David Morrison the title of Australian of the Year is reviewed. There is too much of a cloud over him which denigrates the role …’’

Mr Turnbull was told: “His duty would be to bring Australians together. Instead, he is causing division with his dictatorial spruiking about a republic.”


Tasmanian Governor Kate Warner utters good-sounding but stupid overgeneralizations

Senator Hanson said Governor Kate Warner should consider stepping aside after she challenged her views on Muslim immigration at rally in Hobart on Saturday.

Professor Warner addressed the Walk Together rally in Hobart and questioned Senator Hanson’s position that Australia was being swamped by Muslims and that there should be a ban on Muslim immigration.

Professor Warner used the speech to ask Australians to challenge those ideals. “She [Pauline Hanson] declared that Australia was being swamped by Muslims and … reiterated a call for a ban on Muslim immigration,” she said.

“I think we must call out racism and stand up to intolerance and, as Governor of Tasmania, I’m very proud to stand up and say welcome to Australia to all asylum seekers and immigrants, no matter what colour or creed. “I think it’s so important for Australians who oppose her views to stand up and be counted.”

In a statement, Senator Hanson described Professor Warner’s comments as naive. “Governor Warner’s comments misrepresent my position and the seriousness of the situation facing Australia with regard to Islamic immigration,” the statement said. “Like much of Australia’s political class, the Governor is naive about Islam.”

Senator Hanson called on Governor Warner to consider stepping aside. She accused the Governor of “moralistic posturing” and breaking a tradition of staying out of political debate. “She has broken with tradition by using her symbolic position to enter into political debate,” Senator Hanson said.

Government House in Hobart said the Governor would not be commenting further. But in a statement, Tasmanian Premier Will Hodgman said he had taken the matter up with the Governor.

“The Premier has spoken to Her Excellency the Governor about the matter,” the statement said. “It wouldn’t be appropriate to publicly disclose the details of that conversation. Her Excellency the Governor retains the Premier’s full support.”

Senior Tasmanian Liberal senator Eric Abetz said he respected the Governor but questioned her actions. “With respect, it is not the role of the Governor to involve herself in controversial issues of the day because at the end of the day the role of the Governor amongst many others is to be the arbiter in the event of a political dispute that the Parliament cannot resolve,” he said.


Posted by John J. Ray (M.A.; Ph.D.).    For a daily critique of Leftist activities,  see DISSECTING LEFTISM.  To keep up with attacks on free speech see Tongue Tied. Also, don’t forget your daily roundup  of pro-environment but anti-Greenie  news and commentary at GREENIE WATCH .  Email me  here