How could we allow America, NATO, Israel or other Arab states to destroy something so ancient and valuable for all humanity as Syria - the last secular Arab state? Australian peace activist, Susan Dirgham, taught English for years in Syria and got to know the country and its people very well. She argues that, without deception and our complicity through ignorance, there could be no war in Syria. But how do we work out for ourselves what is really happening in Syria and who to help? We need to understand more of Syria's history and its geopolitical position, to which she provides insight here. Just as we need to severely question the notion of US-NATO presenting a 'majority' opinion, we also need to very carefully assess what NGOs are doing in Syria. Susan is the national co-ordinator of “Australians for Mussalaha (Reconciliation) in Syria" (AMRIS). She has travelled very widely and even lived in China before it was opened to the West. When she speaks she provides testable facts and does not talk down to her audience or ask for money. Please consider asking her to speak. You may contact her at susan.dirgham51[AT[gmail.com. There is a question and answer session at the end of this video.
This has been republished from Voltaire Net.See also: Putin's 2014 Q&A marathon LIVE UPDATES (18/12/14), 'Can't stuff this bear' and other Putin Q&A quotes (18/12/14)
On Thursday 18 December 2014, Russian President Vladimir Putin gave a Press conference. It included his address which lasted from 9:12AM until 12:38PM GMT. President Vladimir Putin has been condemned by Australian Prime Minister Tony Abott and the Australian newsmedia for alleged Russian aggression against Ukraine and complicity with the alleged shooting down of the Malaysian Airlines Flight MH17. In spite of this not one of the Australian journalists, nor any other Western journalist present put these allegations to President Putin. Roman Tsymbalyuk of the Ukrainian News Agency UNIAN did put those allegations. Both his question and Vladimir Putin's response are included.
This article, under the name, "Who created cartoon character "Man Haron Monis" behind "Sydney Siege" Circus?" was originally published by Tony Cartelucci at http://landdestroyer.blogspot.com.au/yesterday on 15 December 2014. We reproduce it in full here. See also, "America's Terrorist Mercenaries Wreak Havoc in Sydney".
Speaking via videolink at a Paris conference organised by pressure group Amnesty International, Edward Snowden, who famously exposed the United States' National Security Agency's (NSA) dragnet PRISM surveillance program in June 2013, said he was "deeply saddened and to a great extent angered' by what he read.
How Australian farmers, especially in Queensland, are living conditions akin to those of the 1930s Great Depression, victims of what has been called, "corporate terrorism". This article has been republished from Dr David Pascoe's facebook page at https://www.facebook.com/OVHRepro/timeline. It describes the scale of dispossession by banks of farmers who are unable to turn the kind of profit that mines and realtors can. It warns of how we are at two minutes to midnight in losing ownership and the ability to produce food on Australia's farms. On this facebook page there are many corroborating tales of suicide and hardship, of meetings and activism. We are republishing this on candobetter.net because Dr Pascoe appears to be leading an important reaction and offensive for Australians against the banks, the mines, the mass media, and to be calling our rotten politicians into question. This article was publicised by Alan Jones on his radio show of December 9, 2014 (to which cdb was alerted by Daisy Uriad), and he also interviewed Australian treasurer, Joe Hockey, who showed little capacity to grasp the seriousness of the problem.
This is an article based on a complaint from the National Dingo Preservation and Recovery Program to the Australian Press Council about an Opinion article, “Marauding wild dog packs wreak havoc in outback Queensland pushing drought-plagued graziers to the wall” (Courier Mail (Queensland), December 06, 2014. Statements in the article are made which, by omission of key facts, and encouragement of prejudice, misrepresent the reasons for the decline in the sheep industry in Queensland. This misrepresentation by omission is used to manufacture an exaggerated account of the role of the dingo in the demise of the sheep grazing industry in that state.
"In a country with baby bonuses, paid parental leave schemes and a high immigration intake, to argue that rapid growth can't be avoided is like claiming that speeding is inevitable while your foot is on the accelerator." (Melvin Bolton)
We so often hear about Melbourne's 'livability' according to the specious and self-fulfilling criteria of the 'Economist group' that it is nice to hear about "Another major liveability index for cities is produced by the American consulting firm, Mercer. "The Mercer Quality of Living Survey for cities is continually being updated and it ranks more than 220 cities on scores under dozens of different criteria of liveability. In this list Vienna has come top for three years in a row and Sydney has come in at number ten, also for the past three years. Melbourne doesn't make it to the top ten and the other nine have populations smaller than Sydney's." (Melvin Bolton)
The Principle of Common But Differentiated Responsibilities: Origins and Scope For the World Summit on Sustainable Development 2002 Johannesburg, 26 August, was intended to provide a basis for international cooperation and has apparently been an issue of contention in the 2014 Climate Talks in Lima 12 years later. (See explanatory document here: Legal brief on 'Principle of Common But Differentiated Responsibilities'.)
During the 12 days of talks World Population grew by approximately 2.7 million people. I wonder whether those 2.7 million will create any carbon emissions during their lifetimes? In the 12 years since the Principle of Common But Differentiated Responsibilities was drafted, World Population has grown by approximately 860 million people. The Principle of Common But Differentiated Responsibilities makes no mention of population growth.
This article includes links to evidence which proves that claims made by Tony Abott, Petro Poroshenko and SBS that East Ukrainian rebels killed the 298 crew and passengers aboard MH17, including 38 Australians, were untrue.
On the SBS news service of 11 December 2014 it was reported uncritically that visiting Ukrainian President President Petro Poroshenko and his host Australian Prime Minister Tony Abbott had urged Russia to withdraw the troops they claim had invaded Ukraine. SBS also urged that those guilty of murdering 38 Australians amongst the 298 who were aboard flight MH17 be brought to justice. They said that pro-Russian rebels had fired the alleged surface-to-air missile that had allegedly shot down Flight MH17. ABC Australia has recently apologised for similar prejudiced reporting, admitting it had no evidence, see: ABC Australia apologises for bias against Russia in reporting MH17 crash. Neither Poroshenko, Abbott, or the SBS 'reporter' however, acknowledge that no evidence has been produced to confirm this claim. Furthermore, there is much forensic and eyewitness testimony that strongly indicates that flight MH17 was shot down by a pair of Ukraine Air Force Sukhoi 25 fighters.
In 1967 when the film The Graduate was released, plastic had entered our world and in fact it had been lurking around in various forms for about a century. By the 1950s, children’s toys, lunch boxes and drink bottles packed for school lunches were made of plastic. Would modern children even recognise a world without plastic?
The Pentagon has issued an official statement saying Iran has conducted air strikes against the Islamic State, but Iran denies this. The minister says this is "psychological warfare intended to antagonize Muslims in the region. We support the people of Iraq and Syria in their fight against the Islamic State by offering organizational and advisory assistance. And we do this openly. Why? Because these are extremist and criminal groups operating against the people of Iraq and Syria. We oppose them and consider them to be a threat to the entire region. But air strikes can’t be effective, and we don’t conduct them. He also denies any problems with Iran's sunnis. [...] We don’t trust the Americans. We think it’s the US that helps breed these extremist groups in the region. They arm, finance and train them. That’s why we feel that this US-led coalition is a puppet show that won’t yield any results. The Islamic State fights a guerrilla war on a vast territory in desert terrain, that’s why air strikes are a non-starter. We think that the only way is to mobilize the people, and we’ve seen some good progress when the militants were forced to retreat and leave the cities they previously captured." (Article's original source is "Iran interior minister: US bred ISIS, now tries to fight them with useless airstrikes" on SophieCo, RT.
The article below is about cost-shifting to local councils to cope with increasing demand for infrastructure and services. This is of course a reflection of population pressure. The councils once could limit the amount of new homes and development but their capacity to do this has been greatly eroded by state government. The state governments have also left councils with little option but to borrow and to gouge residents with higher rates to cater to ever increasing costs of population growth. Just as there seem to be no limits to population growth in Victoria, there are no limits to local rates in Victoria. The article below is an extract from Cardinia Ratepayers and Residents Assn Inc Newsletter.
British film maker David Bond interviewed today on ABC radio was saying that childhood obesity and too much screen time were linked. The amount of screen time robs children of time spent outdoors, having adventures, being in their own world, being independent from their parents and developing an appreciation of nature.
He said that there are increasing barriers to children playing outdoors now, for instance increased traffic. He said that we (in Britain) provide wildlife corridors for animals (although in Australia there are hardly any) but we do not provide corridors for children. He cited a place, where in desperation it was proposed to put a children’s playground underground!
This month, at the United Nations Climate Change Conference in Lima, Peru, one of the most important battles facing humanity is playing out. At stake: the salvation of the planet. Climate change is already being felt across Latin America and the Caribbean, the World Bank says.
Rising temperatures are changing rainfall patterns, leading to flooding in some places and intense droughts in others. Climate change will mean dry places get drier and wet places get wetter.
This article thanks all who attended the celebration today (7 December 2014) to give thanks to the incoming Labor Government and to all who have campaigned for years to save Royal Park and the Zoo from certain destruction should the East West Link be constructed. The article also contains a photo of a concerning note left by East West Connect for a resident, requesting some kind of ongoing involvement in the link.
Speaking at an Australian Business Economist's dinner on 25 November, (http://www.abc.net.au/news/2014-11-26/rba-could-cut-rates-oecd-warns-of-housing-risks/5918946) the RBA's Deputy Governor Philip Lowe told the audience that Australians had gotten too accustomed to a world beating economy and seem to have become unduly depressed now that the nation has come back to the pack. He claimed that a factor boosting the economic outlook is population growth. Dr Lowe said it is much easier for domestic businesses to cope with uncertain economic times in the knowledge that "the overall size of the pie is getting bigger." The reality is that the pie per capita keeps getting smaller; so Philip seems somewhat confused.
Reviews by Dr Joseph Wayne Smith and Professor Peter Pirie: "A contribution to [evolutionary] sociology of Weberian dimensions, combining innovative hypotheses, critical thinking of the highest calibre and a firm commitment to seek facts rather than be bound by politically correct dogmas. It is scholarship at its best ..." (Smith). "A major contribution of Newman's book is the examination of incest avoidance and the Westermarck Effect. The way in which incest avoidance and and the Westermarck effect limit mating in proximate populations and therefore on the distribution and density of populations is particularly important in the Pacific Islands which characteristically are of small area and were populated recently compared to other regions and originally by small bands surmounting marine distances. In the future, demographers, sociologists, population geographers and particularly, anthropologists, will be unable to ignore these two forces, and need to be grateful to Sheila Newman for bringing them to our attention." (Pirie)
RT's Abby Martin interviews Kambale Musavuli, Spokesperson for Friends of the Congo, about the vital role of cobalt in many industrial and electronic manufactures and the use of cobalt in predator drones. The interview connects the genocide of many Congolese with corporate and government cobalt mining. Entire villages have been bulldozed to around mines.
Are you interested in Australia's 2015-16 permanent migration programme?
It has just come to the attention of the Sustainable Population Party that the Department of Immigration and Border Protection (DIBP) is seeking your feedback - by 5 December 2014 (tomorrow).
Inside see copy of the letter from a lawyer which was today delivered to East West Connect, Linking Melbourne authority and Lend Lease, on behalf of Protectors of Public Lands Victoria Inc and Royal Park Protection Group Inc.. advising that work on the Link is no longer justified. This article extends an invitation to celebrate the end of East West Link and documents the cessation of work on this loathed piece of infrastructure. So many people worked so hard to stop this abomination, spent so much time and their own money. Many thought they could never win. Even the judicial system seemed aligned with the government against the people. Julianne Bell and others who followed her example have truly earned this extraordinary outcome, which certainly contributed to the undoing of the Napthine Government.
Migration is hardly a solution to world poverty and conflict, but the mainstream media predictably push this line. Even the Guardian, for all its purported democratic values, continuously pushes for open borders without disclosing that these also facilitate a right-wing agenda for cheap imported labour sources and the crushing of local industry and employment. Its recently issued 'special report' entitled, "Hardline Australia, confused Scandinavia and tense Russia: the global immigration picture" http://www.theguardian.com/world/2014/nov/30/hardline-australia-confused-scandinavia-and-tense-russia-the-global-immigration-picture has been described as 'an appalling, if predictable, piece of propaganda."
The Parliamentary Economics Committee has posted its report on foreign investment in real estate.
Basically the report says they have no means of knowing the extent or impact, because the government has not gathered the data to allow it to be measured. It is scathing about the Foreign Investment Review Board, which is clearly both unable and unwilling to enforce the regulatory system.
Rapid population growth is political poison, and has brought down a second Victorian Government in four years. In the past decade Australia's migration rate more than doubled. The greatest consequences of this dramatic increase have been in Melbourne, which started growing by more than 200 people a day, 1500 each week, 75,000 each year.
As I pointed out at the time, the adverse consequences of this growth for planning, transport, the environment and the cost of living were crucial in bringing down the former Labor Government. Article originally published on Kelvin Thomson MP's site.
The cruel changes made by the Napthine Victorian Government to wildlife laws are another reason many might not have known to be glad that its term just ended. It reestablished wild dog control zones across eastern Victoria which go well beyond the three kilometre limit into public land established under Labor. It reintroduced trap types previously banned by Labor as cruel. It introduced a bounty system whereby recreational hunters (including those using bows and arrows) can kill dingoes (‘wild dogs’) for profit across large parts of eastern Victoria and in the Big Desert National Park in western Victoria. Bounties can be taken in the Big Desert region even though there are no wild dog control zones in that part of the state. It increased the period allowed by Labor between trap visitations to 72 hours. Labor had previously reduced the trap visitation time to limit cruelty. it introduced aerial baiting in Victoria, which had not been permitted by the Brumby Labor government. And that's not all.
Everyone knows that that the Coalition Government (now in caretaker mode) led by Denis Napthine has already signed the contracts for the infamous East West Link Toll Road in advance of the election this Saturday. What the public may not appreciate is that the East West Connect, a consortium contracted to carry out the construction of the biggest infrastructure project ever seen in Victoria, has already commenced work on the project in Royal Park. Last week teams of EWC surveyors moved in and commenced marking trees for removal in the vicinity of the planned tunnel entrance over the Ross Straw Field in Royal Park West as well marking what appears to be a construction road up Brens Drive, through the State Netball and Hockey Centre carpark and north on to the area of Royal Park designated by Linking Melbourne Authority for a construction camp and carpark.
With Victoria going to the polls on Saturday, Jenny Warfe and Dr Matthew Mitchell present compelling evidence the real reason for the East West Link is not road congestion but a superfluous new port project.
Watch highlights of the Surf Coast Energy Group Forum. The issues of population, climate change and pressures on our bio-diversity are addressed. Kelvin Thomson attended, Prof Ian Lowe was a speaker and the audience was large and varied.
There is very little 'social housing' available around Frankston and the Mornington Peninsula, yet Council has suggested these people could be relocated to Mornington - in an entirely different community! Assuming that such accommodation can even be found - there or anywhere else. Despite no clear justification for a car park, Council is stubbornly insisting on continuing with the eviction.
"7.30 has acknowledged your concern and agrees it was inaccurate for the program to state as fact that flight MH17 was shot down by “Pro-Russian militia” and “Russian backed rebels”. The program understands the cause of that incident remains unresolved and is the subject of ongoing investigation." (ABC Corporate Affairs). After David Macilwain, candobetter.net author and 7.30 Report viewer, complained, the ABC has made editorial changes to a report entitled, "Tony Abbott promises to ‘shirtfront’ Putin at G20 Summit." Mr MacIlwain's complaint appears under this ABC response. This is a positive response from the ABC since the kind of unfounded bellicose reporting that MacIlwain complained about is helping to move the world rapidly towards another world war. The ABC can help the world by reporting truthfully and respectfully. (Also published by AMRIS at https://susandirgham.wordpress.com/abc730-editorial-correction-mr-bill-shorten-president-putin-and-mh17/