Friday, October 13, 2017

High Court citizenship case wraps up

The High Court hearing into the eligibility of seven parliamentarians with contested citizenship has concluded, with the court intending to reach its decision “as soon as possible”. The three-day hearing made international headlines and heard arguments ($) from friend of the court Geoffrey Kennett that deputy Nationals leader Fiona Nash and Senator Matt Canavan should be disqualified. Constitutional law expert George Williams told Sky News that while most of the seven parliamentarians were likely to be deemed ineligible, deputy prime minister Barnaby Joyce is likely to win the resulting by-election for his seat of New England because there is “some public sympathy” for his predicament.

Defence industry minister Christopher Pyne has said the government is not responsible for the lax security practices of private contractors awarded government services. Speaking to ABC Radio National yesterday, Pyne said it was “a stretch” to “sheet blame for a small enterprise having lax cybersecurity back to the federal government”. Pyne’s comments come after a Defence subcontractor, a small aerospace company that has not been named, was hacked last year by an unknown party, exposing restricted data on many of Australia's warplanes and naval ships. The subcontractor’s security protocols were so lax it used default logins and passwords for its internet-facing services.

Police in New York and London have launched investigations into Hollywood producer Harvey Weinstein after numerous actresses publicly accused him of sexual harassment and assault. London’s Metropolitan Police are investigating an historic claim of sexual assault from the 1980s, while the New York Police Department said it was “looking to speak” to an individual who had made a complaint in 2004. Weinstein’s wife Georgina has separated from her husband of ten years, saying her “heart breaks for all the women who have suffered tremendous pain because of these unforgivable actions”, while the British Academy of Film and Television Arts has suspended Weinstein’s membership. Weinstein was nominated for four BAFTAs throughout his career, winning one in 1999 for Shakespeare in Love.

And New South Wales will become the first state to introduce a comprehensive policy to recognise and revive Aboriginal languages. In state parliament yesterday, Aboriginal affairs minister Sarah Mitchell said the government’s Aboriginal Languages Bill would ensure “the First Peoples of this state have their languages acknowledged, re-awakened and nurtured”. Speaking in language, Barkindji man Murray Butcher urged parliamentarians to “put the power back in our people to save our languages and give us the power to control our destiny”. The laws will establish an independent panel of Aboriginal language experts and a new language centre, although NSW Aboriginal Land Council chair Roy Ah See expressed concern that “the legislation could seek to impose ministerial controls or intervention in relation to Aboriginal languages”.

Open Quotemarks

LEIGH SALES: What does the Prime Minister do?

GIRL STUDENT: Um, he tells people what to do and they do it.

Close Quotemarks

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How men like Harvey Weinstein implicate their victims in their acts

“This is a basic and familiar pattern: a powerful man sees you, a woman who is young and who thinks she might be talented, a person who conveniently exists in a female body, and he understands that he can tie your potential to your female body, and threaten the latter, and you will never be quite as sure of the former again.” the new yorker

What’s inside all the iPhones

“Apple Inc. has sold more than 1.2 billion iPhones since January 2007, when founder Steve Jobs triumphantly claimed, ‘Today, Apple is going to reinvent the phone’. That figure, based on quarterly results that include the 15 distinct models that came out before iPhones 8 and X, means that in terms of units sold, the iPhone is probably more successful than any consumer product ever created.” bloomberg technology

Selling China by the sleeve dance

“As a troupe whose influence stretches all the way from Bogota, Colombia, to towns in Kentucky that have surely never seen forty Asians in the same week, let alone forty Asians in the same theatre, doing the sleeve dance, Shen Yun is impressively far-reaching. It’s difficult to imagine a group that’s done more to bring Chinese art to unlikely corners of the world ... According to the Chinese government, however, Shen Yun is the singing, dancing face of Falun Gong – a malevolent ‘anti-society cult’ that, the government says, leads its followers to self-mutilation, suicide, and murder.” hazlitt



What could make a party like One Nation embrace immigration?

“One Nation notes that immigration throughout the last century has been of great benefit to Australia; however it must be recognised that inappropriately high levels of immigration can be detrimental to employment, to national infrastructure, services and the environment ... Australian ‘citizenship’ is a valued privilege. One Nation would support a 5 year wait for new migrants to become Australian citizens.”   one nation


The thought of importing more intellectual luminaries like Malcolm Roberts.

“Despite representing a senator from a notoriously anti-immigration party, SC Robert Newlinds said the government's argument was a ‘fundamentally un-Australian notion’. ​‘There should be no place in Australian law – let alone Australian constitutional law – in 2016 for some dichotomy to be drawn between so-called natural-born Australians and immigrant Australians’, he told the full bench. ‘If such a concept ever had a place in Australian law it should be put to bed.’ ”  fairfax


and finally:

Sure, I’ll denounce Jack the Ripper, but I also feel the need to ask why more of his victims didn’t come forward

“Yes, Jack the Ripper’s long spree of murders is bad. But, isn’t the silence of his many female murder victims way worse? The silence of these murdered women allowed Jack the Ripper to continue to galavant through the streets of London, murdering with impunity. Let’s not get bogged down by the actual murders themselves. By doing so, we’ll just end up discussing the blatant culture of murder that has poisoned our society and kept women from speaking out for fear of retaliation.” mcsweeney’s