Friday, June 21, 2019

Dutton claims pregnant asylum seekers lying about rape to access Australia

Home affairs minister Peter Dutton has told Sky News that female asylum seeker detainees on Nauru had pretended to be victims of rape and in need of abortion so they could get to Australia. Dutton claimed the women would change their minds upon arrival in Australia from Nauru, and seek legal injunctions to stay. Dutton was making the case against the medical evacuation law that he said would “open the floodgates” to Australia, but have to date seen just 30 asylum seekers enter the country for medical treatment. The comments come in the wake of a 2016 federal court ruling that Dutton had breached his duty of care by refusing to grant a pregnant asylum seeker who had been raped while detained on Nauru access to a country where abortions are legal. The claims come as the federal government pushes to secure the support of four crossbenchers it needs to repeal the law. Incoming senator Jacqui Lambie is being lobbied to protect the laws by former independent Wentworth MP Kerryn Phelps, who spearheaded the legislation.

Iran has shot down a US drone it claimed was encroaching on its airspace, in a move that has increased tension between the two countries. US president Donald Trump said the drone was in international airspace, and suggested the act was a mistake commited by somebody “loose and stupid”. Iranian foreign minister Javad Zarif said Iran would take its complaint that the US "encroaches on our territory" to the UN. “We don't seek war but will zealously defend our skies, land and waters," he wrote on Twitter. The attack took place over the Strait of Hormuz, where the US claims Iran attacked an oil tanker last week.

Former Wallabies star Israel Folau is seeking to fundraise $3 million for his legal fight against Rugby Australia. He was sacked last month after a social media post in April that said homosexuals were destined for hell unless they repented their sins. On a video attached to the GoFundMe page for his campaign, Folau said: “I’m not just fighting for my future and my family; I’m fighting for what is right. But I can’t do it alone.”

At the men’s cricket World Cup in England, Australia has defeated Bangladesh by 48 runs, with David Warner top scoring with a commanding 166. The victory came despite a spirited chase from Bangladesh, which reached its highest-ever one day international score of 8-333, falling short of the target of 382 set by Australia after winning the toss and batting first. Australia now moves temporarily to the top of the table, with Bangladesh needing to win all remaining matches to qualify for the quarter-finals.


“Patrick and Griff argue the current situation is a real and present threat to the economy. They are warning of increasing evidence that high gas prices in eastern Australia are putting the manufacturing sector under dangerous pressure and seeing small manufacturers close. It’s an issue that the sector itself has been warning successive governments about for years. Some industry specialists warn that tying the domestic gas security mechanism to the export spot price to help out gas consumers is potentially risky because the price in other markets is volatile and, while it may be low now, it could rocket in future, taking the Australian price with it.”


“It is not surprising that the rhetoric of these grand old European academies cleaves so closely to the rhetoric of colonialism, and colonialism’s most faithful handmaiden: genocide. As Patrick Wolfe famously put it, ‘invasion is a structure, not an event’, and the regulation of language has always been a central pillar of that structure. The word ‘culture’ comes from the Latin cultura,which means “agriculture”. It shares roots with the word colonia – the ancestor of the English word ‘colony’ – which in Latin means farmed or settled land. Language – in this case, etymology – can be a rope around our tongue, tying us to history, and to the stories of the past.”


“Sometimes his left ear gives him away. It’s hard to miss – it erupts like a mushroom cloud. It’s what doctors call cauliflowered, and it’s the result of continual blunt trauma. For some prisoners, it’s a tell. ‘Some ask me if I’m a fighter,’ Damien Brown says. Brown’s a prison guard. He’s also an army veteran, a professional fighter and recently the founder of a fight and fitness gym that he hopes can offer constructive sanctuary to emergency personnel suffering post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD). ‘I always say no. The minute you admit it, it becomes a challenge.’”


“Nelly Yoa, one of the most deeply intriguing cases of serial lying to ever bubble to the surface of Australian sport, has been sentenced to five months in prison on charges of perjury. Yoa appeared in court in Melbourne today for the sentencing hearing, noticeably free of the flash and pizzazz that saw him arrive at court last week in a Rolls Royce – one he claimed to have borrowed off of criminal underworld figure Mick Gatto – and a full 'security' detail running alongside him; antics that gummed up proceedings at court so badly that his sentencing was delayed by a week.”


“[Belle] Gibson, 27, was fined for breaching consumer law with claims she healed herself with good food and natural remedies — remedies she then peddled to the public as part of her Whole Pantry business. The fine has been unpaid since it was issued in 2017, two years after Gibson’s fake brain cancer diagnosis was revealed. The court heard Gibson earned $16,000 in 2016 and $20,000 in 2017, but spent $91,000 in the past two years. The lawyer for Consumer Affairs Victoria told the court Gibson spent $13,000 on clothes, accessories and cosmetics, as well as $45,000 on “discretionary” items between 2017 and 2019.”


“The book also finds the joy and humor of less official but more widely used common names: the tasselled wobbegong (a near-threatened species of shark in northern Australia with masterful camouflage skills), or the pink fairy armadillo (the small, Argentinian species with big claws and a fair complexion), or the sparklemuffin (a colorful and hairy spider with a leg-shaking mating dance, also from Australia).”

Double bluffs and Cory Bernardi
As Labor and the Coalition explore a double bluff on tax cuts, Cory Bernardi wants back into the Liberal Party.

Max Opray is Schwartz Media’s morning editor and a freelance writer.