geekgirl (r)osiex aka the metal cupcake publishing about interesting things for a really long time!
  • “…Ferguson. It’s not on a single TV station.” [#geekgirl]

     

  • No Morals Morrison Attacks the UN Refugee Convention [#geekgirl] [#wtf]

    [Image Credit: SBS]

    [Image Credit: SBS]

    [From this SBS article] “Immigration Minister Scott Morrison has launched an attack on the UN Refugee Convention, saying it was being used to defend “death voyages”… Lawyers for…157 asylum seekers say the group were told they would be forced to go to India in three orange lifeboats, which they would be taught to use.

    Human Rights Law Centre Executive Director Hugh de Kretser told media on Monday that the group were “absolutely terrified” over the incident, which reportedly happened around mid-June.

    “Australian government officers on board the customs vessel told the group they would be forced to go to India in three orange lifeboats dropped in the ocean somewhere off the coast of India,” he said.

    Mr de Kretser said he had been told that nine adults and two children were taken away from the rest of the group on July 14, when they were shown the lifeboats and told they would be put in them.

    He said all instructions were given in English, which none of the asylum seekers are fluent in. Only a handful speak poor English.

    “Whatever your personal views are on politics and refugee policy, this move was an affront to human decency,” he said.

    Mr de Kretser also said the group were only allowed to change their clothes 11 days after being brought onto the Customs vessel, where they were kept in three windowless rooms 22 hours a day.”

     

  • “Meet Febrina, 3 Years Old…” [#geekgirl]

     

  • Climate Council Seasonal Update: Abnormal Autumn [#geekgirl]

    [Via climatecouncil.org.au]

    [Via climatecouncil.org.au]

  • “Tony Abbott’s daughter did not have to pay for $60,000 design degree…” [#geekgirl]

    [Source: Caroline McCredie/Getty Images AsiaPac Via Zimbio]

    [As reported by The Guardian] “Tony Abbott’s daughter Frances received a “chairman’s scholarship” for a degree costing more than $60,000 from the Whitehouse Institute of Design where an Abbott donor sits as chairman on the board of governors, Guardian Australia can reveal.

    The revelation raises questions for the prime minister over whether the scholarship should have been declared on his interests register.

    The Coalition government is also under pressure over changes to higher education funding announced in the budget.

    Frances Abbott undertook a bachelor of design at the Whitehouse Institute of Design in Sydney from 2011 to 2013. Guardian Australia has confirmed that she received a scholarship during her time at the institute.

    “Frances definitely was a student with us and received a chairman’s scholarship,” Leanne Whitehouse, director of the Institute told Guardian Australia. She declined to detail how many times the “chairman’s scholarship” has been awarded previously, but the institute’s website makes no references to the scholarship and states the institute “does not currently offer scholarships to gain a place into the Bachelor of Design”.”

  • “Factory Farming Video: Just the Basics of Modern Farms…” [#geekgirl]

  • “Farewell To A Fair Go…” [#geekgirl]

     

  • The National Commission of Audit Recommendations Sounds Like They’re Straight Out of The Onion

    [Image from ABC News 24]

    [Image from ABC News 24]

    [Via Sbs News] “WHAT THE NATIONAL COMMISSION OF AUDIT RECOMMENDED:
    *Raise age pension age to 70 by 2053.
    * Include the family home in a new means test from 2027.
    * Raise superannuation preservation age to 62 by 2027.
    * Slow the roll-out of the national disability insurance scheme.
    * $15 co-payment to visit the doctor and access Medicare
    services.
    * Require wealthy Australians to have private health insurance.
    * Increase co-payments for taxpayer-funded medicines.
    * Open pharmacy sector to competition, such as supermarkets.
    * Allow the states to impose a personal income tax surcharge,
    offset by reduction in federal rates.
    * Scrap Family Tax Befit Part B and new means test for Part A
    with maximum rate cut out at $48,837.
    * Lower the paid parental leave scheme salary cap to $57,460 -
    average week earnings – and use the savings for new child care
    payment.
    * States to be responsible for allocating all schools policy and
    funding.
    * Uni students to pay more for their degrees and lower local
    repayment threshold to the minimum wage.
    * New benchmark to lower growth in the minimum wage to 44 per
    cent of average weekly earnings.
    * Force young job-seekers to relocate or lose welfare benefit.
    * Reduce the number of government bodies.
    * Privatise Australia Post, NBN Co, Defence Housing, Snowy Hydro
    amongst other government-owned enterprises.
    * Abolish the Australia Network.”
  • “Half of European bumblebees in decline, quarter face extinction…” [#geekgirl]

    [From an article at RT] “Almost one-quarter of European crops’ vital pollinators – bumblebees – could die out in the coming years, as half of the species are declining, a new study says. Citing human factor and climate change, it warns of “serious implications” for agriculture.

    A preview of the recent European Commission-funded study, published on the website of the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN) on Wednesday, says it has some “bad news” for Europe’s bumblebees.

    As much as 46 percent of the 68 bumblebee species living in Europe have a declining population and just 13 percent are increasing in numbers, the study shows. According to IUCN, 24 percent of those species are “threatened with extinction.”

    The study, which contributes to the European Red List of pollinators and is part of the Status and Trends of European Pollinators (STEP) project, stresses that three of the five “most important insect pollinators of European crops” are bumblebee species.

    Bumblebees have for thousands of years played a “critical role” in agriculture as they help crops reproduce by transferring pollen from plant to plant. However, as agriculture and urban development have intensified in recent years and cultivated land has been changed, bumblebees have been hit by the loss of habitat and the loss of their preferred forage, as well as pollution and insecticides. “

  • Judge #Gender Diversity Threatened By #OneTermTony [#geekgirl]


    [From  this Sydney Morning Herald article]: ‘A senior NSW judge has warned there are ”worrying signs” the Abbott government is winding back measures to promote greater gender diversity on the bench and called for vigilance to ensure hard-won advancements for female lawyers are not lost.

    Ruth McColl, who has served on the Court of Appeal for more than a decade, said changes introduced by the former Labor government to improve the transparency of the appointment process for federal judges appeared to have been scrapped by the Coalition.

    ”The aim of the process was to ensure the evolution of the federal judiciary into one that better reflected the diversity of the Australian community,” Justice McColl said in a speech in Sydney on Thursday night.

    ”That position has now changed. According to the Commonwealth Attorney-General’s Department website as at 22 February, 2014: ‘There are no current judicial appointment processes’ for any of the federal courts. Read what you like into that rather Delphic statement.”’