Don’t Repeal 18C [#geekgirl]
“The Abbott Govt believes #bigotry is free speech worth defending…” [#geekgirl]
— Tanya Plibersek (@tanya_plibersek) March 24, 2014
“Australian arts community responds to George Brandis’s Biennale threat” [#geekgirl] [#BiennaleBullyBrandis]
[From an article at The Guardian] “Minister’s letter to the Australia Council suggesting that artists who reject corporate sponsorship on political grounds should be denied government funding draws a strong industry reaction…
‘George Brandis has made a dramatic intervention into the Sydney Biennale-Transfield controversy. In doing so, he has openly attacked the philosophy of arms-length funding that underpins the Australia Council.
The Australia Council Act of 2013 explicitly states that the minister of the day can’t issue a direction on funding decisions. “The Minister must not give a direction in relation to the making of a decision by the Council, in a particular case, relating to the provision of support (including by the provision of financial assistance or a guarantee),” it states.
Brandis, who is also the attorney general, seems to be arguing that he get around such niceties by telling the council to work up a broadbrush policy on the matter, striking out any cultural funding recipients who dare to deny the corporate coin. The act is “plainly wide enough to include matters of policy and funding criteria”, he wrote in a letter to the Australia Council.
That’s an ambit claim that is yet to be tested in court. But whatever the black letter details, Brandis’ intervention is an attack on the general philosophy of arms-length funding.
From a public policy perspective, that’s a real concern, because ministerial meddling is inimical to cultural innovation. When funding bodies have to look over their shoulders to consider what politicians and the media will say about the funding decisions they make, the interesting, the innovative and the risky are likely to be abandoned in favour of the safe and the staid.’ – Ben Eltham, industry columnist at ArtsHub.”
So Freakin’ True [#geekgirl] [#OneTermTony]
— Jane Purnell (@janiekid) March 13, 2014
“Senator Ludlam welcomes Tony Abbott to WA…” [#geekgirl]
Mass surveillance and the global website blackout [#geekgirl]
“Senator Scott Ludlam asks the Attorney General about mass surveillance on the day the Australian Greens joined the global website blackout to support the growing campaign against indiscriminate government surveillance. #thedaywefightback – the answer was something to behold.”
Varied News Sources in Oz? #Where? [#geekgirl]
IPA “Australians have at their fingertips access to more news from more varied sources than ever before”. Oh sure..
— Steven Curren (@sacurren) January 30, 2014
#Abbott Moves Against The ABC & SBS [#geekgirl] [#GrrRRrr]
Australian Prime Minister Tony Abbott has launched a calculated attack against the freedom of the press with today’s announcement of a governmental “efficiency study” into both of Australia’s public broadcasters, the ABC and SBS:
“In a statement, the Department of Communications says it will examine operational costs as well as products and services in order to “increase efficiency and reduce expense”. The decision comes a day after Prime Minister Tony Abbott claimed the broadcaster was unpatriotic in its coverage of the Edward Snowden leaks and asylum seeker abuse claims.”
Doesn’t Tony Abbott remember the following comments he so stridently voiced back when he was Opposition Leader (that are freely available on his own Political Party’s website) regarding how the then Prime Minister of Australia should accept that:
“… politicians don’t always like the coverage that they get but if you’re in public life you’ve got to take the rough with the smooth and a vigorous, critical media is an important part of a healthy democracy…what I will never support is any attempt to try to bluff the media out of doing its job which is to hold bad governments to account….regardless of who owns the newspapers I think it’s important that the media in Australia robustly hold governments to account and any attempt by government to slide out from under critical scrutiny is just wrong.”
Read the rest of Abbott’s mindbogglingly hypocritical comments here, quickly, before the rush to censor it like they did to the Gonski Report website and other inflammatory “hoist-by-his-own-petard” speeches by Abbott. Oh, and in my not-so-humble-opinion, be prepared for the results of the “efficiency” [HA!] study to most likely show that the ABC *needs* (just imagine I’m a closed-minded typical right winger here for a sec, m’kay?) to:
- Have its funding significantly reduced and/or
- Be sold off to the highest bidder (considering privatisation is the acceptable right-wing-bog-standard-solution to fix a country’s woes, yes?).
What if we cared about those living in poverty as much as we care about celebrities? [#geekgirl]
This is a Statement of Non-Confidence [#geekgirl]
We strongly implore the Governor General of Australia to dismiss the LNP Government before serious damage is done to Australia as a nation.
The Federal and State LNP Governments are poised on the brink of inflicting irrevocable damage on the Nation.
Just days after the election, the LNP Government has already removed several key, and crucially important ministers from the Cabinet. Among these are the ministers for Science, Mental Health, Aged Care and Disabilities. Insultingly, they have been replaced with a minister for Sport.
Furthermore, just 100 days into the Abbott regime, we have become the first nation to attempt to repeal actions against the Climate Change, have been slammed with human rights abuses for our Asylum Seeker Detention Centres including children being separated from their parents, the sick being denied medication and asylum seekers being imprisoned for unacceptable amounts of time, and have had the very last bastion of free journalism in Australia (the ABC) threatened with budget cuts because they do not say what the LNP want them to say!
We simply cannot sit by idly while our Country is ravaged in this fashion. Everything that we have built these many long years is now at risk as the LNP dissect Australia and sell her vital organs for profit.”