Brown Study

Brown Study

11 January 2014

9:00 AM

11 January 2014

9:00 AM

To let one ship become embedded in Antarctic ice that was supposed to be melting might be understandable. But to allow it to happen to two ships at the same time looks like carelessness. Or perhaps it means, as I have suspected all along, that the climate change disciples have been actively misleading us. They promised us that the science was in, the polar icecaps were melting, it was all our fault and we should stop industrial progress before we are all drowned in the relentlessly rising water. Indeed, it was on the strength of those arguments that I abandoned St Kilda to move to higher ground in South Yarra to await my doom. But now we can see with our own eyes that it was all a lot of stuff and nonsense. Not only was the Russian tourist ship trapped in ice; not only was the Chinese ship sent to rescue it also seized in the vicelike grip of nature, but an embarrassing photograph of Mawson’s expedition showed that at this exact place 100 years ago there was not enough ice to fix a gin and tonic. There will be no end of creative excuses invented to explain away the obvious, namely that the climate change advocates were ignorant or lying; but this time the evidence is overwhelming. Meanwhile, North America is in the grip of a new Ice Age and I am freezing in Canberra in the middle of summer. Perhaps Kevin Rudd was right: this really is a great moral issue, but the moral issue is whether you should be lied to, intimidated and ridiculed, simply because you have a different opinion from the climate change extremists.

It is amazing that the government has not taken aim at the former Minister for Communications, Stephen Conroy, for he must surely have been the biggest failure as a minister that this country has ever known and yet he is being allowed to return to power as leader of the opposition in the Senate without the slightest criticism or challenge to his authority or ability. He failed as a minister to have any of his legislation passed, put his name to the most severe restrictions on freedom of the media that a Western democracy has ever seen, abandoned his favourite piece of unworkable nonsense, the filter on TV programmes and presided over the gigantic stuff-up of the costing and implementation of the NBN. That last piece of brilliance had a proposed cost of $37.4 billion which has rocketed to $66 billion and the project is now three years behind schedule. The man is seriously incompetent. He should be pursued and discredited, not only because of his breach of the trust in which he was supposed to hold his portfolio, but because he is now at the forefront of another backroom deal to shoehorn a factional candidate into a parliamentary seat. This time the deal is to save the hide of a failed candidate for pre-selection for the federal seat of Batman, Mary-Anne Thomas, and to give her the State seat of Macedon, miles away from her home in Northcote, against the protests of local party members and contrary to all the promises of popular plebiscites to choose ALP candidates. Sleazy deals are back again, the factions rule, the faceless men fix endorsements and the people are ignored. Thus, honing in on Conroy would tarnish him, the factions and the backroom boys’ control of the party and discredit the Labor party even more in the minds of ordinary people.


When the news burst over the holidays that we now have a new law against bullying in the workplace, I must admit I was sceptical, as these types of reforms have a habit of growing like Topsy and becoming a new means of holding employers to ransom and extracting from them what is referred to, somewhat elliptically, as ‘go away money’. But when it was explained to me how the reform would work, I began to see that it had some merit. It seems that the employer will be liable not only for bullying, but for allowing it to happen and not stopping it. Thus, by way of example, it was explained that if the customers in a restaurant are rude to the waiters, it is obviously the employer’s fault and the waiters can make a claim. This, I thought, has potential. If the staff can claim for the indignity to which the customers subject them, this may be the last true chance for the customers to stand up to the staff and defend themselves. I, frankly, am sick and tired of being bullied by waiters who scream ‘kitchen closed’, cannot understand that ‘medium’ does not mean burnt to a crisp, will not let you make the slightest change to a menu, pour scorn on you because you ask the meaning of some bizarre foreign ingredient, refuse to let you split the bill with your friends, generally hold you in thinly disguised contempt — and then expect a tip. Yes, it might be a good change to the law after all. In fact, this is going to be my next campaign: restaurant patrons, throw off your timidity, stand united against the domineering and overbearing waiters who control your lives, reclaim your liberties and end all bullying, especially by waiters.

Every government has two or three ministers who are the permanent targets of abuse from extremists. The main victim at present is Scott Morrison. The refugee lobby attacks him because they know we are in a fight to preserve and protect the boundaries of this nation and the composition of its population.It therefore behoves Morrison’s colleagues to defend and actively support him. So should we.

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