Friday, January 21, 2011

Aussie expat suing UK employer over 'racist' comments

I can well imagine that the comments would be tiresome but any reaction beyond that seems excessive. He must be unaware that the English are bigoted towards one-another too. Just ask a Yorkshire man about Lancastrians if you doubt that. I would tend to hit back with derogatory remarks like: "Well at least I haven't got a working-class accent". That would cause ire but would also stop the aspersions. The English are deeply embarrassed by any mention of social class and would not risk further mention of it

An AUSTRALIAN working in the UK is suing his employer over his colleagues' allegedly racist comments mocking his nationality, the Daily Mail reported.

Geoff Stephens, a community warden, has lived in Britain for 26 years, yet the 48-year-old claimed his colleagues regularly make jokes about kangaroos, greet him with “G’day, sport” and ask, “Is your girlfriend called Sheila?”

The Adelaide native said he has been taking a “cocktail of antidepressants” to deal with the constant abuse from his coworkers in Dymchurch, a Kent County village about 112 km southeast of London.

“I’ve only been able to sleep for three hours a night since August, and the physical and mental exhaustion will eventually kill me,” he said, according to the Daily Mail.

“I feel like my life has been ripped apart. I loved my job with a passion and I did a lot of good work in Dymchurch,” he added. Wardens work closely with police in the UK, alerting them of anti-social behavior, littering and graffiti as well as helping them organize community outreach programs.

Dymchurch locals said they were aware of the teasing, but did not realize how upset Stephens was.

“He’s got an Australian accent and people rib him about it, but nobody knew quite how much it was affecting him,” one resident reportedly said, asking not to be named.

“I think he doesn’t mind the kids having a laugh about ‘putting another shrimp on the barbie’ or saying ‘G’day, sport,’ but it’s the constant references to Australia from his colleagues that is obviously getting him down.”

Stephens is suing the Kent County Council, which refused to comment on personnel issues.


More asinine "justice"

SENTENCING reformers say they are stunned a convicted drug dealer danced his way free from court today, after being released on a bond. The student drug dealer who imported and sold a large quantity of the deadly party drug 'meow meow' literally danced from court today after a judge released him on a bond.

Malich Coory [Khouri?], 20, laughed, joked and clowned around with his arm around a friend as he walked from the County Court and posed for waiting media cameras.

In her sentence Judge Jane Patrick said that in a report to the court a psychologist said Coory was suffering from depression and deeply regretted his drug dependence and involvement in importing the drug.

"I accept the seriousness of the offence has been brought home to you and this has served as a wake up call," Judge Patrick said.

Coory showed little sign of his depression as he fooled around with his mates and lit up a cigarette.

But People Against Lenient Sentencing spokesman Steve Medcraft said he would be seeking an immediate appeal, describing the decision as “an insult to law-abiding citizens".

He also believed the sentence sent the wrong message, with the dangers of “meow meow” becoming increasingly known. “This bloke is peddling misery and gets a sympathetic hearing from a judge. He said Coory had demonstrated that many criminals viewed the court as "a circus and a game".

“The thing that is wearing very thin … how many barristers have found that post-traumatic syndrome and depression are the greatest assets to use in a defence trial.

“A lot of people have depression, but they don’t deal in drugs. They don’t deal drugs to get over their depression. “He’s obviously played the game. "Claim depression and you can still deal in death and misery.”

“I think the average person on the street would have to be shaking their heads. “It’s given a green light to drug dealers,” Mr Medcraft said.

Mr Medcraft called on Premier Ted Baillieu to take a stand on the issue, given his stated policy to toughen sentencing laws before the election. “I can’t wait for Parliament to resume, because this is exactly the legacy of the last eleven years, in which judges are either being hoodwinked or believe in the tooth fairy.

“I know Ted Ballieu and them said they are going to review it (sentencing), but I would certainly hope they pull that forward. “I think the State of Victoria or the prosecutor should appeal that sentence. That is manifestly inadequate.

The judge sentenced Coory to 22 months in custody but released him immediately on a recognisance release order of $500, effectively a bond, and he was ordered to be of good behaviour for 22 months.

Coory of Greenvale, had previously pleaded guilty to single counts of importing 753 grams and possessing 1.57 kilograms of 'meow meow' or 4-MMC. The drug also known as 'bubbles', 'drone' and 'meth' has been linked to 25 deaths, including suicides, in the UK and in one reported case a teenager ripped off his scrotum because he believed centipedes were crawling over his body.

Judge Patrick said 4-MMC had a similarity to ecstasy and because it only emerged in 2007 in France in was not listed in the Victorian Drugs, Poisons and Controlled Substances Act.

She said it is believed that Coory is the first person in Victoria to be prosecuted for importation and possession of 4-MMC under Commonwealth law. "Young people should be very wary of taking this drug for health and legal reasons," the judge said.


Both sides of the climate controversy recently heard on Australia's public broadcaster

And was the Warmist a picture of illogic! All he could point to was the undisputed rise in CO2, as if that proved his case. Since the rise in CO2 was, by his own admission, accompanied by FLAT temperatures (1998, 2005 and 2010 all the same), it does the exact opposite. He assumed what he had to prove (that CO2 causes warming) and then failed to see that the evidence contradicted his assumption!

And the guy is a big cheese among Warmists too. Being a "secretary-general" sure sounds like hot sh*t

TONY EASTLEY: The United Nations weather organisation has confirmed that 2010 was one of the three hottest years on record.

The World Meteorological Organization says that last year was as hot as 2005 and 1998 and that Arctic Sea ice cover was the lowest in recorded history.

The Organisation says last year was also marked by extreme weather events in Europe, Russia, Asia and South America.

Meredith Griffiths reports.

MEREDITH GRIFFITHS: After a wet and cool few months in parts of Australia and those paralysing snowstorms in the northern hemisphere, this news may come as a surprise to some.

MICHEL JARRAUD: We can indeed report that 2010 is now going to rank as the warmest year on record, at the same level as 2005 and 1998.

MEREDITH GRIFFITHS: Michel Jarraud is the secretary-general of the World Meteorological Organization.

It says those three years recorded the highest temperatures since 1850, about half a degree warmer than average.

MICHEL JARRAUD: The latest decade is the warmest on record. So year after year this trend is confirmed, actually it's being strengthened year after year.

MEREDITH GRIFFITHS: Last year also saw Arctic Sea ice recede to its lowest level.

Mr Jarraud says these new statistics should silence those who don't believe that greenhouse gases are changing the world's climate.

MICHEL JARRAUD: The sceptical position, it's untenable. You cannot escape the fact the concentration of greenhouse gases have reached record levels and this is not hypothesis these are facts, they can be measured with great accuracy.

The laws of physics are also very solid, greenhouse gases cannot contribute to cool the atmosphere, more greenhouse gases can only do one thing: warm.

MEREDITH GRIFFITHS: He also noted that last year was characterised by a number of extreme weather events like the heatwave in Russia and the floods in Pakistan.

MICHEL JARRAUD: With the global warming, some of these events will become more frequent, or more intense. So let me take for example, the Russian heat wave. You cannot say uniquely it's due to global warming, but what you can say is that what is right now totally exceptional will happen more frequently in the future.

MEREDITH GRIFFITHS: Geologist Bob Carter from James Cook University says Mr Jerraud has no evidence for that.

BOB CARTER: Lots of scientists have been looking for that evidence but to date there is nothing in the scientific literature which says we have more climatic emergency events at the moment than in the past or that these are more frequent or more dangerous. There is no scientific evidence for that.

MEREDITH GRIFFITHS: Professor Carter says it's not surprising that last year was one of the warmest, but says that doesn't mean greenhouse gases are the blame.

BOB CARTER: The question is not whether it causes warming, the question is how much warming? Since 1998 we've had three warm years - 1998, 2005 and 2010 - and each of those years is associated with an El Nino event which causes or is related to the warming. Okay, but there's no trend, 2010 is not significantly warmer in any way than 1998.

So we have a warm period over a period of 12 years. Over those same 12 years we have a five per cent increase in carbon dioxide in the atmosphere. The carbon dioxide is supposed to cause more warming. Well this data that we've just discussed tells you that human carbon dioxide emissions are not causing dangerous global warming, indeed they're not causing any warming at all at the moment.

MEREDITH GRIFFITHS: Professor Carter says the last 150 years have been among the coolest in the past 10,000 years of the Earth's history.

TONY EASTLEY: Meredith Griffiths reporting.

Two leading US agencies, NASA (National Aeronautics and Space Administration) and the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, recently reported too that 2010 was also the wettest year on record.


Gillard repeating indigenous policy errors

Freely available welfare payments corrupt people

Gary Johns

KEATING government minister Gary Johns has castigated the Gillard government for relying on old policies that stop indigenous Australians from being part of the mainstream economy in its draft Aboriginal economic development strategy.

Professor Johns, who is associate professor of public policy at the Australian Catholic University's Public Policy Institute, has submitted a paper to the government's review of its indigenous economic strategy in which he argues that the government should not be delivering goods and services to indigenous people where they presently live. "Too much of the old paradigm remains in the paper," Professor Johns writes.

"These legacies of former ineffective policies will continue to inhibit transition of indigenous Australians to the real economy."

Professor Johns argues that having indigenous people waiting for opportunities to be delivered to their door is not what they need.

"This has been occurring, especially in northern Australia, without success or benefit for the last 40 years," he writes.

Professor Johns says any policy that seeks to artificially create an economy without skills and habits of work or genuine local economic activity being present, will fail.

"And yet the government has decided, through its National Partnership on Remote Indigenous Housing, to develop 26 communities. The two salient characteristics of these communities are that they were former mission stations and, with some minor exceptions, have no economic base."

Professor Johns argues the government still struggles to apply to indigenous Australians the rules it applies to others. He argues the biggest problem in employment services is the weakened jobseeker compliance system.

"Centrelink rarely upholds a participation report for non-compliance in remote areas," he writes. "This is leading to a passive welfare environment."

He also disagrees with the government's statement that indigenous people have extensive knowledge of land management, arguing it is "certainly not of the kind that would be useful in a modern economy".

"Perpetuation of these myths is harmful," Professor Johns says. "They direct indigenous people to place-based activity; the experience of the last 40 years demonstrates that it is doomed to failure".

He attacks the government's evidence to argue that Aborigines are going to university in greater numbers. "People now being recruited to university as indigenous are frankly embarrassing," he writes. "Many of these students would not have suffered any prejudice whatsoever and are generations apart from traditional society. "They are heralded as part of the success of a 'program' purely to keep up the numbers. The harm this sort of activity does is to undermine the work of those who actually have to change people's behaviour, not simply recruit those who would have made it regardless. The net impact of such programs is near zero."

Professor Johns calls for all arms of government policy to work in tandem to change the culture. "Governments must stop pretending they have the answers," he says.


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