|IndyWatch Melbourne VIC All Topics Summary Archiver|
IndyWatch Melbourne VIC All Topics Summary was generated at Melbourne VIC IndyWatch.
Thank to court watcher Bill Thompson for the tip - after our story about IBAC charges a few days ago! Do you know more? Please let us know too. Bill wonders if there's any connection.
On the first day of the COAG Energy Council meeting in Adelaide yesterday (Tuesday December 18), two citizens entered Senator Matt Canavans press conference and stood either side of him bearing #StopAdani signs. Interrupting his opening statements, they asked him why he supports the Adani coal mine.
One of the pair, Donna Smit, 49, said,I interrupted Senator Canavan because Queensland is burning up and he wants to fuel the fire.
More coal means our bushfires, droughts and storms will be even more deadly. I want to know why Senator Canavan, in all good conscience, supports the Adani coal mine when scientists are clear we must leave thermal coal deposits in the ground.
Senator Canavan hides behind the minimal jobs the Adani mine will create, as if coal is the only way we can provide for our families. The Adani mine threatens farmers livelihoods and the 70,000 jobs reliant on a healthy reef.
The federal government must help communities reliant on coal to transition to a cleaner economy of renewable energy, she said.
Jamie Dunn, 23, who held the other sign, said, as a young person, the opening up of the Galilee Basin to new coal mining will have a catastrophic effect on my future.
Climate change is the single biggest threat to my generation and Senator Canavan is determined to make it worse. I will not stop until the Galilee Basin is protected from coal mining for good, he said.
Danish authorities have concluded that the situation in some parts of Somalia is safe, and that Somalis no longer have valid grounds for asylum. Following a review of the situation in Somalia, which began in 2017, residence permits will therefore be withdrawn for no less than 1,000 Somalis. It is...
MP scandals undermine democracy from within 12:00AM DECEMBER 19, 2018 Former assistant minister Andrew Broad will leave parliament next May but, like other scandal-prone MPs before him, he will leave a legacy of deeper distrust and cynicism about politicians. His alleged conduct flying to Hong Kong to meet a...
The following is from Save Public Housing Victoria
Have you seen the ABC documentary about Waterloo called There Goes Our Neighbourhood?
Quote All over the globe public housing is under siege.
And now its Australias turn.
Whichever major party is in power across Australian states the despicable covert privatisation of Public Housing and public land is likely to continue, because whats driving it is money, power and mega-profits.
Homelessness of course will worsen!! The homeless, to our shame, are our internal refugees
Personal testimonials (1)
At a meeting in Gronn Place in West Brunswick earlier this year, we heard from Louise who spoke about her sisters experience in Millers Point in Sydney.
Here are some
extracts from her speech.
When the government said they wanted to renew Millers Point, they said the main reason was that it was costing too much in maintenance. I can tell you right now, they spent nothing on maintenance. People had to paint their own places, had to replace their own stoves. The government spent nothing.
In Millers Point, to get them out, they offered them the world not telling them they were finding them alternative accommodation by throwing those (public) tenants out. The same pretext they said to existing tenants, Youll only be out for 3 monthsand well fix the place up. In the meantime, they brought in people from Millers Point.
Theres two reasons why people live in Public Housing. The first reason is they choose to because of their community. Secondly, they cant afford any other accommodation, either temporarily or permanently. There has to be a place in our society for people who cant afford to buy or pay high rents. Everybody is a citizen.
Regarding the displacement process underway in Melbournes inner-city under the Labor government
Louise: People have mentioned the government coming along with pieces of paper and smiles on their faces. What happens is they tell lie after lie. The minute people give up their place in Public Housing theyre heading down the road of homelessness for a number of reasons....
By James ONeill New Eastern Outlook 18.12.2018 When the current Australian Prime Minister Scott Morrison floated the idea that Australia might move its Israeli embassy from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem, it was widely suggested that this was an attempt to curry favour with the relatively large (12%) Jewish population in the electorate where 
AFTINET is a network of both individuals and 60 community groups including including unions, churches, environment, public health, aid and development, womens groups and others advocating for fair trade (also called trade justice), based on human rights labour rights and environmental sustainability.
Donald Trumps rejection of trade agreements and aggressive use of unilateral tariffs, and One Nations similar policies in Australia have tapped into resentment of current neoliberal trade policies, which for many people have not delivered promised jobs and growth, and have contributed to growing inequality.
Trump and One Nation have mobilised this resentment from a conservative and racist perspective, fanning ultra-nationalist and anti-immigrant sentiment. But their simplistic responses of high tariffs on imports will not magically restore lost jobs. Building walls and discriminatory migration policies based on fear will not improve peoples lives but will bolster militarism and the danger of war.
AFTINET is part of the global movement of progressive groups supporting peace, human rights and global solidarity. We are not opposed to trade, but want a more just global trade system
What Trumps rupture with some neoliberal trade policies does demonstrate is that they are not immutable economic rules resulting from market forces, but political decisions that can be changed. As advocates for trade Justice we must seize the opportunity to challenge bad policy and develop alternatives which benefit the majority, not just the top 1%.
Whats wrong with current trade policy
Fundamentalist neoliberal trade policy as practised by the Coalition Government aims to achieve not only zero tariffs but also zero other barriers to all trade and investment.
Each country should specialise in its most narrowly-defined competitive products or services, import everything else at the lowest possible prices, have no active industry policies and minimise other government regulation. Australia would be a farm and a quarry, with deregulated service industries like tourism and financial servi...
The former home of once-loved, now-gone Michael The Deli at 50 Leeds Street, Footscray, is getting a revamp and a new life. According to the building permit notification in the window, the new business here will be a cafe during the day and a bistro during evening hours specialising in European cuisine. 
At ANZs annual general meeting in Perth this morning, questions will be asked of CEO Shayne Elliott about the banks failure to compensate Cambodian farmers pushed off their land to make way for an ANZ-funded sugar plantation.
Keren Adams, a Director of Legal Advocacy at the Human Rights Law Centre, said that ANZs failure to take any responsibility for the consequences of its actions was shocking:
ANZ has profited from serious human rights abuses. They admit that their systems were lacking and as a result, they funded an initiative that destroyed the lives of hundreds of Cambodian families.
In 2011, ANZ provided a $40 million loan to Phnom Penh Sugar, which had forcibly displaced hundreds of local farming families and employed school-aged children in dangerous conditions at its sugarcane plantation in southern Cambodia. The loan was recently found by an Australian Government complaints body to contradict the banks own internal policies and international human rights standards.
In October, in response to questioning about this decision, Mr Elliott told an Australian Parliamentary Committee that what had happened in Cambodia was a dreadful situation and that the bank would look to do the right thing with the profit made from the loan. However the bank appears to have subsequently backed away from those statements. In a letter sent to interested stakeholders this week, the bank suggested the farmers should instead look to the Cambodian government for compensation, despite the governments known intimidation tactics.
After Mr Elliotts recent public comments, the Cambodian families left destitute by this land grab were looking to the bank to do the right thing. The banks decision is another slap in the face for them, said Ms Adams.
We call on ANZ to immediate divest the profit from its loan to Phnom Penh Sugar to help address the harm caused to these families.
A statement to be provided to shareholders by NGOs Equitable Cambodia and Inclusive Development International outlines a further five recent cases in which ANZ has allegedly financed companies implicated in land grabbing and other serious human rights violations.
For interviews, call Michelle Bennett, Director of Communications, Human Rights Law Centre, 0419 100 519.
Contributed from New South Wales
Last week Prime Minister Scott Morrison proposed the creation of a Commonwealth Integrity Commission, after months of refusing to do so.
The intensity of public pressure and loss of a parliamentary majority forced the issue.
It is tempting to see this as a major back down. But things are
not always quite what they seem. There is no intention to set up a
commission to properly tackle corruption in Canberra. A smokescreen
to cover up public anger against lack of action is being
Its there is black and white, in the paper submitted last Thursday, which boldly states that the CIC will not investigate direct complaints about ministers, members of parliament or their staff received from the public at large.
The implication is that information passed on by a whistleblower will not be followed up either.
All that the CIC will be mandated to do is take referrals from established government agencies and regulators. This means that the machinery to edit out what the government does not want pursued is in its hands. After all, these agencies operate under the guidelines provided by the government of the day.
Even if specific government direction does not exist, hurdles and delays conveniently in place, to make it much harder for any complaints to be heard.
The Federal Police, for instance, has a mandate to investigate corruption. But its track record is nothing to brag about. If those who have some information to pass on, have to go to the Federal Police, and wait for them to build a case, and pass it on to the CIC, it may be a very long wait, if anything is done at all.
This will send out the message that making a complaint is a waste of time.
Secondly, any case coming under suspicion, must meet a perceived threshold test of criminality on paper. But how is this to be tested?
Those involved in corruption do not put their behaviour out there in public to be seen. Cracking cases must involve following up leaks and pulling aside the cloak of secrecy. The CIC will lack the power to do this.
Thirdly, even if a case reaches the CIC, all it is empowered to do is hand over the case to a special prosecutor, who will decide whether a criminal case should take place. Who appoints the special prosecutor?
This is a CIC without teeth.
Every indication is that there is significant corruption in Canberra. The high number of multi-million contracts, widespread connection between those in the political system and the corporate world, and the penetration of the business lobbyists provide fertile territory to induce payments for favours.
Jebs note was a short copy of Trumps execution order for GHWB.
That given to Hillary was a note concerning orders by DC Judge Royce Lamberth to the State Department and the DOJ to produce HRCs file and asking why they have acted in Bad Faith.
Forcefully announcing that the double speak, lies, and deceptions concerning HRC is One of the greatest modern offences to government transparency.
He [Trump] wants to start gaoling State and DOJ dupes. They were given 10 days to deliver.
They lacked complete candour. How much ratting do you think there will be from the Feminese big mouth nut jobs? He said they have Strained Credulity.
Kavanaugh will gaol them if they falter, or treason will be played as the hidden file concern...
China would continue with its strong Communist Party control of its society as it sought to further open up its economy, Chinas President Xi Jinping said in a landmark speech yesterday celebrating the countrys 40 years of reform.
The speech, made at the Great Hall of the People on the 40th anniversary of the reforms made by Deng Xiaoping in opening the economy in December 1978, was a signal that the Communist Party intended to strengthen its control over China and its people, while focusing on delivering further improvements in the countrys standard of living.
Chinas President Xi Jinping applauds during a celebration meeting marking the 40th anniversary of Chinas reform and opening up policy. Picture: AFP
In his 90-minute speech, which did not contain any new announcements, and was focused largely on his domestic audience, Mr Xi highlighted the countrys economic achievements, including lifting more than 740 million people out of poverty and building the worlds largest social security system with an age pension covering more than 900 million people and medical insurance covering 1.3 billion.
China had also become the worlds largest exporter and the worlds largest holder of foreign exchange reserves.
Mr Xi said China now stood tall and firm in the East, following the unprecedented miracle of the past 40 years, and would continue to step up its role as a player on the global scene.
But he said its rise from near poverty to the worlds second largest economy would not represent a threat to any other country, and China had no intention of using its economic power to seek dominance over other countries.
China does not represent a threat to any one country, he said. China will never seek hegemony.
But he said no one was in a position to dictate to the Chinese people what should or should not be done.
The speech, which made no reference to Chinas trade war with the US or the trade negotiations with the Trump administration, was seen as a disappointment for observers who had been hoping it might signal Mr Xi was planning further reforms of Chinas economic system, which is still dominated by state-owned enterprises. The private sector is now also exp...
I am sure that readers would be expecting this post to be about
Donald Trump, who has given us many great moments in presidenting
by virtue of his grifting, incompetence, and sheer brazen lying.
But this is actually about Sri Lanka where the president there
seems to be trying to give Trump a run for his money when it comes
to making impulsive and stupid decisions without thinking things
through, feeling that the sheer office of his office was sufficient
to make any decision he makes become reality.
I wrote earlier about the crisis in Sri Lankan politics that was triggered on October 26th by the decision of the president Maithripala Sirisena (MS) to summarily fire the prime minister Ranil WIckremesinghe (RW) and replace him with the leader of the opposition (and former president) Mahinda Rajapaksa (MR). RW insisted that MS did not have the constitutional authority to fire him and refused to vacate the official residence. Meanwhile MR appointed his own cabinet to run the government even though he tried but failed to show that he had the support of the majority of parliament, a necessary requirement to form a government in a parliamentary system.
So we had an impasse with, depending how you looked at it, either two prime ministers and two governments or no prime minister and no government, and there were rowdy scenes of fisticuffs in parliament and public demonstrations in the streets as the two sides claimed legitimacy. The rest of the country went about its business as this craziness went on.
The president MS had apparently never heard the sage advice that when you are already in a hole, you should stop digging. In an effort to end the impasse without backing down, MS then issued a proclamation dissolving parliament and calling for new elections. This was challenged in court and the Supreme Court ruled on Thursday that the constitution prohibited the president from dissolving parliament until a specific time had elapsed and since that time had not as yet been reached, his order was invalid.
There did not seem to be any resolution without somebody backing down in an embarrassing public defeat, something that rarely happens in politics. But that actually happened. The issue got resolved suddenly with MR resigning as prime minister and MS swearing RW in again as prime minister. This has to be seen as a serious loss of face fort he president. I think that there will be such general relief that this whole mess has been resolved without too much violence that embarrassing legal technicalities, such as why RW had to be sworn in again as prime minister if he had never been legally r...
Tropical Cyclone "Owen" brought extremely heavy rains to parts of Queensland, setting a new Australian December daily rainfall. Owen made its first landfall well north of Cardwell, Queensland early December 10, exited into the Gulf of Carpentaria and...... Read more
When the current Australian Prime Minister Scott Morrison floated the idea that Australia might move its Israeli embassy from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem, it was widely suggested that this was an attempt to curry favour with the relatively large (12%) Jewish population in the electorate where a by-election was being held.
Following the governments humiliating defeat in an electorate it had held for more than a century, the idea was expected to die. That possibility was reinforced by the widespread criticism that followed the prime ministers announcement. That criticism was couched almost solely in terms of the damage such a move would do to Australias relationships with its near neighbours such as Indonesia.
Supporters of the Prime Minister also argued that moving the embassy to Jerusalem would enhance progress in the two state solution to the problem between Israel and the Palestinians.
More recently however, the Australian cabinet has approved the idea that the embassy should be moved, but not immediately. The delay was purportedly on cost grounds, financial cost that is, not reputational.
Almost completely missing from news bulletins and mainstream media analysis are the arguably far more important elements in the Tel Aviv Jerusalem equation.
The term international law is now avoided in political discourse, for the very good reason that the actions of the western powers do not sit well with adherence to international law.
The invasions, occupations, and attacks upon Afghanistan, Iraq, Syria and Yemen, among others this century alone make the point. In all of these illegal endeavours Australia has been a willing, indeed eager, participant. This is quite apart from Australias own violations of, for example, the Convention on Refugees and the Convention on the Rights of the Child.
Australian politicians als...
This 17 April 2018 video says about itself:
According to an undercover report from journalist James Bloodworth, some Amazon warehouse employees fear going to the restroom, as the 10-minute walk could get them written-up or even fired.
By Nick Barrickman in the USA:
I think the whole shipping business is a little corrupt
Amazon worker wrongfully fired for theft reveals companys dead-end appeal system
18 December 2018
A former employee at Amazons BWI-5 facility in Baltimore, Maryland contacted the International Amazon Workers Voice to describe what can only be called a nightmare of corporate red tape.
Hired in 2016, the 25-year old workerDwas a permanent warehouse employee, meaning he had surpassed the standards of the internet giant and had survived the corporations onerous and indefinite probationary period without an infraction, allowing them to receive minor benefits granted to permanent workers.
Unfortunately, job protection and the right to a fair hearing were not among the benefits that were listed. In August 2017, D was terminated from his position as a warehouse associate for allegedly stealing an item of food from the in-house food vending systema Twix ice cream bar. I had been in a conversation with friends before my shift started and forgot to pay for it at the Canteen [vending company] kiosk, he said.
As I began my shift, I was approached by one of the managers and was told that I had been called to the Human Resources office. Waiting in HR, D struggled hard to figure out why the manager had requested his presence. I finally realized that I had forgotten to pay [for the ice cream]. The worker noted that he had a tendency to be forgetful but had never stolen anything in his life or had any previous infractions at the company.
D was about to enter a...
Originally posted on Waking Times Phillip J. Watt, Contributor Long story short; French citizens have revolted for the fourth week in a row calling for changes in governmental and corporate design. Even though UN Military and thousands of French police have been deployed in response, the police have actually been filmed removing their helmets in solidarity with the French 
Originally published by Paul Gregoire at Sydney Criminal Lawyers on July 5th 2018 but given the recent uprising in France its about time I shared this. Its as though our so-called leaders got wind of what was in the works in France with the yellow vest movement as it was started back in may! This 
Madagascars election on Wednesday could have major implications for the future of the islands environment and wildlife and by extension, its rising ecotourism sector says a prominent conservation scientist. In an op-ed published this week in Al Jazeera, William F. Laurance, a researcher at James Cook University in Australia, warns that if Madagascar elects former president Andry Rajoelina, the countrys dwindling natural resources could face renewed assault. Under Rajoelinas previous reign, which followed a 2009 coup, Madagascars forests, wildlife, and coastal waters were pillaged. Rajoelina himself was linked to trafficking in rosewood timber: Upon his removal, a stash of rosewood logs was found in the presidential palace, writes Laurance. A critically endangered indri lemur (Indri indri), the largest lemur species. Photo by Rhett A. Butler. The environmental devastation under Rajoelina continued through his successors Hery Rajaonarimampianinas rule, with a surge in deforestation and an auctioning off of community-managed fishing areas to foreign industrial fleets. With 95 percent of Madagascars lemurs classified as as either endangered or critically endangered, there is a real risk that a Rajoelina presidency could diminish some of the islands biggest attractions for nature tourists. We can see Rajoelinas predatory attitude to the environment as demonstrated by his track record, writes Laurance. One must only look to the appalling state of the Malagasy rainforests to witness his rapaciousness. Appallingly, one of Rajoelinas first acts was to legalize the felling of precious hardwoods by executive decree, he continues. The illicit trade flourished: after a year of
Read Online This Week: 18 - 24 December 2018 Newsletter | #625 Whats On this Week in marvellous Melbourne Tuesday 18th December 2018 to Monday 24th December 2018 Christmas Festival 2018 The Playground Pop-Up At Fed Square Santas Magical Kingdom Christmas Lights Search Carols By Candelight Christmas Day Dancing In The Street - A Tribute To Motown School Of Rock | The Musical Sand Sculpting Exhibition - Peter Pan Weekend Wrap Outdoor Cinema Guide New Years Eve Parties Markets This Weekend Merry Christmas #Melbourne Christmas Festival 2018 The annual Christmas festival transforms the city into a magical place and celebrates the spirit of Christmas in true Melbourne style. Federation Square will be transformed into Christmas Square a magical forest offering festive fun for the whole family. Gingerbread Village at Federation Square. Santas House Spectacular Projections and Light Show Melbournes Christmas Festival The Playground Pop-Up At Fed Square Daily in December @ Federation Square The perfect pit stop on a family day out with everything the little ones love - were talking yard games a ball pit sweet treats ice cream and loads more plus Santa Claus on weekends. The Playground Pop-Up At Fed Square Santas Magical Kingdom 23 November - 23 December 2018 | Caulfield Racecourse The magic of Christmas will come alive at Santas Magical Kingdom with an interactive walk-through adventure land. Santas Magical Kingdom 2018 | Ticketmaster Christmas Lights Search The Melbourne Christmas Lights Guide will help you and your family plan to see all of Melbournes best Christmas Light displays. Melbourne Christmas Lights | Search Carols By Candelight Head out with family and friends for a wonderful night of carol singing. Carols on Southbank - Friday Carols by Candlelight | Vision Australia - Monday --> Carols By Candelight...
Frances Vida Lahey (1882-1968) studied painting
at the Brisbane Technical College. In her early 20s (190509), she
travelled south to Melbourne and studied at the National Gallery
School with Bernard Hall. It was conventional training for a young
Australian artist in the Edwardian era. And like everyone else,
Vida Lahey travelled to Europe in 1915 where she spent four years,
studying art in Paris at the Acadmie Colarossi and doing her bit
during WW1. But her stay in Paris came after the painting I want to
1. 0116/18 Sportsbet TV Free-to-air A man is seen naked from the waist up and appears to be manscaping. Upheld Number of complaints: 793 Issues of concern: 2.1 Discrimination or vilification, 2.2 Exploitative or degrading, 2.3 Violence and 2.4 Sex/sexuality/nudity 2. 0113/18 ...
The Andrews Labor Government has announced $1.1 million worth of grants to support renewable energy projects in local communities across Victoria. The post Boosting renewables and cutting energy costs appeared first on RenewEconomy.
By Jeremy Salt Source Australia and Israel are white settler states, established violently over the heads of the indigenous people, without the benefit of any treaty arrangement. A land without people for a people without land was the Zionist lie. Terra nullius was the Australian white settler equivalent. Australian aboriginal ownership was collective and traditional. 
By Azadeh DastyariA young girl protesting at a rally to bring refugees on Nauru and Manus Island to Australia.
Australia was one of 176 countries to vote in favour of the Global Compact on Refugees (refugee compact) in mid-November this year. The United Nations General Assembly will adopt it by the end of 2018.
However, Australia did not join the Global Compact for Safe, Orderly and Regular Migration (migration compact) at a conference in Morocco on December 10-11.
There is much confusion about the two compacts, with commentators often conflating the two documents. However, they are distinct agreements with differing subjects.
The term refugee used in the refugee compact has a specific meaning under international law. It refers to a person outside their own country who fears persecution because of their race, nationality, membership of a particular social group or political opinion.
As a signatory to the Refugee Convention and Refugee Protocol, Australia has particular obligations to refugees under these two treaties. The refugee compact does not replace these obligations. Instead, it is a non-binding agreement that intends to provide a basis for predictable and equitable burden- and responsibility-sharing.
The Refugee Compact lists four objectives. They are to:
Unlike the term refugee, the term migrant does not have a precise meaning under international law. Australia does not have any specific international legal obligations to migrants beyond respecting their human rights under the human rights treaties to...
Support and wellbeing of survivors is, and always should be, at the heart of this issue, said Anna Brown, incoming CEO of Equality Australia and Director of Legal Advocacy at the Human Rights Law Centre.
It is imperative that there are stronger laws and support for survivors, and also education about the harm caused by the cultural ideas and messaging prevalent within faith communities.
Its fantastic that the ALP has listened to survivors and researchers. Changing their policy to reflect that gay conversion is broader than therapeutic practices and acknowledging that the ideology behind gay conversion is also harmful, is an important step toward protecting the community, said Mr Csabs.
The changes in the ALP platform reflect a key recommendation of the Human Rights Law Centre and La Trobe University Report ...
by Mary W Maxwell, LLB
Dear Dr Mindy Hull, Massachusetts Medical Examiner
I mailed you a letter (copy enclosed) back in August of this year, 2018, in which I requested an Inquest into the April 19, 2013 death of Tamerlan Tsarnaev. I am writing to you now to demand an inquest into the death of another person whom we will have to call John Doe.
At famous shootout took place on Laurel St, Watertown, in the wee hours of April 19, 2013, allegedly in connection with the Boston Marathon bombing that occurred four days earlier.
Officer Ric Donohue was injured in that sho...
The Independent Commission Against Corruption has raided the NSW Labor Party headquarters in Sydney on Tuesday morning. The Herald understands investigators arrived at the Sussex Street offices, looking for records as part of an ongoing investigation. Senior union and Labor Party officials are in Adelaide for the ALP National Conference...
In August 2012 Mr and Mrs Ralph and Ruby Blewitt had a difficult conversation. Ralph explained to his wife that he'd been involved in union corruption in Australia during the 1990s. And he said he was going to go back to Australia to fess up. Ruby comes from a lovely...
When it comes to dread-soaked synth-punk, few bands do it better than NUN. But fans of the Melbourne quartets self-titled 2014 album might be need time to adjust to the bands long-gestating follow-up, The Dome. Where the first record was harsh and abrasive, the second is surprisingly poppy and streamlined. Even frontwoman Jenny Branagans baleful vocals feel more clean-cut and accessible.
Yet, rather than sacrifice the pitch-black mood of earlier tracks like Uri Geller and Cronenberg, The Dome exploits the thrilling dichotomy of brighter, punchier songs that dispense regular doses of fear and paranoia. Sometimes that has more strength to it, says Branagan by phone. Its unsettling in its own way. I find this album really sad, grim, and bleak.
That perspective isnt shared by bandmates Steven Harris, Hugh Young and Tom Hardisty, who brandish various synths and drum machines. [They] feel very differently, she confirms. They feel that this is a very bright and uplifting thing. We all come at it in a different way.
Its easy to see both sides. For all the wonky drag of the slow-burn Pick Up the Phone, or the sustained fever-dream vibe of seven-minute closer Debris, Another Year pairs Branagans protest-like lyrics to gleaming, pinging melodies. Even opener Wake in Fright, with its unmistakable nightmare mantras, feels strangely empowering, while Cant Chain is an outright pop anthem that manages to top the first albums fist-pumping single Evoke the Sleep.
But again tapping that paradox of dark and light, Branagan says Cant Chain was written in response to a friends suicide attempt. Even the titular hook Cant chain these morons down was a blackly comic way of saying you cant truly hold on to someone who doesnt want to be here. Youre wanting to keep your friend safe and happy, she explains, but at the end of the day, what control do you have over another persons choice?
As for the sample at the end of the song, its from the 1972 BBC mini-series Ways of Seeing, written by the late English academic John Berger. Branagan regularly makes such mood-setting interludes for NUN, and shes recently...
Via: Ars Technica: Signal, one of the most secure messaging apps, essentially told Australia this week that its attempts to thwart strong crypto are rather cute. By design, Signal does not have a record of your contacts, social graph, conversation list, location, user avatar, user profile name, group memberships, group titles, or group avatars, Joshua 
You say you love your children above all else, yet you are stealing their futures right before their very eyes. This 15-year-old activist just called out world leaders for their global inaction on climate change.
Video from U.S. Senator Bernie Sanders
The post Video: 15-year-old climate activist calls out world leaders for inaction appeared first on The Pen.
Fresh off the plane, a trail across the world left on the maps, I walk through the picturesque German town I have chosen as the location for my future stories. Ill walk these streets past bright coloured houses with wooden shutters as I fight to earn that expensive piece of paper in endless hours of studies.
I enter the administration office, one of the many cornerstones of bureaucratic Germany. A thick line on the floor warns me to not take another step. Good citizen that I am, I halt right in front and maintain discretion as requested. The room smells like a stuffy office that has never heard laughter. Three clerks sit behind their narrow desks and stare at flickering screens from the early 2000s.
One of them raises her voice to explain a line of incomprehensible instructions in the type of administrative German even natives have trouble understanding. Her client stares back in confusion. I sigh and stare at the shiny literature given out by the government to make sense of the many hoops and never-ending forms that frame German life. This is the third time Im here, waiting for another form to fill out for my landlord amidst snarky comments from the staff regarding my incomplete pile of documents.
As her last client passes me by, a document smelling of fresh ink in hand, a clerk waves me over. I sit down as her fingers dig into the keyboard. She doesnt look up.
What can I help you with? she says in a monotone voice.
Id like to register my residence, I reply.
Do you have the certificate of tenement provision filled out?
Yup, I say. Now were talking.
Your identification papers?
I hand her my folder of documents and wait in silence as she examines them.
Please be patient for a moment, Miss, she says and starts punching the keys again, asking questions occasionally.
As I endure the procedure, I observe the clerk at work, wondering what she might do in her free time.
Before I know what is happening, she draws a long ruler out of nowhere, places it over the name of my birthplace on my passport and crosses it out with a fat marker. I lose my breath. What did she just do?!
There is no chance to ask whats going...
On my way to Yarra Sculpture Gallery this year I saw a ghost sign painted on an empty building. It reminded me of one of the reasons why I write this blog. I want to record something of the galleries in Melbourne today.
J Miller Art Gallery / Pictures Framers Restorers / Sales Service & Supplies 419 7516
The old telephone number before the 9 prefix was added to Melbourne telephone numbers in 1995. Millers gallery provided a range of services; contemporary art galleries in Melbourne no long do picture framing as part of their business.
The State Library Victoria has a one folded invitation card and one sheet press release for an exhibition at J Miller Art Gallery. The exhibition was by the Polish artist, Grzegorz Morycinski, March 14, [no year, circa late 1980s?]. Morycinski was a contemporary painter who spent four months in Australia in 1987.
Perhaps my blog posts will simply contribute to a more complete archive of Melbournes art world (not a vain hope as this blog is preserved by the State Library of Victoria on Pandora).
* * *
I am still working on my book on art and crime as I have decided to expand it from Melbournes art crimes to Australian art crimes. I have been posted a couple these stories from my research, and a couple of times I have been rewarded with more information.
* * *
I have been fortunate to be born a white heterosexual male in an Anglophone culture and it has been a privilege. The only downside was that I was in generation X, a punk anarchist and there are thousands of guys like me. Writing about Melbournes visual arts appears to be a good use of my academic skill set. (Thanks to the Australian tax payers for providing me with the free education. I hope that I am paying it forward with my blog.) However, for much of this year I dont have been trying to listen, learn and leave room for other voices.
* * *
So goodbye to 2018; this blog will return in 2019.
Contributed by Ben Wilson and Joe Montero
The COP24 summit in Poland has finally come out with an agreement. The Unites States and Australia celebrated coal. Brazils new Jair Bolsonaro regime showed its climate warming skepticism. Oil producing countries Russia, Saudi and Kuwait, argued to slow things down. Despite this, some progress was made.
Measures were supposed to be adopted to step up the implementation of 2015 Paris Agreement. But a compromise was made to delay this till 2020, when the next summit takes place in Chile. The agreement says that commitments already entered into must have been met by then.
Time is running short, however. The intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) warned just two months ago, that the global temperature rising above 1.5 Celsius will have grave consequences, and that there is little more than a decade to turn the situation around, by halving all carbon emissions.
The current path could result in the temperature rising by up to 3-4 degrees Celsius, according to the science. This suggests that the global political establishment is not yet aligning with the science.
Discussion in Poland concentrated on standardising reporting and improving transparency. Both of these are needed. But this should not delay stepping up action.
It is understandable that countries want to minimise the negative impacts of making a transition. This is best achieved through cooperation between nations and mutual assistance. The longer it takes to do enough, the higher the cost will be.
Failure to act on a sufficient scale will destroy many species,
and upset the life cycle, on which human beings are also
Changing weather patterns will mean that not enough food will be available to feed the human population. Rising sea levels will mean small countries disappearing and many cities being inundated. Economic collapse, the failure of political institutions and social turmoil will be inevitable.
What is clear, is that reliance on the political elite is not enough. Only when there is sufficient pressure coming up from below, is movement on the political stage possible. The little progress that has been made has come about this way. It is only the beginning, and much more is needed to lift the game.
There must be a turning away from unrestricted capitalism that always puts the private bot...
Fork & Fingers, 230 Union Road, Ascot Vale. Phone: 9041 2436 Consider The Sauce and one of its regular dining pals had been vaguely talking about a visit to Fork & Fingers to try its Indian fusion food for more than a year. In the end, though, it was with four other regular members 
"Protester Daniel Heggie said the reindeer were being exploited". By sick children and their families at the Brisbane Children's Hospital. Charming people. Animals rights protesters fronted a group of sick children and their families who were meeting a pair of Santa's reindeer on Monday afternoon. Police were called to remove...
Todays maps focus on the performance of the Greens, who went backwards in terms of votes, yet managed to win a record number of lower house seats at a general election.
This first map shows the primary vote swing for the Greens in the 88 electorates.
Seats coloured dark green or bright green mostly swung to the Greens. Pale green seats had a small negative swing, with the brown seats doing worst.
In the recent past weve seen the Greens gain swings in the inner city while losing ground in regional parts of Victoria, but the picture from this election isnt quite as clear.
Yes there was a big increase in the Greens vote in Northcote, Prahran and Richmond (the last helped by the absence of a Liberal candidate), but the Greens vote went slightly backwards in Melbourne and Albert Park, and barely increased in Brunswick.
This second map shows the two-candidate-preferred vote by booth in non-classic seats. This includes five Labor vs Greens races, one Labor vs independent race and one Liberal vs Greens race, all in a contiguous area in the inner city stretching from Prahran to Pascoe Vale.
The map also shows the map data for Mildura, Morwell, Shepparton and Geelong, but you have to zoom out to see those areas.
You can also toggle the map to see the swing by booth, but only for four inner-city Labor vs Greens races for some obscure technical reasons.
Thats about it for today. Ill have more maps tomorrow.
Both the Hang Seng and the Shanghai indices recovered from last weeks poor data and the DOWs late Fridays decline. Volumes continue thin and that appears to be spreading to many markets. It is not uncommon to see markets drier ahead of the holiday season, but this year it seems to gets more attention probably because prices are in decline. Once the bounce back to unchanged was over, both played in a narrow range to close fairly neutral. Japan on the other hand, traded well following the open and managed a +0.65% gain on the day. We are seeing renewed weakness in the Yen, in Asian trading, but looks to have found the safe-haven bid again for the moment anyway. A ray of hope was also displayed in Australia and India, as both markets finished around 1% higher. Overall a fairly quiet session awaiting China, the FED and Germanys IFO report.
Europe attempted to hold just slightly lower levels Monday, but once the US markets opened that proved just too much of an ask! Growing fears of a global slowdown continue to spread and recent data tend to support that sentiment. China numbers Friday, followed by further BREXIT and European uncertainty are all in the mix ahead of the Federal Reserve and a devastatingly slow retail sector. Talk this evening is that Jeremy Corbyn (Labour Leader) apparently intended to propose a no-confidence motion in Theresa May, but then decided he didnt need to after Theresa May tabled a date for the Parliamentary vote ( Week of January 14th, 2019). If this vote were to happen, it is in her and not the government. BREXIT and all its shenanigans will continue for at least another three months, so buckle in it could get wild! GBP however, has traded higher against the USD as speculation that the FED holds after this weeks move. Most core European bourses closed around 1% lower.
US markets have been heavy all day and are looking to close at their lowest levels for the year. Having retreated from close to 15% from their highs, markets are trading nervous as we await the FED and data starts to slow again. Housing numbers today were their slowest in three years, but there was a pick-up in business activity. Although volumes are better than their 20day average, the 20day average is still way down...
Australia has just proven that it doesnt necessarily take sweeping changes in legislation to get people to cut down on their plastic consumption. The country has cut its plastic bag use by 80 percent over the course of three months thanks to sweeping measures instituted by major national retailers.
Since July, two of Australias largest supermarket chainsColes and Woolworthshave implemented a nationwide ban on free lightweight plastic grocery bags. Australias National Retail Association (NRA) estimates that the ban has saved 1.5 billion single-use plastic bags from entering the ecosystem since it went into effect. Customers are now being offered reusable bags for 15 cents a piece, and while there was some resistance at first, new habits are already forming.
The decision by certain retailers to no longer offer free single-use plastic carry bags certainly received a hostile response from some shoppers initially, but these retailers deserve credit for dramatically reducing the number of bags in circulation, shared David Stout, NRA Manager of Industry Policy. The bulk of shoppers now use their own bags, which has been instrumental in reducing the number of plastic bags being consumed. Indeed, some retailers are reporting reduction rates as high as 90 percent.
Weekly Geo-political News and
Secret head of world finance, Cardinal Pell, fired and big changes coming
By Benjamin Fulford, White Dragon Society
Last week Cardinal George Pell was found guilty of sexually abusing children by an Australian court and was subsequently fired by Pope Francis because he was elderly.
This is huge news in the secret world of finance, because Pell was the person in charge of financial matters at the Vatican and thus was a secret controller of most world government leaders, P2 Freemason and CIA sources say. This is because when most world rulers take power, they get a visit from an official of the Vatican Bank who hands them a bank book with an astronomical number written in it (a billion dollars or more for big countries; less for smaller countries). They are then told, Welcome to the world of the rich, and are gently reminded that if they refuse to accept the money they will be removed.
This is the choice of silver or lead that has allowed the Vatican P2 Freemason Lodge, run by descendants of the Caesars, to secretly rule most world governments. The 200 leaders who last week affirmed the fraudulent carbon causes global warming agreement are all slaves of this system, P2 Freemason and CIA sources agree.
On December 15 the Australian Prime Minister Scott Morrison announced that Australia recognizes West Jerusalem as a capital of Israel, adding that Canberra "acknowledges the aspirations of the Palestinian people for a future state with its capital in East Jerusalem," thus abiding by the so-called two-state solution. Tzachi Hanegbi, the Israeli minister for regional cooperation, noted that Israel is not satisfied with the Australian decision to recognize West Jerusalem as the capital of Israel in conjunction with the acceptance of East Jerusalem as the capital of Palestine, according to the Guardian. "Australia is a deep and intimate friend of many years of Israel. We were happy to hear that it has an interest to clarify its recognition of Jerusalem as Israel's capital. But to our regret, within this positive news they made a mistake. There is no division between the east of the city and the west of the city. Jerusalem is one whole, united. Israel's control over it is eternal," said...
By Kent Heckenlively, JD After having my talk at the Commonwealth Club of California cancelled because of protests, being thrown out of Age of Autism for daring to pen a few articles for BolenReport, and being BANNED from speaking in Australia for three years, I have a new honor. Ive been Snoped! If you dont Continue reading Oh No! I Just Got Snoped! (Laugh Here)
Spy chiefs from the Five Eyes intelligence network briefed Prime Minister Justin Trudeau on two occasions this year about the national-security risk from Chinese high-tech giant Huawei meetings that took place months before Canadas arrest of a top Huawei executive severely strained relations with Beijing.
Sources say Mr. Trudeau met the spy directors at a Five Eyes meeting in mid-July in Nova Scotia and at secret intelligence talks on the sidelines of the Commonwealth summit in London in April, where Huawei and its ties to the Chinese government dominated discussion.
By ROBERT FIFE AND STEVEN CHASE
The Globe and Mail
The Five Eyes network is made up of Canada, the United States, Britain, Australia and New Zealand, which co-operate to combat espionage, terrorism and global crime.
During the discussions in Halifax and London, sources said the spy chiefs stressed that their countries cannot become dependent upon Huaweis 5G technology because they view the Shenzen-based company as beholden to the Chinese state. Under Chinese law, the countrys companies must work with Chinas intelligence agencies if requested.
Senior federal officials, including the Canadian Security Intelligence Service, would not discuss the Five Eyes deliberations on Huawei.
CSIS will not comment on the nature or substance of meetings held with its Five Eyes partners. Canadas relationship with these partners remains strong and is focused on keeping Canada safe from a variety of threats, CSIS chief information officer Tahera Mufti said in a statement.
Mr. Trudeau is facing a difficult decision on whether to join the majority of his Five Eyes allies and bar Huawei equipment from being used in next-generation 5G mobile networks.
December 16, 2018 The foreign minister of Bahrain has defended Australias formal recognition of the so-called West Al-Quds (Jerusalem) as Israeli capital, saying the move would not affect a future Palestinian state with East Al-Quds as its capital. Australias government announced the decision on Saturday, reversing decades of Middle East policy, but said it would 
A New York Times report on Stones allegations against Rush parses the difficulties of coming forward in the #MeToo eraespecially in Australia.
As many strides as the #MeToo and Times Up movements have made in a short time, they still have a long way to go. Exhibit A is the latest allegations against a well-known actor.
Belgian Prime Minister Charles Michel's stubborn endorsement of the UN Global Migration Pact has brought his government to its knees and caused massive demonstrations against the Pact in Belgium. Charles Michel now governs with a minority, because the center-right Flemish N-VA has walked out over the PM's move to have Belgium support a UN migration pact. The Prime Minister is now trying to govern with assorted and reshuffled Liberals and Christian Democrats. The upcoming Migration Pact has divided international alliances: Austria, Hungary, the US, Israel, Australia and several other states rejecting the accord. Belgium's migration minister, Theo Francken, commented on Thursday, "It's way too pro-migration. It doesn't have the nuance that it needs to have to also comfort European citizens." He said that, although it was not legally binding, it was also not without legal risks. He said that wide interpretation of human rights laws in EU courts were "tying the hands of migration policy-makers." 
The Belgian government has split apart after Prime Minister Charles Michel ignored the objections of his ruling coalitions biggest party and insisted he would sign the UN migration pact.
The Flemish nationalist New Flemish Alliance (N-VA) party quit the government following crisis talks over the weekend, prompting Michel to announce he would travel to Marrakesh to sign the controversial compact representing a minority government.
Stepping down as interior minister on Sunday, the N-VAs Jan Jambon told local media I think that, formally speaking, we are stepping down. We said that if the coalition goes to Marrakesh, it will be without us.
The patriotic party had previously produced a list of 30 objections to signing the so-called Global Compact on Safe and Orderly Migration including a lack of differentiation between illegal and legal flows, and questions over whether the agreement, which declares mass immigration to be inevitable, desirable and necessary, could have a chilling effect on objective journalism.
Vice Prime Minister Alexander De Croo rebuffed the N-VA for branding the parties set to sign Belgium up to the UN document as a Marrakesh coalition, asserting that ministers will continue to have firm but humane migration policies because no one in this government want....
The Intelligence Hub for the Victory of Light
Sunday, December 16, 2018
Yellow Vests and the Vortex of Paris
On November 10th, 1793, there was an activation of Goddess of Reason and Liberty in the Notre Dame church in Paris:
That church was the location of the temple of Isis in Roman times:
Where initiates into the Goddess mysteries still meet today:
Exactly 225 years after the activation of Goddess of Reason, certain Goddess priestesses of the Resistance Movement came to the surface in Paris and did a special planetary kundalini activation.
The activation was taking place from November 8th to November 11th, 2018, during the meeting of the world leaders in Paris. The second basement DOES exist, although the waitress denied it.
This activation served as a trigger for planetary kundalini awakening where people will finally rise up against the oppression of the Dark forces.
This comes courtesy of the Daily Mail - the photos from Christmas Island came to us from Shaz of CI and were first published here on this website. I can think of at least one Australian war veteran who lives overseas but has to return for medical treatment who will...
TURC hearing into CFMEU officials and their apparent destruction of evidence subject to TURC's Notices to Produce Monday, 21 September 2015 AT 2PM the Commission commenced its hearing, former National President of the CFMEU Dave Hanna in the witness box. Ms McNaughton opened by having Mr Hanna confirm the names...
Thanks to Team Tommy on Twitter for the image!
Unbelievable. Covered up the video cameras. Destroyed tonnes of documents as they were being called by the Royal Commission. Fought the charges, didn't cooperate, plea of not guilty. And walks free on a bond. An ex-union boss has avoided jail after being found guilty of dumping and burning tonnes of...
Why Yael Stone is terrified to talk about Geoffrey Rush.
By Bari Weiss
Ms. Weiss is a writer and editor for the Opinion section.
Yael Stone is scared.
We are in New York City, at a ramen place near her apartment in Astoria, Queens, and Ms. Stone, who stars in Orange Is the New Black, has barely touched her soup. She tells me she hasnt been sleeping for the better part of a year.
Its not just her 6-month-old baby whos keeping her up, but her decision to come forward for the first time and speak to me about her experiences with Geoffrey Rush, one of the most powerful actors in her native Australia.
Most women who go public with #MeToo stories are fearful for obvious reasons. There is the pain of reliving traumatic experiences. There is the rage of not being believed. And there is sometimes the discomfort of admitting, as Ms. Stone readily does, that she didnt say no and at times even encouraged some of his behavior. She did so, she says, out of fear of offending a mentor and friend.
But Ms. Stone isnt just afraid of the emotional consequences of talking about her allegations against Mr. Rush, her onetime hero, including that he danced naked in front of her in their dressing room, used a mirror to watch her while she showered and sent her occasionally erotic text messages while she was 25 years old and starring opposite Mr. Rush, then 59, on stage in The Diary of a Madman in 2010 and 2011.
I was recently interviewed by Polands biggest media organisation about my work around disaster capitalism (both the book and film). The conversation covered Afghanistan, Haiti, aid, US foreign policy, Trump and what journalism should be (hint: challenging those in power).
It was great to engage with an audience that in the West is increasingly viewed as conservative and intolerant. The Polish journalist told me that this view is inaccurate and public opinion is far more diverse on matters of immigration and refugees.
Heres the story (readers will have to use Google Translate): polishinterviewdisastercapitalism
Listeners to BBC Radio 4s Today programme on December 15th heard the following (from 05:06 here) in a news bulletin presented by Alan Smith. [emphasis in italics in the original, emphasis in bold added]
Smith: Australia says it now recognises West Jerusalem as the capital of Israel but it wont be moving its embassy from Tel Aviv at this stage. The prime minister Scott Morrison has also acknowledged the aspirations of Palestinians for a future state with its capital in East Jerusalem. The divided city, where the Israeli parliament is located, is not internationally recognised as the countrys capital. Phil Mercer reports from Sydney.
Apparently BBC Radio 4 along with the BBCs correspondent in Sydney is so used to using the politically partisan term East Jerusalem that it has forgotten that although Jerusalem was indeed divided during the nineteen-year period of the unrecognised Jordanian occupation that began in 1948, it was ...
Bellarine Police will ramp up efforts to reduce the number of bicycle and scooter riders who are not wearing safety helmets.
Bellarine Police have recently observed an increase in penalty notice fines.
The current fine for not wearing a securely fitted and approved bicycle helmet is $205 for a person 14 years of age or older.
The offence also relates to persons who are riding a scooter or other wheeled recreational device or power assisted bicycle.
We dont want to be giving these fines out to kids, but its getting to stage where we have to or else there will be some serious injuries, Sergeant Shane Connolly said.
There has been an increased observation by local police members who have observed an increase in youths riding electric bicycles.
It is still the responsibility of the rider to have the appropriate helmet and fitted properly.
There has also been an increase in thefts of bicycles in the Ocean Grove and Barwon Heads area.
Sergeant Connolly said thefts were mostly from the front of houses or shopping centres.
Local police have been able to locate a lot of the bikes as they are often dumped by the thief once that person has reached their destination, he said.
To prevent further thefts, bikes should not be left in view at the front of their premises and if left for even a short period of time, a lock be placed.
Bellarine police station is equipped with quad bikes, which will be used this summer.
The bikes enable police to get into areas that are hard to patrol, such as bike tracks, car parks and parks, Sergeant Connolly said.
We have recently used them to locate missing persons, patrol for suspicious behaviour and suspected thieves in the beach car park areas.
The quad bikes are able to assist in patrolling the beach due to increased complaints in poor dog behaviour or control on the beach areas.
The news would have its readers believe that were in the end times that climate change has reached the point of no return and the world is on the brink of nuclear wear. Unfortunately the hopeful and inspiring stories tend to pass by far too quickly, but if you look for them, theyre always there. Some are the result of years worth of work, research and investments, while others come about simply by accident.
Take the Great Barrier Reef, for instance. Coral reefs account for a measly 1% of the entire ocean on planet Earth. Despite the miniscule amount of surface area they cover, coral reefs provide food and shelter to one quarter of all marine life. Reefs also support marine life that ends up in the human food chain, feeding a whopping one billion of us.
Thanks to a little thing called bleaching, about two thirds of the Great Barrier Reef in Australia has been killed off due to a rise in temperature, thought to have been brought on by global warming. The statistics are alarming.
Thankfully, and completely by accident, Dr. David Vaughan from the Mote Marine Laboratory in Florida, may have found a way to reverse that devastating loss.
Coral ordinarily takes 25 to 75 years to reach sexual maturity, meaning it can take up to six years to plant 600 coral. This fact alone is one reason the bleaching of the Great Barrier Reef is so alarming. But thanks to Dr. Vaughan, we may be able to help coral grow forty times faster!
The Good News Network describes Dr. Vaughans accidental discovery:
He had been trying to remove a coral from the bottom of a tank when it broke into a dozen pieces. To his shock, all of the pieces regrew to the same size in just three short weeks, as opposed to the three years it had taken to grow the original coral.
The process of fragmenting coral to encourage regrowth is nothing new. In fact, the pro...
This month the ACCC released a long-overdue report into the way Facebook and Google have changed the media in Australia and the world. Here are a few quotes: ...the impact of digital platforms (ie Facebook and Google) on the supply of news and journalism is particularly significant. News and journalism...
A new paper with many authors most prominently Joseph Henrich tries to measure the cultural gaps between different countries. I am reproducing a few of their results (see pp.36-37 for more), noting that higher numbers represent higher gaps:
Distance from the U.S.
Georgia [the country]: 0.15
Hong Kong: 0.09
Egypt is the most distant, then Yemen, with Canada as the closest.
As for cultural distance from China, we have:
Great Britain: 0.20
Hong Kong: 0.09
Russia: 0.09 (not *so* far away)
Overall the numbers show much greater cultural distance of other nations from China than from the United States, a significant and under-discussed problem for China. For instance, the United States is about as culturally close to Hong Kong as China is.
In hindsight, there were probably smarter places I could have travelled to escape my addictive personality than Eastern Europe. Especially when a recovering junkie can get given a script no questions asked for morphine.
I could see the sun beginning to rise on the horizon of the abandoned Templehof Airport in Berlin from the window of our Airbnb. It was a nice change from the dirty backpackers I had been staying in for weeks, which reeked of desperation and Lynx Africa.
I had just polished off my second bottle of cheap Merlot, and was having a shower with a male acquaintance I had picked up at my hostel two nights prior. The bathroom was thick with steam hovering above the polished tiles.
As we soon discovered, shower sex is not as comfortable or convenient as it appears in porn; we were both struggling to find a position without a plug or a tap poking into one of our backs.
I had the great idea to pop a leg out of the shower to give myself more wriggle room, only to glide along the wet floor and smack my foot into the glass screen. Feeling a shrapnel-like pain ricocheting through my leg, I looked down to realise that while two toes remained in place, three were dislocated and hanging sideways like limp biscuits.
In a state of shock and thankfully numbness from the amount of red wine I had consumed I let out a loud, Fuuuuuuuuck! and decided to Skype my mother for some free medical advice.
Youre going to have to crack them back in, and then go to the hospital, she said with panic in her voice.
My friends, both supportive and utterly disgusted, rolled me a joint for the pain and tried to convince me to go to the doctor for a proper examination. However, being a naive 18-year-old with pre-existing addiction problems, I figured shell be right and instead took a Valium and went to sleep.
Boarding a train to Prague the following morning, the weight of my 65L pack and relapse hanging heavy on my shoulders, I tried to disregard the internal throb that filled me when the crevices of plastic baggies had been licked clean.
After climbing 287 steps to the top of the Prague Castle, the external pain from the night prior had begun to sink in. This was quickly eradicated by a trip to the Absinthe Bar, where we sampled some Green Fairy, and the bud they sold us from behind the counter.
Three caps, two...
As wildfires burn, as temperatures rise, as the last remaining old-growth forests in Poland are logged, world leaders are in Katowiceto negotiate the implementation of the Paris climate agreement. To outsiders, UN climate talks may seem like a positive step. Unfortunately, this is COP24.
For 24 years, world leaders have annually talked at each other instead of to one another in hopes of reaching an agreement on how to mitigate the climate crisis. In all that time, they have barely scratched the surface of an issue that the worlds top climate scientists say we now have 12 years to stop and that is an optimistic estimate.
Theres an urgency in my heart being...
Published on Dec 16, 2018
European auto resignations plunge, this is not a good sign, we are seeing auto sales in the US and Europe decline. Home prices in Australia, Canada and Europe are declining, the housing prices in the US are also dropping, bubble is deflating. Q posted how the Fed is going to be taken down by gold, Trump confirms this by his past comments on gold. The timing will be everything but the build up to contradict and bring the Fed down is in the works.
Published on Dec 16, 2018
Texas Judge rules Obamacare is unconstitutional. Robert Mueller gives the 302's to the Judge. Clinton answers questions under oath and can't remember 20 of them. The MSM is preparing for video and other news by telling everyone do not believe what you see or hear. Anons explains whats coming up.
Contributed by Jim Hayes
As Australia goes to the dogs under the Morrison government, the Australian Labor Party had its national conference in Adelaide this last weekend.
Many were looking forward to this marking, not only a decisive break from the policies of the Coalition, but the bipartisanship of the past that has brought to Australia neoliberal economics and crueler government.
Some welcome policies were announced. Among them promises to
take on more refugees, impose greater penalties on employers who
steal super from their employees, talk with first Nation
Australians about constitutional recognition and build 250,000 new
affordable homes over ten years and something was said about
reducing negative gearing. The conference adopted a policy that
will stop selling arms to Israel.
But on many big ticket items, little or nothing was said. This conference had the air of a stage managed affair, with unity built on saying as little as possible. It held onto a strategy of keeping low and allowing Scott Morrison to hang himself.
Critics have pointed out that this strategy risks failing to inspire people. The risk is real. Although the polls suggest Labor will rock in next year, they also show that Labor leader Bill Shorten is not particularly trusted.
Australia shares the worldwide phenomenon of a growing part of the population not trusting politicians of the major parties. It has its own particular causes here. The Coalition is suffering the most, and it also is affecting Labor. Unless it can show that it is sufficiently different, Labor stands to suffer extensively when it government. We have seen this happen to social democratic governments in Europe. It will happen here too.
We are no longer in times where business as usual is good enough. There must be an acknowledgement that most are becoming worse off, our rights are going, the First Nations are moving towards Treaty as the road to equality and self-determination. Public opinion has shifted is calling calling for decisive action on tackling carbon emissions and an end to offshore detention. Australia wants greed of the banks taken on in earnest, corruption seriously tackled.
This is what is being called for. We saw groups make a noise
about certain issues that we important to them at the Conference.
They are not alone.
These are the issues where a clear stance is needed, to mobilise
popular enthusiasm and ensure a solid base of support for changing
Australias direction. Getting people on side depends on building
trust and not merely slanging off at the other side.
No commitment was given to basic matters such as, raising reversing the fall in the wages share of national income, the minimum wage, putting into place a new an...
Featured Dish: 24hr Braised Lamb Shoulder Babajan is a modern Turkish and Middle Eastern eatery situated in Carlton North. Their new summer lunch and dinner menu have a host of sharing and small plates, including Warm Olives, Baba Ganouj with Crispy Sucuk, Pickled Octopus with Marash Chilli & Oregano and Saganaki with Pears. Or head 
When: 4:30pm 19th December 2018 Where: Australian Federal Police, 383 LaTrobe St, West Melbourne, VIC Facebook event here Bahraini refugee Hakeem Al-Araibi, a permanent Australian resident living in Melbourne, is being held in Thailand and faces deportation back to the threat of torture in Bahrian. He fled Bahrain because of persecution and torture due to(...)
Featured Dish: Jerk Chicken Queen Vees has just taken over the old Hanoi Hannah venue on High St. Big shoes to fill? Indeed. You might wonder what kind of tactic a restauranteur might deploy to when entering iconic grounds. The answer here is quite clearly to run a mile from any overlap. Caribbean cuisine shares almost 
17 December 2018: AFTINET convener Dr Patricia Ranald writes in the Guardian on the risk that Adani could sue our government for millions through Investor-State Dispute Settlement (ISDS), should their mining licence be cancelled by a future government.
Yet another example of why Labor should implement its policy against ISDS in all trade agreements, and remove it from current deals like the TPP.
We asked Overland contributors, volunteers, staff and editors to share their highs and lows of 2018.
It wasnt long after my pup Rosie got her final vaccinations that we both braved the winter weather and took our first trip down to the dog beach in Brighton. Beforehand we were strolling down Acland Street checking out the sights and smells of a mostly busy Saturday afternoon filled with pedestrians, pets, and other 
I have just finished my collection of election data for the Victorian state election.
This collection features the full list of booths with location information, the full list of candidates, primary vote and 2CP voting figures by booth, and voting figures by electorate and region as well.
Ive been able to use this data (as well as the swing data from Poll Bludgers excellent results site) to produce a series of maps, the first of which I will be publishing today.
These maps show the two-party-preferred vote by booth for the 77 seats which held Labor vs Coalition booth counts. This includes the 76 seats where those parties came in the top two, plus Benambra where the 2PP count was finished despite the change in the top two in the final distribution.
If youd like to check out this data, its now available for download on my maps page, along with thirteen other collections from recent state and local elections. Older data (including the 2014 Victorian results) are available to Patreon donors.
First, this map shows the two-party-preferred vote by booth for every booth in the 77 seats where we have a 2PP booth count. This excludes six inner-city seats where the count included the Greens, as well as four regional and one suburban seat where an independent made the final count.
You can also toggle that map to show the swings by booth. Youll see that most areas swung to labor, but there was a particularly strong swing in the inner south-east of Melbourne, where Labor tended to cross 10% on the election-night vote.
Ill be back tomorrow with more maps created from this dataset.
Every Moment of Every Day, Mobile Phone Apps Collect Detailed Location Data. (Totally out of control, The New York Times)
Bitcoin is a Decentralized Organism (Mycelium)(This is one of the most enjoyable and informative articles I've read all year, by Brandon Quittem)
Joe Rogan Experience #1035 - Paul Stamets (If you liked the above article, you'll love this, YouTube)
In memory of Gray-Cards Year End Top 5 Photo Extravaganza!
1. Make a SINGLE post of your Top 5 photos on YOUR tumblr.
One post of 5 photos on your tumblr.
2. Submit the link to that post (permalink) to us via our SUBMIT.
3. Submission starts 12/23
4. Submission ends at 6pm EST on 12/31.
5. One Top 5 per original content tumblr please.
Top 5 postings begin at midnight (EST) on New Years Eve and run for 24 hours.
All submissions with a working link will be posted.
Everyone is welcome; all skill levels are welcome and encouraged.
You do not need to be following us.
You do not need to tag us.
Do not forget to promo yourself, your shops and blogs.
Drop us a note if you have questions!
Thanks for a great year tumblr photographers!
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