Question dismissed

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Last updated on August 5th, 2017 at 04:05 am

The PM deals with an inquiry:

John Howard chews on the question for all of a millisecond, sets his jaw and declares, “I dismiss it with contempt.”

At least he didn’t try for lofty disdain. Read the whole thing, by my former Bulletin colleague Tony Wright.

Posted by Tim B. on 06/29/2007 at 03:08 PM
    1. I’ll just put in a plug here for my new blog where I write a post on this topic.

      Posted by Melanie on 2007 06 29 at 03:37 PM • permalink


    1. Like the abolition of settee, thugee, and the systematic torture of captives by the Apache and Comanche, sometimes cultural imperialism is just plain right.

      Posted by brett_l on 2007 06 29 at 03:39 PM • permalink


    1. Critics liken Howard’s intervention in NT to Tampa and Iraq.
      In fact it has more in common with his quick response to the (dare I say) Port Arthur Massacre.
Posted by chrisgo on 2007 06 29 at 03:54 PM • permalink


    1. How about if he’d just done this?

      Posted by paco on 2007 06 29 at 04:12 PM • permalink


    1. Hey, there’s a lot of disadain and contempt floating around out there.

      Posted by paco on 2007 06 29 at 04:37 PM • permalink


    1. And what, pray tell, is wrong with the ploy of dividing and conquering?
      If Krudd introduces what he thinks is a good idea, he claims it is not to get him elected but for the good of the country.
      If Howard introduces something that looks like being popular in the electorate the Howard-haters claim he is using “wedge” politics, being divisive and just trying to get re-elected.
      If the “divided” electorate decides to vote for Howard, how is that a bad thing?

      Posted by Skeeter on 2007 06 29 at 04:38 PM • permalink


    1. And, speaking of France, more news from that amazing country.

      Posted by paco on 2007 06 29 at 04:41 PM • permalink


    1. How could Tony Wright get it so wrong? Working at the Bulletin AND The Age helps explain it.

      Posted by watty on 2007 06 29 at 06:04 PM • permalink


    1. #2 Brett, I think you meant suttee and not settee.

      Back on topic:

      “But being silent has been the problem all the way along the line,” Brown says. “And it has been John Howard who has been silent on the issues facing Aboriginal Australia for all this time until now, just before an election. We have to see this whole matter in the context of him doing nothing for 11 years, of tossing the black armband view of history into the gutter and refusing to say sorry because he believes what has gone wrong is the fault of the Aboriginal people themselves.

      “There have been important reports about what has been happening in these communities around for years — (Griffith University academic) Bonnie Robertson’s Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Women’s Taskforce on Violence report in 1999 springs to mind, and we’ve all seen it on the front pages of newspapers. But Howard ignored it all and did nothing until now.”

      I don’t recall Bob Brown banging on about the issues up in the Top End.

      I guess all those trees in Tassie were far more important.

      Posted by Nilknarf Arbed on 2007 06 29 at 06:32 PM • permalink


    1. #7 What a load of B(arbara) S(treisand), eh? /hat tip to Rushbo.

      Posted by dean martin on 2007 06 29 at 06:38 PM • permalink


    1. 7 Paco

      but but but…they don’t like jews.

      Posted by El Cid on 2007 06 29 at 07:07 PM • permalink


    1. wow Paco…you were #7 and I #11, shall we open a chain of stores?

      Posted by El Cid on 2007 06 29 at 07:08 PM • permalink


    1. Like I mean, France use to crate them up and send them to the Nazi’s

      Posted by El Cid on 2007 06 29 at 07:10 PM • permalink


    1. Australian Greens Leader Bob Brown, a medical doctor who has long been appalled by the squalor and abuse in remote communities,

      But not so appalled as to assist John Howard’s efforts to stop it. Brown doesn’t give a toss about the squalor and abuse except its value as a recruitment tool for his political party. For the Greens, the promise to fight against Aboriginal disfunction is much more important than the fight itself. It’s a party that lives off festering sores, not cures them.

      Posted by Contrail on 2007 06 29 at 07:35 PM • permalink


    1. The problem here is airbrushing of reality, past and present, to conform to some PC notion of the truth.

      An interesting example is canabalism amoungst Australian Aboriginals. It’s a subject that is absolutely taboo.

      My hobby for a number of years was reading first person accounts (of history). I recall reading a book by Canning’s 2nd in command about exploring what became the Canning Stock Route from the Kimberley to the south of WA. (google will give you his name and incidentally I recommend the book)

      They were the first white people to travel through this area in the early 1900s.

      He is matter of fact about cannibalism by Aboriginals. Observing that they find the fat around the kidney a delicacy and generally avoid eating whites, because their diet of salt meat makes that fat salty and unpleasant to eat. However, they are partial to Chinese as their diet of rice makes this fat a delicacy.

      BTW, I find Aboriginal canabilism no more significant that my Viking ancestor’s fondness for a bit of rape and pillage.

      Posted by phil_b on 2007 06 29 at 07:47 PM • permalink


    1. #9 Nilknarf: What, you don’t think this atrocity should be brought to an end, by means of force, if necessary?

      Posted by paco on 2007 06 29 at 08:09 PM • permalink


    1. #12 El Cid: I think that means good luck is coming our way. Time to start building condominiums on the bottom of that dry lakebed in Chile.

      Posted by paco on 2007 06 29 at 08:12 PM • permalink


    1. #16 Arrrghghghghg! My eyes! MY EYES!!!

      Posted by Nilknarf Arbed on 2007 06 29 at 08:27 PM • permalink


    1. The article is crap. See the Bulletin, see the toilet. See the bulletin go DOWN the toilet!

      Posted by wreckage on 2007 06 29 at 08:31 PM • permalink


    1. Oh, the Age. Same diff.

      Posted by wreckage on 2007 06 29 at 08:31 PM • permalink


    1. 17 Paco

      Good. I shall send greene down, to scout and bring back a report.

      Posted by El Cid on 2007 06 29 at 08:46 PM • permalink


    1. “Look, I know it is going to be difficult. I have to wear all that, Mal Brough and I have to wear the responsibility and we will. But I know I am right.”

      This whole intervention could fall in on John Howard and destroy any chance of re-election.  He knows that, but he goes ahead anyway because he believes it is the right and best thing to do for these communities and for the country.

      If he continued to leave the problem for the state and territory premiers – or for the Bob Browns – to take care of, nothing would be done and the conditions in these communities would continue to degenerate.

      Bob Brown is a cult leader.  John Howard?  A true leader.

      Posted by ann j on 2007 06 29 at 08:53 PM • permalink


    1. Noel Pearson has a blog – ‘An avoidable misery’ in today’s Australian.

      It’s well worth reading in full.

      And we still have lefties wanting to do nothing or seeing a sinister agenda in any attempt to stop the misery and these crimes.

      What is it about some people that they can be so blinded by ideology that everything is subservient to the it? And that includes human compassion and human dignity.  (That was a rhetorical question by the way, because there is no answer).

      Posted by Wand on 2007 06 29 at 09:03 PM • permalink


    1. #2 abolition of settee? nobody expects abolition of the comfy chaise…

      Posted by KK on 2007 06 29 at 09:21 PM • permalink


    1. I love this quote:

      HOWARD says his decision to intervene in the Northern Territory was the result of a “build-up” of concern, both personally and within Government ranks. Indigenous Affairs Minister Mal Brough, who had spent many months travelling to Aboriginal communities, often sleeping rough, “had been talking to me for quite some time about his growing unhappiness about what he was discovering in these communities”.

      “I watch (ABC-TV’s) Lateline for my sins, and I became disturbed by their investigation last year into pedophilia in indigenous communities.

      “And then, of course, I was confronted with that latest report (Little Children are Sacred by Pat Anderson and Rex Wild). The report focused my mind very heavily.

      The reaction of many Labor premiers to the Howard Government initiative has just been disgraceful. Instead of offering ‘in-principle’ support like Kevin Rudd, they’ve just been content to bitch about supposed claims of racism.

      Howard does something, they do nothing. Not a good look, guys!

      This is happening all the time with the State Labor Governments; they’re all show and no go.

      Posted by TimT on 2007 06 29 at 09:39 PM • permalink


    1. I fully support Rudd’s support of the new program, but I don’t support the new program .

      Have I got what the labourites are saying right?

      Posted by Wimpy Canadian on 2007 06 29 at 10:08 PM • permalink


    1. #21 El Cid….I aint goin to Chile. Besides sports and entertainment is my division . It says so on my new blazer. Not to mention finishing up the remodel on the new atrium so thoughtfully provided by your malfunctioning delivery parachute. Or as my lovely bride puts it.“You are not going anywhere until you fix the g*&dam; hole in the roof”. Please convey my regrets to Pres. Paco.

      Posted by greene on 2007 06 29 at 10:26 PM • permalink


    1. #27: C’mon, Greene! Twenty bucks a day and all the llama meat you can eat. I can’t believe you’re not all over this opportunity.

      Posted by paco on 2007 06 29 at 11:02 PM • permalink


    1. #28 paco…20 bucks!Llama meat! Why didn’t you say that earlier? I’m on the first plane to Santiago tomorrow morning.

      Posted by greene on 2007 06 29 at 11:38 PM • permalink


    1. Yes, yes… the comfy chair revolution must be crushed and PIMF.

      Posted by brett_l on 2007 06 29 at 11:42 PM • permalink


    1. They still have employees at the Bulletin?

      Posted by Margos Maid on 2007 06 30 at 12:23 AM • permalink


    1. #31 – They sure do!

      Posted by Infidel Tiger on 2007 06 30 at 12:29 AM • permalink


    1. #25

      The reaction of many Labor premiers to the Howard Government initiative has just been disgraceful. Instead of offering ‘in-principle’ support like Kevin Rudd, they’ve just been content to bitch about supposed claims of racism.

      And is it just me, or do others think it is wrong for state premiers to “do deals” with the Federal Government for the services of their allocation of ten police to be sworn in as honorary NT police to assist in the job ahead?
      Beattie, Labor premier of Queensland, who is of course very sorry and very concerned about all this*, made a big dollar deal to get money from the Federal Government to fund more indigenous housing.

      *as he seems to be about everything which he has cocked up in Queensland.

      Posted by kae on 2007 06 30 at 12:58 AM • permalink


    1. For all of the commentary about HoWARd’s scurrilous attack on indigenous child molesters, there was one point of view we were all waiting to hear, because this person, I knew, would have the answers.

      One person, I knew, would have been putting in the hard thinking to show the way forward. Let’s go see.

      Posted by Margos Maid on 2007 06 30 at 01:56 AM • permalink


    1. The proper thing to do when your most hated rival does something that you’ve been trying to get done for a long time is to say, “It’s about time!”  And then do your best to make sure it works.

      This pathological fear that someone else is going to get credit for something is obscene.

      That said… can someone please briefly explain what is going on?  I got my internet provider to unblock .au but I still can’t get to some links from here.  I got the part about sexual abuse in aboriginal communities… is it a traditional cultural thing?

      And what was the inquiry to the PM?

      Posted by Synova on 2007 06 30 at 01:56 AM • permalink


    1. From today’s Australian:

      Our leader is listening to the cry of mothers.

      Posted by kae on 2007 06 30 at 03:29 AM • permalink


    1. Thanks for that link kae (#36). How can anyone, in particular that spinning waste of space Carpenter, argue with a single word in that article?

      Posted by AlphaMikeFoxtrot on 2007 06 30 at 03:45 AM • permalink


    1. For anyone who’s interested, I have only got around to reading today’s paper.
      I found this:
      Pearson ‘breached protocol’. Be inflamed.There’s much more here: The Australian’s special reports “Indigenous Welfare”.Be angered by some items, uplifted by others.

      Posted by kae on 2007 06 30 at 04:47 AM • permalink


    1. Good links Kae.  So the head of the ‘National Sorry Day Committee, and an academic from Tasmania is critical of the government’s actions in NT.  Bwahhahahaha!

      Posted by entropy on 2007 06 30 at 05:10 AM • permalink


    1. #39

      Silly bint. You’d think that she’s happy to let “Aboriginal Protocol”* brush all the physical abuse, alcoholism, violence, substance abuse and neglect under the carpet.

      It is against tradition to talk about problems in the group/tribe. That’s why these terrible things flourish.

      It’s time for the whole mess to see the light. It’s time to stop hiding it, so that the shame is gone and actions which work to stop these dreadful abuses and protect the children and women of these groups can be taken.

      JWH’s decisive actions may be devisive, but we can now see who really wants to help these people, and it appears there are many ‘whiteants’ in their midst.

      Posted by kae on 2007 06 30 at 05:27 AM • permalink


    1. (I left off a couple of commas, ,, there. And I also have the pleasure on weekends of looking at three newspapers, dead-tree-versions.)
      I slept in thismorning. Wasted hours!

      Posted by kae on 2007 06 30 at 05:28 AM • permalink


    1. #36 So dear Prof Behrendt is upset about Mr Pearson not keeping his silence? Fine, no problem there, but what does she suggest to fix the problem?


      Posted by Nilknarf Arbed on 2007 06 30 at 06:43 AM • permalink


    1. If Aborigines shouldn’t criticise each other in public (the so called “Aboriginal protocol”), then hasn’t the good perfessor breached protocol by criticising Noel Pearson for criticising Aborigines…? Or is she just one of a whole sewer full of turds now exposed to public scrutiny for the first time now trying to contain the stench?

      Methinks times up for some of these people. And about time.

      Posted by Hanyu on 2007 06 30 at 06:55 AM • permalink


    1. Obviously Larissa has her finger on the pulse of abuse in remote Aboriginal communities – as does Helen Moran.

      Posted by Margos Maid on 2007 06 30 at 07:10 AM • permalink


    1. Assimilate, or take the consequences.

      Posted by blogstrop on 2007 06 30 at 07:36 AM • permalink


    1. …Professor Behrendt, herself Aboriginal, said Mr Pearson had been the beneficiary of a protocol among Aborigines not to publicly criticise one another lest the appearance of division be used as a wedge by opponents.

      That being the left establishment protocol of suppressing dissent.

      Posted by Wimpy Canadian on 2007 06 30 at 09:57 AM • permalink


    1. [Politically incorrect warnning] For those of a liberal disposition, you may wish to put your fingers in your ears and sing LA-LA-LA-LA while you are reading this [/Politically incorrect warnning]

      Have these bad things in aboriginal communities started recently or have they been going on for a long time? Perhaps from even before the Europeans arrived? Has anyone studied this? Clearly, alcohol and gasoline are new.

      Posted by Wimpy Canadian on 2007 06 30 at 10:06 AM • permalink


    1. #38 Kae, I can’t make the “Australian’s special report” link work. Is it still available, anyone have a copy?

      Posted by Wimpy Canadian on 2007 06 30 at 10:14 AM • permalink


    1. #48 It’s still possible for me.

      If you’re getting a page with loads of articles, I think that’s the idea.

      Posted by Ash_ on 2007 06 30 at 11:47 AM • permalink


    1. #48
      Thanks Ash!
      Yes, Wimpy. It’s a whole series of articles all about the problem. There is another in this week’s Bulletin, which I looked for last night, but couldn’t find a link for. I’ll look again today. I know the Bulletin used to go online on Saturdays after it was issued.It’s the cover story on the issue featuring John Howard on the cover with the title “To the Rescue”. link here, but last week’s issue isn’t up yet.

      Posted by kae on 2007 06 30 at 07:28 PM • permalink


    1. Wimpy, this weeks “To the Rescue” Bulletin article addresses where the problems of sexual abuse came from.

      But honestly, this has been studied for years; inside-out, upside-down. The time for study is over. It’s time to DO something.

      Posted by kae on 2007 06 30 at 07:30 PM • permalink


    1. Anyone else watching Laurie Oaks grilling Tony Abbot about “What’s it going to cost to do this in the aboriginal communities? Billions? Surely it’s going to cost billions”. He went on about how it hadn’t been thought out.

      I’d like to give Oaks a slap and tell him it’s cost BILLIONS since taxpayers have been donating to the FAILED aboriginal Industry which has managed to do fuck all to fix the problem. And in fact, I understand in some cases, has made it WORSE.

      Posted by kae on 2007 06 30 at 08:20 PM • permalink


    1. I think the Oaks/Abbot interview should appear here soon. Try tomorrow if you are interested.

      Posted by kae on 2007 06 30 at 08:24 PM • permalink


    1. Laurie Oakes: saving the kiddies is too expensive. Besides, they’re only n****rs.

      Posted by wreckage on 2007 06 30 at 09:02 PM • permalink


    1. “Ms O’Donoghue said the Government was trying to impose 99-year leases “through the back door”.” Shock! Horror! Evil white supremacists offer Aboriginals ACTUAL TITLE Article

      Sob! When will the condescension and paternalism EVER END! How could that horrible Mr Howard allow Aboriginals to actually own the land they live on!

      < / idiot >

      It’s is 100% about friggin’ time Aboriginals were offered worthwhile title over their lands.

      Posted by wreckage on 2007 06 30 at 09:09 PM • permalink


  1. Here’s the Bulletin article link. It’s the Cover Story: Hard law hard love.

    If you leave politics and take the road from Darwin south to Katherine, and turn west on the Victoria Highway, some way down is a small and very pretty Aboriginal estate on the Flora River, west of Katherine. There are a couple of neat houses. The lawns are watered and the joint is spotless. It is the home of Marie Allen, an outspoken Wardaman woman.

    People are allowed to drink here, but Allen’s condition to Aborigines who want to stay is that violence is forbidden. And she will crack skulls with a big stick if she sees any.

    Allen, 57, gave testimony at the Territory’s own child sexual abuse inquiry, commissioned by Martin. None of what she had to say made the report’s final cut. It doesn’t matter. The authors of that report, Little Children are Sacred, claimed child sexual abuse was occurring in “almost every community”. That report, just weeks old, has now been rendered obsolete. Allen believes sexual abuse is rife but has her own take on the reasons for it. “When you fit it all together, I really believe some [bad sex practices] have emerged out of initiation ceremonies,” she says.

    “If you look at the people who are doing the sexual abuse, they are usually not teenagers. It’s common knowledge that the abused turns out to be the abuser. People blame pornographic films, but it’s deeper than that. At one stage there were people putting their boys, aged nine or 10, through Katherine hospital to be circumcised because they didn’t want them going through initiation.”

    Posted by kae on 2007 07 01 at 11:33 PM • permalink