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Isobel Blackthorn musing on...

  1. Writers for social justice

    I missed out on modern history at school and confess that for decades I shied away from gaining much knowledge of the rise of fascism as it all seemed too ugly, too horrific, to delve into.

    Now I’m finding it hard to put down Anna Funder’s All That I Am, a novel based on real events in the period between WWI and II, when Hitler rose to power and those on the Left, the communists and socialists of all stripes, were purged. The captured were rounded up and put in prisons until there were so many that concentration camps were created to house them. Thousands of journalists, writers, poets, activists and intellectuals fled Germany ...
  2. On Air

    I’ll be on Ann Creber’s The Good Life this Monday (8th September) at 4.10 pm, talking about the home hospitality respite program for asylum seekers that I coordinate for the Bega Valley under the auspices of
    Home among the Gum Trees, Rural Australians for Refugees.

    Tune in to 3MDR, 97.1FM or go to their website for live streaming.
  3. It’s unequivocal – Uranium is our salvation!

    It pleases me to announce that Australia will be selling uranium to India. They are a stable democracy with a growing economy and much need for power. This government is happy to expand into the vibrant market of India with this valuable resource, giving a timely boost to our own economy. Our nation stands to gain many benefits from this gesture of goodwill. Profits all round. It’s a win win win. Yes, I’ll chink flutes with you.

    Tailing ponds? Oh, don’t worry about them. They are perfectly safe. Deformities in local populations? You mustn’t take notice of the propaganda on this one. There is no evidence whatsoever

    Updated 4th September 2014 at 01:07 PM by Mick Pacholli

    isobelblackthorn , Politics
  4. Changing the whole system

    I might have titled this piece Big Brother. It would have been in keeping with last night’s 7.30 Report on the ABC. A title that would have mocked Tony Abbott’s, ”Team Australia,” his speech masters clearly seeing merit in the co-opting of the language of sport for the purposes of reinforcing a Nationalist ideology. And in Strengthening the Surveillance State, Louise O’Shea certainly supports the observation that the most recent amendments proposed by the Australian government do indeed carry the big brother connotation. According to O’Shea, ”The National Security Amendment Bill (No. 1), introduced into Parliament in July, has so far caused ...
  5. Order in a New World

    If I ruled the country the first thing I would do is sack every CEO, deny them access to their wealth and property and make them work for the dole while applying for 40 jobs a week outside of the corporate and public service sectors. With no rental history they would be couch surfing (if they find themselves with any remaining friends). And for the first six months, with no welfare at all, they would be relying on charities for handouts.
    Then, when they are caught stealing or dumpster diving, I would send them to jail for a mandatory term, where they would be required to work full-time for nothing and following the example of my American counterparts, if ...

    Updated 18th November 2014 at 04:05 AM by Mick Pacholli

    Authors and Contributors , isobelblackthorn , Politics
  6. Totalitarianism is wearing a new coat.

    It might seem extreme to talk of totalitarianism in the same breath as America. Totalitarianism belongs to the twentieth century, to Stalin and Mussolini and Hitler. It smacks of despots wielding absolute power through state control. America is nothing of the sort. America is a democracy. Or is it?

    When I think of what occurs in the world today, what has gone down since 9/11 2001, that pivotal day that changed America, I begin to wonder. The aftermath of 9/11 saw the formation of the Patriot Act (an acronym for Uniting and Strengthening America by Providing Appropriate Tools Required to Intercept and Obstruct Terrorism), andHomeland Security. ...

    Updated 12th August 2014 at 04:16 PM by Mick Pacholli

    Authors and Contributors , isobelblackthorn , Politics
  7. MH17 Should be Raising Questions Concerning the Nature of Contemporary Warfare

    While the Australian media is almost exclusively obsessed with the deaths of our own (notably broken down into 28 citizens and 8 permanent residents) and the adequacy of our government’s responses on the world stage, turning a global event into a navel-gazing exercise that serves to boost our knee-jerk xenophobia and parochialism and contributing nothing of substance that can enable us to contextualise the downing of MH17, other writers from around the globe are striving to provide in-depth analyses of the situation on the ground in the Ukraine. One article that provides some insight into the situation is journalist Wayne Madsen’s piece in Lia 360.

    Updated 23rd July 2014 at 04:47 PM by Mick Pacholli

    Authors and Contributors , isobelblackthorn , Politics