Monthly Archives: May 2007

Climate change — beyond John, Tim, Miranda — and even Al…

… and yet not Left as some might conceive it.

I am still processing a heap of new stuff that is coming my way, but not from the Americans. All I can confidently say is that it is worth looking into. There are names here that in my ignorance I had never even heard of, and yet at least one of these is a name that John Howard must surely have heard of — and what a gloriously British name it is! Sir Crispin Tickell. “Coldstream Guards, diplomat, Ambassador to Mexico and the United Nations during the 1991 Gulf War. Sir Crispin was warden of Green College, Oxford between 1990 and 1997, when he made George Monbiot a fellow. Tickell wrote Margaret Thatcher’s speech on global climate change…”

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Posted by on May 31, 2007 in Aussie interest, climate change, Current affairs, Education


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Overbearing pride or presumption. John Howard’s favourite word of late, as in: Don’t you come in here [Kevin Rudd] with your puffed-up hubris and start lecturing this side of the House.

Pardon me while I pick myself up off the floor!

A Google search for John Howard hubris brings up 401,000 results, with tag lines like:

  • If John Howard has this in mind for 2006, he’s not showing it – yet. But hubris? Gloating? That’s been there in spades from his front and back benches…
  • FOR a man who eschews hubris, John Howard was drowning in it yesterday. First, there was ill-disguised arrogance when asked about Government’s ads…
  • Howard’s hubris may contain the seeds of his demise (The Age, September 4, 2003)…
  • The hubris of Howard will eventually trip our government up…
  • One of the most grating lines that John Howard has wheeled out ad nauseam over the … believe the Rodent is “losing touch” and showing signs of “hubris”. …
  • But John Howard, barely concealing his routine triumphal hubris, has bent over backwards to assure Australians that he has “no desire to extend Commonwealth …
  • Now the treasurer confirmed that, in fact, John Howard (then a failed former leader), … the prime minister had accused his deputy of hubris and arrogance. …
  • Hubris has gone to John Howard’s head, or in other words, he has “lost the plot”. He thinks he is such a good politician that he can sell refrigerators to …
  • One of the secrets of John Howard’s political success is that he made a close study of … the final phase of the Keating era saw similar acts of hubris. …

You get the drift.
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Posted by on May 30, 2007 in Aussie interest, climate change, Current affairs, Kevin Rudd, Politics


Evidence against evolution?

Perhaps Ken Ham is on to something, perhaps inadvertently his museum and indeed he himself do represent powerful arguments against evolution…

And has evolution produced THIS?

Moscow love-in 27 May 2007

Certainly “progress” is uneven, isn’t it? But whoever said (after 1918 anyway) that evolution was progressive? Or purposive in any but a blind way?
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Ken Ham — God’s gift to atheism

Elohim said
We will make a groundling (Adam) in our image, after our likeness
Let them govern the fish of the sea the fowl of the skies, the cattle, all the earth every creeper that creeps on the earth
Elohim created the groundling in his image created it in the image of Elohim male and female created them
Elohim blessed them
Elohim said to them
Be fruitful, increase, fill the earth, subject it
Govern the fish of the sea, the fowl of the skies every beast that creeps on the earth
Elohim said,
Here I give you all plants seeding seed upon the face of all the earth and every tree with tree-fruit in it seeding seed
It shall be for you for eating
And for every beast of the earth for every fowl of the skies for all that creeps on the earth with living soul in it all green of plants for eating
It was so
Elohim saw all he had made
Here! it was very good
It was evening, it was morning
The sixth day (Gen. 1:26-31).

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When foreign aid isn’t really aid…

Today’s Sydney Morning Herald begins a series of reports that merit close study, beginning with Phantom aid never leaves our shores. Read the rest of this entry »

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Posted by on May 28, 2007 in Aussie interest, Current affairs, immigration, Politics, Pontification and raving


National Reconciliation Week 27 May – 3 June 2007

This year is very significant being the 40th anniversary of the 1967 Referendum and the 10th anniversary of Bringing Them Home — that is a great entry on Adrian Phoon’s blog. [No longer online. 😦 ] See also my Indigenous Australians page and a posts search here under the word indigenous. Much soul-searching has been going on this week.
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Posted by on May 28, 2007 in Aussie interest, Current affairs, Indigenous Australians, Multiculturalism and diversity, Observations, Reconciliation



You shall not round off the hair on your temples or mar the edges of your beard.

Thus does Leviticus put all hairdressers out of business: Chapter 19 Verse 27. And of course there is much worse in there, as Richard Dawkins is currently pointing out on TV, but also as Bishop John Shelby Spong has equally pointed out in The Sins of Scripture; but it is, as I said here last week, a mixed bag, Leviticus. Perhaps we, with our capitalist society, our current workplace laws, and our treatment of asylum seekers, might do worse than take note of other verses in the same chapter.

9: “When you reap the harvest of your land, you shall not reap your field to its very border, neither shall you gather the gleanings after your harvest.
10: And you shall not strip your vineyard bare, neither shall you gather the fallen grapes of your vineyard; you shall leave them for the poor and for the sojourner: I am the LORD your God.
11: “You shall not steal, nor deal falsely, nor lie to one another…
13: “You shall not oppress your neighbor or rob him. The wages of a hired servant shall not remain with you all night until the morning.
14: You shall not curse the deaf or put a stumbling block before the blind, but you shall fear your God: I am the LORD.
15: “You shall do no injustice in judgment; you shall not be partial to the poor or defer to the great, but in righteousness shall you judge your neighbor.
16: You shall not go up and down as a slanderer among your people, and you shall not stand forth against the life of your neighbor: I am the LORD…
32: “You shall rise up before the hoary head, and honor the face of an old man, and you shall fear your God: I am the LORD.
33: “When a stranger sojourns with you in your land, you shall not do him wrong.
34: The stranger who sojourns with you shall be to you as the native among you, and you shall love him as yourself; for you were strangers in the land of Egypt: I am the LORD your God.
35: “You shall do no wrong in judgment, in measures of length or weight or quantity.
36: You shall have just balances, just weights, a just ephah, and a just hin: I am the LORD your God, who brought you out of the land of Egypt.”

So I am a shameless cherry-picker, not only from the Bible but from other philosophies and traditions as well. Rather like a Quaker or a Buddhist, I see the Spirit of God anywhere and everywhere, but nowhere exclusively, whatever fundamentalists may like to believe. Or I could be more pretentious and say I am postmodern, a spiritual flaneur. Nothing wrong with that either; I refuse to be bullied into the certainties of others, even those of Dawkins.
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Posted by on May 27, 2007 in Faith and philosophy, Personal, Religion