Tim Blair


New Criterion



Saturday, July 05, 2003
ARE YOU WORKING TOO HARD? Not taking enough leave? If you had more leave entitlements you could get a bigger payout when you leave that job from which you have been failing to take leave.

And so on. All part of the union movements push for more for those who have - jobs that is - and stuff the rest.

Nothing new here. That's why the ACTU needs the Australia Insitute, which can be relied on to conduct deliberative polling to support the union position.

All based on the assumption that workers are not in charge of their own life choices and need to be controlled by Union-directed regulation.

And on the assumption that more leave equals healthier, happier, richer workers and families.

No evidence for any of this, of course. These are just thoughts, produced by a think-tank.

The Australia Institute, that is, which has produced a report with the appropriate spin. No reason they shouldn't. They are, as Director Clive Hamilton concedes readily, labor-oriented.

Which is why, when their report is released on a quiet news day, Sharan Burrows and other Union heavies are lined up for media interviews. All singing from the same hymn-book. More leave entitlements are needed, not, of course to produce more money, but for the sake of workers' health and family lives.

Last week these same goofs were telling us that the growth in part-time work was a threat to Australian families. This week it's the opposite.

When you look at the survey figures in the Institute's flimsy report, the picture is rather different.

Of those not taking their full rec. leave entitlement each year, 63% cite reasons that could be described accurately either as self-interest or unknown. Either they are saving their leave for later, or they prefer the money, or even the work.

(These figures are made difficult to interpret because the total of all options is greater than 100%, because they tally answers, and you can have more than one anwer. Only 37% of the answers cite "work-related" reasons for not taking the leave, and this doesn't distinguish reasons imposed by employers from reasons chosen by workers).

So how do the ACTU spinners get from that to a popular endorsement for more leave? They ask if you would rather have 4% more pay or two weeks more leave! You'd be a mug not to choose the leave, even if you didn't intend to take it, because it's worth a lot more than a 4% pay rise, if you cost it correctly. Even so, they get a bare majority.

And so the Institute come to the conclusion: It is therefore possible that to improve the work-life balance of the
majority of full-time employees, senior decision makers may need education and counselling to ensure that their own work preferences are not imposed on their subordinates who desire a better balance for themselves.

I know just the fellow to do the counselling. That caring, sharing secretary of the NSW CFMEU, John Sutton.

Then why does ABC news continue to promote the Australia Institute as "a public policy think-tank" and avoid any mention of ideological or political bias?

While it describes the Institute of Public Affairs as "a self-described right-wing think-tank".

Rhetorical question.

Later. Some good news. While this non-news story got a great run on Auntie's national television news, I have seen no trace of it in that section of the print media that now fills my recycling bin.

Friday, July 04, 2003

If you search Google with the words "weapons of mass destruction" you get this, the first of a list of over one million sites.

If you backtrack the links to this popular site you get this list of 445 linking sites.

If you check a dozen of those linking sites you find no links to the propaganda page we started from.

It may be clever, but is it the sort of things good pacifists should boast about?

Or even a reputable ISP?

Later: Google is no longer producing the propaganda page.

Thursday, July 03, 2003

Uncle and printed blogger Gerard Henderson have both blogged on the BBC-ABC celebration of the vicious traitors, Philby, Burgess, McLean and Blunt.

Here is some more information on some specific fabrications the scriptwriter has used to justify the treachery of his heroes:

Two incidents, for example, are shown playing a crucial role in pushing the quartet towards communism. In one of them, a Jewish girlfriend of Philby’s at Cambridge is subjected to Nazi-style insults. In another, college domestic workers who are on strike are beaten up by right-wing undergraduates. The most notable thing about both episodes, in the context of a supposed docudrama, is that neither of them actually happened: they were both dreamed up by the scriptwriter. And there are many other fabrications, including a KGB attempt to assassinate Franco which fails because Philby, decent and humane fellow that he is, can’t bring himself to pull the trigger.

Is all this starting to sound familiar? Historical "facts" being fabricated in the higher ideological cause, just like our naughty historians Ryan and Reynolds, and on the same team?

The fifth Cambridge spy, John Cairncross, makes only a brief appearance, for example: he is shown working as a wartime code-breaker, and rejecting Blunt’s suggestion that he start passing on information to the Russians. In reality, as Oleg Gordievsky has pointed out in a trenchant analysis of the series, during the war Cairncross kept the KGB supplied with a steady flow of decrypts, including the first news they received of work on the atomic bomb

And here's the defence from the BBC drama queen:

We don’t forget to be witty and cheeky and a little bit controversial, which we like. Otherwise we are going to have a drama which says, “What-ho, these chaps are traitors and we hate them.” It’s much more complicated than that.

According to the BBC corporate flack: “the truth is elusive.”

Or, as Professor Lyndall Ryan might put it: there are alternative truths.

With our professional historians inventing the past that suits their ideology, and our public broadcasters doing the same, the modern leftist orthodoxy needs no Orwellian 'memory hole'. They've found a more entertaining, and invisible, way of burying the past.

BARE-ARSED cheek exposed, again, from the Gastropod in last night's Late Night Live.

He pretends to have read Ian McCalman's new book on the Gastropod's more talented 18th century exemplar in conning the gullible, Count Cagliostro.

After interrupting Ian with so many enthusiastic questions from his close scrutiny of the text, he asks guilelessly:

" ... are there any illustrations in the book?"


She has the sense to pinch ideas from the New Criterion blog.

Like the story of this book on the way PC censorship is applied to textbooks in the US.

It's on tonight's PM news magazine programme.

PM covers its idea pinching (for which Media Watch would call a commercial broadcaster a plagiarist) by saying the book has just been published. Not true. It was published three months ago.

Wednesday, July 02, 2003
ON THE ROPES. How do you tell when someone is having trouble answering criticism?

Just check the amount of abuse in their response. Like this example:

KEITH WINDSCHUTTLE, AUTHOR: I started with Henry Reynolds' claim that 10,000 Aborigines had been killed in Queensland before Federation. Reynolds had provided false citation of his evidence. In the three years since then I have been checking the footnotes of the other historians in this field and have found a similar degree of misrepresentation, deceit, and outright fabrication. Henry Reynolds is the best of them.

PROF. HENRY REYNOLDS, UNIVERSITY OF TASMANIA: One of your problems, Keith, is that you are so self-righteous. You are unbelievably self-righteous. You vilify people whose evidence you don't like and you accept uncritically. The whole book does this. It's not unusual. We are all like that, but don't put yourself up as an arbiter for rigorous historical method, because you're not.

This, and many more insights into how the left behaves when it's caught playing in the gutter, can be gleaned from the transcript of Channel 9's Sunday programme referred to in the previous blog.

Well worth reading.

Tuesday, July 01, 2003

Via Tim Blair, via the spiffing new blog from The New Criterion, via Andrew Bolt in the Herald Sun, via Channel 9 we have at last an answer from naughty historian Lyndall Ryan, caught out fabricating Tasmanian history.

What is her defence?

I done it, your Honour, but we all do it.

But on Channel 9's Sunday program, reporter Helen Dalley asked her to explain why she'd said Knopwood was her source for claiming 100 Aborigines had been murdered, when he'd actually recorded only four such deaths.

Ryan: Right. I certainly agree that the Knopwood diaries say that, but I also had another reference referring to a report by John Oxley who was a surveyor who'd been sent down to Tasmania in 1809. He said too many Aborigines were being killed.

Dalley: OK, but how did you extrapolate from his words saying "too many Aborigines had been killed", to "about 100 lost their lives"? Is that just made up?

Ryan: Well, I think by the way in which Oxley wrote that he seemed to think there had been a great loss of life from the Aborigines.

Dalley: So, in a sense, is it fair enough for (Windschuttle) to say that you did make up figures? You're telling me you made an estimated guess.

Ryan: Historians are always making up figures.

Stand by for the flood of apologies to historian Keith Windschuttle, who has been vilified for undoing her mischief. Not.

I SHOULD HAVE KNOWN. My apologies to my entire slavishly dependent readership for leaving them with the impression that Mahathir the Mad would have to move to the US to take up his Adjunct Chair in Whiteness Studies.

Of course we already have our own academic coven devoted to this "subject".

And, of course, it's at the University of Western Sydney, where every prospect is political, provided you're facing in the direction sinister.

This is the joint that bleats that it's $35 mill down the tubes if it's funded like its equals, and has started a political campaign to force more than its share out of the commonwealth government.

So, what is Whiteness Studies, antipodean version?

In the US, interest in whiteness was raised by call from within black feminism to study the particular identities, divisions, and paranoias inherent in whiteness, rather than approaching it as a homogeneous, neutral, and transparent category.

In Australia, by contrast, the uptake of whiteness studies has been much slower, taking its cue from the US work rather than arising from a self-consciousness regarding whiteness in the Australian public sphere.

They'll soon remedy that for us at UWS. But not without more money.

In his essay "Multiculturalism and the Whitening Machine, or How Australians Become White," Jon Stratton suggests that the late turn to whiteness studies in Australia stems from the differences between Australian and US forms of multiculturalism.

In short, he claims, that in the US "white hegemony has been much more seriously challenged and unsettled that in Australia."

By contrast, Australian multiculturalism has involved the negotiation and management of cultural and ethnic difference, failing to address the unequal dynamic of racial power that still haunts the national imaginary.

Whatever opinion one takes of official multiculturalism in Australia, it is an unavoidable fact that whiteness has been, and continues to be, a key factor, if not the key factor, in the shaping of national identity.

Too right! Omo nation.

How has this been disguised from the punters of colour?

This means that whiteness can be accumulated by a subject who does normally identity as white; e.g., an Aboriginal such as Ernie Dingo. Equally, it points to the existence of white subjects with a relatively low possession of the symbolic capital of whiteness; i.e., the people often referred to as "white trash."

Does that mean Ernie is white trash? Or that white trash have great on-screen presences and make a packet from commercials like our Ernie? Is it the dirt that makes poor people less white?

How can UWS help us out of our moral swamp?

In exposing this internal differentiation of whiteness, advocates of whiteness studies seek to displace the normativity of the white position—to understand it not as a transparent or neutral position from which all ethnic or racial differences are measured, but as a marked identity in its own right

I think I get it! UWS wants John Howard, leading white man, to get his battlers to pay more taxes so that the deeply fashionable thinkers of UWS can tell them why they're trash. And how they can buy their way out of it, I suppose.

Better still, let's just do away with white.

One group of whiteness critics in the US, those associated with the journal Race Traitor advocate a total abolition of whiteness (as symbolic privilege), bringing attention to bear upon the world of the downtrodden: bankrupt schools, corrupt police forces, failing labour unions, etc.

Bhabha is suspicious of such a call for the abolition of whiteness because he believes that this symbolic privilege might perpetuate itself under another name, such as nationalism, civility, or tolerance.

Now there are some deep social evils.

Are the problems that critics like Stratton and Hage have identified in official Australian multiculturalism more to do with the fact that it is Australian rather than with the fact that it is multicultural?

Of course, you dills, We'd worked that out already.

University of Western Sydney. Just the spot for Mahathir the Mad. But nor for my money.

THE ENTIRE AUNTIE COMMENTARIAT has still not heard of the democratic movement in Iran.

ACCORDING TO HELEN HUGHES, the Solomons Islands has had windfall income alone of $5 500 per person since the late 1970s.

From those billions the residue of capital, real or financial, appears to be about zilch.

And, as Professor Hughes says, unless the occupation brings political change as well as security, Australians will be pounding the beat under the coconut palms until the Pacific rises over them.

That is, for a very, very long time.

GERARD HENDERSON has blogged on those four pommy sociopaths idealised by the BBC.

BLESS YOU, DAILY TELEGRAPH EDITOR, for restoring Uncle's faith in the vocation of Australian journalism!

Carr chases dog. Sam a 13-year old kelpie-cross, is the latest target of the Carr Government's desperate grab-for-cash.

The ailing Summer Hill dog is in the absurd sights of bungling bureaucratic debt collectors - who are hounding his owners for a fine they paid more than a decade ago.
(Saturday June 28, 2003).

They could have worked in at least five more puns, and that "absurd" is best left in the tutorial room of Sydney Orr University.

Nevertheless, a palpable hit, DT.

Please put that photo of Sam on your website.

Beat that, Geelong!

WHAT IS IT about Kevin Rudd's trousers that brings on multiple-voting?

Never mind. It is the purpose of Uncle's voter manipulation oops deliberative polling to get at the passion behind the votes.

And then to get the right result.