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Wednesday, 20 December


Top 6 questions for 2018 and a few predictions just for fun "IndyWatch Feed National"

By Steve Brawner

2017 by Steve Brawner Communications, Inc.

What might happen in Arkansas and national politics in 2018? Asking questions is easier than making predictions. So lets ask, in the order theyre likely to be answered.

 Will Sen. Read the rest

The post Top 6 questions for 2018 and a few predictions just for fun appeared first on


2017: Carbon Briefs end-of-year review "IndyWatch Feed National"

As the year draws to a close, Carbon Brief takes a look at 2017s top climate and energy stories through the medium of numbers

49 countries

For CO2 emissions to fall, they first have to peak. And research published this year suggests that this is already happening.

The report, produced by the US-based World Resources Institute (WRI), suggests that 49 countries which include the UK, US, Australia, Brazil and Canada have seen their emissions peak, representing around 36% of current global emissions.

Carbon Brief created an interactive chart of WRIs data as part of our coverage.

But how much time does the world collectively have left to reduce its emissions in order to avoid dangerous climate change?

At the beginning of the year, Carbon Brief published our traditional carbon budget update, revealing that just four years of current CO2 emissions would blow whats left of the budget for a good chance of keeping global temperature rise to 1.5C.

However, in September, a new study published in Nature Geoscience proposed that there might be a little more breathing space to meet the 1.5C limit than previously thought.

As lead author Dr Richard Millar explained in a guest post, the study estimates the remaining 1.5C carbon budget from today onwards. This contrasts to previous methods which have been based on cumulative emissions to date. As a result, Millars study put the remaining 1.5C budget at around 20 years of current emissions.

The paper caused quite a stir, with parts of the media claiming that climate models the basis for carbon budget estimates are wrong and have overstated the observed warming of the planet.

Carbon Brief...


Breaking: Gunnedah Shire Council votes to fluoridate town water "IndyWatch Feed National"

GUNNEDAH Shire Council has approved plans to fluoridate the towns water supply on the back of overwhelming community support.

But in a packed council chambers on Wednesday night, councillors voted in favour of requesting approval from NSW Health to commence fluoridation of the Gunnedah water supply.

Opponent Wendy Carpenter, who co-ordinated the Its OK to Say NO to fluoride in Gunnedahs water campaign, addressed the meeting, stating 97 per cent of western world countries dont fluoridate their water.

It is a waste that is too toxic to be allowed into the air, the soil and the water, she said.

It is mass medication without consent.

Dont be known as the councillors who consented to put poison in our water.

Cr Murray OKeefe, who moved the recommendation, conceded it was the most publicly-debated issue as a first-term councillor, and that hed stop counting the number of people whod asked him why Gunnedah doesnt have fluoridated water.

Its best practise for our shire, he said.

Cr Rob Hooke spoke in favour of the very emotive debate.

In my capacity, I have a bachelor of applied science, majoring in biochemistry, human physiology and neurology, and some of the findings brought forward from the anti-fluoride camp I found alarmingly questionable, he said.

By saying no to fluoridation, its like were refuting what the health experts and peak bodies are saying. None of us are experts in the room.

Cr Gae Swain said shed received correspondence and spoken to many people who supported fluoridation.

Overwhelming, my community has told me as a council rep, just get on with it and do it, she told the meeting.......


The last post...for a while "IndyWatch Feed National"

This blog was initiated by Pauline Wilson, an Adelaide based UFO researcher, in 2009. When Pauline's interests moved on to other things, I took over the blog. Since 2009 there have been 896 posts; some short, and some thousands of words in length.

Over my 51 years of interest in the subject, I have taken a number of breaks from my research. My shortest break was six months, and the longest was four years. I find these breaks from research to be very useful. One can get so involved in the topic that you can't sit back and make objective decisions about things.

Despite all the current excitement about the formerly secret US Department of Defence UFO program, it is time for me to take another break. At the moment I do not know how long the break will be.

I thank all my blog readers for sharing the journey so far.

So, this blog will see no new posts until I return from my 'holiday' from UFO research.

Signing off for now.


Keith Basterfield.


The Trump Doctrine: American Interests Come First "IndyWatch Feed National"

US President Donald Trump speaks about his administrations National Security Strategy at the Ronald Reagan Building and International Trade Center in Washington, DC, Dec.18, 2017. (AFP)

By ARTHUR HERMAN December 19, 2017 2:55 PM


The president recognizes important new realities in world affairs. Ever since Donald Trump took office, Americans have wondered if he has a coherent vision of Americas place in the world, or if he sees foreign affairs the way he sees Twitter: as a space where emotion and instinct roam free from the restraints of rational discourse. Now we have an answer.

The speech he gave Monday at the Reagan Center was the curtain-raiser for his new National Security Strategy, a 55-page document that gives us more insight into Trumps view of the world than has any text since his speech to the U.N. in July and a far more comprehensive insight than weve ever had before.

The Trump Doctrine can now be summed up as follows: America and American interests will always come first, globalist agendas second. But dont think you can cross us, or our allies, with impunity. Americas not looking for trouble, but if you come after us or them, we will hurt you like hell.


Many have further highlighted the presidents concept of principled realism in foreign affairs: realist because it acknowledges the central role of power in international po...


In rush to launch service on a new, faster Amtrak route; Amtrak didnt wait for system that couldve prevented wreck "IndyWatch Feed National"

The Associated Press

The rush to launch service on a new, faster Amtrak route near Seattle came at a deadly cost critical speed-control technology that could have prevented a derailment was not active before the train set off on its maiden voyage.

Work to install the sophisticated, GPS-based technology known as positive train control isnt expected to be completed until next spring on the newly opened 15-mile (24-kilometer) span where the train derailed, according to Sound Transit, the public agency that owns the tracks.

The train was going 80 mph (129 kph) in a 30 mph (48 kph) zone Monday when it raced off the rails as they curved toward a bridge, hurtling train cars onto a highway below, investigators said. Three people were killed, and dozens were injured. Federal investigators say they are looking into whether the engineer was distracted.

A positive train control system could have detected the speeding and automatically applied the brakes to stop the train, said Najmedin Meshkati, a University of Southern California professor who has studied the technology for three decades.

It is another layer of safety, he said.

The head of the railroad safety program at the University of Delaware describes how Positive Train Control, technology that can automatically slow or stop a speeding train, could have prevented the deadly Amtrak derailment in Seattle. (Dec. 19)

Amtrak and the Washington Department of Transportation started publicizing the switch to the new route in October. Amtrak CEO Richard Anderson said that no one wants PTC more than me but would not directly answer questions about why it is taking so long to get the speed-control technology up and running across the board.

Im a huge believer in positive train control, he said at a news conference Tuesday evening. It just makes so much scientific sense.

Image may contain: night and outdoor

Anderson said the companys safety culture can continue to improve and said the crash should be seen as a wake-up call.

Its not acceptable that were involved in these types of accidents, he said.

Railroads are un...


The White House will take its petition site offline at midnight "IndyWatch Feed National"

The We the People section of the White Houses website was launched in 2011 by the Obama administration, where it pledged to answer any petition that garnered over 100,000 in 30 days. Under the Obama administration, over 200 such petitions met those requirements and were answered. Things changed when Trump entered the White House, however.

The We the People section of the White Houses website was launched in 2011 by the Obama administration, where it pledged to answer any petition that garnered over 100,000 in 30 days. Under the Obama administration, over 200 such petitions met those requirements and were answered. Things changed when Trump entered the White House, however. Since then 17 such petitions have met the requirements, but all have remained unanswered, reports the New York Times. And now the paper is reporting that Trumps White House will take down the We the People section of the website at midnight tonight with a promise to relaunch it in January as a new site. Trump officials promise that when the new site is relaunched, all exciting petitions that have met the requirements will be answered. We for one cant wait to see how they reply to the successful petition calling for Trump to release his tax returns.

Read Full Story


Amazontube might be about to take on YouTube "IndyWatch Feed National"

Amazon has filed two trademarks requests with the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office for something called Opentube and  Amazontube, reports TV Answer Man. The trademark requests describe the services as non-downloadable pre-recorded audio, visual, and audiovisual works via wireless networks, suggesting that they are similar to Googles YouTube. The trademark requests came on the same

Amazon has filed two trademarks requests with the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office for something called Opentube and  Amazontube, reports TV Answer Man. The trademark requests describe the services as non-downloadable pre-recorded audio, visual, and audiovisual works via wireless networks, suggesting that they are similar to Googles YouTube. The trademark requests came on the same day that Google announced it was removing YouTube from Amazons Echo Show, which suggests that Amazon may think it more prudent to start a rival video service than coax Google back onto its platform.

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Erdogan rival vows to overturn executive presidency "IndyWatch Feed National"


Turkeys Iyi (Good) Party chairman Meral Aksener answers questions during an interview with AFP in Ankara, in this December 15, 2017 photo. (AFP)

ANKARA: A dissident Turkish nationalist who founded a new political party and is now viewed as a possible rival to President Recep Tayyip Erdogan has vowed to scrap her opponents vision of a super-presidency if elected.

Meral Aksener, 61, Turkeys first...


Watzal und Dershowitz "IndyWatch Feed National"

watzal dersh.png Share

By Gilad Atzmon

Two days ago, I revealed that Ludwig Watzal, a  supposedly  pro Palestinian German  writer, attempted to defame me and my work by doctoring my words and fabricating quotes.

Some of my supporters who follow Watzals work approached Watzal and asked him for clarification.

Watzals initial response was to dismiss their questions.

This is all trash written by a Zionist agent, Watzal answered.

Screen Shot 2017-12-18 at 16.54.40.png

 So again, I have been labeled a Zionist agent, just for pointing at the depth of duplicity in the midst of the Palestinian Solidarity Movement.

But then Watzal was shown screen shots from my book The Wandering Who? that proved that he had completely invented my words. The German disinformation merchant changed his tune.

Watzal had to admit that he had lifted the quotes from no other than ethnic cleanser advocate, Prof.  Alan Dershowitz. You may ask why a Palestinian solidarity activist would turn to Dershowitz as an authority. You would expect Watzal to know that Prof. Noam Chomsky described Dershowitz as a remarkable liar and slanderer.

But our story doesnt end there. Watzal, the hapless imbecile managed  to dig an even deeper hole. Watzal wrote to a respected solidarity activist who had q...


Port Campbell Group rejects DELWP's 'Smart Planning' "IndyWatch Feed National"

"The proposed Smart Planning must not proceed in its current form. The Group does not support fast tracking development, weakening permit or planning triggers or referral requirements, or permit exemptions, or the removal of appeal rights." Inside find Port Campbell Community Group Inc's submission to the Victorian Planning Provisions Discussion Paper.

Port Campbell Community Group Inc. A0051688U
Submission to DELWPs Smart Planning November 2017

In the interests of balancing the present and future interests of all Victorians (g) that Smart Plannings so-called Key Benefits must better align with the P&E Acts Objectives which requires all development (f) to foremost meet (a), (b), (c) and (d):
(a) to provide for the fair, orderly, economic and sustainable use, and development of land;
(b) to provide for the protection of natural and man-made resources and the maintenance of ecological processes and genetic diversity;
(c) to secure a pleasant, efficient and safe working, living and recreational environment for all Victorians and visitors to Victoria;
(d) to conserve and enhance those buildings, areas or other places which are of scientific, aesthetic, architectural or historical interest, or otherwise of special cultural value;
(e) to protect public utilities and other assets and enable the orderly provision and coordination of public utilities and other facilities for the benefit of the community;
(f) to facilitate development in accordance with the objectives set out in paragraphs (a), (b), (c), (d) and (e);
(g) to balance the present and future interests of all Victorians.

Community Expertise

Community members and groups are crucial for their local knowledge and expertise which, if listened to, would save the State and public millions of dollars in wasted time and energy considering flawed planning proposals.
The Group has taken part in in many planning consultations see Appendix A.

Four instances of poor planning decisions are listed below, some current:

The Southern Ocean Beach House
A major motel, retail development and excavation within meters of major caverns on Port Campbells fragile limestone headland cliffs.
The University of New South Wales Law Journal published a special...


Severe thunderstorms hit Victoria, Australia "IndyWatch Feed National"

Victorians are cleaning up after severe thunderstorms swept across the state, bringing strong winds and rain that has damaged houses and uprooted trees. The State Emergency Service (SES) said they had received hundreds of calls for assistance after storms brewed on yesterday afternoon. A severe thunderstorm warning for damaging winds, heavy rain and large hailstones remains current for much of the state. More than 30,000 homes properties are still without power, down from about 100,000 around the state last night. Power was also out in parts of suburban Melbourne but the impact was far less significant. The weather bureau's Dean Stewart said Melbourne received 20 millimetres of rain within 15 minutes, causing flash flooding in many suburbs. "The highest wind gust in the state was up at Kilmore Gap to the north of Melbourne - 117 kilometre per hour - but a lot of towns reported gusts over 100kph, [followed by] Wangaratta with 113kph, Bendigo 111kph, Mangalore 107kph, Laverton 98kph," he said.


The Bard in the Badlands Hell is empty and the devils are here "IndyWatch Feed Northcoast"

What happens when the robots, androids, replicants, call them what you will, feel emotion and sentiment, establish relationships, and recall memories, like humans do? When the boss starts disrupting the storylines, the droids go off-script, think their own thoughts, and live their own lives. And lo! bad things happen! Before you know it, robots start quoting the Bard of Avon.

Westworld addresses some disturbing concepts. The mechanical and moral arcs of Artificial Intelligence. The ethical implications of an escapist theme park where well-heeled guests indulge in gamer-like fantasies, some of which that would see them jailed in their mainstream, material lives play poker in a saloon (and cheat), go with a whore (of either sex), ride out with a posse, witness or even participate in a gunfight and rape and pillage through a simulacrum Wild West, killing and fucking whomever they liked.

And then there are the hosts, the oh-so-realistic (are you one of them is a question often asked by a fascinated and impressed guest) robots, androids, cyborgs, replicants call them what you will depending on your favourite sci-if film who play out pre-written, sometimes derivative, mostly anodyne, but often perverse storylines, with added code for improvisations to move the guests adventures along, and for prohibitions on the use of knives, axes and firearms,  because management mandates that whist guest might get injured, by accident or for the thrill of it, none must get themselves killed.



This Is The Worlds First Fully Solar Train "IndyWatch Feed National"

In an Australian beach town, surfers get their boards to the coast using renewable-powered transit.

The Australian beach town of Byron Bay has a traffic problemespecially during holidays, when tourists cause gridlock on local streets. Until recently, there were few options for public transit. But the town now has a second option for traveling one common route: The worlds first fully solar-powered train, running on a restored train line that was out of use for more than a decade.

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Swiss Market Index Third Time a Charm? "IndyWatch Feed National"

QUESTION: Mr. Armstrong; I attended your 1992 Zurich Institutional Seminar when the Swiss Market Index was trading just below 200. You gave your projection for the high in 2007 would be 9500.0. We sold that high at the bank and the market peaked at 9548.1. The market rallied back to 9537.9 in 2015 and we sold it again. I left the bank as you know and have retired with your turn in 2015. You have always said that if a market knocks on the door 3 times, it is going to go through. My question is, do you think this will hold true in Switzerland?

Keep up the excellent work. The world really needs you.


ANSWER: Yes. The next resistance target will be 11000-11200 level if we break through the 2007 high. Enjoy your retirement. Of course we never really stop thinking about the markets and the world. I suppose it is a curse of the trade.

As far as The world really needs me; thats what I am afraid of. Getting drafted at my age is not exactly my idea of retirement. So I hope you are wrong on that forecast.

Good fortune.


December in fiction "IndyWatch Feed National"

Our heroine is Acker, who is tattooed, shaven-headed, a dissector of old books (literally she chops them up). At first we take her for an advocate for victims of domestic violence, but nothing in this text is that straightforward. How, Wright asks, could we ever resolve the debt we all owe to the unfairly dead?


Australian Dollar and Bitcoin "IndyWatch Feed National"

1.00 AUD = 0.00004 BTC
0.00010 BTC = 2.30 AUD


Severe thunderstorm hits Victoria, leaving 100 000 homes without power "IndyWatch Feed National"

A quick-moving severe thunderstorm accompanied by destructive, golf-sized hail and strong winds hit Victoria, Australia on Tuesday, December 19, 2017, leaving 100 000 homes without power. The Victoria office of Bureau of Meteorology said an extraordinary amount of...... Read more



Byron Theatre, January 6 2018 @ 7:30 pm 8:20 pm

Two must see artists of outrageously funny proportions combining their talents into one incredible show for your pleasure!

Varietyville is a thrilling fusion of the most unique, ridiculous and bizarre acts youll ever see.

Starring award winning, five star internationally renowned physical comedian Daniel Oldaker aka Dandyman (La Soire, Edinburgh Fringe Festival, Melb. Int Comedy Fest) and the inimitable circus variety star Rani Huszar, Ruby Rubberlegs as seen on ABCs Live at the Memo, The Sideshow and the world renowned variety show La Cliqu.

Both stars of the international Festival circuit have appeared in films, on television, in circus tents, on the street, in opera houses and now they come to a theatre near you!

Varietyville takes variety to a whole new level. Bite sized morsels of masterful magic, chaotic clowning, preposterous physical feats, musical mayhem, hilarious hi-jinks and much much more!

Oldaker & Huszar have captivated audiences for the last 15 years in over 30 countries around the world with their ridiculous sense of humour, endearing charm and unique and quirky physical theatre. You wont believe until you see and when you see it you still wont believe.

Acts of Absurdity is a wonderfully peculiar show that has a little bit of everything, put on by some world-class performers. If you cant decide what kind of show to see at Fringe this year, put your hard-earned cash towards this superb variety show and see it all. You wont regret it Rip It Up (Jeniffer Brown)

Acts of Absurdity And Uncontrolled Laughter I laughed harder and longer at one act this evening than I have anything else I have seen this fringe Clothesline (Charissa McCluskey-Garcia) Fringe World, Perth

Funny, unpredictable, engaging and pricelessacts of physical daring and laugh-out-loud humor as mime, juggling, illusion and movement flowed se...


MACKAY Violent Mackay crook pleads guilty to new charges "IndyWatch Feed National"

MACKAY December 20, 2017 at 06:03AM ,

Violent Mackay crook pleads guilty to new charges

December 20, 2017 at 06:03AM ,

A VIOLENT crook previously convicted of taking part in an armed home invasion, among other crimes, has admitted to a string of new offences. Clinton James Kissier, 31, of Slade Point, remains behind bars after the crime spree, between July 18 and September 21. Kissier faced Mackay Magistrates

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MACKAY Police charge Eimeo woman over repeat noise complaints "IndyWatch Feed National"

MACKAY December 20, 2017 at 01:56AM ,

Police charge Eimeo woman over repeat noise complaints

December 20, 2017 at 01:56AM ,

it is important for police to remind residents that compliance with noise abatement directions linked to excessive noise complaints is expected always, he said. Call your local police station for inquiries about registering parties. The woman is due to appear in Mackay Magistrates Court on January 16. 0.

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MACKAY WATCH: Axe wielding man guilty of Mackay altercation "IndyWatch Feed National"

MACKAY December 20, 2017 at 11:27AM ,

WATCH: Axe wielding man guilty of Mackay altercation

December 20, 2017 at 11:27AM ,

officer-in-charge Detective Senior Sergeant David Tucker later described Santo as very aggressive and said officers feared injury, given it was a full-size axe. Santo, 25, faced Mackay Magistrates Court via videolink from jail on Tuesday, pleading guilty to going armed as to cause fear on October 21.

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We will shortly see, Ms GILLARD, who will win. Clinton and her protectors, or justice. "IndyWatch Feed National"

FOX BUSINESS: Ex-FBI Assistant Director James Kallstrom warns 'patriots,' will soon expose why the Clinton Foundation investigation was 'shut down.' Josh Caplan (@joshdcaplan) December 20, 2017


Coming Into My Own "IndyWatch Feed National"

Ive always struggled with being close to someone. Well, not physically close I could trip over a pavement and fall into them, but that would be more gravitys choice and my misfortune. Close as in sexually.

Parties were where it became most challenging to hide facts about myself from those around me: not just from the strangers playing the drinking games, but my good friends as well. Somehow, at the ripe age of 23, I had managed to not tell a single soul. Not a best friend, not a therapist and certainly not my own mother.

My family and I were fortunate enough to travel often when I was child, and on one particular trip, I found myself in Istanbul, Turkey. When youre 12, travelling is exciting, but new cultures can be confusing, especially when youd rather not wear long-sleeved garments in 45-degree heat, and would instead prefer to be by the resort pool playing Marco Polo.

That was me a nave, always-happy kid with bundles of energy and a weird grin showing off my never-fully-fixed overbite, until an experience with the 40-something-year-old hotel owner made me grow up more quickly than I would have liked.

A Turkish bath is meant to cleanse and relax you. The first room is extremely hot, and you sit in there sweating out your toxins until youre ready to cool off, then you jump into a cold shower. After fully washing your body, you then can sit in a cool room and relax.  But my own experience was one without the relaxation the hotel manager promised.

We must have a power outage! he said, suddenly walking into the now-dark womens shower area. He didnt seem bothered at all by the usually stressful situation. I was in two towels, one hand scrunched tightly around the one covering my body, the other on my head holding together the poorly wrapped piece of cotton. I didnt respond much at all, focusing more on getting back to my hotel room where my parents were, and less on this much older man in front of me, who was now leaning in slightly.

Excuse me, I said feebly, trying to get by.

Next, I remember being pushed up against a wall and feeling a sloppy, wet mouth on mine. The mans hands pressed against my chest as I tried to squirm away. Is this what a kiss is meant to feel like? Was me being naked, my body bare besides a towel, enough to confuse him? Am I in the wrong?

Thoughts were running through my head and I struggled to comprehend what was happening. I had never been kissed before, let along bare in front of a stranger, and my efforts to get away became both stronger a...


Leaked doc exposes police commissioner's lies on criminals in the force "IndyWatch Feed National"

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Islam as philosophical dead end "IndyWatch Feed National"

Classical (622 to c.940) and early medieval Islam was a civilisation and period with a rich philosophical tradition. Yet Islam became a philosophical dead end, an example of how societies, indeed, an entire civilisation, can stop supporting philosophy as a significant autonomous realm of enquiry. Islam is a civilisation where religion swallowed philosophy, with consequences we are still living with.

That Islam as a civilisation developed a rich philosophical tradition is obvious and well-documented. Thinkers writing in Arabic were particularly important in reconciling Aristotelianism with monotheism. Ibn Rushd (Averroes) (1126-1198) in particular was very influential in Latin Christendom. So much so that St Thomas Aquinas (1225-1274), in his writings, would refer to Aristotle (384-322 BC) as The Philosopher and Ibn Rushd (Averroes) as The Commentator.

Yet that rich philosophical tradition dwindled away to vanishing point. It did so as the result of interaction between ideas and social change.

The social dwindling

The social change was the dwindling away of any basis for supporting scholarship and learning outside explicitly Islamic religious schools. The movement to a fief-based military administration reduced administrative bureaucracies, by far the most significant basis for non-religious intellectual life within Islamic societies, while dominance by Turkish-speaking warlords, from the time of the Seljuqs (1037-1153) onwards, led to a surge in ostentatious support for religion by rulers making up for their non-Arabness via ostentatious religious adherence and patronage.

The shock and devastation of the Mongol invasion (much larger and far more traumatic than Crusader seizure of narrow coastal strips), including the sack of Baghdad (1258), the only time the capital of a livin...


EXPLAINER: New Matildas Reporting Around #metoo "IndyWatch Feed National"

As most readers would know, were devoting significant energy to the #metoo campaign and, in particular, to exposing men in powerful positions who use and abuse that power to assault and harass women.

Were a tiny, independent publication. Most of our writers do not get paid. We dont have the resources of a Fairfax or a News Corp or an ABC. We do, however, have extraordinary pro bono lawyers in Geoff Holland and the team at Marque Lawyers. Were able to report these stories and other major investigations in large part because of these people. I cant emphasize enough my gratitude to them, or their importance in this campaign.

Of the six males outed in the Australian media so far, New Matilda is responsible for two of those. Im proud of that fact, but I acknowledge its not even the tip of the iceberg. So theres more to come.

I also understand the concerns of some readers about trial by media. I share those concerns. In our defence, I would say that at New Matilda, we investigate and publish these stories slowly and carefully, and the burden proof in order to justify publication is substantial.

It is a grave responsibility when you publish a story that you know in all likelihood will destroy reputations and impact many lives.

Heres why we do it regardless.

Firstly, media has always exposed stories like this. The only difference at the moment is the pace at which it is happening. Thats a good thing because, undeniably, the pace at which it has happened previously shames us all. #metoo wouldnt be a thing if media had done its job in the first place.


Secondly, the job of the media its most important job is to step in where the system fails.

The systems designed protect womens rights and hold abusers to account if those systems even really existed in any meaningful way have clearly failed. That is also undeniable. If those systems were effective then, again, we wouldnt have seen such a visceral outpouring of grief and anger from women around the world.

Its worth remembering, those women are our wives, our partners, our mothers, our family members. One day theyll be our children. These are the people we love. More importantly though they are people in their own right. People who have been routinely failed by the systems around them. Routinely made to feel unsafe.



In Gujarat, BJP Has Consistently Delivered on One Front Instilling Fear Among Its People "IndyWatch Feed National"

After 22 years of BJP rule in the state, two fears have become evident of going against it and of the other.

BJP supporters in Gujarat. Credit: PTI

BJP supporters in Gujarat. Credit: PTI

Not all elections are equal. But the difference between the Bihar assembly election and UP and on this day, between Gujarat and Himachal is this some elections are the nerve centre of our body politic. And sitting in the heart of that nerve centre in Gujarat. I ask myself, what is the job of a political reporter? If I look at the way in which people are increasingly disdainful of the media and exit polls, I would say the answer is this: it is a barren and hollow place to be if it meant sticking a mike in the face of a BJP or Congress party spokesperson to extract one homily after another. Weve won although weve lost, or We may have lost ground but weve won. Because in all the hype and hyperbole, the real story never gets asked. What does all of this mean for the people? That as I see it is the job of every political reporter to answer. Feet in mud, noses in vada pav stalls and the sweat and the blood of the people.

Here is what the report from the trenches looks like. The one you wont hear about on television or read in the more arithmetic of politics type of writing. The palpable fear in the eyes of a tribal farmer who works seasonally at a construction site a hundred kilometres away. One who sacrificed two days of daily wages plus spent on bus fare and food to get to his village and vote. This is a man who earns 250 rupees in a day and cann...


1947: The Year that Changed Everything 70 Years On "IndyWatch Feed National"

1947 was a year of infamy in terms of the New World Order agenda. 1947 was the time when profound events were taking place: the birth of the horrible US MIC (Military Intelligence Complex), the probable continuation of the Nazi regime and likely ET visitation.

As the year 2017 comes to an end, and we close out the 70 year anniversary of the year of 1947, it is worth briefly looking back on that momentous year at some of the events that transpired then which still have a profound effect on our world today.

1947: Operation Highjump

Just when you thought it was safe to go back into the water no, Im not referring to Jaws, but rather the US-UK-Australian military expedition led by Admiral Richard Byrd in January and February of 1947. He thought it would be safe to go down to Antarctica, but he was overpowered and beat a hasty retreat.

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How to Manage Your Anger Based on Your Zodiac Sign "IndyWatch Feed National"

Were all extremely different from each other no doubt, but we also share common traits and characteristics. After all, we are all human! Sometimes the best way to understand your personality is your zodiac sign, and it might even help you control your anger too!

While lots of people are still skeptical of astrologys accuracy, but you cant deny that it can accurately describe real-life dilemmas and scenarios based on our individual personality type. Well probably never have the answers to the cosmos, but we are sure of one thing! The stars, the sky, and the universe have a very weird way of working things out and they have a much greater influence on us than we think. We might not understand it fully, but its there! We can use our zodiac sign to better understand lots of aspects regarding personality, behavior, and energetic influences! It can even correlate to aural readings!

Our zodiac sign might help us better understand our emotions and additionally help us react better to the unpleasant ones, like anger. Anger is a difficult and confusing emotion that experience and it always shows up somehow! Heres what astrology has to say about how to deal with it!

1. Aquarius

Aquarius is very level headed and despises arguing. They will participate in a good debate but when things get heated ad childish theyre automatically out. Aquarians deal with anger better when thought of from a logical point of view.

2. Pisces

Pisces is very deeply rooted in emotions. They feel things very vividly and get drastically upset about things. They get very fired up about people being inconsiderate and get heated quickly. However, they always calm themselves down and make things right afterward.

3. Aries

As a fire sign, Aries can get very furious from time to time. Because you te...


Free Sydney Music Compilation: The Bridge Class of 2017 "IndyWatch Feed Nsw"

Stuff your stocking with 100% Sydney music, curated by The Bridge.

Our Sydney music nerds have put together a little Christmas pressie, made up of their favourite home-grown tracks of the year. Presenters Ryan Saar, Lachlan Wyllie and Tia Newling have rounded up their top picks of the year from right across Sydney. The best part? Its free! (Or name-your-price, if youd like to contribute a donation to at FBi Radio.)

Get it for yourself via bandcamp and read through a track-by-track run down from each presenter below.

Artwork by the excellent Russell Fitzgibbon.

The Bridge Class of 2017 by FBi Radio


Ryan Saar

Georgia June Cool

Before Georgia June released her debut track Cool in September, shed already lived the life of a rock star. Under a mentorship with Billboard Magazine, June moved to New York and recorded her first tracks with Passion Pits Ayad Al Adhamy, the result being the nugget of pop-rock perfection that is Cool. Its a song that bursts with Junes infectious personality, wry wit and a foot-stomping chorus sure to put holes in your floor. Shoutouts to the time my housemate caught me singing Cool into a mirror with a hairbrush for a microphone.


Moody Beach Vanilla

Vanilla is impossibly chic, the audio equivalent of whatever French New Wave film is currently getting all the arts students in a frenzy. Vanilla cruises on guitar and synth lines with breezy confidence, Melissah Maries vocals hovering above her distinct brand futuristic pop with otherworldly magnetism. Every time I listen to Moody Beach, I cant help but feel Ive stumbled upon one of the best (and effortlessly cool) secrets in local music.


Buzz Kull Into the Voi...


Keating Speech the starting point for moving forward "IndyWatch Feed National"

Sunday 10th December marked 25 years since the landmark Keating Redfern Speech. It was a speech that told the truth.

Coming from a Prime Minister, it was a truth that could not be unsaid, a truth that formed the foundation for moving forward together on the journey towards a reconciled nation. He said:

"Because, in truth, we cannot confidently say that we have succeeded as we would like to have succeeded if we have not managed to extend opportunity and care, dignity and hope to the indigenous people of Australia - the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Island people. 

It has been ANTaRs firm belief since we came together 20 years ago, that without an acknowledgement of the truth of our shared history, we could not develop a stronger relationship based on trust, understanding and empathy.

This is a message we need to share as we head towards Survival Day 2018. You can help by signing our Sea of Hands pledge.

As Patrick Dodson said in the forward to last years State of Reconciliation Report:

Disturbingly, the Report reveals the schism between Indigenous and non-Indigenous Australias understanding and perspectives of how our nations history has shaped the contemporary circumstances of Indigenous communities, and their relationship with the Australian State. There is a discernible lack of appreciation by settler Australia about the grievances and sense of historical injustice that Indigenous people feel. This must be addressed for Australia to be reconciled.Pledge to think differently about January 26

An understanding of the truth of our history, will tell you that January 26 - the day the First Fleet invaded Gadigal land (in what is now known as Sydney Cove) - is not a day that includes Australias First Peoples in a national celebration.

It is asking First Peoples to celebrate the onset of invasion of the lands, and the history of dispossession that came with that invasion as so clearly ar...


On fetishising busyness and tiredness "IndyWatch Feed National"

Busyness has become a competition, a Victorian Cross or Legion of Merit for running ourselves into the ground. It speaks to our self-worth and dedication to our crafts. An overloaded lifestyle, rather than a quieter one, has become an aspirational status symbol. We venerate industry, even when it culminates in something lesser than the sum of its effort.



Every year The Falls Music & Arts Festival in each location (Lorne, Marion Bay and Byron) puts $1 from each ticket sold into a Falls Festival Community Fund that is then distributed to a range of local organisations.

Falls Music & Arts Festival Byron is happy to announce the Mullumbimby Public School, Burringbar Community Association Inc., WIRES (Northern Rivers), Shaping Outcomes (Byron Bay) and Crabbes Creek Community Hall are recipients for this years Falls Festival Byron Community Fund.

Mullumbimby Public School
Mullumbimby will purchase musical instruments to continue to establish a school band that can foster student love of music and represent MPS with pride at community events.

Receiving a Community Grant from Falls will greatly assist us in supporting the emergence of the musical soul of Mullumbimby Public School, and is much appreciated by our school community and beyond said Principal David Lees.

Burringbar Community Association Inc.
Burringbar Community Association Inc. will use the grant to initiate the Burringbar Heritage Walk, consisting of historical identification plaques in significant locations throughout the village.

The Burringbar Heritage walk will foster community involvement, and corresponding pride, in addition to providing an opportunity to interact with people of varying backgrounds and experiences said Eva Heath of the Burringbar Community Association

Shaping Outcomes (Byron Bay)
Shaping Outcomes (Byron Bay) will use the grant to provide resources for the childrens groups they run including Ready for School and Social Thinking.

The Falls grant has enabled us to purchase resources that will be so valued for so many children accessing our services and will really help us to support children to thrive, connect and belong! said Shaping Outcomes Executive Director Zoe Cluff.

WIRES (Northern Rivers)
WIRES will use the grant to assist in responding to more calls to help injured, sick, displaced and orphaned wildlife.

WIRES is committed to continuously improving outcomes for animals and the Falls Community Grant is an investment in preserving our wildlife both now and for future generations. said WIRES spokesperson Paula Wallace

Crabbes Creek Community Hall
Crabbes Creek Community Hall will use the grant to contribute towards the New Years Eve fireworks display for the community.

Every New Years Eve, the Crabbes Creek Community Hall puts on a fabulous family-focused celebration. The funds from Falls Festival will be used towards one off the big...


OIT: Tim Kelly Interviews Ryan Dawson- Michael Flynn/Israel Gate & War Profiteers "IndyWatch Feed National"

 This is a far reaching interview. I think it's worth the time.
With thanks to Tim Kelly from Our Interesting Times  (always linked in the side bar) for making this freely available

 "Ryan Dawson returns to Our Interesting Times to discuss the recent guilty plea by Michael Flynn and how the mainstream media has largely ignored the Israeli angle to the story. We also talk about his upcoming documentary "The 'Jewish State': How Terrorists Formed a Nation" and the lecture he delivered in Sydney, Australia in December, 2016."

Hoping to have some newsy type posts up soon. I'm busily baking :)


The revolving door between the corporate world, government and fossil fuels "IndyWatch Feed National"

Contributed from New South Wales

It is no secret that far too many of Australias politicians and key political advisors, build unhealthy relationships with powerful big businesses interests that have an incentive to influence the political process and government.

Australias disclosure laws are grossly inadequate to bring out more than a small portion of what is going on. Most Australian do not like it and they recognise that favours are handed out only because those handing them out expect something in return.

This is the definition of corruption and if this is occurring in Australia on a large scale, it means that the political system is corrupt. It also means that many of our leaders are sacrificing the interests of those they claim to represent for personal benefit. We deserve much better than this.

Corruption can take the form of cash payments to individuals and political parties. We are seeing quite a few exposures of this practice right now. And it is becoming clearer that what is declared is only a small part of the total. Payers have devised many ways, to create convoluted routes to get the money to where it is intended.

The offering of other incentives is just as corrupt. Leading politicians get to mix with and know powerful people, who may let it be known that an opportunity will come their way, if they do the right thing. The growth of the corporate lobbying industry has increased the opportunities for understandings to be struck.

Politicians and especially ministers, will influenced to consider their personal interest in the making of decisions. Pressure is on to recruit selected individuals into senior ministerial and senhior staff positions.

It is customary to follow a political career by sitting on one or more company boards. The reason why companies put former politicians and former advisors of politicians on their boards, is so that they can use the network established during their political career, to provide benefits for the company.

Greater transparency is needed. Measures should be in place to detect and outlaw conflicts of interest. It should be illegal to transfer form a political career to positions that can use former politicians and senior political staff to further corrupt political processes.

Of course, it is unlikely that a corrupt political system will willingly clean itself up. This mean that exposing what is going on is important.

NSW Greens MP Jeremy Buckingham has posted the following on social media and it should be spread as widely as possible. It is only a small part of the problem. At the same time, it warrants special attention, at a time when the problem of global w...


North Coast disability services under threat "IndyWatch Feed Northcoast"

L- R: Doug Hollingworth, Dawn Walker MP and Joanne Mclean outside DAISIs shopfront in Ballina that will soon be closed unless a state government funding cut is reversed. Photo supplied

Greens North Coast MP and disability spokesperson Dawn Walker has lashed out at the NSW Governments planned cuts to disability advocacy funding for the region.

Ms Walker said the move would see a dramatic loss in support for people with a disability on the North Coast.

She has called on the NSW premier and North Coast-based Nationals MP Ben Franklin to urgently intervene.

The looming cuts are due to take effect from June 2018 and Ms Walker says they threaten to wipe-out local disability information services, DAISI (Disability and Aged Information Service Inc), based in Ballina, and Ability Advocacy in Alstonville.

The cuts are occurring because the state government is set to roll its disability advocacy services funding, worth $13 million statewide, into the National Disability Insurance Scheme (NDIS). But the NDIS does not cover advocacy services, which Ms Walker says will leave a major funding gap.

Im appalled that NSW Liberal-Nationals think its acceptable to cut core funding from our disability advocacy services that assist some of the most vulnerable people in our community with a range of everyday issues, including housing needs, service complaints and developing their NDIS applications and plans, Ms Walker said.

These heartless cuts mean organisations like DAISI and Ability Advocacy, which have been assisting people with a disability right across the North Coast for almost 20 years, will be forced to massively decrease the number of people they support, lay off staff and possibly even close altogether, she added

Ability Advocacys Alstonville manager, Doug Hollingworth, says the group employs six staff and supports approximately 120 people with disabilities in the local area.

These cuts would mean we would mean the loss of two staff members and wed be forced to stop providing support to 40-50 people with disabilities who will have nowhere else to turn. We know how important our services are to local families and people with disabilities across the North Coast who will suffer as a direct result of these cuts, Mr Hollin...


Kingscliff beach access to be opened Thursday "IndyWatch Feed Northcoast"

Tweed Shire Councillors and Kingscliff Chamber of Commerce members are given a sneak peek at the new Kingscliff beach steps. (from right) Kingscliff Chamber President Mark Humphries, Tweed Shire Councillor Warren Polglase, Tweed Shire Council General Manager Troy Green, Tweed Shire Council Manager Recreation Services Stewart Brawley and Tweed Shire Councillor Pryce Allsop. (supplied)

New beach access that has been built as part of a $22 million foreshore development at Kingscliff will be opened to the public tomorrow.

Tweed  mayor Katie Milne said that while the redevelopment project was still being completed, residents would be able to access the beach and the new concrete beachfront steps through the new park, just to the North of the Cudgen Headland Surf Club.

Cr Milne said temporary lighting would be set up in the area for safety and the park would remain fenced off as the site shut down between December 22 and January 8.

The foreshore redevelopment, which includes the new central park and beach access along with a seawall and a complete redevelopment of the holiday park has been specifically designed to create a link between the beach, the park and the central business district of the Kingscliff community.

The protection of the foreshore from coastal erosion is expected to be a significant economic boost for the area and is expected to act as a catalyst for further public infrastructure and attract private sector development.

Kingscliff Chamber of Commerce president Mark Humphries said the early opening will be a great gift for cafe and restaurant owners along Marine Parade.

The new access is sensational and will make for a wonderful experience with views of the beach and the water, Mr Humphries said.

With the bridge being closed and then the park fenced off for the past year there has definitely been an impact and we have spent $20,000 of the chambers funds to run TV ads in the area telling day trippers we are still open for business.

We have been big supporters of the Councils plans from the beginning and the final design has more than exceeded our expectations.

I have no doubt Kingscliff is on the cusp of greatness and this will make a huge difference for locals and tourists alike.

The post Kingscliff beach access to be opened Thursday appea...


MYEFO. More money, but nowhere near enough to fund tax cuts "IndyWatch Feed Nsw"

Scott Morrison wants you believe the budget's strong enough to fund tax cuts.

It isn't, and the update makes that clear.

As it is required to do, it spells out the stated aim of the budget - what the Coalition has pledged to achieve since its election - on page 31.

The aim is to "deliver sustainable budget surpluses, building to at least 1 per cent of GDP, as soon as possible, consistent with the medium-term fiscal strategy".

That's a surplus of 1 per cent of gross domestic product, as soon as possible, consistent with quality spending and economic growth.

After a boost to the budget of about $10 billion over four years, what has it been left with?

A budget surplus of just one half of one per cent of GDP by the end of the four year projection period.

It's an improvement. The May budget pencilled in 0.4 per cent. But it's nothing like the 1 per cent of GDP the Coalition itself adopted as a target to be reached "as soon as possible". And beyond those four years the graph in the update shows the surplus staying put at half a per cent of GDP right out to 2027.

Weakening that budget position by giving some of it away, as the Prime Minister and Treasurer are hinting they will in next May's budget, would be a further abrogation of a pledge the Coalition hasn't come near fulfilling ever since it made it in 2014.

Improving the budget, certainly improving it by the billions that would be needed to fund reasonable tax cuts, is hard. Almost all of the $10 billion improvement this time came came from (generally mining-related) higher company profits and superannuation earnings, as well as lower than expected payments to Australians who are out of work. Government actions improved the outlook by about half a billion. It won't be enough.

In The Age and Sydney Morning Herald


Fresh push for company tax cuts as economy lifts budget $10 billion

Treasurer Scott Morrison has signalled a fresh push to get the government's $50 billion package of company tax cuts through the Senate, saying that US President Trump is forcing his hand and that the changing composition of the Senate gives him a chance.

Higher than expected company tax receipts helped improve the budget position by $10 billion in the update released on Monday, improving the outlook for 2017-18 by $5.8 billion.

"The Trum...


Surveys show support for greater koala protection "IndyWatch Feed Northcoast"

Lismore and Ballina residents want koalas protected. (supplied)

Surveys conducted for the North Coast Environment Council show overwhelming support for measures to protect koalas in the electorates of Lismore and Ballina.

NCEC spokesperson Susie Russell said the council commissioned two ReachTEL polls which showed that seventy per cent of people surveyed supported the creation of new national parks to protect koalas from logging and land-clearing.

People across the north coast are extremely concerned about the plight of the koala, Ms Russell said

Almost 90 per cent of participants in the polling had some awareness of the plight of the koala, with about 50 per cent being very aware.

Ms Russell said people understood that if the regions koala were to be saved there needed to be greater protection for the forests in which they live.

Its not hard to understand, we cant keep logging and clearing koala habitat and expect koalas to thrive, she said.

With the State Government poised to release its State-wide Koala Strategy, this is a timely reminder, that unless existing koala populations across all tenures including public State Forests are given protection, this animal will continue its trajectory towards extinction.

Ms Russell said analysis by the North East Forest Alliance earlier this year showed that in the last decade, 24,000 thousand hectares of high quality koala habitat has been cleared as the result of intensive logging, much of it carried out under the supervision of the State Governments own logging company the Forestry Corporation.

Any Koala Strategy which solely focuses on private land purchases and fails to address the massive habitat destruction on public land will be a failure before the ink is dry, she said.

The NSW Chief Scientists Report on Koalas made it clear that their should be clear benefit to key koala populations in NSW [and by] identifying and protecting koala habitat and managing key threats, this strategy will also benefit other native species and NSW landscapes more broadly.

As temperatures rise across the country and place our native wildlife and forests under even more stress, we need serious and drast...


Catalans are about to go to the polls in continuing battle over independence "IndyWatch Feed National"

Contributed by Jim Hayes

Catalans go to the polls on Thursday (21 December) their time, to vote in an election that will have a major impact on the regions efforts to break away from Spain.

This is an election that Spanish prime minister Mariano Rajoy imposed as a political strategy to manufacture a political scenario where the Catalans movement will be checked. To prepare the ground, the Catalan parliament was dissolved, leaders of the pro-independence parties were arrested and President Carles Piugdemont fled to Belgium, to escape his own capture.

The strategy was devised after the 1 October referendum vote and the subsequent declaration of independence by the regional parliament.

Piugdemont remains the leader of Together for Catalonia (JxCat) and has been campaigning from abroad, using digital media.

Oriol Junqueras, who was vice president of the ousted regional government and leader of the Republican Left of Catalonia (ERC), has been campaigning from his prison cell in Madrid. Despite a serious restriction on the right to have visitors, he was able to have a major recorded statement smuggled out at played to a large rally in Barcelona. There are three other leaders remaining in prison.

The polls are saying that the prime ministers Popular Party will be lucky to get 6 percent of the vote. Citizens (Caudatans), has stepped into the resultant vacuum, pulled in support from among those disaffected with the two major traditional parties. They may end up being the party with the second highest number of votes.  It is seeking to place itself as the party for all those who do not want to break away from Spain.

An opinion poll by the Center for Opinion Studies in Catalonia, found that more than half of Catalans between the ages of 18 and 34 would vote to break away from Spain given a simple choice of yes or no.

All polls are pointing to the likelihood that the pro-independence party the Republican Left of Catalonia (ERC) will get the largest share of the vote, followed by Caudatans and JxCat in third place.

The Socialist party which has been solidly backing the Popular Party position on independence and the key policies around Spain, has sought to distance itself a little from tis past and recast its image as being more independent and muted its anti-independence message during the election campaign. The polls have suggested that this has not brought about a major change to its fortunes sand the best it can hope for is to hold onto its position at the last election.

It is the anti-aus...


What a Handy Term Radicalized Muslim Flexible, Global, Machine-Washable "IndyWatch Feed National"

Top row: Flags of France, UK, Indonesia, Bottom: Germany, Australia, and US

by Mary W Maxwell, LLB

What do the countries whose flags are shown above have in common? They have all been violently attacked by Muslims.

Or so they say.

Here is a list in chronological order of six violent attacks. (This is a very select list; scores of other similar incidents have occurred):

In Bali, three Indonesian men bombed a club frequented by Australian holiday-makers (2002).

In London, a Jamaican and three Pakistani friends bombed Tube stations and a bus (2005).

In Boston, two Chechen brothers allegedly bombed the finish line of the Marathon race (2013).

In Sydney, the Iranian Man Haron Monis killed two of his 18 hostages during the siege of the Lindt Caf (2014).

In Paris, two Algerian Kouachi brothers allegedly killed several people in the office of the magazine known as Charlie Hebdo (2015).

In Berlin, a Tunisian man allegedly drove a truck into a Christ...


Ask your doctor about Sleep Drunkenness Disorder "IndyWatch Feed National"

As many as one in seven people may be affected by 'sleep drunkenness disorder' soon after they've woken up or during the morning, a new study finds. Sleep drunkenness disorder involves severe confusion upon wakening - way more than just the usual morning grogginess - and/or inappropriate behaviour: things like answering the phone instead of turning off the alarm. Confused awakenings can happen to people when very short of sleep or jet-lagged, but are regular occurrences for those with the disorder. Following a forced awakening, the disorder may even lead to violent behaviour and then complete amnesia about the event.


NSW unprepared for major blackout "IndyWatch Feed National"

The states chief scientist has warned NSW could be plunged into chaos in the event of a large-scale black system power outage, similar to the one that debilitated South Australia last year.

While finding it was highly unlikely NSW would fall victim to a blackout of that scale, a report released by the Energy Security Taskforce has found NSW was nevertheless ill-prepared.

Taskforce chair and chief scientist Mary OKane says the state government needs to adopt a more proactive approach to managing short- and medium-term risks, including during prolonged periods of extreme heat.

The government must be alive to risks over coming years so that it can manage emerging risks proactively when needed, Prof OKane said in a statement.

For Sydneysiders, the report found up to 10,000 people on underground trains would need to be evacuated in the event the state fell victim to an outage.

Meanwhile, public hospitals only have six hours worth of fuel in their back-up diesel generators, the report released on Tuesday, found.

As we saw in the South Australian event, sometimes these can go on for a while and there is reason to think it would be quite some time in a black event like that for Sydney to come back up, Ms OKane told ABC Radio on Wednesday.

The report found the system was vulnerable in times of extreme weather events and made nine recommendations to shore it up.

The next decade will be a period of transition and disruption for the National Energy Market, and with that comes opportunities for innovation to increase the future reliability and security of the states electricity system, Prof OKane said.

The post NSW unprepared for major blackout appeared first on Echonetdaily.


Lost MH370 sparks global flight tracking "IndyWatch Feed National"

The UN has defined new technical standards to guarantee the seamless tracking of aircraft and to prevent flights from disappearing off the radar, the International Telecommunication Union says.

The UN agency has been working to integrate existing flight surveillance systems since the disappearance of Malaysia Airlines flight MH370 in 2014.

The Boeing 777 flight MH370 from Kuala Lumpur to Beijing went missing with 239 passengers, including six Australians, and crew on board on March 8, 2014.

With the new technical standards that are already being implemented by some countries, different systems will be connected to exchange flight data.

The increased use of satellite technology will improve tracking in areas where there are no land-based data receivers, such as oceans or remote regions.

The adoption of these technical principles for enhanced aircraft surveillance via satellite will make great strides in saving lives, ITU Secretary General Houlin Zhao said on Tuesday in Geneva.

A search covering hundreds of thousands of square kilometres in the Indian Ocean was called off in January with no result.

The Malaysian government entered into a no find, no fee arrangement in October with US company Ocean Infinity in a bid to recover the missing plane.

The post Lost MH370 sparks global flight tracking appeared first on Echonetdaily.


North Korea behind big ransomware attack: US "IndyWatch Feed National"

US President Donald Trumps administration has publicly blamed North Korea for a careless and reckless ransomware attack that infected hundreds of thousands of computers worldwide in May and crippled parts of Britains National Health Service.

Homeland Security adviser Tom Bossert told reporters at a White House briefing on Tuesday that North Korea was directly responsible for the WannaCry ransomware attack and that Pyongyang will be held accountable for it.

This was a careless and reckless attack. It affected individuals, industry, governments and the consequences were beyond economic. The computers affected badly in the UK in their healthcare system put lives at risk, not just money, Bossert said.

Bossert said the administrations finding of responsibility is based on evidence and confirmed by other private companies and foreign governments, including the UK, Australia, Canada, New Zealand and Japan.

He said Microsoft traced the attack to cyber affiliates of the North Korean government.The findings come as the US has sought to pressure Kim Jong Uns government to end the pariah nations nuclear and missile programs.

Bossert said the Trump administration would continue to push Pyongyang to curb its ability to mount attacks and seek to partner with the private sector to prevent future attacks.But he said Trump has used just about every lever you can use short of starving the North Korean people to death to change their behaviour.

So we dont have a lot of room left here to apply pressure to change their behaviour. Its nevertheless important to call them out, let them know its them and we know its them.

Bossert said attributing the attack to North Korea would let them know were going to move to stop their behaviour and work with tech partners such as Microsoft and Facebook.

The WannaCry attack struck more than 150 nations in May, locking up digital documents, databases and other files and demanding a ransom for their release.

The ransomware exploited a vulnerability in mostly older versions of Microsofts Windows operating system.

Affected computers had generally not been patched with security fixes that would have blocked the attack.

WannaCry came to a screeching halt thanks to enterprising work by a British hacker named Marcus Hutchins, who discovered that the malwares author had embedded a kill switch in the code.

Hutchins was able to trip that switch, and the attack soon ended.

In an unusual twist, Hutchins was arrested months later by the FBI during a visit to the US; he pleaded not guilty and now awaits trial on charges he created unrelated forms of malware.

The post...


Peace Almanac November "IndyWatch Feed National"



November 1. On this day in 1961 the Women Strike for Peace demonstration in the United States was the largest womens peace action to date.

Australia abolishes peace-time compulsory military training. (1929)

November 2. On this day in 1982 a nuclear freeze referendum in eight U.S. states won the support of 25 percent of U.S. voters.

November 3. On this day in 1950 the UN Uniting for Peace Resolution was passed by the UN General Assembly at Flushing Meadows, NY.

November 4. On this day in 1946 UNESCO was established. Also on this day in 1980, Ronald Reagan was elected U.S. president after secretly and treasonously using George H.W. Bush and William Casey to persuade Iran not to release U.S. hostages while Jimmy Carter was still president.

November 5. On this day in 1855 Eugene V. Debs was born. Also on this day in 1968 Richard Nixon was elected U.S. president after secretly and treasonously sending Anna Chennault to sabotage Vietnam peace talks, campaigning on a nonexistent secret plan for peace, and actually planning to continue the war, as he did once elected. This is a good day to think about who our real leaders are.

November 6. This is the International Day for Preventing the Exploitation of the Environment in War and Armed Conflict.

November 7. On this day in 1949 Costa Ricas Constitution prohibited a national army. Costa Rica, now using entirely renewable energy, is home to the Interamerican Human Rights Court and the UN University of Peace.

November 8. On this day in 1897 Dorothy Day was born.

November 9. On this day in 1989 the Berlin Wall began to be demolished, symbolizing the ending of the Cold War. This is a good day to remember how fast change can come and how available peace is.

November 10. On this day in 1936 the worlds first peace corps International Voluntary Service for Peace (IVSP) arrived in Bombay led by Pierre Crsole.



Aussie claims Bali drugs arrest ridiculous "IndyWatch Feed National"

An accountant and one-time federal election candidate facing drug charges in Indonesia has been rushed to hospital after being paraded before the media.

Isaac Emmanuel Roberts, 35, was arrested following his arrival in Bali from Bangkok on December 4.Hes accused of carrying 19 grams of amphetamine and ecstasy pills in his luggage.

On Tuesday, Bali police paraded Roberts, dressed in orange prison garb and a balaclava, to journalists.

He was later taken hospital, after being shocked by the media attention.

He got sick. He was shocked after the press conference today. Maybe he never thought that he will be in the press conference, his lawyer Deni Sedana told The Daily Telegraph.

Earlier, Roberts had angrily suggested hed been set up by Indonesian authorities.

I was invited to this country. I was working with a Customs officer and they knew I was going to bring something, he said.

Im just a f***ing addict, they want to waste their resources on addicts. They want to punish addicts, this is ridiculous. What about the f***ing importers? I wasnt going to sell it to anyone here, no one was going to use it here.

Indonesian customs officials claimed the drugs were hidden in a plastic bottle and another container in his luggage.

Based on the results of the inspection, our officers found five packages containing clear crystals weighing 19.97 grams and 14 tablets weighing a total of 6.22 grams, Bali Airport customs office chief Himawan Indrajono said in a statement.

An accountant formerly based in Brisbanes Fortitude Valley, Roberts business website hasnt been updated since 2015 when he faced the professional conduct tribunal of Chartered Accountants Australia and New Zealand.

The tribunal decided on November 15 of that year that Roberts had failed to reply to correspondence, issuing him with a reprimand and fining him $3100.

He also unsuccessfully ran for former Liberal treasurer Peter Costellos Victorian seat of Higgins in 2009 as a Liberal Democratic Party candidate.

The seat was won by current federal government minister Kelly ODwyer.

There are concerns Roberts could face execution in Bali if convicted of drug trafficking.

In 2015, convicted traffickers and Sydney men Andrew Chan, 31, and Myuran Sukumaran, 35 were executed by firing squad.

They had been arrested in 2005.

The executions strained relations between Jakarta and Canberra and prompted Australia to temporarily recall its ambassador in protest.

Indonesia is facing a drug crisis with an estimated 6.4 million drug users in a country of 250 million people.



NSW Health misleads preschools over vaccination rules "IndyWatch Feed Northcoast"

From December 31, conscientious objectors to vaccination will no longer be able to enrol their children into preschools. Photo from International Business Times

Paul Bibby

The director of a Brunswick Heads preschool says she was misled by the NSW health department regarding the application of new vaccination rules and that other local directors have been utterly confused and frustrated by the changes.

Frances Dyett from Lilly Pilly Preschool is now inviting the parents of unvaccinated children in Brunswick Heads to enrol their kids at her centre before new rules abolishing the so-called conscientious objection option come into effect on January 1.

I have turned away many upset, angry parents believing I was doing the right thing and complying with the rules and regulations, Ms Dyett said.

I was initially given misleading information from the health department but was one of the lucky ones who received a call back to say they had given out wrong information.

On January 1, new rules will come into effect that prevent unvaccinated children from being enrolled in NSW preschools unless their parents can prove they have a specific allergy to the injections.

Prior to this, parents have been able to enrol their unvaccinated children if they were able to register as a conscientious objector to vaccination.


Over the past three months, local preschools have been inundated with requests from parents trying to enrol their children for 2019 and beyond in a bid to get in before the January 1 deadline.

However, all but a handful have been rejected by the preschools.

It has now emerged that a number of the preschools were acting on incorrect information from health department officers who were apparently unaware of how the n...


George Brandis shift to UK not his idea "IndyWatch Feed National"

Outgoing Attorney-General George Brandis has admitted that leaving politics to become Australias High Commissioner in London was not his idea.

Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull will formally propose Senator Brandis for the new role early next year after calling time on 17 years as a Queensland senator.

After conceding the appointment was Canberras worst-kept secret, Senator Brandis denied he was told his time was up due to poor ministerial performance.

I wouldnt say it was my idea, Senator Brandis said on the ABCs 7.30 report on Tuesday night.

It was something that developed in discussion and it was something that I was attracted to.

Senator Brandis said he did not believe colleagues were plotting to push him out of parliament when discussions about taking up the diplomatic position started earlier in the year.

It is a post that I have often thought would be a post for which I would have certain suitabilities, he said.

Mr Turnbull paid tribute to the former cabinet minister, who will replace one-time federal Liberal leader Alexander Downer in London, where he has spent three years as High Commissioner.

It is a very, very important time in the history of the United Kingdom and there is a lot at stake for Australia in our relations with the UK, Mr Turnbull said in announcing a cabinet reshuffle on Tuesday.

Senator Brandis, a key advocate within the coalition for legalising same-sex marriage, leaves parliament after seeing the law passed on his final day in the Senate.

Mr Turnbull said the historic change happened in no small measure to to his eloquent advocacy.

The prime minister also praised Senator Brandis over a national security review which resulted in foreign interference legislation which is before the parliament.

The most sweeping reforms ever made to keep us safe from hostile foreign interference are his handiwork and will be an important part of his legacy, Mr Turnbull said.

In 2014, Senator Brandis famously declared people had the right to be bigots during a debate on changing racial discrimination laws.

The Queens Counsel last year had a high-profile bust-up with former solicitor-general Justin Gleeson, who subsequently resigned over the pairs broken relationship.

The 60-year-old entered parliament in 2000 and was made arts and sport minister in 2007 under John Howard.

When the Tony Abbott-led coalition came to power in 2013, Senator Brandis became attorney-general and arts minister.

The post George Brandis shift to UK not his ide...


205-square-metre blocks proposed for West Byron "IndyWatch Feed Northcoast"

West Byron masterplan. Source PAA Consulting

A 387-lot proposal for West Byron, to be developed in stages, is now on public exhibition via Byron Shire Councils website from December 14 until February 7, 2018.

The 108-hectare site is located 2.5 kilometres west of Byron Bay on Ewingsdale Road and the controversial project will be undertaken by QLD construction company Villaworld.

At an estimated cost of $40m, the DA comes in 33 separate documents totalling 1,647 pages. The files combined are just over 1GB in size.

Plan of management documents include biodiversity conservation, traffic, engineering, acid sulfate soils, stormwater, cultural heritage, bushfire, flood, noise assessment, vegetation, flora and fauna and landscaping. 

Two business lots, two industrial lots and four residue lots are also proposed.

A skate area is suggested for the park, as well as community gardens and a cycleway. A neighbourhood centre area, along with two recreational areas, is also planned.

Under the hood

Within the Design Guidelines document, both two-storey, four-bedroom homes and high-density terrace-style dwellings are presented.

Blocks range from 205m2 up to duplex blocks of around  800900m2. (As a point of comparison the traditional Aussie quarter-acre block is approximately 1,000m2.)  

There are 25 duplex blocks indicated in the masterplan.

To complete the project, traffic consultants Veitch Lister say up to 300,000m3 of fill will be required to complete the site formation across the whole [West Byron area], in order to achieve the desired flood immunity.

The traffic consultants admit they are u...


December 20 On This Day in Australian History "IndyWatch Feed National"

1811 - Gov Lachlan Macquarie began humming a Rod Stewart number when he sailed from Port Dalrymple in the Lady Nelson for Port Stephens.

1813 -A public meeting was held in Sydney to form a society to protect Pacific Island natives.

1825 - The new Legislative Council of New South Wales was sworn in.

1826 - Convicts sailing for the tropic climes of Norfolk Island threw a hissy fit, took control of the ship Wellington and set off for NZ....where they were nabbed by the whaling ship Sisters.

1836 - The Executive Council of NSW cleared Major Thomas Mitchell of responsibility after his expedition killed a large number of Aboriginal people on the Murray River.

1836 - Journal entry for Mary Thomas -
This day William, then a boy of fifteen, completed an oven which he made of iron hoops fixed in the ground in a half-circle and covered with a thick coating of clay, afterwards burned. It answered exceedingly well and we not only baked bread in it but pies and puddings, and occasionally fresh meat, when we could get it, but that was seldom. This oven was the first constructed in the colony, and remained in its primitive state, as I was told, long after we quitted Glenelg.

1842 - The brand spanking new Melbourne Council took over from the Market Commissioners who'd been running the shooting match till then....but strangely there was no demand that Swanston Street be turned over to penny-farthing bone-shaker dare-devil racers.

1848 - Constitutional Association formed in Sydney to effect electoral and land reforms.

1859 - Manhood suffrage and secret ballot granted in Qld.

1870 - Victoria became the first state to allow women to own personal property (wages and dividends etc.) independent of their husbands. It followed the passing of an Act of Parliament in Britain earlier in the year.

1879 - Flinders St. to Spencer St. was connected via a road level tramway in consequence of Victoria Railway's purchase of Melbourne & Hobsons Bay United Railway Co's lines radiating from Flinders St.

1889 - Despite the plan of the Queensland government to outlaw the importation of Pacific Island labour after 1890, a Royal Commission reported on this day the labour was essential. It stated that if all coloured labour be withdrawn from the plantations the extinction of the sugar industry must speedily follow.



Rocks to go at Seven Mile Beach Road "IndyWatch Feed Northcoast"

Beachgoers parking along the sides of Seven Mile Beach Road. Photo Ian Cohen

The No Stopping signs and boulders at the southern end of Seven Mile Beach Road, Broken Head, will be removed after councillors last week voted to endorse the action plan for wider community consultation.

Cr Paul Spooners motion was supported by all councillors, and will also create a proper turning circle and car parking area at the location.

During debate, the unique biodiversity significance of Broken Head was discussed, as well as its increased popularity for visitors owing to social media and travel websites.

Recent parking restrictions had upset locals, said the mayor, and he said that recent bushfires from campfires and illegally parked cars along the narrow dirt road have been an access issue for emergency services. A budget of $20,000 for concept infrastructure planning investigations and other measures will also be considered.

A neighbourhood watch is part of the action plan, which invites locals to get involved with monitoring the area. 

A lack of responses from both the Police and NPWS requesting support in these matters has been noted, and councillors have asked staff to write to them again, requesting an urgent response.

The post Rocks to go at Seven Mile Beach Road appeared first on Echonetdaily.


One of the reasons why local government, traditional owners and communities in the Clarence Valley should be very wary of home-grown and foreign lobbyists, investment consortiums and land developers "IndyWatch Feed Northcoast"

On 15 August 2015 four representatives of United Land Councils Ltd & United First Peoples Syndications Pty Ltd gave evidence before the NSW Legislative Council General Purpose Standing Committee No. 6 INQUIRY INTO CROWN LAND.

One of the projects put forward to the Inquiry by those representatives was the industrialisation of the Clarence River estuary by way of construction of a mega freight port.

The following tale involves a number of persons or firms associated with the aforementioned  companies and this mega port & rail project, including Nick Petroulias aka Michael Felson aka Nick Peterson.

The Newcastle Herald, 21 October 2017:

HE WAS brash and brilliant. A young lawyer from Melbourne who became a rising star of the public service, hand-picked to serve as assistant tax commissioner by the age of 30.

That was until a spectacular fall from grace left Nick Petroulias jailed for using his plum position to do the very thing he was tasked with stamping out: defrauding the tax office.

Since his release from prison in 2010, Mr Petroulia...


"The Sociopath Next Door" "IndyWatch Feed National"

"The Sociopath Next Door"
by Martha Stout
"Imagine - if you can - not having a conscience, none at all, no feelings of guilt or remorse no matter what you do, no limiting sense of concern for the well-being of strangers, friends, or even family members. Imagine no struggles with shame, not a single one in your whole life, no matter what kind of selfish, lazy, harmful, or immoral action you had taken. And pretend that the concept of responsibility is unknown to you, except as a burden others seem to accept without question, like gullible fools.

Now add to this strange fantasy the ability to conceal from other people that your psychological makeup is radically different from theirs. Since everyone simply assumes that conscience is universal among human beings, hiding the fact that you are conscience-free is nearly effortless. You are not held back from any of your desires by guilt or shame, and you are never confronted by others for your cold-bloodedness. The ice water in your veins is so bizarre, so completely outside of their personal experience, that they seldom even guess at your condition. In other words, you are completely free of internal restraints, and your unhampered liberty to do just as you please, with no pangs of conscience, is conveniently invisible to the world.

You can do anything at all, and still your strange advantage over the majority of people, who are kept in line by their consciences will most likely remain undiscovered. How will you live your life? What will you do with your huge and secret advantage, and with the corresponding handicap of other people (conscience)? The answer will depend largely on just what your desires happen to be, because people are not all the same. Even the profoundly unscrupulous are not all the same. Some people - whether they have a conscience or not - favor the ease of inertia, while others are filled with dreams and wild ambitions. Some human beings ar...


"Psychopathic Predators, Human Prey" Part 1 "IndyWatch Feed National"

"Psychopathic Predators, Human Prey" Part 1
by Maasanova

Note: The following is largely extracted from two articles: "Twilight of the Psychopaths," by Dr. Kevin Barrett and "The Trick of the Psychopath's Trade" by Silvia Cattori.

"I make the effort to share this information because it gives me, at last, a plausible answer to a long-unanswered question: Why, no matter how much intelligent goodwill exists in the world, is there so much war, suffering and injustice? It doesn't seem to matter what creative plan, ideology, religion, or philosophy great minds come up with, nothing seems to improve our lot. Since the dawn of civilization, this pattern repeats itself over and over again. The answer is that civilization, as we know it, is largely the creation of psychopaths. All civilizations, our own included, have been built on slavery and mass murder. Psychopaths have played a disproportionate role in the development of civilization, because they are hard-wired to lie, kill, cheat, steal, torture, manipulate, and generally inflict great suffering on other humans without feeling any remorse, in order to establish their own sense of security through domination. The inventor of civilization - the first tribal chieftain who succes...


A closer peek at the Saddle Road residential proposal "IndyWatch Feed Northcoast"

Echonetdaily understands that the planning proposal study area of 315 hectares covers a much larger area than what is proposed for residential use, meaning that cane fields for example will not be rezoned residential. This is owing to a range of elements such as access options. 475 dwellings are proposed. Image from Saddle Road Planning Proposal.

An invitation by councillors for Saddle Road landowners to lodge a large planning proposal for affordable housing still has many neighbours offside; they claim it is not transparent and does not conform to the Community Charter for Good Planning.

As reported last week, Saddle Road landowners propose 475 dwellings on the ridgeline between Mullum and Brunswick Heads. The planning proposal and the staff recommendation were removed from the December 14 Council meeting by senior staff owing to allow more consultation between planning staff and the proponents and the objectors.

The staff recommendation is to refuse the application, in part owing to its falling outside planning strategies.

Yet the proposed development was favoured and singled out by Greens mayor Simon Richardson and supporting councillors at the June 22 meeting; they voted to invite an affordable housing planning proposal for Saddle Road land known as Area 17.

And then later in September, councillors invited all Shire landowners to submit an expression of interest (EOI) for affordable housing proposals in both existing and potential future urban areas, yet Council only requested conceptual proposals only at this stage, not a planning proposal.

The Bruns Eco Village (BEV) affordable housing/intentional community proposal falls under the rezoning request, along with four other large land titles that cover between 52 and 112 hectares.

According to two landowners of larger lots, 20 per cent of the total subsequently residentially z...


They grow them big in the Far North! Police discover five-metre long python blocking road in Queensland "IndyWatch Feed National"

Police in Australia joked they were "going to need a bigger ladder" after encountering a five-metre long python blocking the road. Queensland Police officers encountered the amethystine python, also known as a scrub python, near the small community of Wujul Wujul, located 345km north of Cairns. Officers on a night patrol had to wait for the slithering reptile to cross the road, giving them enough time to capture a photo which has racked up over 50,000 shares and likes on Facebook. "They breed them big in the Far North!" explained Senior Constable Heidi Marek.


Bitcoin Price Watch; Heres Whats On Tonight "IndyWatch Feed National"

The bitcoin space is taking something of a hit at the moment and price is suffering as a result. Things arent moving as long-term holders might like them to and the implications of this longer term are pretty uncertain; can we hold above the recent broken levels and in turn can things recover above and beyond the 20,000 level that looked almost certain to be taken out just a week or two ago.

These are all questions that we dont know the answer to, of course, and that were going to have to wait to find out.

As we noted this morning, however, none of this matters for our intraday strategy. Weve got a standard approach to the markets and it doesnt matter whether price goes up or down. So long as things are moving and weve got our predefined levels in place, weve got a chance to profit from wherever things go.

So, with this all said, lets get said levels set up.

As ever, take a quick look at the chart below before we get started so as to get an idea whats on and where we are looking to jump in and out according to the rules of our intraday strategy.

The chart is a one-minute candlestick chart and its got our key range overlaid in green.

As the chart shows, then, the range we are looking at this evening is defined by support to the downside at 17901 and resistance to the upside at 18174. If we see a close above resistance, well get in long towards an upside target of 18225. Conversely, a close below support will have us in short towards a downside target of 17820.

A stop loss on both trades will ensure were taken out for just a small loss if things turn against us.

Lets see what happens.

Charts courtesy of Trading View



Billinudgels big heart helps Tanya and family "IndyWatch Feed Northcoast"

El Chapo, Choppy Chop and Tanya together at the fundraiser. Photo supplied

Aslan Shand

Tanya McIntyre (nee West) is struggling with advanced cancer and she, her husband Scotty and daughter Shanise were overwhelmed by the love and support shown by their local Billinudgel community on Sunday December 10.

People realised that we were struggling and Kenny at the pub and other key members of the community came together to organise the fundraiser, said Scotty.

It was something else  the community and businesses are still recovering from the floods and this community just kept giving. 

There were young people here, families with mortgages, and they managed to raise $17,000 out of their own back pockets.

Having grown up in the Brunswick Heads area, Tanya has always lived around Billinudgel and is well known and loved in the community.

Tanya has been a longtime employee at the hotel and a close personal friend, said publican Ken Barnham.

Her daughter Shanise and Jodie, Tanyas sister, really did a lot of the leg work to bring it together.

The money raised will be used to pay for Tanyas radiation treatment and has taken a great weight off Scotty, Shanise and Tanyas shoulders.

The post Billinudgels big heart helps Tanya and family appeared first on Echonetdaily.


African sea turtles dinosaur age journey to Europe "IndyWatch Feed National"

This video says about itself:

The ancient turtle that migrated from Africa to Europe

New research has traced the incredible journey of an extinct traveler turtle that migrated to Europe from Africa 95 million years ago.

At the time, Earths continents were much different than they are today; Africa and South America joined to make up part of the ancient continent Gondwana, while Europe, Asia, and North America formed Laurasia.

A new study has found that these ancient river turtles crossed into Laurasia much earlier than previously thought, where they adapted from their freshwater lifestyle to survive in the coastal marine environment.

From the Scientific News Service (Sinc) in Spain:

The incredible journey of the first African tortoise that arrived in Europe

December 18, 2017

About 95 million years ago, a river turtle adapted to marine environments and made an extraordinary migration from the ancient continent of Gondwana, which grouped what is now Africa and South America, to Laurasia, the Northern continental mass of which Europe, Asia and North America were part. Its remains, found in the town of Algora in Guadalajara and in Portugal, are the evidence of the first known dispersal event of a turtle from Gondwana.

The researchers themselves call the turtle traveler, but the journey of Algorachelus peregrinus, as they have called it, did not start in Algora (Guadalajara-Spain), where it was recently discovered, but in Africa during the Upper Cretaceous.

It is not just any turtle, but, as the name suggests, it gives us the necessary clues to describe how a successful migration occurred about 95 million years ago; this journey would have drastic consequences, explains Adn Prez -Garca, researcher in the Evolutionary Biology Group of the UNED, the National University of Distance Education...


Free play at preschool leads to critical thinking in later life "IndyWatch Feed Northcoast"

Ms Gold says she is thankful for the support, courage and the trust that came from the community. Photo Jeff Dawson

Paul Bibby

The little moments of imagination in action have always been the most cherished for Ellon Gold throughout her 30-year teaching career.

Its when the children use the environment to create what they need like putting a cloth over a box and pretending its a computer thats what I really love, Ms Gold says.

When you see children in self-structured free play like that, you know that its going to metamorphose into critical thinking later in life.

Thats so important and I dont think we value it enough.

For three decades, Ms Gold has been a valued member of the Steiner teaching community, the last nine years of which were spent at the helm of the Periwinkle preschool in Byron Bay.

But the Ocean Shores resident has decided to retire from teaching and has just left her role as director at Periwinkle.

I wont say its always been easy but its also been a gift, she says.

I really found my lifes work when I went to Steiner. I really felt it was where I was meant to be. The support and the courage and the trust that have come from the community, not just at the start but year after year, has been amazing,

After completing her Steiner training in 1985 and then a teaching degree in Wollongong, Ms Gold worked at the Stanford Valley Steiner School in Brisbane before joining Periwinkle in 2009.  

She says she has seen many changes in her time as a teacher, particularly the experience of parenting.

In past times, parents were a bit more protected, she says.

There werent so many outside influences.

But Ms Golds teaching philosophy has remained the same.



Rail returns to the Bay "IndyWatch Feed Northcoast"

Solar train conductor Sheree Etteridge clips a ticket. Photo Jeff Dawson

Train and public transport enthusiasts celebrated the start of a train service from Belongil into Byrons CBD on Saturday.

The train can accommodate 100 people and covers three kilometres. A limited service will operate until the full schedule commences in January.

The train leaves on the hour (running from 10am till 5pm) from North Beach, near the Sun Bistro in Sunrise.

From Byron, it leaves 15 minutes past the hour, running from 10.15am till 5.15pm.

There will be no service Sunday December 24 till Tuesday December 26.

For more info visit

The post Rail returns to the Bay appeared first on Echonetdaily.


JUSTICE FOR SALE! The Real Costs of Going to Jail "IndyWatch Feed National"

The Victorian Government has announced it will spend $345 million over three years on almost 500 new cells to deal with the states overcrowded jail system and increasing prison population. True Crime News Weekly correspondent Gary Johnston wonders whether throwing hundreds of millions of dollars into a failed system is a wise move. * *

Continue reading


Agnotology in Vaccine Problems Non-Placebo Placebos "IndyWatch Feed National"

By Pixie Seymour

Agnotology = Culturally induced ignorance by the publication of inaccurate or misleading scientific data

The biggest and most disgusting agnotology problem with so-called science that is relied on for safety in vaccines, is that in most of the human trials, the new vaccine is tested against what is nearly a whole other vaccine! New vaccines are not tested against the usual placebo of saline. By not using an inert substance for a placebo, that is violating the baseline of nothing in their research studies.

With the MMR for example, a major study was done in Finland (1986) with 581 sets of twins. This double blind placebo study tested the reactions from the combined MMR vaccine. This study is relied on by the Australian government as evidence that the MMR vaccine is safe. The results looked good, IF you skip over what the placebo actually was. The so-called placebo group received the same product including neomycin and phenol-red indicator but without the viral antigens, i.e.

The placebo group received a product with neomycin, sorbitol and hydrolysed gelatine, Medium 199 (vitamins, amino acids, foetal bovine serum, sucrose, glutamate), Minimum Essential Medium, phosphate, recombinant human albumin, chick embryo cell culture and WI-38 human diploid lung fibroblasts. Lets pull that statement apart to see what they meant and exactly what that placebo was. Firstly the same product We are talking about the MMR vaccine being used as the placebo, but without the viral antigens. Lets then look at the other ingredients in the MMR that were administered in the placebo.

  • Live attenuated rubella virus propagated in WI-38 human diplo...


Purslane? Yes, please! "IndyWatch Feed Nsw"

Common purslane turns out to be exceedingly tasty on a toasted sandwich


The Holy Spirit what the Holy Spirit means to me part 13 The Holy Spirit and the founder of Hillsong the pedophile Frank Houston "IndyWatch Feed National"

When I started attending Hillsong in 1981 in Sydney, Australia, I was perplexed by what was going on. I didnt travel to Australia from the country of my birth and upbringing, New Zealand, to be involved in Hillsong. I was in Sydney, and I went there to check it out because a friend of mine at the time from New Zealand, Paul Cain, was attending there.

Hillsong was called Christian Life Centre Darlinghurst or CLC Darlinghurst for short in those days. Or CLC Darlo, even shorter. Australians like to abrogate and shorten names, terms and sentences. For example, Im gonna check-out me mates this arvo, means Im going to visit my friends this afternoon. Every nation and people-group has their sayings and terms. Me mates is a bit bogan (think cockney or red-neck) and this is how many people talk in Western Sydney where Brian Houston has been so successful. I dont think Brian could have pulled the wool over the eyes of educated Sydney people, and robbed them of their cash, in the way he has done in Western Sydney.

Now Hillsong is more sophisticated, people have a lot more trouble figuring out what is going on at Hillsong. Many are deceived and join them.



Hillsong founder the child rapist Pastor Frank Houston. Part One. Frank Houstons pedophile activities. "IndyWatch Feed National"


Rev William Francis Frank Houston.  Founder of Hillsong Church. Over 400 boy sex abuse victims of Frank Houston. Self-confessed pedophile. Confessed to lifelong secret child sexual abuse of little boys, male preteens and male teenagers. But mainly little boys aged 7 to 11. Frank Houston The worst Pentecostal pastor since the day of Pentecost 2000 years ago. A Son of Lucifer. Frank Houstons eyes are black like Lucifers.

Note of 27 October 2017

Pastor Brian Houston, the current head pastor of Hillsong Global Church is to face pedophile protection charges some time in the future from the Australian Police and Authorities.

Ive edited the article below reflecting current up to date information.


This article and its updates

This article outlines the history of Pastor Frank Houston, the founder of Hillsong, and his secret sexual abuse of hundreds of little boys, male pre-teens and male teens over five or more decades possibly for 70 years if you include his grandchildren and rent boys (underage male prostitutes).

This site is the most authoritative and comprehensive site on Hillsong corruption, Houston corruption and Hillsong pedophilia.

This article was first published on this site on 9 September 2012 p...


The WWII baby-in-a-box mystery: Genetics testing and detective work find abandoned baby's family, over 70 years later "IndyWatch Feed National"

Robin was 13 when he found out he was adopted. Later he was told he had been abandoned - left in a box on London's Oxford Street. Now 74, he has spent most of his life wondering who left him and why. But thanks to DNA, and the dogged detective work of one of his daughters, he finally has some answers. When Robin King discovered he was adopted he ran away from home. He had been snooping around his parents' bedroom when he came across his adoption papers in a holdall. He fled to a friend's house and the pair then cycled from London to Southend where they slept in a tent until they were picked up by the police a few days later. "My friend's mum had to pay for us to come back on the train," Robin recalls. At home, no-one ever mentioned the subject of his adoption. "I was afraid of raising it as I didn't want any confrontation. I think it affected me deep down," he says.


Philippine Navy chief relieved "IndyWatch Feed National"

Philippine Navy Vice Admiral Ronald Mercado is supposed to retire in March 2018. Facebook/Philippine Navy

MANILA, Philippines (Second update 3:47 p.m.)

Vice Admiral Ronald Mercado was relieved from his post as the Philippine Navy Flag Officer-in-Command on Tuesday. .

Rear Admiral Robert Empedrad was installed as acting Flag Officer-in-Command during the change of command ceremony held this morning.
Empedrad, the former Deputy Chief of Staff for Retirees and Reservists Affairs, replaced Mercado who is supposed to retire in March 2018.
Armed Forces of the Philippines spokesperson Edgar Arevalo said the reason for the change of command will be explained in due time.


A Few Thoughts "IndyWatch Feed National"

Range Training

Sometimes training doesn't take (VIDEO HERE), even at the Fort Worth, TX Police Dept.

Typical Muslim Activity

(Sweden) Muslim migrants gang-raped a 17-year-old girl, then poured lighter fluid in her vagina and set it on fire. The answer of the Swedish government is to caution women not to go out at night. It's Sweden, they can do what they want. In another place you might have people making head shots of military age Muslim males who are accosting women. Of course, I would NEVER encourage that. And in a land of law abiding people where firearms are illegal, it would never happen. They're rely on the police to protect honest, law abiding people from the savages that their government let into the country.

Chinese Patroling

On 18 December, the Japanese Ministry of Defense (MOD) Joint Staff issued a press release on the flights of six Chinese People's Liberation Army (PLA) aircraft near southern Japan. 

The map graphic was released by the Japanese Ministry of
Defense on 18 December. The flight paths
are as plotted by the Air Self-Defense Force.


All The Skulls! "IndyWatch Feed National"

image by sean fennessey.

image by sean fennessey.

image by sean fennessey.

Beginning december 15, 2017, the inaugural National Gallery of Victoria Triennial will open its doors to the work of over 100 creatives from 32 countries. Among the artists, designers, technologists, architects, animators, and beyond is Australian hyper-realist sculptor Ron Mueck, who is presenting his largest ever work to date. Mass is an installation of 100 individual human skull forms piled up on the gallery floor, each which engage with the architecture of the site.

Amazing! I want those as furniture. You can read and see much more at design boom. You can see more of Ron Muecks amazing work here this is one of my faves:

Angel, 1997
Mixed media
Figure: 110 x 87 x 81 cm / 43 1/2 x 34 1/4 x 31 7/8 in
Stool: 60 x 40 x 38 cm / 23 5/8 x 15 3/4 x 15 in.


The Meme That Defines The Ruination Of Childrens Lives "IndyWatch Feed National"

By Catherine J. Frompovich

As the winter holidays draw near, especially the magical time known as Christmas, children become the main focus, and rightfully so!  Why?  Because the reason for the season was the birth of a child over two thousand years ago, which impacted lives of billions around the world to the point where that life now has been repudiated as politically incorrect.  Nothing can be further from the facts since that young life went on to teach love, compassion and forgiveness.  However, the Nazarenes life from the very beginning was fraught with terror against him. A bureaucrat named Herod, who wanted Baby Jesus dead, [Matthew 2:16] issued a decree with orders, plus implemented a work force to kill all young males under two years of age around the ancient town of Bethlehem in Palestine, a place where the Census of Quirinius was taking place and to which Mary and Joseph traveled to be compliant with the law.

There seems to be uncanny parallels regarding childrens lives being negatively impacted by bureaucrats at various times during recorded history, e.g., the Nazis death camps which included children.  Currently and especially in the USA, Australia and other forceful nations, an unwitting campaign against childrens lives comes under the unfortunate medical guise of preventing disease.  Again, nothing can be outrageously misleading when, as a result of the explosive increase in mandated childhood vaccines, childrens health and lives have been impacted negatively.

That reality...


What is Ethereum and how is it different from Bitcoin? "IndyWatch Feed National"

What is Ethereum and how is it different from Bitcoin? by Vincent Briatore, CEO QUORA Originally Answered: How does Ethereum differ from Bitcoin technically? Click here to sign up for The Daily Coin FREE newsletter covering precious metals, war, health and prepper suggestions! Ok, Lets...

The post What is Ethereum and how is it different from Bitcoin? appeared first on The Daily Coin.


Alex Tsakiris interviews Stanton Friedman on Jacques Vallee and UFOs/Consciousness "IndyWatch Feed National"

Now, when we talk about augmented reality, there are three important use cases that we think about... --Mark Zuckerberg, CEO Facebook That's Facebook's CEO, Mark Zuckerberg, spreading Facebook's Brave-New-World-Gospel re the merging of consciousness and computing. He's actually taking his foot off the pedal a little bit with this group of developers. If you search for some of his more freewheeling discussions he straight-up talks about mind reading, telepathy and even mind control. It's all part of Facebook's glorious future. And, you know what? He might be right. Skeptiko has always been about controversial science and spirituality related to consciousness, but if we're going to be honest, we have to accept that technology has a role to play in cutting through some of the philosophical bullshit that sometimes dominates these discussions. I mean, when mind reading is another app you can download on your iPhone 20, some of the "spiritual" questions surrounding consciousness will be answered. Same goes for UFOs. The main question that's dominated the UFO field for the last 10 years is whether we should remain focused on nuts-and-bolts technology related questions/issues, or shift the focus to experiences and experiencers. Jacques Vallee has been a leading thinker in this area linking modern UFO encounters extended consciousness phenomena. I've covered this topic in my recent interview with him and my interview with Robbie Graham. But since we had not heard from anyone in the nuts-and-bolts camp, I decided to turn to Stanton Friedman for this episode.


Massive 'balloon' of hot rock is building up under America's Northeast "IndyWatch Feed National"

A vast mass of hot rock is welling up underneath Vermont and extending into other subterranean regions below New England, new research shows. Scientists used a network of thousands of seismic measurement devices in the largest geological study of its kind, detecting the enormous blob upwelling under Vermont, New Hampshire, and Massachusetts - and possibly elsewhere. "The upwelling we detected is like a hot air balloon, and we infer that something is rising up through the deeper part of our planet under New England," says geophysicist Vadim Levin from Rutgers University - New Brunswick.


Young Earth creationist argumentative strategy "IndyWatch Feed National"

I came across this interesting blog post by someone named Jaybird (whose gender is not specified and I will refer to as a he) who had been a young-Earth creationist. He was taught that it was vitally important to defend the idea of a young Earth because that was based on a biblical chronology and if that was taken as metaphorical, then that would open the floodgates for thinking that everything, even the resurrection of Jesus, as metaphorical, and that would be the end of everything. He describes the rhetorical tricks that he was taught to enable people like him to defend that position and get the better of their more-scientifically-minded critics.

[T]hey trained a bunch of kids how to argue in service of Young Earth Creationism and they gave us a very interesting (to my mind, anyway) bunch of tools to use when we went out into the world to spread the word.

The main thing that they taught us was that most people dont know a whole lot about biology. Most people just take what is taught them and they regurgitate it for a test in the classroom without ever thinking about what theyve regurgitated.

We had to learn, by memory, the differences between (deep breath) Piltdown Man and Nebraska Man and Java Man and Peking Man and we had to have these facts at our fingertips. (Keep in mind: This was before Smartphones were a thing.) We had to be able to argue this stuff at a moments notice because . . .

Well, the people we were arguing against usually werent that well-versed in it. They took a year of biology in high school and they probably memorized stuff just long enough to get past the test and then promptly forgot it.

Ask them questions about how come your professors never told you about Nebraska Man? (and never mind that the answer was they had to cover everything from the Krebs Cycle to Photosynthesis to Reproduction to a section involving dissecting a (not yet extinct) fetal pig and there wasnt really time for that sort of thing if there were only 175 days of school.)

One interesting thing was that they were told that they were not interested in their critic so much as whoever was observing the exchange. (This is something that I agree with. It is the audience that you should target, not the person you are arguing with.) They were taught to try and get under the skin of their opponents and make them angry. Why? Because science and scientists are supposed to be cool and rational. If you can remain cool and calm and your opponent got angry and emotional, then you came out appearing as the scientist in the eyes of observers.



Prayer and Meditation for Wednesday, December 20, 2017 The virgin shall conceive and bear a son and shall name him Emmanuel "IndyWatch Feed National"

Wednesday of the Third Week of Advent
Lectionary: 196

Image may contain: 1 person

Paintings of Mary of Nazareth, mother of Jesus. The Annunciation, by Dante Gabriel Rossetti

Reading 1 IS 7:10-14

The LORD spoke to Ahaz:
Ask for a sign from the LORD, your God;
let it be deep as the nether world, or high as the sky!
But Ahaz answered,
I will not ask! I will not tempt the LORD!
Then Isaiah said:
Listen, O house of David!
Is it not enough for you to weary men,
must you also weary my God?
Therefore the Lord himself will give you this sign:
the virgin shall conceive and bear a son,
and shall name him Emmanuel.

Responsorial Psalm PS 24:1-2, 3-4AB, 5-6

R. (see 7c and 10b) Let the Lord enter; he is the king of glory.
The LORDs are the earth and its fullness;
the world and those who dwell in it.
For he founded it upon the seas
and established it upon the rivers.
R. Let the Lord enter; he is the king of glory.
Who can ascend the mountain of the LORD?
or who may stand in his holy place?
He whose hands are sinless, whose heart is clean,
who desires not what is vain.
R. Let the Lord enter; he is the king of glory.
He shall receive a blessing from the LORD,
a reward from God his savior.
Such is the race that seeks for him,
that seeks the face of the God of Jacob.
R. Let the Lord enter; he is the king of glory.


R. Alleluia, alleluia.
O Key of David,
opening the gates of Gods eternal Kingdom:.....


Saakashvili Refuses To Be Questioned By Ukraines Prosecutor-General "IndyWatch Feed National"

Mikheil Saakashvili speaks with protesters in their tent camp near of Parliament building in Kiev (picture-alliance/NurPhoto/S. Kharchenko)

Former-President of Georgia Mikheil Saakashvili

Last Updated: December 18, 2017 14:58 GMT

Ukrainian opposition leader Mikheil Saakashvili appeared at the Prosecutor-Generals Office in Kyiv on December 18 but refused to answer questions from investigators.

Ukrainian authorities have accused the former Georgian president and ex-Ukrainian governor of abetting an alleged criminal group led by former President Viktor Yanukovych, who fled to Russia after his ouster in February 2014. They also have suggested that protests led by Saakashvili are part of a Russian plot against Ukraine.

Saakashvili has strongly denied all the charges.

Outside the Prosecutor-Generals Offic....


Another piece that places the blame squarely on the science establishment, as it should "IndyWatch Feed National"

For years weve been seeing women rise through the training ranks of academic science, experiencing fearsome attrition, but we said that men were also being weeded out by grad school and post-doc positions and the harsh competition to land a tenure-track position. And then we noticed that a smaller proportion of women were actually getting those jobs, so we mostly shrugged our shoulders and said, well, its a painful grind to get there, so it must be fair (how intolerable it would be if we all suffered unnecessarily, after all), and so the ladies must simply be less capable of handling the rigors of a career in science said rigors being the same obstacles that the Men of Science created and put in place. We talked about estrogen and nurturers as if those were inimical to doing science, instead of irrelevant (although I try to imagine a culture of science that were more nurturing and supportive and cooperative, and cant help but think that that would be so much better). We try to pretend that hey, these differences in outcomes are purely biological or genetic or hormonal, and gosh, _()_/, maybe well answer the question of how it happens later, if we just throw more men at the analysis.

I think the question has been answered repeatedly. People have written at length about the answer. It seems that every month theres another piece that summarizes the real source of the problem the latest, and its a good one, is in Marie Claire magazine. The answer, as always, is the same.

Male scientists are the product of a misogynistic culture, and they like to pretend that theyre objective, self-aware participants in that culture, even when theyre oblivious, and see exploitation of women as their due. Its droit du seigneur for the 21st century. Were not going to fix it until more men wake up, or, since thats unlikely, more women crack the ranks of science and slap the men awake.

Or we can just wait for the old male scientists to die off.


Freedom of Religion under Attack? "IndyWatch Feed National"


The attack upon religion in Australia is not what one would call a direct assault. It is also not unique to just Australia. This is simply the way prosecutors expand the envelope of power. They look at a single issue and seek to address that issue alone. They rarely look at the implications beyond their immediate objective.

Take FACTA in the USA. The objective is to catch people avoiding taxes by putting their profits offshore. They begin with that assumption and ignore the fact that NOT everyone doing business offshore is to hide taxes. They then obstruct businesses from expanding globally. In my own case, despite the fact that we do business around the globe, because I am an American, I cannot open an account anywhere outside the USA because nobody wants to deal with the FACTA reporting back to the USA. My only solution is to go public since an American citizen can no longer own and operate a multinational business privately. Here we have a law designed to get tax evaders, but it blocks the legitimate business from operating. The only exception is the multinational corporation.

This is the entire problem with regulation. In the case of Australia, they may have a noble goal and demand that religion should abolish celibacy and report child abuse crimes confessed to priests to be able to punish people. But such noble goals end up altering the entire structure of a faith. Once you make one exception, you open the door for all crimes.

The same thing with the Muslim secs that demand women wear the full burka. Yes, on the one hand, anyone could put on a burka and hide from the public. So how do you deal with this? The Australian Senator Pauline Hanson entered the Senate in a burka to demonstrate the point. You can outlaw a burka and effectively tell them to leave your country or go to jail. Is that what you tell Christians if they do not report specific crimes to the State? Once you take that first step for on...


"F-aaaaark!" the crow calls in the skies over Canberra "IndyWatch Feed Northcoast"

Its hard to believe that Australian Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull and his Cabinet were not three sheets to the wind when they drew up this short list..

ABC News, 18 December 2017:

After more than a year of speculation, the ABC has confirmed Attorney-General George Brandis will leave Parliament to take up the post of Australia's High Commissioner to the United Kingdom.

The move will be announced as part of a broader pre-Christmas reshuffle of Malcolm Turnbull's Cabinet, to be detailed tomorrow.

Among the contenders to replace Senator Brandis as attorney-general are Social Services Minister Christian Porter and Employment Minister Michaelia Cash.

And I thought the Turnbull Government ministerial line up couldn't get any worse........

Australian Prime Minister Malcolm Bligh Turnbull, media release, 19  December 2017:

I have refreshed my Ministry to reflect the priorities and values of my Government.

The Ministry features two new, major portfolios: one focused on job creation, the other on national security. This reflects my Governments determination to provide opportunity and security for e...

Tuesday, 19 December


MACKAY Noise complaint leads to court appearance, Eimeo "IndyWatch Feed National"

MACKAY December 19, 2017 at 12:03PM ,

Noise complaint leads to court appearance, Eimeo

December 19, 2017 at 12:03PM ,

A 28-year-old female Eimeo resident will be appearing in the Mackay Magistrates Court following an alleged incident of disobeying a police direction linked to an excessive noise complaint. Its alleged that police attended at a Gans Court, Eimeo address at about 3.45 pm on December 18 in response to

, ,

user1ouenvdy crimeviewqld , ,

Filed under: Uncategorized


Top 4 Anti-LGBT Myths Of 2017 "IndyWatch Feed National"

In a year of nonstop crisis, scandal, violence, and political unrest, it is easy to understand how many people across the country feel on edge. As we well know, fear is often an effective tool to motivate the masses in a desired direction.

LGBT media would have us all believe that LGBT people are in a near-constant state of danger in the United States and under assault from the police, Republicans, and the president himself. But a closer inspection tells us this simply isnt true. Lets take a look at the top anti-LGBT myths of 2017.

1. 2017 Was the Deadliest Year for Transgender People

If you have been paying attention to the media, you will have noticed a series of headlines stating, Transwoman is the 17th19th22ndmurdered so far this year! The dramatic statement with an escalating victim count gives the impression that transgender people, specifically transwomen of color, are being intentionally targeted for hate crimes across the country. The panic of each news story validates feelings of victimhood and fear and causes those scrolling by to believe in an epidemic of violence.

This narrative inspires government policy and initiative to curb the violence and demands to demonstrate intolerance for hate crimes. In September, Rep. Keith Ellison introduced a congressional resolution titled Recognizing the violence and other challenges faced by transgender women of color in America.

Ellison and several other congressional leaders signed a letter to Attorney General Jeff Sessions in March pleading for him to do something about transgender murders. The letter stated, We write to urge you to investigate the recent murders of multiple African-American transgender women around the United States. Transgender women are over four times more likely to be murdered than the general population of all women, and 2017 is on track to be the most deadly year for transgender women, particularly those who are African-American.

In 2017 has been the best year for trans people; its also been the worst, Salon wrote, According to sociologist Nielan Barnes, a professor at California State University, Long Beach, the very visibility and increasing acceptance that helped lift Roem [the first openly transgender to win state office in America] and others into office may lie at that heart of what can feel like a deadly backlash. More attention is directed to the LGBT population, and transgender individuals, because theyre non-gender-conforming, and theyre far more visible, tend to...


Its High Time To Cut U.S. Funding For This Troubled International Cancer Agency "IndyWatch Feed National"

Since Donald Trumps election, international bureaucracies that receive U.S. tax dollars have been on notice that our unchecked government largess to them is about to end. The World Health Organization is one example of a bloated, inefficient agency that is ripe for reform.

As Jeff wrote in June, WHO is plagued by persistent wasteful spending, utter disregard for transparency, pervasive incompetence, and failure to adhere to even basic democratic standards. The United States has failed to hold the WHO accountable for the nearly $2 billion in U.S. funding WHO receives each year.

WHOs new director-general is Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus, an Ethiopian doctor who served as a top official in that countrys ruling Marxist government. In October, Ghebreyesus laughably appointed now-deposed Zimbabwean dictator Robert Mugabe as a good will ambassador. (He later rescinded the appointment amid widespread condemnation by member states and donors.) According to an Associated Press investigation earlier this year, WHO spends as much on travel expenses each year as it does on programs to fight AIDS, malaria, and tuberculosis combined.

Congress has recently begun asking oversight questions about potential misconduct at the International Agency for Research on Cancer, a WHO affiliate based in Lyon, France. But IARC has been snubbing its nose at requests for information. Now, the committee doing the investigation, the House Committee on Science, Space, and Technology, is threatening to cut off federal funding until it gets answers. House leadership must recognize that this move comes not a moment too soon, and it must be prepared to back up the threat if necessary.

Cancer, Cancer Everywhere

IARC convenes a working group each year to evaluate the cancer-causing potential of chemicals, food, personal habits, and environmental factors. Out of the more than 1,000 hazards IARC has analyzed over the past 50 years, only one has been deemed non-carcinogenic.

IARCs alarmist reports occasionally smack of propaganda intended to advance a wider political agenda. As we wrote in November 2015, the agencys flawed study that said bacon and red meat might cause cancer was likely tied to the United Nations climate change goal to slow global meat consumption because farm animals purportedly contribute to global warming. Others panned IARC for doing a poor job of communicating risk by failing to explain the difference between absolute and relative risk.

While risk communication should be a core competency of IARC, they are now in hot water for something that suggests a more si...


Bitcoin Price Watch; Riding Out The Uncertainty "IndyWatch Feed National"

There exists a substantial degree of uncertainty in the bitcoin space right now. Things have been pretty volatile over the last few days as far as the bitcoin price is concerned and exactly how the fundamentals of the space scaling, transaction fees, that sort of thing are going to play out going forward is the question everybody wants to know the answer to.

From a long-term holding perspective, this makes things pretty tough.

With that said, of course, we have maintained our intraday strategy from as far back as when price was trading in and around a couple of hundred dollars and just because there is correction risk right now doesnt mean we are going to alter the way we approach things.

So, lets keep our cool and push forward into the European morning session today. As ever, take a quick look at the chart below before we get started so as to get an idea where things stand in the bitcoin price right now and where we are looking to get in and out of the markets according to the rules of our intraday strategy.

The chart is a one-minute candlestick chart and it has our primary range overlaid in green.

As the chart shows, the range we are looking at for the session today comes in as defined by support to the downside at 17803 and resistance to the upside at 18318. Thats a pretty wide range so we can be relatively liberal with our risk management placements.

In line with this, if we see a close above resistance, we will enter long towards an immediate upside target of 18400.

Conversely, a close below support will have us in short towards a downside target of 17720. A stop loss on both trades around $20 or so just the other side of the entry will ensure we are taken out of the positions in the event that things turn against us.

Charts courtesy of Trading View



Passenger Medevaced From Carnival Spirit "IndyWatch Feed National"

A Westpac rescue helicopter medevaced a passenger from a Carnival cruise ship off the coast of New South Wales (NSW), Australia yesterday .

The 40-year-old passenger was reportedly suffering a stroke on the Carnival Spirit cruise ship about 50 miles from Port Macquarie on NSW's mid-north coast. The rescue helicopter winched the passenger from the Spirit and airlifted her to Newcastle's John Hunter Hospital for further treatment.

There have been a number of medevacs from the Carnival Spirit cruising around Australia in this past year. 

A Westpac helicopter flown by the NSW Ambulance and Australian Maritime Safety Authority reportedly medevaced a 32-year-old male passenger from the Carnival Spirit a week ago.

Photo credit: Carnival Spirit - coffscoastadvocate.

Carnival Spirit



Donald Trump, a dangerous warmonger "IndyWatch Feed National"

This video from the USA says about itself:

Did Trump Bomb Syria To Boost His Raytheon Stock?

10 April 2017

It sure appears that way Ana Kasparian and John Iadarola, hosts of The Young Turks, discuss.

While the world is dealing with both the implications and the fall-out from President Donald Trumps missile attack on a Syrian airfield on Thursday, the manufacturer of the Tomahawk missile used in the attack is seeing their stock surge which is good news for their investors including the president.

As noted by the Palmer Report, Trump owns stock in Raytheon, which was reported by Business Insider in 2015.

According to Trumps financial disclosure reports filed with the FEC in 2015, his stock portfolio includes investments in technology firms, financial institutions and defense firms, including Raytheon.

On Thursday, Trump launched an attack on the al-Shayrat military airfield, used by both Syrian and Russian military forces, hitting it with 59 Tomahawk missiles manufactured by Raytheon. Trumps attack on Syria was reportedly in response to a deadly gas attack

While the Tomahawk attack did little damage to the airfield with the Syrian air force continuing to launch assaults from the same base on Friday investors, sensing...


Yearning for Learning: Developing Co-op Curriculum "IndyWatch Feed National"

On Sunday 19th November Earthworker organisers, along with members of Earthworker Energy Manufacturing Cooperative and Redgum Cleaners" Cooperative, attended a day-long training and education workshop. Below is a reportback from Mark, an Earthworker Organiser, about the day. SIt has been said that cooperativism is an economic movement that uses education. We can alter that definition, []


Report back: AGM 2018 "IndyWatch Feed National"

The AGM On Saturday the 11th of November, Earthworkers got together for our Annual General Meeting in Narrm/Melbourne. Organisers gave reports about key changes to our rules affirmed at our special general meeting earlier in the year, as well as the progress of the cooperative factory in Morwell, Earthworker Energy, and Earthworker"s newest worker-coop, the []


Chinese diplomats warn students in Australia to stay alert to safety risks "IndyWatch Feed National"

South China Morning Post

Consulate in Melbourne issues alert following string of incidents

PUBLISHED : Tuesday, 19 December, 2017, 2:04pm
UPDATED : Tuesday, 19 December, 2017, 3:08pm


Too many toys, revolutionary flies and Merry Beetle-Mas; Tuesday Boiling Point 19th of December "IndyWatch Feed Nsw"


It is the season of giving, but are you an over the top gift giver or more specifically an over the top toy giver? This week Alex Sentinella explored the science of toys and play. Today we all want more. Perhaps more is harming us. Research from The University of Toledo indicates less toys promote engagement and creativity. The reason? Children have a chance to develop and strengthen their play skills and their attention. Rather than moving from one toy to another toy, in a kind of toy multi-tasking frenzy. At a time when we all want more, we should step back to remember it is a time of giving, but lets not be an over the top toy giver.

Its hot, humid, dry and sunny. This means two things. Sunburn and flies. When the sun comes out, so too do the flies. While we may all be swatting and grabbing the fly spray, these pesky little devils may be the answer to over population. More specifically the Hermetia illucens or black solider fly. Scientists are trying to find alternative methods to sustain our growing population. Large quantities of water and agricultural resources, including land, are needed to support our current foodie lifestyles. The black solider flies may provide the answer and be an alternative source of food for animals, such as pigs and chickens. Do you want to hear more about black solider flies and how they can revolutionise both the agricultural industry and our carbon footprints? Listen to the podcast and hear what this weeks guest Holly Richardson has to say!



Hits of 2017 "IndyWatch Feed Nsw"

My Mum encouraged me to reflect on the year, which has offered many opportunities for the pursuit and development of creative endeavours.

The year opened with a resolution to write a haiku poem each day, a practise that I've maintained and published on my Whimsy blog. In hindsight I can see this decision contributed to the development of an exhibition in Narrandera.

In January I saw my video projections on Wagga Wagga City Council Chambers. It was the second piece I've developed for them and greatly improved from attending a workshop with Yandell Walton they'd run in 2016.

In March I acquitted my second CASP project with a series of workshops at Griffith Pioneer Park Museum's annual Action Day.

In April I was accepted onto the Western Riverina Arts Board and it's great to continue my relationship with the organisation, which began in 2009 when I wrote a letter supporting its establishment and continued when I worked as Project and Communications Officer.

In June I began an international collaboration with UK-based Naviar Records, with a series of workshops to encourage haiku poems for the Crossing Streams exhibition. It wasn't a good start as no one attended but I was able to generate almost a couple of dozen haiku with five of these being distributed by Naviar and also the Disquiet Junto, generating around five hours of original recordings.

This year I continued contributing to Cyclic Defrost and interviewed both Marco from Naviar and Marc from Disquiet, which were opportu...


Major Japanese Automotive Group and Dealerships Embracing Bitcoin "IndyWatch Feed National"

Major Japanese Automotive Group and Dealerships Embracing Bitcoin

One of Japans largest used car automotive groups has partnered with the countrys largest cryptocurrency exchange Bitflyer to enable bitcoin payments at its dealerships across Japan. Starting with 26 dealerships, the company also plans to add bitcoin payments to 550 additional locations.

Also read: South Korea Clarifies Position After Reports of Possible Ban on All Crypto Transactions

Car Dealerships Accept Bitcoin Via Bitflyer

The Tokyo Stock Exchange-listed Idom Inc. engages in the distribution and sale of used cars. Formerly known as Gulliver International Co. Ltd, the company has been operating a network of stores that buy and sell used cars across Japan since 1994.

Major Japanese Automotive Group and Dealerships Embracing BitcoinThe company claims to have the largest market share for the domestic used car market, ranking number one in both sales volume and number of purchases. With a subsidiary in the U.S. and New Zealand, the group also holds a 67% stake in Australian new car dealer operator Buick Holdings Pty Ltd.



President Trump's national security strategy - good news for freedom and Australia. Bad news for Islamists. "IndyWatch Feed National"

This is good news for Australians everywhere. Mad Dog Mattis has already crushed the nascent Islamic Caliphate in Iraq and Syria that was allowed to flourish under Obama. Expect more of the same. And climate change as a threat to US security is gone - kaput. The only threat related...


Australias Foreign Agent Law Is A Smokescreen For Duping The Population "IndyWatch Feed National"

The American-influenced piece of provocative legislation will likely result in an anti-Chinese witch hunt.

The post Australias Foreign Agent Law Is A Smokescreen For Duping The Population appeared first on


Officials Admit Flu Vaccine 2017 Likely Worthless "IndyWatch Feed National"

By Dr. Mercola

Flu season in Australia, located in the Southern Hemisphere, occurs while residents of the U.S. in the Northern Hemisphere are enjoying summer. What happens in Australia is a good bellwether for how bad the flu season in the U.S. will be come winter. And if this holds true for the 2017-2018 flu season, influenza vaccine experts are warning that the U.S. could be in for a doozy.

Writing in the New England Journal of Medicine, health officials with the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases (NIAID), the World Health Organization (WHO) and in Australia described record-high numbers of laboratory-confirmed influenza notifications and outbreaks and higher-than-average numbers of hospitalizations and deaths during Australias 2017 influenza season.1

Whats more, the influenza vaccine, which is still described by public health officials as the best tool to stay healthy during flu season despite years of dismal failures, turned out to be mostly worthless in Australia this year. The predominant circulating flu viruses were influenza A (H3N2), against which the 2017-2018 flu vaccine had a preliminary effectiveness of just 10 percent. Health officials have admitted that this seasons influenza vaccine is likely to be a major flop in the U.S. and other countries in the Northern Hemisphere.

Given that the composition of the 20172018 Northern Hemisphere vaccine is identical to that used in Australia, it is possible that we will experience low vaccine effectiveness against influenza A (H3N2) viruses and a relatively severe influenza season if they predominate, they noted.2 As of early December 2017, more than 7,000 U.S. influenza cases have been lab confirmed, which is more than twice the number confirmed one year ago at this time,3 and 90 percent of states have reported some type of influenza activity.4

Multiple Reasons Why the 2017 Flu Vaccine Is Likely to Fail

There are many reasons why flu vaccines are often ineffective, starting with vaccine mismatches. Each year, health officials make educated guesses as to which influenza virus strains will be circulating in order to include them in that years vaccine.

For the past 12 years, influenza vaccines have failed to work more than half the time....


ABC News - "Of 88 LGBTQI Australian drama characters between 2011/15, only 2 were transgender". "IndyWatch Feed National"

The fact that Victoria Police executed a search warrant on sitting prime minister GILLARD's former office wasn't and isn't news to the ABC. This is.


Another Electoral Victory, Another Reminder of a One-Dimensional India "IndyWatch Feed National"

The aggression of development, the militancy of cultural nationalism and the loud assertion of shiny India have become the dominant discourse, and it is becoming extremely difficult to come out of its shadow.

A vendor arranges masks of Prime Minister Narendra Modi at his shop in Ranchi. Credit: PTI/Files

A vendor arranges masks of Prime Minister Narendra Modi at his shop in Ranchi. Credit: PTI/Files

Success, we know, has many friends. As the BJP wins the elections in Gujarat and Himachal Pradesh, we are bound to witness once again the admirers of Narendra Modi celebrating the euphoric moment, and asserting the irresistible power of the prime minister to prove that there cannot be any alternative to him. From the members of the ruling party to a set of well-educated television anchors, from non-reflexive and obsessively confident spokespersons of the establishment to some academic experts with instantaneous answers to everything, the songs of praise will be loud and dramatic.

Yet, intellectual honesty demands the ability to remain contemplative, ask critical questions and not t...


The World as it Turns in 2018 "IndyWatch Feed National"

QUESTION: Marty; Will you put out a report on what to expect in 2018 as you did in 2017?

Thanks for all you do. It is amazing you do not spam us with emails or try to tell us to hand over our savings to you. Your WEC is the only event I have ever attended where there was no solicitation. Thank you so much. When you said we are all in this together and thats why you do this, I have to tell you, you really brought tears to many eyes.

Keep up the good work


ANSWER: Yes, of course, I will put out the 2018 report as soon as 2017 closes. We are all in this together. Hopefully, when the crash and burn comes, the more of us that stand up and demand change in the right direction will hopefully save the day. If not, I fear for my own posterity. They will never know the freedom I grew up in and the politicians grab more and more power to keep control.

As I warned, 2018 is the start of a brand-new trend of volatility. So this report will be very important. Probably more so than usual.


Talking to the Media : Avoiding the Pitfalls: A Guide for Anarchists "IndyWatch Feed National"

Anarchists have appeared in the corporate media a lot this year, from the first breathless reports on resistance to the rise of the far right to recent appearances in the fashion pages. But not all visibility is good visibility. The Trump regime is looking to popularize an image of anarchists and other activists as a major threat to public order in order to legitimize further crackdowns; fascist organizations have worked hard to capitalize on a media profile of antifa as violent and mysterious in order to draw more people into their ranks. Corporate media outlets like the Wall Street Journal are notorious for catering to the reactionary politics of their owners, while even the most sympathetic media coverage can be useful to law enforcement agencies seeking information to use against activists.

Anarchists and others have long been critical of the function of the media itself. Yet its not always possible to avoid press coverage; in the information age, its spin or be spun. When we act effectively in pursuit of social change, media outlets will seek to represent us to the general publicand unless we can disrupt their narratives, most people will see us through their eyes.

Corporate media is not a neutral space in which we can present ideas the way we can in direct conversation with our coworkers and neighbors. It is a strategic terrain on which the authorities position themselves to legitimate the use of force. To step in front of the cameras is to enter a hostile territory controlled by a class that is determined to use our images against us. If we enable media outlets to depict us as violent, alien, or extremeno matter how strong the arguments we make in favor of our tactics or ideasthe ultimate result will be that the authorities are emboldened to step up their attacks on us.

When we engage with the media, we must not imagine that they will promote our ideas; we have to accomplish that on our own through our own channels. (At best, we can use media appearances to direct people to those channels, like the organization that insisted on only answering interviews in front of a banner displaying their website.) Rather, we are engaging in a subtle war of position in which we seek to prevent the authorities from alienating others from us and to undermine the narratives that legitimize their violence. We must always balance the possible gains...


The story of Laika, who was just a dog "IndyWatch Feed National"

Speaking at a Moscow press conference in 1998, Oleg Gazenko a scientist attached to the mission expressed his regret in sombre and sympathetic tones: The more time passes, the more Im sorry about it. We shouldnt have done it. We did not learn enough from this mission to justify the death of the dog.


Jazz Icon Graeme Lyalls Lawyers Threaten NM With Contempt Over Leaked Catholic Report "IndyWatch Feed National"

New Matilda had been planning to publish a major new feature as part of an ongoing investigative series into the sexual misconduct of men in powerful positions.

The story was slated for publication yesterday, and was based in large part on a leaked copy of a 60-page report produced by the Catholic Church, which had investigated allegations against Graeme Lyall AM an icon in the Australian jazz industry while he was a music teacher at a Catholic school in 2010.

The report produced under the Catholic Churchs Towards Healing protocol, its official mechanism for dealing with allegations related to sexual, emotional and physical abuse is now the subject of a suppression order issued by the District Court of South Australia.

For this reason, the details of the report cannot be disclosed.


As a result, New Matilda is re-investigating the matter over the Christmas break. We hope to finish a new feature independent of the findings of the report by early to mid January.

If you want to assist New Matilda in that investigation, and others (including the ongoing Charles Waterstreet investigation being led by journalist Nina Funnell), you can contribute to our Pozible fundraiser here. We still need to raise $20,000 before December 24, just a few days away.

New Matilda is a small, independent media outlet with limited resources. Were trying hard to do our share of the heavy lifting on this important public interest issue, and we can use all the help we can get. As you can probably imagine, this sort of journalism is extremely costly, time consuming and fraught with legal risk. You can join the movement here.

In the meantime, in line with New Matildas policy of publishing all threats issued against this publication, below is the correspondence received from Mr Lyalls lawyers, along with New Matildas response.

Tomorrow, well be publishing (admittedly more benign) threats from the University of New South Wales against New Matilda, in relation to our ongoing Charles Waterstreet investigation.

FROM: Bill DeGaris, De Garis Lawyers...


Swimmer Skips Laps to Stroll the Changeroom with his Cock Hanging Out "IndyWatch Feed Nsw"


A local swimmer today decided to skip his daily 100-metre swim session and get straight into walking about the pool change room with his doodle hanging out for a few hours.

The man said he may never get in the water again.

My favourite part of training is walking about the change room completely nude after my swim, staring at everyone in the eye, he said. So today, I thought Id cut the swimming part out completely and get straight down to business.

The man is not alone in his love of getting his dong out after a few laps.

I have a coffee, read the newspaper for a bit and strike up a few conversations with the squad kids in the gents before I even think about putting on some undies, he said. Those blokes who awkwardly get changed behind a towel should be banned.

Several local councils have told The Sydney Sentinel theyre thinking of getting rid of the pool from their aquatic facilities altogether, to make way for additional change rooms.


When someone wants to tell you how to live, tell them about the late Kazimierz Piechowski "IndyWatch Feed National"

If you aspire to any influence on the way our country develops you might find a trip to Auschwitz useful. Depressing, chilling and unsettling too. What is the limit, the outer boundary on collective human behaviour? What are we capable of? Auschwitz helped me understand at least those questions a...


Silver: Double-Digit Gains This Year, Then Tulip Mania "IndyWatch Feed National"

Silver: Double-Digit Gains This Year, Then Tulip Mania by Pete Krauth Wall Street Examiner If you want the upside potential of Bitcoin with minimal downside risk, then silver may well be your answer. Click here to sign up for The...

The post Silver: Double-Digit Gains This Year, Then Tulip Mania appeared first on The Daily Coin.


What Should Concern You About The GOP Tax Plan? Its Not The Taxes "IndyWatch Feed National"

Imagine a world where politicians are bought and sold, not by corporations, but by religious activists hell-bent on policing your sex life. A world where thought crimes are punishable under the law.

This dystopian world is currently being pursued by the GOP under the guise of tax reform.

The biggest problem with the Republican tax plan has nothing to do with taxes.

There are many causes for concern in regards to the financial aspects of the GOPs tax reform bill.

According to the non-partisan CBO report, the bill increases the national debt by 1.7 trillion dollars over the next decade.

The bill will also increase wealth inequality between the haves and the have-nots. Disenchantment and increased poverty rates will become this bills legacy.

These effects are frightening and are being exposed by the Democrats and the few Republicans in Congress with a conscience.

These effects, however, can be undone by Congress once the Republicans lose power. Weve all seen disastrous tax plans get thrown to the wayside by new administrations before. The problem everyone should be focused on is one that cant be fixed as easily by a new political party in power.

The most insidious part of the GOP tax bill is a provision pushed for by the religious right for the past 25 years.

Contained in this small section of the bill is a provision that will set the country on the road to Theocracy. The Republican party is attempting to undo the Johnson Amendment.

They want to remove the wall of separation between religion and the state, and they are hoping you dont notice.

What Is The Johnson Amendment?

The amendment, named after Lyndon B. Johnson, passed in 1954 before LBJ became a President. It bars any church or non-profit organization from taking part in political campaigns. These organizations cannot endorse a political candidate in a direct or indirect way.

In other words, theres a tacit agreement among non-profit organizations, churches, and the government: dont interfere with us, and we wont interfere with you.

What Are The Consequences Of Lifting The Amendment?

At first glance, taking away the rule prohibiting churches from taking part in politics isnt a big deal. Why shouldnt a preacher or Imam be able to endorse a candidate?

The answer, as always, is in the money...


The Elusive Search for a Nuclear Waste Repository in Europe: Watch France24's Video "IndyWatch Feed National"

France is searching for a 25 billion solution to the unanswerable question of what to do with its high-level nuclear waste - bury it deep underground.

The post The Elusive Search for a Nuclear Waste Repository in Europe: Watch France24's Video appeared first on


Dutch Freedom Party leader calls for Trump-style Muslim travel ban in Europe "IndyWatch Feed National"

Dutch Freedom party leader tells far-right gathering in Prague Europe should also turn back migrant boats like Australia. European countries should adopt Donald Trump-style travel bans to counter a wave of Islamisation supposedly sweeping the continent, the Dutch anti-immigrant politician Geert Wilders has said. Wilders, the leader of the Netherlands' Freedom party (PVV), made his comments at a gathering of far-right leaders in Prague. He also urged Europe to adopt Australia's tactics in turning back migrant boats and to build new border walls, as Trump has vowed to do along the US frontier with Mexico. Wilders was flanked during his press conference by France's Front National leader, Marine Le Pen, and Tomio Okamura, the leader of the Czech Freedom and Direct Democracy party (SPD), which finished joint third in recent parliamentary election with nearly 11% of the vote.


If the Islamists stop fighting, there will be no more fighting. If Israel stops, there will be no more Israel. "IndyWatch Feed National"

Arabs - always the victims. Exhibit one - Arab girls slapping Israeli soldiers in the face - what restraint those two boys have! Disturbing video shows little Arab girl pushing and slapping Israeli soldiers in the face while cursing at them, yet they don't respond. Israel Breaking (@IsraelBreaking)...


1947: The Year that Changed Everything 70 Years On "IndyWatch Feed National"

1947 roswell UFO crash

1947 roswell UFO crash

1947 was a momentous year in the history of humanity yet hardly anyone knows why. 70 years on, we take a look at that years life-changing events.


was a year of infamy in terms of the New World Order agenda. 1947 was the time when profound events were taking place: the birth of the horrible US MIC (Military Intelligence Complex), the probable continuation of the Nazi regime and likely ET visitation. As the year 2017 comes to an end, and we close out the 70 year anniversary of the year of 1947, it is worth briefly looking back on that momentous year at some of the events that transpired then which still have a profound effect on our world today.

1947: Operation Highjump

Just when you thought it was safe to go back into the water no, Im not referring to Jaws, but rather the US-UK-Australian military expedition led by Admiral Richard Byrd in January and February of 1947. He thought it would be safe to go down to Antarctica, but he was overpowered and beat a hasty retreat. Byrd led around 4,700 troops in an invasion of Antarctica, but his forces encount...


NORTEC wont properly compensate businesses "IndyWatch Feed Northcoast"

Adelaide Friday, Michael Brechbuhler, Jarrah Hustler and Natalia Sanchez from the Byron Bay incubator site are reeling at the news they have to move out in six weeks. Photo Aslan Shand.

It is the little businesses that were just trying to get on their feet that will suffer most by NORTECs move to abandon its small business incubators.

Businesses at the Byron Creative incubator site in the Byron Bay industrial estate have asked NORTEC for an extension of time to leave the site and arrange alternative business premises but have been told that January 19 is a hard deadline.

Michael Brechbuhler from Eco Minerals had been on the site for five years and has resources behind him to successfully move to a new site, however, it is the smaller newer businesses that he is concerned for.

While Eco Minerals will move on from this short notice decision by Nortec, other business owners are being destroyed by it. I have listened to the stories of Jarrah and Jake and how they were promised long term rental spaces for the next three years, just a couple of months ago and they poured their savings into building up their dreams, said Michael.

Jarrah at Jarrah Hustler Hair and Jake at Jake May Design have both invested a great deal of money, work and love into the infrastructure of their offices and are now at the risk of losing all of it.

No compensation

Some of the businesses have asked NORTEC for a degree of compensation for the business losses they will be making as a result of both broken promises by NORTEC and the short notice for moving.

NORTEC is about to make a great deal of money from an indecent decision that will cost many little businesses their existence, continued Michael.

And now they are bickering with those same financially destroyed small business owners and refusing to pay them any kind of real compensation that would be a minute slice of the enormous profits they are likely to make...


The Death of Malcolm Tucker and President Bartlet "IndyWatch Feed National"

Since the early 1990s, political culture in the west had been underpinned by a belief in politically moderate pragmatism. This belief not only framed the policies of the major political parties, but also framed the assumptions in our broader political culture about what was politically possible in the modern era. We all thought we knew that principled ideologues could never get elected without becoming more pragmatic.


Vanpackers crapping in Byron Bay car park "IndyWatch Feed Northcoast"

Vanpackers are taking over the Rails car park in Byron Bay according to local residents and businesspeople. Photo supplied

Byron Bay residents and businesspeople are crapped off by an invasion of vanpackers who they say have set up an unofficial campsite on railway land in the centre of the town.

They say the travellers are taking advantage of a Catch 22 that prevents Byron Council rangers taking action against them in the car park adjacent to the Rails Hotel.

Local business owner Joy Barber Hua told Echonetdaily that not only are the parking spaces for shoppers taken up by around 20 vans parked day and night but the campers are dumping rubbish and using the car park and surrounding business premises as a toilet.

Crapping next to van

Just this morning I was confronted by human excrement by our back door together with used toilet paper. Last week there was excrement in the car park where a camper had clearly just decided to toilet by the side of their van.

This is despite the fact that an Exceloo automatic toilet operates 24 hours a day just metres away in Railway Park.

We call the council and they say that as its railway land its not council jurisdiction, Ms Barber Hua said.

But she added that when she calls the company responsible for managing railway land, they say theres nothing they can do and to write to the minister for transport.

Im guessing that will be a waste of time, she said.

The police come out when there are disturbances and loud music but they should be focusing on better things Im sure.

It seems that council and the railway company cannot agree on who should manage the car park (down to money?) and as a result its just been abandoned by both.

Word spreads quickly on forums that theres free camping to be had and Im despairing at how bad things will get as the summer gets busier, she said.

Ms Barber Hua thinks Byron Council should be working together with Transport for NSW to make sure our town where we pay rates is safe for everyone.

This car park is becoming a...


Incompetent Trump nominee withdraws "IndyWatch Feed National"

Recall Matthew Petersen, nominated by Donald Trump for a lifetime appointment as a federal judge who at a hearing last week was unable to answer a single question about the law that was posed to him by Louisiana senator John Kennedy, a very conservative Republican. Well, it appears that after being at the receiving end of a storm of ridicule, he has withdrawn his name from consideration.

Sam Stein explains the background to this bit of kabuki theater that Kennedy was putting on for TV.

Political humiliations like these dont often happen in public view, let alone at the hands of a member of the same political party of the nominating administration. And, sure enough, the video went viral. By Monday, Petersen had decided to withdraw his nomination. Kennedy, it appeared, had got his man.

Except, Petersen wasnt the one he was truly after. Indeed, the real subject of the senators ire appears to have been the person who delivered Petersen to the committee in the first place: White House Counsel Don McGahn.

But this tiny victory should not make us forget that Trump has managed to get many poorly qualified but highly ideological people on to positions in the federal judiciary, some simply by virtue of being close to McGahn. As Stein documents, the bar for approval is really low and only a few like Petersen could not clear it.


The US to Attack North Korea Before March "IndyWatch Feed Nsw"

Bitcoin, stock bubbles, gold, Fed interest rate decisions, global recovery, and emerging markets debt problems dominate financial discussions today.

Which of these is the most important?

The answer is, none of the above.

The most important financial or geopolitical issue in the world today is a coming war between the U.S. and North Korea, probably in the next twelve weeks.

How can I be so sure about the timing? The Director of the Central Intelligence Agency told me.

In a private conclave in Washington DC on October 20, 2017, CIA Director Mike Pompeo told a small think tank group (including me) that it would be imprudent to assume it would take North Korea more than five months to have a reliable arsenal of nuclear-armed ICBM missiles. These could strike U.S. cities and kill millions of Americans.

Five months from October 20, 2017 is March 20, 2018. Thats an outside date but the war will likely begin before then.

That would create an element of surprise and avoid the surprise of a faster than expected deployment of strategic weapons by North Korean leader Kim Jong Un.

Why cant the U.S. just live with a nuclear
armed North Korea?

We managed to live with a nuclear armed Russia and China during the Cold War.

We relied on deterrence, containment, sanctions, diplomacy, and eventually arms treaties to avoid a nuclear war. Why not do the same with Kim?

President Trumps National Security Advisor, General H. R. McMaster answered that question at our Washington conclave also.

He said acceptance of a nuclear-armed North Korea is unacceptable. The U.S. will stop North Korea from acquiring its nuclear capability in the first place rather than learning to live it.

The reasons for this are many. None of the other nuclear-armed powers ever threatened to attack the United States unless attacked first.

North Korea has threatened to attack and destroy the U.S. many times. The best approach for dealing with threats from dictators is to take them at their word.

Adolph Hitler told the world in the 1920s that he would unite Germany, conquer Europe and kill Jews. He did so in the 1930s and 1940s.

Osama bin Laden declared war on the United States in 1996 and again in 1998. In 2001 he attacked New York and Washington and left thousands of Americans dead in Manhattan, Virginia and Pennsylvania.

When Kim Jong Un says he will attack the United States with nuclear weapons, it is reckless to believe otherwise.



Ballina mayor may step down from planning review of sand mine "IndyWatch Feed Northcoast"

Aerial view of McGearys Quarries existing unremediated sand mine at Lennox Head. Photo No Sand Mines for Lennox

Chris Dobney

Ballina Mayor David Wright may recuse himself from the Joint Regional Planning Panels consideration of a development application that would see a massive increase in sand mining at one of Lennox Heads two remaining sites.

Mayor Wright told Echonetdaily, Ive been in council for a long time and I honestly cant remember if Ive worked on this one before but Ill discuss it with council staff and if necessary Ill remove myself from the panel if I think theres a conflict.

Submission extension considered

But Cr Wright said the council would not automatically extend the time for submissions on the controversial development application by McGearys Quarries, which, as reported by Echonetdaily yesterday, would see up to 1.9 million tonnes of sand excavated over a 30-year period.

The DA is scheduled to come off submission on January 29, the day before school goes back.

Cr Wright said its already been open for two weeks and will be [on display] for nearly two months. We also take late submissions.

The biggest problem is that if we dont deal with it will be deemed refusal.

But he added if it looks like theres plenty coming in in January theres no problem to extend it for another two weeks.

I have discussed it with the GM and we will wait to see how many submissions come in during January.

Proponent supports extension

The mayors comments come after the planner acting for the proponent himself expressed surprise at the timing of the DAs exhibition.

I just thought I would let you know we are more than happy for the exhibition to be extended. In fact, we too were a little surprised that the exhibition is programmed for over the Christmas break, Steve Connelly from Planners North said in a letter to Echonetdaily.

We were anticipating that exhibition would not have commenced until school went back, he said....


Local businesses suffer at RMS hands "IndyWatch Feed Northcoast"

The Macadamia Castle at Knockrow

Many local businesses have suffered financial losses since the RMS opened the Pacific Highway upgrade between Tintenbar and Ewingsdale. Promises made by the RMS during the development and implementation of the highway upgrade have not been kept said Macadamia Castle owner Tony Gilding.

They have a dreadful culture and they lack any type of empathy for people they have affected and they dont like to have their authority questioned, pointed out Tony.

Whilst the benefit to motorists has been significant there are aspects of the upgrade not completed and the community is still feeling the pain in many areas.

My efforts to solve these issues have included hundreds of letters, a meeting with Ben Franklin MLC in March 2016 and a visit to Sydney to meet with Minister for Roads Melinda Pavey on October 12 this year.

Simple measures like moving signs to the right  location so that they direct traffic to the castle are just not being done.

At the top of the exit ramp of the Ross Lane exit from the South, where I get most of my customers, there are no directions to the castle. It is a matter of moving a sign 25m to the right place.

The issue of noise impact and mitigation have also been a sticking point between Tony and the RMS.

There is an area at the back of my property where we used to have a kangaroos extension area that is now unusable due to noise from the highway, Tony pointed out.

They put noise receptors in that were 2-300m away from the affected area and then say there isnt a noise issue.

More broken promises

A meeting with RMS and National Party MLC Ben Franklin in March 2016 lead to another list of broken promises from the RMS and Tony and other local businesses are still waiting for the promised completion of the St. Helena lookout information bay and c...


Counter-terror police officers to be armed with semi-automatic rifles to guard Sydney during Christmas and New Year "IndyWatch Feed National"

Note: A criminal police state is now in full swing while the general public walks around in a dream world, more concerned with gay rights & frappuccinos. Read More


What does the union and community win at Webb Dock mean "IndyWatch Feed National"

Editorial comment

It is obvious that the outcome of the dispute at Webb Dock is important. It means that the worker who had been denied employment is back at work and for the other working at the dock, wages and conditions of employment have been preserved.

As important as this is for those whose livelihood is tied up with Webb Dock, there is more to what has been achieved.

A battle at  had been building up that had all the makings of a watershed show down between the union movement one side and a big section of corporate Australia and the government on the other. There is good reason to believe that this section of corporate Australia and the government were using this dispute, as a stepping stone, towards big cuts to wages and conditions, through a a major expansion in the casualisation of work. To do this, unions have to be pushed out of the way.

Over some years a formidable arsenal of industrial legislation has been put in place,  and has tilted the advantage much further away from the unions. An estimation had been made that this was a big enough arsenal to win the day against them at Webb Dock.

The estimation turned out to be wrong.  The rise of the community assembly, got in the way.

Community assemblies are a natural outcome of the laws that have put a break on the ability of unions to represent their members. Contrary to the claims by some, union officials have little wiggle room and even lack the legal right to visit their members in the workplace. Union members are part of the wider community, where government cuts and harder times overall is creating a situation, where sympathy for the position of unions and their members is bound to be stronger.

The key at Webb Dock is that the community was gathering and the pace of it was increasing by the day, giving rise to an expectation that this could end up on the scale of the Patricks battler of 1998, where the employer and government side got a beating, as tens on thousands turned up at the same dock and more descended on port facilities around Australia.

In 2017, the Supreme Court found itself helpless, because industrial law has no jurisdiction over community actions and the conditions were not there for the government to use other law to deal with the situation.

The lesson is that community action is powerful.

No doubt, this is being taken account of by all parties concerned. The Turnbull government and its allies will be considering their strategy. So will unions and community groups.

For those who value community empowerment as the road to building a truly democratic society, the rise in community action brings new possibilities.


The post...


FLASHBACK: Asteroid dust may influence weather, may play 'more important climate role than previously recognized' "IndyWatch Feed National"

Dust from asteroids entering the atmosphere may influence Earth's weather more than previously believed, researchers have found. In a study to be published this week in the journal Nature, scientists from the Australian Antarctic Division, the University of Western Ontario, the Aerospace Corporation, and Sandia and Los Alamos national laboratories found evidence that dust from an asteroid burning up as it descended through Earth's atmosphere formed a cloud of micron-sized particles significant enough to influence local weather in Antarctica. Micron-sized particles are big enough to reflect sunlight, cause local cooling, and play a major role in cloud formation, the Nature brief observes. Longer research papers being prepared from the same data for other journals are expected to discuss possible negative effects on the planet's ozone layer. "Our observations suggest that [meteors exploding] in Earth's atmosphere could play a more important role in climate than previously recognized," the researchers write.


Big surprise: Israeli court rules to keep documents about Israel's involvement in Rwandan genocide sealed "IndyWatch Feed National"

"There is no terrible regime - Columbia, Guatemala, Uruguay, Argentina and Chile during the time of the colonels, Burma, Taiwan, Zaire, Liberia, Congo, Sierra Leone - there is not one that does not have a major military connection to Israel." - Jeff Halper, 2003 If the details in this court report were allowed to be made public, it would no doubt be extremely embarrassing to the state of Israel, who relies on maintaining the status of eternal 'victim' in order to side-step dozens of UN resolutions regarding its illegal land annexations and human rights abuses against the native Palestinian population who have been under violent Israeli military occupation for over 50 years. Question: why have the Israeli Courts ruled to cover-up these important details about Israel's own role in helping to facilitate a genocide in Africa? Their answer: "The release of information would undermine state security and international relations." According to reports, Israel's arms exports to Rwanda were in violation of international law.


Xmas Wishes to All. "IndyWatch Feed National"

To those of you who celebrate Xmas, wherever you are, I wish you all the very best for this Xmas season & the year to follow.

Probably the worst threat to us all wherever we are in the New Year & years to come is climate change. The ice caps are melting as is the permafrost, here in Australia we are experiencing a severe heat wave. It is us who should have the final say in how this planet is cared for, NOT big business or the government. All they are interested in is lining their own pockets! This is something I will never understand. We can't not think about our survival & the survival of our descendants at this time of year, but let's not let this spoil the time we have with our families over this season.

Please take care on the roads if you have to travel, it is the other vehicles you have to watch out for! Don't be in a rush to get to where you are going, remember, better late than never!!! 
Best wishes & sincere regards to all.


Govt splashes cash on community groups before Xmas "IndyWatch Feed Northcoast"

Lismore MP Thomas George (Nationals) with the lucky winners of Community Building Partnership funds from his electorate. Photo supplied

Around half a million dollars of state government cash is about to be handed out to community organisations in the Ballina and Lismore electorates, with the announcement sure to be a welcome Xmas present for the lucky winners.

The grant funding comes from the NSW Governments 2017 Community Building Partnership program which will aims to create more vibrant and inclusive communities and deliver positive social, environmental and recreational outcomes, according to the media release trumpeting the handouts.

The government largesse totals $300,000 towards the upgrading and construction of community infrastructure in each of the two state electorates.

Successful projects in the Ballina electorate include:

$20,000 for Riding for the Disabled Association (NSW) for a machinery and office administration shed, slab construction and installation and electrical fit out.
$20,100 for the construction of a new building to accommodate the headquarters of Mullumbimby Mens Shed located at Mullumbimby Community Gardens.
$15,705 for Byron Youth Service refurbishments
$20,000 for the Lennox Head Alstonville Surf Life Saving Club for a Lennox Surf Club Facility upgrade.
$21,000 for the Ballina Tennis Club for a clubhouse extension with amenities upgrade and disabled facility.
$24,000 to Ballina Shire Meals on Wheels Inc to increase safety and accessibility by renovating, repairing and refurbishing facilities.

Successful projects in the Lismore electorate include:

Murwillumbah Rowing Club for new decking and shade structure.
Tyalgum Community Hall Association to renovate their kitchen.
Tweed Valley Woodcraft Association to line and insulate their clubroom.
Tweed Valley Rural & Community Advancement Cooperative for a shed and rainwater tank at their community garden.
Murwillumbah Scouts for repairs to their hall

Ballina MP Tamara Smith (Greens) said she was delighted to have been able to prioritise so many worthy projects in our community that will create more vibrant and inclusive communities and deliver positive social, environmenta...


Brunswick Heads Nature Reserve goes alcohol free "IndyWatch Feed Northcoast"

Brunswick Heads Nature Reserve at New Brighton will be part of an alcohol free zone during the holiday season. Photo OEH

If you are planning to give up the booze over new year weve found just the place for you: Brunswick Heads Nature Reserve will be an alcohol-free zone on Boxing Day, New Years Eve, New Years Day and Australia Day.

The National Parks and Wildlife Service (NPWS) Tweed Byron Area Manager, Sue Walker, said following positive feedback from previous years, alcohol would again be banned on these days to promote a family-friendly experience.

Brunswick Heads Nature Reserve is a place for visitors, including those with young children, to enjoy a natural coastal environment on these special days, Ms Walker said.

Visitors who come to experience the reserve for its natural beauty and relaxed atmosphere should feel safe to do so.

In the past, alcohol related anti-social behaviour on these days has forced families with small children to leave the Reserve.

The temporary ban aims to avoid a repeat of previous incidents of fires being lit during high fire danger periods, smashed bottles being left on the beach, and other rubbish such as plastic bags being left behind, which can easily end up polluting the Brunswick River and threatening marine animals.

People are reminded that these beaches are not patrolled and swimming is not recommended.

The reserve is a breeding site for critically endangered beach-nesting shorebirds and protects coastal rainforest, an endangered ecological community, Ms Walker said.

The temporary alcohol ban applies to all parts of Brunswick Heads Nature Reserve, including North Head and Harrys Hill, aka Christmas Beach (the north bank of the Brunswick River) on Boxing Day (26/12/2017), New Years Eve (31/12/2017) and New Years Day (1/01/2018). The Reserve will also be alcohol free on Australia Day (26/0 1/2018). The temporary alcohol bans are in force all day (24 hours) on the days listed.

NPWS officers, with support from NSW Police, will be on site to enforce the alcohol free zone. People caught breaching the ban will be issued an on-the-spot fine and escorted from the Reserve.


The post...


One in six Byron properties being holiday let "IndyWatch Feed Northcoast"

New figures from Byron Shire Council show one in six properties in the shire are being holiday let. Photo: AirbnbSecrets

Of the 15,654 dwellings in the Byron Shire 2,655 properties were advertised on holiday platforms such as Airbnb in 2017, according to new figures released by Byron Shire Council this week.

This equates to around 17 per cent, or one in every six houses in the shire, about half of the total number of holiday-let properties in the entire Northern Rivers.

The councils acting general manager, Mark Arnold, said accommodation was at a premium and many people are renting out their homes for short-term holiday accommodation.

But he added there are good and bad landlords as well as good and bad tenants.

Short-term holiday rentals, whose operators work with council and obey the rules, are important in the overall supply of accommodation in the Byron shire, he said but we have a significant problem with people who rent their homes for unauthorised holiday letting.

No regard for neighbours

Mr Arnold said problems arise when there is a constant stream of visitors moving through residential neighbourhoods and staying for short amounts of time.

There often seems to be little regard for residents who are subjected to loud music, anti-social behaviour and late-night parties and this is disrupting the lives of local people.

Dob in a noisy neighbour

Our residents are constantly telling us they are tired of being victims of the tourism industry when it comes to the impact on their home lives and when you consider that of the 4,265 holiday listings on Airbnb in the Northern Rivers that more than half are in the Byron Shire you can see how big the problem is, Mr Arnold said.

Council has recently resolved to make clear its intention to prosecute the owners of unauthorised short-term rental accommodation, and residents who believe their neighbours are doing the wrong thing, are asked to contact Byron Shire Council, he said.

The post One in six Byron properties being holiday let appeared first on...


Songbirds singing together, new study "IndyWatch Feed National"

This 2015 video says about itself:

Australian Magpie-lark (Peewee) (Grallina cyanoleuca) tweeting away with a barking dog providing accompaniment.

From Oxford University Press USA:

How birds work to sing together

December 18, 2017

A new paper published in Behavioral Ecology finds that songbirds may coordinate both vocally and visually to enhance their singing partners responses.

In many group-living animals pairs sing together to defend resources, but such signals can be much more complex than that of the acoustic stimulus on its own. In addition to songs, cooperating animals may produce movements that can be precisely combined between partners and with songs. Experiments with robot birds revealed that coordination of vocal and visual components of the Australian magpie-lark audio-visual display enhances the receivers responses to this complex signal. Singing animals dont just sing together; they also dance.

Animals communicate with their whole bodies. In humans, for example, vocal expressions are naturally produced with associated movements of the face, which reduces speech ambiguity. Because voices and lip movements are physically linked, even small modifications have a deteriorating effect on reception of the message, so coordination is a challenge in that it requires continuous monitoring of the partners behaviour.

Previous research showed that precise vocal coordination between cooperating animals increases the quality of their display; little is known, however, about the role of coordination between songs and movements. Partners of the rufous-naped wren, Campylorhynchus rufinucha, for example, combine multiple types of songs and body movements in a coordinated fashion. Researchers have suggested that movements such as these may improve vocal coordination within a pair. The movements diversity and precise match with the songs suggest that both components signal jointly to other pairs.

This paper used robotics to analyze the coordination in the duets of the Australian magpie-lark Grallina cyanoleuca. Researcher here used a pair of magpie-lark robotic models. The models used taxidermic skins, so the color, pattern, and surface texture w...


One million Aussies misuse prescription drugs "IndyWatch Feed National"


One million Australians misused pharmaceuticals in the previous 12 months, a new report reveals.

Analysis conducted by the Australian Institute of Health and Welfare (AIHW) shows the misuse of powerful prescription medications for non-medical reasons is rising and now account for more drug-induced deaths than illegal drugs.

Over the past decade, there has been a substantial rise in the number of deaths involving a prescription drug, with drug-induced deaths more likely to be due to prescription drugs than illegal drugs, said AIHW spokesperson Matthew James.

The report, released on Tuesday, looked at two main types of prescription drugs: opioid analgesics (which include morphine, codeine and tramadol), and benzodiazepines prescribed to improve sleep and treat stress.

According to the report, the number of people older than 14 to have misused a pharmaceutical drug in 2016 was at 4.8 per cent, up from 3.7 per cent in 2007.

Use of pharmaceuticals for non-medical reasons in 2015-16 was higher than all illegal drugs, except cannabis (10.4 per cent), and more people sought treatment for opioid painkillers compared to a decade ago.

Benzodiazepines were the most common single drug type identified among the 1,808 drug induced deaths, accounting for 663 deaths in 2016.

Prescription painkillers such as oxycodone, morphine and codeine accounted for 550 of the drug induced deaths.

Earlier this year, the National Drug Strategy Household Survey showed that indigenous Australians were more than twice as likely to have recently used a pharmaceutical for non-medical purposes than non-indigenous Australians.

The survey also found people living in remote areas were almost twice as likely as those living in major cities to have recently used a pharmaceutical for non-medical purposes.

This finding also held true for Australians living in the most disadvantaged socio-economic areas, with six per cent having recently misused pharmaceuticals compared with 4.2 per cent of those in the most advantaged areas, said Mr James

Recent users of pharmaceuticals for non-medical purposes were also more likely than those who had not misused pharmaceuticals to experience mental illness, chronic pain and experience high or very high levels of psychological distress, according to the report.

The post One million Aussies misuse prescription drugs appeared first on Echonetdaily.


Sea Shepherd saves loggerhead turtle from Ballina shark net "IndyWatch Feed Northcoast"

The loggerhead turtle found caught in a shark net off Ballinas Lighthouse Beach yesterday (December 18) before it was rescued. Photo Sea Shepherd

The quick actions of Sea Shepherd monitors and a nearby SMART drumline contractor averted the otherwise certain death of an endangered loggerhead turtle that became entangled in shark nets off Ballinas Lighthouse Beach yesterday (Monday, December 18).

Yesterday the the Apex Harmony crew were out documenting off Lighthouse Beach when they spotted the turtle entangled in the net.

Queensland coordinator Jonathan Clark contacted NSW DPI immediately however the SMART drum line contractor who was in the vicinity came over to the net and assisted in freeing the turtle from the entangled mess.

NSW Apex Harmony coordinator Allyson Jennings said Once again, the nets have indiscriminately claimed an endangered Loggerhead turtle and had our crew not been there for this animal, it would have most certainly died by drowning.

Is this what we want people around the world to see? That we kill marine life to provide a false sense of security for ocean users? It is peak breeding season for this species and every individual counts, she said.

Mr Clark added, Our crews have found seven non target animals in the nets in six runs within a week. These discoveries and the data from the first trial are solid proof that these nets are nothing but a failure in terms of safety for ocean users and are killing marine life unnecessarily.

It is time Ballina Mayor David Wright and the NSW Government woke up and started accepting the findings from the federal senate inquiry report, that these nets are ineffective for ocean safety and are tarnishing our image as a nature-loving country locally and internationally said Ms Jennings.


The post Sea Shepherd saves loggerhead turtle from Ballina shark net appeared first on Echonetdaily.


Porter is front-runner to replace Brandis "IndyWatch Feed National"


Christian Porter is tipped to replace George Brandis as attorney-general. AAP Image/Mick Tsikas


Rising West Australian Liberal Christian Porter is the front-runner to replace George Brandis as Australias first law officer under a looming federal cabinet reshuffle.

Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull is expected on Tuesday to announce a refreshed line-up to take the coalition government into 2018.

Senator Brandis will leave the upper house to become High Commissioner to the United Kingdom, taking over from Alexander Downer whos held the post since 2014, according to reports.

Mr Porter, a former WA state attorney-general, is currently social services minister and his portfolio could be handed to Victorian Dan Tehan, The Australian reported.

Meanwhile, Deputy Prime Minister Barnaby Joyce is expected to vacate his agriculture portfolio and pick up transport and infrastructure from his Nationals colleague Darren Chester.

The fate of Mr Chester in the new coalition line-up not clear but he could end up with agriculture, Fairfax Media reports.

However, new deputy Nationals leader Bridget McKenzie, who replaced disqualified senator Fiona Nash, is also expected to earn a cabinet spot and could also be a candidate for agriculture.

Its also expected cabinet secretary Arthur Sinodinos, who is battling illness, wont return to the cabinet table next year.

Elsewhere, Justice Minister Michael Keenan could be in line to take on a security role under the new Home Affairs mega portfolio to be overseen by current Immigration Minister Peter Dutton.

Former health minister and NSW Liberal Sussan Ley could also make a return to cabinet after she was forced to resign in January when questions were raised about her use of MP travel entitlements, Fairfax Media reports.

The post Porter is front-runner to replace...


Trump, North Korea, Iran: Some Facts and the instinct to attack "IndyWatch Feed National"

What difference does it make to the dead, the orphans and the homeless, whether the mad destruction is wrought under the name of totalitarianism or in the holy name of liberty or democracy?

Mahatma Gandi, 1869-1948

When the UN was established on 24th October 1945, little over five months after the end of World War 11, the organizations stated aims were to prevent further devastating conflicts. In spite of the fact that 193 out of the worlds 195 nations are Member States, it has failed woefully.

The US alone has been involved, since the UNs founding, in fifty-seven overt murderous meddlings, government overthrows, bloody invasions and/or occupations. One article estimates that the US supremely ironically base of the UNs great Headquarters most likely has been responsible since WWII for the deaths of between 20 and 30 million people in wars and conflicts scattered over the world.

The writer asks: How many September 11ths has the United States caused in other nations since WWII? He answers himself: Possibly 10,000. It is surely a reflection of desperation for peace and disgust at where humanity is being led, that the meticulously researched piece was shared over seventy seven thousand times on the one quoted site alone.

No wonder the US government is so keen to crush and corral the Internet.

Donald Trump, addressing the UN General Assembly on the 19th September, made it chillingly clear that if he has his way he is headed for numerous more international September 11ths.

It was seemingly equally clear that he was clueless about the fine founding aims, for all its failings, of the UN:

We the peoples of the United Nations determined to save succeeding generations from the scourge of war, which twice in our lifetime has brought untold sorrow to mankind to reaffirm faith in fundamental human rights, in the dignity and worth of the human person of nations large and small to practice tolerance and live together in peace with one another as good neighbours

Human worth, tolerance, peace and international neighbourly-ness are clearly a foreign land to the multiple draft dodger.

Just prior to Americas Congressional Budget Office announcing that the nations nuclear weapons programme will cost a mind-bending $1.2 Trillion over the next thirty....


Welfare, family payments and universities are on the Turnbull governments hit list for 2018 "IndyWatch Feed National"

Contributed by Joe Montero

Governments have developed the habit of sneaking in a few nasties in the lead up to Christmas, when public attention is tuned into the holiday season. The Turnbull government proves to be no exception.

The six-monthly update of the May budget, which has just been released, shows that the government plans to impose major funding cuts to welfare, families and universities.

Two days after the Bennelong by election, it is revealed that there is a plan to withhold lump sum payments under family tax benefits for people with outstanding social security, student assistance, or paid parental leave debts from December 2018. This is a $400 million cut.

In addition, the government will also save $1 billion over four years, by tightening payments to family day care services as it transitions to the New Child Care Package that will begin on 2 July 2018.

Waiting time for family payments, including the family tax benefit, paid parental leave and carers allowance, will be extended from two to three years.

University funding will be cut by $2.1 billion.

Speaking at a press conference on Monday after the budget-update was released, Treasurer Scott Morrison said the Coalitions plan to return the budget to surplus by 2020-21 was still on track, with Treasury estimating the deficit for 2017-18 would be $23.6bn, an improvement of $5.8bn from six months ago.

He said the government expected the deficit to decline further in 2018-19, to $20.5bn, and then to $2.6bn in 2019-20, before recording a higher-than-expected surplus of $10.2bn in 2020-21. Projections like this have the habit of not materialising. Too many factors are not taken into account. Even if it does turn out to be true, it does not necessarily mean that this is a good thing. Budgets cannot be separated from from the economy and society.

Morrison might brag that there are now fewer people on welfare than there has been for the last 25 years. The point is where they have gone to. We have a very good idea about this. Most have gone on to insecure, part time and low paid work, along with a large part of the previously properly employed workforce and have little chance of improving on this.

The governments actions and obsession with budget surpluses and all the upbeat talk around it, flies in the face of basic economic sense. The reason being, and this is admitted in the update, projected nominal economic growth consumer spending are continuing to fall.

Further cuts to welfare and families will further increase the fall in consumer spending and this will impact negatively on econo...


W&J Traditional Owners win interim injunction in Federal Court "IndyWatch Feed National"

Media Release

  • Court order against Qld Government preventing native title extinguishment
  • Injunction hearing set for 30 January 2018, trial in March

Brisbane, 19 December 2017.  Wangan and Jagalingou (W&J) representatives, seeking to prevent the extinguishment of their native title by the Queensland Government for Adani, have ensured that there will be no surrender of lands until the court hears their injunction application in late January.

Justice Reeves of the Federal Court made an order yesterday against the Qld Government, preventing any surrender of native title until the W&J application is heard. He also set the W&J interlocutory application for a hearing on 30 January 2018.

This full hearing is set for trial in March in the matter of Delia Kemppi & Others v Adani Mining Pty Ltd & Others.

Wangan and Jagalingou (W&J) Traditional Owners Council Spokesperson, and one of the appellants, Adrian Burragubba said, The interim injunction offers some respite. It ensures that extinguishment of our native title cannot be snuck through over the holiday period.

Adani pressed hard and objected to the injunction. The Queensland Government sought to preserve its ability to advance swiftly on the Adani project, refusing to give an u...


December 19 On This Day in Australian History "IndyWatch Feed National"

1840 William Thomas, Aboriginal Protector, established a station at Narre Narre Warren which was visited by the chief protectorate, George Robinson, on this day.

1855 - A bill was passed like a rich man through the eye of a needle introducing this new fangled idea of a secret ballot.
So next time you wander down to toss your vote in the box without fear or favour of upsetting your neighbour, remember the smart-arse Melbournians dreamt the whole thing up.

1858 - The Post Office building in Sturt St, Ballarat was officially opened.

1859 - The St Kilda to Chapel Street (Windsor) section of railway line (Vic) opened.

1859 - The Windsor to North Brighton Railway line (Vic) opened.

1862 - A male was taken by a shark in the Brisbane River, QLD, whilst attempting to rescue a wounded bird.

1877 - The Hamilton to Portland Railway line (Vic) opened.

1877 - Cable communication to Europe restored after being broken for four months.
And you thought the NBN was bad...!

1881 - The Caulfield to Mordialoc section of railway line (Vic) opened.

1883 - Cuthbert Vere Lysaght was fatally injured by a shark whilst swimming in the Parramatta River, NSW.

1887 - The railway line from Kew Junction to Kew (Vic) was opened.

1896 - Sydney's Palace Theatre opened.

1906 - Commonwealth legislation authorised the Murrumbidgee Irrigation Scheme.

1919 - Royal Commission on high prices presented its final report to Parliament.
High prices on what I have not the foggiest but knowing politics it's probably something deathly boring so let's just leave well enough alone, shall we?

1930 For the first time Perth was linked by telephone to the rest of Australia.

1932 - The British Broadcasting Corp. began transmitting overseas with its "Empire Service" to Australia. 

1938 - The works of Aboriginal artist Albert Namatjira were first exhibited at the Fine Art Society Gallery, Melbourne.

1940  - Jack Ryan su...


The Guardian: Permaculture in Malawi "IndyWatch Feed Northcoast"

Permaculture in Malawi: using food forests to prevent floods and hunger

   Read original story

Permaculture projects in Malawi are developing sustainable food systems. It is time the development sector took this marginal hippy movement seriously
African Moringa and Permaculture Projects household permaculture gardens


SOTT FOCUS: Lawyers, Girls and Money - Cui Bono with #MeToo? "IndyWatch Feed National"

Dante is, to my mind, fiction's most satisfying executioner. In the 30th canto, in the 8th circle of hell, we find Potiphar's wife consumed with a fever so fierce, her skin smokes. Now Potiphar was the captain of the Pharoah's palace guard in the book of Genesis. When Joseph, the son of Jacob, was betrayed by his brothers, stashed in a cistern and sold to a caravan, he ended up being purchased by Potiphar. Joseph, who was young, handsome and, best of all, favored by God, quickly rose in Potiphar's esteem until he was made overseer of the guardsman's house. Joseph soon caught the eye of Potiphar's wife, whose name among the Muslims is said to have been Zulaika, and she wanted to get freaky with Joseph, but he refused. Joseph did not want to betray the trust his master Potiphar had placed in him, so every day Zulaika would proposition him, and everyday he would refuse. One day she became enraged at his refusal and tore a bit of cloth from his cloak as he escaped her. Scorned and affronted by his rejection, a wicked idea came to her, and using the bit of torn cloth as circumstantial evidence, Zulaika falsely accused Joseph of rape. Potiphar felt deeply betrayed and had Joseph imprisoned. While Joseph's ultimate end was not unhappy, Zulaika is never made to answer for her crime until, over 2,000 years later, Dante arrived to condemn her to the 8th circle of hell, and smoldering flesh.


Victoria Becomes The First Australian State To Ban Puppy Mills "IndyWatch Feed National"

By  Amanda Froelich Truth Theory

Good news! The state of Victoria is now the first in Australia to ban puppy mills. For those who are not familiar with the term, a puppy mill is a large-scale commercial dog breeding facility where profit is generally placed above the wellbeing of animals.

Sadly, it is not uncommon for the canines in puppy mills to be mistreated or malnourished. According to the ASPCA, the number of dogs in a puppy mill varies significantly. It can range from 10 to 1,000 dogs. Because puppy mills are not licensed and inspected, it is impossible to know the exact number.

To maximize revenue, female dogs are bred at every opportunity. They rarely receive recovery time between litters and when they can no longer reproduce, they are killed. Any puppies born with overt physical problems are likely to be put down, as well. To learn about the additional horrors of puppy mills, click here. For now, lets celebrate this latest news.



Sex abuse report released in Australia "IndyWatch Feed National"

The royal commission in Australia charged by the government with investigating how institutions (religious, federal and state governments) have responded to child sex abuse allegations has, after five years issued a 17-volume report containing 400 recommendations, of which 189 are new. Such commissions usually issue fairly mild recommendations but these were quite sweeping. Naturally, the report looked at the Catholic church, one of the worst perpetrators of child sexual abuse, and suggested two major changes: ending celibacy for priests and requiring priests to report to the authorities anyone who in confessions to priests said that they had abused children.

Here are the recommendations for religious institutions:

  • The ministry of churches (not just the Catholic Church) should not be exempt from reporting information discovered in religious confession.
  • Any religious organisation with a rite of religious confession should implement a policy that confession for children be conducted in an open space and in a clear line of sight of another adult.
  • The Australian Catholic Church should request permission from the Vatican to introduce voluntary celibacy for diocesan clergy.
  • Candidates for religious ministry should undergo external psychological testing, including psychosexual assessment, to determine their suitability to be in the ministry and to undertake work involving children.
  • Any person in religious ministry who is the subject of a complaint of child sexual abuse which is substantiated or who is convicted of an offence relating to child sexual abuse, should be permanently removed from ministry.

Basically, the report says that churches and priests cannot be trusted to police itself when it comes to child sexual abuse. The practice of confessional silence is particularly pernicious because it gives the perpetrator the relief of having told someone and feeling that they have been cleared in the eyes of their god without any further action. Thus they are free to abuse again.

In the US (I dont know in Australia), teachers are among those are designated as mandatory reporters in that if we are made aware of abuse, we are mandated to report it to the authorities and can be punished if we dont. There is no reason why priests should not be under the same obligation.

Of course, t...


Burkina Faso Ends Relationship With Monsanto After Cotton Crop Failure "IndyWatch Feed National"

By Brandon TurbevilleNatural Blaze

In yet another instance of Western and corporate imperialism, on the continent of Africa, Burkina Faso stands as yet one more example of the failure of corporate crops and the willingness of the U.S. government to act as Monsantos enforcement arm against weak, victim nations.

Around 10 years ago, Burkina Faso introduced GM seeds produced by Monsanto known as Bolguard II which was designed to produce its own poison and cut down on the dreaded bolworm.

For 8 years, Burkina farmers had been dealing with a major problem in terms of pestilence. The bolworms that typically attack cotton crops had become resistant to the pesticides that would kill the worms.

Monsanto had an answer for the farmers, and it was more of the same on steroids.

Bolguard II GM cotton.

By 2015, three-quarters of all Burkina Fasos cotton production was genetically modified. But the country whose cotton was coveted the world over for its quality and luxurious sheen, was quite different when the GM harvest appeared.


Turnbull Government's data retention privacy blunder just rolls on and on... "IndyWatch Feed Northcoast"

If data can be re-identified with no more than SQL, there's no "if" about a leak, and the "when" is history. [Journalist Richard Chirgwin, Twitter18 December 2017]

But why are medical records so attractive? Well, it turns out that theres a metaphorical holiday feast of enticing data served up in your average health record. Family history, demographic data, insurance information, medications, etc. means theres enough information to completely steal an individuals identity and commit medication fraud, financial fraud, insurance fraud and a wide array of other crimes. When this very private, unchangeable information gets into the wrong hands, devastation can ensue. [Robert Lord writing in Forbes, 15 December 2017]

First the Australian general public were told that patient data was well protected and data breaches wouldn't happen as a result of government's drive to collect, cross-match and retain as much information about each and every Australian citizen/permanent resident as possible.

Then when the inevitable day came where poor data security was laid bare - as the personal histories of 550,000 blood donors were placed on an insecure computer and accessed, as Medicare details began to be offered for sale on the Internet's dark web and Medicare itself b...

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