Australia’s invasion of facts

Today, we are now one month on from Australia Day, which means in eleven months time we’ll be returning to the controversy that surrounds the public holiday. So here are some facts about Australia Day.

The British first landed on the soil of what we know today as Australia on the 26th of January 1788. It wasn’t until 29 years later in 1817 that the British Colonial Office put forward that New Holland should be called Australia.

36 years after the first fleet’s arrival, the continent that the native inhabitants had lived upon for many thousands of years, would officially be known as Australia.

Then 112 years after the British landed, or let’s be honest invaded, Australia became a nation and not just six British colonies.

This happened on the 1st of January 1901. There was no Australia Day until 1915, which was held to help raise funds for the World War 1, war effort. And the date… July 30.

“Australia Day” was not commemorated as a national holiday until 1994.

So for all those who don’t understand why anyone would want to change the date of January 26 for Australia Day, despite the hurt it brings to Indigenous Australian’s, my response would be that you simply don’t understand history.

The First Fleet landing on the 26th of January 1788 is not a date we should be celebrating Australia Day on. The country wasn’t even called Australia at this point.

The true date for Australia Day should be the 1st of January because on that day in 1901, Australia became a nation.

It would seem in the 120 years that have passed, we’ve learnt very little and are still as ignorant as this nation was in its infancy.

Capital Crime

With every day that passes, the news from Australia’s capital, Canberra – is increasingly horrifying.

It was only a week and a half ago that the public learnt of the alleged rape of former Liberal Party staffer who worked at Australia’s Parliament House, Brittany Higgins.

Brittany Higgins

On Monday the 15th of February 2021, ABC News reported that: Brittany Higgins alleged, on Channel Ten’s The Project, that she was raped by a male colleague in the office of then-defence industry minister Linda Reynolds after a night out in the weeks before the 2019 election was called. Ms Higgins said she decided not to pursue a complaint with the police as she felt pressure that it would affect her job.

As to when the allegation was known in the halls of power, according to Prime Minister Scott Morrison, he was told about the alleged rape a few days before the rest of us.

Ms Higgins denies this. She claims she received a call prior to the 2019 Federal Election, from the Prime Minister’s Office (not from the PM himself), to apparently check in with her to make sure she was okay.

Coincidentally, this alleged phone call came just prior to the airing of an ABC-TV Australia 4 Corners investigation into sexual impropriety in Canberra.

A lot has happened since the public discovered the allegation on February 15. As of Tuesday 23 February, there are now four reports of assault on female staff members at Parliament House.

The name of the alleged rapist of at least two of the women has been released to the public.

I am choosing not to name him here or on the Cory Talks Podcast for two reasons.

While I hardly have the media presence to influence any possible future court case, I am not a journalist and would not want to present information that could be seen as possibly prejudicing a court case on this or other related matters. Secondly, I do not wish to be sued.

Brittany Higgins in better times.

It is my personal view that the identity of the suspect should be made public once assessed by Australian Federal Police that he is the likely perpetrator and a warrant be issued for his arrest.

Australian Federal Police

The alleged appears to have managed to wipe himself from the internet and deleted his social media accounts. That takes planning and knowledge. Is this at all possible something he could have done alone? I very much doubt this.

Prime Minister of Australia, Scott Morrison

I also doubt (to a very high degree) that the Prime Minister or his office, were unaware of the circumstances in this rape allegation.

Why would a ministerial office couch be steam cleaned on the weekend, if there were nothing to hide.

Victims of crime deserve justice. The rest of us are not in the same boat as Ms Higgins and others who have laid allegations, but all Australian’s deserve to know what happened, how this could occur and be swept under the carpet, and put an end once and for all to politicians getting away with all sorts of crimes.

Politicians are no different to you or I and holding power should not mean they can trample all over the laws of the land.

Prime Minister Morrison saying that politics is no different to other business industries when it comes to crimes such as rape.

How can he possibly think that comment can excuse what’s happened under his own nose. Is the Prime Minister a criminal or a cretin?

This is me using my words. Use yours and contact me with your thoughts.

The flood cometh!

Who would have thought that the Australian Parliament House rape allegation could get any worse.

Perhaps we’re just blinkered if we don’t think it can in fact get worse.

In the period of just seven days, there are four allegations of rape or inappropriate sexual situations by four women. It’s understood that all allegations are directed to at least two male Liberal Party members.

All throughout this, the Prime Minister, Scott Morrison maintains that he was unaware of any of this.

Australian Prime Minister Scott Morrison

It would make the Prime Minister a liar or woefully inept in the top job.

I’m appalled by the amount of female members of the Liberal Party that have claimed they knew little about the allegations, despite information that would indicate otherwise.

Amanda Vanstone. Opinion piece writer for The Age newspaper and contributor to ABC Radio National

Now former Liberal Party member and former Senator, Amanda Vanstone has been quite dismissive of the situation in what could be seen as a bid to lessen the seriousness of what has allegedly been allowed to happen in the nations capital.

It’s hard to argue that there’s a great deal of inequality in Australian federal politics. Both sexes are proving to be horrible and self serving.

The Canberra Disease

Australia’s seat of politics is sick. Very sick. Some in fact, (myself included) hope that it is terminal.

Every day it seems there’s reports of cruel governance from the Federal Liberal/National Coalition (LNP). Rorting, lies, misinformation, self-serving deals and probably the most despicable of what we currently know if this horrid government, a rape allegation.

This week it was publicly revealed that a young Liberal Party staffer, not long into her dream job of working at Parliament House in Canberra, was allegedly raped in the ministerial office of her boss, in 2019 by a male who also worked in the same department.

Brittany Higgins, the now former Liberal Party member of staff soon after the alleged rape, left working for the then Defence Industry Minister, Linda Reynolds and went to work for Employment Minister Michaelia Cash until she resigned in early February.

There’s some horrifying details to this story, and not just the alleged incident itself, but the way the situation was deal with and who actually knew what happened.

Minister Cash claims she was aware something happened to Ms Higgins during an event at Parliament House back in 2019, but claims she was not privy to the details.

I do not see how Cash would not seek further details from another woman who says an incident occurred at a work function. Not just as a woman, but as a senior government official.

Former minister Reynolds got a bollocking from Prime Minister Scott Morrison this week for bringing Ms Higgins into the very office where the alleged rape took place, to discuss what happened.

Reynolds also claims she was not aware of the details. How could this possibly be true. Reynolds has also stated on the record that she was extremely concerned for Ms Higgins’s wellbeing. How could Reynolds be that concerned, yet still not know what had happened in her own office?

Then there’s the Prime Minister. Proving that employing someone to make Morrison seem more caring was an abject failure. The PM mishandled the situation on the day the allegation became public, then Morrison back tracked the following day saying that he spoke to his wife Jenny the night of the bombshell news, to which Jen asked her husband to put himself in the place of a parent who hears their child was assaulted and to imagine if it were one of their daughters. This only made things worse.

It’s sad that the Australian leader has to take empathy and compassion lessons from their partner.

The Prime Minister is also claiming he had no knowledge of the alleged rape until late last week. A notion former Prime Minister and Liberal Party Leader, Malcolm Turnbull finds very unlikely. Ms Higgins claims someone from the Prime Minister’s Office reached out to “check in” on her last year. This was at the time for the ABC ‘4 Corners’ investigation into sexism and inappropriate behaviour by the Australian Attorney General Christian Porter. The Prime Minister claims he has no evidence someone from his office got in touch with Ms Higgins.

Conflicting information is circulating – a common affliction in Australian politics. Initial reports suggested ACT Police were involved having spoken to a complainant in April 2019, but Ms Higgins did not wish to proceed with a formal complaint. Now politicians recollections say police were not involved.

Initially this week, I heard that Australian Federal Police would get involved in the investigation. This seems not to be the case now.

Ms Higgins says she was denied access to the CCTV footage. ABC News Online reports that a spokesperson for the Department of Parliamentary Services says the vision was on file ready to give to police. The DPS claims it is unaware of any request by Ms Higgins to view or access the CCTV footage.

The Prime Minister has announced an independent review into the workplaces of parliamentarians and their staff.

Not sure I’d have much if any faith in that process. Now that many details of the alleged rape are out, this should be left in the hands of police to investigate. A “review” is likely to water down any recommendations and in my opinion make a prosecution virtually impossible.

I hope Ms Higgins gets justice. Those responsible and those who have and are enabling those responsible should pay a very heavy price. Sexual assault is unacceptable anywhere in Australia even in Canberra.

21 FEB 2021: It has since come out that a second woman has come forward claiming that she too was raped by the same male that allegedly raped Ms Higgins. The Prime Minister is still denying that he knew about these reports despite text messages that would suggest he was at least aware of Ms Higgins situation.

Witch hunt or failure to secure democracy?

Not something I wanted to wake up to on a Sunday morning. Maybe it’s the reason I slept through my alarm.

Being a Sunday, this story will feature in the next edition of my podcast which will be released 9am tomorrow morning Australian Eastern Daylight Time (+11 hrs GMT).

Speaking of time, I believe the clock is now ticking on American politics and its destruction of democracy.

Former US president Donald Trump labels the Senate impeachment trial another phase of the “greatest witch-hunt in the history of our country”, after being acquitted of inciting the deadly January 6 riot at the US Capitol.
— Read on

Disappointing disappointment

I’m almost speechless with disappointment at how the Business Council of Australia is disappointed that Victoria is entering a five day lockdown, not because of simply COVID-19, but the more dangerous UK variant.

I feel like I say this until I’m blue in the face, business is putting profit over people’s lives. Not just people… THEIR CUSTOMERS!

I understand their is a financial and employment factor to the situation we find ourselves in. But none of that means a hill of beans, if there’s a large chunk of the community that is sick or worse. What happens to the precious economy if sections of society disappear?

What is humanity so arrogant in thinking we can control the pandemic to a degree whereby coronavirus and normality can co-exist?

We’re screwing the planet when it comes to our habitual abuse of our world when it comes to climate. We take what we want and ignore others and future generations.

Like government, business should lead by example. Enough with the divisive media releases about a “circuit breaker” short lockdown being selfish and not thinking of the impact on business. No society. No need for business.

Stop pulling on the economic heart strings.

Australian businesses want our custom, to shop local, to buy Australian. The least… the very least Australian’s should expect from business is they put their customers lives and general health ahead of their bottom line.

Must be too much to expect from some businesses in this country.

Here’s the news story from ABC News Australia.

Business lobby says even a short lockdown in Victoria will have “monumental social and economic costs” and call for a national plan to manage COVID-19 outbreaks.
— Read on

Victorian circuit breaker lockdown

Victorian Premier Daniel Andrews today announced what he termed a “circuit breaker” five day lockdown to tackle the more virulent strain of COVID-19.

Premier of Victoria – Daniel Andrews

This short lockdown takes effect from 11:59pm this evening until 11:59pm on Wednesday 17th February (a minute before midnight).

Fingers crossed we get back to some sort of COVID normal on Thursday.

Here’s Dan Andrews media statement.

Statement from the Victorian Premier – Friday 12 February 2021.

Risky homecoming

For the first time since October, Victorian health authorities report a person with COVID-19 is being treated in the intensive care unit of a hospital.
— Read on

I very much understand Australian’s who are stuck overseas and want to come home. I don’t have a lot of sympathy for anyone who decided to hedge their bets and stay overseas when the lockdown first happened early in 2020, and now decide to come home to Australia.

If you chose to stay overseas, then you should accept the consequences of this choice. By returning your risk is much higher and you push hotel quarantine and health professionals to the limit.

As I said, I do understand that desire to come home. If I were in the same position, I’m positive I’d feel the same. But I don’t believe it’s get to that point as I would have tried to get home when everything started turning to crap in February/March last year.

There’s no doubt human arrogance stopped many coming home when it would have been easier to.

Simple facts point to the unlikely appearance of the more virulent UK incarnation of COVID-19 in Australia, had people stayed where they were until the vaccine rollout.

I know this is no doubt not a popular opinion, but facts are facts and not one person’s opinion.

Speaking of opinion, mine is that the Australian government has wasted a great deal of time in ensuring Australian’s get home.

I’m no expert, but I imagine there was a window to make getting Australian’s home, when there was just one variant of the coronavirus. With two variants including the UK strain, I suspect the return of Aussies has passed.

The risks of more contagious versions of COVID-19 getting into the community are too great. It’s possibly more a case of luck than science that has thus far prevented the general population being affected.

There’s been too much compromise from governments more concerned about their popularity and complacency from the public, egged on by a great section of the media playing down the pandemic.

Why in the 21st century was wearing a mask such a difficult thing to do? Of all things to do in combatting COVID-19, it was the very least we could do. Not only for ourselves, but our family, friends and those we don’t even know.

But on the point of people we don’t even know, society has become one big pool of “what about me’s” – 100% concern for themselves, 0% for anyone else.

A wasted opportunity

Democrats could find another way to bar Donald Trump from high office, using a little-known clause in the constitution’s 14th amendment, according to a leading US legal scholar.
— Read on

My take on this is, what’s the point of impeachment when an unfortunate greater number of people will vote to not convict despite overwhelming evidence to the contrary.

These politicians vote not for what’s right for the country, but for what’s right for them – personally. This is a disservice to the American people and makes democracy look weak and malleable by forces of self interest.

With a slim but clear majority of Americans supporting the charge of insurrection on Donald J Trump, what’s the point of a great democracy like America, when the people are only listened to when convenient?

President Joe Biden and Vice President Kamala Harris have a lot of work to do and I hope they can achieve much, particularly in relation to the coronavirus pandemic.

The damage Donald J Trump has done to America and the world is virtually incalculable. He must not be allowed to ever hold office again.

He should feel lucky to hold a golf club membership!

We’re in this together. Not.

Here we have Scott Morrison, Australia’s Prime Minister. A member of the Pentecostal cult. A person who I would not trust to take my order at a fish and chip shop.

Since the beginning of the pandemic, the sycophant #ScottyFromMarketing has bleated about us all being in this together.

Keep in mind he was the leader that during the worst bushfires in Australian history, pissed off to Hawaii and lied about it.

The sickening charlatan and his band of pigs with their snouts in the trough, have done little more than divide the nation. State against state. Neighbour against neighbour.

The only reason Australia is in a relatively good position in regards to COVID-19, is because of leadership from the states, like Victoria’s Daniel Andrews, Queensland’s Annastacia Palaszczuk, Western Australia’s Mark McGowan and South Australia’s Steven Marshall.

These state Premiers have put the safety of their citizens over the corporate greed and profit making of the Australian Liberal Party Federal Government. ScoMo is too stupid to orchestrate this betrayal of the office of Prime Minister, the man behind the man would be dark lord and democracy destroyer Rupert Murdoch.

Australia needs to rid itself of these two cancers, the Federal Liberal/National coalition government and News Corp.

The burger I fell in love with

Today I had lunch at my favourite local establishment, Cafe Palat in the Breakwater Industrial Estate here in Geelong.

May I present to you, the Pulled Beef Burger with a side of roasted potato wedges. For dessert, a healthy bowl of seasonal fruit salad.

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