Skip to content
Advertisements

Aboriginal Elders hit back at former Greens Leader Bob Brown

August 7, 2012

There has been no shortage of Australian politicians throughout recent history who have attempted to address the plight of Indigenous Australians.

Millions of dollars have been spent on multiple programs with the best intentions of alleviating poverty and raising standards in health and education.  More often than not, these programs have failed miserably.

In recent years, more drastic measures have been labeled paternalistic, interventionist and draconian.

But now, it seems as though Aboriginal elders have simply had enough of white Australians, speaking on their behalf and want to have a greater say in the merit of commercial ventures that may deliver massive benefits to local indigenous communities.

According to News Limited, an Aboriginal elder in Western Australia’s Kimberley region has delivered a stinging rebuke to Bob Brown, urging the former Greens leader to back off from his protest against a major gas project.

In the letter, Jabirr Jabirr elder Rita Augustine tells Mr Brown that “The only thing we need saving from is people who disrespect our decisions and want to see our people locked up in a wilderness and treated as museum pieces”.

She also says, “what saddens me most is your complete disregard for Aboriginal people. I know you care about the whales and the dinosaur footprints, but what about people?”

Mr Brown is currently visiting the site of the proposed  $45 billion gas project and is concerned about he whale calving grounds in the area.

The project was negotiated in conjunction with Woodside, the WA Government and the Kimberley Land council (KLC), which is the native title representative body for Kimberley traditional owners.

As part of the deal, the traditional owners in the Kimberley will receive a massive  $1.5 billion in assistance over the next 30 years.

The money will go directly towards housing, education and health programs and will benefit the local indigenous people rather than being channeled through the bureaucracy of the Kimberely Land Council.

In her letter to Bob Brown, Rita Augustine lashed out at the way in which others attempt to speak on behalf of Aboriginal Australians without any understanding of their culture, or the challenges they face.

The letter follows….

 

Dear Dr Bob Brown,

I am writing to you because I have heard that you are coming to the Kimberley on a mission to our country and our culture from gas developments at James Price Point.

It is great that you care so much about our country and our culture. We are proud of our history of caring for this country over thousands of years. The country tells us who We are. It gives us strength and determination. But now we face great challenges; not only about our country and our culture, but about our survival as Indigenous people.

Our people have had to make a choice about allowing development on our lands. It hasn’t been easy, but we have made a decision – a majority decision -to face up to our own challenges, and to build a better future for our children, our people, our culture, and our country.

Dr Brown, it is hard for us to understand why you think it is necessary for you to speak on our behalf, about our country, our culture, and our futures.

The only thing We need saving from, is people who disrespect our decisions and want to see our people locked up in a wilderness and treated as museum pieces.

We are a living people and a living culture. We have faced severe change over the last 200 years, and most of it has been far beyond our control. Now We have a chance to make decisions about our own lives and our chi|dren’s futures.

There are people, like you Dr Brown, who disagree with our vision for our future. And that’s a good thing in our democratic society. But please, don’t use us to push your view. We can speak for ourselves.

I am a supporter of the gas precinct. This was not an easy decision for my people to make and it was not done lightly. But our people need a future that isn’t reliant on Government Welfare. The Browse LNG Project presents that opportunity. I want my children and grandchildren to benefit because if our people don’t survive; then the real, living culture dies.

The gas development decision was not made by the Kimberley Land Council. It was made by Kimberley traditional owners after years of consultations and meetings with senior lore bosses and elders. Some of our own group disagree with that decision, and we acknowledge that. The majority ofour group voted to support the development, and instructed the KLC to negotiate an agreement that would give us the power to control our own lives.

And by the way, the money doesn’t go to the KLC. It goes to the benefit of Kimberley Aboriginal people.

I am an old woman now and I have witnessed and lived the despair and hopelessness of many Kimberley Aboriginal people. Dr Brown, do you know what it is like to be taken away from your family, to not have money to buy food, to live in a house that is dilapidated and beyond repair? To see your children grow up in despair, die before they are 50, or even worse, take their own lives before they get to their 20s?

My people have lived this life, and we don’t Want it anymore.

You recently wrote an opinion piece about your mission to the Kimberley. You are a respected and honourable man in Australian society, but you got a few things wrong about this gas project, and about Aboriginal people and our culture and country. Itis not your place to tell Aboriginal stories of culture to the world, for they are our stories about our traditions and our culture.

But what saddens my people most is your complete disregard for Aboriginal people. I know you care about the whales and the dinosaur footprints, but what about people?

The Indigenous suicide rate in the Kimberley is one of the highest in Australia. There have been 25 suicide deaths in the past year. Dr Brown, is this not an epidemic and national emergency?

You are the mission leader bringing the Sea Shepard to the Kimberley to highlight the plight of the whales. We have had missionaries coming to the Kimberley before. What about our dying children?

Is this not a cause you should be protesting against?

If we can use the $1.5 billion in benefits that have been negotiated as part of the Browse LNG Precinct Agreement to save our peop|e’s lives, will that not be a good thing? We are not money hungry people. This money is not going into our back pocket. It will be used to implement suicide awareness programs, training and counselling for families, education and employment opportunities, better health and housing. ls that too much to ask for?

You’ll probably say these things are natural rights for all Australians, and that governments should be providing them regardless of gas projects. Yes they should. But look at the last 200 years and tell me ifthat has worked. If we wait another 50 years, there is a real risk that Aboriginal people, and the culture that We, and you, value so highly, will be gone.

Dr Brown, we are not enemies. We share many values. We love our land and sea country. We respect strong culture. We want the World to be a better place, not for us, but for our young people and their children.

Kimberley Aboriginal people have helped contain large scale gas development to a single site. We continue to push for the best environmental and social impact safeguards, and community benefits.

You could easily back us up in these efforts.

We don’t live in a perfect World, but we do have an opportunity to make it better.

I know that saving the Kimberley is important to you, and maybe my humble Words won’t change your opinion. But please, while you are in our country watching the whales, spare a thought for our people and whatwe are trying to achieve.

Yours faithfully

 

Rita Augustine

On behalf of the Environmental and Cultural Heritage Team and Jabirrlabirr Traditional Owners

 

 

 

Advertisements
68 Comments leave one →
  1. JAWS permalink
    August 7, 2012 6:07 pm

    Go………..Go……….Go……………..Go…………………Go ……………..Woodside……………………..Go You Good Thing

    Bob Brown is the biggest fucking turd to have ever littered the Senate.

    If you need evidence of the economic vandalism of the Greens look no further than our own version of Greece which masquerades as Tasmania.

    In fact Tasmania is a good example of why GST funds should not be used to subsidise less wealthy states.

    If you want to vote Green then you should be prepared to “Live the Experience” and not expect handouts when you rally against your own states economic development.

  2. August 7, 2012 6:25 pm

    “Bob Brown is the biggest fucking turd to have ever littered the Senate.”

    Have you met Christine Milne….?

  3. el gordo permalink
    August 7, 2012 6:40 pm

    ‘If you want to vote Green then you should be prepared to “Live the Experience” and not expect handouts when you rally against your own states economic development.’

    That is a refreshing idea and would dramatically change our political culture.

  4. TB Queensland permalink
    August 7, 2012 6:42 pm

    I almost counted how many “culture”s there are in the letter … but that would be crass … perhaps ToM will do it for us …

    I reckon the Rita has a very good point … it is the, Jabirr Jabirr, people’s decision not BB’s … BUT the money must be managed … anyone from any culture when coming into a lot of money (especially when they haven’t had any before) end up “blowing” it on useless shit … (or pissing it up against a wall!) … I’ve experienced it personally in a number of incidents …

    My old man was left £10,000 in 1958 (my grandmother died) … at the time he was earning £5 a week … in 1959 he had £3,000 left … most of it against a wall and a marriage almost in tatters … in 1959 my parent’s invested the remaining money in a “chippie” (fish & chip shop) … they doubled their money and emigrated to Oz in 1960 … arrived in 1961 … with £4000 … £2000 in a six week boat people voyage!

    In 1989 we returned from PNG with $10000 to invest … we owned everything … we didn’t have a bloody clue!

    My son-in-law has just paid his mortgage off after six years … he has money that needs investing and keeps coming up with ideas that ………….

    It’s not culture the Jabirr Jabirr need to worry about its knowledge of finance … and people who will want to rip ’em off … they also need to talk to the “people” at Weipa and across the world – the Enuit in Alaska …

    Maybe they need to chck out Native American Gaming in America .. too …

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Native_American_gaming

  5. Tom of Melbourne permalink
    August 7, 2012 6:46 pm

    The only thing We need saving from, is people who disrespect our decisions and want to see our people locked up in a wilderness and treated as museum pieces.
    We are a living people and a living culture.

    Exactly. It always amazes me that people continually prattle on about what is and isn’t indigenous culture, as if it’s the only culture in the world that should remain static,. That it is a culture that should be “treated as a museum piece”.

    I find it repulsive that a range of types (like Brown) presume to speak on behalf of these people, they are articulate enough to speak on their own behalf, and entitled to extract the economic benefits from their assets, just like everyone else.

  6. August 7, 2012 7:20 pm

    “they are articulate enough to speak on their own behalf, and entitled to extract the economic benefits from their assets, just like everyone else.”

    Indeed Tom. Hopefully this is the first (public) step in making that become a reality..

    I think I’ve mentioned (somewhat controversially) in the past, is that the only way one (or a community) can move on from the wrongdoings of the past, is to relinquish “the shackles” of the “victim mentality.”

    I am in no way suggesting that indigenous Australians are milking the system with a victim mentality, but perhaps the likes of Bob Brown are “imposing” a victim mentality, when aboriginal Australians are already quite willing to free themselves from that characterisation, which seems to be the case in this situation.

  7. TB Queensland permalink
    August 7, 2012 7:32 pm

    … they are articulate enough to speak on their own behalf, and entitled to extract the economic benefits from their assets, just like everyone else.

    Indeed … ToM …having experienced thsi “cultural cringe crap” in both Oz and PNG …

    As, sreb, says BB is “milking” the system … he’s fkn “retired”!

  8. Spread the mining wealth. permalink
    August 7, 2012 7:47 pm

    I like the cut of Rita’s jib. And fuck you Bob.

  9. Toyota Dreaming permalink
    August 7, 2012 8:03 pm

    I didn’t mean that Bob. Seriously. You’ll be up there doing all the important stuff – like seranading fossilised whale bones by whistling through a dried out dingo’s-ring – but them silly locals will just be after better conditions for themselves and their families more white man’s stuff.

  10. Tom of Melbourne permalink
    August 7, 2012 10:04 pm

    It’s a possible conundrum for Greens types.

    How to justify Brown in this context? I think they’ll go with the “blame a trouble maker who does not represent the real people” tactic.

    It usually works for them,

  11. Splatterbottom permalink
    August 7, 2012 10:06 pm

    We have seen all too often that money is corrosive of human decency. But it is utterly heartbreaking to see victims of white capitalist oppression bought off and turned against the greater good like so many expendable foot-soldiers. The root of all evil indeed!

    If ever there was evidence of the canker of capitalism it is here for all to see. This is a classic case of capital turning the oppressed against each other and against the noble and enlightened intellectuals who have done so much for them.

    Rita is just plain ungrateful. She should show some respect for the decent virtuous activists who have made such great sacrifices on behalf of little brown people like her. There are always difficult choices to be made and all humans, including Rita, need to show respect for the planet that sustains them.

    It is bad enough that wicked mining companies destroy our precious country, but it is far, far worse to see people using the very land rights won for them by heroes like Bob Brown in the service of mineral-extracting wilderness-rapists like Woodside.

    I weep as I type this. It does my head in. I just can’t believe the evil venal greed behind this outrageous letter. Won’t somebody please think of the planet? We all have sacrifices to make.

  12. el gordo permalink
    August 7, 2012 11:07 pm

    ‘Won’t somebody please think of the planet?’

    I have lived here all my life and have become blase’…sorry.

  13. armchair opinionator permalink
    August 8, 2012 12:10 am

    BTW, no-one is stopping Woodside from improving the lot of Aborigines as they say they wish to do, they don’t need to own, rape and pillage their lands to do so. Seems a very unethical argument that Aboriginal people can only have improved health and education outcomes if mining companies allow it.

    THE KIMBERLEY: THE RIGHT THING OR KA-CHING?

    …Ah, yes. This is the cry of the mining companies wherever they want to go in Australia where indigenous people live or have ever lived. “We will bring benefits that only our activities can bring. These will be employment, health and educational benefits that will help to solve the enduring problems of Aboriginal communities.” So the issues the miners put front and centre aren’t the obvious environmental risks; it’s really all about helping people…

    …When Premier Colin Barnett was asked why these benefits wouldn’t still flow to the Jabirr Jabirr and Goolarabaloo people if the gas hub was located somewhere in WA other than the sensitive Kimberley coast, he replied, “No. They won’t get them unless it’s here.”
    Is there really some government policy that ties royalties or taxes from a particular site to the surrounding region? No, quite the opposite in fact…

    …The Centre for Aboriginal Economic Policy Research, at the Australian National University, published a study in 2005 entitled Indigenous People and the Pilbara Mining Boom. A line of this report reads thus: “Despite 40 years of sustained economic development in the Pilbara region, the labour force status of Indigenous Pilbara residents has barely altered.”…

    …Even if all of this were not true, it’s the fundamental premise that seems false. The concept that you now receive a good education in Australia or adequate
    healthcare if you happen to live in a valuable mining area, whether you are Indigenous or not, is so preposterous as to appear to need no reply.

  14. August 8, 2012 8:24 am

    “I weep as I type this.”

    Welcome to my world….

  15. Splatterbottom permalink
    August 8, 2012 8:42 am

    My tears were of laughter. 🙂

  16. Tom of Melbourne permalink
    August 8, 2012 8:49 am

    It’s a fact, money does buy better housing, better medical/health services, better education, better food.

    With money you can take holidays, pay bills, participate in cultural and leisure activities, and clothe your children. Given the option, I can understand why these people would prefer to obtain some economic benefit from their assets.

    ….. and very funny from SB.

  17. Splatterbottom permalink
    August 8, 2012 9:43 am

    ““If it is another Aboriginal person I don’t have any problems but if it is a so-called redneck putting these things up on the internet I’m offended by it,” Mr Hunter said.”

    I’m confused. Can someone let me know when it is alright to be offended by that stuff.

  18. Good Grief permalink
    August 8, 2012 9:52 am

    ‘I’m confused. Can someone let me know when it is alright to be offended by that stuff.’

    That’s the Grievance Industry’s job, splatter.

  19. TB Queensland permalink
    August 8, 2012 9:52 am

    If I own land I can do whatever I like with/on it as long as I follow societies rules, regulations and protocols … the Jabirr Jabirr have exactly the same rights …

    I might drop a note into BB’s letterbox when I’m down his way next month … something simple …

    Bob

    Fuck off and mind your own business not the Jabirr Jabirr’s.

    Regards

    TB

    ++++++++++++++++++++++++++

    sp, keep up the good work I lurv sarcasm …

    … “the lowest form of wit”, my Grandma always used to tell us … guess whose tongue dripped sarcasm daily!

    Pity so many people don’t get the irony … especially in WA it’s full of it …

  20. August 8, 2012 9:59 am

    You should write letters more often TB.

  21. TB Queensland permalink
    August 8, 2012 10:19 am

    Funny you should say that, sreb, ’tis somewhat of a joke in our family … The Minister wrote a letter to my sister about her lack of anger management, hissy fits and bad manners … because she couldn’t actually talk to her about it without getting a ranting session … by this time I’d got fed up of playing bloody arbitrator in the family and sorting shit out so when I was shown the letter I just said … send it … that was about 15 years ago … drama ever since but no contact at all now (after she stole money via my parents will)… so if we ever have an issue, the kids just say … we’ll get Mum to write a letter …

    Letters are a bit like the interwebby thingy though, once they’re are out there it’s hard to deny you said it … as is often pointed out …

    Back on subject … one of the best parts of the Weipa bauxite project is the number of local Aboriginals learning trades and admin skills … the local culture is well supported with a local Cultural Centre and an introduction to local culture and issues is a major (compulsory) part of the Rio Tinto mine induction program …

    And I must say that the young Aboriginal supervisors that attended my training programs were very bloody smart … just a pity that some white folk patronised them … a problem I enountered in PNG … I treat all people equally colour, culture or background means nothing to me … if you are a good guy you’re a good guy if your an arsehole etc … and you’ll be treated as you present yourself … most of the arsholes in PNG are not nationals BTW …

  22. armchair opinionator permalink
    August 8, 2012 12:04 pm

    “…It’s a fact, money does buy better housing, better medical/health services, better education, better food…”

    “…Dr Brown, do you know what it is like to be taken away from your family, to not have money to buy food, to live in a house that is dilapidated and beyond repair? To see your children grow up in despair, die before they are 50, or even worse, take their own lives before they get to their 20s?…”

    We’re talking about basic health and education, something that they should have had as their birthright in this country, as equal Australians, without selling off their lands [which they’ve had to fight long & hard to possess I believe]. Not all traditional owners feel as the letter writer above does.

    If the miners are doing this for such altruistic purposes, why can’t they employ Indigenous peoples without the caveat of mining their land?

    Only mining & destroying their lands can change Aboriginal lives? The state and federal governments share no responsibilities in this regard? How come white Australians don’t have to sell their properties to have better health and education?

  23. August 8, 2012 12:38 pm

    “If the miners are doing this for such altruistic purposes, why can’t they employ Indigenous peoples without the caveat of mining their land?”

    Often, a condition of employment is that people need to be able to show up on time.

  24. Welfare trapper permalink
    August 8, 2012 12:39 pm

    ‘Only mining & destroying their lands can change Aboriginal lives?’

    I don’t think anyone is saying that. But this is a major opportunity to improve the lot of the local aborigines, and a majority of them have decided to take advantage of it.

    ‘How come white Australians don’t have to sell their properties to have better health and education?’

    Not sell, exactly, but taxpayers do “forfeit” a portion of their income to pay for those kinds of things.

  25. JAWS permalink
    August 8, 2012 12:51 pm

    “If the miners are doing this for such altruistic purposes, why can’t they employ Indigenous peoples without the caveat of mining their land? ”

    Woodside* are not mining their land perse. The gas rigs are well off the coast but the gas (which is too large in volume to be shipped as a “gas”) needs to be transported out of the area via purification/liquidisation process which occurs in what is called an “LNG Train”.

    Its the LNG Train that is to be constructed on the waterfront

    Then it is shipped off to wherever.

    There are a number of Woodside (WPL) experts who believe that WPL would be better off forgetting about doing it where it is planned because its too much hassle and can possibly be done more economically elsewhere. But that’s just an opinion on their part.

    So its quite possible that the Indigenous people of the area could totally miss out if f**king cnuts like Brown make it “all too hard”

    * The contributor holds a substantial number of WPL shares within his SMSF

  26. armchair opinionator permalink
    August 8, 2012 12:51 pm

    Not sell, exactly, but taxpayers do “forfeit” a portion of their income to pay for those kinds of things.

    And taxpayers pay into a common pool so that all of society should have equal outcomes in things like health and education. Why do private schools and hospitals get taxpayer funding when Aboriginals do not have basic equality in service provision?

  27. Wilful Contrarian permalink
    August 8, 2012 12:52 pm

    AO, if given the choice between subsistence/minimum standards of housing, health care & education, and a standard above this, why shouldn’t people voluntarily choose the higher standard.

    If they have assets, they are entitled to deploy them to achieve their own objectives and interests.

  28. Tom of Melbourne permalink
    August 8, 2012 1:01 pm

    testing a new device!

  29. armchair opinionator permalink
    August 8, 2012 1:05 pm

    If they have assets, they are entitled to deploy them to achieve their own objectives and interests.

    This isn’t new. Show me the research where it proves that this is what happens, that those objectives [by letter writer above and stated by mining company] have been achieved.

  30. armchair opinionator permalink
    August 8, 2012 1:06 pm

    Wilful Contrarian = tomM?

  31. Definition Of Insanity permalink
    August 8, 2012 1:12 pm

    ‘Why do private schools and hospitals get taxpayer funding when Aboriginals do not have basic equality in service provision?’

    I agree that the current system has failed aborigines in remote communuties. That’s what (a majority) of these people are saying. They want to get out of the welfare trap and they see this as their chance. I hope it works out for them.

  32. armchair opinionator permalink
    August 8, 2012 1:26 pm

    …agree that the current system has failed aborigines in remote communuties…”

    “…They want to get out of the welfare trap and they see this as their chance. I hope it works out for them….

    The burden of system failure is theirs alone? When all other Australians do not have the same burden placed upon them?

    A strange kind of equality of life and opportunity we have!

  33. armchair opinionator permalink
    August 8, 2012 1:34 pm

    Often, a condition of employment is that people need to be able to show up on time.

    Cultural superiority much? I hope they claim your land/property and turf you out on your lily white lardy arse, back to your colonial roots, see how superior you are then 😆

  34. August 8, 2012 1:45 pm

    LOL! I was wondering how long it was going to take to get a reaction….. 🙂

  35. TB Queensland permalink
    August 8, 2012 1:46 pm

    … on your lily white lardy arse …

    Klassic Komedy! 😆

  36. August 8, 2012 1:54 pm

    At least my lily white lardy arse knows how to turn up to work on time, not just whenever “the vibe” feels right…. 😉

  37. TB Queensland permalink
    August 8, 2012 1:55 pm

    When I first got to PNG my trainers (expats & nationals) would schedule a course for 8:30 am and no-one would turn up till 9:30 … so I told ’em to just start the course at 8:30 … but who do we train? they said Each other, I said (’cause they certainly needed it) … after a week of turning up to a training course that had already run for an hour … everyone turned up on time …

    It was the silly expats that just accepted it as “Melanesian Time” … they’ve always done it … can’t abuse the culture … wankers …

    When I finally got sick of the smarmy, patronising expats telling me we couldn’t interfere with PNG culture at a management meeting … I very calmly explained that the process producing, maintaining, marketing, selling electricity came from my culture and as soon as a national walked into the gate he/she was in my culture as soon as I walked out of the gate I was in theirs … respect BOTH ways … anry an argument over the issue again …

    The irony was the guy who had given me the $#!ts for so long was a missionary (as well as the Technical Training Manager) … and he was pontificating about interfering with the culture … just another fkn hypocrite …

  38. Tom of Melbourne permalink
    August 8, 2012 2:01 pm

    (I’m thinking that “Wilful Contrarian” is a more appropriate way of describing my orientation)

  39. August 8, 2012 2:30 pm

    At least my lily white lardy arse knows how to turn up to work on time, not just whenever “the vibe” feels right….

    That’s not what your boyf………… *nah, best not*

  40. August 8, 2012 4:04 pm

    Facebook page vilifying Aborigines ‘breaks Australian law’

    by Andrew Crook and Matthew Knott

    “A senior solicitor involved in the successful Andrew Bolt racial discrimination case says US social networking giant Facebook has broken Australian law by hosting a controversial page dedicated to vilifying Aboriginal people.

    Joel Zyngier, a senior associate with Holding Redlich, told Crikey this morning the site appears to be breach of section 18C of the Racial Discrimination Act that prohibits an act that “offend, insult, humiliate or intimidate another person or a group of people” on the grounds of race.

    “Much if not all of the content on the page would be reasonably likely to do one or more of offend, insult, humiliate or intimidate an Aboriginal person,” Zyngier said.

    “Facebook Inc and the moderator of the Facebook page Aboriginal Memes (and even those who post on the site) may have contravened section 18C of the Racial Discrimination Act by publishing certain images and words on that page. It is clearly an intentional public communication made on the grounds of race.”

    On Monday, opposition leader Tony Abbott said he would wind back 18C of the act, partially — it would appear — to placate Bolt and deal with instances of hatred separately under common law.

    Crikey can also reveal the Australian Communications and Media Authority, which is responsible for regulating online content, is investigating the page after receiving a complaint. ”The ACMA is currently investigating specific URLs that contain the online content you referred to after receiving a complaint yesterday,” an ACMA spokesperson said this morning.

    ACMA, however, has little power to act because racially discriminatory material posted online, while unlawful, is not prohibited by the Broadcasting Services Act.”

    http://www.crikey.com.au/2012/08/08/facebook-page-vilifying-aborigines-breaks-australian-law/

  41. armchair opinionator permalink
    August 8, 2012 4:08 pm

    At least my lily white lardy arse knows how to turn up to work on time, not just whenever “the vibe” feels right….

    Would that be your lily white workplace of angry WCPs, power mad obsessives, neurotics and sociopaths?

    Might be better off taking a little time off from that soul destroying, toxic environment, it’s killin’ ya! – go home, live and love a little, get some good, good, good vibrations, feel the excitations! 🙂

  42. August 8, 2012 4:10 pm

    Tonight on Insight – SBS 2 at 7.30pm….

    The number of people identifying in the census as Aboriginal or Torres Strait Islander is up more than 20 per cent since 2006. But there’s debate in some Aboriginal communities over who should be able to call themselves Aboriginal, and whether the current certification system is working as well as it should be. Australian current affairs forum hosted by Anton Enus.

  43. August 8, 2012 4:12 pm

    “Would that be your lily white workplace of angry WCPs, power mad obsessives, neurotics and sociopaths?”

    Oh, that could be anywhere….!

  44. August 8, 2012 4:13 pm

    go home, live and love a little, get some good, good, good vibrations, feel the excitations!”

    God advice! We’re about to go to Penang for a couple of weeks.

    Coincidentally I’ve enrolled in a “teaching English as a second language” course.

    I might not come back!

  45. August 8, 2012 4:15 pm

    I think you will enjoy this article Kitty…

    Nice reminder to engage with the folks around us http://t.co/z1SZcPuI

  46. armchair opinionator permalink
    August 8, 2012 4:21 pm

    …But there’s debate in some Aboriginal communities over who should be able to call themselves Aboriginal…

    It’s a genuine debate reb…amongst and led by Aboriginal people, not the redneck racists who want to marginalise, disparage, ridicule and demonise due to misplaced and ignorant envy, all encouraged and incited by the likes of the Bolter who only wants to feed more $ through his machine.

  47. So confusing permalink
    August 8, 2012 4:28 pm

    Apparently we’re not all equal under the law. Bolt was convicted for saying the same kinds of things.

    Oops, sorry! He’s white isn’t he? How dare he!

    (Plus he’s a wingnut. 😉 )

  48. August 8, 2012 4:32 pm

    “Bolt was convicted for saying the same kinds of things.”

    Actually, if I recall correctly, Bolt was convicted for just “making shit up.”

  49. Same arguments permalink
    August 8, 2012 4:38 pm

    Not sure about that, reb.

    “Broadly speaking, the nature of her complaint is that the articles conveyed offensive messages about fair-skinned Aboriginal people, by saying that they were not genuinely Aboriginal and were pretending to be Aboriginal so they could access benefits that are available to Aboriginal people. Ms Eatock wants the law to address this conduct. She wants declarations and injunctions and an apology from the Herald & Weekly Times.”

  50. armchair opinionator permalink
    August 8, 2012 4:46 pm

    Actually, if I recall correctly, Bolt was convicted for just “making shit up.”

    Exactly, something they choose to ignore for a loftier sounding free speech dummy spit and revisionary re-write more acceptable to conservative-think.

    Shoosh now, you’re not supposed to remind them of their deluded and conflicted ‘realities’ it makes them very aaannngggrrrryyyy and they just might have to shoot some reffos or anyone unlucky enough to enter their orbit.

  51. armchair opinionator permalink
    August 8, 2012 4:52 pm

    …by saying that they were not genuinely Aboriginal and were pretending to be Aboriginal so they could access benefits that are available to Aboriginal people…

    And he added incorrect and untruthful statements, lies and libel he got caught on, nothing to do with his hate/attack speech. It was basically lazy journalism, he was so used to getting away with it for so long, due to of the lack of media [self] regulation.

  52. armchair opinionator permalink
    August 8, 2012 4:58 pm

    Thanks reb, I did like that article, thoughtful and human. Great descriptive writing, I could actually visualise the whole scene.

  53. armchair opinionator permalink
    August 8, 2012 5:06 pm

    Oops, sorry! He’s white isn’t he? How dare he!

    Yes, he’s white and writes to demean and belittle people. Even worse when an already disadvantaged and marginalised voiceless and powerless minority get the special Bolt treatment. Why doesn’t he ‘bolt’ the white majority, those who enjoy status and privilege and have plenty of superior self esteem?

    Oops, sorry! No money for Murdoch and no job for the Bolter!

  54. Same arguments permalink
    August 8, 2012 5:12 pm

    ‘And he added incorrect and untruthful statements’

    That’s right.

    According to Bromberg J: “402. Bolt wrote that Ms Cole was raised by her “English-Jewish” or “English” mother (1A-2; 2A-24). That statement is factually inaccurate because Ms Cole’s Aboriginal grandmother also raised Ms Cole and was highly influential in Ms Cole’s identification as an Aboriginal. He wrote that Ms Cole “rarely saw her part-Aboriginal father” (1A-3). That statement is factually incorrect. Ms Cole’s father was Aboriginal and had been a part of her life until she was six years old. Ms Cole later lived with her father for a year whilst growing up.”

    And: “406. lt said of Wayne and Graham Atkinson that they were “Aboriginal because their Indian great-grandfather married a part-Aboriginal woman” (1A-33). In the second article Mr Bolt wrote of Graham Atkinson that “his right to call himself Aboriginal rests on little more than the fact that his Indian great-grandfather married a part-Aboriginal woman” (A2-28). The facts given by Mr Bolt and the comment made upon them are grossly incorrect. The Atkinsons’ parents are both Aboriginal as are all four of their grandparents and all of their great grandparents other than one who is the Indian great grandfather that Mr Bolt referred to in the article. Mr Bolt did not seek to deny the evidence of Aboriginal ancestry given by the Atkinsons but insisted that their ancestry was accurately conveyed by the statements made and extracted above.”

    And: “407. Documentary source upon which Mr Bolt relied for his statement that Ms Eatock only started to identify as Aboriginal “when she was 19 after attending a political rally” (1A-27), was in evidence. That source made an incorrect assertion as to when Ms Eatock began “publicly” identifying as Aboriginal. Mr Bolt repeated the error as to age (for which no complaint is made) but left out “publicly”. The absence of that word created the false impression that Ms Eatock had not identified as an Aboriginal person before she was 19 years old and only upon attending a political meeting. In his evidence, Mr Bolt was unimpressively dismissive of the significance of that omission.”

    All of which does not change the premise of his articles. That he, like several guests on the Insight program, question what qualifies someone to be called aboriginal.

  55. armchair opinionator permalink
    August 8, 2012 8:21 pm

    In his evidence, Mr Bolt was unimpressively dismissive of the significance of that omission.”

    …and unapologetic and unimpressively dismissive of those people he has maligned. he got done this time, he’s been making derogatory and demeaning racially divisive remarks for years. poor bolthead, what a sook, as with tony abbott, it’s been the longest dummy spit, cry me a river!

    are they still sooking about this, the right wing attack dogs? the culture warriors who cowardly throw their spears from the protection of giant media empires? they don’t like it when their muckraking collides with reality, when real people with real feelings confront them and force them to answer for their very public racism and bigotry.

  56. Ol' Sancty permalink
    August 8, 2012 9:11 pm

    Kittylitter, I think as time is passing, and the conduct of the Plaintiffs, especially Larissa Berehndt and that criminal ex ATSIC head are becoming more widely known, and more of the real tribal Aborigines are beginning to speak out, Bolt’s pieces on the issue, however clumsily put together, are becoming apparently more accurate.

  57. armchair opinionator permalink
    August 9, 2012 10:56 pm

    Bolt’s pieces on the issue, however clumsily put together, are becoming apparently more accurate.

    there’s no “becoming apparently more accurate”. if they were accurate, he would not have been found guilty.

  58. James of North Melbourne permalink
    August 9, 2012 11:21 pm

    If you’d read the articles, Kittylitter, rather than the confected leftie outrage about them, you’d know that his point was that the subjects were career Aborigines with little regard for those they purported to represent. We already knew that about Clarke, we now know it about Behrendt.

    The Judgement was a politically motivated disgrace. It has failed, because the raised profile of the Plaintiffs has put their own conduct up for scrutiny.

  59. armchair opinionator permalink
    August 9, 2012 11:32 pm

    It has failed, because the raised profile of the Plaintiffs has put their own conduct up for scrutiny.

    must be a rarity in legal circles to define a successful court case as a failure! Best tell the bolter to stop sooking, he actually won [conservative-think just amazes me!] 🙂

  60. armchair opinionator permalink
    August 9, 2012 11:41 pm

    If you’d read the articles, Kittylitter, rather than the confected leftie outrage about them, you’d know that his point was that the subjects were career Aborigines with little regard for those they purported to represent. We already knew that about Clarke, we now know it about Behrendt.

    do we? i guess a lot of people and the court think differently. and because they do, conservatives reckon we have to repeal the laws because they are simply incapable of non descrimination.

  61. James of North Melbourne permalink
    August 9, 2012 11:57 pm

    Sorry Kittylitter. Your side have surrendered your mortgage on morality. Exposed for the carpetbaggers and frauds that they are. You can keep trotting out the revolutionary lines, but the pigs in charge of the revolution are walking upright.

    Did you hear Adam Bandt has been exploiting interns?

  62. armchair opinionator permalink
    August 10, 2012 12:49 am

    Sorry Kittylitter. Your side have surrendered your mortgage on morality. Exposed for the carpetbaggers and frauds that they are. You can keep trotting out the revolutionary lines, but the pigs in charge of the revolution are walking upright.

    oh we’re doing the “the commies are coming, the commies are coming” thing again are we!

    boring but predictable.

  63. August 10, 2012 9:23 am

    Did you hear Adam Bandt has been exploiting interns?

  64. public toilet permalink
    August 10, 2012 1:19 pm

    Did you hear, Andrew Bolt, has been exploiting his impressionable lickspittles?

  65. public toilet permalink
    August 10, 2012 1:21 pm

    The Greens make the squirters squirt with greater alarm.

  66. Samm permalink
    October 15, 2012 3:19 pm

    would like to hear more voices before I can understand the Aboriginal communitys opinions, news limited have a history of cherry picking the opinions that suit their idealology and running with it, (bess price, noel pearson, warren mundine) to name a few, heres one source, I will look and wait for more to enable me to cross reference the information, or am I being to cautious, news limited, I think im being wise

  67. el gordo permalink
    October 15, 2012 3:47 pm

    Welcome Samm …cross referencing is a good idea in gaining a broader picture.

Go on say something, you'll feel better...

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

w

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: