Wednesday, December 17, 2008

The Greens blocking of action on climate change: Striping own skin or displaying true colour!

I was laughing deeply when I saw Bob Brown, the Greens leader, threatening to block in the senate the proposal from the government to take action to reduce the emissions by 5 – 15 % by 2020. Such threat that was shared by Liberals and Nationals.

What does this actually mean?

It means that no action would be taken in regard to reduce the effect of climate change, let alone take action to reverse its effect. Then we will be lost watching all political parties engaging in blame game, for electoral reasons only.

Who can believe that the Greens, who was established to fight for this particular reason, would abandon this big goal? And for what in return?

The failure of the government to pass its bill will give all political parties the excuses not to do anything in this regard. The Labor government would say that “we” had failed to pass this bill, and will blame the alliance between the Liberals and The Greens for it. The Liberals would declare that John Howard was right not to take actions, and will declare that jobs are saved and we do not need to take any action in this regard.

But what the Greens would achieve from this lack of actions?

The Greens will maintain its viability by maintaining its loud voice on opposing any steps in this regards.

But would this be classified as childish move or opportunist one?

For the Greens supporters it’s called “sticking to principles”, even if this means that no real action to reduce the destructive effect of emissions on our environment will be ever taken. The Greens hierarchy would think that this means that the expiry date of this party would be prolonged, by prolonging the empty rhetoric on doing anything on environment and just resorting to political score-pointing.

For any political analysis this would be the biggest betrayal for the issue of protecting environment. The Greens infact stopped any actions taken to acknowledge the issue and take any step in this regard.

The Greens empty rhetoric and demands of “take full step or no step at all” are neither acceptable nor viable. If the Labor would adopt the agenda of the Greens in this regard, one of these political parties should disappear. In politics you negotiate, take what you can take. And then if it is not enough, you ask for more.

It is very clear that the Greens had many reasons to abort any action on climate change:
1- It wants to continue acting as “vocal syndrome” in Australian politics, where they complain about almost everything, but practically achieve none. By this way they think that they can just keep loud voice, before people start to forget about their presence.
2- It wants to establish good basis to justify its growing alliance with the racist far-right Liberals party. This relationship is not new, but it needs to be born in light, after years of secret dealings.

By doing this, the Greens would fail to fulfill its role and infact would reach its expiry date, exactly as happened to the Democrats. For the small “left” parties, who know that they will never govern a country, the philosophy behind its activities should be just to “keep bastards honest”, try to extract compromises and enforce them to make socio-economic changes. The philosophy is so easy. Small party should be active on few important issues, to get some votes from the current big governing parties. Then the government would act in a bid to stop the exhaustion of its votes. Also any presence in the decision making bodies (Parliaments and councils) is just to access a platform and resources to highlight the issues that matter. Through this process, the most important issue is that the power thirst should not divert the attention of such party to start making compromises, to achieve more power grabbing instead of more socio-economic changes. If this happens, the party would become part of the problem and not part of solution.

And this is exactly what happened to the Greens.
The power thirst of their hierarchy made them start to make compromises to “look attractive” for the “undecided” voters.

This is why the Greens had departed many platforms, departed its direct-action style and started to engage in behind-doors deals with “any” political force to attract “any” votes to keep its viability by “any” means.

Who remember when was the last time a Greens member had jumped on a tree and tied him/herself to it? When was the last time the Greens talked about the occupation of Afghanistan?

On the contrary. The Greens was talking recently about Afghanistan asking for more troops to be deployed to ensure that “the job had been done”.

Going back to climate change action.
If I was the Labor party hierarchy, I would invest millions of dollars to expose the Greens on these particular issues.

The Greens block of the bill in senate means that there will be no actions to reduce the emissions for long time to come. I will also remind people that the Greens is allying in their position with the Liberals, whose leaders were denying, and are still denying, the existence of climate change.

If I am in Labor party, I would be dancing for this opportunity to expose the true colour of the Greens: transparent colourless (to allow them change their colour when needed).

We are praying that the Greens opportunists will continue in their political naivety in displaying their pure opportunism.

Wednesday, October 15, 2008

When Australia’s humanity is worth less than $80,000.00!

The Aminovs case had exposed a very bitter reality: after 12 years of the neo-liberal agenda, the humanity of this great nation has been reduced to a worth of less than $80,000.00.
When Aminovs son called the Immigration Minister’s office yesterday, the Minister’s Adviser was talking only about the $80,000.00 (required for the visa to be granted within months, instead of decades). The Adviser did not care and did not want to discuss any humanitarian circumstances that could change the Minister’s opinion and heart. She also would not agree to arrange for meeting with the Minister to try to convince him of the logical reasons why this family should have been granted permanent visas a long time ago.
All the evidence of humanitarian circumstances we provided the Minister’s Office was either ignored and regarded as irrelevant or were never presented to the Minister. We believe that the latter is the case. This is why the Aminovs were left with no other option but to try to attract the attention of the media, in a bid to reach the Minister, instead of dealing all the time with his advisers and secretaries.
What had shocked us all is the lack of any interest by any media outlet to speak about this highly humanitarian issue that (until now) had devastated the life of a young Australian permanent resident, turning it into complete misery. This misery has the potential to progress to worse consequences if the issue continues to be totally ignored by the Minister and media outlets.
The latest report by the Aminov’s son’s mental therapist (which was definitely not read by the Minister or his advisers/secretaries) pointed out very clearly that the highly inhumane treatment of this family resulted in the suicidal thoughts and attempts by the son (who will become an Australian citizen early next year, if he will be still alive!!)
The heartlessness of all ministerial staff and other politicians in the Federal parliament casts a very dark shadow about the status of humanity in this great nation.
The Federal government is now talking about spending billions of $s of tax-payers money to correct the mistakes, the greed or the irresponsible actions of a few investors, money borrowers and lenders, or to compensate for the inaction of an irresponsible previous government. How is it that the same government can be so obsessed with the $80,000.00 it wants to collect eagerly from the Aminovs?
What kind of nation have we been reduced to by this current government and the previous government, where everything is calculated by “fiscal management” yardstick, by dollar measurement and by inhumane laws which were introduced by a government that was condemned by all national and international human rights organisations, by its own members and by historical figures of its party?
But even taking this “fiscal management stance” – why would the government not grant the Aminovs a permanent visa?
The decision to prolong the mental torture of Aminovs by prolonging the period until they will be granted PR (11 years so far, in addition to possibly 17 years of waiting) did cost me as a taxpayer the following:
1- The son, Marat, became very sick and so he was unfit for work for the last year and he is expected to retire soon on a disability pension. We lost an average of $8,000.00 taxes from his work.
2- His repeated admission to a mental health institution (north shore hospital – mental health unit) cost me as a tax-payer tens of thousands of dollars
3- The cost of looking after Marat after becoming mentally ill as a result of this ordeal could run to tens of thousands of dollars in rehabilitation programs, specialised employment programs, specialised home-care programs and other related programs.
4- The cost borne so far by community supporters trying to save Marat or any of his family members from physical collapse or attempted suicide to end their suffering has so far been huge.

5- The cost of measures taken by the family and its supporters to reach the Minister to try to change his heart and decision to end its ordeal is becoming more and more expensive. The current and latest effort required several people to travel to Canberra, leaving their families and jobs behind.

And after all these costs, we heard from the Minister’s office one demand to end this family’s deep humanitarian suffering: you should have paid $80,000.00!
How cheap has our great nation’s pride and humanity become?

And so we say: Dear Minister, Please act to end this family’s suffering, before it is too late. If anyone of this innocent family’s members would be lost through the process to reach you and your heart, our nation would suffer a lot. Our suffering will include moral suffering for generations to come. So please grant them permanent visas before it is too late.

Wednesday, April 16, 2008

Morris Iemma: A Politician or Neighbourhood Thug!

I met Morris Iemma, NSW Premier, for the first time on the election day of 2003 state election outside one of the polling booths. I was shocked.

On the election day, all politicians behave themselves in a highly respectable and clever way.

He was acting as neighbourhood thug, and not a politician seeking to get the highest possible votes to keep his seat. He arrived to the booth in a very arrogant way, his nose was up touching the sky and surrounded with many of his supporters behaving as merely supporter thugs. He did not offer his hand to shake anyone’s hand, did not offer to help any voter and did not make any promise, even cheap deceiving ones.

He approached me, and I was helping his opponents, and said “anyone than Labor would need hundreds of years to snatch this seat from us”. I immediately shook my head in mockery and said “but Labor did lose Cunningham last year. It was very safe Labor seat for more than half century when your party behaved as thugs and ignored the people voting for them”

I was sure at that time that this arrogant “politician” who displayed no sense of political experience, would never climb beyond his current position. I judged this in a balanced pragmatic way.

A politician who lives on tax-payers money, should have acted in dealing with tax-payers better than this, to keep his employment at least.

But this thug was acting just as neighbourhood Al Capone gangster, using the argument that “you do not have any other alternative”.

Then I was shocked when he asssumed the top position in the state, after bloodless coup orchestrated behind closed doors in Terrigal.

But we say in Arabic “You bring curse on yourself”. And this is what happened.

The Terrigals, a newly formed Labor faction of mainly opportunists and named after secret meeting in the house of one of them in Terrigal, decided to absolutely control NSW Parliament. By appointing Morris, they actually decided to destroy their faction just shortly after its foundation.

The period of their control was marked only by scandals and chaos: fraud, corruption, sexual abuse (including child abuse), economic mismanagement, spreading culture of intimidation, bullying and racism... etc.

And I discovered more about Morris Iemma yesterday. In a visit to his electoral office, I discovered that it is not only him who is arrogant and ignorant. All workers at his office have the same attitude, or worse.

The worker there treated me as a criminal or at least beggar, who is hoping to get anything from this office. She treated me as parasite on them and the society. They forgot that they are the one who are getting the tax-payers money to help me and other residents of the area.

They forgot when they started to intimidate me when they could not fight my logic with similar logic that they are working in the office of the local MP and not at an office of ASIO or at correction service facility. They also forgot that I am a good law-abiding citizen, and not a criminal seeking some sort of amnesty.

The first thing that drew my attention at Morris’s office was the mono-colored ethnic background of the employees. At the office of one of the most multicultural seats in Australia, all the employees are very blonde, blue eye-colored and can speak only English. And the only English they are fluent in is the language of intimidation and bullying.

I compared Morris’s office with other MP’s offices.

At Tony Stewart office the picture is very different. The employee that I met earlier at the day was olive skin; spoke English with an accent, very polite and willing to help. She listened a lot, never lectured me and even went further to criticise the government action.

At the office of Ms Linda Burney, the atmosphere was very similar: very multicultural, polite and helpful. No intimidation or trace of any threats or bullying.

Usually the office of the local member is there (at tax-payers money expense) to help residents solve the obstacles they face or listen to their issues and try to address them (or take them into account and act upon them).

Usually, if the resident walks in the local member’s office with a bad image about the member or his party, he/she should walk out of the office with a better picture.

I walked in Morris Iemma’s office with bad image about him and his government. I walked out with a worse image.

Before I walked out the office, I swore to the employee there that I will soon move form the area which Morris represents its local member and in which they work as his employees. I also swore that we will do our best to get rid of such arrogant politicians.

Mr Morris Iemma,
If you think that Lakemba is a very safe Labor seat and it could take us hundreds of years to unseat you, you should think more. You should ask your colleague in arrogance and racism, Mr John Howard. He thought that Bennelong was very Liberal seat for about half century. Voters of his electorate sent a strong message last year to him, and to all arrogant politicians who acts as gangsters.

They sent him to the history dust bin, a lesson for you, Morris, to learn from.

And we have many alternatives.

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