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Tuesday, 13 December


Third supermoon in a row set to 'tip people over the edge' and make Christmas a potential 'battle ground' "IndyWatch Feed National"

An upcoming Supermoon could set tensions running high this Christmas and make the festive season a "battle ground", according to one psychiatrist. Rose Smith, the head of the largest network of psychic readers in the Southern hemisphere, Absolute Soul Secrets, has said having three slightly larger moons in a row at the end of the year could result in people experiencing heightened emotions. Australian psychiatrist Rose Smith says a third supermoon could effect people's emotions and 'tip them over the edge' Ms Smith told Daily Mail Australia: "Supermoons are not unusual, we get several a year, but it is unusual to have three in a row and to have them at the end of the year and at the end of the '9' cycle. "There is a lot of stress in the aether, and a lot of pent up emotions built up over time. People have to tighten the reins on their tongues otherwise feelings might come out all over the place." She also warned that the third supermoon could make Christmas a 'battle ground', especially when people carry out their Christmas shopping. Ms Smith added that she had visions of people 'fighting over high heels'. The next supermoon is expected to take place just after midnight on Wednesday and will be the third supermoon in three months. Supermoon is the term given when a full moon is closest to earth. It appears 30 per cent brighter and 14 per cent bigger to those watching on Earth. Some myths and legends believe supermoons pushes people over the edge and into insanity. The word lunacy is actually derived from the Latin lunaticus, which means "of the moon" or "moonstruck".


SR 1391 – Dr. Ben Carson on How to Beat The New World Order "IndyWatch Feed"

Visit our website now: - considered by informed insiders’ as THE ultimate resource for fixing the National Debt problem and surviving Economic or Financial Collapse/Crash and attaining the unvarnished truth about Washington and today’s United States Political Climate. Good afternoon, I’m still reporting on Dr. Ben Carson on How to Beat The New World Order But first, Beth got me an early Christmas gift. I’m not into novelty items, but this is just too good. Make Christmas great again. And just let me take this opportunity to applaud Bill O’reilly who has stood up for saying Merry Christmas for several years on his show. We are going to celebrate our holiday and not be afraid to greet everyone we meet with this greeting in the spirit of love and peace towards all humankind – Merry Christmas. Now, to Dr. Carson. Here’s a little 2 minute 50 second clip of Dr. Ben Carson that I got from a YouTube Channel called @admtrainee. It’s of Dr. Carson speaking in a church – apparently Australia – probably within the last few months. Beth was asked to be Dr. Carson’s county coordinator very early on – perhaps late 2014. But as soon as we saw him speak, we knew that he was too weak to win against the magnitude of the forces of darkness that would go all-in to win this election. Even Donald Trump – the most disruptive presidential candidate in my lifetime - barely had the strength to win. No one in American history has put the level of work as Trump did in his last 2-week blitz across this nation. I’m not sure Dr. Carson – even now – recognizes what his role is. He and Mike Huckabee are the conscience of party. And thank God, Dr. Carson agreed to take on one of the most difficult jobs in the new Trump administration, Sec. of Housing and Urban Development. America needs him to take this job and America needs him to stand on the elevated watchtower and speak his mind as the Trump presidency unfolds. And what Dr. Carson is about to say from this pulpit strikes at the very heart of the evil that has taken over our nation that we must now roll back. [insert] I’ve never heard this interpretation before. If anyone knows the scriptures to which Dr. Carson is referring, please email me at I’m still reporting from Washington. Good day. Bill Still is a former newspaper editor and publisher. He has written for USA Today, The Saturday Evening Post, the Los Angeles Times Syndicate, OMNI magazine, and has also produced the syndicated radio program, Health News. He has written 22 books and two documentary videos and is the host of his wildly popular daily YouTube Channel the “Still Report”, the quintessential report on the economy and Washington. Connect with Bill Still:


US Senate Passes Bill Targeting Independent Media "IndyWatch Feed National"

Only government approved propaganda will be allowed to saturate the masses.  By General Maddox.  A bold move by the US Government may see the end of alternative media outlets being accessed by Americans.  The National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA), which has been renewed every year by whatever president is in power since 9/11, will have […]


86-Year-Old Activist Teaches Himself To Knit To Make Caps For Premature Babies "IndyWatch Feed"

86-Year-Old Activist Teaches Himself To Knit To Make Caps For Premature Babies

This inspiring activist taught himself to knit in four days, and within a few weeks, had created 55 caps to donate to premature babies.

 Amanda Froelich

They say you can’t teach an old dog new tricks, but 86-year-old Ed Moseley would disagree. In fact, the activist would likely tell you that you’re never too old to learn a new trade.

After Dogwood Forest Assisted Living, the facility Moseley lives at in Georgia, asked for residents to help make knit caps for premature newborn babies, the elderly citizen was more than happy to partake. He told Inside Edition: 

“I’ve never knitted in my life. Corporate said it’s a nice project for keeping the old people out of trouble.”

Even though Moseley is battling cancer, he taught himself to knit in just four days. At first, the task of knitting a baby’s cap took Moseley four hours to complete. But now, he can complete a cap in 1 1/2 hours while watching television or chatting with a friend. Within the first few weeks, Moseley created 55 caps for premature babies. It wasn’t long before other residents pitched in to eventually create 300 caps to donate.

All caps were delivered to to the Northwise Hospital last Thursday, just in time for National Preemie Awareness Day. Says Patricia Blunt, a mother of a premature baby in the unit:

“It’s very nice that so many people care about the babies in the NICU. Being up here is so disruptive to your every day and knowing that people care enough to help parents is so appreciated.”



VaxXed Screenings Unchallenged Around Australia "IndyWatch Feed National"

After months of misinterpretations and slandering by the mainstream media VaxXed goes off without a hitch.  By General Maddox. Brutal verbal lashings by the Murdoch media monopoly leading up to the very first screening in Logan City, Queensland were deplorable to say the least. A host of disinformation and propaganda were regularly printed or published […]


Epic lightning storm hits Bondi Beach, Sydney, Australia "IndyWatch Feed Alllocal"

A thunderstorm that formed near the Sydney CBD late Thursday, December 8, 2016 created a spectacular lightshow, with thousands of bolts striking in many directions. After a hot and clear day of 31 °C (87.8 °F) temperatures, the skies suddenly turned black as...... Read more »


Poll Roundup: 2016 Year In Review "IndyWatch Feed Allstate"

Aggregate 52.0 to ALP (+0.1)
Labor would win an election "held now"

It's about the time of year when polling shuts down for a few weeks, so as usual I will post an annual recap.  If there are any late polls then I will edit the text to add them in.

In the three weeks since the last roundup, we've seen some evidence that the anti-Coalition trend in polling has softened, but not all that much.  Newspoll has come in from 53:47 for Labor to 52:48, while Essential's last three readings for Labor have been 51, 52, 53.  I aggregated the Newspoll at 52.1 and the Essentials at 51.3, 52 and 53.1.  There was also the Ipsos discussed in the update to the previous piece.  All up I have things at 52.0 to ALP, down from 52.4 three weeks ago:

Whatever is going on in February and March is likely to shape polling much more than whatever (if anything) is causing the very small comeback that we see here.


The most recent Newspoll saw Malcolm Turnbull's Better PM lead over Bill Shorten drop to an all-time low of 9 points (41-32).  This is the same margin Kevin Rudd had against Tony Abbott in 2010 when Labor dispensed with Rudd's services.

Both leaders polled poor personal ratings with Turnbull backsliding a few points to a net -23 (32-55) and Shorten doing the same to -17 (34-51).  Essential had Turnbull on a new personal worst of -12 (down 4, 34-46) with Shorten on -3 (up six, 35-38) and Turnbull's lead as Better PM down one to 11 points (39-28) - the 39% is Turnbull's lowest rating as Better PM from Essential so far and 11 points is his equal smallest lead over Shorten.  However these Essential findings should be considered as in the context of a sample that may have been a little bit Labor-friendly.

Essential also released ministerial approval ratings, which were pretty nondescript with the exception of Foreign Minister Julie Bishop, who recorded a whopping net +29.  Foreign Minister is an easy portfolio to be popular in because the incumbent is not responsible for harsh policies and often gets opportunities to look good on the world stage.


Mark Thorpe and Wyatt Kilgower have been named Wellington's leading citizens "IndyWatch Feed Alllocal"

SailorMark Thorpewas announced 2017 Wellington Citizen of the Year today at a luncheon hosted by Wellington Shire Council.
Mark has gained much respect in his sailing career and has won Victorian Sailor of the Year with a Disability. He also achieved a Bronze Medal in Special Olympics Sailing and provides much support to his peers with Sailability and is a participant in the Sale to Sea event.
Very active in the community, Mark works hard to educate others in Ataxia-Telangiesctasia and helps with fundraising. He is a member of the Wellington Access and Inclusion Advisory Group and carries out communication and accessibility audits at Council facilities.
"Mark possesses a gritty determination to make the most of his abilities and always does everything with a positive outlook and fearless determination," said Wellington Shire Council Mayor Carolyn Crossley.
Photo above:Deputy Mayor Alan Hall, Citizen of the Year Mark Thorpe, Glenys Thorpe and Mayor Carolyn Crossley.
Photo below:Deputy Mayor Alan Hall, Young Citizen of the Year Wyatt Kilgower and Mayor Carolyn Crossley.
Wyatt Kilgowerof Port Albert was named 2017 Young Citizen of the Year after giving many hours of his time as a volunteer.
He is a Port Albert CFA member, 4th Lieutenant, Training Officer and Junior Leader. Wyatt is also Woodside Surf Life Saving Club Captain, Patrol Captain, First Aid Officer and second in charge of search and rescue. In that role, Wyatt bravely helped Water Police rescue three people from a yacht.
Wyatt was involved in the creation of the Youth Committee in Yarram and setting up the local Yarram FReeZA. He also helps at the Regent Theatre with the sound, lighting and restoration.
Wellington Shire’s Community Group of the Year wasSale Central Rotary Club (Monday Tucker)and Community Event of the Year wasSeaspray Centenary Celebrations.
Council deliberated between seven community events, four community groups, three young citizens and 11 citizens; all nominated by members of the Wellington Shire community during this year’s nomination period.
“Congratulations to all of our nominees and winners," said Mayor Crossley. "Council and our community sincerely thank you for your many voluntary hours dedicated to making Wellington great.”
The Award Winners for 2017 will each be invited to attend a Wellington Shire Australia Day...


People and Places: 30 Years with WEA Sydney "IndyWatch Feed Alllocal"

Perry Celestino began as an anthropology tutor in 1985 and has presented over 100 courses at WEA. He talks about Anthropology, looking at peoples and places, Travel, with illustrations from 147 cou...

Citizen Science through the Decades "IndyWatch Feed Alllocal"

As part of the Sydney Science Festival, John Turnbull, Underwater Research Group, Associate Professor Shauna Murray, UTS, and Dr Inke Falkner, Sydney Institute of Marine Science, explore citizen sci...

Art and Architecture with Barbara Flynn "IndyWatch Feed Alllocal"

Join City of Sydney public art curator Barbara Flynn to hear about the process of curating public art for spaces enjoyed by the city, the architecture of a public art space and the effect it can hav...

Sydney Ideas: Farmyard Choreographies in Early Modern England "IndyWatch Feed Alllocal"

How do we read animals that have left almost no textual traces? There is little written record of what it was like to live with a cow; or what it was like to be a sheep in the early modern period. E...

A Career in Conducting with Dr Carolyn Watson "IndyWatch Feed Alllocal"

Dr Carolyn Watson was the inaugural conductor in residence at the Sydney Conservatorium and has worked in Europe and USA. She has won the Berlin New Music Award and the Bayreuth Scholarship Award. ...

Reparative Aesthetics: A Curators Talk "IndyWatch Feed Alllocal"

Guest Curator Sue Best talks about the works in the University of Sydney's art exhibition Reparative aesthetics which features works by Rosângela Rennó and Fiona Pardington. Sue asks how do artists...


OnlyMelbourne Newsletter #520 "IndyWatch Feed Alllocal"

Read Online Newsletter | #520 | What's On this WeekTuesday 13th December 2016 to Monday 19th December 2016 Newsletter | #520 | What's On this Week Summer School Holidays December 2016 to January 2017 View School Holiday Guide Comedy Performance Course For Adults .nobrtable br { display: none } Clifton Hill - February 2017 - Limited Places > Book Now Melbourne Comedy Festival Performance Course CATS-HIBITION .nobrtable br { display: none } Cat Art Exhibition in Fitzroy @ in.cube8r | Gallery & Emporium CATS-HIBITION 11 - 24 December 2016 What's On This Week .nobrtable br { display: none } Melbourne's Christmas Festival, Mickey’s Magical Christmas Tree, Dinner & Dance Train, Heineken Saturday @ Royal Croquet Club, West End Art Park, Austral Wheelrace & Australian Madison Championships, Fed Square's Festive Fair, Flume, Made In House | Redbubble, Mapping Melbourne, Melbourne Toy Run, Melbourne Victory v Melbourne City, Santa's Christmas Spectacular, The Pets Market & Whitehorse Carols 2016 View Week's Events Markets This Week .nobrtable br { display: none } Art Craft and Produce Markets open this weekend Markets Guide | Special Christmas Markets Summer Outdoor Cinemas .nobrtable br { display: none } Watch movies under the stars in an outdoor cinema Outdoor Cinema Guide * New Cinema's Added Christmas Day Lunch at Hophaus .nobrtable br { display: none } Celebrate Christmas at Hophaus on Sunday 25 December 2016 Christmas Day Lunch New Year's Eve .nobrtable br { display: none } Book Now before it's too late! View New Year's Eve Events New Year's Eve Dinner and Show .nobrtable br { display: none } 3 Course Dinner and Show @ Royal Melbourne Hotel Cabaret Berlin | Book Now New Years Eve Party .nobrtable br { display: none } Melbourne's most iconic beer garden Village Melbourne The Village Night Garden New Year's Eve at Hophaus .nobrtable br { display: none } New Year's Eve Dining & Fireworks @ Hophaus Bier Bar Grill - Southbank Silvester Nacht at Hophaus Newsletter Read Online | SmartPhone Version | Last Week's Newsletter Calendar | Dining & Drink | Shopping | Things To Do Advertising | | Privacy Policy | Contact Us All Content Copyright © 2016 RIPEFRUIT. All Rights Reserved.


On the Feasibility of Side-Channel Attacks with Brain-Computer Interfaces "IndyWatch Feed National"



Ivan Martinovic, University of Oxford; Doug Davies, Mario Frank, and Daniele Perito, University of California, Berkeley; Tomas Ros, University of Geneva; Dawn Song, University of California, Berkeley

Open Access Content

USENIX is committed to Open Access to the research presented at our events.

Read More


Whose Laws Are Archaic? When Standing In Court Matters More Than Violence Against Women "IndyWatch Feed Allstate"

A Muslim woman is on ‘trial by media’ for refusing to stand in court. But the media’s attention should be focussed on the allegations of police violence against a woman, writes Michael Brull.

Moutia Elzahed is a Muslim woman, who has two children. They are both teenage boys. She is married to Hamdi Alqudsi, who was convicted for his role in helping seven men go to Syria. As he is in prison, Elzahed must look after her two children as a sole parent.

On 18 September 2014, their house was raided by both the federal and NSW police. Ms Elzahed alleges that she was punched in the ear, eye and head during the raid. Her sons also allege that they were treated violently.

Ms Elzahed alleges that the police called her sons “terrorists”. She alleges that they said to her things like “Shut up bitch”, and “Get out of the fucking bed bitch”. Her son alleges that whilst not fully dressed, she tried to cover her body with a blanket. As she refused police requests to remove the blanket, a police officer punched her.

There has been no suggestion that Ms Elzahed has committed any crime, or is in any way implicated in the criminal actions of her husband. Yet the fact that she is seeking redress for violence allegedly perpetrated against her, whilst looking after two children by herself, has garnered little sympathy from the public, or from media commentators.

In this case, the alleged perpetrators of violence against a woman are the police. And the woman is a religious Muslim, who wears a niqab. No voices of sympathy have been offered on Ms Elzahed’s behalf. No interest has been shown in exploring the allegations she has made against the police.

In fact, it is striking that the allegations of violence have been completely ignored, as various media commentators compete to ridicule Ms Elzahed for her religious beliefs.


Evidence rejected because of the niqab

Ms Elzahed wears a niqab. This is a type of conservative Islamic headdress, which covers a woman’s neck and most of her face, except for her eyes. It is worn by a small minority of Muslim women. District Court Justice Audrey Balla decided that because Ms Elzahed refuses to take off the niqab to testify, she will not be allowed to give evidence about the assault by the police.

In effect, this is a determination to not hear the central allegation of the ca...


Tech Breakthrough Could Make This The Biggest Winner Of OPEC’s Cut "IndyWatch Feed"

Tech Breakthrough Could Make This The Biggest Winner Of OPEC’s Cut Introduction: Using the newest of techniques, this revolutionary oil company has found a clean and profitable way to produce oil from tar sands Ticker: MCWEF, MCW.V, XOM, APC, APA, BHP, CVX As far as the markets are concerned, OPEC’s 32.5-million bpd output cut deal…

The post Tech Breakthrough Could Make This The Biggest Winner Of OPEC’s Cut appeared first on The Daily Coin.


Monitoring the Miners: Rio Tinto, Drones and Surveillance "IndyWatch Feed"

In of itself, technological development is benign.  But behind every use is a human agent, and behind that agent is a motive, an inspiration, an agenda. Monitoring one’s employees has become the great mainstay of what companies claim is a productive exercise. The watched employee will have incentives to behave, to prosper, and to fulfil the ethos of the company.

Management at the mining giant Rio Tinto have ambitions to take the technology of monitoring employees to another level – quite literally.  Proud to have been at the forefront of various technical innovations in the employment field, the recently proposed surveillance program by the company’s management caused more than just a ruffling.

Some of this was put down to the company’s fly-in, fly-out contractor (FIFO), which seemed enthusiastic about the idea of monitoring work personnel on the work camp sites.  Last Thursday, Rio Tinto, through its human resources arm, distributed an email claiming the suggestion inaccurate. “We do not, nor will we in future, use drones to monitor employees on any of our sites or premises.”

Hair splitting duly ensued. “This concept,” claimed vice president for human resources Nicky Firth, “has never been proposed and there is no provision in the contract with Sodexo for this form of activity.”

Sodexo, the company allied to Rio Tinto’s operations similarly poured water on the idea, though it was hardly of the cold sort, claiming that “the comments in regards to future technology are conceptual only and there are no intentions to introduce any of these concepts to Rio Tinto sites.”

Soon after Rio awarded a 10-year facilities management contract to Sodexo in March, an agreement covering operations and accommodation sites, Keith Weston, Sodexo’s vice president for mining global sales and business sales, envisaged such mobile surveillance as a valuable measure providing “real time insights and metrics on equipment and people movement”.1

Weston had one unmistakable goal: “to get to the point where we capture individual insights on where employees are spending their time and money and improve the quality of their lives.” This was being done for them.

The mere fact that these ideas are doing the r...


Dispossessed Release Footage Of Infamous Sticky Fingers Altercation "IndyWatch Feed Alllocal"

Dispossessed Release Footage Of Infamous Sticky Fingers Altercation

Australian Indigenous protest band Dispossessed have released footage of what occurred during their performance at Sydney venue The Red Rattler back in July. The gig has become the subject of much speculation and hearsay in recent months after the band were allegedly involved in an altercation with Sticky Fingers frontman Dylan Frost.

“Last nights gig with Jack Mannix was a ridiculously surreal and torturous experience,” Dispossessed’s Birrugan Dunn-Velasco wrote on Facebook on 29th July. “Only playing two songs and then whilst in a tane manner yarning to the audience have it dissolve into a circus of hyper defensive white supremacy and self entitled colonial privilege.”

“Unfortunately if they were made to feel uncomfortable by our peoples sufferring but still come to voyeuristically witness entertainment born from our peoples suffering then their priorities are oppressive. I am not a monkey to play on command and we walked off stage when the lead singer of Sticky Fingers among many others began grossly shirt fronting us yelling that we are the ones not listening.”

“This is a PSA don’t bother coming to a dispossessed show if you’re not going to listen to our people, don’t bother coming to a dispossessed show if you’re not going to support our people in every day life. Such as confront microagressions of colonial violence in spaces that we do not have the privilege to access. Weaponise that privelege. Rock up not just to the show but with our people.”

Speaking to The Music in August, Frost’s bandmates in Sticky Fingers, who announced an indefinite hiatus earlier this month as a result of Frost’s ongoing battles with substance abuse and mental health issues, defended Frost, insisting the alleged altercation was a “massive misunderstanding”.

“Basically Dylan was at the show and there was a speech being made,” bassist Paddy Cornwall told The Music. “There were a few words being thrown around the room. Dylan yelled out ‘Fuck Pauline Hanson’ and he’s admitted that, you know, it was like not really his place t...


Christopher Shortis : “No guns for you!” "IndyWatch Feed National"

Above : Chris Shortis (L) marching alongside other fascists (including man in swastika t-shirt, neo-Nazi Glenn Anderson) on May 31, 2015 in Richmond. This was the public debut of the UPF. Former United Patriots Front (UPF) turned Australia First Party … Continue reading


Labor Slam Mike Baird, Detail 7-Point Plan To Save Sydney’s Live Music "IndyWatch Feed Alllocal"

Labor Slam Mike Baird, Detail 7-Point Plan To Save Sydney’s Live Music

The NSW Labor Party have announced a seven point plan by which they hope to save Sydney’s heavily-suffering live music scene. It’s no shock that draconian lock-out laws and restrictions on liquor purchasing have decimated the once-vibrant live music industry, despite the efforts of activist groups such as Keep Sydney Open.

Speaking to The Music, former Mayor of Leichhardt Darcy Byrne and former Sydney member Darcy Byrne slammed Mike Baird for the damage inflicted upon Sydney’s music live music scene.

“Mike Baird doesn’t understand what the lock-out laws have done to Sydney’s live music scene,” Haylen says. “We’ve lost venues, jobs and many of the things we love about Sydney.”

“Musicians and music lovers have been warning that as venues shut their doors across Sydney the next generation of artists are being left without any spaces get a start in the industry,” Byrne adds.

“Creating a new category of licensed live music venues can give the sector a shot in the arm and lead to the proliferation of a new kind of venue in the inner west and across metropolitan Sydney. Because people consume alcohol differently when it’s combined with cultural activity, live music venues can be the antidote to the the plague of beer barn violence.”

Laid out in brief, Labor’s seven-point plan proposes the following steps to improve the prospects of Sydney’s nightlife:

  • All-night public transport on weekends through a trial of late-night trains, buses and light rail.
  • Create a new class of liquor licenses for live music venues which allow later trading for venues across Sydney which focus on live music, such as Oxford Art Factory.
  • Appoint a night time economy commissioner to work with stakeholders, local government and police to facilitate the growth of Sydney’s late night economy.
  • Build a strategic plan for contemporary music which will identify short, medium and long-term actions to support the growth of live music and other small live cultural events.
  • Establish a permanent night time economy roundtable that will support live music and jobs.
  • Review regulation.
  • Support small bars, including increasing venue capacities from 60 to 120 people.


Victory masters challenge "IndyWatch Feed Alllocal"

THIS year’s Semex Holstein Australia on Farm Challenge Victoria and South-Eastern South Australia annual luncheon was held recently in Melton.
The luncheon celebrates champions in their respective age classes in the biggest and arguably most competitive state of the nationwide competition.
This year, Maree Deenan from Leongatha South won the four year old champion class with her cow Carisma Demolish Victory.
The win came with a personal story for Maree.
Carisma Demolish Victory is a VG87 Budjon-Nitzy Demolish daughter out of Murribrook Goldwyn Victory VG86 by the 2008 International Dairy Week intermediate champion Strongbark Linjet Victory EX90-1E.
Maree said together with her parents, Trevor and Rosalie Zanders, they had bought the four year old champion’s dam, Murribrook Goldwyn Victory. They later split the partnership by taking pick for pick on the calves.
“She was my pick,” Maree said with a smile.
Judge Murray Polson, from Oxley Island in New South Wales was excited to see Victory.
“She put it together for me,” he said.
“She had so much width and openness of chest and you look at her side profile and she has that beautiful sharp shoulder; she’s so wide in her pins and she tracks so nicely on those feet and legs.”
Maree said this was her second year involved in the on farm challenge, after returning to farming in August last year.
After winning the four and five year old sections at local level, Maree said the state level win was exciting.
“I am very passionate about breeding and my cows, showing is an extension of that. It is nice to get recognition that you are breeding cows,” she said.
Maree said Victory was chosen for the on farm challenge because she walks on good feet and legs, has an awesome udder with amazing veining and a lot of capacity and style.
She said the on farm challenge is a great alternative to conventional showing.
“Showing is a huge expense and a big time commitment, which is why the on farm challenge is great. It gives farmers an opportunity to show others our cows, without the expense,” she said.
Holstein Friesian Association of Australia South Gippsland sub-branch president Stuart Mackie said to win the state title is a huge honour, competing against best cows from around the state.
“When looking at cows in the competition, which across the state is over 1500, to get into finals or get into the top five is a really good effort,” he said.


Burra barbie "IndyWatch Feed Alllocal"

A COMMUNITY barbecue for dairy farmers brought people from across Victoria together at Coal Creek Community Park and Museum, Korumburra, on Sunday.
The event was organised by the Leos Club of Korumburra, Lions Club of Korumburra and The Need for Feed team.
A Tough Times grant from South Gippsland Shire Council helped fund a number of people to attend and support farmers.
Emotions ran high as farmers received hampers and other gifts, and they appreciated a day out from the pressures of the farm.
Organisers of the event were very appreciative of the generous support from local businesses and groups.

Supporting farmers: from left, supporting the community barbecue for dairy farmers at Korumburra on Sunday were Katie Glassock, Lesley Clare, Brett Noble, Emilee Row, Molly Gurnett and Brodie Kennedy.

Supporting farmers: from left, supporting the community barbecue for dairy farmers at Korumburra on Sunday were Katie Glassock, Lesley Clare, Brett Noble, Emilee Row, Molly Gurnett and Brodie Kennedy.


Leaner cattle stand out "IndyWatch Feed Alllocal"

There were approximately 1400 export and 300 young cattle penned representing an increase of 220 head week on week.
The usual buying group was present and operating in a mixed market, with most prime cattle easing in price, while lean manufacturing cattle sold to stronger demand.
Quality was good, with most prime cattle holding plenty of weight and condition.
Heavy weight vealers suited to butchers sold from 329c to 353c/kg. A few yearling trade steers made between 319c and 335c/kg. Yearling heifers to the trade sold between 282c and 330c/kg. Trade cattle eased 3c to 4c/kg mostly for a larger and better quality selection.
A limited selection of grown steers slipped 14c, while the bullocks averaged 10c/kg cheaper. Heavy weight grown heifers dropped 10c/kg. Heavy crossbred manufacturing steers eased 11c/kg.
Heavy beef cows sold slightly cheaper in a more limited selection, while the lean dairy cows sold to stronger demand, with prices 5c to 9c/kg dearer. Heavy weight bulls gained 5c/kg.
Grown steers made from 289c to 310c/kg. Bullocks sold from 285c to 305c/kg. Heavy weight bullocks made between 288c and 299c/kg. Heavy weight grown heifers sold between 250c and 297c/kg for most. Heavy weight Friesian manufacturing steers made from 246c to 274c, with the crossbred portion from 260c to 297c/kg.
Most light and medium weight cows sold from 180c to 232c/kg. Heavy weight cows made mostly between 215c and 255c after a top of 265c/kg. Heavy weight (C and B muscle) bulls sold between 259c and 295c, with the dairy portion between 245c and 268c/kg.
The next sale draw – December 14: 1. Rodwells, 2. Landmark, 3. Phelan & Henderson & Co, 4. Elders, 5. SEJ, 6. Alex Scott & Staff. Sheep sale Wednesday at 12pm.
Prime Sale – Wednesday, November 30
11 M. & N. Bracecamp, Berrys Creek 556.8kg 310.0 $1726.14
1 B. Webb, Darnum 613.8kg 305.2 $1873.17
8 Clear Springs Pastoral Co. P/L 658.1kg 305.0 $2007.28
12 Pearson Beef, Meeniyan 614.6kg 303.6 $1865.88
16 J.R. & B.D. Logan 678.4kg 301.6 $2046.17
8 P.R. & R.M. Fairey, Whitelaw 706.9kg 300.0 $2120.63
2 P. McAinch, Agnes 352.5kg 352.6 $1242.92
3 Formbuild Pty Ltd, Phillip Island 365.0kg 351.6 $1283.34
1 Nearhaven Pty Ltd, West Creek 320.0kg 346.2 $1107.84
2 Gurdies Park, Corinella 290.0kg 344.6 $999.34
1 R.D. Vosper, Narracan 365.0kg 342.6 $1250.49
1 J. Geary, Leongatha 300.0kg 340.6 $1021.80
1 Nearhaven Pty Ltd, West Creek 335.0kg 350.6 $1174.51
2 R.D. Vosper, Narracan 337.5kg 338.6 $1142.78
8 Formbuild Pty Ltd, Phillip Island 357.5kg 338.2 $1209.07
7 P. McAinch, Agnes 329.3kg 336.2 $1107.06
16 L. Goodfellow, Mt Eccles 290.3kg 335.6 $974.29
2 C. Scholten 315.0kg 330.0 $1039.50


Dressage series a big success "IndyWatch Feed Alllocal"

THE inaugural Gippsland Dressage Series, hosted by four local adult riding clubs, saw more than 170 horse riders converge on the area over four days of competition.
The series was hosted by the Leongatha and District Equestrian Club, Wonthaggi Adult Riding Club, Stony Creek Riding Club and Bennison Adult Riding Club.
Wonthaggi and Leongatha held competitions at Wonthaggi in October and Bennison and Stony Creek held competitions on December 3 and 4 at the Bennison grounds.
Series winners for the four days of competition were: level one, Elinor Hannay from Bennison Adult Riding Club, level two, Marita Hurst from West Gippsland Adult Riding Club, level three, Joanne Cox from Leongatha and District Equestrian Club, level four, Lauren Buckeridge from West Gippsland and level five, Shirley Smith from Wonthaggi Adult Riding Club.
All four host clubs would like to express thanks to entrants, judges and to the many helpers and volunteers who worked hard to bring the series together.
“Thanks also to event secretary for the quick results and ability to answer the tricky questions,” a spokesperson for the series said.
“We hope everyone enjoyed the Gippsland Dressage Series 2016 and we hope to do it all again next year.”

Level four: Gippsland Dressage Series 2016 winner Lauren Buckeridge from West Gippsland Adult Riding Club and her horse Biazon.

Level four: Gippsland Dressage Series 2016 winner Lauren Buckeridge from West Gippsland Adult Riding Club and her horse Biazon.


Sandy Point stages girls for surf "IndyWatch Feed Alllocal"

GIRLS from the South Gippsland region braved the rain and wind last Thursday, December 8 for the final stop of the Surfing for Girls Program at Sandy point.
Thirty-five girls from South Gippsland Secondary College and Yarram Secondary College attended the day at the popular tourist destination.
The eight location program covers the whole state and teaches girls some valuable water safety skills and surfing technique in the lead up to summer.
The program uses positive female role models and professional surf coaches to pass on skills and knowledge to the next generation of female surfers.
Lead coach Ruby Campbell was amazed at the resilience of the girls considering the weather.
“The girls weren’t even concerned about the weather! All they wanted to do was get in the water and go surfing.”
“It’s been a great program and the last stop showed what the program is all about: girls getting out in the water and being active no matter what the weather is like.”

Good turnout: thirty-five girls braved the weather at Sandy Point for the final stop of the Surfing for Girls Program.

Good turnout: thirty-five girls braved the weather at Sandy Point for the final stop of the Surfing for Girls Program.


Putting a face to our Rumbalara project "IndyWatch Feed Alllocal"

Georgia Mirrissey and the team at RumbalaraOur Community Lawyer, Georgia Morrissey (standing in the centre at the rear), has been promoting our Rumbalara Health-Justice Partnership since its October launch and getting to know the local community by attending events at Rumbalara and elsewhere in Shepparton. A highlight was the Rumbalara Women’s Network Cultural Fusion Day. This event attracted a large number of women from many different cultures and was a credit to the members of the Network. Georgia enjoyed hearing about the role of strong women in the different communities and how best to promote the wellbeing of local girls. She looks forward to working more with the organisers and participants in the future.

The Rumbalara Health Centre is developing programs for a group of vulnerable women, some of whom have suffered family violence and some of whom have substance abuse issues. They have invited Georgia to present to these programs and she is looking forward to working with them.

She has now seen almost 20 clients and several staff members have dropped in for secondary consultations. We expect these numbers to grow in 2017 as knowledge of the project grows. In early 2017 Legal Health Check Training will be delivered to the Rumbalara Health staff, with a view to extending that to other departments.




Catching up with a legend "IndyWatch Feed Alllocal"

“THE response has been fantastic”, said John Kennedy, when he described his first week in at Korumburra based business The Bicycle Fitting Store.
Last week John caught up with former promoter of the Leongatha Cycling Carnival for many years, Terry Watchorn.
John Kennedy, a former elite bicycle racer, was around during the carnival era with the likes of Gary Neiwand, Stephen Pate and Shane Kelly going around the track.
“It was probably the best carnival going around Victoria for quite a few years and a shame it couldn’t continue,” Mr Kennedy said.
Mr Kennedy has had a lot of interest since opening with people asking about mechanical workshops for bikes, about cycle coaching and bike design.
“I’m happy to build a bike for someone but equally happy to talk to people who may have bought a bike and want to have it adjusted to their needs,” he said.
Mr Kennedy said he was delighted to announce he and a few others had formed a group called “South Gippsland Group” which will aim to push a number of priorities through for the area, including the extension of the rail trail from Leongatha to Korumburra then to Loch and Nyora.
“We have a number of other objectives and this will come out in due course.”
Call in to 42 Commercial Street Korumburra and have a chat.

Demo: Adam Watchorn, pictured on the Bio Bike 5000, is put through his paces by owner of The Bicycle Fitting Store, John Kennedy. Adam accompanied his grandfather Terry Watchorn, the former promoter of the Leongatha Cycling Carnival.

Demo: Adam Watchorn, pictured on the Bio Bike 5000, is put through his paces by owner of The Bicycle Fitting Store, John Kennedy. Adam accompanied his grandfather Terry Watchorn, the former promoter of the Leongatha Cycling Carnival.


Glen Alvie show no mercy "IndyWatch Feed Alllocal"

GLEN Alvie took out a massive win over the Imperials on Saturday.
The Imperials had its work cut out for it after Joe Burke’s opening century in Glen Alvie’s innings, but Glen Alvie’s bowlers were merciless.
Four batsmen for the Imperials were dismissed without scores as Glen Alvie’s fielding side fought for the win.
Ricky O’Loughlin – the Imperials’ eighth batsman- made the highest score of the day with 12 runs.
Burke came away with the most wickets – three from 7.3 overs – and fielders Josh Hamilton, Daniel Gilbert and Jy Hull took two catches each.
After 27.3 overs, the Imperials were all out for 26 runs.
The Imperials opened a second innings with Tom Evans making 25 runs. and James Forrester posted 15 runs.
However, Burke continued his run and took out four wickets from eight overs.
After 24.4 overs, the Imperials made 80 runs.
Another big win was secured by Korumburra against Koonwarra L/RSL.
Korumburra made 124 runs the week prior.
Koonwarra L/RSL’s opening batsman Leo Enter performed well, making 24 runs.
However, he was caught by Darren Scott and it was downhill for Koonwarra L/RSL from there.
Eighth batsman Matt Boswell made up some ground with 21 runs, but Korumburra had taken control of the match.
Harry McNeill was Korumburra’s stand out bowler, taking three wickets in 12 overs. Nick Arney and Jeremy Oxlee also performed well, taking two wickets.
After 45 overs, Koonwarra L/RSL was dismissed all out for 79.
The Wonthaggi Miners left its score at 127, and Poowong Loch scooped the win.
Poowong Loch’s Nathan Allen started the innings well with 35 runs before he was caught by Miners bowler Tom Wells.
Trevor Allen accumulated 32 runs before he was bowled out and the top batsman for Poowong Loch was Jordan Poynton, he was bowled by Leigh Granger.
Wayne Chapman caused the most damage for Poowong Loch, bowling four for 21.
However, Poowong Loch took the win with 9/181 after 77 overs.
Foster had the bye during this round.
1st innings Korumburra 214
1st innings Koonwarra-L/RSL
L. Enter c. D. Scott
b. J. Oxlee 24
D. Clark b. N. Arney 3
D. Baker b. H. McNeill 9
B. Tomada c. C. Mileto
b. N. Arney 5
J. Stockdale c. J. Celebrine
b. H. McNeill 0
J. Rockall lbw. b. S. Harland 5
K. Thorne lbw. b. M. Olden 6
M. Boswell n.o. 21
J. Pickersgill b. J. Oxlee 0
J. Geary c. N. Arney
b. D. Scott 0
A. Drury b. H. McNeill 3
Extras 3
Total 79
Bowling: N. Arney 2/11, H. McNeill 3/19, S. Harland 1/8, M. Olden 1/20, J. Oxlee 2/3, D. Scott 1/16.
1st inni...


Keeping the greens green "IndyWatch Feed Alllocal"

GOLFERS can look forward to lush green tee off areas and greens at the Leongatha Golf Club when the $240,000 major irrigation project is complete next week.
According to club general manager and PGA professional Josh Hall planning for the irrigation project started about two and a half years ago.
“Submissions for grants started 18 months ago and in June this year we got the news we were successful,” Mr Hall said.
“We received an $80,000 grant from Sport and Recreation Victoria through the Community Sports Infrastructure Fund – Minor Facilities program.” he said.
“Once that was confirmed the South Gippsland Shire agreed to $50,000 funding.
“This funding along with some $90,000 to $100,000 from the club and fundraising, another $5,000 from the Inverloch branch of the Bendigo Bank and $12,000 from our own members has funded the installation of an automated irrigation system for the 18 course tees and greens as well as the pump to accommodate the system.”
Talking to The Star on Friday Mr Hall said the improvements to irrigation at the club will see the original 1970’s outdated watering system replaced with a state of the art system.
“The current system costs the club a significant amount, both in real dollar value and labour,” he said.
“Works started mid November and the aim was to finish the week before Christmas and we are on track for that.
“The works have progressed very well with no interruption to golfers and we have been getting some great positive comments from our members about improvements being made to the course.”
Mr Hall said the benefits of the new system will see the old time consuming, manually operated watering system that was virtually a full time job, replaced with a time saving fully automated system that can be operated from an app on the phone.
“When complete we will be able to water at night which will mean cost savings with off peak rates and at night we will use less water and the labour component will be cut,” he said.
Mr Hall said they will be able to target areas and water in a rotation of about three greens at a time and work around the course.
While Mr Hall said they have had some 190mls of rain for the month of October this year. This is compared to only 10 mls for the same month in 2015, so the new irrigation system will definitely insure the course is always in top shape, through the summer and years when the rainfall is down.
“The benefit to golfers will mean there will be no dodging of sprinklers coming on during the day,” he said.
Mr Hall said the club is always looking at improvements and part of the club’s 2014 strategy plan is a hole by hole review that has been completed and results will be released to the public early next year.
“We will be looking at replacing some of the greens, tree work and new tees, we will not be changing the hole design...


Four national titles for young gun "IndyWatch Feed Alllocal"

KOONWARRA’S Jack Stockdale is the youngest person to hold four open national titles following the recent New Zealand Clay Target Association 2016 skeet nationals event.
The 16 year old flew out to New Zealand on November 21 and came home a week later with four prized blue ribbons.
The event was held at the Waikato Gun Club in Hamilton.
On top of his record breaking stint in the open titles, he also won every junior event.
His first event – the 28 gauge skeet championship – delivered his first national title. He shot 50/50, along with nine others, and shot another 60 to take the win.
In the 100 target doubles championship, Stockdale made another fantastic achievement.
“I shot 100/100, which is pretty unheard of. I’m the first junior to shoot 100,” he said.
“There are 10 names on the trophy already, and no one else has done it either.”
He went on to win the all gauge high gun after shooting 442 from 450. He was three targets clear of second place.
In the national skeet high gun he shot 248/250 to win, three targets ahead of second.
Stockdale thanked his parents, Tim and Judy Stockdale, and members of the Inverloch and Korumburra gun club’s Jock Bradley, Daniel Hemming, Max Oakley and Trent Tobias for backing him up in the past 12 months.
“We at the Korumburra and Inverloch gun clubs have high hopes for Jack and we are very proud of his achievements,” Korumburra Gun Club president Trent Tobias said.
The Korumburra Gun Club recently re-established its skeet range.
“This will help our members – like Jack – get some training in without having to travel to Frankston or Bairnsdale,” Tobias said.
“We finished it around June and now we will be able to reintroduce skeet competitions at the club.”
Stockdale is now working towards making the Victorian Open team next year, and go on to compete in America.
There are some hopes around the club he will transfer from American skeet to Olympic skeet, making him eligible for the Olympic tryouts.
However, Stockdale said this is a long term goal for him.
Stockdale will be honing his skills at the Gippsland Sports Academy in February. Gippsland Sports Academy partnered with Olympic gold medallist Russell Mark and Commonwealth Games gold medallist Lauryn Mark from Go Shooting to run a clay target program.
In the meantime, Korumburra Gun Club is also seeking sponsorship for Jack.
“Competitions can be costly, so we are looking for generous sponsors to get behind Jack,” Trent said.
If you would like to support Jack, contact Trent on 0402 889 699.


Goulburn Valley Star Weavers pledge 10,000 stars "IndyWatch Feed Alllocal"

Goulburn Valley Star WeaversGoulburn Valley CLC Community Lawyer Acacia Burns (at right) recently graduated from the Greater Shepparton City Council Community Leadership Program. As part of the program, Acacia instigated the Goulburn Valley Star Weavers, a star weave community of the One Million Stars to End Violence Project.

The One Million Stars to End Violence Project was artist Maryann Talia Pau’s personal response to the rape and murder of Jill Meagher in 2012.  Since then, the project has grown into an international weaving movement, with stars being woven in Australia, New Zealand, the Pacific Islands, Europe and the USA.

Coming together to weave stars presents friends, family and neighbours with an opportunity to start a conversation around violence and to reinforce the message that violence in all its forms is unacceptable. By coming together we are reminded that we have to make peace and create safe spaces in our community; they don’t just happen.

The Goulburn Valley Star Weavers has brought this conversation to Shepparton and throughout the year the group has hosted workshops, attended community events and mounted a star display at the Shepparton Library.

Acacia’s aim was to get the Shepparton community to weave 10,000 stars by July 2017 and to put the stars on display at the 2018 Gold Coast Commonwealth Games. So far, the Goulburn Valley Star Weavers has made 6,000 stars.

Goulburn Valley CLC (Suite 3, 98 Nixon Street, Shepparton) is the main drop off point for the Shepparton community. If you would like more information or you would like to contribute, you can contact the Goulburn Valley Star Weavers via Acacia on 0423 125 100 or



Australia clears itself of blame in Deir ez-Zor bombing, watches on as Palmyra falls to ISIS "IndyWatch Feed"

Previously published (13/12/16) on Russia Insider. See also: Reports: Audio recording between ISIS and US before Deir Ezzor massacre found (26/9/16) | Ron Paul Forums, US attack on Syrian Army in Deir Ezzor was ‘coordinated’ (30/11//16) by Paul Antonopoulos | Al Masdar News.

Four wounded Syrians who survived the bombardment of Deir ez-Zor by Aust­ralian, US, British and Danish aircraft on 17 Sep 2016. Sixty-two of their com­patriots perished that day. Whether they intended to bomb the Syrian Army, or ISIS as they claimed, any aerial attack on the territory of a sovereign country like Syria, without the consent of its government, is a violation of international law. 1

A US investigation found the coalition 'botched' a strike in Deir ez-Zor, hitting the Syrian Army by mistake. Why did they not return to kill the IS fighters who moved in, or the IS fighters who just moved back to Palmyra?

Following a two-month investigation into the US coalition attack on a Syrian Army base in Deir al Zour in September, the Defence departments of the US and Australia concluded that the 'botched' strike was a result of poor information and human error, and no-one will face charges over the 'incident'.



Vertical Life magazine "IndyWatch Feed Alllocal"

  • A lovely piece about climbing Blade Ridge on Federation Peak in south west Tasmania. Arguably Australia’s longest route, at 600 metres, rarely climbed because of the epic approach,
  • A set of ‘letters to my older/ younger self’, where climbers write a letter to themselves, reflecting on life and climbing (includes a cameo from the legendary Mike Law),
  • A great profile on Australian climbing photographer Glenn Robbins,
  • A profile on Australian climber Mark Moorhead, a phenomenally good climber who graduated from local rock climbing to major mountaineering, climbing in Europe and the Himalayas. He died while on Makalu in 1983, aged just 23.
  • Plus lots of stories on bouldering projects, a good nod to various bits of Australian climbing history, existentialism, a profile of WA climber Logan Barber and Chris Sharma, and a synopsis of key news from the climbing world over the past two years.

It’s good to see a reasonable number of women writing for the magazine and there are some really lovely images from Australia and around the world.

Venturing into print is always a brave venture, especially for niche products like a climbing magazine. Many previous Australian mags have gone down in financial ruin. Please support VL. You can buy it at many newsagents (complete with a wall calendar for 2017) or from their online store.




Album of the Week – ‘Professin’ the Blues’ by Fiona Boyes "IndyWatch Feed Alllocal"


Professin’ the Blues‘ by Fiona Boyes is Eastside Radio’s Album of the Week. Fiona Boyes, an Australian blues guitarist, vocalist, and songwriter, has been recording and performing for more than 25 years, and came back with a brand new record that will delight every blues fan. With only a guitar, a surprising voice, and a few drums, she manages to build a strong and efficient album. She manages to take the very essence of the blues music and to put it in her songs.

Fiona is a veteran recording artist with 13 releases. Australia’s first lady of the Blues has five USA Blues Music Award nominations in four different categories, and more than 30 Australian music awards, spanning the blues, folk, jazz and Americana genres. Her immersion in the wide musical and historical traditions that make up the blues and her deep love of the art-form itself lends conviction and authenticity to her playing and songwriting. Beginning her career as a blues artist when she won an Australian made Maton guitar in a local coffee shop talent show, she honed her skills with all female band The Mojos, who went on to become one of Australia’s premier blues acts. She started solo recording in 2000, and gaine worldwide renown in 2003 when she won the International Blues Challenge in Memphis, being the first woman and first non-American to be so honoured. Once again, she came back a the top of her art with that fantastic blues record, ‘Professin’ the Blues‘.

The very first second of the album set the atmosphere with the powerful  ‘Can’t Stay Here No More‘. First  an acoustic guitar played perfectly, bringing us on the old US road where it all started. Then, a voice. And what a voice. Surprising by her strength, but able to reach high pitched notes alongside deep low howling, Fiona’s voice is astonishing. And finally, powerful and heady, like the tambours of an ancient Indian clan, the drum. Simple but inc...


A ‘lightbulb moment’ for one of our clients "IndyWatch Feed Alllocal"

ohtjqmr6spy-nathanael-ottoSally* is a disability support pensioner. Earlier this year, she approached Goulburn Valley CLC  after she was arrested by the local Sherriff and bailed to appear before a Magistrate in relation to 14 warrants totalling almost $4,500 in unpaid parking tickets, speeding fines and tolls accrued by her ex-husband and her son in cars registered in her name.

Sally separated from her husband in 2009. They had three children. Until recently Sally ran her own business. When she approached our service she was in a bad way. She was depressed and anxious, with very little family support. Her son and his girlfriend were trying to force her to sign her car over to him and to pay for the car’s registration.

Sally explained that her ex-husband had been controlling and manipulative and that all the family’s bills, debts and other liabilities were in her name, including the vehicles. Sally felt that her son had begun to mirror her ex-husband’s abusive behaviour and was pressuring her to give into their demands.

The situation was made worse by Sally’s battles with Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder stemming from the abuse in her marriage, which had in turn led to the breakdown of her business. Sally was no longer working and was struggling to get by on the pension.

Sally told us that she had informed VicRoads that she was not responsible for the fines and had done her best to pay. However, she had not been notified about many of her ex-husband’s and son’s fines and, as a result, they had not been paid.

Without any income and with debts left by her ex-husband exceeding $100,000, Sally was struggling financially. She often had to request food from St Vincent de Paul just to get by. Due to her financial situation, Sally was not in a position to pay the fines, even under a payment plan. Sally was frightened that she would be sent to prison.

Even though her marriage had ended several years previously, Sally was only now beginning to understand the extent of her ex-husband’s control over her and how isolated she had been for so many years. We explained to Sally that family violence takes many different forms including, physical, emotional, psychological and financial abuse. Sally later reflected that this was a ‘lightbulb moment’ for her.

We helped Sally to write a submission to the Magistrate that argued that, given her medical condition and financial situation, imprisonment would be unduly harsh and oppressive. Sally represented herself at Court. The Magistrate determined that the $4,500 be withd...


True Blue Aussie Values: Studio 10’s Disgusting, Degrading Attack On A Woman Who Refused To Stand "IndyWatch Feed Allstate"

What’s worse, a woman refusing to stand in court, or police assaulting a woman and calling her kids terrorists? Michael Brull thinks the answer is clear.

It turns out, a Muslim woman sitting down is more offensive to Australian media than police assaulting a Muslim woman and calling her children terrorists.

The woman in question is Moutia Elzahed, suing the police for assaulting her family. Right-wing Murdoch blogger Tim Blair has repeatedly ridiculed Moutia Elzahed on his blog at the Daily Telegraph, calling her a “bag lady”. That is his reference to her niqab.

In a caption to a picture of her on his blog, it says “Something – could be a person – leaves court yesterday”. His comments are somewhat representative of the Tele’s feverish and obsessive coverage of the case.

Aside from showing courage in challenging the police for their alleged assault and abuse, Ms Elzahed has also shown intelligent judgment. When confronted by writers for the Telegraph, she correctly observed that, “Your newspaper is evil… The Daily Telegraph is evil.”

A more repulsive reaction to the case was displayed by the vapid chauvinists of Channel 10 morning talk show, Studio 10. For a few stomach-turning minutes, the panel repeatedly sneer at Islam and Ms Elzahed. Not a single one of them made even a vague reference to the allegations of violence she has made.

Apparently unfamiliar with her name, none of them use it throughout the clip. That ignorance of the plaintiff and her case had zero influence on their eagerness to ridicule and attack her.

Denise Drysdale took particular pleasure in mocking Ms Elzahed: “When she says she’ll only stand for Allah – where’s he?” The audience and panel burst into laughter. “Where is he? Is he going to come into the court and then she’ll stand up? Isn’t he up there somewhere?”

When another panellist suggests that her insistence on testifying whilst wearing the veil was a separate issue related to the issue of modesty in Islam, Drysdale curtly responded: “She’s living in Australia.” The audience applauded.

The insinuation that Ms Elzahed was somehow an interloper, not one of us, but one of “them” who refuses to respect “our” way of life was taken up by Nic...


Daisy and the whale "IndyWatch Feed National"

whaleAs big as a whale

All stories must start somewhere, so we will start with a horse named Gold and Black. The twenty-something rider on top of Gold and Black was one of Western Australia’s most skilled equestrians, Bertha Elvina Locke, although everyone called her Daisy. Daisy was to suffer several horse-related accidents throughout her life, but she just treated these as a risk of the sport. It is quite clear that this young woman was the sort to take life’s ups and downs in her stride.

Daisy lived at Wonnerup or, to be more specific, at Lockville Farmhouse, a picturesque building with an original wattle and daub cottage and a later two-storey limestone extension.  It was probably slightly unusual in that part of the state for Daisy to have another hobby: reading mining manuals.  She also discovered the whale which was Perth Museum’s most famous exhibit for more than a century, although it now lies hidden in a Welshpool warehouse awaiting a new home.

Picture Daisy riding one her horses along Lockeville Beach, accompanied only by her large white parasol, lined with green, on Tuesday 17 August 1897.  This is when Miss Locke came to see a giant whale stranded near the jetty. Turning her horse around, she galloped to Wonnerup House to seek her uncle’s assistance. Together with another man, they went out in a small boat, harpooned the great creature, and securely anchored it to the shore.  Daisy, with the knowledge gained from her mining manuals that everything of value must be within four pegs, decided to stake the beast in case anyone else claimed it. Three long pieces of wood were fo...


Retiring to live on the fat of the land may not be possible – rents are falling "IndyWatch Feed"

CoreLogic’s Quarterly Review of the residential property market released yesterday brings sobering news for land holders – particularly Australia’s 1.2 million strong Negatively Geared investor class. Rents are falling. Source: CoreLogic CoreLogic’s Tim Lawless observes: “Rental incomes are falling across the combined capital cities in the midst of the weakest rental market on record. A […]


Greater Tastes in Traralgon: MOMO "IndyWatch Feed Alllocal"

MOMO Traralgon103 Seymour Street, Traralgon.   5174
Monday to Thursday: 7.30am to late (10pm approx.)Friday: 7.30am to late (11pm approx.)Saturday: 8am to late (11pm approx.)Sunday: 9am to late (10pm approx.)Liquor licence is valid until 1am.
Review and photos byJohn Munns.
“Thoroughly Modern MOMO”
Location:On the corner of Seymour and Church Streets, towards the outer edge of Traralgon CBD, making parking the car a little easier, is MOMO.  Large modern almost club style venue with plenty of room and very good street access. You can’t miss it, simple yet effective black and white signage stands out a mile.
Inside you find plenty of seating.  Some bench style units along the walls and tables in a variety of place settings, well set out with plenty of space in between. Tables at the front close to the full length glass frontage where you can watch the world go by, and they can enviously watch you while you dine and relax. Alternatively towards the rear of the industrial-style café, the light dissipates into an almost club-like atmosphere enhanced by the brick façade on the walls and lit by large overhead chandelier type fittings. These I suspect are made from old metal wagon wheels.  This atmosphere is enhanced by matt black painted ceiling décor which includes ducting and wiring conduits. Why waste money on a fancy ceiling when, with a load of black paint, you have one ready-made!
The service counter at the front and to one side doubles as a well-stocked bar with a good range of top shelf drinks with wine and beer. Full table service is provided here and it is ideal for not only a coffee (and cake... I’ll get to that later!) but for meals throughout the day and for group bookings.  Wash room facilities are well signed and all accessible, also found to be clean and regularly serviced.
Menu:Menus at MOMO are divided into Breakfast, Lunch and Dinner and I am not about to attempt to list even a fraction of what is on offer. Suffice it to say, each individual menu takes up one A4 sized sheet.  There is plenty of choice and menu is available on the MOMO


In conversation with artist Aleks Danko "IndyWatch Feed Alllocal"

Australian artist Aleks Danko discusses his work and practice with independent curator Glenn Barkley and Lesley Harding of Heide Museum of Modern Art, Melbourne. This is a rare opportunity to hear f...

Vietnam’s forests on the upswing after years of recovery "IndyWatch Feed Allstate"

As the world moves into an era above the ominous 400 parts per million carbon dioxide threshold, carbon storage and reforestation are becoming even more significant. In Southeast Asia, Vietnam has been largely successful in rehabilitating its lost and damaged forests over the past 15 years. Yet even as one country ups its canopy cover, the larger global problem of deforestation hasn’t eased. It’s been almost 50 years since attacks on Vietnam’s southern forests hit their peak in 1967. In a single year, the United States sprayed over 5 million gallons of defoliants, including Agent Orange, across more than 600,000 hectares. They were trying to eliminate forest cover that provided a hiding place for the North Vietnamese and Viet Cong troops, as well as crops. The extent of damage caused during the decade-long spraying campaign is hard to quantify. Estimates place affected forest cover in the range from 14-44 percent, with the most severe damage on coastal mangrove forests. In the regions hit heavily by chemical herbicides during the war, grasslands quickly took over. These are areas that researchers from Vietnam’s Huế University and Australia’s University of Queensland have deemed will be unlikely to recover in the short term without interventions. Even in areas outside of the former war zone, forest recovery has been a bumpy process fraught with challenges. Forest cover declined sharply during the latter half of the 20th century, from 43 percent in the early 1940s, to about 17 percent by the end of the 1970s, according to…


Arts Wednesday 14 December 2016 "IndyWatch Feed Alllocal"

Jacqui Newling joins us at 10:40 am for the final part of Eat Your History and, appropriately, it is about pudding.

At 11:00 am I am joined by social analyst, Neer Korn, who makes a welcome return to Arts Wednesday, talking about what we Australians have been thinking this year.

Music is all about summer and summer holidays.

Do keep me company.


The post Arts Wednesday 14 December 2016 appeared first on 89.7 Eastside FM.


Christmas market this week! "IndyWatch Feed Alllocal"

mansfield christmas market

It’s Christmas time…….. our December market has popped up on the calendar again and it is a time of the year that we just love.  The weather has decided that it actually IS Summer so the berries, cherries and stone fruits are all just tasting magnificent.

We look forward to seeing you all on Saturday – there is a great lineup of stalls (even though we’ve changed to the 3rd Saturday).  We are very excited to have some more fresh milk at the market this week – Sue and Bruce from Locheilan Cheese have entered an on farm partnership which allows them to bring cow’s milk!  Coupled together with Melissa and Donovan from Tolpuddle Cheese who have been bringing fresh goat’s milk we are a very lucky market.  Make sure that you bring your cooler (and some ice) so that you don’t miss out on taking home these products.

April at Delatite Special Occasions is offering “decorate your own” gingerbread men for $3.  All proceeds will go to Cake Angels who are volunteers who make cakes for kids in need.  Head on down to her tent to get creative for Christmas!

Many of our stallholders have “ready to go” hampers that will be available for purchase on Saturday. A great way to do some Christmas shopping whilst supporting local producers. The Mansfield Primary stall will have Christmas gift bags and decorations again – raising money for their grade 6 ceramics program.

We are also looking forward to being entertained by the local MAD Orchestra who will be with us from 11am playing a range of carols!

December Stallholders (correct 13/12/2016)

  1. Aintree Almonds (TBC)
  2. Boonderoo Farm – Bread & pies
  3. Delatite Special Occasions
  4. Gary’s veggies
  5. Greg’s Seedlings
  6. Greta Valley Free Range Eggs
  7. Howes Creek Farm – terrines / pate / sausages
  8. Howe...


Gallery: FBi Presents Peaches at The Metro Theatre "IndyWatch Feed Alllocal"

Peaches at The Metro | 9.12.16 | Photo by Megan Carew

In Australia for Meredith Music Festival, the inimitable Peaches played a Sydney headline show at The Metro Theatre on Thursday. Support came from Habits and Black Cracker.

Since her debut release Fuck The Pain Away catapulted her into the spotlight, the queen of electroclash has continued to blur the lines between music and performance art – from releasing her sixth studio album Rub to collaborating with Iggy Pop, Joan Jett, Josh Homme, Beth Ditto and more.


Peaches at The Metro | 9.12.16 | All photos by Megan Carew


Habits supporting Peaches at The Metro | 9.12.16 | Photo by Megan Carew Habits supporting Peaches at The Metro | 9.12.16 | Photo by Megan Carew Habits supporting Peaches at The Metro | 9.12.16 | Photo by Megan Carew Habits supporting Peaches at The Metro | 9.12.16 | Photo by Megan Carew ...


Falls Festival Announces 2016 Arts Line-Up….A Festival After Your Own Art "IndyWatch Feed Alllocal"

unspecified-1The Falls 2016 Arts program is here and it’s bursting with magical show stoppers, interpretive dance routines, circus acrobatics, trippy games, interactive installations and enough activities and performances to amuse you all fest long! Keep your eyes peeled whilst onsite at Falls this year for the party inside the party, including


Get ready for the hilariously unexpected at The Grove! Get a culture hit and sit back and relax to freestyling rhymes, physical comedy, circus, magic, hip-hop dance workshops, puppetry, burlesque, samba soul sessions, Russian choirs, 80’s flash mob troups, rom-com stand-up, folk and bluegrass bands, cabaret, French songstresses, morning yoga, wild rappers and so much more!

PERFORMERS: Angie Hudson · DELI · DustyEsky · Haiku Hands · Hello Tut Tut · Ilona Harker · Inagwa · Leo · Low Down Riders · Mataya · Merryn Jeann · Mouldy Lovers · Parcels · Shaun Kirk · Teddy Lewis King · Wharves COMEDY CLUB: Gordan Southers · Lindsay Webb · Mandy Nolan DANCE CREWS: Funky Moves crew · Samba Soul · The Cassettes DJS: Beatrice · Crucial D · DJ Shizzle · Joelism · Sounds Good Sound System CIRCUS AND MAGIC: California; Russia’s Best Kept Secret · Corey Pickett · E=MC3 · French Maids · Glow Show · Juggling Chef · Kiki Bittovabitcsh · Kiki Bittovabitcsh backstage tour · MAE WILDE · Nick Kay · Peep O-Rama · Rosalita Ole · Sir Anthony Livingspace · The Fire Boy · The Great Dave · The Strong Man WORKSHOPS:  Adagio – partner acrobatic workshops · carnivale percussion and dance with Samba Soul · hip-hop dance workshop with The Funky Moves crew · hula-hoop workshop Juggling workshop · MC workshop with Teddy Lewis King · movement and dance workshop – with Haiku Hands · yoga with Jess Humpries POP UPS: 10 Minute disco · Costume Space · Mae Wilde presents ‘So you think you can Dance’ · The Official Officer of Outstandingly Outrageous Occurrences and his Encouraging Enablers + MORE


The first night of each event has a fancy dress theme and this year is no...


UK- It is Time For You All to Come Together and Take a Stand!! "IndyWatch Feed National"

After reading Hoaxtead’s latest post- if I was Kristie- I would get together with all those at Shirley Oaks, the Hollie Greg camp, the Melanie Shaw camp, and with ALL THE OTHER FUCKING VICTIMS- and start working together to show that there is an OBVIOUS FUCKING ISSUE in the UK.


Kristie Sue Costa tries to petition IPCC


The Poms at Oxford excel at mind control "IndyWatch Feed Alllocal"

Oxford university students told to use ‘ze’ instead or ‘he’ or ‘she’ | 11 Dec 2016 | Students at Oxford university have been told to refer to each other using gender neutral pronouns like ‘ze’ to stop transgender undergraduates from being offended. The students’ union said in a leaflet that the move was intended to reduce the risk of offending transgender students, the Sunday Times reported.


We nearly have critical mass ... "IndyWatch Feed Allstate"

Click through to the site to view the cartoon.


Reach Community Initiatives to host Christmas Dinner "IndyWatch Feed Alllocal"

For many people Christmas can be a lonely time, but Reach Community Initiatives (RCI) wants to change all of that by hosting a free Community Christmas Dinner. The dinner will be held next Wednesday December 21Êin the West Ryde Community Hall, 3-5 Anthony Road, West Ryde. This family friendly event includes Christmas carols, great food […]


Riverside value innovation technology and ambition "IndyWatch Feed Alllocal"

To The POINT with BELINDA KELLY AS a STEM Action school, one of only seven in the state, Riverside Girls High hosts professional learning days for teachers across the state to visit and hear about how we have grown in the delivery of STEM. Teachers from as widespread as Narooma, Cooma and Springwood and Rivendell […]


Christmas Party time at Vimiera Village "IndyWatch Feed Alllocal"

Dr John celebrates Christmas & a Happy Birthday! Our famous “Merry Media Medic” Dr James Wright also known to us all as the real life Dr John F Knight AM of Vimiera Village Eastwood and charity Medi Aid Centre Foundation celebrates this week. He hosted his annual Christmas party for the folk at Vimiera Village […]


Kind hearted TWT readers make Samantha’s Christmas Wish come True! "IndyWatch Feed Alllocal"

Severely disabled twelve year old Samantha Chebat’s Christmas wish came true on Monday when Ryde Toyota delivered a spacious Toyota Tarago funded through the kindness and generosity of The Weekly Times readers. Samantha of West Ryde has the congenital disease Cdg2m which confines her to a wheelchair and unable to eat or breathe without mum […]


Road closures on Hunters Hill peninsula for New Year’s Eve "IndyWatch Feed Alllocal"

HUNTERS HILL HAPPENINGS with Mayor RICHARD QUINN HUNTERS HILL peninsula will be closed at Church Street overpass from 1pm on New Year’s Eve, Thursday December 31 until midnight. The purpose of the road closure is to regulate the volume of traffic entering the Hunters Hill peninsula and to prevent congestion and parking problems. This will […]


TWT Festival Singing Star Contestants Record entry of top Quality contestants "IndyWatch Feed Alllocal"

This year’s Gladesville Christmas Festival $1,000 Singing Star Contest attracted a a record entry of top quality competitors which impressed the judges. Competition started immediately after the official opening by new TWT Festival Queen Charlotte Cosgrove who was named by Lane Cove MP Anthony Roberts who was accompanied by his second son Samuel. Singing Star […]


Victor the bulldozer squashes cute, cuddly and unsafe toys "IndyWatch Feed Alllocal"

Hundreds of adorable childrens toys were bulldozed by Ryde MP Victor Dominello in Macquarie Park last Wednesday. The toys had been deemed as faulty and dangerous to young children by NSW Fair Trading and Mr Dominello’s brutal act was part of an annual product safety blitz in the lead up to Christmas. “Thomas the Tank […]


Eliza Doolittle performs at Clermont Aged Care Christmas Concert "IndyWatch Feed Alllocal"

Immortal stage character Eliza Doolittle came to Clermont Aged Care in Ryde on Friday to tell her incredible life story. Eliza Doolittle told the story of her rise from being a humble flower seller to being one of London’s celebrated ladies and performed songs from her stage hit My Fair Lady. The songs include; On […]


College wins Master Builders Association Award "IndyWatch Feed Alllocal"

Holy Cross College Ryde have won the 2016 Master Builders’ Association Award for Best New Building. Co-Wyn Building Contractors Pty Ltd were recognised for the construction of the College’s new Flexible Learning Precinct. The MBA Excellence in Construction Awards are the commercial building industry’s most prestigious awards, attracting entries from the state’s largest commercial, industrial […]


Council meeting blasts Baird as arrogant, dictatorial "IndyWatch Feed Alllocal"

No Christmas Joy for Premier at Hunters Hill Council Baird Blasted as ‘Arrogant Dictator’! BY OUR CIVIC ROUNDSMAN Premier Mike Baird is treating Hunters Hill as an insignificant backwater and is arrogant and dictatorial, Hunters Hill Council heard on Monday night. Councillors voted unanimously to accept the condemnation in a report by Mayor Richard Quinn […]


Prestigious sport award for Rhodes tennis ace Alex "IndyWatch Feed Alllocal"

RISING Australian tennis star Alex De Minaur of Rhodes has capped a big year on the international circuit after being named Male Junior Athlete of the Year at the recent Newcombe Medal Night. The talented 17 year old reached a career-high ranking of two on the juniors circuit -finishing runner up in singles to Canadian […]


Steve’s successful
 Movember campaign "IndyWatch Feed Alllocal"

LOCAL sports identity Steve White has completed another fruitful Movember campaign – helping to raise awareness and support for the more than one million Australian men currently living with depression or anxiety. A six-time participant, Steve is pictured showing off his moustache with wife Alexandra after raising $2,500 for a worthy cause. The Ryde Eastwood […]


Sand in the City exhibition "IndyWatch Feed Alllocal"

Sand in the City exhibition now on display at the Museum of Sydney features giant sand models of the city’s iconic coastal landscape and an alluring hands-in augmented sandbox. Photo by James Horan.


Meet Queen Charlotte "IndyWatch Feed Alllocal"

CHARLOTTE COSGROVE was crowned 2016 TWT Gladesville Christmas Festival Teen Queen on Saturday by previous Teen Queen Amanda Hedges at Gladesville Shopping Village. New Teen Queen Charlotte officially opens Festival 2016 TWT Gladesville Christmas Festival Teen Queen Charlotte Cosgrove was announced and congratulated by Lane Cove MP Anthony Roberts and crowned by 2015 Teen Queen […]


Retro theme calendar launched by councils "IndyWatch Feed Alllocal"

Three of our local councils have teamed up to support the police effort to promote the road safety message to children. Hunters Hill, Lane Cove and the City of Ryde councils this week launched their combined 2017 Road Safety Calendar which uses retro themed messages to encourage safety and courtesy. The calendar is available to […]


Bush Music Club 
Family Xmas Dance "IndyWatch Feed Alllocal"

Sydney’s Bush Music Club will hold its bi-annual Family Christmas Dance this Saturday December 17 in Ermington Community Centre, 8 River Road, Ermington from 7pm to 11pm with a light supper provided. Featured is the Southern Cross Band and dancing will be ‘called’ and walked-though if necessary for those who are ‘rusty’. The Club’s Christmas […]


Climate, Forests, Wildlife & Economy threatened by Tasmanian Government regressive agenda "IndyWatch Feed Allstate"

Media Release 13 December 2016


Bob Brown Foundation is expecting a lively Public Meeting in Hobart Town Hall tomorrow calling for forest protection, as guest speakers highlight the threat by Tasmania’s government to trash the future of forests, wildlife habitat, the economy and climate.

Impacts will be felt from the local to international by the regressive Tasmanian government agenda to allow logging in 357,000 hectares of Tasmania’s forests that were independently verified as high conservation value and promised secure protection by the previous Tasmanian government.

“Premier Hodgman plans to turn forest beauty into a double eyesore: one being the piles of logs on the Hobart wharf, the other being the hillsides scarred form clearfell logging in Tasmania's scenic interior. This puts visitors off and costs tourism industry jobs,” Bob Brown said.

“With global warming accelerating and ice sheets melting at an alarming rate, we have an urgent and overwhelming responsibility to protect native forests as carbon stores and restore degraded forests to maximise carbon as fast as we can. We need more forests protected, not less. The climate depends on it,” Global Greens Ambassador Christine Milne said.

“It is reprehensible that the Hodgman Government is recklessly destroying biodiversity and pumping carbon dioxide into the atmosphere when all the modelling of how the world can constrain global warming to less than 2 degrees and pursue 1.5, are based on increasing terrestrial carbon stores not rushing to liquidate them through logging,” Christine Milne said.

“After 20 years of trying to protect habitat for the world’s largest freshwater invertebrate, enough is enough. No reserves have been put aside and we are running out of areas considered suitable habitat for protection of this globally unique species. It is time to make a stand,” Lobster man Todd Walsh said.

“Logging high conservation value forests is not only offensive to Tasmanians but the kiss of death in the market. These days, people want to be sure that they are not buying the products of forest destruction,” Peg Putt, CEO of Markets for Change, concluded.

Defend Forests Public Meeting at Hobart Town Hall

Time: 1:10pm – 2pm
When: Wednesday 14 December

Order of Speakers:

Peg Putt – CEO Markets for Change.

Todd Walsh – The Lobster man, expert on the giant freshwater lobsters, Astocopsis Gouldi.

Heather Sculthorpe – CEO Tasmanian Aboriginal C...


5 ways Australia can achieve the Sustainable Development Goals "IndyWatch Feed"

Strong political leadership, financing for sustainable infrastructure and climate action, and more cross-sector partnerships: These are some things Australia needs to achieve the United Nations' Sustainable Development Goals.


EPA scandal, funding the Greens "IndyWatch Feed"

Public funding of the green vandals.

With the blessing of the Department of Justice, the EPA has been going after major corporations and telling those corporations that they can pay a massive fine to the federal government or pay a lesser amount to various environmentalist groups.
More often than not, to get the EPA off their backs, the companies fork over money to leftwing run environmentalist groups. Those groups then begin a vicious cycle. They start hounding the corporations that give them money, file complaints with the EPA, then get the EPA to shake down the companies for more money.
Congress investigated this and the House of Representatives produced a report on what the Department of Justice is doing with corporations. The EPA, in particular, uses what’s called its “settlement fund.”


Tech Breakthrough Could Trigger The Next US Oil Boom "IndyWatch Feed"

The following analysis from leading online publication is a paid advertorial.

As far as the markets are concerned, OPEC’s 32.5-million bpd output cut deal agreed to two weeks ago could go either way, and the uncertainty makes it anyone’s guess—but MCW Energy, the pioneer of breakthrough clean oil sands extraction in Utah, is not concerned:

If oil prices remain low, its production costs are dramatically reduced, and in any scenario, its breakthrough technology makes everything from Utah’s vast oil sands to the Permian Basin’s massive offerings easier to extract.

When you combine MCW’s immunity from oil price vulnerability with a Utah play that has an estimated 87 million barrels of proven reserves worth about $3.4 billion in today’s market, can produce at a market-defying $27/barrel and is the first technology to offer a clean, safe and efficient way to get oil sands out of the ground and pump more from the giant Permian Basin, you have a company poised for massive gains in the New Year.

For all those oil sands skeptics out there: This isn’t Canada, where production is presently prohibitively expensive, and oil sands are equated with toxic trailing ponds that make environmental issues a major hurdle.

This is Utah, and more precisely, it’s Asphalt Ridge, in the heart of the western Green River Formation, where MCW Energy has been cleaning Utah’s oil sands and selling it off since the beginning of this year, with plant capacity now being augmented to 500bbl/day. And it’s all being done with zero water and zero trailing ponds.

But there is an even bigger play going on behind the scenes here—beyond the revolutionary oil sands developments: MCW’s proprietary technologies can boost production and reserve values and unlock the potential of sizable assets, not only from their estimated 89 million barrels in Utah, but also from an estimated 168 million barrels they’ve recently scooped up in Texas’ prolific Permian Basin—just for starters. This is where top producers such as Anadarko Petroleum Corp. (NYSE:APC), Apache Corp. (NYSE:APA), BHP Billiton (NYSE:BHP) and Chevron Corp. (NYSE:CVX) are gathering in full force to tap America’s oldest and most prolific basin whose best days are still ahead of it.

Nor does i...


$60M Trade Union Royal Commission used false evidence to excuse Thiess bosses "IndyWatch Feed National"

On 12 May 2014 Jeremy Stoljar SC made his opening statement about the AWU Scandal. He misled the Commission on the $60M contract Thiess was gifted by Carmen Lawrence's Government. The Commission learned nothing about Thiess during its two years of operation. Stoljar recommended that the Commission make these final...


Shooting star "IndyWatch Feed Alllocal"

JACK Stockdale is only 16 but he’s just returned from New Zealand with four open national titles, after shooting scores even the world’s best would be thrilled with.
Jack, from Koonwarra, shoots with the Korumburra and Inverloch clubs and only began four years ago when he could obtain a gun licence.
It is clay target skeet shooting, and his four titles came in its varying disciplines.
The crowning achievement, the one that blew everyone away (not literally), was the skeet doubles in which he pulled a perfect 100/100.
Nobody had done that in the past 10 years of that competition which attracts the best from our part of the world.
He was the first junior to ever do it, and only a handful of shooters in the world have ever completed the feat.
The runner-up with 98/100 had every reason to feel a touch unlucky, as that’s usually a winning score.
“My previous best was 93/100 before I pulled that out. I’d never shot 50/50 before
He also won the Overall National 28 gauge title with 110/110.
Jack’s other wins were almost as impressive, but his overall performance ensured he was the first person to win four national titles at a single event.
He’d also had great success at a preliminary tournament, also in Hamilton, with impressive wins.
“I hoped I hadn’t peaked too early.”
When news filtered back to Korumburra Gun Club members about what he’d achieved, club president Trent Tobias said there was a mixture of disbelief and jubilation.
“What Jack has achieved in New Zealand is fantastic,” Trent said.
“To win an open national title at 16 and be shooting perfect scores is unheard of.
“Not even the best have won four titles at the nationals.”
Yes, Trent was shocked to hear of his scores, but not of his success at that level.
“It’s amazing to watch him. He has an old head on young shoulders. His technique is so smooth and effortless.”
Trent said he was also a very popular member of the club, who’s happy to chat to anyone about anything, regardless of their age.
Jack has won all of the junior Australian state titles and is on the Australian development team, but he’s just the beginning.
“My goal eventually is to make the open Australian team for the shoot in the USA which is held every two years,” Jack said.
Jack has the full support of his parents Tim and Judy.
“It’s an expensive sport and they’ve covered everything and stood right behind me.”
The Korumburra and Inverloch clubs have also been supportive.
Korumburra has re-established itself as a skeet shooting ground which has worked out well for Jack and other members.
“It’s given Jack a place locally to train. The only other place with these facilities in Gippsland is Bairnsdale, or, to the metro area in Frankston,” Trent said.
He said target sho...


Cash transfers are not squandered on booze but do not replace the need for jobs "IndyWatch Feed"

Some years ago I was asked to design a framework for the implementation of minimum wage system in South Africa as part of an ILO project my research group was involved. We were evaluating the first five years of the Expanded Public Works Programme in South Africa, which was a cut-down employment guarantee program (limited by supply-side constraints on public expenditure largely conditioned by the bullying of the South African government by the IMF). One of the issues I had to deal with was the belief among many economists that the existing cash transfer system introduced by the South African government after 1994 should be expanded into a full-blown Basic Income Guarantee and that any notion of employment guarantees should be rejected. Our work demonstrated quite clearly (in my view) the flawed logic in this argument. The cash transfer system was productive as it stood but was no reasonably extensible into a widespread income guarantee without significant negative consequences. The creation of an employment guarantee scheme to absorb the social transfers and leave them as supplemental to cope with varying family structures was a much better option. That conclusion holds for less developed nations and advanced nations alike.

The post-apartheid South African administration, unfortunately, adopted a neo-liberal economic understanding of the world and the policy apparatus that is concomitant with that understanding.

The most explicit example of this is seen the transition from the Reconstruction and Development Programme (RDP) to the Growth, Employment and Redistribution Programme (GEAR). The RDP was envisaged to be the cornerstone for building a better life of opportunity, freedom and prosperity.

In 1996 RDP was superseded by GEAR, which adopted explicit economic growth strategies that were oriented towards private sector investment and assumed the role of the public sector and government programmes to be minimal.

The GEAR strategy pursued fiscal discipline by minimising deficits and maintaining high real interest rates, which constrained economic and employment growth.

The failure of GEAR was never more evident than in the discrepancy between the economic modelling, which predicted that a 6 per cent growth rate would create an average of 270,000 additional jobs annually in the formal sector, and the outcomes, which saw formal sector employment, stagnate and fall.

The IMF had their hands all over GEAR.

It was no surprise to me when I started working in South Africa that the richness of real resources that the nation possesses were not being (and have not been) used to benefit the greater population.

The neo-liberal economists who had the ear of the government continually emphasised the primacy of the private market plac...


Listen to the New TinPan Orange Single “See You In The Water” "IndyWatch Feed Alllocal"

Image Courtesy of TinPan Orange Melbourne indie-folk band TinPan Orange are wrapping up 2016 with the release of their new sinhle “See You In The Water”. The melancholic single can be streamed here: Having spent much of 2016 touring Europe with The Cat Empire, TinPan Orange have announced some local headline dates in 2017 with […]


In which the pond joins the reptiles in a little Donald watching ... "IndyWatch Feed"

Well that's the Trump joke out of the way, and it doesn't pay to dive beneath the headlines for the 'tish boom' payoff ...

Of late the reptiles have dropped off the Trump watching, though it keeps up a heated pace in the United States, as they marvel at the strange cuckoo in their nest ...

One tweet and share prices crash and the poodle is plunged into a world of uncertainty and defensive pain ...

Meanwhile, the lizard Oz editorialist is still trying to catch up and tempt the pond with a bit of Ozzie Oi Oi ...

But it turned out to be a damp fizzer ...


US dollar is losing ground in Southeast Asian countries "IndyWatch Feed National"

423423123123One of the world’s most important processes in recent years has been the weakening of the US dollar on the international currency market and the desire of many countries to abandon it in order to release their economies from US influence. The United States is resisting this process.

Recently, the US created the Trans-Pacific Partnership: one of its goals was to counteract China’s economic expansion in the Pacific Ocean. Undoubtedly, the US dollar will be the most popular currency in the territory of the TPP. The United States itself and its closest partners such as Australia, Canada, Japan, etc. have joined the TPP. However, the Partnership is still open – as the US hopes to attract further members. Even the Peoples Republic of China was invited, despite it being the main competitor of the TPP. So, a number of developing countries of the Asia-Pacific region, seeking to increase their participation in international trade, are now facing a choice between the TPP and other economic organisations where Russia and China play the main role. First of all, this concerns the ASEAN countries.

Several major events were held in Hanoi at the end of October 2016: the 8th CLMV (Cambodia, Laos, Myanmar and Vietnam) Summit, the 7th ACMECS (Ayeyawady – Chao Phraya – Mekong Economic Cooperation Strategy) Summit and the World Economic Forum on the Mekong Region (Mekong WEF).

As it is well known, the Mekong River has its origin in China and traverses the entire Mainland Southeast Asia, uniting all of its countries into a single sub-region. The river is of great economic significance for Vietnam, Cambodia, China, Laos, Myanmar and Thailand. These countries are forced to actively cooperate in order to jointly use it without violating any interests. CLMV and ACMECS Summits have been held since 2003. The most important economic and political issues of the Mekong sub-region are discussed there. These meetings have brought about a number of benefits, by maintaining regional stability and promoting the economic growth of all countries involved. Thanks to their cooperation, the Mekong sub-region has become one of the fastest growing parts of ASEAN and the Asia-Pacific Region. Mekong WEF was first organised at the initiative of Vietnam. 60 companies from the Mekong sub-region and more than 100 companies from other countries took part in the Mekong WEF....


Hooded Robin at Adavale St dams (Brookfield) reported by Ed Frazer on 13-12-2016 "IndyWatch Feed Allstate"

I was over the back of the property and heard an unfamiliar bird calling and located a Hooded Robin about 20m up a nearby tree. It stayed for only about 1 minute but I had a clear view. I later checked with Morecombe app. and the call was identical with the sub-species picata AM recording. It appeared to be resting before going on in a south-westerly direction.


If these walls could break: Mike Parr’s On Manus Island "IndyWatch Feed National"

We remain locked out of the camps as assuredly as refugees are locked in. We don’t know the full extent of the horrors but the leaked reports should leave us in no doubt. This is our Belsen. On Manus Island paid homage to this terrible chapter in Australian history with grave dignity.


SHEILA E – LIVE REVIEW "IndyWatch Feed Alllocal"

Metro Theatre Sydney,
Sunday 11 December 2016

Review by: Paris Pompor
Photos by: Rizwan Omar

Lynn Mabry takes centre stage with Sheila E in her element on percussion

Lynn Mabry takes centre stage with Sheila E in her element on percussion

“Who said, girls couldn’t drum?” Sheila Escovedo rhetorically asks after one of her impressive percussion solos tonight.

Well, certainly no one here would have dared utter that misconception.

And if they had, they would have been shouted down or evicted by the considerably sized adoring crowd that has gathered inside the Metro on Sydney’s George St strip. Here, on this balmy night, we’re all instantly transported back to the mid-’80s. From the polished lighting design, snappy snare tones and wiggy synth fills, through to the two-tone product-filled mall-bangs and white belt of back-up singer Ashling Cole. Alongside the tortured-seamed jeans, swinging leather jacket, ultra-white hi-tops and gleaming MTV-teeny-heart-melting smile of guitarist Sir Mychael Davison, it’s like being on the set of ‘Krush Groove’ for one of the club sequences. Arriving on stage as a unified force, Sheila’s E Family Band wastes no time unleashing their ‘80s funky house party vibe. Even outside, time seems rewound: George St doesn’t feel quite as dead as the rest of this locked-out city, although I spare a thought for the band finding somewhere to get a post-show drink, let alone finding somewhere to “partyup” afterwards.

Inside, the guy in front of me has ‘Prince’ emblazoned across the back of his T-shirt, and there’s a palpable sense many have assembled as much to experience the purple prodigy posthumously (albeit by one degree of separation) as they have to re-live Escovedo’s early hits ’The Glamorous Life’ and ‘A Love Bizarre’. On first count, she doesn’t disappoint with a number of Prince tunes peppering the set. On second count however, we’re left wanting. Instead of an extended workout of at least one of the aforementioned Sheila...


Festival backs cancer charity "IndyWatch Feed Alllocal"

THE Inverloch Sounds of Summer music, food and wine festival has already attracted big name performers such as Clare Bowditch and Sara Storer.

Now the festival has secured a link with another iconic Australian performer, actor Samuel Johnson, but not for his creative talents.

He is the face of the charity Love Your Sister, which raises awareness of the importance of the early detection of breast cancer.

Johnson’s sister Connie Johonson is dying from breast cancer. At just 35, she is a mother to two boys and has already beaten cancer twice.

Samuel has been with his sister every step of the way.

Festival director Kate Adkins, of Events by Kate, said she and husband Mick were proud to be supporting Love Your Sister.

“We are doing this for Connie and everyone who is fighting cancer, fought the fight and those who have been taken,” she said.

“There are three women I think about often and this donation will also be for them! All three women, taken from their families too soon, all have missed their children getting married, meeting their grandchildren and just being there for all the everyday things you want your mum, wife, daughter, sister and friend to be there for.

“They were, Tess, my mum’s best friend, the funniest lady with the most hilarious sayings; Rhonda, a dear friend’s mum, who had the most radiant smile, style and elegance; and Helen, Mick’s aunty, a caring soul with the most infectious laugh.”

Faced with the fight of her life, Connie set Samuel the toughest challenge she could think of: to set a new Guinness World Record for the most distance travelled on a unicycle, raise $1 million and spread Connie’s message of breast cancer awareness.

Samuel kept his promise to Connie.

After travelling 15,955 kilometres over 364 days and raising nearly $1.5 million, on Thursday, February 13, 2014, he finished what was then the world’s longest unicycle journey.

Not content to rest on their laurels, Connie and Samuel have set a new goal to raise $10 million.

Kate said, “This is where our festival family comes in. We would love for all ticket holders to give a gold coin donation on arrival. They will also see the Love Your Sister merchandise tent onsite.”

Inverloch Sounds of Summer will be donating to the cause and if 5000 tickets are sold, the festival will give $10,000.

“We are proud of all the local businesses and community groups that are involved with Sounds of Summer but after being contacted by one of Love Your Sister’s volunteers last week, we realised our festival is capable of so much more,” Kate said.

“This has reminded us we are here to make a difference in this world, to...


Dancers take the stage "IndyWatch Feed Alllocal"

LISA Pellin Dancers of all ages converged on the Wonthaggi Community Arts Centre on Sunday, for the school’s annual concert.

The dedicated dancers performed a matinee and evening show for family and friends.

Students from all classes’ showcased routines learnt throughout the year at the Leongatha school, with contemporary, classical ballet, tap, jazz and hip hop performances highlighting the versatility of each student.

Colourful kids: from left, Alisha Martin, Ruby Katz and Lacy Fennell were keen to get on stage for the Lisa Pellin annual end of year concert, held at the Wonthaggi Community Arts Centre on Sunday.

Colourful kids: from left, Alisha Martin, Ruby Katz and Lacy Fennell were keen to get on stage for the Lisa Pellin annual end of year concert, held at the Wonthaggi Community Arts Centre on Sunday.


Chamber carnival best yet "IndyWatch Feed Alllocal"

NUMBERS were well up at the Leongatha community carnival held in the town on Saturday, December 10

The event, which was organised by the Leongatha Chamber of Commerce and Industry, was so well patronised by the public that it will go some way to covering the costs of the event.

“The day is really about putting something on for the community as a way of thanking them for their support of our businesses over the year. We were delighted they turned out and supported the carnival too,” one of the organisers Emma Smith said.

“Thanks to shire support and the money chamber members put in through their memberships. We made sure the rides were subsidised and families could afford to participate.

“In turn we hope the community shows its support for local businesses especially when retail conditions remain challenging.

“It was a big day; we cleared 175 of our 200 showbags and there was a good vibe through the whole day. The weather really helped make the day too. There were lots of happy faces and smiles.”

Activities enjoyed by most were the face painting, Emerald the green fairy stilt walker, the giant shark slide, the balloon twister, the cup and saucer ride and of course the arrival of Father Christmas.

Balloon man: creating some wonderful creatures was the balloon man “Arty Twist” for Katrina Neeson with young Luka.

Balloon man: creating some wonderful creatures was the balloon man “Arty Twist” for Katrina Neeson with young Luka.


Carols draw a crowd "IndyWatch Feed Alllocal"


FAMILIES and friends gathered together on Saturday night for the annual event, Carols in the Drome held at the Leongatha Recreation Reserve.

The event featured plenty of local talent up on stage, including the Mary MacKillop Choir, a mass children’s choir, the Combined Churches Choir, the South Gippsland Shire Brass Band, Beggs 2 Differ and a children’s centre choir.

Russell Hemming once again acted as the master of ceremonies for the event and also took the stage to perform a few numbers of his own.

Other highlights of the evening were performances by Kerryn Lockhart, Aaron Gale, Marty and Hamish Box, Jackson Patterson and Ashley Geary.

Hundreds of children were kept entertained throughout the evening with face painting, a jumping castle and other games and activities, fuelled by food from a great selection of vendors, including the Leongatha Lions Club.

The night was capped off with a visit from Santa and a fantastic fireworks display.

Shire brass band president Natalie Stewart said the crowd was strong at this year’s event, which she estimated was more than 500 people.

“It was a successful night and we received a lot of positive feedback about all of the acts. A lot of people liked the performance of Little Drummer Boy to close the evening,” she said.

Ms Stewart said the games and children’s activities proved popular this year, as did the new addition of food trucks to the event.

“All the proceeds from the sale of popcorn and the glow sticks goes back into the carols for the next year, which will be our 10th anniversary,” she said.

“The aim for next year will be to get more people involved and as many entertainers as we can.”

Ms Stewart said people can expect the 2017 carols to be the biggest and best yet.

Band of Santas: South Gippsland Shire Brass Band’s Don Santin, Rod Coughran-Lane and Neville Drummond were set to take the stage at the Carols in the Drome event, held in Leongatha on Saturday night.

Band of Santas: South Gippsland Shire Brass Band’s Don Santin, Rod Coughran-Lane and Neville Drummond were set to take the stage at the Carols in the Drome event, held in Leongatha on Saturday night.


State award for Janie "IndyWatch Feed Alllocal"

LEONGATHA’S Janie Gordon was presented with a prestigious Music Theatre Guild of Victoria, the Tony McShanagh Dancer’s Award for her role in Wonthaggi Theatrical Group’s 2016 musical Evita, as Peron’s Mistress at the annual Bruce Awards for Excellence 2016 on Saturday night at the Frankston Arts Centre.



Shining star: Janie Gordon (centre) of Leongatha is congratulated on winning a State theatre award by from left Corey Green, Finnan Donohue, Roy Trumble and Mack Williams.

Shining star: Janie Gordon (centre) of Leongatha is congratulated on winning a State theatre award by from left Corey Green, Finnan Donohue, Roy Trumble and Mack Williams.


Final assembly for David Gray "IndyWatch Feed Alllocal"

KORUMBURRA Primary School’s assistant principal David Gray is retiring from teaching this week.

This Friday, December 16, from 9am-11am, Mr Gray will be honoured at the final assembly for the year.

Mr Gray attended Toorak Teachers College from 1977-79 and his first teaching appointment was in 1980 at Dumbalk North Primary School as second teacher.

The school population had reached the magical number of 26 which entitled the school to a second teacher.

“Head teacher was Irene Beasley – a great role model and a perfect person to have as my first teacher,” Mr Gray told The Star.

Mr Gray then had stints at Hallston, Dumbalk and Koonwarra primary schools before gaining a permanent position at Korumburra in 1988, teaching Year 1/2.

“Since then I’ve taught in all year levels except Prep,” he said.

Mr Gray became assistant principal during 2007 when Greg Twite retired. This year sees Mr Gray’s 28th year at KPS.

Some of the highlights over the years have included building and ground improvements, camps and excursions, art shows , sporting events, musicals and his instigation of South Gippsland Student Leaders’ Annual Conference at Korumburra Amenities Complex for Year 6 leaders from across South Gippsland.

“The wonderful dedicated staff and fantastic children have been so great to work with over the years,” he said.

“Many of the students I have taught have gone on to become work colleagues or parents of current students and members of Parents and Friends or School Council.

“I leave my role and the teaching profession still loving my job and getting up each day looking forward to going to work.”

Friday’s assembly will also mark the farewell for graduating grades sixes as well as the announcement of the school leaders for 2017.

Dan Wells will be stepping in as assistant principal in 2017.

Mr Wells has been a classroom teacher at the school since 2013. He was also the information communication technology coordinator and had a major role in coordinating the bike education program at the school.

Mr Wells said he is looking forward to the challenges the year ahead will bring, and developing a strong rapport with the staff, students and parents.

“Our values at this school are to ‘aim high’ and I feel my decision to take this position ties in with that,” he said.

“Dave (Mr Gray) has been at the school for 28 years and he was assistant principal for eight of those years, which are pretty big shoes to fill but he has expressed his confidence in me to fill this position.”

Mr Wells said he is looking forward to seeing the school fr...


Bike festival heads to Foster "IndyWatch Feed Alllocal"

FOSTER is gearing up to welcome some 4000 cyclists and hundreds more support crew and families, when the Great Victorian Bike Ride comes to town next year.

Just as the 2016 bike ride was coming to an end, it was announced Foster would be on the route, along with Yarram and Wilsons Promontory.

Foster Chamber of Commerce president John Davies said the ride would provide many opportunities for the town.

“The ride will give the town a big boost and we are very excited,” he said.

Foster first hosted the event in 1986 and again in 2007 when 3747 thousand riders enjoyed a rest day.

Mr Davies said it was a bumper day for the town, with pool attendances possibly a record.

He said the 2017 event would give Foster the chance to showcase the scenery, and accommodation venues and businesses would benefit.

The chamber will be discussing plans at future meetings and hopes cyclists will have a great time and may return.

Foster recently hosted Daniher’s Drive, the fundraiser to find a cure for Motor Neurone Disease, and Mr Davies said that was exciting.

“We had Australian cricketer Shane Watson there and as he is from New South Wales, he had never been to Foster and couldn’t believe how beautiful the region is. He said he may come back and visit so there are spin-offs from these big events coming to town,” he said.

Yarram is also a popular destination for the ride, as this will be the fifth time Yarram has welcomed the ride. The first was in 1986 when 2600 riders camped, followed by 1990, 1997 and in 2003.

Yarram will host an overnight stay and Yarram Traders acting president Garry Stephens said the town would put on a show.

The ride starts on November 25, 2017 at Wilsons Promontory.

On Sunday, November 26, cyclists will ride 58km to Foster and the next day, they will make their way to Yarram.

After resting in Yarram overnight, the cyclists will then ride to Seaspray, followed by a long ride to Bairnsdale on November 29, where they will have a rest day before heading to Maffra on Friday, December 1.

The ride then goes to Glengarry on December 2 and finishes in Trafalgar on December 3, ending a 517km journey through the region.


Cheers all around "IndyWatch Feed Alllocal"

SOUTH Gippsland Year 12 students celebrated their success as Victorian Certificate of Education results were released yesterday (Monday).

Students received their Australian Tertiary Admission Rank (ATAR) scores, the main criterion for entry into most undergraduate-entry university programs in Australia.

Leongatha Secondary student Gemma Martin received an ATAR of 89.90.

“I’m a bit disappointed as I performed poorly in a few of my exams. However, it will allow me to study the course I want, Bachelor of Biomedical Science at Deakin University,” she said.

College careers advisor Jenny Goss said, “There was a pleasing increase in the number of scores above 70 this year and an increase in the number of students making applications for TAFE and/or university studies.”

Six Mary MacKillop students received scored in the nineties. Student Matilda McNeil scored an ATAR of 96.6  and Isaac Frith scored 94.9.

Twenty-five percent of Mary MacKillop students scored ATARs of above 80.

About 35 percent of students were in the top quarter within Victoria and 41 percent received above 70.

“There are a number of classes where multiple students have scored 40 or more. This only happens when the teacher really knows her or his business and has worked hard for their students,” principal Davis Leslie said.

At Wonthaggi Secondary College, the highest ATAR score was received by Fergus McKittrick, with 96.4, and just below him was Maddy Murray with 96.3.

The college announced 126 students completed their VCE.

“Several have had early offers to tertiary institutions while most now wait the important VTAC offers in mid-January,” Darren Parker, McBride Campus principal, said.

Mirboo North Secondary College Year 12 student Riona Beyer received an ATAR score of 96.45.

Twelve percent of students received an ATAR over 90 and 42 percent over 80.

Korumburra Secondary College will announce its dux at the school presentation evening this Thursday.

Principal Abigail Graham was pleased with the results.

“We had a great number of students with study scores over 40 and a significant number of students with scores over 35,” she said.

Forty-one students completed their Victorian Certificate of Education while six achieved a Victorian Certificate of Applied Learning.

“We are very happy and we could not be prouder,” Ms Graham said.

Two students have obtained scholarships to attend Latrobe University, already.

South Gippsland Secondary College had a small cohort of students this year due to a large number of students getting apprenti...


Climate change: Heating up "IndyWatch Feed"

In case anyone was in any doubt about the way the climate is heading: 2016 was New Zealand's hottest year on record:

NIWA directly attributes this to climate change. And meanwhile, our government fiddles while the planet burns.


Results unveiled early "IndyWatch Feed Alllocal"

SOME 2075 VCE students received their results five days before the official release date.

Students registering to receive their results via text on Wednesday.

Many students took to social media to spread the news, leading to other students trying to get their own results early.

Leongatha Secondary college student Milly James said, “I was with my boyfriend and he started saying how everyone on the VCE discussions page was posting about it, so he thought he would give it a go and then a minute later all of his results came through, so then I texted them and got my results.

“I then rung my family and told them all about it but I thought it was so weird how it all happened. It was a bit shocking as well, just because I wasn’t prepared or expecting them to come at all.”



Raw energy "IndyWatch Feed Alllocal"


A MULTI-MILLION dollar project could slash energy costs and ease the economic blow of the closure of the Hazelwood power station on Mirboo North and broader South Gippsland.

A proposal to establish a renewable energy project to provide Mirboo North with its energy needs while boosting the local economy is now entering the feasibility stage.

If a new solar farm, wind farm or other renewable energy development eventuates, the project could be worth up to $6 million for the community through electricity sales and other economic spin-offs.

Nearly 100 people attended a public meeting at the Walter Tuck Reserve in Mirboo North recently.

The Mirboo North community has been inspired by the Hepburn Wind project, south of Daylesford. The community owns two turbines that produce electricity for more than 2000 homes.

Nearly 2000 cooperative members contributed $9.8 million to the construction of the wind farm, and the State Government provided grants totalling $1.725 million and the Bendigo Bank a $3.1 million loan.

Since 2011, the Hepburn Wind cooperative has funded 45 local projects with grants totalling more than $89,000 and employs people to maintain the site.

Mirboo North Community Energy Hub project officer Ian Southall said the feasibility study would determine how electricity could be generated at Mirboo North, creating jobs and providing households and businesses with access to cheaper electricity.

“It could be a solar farm, a small wind farm, hydro or a biomass plant. We certainly want the community to own a fair proportion of it to ensure we can have the investment in the community and have local jobs,” he said.

“We have a lot of natural resources in the area. It’s just a matter of whether they can sustain a grid connect energy system 24/7.

“Hopefully people will be able to buy local energy and that money will circulate throughout the community.”

Mr Southall said the energy hub could help ease the impact of the closure of Hazelwood power station at the end of March 2017.

“We have certainly got to try and provide for jobs otherwise there could be between five and 10 percent of the population move on because of unemployment because of the demise of Hazelwood,” he said.

“Anecdotally there are 300 to 400 people who work in the Latrobe Valley and Hazelwood that come from the Mirboo North and Leongatha area.”

The hub plans to complete the feasibility study within eight months, and will turn to the community for financial support and also Mirboo North Community Bank branch of the Bendigo Bank and the Mirboo North and District Community Foundation.

At the recent meeting, the communi...


Long jetty to be ready in two years "IndyWatch Feed Alllocal"


THE Long Jetty at Port Welshpool will be rebuilt by Christmas 2018.

The Port Welshpool Long Jetty Project Control Group met recently to discuss the next steps for the Long Jetty rehabilitation project in light of the project funding received from all levels of government.

An overview of the latest jetty condition assessment was provided that identified significant deterioration and splitting in all piles.

All piles will require some sort of treatment either repair or replacement. Administrative processes for the State and Commonwealth Government Funding Agreements and the tender documentation are now being finalised.

Tenders for rehabilitation works will be advertised in February 2017. Works will likely start mid-2017, with the project completed by Christmas 2018.

South Gippsland Shire Council’s chief executive officer Tim Tamlin attended the meeting and was pleased the project was ready to progress.

“The Long Jetty rehabilitation project has been a key priority project for South Gippsland for some time and it is rewarding to see the hard work of advocacy pay off,” he said.

“Once complete the project will create a $32 million economic impact in the first 10 years of operation for the region. This will create a range of opportunities and see prosperity increase in the area.”

An information board is being arranged at the jetty site and council has created an online progress portal at for individuals wanting more information on the project.


Lifesavers’ rescue call "IndyWatch Feed Alllocal"

SOUTH Gippsland Shire Council has been urged to support the expansion of the Venus Bay Surf Life Saving Club next financial year or risk the club waiting many years for another opportunity.

Club president Craig Watson last Wednesday told council a bigger clubhouse was needed to store vehicles and accommodate modern public toilets.

He asked council for $150,000 to allow the club to source funding from the State Government, saying the Venus Bay clubhouse was Lifesaving Victoria’s number one project.

The club needs additional space for an extra four wheel drive and all terrain vehicle, as well as a jet ski that is on the way. The club also needs another four wheel drive.

The $850,000 clubhouse expansion is dependent on the club finding $170,000 to apply for the balance. The club is willing to contribute $20,000.

Mr Watson said the expansion could be completed by December 2017 with a commitment from council.

At tomorrow’s (Wednesday) council meeting, council will vote to whether to allocate $200,000 to wildlife and environment protection, including the planning of Van Cleef Reserve, and also $200,000 to a skate park at Venus Bay.

These projects will be funded under council’s Community Capital Works Allocation Project, in which the communities of Venus Bay, Foster, Mirboo North and Korumburra were each allocated $400,000 to spend as per a community vote.

The Venus Bay community voted to back the lifesaving club project, yet as the clubhouse is not owned or controlled by council, council officers said the project does not meet council’s criteria for funding.

Mr Watson said council had the power to change the criteria.

“This project received twice as many votes as any project put out there,” he said, adding council’s reputation was at risk if it did not support the lifesaving club.

With 13 percent more people visiting Venus Bay beaches last year, and attendances rising by 50 percent in the past five years, Mr Watson said the lifesaving club underpinned tourism in the town – and South Gippsland – as without lifesavers, people would not visit the dangerous Venus Bay beach.

“We patrol eight kilometres of beaches with five access roads. No other surf life saving club in Victoria does that,” he said.

Cr Andrew McEwen said he believed more people visit Venus Bay’s beaches than visit Wilsons Promontory.

Mr Watson said, “I’m not sure that but seeing a warm day in January on the Venus Bay beach last year, you could not move and we provide a safe environment for them.”

Mr Watson said the clubhouse would be a community refuge during a bushfire if the road out of Venus Bay was cut off.

“The clu...


Mirboo North makes a splash "IndyWatch Feed Alllocal"

THE Mirboo North community will soon start raising funds towards the redevelopment of the town’s pool.

South Gippsland Shire Council is now undertaking designing of the pool project, with the works to be undertaken in 2018-19 with a council contribution of $1.9 million.

The community will be asked to make up any shortfall in the project, which will renew the pool’s aging infrastructure.

Friends of Mirboo North Pool’s Fred Couper, Mary Baker and Jodie Pincini updated the new council about the community’s plans last Wednesday evening.

“There is going to be a big fundraising campaign,” Mr Couper said.

“We have come a long way and we feel we are on to something special.”

The current pool was built in the 1970s and is the third pool to service Mirboo North.

“People in South Gippsland use the pools at far greater rates than in other shires,” Mr Couper said.

The friends initially commissioned a structural survey of the pool and that informed the current redevelopment proposal. They then surveyed the community about its views.

Cr Alyson Skinner asked Mr Couper why the community did not seek to include the pool redevelopment within council’s Community Capital Works Allocation Project and so seek a share of the $400,000 available to be spent in Mirboo North.

Mr Couper said council had already allocated funding in its Long Term Financial Plan, whereas the allocation project – at that time – was for works to be completed in 2017-18.

In a bid to increase income, the friends may consider serving meals at the pool or having a function room to cater for such events as birthday parties.

Cr Meg Edwards suggested the pool could operate with a mix of paid and volunteer lifeguards to reduce wage costs.

Mr Couper said, “You get a burst of volunteerism when the pool is under threat but what happens in five years’ time?”

He said the YMCA, which operates the pool, was “risk adverse” and so may be wary of the reliability of volunteer lifeguards. If they did not report for duty, the pool would not be able to open.

Cr Edwards also asked if the redevelopment could include the possibility of heating the pool, such as through blankets.

Ms Pincini said the pool had solar blankets but these were not used at night due to security fences not being adequate to keep people out when the blankets were in place. People swimming under the blankets risk drowning.

Cr Don Hill said a small hydrotherapy unit could be installed at an affordable price as a possible revenue raiser.



Can Trump End the Reign of ‘Bubble Finance’? "IndyWatch Feed"

Today, we’ll look at another Olympian money man — the chairman of Trump’s new Strategic and Policy Forum and private equity magnate, Stephen Schwarzman.

The post Can Trump End the Reign of ‘Bubble Finance’? appeared first on The Daily Reckoning Australia.


Grinch strikes "IndyWatch Feed Alllocal"

THIEVES have robbed Korumburra of Christmas spirit by stealing and vandalising festive decorations in a late night display of ‘Bah, humbug’, early on Sunday.

Christmas decorations were stolen from up to three yards in Korumburra, with some later being found vandalised and irreparable.

The community Christmas tree in Leongatha was also vandalised on Saturday.

A reindeer was stolen from the front yard of Karen and Bob Penrose’s home in Radovick Street, Korumburra early on Sunday morning.

“It’s sad to think you can’t continue to put your decorations out without thinking they’re going to be stolen or damaged,” Mrs Penrose said.

“We just decorate our yard to make people smile.”

She was heartbroken by the theft of the reindeer, given its sentimental value.

“I had a couple of strokes three years ago and my husband Bob bought me the reindeer because he knew I loved them,” Mrs Penrose said.

“A drink can tab was there laying where Rudolph was so I believe they may have been drinking.”

Other lights were stolen from Mair Crescent, Korumburra and possibly a third home, according to Leading Senior Constable Carl Baido of Korumburra Police. The thefts were valued at up to $250.

“It’s pretty disappointing that people go to the effort of setting up nice little scenes for this to happen,” he said.

Police have CCTV footage of the Mair Crescent theft that shows a group of three males involved, with one stealing the decorations.

The Penroses will replace the reindeer but this time will attach it to a concrete block.

On Saturday night, an offender tried to climb Leongatha’s Christmas tree near the courthouse, damaging the lights and leaving holes in the tree.

Leongatha Chamber of Commerce and Industry president Brenton Williams was disappointed, given the chamber had tried to brighten up the town for Christmas.

“We have a limited budget for Christmas decorations but we are trying to do the best with what we have. This is just pointless,” he said.

The matter has been reported to Leongatha Police and they are looking over CCTV vision.

The lights were pulled down as the offender tried to get down the tree and now only half the lights are functioning.

The vandalism comes just a week after someone stole the power board used for the tree.

Senior Constable Nathan Grist of Leongatha Police said, “The Christmas tree is under surveillance so if people are thinking of climbing it, then think again.”



A Proposal To Paul Bonnaci- Famous “Victim” of Omaha’s Franklin Credit Union… "IndyWatch Feed Allstate"

To Paul Bonnaci

Okay- so I know that you and your pal Noreen Gosch are going around telling people how full of shit I am- and so I have figured out a way that we can put this all to rest.

You see- you have a UNIQUE POSITION in that MYRIADS of people believe you were INTRINSICALLY INVOLVED with what was going on in Omaha- and so they look to you for answers with all of this mess. I mean- you were born and raised in Omaha- are STILL LIVING in Omaha- and by your own admission- you were heavily involved with what was going on in Omaha in the 80’s- so you MUST know your shit.

So what I propose is simple. I want you to go through my YouTube video I did DETAILING what I knew to have happened in Omaha in the Old Market at the time- and I would like you to explain- IN DETAIL- how I am wrong. And most of all- I would like you to CORRECT ME with THE TRUTH.

Since you were so involved with Omaha and the people in it- this should be ABSOLUTELY NO ISSUE for you.

Please- by all means- correct me with your truth, oh Franklin savior. Enlighten us all.

I’ll await your reply- since I am going to post this anywhere and everywhere I can. Because I want EVERYONE to get a chance to see what you have to say.

With the UTMOST Sincerity,

David Shurter

A Walking Tour of Pedophile Heaven Omaha NE’s real Legacy


How to Trade Mario Draghi’s ‘Taper Tantrum’ "IndyWatch Feed"

Mario Draghi, President of the ECB, keeps pretending that the monetary experiment is going to plan. He’s now ‘tightening’ the bond buying program.

The post How to Trade Mario Draghi’s ‘Taper Tantrum’ appeared first on The Daily Reckoning Australia.


A proposal for open access Pacific migration to Australia "IndyWatch Feed"

A new Lowy Institute discussion paper by Leon Berkelmans and Devpolicy alumnus Jonathan Pryke promotes the development benefits of expanding Pacific access to Australia’s labour market and suggests a path forward to realise these benefits. In another signal Pacific labour mobility is attracting renewed attention, the authors posit if Australian Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull is serious about a ‘step-change’ in the relationship between Australia and the Pacific built on fresh ideas, tackling labour mobility should be a high priority.

Berkelmans and Pryke find allowing just one per cent of the Pacific’s relatively small population to work in Australia each year would be a greater economic contribution than Australia’s entire current aid budget to the Pacific. A more expansive ‘open access’ regime could generate migrant income up to $25 billion by 2040 (2005 PPP adjusted US$). The magnitude of this finding outstrips that in the World Bank-ANU Pacific Possible Labour Mobility report [pdf] but echoes the same sentiment: every additional Pacific migrant who can work in Australia will create economic benefits for themselves, their families and communities.

The paper raises possible risks associated with the proposal and rightly suggests these can be mitigated by effective policy design. The only major question I have is how best to model a future flow of migrants under an open access regime. The authors base their projections primarily on historical migration outcomes under the Compact of Free Association, where Micronesian countries, Palau and Marshall Islands enjoy access to the United States. The projections appear on the low side to me, particularly as a more mature diaspora community develops and acts as a long-term pull on potential migrants. To give the authors credit, getting the number exactly right is not the intention. Predicting migration flows is...


When Will It Stop? "IndyWatch Feed"

Given China’s economic growth is relatively healthy, you have to ask why capital isn’t interested in hanging around.

The post When Will It Stop? appeared first on The Daily Reckoning Australia.


Splitting the difference for great views at Aireys "IndyWatch Feed Alllocal"

Your next Great Ocean Road selfie is within arm’s reach at Airey’s Inlet with the completion of the Split Point lookout upgrades.


The very first visitors on the new platform were blown away with the views.

Two new viewing platforms have been constructed to sensitively complement previous works in the area, catering for increasing numbers of visitors along the Great Ocean Road.

Great Ocean Road Coast’s Coastal Reserves Manager Caleb Hurrell said the upgraded lookouts aimed to enhance the safety and enjoyment for all users, while promoting environmental rehabilitation.



Disease losses huge for Qld prawn fishers "IndyWatch Feed Alllocal"

A worker places king prawns on display at a fish store at the Sydney Fish Markets 2014. AAP Image/Daniel Munoz

A worker places king prawns on display at a fish store at the Sydney Fish Markets 2014. AAP Image/Daniel Munoz


Tanker loads of chlorine are being poured into prawn ponds south of Brisbane as biosecurity officials try to contain an outbreak of white spot disease.

Authorities are scrambling to contain the outbreak to the Logan River area, amid fears it could spread and affect lucrative prawn fisheries elsewhere.

So far wild prawns taken from the river have tested positive, as have prawns at three of the eight land-based farms in the region.

The virus, which can stop prawns and crabs from growing but poses no risk to humans, was not previously known to be in Australia, and has sparked a ban on prawn and crab fishing in the river while eradication efforts are underway.

Queensland’s Chief Biosecurity Officer Jim Thompson says chlorine is being used to kill all prawns on the three infected farms, including in ponds that have not tested positive for white spot.

The chlorine also acts as a decontamination agent.

Dr Thompson said it must be a difficult process for prawn farmers to watch.

But he said it’s a vital process to prevent birds or other agents potentially spreading the disease to new sites.

‘Our process is to, in effect, lock down those affected sites and clean them up as quickly as we can. Unfortunately, in those circumstances, it means we do have to destroy the prawns on site,’ he told ABC radio on Tuesday.

One farm’s stocks have already been destroyed. Work is continuing on Tuesday on the other two infected farms.

But there is some good news.

Sampling is being done across a wide area, and not one of 370 samples taken on Monday returned positive results.

Prawn farmers and fisherm...



Likely Climate Change Impacts on Birds in South-East Queensland "IndyWatch Feed Alllocal"

Satin Bowerbird
A decline in populations and the distribution of some bird species in the Sunshine Coast region and other parts of South-East Queensland over the past 30-40 years, along with increases in populations of other species, are likely to be related to climate change.

An isolated population of the Eastern Bristlebird occurred in the Conondale Range in the Sunshine Coast hinterland - the northern limit of its distribution. Discovered as recently as the 1980s, the population appears now likely to be extinct as there have been no confirmed records for several years - see here for more.

Eastern Bristlebird
The Spotted Quail-Thrush was formerly seen with regularity at sites such as Widgee, Eudlo, Wild Horse Mountain and Brooyar State Forest in the Sunshine Coast hinterland. The species is now absent from these sites, with no confirmed records in recent years, and appears to be extinct in the Sunshine Coast region....


David Leyonhjelm guest post. It’s all about trust "IndyWatch Feed"

In July 2015 the Abbott government introduced a customs regulation to prohibit imports of seven shot lever action shotguns. The announcement by the Prime Minister made clear it was part of the government’s one-announcement-per-week terrorism strategy. It was also said to be temporary, pending a review of the National Firearms Agreement involving the states and territories.

Around two weeks later the government was seeking my support to oppose an amendment to a bill relating to migration. Labor’s amendment raised no questions of rights or freedoms (it was to increase from one to two the number of independent people present when biometric data was collected from minors), and I was indifferent as to its fate.
That led to the now famous (or infamous) agreement in which the government agreed in writing to apply a sunset clause to the import ban, in exchange for my vote on the amendment.

We both acted on the deal. I voted with the government, and the government introduced a new regulation placing a limit of 12 months on the import ban. The ban was to be lifted on August 7 this year.

A week before the import ban was due to be lifted, it was reimposed. The Minister for Justice, Michael Keenan, told me that he never had any intention of allowing the shotguns to be imported. In other words, there had never been any intention of keeping to the bargain. When Tony Abbott chimed in, once it had been linked in the media to my vote on the reinstatement of the ABCC, it was clear that whether he knew about the deal of not, he would also have failed to honour it.

This places the government in a tricky position. Following the election, the government now requires the support of nine of the 11 crossbench senators for its legislation to pass. Securing that support is obviously more difficult if it cannot be trusted to negotiate in good faith. It sets the tone of negotiations before they have even begun.
Some in the media see this as part of the cut and thrust of politics. I do not, and nor do most (but not all) of my parliamentary colleagues. There was cut and thrust in negotiating the agreement, from which the government could have chosen to withdraw at any time. Instead it gave its word, which it then broke.

The import ban achieves nothing and is not preventing the ownership and use of seven shot lever action shotguns.

Not that there is anything to fear from seven shot lever action shotguns. The presence of two extra rounds in the magazine do...


National gives up on energy efficiency "IndyWatch Feed"

Today the government released its draft New Zealand Energy Efficiency and Conservation Strategy 2017 - 2022 for consultation. While the accompanying PR tries desperately to talk up how the NZEECS will "enable our transition towards a smarter, lower-carbon and more productive economy", reading the draft, it is clear that it will do the opposite: National is giving up, completely, on energy efficiency and conservation.

Compare the new draft with the existing strategy (appended to the New Zealand Energy Strategy 2011-2021). The old target of improving commercial and industrial energy intensity by 1.3% a year has been weakened to 1%. Targets for an overall improvement in light vehicle fuel efficiency have been replaced with one for the uptake of electric vehicles. All other targets have simply been discarded, in favour of some vague, targetless waffle about improving energy efficiency without any concrete steps to do so. Targets for more geothermal energy, to insulate homes, improve minimum energy performance standards for products, and improve public sector energy use have simply been discarded. They still retain the energy strategy's 90% renewable by 2025 target, but the maths shows we have no hope of achieving it, and they certainly don't propose any policies to change that picture.

We know why this has happened: targets mean accountability, which is not something National wants in this area. Like child poverty, this is simply not an area of policy interest for them. They think "energy efficiency" is something espoused by Greens and hippies, rather than just a damn good idea. The only reason they've produced even this weak document is that they are statutorily obliged to do so - and even then, its so piss-weak that its unclear whether it meets the statutory requirements around contents and targets. They simply do not take this seriously, and are making it clear for everyone to see.

The problem is that they need to take it seriously. Climate change is happening now, and we need to radically decarbonise our economy to prevent it fro...


Lessons From Brexit: What Really Is at Stake "IndyWatch Feed National"

By James O’Neill* Last week the UK Supreme Court (formerly the House of Lords) heard argument on the appeal by the Secretary of State for Exiting the European Union from the unanimous decision of the High Court in favour of the applicant Gina Miller. That High Court decision brought howls of outrage from the tabloid press […]


December 2016 E-News "IndyWatch Feed Alllocal"

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Rate rise needed to restore Richmond River: councillor "IndyWatch Feed Alllocal"

The Richmond River estuary at Ballina was rated F in a 2015 Ecohealth report. Photo

The Richmond River estuary at Ballina was rated F in a 2015 Ecohealth report. Photo

Ballina Shire Cr Keith Williams is calling for restoration works on the Richmond River to be the top priority for the council’s next budget – and he’s asking for a rate rise to help fund it.

At last week’s Ballina council finance committee meeting, Cr Williams put up a motion for a 1.5 per cent rate rise to help fund a healthy waterways program.

The motion was defeated on the casting vote of Mayor David Wright.

Ballina Councillor Keith Williams. Photo supplied

Ballina Councillor Keith Williams. Photo supplied

But Cr Williams is hopeful a compromise can be reached at this Thursday’s council meeting, which will reconsider the issue.

Cr Williams said the river is ‘in serious trouble.’

‘The situation has gotten worse in the four years I have been a councillor. The death of the majority of oysters in the estuary over the last couple of years is a sign we can’t allow this to continue,’ he said,

‘We have talked the river to death. It’s time for action and action will cost money.’

Cr Williams estimated that the total cost of implementing the Coastal Zone Management Plan for the Richmond River is ‘around $16 million.’

‘A 1.5 per cent rate rise raises $300,000 per year.

‘This is nowhere near enough to do the job but it provides a starting point to apply for state and federal funding to implement a wide range of strategies to improve the health of the river.

‘We can turn our river around. It has been done elsewhere and it can be done here. Thursday’s Council meeting will be the test of whether there is a will to begin,’ Cr Williams said.


The post Rate rise needed to restore Richm...


Why Didn’t Our Politicians Gruntle Us This Year? "IndyWatch Feed"

Des Pensable copyright 2016

I’ve had a sad and unhappy time this year

When I should have been all gruntled with cheer

You see it all started quite well

Our politicians had decided to gruntle us, that’s fine

They had signed the climate agreement in Paris

Then returned and approved the Adani coal mine.

I wasn’t gruntled at all,  in fact I was angry

Disappointed, annoyed, cross and irate.


Next the government  kicked out their leader

As his approval polls had dropped too low

Abbot wasn’t gruntling many people so

They chose another idiot, a banker to the core

The one that ruined our Internet who

wants to tax the pensioners and the poor.

I wasn’t gruntled at all, in fact I was displeased

Exasperated, Irked, piqued and dissatisfied


Then we had new elections and promises galore

They promised jobs to gruntle the unemployed

and  gruntle  the corporations that paid no tax at all

They promised a gruntling budget and warned us

Not to vote for Independents, Labor or the  Greens

I tried to vote them out but failed.

I wasn’t gruntled at all, In fact I was displeased

Fed up, vexed, miffed, riled and pissed off.


Finally we had the gruntling spectacle

of the US empire elections in all their glory

We were not gruntled when misinformation,

Media lies and election fraud was the main story

A pathetic choice between Clinton the war hawk

Or Trump the heroic climate change denier.

I wasn’t gruntled at all when Trump won, in fact

I was thoroughly disgruntled with all politics this year.



The verb disgruntle, which has been around since 1682, means “to make ill-humored or discontented.”  .” In the 1920s, a writer humorously used gruntle to mean “to make happy”—in other words, as an antonym of disgruntle. The use caught on although it isn’t used very often.

This poem refers to the elections in the y...


Still indecent "IndyWatch Feed"

The annual Child Poverty Monitor was released today, showing that 295,000 children were living in poverty and 90,000 in severe hardship. While the percentage has dropped since last year, by the numbers that's more than ever before, and it certainly doesn't constitute any real progress. Which is understandable, given that the government's response to these reports has ranged from sticking their fingers in their ears through bureaucratic obfuscation and denial to bullshit victim blaming. But no matter which way they spin it, the problem is real. And as the government, its their responsibility to do something about it.

National has done one good thing: raised benefits for the first time in 40 years. But that hasn't flowed through into the statistics yet (we'll probably see it show up in the 2018 report), and they need to do more. One very obvious measure would be to make a solid commitment to reduce child poverty by setting targets - a policy measure they use for everything else. The longer they refuse to do so, the more they make it clear that they really just don't care about hungry kids.

And they should care. Not just because this is a moral stain on our nation, but because child poverty costs a fortune and reducing it saves money. That's logic that even Bill English should understand. Reducing child poverty is not a cost - it is an investment in a better future for everyone. Isn't that meant to be what his government is about?


Climate change is impacting all aspects of life on Earth: new study "IndyWatch Feed Allstate"

Global average temperatures have risen by about 1°C since 1880. But just one degree of human-induced warming has impacted nearly all aspects of life on our planet, concludes a new study. Climate change has affected species across ecosystems, changing their genes, physiology, morphology and phenology, and impacting their distributions, food webs and overall interactions, researchers report in the new study published in the journal Science. This finding was a total surprise, study lead author Brett Scheffers, an assistant professor in the department of wildlife, ecology and conservation at the University of Florida, told Mongabay. “We not only found ecological responses to climate change across freshwater, marine, and terrestrial ecosystems, but these responses scaled from the smallest level of a gene to the largest level of an ecosystem.” [caption id="attachment_190849" align="aligncenter" width="768"] Responses to climate change scale from the smallest level of a gene to the largest level of an ecosystem. Photo by amerune. Source: Wikimedia Commons, licensed under CC BY 2.0.[/caption] Numerous studies have attempted to tease out the impacts of climate change in the past. Scheffers collaborated with researchers from 10 countries to review previously published research, and compiled evidence of climate change responses across 94 ecological processes that are integral to healthy terrestrial, marine and freshwater ecosystems. Of the 94 ecological processes reviewed in the study, over 80 percent showed signs of response and distress, the researchers found. “Some people didn’t expect this level of change for decades” study co-author James Watson of the University of Queensland in Australia…

Australian War Grave Gardens in Perpetuity "IndyWatch Feed Allstate"

Landscape consultants Andrew Prowse and Kim Morris describe their work reviving Australia's war grave cemeteries in Papua New Guinea, Queensland and NT for the Commonwealth. Foci are history and des...

Strong and shallow M6.5 earthquake hits Sumatra, 97 dead "IndyWatch Feed"

A strong and shallow earthquake registered by the USGS as M6.5 hit northern Sumatra, Indonesia at 22:03 UTC on December 6, 2016. The agency is reporting a depth of 8.2 km (5 miles). Geoscience Australia is reporting M6.6 at a depth of 20 km (12.4 miles). According...... Read more »

Peru pledges tougher stance against illegal timber "IndyWatch Feed"

Peru’s recent pledge to wage a fiercer battle against illegal logging and timber trafficking could become a thorn in the side of the $30-$100 billion a year global illegal logging industry. Official Peruvian government estimates indicate that a staggering 90 percent of all sourced timber from Peru is illegal. According to the US-based nonprofit Environmental Investigation Agency (EIA), most of these exports end up in the U.S., Australia, Mexico, Canada, Europe, and China - now the world’s largest consumer of illegal timber. The move is a boon to the U.S. Lacey Act and Peru’s Operation Amazonas, both created to combat the increasing problem of deforestation and lumber depreciation. The Lacey Act, created in 1900 to ban illegal trafficking of animals, was amended in 2008 to prohibit trade in illegally sourced wood and wood products. During a November 2016 forest governance meeting, the Peruvian government pledged to improve the traceability of timber flows through export documentation, authentications after harvest and before export, and penalties for going against existing laws and new guidelines. Details of the stricter standards were published by EIA on November 18. The new commitment was partly the result of an investigation stemming from the United States’ verification request of a shipment of lumber that was seized in Houston in January 2015. Peruvian officials found that nearly the entire shipment was sourced illegally. The new provisions intersect with concerns long held by international civil society organizations and indigenous groups. For years, the Peruvian government has received requests from these…

Australian retailers accused of misusing the RSPO’s label on their palm oil products "IndyWatch Feed"

Two of Australia’s biggest retailers have been misleading customers with claims that palm oil used in their own-brand products has been certified by the world’s largest association for ethical production of the commodity, an NGO has alleged. According to Australia-based Palm Oil Investigations, retailers Woolworths and Coles are bypassing standards set by the Roundtable on Sustainable Palm Oil (RSPO) that would allow them to describe products containing the ingredient as sustainable. The allegations come in stark contrast to the reputations of the brands, which are widely seen as leading forces for reform in an industry marred by widespread allegations of environmental and human rights violations as it has rapidly expanded in countries such as Indonesia and Malaysia. Both retailers were awarded full marks this year on the World Wildlife Fund’s Palm Oil Buyers Scorecard, which ranks companies on how responsibly they source palm oil – an ingredient said to be included in some 50 percent of consumer goods. Their reputations have been built largely on their commitment to selling only own-brand products certified by the RSPO, which are supposed to be free of any link to practices forbidden by the body, such as the clearance of primary forests and deep peatlands, land grabbing and labor abuses. [caption id="attachment_188671" align="aligncenter" width="768"] An oil palm plantation in Indonesia burns. The industry's expansion into the archipelago country's vast peat swamp regions, where land less likely to be claimed by local communities, has fueled the annual forest fires which each year blanket Southeast Asia…

Sapphire boom propels thousands into Madagascar rainforest "IndyWatch Feed"

Some 45,000 people have descended on an area of forest in eastern Madagascar since October in search of sapphires, which on occasion have reportedly topped out at more than 100 carats, or a bit smaller than a golf ball. In November, the Australian news site, The Conversation, reported on a recent trip by gemologist Rosey Perkins to an upstart sapphire mine not far from the city of Ambatondrazaka. Despite its remoteness, Perkins estimates that perhaps 1,000 new miners were arriving at the makeshift settlement every day when she was there in October. The destructive nature of the mining process, as well as the repercussions that such a sudden influx can have on the environment, has conservationists and scientists worried. In this sort of mining, miners typically pull up standing trees so they can sift the sapphires from the gravel. Often, they will also fell standing trees for firewood or charcoal and shelter. The area around the mine site is part of the Zahamena Ankeniheny protected forest, with a nearby biodiversity and carbon project funded by the World Bank. The area is also known as the Corridor Ankeniheny Zahamena. Maps from Global Forest Watch demonstrate the high levels of intact forest in the area and the relatively minimal losses those forests incurred between 2000 and 2013. Scientists define intact forests as those showing little impact by humans and look to these areas in the Tropics as harbors for biodiversity. If the mining continues, the destruction of the forest could bleed into…

Afghanistan facing major health crisis "IndyWatch Feed National"

National Nine News (Australia), April 27, 2006: Afghanistan is facing a health crisis larger than that experienced by Asian countries after the 2004 tsunami, an Adelaide forum has heard. Mariam Rawi, a member of the Revolutionary Association of the Women of Afghanistan (RAWA), has told the forum that despite Afghanistan receiving billions of dollars in aid, little has been done to address the country's lack of health services.

Dr Najibullah Lafraie: Fundamentalist in the Guise of Academician "IndyWatch Feed National"

... but now that Najibullah Lafraie, in a rare show of shamelessness, has threatened RAWA supporters in Australia and is trying to put a mask on his fundamentalist face, I am compelled to write not only about our conversation but also to reject his statement. I hope it will also attract the attention of Mr. Throman Holi who as a lawyer of Najibullah Lafraie has asked our supporters in Australia to remove an article about Najibullah Lafraie from their website and apologies this 'foreign minister' of the criminals and killers.

RAWA AUSTRALIAN TOUR "IndyWatch Feed National"

RAWAs Amena Shams was in Australia, speaking at many forums across the country. For all those who were fortunate enough to attend one of Amenas many events, it was a great opportunity to reconnect directly with RAWA, to be inspired by news of RAWAs ongoing work and to receive accurate, current information of the situation for Afghan women. For this 2005 tour events were organised in Melbourne, Adelaide, Sydney, Lismore and Brisbane by a wide range of organisations including the Human Rights and Equal Opportunity Commission, the Boite, the International Womens Development Agency, Immigrant Womens Support Service, Melbourne University, Flinders University, Amnesty International, the Australian Peace Committee, WILPF, Darebin City Council, several private and government schools as well as many RAWA supporter groups and individuals.

Britain shocked by growing soccer child abuse scandal "IndyWatch Feed National"

What began as a harrowing account of child abuse suffered by a former professional English soccer player last month has lifted the lid on what could be one of the worst pedophile scandals Britain has ever known. Andy Woodward, 43, who played in the lower divisions of English soccer, told the Guardian newspaper ... how his life had been ruined because he had been molested as a boy by a youth team coach. His frank revelations of the sexual abuse he endured three decades ago prompted more than 20 other former professionals to come forward with their own distressing stories of suffering at the hands of sexual predators in the sport. In a sign of how widespread the abuse might have been, British police said on Thursday that about 350 victims had come forward to report sexual abuse within soccer clubs and indicated the number was likely to rise. The National Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Children (NSPCC) charity said that a helpline dedicated to the soccer abuse scandal had received 860 calls in its first week. The charity's staff had made 60 referrals to police or social services in the first three days, triple the number made in the wake of a similar scheme set up for victims of [Jimmy] Savile. The NSPCC has not ruled out suggestions the abuse is still ongoing. "It would be naive to assume that all of the concerns that are being disclosed and being talked about are in the past," said Jon Brown, the NSPCC lead on tackling sexual abuse. "There are many parallels between Savile and what we are seeing and hearing."

Note: Watch an excellent segment by Australia's "60-Minutes" team "Spies, Lords and Predators" on a pedophile ring in the UK which leads to the highest levels of government. A second suppressed documentary, "Conspiracy of Silence," goes even deeper into this topic in the US. For more, see concise summaries of deeply revealing sexual abuse scandal news articles from reliable major media sources.

Australian Jehovah’s Witnesses protected over a thousand members accused of child abuse, report says "IndyWatch Feed National"

Over the course of about six decades, more than 1,000 members of the Jehovah’s Witnesses were accused of sexually abusing Australian children, according to a new report. Victims were ordered to keep quiet. Not one of the alleged perpetrators were reported to the police. Now, a royal commission in Australia has found the church demonstrated a “serious failure” to protect children from the risk of sexual abuse. A 107-page-long report released Monday detailed a number of ancient policies that exhibited what the Royal Commission into Institutional Responses to Child Sexual Abuse referred to as a “serious lack of understanding of the nature of child sexual abuse.” The church’s responses to sexual abuse allegations, and its desire to handle them internally, often mirror those of the Catholic church or of some Orthodox Jewish communities. But unlike the priests of the Catholic Church, the Jehovah’s Witnesses have no paid clergy. Alleged perpetrators are mostly regular congregants, who are shielded from official prosecution by the church’s code of moral conduct. The church’s rules, which are based on a strict interpretation of the Bible, call for separation from other members of society. The Jehovah’s Witnesses’ responses to abuse allegations are not limited to Australia. The religion’s parent organization, the Watchtower Bible and Tract Society of New York, for 25 years has instructed its elders to keep cases of child sexual abuse secret from law enforcement and members of their own congregations.

Note: For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing sexual abuse scandal news articles from reliable major media sources.


The night of the living dead "IndyWatch Feed"

Where does this go? Is it just more of the process that GWB was selected and not elected, or do they really mean to turn over the election result? The latest:

White House moves to undermine victory…
Media try to delegitimize…
CNN HOST: Trump win a ‘national emergency’…
CONFUSION: Earnest says CHINA did hacking…
CIA pushes ‘conspiracy theory’…

CHILL JILL: Judge rejects Pennsylvania recount…
Completed Wisconsin recount WIDENS Trump margin…

It’s the first one that is the most sinister. The actual title at the link is, Clinton campaign backs call for intelligence briefing before Electoral College vote.

Hillary Clinton’s top political adviser John Podesta said the campaign is supporting an effort by members of the Electoral College to request an intelligence briefing on foreign intervention in the presidential election.

“The bipartisan electors’ letter raises very grave issues involving our national security,” Podesta said in a statement Monday. “Electors have a solemn responsibility under the Constitution and we support their efforts to have their questions addressed.”

“Each day that month, our campaign decried the interference of Russia in our campaign and its evident goal of hurting our campaign to aid Donald Trump,” he said. “Despite our protestations, this matter did not receive the attention it deserved by the media in the campaign. We now know that the CIA has determined Russia’s interference in our elections was for the purpose of electing Donald Trump. This should distress every American.”

Podesta’s statement is the first public statement from the Clinton campaign raising questions about the legitimacy of Donald Trump’s victory.

The claims are groundless and the election is over, unless the electoral college decides to go rogue. To understand just how groundless any of this is: Former UK Ambassador Blasts “CIA’s Blatant Lies”, Shows...


Illegal doof organisers fined $6,000 by Lismore council "IndyWatch Feed Alllocal"

Rocky Creek Dam, which supplies water to Lismore, Ballina and Byron shires. Photo Rous Water

Rocky Creek Dam, which supplies water to Lismore, Ballina and Byron shires. Photo Rous Water

Two organisers of an illegal doof held at Rocky Creek Dam earlier this year have been fined $6000 by the Lismore City Council.

The illegal dance party, called Pretty Vibes and attended by about 100 people, was held on the Mother’s Day weekend in May in a public reserve area of the dam.

Following complaints from the public, police attended the party to investigate concerns that included the levels of intoxication among revellers, public urination, and the party being at odds with the public usage of the reserve.



Following a review of the evidence and an assessment that the organisers had breached the Environmental Planning & Assessment Act and received financial gain, the two organisers, aged 20 and 25, were fined $3000 each.

‘NSW Police have been actively working to take action in response to illegal doof parties, and have sought assistance from local government in this instance,’ the council’s development and compliance manager Peter Jeuken said.

‘The breaches of the Act were reviewed against the council’s enforcement policy and associated guidelines.

‘The seriousness of the breach was considered high because of the potential harm to individuals attending the event, that the offence occurred on public lands and harmed the use of those lands by other sectors of the community, and that the breach was motivated by financial gain.

‘It was important to impose a penalty that was proportionate to the seriousness of the offence, sets a proper precedent for future cases and is consistent with the intent and objectives of the legislation.”

Senior Constable David Henderson from the Richmond Local Area Command Crime Management Unit said the council’s actions sent a clear message to doof operators that there were consequences for illegal activities.

“It’s important that we send clear and unambiguous messages about this kind of illegal behaviour,’ Sen Const Henderson said.

‘These operators have every opportunity to do the right thing and gain necessary approvals for their activities. If they do not, then there is a consequence,’ Senior Constable Hen...


Tegan & Sara Announce 2017 Australian Tour Dates "IndyWatch Feed Alllocal"

Tegan & Sara Announce 2017 Australian Tour Dates

Tegan & Sara just can’t get enough of their Australian fans. Having only recently toured Down Under during a series of sold-out headline shows and a much-lauded appearance at Splendour In The Grass, the Canadian duo have announced they will return to Australia this March.

The sisterly duo didn’t get time to hit up Brisbane and Adelaide last time around and it’s been eating away at their consciences ever since, so March will see them playing shows in Brissy, Adelaide, and Melbourne and Sydney as part of the Zoo Twilights series.

The pair are still hot on the heels of their acclaimed eighth studio album, Love You To Death, which was produced with good friend and collaborator Greg Kurstin, best known for his work with the likes of Adele, Sia, Beck, and Ellie Goulding.

The album once again sees Tegan and Sara flexing their considerable pop songcrafting muscle, working through tunes that elegantly straddle the line that separates the worlds of indie, pop, and rock, all the while suffusing each track with their irrepressible attitude.

Check below for all the dates and ticketing details.


Tickets available 10am Thursday, 15th December

Monday, 6th March 2017
The Tivoli, Brisbane QLD
Tickets: Handsome Tours

Tuesday, 7th March 2017
The Gov, Adelaide SA
Tickets: Handsome Tours

Wednesday, 8th March 2017
Melbourne Zoo Twilight Series, Melbourne VIC
Tickets: Handsome Tours

Thursday, 9th March 2017
Twilight at Taronga, Sydney NSW
Tickets: Handsome Tours


Colombia hit with ISDS cases on mining regulation and medicine "IndyWatch Feed"

December 13, 2016: Canadian mining company Eco Oro has filed an ISDS claim against a Colombian court decision to limit its mining activities for environmental reasons. The claim is funded by Amber Capital hedge fund which will in turn receive 11% of any compensation awarded as a result of the claim.

This follows reports last week of a notice of  an ISDS dispute by Swiss Pharmaceutical giant Novartis  over Colombian government plans to use compulsory licensing to reduce prices on a patented treatment for leukaemia, after voluntary negotiations with the company failed.  These cases show how global companies can use ISDS  to undermine environmental regulation and access to affordable medicines.


Aloe and Rain Lilies "IndyWatch Feed Alllocal"

Nearly finished -


An aloe and rain lilies on the steps outside Guy Crosley's at Bundagaree. I'll do a bit more to it yet, 



NEWS: Son Volt Announce New 2017 LP "IndyWatch Feed Alllocal"

Son Volt has announced that their new album, Notes Of Blue with be released on February 17th, 2017 via Thirty Tigers/Cooking Vinyl Australia.Led by the songwriting and vocals of Jay Farrar, Son Volt was one of the most instrumental and influential bands in launching the alt-country movement of the 1990’s. A movement that was the precursor to what is now widely referred to as … Continue reading


Lismore to consider motion to ban plastic bags "IndyWatch Feed Alllocal"

Plastic bags are a huge source of worldwide pollution. Photo katerha/Flickr

Plastic bags are a huge source of worldwide pollution. Photo katerha/Flickr

The Lismore City Council will this evening decide whether to support the growing local government movement to ban single use plastic bags.

Greens councillor Vanessa Ekins has lodged a notice of motion calling on her fellow councillors to write to state and federal governments urging them to introduce legislation that will ban the bags.

Cr Ekins also wants the council to contact local retailers ‘to encourage them to voluntarily and in a staged approach, reduce and ultimately eliminate single use plastic shopping bags from the Lismore local government area’.

‘Single use plastic bags are a major litter problem in our parks and waterways and can result in the deaths of many turtles, cetaceans, birds and other animal species,’ Cr Ekins said.

‘Councils around Australia are running campaigns to ban single use plastic bags and adding our voice to the chorus will encourage the other spheres of government to act.

‘Although many local businesses and residents have reduced their need for single use plastic bags, council can take a much more active role in moving toward a single use plastic bag free future.’

In response to the notice of motion, staff have pointed out that a similar motion was passed in 2012 and the governments response had been that banning plastic bags was a matter for retailers.

Since then, however, South Australia, Tasmania, the Northern Territory and the ACT had all implemented bans.

NSW has said it would push for a national response rather than a state ban although Labor’s Penny Sharpe is expected to introduce legislation by the end of the year.

Staff also pointed out that while all businesses in the central business district were approached at the time, none wanted to be involved in a ban.

Staff said last financial year the waste facility recycled 76 bales of single use plastic bags and other soft plastics, amounting to 30.4 tonnes of soft plastic.

Cr Ekin’s motion will be considered at the meeting this evening, which will be held in the council chambers in Goonellabah.





The post...


Frank Carter Delivers An Amazing Speech About Sexual Assaults At Gigs "IndyWatch Feed Alllocal"

Frank Carter Delivers An Amazing Speech About Sexual Assaults At Gigs

Frank Carter delivered an impassioned speech at his Brisbane show on Saturday night, in which he spoke out against the culture of sexual assaults against women at gigs, before leading a female-only stage dive.

Speaking about his two-year-old daughter, the British singer said, “I refuse to grow up in a world where she does not feel safe to stage dive.”

Addressing the males in the audience, he added, “This is how the change happens. We have this conversation among ourselves and if you see anybody at any gig from now on touch anybody inappropriately, you fucking knock their teeth out. And when they ask you, ‘What the fuck was that for?’ – you tell them that I sent you.”

Carter then kicked into ‘Modern Ruin’, which was followed by a handful of women diving off the stage into the audience. It was pretty damn special. Watch footage of the speech, and some acrobatic ladies, below.


Sydney Hip Hop Crew One Day Are Throwing A Summer ‘Pop-Up’ Show "IndyWatch Feed Alllocal"

Sydney Hip Hop Crew One Day Are Throwing A Summer ‘Pop-Up’ Show

After a four month break, Sydney hip hop collective One Day are hosting a special summer pop-up edition at The Greenwood Hotel on January 14.

The pop-up event will feature the One Day family: Joyride, Raph, and Nick Lupi, plus guest sets from the likes of Jayteehazard, NES, Klasik, Girls DJs, and Shantan Wantan Ichiban. There will also be a live mural, food stalls, and drink specials.

One Day have been entertaining audiences around the country since 2006, but go back even further than that. As Horrorshow MC Solo explained last year: “Most of us went to the same high school and even those who didn’t; we all grew up in the same neighbourhoods around the inner west and so we moved in similar circles and were connected through house parties, mutual friends, graffiti and of course a love of rap music.

“Back at this time we were mucking around, freestyling at parties and beginning some early attempts at making songs. Once Spit Syndicate had a couple of mixtapes under their belt and were playing gigs around Sydney, the crew was starting to take shape and we gave it the name One Day – a nod to our aspirations for the future as to where we might take this music thing.”

Tickets to the One Day Summer Popup start at $15, and considering these events often sell out within the first 24 hours, you’ll wanna grab tickets here.


View with banana leaves "IndyWatch Feed Alllocal"

Greens... There are a lot of different greens


A tiny painting started with leftover paint around dusk on the verandah at Bundagaree


Ballina koala strategies ‘a recipe for extinction’ "IndyWatch Feed Alllocal"

The upgrade of the Pacific Highway near Ballina will severely impact on local koala populations, opponents say. Photo

The upgrade of the Pacific Highway near Ballina will severely impact on local koala populations, opponents say.

Protection strategies for koalas living near the Ballina section of the Pacific Highway upgrade are nothing more than ‘government spin designed to disguise the likely extinction of a local population recognised as nationally significant’.

The Australians for Animals group has slammed a report prepared by the NSW Chief Scientist saying the review committee was dominated by bureaucrats, with no community organisations or non-government organisations represented.

Australians for Animals coordinator Sue Arnold condemned the report as ‘smoke and mirrors’, saying the document contained recommendations that are incapable of providing protection for remaining koalas and their habitats.

Ms Arnold has pointed to an independent review of the RMS’s koala plans for the Ballina upgrade by local ecologist David Milledge.

Mr Milledge wrote: ‘This section of the upgrade will destroy koala habitat, bisect the population and cause its early demise’.

‘So-called mitigation measures are untested and likely to accelerate the destruction,’ Mr Milledge said.

‘With curious logic, the construction is heralded by the RMS as beneficial to koalas, claiming the road-works will slow the rate of eventual extinction’.

Mr Milledge’s review concludes that Ballina’s eastern sub-population of koalas would suffer a combination of impacts caused by the construction.

‘This sup-population will be isolated by the upgrade, placing the animals on an extinction trajectory from which the population is unlikely to recover,’ he said.

‘The eastern sub-population will have half or more of its foraging habitat destroyed by clearing for road construction and special disruption is likely within the eastern sub population resulting from the breakup of Koala “ cells” that are likely to contribute to population breakdown.

‘The potential for mortality by vehicle strike and dog attacks will be increased with exclusion fencing which will funnel Koalas into the Wardell urban area with in...


Residents group celebrates sports field victory "IndyWatch Feed Alllocal"

Suffolk Park Progress Association president Donald Maughan (left) and vice president Patsy Brosnan invite locals to celebrate at tonight's AGM (Tuesday, December 13). Photo supplied

Suffolk Park Progress Association president Donald Maughan (left) and vice president Patsy Brosnan invite locals to celebrate at tonight’s AGM (Tuesday, December 13). Photo supplied

The Suffolk Park Progress Association (SPPA) will tonight celebrate its great achievement this year, ensuring the handover of the Beech Drive sports field, playground and community garden to Byron Shire Council.

Vice president Patsy Brosnan drove the Save Our Park campaign. In just a few weeks, the public pressure it created forced education minister Adrian Piccoli to take the land off auction, where it was estimated to sell for $5 million, and hand it instead to the council for public use in perpetuity for a sum of just $900,000.

Tonight the group will celebrate the victory with drinks and nibbles at Suffolk Park Hall at 7pm, followed by its AGM.

Ms Brosnan said the group welcomes people ‘who would like to become more involved in improving our village.’

You can become a paid-up member on the night: single $10, concession $5, family/couple $15.

The post Residents group celebrates sports field victory appeared first on Echonetdaily.




Senior Israeli politician doesn’t like question about occupation, spits dummy "IndyWatch Feed Allstate"

Yesterday I attended a press conference in Jerusalem with one of Israel’s leading politicians, Yesh Atid leader, Yair Lapid. He’s a serious contender to be the country’s next Prime Minister. Like most politicians in Israel, he hates Palestinians, wants them to disappear and largely refuses to condemn settlers or settlements. Welcome to Israel in 2016.

I asked the following question:

“You talked before about the idea that since Oslo, Israel has done little or nothing wrong but the truth is that 2017 is the 50th anniversary of the occupation, there are now 600,00 to 800,000 settlers, all of whom are regarded by international law as illegal. Is there not a deluded idea here that many Israeli politicians, including yourself, continue to believe that one can talk to the world about democracy, freedom and human rights while denying those things to millions of Palestinians and will there not come a time soon where you and other politicians will be treated like South African politicians during Apartheid?”

This was Lapid’s response (already on his party’s Facebook page, the only response they thought was important enough from the conference to quote in full, and the comments below the video are racist and nutty):

It was a depressing and dishonest answer. Furthermore, with a few notable exceptions, the vast majority of journalists in attendance were deferential to Lapid and asked him bland questions. Lapid is a man who proudly talks about building a wall around all Palestinians. Like in so many countries, most reporters rarely challenge establishment power; they’re afraid of losing access.

I was planning on releasing the video of Lapid’s response soon (I hadn’t posted anything online yet about my question and his response) when the Jerusalem Post called me last night and said they were going to run a story about it and would I like to comment? I’m not convinced it’s really a story but many Israelis and its politicians are deeply sensitive to any criticism.

I’ve been writing about Israel and Palestine since 2003, and visiting since 2005 (I now live in Jerusalem), and all that’s worsened is the extremism and vitriol of...


Video: Rising inequality in Australia "IndyWatch Feed National"

From the Australian Council for Social Service (ACOSS) Inequality is a rising trends in Australia and action is needed to tackle this problem, not penalising...

The post Video: Rising inequality in Australia appeared first on The Pen.


Burra Din or the Big Day "IndyWatch Feed Alllocal"

Long-term Westender contributor Dave Andrews reminisces about an unusual Christmas celebration. In India, Christmas is called Burra Din or the Big Day. How do you celebrate a Big Day like Christmas in a country like India?  We lived in India for twelve years, doing community development work with marginalised people in New Delhi. And I will […]

The post Burra Din or the Big Day appeared first on Westender - West End 4101.


In which the pond takes its usual Tuesday look at the government cash-loving, planet-hating Caterists ... "IndyWatch Feed"

Before moving on to the usual - Caterists celebrating dinkum Oz coal, coal, coal for the world, in much the same way this day as headlines are celebrating soaring temperatures - the pond would like to take a walk down memory lane, and brood on the subject of sin ...

The pond had a stern upbringing. A sin was a sin, no matter how small the sin. Oh sure there were venial sins and mortal sins - watch out masturbators and users of naughty words - but thanks to dropping the weekly paycheck into a brown envelope on shakedown tithing mass day and a word with the interceder in the confessional box, any form of sin could be fixed...

It often led the pond to the tempting, sinful thought that if forgiveness could be so easily bought and fixed, why not just keep on sinning? After all, the bigger the sin, the more grand and enjoyable the forgiveness ... in the Catholic way ...

But still, a sin was a sin, and it required acknowledgment and some attempt at redemption. It was no good saying that little Janey had sworn like a trooper or advised of the pleasure to be had touching a certain spot, she too was a sinner, and to follow a sinner in sinning was a sin ...

There was no way of getting out of a sin by saying others had sinned. We were all sinners, thanks to that bloody woman, but that was just the start of the sin empire business ...

Now it just so happens all these thoughts came flooding back recently when reading a Fairfaxian piece about the Caterists ...

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