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Lost Copy: The Endless Wars: Iraq and Afghanistan, John Martinkus

ANTONY LOEWENSTEIN, The Australian, 12:00AM April 21, 2018
22.04.18 3:16 pm

In The Operators, a great book on the war in ­Afghanistan, the American journalist Michael Hastings is scathing of reporters who spend their lives praising generals and socialising with them.

Hastings exposed the arrogance and childish antics of the then head of US operations in Afghanistan, Stanley McChrystal, and his team. Barack Obama fired the general, who today runs a management consultancy firm.

After Hastings’s scoop, many mainstream journalists went after him, instead of questioning McChrystal’s credentials. Hastings was ­attacked for breaking the “gentlemen’s agreement” that existed between reporters and the military. Journalists would received scoops and access if they played this cosy game.

The New York Times published articles praising McChrystal and urged the president to keep him in his role. Largely ignored was the fact that his aggressive counter-terrorism policies were a key factor in surging violence against civilians and soldiers in Iraq and Afghanistan.

Hastings, who died in a car crash in Los Angeles in 2013, was contemptuous of uncritical, embedded journalism that cared little about the lives of Afghans and Iraqis.

Australian war correspondent John Martinkus shares much with Hastings’s worldview. His new book, Lost Copy, is a damning indictment of what we don’t see and hear about the never-ending “war on terror” …

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SITREP: A false flag attack on a USN ship next?

The Saker via Simon Warriner
22.04.18 3:03 pm

Before history gets lost in the fog of the next war, it might be timely to post this analysis of the geopolitical cluster fuck that is the Syrian conflict, if only in the vain hope that it might discourage our own neocon nutbags from sending our kids off to another glorious war

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Joint statement from community sector on responses to housing and homeless in Hobart

Housing Connect
22.04.18 2:40 pm

21 April 2018
Housing connect is working on the ground with Tasmanians every day to support their housing needs. ShelterTas and TasCOSS are the peak bodies representing the community sector and low income disadvantaged Tasmanians.

Every day in Tasmania, the Housing Connect partners, Anglicare, Colony 47, Hobart City Mission, the Salvation Army and CatholicCare are on the ground working with people who are severely disadvantaged including people who are currently experiencing housing stress.

As emergency relief organisations, we have welcomed the additional resources provided by the Tasmanian Government to respond in securing emergency accommodation for people in need during the winter period.

These resources have allowed Housing Connect to provide support workers over the past few weeks to understand and respond to the housing need of people both at the Showgrounds and Berriedale sites.

The resources have also allowed Housing Connect to locate and secure a number of properties for people in need over winter.

Housing Connect, ShelterTas and TasCOSS are working together to advocate and lobby for longer term solutions, however we recognise that finding a resolution to homelessness is a whole of community response.

We have been delighted that both short stay accommodation providers and private landlords have made options available for the program.

We continue to look for appropriate accommodation as further requests arise and would welcome any properties that may be available for this purpose.

If people need housing support or they have a property option available they should contact Housing Connect.

In the last fortnight we have sourced 6 properties with two more option currently under negotiaton. These have supported people from both the showgrounds and Berriedale sites as well as others.

The $500,000 is targeted to secure houses to ensure those who are sleeping rough have safe, appropriate, secure homes over the winter. This is a short term, six month package. 

Fact sheet:

• As of the middle of end of the week, we have sourced 6 properties including houses and cabins to accommodate the range of different needs of the small family groups and individuals who have been living at the Showgrounds and Berriedale. We are also negotiating with landlords to make two additional properties available over the coming weeks.

• Today there are 8 people who were living in tents on these sites who are now living in safer and more sheltered accommodation.

• We also have accommodation options available for another two families who are currently on these sites.

• We are still looking for options for accommodation including 3 single men who have pets who are seeking assistance.

• The current scope for Housing Connect emergency response is to:

o Source short term accommodation options and provide support for those with the highest needs.  This is - people at risk of or currently rough sleeping.

o Housing Connect do not own or manage houses, we support people to access options that are appropriate for their needs. This is challenging, as there is a shortage of available properties.

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The Saturday Briefing: Banks royal commission won’t change culture

The Saturday Paper
21.04.18 6:08 am

“Successive governments’ greater fear is not the suffering of customers and corruption in the banks, it is of a gigantic collapse.”

Michael West: While banks at the royal commission admit to misleading conduct and corruption – permitted by a compliant regulator – they are protected by government as too big to fail.

This week, the third of the royal commission’s sitting, was all about fees. Testimony emerged of fraud, dishonesty, greed and incompetence by hundreds of bank-aligned financial planners.
“As a lawyer in the regulatory policy branch, I routinely saw large financial institutions regularly make dishonest representations to ASIC,” ex-employee James Wheeldon tells Michael West. “Their lawyers, too. And I complained and they did nothing.”

The royal commission will trip from one scandal to the next. Like Donald Trump, people will get used to it. Stories of corruption and malpractice will flow like a raging torrent. The number of ruined lives will mount, the stories of entire savings lost on bad or rapacious advice. The essential question is, what will come out of it?

Plus: Paul Bongiorno on Malcolm Turnbull and the war room, Karen Middleton on Scott Morrison’s derailed budget message, and Mike Seccombe on homelessness.

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The Nib: Rise and Shine the World is doomed

The Nib
21.04.18 5:34 am

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New York Times Opinion Today

New York Times
21.04.18 5:32 am

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Barnaby Joyce and Vikki Campion welcome baby boy into the world

Canberra Times
21.04.18 5:29 am

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Win for Tasmania at COAG Energy Council meeting

Guy Barnett, Minister for Energy
20.04.18 7:04 pm

The Tasmanian Government is very pleased that the COAG Energy Council has agreed to progress development of the detailed design of the National Energy Guarantee.

With our abundance of renewable energy, particularly Hydro generation, a well designed National Energy Guarantee can deliver significant opportunity for Tasmania.

The National Energy Guarantee represents the best opportunity to progress a national scheme for affordable, reliable, and clean energy and reward Tasmania’s historic investment in renewable energy.

However, there is a lot more work to do to both protect and promote Tasmania’s interests.

In a major win for Tasmania, COAG agreed to prioritise further work on the transmission system and interconnection in the National Energy Guarantee.

This would strengthen the case for a second Bass Strait interconnector and underpin our Battery of the Nation ambition, unlocking major investment in renewable energy projects and more jobs in Tasmania.

I am very pleased that COAG has listened to Tasmania’s views in terms of improved interconnection with the National Energy Market.
Infrastructure Australia recently announced the proposed second interconnector as a national priority.

The Hodgman Liberal Government is targeting 100 per cent renewable energy generation and Australia’s lowest energy prices by 2022.

Tasmania is already the nation’s renewable energy powerhouse and the Hodgman Government is determined that our contribution will grow as we work towards a final determination on the National Energy Guarantee.

I look forward to ongoing good faith cooperation at a national level that will deliver benefits for Tasmania from the National Energy Guarantee.

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Morrison adopts majority of Greens 2016 election policy on banking

Greens Treasury spokesperson Senator Peter Whish-Wilson
20.04.18 3:55 pm

Greens Treasury spokesperson Senator Peter Whish-Wilson welcomes the Government’s adoption of Greens policy positions on stronger white collar crime penalties after years of campaigning and Senate work.
Senator Whish-Wilson said, “Like the Royal Commission, investigating new white collar crime penalties was a recommendation of the 2013-14 Senate Inquiry into ASIC.
“That seminal Inquiry recommended that the Government review existing penalties for white collar crime, but the Government refused then to act. Following this, I moved for an additional Senate Inquiry into white collar penalties that presented its report in November 2015.
“In that Inquiry report I argued that there need to be a sharp increase in civil and criminal penalties including higher fines and jail terms, that fines be a multiple of the amount of money illegally gained. And I also argued that a new disgorgement powers be made available to ASIC so that any ill-gotten gains can be clawed back.
“Scott Morrison has cut and pasted much of the Greens policy positions on white collar crime and we welcome him doing so. It would have taken some of the political pressure off him if he’d borrowed them earlier and I am always willing to take his calls if he wants to discuss or implement more of our ideas.
“The Government has now adopted the majority of the entire banking policy package we took to the Federal election including a bank levy, a Royal Commission that is examining breaking up the banks, reform of the financial ombudsman and now new financial penalties.
“What we need to see now is a vastly more well-resourced ASIC that is no longer afraid prosecute white collar crime. We need to actually deliver penalties that hurt crooks and demonstrate to the public that justice has been done. The days of ASIC giving slaps on the wrist in exchange for promises and platitudes from players like the big banks should be over,” he concluded.

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Innovative alternative program leads to employment for local youth

Mark Boonstra, Manager of Impact Communities
20.04.18 3:45 pm

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Isobelle Banfield

Finding that elusive first job can be a tough ask for many young people, which is apparent with the recent release of statistics showing that youth unemployment rate in Southern Tasmania is on the rise again.

To combat this trend, the Youth Entrepreneurial Services (YES) initiative, working in partnership with Vicinity Centres, is showcasing young Tasmanians’ creative skills and employment potential through experiential learning in the world of entrepreneurship.

The recent launch of a YES pop up shop at Northgate provided a great outlet to sell hand crafted products, designed and made by the initiative’s participants – young people aged between 15-24 at risk of long term unemployment.

The pop up shop creates an opportunity for participants interested in a building a career in retail and sales, to hone their skills in and showcase it to potential employers.

18 year old Isobelle Banfield of Bridgewater joined the initiative after finishing school, and was determined to find her first job in retail. With her friendly and welcoming personality she discovered her natural talent for engaging with customers at the YES pop-up shop. This did not go unnoticed, and soon she was scouted by not one but two local businesses in Northgate.

After consulting with Ben Kurec, YES’s on site Employment Coach, Isobelle was able to tailor her resume and practice her interview techniques, and as a result she was successful in both interviews and is now working two jobs, kicking off her career in retail and giving her an opportunity for a bright future.

With the pop up shop now located at Eastlands, YES hopes to replicate this success for other participants, demonstrating to employers what our young people are capable of when given the opportunity.

Youth Entrepreneurial Services is an initiative of Workskills’ community arm, Impact Communities. The initiative offers young people between 15-24 years of age who are at risk of long term unemployment an opportunity to gain a variety of work experience, learn more about themselves in a supportive and exciting environment, and ultimately progress into work, self employment, or further education.

Entry to the program is via expression of interest or referral, and is subject to entry requirements. For more information see https://www.impactcommunities.org.au/expressions-of-interest/

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Guardian Brit: Scientists warn of nerve agent potency

Guardian
20.04.18 2:45 pm

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Guardian Oz: AMP chief quits

Guardian
20.04.18 12:49 pm

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Myer Milestone As Stage Two Officially Opens

Jeremy Rockliff, Acting Premier
20.04.18 12:48 pm

Sales registers are now ringing on all five floors of Myer Hobart’s brand new, re-developed department store as it officially opened its doors today.
The Hodgman Liberal government played an important role in ensuring the development proceeded, by providing a $15 million dollar commercial loan.
While ultimately the loan facility wasn’t drawn upon, it was a vital step to provide the certainty for the project to go ahead.
More than a decade since a fire destroyed the store in 2007, we are pleased to see it operating at full capacity and offering a retail boost to Tasmanians.
The first stage of the re-development opened its doors in November 2015 breathing life back into Hobart’s CBD and providing hundreds of jobs.
Now, we are delighted to see Stage 2 officially open for business boasting five floors and occupying over 12,500 square metres of space.
Tasmania’s retail sector is booming, growing for 40 consecutive months and helping to create new jobs.  Myer’s new building will add to that and will not only be a major drawcard to Hobart’s CBD, it will support and increase jobs.
I would like to both sincerely thank and congratulate Myer for investing in Tasmania.
Myer’s redevelopment is yet another indication of the confidence businesses have in Tasmania’s economy.
Our plan is about ensuring the right economic framework is in place to assist businesses to create local jobs.

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Crikey Worm ...

Crikey
20.04.18 12:22 pm

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UTAS Bike Fair 2018

Cycling Towards Sustainability
20.04.18 7:58 am

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Minister refuses to release details of probe into polo pony deaths

ABC
20.04.18 7:55 am

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Kim Peart’s address to Northern Midlands Council

Kim Peart
20.04.18 7:38 am

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Kim Peart ~ running as an independent candidate in Prosser
39A Bridge Street   Ross   7209   Tasmania
Mobile: 0400 856 523   Twitter: https://twitter.com/PeartForProsser
To be kept informed of Kim Peart’s campaign, ask to receive the ~ Prosser Battlefront

Kim Peart took the battle to fix the housing crisis to the Northern Midlands Council meeting this week, addressing the Councillors.

See ~ page 404 ~
https://www.northernmidlands.tas.gov.au/source-assets/files/2018-Council-Minutes/2018-04-16-Minutes-open-council.pdf

Kim’s photo survey includes one solution to the housing crisis, with the container house, which would also double as a store of emergency accommodation on the island in case of any catastrophe, such as another fire event. ~
https://australianspaceparty.discussion.community/post/in-search-of-a-home-2-apr-2018-9700773?pid=1303751414

A basic converted container with door and window added can be provided for around $5,000, then add insulation and other amenities.

KIM PEART’S PROSSER FLIER >>>>>

Promoting Enterprise in Prosser

Meet Kim Peart at a Community Meeting. ~ I welcome hearing about any matters that concern you.

    Ross ~  6pm Thursday 26 April, Town Hall supper room

    Sorell ~  6pm Saturday 28 April, Sorell Memorial Hall supper room

    Bagdad ~  2pm Sunday 29 April, Bagdad Community Club, 1661 Midlands Hwy

    Oatlands ~  6pm Monday 30 April, Ex-Servicemen’s & Women’s Club, 1 Albert St, Oatlands

    Eaglehawk Neck ~  6pm Tuesday 1 May, Eaglehawk Neck Community Hall

    Swansea ~  6pm Wednesday 2 May, Swansea Town Hall

Or invite me to meet your community as I travel around Prosser.

About Kim Peart ~  As a visual artist I have had my own gallery over the years, and made crafts sold around Tasmania. Since 2006 my focus has been with the space industry, using the virtual worlds as a way to communicate globally, set up displays, and build working models. In collaboration with my wife, Jennifer, we founded Space Pioneers in 2011, which is a registered business name in Australia. If elected to Prosser, I would be able to be more effective in promoting ways for Tasmanian enterprise to connect with the global space industry.

A Vet Clinic Needed ~  There is at present no vet clinic between Richmond and Longford. I am working toward the establishment of a vet clinic in Ross. I am wondering if this could be a country campus for one of the large vet schools on the mainland. When the way is found to make this happen, there could be a branch on the East Coast, to focus on marine veterinary science. Success will see university level studies made available in central Tasmania. The Tasmanian Government will be invited to support this happening. Will you help?

Light Industrial Park ~  For many years the need for a light industrial park for Ross has been raised by many voices, but has never yet happened. If created, this would provide a home base for trades people who help keep the farms working. This can include storage facilities for grains and farm products. If the need exists, exactly where it will be located is a moot point. Trades education could follow. Would you like to help make this happen?

Recycling Service Needed ~  Recycling is essential, but we have been sending our trash to China, and now they are saying, “No!” We need to investigate local recycling. 

Space Development ~  Australia now has a space agency. We need to investigate every possibility for connecting with the global space industry. Can we grow food for space, just as the Australian Defence Forces have a facility to produce food for their needs in Scottsdale? Could we develop a space camp in Tasmania, where people going into space can prepare for the experience? Space tourism is about to take off, and if we offer the service, anyone going into space could combine a holiday in Tasmania with a space camp. Could we develop a youth activity with space, seeking the support of the new Australian Space Agency? Activities could include drone racing. A robust space industry in Tasmania will create work, allow youth to find exciting careers, and lead to new enterprises being forged. Space will also inspire youth to engage in the STEAM subjects (Science, Technology, Engineering, Arts and Mathematics), which will be a boon for future innovation and prosperity.

Australian Convict Trail ~  In 2016 I proposed an Australian Convict Trail, to create paths for walking and cycling between country towns. This would be a new form of tourism in Tasmania, connecting country towns to the cities and airports. A mini coach service would evolve, which country residents would also use to go to the city for work, family, or entertainment, without having to drive long distances at night.

1821 Macquarie Tour ~  In 1821 Governor Lachlan Macquarie travelled through Van Diemen’s Land, with his wife and son, from Hobart to George Town and back again, naming many places including Perth, Campbell Town, Ross, Oatlands, Brighton and Sorell. Should there be a state-wide celebration of this event in 2021? What would you like to see happen?

Fixing the Housing Crisis ~  It surprised me that the housing crisis had arrived in Ross, where there are now no rental properties available. It is shocking to read of an employed father having to set up a tent for his family at the Elwick Showground. How can this be happening in Tasmania? On top of this there are reports of families going without food. We need to fix the housing crisis, which we can, by ending homelessness on this island. I have proposed a few practical low-cost solutions, including for country towns. When there is no place in a town for a worker to rent, where do they live? When workers cannot live in a town, they are not available in that town for work. Lack of available workers undermines the economy of any town and district. Ending homelessness in Tasmania will fix the housing crisis, will draw rents down, and can also be matched with community gardens to grow food. A country solution to housing and food can also be extended to the cities. No citizen or child in Australia should ever go without a home or food. Can we work together to fix these problems?

Heritage Needs ~  At the Ross Bridge Festival this year, Saturday 20 October, we will consider ways to improve heritage planning. In a town like Ross, heritage underpins much of the economy. A heritage plan that works for Ross can work for many heritage towns. There is no heritage plan for Ross at present, and this planning vacuum is allowing many opportunities to fall by the way. Inspired by the unique convict art of the Ross Bridge, there could be a sandstone carving challenge held one day, with prizes, even this year. Is there anyone out there interested in a sandstone carving challenge?

Climate Change Plan ~ The Earth is getting warmer and climates are changing. Tasmania needs a Climate Change Plan. We need to prepare for a population influx into Tasmania, with people from the mainland seeking a cool change. We need to plan for this now, as city traffic jams will become an unbearable nightmare, along with more housing stress. I suggest that Tasmania needs to decentralise the population, with more people being able to live in country towns. My proposal with the Australian Convict Trail could help achieve this, building on our success with tourism to plan for a changing future. We also need to energy and water proof this island, as we now know that Tasmania is not immune to drought and other catastrophes. Would you like to engage in debate about preparing a climate change plan for Tasmania?

AN ARTICLE ABOUT KIM PEART ~

Kim Peart, Tasmanian political candidate, and his dream for humanity’s future in space
Aneeta Bhole, 16 September 2017, ABC News Online
http://www.abc.net.au/news/2017-09-16/kim-peart-tasmanian-political-hopefuls-space-dream-for-future/8892938

A COUPLE OF ARTICLE BY KIM PEART ~

Searching for a Home
2 April 2018 ~ photo survey ~ includes an option for an inexpensive home: the container house
https://australianspaceparty.discussion.community/post/in-search-of-a-home-2-apr-2018-9700773?pid=1303751414

Fixing the Housing Crisis …
15 March 2018
http://tasmaniantimes.com/index.php?/article/fixing-the-housing-crisis-/

A Christmas Carol
21 March 2018
http://tasmaniantimes.com/index.php?/article/a-christmas-carol/

PETITION: Ending Homelessness in Australia ASAP
25 March 2018
http://tasmaniantimes.com/index.php?/article/petition-ending-homelessness-in-australia-asap/

A letter to Will Hodgman
27 March 2018
http://tasmaniantimes.com/index.php?/pr-article/a-letter-to-will-hodgman/

See the comment from Kevin Moyland following the letter to the Premier

A Simple Target: Zero Homeless
4 April 2018
http://tasmaniantimes.com/index.php?/article/a-simple-target-zero-homeless/

‘Housing Crisis, or Political Vacuum?’
9 April 2018
http://tasmaniantimes.com/index.php?/article/housing-crisis-or-political-vacuum/

Does Tasmania Need a Climate Change Plan?
19 February 2018
https://australianspaceparty.discussion.community/post/does-tasmania-need-a-climate-change-plan-19-feb-2018-9657920?pid=1303319284

Moreton Bay to Port Arthur
30 April 2016
http://tasmaniantimes.com/index.php?/article/moreton-bay-to-port-arthur/

Campaigning along the Australian Convict Trail
15 February 2018 ~ map and photo survey ~ more images to be added
https://australianspaceparty.discussion.community/post/campaigning-along-the-australian-convict-trail-14-feb-2018-9653441?pid=1303264492

ABOUT Kim PeartBorn in 1952, Kim was raised in Howrah when it was farmland, played in the old fort in Bellerive, and rode the old ferries to Hobart to go to movies. Kim plied the life of a visual artist, with a studio in the Salamanca Arts Centre, and then in Murdunna, and later in Bellerive in the old bakery. In 2007 Kim was listed among Tasmania’s top 200 movers and shakers for “An urban bushland conservationist who has worked tirelessly over the years to maintain walking tracks and protect wildlife from the encroachment of bush-front housing developments.” Kim is campaigning for an Australian Convict Trail, with the Tasmanian leg running from the ferry in Devonport to Port Arthur, along with foot and cycle paths by Tasmania’s highways and roads. After being at the launch of an Australian Space Agency last September, Kim is seeking ways to create employment, careers and new enterprise in Tasmania with the global space industry. Kim now lives in Ross, with his wife Jennifer, and a small tribe of alpacas.

Authorised by: Jennifer Bolton, 39A Bridge St, Ross

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The Briefing ... Harsher punishments for corporate wrongdoing

The Saturday Paper
20.04.18 7:07 am

Good morning, and welcome to The Briefing.

The government has introduced greater criminal and civil penalties for corporate and financial misconduct after the royal commission into the banking and finance industries heard details of illegal fee charging and unethical practices by lending institutions.

The commission heard yesterday that Commonwealth Bank of Australia subsidiary Count Financial charged clients up to 10 years after they had died, and from Westpac customers who lost their life savings after receiving poor financial advice. CBA representative Marianne Perkovic was accused by senior counsel assisting the commission, Michael Hodge QC, of “dissembling” and failing to answer questions, while commissioner Kenneth Hayne also criticised Perkovic’s answers as insufficient and directed her to listen to a question again …

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Sickening bank behaviour shows need for broader probe

Canberra Times
20.04.18 7:06 am

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What do we need? A royal commission into tax evasion now

Canberra Times
20.04.18 7:05 am

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Sunday: 4th Hobart Language Day

Sonia Parra/Matthew Bishop
20.04.18 6:59 am

Traditional live music and dances from Afganistan, India, Bangladesh, Sri Lanka,calligraphy and readings in other alphabets, Braille alphabet, Auslan,  ochre hand prints, story time in different languages, Human Rights Declaration video recording in different languages and Aboriginal hand sign language with Clarrie and April Anmatyeer women in the Hobart Language Day, on Sunday 22 April 2018, 10 am-13pm in Mather’s House, Bathurst St, Hobart.

This year the celebration of language diversity in the city will be in the same place and time of the popular Farmer’s Market.

Hobart Language Day is about celebrating languages spoken in Hobart and cultural diversity that shows our strong sense of community.

The language day has support from the Hobart Council, Tasmanian Government, Multicultural Council of Tasmania and Bellendena small grants. It’s a free and family event.

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New York Times Opinion Today

New York Times
20.04.18 6:57 am

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Live Exports: Scathing of politicians who keep supporting the trade

SUZANNE CASS, STOP TASMANIAN ANIMAL CRUELTY
20.04.18 6:55 am

Following the release of horrific footage of the conditions for sheep on live export ships shown on 60 Minutes on Sunday April 8, at least three politicians have broken ranks with their parties to call for a ban on the trade. Liberal backbencher Sussan Ley is leading the charge with Private Member’s Bill to shut down the trade, and support for the indusry from within the ranks of both the Coalition and Labor is slipping.

Stop Tasmanian Animal Cruelty’s Suzanne Cass, while welcoming the move, was scathing of politicans who remain supportive of the industry.

‘Animal advocates, as is the whole wider community, are just shaking their heads and wondering if these people saw the same vision as we did. Those poor sheep, filmed over no less than five voyages, were absolutely piteous. It’s within the regulations to cram sheep in at three per metre, but outside the regulations, we saw that pregnant sheep had given birth to lambs who died horribe deaths, feed troughs containing nothing but dust from poor quality pellets, and the water troughs were almost empty. And most of the sheep couldn’t even get near them - evn if they could, they were drowinging in excrement, and well past the point of no return. Even sadder is the knowledge from whistleblower Faizal Ullah confirmed, that this is “just routine”’.

Ms Cass believes that some of the sheep thrown over the side were still living. She also remains unconvinced that Tasmanian sheep are not being exported to the Middle East, but says it is impossible to confirm that. 

‘I asked the Department of Primary Industry about this some time ago, and was told that “they don’t know”, which hardly seems good enough’.

Since Ms Ley has taken this stand, another Liberal backbencher, Jason Wood, has spoken out, along with Labor’s Josh Wilson, the Member for Fremantle, from where the majority of sheep are exported. Agriculture Minister David Littleproud has announced that a review is to be undertaken, but no shipments heading for the northern summer will be suspended.

‘There are many problems with the Minister’s announcements’, sid Ms Cass. ‘Firstly, the ship at the centre of this storm, the Awassi Express remains docked in Fremantle and cannot get a licence. If and when it does, it will only be allowed to load 57,000 sheep. However, the Maysora, a smaller and older ship, was allowed to sail on one of the longest of long-haul voyages last week with 77,000 sheep and 9,500 cattle on board. There is nothing about that that can be defended’.
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The Maysora is one of the only three remaining ships to have double-tiered pens, so that twice the number of sheep can be loaded. All three are the oldest of the the live export fleet (Maysora at almost 30 years old, The Al Shuwaikh at 34 years old and the Bader III at 41 years old).

‘The Bader III is expected in Adelaide tomorrow, and in 2014, 4,179 sheep died on one heat exhaustion event in a 24 hour period, in conditions arguably even worse than thiose we saw on the Awassi Express. As for the Minister’s Whistleblower Hotline, he cannot be serious. The exporters will NEVER allow vision like we’ve seen to get out again, so no crew member will be allowed to keep their phone after these ships sail. I guess we shouldn’t be surprised. We’ve seen this posturing so many times before, both from the LNP and from Labor before them.

‘If the Minister was serious, and expected any faith or trust from the community he would halt all live exports immediately and permanently, and move forward towards a total ban on the trade, thereby providing jobs to Australians instead of shipping them offshore, as he just has by giving Vietnamese slaughterhouses $146 million taxpayers’ dollars. Overall, he seems to be trying to treat the Australian community as fools’, Ms Cass concluded

(Further note: Proposals for an Inspector General for Animal Welfare so far have it sited within the Depatment of Agriculture, which would make it as compromised as the Department itself is)

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The Nib: Wedding Weirdness

The Nib
20.04.18 6:53 am

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Labor and Liberal must remain open-minded over calls to break up the banks

Greens Treasury spokesperson Senator Peter Whish-Wilson
19.04.18 5:03 pm

Greens Treasury spokesperson Senator Peter Whish-Wilson is calling upon both Labor and Liberal Parties to remain open-minded to calls to break up the banks in light of the compelling evidence at the Royal Commission of banks being unable to manage the conflict of interest inherent in owning financial advice businesses.

Senator Whish-Wilson said, “At the 2016 election the Greens proposed that any Bank Royal Commission specifically examine the question of whether banks could responsibly own and run financial advice businesses, and if not, to examine the question of how the sector should be restructured.

“So far the evidence from the Royal Commission suggests that banks can’t be trusted to manage conflicts of interest and that the regulator doesn’t have the tools or willingness to deal with it.

“The Greens welcome the comments by former ACCC Chairperson Allan Fels that tighter regulation simply won’t be enough and that a vertical and horizontal break-up of the banks be seriously considered.

“I hope that that the coalition Government and the Labor opposition do not hastily dismiss these sort of calls and start putting the policy work in place to examine how a mandatory bank break-up might be implemented in a structured and ordered manner.

“When I put forward a proposal that the Royal Commission should examine the question of breaking up the banks it was criticised by the Treasurer Scott Morrison, former Commonwealth Bank CEO David Murray and former NAB Chairperson Michael Chaney. But given the evidence before the Royal Commission so far it is clear that the Greens have been vindicated,” he concluded.

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100 Day Plan: Family Violence Action Plan evaluation under way

Jeremy Rockliff, Acting Premier
19.04.18 4:57 pm

The Liberal Government is continuing its commitment to address the scourge of family violence.
Tasmania’s first comprehensive Family Violence Action Plan – Safe Homes, Safe Families – was released in August 2015, and has been widely acknowledged as a nation-leading response to family violence.
As part of our 100 Day Plan, the Hodgman Government committed to commence a comprehensive evaluation of the Family Violence Action Plan.
The evaluation began on 26 March with a meeting of senior public servants to discuss the evaluation framework.  That framework will be considered by Cabinet shortly.  The evaluation will be integral to the development of the next five-year Action Plan, which will be prepared over the next 12 months and will commence in July 2019.
Public consultation with the community, and key stakeholder groups, including the Family Violence Consultative Committee, will ensure that all Tasmanians will have a say.
The Hodgman Government has also committed additional funding over the next two years to meet increased demand for services, boosting funding by $750,000 per annum and investing in the innovative Project O family violence prevention project on the North-West Coast.
Consultation will also occur this year on new laws to further strengthen family violence legislation, reflecting our commitment to create a nation-leading new offence targeting persistent family violence offenders.

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Farewell Event – Au Revoir to Bertrand Cadart (former Mayor GSBC)

Glamorgan Spring Bay Council
19.04.18 4:53 pm

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Former Mayor and Councillor of Glamorgan Spring Bay, Monsieur Bertrand Cadart was today bid a very fond and emotional farewell at the East Coast Heritage Museum in Swansea. Bertrand was honoured for his service and dedication to the communities of Glamorgan Spring Bay.

Around 100 people attended a farewell reception, which involved the launch of a special exhibition in Bertrand’s honour featuring a number of artefacts from the 1979 film Mad Max in which Bertrand played the role of Clunk and built all of the motorcycles for the film.

As one final surprise the flamboyant Frenchman donated his infamous Mayoral scooter to the museum at the event. This will remain as a permanent display and quirky reminder of Glamorgan Spring Bay’s interesting French Mayor.

Bertrand served on Glamorgan Spring Bay Council for 12 years, with a large part of this time as Mayor.  During that time, his dedication to the community and his commitment to his Council duties were exemplary.  His love of the East Coast of Tasmania shone through and resulted in media attention for the region both nationally and internationally. 

Ruth Dowty, CEO of East Coast Tourism said:

“There were many years of patient and tenacious effort from Bertrand to further tourism on the East Coast – and look at where we are now, due in no small part to Bertrand’s tireless commitment.  No other region in the state is growing as fast as the East Coast –that’s what happens when leaders like Bertrand work tirelessly for years and develop the groundswell of support across the community.”

In September 2017, Monsieur Bertrand Cadart was forced to resign as a Councillor from Glamorgan Spring Bay Council (GSBC) due to illness and has since been living in Queensland receiving treatment for leukemia. 

A very emotional Bertrand said:  “I cannot express how much I miss Bicheno and the East Coast of Tasmania and I truly believe I spent the best years of my life here.”

Senator Eric Abetz in his speech today said:

“When I first met Bertrand I very quickly became fond of him and believe he not only put the East Coast of Tasmania on the map of Tasmania and Australia but the world.”

And in the ultimate compliment, Mayor Michael Kent said:

“As Mayor if I can achieve half as much as Bertrand did, I will be a very happy man.”

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Josh Frydenberg must settle on recycling solution at upcoming Meeting of Environment Ministers

Greens spokesperson for Waste and Recycling, Senator Peter Whish-Wilson
19.04.18 2:15 pm

Greens spokesperson for Waste and Recycling, Senator Peter Whish-Wilson, urges the Ipswich City Council to reconsider their decision to start dumping recyclable material and calls upon the Federal Government and states to urgently agree on a policy response at next Friday’s COAG meeting that averts similar decisions from other Australian councils.
Senator Whish-Wilson said, “No council should be dumping recycling in landfill full stop. It is unacceptable and I urge the Ipswich Councillors to reconsider this decision, and wait for a full policy response from next Friday’s COAG meeting.
“The China National Sword policy should not be being used as an excuse by councils to dump these materials in the ground but the decision by Ipswich City Council is a timely warning of how councils right across Australia might act if the Federal Government doesn’t put forward a plan to lead us out of this crisis.
“Friday next week, the Meeting of Environment Ministers will be meeting to discuss the recycling crisis and it is critical that at this meeting a national policy response is agreed to. Announcing another talkfest is not going to cut it, Josh Frydenberg needs to show federal government leadership and take control of this right now.
“The entire recycling industry is screaming for a national policy response and so far Josh Frydenberg has failed to engage in the issue in any substantive way.
“If Josh Frydenberg doesn’t put forward a plan that will actually fix this crisis, then more and more councils will make the decision that Ipswich City Council has. The Environment Minister must act now to stop this contagion,” he concluded.

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Guardian Brit: Labour would rip up definition of affordable housing, Corbyn says

Guardian
19.04.18 2:04 pm

Read here

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Hodgman must go back to the drawing board on short-term accommodation

Josh Willie MLC Shadow Housing Minister
19.04.18 1:58 pm

 Housing and tourism groups now join chorus calling for reform
 Government has got it badly wrong on investor property, short stay accommodation in inner city areas
The Hodgman Liberal Government needs to urgently reconsider its positon to rule out changes to short-term visitor accommodation and publicly support a Parliamentary Inquiry into the housing crisis.
Shadow Housing Minister Josh Willie said Premier Will Hodgman could no longer ignore the growing chorus of calls for proper scrutiny around investor property, short-stay accommodation which was having a huge impact on the private rental market in the south.
“Mr Hodgman needs to concede that he has got it badly wrong with his reforms to deregulate visitor accommodation like Air BnB and his decisions are contributing to Tasmania’s housing affordability and homelessness crisis,” Mr Willie said.
“The Liberal Government needs to support the proposed Parliamentary Inquiry into public and community housing, private housing affordability and residential and tenancy issues.
“The opportunity needs to be given for all stakeholders to put their statements on public record and so that recommendations can be made to inform future planning for housing in Tasmania.
“The government should be developing comprehensive plans for housing, including short, medium and long term options, with key transition points and timelines for accountability.
“But it’s become abundantly clear the Liberals are just not serious about addressing homelessness and housing affordability, with Roger Jaensch unable to answer even the most basic questions on this critical issue.”
Mr Willie said the Hodgman Government needed to:
 Outline how it will spend the $125 million promised for housing affordability during the election campaign – including timelines – and expand on the communique released after the housing summit
 Stage a Parliamentary inquiry into public and community housing, private housing affordability and residential and tenancy issues with bipartisan support
 Announce a pause on short stay accommodation for stand alone investment properties in high stress areas and support the proposed Legislative Council inquiry
 Make genuine allocations towards public housing in the next budget after a reduction in spending of $45 million over the last term of government which has resulted in 500 less available dwellings.

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