Hello Cruel World
Sunday, November 03, 2002
Trawlings caught in the net
Trawlings caught in the net:

[Do the words "Told you so" have any resonance here? (Going back
to that pre-Olympic legislation ... what _did_ happen to that?
Despite Ric Birch's assurances, don't know if it did end up with 'sunset'
clause. Trying to remember if it was State or Federal.)]

All the way with LB ... er ... ASIO
By Alan Ramsey
November 2 2002

... Squads of assorted police, directed by ASIO agents, guns drawn, were
bursting into homes of people "who may have some knowledge". That's all
it takes, in these days of fear and not a little hysteria, to have armed
police take your home apart, in front of your children, and cart away
anything they choose, yourself included, to examine at leisure, telling
the rest of us, in a sense, to mind our business, that all is above
board and entirely lawful, and, as Williams asserted on Wednesday, "that
everything is being done in order to ensure the Australian community is
properly protected"...

Was looking for EM Forster's bit on not believing in belief, having
come across the quote recently. Sounded like one of the sort of
things I've been rabbiting on about. Finally found it at:

What I Believe
E.M. Forster in Two Cheers for Democracy (1951)
Interestingly, it also addresses another subject that's a recent worry
(particularly since September 11th). People are currently bringing up
some memories of the sort of things done in the 1950s & 1960s to
helpless 'no-count' types (e.g. poor &/or non-white &/or prisoners
&/or mentally ill &/or handicapped) for Cold War experiments,
and the penalising of others on the merest suspicion of connection
with 'unAmerican' activities. Interesting how many seem to think it was such a happy & innocent decade, the fifties.
Even in retro shows like 'Grease' - as well as ones made at
the time like 'West Side Story' you could see some of the
problems. This gives you some idea of the kind of pressures
building up at the start of the 1950s. Which of course is what I've
been pointing to with the anti-terrorism moral panic (see story above).

While searching, ran across some interesting places, including
[BTW, Pink Alert]:
Benzaldehyde reviews

Assorted quotes & examples of people mostly living a tolerant life.
This seems to be a 'defensive' site against the blitz of the American
"Moral Majority" - who don't recognise any other morals - since it
seems to assume a bad attitude towards atheist/agnostic 'nontheists',
as he dubs them:

And an article, some years before he died, by Carl Sagan (another
of my heroes):

His last book was "The Demon-Haunted World". According to
someone who'd read earlier drafts, Dr Sagan strengthened & hardened
it up, he thought perhaps CS knew that it was likely to be his last
word on the subject. Have a couple of his books, might check
for that one next time I get to a a) library; b) 2nd-hand book shop.

Thoughts about democracy, government & society:

Article on www.smh.com.au [Franco's "stolen children"]
Have heard this story about Chile too. Looks like Latin America copied
the old Latin country. I suspect similar things have happened
over centuries, e.g. heretic's infant children being taken before
they burn the parent(s); native peoples' children being deprived
of their language & culture, to be acculturated to colonialists'
ideas -- including the inferiority of the natives & their culture
(have heard the Australian 'stolen generation' story repeated
in several countries).

The thought in the story did occur to me at the timing of the s
udden cessation of that trial...
What butler saw will remain secret
(This blew up into quite a noisy story over the next few weeks.
Then faded off.)
Comments: Post a Comment

Powered by Blogger
Feedback by backBlog

 / . Lives in Australia/New South Wales/Sydney, speaks English. Eye color is hazel. I am what my mother calls unique. My interests are photography, reading, natural history/land use, town planning, sustainability.

This is my blogchalk:
Australia, New South Wales, Sydney, English, photography, reading, natural history, land use, town planning, sustainability.