The Psychology of Internment – Part 1

In the past nineteen months, I have become deeply afraid. Because I think this nation is heading down the path of fascist totalitarianism so fast it’s almost unbelievably irretrievable.

abbott, that vainglorious little man, is only the front puppet.

Behind him are the forces of BIG energy (aka coal and oil), BIG Pharma (what is the TPP all about?), BIG guns (aka the Military-Industrial Complex, about which President Icingsugar warned us – well, that’s what I thought his name was 55 years ago), BIG whatever else you can think of . . .

Puffy’s piece is a timely reminder of the hell we are perpetrating, not only for others – for which we should be hauled before the International Court of Justice – but also the hell we are fomenting for ourselves.

You can’t do this stuff without enormous psychic damage to everyone.

Thank you, Puffy.

(Image Credit: How Stuff Works)


A discussion in two parts

Part One – The reader completes a task (please).

Australia has entered an Age of Internment, the like of which not seen on our soil since World War Two.

Both major political parties have gone down this miserable road, in thrall to a section of the populace fearing outsiders and the perceived threat that they may steal this land in the way we stole it from the Aboriginal peoples in 1776.

There was a road to a humane solution that could have saved lives, built a new regional plan to help asylum seekers while taking Australua off the people-smugglers’ menu. It was, in my opinion worth a try. The Gillard ALP government’s Malaysia plan might have worked. We will never know now, as partisan politics and the chance of picking up some votes in electorates where racial fear was opportunistically stoked by the Liberal and National parties scuttled that idea.

So here we are,going backwards into the internment era, and worse, with reported conditions akin to the worst hell-hole in a mad third-world dictator’s prison. The reports on the treatment of children are shocking.

This is the perfect time to revisit an old social science experiment, one shocking and controversial. This experiment triggered the creation of University Ethics Committees, which these days examine every researchpropsal for potential harm to the participants.

This research would never be allowed today and cannot be repeated. Indeed the experiment was cut short when the lead researcher was pulled up by a colleague who saw he had gone off the rails too.

I am of course discussing the Stanford Prison Experiments at Stanford University, California, in 1971.

Many are aware of it but I urge you, even if you have not the slightest interest in social science, to set aside a little time, grab a glass or cup of whatever and read through the complete description of the planning, carrying-out and fall out of this seemingly innocent almost naive research.

Because nobody predicted the shocking results.

Then think of Nauru and Manus Island. Think of the Department of Immigration, the Minister, and our Prime Minister.

I will not pre-empt the story just now, but will follow up with another post when people have had the time to read, listen and absorb. Please don’t just read the first page of the website and think, yeah, that one. Take the slide tour. It has the detail which contains the devil.

Thank you.

610 thoughts on “The Psychology of Internment – Part 1

  1. I don’t blame the Emperor Penguin for the cheaper iron just for depending on its price and bleating to the rest of us for Salvation

    “A weaker local economy, impacted by the downturn in the resources sector, is clearly affecting buyer activity in the Perth market despite the recent reduction in interest rates.” Dr Andrew Wilson said.

  2. Looks like Dan drew the short straw in “Who wants to be the face of The Wonderful, Caring Government today?”

    The Member for Wannon, Dan Tehan, agrees and believes the Government should resolve the impasse swiftly.

    “[My constituents] have been saying that politics is put in front of jobs and what I have been reassuring them is that, as far as I’m concerned, what I want to see is jobs put before politics,” Mr Tehan told 7.30.

  3. However, it is good to see Mr Tehan showing some guts – even though it’s purely from self-interest – given the investment in, especially, wind power in and around his electorate.

  4. I just got this

    “No data received

    Hide details
    Unable to load the webpage because the server sent no data.
    Reload this webpage
    Press the reload button to resubmit the data needed to load the page.
    Error code: ERR_EMPTY_RESPONSE”

  5. This little black duck


    Looking for LNP policies

  6. Indeed.

    I could have suggested English Grammar and Semantics but that would be “cute”.

    Speaking of which, I don’t like “cute” in its meaning of “pretty” but as a derogative adjective of “clever” it works just fine for me.

  7. Fiona,

    I was trying to post a comment.

    I could blame Fraudband but I think it was just a very short break in communication somewhere along the line. It couldn’t ACK so it NACKed.

  8. Methinks that Mr Andrews is actually descibing the state of the LNP’s front bench.

    Currently tapping on my phone as my desktop seems to have karked it. A most frustrating position to be in!

  9. curioz,

    Your desktop needs a good talking-to or a horse-whipping.

    And so does Mr Grecian 2000.

  10. Ducky,

    I don’t like “cute” in its meaning of “pretty” but as a derogative adjective of “clever” it works just fine for me.

    I meant the latter, of course.

    For anyone who has any doubt, I am a former lawyer, now academic psychologist, specialising in developmental psychology, with a particular interest in cognitive development.


  11. Hmmmm…..getting out before he is shoved out?

    LNP director Brad Henderson quits

    The LNP state director has resigned from his position ahead of a review being handed down into what went wrong for the party at the Queensland election.

    Brad Henderson who has served in one of the Liberal National Party’s top positions for more than a decade, first for the Nationals and later the LNP, released a statement to party members late on Thursday night.

    His term as Queensland director will come to a self-determined close with the annual LNP convention in July.

    Mr Henderson led the LNP campaign team which oversaw the Newman government lose office in 2015 after winning a historic majority less than three years before


  13. Fiona

    with a particular interest in cognitive development.

    You could be a consultant to the Liberal Party.

  14. Fiona,

    I have never considered “pretty” one of my attributes or a desired one.

    No, I didn’t know precisely but I have found your insights in the area of particular value and shall, I’m sure, continue to do so.

    100 minutes of beauty sleep or Three Act Tragedy?

    Agatha, by two lengths.

    One day, I hope to pen an opus some thoughts on the beauty, the nuances, the consistencies and the sheer cussedness of the English language. As someone dewogged I feel well qualified.

  15. Before I quit I always check for recent comments. Damn you! Thanks, Leroy, for your late night efforts.

    That’s it!

  16. Ducky & Curioz,

    . . . or a horse-whipping.

    And so does Mr Grecian 2000.

    The Minister for Grecian 2000 would enjoy a horse-whipping or three.

    So let’s be sadistic and deprive him.

  17. CTar,

    You could be a consultant to the Liberal Party.

    Nope. Development – especially of cognition – is way off their radar.

    Besides, it would hurt.

  18. ” …the beauty, the nuances, the consistencies and the sheer cussedness of the English language.”

    Ducky..: ” Perfume of embraces all him assailed. With hungered flesh obscurely, he mutely craved to adore.”

    What the hell does that mean??..Can those two sentences be understood without the supporting text or story? Is all language connected in a seamless weld with our emotions and to separate one from the other is to exhibit the mechanism of a clock outside it’s decorative case.

  19. Four plus hours later and un-backed up documents and photos now backed up (thanks to a temporary USB Linux distro), I’ve somehow managed to get the wretched thing to boot the Windows CD (still don’t know what I did right there) and I seem to be lurking back on my proper hard drive.
    Keep your fingers crossed as I now get to boot it several times and hope it continues to work as it should.

    Strange how relieved I feel now I can use the keyboard and can find things where I left them on my ‘desktop’ *wry amusement at self’
    Heaven help me should this beasty expire and I can’t fix it. I think I might then cry!

  20. The ABC – One of this mornings stories is “S-E Queensland and Northern NSW on Food Alert as heavy rain drenches the area”.

    Maybe it was raining too hard in QLD for the camera people to go out.

    The first bit of video of the “drenching rain” shows people hurrying across the intersection of Northbourne Avenue and London Circuit in Canberra …

  21. Good morning Dawn Patrollers.

    Peter Martin calls it. The RBA will cut interest rates on Tuesday. And he tells us why.
    Mark Kenny tells it as it is (was) with the Bali nine.
    And Kenny shines the light on Keenan and Bishop.
    The issue will not go away in a hurry.
    Some very direct stuff on the issue from “View from the Street”.
    The last word on the matter from Waleed Aly. He writes so well
    This Liberal MP has had enough of the RET target stalemate.
    This appalling set of numbers tells a horrible truth.
    Michelle Grattan looks at the Australia/Indonesia relationship.
    The Dr Karl ad campaign will be grist for the Senate Estimates mill.

  22. Section 2 . . .

    The Independent Australia takes apart Greg Hunt’s “stunning success”.,7648
    The 21 worst things the Liberals did yesterday.
    Surely not!
    The month in politics from the AIM Network.
    More than 4000 ATO workers are getting set to take strike action.
    I’ve come to dislike this Aussie lady from Google.
    Should businesses charge for quotes?
    Gillian Triggs writes about the McIntyre dismissal.
    Some good advice to Hockey from this SMH editorial. Everyone should pay their fair share of tax.
    This probe into the bullying of a gay policeman by his fellow offers will not be pretty.

  23. Section 3 . . .

    Ged has a good point here.
    Greg Jericho analyses the difficulties of finding affordable housing.
    Alan Moir with the role of the AFP.

    Ron Tandberg with negative gearing and aspiration.

    David Pope throws a surprise party for Bill Shorten.

    A good rendition of Mick Malthouse by Mark Knight.

    David Rowe with SSM and the Labor Party.

    Bill Leak and tough guy Widodo.

  24. The unfortunate thing for us as a nation, is that this totally incompetent govt’ was not put under closer scrutiny before they were elected by what we all agree now was a gormless, drunk on their own self importance MSM.

    We are now stuck with a managerial staff that is out of touch with the “factory floor”, the “coalface” , the doctors surgery, the “blackboard” it what you will..their gross bumbling along in domestic and foreign policy is a condemnation of the forth estate and complete validation (for what it is worth in a now trashed nation!) of those blogs on social media who pin-pointed with alarming accuracy the faults and complicity of this govt’..with the unfortunate frustration of a Cassandra .

    What really hurts and insults, is the fact that those f#ckin’ useless “journo” jerks that pushed their crap stories in the first instance are still in a job, while tens of thousands who have to suffer the bombastic foolishness of the idiot and his idiotettes have through no fault of their own lost theirs!…I wonder if a class-action could be got up on the strength of ” failure of responsibility” ?

  25. Excellent piece from the US – The Intercept – on the sacking of Scot McIntyre, the neutering of state-funded journalism and more – well worth reading.

    Cowardly firing of Australian state-funded TV journalist highlights the West’s real religion.

    But what is at the heart of McIntyre’s firing is the real religion of the supposedly “secular West”: mandated worship not just of its military but of its wars. The central dogma of this religion is tribal superiority: Our Side is more civilized, more peaceful, superior to Their Side.

    McIntyre was fired because he committed blasphemy against that religion
    That’s why Scott McIntyre was fired: because he questioned and disputed the most sacred doctrine of the West’s religion. In a free, healthy and pluralistic society, doing so would be the defining attribute of a journalist, the highest aim. But in societies that, above all else, demand unyielding tribal loyalty and subservient adherence to orthodoxies, it’s viewed as an egregious breach of journalism and gets you fired

  26. The ABC seems to have ditched Canberra people hurrying in the rain film clip from their S-E QLD rain story now.

  27. This day in 1982 – A Vulcan bomber attacks Port Stanley Airfield. It drops a 500lb bomb on the runway.

    To get the Vulcan from Asuncion Island to the Falklands and back takes 7 in-air refuels.

    The Argentinians have the runway patched and ready for use in 12 hours. The flight was a total waste of time 9and was a one and only).

    Meanwhile three RN ships bombard the airport and the Harriers also attack. Two Argentinian aircraft are shot down.

  28. In recent weeks almost 500 refugees who have made their way to France via the notorious migrant boats across the Mediterranean have set up camp at two locations in the heart of Paris. But many tell The Local they have no plans of staying in the French capital.

    Paris is changing:

  29. The reason for the ‘this day’ postings: About 3 weeks ago I was looking for my birth certificate. I found that and also a bundle of notebooks that I used to take to meetings.

    I was flicking through them and came across meeting notes from the Falklands War period and decided I’d read them day by day on the day.

    Other stuff was also going on at the time.

    I’m amazed at what I remember and what I don’t and the accuracy / inaccuracy of my memory.

    Another thing is that standard practice was for me to take the current note book home with me at night. Low risk but no doubt the security people would have gone nuts if the knew what was recorded in them. And also that I took them all from the office and bought them back to Australia.

  30. gigi

    I doubt the locals would be surprised. Last time I was there lots of Rumanians camped along the river banks.

  31. ctar1

    I guess everyone is getting used to migrants except here in Australia where they are stopped at sea and often returned under this right-wing govt.

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