It’s our leaders who are creating a generation of terrorists

My apologies, Jaycee, for displacing your marvellous and macabre tale so soon. Unfortunately, events don’t wait.

The cultural warriors of the extreme(?) right – Abbott, Abetz, Andrews, Bernardi, Christensen – the list goes on and on – would do well to think about this article.

Instead of throwing oil (Saudi oil, most probably) on the flames, what about doing wussy things like engagement, acceptance, tolerance?

(Nah, no votes in that . . . but ramping up the hysteria will do the ‘right’ a power of good . . .)

However, in view of the violence in Belgium today, this article (published well before any suicide vest was detonated) is essential reading. Big hat-tip, and thanks, to eJames.

Independent

Europe is losing the battle because its leaders still indulge the sponsors of terrorism and germinate animosity and rancour
Yasmin Alibhai-Brown Monday 21 March 2016

On Friday, Belgium police captured Salah Abdeslam, a key conspirator and member of the Islamist gang that murdered so many innocents in Paris last November. Belgium PM Charles Michel is triumphant: “This evening is a huge success in the battle against terrorism.” Monsieur Michel’s bombast is typical of Western leaders – they revel in their “victories” and never think about why so many young Muslims, born in Europe, are turning to violent extremism.

Not one of the EU nations has, to date, taken on Saudi Arabia, the promulgator of hardline Islam and zealous intolerance. Saudi Arabia went into Belgium in the late sixties and spread Wahhabism among the newly arrived Muslim migrants. To date, $70bn has been spent on this global brainwashing and destabilisation programme. This Tuesday evening on ITV, a secretly filmed documentary investigates the nefarious kingdom. Will this exposure alter Europe’s special relationship with the most evil of empires? No.

Here is a dire warning: Europe is losing the battle against terrorism because its leaders still indulge the sponsors of terrorism, unthinkingly aid and abet the propagandists of Isis and germinate animosity and rancour in a new generation of Muslims. EU governments never say sorry, never let complexities divert them from their macho missions, seem incapable of thinking holistically, do not engage with history or the hinterlands, undercut democratic values, can only react to events as they happen and thereby endanger the lives of millions of citizens.

The police and special forces expect multiple terror attacks in London. Other cities are preparing for new blasts. These crimes are indefensible. And no, I am not saying that the West deserves these bloodbaths or is wholly to blame for them. Repulsive Islamists and their ideologies are hell-bent on annihilating modernity and cumulated human cultures. But I do believe that European politicians have, over many decades, created the conditions for fanaticism to seed and grow. The abysmal official responses to the refugee flows are leading to new anti-Western furies.

Here is a friend of mine, a Muslim woman, who works in the City and lives in a grand home: “I was born here, have done well. My faith is private and I have no time for fundis ( fundamentalists). But I am shocked. How can Cameron, my Prime Minister, treat refugees like they are cockroaches? Those children? Would he do this if they were white people from Zimbabwe? I now understand how a young Muslim turns and loads up on hate. My own son is so full of anger.” Me too. The media and our leaders – except for Mrs Merkel – demonise refugees and fill up on self-pity. The migration crisis is all about us. Sickening.

Now Turkey – where the government daily violates human rights – is paid billions to take the migrant problem out of Europe. Men, women and children from Africa and Arabia have become traded meat. And all the while, our politicians wax lyrical about Europe’s values and “higher” civilisation. Can you not see how this dissonance affects those with links to those places? And humane indigenous citizens too?

I recently met a young, wannabe jihadi. Salim (not his real name) is 19 and very bright. His mum wrote and requested me to meet him. He went on and on about being a despised Muslim, about Iraq, Libya, Afghanistan, Syrian refugees. He wants to join the caliphate because he feels he has no future in England. He was like a tethered animal wanting to break free of the life he knew.

His mum now has cancer and he has sobered up. However, his views on these misguided wars are not treacherous and are widely shared. (The police will not get these names out of me. Many readers write to me privately and I cannot break that trust.)

The European crusaders who attacked Iraq and Libya and play hidden war games in Syria have never accepted responsibility for the churn, chaos, rage and violence that they left in their wake. Western sanctions and bombs wiped out more people in Iraq than Saddam ever did. Read Patrick Coburn’s new book, Chaos & Caliphate, which chronicles these historical catastrophes. For Salim and his ilk, these killer facts fuse with their own life stories of confusion and rejection and the amalgam combusts.

Abdeslam was kept safe and hidden by those who live in Molenbeek, an overcrowded Muslim ghetto stuffed with no-hopers. Some inhabitants describe the place as Europe’s biggest jihadist factories. Why should this be so? Because the very air is thick with disillusionment and breathed in by all those who live there.

In the Sixties, Belgium welcomed cheap factory labour from Morocco and other Arab lands. The old industries died and families were marooned with no jobs, low skills and a sense of failure. They believe successive governments used and then discarded them. Francoise Schepmans, the mayor of Molenbeek, has now come out and spoken about the “culture of denial”, which now must be broken. Belgium needs to address its racism and neglect of Muslims who are in its national bloodstream. So too France, Germany, Spain, Britain, Denmark and so on.

Our political elites need to be honest, savvy and ethical. They must refrain from impetuous militarism and reach out to estranged Muslims. Remember, the West beat communism using political and economic seduction. Weapons, oppressive laws and racist discourse will not defeat Islamist terrorism. Soft, smart power just might.

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327 thoughts on “It’s our leaders who are creating a generation of terrorists

  1. Collingwood have been rocked by reports that up to 11 of the club’s players tested positive to illicit drugs over the off-season. The explosive claims were revealed by News Corp on Thursday evening, just before the AFL season got under way at the MCG.

    Collingwood president Eddie McGuire responded to the report on Fox Footy and said that the club’s hands were tied when it came to the AFL’s illicit drugs policy, which guarantees player confidentiality.

    http://www.theguardian.com/sport/2016/mar/24/afl-11-collingwood-players-tested-positive-to-illicit-drugs-report

  2. https://newmatilda.com/2016/03/24/arthur-sinodinos-and-the-coalitions-probity-problem-how-not-to-start-an-election-campaign/

    https://newmatilda.com/2016/03/24/turnbull-fiddles-with-green-energy-policy-while-carbon-burns/

    http://www.theguardian.com/commentisfree/2016/mar/24/the-impact-of-environmental-disaster-and-the-injustice-of-a-community-left-behind

    http://www.dw.com/en/editor-in-chief-of-turkish-daily-todays-zaman-now-in-brussels-exile/a-19129163

  3. Good morning Dawn Patrollers.

    Stand by for Eric Abetz to come out and accuse the ABC of bias after this Tony Jones interview with Turnbull.
    http://www.smh.com.au/federal-politics/political-news/tony-jones-and-pm-clash-in-first-lateline-interview-20160324-gnqsjv.html
    All is not well within the broad church suggests Mark Kenny.
    http://www.smh.com.au/comment/turnbulls-relationship-with-morrison-is-this-eras-defining-power-dynamic-20160324-gnqa47.html
    Lenore Taylor says schools and hospitals deserve a straight message from Morrison and Turnbull. She also refers to the talk of the town in Canberra – the simmering tensions between said two.
    http://www.theguardian.com/australia-news/2016/mar/25/schools-and-hospitals-need-a-straight-message-from-scott-morrison-and-pm
    Peter Martin looks at interstate migration rates.
    http://www.smh.com.au/federal-politics/political-news/population-surge-melbourne-booms-as-locals-leave-sydney-20160324-gnqfd2.html
    Arfur lashes out as the finger gets pointed at him Again!
    http://www.smh.com.au/nsw/arthur-sinodinos-under-renewed-pressure-over-liberal-donations-scandal-20160324-gnqhsf.html
    And Labor calls for Arfur to stand aside.
    http://www.smh.com.au/federal-politics/political-news/labor-calls-for-arthur-sinodinos-to-stand-aside-over-finding-nsw-liberals-concealed-illegal-donors-20160323-gnpyt1.html
    Ben Eltham looks at Arfur and the return of the Coalition’s probity problems.
    https://newmatilda.com/2016/03/24/arthur-sinodinos-and-the-coalitions-probity-problem-how-not-to-start-an-election-campaign/
    “View from the Street” sums up the sad. sad week for Arthur Sinodinos.
    http://www.smh.com.au/comment/view-from-the-street/view-from-the-street-its-been-a-sad-sad-week-for-arthur-sinodinos-20160324-gnqgwx.html
    This detailed poll is devastating for the government.
    http://www.smh.com.au/federal-politics/federal-election-2016/election-2016-devastating-poll-shows-just-three-per-cent-of-voters-support-likely-budget-centrepiece-20160324-gnq4t5.html
    The Rockefeller Family Fund has divested itself of fossil fuel assets.
    http://www.smh.com.au/world/rockefeller-family-fund-divests-from-fossil-fuels-which-built-familys-fortune-20160324-gnqc69.html

  4. Section 2 . . .

    Religions’ tax break is a cross we shouldn’t have to bear.
    http://www.smh.com.au/comment/easter-is-a-good-time-to-revisit-taxexempt-status-of-religious-organisations-20160323-gnpzjj.html
    The Belgians are displeased with Turnbull’s “dangerous” comments.
    http://www.smh.com.au/world/belgian-envoy-decries-malcolm-turnbulls-dangerous-comments-on-brussels-bombings-20160324-gnqqhz.html
    The scariest thing about terrorism is our reaction to it.
    http://www.theguardian.com/commentisfree/2016/mar/24/scariest-brussels-reactoin-paranoid-politicians-isis-atrocity-belgium
    I wonder how much Mehajer has been spending on lawyers. Is he on the brink of bankruptcy?
    http://www.smh.com.au/nsw/salim-mehajer-misses-debt-deadlines-and-mortgages-family-property-20160324-gnq96y.html
    The corporate values of the Catholic church on full display.
    http://www.theage.com.au/victoria/its-disgusting-church-spends-more-to-restore-church-than-compensate-victims-of-paedophile-priests-20160324-gnqm79.html
    More PR trouble for VW.
    http://www.theguardian.com/business/2016/mar/24/volkswagen-recalls-touaregs-and-porsches-in-latest-hit-to-reputation
    Greg Jericho, with his usual detailed support, analyses just what is the “average Australian”.
    http://www.theguardian.com/business/grogonomics/2016/mar/24/the-budget-is-coming-so-standby-for-talk-of-ordinary-australians-who-are-these-people
    Rot in hell you stinking mongrel!
    http://www.theage.com.au/world/radovan-karadzic-exbosnian-serb-leader-convicted-of-genocide-and-war-crimes-20160324-gnqt6p.html
    Off-season hair testing of AFL players reveals a lot of use of illicit drugs. I wonder if there is a relationship between the extent of such drug use and the surface area of tattoos.
    http://www.theage.com.au/afl/afl-news/hair-testing-collingwood-in-top-three-clubs-for-positive-tests-during-the-offseason-20160324-gnqpz7.html
    Deservedly, on-line payday lenders are coming under scrutiny.
    http://www.smh.com.au/business/consumer-affairs/online-payday-lenders-under-scrutiny-following-nimble-investigation-20160324-gnq3kz.html

  5. Section 3 . . . Cartoon Corner

    Ron Tandberg with Arfur visiting the BSW Electoral Commission.

    Ron Tandberg and Morrison’s soft spot.

    David Pope picks up on the Tintin theme.

    Cathy Wilcox has worked out how the Safe Schools program got introduced.
    http://www.smh.com.au/photogallery/federal-politics/cartoons/cathy-wilcox-20090909-fhd6.html?selectedImage=1
    Alan Moir with a map of our national boundaries.

    Ugh! Andrew Dyson and Eurovision 2016.

    More from Ron Tandberg as he takes us to the hustings.

    John Spooner with a sad reflection on the terror attacks.

    Mark Knight on the road for the Easter break.
    http://cdn.newsapi.com.au/image/v1/18136957f5f42ace5e2731bea4450d4f?width=1024&api_key=zw4msefggf9wdvqswdfuqnr5
    The menace of Abbott.
    http://cdn.newsapi.com.au/image/v1/7a74e4747b5f331c224b3624e31428c8
    David Rowe with an Easter Message for Abbott.

  6. Mark Knight knows his Shakespeare.

    Yond Cassius has a lean and hungry look. He thinks too much. Such men are dangerous.

  7. Turnbull is in full “crash through or crash” mode.

    Last night’s interview on Lateline frustrated him because he thought he had a “National Security” platform to strut around on, but Tony Jones pulled the rug.

    So Turnbull did what he always does when he thinks someone of lower intellect than he (pretty-well everyone) interrupts His Magnificence: he tried to bully Jones.

    Unfortunately for Turnbull, his Cabinet Secretary, Uncle Arfur Sinodinos has been lumped with at least partial responsibility for depriving the party of $4.4 million in electoral kickback moolah. The Golden Greek is upset, and is even threatening to sue the Electoral Commission (!), but wiser heads may advise him against it. It’s not a good look to be going to court over ill-gotten gains. Jones was onto it like a demented Shi-Tzu.

    Tought tits, I reckon, that this came up now. Luck of the draw and all that. But the Liberals MUST have known that such fraud couldn’t be ignored by the Commission forever. What better time to put the pressure on the Party to fess up their dodgy donors than in the run-up to an election that’s going to involve 15 weeks of heavy cash outlays?

    And what worse time for the Party to have to do it?

    Also, of course, whither the Free Enterprise Foundation? Something I’ve not seen yet is a discussion of just what monies they have laundered for the Federal Liberal Party. Noice.

    Of course it had to be stopped. Smartarsed lawyers thinking that a one-step separation between donor and donee was sufficiciently arm’s-length to sanitize crookery were too clever by half. Now it’s come back to bite them at a most inconvenient time: just when they need the money!

    When Turnbull crashes, he burns brightly. Remember Godwin? Remember the unloseable Republic Referendum?

    Yet to come is the Mal Brough investigation. Tony’s mates at the AFP will make sure that’s brought on closer to the election if they have any sense. Plodders and Keystone Cops they may be, but the AFP know an opportunity when they see one.

    But of course this brings up the whole “Abbott Thing”. Hate Turnbull as many may do, even some of the rabids on the Right of the Liberal Party don’t want to actually lose an election. Tony may be “told”. We may find that not only is the fight Tony/Malcolm, but also Tony/Tony.

    What will 2GB make of all this? Last night on the Bolt hour, callers were accusing Turnbull of all kinds of hateful things: being a friend to terrorists, a traitor to Australia, a tax dodger, and (horror!) a closet Labor Man. Even Bolt eventually got sick of it, as he started hanging up on some of the wilder ring-ins.

    Dysfunction? Labor? Moi? When a shit fight gets going among the Liberals, make sure you have a large blanket ready. It’ll make a turd-flicking afternoon at the Taronga monkey cage look like tea-and-scones at Buckingham Palace.

    Yet to come we have … the Cayman Islands. I always thought that cries of Labor being envious were somewhat shrill. Be sure that there’ll be someone “of the Left” digging deep there, ready with some juicy tidbits on just what Malcolm has done with his and Lucy’s money in the island paradise.

    And our pals at the Senate will be no slouches, either. Don’t expect them to go down without a fight. The Greens, shown for the dupes they are (everyone seemed to know this, except them), will be particularly cranky. Libs bragging they put one over the naive tree-huggers will only goad the greenies into the red zone.

    So much time, so little known. About policy. About process. About Mal Brough. About Arfur. About tax havens.

    OK, so we DO know a lot about Tony Abbott, but none of it’s good for The Enlightened One.

    People say Malcom has aged in the last six months. By the time this 15 week – or was it years – election campaign is over (and that’s assuming it even gets started), he’ll be walking around with a Zimmer Frame.

    That’s what happens when you elect an ego maniac, and why they wisely chose to ignore Turnbull for so long. All the signs were there. We’re only just being reminded of them now.

  8. Another Jesus long weekend..with the vacant breathlessness of Rachel Cohn..;”I am all things to all people…” like Tofu…all hail Tofu…king of kings!

    I think it is time for an Atheist long weekend!

  9. I find Good Friday to be the most boring day of the whole year.

    As a lapsed Catholic altar boy, forced to do too many black vestmented Good Friday liturgicals (they don’t actually have a mass on Good Friday) I can only agree. Not only that, but it usually gets miserable – cold and rainy – around 3pm.

    Now, I’m not religious, but…

  10. Y’know..London to a brick if those A-rabs had discovered the therapeutic effects of “Arabica Dark ” coffee a couple thousand years earlier, there would not have been this Jesus thing..

    ”Abdul!..Salomon…come quick, th e blasphemer ;Jesus is oncwe again preaching heresy in the temple!!”

    “Ahh..relax, Timon..can’t you see we are having morning coffee already..sit down and join us already..the new barista Saloman has employed makes wonderful patterns with the froth..”

  11. I remember one Easter early morning service for the nuns at the church, My elder brother who was “altering” with me , fainted while “on duty..now the religious canon those days forbade women to go beyond the alter rail while the service was going…so in true Fellini style, out the corner of my eye (I had to stay “at my post”), I could see this cluster of concerned nuns clustered at the edge of the alter rail , reaching for, grasping and pulling the inert body of my brother toward them so as to revive him…trouble was, one leg was caught on the step rung and as they pulled him toward themselves, he was doing the splits with only a pair of shorts in a most “exposed” fashion..

    “Careful sisters”, I heard mother superior whisper ” we can see that the young man has a very prosperous future ahead of him..and we must not damage those prospects…”

    So one of the more inventive sisters there found a high-light window hook which they secured at his collar and they succeeded in dragging him around with that..

    The life of an altar-boy can be a dangerous occupation.

  12. An article in The Independent backing the original article of this Thread:

    Brussels attacks: How Saudi Arabia’s influence and a deal to get oil contracts sowed seeds of radicalism in Belgium

    There are many reasons why Belgium has become a hotbed of radical Islamism. Some of the answers may lie in the implanting of Saudi Salafist preachers in the country from the 1960s.

    Keen to secure oil contracts, Belgium’s King Baudouin made an offer to Saudi King Faisal, who had visited Brussels in 1967: Belgium would set up a mosque in the capital, and hire Gulf-trained clerics.

    At the time, Belgium was encouraging Moroccan and Turkish workers to come into the country as cheap labour. The deal between the two Kings would make the mosque their main place of worship.

    Brussels already had the perfect place. An oriental pavilion designed by Belgian architect Ernest Van Humbeek had been built in the capital’s Cinquantenaire park in 1879, but was falling into disuse. The 1967 deal gave the Saudis a 99-year, rent-free lease. The pavilion was refashioned by the Saudis, opening in 1978 as the Great Mosque of Brussels, as well as the seat of the Islamic and Cultural Centre of Belgium (ICC).

    Although the mosque was treated as the official voice of Muslims in Belgium, its radical Salafist teachings came from a very different tradition to the Islam of the new immigrants. Today, there are around 600,000 people of Moroccan and Turkish origin in Belgium, a country of 11 million.

    “The Moroccan community comes from mountainous regions and rift valleys, not the desert. They come from the Maliki school of Islam, and are a lot more tolerant and open than the Muslims from other regions like Saudi Arabia,” says George Dallemagne, a Belgian member of parliament for the centre-right CDH, an opposition party. “However, many of them were re-Islamified by the Salafist clerics and teachers from the Great Mosque. Some Moroccans were even given scholarships to study in Medina, in Saudi Arabia.”

    Mr Dallemagne says the Salafist clerics have tried to undermine attempts by Moroccan immigrants to integrate into Belgium. “We like to think Saudi Arabia is an ally and friend, but the Saudis are always engaged in double-talk: they want an alliance with the West when it comes to fighting Shias in Iran, but nonetheless have a conquering ideology when it comes to their religion in the rest of the world,” he said.

    Mr Dallemagne has sponsored many resolutions in the Belgian parliament aimed at loosening ties with Saudi Arabia, and reducing the Salafist influence in Belgium. “We can’t have a dialogue with countries that want to destabilise us,” he says. “The problem is that it is only recently that authorities are finally opening their eyes to this.”

    The mosque has sought to send a strong message opposing the latest attacks, with Mohamed Ndiaye, one of the centre’s imams, releasing a statement in the aftermath: “We would like to express our deep sorrow over the Paris attacks. Our thoughts are with the people of Paris and the victims’ families.” Other officials have also come out to repeat the message that Islam is a religion of peace and has nothing to do with the terrorists of Molenbeek.

    But the mosque remains a concern for the Belgian government: in August, a WikiLeaks cable revealed that a staff member of the Saudi embassy in Belgium was expelled years ago over his active role in spreading the extreme so-called Takfiri dogma. The cable – between the Saudi King and his Home Minister – referred to Belgian demands that the ICC’s Saudi director, Khalid Alabri, should leave the country, saying that his messages were far too extreme, and that his status as director meant he should not be preaching anyway.

    http://www.independent.co.uk/news/world/europe/brussels-attacks-saudi-arabia-influence-oil-contracts-sowed-seeds-radicalism-belgium-great-mosque-a6745996.html

  13. Does this remind one of Waffles folk, blaming the victims?

    Most of the messages sent to the people of Brussels this week were heartfelt and appreciated. A few, however, were cynical. One was contemptible; it came from Israel.

    The Israeli government as a whole claimed it “stands with Brussels.” As a resident of Brussels, I refuse that solidarity.

    Ofir Akunis, the Israeli science minister, tried to play politics. He suggested the attacks occurred because, rather than fighting terrorism, Europe was too busy placing labels on goods from Israeli settlements in the occupied West Bank.

    His comments are too inane to merit a detailed rebuttal. And besides, the labeling to which he referred is an initiative taken by the political elite. Many ordinary Europeans have gone beyond demanding labels: they are too busy boycotting all Israeli goods and campaigning against companies who seek to profit from the occupation.

    We shall remain busy. The most fitting tribute to victims of violence is to tackle its root causes. That means fighting imperialism, bigotry and inequality. It means defending multiculturalism, a beautiful idea that Israel has rejected.

  14. More on the ill-feeling between Waffles and Morrison.

    Waffles, the arrogant prick, is blaming his poor polling on someone else, because it could never be the fault of Malcolm the Magnificent. It’s all Scrott’s fault.

    I really don’t like linking to Sharri Markson’s work, but sometimes ………

    It’s paywalled, so –

    Federal election 2016: roasting not dinner Morrison expected

    Malcolm Turnbull criticised Scott Morrison over his handling of the GST in front of cabinet colleagues during a dinner at The Lodge.

    Some of the Treasurer’s colleagues saw the Prime Minister’s remarks at the February 21 dinner­ as a dressing-down.

    The Australian understands Mr Turnbull told Mr Morrison his continued hard sell on raising the GST had shown the government in a bad light and was causing it difficulty.

    The dinner at The Lodge that Sunday night was not a full meeting of the cabinet, but many ministers attended. The Prime Minister is also understood over the course of that weekend to have asked the Treasurer to pull back on his media commitments, concerned at his poor performance that week at the National Press Club and in a series of talkback radio intervi­ews, where he spoke about “unicorns” and “pixie horses” and was criticised for lacking vision.

    The following day, Newspoll in The Australian showed the government had lost its two-party-preferred lead over Labor and was tied at 50-50, which Mr Turnbull is understood to have sheeted home to Mr Morrison’s poor media performance.

    It was the first concerning poll for Mr Turnbull, ending his personal honeymoon. Before then, the Coalition had held a two-party-preferred lead of 53 per cent to 47 per cent for three months.

    When The Australian put questions to the offices of Mr Morrison and Mr Turnbull about the terse exchange during the dinner, ­neither denied it had occurred.

    Their relationship is understood to have suffered a blow as a result of Mr Turnbull’s criticism of the Treasurer in front of cab­inet colleagues, but several observers believe they have resumed a ­constructive professional working relationship since then.

    Shortly before the dinner, at 5.50pm, Mr Morrison withdrew from his regular weekly slot with talkback host Ray Hadley.

    Mr Morrison has publicly ­argued that the reason he pulled out of Mr Hadley’s February 22 show was because he had previous commitments, namely an unscheduled partyroom meeting where Mr Turnbull announced Senate voting reform changes.

    “The Treasurer was unavailable for the interview on February 22 because of prior commitments. This is already on the public record,” his spokesman said, adding that the pair “have ­always enjoyed an excellent and close working relationsh­ip”.

    “The Treasurer and the Prime Minister continue to work closely together as they prepare the 2016/17 budget,” he said.

    Tensions between Mr Turnbull and Mr Morrison are proving a challenge at the beginning of the longest election campaign in history. The Australian’s revelations of the dressing-down come as the Prime Minister admitted yesterday that the Treasurer was not part of the “small circle” that finalised the decision to bring forward the budget to May 3, nor naming a likely July 2 election

    Mr Turnbull confirmed The Australian’s report that Mr Morris­on had only learned of the change in the budget date during a cabinet call on Monday morning, before Mr Turnbull’s press conference. “I did not call Scott Morrison on Sunday night,” he told the Nine Network’s Today show.

    “It was a very small circle. I spent the evening, well, the bulk of my time, with my ministerial colleague­s. It was obviously spent with the Attorney-General, who provided the advice.”

    Mr Turnbull said he and Mr Morrison worked “as closely together­ as you can” and that the Treas­urer was “well aware … that we were considering and were likely, very likely, in fact, to ask the Governor-General to call the parliamen­t back on the 18th of April and, if we did that, obviously the budget would have to come back a week early.”

    http://www.theaustralian.com.au/national-affairs/federal-election-2016-roasting-not-dinner-morrison-expected/news-story/1a611532dbde7c9bd6fed7dc56c81025

    If you can be bothered Googling, read the comments. The hatred from rusted-on Liberal voters being directed at Turnbull is quite something. Someone has a plan for Liberal voters in the relevant electorates to vote Labor to get rid of Turnbull, Bananas and Grunt, because they are seen as threats to the future of the Liberal Party. Then there’s the idea of everyone voting National so Bananaby could be PM, because he is the ‘most trustworthy.’.

    The Dark Side is getting quite frantic, no matter what you read or view, but this is not being reflected in polling.

  15. I find Good Friday to be the most boring day of the whole year.

    Thankfully not for me, it is one of the two long weekends when I have all of my family over, a weekend of eating, a little drinking, laughs and generally for me a weekend of board games, cards, hide and seek and story telling… allgreat fun and joy. 🙂

    and No, I don’t have a religious bone in my body.

  16. Nixon Chief Policy Officer: We Created ‘War on Drugs’ to Oppress Blacks, Antiwar Movement

    According to Harper’s magazine, John Ehrlichman, chief policy officer for Nixon, says of the ‘war on drugs’ implemented by the regime:

    “You want to know what this was really all about?

    The Nixon campaign in 1968, and the Nixon White House after that, had two enemies: the antiwar left and Black people. You understand what I’m saying? We knew we couldn’t make it illegal to be either against the war or Black, but by getting the public to associate the hippies with marijuana and Blacks with heroin, and then criminalizing both heavily, we could disrupt those communities.

    We could arrest their leaders, raid their homes, break up their meetings, and vilify them night after night on the evening news. Did we know we were lying about the drugs? Of course we did.”

    Telsur notes that “since the implementation of the war on drugs, the African-American community has seen disproportionately high levels of imprisonment for non-violent crimes.”

    A related report released this week confirms that US citizens of European descent (whites) are more likely to abuse hard drugs than those of African descent.

    One of the report’s authors summarized: “We found that African Americans are less likely than other racial/ethnic groups to abuse hard drugs. Yet, African Americans are disproportionately incarcerated for drug crimes.”

  17. A propos de rien…

    Bushfire’s Meat Pie Filling Recipe

    Some parts might sound yucky (I never liked carrots, but HI explained to me that they don’t douse them in kero to get rid of the bugs anymore) but it’s all good ingredients and good stuff.

    Ingredients
    500gm lean mince,
    1 medium sized carrot, diced
    1 brown onion,
    1 small can of (Ardmona) crushed tomatoes.
    Salt
    Black Pepper
    Curry powder

    Doing it

    On a low stove… (the aim is not to burn anything)

    Brown the onions slightly in olive oil (not too much oil, just enough).

    Add a hefty shake of pepper, about 1 level teaspoon. Ditto for the curry powder.

    Fry a bit longer, a coupla minutes

    Add the mince a bit at a time, stirring each time.

    What hell… add the carrot too.

    Fry it all for a few minutes until it browns (i.e. the mince is 1/2 cooked),

    Empty entire can of crushed tomato into the saucepan.

    Fill the tomato with water, twice, and pour it in the saucepan. Mix it all up.

    Cover and simmer for about an hour, stirring every 10 minutes. Use a masher to get rid of the lumps in the meat.

    Add salt to taste.

    Turning it into a pie.

    Youse will all have your favourite pie crusts. I use ready-cut ones (Pampas?) from the supermarket freezer department. I actually make up the pies in one of these:

    http://static.squarespace.com/static/512d9e2de4b0b3ec3061efb5/524d0a3be4b06c7acd00b05a/524d0ff4e4b06c7acd01651e/1380782068441/mini-pie-maker1.jpg?format=original

    That way I can put them in the fridge for storage and eat them at room temperature (with Rosela sauce – tomato not barbeque). Only pies you can eat at room temperature are really GOOD pies.

    If anyone has a better idea for the pastry, please let me know.

    • BB – “Mini Pie Maker”????

      That’s f’ken cheating of the first degree. Are you a lazy bastard or something?

  18. http://www.abc.net.au/news/2016-03-24/brent-the-fight-for-liberal-identity/7273580

    Worth a read, although I rate Labor’s chances a little bit higher than Peter Brent does, and I also think Turnbull wouldn’t be able to move the Liberal party position on certain issues that much anyway. However, I agree that the culture warriors in the Liberal Party, as well as their more hard right supporters, THINK that Turnbull would do what Brent says. It explains the comments you can see in The Oz article Leone posted above. That’s why they are acting so strangely for a party that’s in a position to win.

    For a good recap on the culture warriors, see this from December, it explains a lot…
    http://insidestory.org.au/an-anatomy-of-abbotts-army

  19. Some good news from Syria. SAA said to be on the verge of recapturing the world heritage city Palmyra. Apparently nothing but desert between there and the ISIS capital Raqqa. End times approaching for ISIS ? If it is the Libs will be devastated at the loss of opportunity for 24 flag pressers and telling scary tales of the ‘Death Cult’ a comin’ for us all .

    I hope they build a monument to the Palmyra director of antiquities. When ISIS closed in he stayed behind to hide and protect the antiquities. Captured, tortured and executed when he refused to reveal hiding places.

  20. Kaffeeklatscher,

    I wish the ‘Like’ star came in different sizes.

    Couldn’t agree more, so would you please accept

  21. If you’re looking for good Easter viewing, or even if you weren’t, I recommend this.

    Incident in Judea is a 1991 UK TV version of the biblical part of The Master and Margarita. Its got a great old school UK drama vibe, like watching the 1970s I Claudius.

    It’s an hour long, the stuff at end of youtube clip seems to be just what was on the end of someone’s VCR tape. The 1991 TV show has never been reissued in any format. Note, wiki says it was originally 98 minutes long, but I think that’s incorrect and it was never more than an hour long. I recall it was shown on SBS at the time.

    This write up is almost too detailed. Better to watch it first, then read it.
    http://petermalone.misacor.org.au/tiki-index.php?page=Incident+in+Judea

    • Still following the Rudd playbook, to the letter.

      Next – derailing the election campaign by getting a tame journalist to drop bombshell questions at the NPC, as Oakes did for Krudd.

  22. Gippsland Laborite,

    Someone should tell abbott to eschew the tight shirt look, and/or to buy a properly fitted bra for those pert little manboobs.

    • I was about to say the same thing. Abbott seems to like the too-tight look. I suppose the vain little clod thinks it shows off his manly (cough…..cough) physique. Strained cloth pulling against buttons does not make him look ‘manly’, it makes him look like a middle-aged bloke who is getting too fat for his shirts. Someone really should tell him.

  23. From The Guardian’s piece on Paul Theroux’s book on the Deep South and Trump, linked earlier today.

    Theroux agrees with Bernie Sanders that Trump is a “pathological liar”. He thinks a candidacy-curbing Trump scandal isn’t far off. “Trump is not unstoppable. I think that the Trump campaign will unravel because he’s such a devious man. He is untruthful. People who make that much money in business, and who talk like that, have hid a lot … I think something will emerge.”

    I think the same is likely to happen with Turnbull. There’s enough dirt on him out there to fill in an abandoned Hunter Valley coal mine, and sooner or later something will surface. The dirt will come from his own ranks, not from Labor, just as the Julia Gillard dirt thrown by Laurie Oakes came from Rudd, not the Liberal Party.

    Link again, to save scrolling back.
    http://www.theguardian.com/books/2016/mar/24/donald-trump-popularity-deep-south-paul-theroux-book

  24. Hillary Clinton’s three part plan to defeat ISIS is to:

    Defeat ISIS in Iraq and Syria
    Destroy ISIS everywhere
    Prevent ISIS attacks in the U.S.A.

    LMAO!

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