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ANZAC Day 2011

Published April 25, 2011 by Michael C Leeson

ANZAC DAY 2011

The “Ode of Remembrance” taken from Laurence Binyon‘s poem “For the Fallen“, published in The Times in September 1914.

 They shall grow not old, as we that are left grow old:

Age shall not weary them, nor the years condemn.

At the going down of the sun and in the morning,

We will remember them.

Lest We forget (repeated in response)

 Gallipoli Campaign

 Words of Kemal Atatürk (1934) 1st President of Turkey

 “Those heroes that shed their blood And lost their lives. You are now lying in the soil of a friendly country. Therefore rest in peace. There is no difference between the Johnnies And the Mehmets to us where they lie side by side Here in this country of ours. You, the mothers, Who sent their sons from far away countries Wipe away your tears, Your sons are now lying in our bosom And are in peace After having lost their lives on this land they have Become our sons as well.

ANZAC spirit

Korean War 1951 Battle of Kapyong 60th anniversary

This is a time for reflection on the bravery and sacrifices of our citizens in times of armed conflict that we may live a life free of injustice. It is a moment to reaffirm our commitment to fight on in making this world a better place for all its citizens no matter their creed.

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The Arab Spring

Published April 25, 2011 by Michael C Leeson

It seems strange I have chosen at this time to write on what some call The Arab Spring, a series of protest in Africa and the Middle East nations against authoritarian rulers. A people’s movement featuring various forms of civil disobedience for example rallies, marches and strikes sometimes met with open violence by authorises. These events have seen increasing civil unrest across the region as the democratic tsunami rolled from Tunisia through Egypt and beyond. It has resulted in regime change, with the legislative/policy change, sacking of several governments, heads of state resigning, and even civil war. The people voice demands for political reform to end decades of authoritarian rule, which is unprecedented in the region.

Including

Tunisian Revolution , 2011 Egyptian Revolution , 2011 Libyan civil war

2010–2011 Algerian protests, 2011 Bahraini protests, 2011 Djiboutian protests

2011 Iranian protests, 2011 Iraqi protests, 2011 Jordanian protests

2011 Moroccan protests, 2011 Omani protests, 2011 Syrian protests

2011 Yemeni protests, and others

What inspires me about these events is the civil passion to challenge the violent authority of aging dictators and seek to reinvigorate their nations. While I see, the calls for democracy in simple terms as a people demanding change to improve their lives. Some have described this social change movement as a youth movement. However, in these protests I have seen people from across the lifespan standing up and demanding social justice.

It is not about

Debates based on competing political philosophiesAmerican Imperial, Capitalism  and Socialism

Islamist threats verse Western interests around securing oil supplies

The power of social mediaTwitter, Facebook and the blogger sphere theses are tools they are not feet on the ground

Traditional relations between the West & Arab people – as those being ousted are mainly Western puppets

However equally it may be about some and/or all of the above

All I can say is let the passions of the people reinforce their resolve in seeking to write their own destiny and defeat those who seek to expunge the flame of justice.

The 2011 Shake

Published April 18, 2011 by Michael C Leeson

North Queensland hit by a 5.2M earthquake some 60km West of Bowen, the quake hit at about 15:30 on Saturday 16/04/11. Residents from the Cassowary Coast Region  in the north through to Sarina in the south and out to Charters Towers in the west were affected. The event whilst nowhere near the strength of recent events in Christchurch (NZ) or Japan  is something different for NQ residents. There has been no report of damage to person or property from the NQ event other than the shock to residents after a summer of momentous flooding and a mega-cyclone.

My experience of the event was as a minor tremor lasting some 30 seconds that saw the house shake and windows rattle nothing OTT.

Aftershocks rock north Queensland (ABC-tv exp 16/07/11)

Mr Cameron your a bludger

Published November 9, 2010 by Michael C Leeson

It seems the Conservative UK government has discovered work for the dole or a version there of, where those receiving unemployment benefits are required to undertake unpaid work. The plan here sees benefit recipients expected to undertake a 30 hr week for 4 weeks (?) with no additional payment to mitigate costs incurred by the individual. This means the supposed employer gets free labour for a time, what does this may mean.

A false reporting of unemployment statistic, this always looks good for an incompetent government

Capital again given a free ticket by government

A drop in wages & workplace conditions, why pay someone when you can get labour for free

An expectation that people on limited income incur additional costs without an appropriate level of compensation for a day’s work

Who’s a little bludger now Mr Cameron

All people seek is a fair days wage for a fair days work

Bubba goes to Washington

Published November 9, 2010 by Michael C Leeson

The mid-term results seem disappointing especially, after the Bush years,

Some themes & commentary

Conservatives are the party of free enterprise, what about monopoly capitalism? – The State through its operation seeks to perpetuate economic monopolies hence, neutralising competition.

They hold to the free market as a tenet of faith. However, it is a qualified observance shaped by i.e. neoconservative, economic liberalism, liberal democracy

Arguing for the end of the welfare state rather they promote Charity whose victims litter the pages of history

Fiscal responsibility, what about the GFC which evolved over the past 30 yrs during the reigns of the great senile one, Geo I, Clinton & Geo II the Tsars of lassie-faire capitalism and economic rationalist perspectives

Social illiterates – no sense of community –– obsessed with individualism – we live in a society whose social system is at best morally bankrupt

Low tax & Small government –  Bush years some contradictions here

trickle-down economics – government pandering to the elite

Romanising dated social institutions – how relevant is marriage in the 21st century – While it may represent the vestiges of heterosexist hegemony, now threatened by those queers.

The Tea Party – Geo II fan club – a rag tag band of right wing loonies pretending it is the 17th century – We had our own version One Nation about 10 years ago offering simple answers on complex issues, it too had some electoral success but imploded under the weight of leadership egos.

Immigration issue – economic down turn – unemployment – fortress mentality –  hyper-nationalism –  a volatile mix and fertile ground for loonies of all persuasions especially the right

Yes, we can move forward with real action

Published August 25, 2010 by Michael C Leeson

Increasingly, I feel reassured by the words of the independents at the centre of the election result, that Australia can achieve a viable, stable effective and progressive government.   The model of progressive consensus government seems to be one constant theme at any media event, today these men spoke at the National Press Club in outlining their approach to the situation. I admit having been left a little cynical by the past 30 years of party politics, I see this as a real opportunity for the people to take back their parliamentary system. To end the soap opera that it has become played out on the 24 hour News cycle of drama,  the blame game, name-calling and one-upmanship, or is it simply the starry-eyed socialist in me, which sees the potential of embracing this moment in history.

Red Team 0 Vs  Blue Team 0

Result Australia Wins

Tinker, Tailor, and Head kicker

Published August 24, 2010 by Michael C Leeson

The head kicking mad monk has just put himself up, as the model for a consensus driven Australian politics however, when is Intransience a definition for consensus.  While fielding media question Abbott seemed closed to any changes in his policy agenda, his only concession it seems is some tinkering around parliamentary reform according to him he has always supported, paternalism don’t you just love it. It is obvious this Neanderthal still thinks that he has all the answers to the questions, challenges and issues facing Australia in the tailored policy agenda he has put together in turning this country into some conservative Liberal democracy a shopkeeper’s utopia. However, Abbott does not get the message that he did not win anything on Saturday, the electorate sent a clear message they do not trust either the Coalition or Labor. This result even points to the electorate’s confidence in the effectiveness of the system, some are now talking about consensus politics and what that horse may look like.

Consensus politics can relate to

Consensus Democracy is the application of consensus decision-making to the process of legislation in a democracy

or

Consensus Government or government by Committee – non-partisan government

It would be the end of party politics, which may be a good thing

Oh, these are strange and interesting days when the political establishment faced with a quandary of their own making seems challenged.