Tuesday, June 26, 2007

Howard's National Emergency.

John Howard's National Emergency call , on the plight of aboriginal communities is most concerning. I involved myself in a little bit of discussion at Anonymous Lefty and later at Lavatus Prodeo on the subject. Personally, I have little doubt that our PM has shamelessly run, with a report commissioned by the Northern Territory Government, for a purely political purpose.
I do not believe his motives are pure, but more about latching onto a motherhood issue, to wedge Labor , as we move closer to an election. Who would not be appalled by paedophile activity in any community, regardless of race, colour or religion? Howard has had well over ten years to improve the situation for indigenous people. He has systematically destroyed whatever leadership mechanisms they had, and actually withdrawn funds for basic services and infrastructure, over that time.
It is a big ask to believe that he has finally seen the error of his ways, as even now, he merely talks of symptoms, that need to be eradicated rather than the basic causes of problems. He found his ammunition and has declared another war.... now that a war on drugs , war on terrorism, war on asylum seekers lack quite the emotional bite.

As I responded to a Megami' request, in my comments, at L.P. “Can someone please elaborate on the Army claim in this?” Megami, when you declare Teh “National Emergency”, you need soldiers. Hell, you just “need them”. This is the new “War on Black Paedophile Rings”. Navy would be involved but some uncertainty as to the depth of Todd River. Brough, busy checking. Howard has his target audience in mind and knows how to bullshit them.
Other comments I made at L.P......
I am quite concerned about intentions. Given that the plans seem to have the potential to make the situation worse for all, NT, aboriginals. All families are to be treated, the same, whether they are involved in what is considered 'bad behaviour' or not. There are no rewards, but punishment in the form of suspended welfare payments and various other increased living expenses. No funding for improved education or health. Just the threat of medical examinations for all youngsters regardless of their parents wishes.
To top it off, they lose control over who may enter their lands. Can you imagine how pastoralists and miners would like their rights of control prohibited? The intention I believe is less about allowing “transparency” but more about providing a good excuse to open up areas for tourism and mining development for white carpetbaggers.

UPDATE Mutitjulu community leaders: please listen to us
I just caught up with this plea from Mutitjulu leaders Dorothea and Bob Randall , that Crikey published. This is the first community to be seized under Howard's National Emergency, probably, because it is closest to suitable accommodation for politicians, embedded journalists and bureacrats, before the army sets up 'on site', digs.

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