QED

Rules? The Left Grants Itself Immunity

Rules, what good are they when the Left is inconvenienced and the progress of its agenda impeded?

That’s a question taxpayers and four spurned authors should be asking after judges charged with deciding the winner of the Victorian Premier’s Literary Award for non-fiction decided a pet cause trumped the contest’s rules. Many will have read how Manus detainee Behrouz Boochani (left) was awarded the richest prize for writers in the country, a very tidy $100,000, plus a second award of $25,000.

Rule Seven puts it simply, as the best writing should:

7. Authors must be Australian citizens or permanent residents of Australia.

Mr Boochani is neither.

A thwarted illegal immigrant from Iran, he is a long-term resident of Manus Island, whence his epistles to The Guardian and other outlets have built up quite the cult following among Australia’s open-borders crowd. In this regard he landed on his feet because the five judges, appointed by The Wheeler Centre which administers the awards, are all huge and persistent advocates for leaky boats and those who sail in them.

The judges were:

Dennis Altman, professor emeritus at LaTrobe University and prominent gay activist, who has said:

It’s interesting how many people have leapt on the bandwagon (supporting same-sex marriage) but remain silent about the fact we are holding men in detention in Papua New Guinea who have fled because of their sexuality. Were they to be released in Papua New Guinea, which the government says they could be, they face huge possibilities of violence, intimidation, imprisonment and maybe death.

Perhaps it was Mr Boochani’s dispatch to The Guardian which especially impressed him:

Toilets, the last refuge for [fellow Manus resident] Alex and his boyfriend, were converted into a public place. In practice, he did not have any privacy in the prison any longer. Those who never had to experience being in prison might not be able to contemplate what I mean by lack of privacy. It is hard to imagine how tough it is living under the heavy gaze of a closed community.

Fatima Measham, until recently consulting editor at the Jesuit-funded Eureka Street and ardent campaigner against racism, sexism, coal, Islamophobia, homophobia, Tony Abbott and all the other causes that raise bulk cheers from the Twitter crowd. Going by a recent column, she might well have regarded tearing up the rules as a moral and redemptive obligation:

What is the worst thing that can happen if we brought all refugees in offshore detention to our shores and let them begin their lives? The worst has already happened. Men have died in despair by their hand and others, and from rampant neglect on the part of the Australian government. Children have given up in the most profound way possible.

If we accept that the worst has already happened, if politicians can find character enough to own what they have sanctioned, then space can be made — for life, and perhaps a measure of redemption where there has been dishonour.

In another essay excoriating Australia, even broadband becomes an exhibit for the prosecution:

Australia has been bogged in mediocrity for some time. It has sunk in critical areas: climate action, renewable energy, wildlife protection, education, broadband and other infrastructure. But there is one area in which Australia has been remarkably exceptional: cruelty against people who came by boat to seek asylum.

Funny thing is, though, Ms Measham is big on rules when she perceives people of whom she disapproves to be breaking them. This tweet from February 3:

Irony, anyone?

Sonia Nair ‘s online CV announces that she has been

… volunteering at Right Now since 2012 in various capacities, a highlight of which was programming a social-justice focused day at the 2017 Melbourne Writers Festival called Protest and Persist. She is a writer and critic who has been published by The Wheeler Centre, The Lifted Brow, Meanjin, Time Out, Kill Your Darlings, Metro …

On the topic of Manus and Nauru, a woman who last year was still traveling on her Malaysian passport writes

Every Australian should know what these men have gone through, what atrocities are being carried out under the banner of the Australian flag, and what needs to be done to stop it from happening so these men are not consigned to the “non-people” they are in the danger of becoming.

Atrocities? One would imagine the judge of a literary award might have a better command of words and their definitions. Oh, and of history, too, as that same essay decries “Australian pillaging of Nauruan land”. It will come as news to Ms Nair that Nauru was once the world’s richest nation as a result of that very same “pillaging”. Alas, all that immense phosphate wealth was squandered on, among other things, the production of a West End musical that depicted Leonardo daVinci, widely believed to be homosexual, as a lusty hetero and father of Mona Lisa’s child. As The Independent put it in 2008 when explaining where all those billions of dollars went:

Presidents would commandeer aircraft to take their wives shopping in Melbourne, New York and Singapore. Households owned three cars, including, in one case, a Lamborghini, although the island has a 40kph (25mph) speed limit and only one 12-mile circular paved road. Jobs were plentiful, housing free, and no one paid tax. Children went to the best schools in Australia and Nauruans gave lavish gifts, such as three-piece suites.

Jordy Silverstein‘s biography at Melbourne University’s “find and expert” site informs us that she shares her fellow judges’ passion for refugees

Jordana Silverstein is an ARC Postdoctoral Associate with the ARC Laureate Fellowship Project ‘Child Refugees and Australian Internationalism: 1920 to the Present’, led by Professor Joy Damousi. As part of this project, Jordana is investigating the history of Australian Government policy directed towards child refugees from 1970 to the present.

Her previous research has focused on questions of belonging, nationalism, identity, historiography, sexuality and memory, which she has primarily investigated through the lens of Australian Jewish history.

Her Twitter feed will leave no doubt where she stands on the matter of offshore detention.

Finally there is Bhakthi Puvanenthiran, associate editor of Crikey!

Does anything more really need to be said about the perspective and opinion she brings to offshore detention?

Well perhaps one thing. In an interview with medianet.com.au she explained what to look for when hunting up a story:

I think it’s always about looking at who is involved and what that tells us about a situation.

What the decision to shred the rules of the Victorian Premiers’ Literary Awards tells us is that, as always seems to be the case when public monies are bestowed on the artsy Left, the people handing out the cash tell us very much indeed about any given “situation”.

As to the four spurned entrants, all eligible under the rules, they might now have concluded they never had a chance of taking home that $125,000 prize.

Perhaps one or all could obtain legal advice about the award’s Rule #6:

Breach of the conditions of entry will render an entry invalid.

12 comments
  • padraic

    War is peace. Truth is lies. Freedom is slavery. Ignorance is strength. Black is white. 1984 has passed but its spirit lives on. Why do people come to Australia and then trash us and our values?

  • padraic

    War is peace. Truth is lies. Freedom is slavery. Ignorance is strength. Black is white. 1984 has come and gone but its spirit lives on. Why do people leave their paradises and come to Australia legally and then trash us and our values?

  • padraic

    Oops! There was some computer glitch message which told me the first attempt failed, so I rewrote it with some editing and reposted it. Some gremlins ?

  • Mr Johnson

    What do the other shortlisted authors say about it? Probably nothing, and instead clap like seals. I know many in the literary industry, and it is overwhelmingly left leaning. I expect their back teeth will be grinding, but they will retain shiny smiling faces to the public. The biggest punchline is that most authors need to work two jobs as they veer towards the poverty line. So watching this large cash prize sail past their clutching hands while they do nothing is a matter of ‘serves you right’. The Left always eats itself.

  • Peter Smith

    We need to start appreciating that the post-modern, refugee-loving, windmill embracing, left are a race apart. We – by whom I mean those of us of sound mind – can never begin to understand how they think. In fact, I don’t think that they think at all. They just feel – like infants. I would like geographic separation but we are stuck with them. I have taken steps. Parting with some left-wing companions and never listening to or watching the ABC. How to protect our children and grandchildren, as the case may be, is a far bigger challenge.

  • Jody

    Peter, those are all the children of the self-indulgent, narcissists of the hippy generation of the late 60s/early 70s. I disliked them intensely then – and their humorlessness, lack of morality, self-actualizing sense of mission, entitlement, and hubris – as I do now. These were the ugly people at the ABC, too, who were often (more than not) the resident drug addicts. I remember observing to my (new, at the time) husband, “these people’s children will grow up to run things; doesn’t that terrify you”?

    Bingo.

  • Jody

    PS: Yesterday I was searching for a good investigative journalist to contact about the atrocities in the Family Court in this country (yep, thank you Left) and how like Chinese-style courts it has become; no need for tiresome evidence, just guilty as charged. And I have evidence to prove this serial abuse and discrimination from the Family Court.. Only if you’re a man, that is. Thank you feminists.

    Anyway, I looked up Kate McClymont on Twitter and thought I’d give her a go. But reading her Twitter comments I observed in a (rare) tweet, “I was going to give you a scoop but I see you are trapped in the undergraduate Left”. She took it extremely ill and turned on me. I replied, “Still no self-awareness about why Fairfax went down the tubes? Clue: their ‘competitors’ are singing from the same group-think song sheet”.

    The Left takes care of its own; a sheltered workshop for those unable and unwilling to mature and learn. McClymont won an award for busting open the sexual abuse of children in the church. A convenient project for a Lefty, I would have thought.

  • Rob Brighton

    Convenient but necessary regardless of who manages it and more power to them, if only they could bring themselves to repeat the same effort and do something about the poor little tykes being hurt in remote communities, but no, that would be racist just ask Yumi Stynes.

    As to the abuses of the family law court……..good job and good luck getting past the brigade of man haters running the show. I think you are flogging a dead horse myself but I really wish you success Jody.

  • Macspee

    Roger almost absolutely spot on. An excellent expose of utter wilful stupidity.
    The few comments about Nauru were not altogether fair. Nauru was “stolen” until31 January 1968 by the BPC, a joint venture of Australia, UK and NZ, that plundered its phosphate (read Christopher Weeramantry’s “Nauru-Environmental Damage under International Trusteeship”).
    The Nauruans certainly got stuck into it after they became independent and found out how much phosphate sold for. They did waste money but the cars etc were bought by landowners own money from royalties. The government for years ran a deficit of $100m+ just on the airline that was a ridiculous exercise. The Nauru Trust was well run for years until the locals started to believe they could do it better. “Leonardo” was a piddling expense in the scheme of things and it made Leonardo’s sexuality uncertain although it did lean towards hetero. The music was good and the idea not bad at all.
    It is untrue that aircraft were commandeered for shopping trips although in the early days schedules were sometimes thrown into utter disarray by the President.
    The Nauruans paid the price for thinking they knew best and refused partnerships or minority interests in projects where they would have been protected. They were only offered 13% of Leonardo but insisted on 100% and it was similar with other projects.
    Today they exist on handouts from Australia, NZ, international organisations and other but do little themselves. A population of about 2000 at Independence is now about 10,000 living on 8sq miles of which less than half is habitable.
    Few mention that the refugees on the Island live better than most of the locals whose houses are roofed by asbestos thanks to Australia and the BPC and who now pay tax, and charges for services, and wonder where and how their children will ever get employment once the refugee money runs out.

  • Edward Carson

    Surely this must be some kind of crime or civil wrong where a pubic official hands out taxpayer money without authority?
    Let B.B. keep the money, or whatever is left of it, and issue a writ for the person who wrote the cheque to account for the $125,000.

  • Jody

    The virtue-signalling vanity project which is “Buzzfeed” has laid off staff. Let’s look at the real extent of their virtue:

    https://medium.com/@BuzzFeedNewsStaffCouncil/letter-to-buzzfeed-pto-layoffs-f79d9c857a21

  • whitelaughter

    Peter, they’re easy to understand – just go back to Montesquieu and “The Spirit of Laws”:
    – there are 3 sorts of people, and 3 sorts of govt, one for each:

    – people who are motivated by ideals, and who live in republics
    – people who are motivated by honour, and who live in monarchies, and
    – people who are motivated by fear, and who live in tyrannies.

    With the development of the Constitutional Monarchy, or ‘crowned republic’, we’ve developed a system for the first two groups. But that leaves the third group, who instinctively grovel to those who would crush them, but despise those who seek their well being. Naturally they lick the boots of those who can condemn them in the media! That they are applauding while they are robbed? To be expected.

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