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IndyWatch Goulburn Valley News Feed was generated at Australian Local News IndyWatch.

Friday, 29 June

00:00

June 29 #OnThisDay in #Australian #History "IndyWatch Feed Vic"


1754 - Marie Louise Girardin was pupped, a cross-dressing French lass who, disguised as a bloke, served as a ship's steward with the French expedition of d'Entrecasteaux and was probably the very first European sheila to set foot on the Apple Isle of Tassie.

1799 - Storeship Albion arrived at Port Jackson with Capt. Eber Bunker aboard. He subsequently went whaling.

1836 - St Mary's Cathedral, Sydney, was consecrated by Bishop John Bede Polding.

1846 - The first river steamer service, the Experiment, began tootling between Brisbane and Ipswich, Qld.

1865 - St Mary's Cathedral, Sydney, was destroyed by fire.

1865 - The first Horse Race Meeting held in Mackay.

1869 - The foundation stone for St Peter's Cathedral, Adelaide,  was laid on St Peter's Day by Bishop Short in the presence of more than 1000 people.

1869 - Chippendale station, between Sydneys Central Station and Railway Square, originally opened as Mortuary Station and transported the dead and the grieving to their final resting place, Rookwood Cemetery.

1877 - Two young German Lutheran missionaries from Bethany, SA, reached the Finke River, NT, and prepared to establish Hermannsburg, a mission to the local Aborigines.

1881 - Ballarat was graced with His Graces on a Royal visit from Prince Albert Victor, Duke of Clarence & Prince George, Duke of  York (George V).

1907 - In order to prevent the introduction of fruit-fly to Victoria, the Minister for Agriculture announced that regulations were to be passed immediately to prevent any fruit from New South Wales entering Victoria unless it had been packed in the orchard where it was grown and passed by the inspector stationed in Sydney. Additionally Queensland citrus was to be stored for a week before shipment south.

1912 - W.E Hart, the first to get his pilot's licence in The Land of Oz, won Australia's first air race (from Botany to Parramatta, 25 kms) when he beat the American daredevil A.B 'Wizard' Stone, who landed, lost, at Lakemba.

1914 - The Kulwin Railway Line (Vic) was extended from Sea Lake to Nandaly.

1918 - The Enoggera-Terrors Creek Railway Line (QLD) was extended from Mitchelton to Samford and was officially opened at the Samford Railway Station & Goods Yard.

1918 -  Cairns and Innisfail agreed the new Rugby League code had to be adopted for an inter-city game scheduled for the 29th June 1918 with a view to implementing the code for Club games in both Cairns and Innisfail for the 1919 Season.

1922 - The Strzelecki Railway Branch Line (Vic) was opened from  Koo Wee Rup  to Strzelecki.

1942 General Thomas Blamey reorganised the army for the defence of Australia.

...

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Thursday, 28 June

23:15

Australias Debt Bomb. "IndyWatch Feed Vic"

Last night on ABC TV News, during the financial report section, Philip Lasker dropped a bombshell that almost nobody noticed..  It starts getting interesting about half way through the video clip below..:

http://www.abc.net.au/news/business/kohler-report/

Home lending almost accounts for 80% of the national economy. At first, I nearly fell off my chair.  surely not?  But of course dear reader it all makes sense.  after all, the economy is measured in money throughput, and when that money is almost completely created as debt, of course the economy consists of debt. and as more and more business no longer produces anything worthwhile, people are turning to borrowing to buy real estate, and, most likely, stocks too.

A housing downturn seems to have started, and it wont take much to bring the whole house of cards down in a huge pile of worthless money.

How much longer can this keep going?  I hope long enough for me to get my house in order  Please please can I have another 12 months.

07:49

Ageing in harmony: why the third act of life should be musical "IndyWatch Feed Vic"

Image 20160601 25573 yu48y8.jpg?ixlib=rb 1.1
Its never too late to pick up a musical instrument. In fact there are many reasons why its a great idea, particularly in old age.We normally hear about reasons to increase music education for children, and for good cause. There are many cognitive and social benefits to playing an instrument that aid a childs development. Consequently, as an older adult, there are long-term effects of having taken part in these musical activities, as it can limit cognitive decline.

Even a small amount of training can have long lasting effects. But this doesnt mean that those who have never played an instrument in childhood have missed the boat. The ageing brain is plastic: that means it is able to learn new things all the time. So, should we consider an increase in music programs for those in the third age?

Playing music as a workout for the brain

Learning to play a musical instrument is an extremely complex task that involves the coordination of multiple sensory systems within the brain. Many instruments require precise coordination between the eyes, the ears and the hands in order to play a musical note. Using the resulting sound as feedback, the brain prepares for the next note and so it continues. The act of music-making is quite a brain workout.

The relationship between the motor and auditory parts of the brain is strengthened when physically playing music. This may explain why adults trained to play certain melodies have an enhanced representation of music in the brain compared to adults only trained to listen to the same melodies.

As playing music involves many different parts of the brain, even a short-term program for older adult musical novices can lead to generalised improvements for cognitive ability.

Music as a workout for the fingers

Learning to play an instrument such as the piano involves many complex finger sequencing and coordination tasks. As such, it can be a great test-bed for learning to move fingers independently.

The creativity of...

07:23

Job vacancies at the highest level on record "IndyWatch Feed Vic"

Job vacancies flying

Labour market figures continue to defy the sceptics and pessimists, my semi-optimistic self included!

Although telcos, banks, and eventually construction companies may well be shedding staff in the years ahead, the strength of the services sector is overwhelming the bad news. 

Vacancies exploded 24.1 per cent higher year-on-year to a seasonally adjusted 236,000.

Not only is that the highest level on record, it's actually an acceleration in the annual rate of growth to the steepest trajectory since the post-crisis recovery period of 2010. 


The Tasmanian economy hasn't seen much change over the past year, with vacancies reportedly being filled by applicants quickly.

However, in all other states and territories there was significant, double-digit year-on-year growth. 

Western Australia in particular is now looking up, with vacancies up by 26.2 per cent over the year to May 2018, rebounding from a sharp decline.

But the real boom state is Victoria, with vacancies exploding 51.6 per cent from a year earlier to by far the highest level on record at 67,600. Boomtime!

New South Wales also remains at hot levels with 77,300 vacancies, a double-digit increase from May 2017. 


...

03:36

New Change.org Petition Airlines: Dont Deport To Danger! "IndyWatch Feed Vic"

Our new petition calling on airlines not to deport asylum seekers is up on Change.org! RAC has written a Code of Conduct to be presented to domestic and international airlines. We need as many signatures as possible to send a clear statement that deporting innocent people is illegal under international law and will not be(...)

03:22

PTUA welcomes rail investment in Ballarat "IndyWatch Feed Vic"

The Public Transport Users Association has today welcomed the governments announcement of the details of a $130m project to untangle freight and passenger services in Ballarat.

The project will largely separate freight and passenger trains west of Ballarat station, and upgrade the signalling system in the Ballarat area, to allow for more efficient movement of trains of all kinds.

PTUA Ballarat Branch Convener Ben Lever said it was important work that would complement other investments in freight and passenger rail.

There are two big rail projects going on around Ballarat at the moment the Ballarat Line Upgrade project for passenger trains, and the Murray Basin Rail Project for freight trains. These two projects intersect within urban Ballarat, so todays announcement will help make sure there arent too many conflicts between freight and passenger movements.

Its really essential that our passenger services can have a clear run so theyre not delayed by freight trains but its also really important that freight doesnt get overlooked. We need a strong rail freight industry that is competitive with the road freight industry, if we want to reduce the number of trucks on our roads, and get the safety and air quality benefits that come with it. This kind of infrastructure investment is a great step in the right direction.

Mr Lever said the project will help allow for extra services to Ararat and Maryborough, and potentially for extension of trains to Dunolly.

For the train to really be useful to people, it needs to run quite frequently. The Maryborough line in particular has always suffered from a lack of services, so we are definitely keen to see trains running more frequently on this line.

Mr Lever also noted that the project may have benefits for the eventual return of direct passenger trains between Ballarat and Geelong.

00:17

Coming to a fruit tree near you? "IndyWatch Feed Goulburn"

This rather attractive little fly may or may not be in the Flowerdale/Strath Creek area. Its the Queensland Fruit Fly (QFF), Bactrocera tryoni, a native insect distributed through much of eastern Australia, and with a bad reputation as a pest of orchards and vegetable crops, both on a commercial scale and in home gardens. So []

00:00

June 28 #OnThisDay in #Australian #History "IndyWatch Feed Goulburn"

1789  - Governor Arthur Phillip set out for a post-luncheon stroll to trace the course of the Hawkesbury River.

1790  - Mother of the Australian wool industry, Elizabeth Macarthur, first sailed into Sydney with the Second Fleet.

1824 - Cornelius Fitzpatrick was hanged at Sydney for the murder of John Bentley outside Newcastle.

1830 - William Dalton was hanged at Sydney for highway robbery of John Ellison near Parramatta.

1833 - Australia's oldest bridge on the mainland, Lennox Bridge, Lapstone Hill, NSW, was completed.

1836 - Snow fell in Sydney.
Just a trifle cool...

1837 - A public meeting, with David McLaren in the chair, was held to discuss the formation of a Mechanics Institute aka SA Institute.

1842 - Charles Ellis was hanged at Melbourne Gaol for "shooting with intent to maim or disable" ("The Plenty Trio").

1842 - Martin Fogarty Bushranger, was hanged at Melbourne Gaol for "shooting with intent to maim or disable" ("The Plenty Trio").

1842 - Daniel "Yankee Jack" Jepps Bushranger, was hanged at Melbourne Gaol for "shooting with intent to maim or disable" ("The Plenty Trio").

1845 - Explorer John Roper was wounded and lost an eye when the Ludwig Leichhardt-led Port Essington exploration tea-and-scones party was attacked by Aboriginals.

1845 - Near the Gulf of Carpentaria, explorer John Gilbert was killed by a flying spear when natives made a night attack on the Ludwig Leichhardt-led Port Essington expedition's camp, because some of their women had been molested by the two Aboriginals with the party. He was buried on the spot, a tree near by was marked, and a fire was lit over the disturbed earth in order to screen the grave; this, although much searched for, has not since been found.

1849 - The town of Wangaratta, Vic, was eyeballed and surveyed.

1855 -  Ballarat Times owner Henry Seekamp, sentenced for "publishing seditious libel",  was released from gaol, the only man to serve a prison term as a result of the Eureka Stockade.

1858 - Anglican Bishop Matthew Hale opened a boys' college, Bishop's School, founded on the model of the Collegiate School of St Peter, Adelaide.

1861 - Robert O'Hara Burke, who for some unfathomable reason thought that after a career as a soldier, then as a policeman, then as a police superintendent he would be perfect as an explorer, was proved wrong when he starved to death on his famous road trip.

1870 - John Regan (46) was hanged at Launceston Gaol for the murder of his sixteen-year-old wife Emma on the Westbury Road.

1876 - Michael Connelly was hanged at Tamworth Gaol for the murder of his wife Mary Connelly at Carrol Gap.

...

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Wednesday, 27 June

10:39

Freeing Yourself from Environmental Despair "IndyWatch Feed Vic"

Our planet is indeed beautiful. Who cannot be moved by the images of our fragile looking earth taken from the moon? Alas the fragility is real and the pillaging of []

05:43

The 7 April 1992 advertisement of Gillard's intention to seek admission in WA on 4 May 1992 "IndyWatch Feed Vic"

On 7 April 1992 the following advertisement appeared in The West Australian. "Julia Eileen Gillard of 39 St Philips St Abbotsford, Victoria..... intend(s) to apply to the Full Court on 4 May 1992....to admission as a practitioner.." The declaration made by Gillard was dated the day before, 6 April 1992....

04:40

Engineering works on the rise again "IndyWatch Feed Vic"

Engineers back in demand

Positive news for the Australian economy as another issue that was supposed to cause the end of days is seen off.

Following years of seemingly endless declines from the 2012 peak, engineering construction activity was 14 per cent higher year on year at a seasonally adjusted $23.7 billion in the March 2018 quarter.

Public works has done plenty of the heavy lifting here, up 19 per cent from a year earlier to $9.5 billion, with infrastructure projects in New South Wales and especially Victoria a major driver of the rebound. 

Indeed there has been a tremendous increase in engineering work in Victoria since 2014, with activity in the state rising by two-thirds since that time. 

Queensland also saw quarterly activity lift to a 33-month high of $5.4 billion, following on from a wretched downturn as the mega-LNG projects transitioned to production.


Although mineral exploration and metres drilled are soaring again in Western Australia this has yet to translate into meaningful engineering work, with activity languishing at levels last seen in 2006.

Victoria kicked off some $11.5 billion of road/rail/bridge works in the March quarter, helping to lift the national quarterly value of engineering work commenced to the highest level since 2013.

Looking forward

The outlook for engin...

04:35

All over bar the shouting "IndyWatch Feed Vic"

IMG_20180620_153939

The last block.

Another milestone has been reached with the construction of Mon Abri MkII Mark finished all the block laying last week with the last piece of the jigsaw puzzle laid while he wore his Master Brick Layer bowler hat..  apparently brick layers deemed to be masters at their craft used to wear bowler hats in the UK, and well before the well to do in Fleet Street did, or so says Mark anyhow

...

02:47

FUNDING BOOST FOR VICTORIAN LANGUAGE SERVICES WELCOMED "IndyWatch Feed Vic"

 

Wednesday June 27th, 2018

 

FUNDING BOOST FOR VICTORIAN LANGUAGE SERVICES WELCOMED

Minister for Multicultural Affairs Robin Scott has recently announced a significant funding increase for interpreter services in Victoria. Ethnic Communities Council of Victoria (ECCV) Chairperson Cr Kris Pavlidis welcomes this injection of funding towards support of the Interpreting profession.

Equitable access and services information is vital for all Victorians, including those from culturally diverse backgrounds. Yet low English proficiency and a lack of knowledge about services within multicultural communities continue to lead to poorer health access to services compared to other communities.

Victorians whose first language is not English will continue to be left behind by health providers as long as there is cultural insensitivity towards the impacts of communication.

The use of accredited interpreters decreases the risk of miscommunication between service providers and consumers. This funding addresses the fundamental right of all people regardless of their linguistic affiliation, to be heard with dignity and respect said Cr Kris Pavlidis.  

In March 2017 ECCV published a discussion paper Our Stories, Our Voices: Culturally diverse consumer perspectives on the role of accredited interpreters in Victorias health services. This paper recommends that all Victorian public health service providers need to ensure that culturally diverse Victorians who access their health services know their rights to access accredited interpreters, to clear communication, safety, respect, privacy and confidentiality and the right to give feedback and have their concerns addressed.

Minister Scott says All Victorians have a right to access government services, regardless of their English language skills. Interpreters are vital to enabling this access. With Victorias increasing cultural diversity, interpreters have never been more important. It is essential that we ensure a professional, high-quality language services industry to meet the needs of Victorians.

Cr Kris Pavlidis says she concurs with Minister Scotts sentiment that it is crucial to help facilitate a voice for those who would otherwise remain silent.  

For more information and/or media comment, please contact Leenie Fabri, Communications &...

00:58

MAJOR WIN FOR FOOD SOVEREIGNTY AS VICTORIA ANNOUNCES PLANNING REFORMS "IndyWatch Feed Vic"

The Australian Food Sovereignty Alliance (AFSA) is celebrating a win for small-scale pastured pig and poultry farmers and everyones access to food grown in ethical and ecologically sound ways with the Victorian Governments announcement of the long-awaited reforms to the planning scheme.

The reforms acknowledge the very low risk these systems pose to environment and amenity, and introduce a streamlined permit application process for low density mobile outdoor pig and chicken farms, with no requirement for referrals to other agencies nor a notice and review period.

While we still maintain that small-scale pastured pig and poultry farms should not have been required to obtain a permit to farm in the Farming Zone, just as their grazing counterparts are not required to, we have accepted this compromise as a way forward to give local councils and communities confidence that our intentions to raise animals responsibly and respectfully are matched by our farming practices, said AFSA President Tammi Jonas.

Up until 2015 small-scale pastured pig and poultry farms were advised by councils across the state that they did not require permits as they were generally considered to be extensive or grazing systems. However, a VCAT ruling in 2015 deemed free-range pig farm Happy Valley as intensive due to importing the majority of the pigs feed.

The decision triggered a process that has taken three years to address what farmers, councils, and the state government all agreed was an unintended consequence of an imprecise definition.

AFSA mobilized its members and partnered with other organisations across the state such as Slow Food Melbourne, Open Food Network, and the Victorian Farmers Markets Association, which led to an unprecedented 270 submissions made to Agriculture Victoria late last year calling for scale-appropriate, risk-based planning provisions.

We are delighted at this outcome after years of working with the Victorian Government, and optimistic that small-scale regenerative farmers have a seat at the table now that we have collectivized our voices in an organization that the Government recognizes as the voice of small-scale farmers, said AFSA President Tammi Jonas.

Whilst the new scheme is not perfect, it blends solid scientific principles with a pragmatic approach for planners to ensure that our sector can continue to expand rapidly while protecting environment and amenity. The Government and its departments are to be congratulated for recognising the emergence of our sector and asking for our help to formulate this new policy, said Bruce Burton of Milking Yard Farm.

"Regrarians Ltd applauds the Victoria State Government's process since it released its draft reforms in September 2017. Working with partner organisations such as AFSA, VFMA along wit...

00:00

June 27 #OnThisDay in #Australian #History "IndyWatch Feed Goulburn"

1789 - Ooooooooo, there was excitement plus, peoples, when Captain Tench and his party gallivanted upon the Nepean River.

1865 - Army commaner and engineer John Monash was found in the cabbage patch.

1874 - Victoria's mining unions amalgamated to form Amalgamated Miners Union.

1880 - Seige of Glenrowan Day 2 -
Most of the law abiding element of Glenrowans population had been rounded up by Ned Kelly and his gang and held hostage in Ann Jones Inn. This was so the Kellys could derail the train tacks and no warning of the trap towards the police and their special train coming from Melbourne. As the day wore n, and no police train appeared along the tracks, the tense atmosphere developed, and by late night, it appeared that there would be no train. The police train finally left Melbourne for Beechworth in North East Victoria, at 10pm, with police, horses and blacktrackers.

1891 - Floods destroyed property from Wagga Wagga to Queanbeyan, NSW.

1905 - The newspapers were full of the news that 3 West Oz Aboriginal men had been arrested, while a 4th escaped, after the discovery of two skeletons alleged to have been white fellas, while between 9 and 12 murders were being attributed to these men.

1909 - The Main North Railway Line (NSW) was opened.

1911 - Australia's first military academy, Duntroon, opened within the Australian Capital Territory.


1916 - Those farmers in Yanac were mighty pleased with the opening of the Yanac-a-Yanac Railway Branch Line (Vic) from Lorquon.

1925 - The Mildura Railway Line (Vic) was stretched a little longer when it was extended from Merbein to Yelta...and became the Yelta Railway Line.

1927 - When the Duke and Duchess of York finally got home after their tour of Or-stray-lia they had 3 tons of gifts for their little girl, Elizabeth. Bet that copped them a fair fine for over-weight luggage!

1934 - Eight Aboriginal prisoners who had been condemned to death in the Darwin Courts for murder of two white prospectors had their sentences commuted to life imprisonment by the Governor-General.

1937 - In Dubbo, western NSW, trade unionist and Aboriginal politician William Ferguson launched the Aborigines Progressive Association, in opposition to the Aborigines Protection Board, after officials of the Board had arbitrarily used their powers to harass Aboriginal people.

1949 A coal strike involving 23,000 miners began. It lasted for seven weeks until Australian military forces were used to break the strike; the first time such a thing had happened in peace-time Australia.

1951 - The Country of Cumberland Scheme, which determines and controls the growth and planning of Sydney, became operational.

1974 - Eighty-e...

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Tuesday, 26 June

23:21

Well Gosh. "IndyWatch Feed Vic"

 

simon_michauxI just came out of a meeting with two ministers of Finland. One was the Director of Ministry of Economic Affairs and Employment of Finland. We were to discuss how to develop the battery industry in Finland. They openly discussed concepts like peak oil, hyperinflation, EU currency reset, Break up of EU into something else and the projection that we dont have nearly enough minerals to make the desired quantity of batteries and solar panels. They even knew what ERoEI was.

Somebody pinch me!!!

Even though Ive never met Simon face to face, we have become friends over that FB platform and have discovered that we are actually very similar in our senses of humour and outlook for the future..  Simon is an Australian mining engineer whose work I featured on DTM many moons ago, and is currently working for the Finnish Government in a high power position to determine Finlands future energy and resources position. The header of this post is by Simon; he posted it on the FB Peak Oil group I follow.. I just had to share it, because its obvious that there are plenty of people in goverments (all over the world?) who must know what is going on, and yet do not have the guts to come out and say it like it is.

How much longer will we have to wait before reality makes an appearance in Australia?

If you havent seen it yet, heres a presentation by Simon on peak mining.

...

12:05

A UFO film - "The Nullarbor." "IndyWatch Feed Vic"

Introduction

There are two Australian UFO cases, of which almost all researchers have heard. The first is the 1978 disappearance of Victorian pilot Frederick Valentich. The second, is the 1988 Knowles family encounter on the Nullarbor Plains of Western Australia, which is the subject of this post.

Background



In the early morning hours of 20 January 1988, members of the Perth based Knowles family, were travelling by car from Perth to Melbourne, driving through the night over the isolated Nullarbor Plains near the Western Australia/South Australia border. They reported seeing an unusual light, near ground level, which they believed then attempted to lift their car off the ground, during an extended encounter.



Their story made headlines around the world, and locally was investigated in depth by members of UFO Research of South Australia. Now, the story is to be told in a full length feature film.



IMDb

The International Movie Data base shows that a film titled simply, "The Nullarbor" is in pre-production. It is scheduled as a 90 minute, "action, drama, sci-fi." The plot given there is, "On a dark and lonely road an ordinary family encounter something extraordinary....

11:56

2018 True Blue Crew Aussie Pride / Flagwit Parade : All Aboard The Failboat Toot Toot! "IndyWatch Feed Vic"

tl;dr : LOL In Melbourne on Sunday, a small group of racists and fascists, assembled under the banner of the True Blue Crew (TBC), undertook a rally and march, ostensibly in order to celebrate Aussie Pride. The flagwit parade is Continue reading

08:30

July In Your Patch "IndyWatch Feed Vic"


When you look outside this time of year the last thing you feel like doing is standing out in the cold, wet and windy weather, especially if you live in the cooler areas. Dont let this put you off. There is so much to do in the garden and a lot more to do in the garden shed. Get off the couch and put on the thermals, the beanie, a coat and your gumboots and warm yourself up with some winter garden love.

Of course, the following is just a rough guide, and many of you will find your situation varies from the above listing due to microclimates created in your garden, location in relation to your nearest major city, extremes of weather and garden type. But the one thing that remains the same for all zones and regions is this: improve your soil by adding organic matter, mulch and no matter the season, we can all garden more sustainably all year round.

Tool Time
Why not head out to the shed, and sharpen, clean, oil and maintain your garden tools. Sounds tedious, but its really rewarding, and will save you cash in the long run. Practicing tool hygiene will prevent the spread of disease.

Mulch your beds
Top up mulch on your veggie patches, herb gardens and ornamental beds. Choose sustainable, low environmental impact mulch, one that will enrich your soil as it breaks down. If in the southern states try to avoid Sugar Cane as it would have a high carbon footprint due to transport.

Green Manure
Green manure crops are good to go now improve that dormant veggie patch. In cooler to temperate areas you can use crops like like faba beans or field peas and for warmer areas try mung beans. Remember to chop and drop them before they flower.

Pruning & Weeding
Pruning and weeding is a great job to do at this time of year. Deciduous fruit trees love a big old haircut now, except your apricot!

Cool to Cold Areas

Low temperatures for extended periods of time (all of Tasmania, most of Victoria, the southern highlands of NSW, the ACT and a tiny southern bit of SA)

Its bare root season! Get your deciduous fruit trees in now, including apples, pears, plums, peaches and nectarines. Deciduous exotic trees can also be planted now.

Theres still a bit happening in the veggie patch, especially if you love your brassicas, you could try spinach, carrots, sweet peas, broad beans, coriander and peas.

Temperate Areas......

04:49

Nudges from Grandfather "IndyWatch Feed Goulburn"

Nudges from Grandfather is a personal account of the authors discovery of assistance from the spirit realm when information is needed in the dimension of healing, growth and living an embodied spirituality.   Chris Kavelin is a Bahai and directly shares his spiritual experiences and learnings in this faith tradition. He also learns from those ... Read more...

04:40

Water bills among Australias cheapest "IndyWatch Feed Goulburn"

THE average residential water customer in South Gippsland will continue to pay some of the lowest rates in Australia for water and sewerage services.
Average water bills in South Gippsland will remain relatively stable in 2018-19, with the average bill to remain at $996, according to the Essential Services Commission (ESC), the states water regulator.
The ESC issued its final pricing determination last week and said savings identified as a result of community feedback and discussion with SGW meant customers would now see lower prices than what SGW proposed, with only the Consumer Price Index (CPI) applied for the next two years.
SGW amended its original submissions and only sought increases of CPI for the next two years, across volumetric and service charges.
Under South Gippsland Waters draft plan, customers faced paying up to $78 more each year on their water bills. Now the average household bill will remain at $996.
That average applies to an owner occupier using an average of 118kL of water per year an increase of only $18 for the year, representing CPI.
This is on par or lower than most Melbourne customers and between $89 and $800 less than water bills received in major capital cities and territories across Australia in 2016-17.
SGW managing director Philippe du Plessis said, Benchmark reporting has placed South Gippsland Water as one of the lowest charging water utilities in Australia. In real terms, South Gippsland Water prices have increased by only four percent over the last 10 years.
In the context of customer affordability and a two year price period, South Gippsland Water has given a commitment to hold prices stable and only apply CPI for the next two years.
South Gippsland Water is a state owned corporation with prices charged to meet capital and operating costs, not to generate profits for private investors. South Gippsland Water invests money into infrastructure for the benefit of our local communities.
In developing its pricing submission, SGW conducted extensive customer consultation and the corporation remains committed to delivering on customers needs, as canvassed during consultation.
However, the corporation was concerned about the impact increased tariffs may have had on customers.
South Gippsland Water remains committed to delivering a 1.5 percent efficiency target which was accepted by the commission, Mr du Plessis said.
The corporation will also continue to focus on assisting customers who may have difficulty paying their accounts.
To this end, the corporation is implementing support programs to identify and support our customers who may be experiencing difficulty in paying their water bill.
As part of the pricing review process, the ESC analysed SGWs business and accepted there were unavoidable operating costs. These include expenditure associated w...

04:36

Yarding reflects seasonal impacts "IndyWatch Feed Goulburn"

There were approximately 1060 export and 180 young cattle penned representing a decrease of 480 head week on week.
The usual buying group was present and competing in a dearer market.
Quality showed seasonal effects with fewer prime cattle and cows making up half of the sale.
A better quality selection of vealers sold 15c/kg dearer. A small number of yearling trade steers sold 20c/kg dearer for better quality. Yearling heifers to the trade gained 10c to 20c/kg.
Grown steers and bullocks recovered all and more of last weeks losses improving 10c to 15c/kg for a more limited offering. Heavy weight Friesian manufacturing steers improved 7c/kg while the crossbred portion held firm.
The cow sale was a little more erratic with averages from firm to 8c/kg dearer. Heavy bulls sold firm.
Vealers suited to butchers sold from 290c to 330c with secondary lots from 262c to 295c/kg. Yearling trade steers made between 276c and 311c/kg. Yearling heifers to the trade sold between 262c and 295c/kg.
Grown steers made from 288c to 307c/kg. Bullocks sold from 285c to 325c/kg. Heavy Friesian manufacturing steers made between 192c and 238c with the crossbred portion between 242c and 295c/kg.
Most light and medium weight cows sold between 130c and 195c/kg. Heavy weight cows made from 175c to 225c/kg. Better shaped heavy bulls sold from 210c to 239c/kg.
The next sale draw June 27: 1. Elders, 2. Landmark, 3. Alex Scott & Staff, 4. Phelan & Henderson & Co, 5. Rodwells, 6. SEJ.
Prime Sale Wednesday, June 20

 

04:34

Childrens service looks to expand "IndyWatch Feed Goulburn"

THE Corner Inlets kindergarten and childcare services needs to expand to meet demand.
Prom Coast Centres for Children (PCCC) is a not for profit organisation operating centres at Foster, Fish Creek, Toora and Welshpool.
Foster offers long day care and kindergarten, and Fish Creek, Toora and Welshpool provide kindergarten and pre-kindergarten. After school and a school holiday program for primary school aged children are also offered.
PCCC president Kate Woodward told South Gippsland Shire Council last Wednesday there is high demand for services and a desire to cater for growth.
The Foster centre needs a new room to cater for babies and administration area improvements, and buildings at Toora, Welshpool and Fish Creek need upgrading.
PCCC is investigating integrated kindergarten models to increase enrolments at Foster and working with Foster Primary School to have the outside school hours care service provided by PCCC at the Foster school site.
It is not appropriate for 10 year old children to be in a kinder setting for outside school hours care, PCCC president Kate Woodward said.
PCCC is also seeking to build new kindergarten facilities at the sites of the Toora and Welshpool and District primary schools. A council review in 2015 recommended one site to provide a 22 place kindergarten and ancillary services for the towns within five to 10 years.
We look forward to continuing to work in collaboration with South Gippsland Shire Council and welcome any suggestions, Ms Woodward said.
Welshpool and District Primary School principal Gabbi Boyd also a PCCC committee member welcomed the proposal.
We are extremely happy for this to go ahead as a two co-existing centres, she said, noting she had inspected other sites where kindergarten and primary school services were provided on the school site.
It is something that is viable.
Kindergarten services are now offered at Toora and Welshpool kindergartens on alternate weeks.
Families in remote communities are facing high costs in travelling to Foster for long day care.
PCCC employs 30 staff, including trainees and apprentices, and has been in operation since 2014 when the previous administrator, UnitingCare Gippsland, withdrew.

Caring for children: fro...

04:28

Farmers disappointed by milk companies "IndyWatch Feed Goulburn"

MILK processing companies have disappointed dairy farmers by leaving opening price announcements to the last minute.
More disappointing still were the numbers, despite market indicators pointing towards an opening price of around $6 per kilogram of milk solids.
Saputo opened at $5.75kg/MS and Fonterra at $5.85kg/MS, while Burra Foods has a forecast range of $5.60 to $5.90kg/MS.
Fonterra Australia said theirs was a market based, sustainable price and another step towards pricing simplicity.
Before Saputo and Fonterra announced opening prices, Rabobank suggested a full season milk price higher than $6kg/MS was on the cards.
In the lead up to the new season, which starts on July 1, Dairy Australia figures showed Gippsland dairy farmer confidence levels took a hit.
Low farmgate prices was the main factor impacting on negative sentiment among Gippsland farmers, followed by high input costs and concerns around milk processing companies, Dairy Australia senior industry analyst John Droppert said.
Outtrim dairy farmer Luke Lamers said while he still had confidence in the industry, he was lacking confidence in milk processing companies.
Mr Lamers said after a difficult couple of years, his family made the choice to switch to Fonterra, after 40 years with Murray Goulburn.
This is our first season with Fonterra, he said.
Despite Fonterras opening price being 10 cents higher than Saputos, Mr Lamers said it was disappointing they left it to the last minute to announce the price.
They should have come out with it a month ago, to give us time to budget and prepare for the season, he said.
Mr Lamers said world indicators suggested a realistic opening price would sit at $6kg/MS or above.
They are not basing their price on market indicators. Thats why there was disappointment about it, he said.
Mr Lamers said since the events that rocked the industry in 2016, processors had promised to be more transparent with their pricing systems.
I still feel like they are playing around. I wouldnt be surprised if Saputo turned around now and increased its price, he said.
There is a lot of disappointment in the companies, because after all we have been through, they are still behaving in the same way.
Mr Lamers said if the milk price was less volatile, he would be more confident.
At the moment, we have to take it year by year. It is impossible to budget too far ahead, he said.
Mr Lamers family farms across 1000 acres and milks 580 cows to produce around four million litres a year.
A decent spring in 2017 saw a good supply of silage and hay cut off the farm.
We are still feeding home grown silage and still have hay in the shed for the dry cows. We are self sufficient at the moment, which is one less thing to worry about, he said.
...

04:27

Burra Foods milk to hit the shelves in Taiwan "IndyWatch Feed Goulburn"

KORUMBURRA dairy processor Burra Foods has announced the launch of its new dairy brand, Pure Source Milk.
Pure Source is Burra Foods first retail product and is part of a strategy to drive maximum value from fresh farm gate milk in international markets.
The one-litre Australian fresh milk packs will initially be exported to Taiwan with a strong focus on regional provenance back to the Gippsland dairy farming families that supply the high quality milk.
Each pack contains a Farm Finder QR code that tells the story and provides information about the farms that supply Burra Foods.
Evan Scicluna, Burra Foods marketing and business development manager, said, Taiwanese consumers drink over 15 million litres of premium imported fresh milk every year. There is already a positive preconception of Australian agriculture and we plan to take it one step further by promoting Gippsland as Australias premier dairy region.
Burra Foods believes traceability in the dairy supply chain will continue to evolve with technological advances.
Victorian Minister for Trade and Investment Philip Dalidakis congratulated Burra Foods on the Pure Source Milk launch and said the government was backing the company in its drive to promote Gippslands dairy products on the world stage.
Victoria has a well deserved reputation for producing premium food and beverage products, and Burra Foods is a great example of how regional Victorian companies are taking these products to the world, he said.
The Victorian Government is helping companies like Burra Foods connect with global markets so they can grow and employ more locals.
Pure Source Milk will be sold across 5000 distribution points in Taiwan and will be supported by an integrated marketing campaign focused around Gippslands pristine farming environment.

Taste of Gippsland: Burra Foods first retail product, Pure Source Milk, will be sold in Taiwan. Marking the occasion is former Leongatha man, Dale ONeill, Burra Foods general manager commercial, with Lisa Renkin, deputy commissioner Greater China, Victorian Government Trade and Investment Office.

04:25

Time to manage ponds "IndyWatch Feed Goulburn"

A DRY start to winter has opened a small window of opportunity for dairy farmers wanting to irrigate pastures with their dairy pond effluent.
Kongwak dairy farmers Andrew Perry and Kerry Fraser hosted a walk-through on their farm recently as part of the Healthy Soils, Sustainable Farms project supported by the West Gippsland Catchment Management Authority.
Mr Perry said the whole idea of the project was to give the best strategy for the dairy to ensure the best environmental and production outcomes using dairy pond effluent management.
One of the challenges we face is knowing how much to pull back on fertilisers and managing the ponds, so you need an independent review, he said.
It has been a relatively dry year, so we are still pumping effluent into pasture. Normally at this time of year we would be swimming around in our gumboots.
About 10 percent of a cows waste is deposited in the milking process and it is a farmers responsibility to keep that effluent from running off beyond the farm.
Environment Protection Authority Victoria Gippsland region manager Stephen Lansdell said that after a fairly dry autumn in most areas, dairy farmers need to be emptying their dairy effluent ponds for maintenance.
Problems with dairy effluent ponds are common. When EPA ran an inspection program on 31 dairy farms in 2017, more than half were served with legally enforceable notices to undertake works to resolve pollution problems.
According to Agriculture Victoria dairy development specialist Scott McDonald, most environmental issues are due to surface run-off and risk of leaching, odour and effluent pooling which also caused emissions.
Agriculture Victoria plays the lead role in educating farmers and training up the private sector consultants to assist farmers in successful pond design, he said.
There is a bit of an opportunity to irrigate now before they get too wet but its also a good time to do some de-sludging to keep those ponds from over-flowing.

Managing waste: dairy pond effluent can pose challenges to dairy farmers. Andrew Perry hosted a walk-through at his Kongwak farm with Ag-Challenge effluent management consultant Glenn Marriott and West Gippsland Catchment Management Authority project manager Tony Gardner recently.

04:18

Knights take on new soccer side "IndyWatch Feed Goulburn"

Seniors
THE Leongatha Knights hosted the new Warragul United team on Sunday.
In goal for the Warragul team was former Knights player Shem Murphy.
The Leongatha team was without Ethan Bath, Blake Moscript and Braydan Moscript, but had Brian Gannon and Sean Villasevil stepping up from the Reserves.
The game started with both teams losing possession whenever they went forward until Warragul was able to win a corner. With a plan in mind the corner was taken and the ball passed to the front of goal where a United player was able to get a shot off unmarked and score the first goal.
With Patrick OMeara, John Stephen and Pierre Cohignac starting up forward, the Knights were looking at attacking the Warragul side and trying to get the advantage.
Warragul played a controlled game with plenty of passing.
This kept the Knights players guessing where the ball was going.
With deft passing, it wasnt long before the ball was passed forwards behind the defence and when the Warragul player was able to get there before keeper Charlie Dougherty he found a player in support and they were able to score their second goal. The Knights defence in Curtis Rintoule, Tom Barker, Tom Rycks and David Simon was finding things tough with a Warragul side intent on breaking through and beating any offside trap that was set.
The finish of the first half came when Warragul again played the ball forwards and Leongatha was unable to defend the cross, only for a defender to kick the clearance and score an own goal.
The Knights had set up with Fergus Warren pushing into the midfield along with Jack Bainbridge and Stefano Viano and Brian Gannon, a solid midfield that was finding it tough to keep chasing down the elusive Warragul players.
A first half the Leongatha side was glad had finished and for the chance to collect its thoughts on the sidelines and plan a comeback.
The second half proved better for the Knights and they were able to score two goals through placing pressure on the ball carriers and forcing the untied team into quick choices.
When the defence looked to make a back pass to Shem it was PJ who struck and was able to chase the ball down and get a toe onto the ball and score.
The second came from the Knights best passage all match when a free kick was taken and the ball sent down the right wing where Pierre Cohignac was able to send in a cross for an unmarked Fergus Warren to head the Knights back into the match.
Alas all the hard work fell down when the Warragul side sent a clearance forward which was controlled best by its attacker and with a turn of speed put himself into the clear and with only Charlie to beat was able to score.
When Sean Villasevil came on he was able to apply some pressure with his speed but in an unlucky tussle for a ball he received a head knock and wasnt his usual self.
...

04:17

Cross country a tough challenge "IndyWatch Feed Goulburn"

THIRTY Wonthaggi Secondary College students competed at the Gippsland cross country championship in tough conditions at Lardner Park on June 14.
Everyone put in a huge effort and represented the school well.
Toby Challinor placed second in the 12-13 males event and Ella Hughes finished third in the open age womens event; a massive congratulations to these two and also to the 12-13 year old boys team who made it through in the team category. These students, along with Laetitia Pugh, Kiara Brusamarello, Jack Opitz and Jess Gislingham will compete at the State Championships in Bundoora later in the year.
Good luck to these students.

Competitive: Wonthaggi Secondary College students Georgia Dakin and Jayla Morcom tackled the Lardner Park terrain at the Gippsland cross country event.

04:16

Giants find winning form "IndyWatch Feed Goulburn"

KORUMBURRA-Bena scored its third win of the year after defeating Kilcunda-Bass at home on Saturday.
The match was a special occasion for the home side, as coach Damien Holmes played his 200th game in his accolade filled Kilcunda-Bass career.
The five time best and fairest winner was met by a guard of honour formed by juniors of the club and the victorious Reserves players.
The Giants however, were determined to ruin Holmes party and make amends for their loss against the Panthers earlier in the year.
The visitors started off well and kicked the first two goals of the contest.
A small but speedy and silky midfield led by Brenton Fitzgerald was able to kick the Giants into gear and they werent allowing much of the ball to enter their defence.
Aiden Paton was once again a rock down back for the Panthers but the onslaught of entries was too much to handle at times.
The home side was competitive in patches but poor skill errors that seemed to be the theme of the day for them were the downfall when going forward.
After not scoring a goal in the opening term, Kilcunda-Bass responded well and managed to snag three goals in the second.
Chris McKay was awesome in the midfield and used his dash and long boot to gain deep entries.
Sean Casey was also getting plenty of the sherrin in the guts and was able to dish the ball to outside runners often. Riley Scapin was also going well in the ruck for the home side but the Giants were able to wrestle back the momentum before half time as they put on another goal and a half to their quarter time lead.
The game was still very much in the balance at half time and the Panthers were hoping that a couple of early goals would get them right back in the game.
Unfortunately for them, goals were hard to come by as former Panther Matt Edwards and Will Jeffs down back, either intercepted or spoiled a lot of entries.
The case was the same for the Giants though as both sides only kicked one goal for the quarter.
Some poor kicking for goal from Korumburra-Bena let the hosts off a couple of times but they seemed to be only one last blow off knocking out their opposition.
Determined to not let the Panthers peg a couple of goals back and make the game interesting, the Giants started off the final term extremely well and sealed the game up.
Jake McMillan who kicked four majors for the day was taking plenty of strong grabs up forward and up on the wing, proving to be a major factor in the success of the game plan.
The visitors kicked four goals to two in the final term, making them 39-point victors.
Next game the Giants will host Phillip Island in what will be a much tougher contest and the Panthers will face another hard task when they travel to Garfield.

...

04:15

Kangaroos too strong after half time "IndyWatch Feed Goulburn"

FISH Creek was at home to Toora on Saturday and it was the first time the 2016 assistant coach and now head coach at Toora Brett Mitchell had ventured back to Terrill Park since taking the reins at the Magpies.
Brett knows the Kangaroos very well but unfortunately they have had more than their fair share of injuries so far in season 2018.
Saying that, they arguably have the recruit of the year in Jesse Manton and he has been a fantastic addition into the Magpies line up.
The Magpies won the toss and kicked to the canteen end, and the match got underway.
The opening minutes were a bit of a feeling out period with both sides applying plenty of pressure but it was the Kangaroos that looked to be a bit more focused and desperate for the ball.
Their pressure on the ball was fantastic and this provided opportunities at their forward end.
The opening goal went to Adlington at the seven minute mark and this was followed by goals to Shaw and McGannon before Toora hit the scoreboard with a goal to Grant.
Fish Creek answered immediately when Seccull found Shaw again who added his second and gave the Kangaroos a 21 point lead at quarter time.
Not sure what was said in the Magpie huddle during the break but they were a different side in the second quarter and it was Bedggood at the two minute mark who got things started with the opening goal.
Toora had done an about face and its intensity on the ball lifted tremendously.
Manton was in everything and Grant was electric on a wing.
A strong mark by Osbourne added another goal for the Pies and minutes later Andrews did the same for Toora to add another goal and reduce the margin to within a kick.
Seccull settled things briefly for Fish Creek when he marked strongly and goaled from deep in the pocket in front of a vocal crowd at the canteen end.
This was short lived with Toora closing the half with a great goal to Manton after Grant caused a turnover late in the half, at the main break it was Fish Creek by one point.
The second half started much the same as the first with neither side able to gain any real ascendency.
The pressure remained and both sides missed targets through the early part. The game was waiting for something to spark it again and it was Jordan Shaw that launched himself into outer space at the 11 minute mark and took what is the mark of the season to date, he went back a little gingerly and calmly slotted his third goal of the day.
Fish Creek added another goal late in the quarter with Smith crumbing the ball beautifully after a contest in the Fish Creek goal square.
At three quarter time, it was Fish Creek up by 19 points.
The last quarter went underway and Fish Creek was out of the blocks very quickly adding the first goal through Ireland extending the margin out to 25 points and it was going to be difficul...

02:40

Submission on the Privatisation of Land Use Victoria "IndyWatch Feed Vic"

Submission to the Standing Committee on the Environment and Planning Inquiry into the proposed long-term lease of land titles and registry functions of Land Use Victoria June 22, 2018 To Mr. David Davis (Chair): Prosper Australia is Melbourne-based not-for-profit engaged in research and advocacy. Our primary focus is on the political economy of land and []

01:40

Beautiful one day; southern equity the next "IndyWatch Feed Vic"

Queenslander!

What's that you say?

Everyone's moving to Queensland?

So they are!

Here's the incomparable Cameron with the stats.

Where are they coming from?

Sydney mainly...


Source: Kusher/CoreLogic

...and Melbourne...


...and pretty much everywhere else too.


This is a rational response to a price signal, with south-east Queensland offering great affordability and lifestyle.

This is a powerful trend because these interstate migrant-settlers bring equity.

There's a potential counter-point to this, being the higher than usual number of net overseas departures in the lead-up to Christmas.


I looked at the trends in a...

01:15

Decriminalise abortion, Australia told at the United Nations "IndyWatch Feed Vic"

Australian governments should respect a womans right to choose what happens to her body by removing abortion from criminal laws the Human Rights Law Centre told the UN Human Rights Council in a statement delivered in Geneva overnight.

The Council debated an expert report on discrimination against women during its current session, which warned about the heightened risk of death and injury for women when abortion services are restricted through criminal laws. The expert report describes the criminalisation of abortion as inherently discriminatory.

Adrianne Walters, Senior Lawyer at the Human Rights Law Centre, said that as a wealthy nation and a member of the UN Human Rights Council, Australia should be a world leader on promoting reproductive health rights both in word and practice.

Its frankly outrageous that in 2018 in Australia, a woman still has to fight for the basic right to access a safe medical procedure. Australia has heard that the criminalisation of abortion stigmatises womens bodies and forces some women to turn to medically dangerous options, while causing many others distress and hardship, said Walters.

Australias reproductive rights record is being put under the spotlight on the world stage just as Queensland looks to modernise 119 year old laws and pressure builds for reform in New South Wales and South Australia. Only Victoria, Tasmania and the ACT have comprehensively decriminalised abortion.

Victoria and the ACT have led the way and shown that it is possible to reform abortion laws to respect a womans dignity and humanity. Those states dragging their heels, like Queensland and New South Wales, are exposing women needlessly to harm, said Walters.

Restrictive abortion laws, and womens privacy and safety when accessing reproductive health services, will also come under scrutiny when Australia faces the UN Committee on the Elimination of Discrimination against Women next week.

Most of us take for granted being treated as capable decision-makers when we see our doctor. But the law in most Australian states denies this basic decency when it comes to abortion. The vast majority of Australians support a womans right to choose whether to have an abortion in consultation with her doctor. Its time for laws across Australia to catch up, said Ms Walters.

This is the Australian Governments second session as a newly elected member of the Human Rights Council. The Government was elected to the Council last year on a promise to uphold womens rights.

In its incoming pledge to the Council, the Australian Government promised to approach its three year term "in a spirit of self-reflection with a view to improving our own human rights situation".

"Australia can show the world that it is a leader....

00:00

June 26 #OnThisDay in #Australian #History "IndyWatch Feed Goulburn"

1797 - Bass and Flinders explored Botany Bay and Georges River in the Tom Thumb.

1800 - Maj Joseph Foveaux was appointed Lieut-Gov of Norfolk Island, replacing Thomas Rowley.

1802 - The ship Hercules rocked up with 121 convicts. During the voyage 14 convicts were killed during a mutiny and 30 others died of sickness. It brought a consignment of meat which eased the food shortage.

1831 - Mokare, Aboriginal guide, was a Nyungar man of the Minang people, whose territory centred on King George Sound on the south-western coast of Western Australia.  Today he passed to the stars at the home of his friend Magistrate Alexander Collie.
Aborigines and Europeans assembled at Collie's house and walked to where the Europeans dug a grave. Mokare was laid to rest; his cloak and personal artefacts adorned the grave as those assembled cried and wailed. A short time later, the Aborigines left the settlement for a period of mourning. When Collie was dying in 1835, he asked to be buried alongside Mokare. The graves were disturbed during construction of Albany Town Hall in the twentieth century and some remains, presumed to be Collie's, were interred in the pioneers' cemetery, Albany. What happened to Mokares remains after the exhumation is unclear.

1845 - Today saw the last issue ever of the "Tasmanian and Austral-Asiatic Review"

1851 - Sale ( a town in Vic, not the Boxing Day Sale) was gazetted as a village.

1855 - Peter Connolly, Bushranger. Hanged at Hobart.

1855 - John "Rocky" Whelan, Bushranger. Confessed to five murders. Hanged at Hobart.

1855 - Edward Heylin .Hanged at Hobart for burglary.

1855 - John Parsons Knights . Hanged at Hobart for burglary.

1867 - William Peters was hanged at Bathurst for the attempted murder of eight-year-old Faith Perkins at Orange.

1880 - Siege of Glenrowan Day 1 -
Ned Kelly and Steve Hart rounded up the population of the small town of Glenrowan and locked them in Ann Jones Inn. Joe Byrne and Dan Kelly rode off towards Beechworth to find Aaron Sherritt once a friend now police informant. The Kelly Gang later forced railway workers to derail a section of the Melbourne to Sydney train line. This was done after the last passenger train passed at 9pm, and there would be no more scheduled services until the following Monday.

1880 - Aaron Sherritt was at home with his wife, mother-in-law and four policemen, Constables Armstrong, Alexander, Ducross, and Dowling. A neighbour, Antone Weekes, who had reportedly been handcuffed and held hostage by Joe Byrne and Dan Kelly, called out "Aaron" at the back door of Sherritt's hut. When Sherritt answered it, Joe Byrne shot him at point-blank range in the chest. The gang then held four police officers assigned to protect...

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Sunday, 24 June

05:59

Shepparton: End of Life Care: Looking at what we would not want to "IndyWatch Feed Goulburn"

On Wednesday 20 June 2018, at Eastbank Centre in Shepparton, Council of the Ageing, and City of Greater Shepparton presented Unspoken: (What will become of me?); a full house presentation which explored themes of ageing, declining capacity, diminished autonomy. Those attending learned much about the Advanced Care Plan and heard of practical examples of the ... Read more...

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Sunday, 17 June

00:00

June 17 #OnThisDay in #Australian #History "IndyWatch Feed Goulburn"

1788 - The name "Sydney" was used for the first time in some new settlement in some strange, far off land where the dregs of society were shipped...no, not 10 Downing St, although that sounded just as promising as Canberra....
The original name/s for Sydney are Djubuguli (Bennelong Point) and Cadi (all of Sydney Cove).

1804 - Some 300 Aboriginal people threw spears at armed Hawkesbury River settlers, who opened fire and returned to Richmond Hill with stolen goods they have retrieved. A military detachment at Windsor shot two Aboriginal people.

1826 - One bloke who does a bit of haunting is Frederick Fisher - he was done a nasty mischief on this day and his ghost has been seen, celebrated and interviewed at length ever since.

1836 - Michael Maloney was hanged at Sydney for burglary from the house of Richard Hamlyn at Goulburn.

1836 - James Hare was hanged at Sydney for burglary from the house of Richard Hamlyn at Goulburn.

1843 - Continuing the grisly theme and today saw The Wairau Massacre take place, the first deadly fight between the Maori and Europeans since the since the Treaty of Waitangi was signed.

1843 - Gov George Gipps ordered the removal from office of Justice John Walpole Willis, resident Judge in the Port Phillip District, after powerful interests in Melbourne petitioned for his recall.


1867 - One of our greatest writers, Henry Lawson, was birthed on the gold fields.

1890 - The Mansfield Railway Line (Vic) was extended a whopping 4.5 kms from Molesworth to Cathkin.

1891 The Labor party first entered the New South Wales Legislative Assembly with 35 members elected.

1893 Prospector Paddy Hannan filed a Reward Claim, announcing the discovery of gold at Kalgoorlie, Western Australia.

1906 - The highly celebrated (go on, admit you raise a glass to it every day!) Prahran to Malvern steam bus service, reputedly the first Victorian use of self propelled vehicles for public passenger traffic, was abandoned.

1911 - Suffrage in Britain
A week before the Coronation of King George V and Queen Mary, Margaret Fisher led Australian and New Zealand women in a London demonstration. Some 40,000 marched in support of a Bill granting women the right to vote. The British government did not enact the suffrage law until 1919.

1912 - William Frederick Ball was hanged at Armidale Gaol for the murder of Louisa Ball at Bingara.

1926 - The coastline of NSW was gently handwashed, rinsed and hung out to drip dry when the effects of a tsunami were felt courtesy of an earthquake in our unofficial 7th state, NZ.

1940 - The Captains Flat Railway Branch Line (NSW) was opened for train business from Bungendore Junction to Captains Flat......

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Friday, 15 June

03:39

Listening to God and to each other: Prayer and Dialogue "IndyWatch Feed Goulburn"

Listening to God and to each other: Prayer and Dialogue is the theme of the 2018 Jewish Christian Muslim Association Conference, to be conducted at the Don Bosco Centre, Lysterfield, Victoria on the weekend of 29-30 July 2018.   This years JCMA Conference in July 2018 will explore the meaning of prayer and the skills ... Read more...

03:13

Ramadan and Eid Al Fitr: drawing closer to God through prayer and praise "IndyWatch Feed Goulburn"

When the World Council of Churches Assembly in 2013 called for a pilgrimage of justice and peace, it explicitly addressed not only Christians but invited people of good will everywhere to join. It recognized the gifts our interfaith partners have received from God and challenged them to engage them in transforming actions. Thats why, alongside ... Read more...

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Thursday, 14 June

03:35

21 June: International Day of Yoga "IndyWatch Feed Goulburn"

Yoga is an ancient physical, mental and spiritual practice that originated in India. The word yoga derives from Sanskrit and means to join or to unite, symbolizing the union of body and consciousness. Today it is practiced in various forms around the world and continues to grow in popularity. Recognizing its universal appeal, on 11 ... Read more...

00:00

June 14 #OnThisDay in #Australian #History "IndyWatch Feed Goulburn"

1789 - Poor old Billy Bligh, and a few of his crew, popped into Timor after a not so pleasurable cruise in their open boat lasting 5,800 kms.

1813 -  Coroner (and artist) John William Lewin presided at an inquest into the death of an Aboriginal girl named Nanny Cabbage, who is found dead at Cockle Bay (Darling Harbour). Evidence was given that Nanny and two friends, Norry and Currumburn, had connections with two soldiers from the Barracks and drank their rum. The soldiers, Peter Watson and James Rattray were committed for trial,
but acquitted.

1814 - Aborigines attacked settlers at Bringelly, Airds and Appin to avenge the murder of an Aboriginal woman and two children.

1814 - Revolting convicts - and, ohhhhh, weren't they revolting! - snatched the ship Argo in the Derwent area of Tassie and sailed off into the sunset, never to be seen again.

1825 Van Diemen's Land was separated administratively from New South Wales, it became fully independent in December.

1832 - John Fitzsimmons was hanged at Sydney for arson. (Fitzsimmons set ablaze a stack of wheat at Penrith).

1837 - HMS Buffalo, after being at anchor in Holdfast Bay, South Oz, for six months serving as a home for Governor Hindmarsh, set sail for Sydney.

1851 Gold discovered at the Turon River, New South Wales, the diggings became the richest in New South Wales.

1875 - The railway line between Ipswich and Brisbane (QLD) was officially opened. The line was not quite finished; the railway station buildings at Brisbane and several suburban stations were unfinished. The bridge over the Brisbane River at Indooroopilly, which was to supply the missing link, was incomplete, and passengers and goods were conveyed across the river in a punt.

1883 - The bridge over the large puddle of water known as the Murray River was completed at Albury-Wodonga and finally linked the NSW and Vic railways.

1899 - The first official visit of a British Team representing all the four Home Unions, England, Scotland, Wales and Ireland, now known as the first British Lions to tour Australia and New Zealand.
Todays match results -
British Lions 11 v Central South 3 at Goulburn

1890 - Battery operated trams began puddling about in Bendigo; these didn't have enough oomph for the Bendigo hills so were replaced by steam engines in 1892. But on a downhill run and with a tail wind, they'd still outrace the Metro express from Flinders St - South Yarra.

1893 - Edward Smedley was hanged at Darlinghurst for the murder of his wife Phoebe at Qurindi. This hanging was mishandled and Smedley suffocated to death on the rope.

1907 - The Ballarat Art School was transferred to the School of Mines Ballarat (SMB).

...

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Tuesday, 12 June

04:27

End of Life Care: Unspoken: What will become of me? "IndyWatch Feed Goulburn"

Unspoken: (What will become of me?) gently explores the themes of ageing, declining capacity, diminished autonomy and a sense of identity and uses humour to create a comfortable setting for everyone to engage. This is an event for all; from those who care about aging as well as those who care about the aged.   ... Read more...

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Monday, 11 June

01:50

Nothing succeeds like. "IndyWatch Feed Goulburn"

As has previously been described several times, winter is not a good time to be blogging about native fauna. As many creatures are hibernating or have moved to warmer climes the search for a subject is not as easy as simply stepping outside, as it is in spring. It takes a bit of effort to []

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Sunday, 10 June

19:00

Beyond the Barricade "IndyWatch Feed Goulburn"

Sunday 10th Jun, 5.00pm 7.10pm, Riverlinks
Shepparton

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Saturday, 09 June

00:00

June 9 #OnThisDay in #Australian #History "IndyWatch Feed Goulburn"


1803 HMS Investigator arrived in Port Jackson after circumnavigating Australia. On the voyage Matthew Flinders charted the coast and Robert Brown made an extensive collection of the flora of Australia.

1824 - Matthew Brady did a bunk from Macquarie Harbour and a bushranging he did go. My crystal ball tells me it will all end in tears!

1837 - John Cooper was hanged at Sydney for attempted murder on Dominic Gannon at Port Macquarie.

1837 - William Taylor was hanged at Sydney for aggravated highway robbery of Mr Thomas Hyacinth Macquoid on the road between Berrima and Mittagong.

1838 - The horrendous Myall Creek Massacre took place which resulted in the murders of 28 unarmed Aboriginal men, women and children.

1845 - A young shepherd named William Streair walked into a solicitor's office in Adelaide where Henry Ayers, who was also Secretary of the South Australian Mining Association, worked, and showed them specimens of rich copper ore.
Thus, was the Burra Copper Mine born.

1858 - The `Welcome Nugget' was found in a trench on Bakery Hill, Ballarat, by Richard Jeffrey and party of the Red Hill Co. It was the second largest gold nugget ever found and weighed 2217 oz (62.85 kg).

1866 - The Brisbane FC conducted its first scratch match.

1879 - Thomas Hogan was hanged at Beechworth for fratricide at Bundalong, near Yarrawonga.

1883 - The Main Western Railway Line (NSW) was opened from Dubbo to Nyngan.

1884 - The section of the Gwabegar Railway Line (NSW) was opened from Kandos to Rylstone.

1890 - Melbourne Town Hall was the scene of a meeting of protest against the 'sweating' of labour in the work shops.
The more things change, the more they stay the same...

1891 - The Tarrawingee Railway Line (NSW) was  opened from Sulphide Street - Tarrawingee and from Broken Hill Racecourse Junction - Broken Hill Racecourse.

1902 - The Federation Drought had the populace on its knees literally praying for rain and, so it came to pass that their calls were finally answered on this day.

1908 - It was reported good old Tommy Bent (Bent by name, etc) was up in Parliament getting money together to cover the cost of the proposed tramway from Gembrook to Beenak (Vic).

1915 - The Main South Railway Line (NSW) was opened from Galong Temporary Junction - Rocky Ponds Temporary Junction.

1919 - The Ballarat Avenue of Honour, the first avenue of its kind in Australia, was completed with the final planting of trees.
Local farmers helped by delivering wagon loads of tree guards to the site, while fathers and uncles were enlisted to help dig holes for the new trees.
Most of the cost for the...

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Friday, 08 June

22:46

Why we should not drink to plastic "IndyWatch Feed Goulburn"

EAST Hope Island, about 35km south-east of Cooktown, is one of the prettiest small tropical islands in the world. It is ringed with coral and a white-sand beach with rich bird and fish life. You can walk around it in 15 minutes, which I did on World Environment Day this week.

But something stood out on that pristine beach: a plastic soft-drink bottle.

Humans put eight million tonnes of plastic into the ocean each year. It never fully breaks down, except to small indestructible beads. Birds, fish, turtles and dolphins eat the plastic, but cannot digest it. It fills their stomachs so there is no room for food and they starve to death.

Eventually, plastic will kill so much of the fish resources of the ocean that people who depend on it will also starve to death.

We are fouling our own nest and we can neither build nor move to a new one.

Carbon in the atmosphere and plastic in the ocean must be the two most important issues facing humans. Yet our political leaders still put jobs and growth first.

I put the plastic bottle in the dinghy and recalled a job I had at the end of Year 12 at a then family-owned soft-drink factory in Beechworth. Used empty glass bottles came in by the truckload and I had to sort them: by size and type.

You never saw empty glass soft-drink bottles littlering the environment in the 1960s. They carried a 10-cent deposit, so kids collected them up and cashed them in.

For the soft-drink industry it was cheaper to wash and reuse rather than make new bottles.

Then single-use plastic bottles became cheaper than glass. The economic incentive for container return disappeared, and so did deposits. South Australia reintroduced a container deposit scheme in the 1970s. It remains at 10 cents.

Forty years later, NSW began a scheme. The ACT and Queensland schemes will start next month and Western Australia next year.

All of the schemes are pitifully inadequate and marred by silly conditions about cans being uncrushed and bottles having the original label.

According to the Reserve Banks inflation calculator, 10 cents in 1968 would now be worth $1.22. That is where we need to be at least $1 or $1.50 deposit per plastic bottle.

That plastic bottle would not have been left on the beach at East Hope Island with such a deposit. (It had not been washed...

03:30

Dungala Kaiela Oration: At home in Country, At home in the World "IndyWatch Feed Goulburn"

Hosted by Kaiela Institute and University of Melbourne, the 2018 Dungala Kaiela Oration will be delivered by Dr Moana Jackson, Director of Ng Kaiwhakamrama i ng Ture (the Maori Legal Service) and Lecturer at Te Wnanga o Raukawa, taki, at Rumbalara Football Netball Club on Tuesday, 24 July commencing at 5pm.   Moana Jackson has ... Read more...

02:44

Refugee Week: Benefits of Migrants and Refugees "IndyWatch Feed Goulburn"

Refugee Week will be celebrated from Sunday 17 June to Saturday 23 June 2018. #WithRefugees is the theme for Refugee Week 2018 in Australia. Looking to the positive contribution made by migrants and refugees and their settlement in the Goulburn Valley, the Shepparton Interfaith Network in collaboration with the Adult Migrant Education Program at GOTAFE ... Read more...

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Thursday, 07 June

00:34

Cummeragunja walk-off relived as residents unite to share history "IndyWatch Feed Goulburn"

Residents and supporters of the Reconciliation movement walked the floodplain between Shepparton and Mooroopna to relive an historic Cummeragunja walk-off. About 150 people left the Cummeragunja mission, in southern New South Wales, on February 4, 1939, to protest against the conditions and local governments control over the area.   It was one of the first ... Read more...

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Wednesday, 06 June

06:57

Shepparton: Refugee Week Film Night "IndyWatch Feed Goulburn"

In observance of Refugee Week, the City of Greater Shepparton is having a movie night at Village Cinemas, Stewart St, Shepparton on the evening of Wednesday 20 June: World Refugee Day. The film to be screened is a 2014 production, All Saints.   The movie that will be screened is ALL SAINTS which is based ... Read more...

06:43

Refugee Week 2018 in Shepparton "IndyWatch Feed Goulburn"

Refugee Week will be celebrated from Sunday 17 June to Saturday 23 June 2018. #WithRefugees is the theme for Refugee Week 2018 in Australia. In observance of Refugee Week, the Shepparton Interfaith Network in collaboration with AMEP at GOTAFE will present a seminar and discussion on Benefits of Refugee and Migrant Contributions to Australia at ... Read more...

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Friday, 01 June

09:00

Executive Officer employment advertisement "IndyWatch Feed Vic"

The Ethnic Communities' Council of Victoria (ECCV) invites applications for a suitably qualified Executive Officer (EO). The ECCV seeks an experienced dynamic person to lead the strategic advocacy and policy development of the organisation. Expertise in working with Victoria's culturally diverse communities and Government as the key stakeholder is essential. The EO will work closely with ECCV Board and manage a diverse staff team.

ECCV is an equal opportunity employer.

Applications for the EO position will close Monday 18 June 2018 and should be submitted to the Chairperson, Cr Kris Pavlidis at email chair@eccv.org.au or postal address ECCV, Suite 101, 398 Sydney Rd, Coburg, VIC 3058 marked: Confidential, Attention Chairperson.

For further information contact Dr Irene Bouzo at telephone 03 9354 9555

For the selection criteria click here

04:31

RISE Statement on the siege and massacre of Gazans. "IndyWatch Feed Vic"

The past two months have been horrific for the people under siege in Gaza. They have historically attempted for several weeks to protest at the border of Israels 12 year air, sea and land blockage and demand their right of return to 1948 areas now occupied by Israeli suburbs, under The Great Return March. In peacefully protesting, they have been massacred by Israeli sniper live bullets and other weapons which have killed more than 112 of whom 13 were children (under 18) and 13,190 injured.

The people of Gaza are insisting on breaking out of the siege and just day before yesterday, they sailed on a Freedom Flotilla ship with many of the injured to reach Cyprus and access medical care denied from entry into Gaza. Israel intercepted and seized this ship.

RISE stands unequivocally in support of the two million residents of Gaza in their demands for the siege to end immediately, who should not have to endure a brutal and dehumanising blockade which is the largest open air prison in the world.

We strongly believe that all refugees should be able to escape dangerous, unlivable conditions and seek asylum, yet the people in Gaza are forced to endure live ammunition and airstrikes for having the audacity to demand a life of safety and dignity.

We see Australias complicity in its belligerent UN vote against an investigation into Israels latest massacre as further reason to support the Sanction Australia campaign.

Our primary aim is to sanction Australia from participating in international refugee humanitarian decision making and human rights forums until The End of Mandatory Detention, The End of Refoulement and The End of Refugee Boat Turn back policies.

We do not see a difference between Australias white supremacist mandatory detention policy, and Israels zionist occupation, illegal settlements, blockade and seizing of Gazan ships. The parallels reveal clearly why Australia would use its power to protect its settler colonial ally Israel.

We express our solidarity with Palestinians, who have endured 70 years as a nation in exile, unable to return to their occupied lands.

We invite them and all supporters of freedom to join us in our Sanction Australia campaign until Australia improves its human rights record both on refugee and Palestinian rights.

00:07

Why the ERoEI of oil fracking is so awful revisited "IndyWatch Feed Vic"

Following from my last post on this subject, in which the voice over person in the video clips gives the impression of how smart are we doing this stuff, Steve StAngelo of SRSRocco fame published this amazing set of data. I clearly remember Chris Martenson saying in another podcast that the amount of tax levied at the fracking industry barely covered something like a third of the cost of repairing the roads after the millions of truck trips in Texas alone..

IF you dont regularly visit SRSRocco, I heartily recommend it.

The Unbelievable Amount Of Frac Sand Consumed By U.S. Shale Oil Industry

The U.S. Shale Oil Industry utilizes a stunning amount of equipment and consumes a massive amount of materials to produce more than half of the countrys oil production.  One of the vital materials used in the production of shale oil is frac sand.  The amount of frac sand used in the shale oil business has skyrocketed by more than 10 times since the industry took off in 2007.

 

According to the data by Rockproducts.com and IHS Markit, frac sand consumption by the U.S. shale oil and gas industry increased from 10 billion pounds a year in 2007 to over 120 billion pounds in 2017.  This year, frac sand consumption is forecasted to climb to over 135 billion pounds, with the countrys largest shale field, the Permian, accounting for 37% of the total at 50 billion pounds.

Now, 50 billion pounds of frac sand in the Permian is an enormous amount when we compare it to the total 10 billion pounds consumed by the entire shale oil and gas industry in 2007.

To get an idea of the U.S. top shale oil fields, here is a chart from my recent video, The U.S. Shale Oil Ponzi Scheme Explained:

(charts courtesy of the EIA U.S. Energy Information Agency)

...

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Thursday, 31 May

00:53

Tourist Destinations in Israel: A Guide for Travelers "IndyWatch Feed Goulburn"

Israel may be a small country, but there are so many sites to see and issues about which to learn. You could spend months touring the country and still feel like you need more time. If youre visiting for only a week or two, consider adding some of these 18 cultural, religious, historical, and natural ... Read more...

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Wednesday, 30 May

07:36

Why the ERoEI of oil fracking is so awful "IndyWatch Feed Vic"

I recently listened to a podcast featuring Nate Hagens, who, as you might know, is very well connected with Wall Street from his previous life there.. Nate quoted someone who owns an oil company, and apparently they budget 30% of their total well costs on. DIESEL!

 

 

Here is the latest Chris Martenson podcast of Art Berman that re-confirms most of the above.

07:22

Infinite Self Reclaiming Your Inner Power "IndyWatch Feed Vic"

Article by Stuart Wilde...the eternity of the grace of God flows through the life force of plants, trees, animals, humans, and all things. It doesnt have a boundary or definition.

04:56

MEDIA RELEASE 30/5 | CHRISTMAS ISLAND ROOFTOP PROTEST ENDS AFTER FOUR DAYS "IndyWatch Feed Vic"

The defiant rooftop protest on the Green 1 compound of the Christmas Island detention centre ended yesterday evening around 6.30pm (Christmas Island time, Tuesday 29 May) a few hours into the fifth day of protest. The two Iranian asylum seekers came down from the roof and are now being held in the punishment compound, White(...)

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Tuesday, 29 May

04:35

Who Was the Buddha? "IndyWatch Feed Goulburn"

Buddha means one who is awake. The Buddha who lived 2,600 years ago was not a god. He was an ordinary person, named Siddhartha Gautama, whose profound insights inspired the world.   Who Was Buddha? Buddha is not a name, but a title. It is a Sanskrit word that means a person who is awake. ... Read more...

03:11

There is no tradition of anti-Semitism in Islam "IndyWatch Feed Goulburn"

Some are suggesting that Muslims are bringing anti-Semitism to Europe. However, it was in fact Europeans who took anti-Semitism to the Arab world in the first place. Diplomats in particular played an contemptible role. An essay by Professor Peter Wien   Holy books are what people make of them: after all, even the word of ... Read more...

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Monday, 28 May

13:05

Magic numbers distort North East Link business case "IndyWatch Feed Vic"

Cost and benefit figures presented in the North East Link business case by the Victorian Government suggest a massive shifting of the goalposts in an effort to make the $16 billion project stack up, according to a preliminary analysis by the Public Transport Users Association.

Comparing these new figures with those presented just 18 months ago by the governments Infrastructure Victoria agency, you would hardly guess were talking about the same project, said PTUA President Dr Tony Morton.

In late 2016, Infrastructure Victoria produced economic analysis for its 30 Year Strategy which assessed the real capital cost of the North East Link as $5 billion to $7 billion, including associated works on the Eastern Freeway and M80 Ring Road.

That figures now fantastically out of date, Dr Morton said. Using the actual cost estimate of $15.8 billion and the benefit figure from Infrastructure Victoria, the benefit-cost ratio is barely 60 cents in the dollar.

Yet the latest business case puts the ratio as $1.30 to $1.40 in the dollar, having arrived at this figure through what Dr Morton calls creative methods.

First, theyve said only about $12.5 billion of the cost is for construction, the rest is for operating cost, Dr Morton said. Then theyve claimed the whole cost can be reduced to around $8 billion through the device of discounting future spending at 7% per year. Its only by using this discounted value that they can get a BCR above 1.

Discounting is a standard method to account for the fact that spending deferred to the future, or income received in the future, has a lower value in present-day terms. If I have to spend $1000 but not for 12 months time, I can invest a smaller amount now, say $955 with a 5% return, to have the full $1000 when needed, Dr Morton said.

But you have to push spending a long way into the future to get this claimed reduction of nearly 50 per cent. It appears to us the government is using some financial magic to avoid booking a big part of the roads cost until after its supposed to be open and operating and paying no interest in the meantime.

The business case includes a cash flow profile for capital and operating expenditure, yet adding up the latter it comes to less than half the reported real operating cost. What accounts for the remainder is it additional operating cost, or is it construction cost thats being pushed out to the long term somehow?

...

06:37

MEDIA RELEASE 28/5 | CHRISTMAS ISLAND ROOFTOP PROTEST INTO ITS THIRD DAY "IndyWatch Feed Vic"

The defiant rooftop protest on the Green 1 compound of the Christmas Island detention centre has entered its third day. This morning (Monday 28 May) Australian Federal Police officers threatened the protesters that they would be charged unless they came down, but refused to say what they could be charged with. Asylum seekers in adjacent(...)

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Sunday, 27 May

13:16

MEDIA RELEASE 27/5 | ROOFTOP PROTEST CONTINUES ON CHRISTMAS ISLAND "IndyWatch Feed Vic"

Two Iranian asylum seekers have spent a second night on the roof of the Green 1 compound inside the Christmas Island detention centre. (The protest began around 2.30 on Friday 25 May.) Despite the mobilisation of the Emergency Respond Team, the two protesters have managed to get some food and blankets to sustain the protest.(...)

13:15

MEDIA RELEASE 25/5 | ROOFTOP PROTEST ON CHRISTMAS ISLAND "IndyWatch Feed Vic"

Two Iranian asylum seekers have begun a rooftop protest in the Green 1 compound on Christmas Island. The two asylum seekers got onto the roof around 2.30pm Christmas Island time, defying attempts to talk them down. Both have been held in detention over three years; one of them around five years. Tensions have been rising(...)

13:11

Video: Vigil for Salim "IndyWatch Feed Vic"

See a video of Melbournes vigil for Salim here   Created by Jun Bin Lee

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Saturday, 26 May

09:12

Statement on People Seeking Refuge and Asylum "IndyWatch Feed Goulburn"

The following statement was initiated by members of BMRSG, under the leadership of Joy Connor at the RAR Conference in Wodonga in April. It was endorsed by the RAR National Conference and endorsed by BMRSG. It was designed to be sent to all politicians in the lead up to the Federal election. Australia needs to regain its moral credibility by: Recognising people arriving in Australia by using people smugglers are human beings who need help. Ending offshore detention. Resettling in Australia those found to be refugees. Ending mandatory detention of asylum seekers, while allowing for detention if exceptional circumstances are shown. Treating detainees with respect, not as criminals. Not separating families unless exceptional circumstances exist.

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Friday, 25 May

08:42

Sorry Day at Monash Park, Shepparton "IndyWatch Feed Goulburn"

Secondary School students from around Shepparton joined in the Sorry Day commemoration in Shepparton at Monash Park on the morning of 25 May 2018. Guest of Honour was Aunty Faye Lynam a member of the Stolen Generations who gave the Welcome to Country.   Shepparton Region Reconciliation Group facilitated the annual National Sorry ... Read more...

04:02

Songs and strong bonds: The community choir celebrating a half-century of harmony "IndyWatch Feed Vic"

morefullMorefull The Maroondah Singers in concert.  Photo supplied

John Williams has been singing for 80 of his 90 years on the planet. Growing up on a farm on the Mornington Peninsula, there was little opportunity to express himself musically and John really had no idea he could sing. The headmaster of the school would bring in a local girl to sing with us all once a week, My Bonnie lies over the ocean, Rule Britannia, that kind of stuff. When we moved to Mitcham, my mother and I joined the local Methodist Church choir and I started singing alto alongside my mother at the age of 10.

John has been singing ever since and was a key player in the founding of the Mitcham based Maroondah Singers, which this month celebrates its 50th anniversary as a mixed voice community choir.1 It has encouraged young singers starting out and provided end of life care, too. It is a living, breathing singing entity as vital now as it was half a century ago, and it owes its origins, in part, to John.

I was there before Maroondah Singers even existed, he laughs.

...

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Thursday, 24 May

03:14

MINISTER FOR YOUTH LAUNCHES ECCV INTERCULTURAL YOUNG ADVOCACY LEADERS PROGRAM "IndyWatch Feed Vic"

May 24th, 2018

The Hon. Jenny Mikakos MP, Minister for Youth officially launched the Ethnic Communities Council of Victoria Intercultural Young Advocacy Leaders (IYAL) program on Wednesday 23rd  May at Parliament House. The ECCV Chairperson, Cr. Kris Pavlidis acknowledged: the significance of the Ministers support demonstrates great faith in the work of the ECCV and our Intercultural Young Advocacy Leaders program. 

The IYAL program is a pathway for young people from culturally diverse backgrounds to develop governance experience and join the ECCV board of directors. ECCV ran a successful pilot of the IYAL program bringing together a diverse group of next-generation leaders who add another important voice for multicultural Victoria. During this four months pilot the young advocacy leaders received awareness raising sessions to enhance their knowledge and skills of governance and leadership in our culturally diverse community.

The current board of directors have supported this initiative with the leadership of the chairperson, Cr. Kris Pavlidis who says the program steers ECCV with 40 years of pioneering work towards a succession plan that is cemented into our governance structures securing our future. An IYAL member said, It feels good to see that Multiculturalism is supported by so many senior decision makers including politicians

The IYAL group members include: Amali Aluthgamage, Anatoli Amanatidis, Loar Deng, Lisa Do, Kevin Kapeke, Rini Mowson, Minh Nguyen, Savindhi Perera-Jainudeen, Kenny Tran, and Mohammed Yassin.

Further information about the IYAL program, its members and how to get involved can be found at www.eccv.org.au

For more information and/or media comment, please contact Leenie Fabri, Communications & Media Officer, lfabri@eccv.org.au / 0422 480 319

Download media release

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Wednesday, 23 May

12:31

Days of Revolt: Junk Economics and the Future (2/2) "IndyWatch Feed Vic"

In this episode of teleSURs Days of Revolt, Chris Hedges continues his discussion with UMKC economics professor Michael Hudson on his new book Killing the Host: How Financial Parasites and Debt Bondage Destroy the Global Economy

Part 1 is available here..

05:18

Money Makes the World Spin "IndyWatch Feed Vic"

Love makes the world go round but money makes it spin faster or slower. Making oodles of cash enables you to quicken your energy so you can create the experiences []

00:25

Michael Hudson How We Got to Junk Economics "IndyWatch Feed Vic"

In this episode of Days of Revolt, Chris Hedges interviews Michael Hudson, UMKC economics professor and author of Killing the Host: How Financial Parasites and Debt Bondage Destroy the Global Economy. In the first half of their conversation, Hedges and Hudson trace the history of classical economics and explore Marxs interpretation of capitalism as exploitation. http://multimedia.telesurtv.net/v/day

PART 2 is available here.

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Tuesday, 22 May

09:58

URGENT: Vigil + Protest for Rohingyan refugee killed on Manus Island "IndyWatch Feed Vic"

FRIDAY MAY 25, 5:30-6:30pm, STATE LIBRARY Join the Refugee Action Collective for a vigil + protest to mark the death of yet another refugee on Manus Island. Speakers: Shawfikul Islam, Australian Burmese Rohingya Organisation more tbc A thirty two Rohingyan refugee has died on Manus on Tuesday May 22. Reports indicate he was killed(...)

09:39

Chauka, Please Tell Us The Time | RAC film screening fundraiser "IndyWatch Feed Vic"

Friday June 15, 6:30 8:30pm RMIT University, Building 80, 445 Swanston Street, Melbourne Link to Facebook Event: https://www.facebook.com/events/319085588621271/?notif_t=plan_user_associated&notif_id=1526886696072037 Refugee Action Collective Victoria presents: Chaulka, Please Tell Us The Time, a documentary co-directed by Behrooz Boochani and Arash Kamali Sarvestani. This incredible and deeply moving documentary captures life inside the Manus Island immigration detention centre.(...)

06:54

MEDIA RELEASE 22/5 | ANOTHER REFUGEE DIES ON MANUS "IndyWatch Feed Vic"

A 32 year-old Rohingya refugee has died on Manus Island. Reports indicate that the refugee was killed after he jumped from a moving bus and was struck by its wheels of the bus, around 11am very near to West Haus refugee compound. Most refugees on Manus believe that the mans death was suicide. The Rohingyan(...)

03:03

Ramadan: Whirling Dervishes come to Shepparton "IndyWatch Feed Goulburn"

Hijackd, a Shepparton based food truck and social change movement, is excited to be working with Multicultural Arts Victoria to present a special free Backyard Iftar at Queens Gardens as part of Hijackds Ramadan Sessions.   This unique event will provide an opportunity for local people from all cultural backgrounds to have a taste of ... Read more...

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Sunday, 20 May

14:03

Can we save energy, jobs and growth at the same time ? "IndyWatch Feed Vic"

I apologise in advance to anyone with a short attention span, this is a bit long at almost one and a half hours  especially as if you are new to limits to growth, you might have to watch it more than once!
If you ever needed proof that economics is an imbecilic proposal, then this is it.

Published on 30 Jan 2018

Jancovicis conference in ENS School of Paris 08/01/2018 To download the Presentation : https://fr.slideshare.net/JoelleLecon The depletion of natural resources, with oil to start with, and the need for a stable climate, will make it harder and harder to pursue economic growth as we know it. It has now become urgent to develop a new branch of economics which does not rely on the unrealistic assumption of a perpetual GDP increase. In this Colloquium, I will discuss a physical approach to economics which aims at understanding and managing the scaling back of our world economy. Biography : Jean-Marc Jancovici, is a French engineer who graduated from cole Polytechnique and Tlcom, and who specializes in energy-climate subjects. He is a consultant, teacher, lecturer, author of books and columnist. He is known for his outreach work on climate change and the energy crisis. He is co-founder of the organization Carbone 4 and president of the think tank The Shift Project. Original video : https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ey7_F Facebook page :...

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Saturday, 19 May

03:03

3CR Radio Interveiw with Fran Murrell after her trip to the Phillipines "IndyWatch Feed Vic"

3CR INTRO: Last month over 80 delegates, farmers, scientists and development workers from the Asia Pacific region joined peasant farmers in the Philippines for a 5-day conference with the aim of stopping the introduction of so-called Golden Rice, which is a genetically modified organism, which the proponents claim will significantly address hunger and vitamin A deficiency.

LISTEN TO THE INTERVIEW HERE

Download the Transcript below.

PDF icon golden-rice_-ranscript-3cr.pdf

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Friday, 18 May

09:32

May 26 National Sorry Day "IndyWatch Feed Goulburn"

26 May, each year, is National Sorry Day. What is this day? Why is it important? As May 26 draws close, it is an opportunity to find out more. An opportunity to learn more about our history and to develop greater understanding of who we are as a nation.   Twenty one years ago, the ... Read more...

08:46

Victims expendable in CTP proposals "IndyWatch Feed Vic"

THE political equation is clear. On one hand, every year nearly everyone pays rego and third-party and mentally puts it down as a government-imposed charge. On the other hand, only a few hundred in the ACT and a few thousand nationally are injured seriously enough in road crashes to warrant a compensation claim. And thus, to dilute the blame for the former, the rights of the latter are made expendable. It is happening in the ACT. It has already happened in other jurisdictions.

The application of the political equation goes back a long way, as costs and damages rose and the compulsory third-party insurance premiums went up.

As far back as the 1960s, then Victorian Premier Henry Bolte capped damages in response to increased premiums. One of my siblings, then aged six, got paltry damages for life-altering injuries. The legislation was later repealed.

This week, the president of the ACT Bar Association, Ken Archer, wrote about the citizens jury process that recommended radical changes to the ACTs system that would abolish common-law damages, institute caps, and impose injury thresholds below which a person could not get any damages.

Archers damning dissection in the latest ACT Bar Bulletin should remove any confidence that the citizens jury process used in this instance was applied in any fair or rational way. It was utterly skewed towards a pre-determined outcome. Leaving the system as is, or just making minor modifications was not an option.

Some jurors complained that they did not have enough time. People in industries linked to the issues particularly law and insurance were excluded. About 70 of the 6000 people invited to join the jury agreed to do so. In short, the very people who might shed light on the matter were excluded. Instead, the jurors were advised by government-selected experts.

The Government, in an extraordinary abdication of its fundamental role in a democracy, said beforehand that it would accept whatever the jury proposed.

This was part of its election promise to deliver deliberative democracy. What is wrong with ordinary democracy, one might ask. Small wonder people have little faith in the system.

Getting a few volunteer non-experts to decide such a complex matter as compensation for vehicle injury legal, medical, actuarial, technological without at least being able to access their own independent advice, seems like utter folly.

The jury and the government-appointed experts came up with the new and imprecise concept of whole person impairment. Payments for most will cut out after five years.

Drastically meddling with injured peoples rights just because the ACTs premiums are about $100 higher than the national average is very poor policy.

.....

06:59

We RISE eX-detainees including Palestinian eX-detainees highly condemn the recent attacks on Palestinians in the Gaza strip by Israel. "IndyWatch Feed Vic"

Genocidal acts are being carried out daily, inside and outside the borders of Gaza by Israel and it is not a hidden matter; it is out there for people to witness. So far, over 40 Palestinians have been killed in the recent massacre with 2000 others injured.

We are not going to sit back and talk about how can this happen? or violations of human rights law. We find such discussions practically worthless, meaningless and short-sighted because there is no such thing called human rights in occupied territories. If there is one we wouldnt have been treated as worthless humans. We stand against the massacre of Palestinians and the ongoing occupation by Israel.

We dont need sympathy, we need accountability and reparations. We should not forget thousands of Palestinians have been refugees for over 50 years and barred from returning to their homeland or even a durable resettlement solution by UNHCR.

We send our deepest condolences to our community who are the victims of the Israeli governments murderous actions, conducted repeatedly in front of your eyes.

RISE eX-detainees

 

00:00

May 18 #OnThisDay in #Australian #History "IndyWatch Feed Goulburn"

1789 - Arabanoo, an Aboriginal man, was captured at Manly on 31 December 1788 by order of Governor Arthur Phillip, caught smallpox whilst caring for others who were sick, and died at Sydney. He was buried in the governor's garden.

1806 - Report in the Sydney Gazette on five men from the wreck of the George who travelled overland from Jervis Bay to Sydney, along the coast

1825 - The Tasmanian and Port Dalrymple Advertiser, Australias first provincial newspaper, ceased publication.

1839 - Sarah Cook, wife of a shepherd at Norrilong (between Beverley and York, WA) and her baby were speared by members of the York tribe to satisfy tribal lore. Two brothers, Doodjeep and Barrabong were arrested and tried for wilful murder in July 1840. They were later hung in chains at the scene of the crime. A year later, a Noongar man named Yambup was also convicted of the same crime and was sent to Wadjemup Rottnest prison.

1849 - The Summary Trial and Punishment of Aborigines Act was passed in Western Australia.

1854 - Keep a lump of sugar in your pocket as a horse-drawn railway started plodding between Goolwa and Port Elliot in South Oz, which was in fact Australia's first public railway.

1859 - The Sydney Evening Mail ceased publication.

1859 - Harry was hanged at Goulburn for the rape and attempted murder of Margaret McMahon near Cooma.

1865 - Angus McMillan, the murderer of untold hundreds of thousands of Aboriginal people, kicked the proverbial bucket in a pub at Iguana Creek in Gippsland.

1877 - George, a Pacific Islander hanged at Maryborough Gaol for the rape of Mrs McBride.

1877 - Tommy Ah Mow, a Pacific Islanders hanged at Maryborough Gaol for the rape of Mrs McBride.

1889 - Intercolonial footy match between Tassie and Victoria was played at the MCG before a crowd of 20,000. The Gum Suckers wore colours of Royal Blue & Old Gold, while the Apple Islanders wore  their colony colours of Rose, Primrose & Black.
Final score was
Victoria - 6 goals, 9 behinds
Tassie - 1 goal, 6 behinds

1891 - James Johnston was hanged at Ballarat for murdering his wife Mary and their four children.

1897 - The original clubs of the newly formed VFL were Collingwood, South Melbourne, Essendon, Melbourne, Fitzroy, Geelong, St. Kilda and Carlton, which played their first matches today.

1901 - Harry Rickards opened his New Opera House, the future Tivoli Theatre, in Bourke Street, Melbourne, on the site of the former Prince of Wales Opera Theatre.

1902 -  William Windeyer took the main part in rescuing young people from a rowing boat capsized in Fern Bay, near his Hunters Hill home, and was awarded a silver medal by the Royal Shipw...

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Thursday, 17 May

00:01

A cautionary tale for all "IndyWatch Feed Goulburn"

Recently a good friend of mine rang up with an interesting question. Friends of hers had found a Platypus (Ornithorhynchus anatinus) wandering along the side of the road apparently miles away from water. Knowing my friend to be a keen naturalist they had picked it up, put it in a tub and were bringing it []

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Wednesday, 16 May

02:57

Joan of Arc, Spiritual Terrorism and Freedom "IndyWatch Feed Vic"

Article by Stuart Wilde I see nonviolent spiritual terrorists being responsible for the change in the evolution of the planet....

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Tuesday, 15 May

09:36

Is this a sign of collapse gathering pace? "IndyWatch Feed Vic"

The articles coming from the consciousness of sheep are getting more and more interesting after reading this one, I could not help but think that while Australias energy dilemmas are different to the UKs, the following quote really struck a cord with me:

Underlying all of this is a fundamental truth that few are prepared to contemplate: with the end of the last supplies of cheap fossil fuels, there is no affordable energy mix for the foreseeable future.  No combinations of gas, nuclear and renewables can be developed and deployed at the same time as prices are held at levels that are only just affordable to millions of British households.  Nor is there any option of returning to cheap gas from depleted North Sea deposits; still less reopening coal deposits put out of reach by the Thatcher government.

We are lucky to have more coal and gas than we know what to do with, until that is it becomes so obvious we cant keep burning these climate destroying fuels, we just stop. Hopefully before its too late.  But consider this  if the UK economy collapses, what effect would it have on ours? Oil is creeping up, and our electricity rates are the subject of much moaning all over the country. An economic shock is coming, as sure as the sun rises in the East..

Centrica may not care

Sometimes a story is repeated so often that its veracity is never challenged.  One such is the myth that British households are in thrall to a wicked energy cartel that puts excessive profits above common decency.  So much so, indeed, that the government and the opposition parties have all signed up to some form of energy cap designed to keep energy prices affordable.

The grain of truth in this story is that, aided by a craven regulator, the big six British Gas, EDF Energy, E.ON, Npower, Scottish Power, and SSE have on many occasions operated a cartel to hold prices up.  How else can we explain, for example, recent British Gas price increases in the face of a collapse in their customer base?

British Gas owner Centrica lost 110,000 energy supply accounts in the first four months of the year.  That is...

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Saturday, 12 May

04:10

Not so renewables "IndyWatch Feed Vic"

Lifted from the excellent consciousness of sheep blog..

For all practical purposes, solar energy (along with the wind, waves and tides that it drives) is unending.  Or, to put it more starkly, the odds of human beings being around to witness the day when solar energy no longer exists are staggeringly low.  The same, of course, cannot be said for the technologies that humans have developed to harvest this energy.  Indeed, the term renewable is among the greatest PR confidence tricks ever to be played upon an unsuspecting public, since solar panels and wind (and tidal and wave) turbines are very much a product of and dependent upon the fossil carbon economy.

Until now, this inconvenient truth has not been seen as a problem because our attention has been focussed upon the need to lower our dependency on fossil carbon fuels (coal, gas and oil).  In developed states like Germany, the UK and some of the states within the USA, wind and solar power have reduced the consumption of coal-generated electricity.  However, the impact of so-called renewables on global energy consumption remains negligible; accounting for less than three percent of total energy consumption worldwide.

A bigger problem may, however, be looming as a result of the lack of renewability of the renewable energy technologies themselves.  This is because solar panels and wind turbines do not follow the principles of the emerging circular economy model in which products are meant to be largely reusable, if not entirely renewable.

...

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Wednesday, 09 May

08:48

7 Peaks rides tick! "IndyWatch Feed Vic"

Thats one less item on the bucket list. The 7 Peaks rides are set-your-own pace climbs to the top of Victorias seven alpine resorts over the warmer months. Theyre a great reason to get out of the city for a day or long weekend to breathe some country air and see a bit more of regional Victoria. And of course great exercise. Plus theyve fired my enthusiasm for the next physical challenge The Peaks Challenge.

Lake Mountain I think this was the easiest ride. Starts at Marysville. Only about two hours drive from Melbourne. Starts off steeply out of town but not for too far. Then a steady climb through regenerating forest with open views across to adjacent hills. At the top is a shelter with a caf. Nice views. The road isnt too twisty which means heading back down you can build up some great speed. Lots of fun.

Mt Buller This is the nicest ride I reckon. Starts at the mountain entry gates at the base, near a very nice caf. Pretty river alongside. Steady climb through forest, past streams and small waterfalls until just before the summit where theres a sharp, steep pinch that gets you out of the saddle. On the way up keep an eye out for the gnomes tree house. Very cute. Typical ski resort at the top. Couple of cafes. Nice views from the main visitor centre and at the end of the road near the top of the resort.

Falls Creek Bit of an undulating ride to begin with, starting from Mt Beauty. Fantastic views to Mt Bogong, Victorias highest mountain. Road initially follows a valley with hydroelectric transmission lines overhead. Then seems to get a bit steeper on approaching the resort. Not much in the way of cafes open when I was there, other than a mountain biker caf in a converted shipping container in a car park. Nice views.

Mt Hotham Long, mostly pleasant ride from Harrietville. Steady climb to start with views to the resort, which seems to be an impossibly long way away on the other side of a wide valley. Near the top are a couple of steep downhills which have to be climbed back up on the other side. Bit disheartening. Amazing views though as youre above the tree line. No caf open at the top. The nearest was another couple of kilometres down the road. Descent back to Harrietville was brilliant, with the road not too twisting. It was raining when I came back down though so was careful with my speed.

Mt Buffalo Very pleasant, steady climb through beautiful forest with occasional views of smooth granite cliffs and rocks that are a feature of the mountain. Started at the base, at a creek, near Bright. Finished at the old Mt Buffalo Chalet, which is not open. No caf at the top. Fantastic views though. I didnt attem...

05:31

To improve future relationship with your kids, turn up the music "IndyWatch Feed Vic"

If youre a parent whose teenagers spend family road trips with earbuds firmly in place, you may want to encourage them to unplug, then turn the car radio to something the whole family can enjoy.

It just might do wonders for your future relationship with your son or daughter, according to a new study from the University of Arizona.

Researchers found that young men and women who shared musical experiences with their parents during childhood and especially during adolescence report having better relationships with their mums and dads as they enter young adulthood.

If you have little kids, and you play music with them, that helps you be closer to them, and later in life will make you closer to them, said study co-author Jake Harwood, professor and head of the UA Department of Communication.

If you have teenagers and you can successfully listen to music together or share musical experiences with them, that has an even stronger effect on your future relationship and the childs perception of the relationship in emerging adulthood.

Researchers surveyed a group of young adults, average age 21, about the frequency with which they engaged with their parents, as children, in activities such as listening to music together, attending concerts together or playing musical instruments together.

...

03:25

Nude With Beast "IndyWatch Feed Vic"

Years ago, when I was a young lad at university, I worked for a bloke named Philip Jones writer, poet, actor and bookseller. He was a real gentleman who []

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Tuesday, 08 May

03:39

2018 Participation CALD Senior Grants OPEN "IndyWatch Feed Vic"

2018 Participation for CALD Seniors Grants Program now open

8th May 2018

The Victorian Governments 2018 Participation for CALD Seniors Grants Program is now open.

The Ethnic Communities Council of Victoria (ECCV) welcomes the Grant Program for community groups and organizations to develop opportunities which increase the social participation of vulnerable senior citizens who face linguistic, cultural and other challenges.

ECCV Chairperson Cr Kris Pavlidis says We are pleased to be a program partner and applaud the funding of more than 322 community projects since 2011 for isolated seniors of culturally diverse backgrounds to participate in community activities."

The Victorian Government funded projects will be implemented over the course of a year commencing October 2018, with up to $300,000 in grants available this year.

Cr Kris Pavlidis states the evidence shows that older people from culturally diverse backgrounds are at a higher risk of social isolation because of a range of factors such as language and cultural barriers and limited awareness of services available to them.

Eligible organisations such as ethnic community groups, aged care facilities and local councils are invited to apply for funding up to $10,000.

Minister for Housing, Disability and Ageing Martin Foley encouraged organisations to take part and says We want to continue the great work of previous grant recipients in helping isolated culturally diverse seniors participate more fully in community life.

The grants assist community groups and organisations to provide participation opportunities to isolated seniors such as, social activities, assistance with transport and training.  

Applications close by 5pm, Friday 1st June 2018. Successful applicants will be notified by August 2018 and awarded grants for projects commencing 1st October 2018 and concluding on 30th September 2019.

For media comment, please contact Leenie Fabri, Communications & Media Officer, lfabri@eccv.org.au / 0422 480 319

Reference:

https://www.seniorsonline.vic.gov.au/get-involved/grants/participation-cald-seniors-grants-program

Download Media Release

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Wednesday, 02 May

05:04

We May Be Running But Are Rarely in a Hurry "IndyWatch Feed Vic"

What's the hurry? Are you going somewhere or are you Being. Isn't it refreshing when we see people who manage to have a full day of activity...

02:52

STATE BUDGET BOOSTS MULTICULTURAL FUNDING TO $43.6M "IndyWatch Feed Vic"

 

STATE BUDGET BOOSTS MULTICULTURAL FUNDING TO $43.6M

 May 2nd, 2018 

The Ethnic Communities Council of Victoria (ECCV) is delighted with the Victorian Government biggest budget announcement for our culturally diverse community.

ECCV Chairperson Cr Kris Pavlidis welcomes the $43.6m budget allocation, highlighting the $21.9m injection toward specialised employment support programs will contribute to improving migrant and refugee employment outcomes.

Cr Pavlidis said the significant investment of $8.6m into the African Communities Action Plan to address social and economic issues, including education, employment health and wellbeing, will be able to directly empower grassroot communities of African heritage.

Cr Kris Pavlidis applauds the $1.4m increase to the Multicultural Festivals and Events program for community groups including ethnic clubs.  Cr Pavlidis says its important that ethnic and multicultural community organisations will directly benefit from this boost. The $17.1m investment into existing community programs and security upgrades to Victorias multicultural community centres will further improve community amenity and safety. 

ECCV congratulates the Victorian Government on the $15m investment towards programs for young people from culturally and linguistically diverse backgrounds in training, school and work, in addition to the $1.7m supporting culturally diverse young people at risk of offending. The ECCV Chairperson says its important to fund practical support and pathways for isolated and vulnerable youth including sporting venues and leisure centres in outer suburban growth areas. 

The state budget provides $500,000 to improve translations for all major government policy and program announcements. ECCV recognises the significance of accessing culturally relevant language services. Cr Kris Pavlidis says ECCV has been monitoring language services funding and would welcome its prompt roll out.

The ECCV pre-budget 2018-19 submission highlighted the need for culturally responsive employment opportunities. This state budget significantly boosts access to training, upskilling and employment pathways. ECCV intends to monitor this to ensure funding reaches culturally diverse job seekers. The ECCV State Conference May 17-18th will facilitate further discussion and partnerships to initiate employment growth, workplace diversity and a job ready workforce.

F...

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Tuesday, 01 May

11:07

Business as usual budget drops the ball on public transport "IndyWatch Feed Vic"

Victoria is in danger of regressing to a 20th century car-dependent model for transport planning, and needs to renew its ambition on public and active transport, the Public Transport Users Association said today.

After the bold initiatives of 2015 and 2016, this years state budget looks more like something from five or ten years ago, said PTUA President Dr Tony Morton. For every dollar of new spending on public transport initiatives there is $2.40 on new spending on roads and car travel, which is just going to feed growing congestion. Our overall service provision for public transport will be barely keeping pace with population growth, providing little room to help people who want an alternative to sitting in traffic.

The Andrews Government is trumpeting a record $13 billion spend on infrastructure, but with this level of spending, the Victorian public is entitled to know if this is really the right infrastructure, and how its going to benefit a decade or two into the future. Are we still devoting the lions share of funding to additional road capacity thats going to fill up in two years, or are we embracing the 21st century model of efficient movement and choices?

Despite the slant to roads, the PTUA says there are important initiatives in the budget to upgrade signalling and other infrastructure on the Sunbury, Dandenong, Shepparton and Ballarat lines, to continue expanding the train fleet and to provide additional services. This builds on the governments existing major initiatives such as the Metro tunnel, road-rail grade separation and the Regional Rail Revival package.

But PTUA said the overall impression was of a government suddenly reluctant to build on its record in growing public transport, and instead doubling down on roads. They want Victorians to get excited about the North East Link, the Mordialloc Freeway and $2 billion worth of road widening in the suburbs, Dr Morton said. Barring some encouraging words about high speed regional trains, theres really nothing new thats comparable on the public transport side. Is this really all there is, as the Andrews Government goes to Victorians to seek re-election in November?

With Melbournes population set to grow by close to 1 million people per decade, the state cannot afford to drop the ball on public transport, says the PTUA. We really need to be planning the next big rail capacity boost in the west, given everything thats said about the Metro tunnel being full almost as soon as it opens. And theres the ongoing need to boost regular service frequency, including on our long-neglected suburban bus network.

09:06

Victorian Budget Formula "IndyWatch Feed Vic"

Read our Victorian budget submission for further detail on the following issues. A first glance at the Victorian State Budget sees an election year budget, light on reform, big on expenditure. The billowing Victorian land market underpinned most of the spending, with $7.1 bn in stamp duties alone. Some say that the property sector was []

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Monday, 30 April

03:03

eX-detainees highly condemn artists performed in the #Stolenwealth (commonwealth) games in Australia 2018 and call to boycott such artists. "IndyWatch Feed Vic"

We eX-detainees in Australia strongly condemn those artists who performed in the Stolenwealth aka Commonwealth Games in Australia 2018. We eX-detainees have requested artists to boycott the Commonwealth Games both nationally and internationally on the basis of our community members enduring ongoing abuses in Australia run detention centres for over 2 decades (26 years). http://riserefugee.org/stolenwealth-games-boycott-a-first-nations-ex-detainee-solidarity-statement-26-03-2018/

But our request has been regarded with clear disrespect and Australias rape and torture survivors should not have to educate people on this. Artists privileged enough to have such a platform should know that their solidarity should be with the oppressed not with a thieving murderous empire or commonwealth. This was an opportunity to leverage your power for justice but you instead chose fame and money while throwing abused and tortured communities under the bus. What is very interesting is that some of these artists are recognised as progressive and as human rights activists, yet have zero respect for refugees indefinitely detained in Australian detention camps both in and past and at the present. For over 26 years, white Australian refugee policy exists not only because of racist Australian government but also of spineless so-called progressives too.

This systemic abuse of our bodies and livelihood not only exist in detention but also long after we survived. We should not also forget those who are currently held hostage in both onshore and offshore detention camps, including some cases where people have been detained for 10 years without release date.

Therefore, we ask all our national and international followers to BOYCOTT below artists future performances due to their lack of regards for those who survived rape and torture in Australia-run detention centres.

Artist Names / Locations

Meg Mac Melbourne
The Cat Empire Melbourne
Born in a Taxi Melbourne
Regurgitator Melbourne
Confidence Man- Melbourne

Urthboy Sydney
Nina Las Vegas NSW
Icarus Productions Sydney
Hot Dub Time Machine Sydney
Thundamentals Sydney
BlueSkillet Rovers NSW
Eliza & The Delusionals- NSW

Kate Miller Heidke Brisbane
Amy Shark Brisbane
Ella Fence Brisbane
Katie Noonan Brisbane
The Jungle Giants Brisbane
Bullhorn Brisbane
Circa Contemporary Circus Brisbane
Paces Brisbane
Polytoxic dance theatre Brisbabe
Lastlings Brisbane
JACKIE MARSHALL Brisbane
...

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Sunday, 29 April

11:20

2pm 21/07 | Rally: 5 Years Too Many Bring Them Here! "IndyWatch Feed Vic"

When: 2-5pm 21st July Where: State Library of Victoria, 328 Swanston St, Melbourne. Facebook event here This July will mark 5 years since the PNG solution was announced 5 years of limbo in offshore detention hellholes 2 years since Manus was declared illegal Over 1.5 years since US refugee deal announced 10 deaths offshore Its(...)

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Friday, 27 April

04:37

PTUA welcomes study into high speed rail for Geelong "IndyWatch Feed Vic"

The Public Transport Users Association (PTUA) has welcomed the state governments announcement of a study into faster rail services for Geelong.

A $50 million study will investigate the possibility of trains running at between 250 and 300km/h between Melbourne and Geelong.

PTUA Geelong Branch Convener and Regional Spokesperson, Paul Westcott, said faster trains would provide great benefits to the people of Geelong.

It would be fantastic to see higher speeds on the Geelong line, which would mean shorter journey times for commuters, allowing them to spend more time with their families. Its encouraging to see the government planning for the higher speed trains we will need in the future first on the Geelong line, and then on other regional lines, he said.

However, Mr Westcott noted that the overwhelming concern for Geelong line passengers right now is overcrowding at the Melbourne end of the line, and the unreliability of services.

Its vital to fix those problems now, as well as planning for the future, Mr Westcott said. Geelong trains should not be serving suburban passengers from Tarneit, Wyndham Vale and Deer Park.

The line to Wyndham Vale must be electrified so Metro trains can do that job, and the two planned separate tracks must be built so Geelong trains dont have to stop at suburban stations.

The PTUA has also welcomed the state governments announcement that the Melbourne Metro Rail Authority (MMRA) will be re-established as Rail Projects Victoria.

Rather than having separate agencies running each new project, it is sensible to have a single agency responsible for all rail projects, Mr Westcott said. It will help retain talent and skills in rail projects, and provide a pipeline of works for the people involved.

Mr Westcott noted that the new authority should be able to coordinate and combine related projects together. For example, the Melbourne Metro Rail Authority (MMRA) is planning to build a new station at Toolern on the Melton line, right next to Ferris Road, but the opportunity to grade separate Ferris Road at the same time is apparently not being taken.

Based on what the government has said, Rail Projects Victoria will start out with the same remit as the current MMRA, but we hope that more projects will be added to it over time, Mr Westcott said.

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Thursday, 26 April

05:08

North East Link plans to kill off Doncaster rail forever "IndyWatch Feed Vic"

The Public Transport Users Association says that detailed design plans for the North East Link and its accompanying busway include taking over the median reserve for additional car lanes. This will kill stone dead any long term plan for trains to run to Doncaster, according to the PTUA.

Whats being proposed is a radical reorganisation of the road corridor between Clifton Hill and Bulleen, said PTUA President Dr Tony Morton. The wide median which has been set aside for a train line since the 1970s will be deleted and used for car lanes. This provides space for the bus lanes they want to put on the outside of the road but the outside will never be suitable for rail due to conflict with entrance and exit ramps.

The plan to remove the median appears in the map book accompanying the North East Link Detail Design. It adds to previously announced plans for a 16-lane road monster between Bulleen and Doncaster, resembling the superhighways seen in some US cities like Los Angeles or Houston.

Dr Morton said the plan to kill Doncaster rail not only ran contrary to the publics clearly expressed preference it also promised nightmarish consequences for the Doncaster region in the long term. Rail is ultimately the only game in town when it comes to moving large numbers of people around a big city effectively, he said. Even the proposed buses wont be future-proof, and will in time become slow and crowded just like the busway services in Brisbane today. Premier Andrews and his Roads Minister are essentially foreclosing the most space-efficient mode of transport for the least space-efficient. Thats not merely short-sighted, its bordering on spite for the people of Manningham who spent years campaigning for a train.

The PTUA hears daily from bus users in the north east who suffer overcrowded, late, cancelled and defective services, Dr Morton said. The Department of Transport signed a supposedly innovative contract with private operator Transdev, which it appears leaves it powerless to enforce basic service standards on behalf of passengers. I can confidently say no-one who uses these buses today has any confidence in government assurances that buses can do the work of trains in 30 years time when Melbourne is the size of London or Paris.

Instead, Dr Morton said, residents of Manningham and other suburbs were being sentenced to a congested Los Angeles future. So the state spends $16 billion to build this 16 lane monster, and it fills up with 16 lanes of single-occupant car traffic. What do our amazing planners do then? The Americans have freeways 24 lanes wide and theyre still clogged. Freight cant go anywhere because its stuck with all the cars. You dont solve anyones transport problems passengers or freight until you...

04:12

PTUA welcomes Coalition commitments to regional rail in western Victoria "IndyWatch Feed Vic"

The Public Transport Users Association (PTUA) has today welcomed the state Coalitions commitments to improve regional rail in western Victoria if elected in November.

A study commissioned by a group of councils in western Victoria in 2017 called for a swathe of improvements to public transport in their regions, including returning passenger trains to Horsham and Hamilton, and improving a number of coach connections. The Coalition have announced their intention to fund a formal business case for these proposals.

PTUA Ballarat Branch Convener, Ben Lever, welcomed the announcement as the first step towards returning passenger trains beyond Ararat.

Returning passenger trains to these communities is really vital for connecting them to each other, and to Ballarat and Melbourne. We hope this business case can do the detailed planning necessary to allow construction to start as soon as possible, he said.

Passenger trains along these routes would act as the spine of the region. When fast, high-capacity passenger trains are running on these routes, they can be complemented by connecting coaches to places that arent on the rail line, and thereby improve public transport across the whole region.

The Coalition also propose extending the Maryborough line to Donald, reactivating stations at Dunolly and St Arnaud along the way. These extensions are also seen as a first step towards returning passenger services all the way to Mildura in the future.

Returning passenger trains to these communities would be a real boon. Whether theyre taking shorter trips to Maryborough or Ballarat, or going all the way to Melbourne, a fast and well-timed train could be extremely useful for the people living in these towns. Mr Lever said.

Mr Lever did note that there were some technical obstacles to returning trains to returning passenger trains beyond Maryborough that would need to be addressed.

In that part of Victoria there is a mixture of Broad Gauge track, which is primarily used for passenger services, and Standard Gauge track, which is primarily used for freight services. Because a given train can only run on one type of track, passengers travelling all the way from Donald to Melbourne would need to change from a Standard Gauge train to a Broad Gauge train at some point in their journey the decision will need to be made about where that change should happen. We look forward to the Coalition providing these kinds of finer details about their policy in the coming months.

While Mr Lever welcomed the proposed reopening of these stations, he warned against a set and forget approach.

Governments need to bear in mind that its not just about providing the infrastructure or providing a train its about backing that up with servi...

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Friday, 20 April

15:00

Put our buses to work for everyone: PTUA responds to Infrastructure Victoria action plan "IndyWatch Feed Vic"

Melbournes buses need to be overhauled to follow the heavy-lifting example set by Melbournes trams, the Public Transport Users Association said on Friday.

The call comes in response to Infrastructure Victorias Five Year Focus strategy, which outlines short term actions to tackle Melbournes traffic congestion. The report calls on the State Government to make better use of existing infrastructure and bus fleets, restructuring bus networks to be more efficient and managing road space to improve priority for high-occupancy public and active transport.

Its fascinating to look back at the five year plan the PTUA produced way back in 2005, and how many of the things we were asking for then are coming up in this 2018 strategy, said PTUA President Dr Tony Morton. Things like better bus and tram priority, network planning reform, SmartBus links to connect rail corridors and so on these are perennial problems that really wont cost that much to fix but have languished for want of political attention.

But the PTUA has long identified other low hanging fruit likely to have similar bang for buck performance in the short term, Dr Morton said. For example, Infrastructure Victoria talks in their report about network connectivity, but only mention new road links to encourage more car travel. Weve repeatedly raised examples of tram lines that stop barely a kilometre short of railway stations, and where a valuable network connection could be made for want of a short extension, costing the same as a couple of kilometres of new road.

Other inexpensive initiatives included extra stations on suburban lines where spare capacity exists, the PTUA says. The 2005 plan envisaged a station at Campbellfield on the Upfield line (connecting with the 902 SmartBus) and at Newport West on the Altona line. The government wasted the opportunity to build a Campbellfield station as part of the recent grade separation completed at Camp Road, Dr Morton said. One thing missing from the report is how the government might learn from such examples to plan and maximise the benefits from such relatively small projects in future.

But the most promising short-term initiatives came from opportunities to reform bus services, especially those Infrastructure Victoria identifies as underperforming, says the PTUA. Unfortunately, we see the potential here for trendy knee-jerk solutions that make things worse, Dr Morton says. For example, the report hints strongly at the idea of removing underperforming bus routes and replacing them with taxis. However much you ginger this up with buzzwords like customer responsive service and ride sharing, all youre doing is adding cars to the road. In cities around the w...

03:25

How an Ancient Singing Tradition Helps People Cope With Trauma in the Modern World "IndyWatch Feed Vic"

In Finland, lament singing is experiencing a revival, one sad song at a time.  Tristan Ahtone

I took pills for my depression

just to smother my emotions.

Doctors said that I would need them,

but I learned to cry without them.

So I stopped taking the tablets,

then I let my feelings rise up

for my mother when she passed on,

for my marriage when he quit me,

left me as a single mother,

with a hard job and no weekends.

Now I weep without taking pills,

yet I still feel very angry,

and the fury seems well-founded,

but the feelings will not hurt me.

...

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Tuesday, 17 April

03:37

Uproar across Asia over Australia's approval of multinational GM rice. "IndyWatch Feed Vic"

For Immediate Release Friday 13th April, 2018

The genetically-modified organism (GMO) known as golden rice (GR2E rice) will not significantly address hunger or Vitamin A deficiency (VAD) according to the National Anti-Poverty Commission (NAPC).

The International Conference on Golden Rice was organised by MASIPAG and the Stop Golden Rice Network in the Philippines and facilitated by the Anti-Poverty Commission. It included delegates and farmers, scientists, and development workers from Bangladesh, Vietnam, Indonesia, Australia, New Zealand, Sri Lanka, India, and the Philippines. The conference participants joined peasant farmers calling for the stopping of the GM rice outside the Department of Agriculture [1].
 
The conference heard that Australia/New Zealand approval of GR2E rice will impact heavily on indigenous farmers all over Asia. This is because as Filipino law stands, the Food Standards Australia New Zealand (FSANZ) safety assessment can be used for approval to plant in many of the Asian rice growing countries.
 
FSANZ said that on the best available scientific evidence it was safe to eat.  Yet, experts and farmers from India, the Philippines and Indonesia provided studies raising concerns over the safety of the rice, proving that not all evidence was sought or considered by FSANZ. FSANZ has approved the rice into the Australasian food chain 'in case of contamination' to 'avoid trade issues'. There is a total absence of evidence for consumers to know if it is safe to eat.  FSANZ said feeding/ingestion studies were not provided nor did FSANZ require them [2].
 
FSANZs rubber stamp approach to food safety is putting the health of billions of people at risk. This GM rice is aimed at pregnant women and children and yet there is an absence of evidence of safety. Said Fran Murrell from MADGE Australia, We hope that the Philippine Government regulators protect their people by ensuring that rigorous, long term safety studies are carried out.
 
Liza Maza from the National Anti-Poverty Commission in the Philippines said There was no comparative studies between GR2E rice and other varieties to see if it can lessen Vitamin A deficiency,
 
Cris Panerio, national coordinator for the Philippino farmer and scientist alliance (MASIPAG), noted Golden rice is fraught with inherent problems, one of which is the low yield resulting to the disruption of the native structure...

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Saturday, 14 April

06:38

Submission to FSANZ on Food derived using new breeding techniques - we explain why all new GM foods need regulation, testing and labelling. "IndyWatch Feed Vic"

19th April 2018

We submit that:

1) The Food Standards Australia New Zealand Act 1991 was written with intent to ensure all new breeding techniques for food are, and will be, regulated. The Act requires the protection of public health and safety (Section 18 (1) (a), Objectives of the Act) therefore all new breeding techniques must be regulated.

  • The definitions for food produced using gene technology and gene technology cover food produced using all forms of New Breeding Techniques.
  • In New Zealand, it is accepted that in-vitro genome manipulations that were introduced after 1996 should be considered genetic modification techniques (Hazardous Substances and New Organisms Act).
  • All new breeding techniques should be acknowledged as GM. 
  • All new breeding techniques must undergo sufficiently rigorous pre-market assessments and follow up monitoring to ensure they can be, and are being, safely consumed over an entire lifetime. 

We submit that:

2) This public consultation has broken the requirement that risk analysis be based on the best available scientific evidence, as required by Section 18 (2) of the FSANZ Act.

  • This consultation is based on workshops and an Expert Advisory Panel containing scientists with conflicts of interest
  • Austrian government agencies found there is insufficient knowledge of the risks of these techniques and all of them should be regulated.[1]
  • The Norwegian Environment and Development Agencies concluded further biosafety research needs to be done before these techniques are commercialised.[2]
  • The European Network of Scientists for Social and Environmental Responsibility state these techniques are recognized as GM in the medical field and should been seen as GM in agriculture and food. They assert that the application of these techniques allows for outcomes that may be unprecedented in human experience:[3]
  • Non-regulation of these techniques would mean numerous Human Rights are being breached the: Right to Food[4], Right to a Healthy Environment[5], Right to Health[6] and Right to Freedom essential for scientific research.[7]
  • Decisions on the regulation, or deregu...

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Thursday, 12 April

09:10

Community songbirds! Take flight on the airwaves in a new radio show dedicated to singing groups and choirs "IndyWatch Feed Vic"

A truly unique radio show championing the work of Choirs and Community Singing Groups is filling the airwaves above Upwey and beyond with the sweet sound of a cappella and accompanied singing each week.  The Aka-Pelican show is hosted by Rick Steen, a passionate choir singer and blues guitarist whos excited to bring this opportunity to the world in what he believes is a first.

Ricks Aka-Pelican show is broadcast by 3MDR, (Mountain District Radio) on 97.1fm. The community-run station was set up in response to the Ash Wednesday bushfires in 1983 to provide effective and direct communication to locals in the event of emergency, and other than a station manager, it is staffed and run entirely by volunteers.

With a background in folk and blues music, Rick joined the station as a volunteer sound engineer before being trained as an announcer and invited to present a show of his own:

I thought what would work really well is a show dedicated to supporting choirs and a cappella singing. There are around seven choirs in the Dandenongs between Upwey and Gembrook alone, making it a good niche, good for the station and its membership; people will be all over it!

3MDR has enjoyed a variety of homes during its 25-year history including a bus, a water tower and a shop. In February, the station relocated to new premises at the Forest Park Homestead, where Rick now has the luxury of a large studio space suitable for live to air broadcasts during his programs two-hour time slot, from 3 til 5:00pm on Wednesdays.

...

08:57

Show us a plan, and dont neglect local services, says PTUA "IndyWatch Feed Vic"

The Victorian Government needs to show the public an integrated plan for moving people and freight. But the government also needs to match its busy infrastructure programme with a commitment to frequent local public transport service, the Victorian Transport Infrastructure Conference heard on Thursday.

According to a presentation by Dr Tony Morton, President of the Public Transport Users Association, the government has put forward numerous multi-billion dollar transport projects, but has not explained what part they play in any strategic transport plan for the next half century.

On the one hand, the government is building the Metro rail tunnel, which is equivalent to about three West Gate Bridges in carrying capacity and has massive potential to divert single occupant car travel from the existing West Gate Bridge, Dr Morton said. Yet at the same time its sinking billions of dollars into the West Gate Tunnel, which has barely one-sixth the capacity but is likely to induce more car travel into the city, swamping any benefit the Metro tunnel provides.

Winning the West

Melbournes West faces enormous challenges in the near term dealing with urban growth and the states worst pollution from cars and trucks, not to mention the historical neglect of public transport infrastructure and services. We really cannot afford to be adding to the horrendous traffic problems that already exist. In fact we ought to be doubling down on rail infrastructure to bring the West closer to what the Eastern suburbs already enjoy. Its time to start planning Melbourne Metro Two.

Metro Two is the name given to a rail tunnel connecting Newport station underneath the Yarra with Fishermans Bend and the City. It then extends north via Parkville to connect with the South Morang line, providing added capacity to the Mernda growth area and simplifying planning for a Doncaster rail line. Versions of the line appeared in the 2012 Rail Network Development Plan and in plans considered by Infrastructure Victoria. it was also raised favourably in evidence by Victorian rail planner Ed Dotson to a 2010 Parliamentary inquiry into rail services.

Freight needs should have special consideration as part of an integrated plan, Dr Morton said. At present, freight is in a zero-sum game with single-occupant car traffic, and the cars are winning. This will happen as long as we build so-called freight roads that are just going to fill up with cars. We need to be getting more freight back on the rails, taking advantage of the latest international experience with multimodal logistics. Meanwhile, road freight solutions must be well-targeted, designed and sized so as not to induce more car travel.

Dr Morton also welcomed Wednesdays announcement by the Federal Government of $5 billion toward a Melbourne airport rail link. ...

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Tuesday, 10 April

10:52

Trickle-Up Economics Report Launch "IndyWatch Feed Vic"

  Speakers: Dr. Gavin Putland & Dr. Polly Cleveland Date: Wednesday, April 18 Time: 6pm Location:  Prosper Australia Level 1, 64 Harcourt Street, North Melbourne Company tax cuts are favoured by government, wage rises by the opposition. We all want a vibrant economy and the dignity of work. What if there was a policy transition that turned []

06:13

Care urged on Rowville tram proposal: avoid rushing into half measures, says PTUA "IndyWatch Feed Vic"

The Public Transport Users Association has cautiously welcomed a proposal to develop a new tram line connecting Rowville to Caulfield railway station via Chadstone Shopping Centre. But the PTUA is concerned the project could leave the community worse off in the longer term by precluding a conventional train line along Wellington Road.

The previous governments network plan envisaged a regular rail link between Huntingdale and Rowville as the appropriate long term option for this corridor, PTUA President Dr Tony Morton said on Tuesday.

There was also a strong view on Infrastructure Victorias citizen jury in 2016 that this would be imperative in the next 15 years, he said.

We similarly believe conventional heavy rail is the only option in the longer term if were to see any significant mode shift to public transport to deal with our traffic problems. Its difficult to see any other option providing a competitive travel time for longer journeys.

The proposed line will run parallel to the Dandenong train line between Caulfield and Oakleigh before heading east. It will not include the existing interchange at Huntingdale station.

There are some advantages to this proposal, especially for local travel, Dr Morton said. With a tram, you can have stops both at the University and at the Synchrotron up the road, but you probably wouldnt get a train to stop at both. And it certainly delivers on the need for an improved public transport connection to Chadstone.

At the same time, the key risks for the project are speed and interchange capacity. Without serious attention to traffic priority, its not going to hold a candle to train travel as soon as youre going more than a few stops. And the interchange at Caulfield needs to cater for potentially hundreds of people at a time without getting stuck in queues our systems historically been quite bad at this kind of thing.

At present, a journey from Monash University bus interchange to Flinders Street Station can be done in 40 minutes (10 on the 601 bus and 25 on the train, assuming an average 5 minute connection). For a tram connecting at Caulfield to match what the bus and train can do currently, it would need to achieve a 30kph average speed which means it has to be faster than the existing 75 tram along Burwood Highway, and even faster than the Gold Coast Light Rail which is probably best-in-class in Australia for traffic priority right now.

Meanwhile of course, if we ever got the train the communitys been asking for, the whole trip could be cut from 40 to 30 minutes, Dr Morton said. That is the longer term opportunity for the whole high-tech precinct wed be worried about losing.

Dr Morton said the PTUA would continue to press for an integrated...

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Sunday, 08 April

03:20

Hard science can be undertaken on 'anomalies.' "IndyWatch Feed Vic"

Dear readers,

I note that tomorrow, Sydney researcher Bill Chalker and abductee Peter Khoury are speaking in my home town of Melbourne at a VUFOA sponsored event. I am looking forward to going along as a silent observer. I am hoping that the duo may be providing some updated information about the physical evidence aspects of Peter's experiences. For readers who may be unaware of these details, which involve DNA analyses here is a link.

The 'Ata' anomaly

Coincidently, DNA analyses of an apparently anomalous skeleton, which some have suggested is extraterrestrial, features in a US CNN report dated 22 March 2018. 

A mummified skeleton was found 15 years ago in the Atacama Desert in Chile. The recent Dr Steven Greer documentary 'Sirius' which featured this skeleton, strongly proposed that the skeleton was of an extraterrestrial 'alien.' 

However, an article just published in the scientific journal 'Genome Research' reveals that this unusual skeleton is actually human, with multiple bone disease-associated mutations, thus giving it a very unusual appearance. Here is hard science at its best.

The 'Starchild' skull

A second recently published hard science analysis, including DNA work, reports on an unusual 900 year old skull found in the 1930's in Mexico. US researcher Lloyd Pye initiated work on this skull between 1999 and 2014 looking for evidence as to the possibilit...

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Saturday, 07 April

14:10

Golden pheasant and re-start of my blog "IndyWatch Feed Vic"

Golden pheasant

This photo shows a golden pheasant.

I show it here because, when my blog will re-start in about 3-4 days time, some of the post will be on the spot reports from the natural environment of these beautiful birds and other wildlife.

See you all again!

05:54

Queensland construction industry outlook "IndyWatch Feed Vic"

The construction industry is very important to the Queensland economy, and it employs nearly 10 percent of all workers (see Queensland Treasurys Employment by Industry brief). One part of the broader industry, residential construction, has grown strongly in recent years, owing in part to the huge amount of apartment construction activity in Brisbane. But activity in residential construction has always been expected to fall back as projects were completed, and indeed it has been doing so. Private dwelling construction in Queensland in December quarter 2017 was 5.8% lower than in December quarter 2016. In contrast, non-residential construction activity is recovering nicely from its post-mining-investment-boom slump, with private non-residential construction increasing 11.6% over the same period. Growth in non-residential construction has therefore offset the adverse impact of the recent slowdown in dwelling construction on the state economy.

But what does the future hold? To gain some insight, we can examine building approvals data, the latest batch of which (updated with February data) were released last Wednesday by the ABS. Broadly speaking, as discussed below, the outlook is positive, based on recent approvals data and expected public sector capital works (e.g. Cross River Rail) and resources sector developments, possibly including the Adani mega mine (see this recent AFR article), although many observers remain doubtful it will ever proceed.

Non-residential construction

Non-residential building approvals have been at higher levels over the last couple of years after recovering from the trough in 2014-15 (chart below). This gives us reason to be confident about non-residential construction activity, although Queensland has not experienced the massive surge in non-residential approvals seen in NSW and Victoria.

...

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Friday, 06 April

22:30

Leading human rights barrister Julian Burnside examines asylum seeker policies worldwide "IndyWatch Feed Vic"

WORLD PREMIERE OF BORDER POLITICS The Human Rights Arts and Film Festival will screen the world premiere of Border Politics on 15 May in Melbourne. Border Politics follows human rights barrister Julian Burnside as he crosses the globe to examine the treatment of refugees

00:29

Indigenous people racially abused online "IndyWatch Feed Vic"

Melbourne [AAP]

More than a third of indigenous people have been the victim of direct racism online while the majority have seen perils of sharing their culture on social media, a new national report reveals.

The majority of indigenous people using social media were selective about what they posted for fear others would hit back with racism or violence, the Social Media Mob: Being Indigenous Online report has found.

A Penrith woman is one of the 88 per cent of respondents who had seen racism towards indigenous people online.

The comment section of a news article on Aboriginal people is the worst. Massive stereotyping of Aboriginal people. Racist memes being shared. YouTube videos taken without permission of Aboriginal people, she said.

Yet another person said it was a good medium to fight racism, the report states.

Other respondents saw social media as a new meeting place and provided a fresh way to practice and pass on cultural knowledge.

It was also seen as an effective platform to seek help and could be used to develop culturally appropriate suicide interventions and prevention programs.

The report focused on six key areas; indigenous identities, online communities, practising culture, racism and violence, help-seeking, and political activism.

Indigenous people must navigate many different tensions between the benefits and dangers of social media, report co-author Professor Bronwyn Carlson said.

More than 130 participants from across Australia took part in interviews, surveys and discussions conducted by Prof Carlson and Ryan Frazer for the Australian Research Council-funded report.

Participants mostly identified as being Aboriginal while some also identified as Torres Strait Islander.

REPORT FINDINGS:

* 71 per cent of Indigenous Australians said social media was a good platform for learning about and engaging in cultural practices

* 64 per cent expressed concern about sharing indigenous culture on social media

* 88 per cent had seen racism towards indigenous people on social media

* 21 per cent had received threats of violence from other social media users

* 48 per cent indicated social media made them feel more likely to be able to identify someone at risk of self-harm or suicide

* 79 per cent were politically active online.

Source: Social Media Mob: Being Indigenous Online report

Readers seeking support and information about suicide prevention can contact Lifeline on 13 11 14.

Local Aboriginal Medical Service details available from....

00:00

April 6 #OnThisDay in #Australian #History "IndyWatch Feed Vic"

1806 - Report on Aborigines massacred at Twofold Bay. The report tells of weeks of tension ending in a confrontation between 11 sealers from the stranded whaler George and a tribal group which resulted in the death of nine Aboriginals. The report is silent on the cause of the tension however sealers were notorious for their treatment of Aboriginal people in Tasmania and the abduction of Aboriginal and Maori women

1816 - The Principal Superintendent of Convicts William Hutchinson announced on 6th April that 'a quantity of female prisoners' had arrived on the Alexander and those colonists desirous of a housekeeper should apply to his Office.

1822 - Francis Murphy hanged at Sydney for burglary from the house of Nicholas Devine (former Superintendent of Convicts) at what is now Erskineville.

1822 - William Harris hanged at Sydney for robbery of James Cribb on the Parramatta Road.

1832 - Thomas Brennan  was shot by military firing squad at Dawes Battery, Sydney. A private soldier of His Majesty's 39th Regiment of Foot, Brennan had fired at his sergeant with the intent of killing him.
 
1831 - Charles Cowper was appointed clerk to the commissioners for managing the affairs of the church and School Estates.

1844 John Gavin was the first European settler to be legally executed in Western Australia. He was executed for murder at the age of fifteen.

1853 - Charlie La Trobe was not a happy charlie (nor a well boy) but on this day the Colonial Office finally accepted his resignation as Gov. of Victoria.

1860 - John McDouall Stuart was trudging along during a sunny amble when he happened across a sandstone monolith today ; near to the South Oz and NT border he named the monolith Chambers Pillar to honour the wealthy pastoralist who'd bankrolled his strolls about the Fair Isle of Oz.

1864 - Anthony Fernando, one of the earliest Aboriginal activists, was born. He picketed, protested and traveled widely around the world on behalf of all aborigines.

1885 - The railway line to the Williamstown Racecourse (first site) (Vic) was opened.

1892 - The railway line from Lancefield to Kilmore (Vic) opened.

1895 - The Premier of Queensland was enjoying a hearty banquet at the North Gregory Hotel in Winton, QLD today when Sir Herbert Ramsay began to warble an unknown song; Waltzing Matilda had made its debut.

1896 - Today saw the NEW! Olympics begin in Athens, Greece and it turned out to be Gold! Gold! Gol....BRONZE!  Oz had just the one bloke representing at the Games, Edwin Flack, and he "only" managed to snaffle 2 gold medals in the 800 meters and 1500 meters athletics races, failed to place in the marathon (he collapsed while in the lead with only 3 kms to go) and singles tennis but finished...

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Thursday, 05 April

09:00

Is psychiatry ready for medical MDMA? "IndyWatch Feed Vic"

When you think of MDMA, you might imagine a dodgy drug deal or a sweaty dancefloor, but the illicit party-drug may become a legal medicine in just three years. US researchers are conducting final clinical trials testing MDMA-assisted psychotherapy as a treatment for post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD). Dr. Gillinder Bedi is a Senior Research Fellow at the University of Melbourne and Head of Substance Use Research, Orygen National Centre of Excellence in Youth Mental Health. Her new paper asks Is psychiatry ready for medical MDMA?. Listen to her conversation on Thursday Drive below.

 

The post Is psychiatry ready for medical MDMA? appeared first on 89.7 Eastside FM.

04:28

Video catches cops drag innocent disabled man from home, torture him in his front yard "IndyWatch Feed Vic"

Police were caught on surveillance camera dragging an elderly, disabled man from his home and then beating him with a baton, taunting him, and covering his face with pepper spray. Horrifying surveillance footage has been released that shows multiple police officers aggressively assaulting and torturing a disabled man in his front yard after they dragged him from his home during a welfare check. John, a retiree in Melbourne, Australia, was supposed to be enjoying his golden years in peace-but after his psychologist called the Australian equivalent of 911, all hell broke loose. Victoria Police arrived to presumably perform an unwanted welfare check. When John refused to speak with the officers, they dragged him into the yard and beat him, pepper-sprayed him, and then hosed him down with his own water hose-all while mocking him. The entire incident was caught on video recording principally because the homeowner had installed a surveillance system after his house was previously burglarized. In the graphic video, Victoria Police can be heard taunting the elderly man, cursing at him, beating him in the legs with their batons and covering his face with pepper spray. "You fucking idiot!...You like that?...Smells good, doesn't it?" the officers mocked him. The man, who suffers from a bad back and emotional distress can be heard screaming "My back!" as the pack of officers manhandle him. The officers' true intentions were revealed when they were presumably attempting to wash off the pepper spray with which they had filled his face. When the one officer with the hose started applying the water, the nozzle's setting was set to hose. Later, the setting was changed to spray, and a solid stream of water was applied to the man's head and face, likely injuring John further. When the officer with the hose noticed his fellow officer was recording with his cell phone, he stepped back, as if to imply by his actions that he did not want to be caught on camera abusing the man. But caught on camera he was-just not the one he believed his colleague was holding. Upon the arrest, officers charged the man with assault but the recording tells a much different story. Not only did the man not call authorities, he asked them several times to leave him in peace. When he refused to comply with their unlawful orders, the man was violently mistreated. Officials and politicians weighed in on the attack. Opposition Leader Matthew Guy told reporters, "All Victorians will be outraged by it," and called the actions of the police officers "abhorrent." The Independent Broad-based Anti-corruption Commission (IBAC) issued the following statement: "Victoria Police, as their employer, is responsible for determining whether the officers are 'stood down' from policing duties while they are subject to investigation." Acting Commissioner Luke Cornelius called the CCTV "concerning" and said, "sunlight is the best disinfectant,"welcoming external scrutiny of his department's actions.........

01:47

Lottoland offers profit deal to newsagents "IndyWatch Feed Vic"

SYDNEY AAP

Lottoland Australia is offering a profit-sharing deal to 4000 newsagents across the nation in return for in-store promotion of the online betting giant.

Its touting commissions of 20 per cent of the profits generated from bets by punters who nominate their local newsagent when they register with Lottoland.

Lottoland does not offer bets on Australian lotteries but only on overseas lotteries, which means we do not compete directly with newsagents, CEO Luke Brill said on Thursday.

The offer, which is being made on an opt-in basis, comes after talks last year with the newsagency industry.

Its being touted as an improvement on the initial idea to share Lottoland revenue from secondary lottery betting.

In return, newsagents will be asked to advertise Lottoland in-store with promotional materials, such as posters and flags, for betting on international lotteries.

We are proposing a model that puts cash back into small businesses, Mr Brill said in an open letter to newsagency operators released on Thursday.

The federal government in March introduced legislation to ban so-called synthetic lotteries, in an effort to protect newsagents and state and territory revenues generated by the traditional form.

South Australia has already banned synthetic lotteries and the Northern Territory has banned betting on Australian lotteries, while Victoria, NSW, Tasmania and WA are considering introducing legislation.

Although nothing has eventuated, the NSW government is concerned punters believe they are taking part in a lottery when they were actually betting on the outcome of a draw.

Lottoland Australia is the local arm of the Gibraltar-based global group and has more than 650,000 registered customers in Australia.

The post Lottoland offers profit deal to newsagents appeared first on Echonetdaily.

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Wednesday, 04 April

23:32

April 5 #OnThisDay in #Australian #History "IndyWatch Feed Vic"

1790 - HMS Supply returned from Norfolk Island with devastating news HMS Sirius was lost and with her all hope a China rescue. At Sydney the supply position was so critical that same evening Phillip called a Governor-in-Council meeting.

1790 - Sydney: Phillip called all the officers of the settlement, civil and military to Government House in Bridge Street where:
His Excellency laid before every one present the Situation of the Colony.[and] pointed out the Great Necessity there was for an immediate Reduction of the Present Rations. Every persons opinion was asked respecting how Robbing Gardens cd. be prevented & what was the best made [sic] ye. cd. be adopted for procuring fish to make a saving of the Salt provisions.

1790 - Gov Phillip thought some of the convicts were getting a little too well padded for Survivor-style fun on the Isle of Oz so he invented The Biggest Convict and cut rations even further.

1816 -  As wider conflict broke out, Cogie (Gogy) again took refuge at Charles Throsbys farm at Glenfield, near Liverpool, or goes fishing with his friend William Charles Wentworth, son of Surgeon DArcy Wentworth. Charles Throsby letter to D'Arcy Wentworth re proposed reprisals against attacks on white settlers by Aborigines.

1818 - The Batavia anchored in Sydney Cove . Lieut. Elgee of the 34th. Regt. commanded the Guard of Soldiers on board, consisting of detachments the 34th. 46th. & 48th. Regiments.

1824 - The first Attorney General (Sax Bannister, Esq.) arrived in the Hibernia, with the new Charter of Justice.

1824 - Arrival in Sydney on board the Hibernia of first Colonial Treasurer William Balcombe.

1827 - Appointment of John Thomas Campbell as Acting collector of customs N.S.W.

1830 - Stephen Smith and John Hawes were hanged at Sydney for the axe-murder of fellow convict William Davis at Moreton Bay.

1831 - The Earl of Liverpool arrived in Port Jackson on Tuesday with 88 female prisoners. She had the distinction of being the first brig to ever bring prisoners to the colony.

1833 - The Freemans Journal reported on this day that 56 free settlers, wives and children of convicts in New South Wales, were embarked from the Penitentiary house in Cork on to the Caroline at Cove and on the following morning 120 female convicts from the same establishment were conveyed on the Waterloo steamer to the Caroline. Their appearance and conduct was said to be highly creditable.

1841 - Powder your wig along with your nose, the first Supreme Court had its first get together in Melbourne.

1841 - Michael Bradley was hanged at Newcastle for the murder of Catherine Harrison near Morpeth.

1842 - Thomas Horner was hanged at Newcastle for the murder of his overseer....

22:17

Building approvals swing to commercial "IndyWatch Feed Vic"

Approvals shift

Apartment approvals are now declining quite quickly in Sydney, while confidence is picking up off the mat in Brisbane, especially for tonwhouses and semi-detached dwellings.

The latest ABS figures relate to the month of February, but with more and more new apartments failing to value up at completion it's only a matter of time before unit approvals in Sydney decline further. 


Approvals for houses are generally mirroring internal migration trends, with Brisbane and Melbourne attracting the most migrants from elsewhere in Australia, but Perth having experienced an outflow of residents. 


Totting it all up, there is little evidence yet of a bust in residential construction, with more than 221,000 dwellings approved over the year to February 2018, although we are now well off the peaks.


The high-rise apartment sector has also calmed down a bit now, with a notable shift towards more approvals for family appropriate dwellings, such as terraces, semi-detached homes, townhomes, and low-rise apartments. 

...

04:27

Tough time to be a department store "IndyWatch Feed Vic"

Retail fightback

On the face of it a better result for retail trade in February 2018, with a +0.6 per cent increase in turnover, and the January result revised up slightly to +0.2 per cent. 

Under the hood, though, this was another soft result, with department stores clearly under intense pressure.

Total retail turnover in February was $26.45 billion in seasonally adjusted terms, so a marginal +0.2 per cent higher than we saw in November when the i-Phone X was unleashed and Black Friday spiked the results.

And the February figures for Sydney and Melbourne would have been enhanced with Chinese Lunar New Year falling later this year than last.

Click the graphics to enlarge them. 


Looking through the monthly noise, retail turnover in trend terms is +2.7 per cent higher over the year. 


The monthly rebound in turnover was driven by New South Wales (+1.1 per cent) and Victoria (+1.1 per cent), offset by a decline in Western Australia (-0.6 per cent). 


Amazon arrives
...........

01:01

The Teskey Brothers "IndyWatch Feed Vic"

The Teskey Brothers



 

Its undeniable. The Teskey Brothers are a soul/blues phenomenon and the world is falling head over heels. Already in 2018 the Melbourne 4-piece have played to packed houses at Melbourne Zoo, SXSW Festival in Texas, Rockwood Music Hall in NYC, Port Fairy Folk Festival and Byron Bay Bluesfest. Their incredible live show just keeps getting stronger, and the lines to see them keep getting longer!

The Teskey Brothers 2017 album Half Mile Harvest won them accolades, awards and fans far and wide. They now return with a new single and embark on a three month world tour that will pass through Europe, North America, and their biggest Australian shows to date.

The new song, I Get Up, will be out in the world soon but you can grab tickets now for the launch tour in June which takes the band, their tasty horn section and very special guest Caiti Baker right across the country.

 

The post The Teskey Brothers appeared first on The Zoo.

01:00

Tip of the iceberg: Victims' shocking stories of a broken police complaints system "IndyWatch Feed Vic"

An avalanche of news stories from people who have experienced excessive force, racist policing or other police misconduct, and tried unsuccessfully to make complaints, provide a shocking glimpse into the failings of Victoria's police complaints system.

Clients of Robinson Gill Lawyers, the Victorian Aboriginal Legal Service, Fitzroy Legal Service and Flemington & Kensington Community Legal Centre have revealed the failings of a system where police investigate police, after disturbing incidents including:

  • One person left too terrified to complain after being beaten, abused, pepper-sprayed and filmed by six police who attended a mental health call-out
  • A young education employee, Jessie Scarlett-Rhodes, who was handcuffed and hurled headfirst into a divvy van, causing head injuries and a fractured nose. She was then charged by police after she made a complaint, and had her complaint dismissed following a police internal investigation.
  • One person being repeatedly punched, hit with a baton and stomped on by police after his arrest. His excessive force complaint was dismissed following a police investigation.

Jeremy King, lawyer for Robinson Gill who successfully represented Jessie Scarlett-Rhodes in her civil claim against Victoria Police, said:

"It is not uncommon for police accused of misconduct to concoct criminal charges to justify police conduct or to pressure a complainant. There are huge objectivity issues with police self-investigating. Internal police investigators often don't seek out all witnesses and dont search for CCTV. Sometimes police are investigating officers in the same station or that they know.

Lauren Caulfield, from Flemington & Kensington Community Legal Centre's Police Accountability Project, said:

"This is not a case of one or two bad apples, or the occasional error in an investigation. It is the story of a broken police complaints system in Victoria - where police investigate themselves, victims are locked out of the process, dismissed or punished for complaining, and police investigators overwhelmingly find in favour of police.

"The officer who was present during the incident where Ms Scarlet-Rhodes was injured by police also played a key role in the investigation that dismissed her complaint. This same officer was the subject of repeated complaints of police brutality and racism against young people from the Carlton housing estate by our centre back in 2012. How can the community have any faith in this system?"

Meghan Fitzgerald, lawyer with the Fitzroy Legal Service, who represent a client who was assaulted by police during his arrest, with the incident captured on CCTV, said,

 These individual cases are exam...

00:00

April 4 On This Day in Australian History "IndyWatch Feed Vic"


1789 - Smallpox (or it is suspected now it was chickenpox) decimated the Aboriginal population of Port Jackson, Botany Bay and Broken Bay. The disease spread inland and along the coast.

1801 - Governor King ordered Aboriginal people gathering around Parramatta, Georges River and Prospect Hill "to be driven back from the settler's habitation by firing at them".

1817 - Macquarie was able to report to Earl Bathurst that all hostility on both sides has since ceased. He commented therein on the success of the military campaign, though omitted its more barbaric and brutal elements, including the massacre at Appin on 17 April 1816 of a tribe comprising 15 men, women and children, carried out by soldiers under cover of darkness. No accounts survive by Aboriginal people of their view of the campaign, and none was sought by the English at the time.

1820 - The foundation stone is laid for what later became the magnificent Queen Victoria Building in Sydney.

1821 - Today saw the Gov. and Mrs Macquarie having a delightful sail on the good ship Midas about the Southern Settlements to have a Captain Cook at how things were going.

1821 - Sir John Jamieson, Merchant Browne, William Cox, James Smith, Robert Cowper, James Jenkins, et al, obtained permission to cut cedar at Illawarra.

1834 - Hope you've been saving those pennies for the first land sales in Albany, Westralia.

1844 - The cutter America was wrecked in the Torres Strait with the sole survivor, 16 yr old Scottish Barbara Thompson wife of the captain, adopted by the local Aboriginal People until she was found by the survey party from HMS Rattlesnake in 1849.

1846 - The first payable gold discovery in South Australia, gives rise to the first Australian gold mine, five years before the official discovery of gold in Australia at Bathurst.

1848 - As they farewelled the 7 horses, 20 mules and 50 bullocks from Roma, QLD - who were accompanied by Ludwig Leichhardt and 6 other blokes - no one realised the mothership/Yowie/bunyip/rogue black panther/ was waiting for them somewhere in the vast Aussie outback, and that they'd never be seen again.

1865 - Maitland Brown was a bloke on a mission - to find the missing (believed dead) explorers Panter, Harding and Goldwyer in the Kimberley. Today in 1865 he was holding an Aboriginal law-man, Karimba, as a prisoner and guide, but Karimba began leading Brown's search party in the wrong direction whilst trying to set up an ambush.

1866 - W.O. Hodgkinson commenced publication of the newspaper the "Mackay Mercury".

1874 - The Abandonment of Gilberton, was reported in The Queenslander.

In 1874, the missionary Reverend E. Fuller travelled to Cardwell with the ambition of establishing a....

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Tuesday, 03 April

18:00

Thai Street Artists Demand Justice After Killing of Endangered Black Panther "IndyWatch Feed Vic"

Mue Bons mural in Melbourne, Australia (Photograph by Prnz, image courtesy Mue Bon)

In February, Thai business magnate Premchai Karnasuta was arrested with guns and carcasses of endangered animals in Thailands Thungyai Naresuan Wildlife Sanctuary  a UNESCO World Heritage site. Among the animals confiscated was an incredibly rare and endangered black Indochinese leopard (or black panther). It was skinned, its pelt flayed out. Sadly, as so often happens in countries where wealth can bend the law, despite hefty charges, Premchai quickly made bail and subsequently failed to appear for several police summons. Perhaps Premchai thought his money made him above the law, and maybe he is right Forbes put his net worth at $240 million, making him Thailands 35th wealthiest person but Thai artists arent letting him off the hook so easily.

Angered at Premchais illegal and gruesome treatment of endangered animals, not to mention the authorities lax punishment, some artists wanted to share their voice in public. This can be a challenge anywhere, let alone in a Thailand, where there are severe restrictions on press freedom and public organizing. Not waiting for permission, graffiti artists went to work.

One such artist wa...

11:46

Melbournes flooded Brunswick Hotel is holding a fundraiser gig this week "IndyWatch Feed Vic"

Beloved Melbourne venue The Brunswick Hotel have announced a fundraiser gig next weekend which aims to assist their dedicated staff who have been affected by the nightspots recent closure.

Just under a fortnight ago, the Sydney Road venue was forced to close after some genius fresh out of driving school took it upon himself run over the fire hydrant in front of the venue, causing a deluge of water to pour directly into our beloved pub. The structural damage caused by the incident has caused the venue to pull up stumps for the time being, with all of its staff currently out of work.

&

Due to some idiot mounting the kerb and flooding the venue from above with a fire hydrant, The Brunswick Hotel will be

Posted by The Brunswick Hotel onWednesday, 21 March 2018

However, in hopes of easing the stress put on their staff, the Brunny has decided to put on a fundraising event this weekend at the nearby RUBIX Warehouse featuring a number of local music acts.

While forced remodelling is underway through the help of insurance, bar staff, sound engineers, bussies and security guards are all now struggling to pay the rent, fill their bellies and find new jobs to keep them busy while The Brunny is repaired, the venue explains. Thats where Flood Aid comes in!

Featuring the likes of China Beach, Flyying Colours, Australian Kingswood Factory, The Balls, and GIANT, Flood Aid hopes to make things a whole lot easier in that time between remodelling taking place and the hotels eventual reopening.

Tickets to the event are on sale now through Eventbrite, and will be available at the door on the night. Check out the events Facebook page for more info, and be sure to come on out to make sure some of Melbournes hardest-working venue staff get the help they need during this frustrating time.

Check out Flyying Colours Running Late&#821...

08:21

Sydney listings up, up, up "IndyWatch Feed Vic"

Sydney stock up

Sydney listings have finally risen from depressed levels seen over recent years.

Sydney now has 34,901 listings, well up from 28,336 a year earlier, according to SQM Research.


Sydney's listings are up by 23.2 per cent year-on-year.

Hobart saw a seasonal +7.8 per cent increase in listings in March, but at just 2.479 listings are still way lower than a year ago.


Nationally listings were -3.8 per cent lower than a year earlier at 338,113, in part thanks to annual declines in Melbourne, Perth, and Darwin. 

Asking prices for houses in Melbourne have soared and are now over $1 million, while in Sydney they were +2.3 per cent higher over the year at $1.37 million. 

Asking prices for units were higher year-on-year in both Sydney (+6.2 per cent) and Melbourne (+14.3 per cent).

Find SQM's media release here

03:01

Zero G - 2 April 2018 Episode 1178 "IndyWatch Feed Vic"

ZERO-G #1178

Title: Wake the Undead Podcast Title: A Diet Pod

Science Fiction, Fantasy and Historical Radio with Rob Jan & Megan McKeough. This week: we line up for zomcom seconds for Netflix's Santa Clarita Diet Season 2, tip toe around the clever clever horror film, A Quiet Place, see what fungis are up to in the efficiently infective zombie movie, The Girl With All The Gifts, and pick the genre highlights of the 2018 Melbourne International Comedy Festival.

For playlists, show notes, and news see the 3RRR website at:

http://www.rrr.org.au/program/zero-g/playlists

Follow @zerogrobjan on Twitter and Facebook:

https://www.facebook.com/ZeroGRadio

00:00

April 3 On This Day in Australian History "IndyWatch Feed Vic"

1794 -  After a cross-Pacific voyage to North America, Gnung-a Gnung-a returned to Port Jackson in the storeship Daedalus. While in Hawaii, King Kamehameha unsuccessfully offered to buy him.

1805 - The Lady Nelson and Estramina left Sydney for Jervis Bay.

1816 - Benjamin Davis was accused of assisting runaways by giving them supplies in return for kangaroo skins

1819 - John Briggs and Thomas Crane were punished for their attempt at cutting out a boat {cutting out operationa boarding attack by small boats, preferably at night and against an unsuspecting and anchored target.}.

1819 - Notice was given of removal of cattle from W. Wentworth's property at Illawarra.

1828 - John Batman's first known confrontation with the Aborigines occurred on this day, after his shepherd was chased off by a local tribe (Tas).

1838 - When Joseph Hawdon and Charles Bonney arrived in Adelaide on the 3 April 1838 they were greeted with some jubilation by the settlers as there had been a shortage of meat for some time and the herd of cattle they had brought was a welcome sight.


1848 - Explorer Ludwig Leichhardt was last eyeballed on the Darling Downs...if you happen to find him, can you send him home for his dinner,please?

1866 - Frightful Immorality at the Industrial Schools, was reported by the Ovens and Murray Advertiser (Beechworth) describing horrific sexual and physical abuse of the students by staff members with little or no action taken to remove the abusers.

1881 - It was BIG...REALLY big. The powers that be conducted a census across the far-flung 6 colonies of Or-stray-lia as part of the first simultaneous census of the British Empire and found the rabbits were being given a run for their money with a human population of 2,250,194.

1882 - Better wrap up the toaster....Alfred Deakin, he who would become the 2nd Aussie Pm, got hitched to Elizabeth Browne much to her parents disapproval. I think he's proven himself by now.

1882 - The Hawthorn to Camberwell Railway line (Vic) opened.

1884 - There was great excitement in Sunbury on this day, when the goods train from Melbourne exploded. The train left the Melbourne terminus at 2am, and made it as far as Sunbury when the boiler of the engine burst with a terrific explosion, killing the fireman instantaneously and the driver shortly after.

1885 - Tamai was the largest and most significant engagement in which the 770-man New South Wales contingent to the Sudan were involved. In comparison with the British units involved in the battle, Australian involvement was minimal.

1889 - United Kingdom: Judicial Committee of the Privy Council; Lord Watson, Lord Fitzgerald, Lord Hobhouse, Lord MacNaghton, Sir William Grove, Cooper V St...

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Monday, 02 April

12:00

FlowVPS 4GB KVM for ~$65/year and more! "IndyWatch Feed Vic"

Brendan from FlowVPS has sent over their first offer to LowEndBox. We are happy to list them for the first time and look forward to all of the positive feedback we expect from our readers! Brendan is an active member of our LowEndTalk community as well.

Theyre a registered company in Australia (#99 617 970 788). They accept PayPal and Stripe (including Apply Pay). You can find their ToS here.

In their own words: 

FlowVPS is an Australian based company selling services in Melbourne. We aim to offer low cost, high quality services, this is why we exclusively offer KVM with NVMe dries.

Heres the offer: 

VPS-1
  • 2GB RAM
  • 2x vCPU
  • 15GB NVMe Disk
  • 500GB Bandwidth
  • 1Gbps Uplink
  • 1x IPv4
  • /64 IPv6
  • KVM
  • $5.50 AUD/mo ($4.22 USD/mo)
  • [ORDER]
VPS-2
  • 4GB RAM
  • 2x vCPU
  • 30GB NVMe Disk
  • 500GB Bandwidth
  • 1Gbps Uplink
  • 1x IPv4
  • /64 IPv6
  • KVM
  • $85 AUD/yr ($65.00 USD/yr)
  • [ORDER]

Network Info:

Datacenter Name Equinix ME1 Melbourne, Victoria, Australia
Test IPv4: 103.217.254.100
...

10:09

Qld economy well positioned in 2nd quarter 2018, esp. given Commonwealth Games "IndyWatch Feed Vic"

We are now in the second quarter of 2018, and its a good time to review the economic outlook for Queensland. Job vacancy data released by the ABS last Thursday were very encouraging, and suggest the current economic upswing, encompassing a variety of sectors including health and aged care, education, tourism, and mining, will continue into this quarter. As Peter Martin pointed out in his article Best odds since the mining boom: 10 unemployed for each 3 vacancies, the ratio of unemployed persons to job vacancies is at a very low level nationally, so its a good time to be a job seeker, particularly in NSW and Victoria (see my chart below).

Unemployed_to_vacancies_ratio_Feb18

Peter Martin noted that Queensland was one of the worst states in whi...

09:29

Patti Smiths 40 Favorite Books "IndyWatch Feed Vic"

Image of Patti Smith performing in Rio de Janeiro by Daigo Oliva

As a little girl, Patti Smith found liberation in words -- first through the bedtime prayers she made up herself, and later in books. "I was completely smitten by the book," she writes in her memoir, Just Kids.  "I longed to read them all, and the things I read of produced new yearnings."

Smith found a role model in Jo, the tomboy writer in Louisa May Alcott's Little Women. "She gave me the courage of a new goal," writes Smith, "and soon I was crafting little stories and spinning long yarns for my brother and sister." As a teenager she discovered the French Symbolist poets Charles Baudelaire and especially Arthur Rimbaud, who inspired her and helped shape her own artistic persona as a poet and punk rocker.




Despite her fame as a rock 'n' roll musician, Smith has always described herself as essentially a bookish person. It was around the time of Smith's appearance at the 2008 Melbourne International Arts Festival, according to Vertigo, that Smith released this list of her favorite books. Not surprisingly, it's an eclectic and fascinating group of books:

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Sunday, 01 April

23:21

April 2 On This Day in Australian History "IndyWatch Feed Vic"

1787 - Treasury entered into negotiations with Moore and he transferred his rights over sixty-one male and seven female convicts to William Richards Jnr. the sole contractor awarded the government tender for fit-out and provisioning of First Fleet.

1787 - Charter of Justice signed providing the authority for the establishment of the first New South Wales Courts of Criminal and Civil Jurisdiction.

1791 - William Bryant's escape party entered and had a look-see around Port Stephens...but the decor didn't agree with them.

1798  - Frequent Darug raids harass the new Hawkesbury settlers, making it a necessity for firing upon them, by which, it was said, one man was killed. Armed watchmen posted at Toongabbie to guard the ripening Indian corn (maize) shoot three Aboriginal men. They bring in one mans head to prove their story.

1826 - Female School of Industry was opened in Sydney to train gals as domestic servants, although, as they are very scarce on the ground these days, surely this highlights a need to revive this institution...? Anyone...?

1840 - There were many who did not like the Aboriginal camps being close to Melbourne, and when there was a gathering of six or seven hundred Kulin, their mia mias (bark huts) were burnt and the camp dismantled.

1844 - The first permanent synagogue in Oz was opened in Sydney.

1845 - The Burdekin River discovered and named Ludwig Leichhardt.

1846 - Superintendent La Trobe, on his third and final attempt to reach Cape Otway, met with seven Gadubanud men and women in the valley of the Aire River before trekking across the open grasslands to his destination.

1846 - Squatter Henry Allan made an unsuccessful attempt at a northsouth crossing over the mountains, guided by two Aboriginal women from the Wesleyan mission at Buntingdale. In the northern foothills of the Otway Ranges, on the upper reaches of the Gellibrand River, he found an unoccupied Aboriginal camp. On his return trip through the area, he revisited this site and found a large number of implements that had not been there before.

1852 - A gang of 22 blokes played pirate and raided the barque Nelson that was jiggling on its anchor off Williamstown; these enterprising chaps got away with 8,000 oz of gold, which was never recovered.

1856 - Voting for the most liposuctioned, matchstick thin politician by throwing your hat in the air was overtaken when voting by secret ballot became law in South Oz.

1871 - Victoria held a party to end all parties census and found there'd been a wee spot of procreation happening with the population hitting 731,528; with 207,000 of those bodies living in Melbourne. Pity the public transport and water systems haven't expanded with the population....meow.

...

12:03

EP 240: Spiderbait "IndyWatch Feed Vic"

Ep 240 Instagram.png

Photo: Katherine OMalley

Spiderbait

Recorded and mixed by Branko Cosic
Recorded at the Tivoli, Brisbane, 31st March 2017

Janet, Whitt and Kram The three founding members of Spiderbait, began jamming in the shed of Janets familys farm in the rural NSW township of Finley. They soon relocated to Melbourne and were quickly signed to Au-Go-Go Records and released their debut album Shashavaglava in May 1993.
From there they quickly consolidated their status as national treasures, Signing to Polydor and releasing a string of successful albums, which have all racked up gold, platinum or double platinum status. One of these albums was their ARIA award winning effort Ivy And The Big Apples, which they toured to celebrate 20 years since its initial release in 1997.

...

03:33

Australian Health Dept in Breach for Publishing Data of 2.5 Million People "IndyWatch Feed Vic"

Australia's Privacy Commissioner has ruled that the Australian Department of Health unintentionally breached Australian Privacy law when it published the possessively de-identified health data of 10 per cent of the population from Medicare Benefits Scheme (MBS) and the Pharmaceutical Benefits Scheme (PBS).

When researchers at the University of Melbourne re-identified the data they matched at least seven well known Australians including members of parliament by crossing the data with other sources such as Wikipedia, Facebook and news websites. The Australian Health department must in future review and enhance its data governance and release processes with oversight from the Office of the Australian Information Commissioner. The dataset containing the health data was around 3 billion lines long covering 2.5 million people and was downloaded around 1500 times.


Original Submission

Read more of this story at SoylentNews.

00:00

April 1 On This Day in Australian History "IndyWatch Feed Vic"

1788 - Some time during this month dingoes gave up their date with Tom Cruise for a roast lamb dinner of 1 ewe and 5 lambs at Farm Cove.

1790 - Things were crook when daily tucker rations were reduced even further at Sydney.

1794 - He who had his finger in every spot of unrest and his nose in everyone's business, MacArthur was given a pressie of another 10 acres at Parramatta.

1796 - To control the sale of grog Governor Hunter issued the first 10 licences to pubs...and no, it wasn't an April Fools' Day joke!

1817 - Further repressive measures follow the Cataract River slaughter. Macquarie forbids armed Aborigines to appear within one mile of any settlement carrying warlike weapons including Spears, Clubs, or Waddies. No more than six Aborigines may lurk or loiter near any farm and assemblies for ritual battles are wholly abolished.  He outlaws 10 Aboriginal men well known to be the principal and most violent instigators of the Late Murders. They are Murrah, Myles, Wallah (alias Warren), Carbone Jack (alias Kurringy), Narrang Jack, Bunduck, Kongate, Woottan, Rachel and Yallaman. A reward of 10 is offered for anyone bringing any of them in, dead or alive.

1840 - The Fighting Waterholes Massacre .
 A hunting party of employees from nearby Kononwootong Station massacred a party of 60 + Aboriginal elders, women and children. The bones of those who were killed were buried in the embankment wall of the creek, but were uncovered one hundred years later in major floods. The remains of those who were massacred have since been reburied.
It was the second massacre inflicted on the Konongwootong gundidj clan by the Whyte brothers in their first two months of occupation of Konongwootong station.

1843 - The more things change, the more they stay the same...The Bank of Australia failed miserably.

1846 - The executive Council in Sydney voted Port Phillip District off the island to be separated from NSW.

1857 - The brig Sea Bell was wrecked off Fraser Island and the only survivors were a woman and 2 kids who had to holiday there for 2 years before they were rescued.

1876 - Captain John Mason, of Belfast in Victoria was getting his knickers in a twist having eyeballed the Mahogany Ship at Warrnambool and not finding it since so he penned a letter to the Argus newspaper.

1877 - Standing on Thursday Island some smarty poo bum thought it would enhance the tourist value by turning it into a coaling station for steamers so they humped the Qld settlement of Somerset off to the holiday isle.

1885 - Oh to pop back in time to have the coal dust and smoke smell in my hair! Steam trains began running their little wheels off between Adelaide and Victor Harbour.

1886 - Fairy tale of the day,....

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Saturday, 31 March

23:20

Public transport users call for Westgate submarine "IndyWatch Feed Vic"

PTV submarine

The Public Transport Users Association (PTUA) has called for the introduction of a passenger submarine linking the bayside western suburbs of Melbourne with the CBD instead of the controversial Westgate Tunnel.

Theres clear demand for improved public transport in Melbournes west, said PTUAs maritime spokesperson Daniel Morton. A passenger submarine can deliver this with minimal new infrastructure.

Previous attempts to run passenger ferries have confronted problems such as rough waters causing cancellations and delays [1], and speed limits making for slow journeys along the Yarra River section of ferry routes [2].

A submarine would overcome the problems facing surface vessels by travelling below the waters surface, and leave valuable sea lanes open for freight transport, said Mr Morton.

A submarine would also be less affected by low clearances on some of the numerous river crossings [3] already in place from the west of Melbourne that everyone forgets about whenever they say we need a second river crossing.

Mr Morton also pointed out that the future reach of a submarine network would benefit from rising sea levels due to carbon emissions from transport. To start with the submarines would only serve Port Phillip Bay and the Yarra River, but future routes could extend to Elwood, the Westgate Tunnel corridor and other low-lying parts of the city.

Mr Morton said the PTUA was optimistic the submarine plan would float given the governments reluctance to invest in proven transport options for the west. With very low service levels for trains and buses in the west, and virtually no trams, an unproven distraction is just the thing to capture the publics imagination. Meanwhile the government can continue generating more motor vehicle traffic with massive motorway projects instead of providing genuine alternatives.

* * *

1. The Age 16/6/2014 Ferries to Melbournes west not a priority, not viable

2. ABC 12/5/2016 Commuter ferries for Melbournes west to sail next week

3. PTUA: Myth: Theres only o...

04:58

Keep an eye out for Chinas out of control Tiangong-1 space station "IndyWatch Feed Vic"

SCIENCE  Its a long shot, but Chinese space station could fall to earth here , SMH, By Liam Mannix 30 March 2018 

If you get killed by the Chinese space station thats due to fall out of the sky this weekend youll probably be remembered as having had one of the most unlikely deaths on record.  Your chances of being hit by Tiangong-1, Chinas first space station, are about 10 million times smaller than your yearly chance of being struck by lightning.

But Melburnians would still be advised to watch the skies over the coming days, just in case, with much of Victoria inside a band where theres a very slightly larger possibility of the debris hitting.

If you die, you would be the first known person ever to be killed by falling space debris. But maybe not the first animal; according to legend, when the remains of the American space station Skylab fell on outback Western Australia in 1979, it killed a rabbit.

The chances of you being struck by this are essentially zero, says Associate Professor Alan Duffy, an astronomer at Swinburne University  An individual human is a tiny target relative to the Earth which itself is mostly water and even the land is mostly of sparsely populated regions.

The station is as big as a bus and weighs several tonnes. Its name means heavenly palace in Chinese, but the space station has more in common with Icarus than any castle in the clouds, and is set for a fiery demise.

Estimates vary some scientists have organised competitions to see who can most accurately predict when the station will hit the atmosphere but most place its descent to earth in a window between...

02:08

March 31 On This Day in Australian History "IndyWatch Feed Vic"

March 31 is the International Transgender Day of Visibility.

1792 - At Sydney eighty-seven deaths were recorded; most [new arrivals] so thoroughly exhausted that they expired without a groan.

1809 - Tricking those sly dogs of the NSW Corps, Bligh arrived at Hobart and shifted into the renovators delight Government cottage with his daughter.

1813 - Richard Berry was Hanged for cattle stealing.

1813 - John Mahony was Hanged for cattle stealing (brother of Thomas Mahony who was hanged on 24 March 1813 for a separate offence).

1818 -  Daniel Deakin (Daykin) supplies a boat to Bidgee Bidgee, chief of Kissing Point (Ryde) and is paid 13.0.0 from the Police Fund.

1829 - Fort Dundas, on Melville Island, didn't live up to its promises as a 5 star resort so everyone upped sticks and hot footed it to the next fashionable place to be seen, Raffles Bay, NT.

1831 - Surprise, the first Aussie-built steamship, was launched with much aplomb and high spirits , of both kinds, in Sydney.

1839 - Bet there were a few celebrations all round that night too...Joseph Forbes aka Timor Joe, was rescued from Timorlaut Island where he'd not been voted off the island held captive for 14 years.

1863 - South Australians grew to love their woolly backs to the point that by this date there were almost 3.5 million Sunday roasts gambolling about the Adelaide Hills.

1868 - Bernard Cunningham was Hanged at Melbourne Gaol for the murder of John Fairweather, near Keilor.

1868 - Joseph Whelan was Hanged at Melbourne Gaol for the murder of farmer Tom Branley at Rokewood.

1869 - Michael Flannigan (or Flannagan) was Hanged at Melbourne Gaol for the murder of Sgt Thomas Hull at Hamilton.

1871 - Young Griffo, the Lightweight Boxing Champion of The World, was born.

1883 - Robert Kinnear became the first Indigenous runner to win the famed Stawell Gift.

1885 - The Grey River Argus reported  that the West Island (aka Australia) had received warning from Singapore that The Russians are coming! The Russians are coming!

1887 - The Enrolled Pensioner Force in Westralia was abolished and a new unit called the Enrolled Guard was formed from among its members. It was placed under the command of Captain M.S. Smith, the Superintendent of Police and the final parade of the Enrolled Guard was held on this day.

1897 - Jumna Khan was Hanged at Fremantle Prison for the murder of William Griffiths in High Street, Fremantle.

1906 - In 1906 the Grey River Argus trumpeted the news of a huge fire that took out several Sydney warehouses, threatening the entire block, gutting the Berlin Piano Company.

1909 - Vict...

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Friday, 30 March

21:02

George Pell committal: extraordinary scenes inside court 22 "IndyWatch Feed Vic"

The Aaustralian

George Pell committal: extraordinary scenes inside court 22

Cardinal George Pell arrives at Melbourne Magistrates Court earlier this month. Picture: David CroslingCardinal George Pell arrives at Melbourne Magistrates Court earlier this month. 

For the past four weeks between 10am and 4pm, Cardinal George Pells ageing ruckmans body has been wedged, pen poised, head tilted forward, in the same seat in court 22 of the Melbourne Magistrates Court.

The court, like the betting ring at Flemington racecourse or the front bar of the William Creek Hotel, can be a con...

12:12

American Registered Bombardier BD-700-1A10 Global 6000 Bizjet N60XC at Emerald Airport Once Again - Plus More! "IndyWatch Feed Vic"

Visiting Emerald Airport once again on Wednesday 28 March was American registered Bombardier BD-700-1A10 Global 6000 bizjet N60XC.  It was noted making a day-trip to Emerald Airport, arriving from and then later departing back to Brisbane.

N60XC at Emerald Airport in 2017  (File photo)

The sleek bizjet is becoming a semi-regular visitor to CQ having made several visits during different times over the last year or so, including at least three visits to Emerald and Mackay Airports so far in 2018.

Meanwhile, a couple of other corporate bizjet and turboprop aircraft were noted visiting various CQ Airports also on Wednesday 28 March.

LifeFlight (Aeromed) LearJet 45 bizjet VH-CXJ "Ambulance 452" was noted at Mackay Airport completing a medical evacuation flight.  It arrived from Cairns and later departed to Brisbane.

Of the corporate turboprop aircraft to visit Central Queensland on Wednesday 28 March, I spotted Brisbane-based Pesca Aviation AeroCommander 690-A Turbo Commander VH-ATF at Clermont Aerodrome.  It had earlier arrived from Archerfield and Bundaberg and looked to continue to Mount Isa.


UPDATE!  On Thursday 29 March, VH-ATF departed Mount Isa for Longreach Airport before returning to Archerfield.

While also noted at Bundaberg Airport on Wednesday 28 March was Pegasus Air (South Australia) Pilatus PC-12/47E VH-JMU which arrived from and later departed back to Bankstown via Sydney and Archerfield, Victorian-registered Partenavia P.68B VH-PNU visited from Archerfield - where it seems to be presently based and Cirrus SR22 VH-VCD arrived f...

11:56

Exposed: Australias shameful upside-down culture "IndyWatch Feed Vic"

At the end of the day, I look after my own interests.
~ Mario Mancusso, butcher, Newmarket Quality Meats, Flemington, Melbourne, on 29 March 2018



Down under, maybe not surprisingly, things are often turned upside-down. In particular the truth. During the last few days, however, Australian media has suddenly been full of remorseful men talking about honesty, moral, and that Australia needs to get back to its core values after players were caught red-handed tampering with a cricket ball at a match in South Africa.

We can thank Australian cricket sport for exposing to the nation and to the world the troubling and despicable value-crisis which unfolds not just in Australian cricket, but in all sectors and corners of the Australian society, and for, in this way, clarifying for everyone that this is an unsustainable practice that needs to change.

The dispute over ball-tampering quickly turned into a 20 million dollar blow to the Australian cricket team because of sponsors signing out. We do not condone cheating in sport, one of the cricket teams sponsors said.



Human story
What began as a sport story is now v...

02:00

What to Buy as Pricing Pressure Builds "IndyWatch Feed Vic"

Earlier in the week I made the case that big resource firms are on track to go shopping for smaller projects. One reason for that is Rio Tinto Ltd [ASX:RIO].

Rios recent asset sales means it has US$12 billion to allocate in the near future. The current thinking says most of this will be dispersed via dividends and share buybacks.

But theres every chance Rio will be on the hunt for some juicy copper projects to add to its existing portfolio too, and possibly battery minerals as well.

This overall theme is also true for all the big and mid-sized miners across a range of commodities.

Im not alone in thinking this, either

A big decision due for the Northern Territory

A resource analyst at Citigroup expects mergers and acquisitions to increase this year, highlighting one area in particular: oil and gas.

Its no surprise if we take the latest report on the Bass Strait into account.

The Australian Energy Market Operator (AEMO) says gas production in Victoria is going to go down badly as offshore Bass Strait gas fields decline.

The report says the state is heading for gas shortfalls on peak demand by the winter of 2021.

This would also affect South Australia, Tasmania and NSW because they import Victorian gas.

The AEMO says Victoria will be importing gas from Queensland unless something is done to boost production further south. One of those options is onshore gas development, which is currently banned.

This debate isnt going to go away anytime soon. Shales gas development is currently under a moratorium in the Northern Territory (NT) as well.

The Australian reported yesterday that a government inquiry into the industry said the risks associated with fracking could be managed.

Whether or not the NT acts and lifts the ban remains to be seen.

The energy industry will be watching closely. Analysis suggests the gas reserves in the NT are very large perhaps even as big as some of the US shale basins.

And the Jemena pipeline that runs from Tennant Creek to Mount Isa in Queensland should be ready to roll by the end of this year.

That could feed NT gas to the east coast domestic market.

This is exceedingly important to watch. High energy costs are a burden for consumers and manufacturers alike.

Earlier this week, I wrote about how the complete opposite is taking place in the US economy as the US gets a massive tailwind from cheap natural gas.

Some new numbers released confirm this

...

00:49

Opposition to planned Gippsland mine risks of thorium contamination "IndyWatch Feed Vic"

East Gippsland fights mineral sands mine https://www.greenleft.org.au/content/east-gippsland-fights-mineral-sands-mine, Alan Broughton, Bairnsdale,March 23, 2018

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Thursday, 29 March

23:00

March 30 On This Day in Australian History "IndyWatch Feed Vic"

1772 - Bonjour! The Fair Isle of Oz was annexed by France by Monsieur Louis de Saint Alouarn. At Baie de Prise de Possession ("Bay of Taking Possession"; later Turtle Bay), Dirk Hartog Island on 30 March 1772, Officer Jean Mengaud de la Hage became the first European to formally claim possession of Western Australia, on behalf of King Louis XV whilst St Aloarn himself remained aboard the ship.

Ainsi, cher lecteur, nous devrions par des droites parler franais, mai oui ?!

1791 - William and Mary Bryant, while on the run in the guv's boat they'd pinched, went ashore at current-day Newcastle and discovered coal. But, being on the run, they couldn't really shout their discovery to the hill tops.

1791 - Convict James Ruse was given the first land grant in the colony of New South Wales.

1804 - Charles Menzies (known to his mates as Chuckle-head Charlie...or maybe not) made his grand entrance on the Hunter River to re-establish some small settlement named Newcastle.

1809 - HMS Porpoise anchored in Sullivans Cove on the Derwent at Hobart. Governor David Collins boarded Popoise to welcome Governor Bligh. Mary, who suffered severe sea-sickness left the ship for more comfortable quarters in Government House, while Bligh elected to stay with his ship.

1816 - Tired of looking at the retro wattle and daub artistic architecture around the joint, Governor Macquarie appointed Francis Greenaway as the Government's official civil architect.

1827 - Earl Bathurst was an obsessed avid hoarder collector of stuff so he founded the oldest "publick" museum in Oz in 1827, the Australian Museum.

1850 - Dear, favoured British author Chas Dickens was a keen-as-mustard fan of Caroline Chisholm who assisted immigrants once their tootsies landed upon the shores of the Fair Isle of Oz so he published a pile of letters on this day in 1850 in which Brit emmigrants had scribed to support ballsy Caroline's commonsense organisation.

1856 - Residents of East Maitland, NSW were finally able to hang up their broomsticks as the railway line to Newcastle was opened for business.

1857 - The Main North Railway Line (NSW) was flung open with gay abandon from Islington Junction to Victoria Street, and from Islington Junction to Civic.

1870 - Harry Redford (aka Captain Starlight) and 4 mates nicked 1,000 head of cattle and overlanded them 2,400 kms from Qld to South Oz opening up the Strzelecki Track.

1871 - One of the famed Aboriginal cricketers who toured England, Johnny Cuzens, died but the Melbourne Cricket Club was too pissy and refused to contribute the 6 pounds needed for his burial.

1874 - The very first mention of the name of Gembrook was published in The Argus in relation to a government auction offering l...

10:17

Job vacancies into orbit "IndyWatch Feed Vic"

Record openings

Another big result for jobs vacancies in the February quarter, with now just shy of  million vacancies for a huge +19.4 per cent increase and the highest figure on record. 


Of course the labour force is also bigger than it used to be at well above 13 million these days, but even accounting for this it's potentially as good a time as we've seen in recent years for finding a job, with the trend implying that the unemployment rate should decline in due course. 

That the unemployment rate has yet to fall below around 5 cent reflects a rising participation rate, skill mismatches, and a lack of labour force mobility. 


Sydney and Melbourne have created jobs at fast pace in recent years, but this release showed that vacancies are higher than a year earlier across all states and territories, including the resources states which are now into recovery mode. 

That bodes well for broad-based hiring. 

...

01:53

Victoria towns breakthrough deal on network tariffs as it pursues 100% renewables "IndyWatch Feed Vic"

A small Victorian town that is hoping to achieve 100 per cent renewable energy as early as 2020 has achieved what appears to be a groundbreaking deal on network charges that could pave the way for similar projects around the country. Newstead, a town of less than 1,500 people in central Victoria, has negotiated new network [...] full article 

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Wednesday, 28 March

23:00

March 29 On This Day in Australian History "IndyWatch Feed Vic"


1790 -  HMS Supply was back in Sydney with the terrible news that Sirius was lost and gone was all hope of a China rescue.

1809 - England: Mr John Macarthur, who supplied the wines that fuelled the Australia Day rebellion, together with Major George Johnston who led his troops against Governor Bligh, sailed for England in the Admiral Gambier to answer for their pivotal roles in the Rum Rebellion .

1839 - The first recorded encounters in the vicinity of Langhornes Ferry/Rufus River took place in March 1839 and involved the combined parties of Coutts Crawford and McLeod and MacPherson, who were attacked by a large group of Aboriginal people at sunset: James Coutts Crawford's diary entry reads -
"Rose at daybreak the stockmen on going to count the cattle, found our black friends of the night before all collected, to the number of 50 or 60, with their spears among the cattle with some difficulty they drove them across the river. Took 6 spears, a nullah nullah and some sharpening stones Passed on over a flat alluvial land with a sand bank on our right MacPherson & myself were on ahead on the sand bank when we heard a sound of firing behind us and on returning that another engagement had taken place with the same blacks several of whom had at last got a good peppering with small shot. Took several spears"

1841 - Edward John Eyre was in a bit of a pickle - or rather, he'd have preferred to have been in a pickle (or relish or jam) instead of the lack-of-water type of situation in which he found both himself and his travelling companions on this day. Noticing a heavy dew on leaves he began collecting water with a sponge while the Indigenous chaps used grasses; eventually they'd gathered 2 quarts of water and promptly celebrated by making a cuppa tea. After they'd sipped their tea they ambled along til they reached a spot now known as Eyre's Sandpatch, 50kms south-east of Cocklebiddy, where they dug down to six feet and found fresh H2O.

1841 - Joseph Orton, Wesleyan Methodist missionary, observed the destruction of Indigenous food supplies and the violence between different Aboriginal groups forced onto one anothers land by the Christian Heathens who are enriching themselves on the spoil of the dispossessed and wallowing in the blood of their victims.

1847 - Another gaol in our glorious history was that of the Adelaide Gaol which played host to the hanging of Thomas Donelly on this day in 1847 for the deliberate shooting murder of an Aboriginal chap, Kingberri at Rivoli Bay on September 1, 1846.

1852 - Patrick McNamara was Hanged at Maitland for the murder of his wife Rose McNamara at Aberglasslyn.

1857 - Today in 1857 a Census was taken in Gum Sucker territory known as Victoria; but all I can tell you is that the white population was counted at 408,998 because, being s...

12:05

Engineering construction turning a corner "IndyWatch Feed Vic"

Turn it up

There have been some incredible spikes and troughs in engineering construction in recent quarters.

These related to the import of LNG platforms in Western Australia, leading to wild spikes and reversals.

Looking through the noise at the trend figures it seems that the large pipeline of public infrastructure works in New South Wales and Victoria has finally arrested the downturn in engineering construction initiated by the resources construction cliff way back at the end of 2012. 

It's been a long half decade for Western Australia since the peak of the boom, but there were further positive signs for the state in these numbers with the trend now at long last rising again. 


The figures for work commenced are always much lumpier - as is the nature of these things - but these show that Queensland has got some chunky private sector projects underway now. 


One such example is the huge redevelopment underway at Brisbane Airport, but there are plenty of others.

Having already invested $1.6 billion in upgrades since 2012, Brisbane Airport Corporation (BAC) is now:

...

09:27

Neoliberalism corrupts the core of societal values "IndyWatch Feed Vic"

It is Wednesday and just a brief comment on current affairs today. Tomorrow I will have Part 2 of my response to the German attack on Modern Monetary Theory (MMT). Nations more often and not claim to identify with a value system that is intended to bind the citizens together. It is a fine line between this and nationalism. The US for example, claims to be the land of the free, although that is a patently ridiculous thing to hold out given the nature of its society. Australia has long traded on the claim that it elevates sportspersonship, fairness, honesty above all else. In a sports obsessed nation, we hold ourselves out to be fair but tough. We play very hard competitively but honour sporting traditions. At times, this claim is at the sanctimonious extremes and we regularly criticise other sporting nations for what we perceive to be rule breaking even rule stretching doesnt escape our holier than thou media and commentators. That myth has now been exposed. In fact, our most elevated national team the Australian cricket team has demonstrated that it stoops to deliberately conceived cheating (not spur of the moment) in order to win. And now these revelations are obvious, the national scandal that has followed, reveals how out of touch we have become with what has happened to our Society in this neoliberal era.

This was the front-page of the on-line edition of the Melbourne Age this morning. It is representative of the media hullabaloo that has followed revelations on Sunday that the Australian cricket team had deliberately cheated.

For those from non-cricketing nations, a major scandal has unfolded this week involving the deliberate plan by the Australian captain, the vice-captain and the most junior player in the field to deface the ball to give the Australian bowlers an unfair advantage against the South African batsmen.

The nuances of how the defacement was to be accomplished and what it might do by way of advantage need not detain us here. They are peripheral to the point.

It was really naive plan given that it involved an open act on a field with multiple TV cameras scouting around at all angles.

The fact the...

06:02

The Time Frames of Karma "IndyWatch Feed Vic"

Article by Stuart Wilde. Your waking intellect (your personality) brings you instant karma. For example, if you are diligent and responsible, life tends to treat you the same way.

04:45

Like Thieves "IndyWatch Feed Vic"

LIKE THIEVES

The mighty Like Thieves are returning to the fray of the Australian music scene today with the announcement of their brand new single Never See it Coming and a national run of live shows. The Never See it Coming National tour begins on 11 May and ends 2 June and goes on sale from this Friday 30th March! With Clint Boge vocally running red-hot after a completely sold-out The Butterfly Effect tour around Australia and musicians Oden Johannson (Guitar), Clint Gough (Bass) and Daniel Trickett (Drums) stoking the musical fires of the band, Like Thieves are bringing their new, even heavier sound out on the road to Canberras The Basement May 11th, Sydneys Red Rattler Theatre May 12th, Adelaides Enigma Bar May 25th, Melbournes Evelyn Hotel May 26th and Brisbanes The ZooJune 2nd.

 

 

 

The post Like Thieves appeared first on The Zoo.

01:12

Riders urged to help plan Brisbane transport "IndyWatch Feed Vic"

Motorcycle and scooter riders have been urged to make a submission to the Brisbane City Council draft transport plan before the deadline this Friday (March 30, 2018).

In fact, infrastructure chair Cr Amanda Cooper says even late submissions will be considered.

Motorcycles are not mentioned once in the 128-page Brisbane City Council draft transport plan, yet bicycles are mentioned 25 times.

Cr Cooper says that is because motorcycles and scooters are grouped with all motorised vehicles and bicycles are not motorised.

Brisbane City Council transport draft plan ignores motorcycles

However, she acknowledges that powered two-wheelers have quite different needs and can make a significant contribution to solving traffic congestion and emissions issues in Brisbane.

She expressed concern that the Motorcycle Riders Association of Queensland had not yet made a submission, however MRAQ president Chris Mearns says he will respond tomorrow.

When the draft plan was announced he expressed his disappointment that motorcycles and scooters had been ignored.

It is hard to understand why two-wheeled powered transport is not included as it offers considerably reduced vehicle space on the road as well as better fuel efficiency with corresponding pollution reduction, Chris says.

Cr Cooper urged all riders to consider making specific submissions and promised they would be considered.

However, she pointed out that some of the rider contributions so far were not specific.

Instead they just asked for motorcycles and scooters to be considered.

This is a good opportunity for powered two-wheelers to be a part of transport planning in Brisbane as they are in the Melbourne City Council transport plan and the City of Sydney transport policy developed with the Motorcycle Council of NSW.

Brisbane parking issues

Meanwhile, Cr Coper say...

00:37

Download Festival is set to expand to Sydney when it returns next year "IndyWatch Feed Vic"

Over the last few months, all that Australias heavy music fans could talk about was that of the inaugural Download Festival. Well, now these fans can get even more excited, with news that not only will the festival be returning in 2019, but its set to expand to Sydney as well.

Having been a fixture of the UK music scene since 2003, recent years have seen Download Festival expand internationally, first to France, then to Spain, and now finally, Australia. With countless music lovers turning up on the weekend to watch stunning sets by Korn, Prophets Of Rage, Limp Bizkit, Good Charlotte, and much more, it was very clear that Australians have found themselves a new favourite festival.

Now, Download programmer Nigel Melder has confirmed that the festival will not only make a comeback next year, but that Sydney is set to get their own leg of the festival, too.

We could not be happier with how Download rolled out in 2018, Nigel Melder said. The warmth and support from the heavy music community was unprecedented. From fans to industry and media the love has been out of this world.

We cant thank everyone enough for their behaviour yesterday and we are excited to confirm that Download will return to Melbourne and also make its Sydney debut in 2019.

Likewise, Andy Copping, the founder of Download, flew over from the UK in order to experience the festivals southern hemisphere debut.

It was an incredible honour to bring Download Festival to Australia and no better place than at Flemington Racecourse, or as it was renamed by fans Donmington, in the heart of Melbourne, Copping said. Seeing all the bands just hanging out and supporting each other on stage encapsulates the true camaraderie and spirit of this kind of music, this scene and this festival.

Thank you Download Australia, particularly the fans cause its nothing without you lot, you have truly have taken the festival to your hearts and we cannot wait to be back again for you next year!

While theres no word yet on which acts will be in contention for next years festival, we wouldnt blame you if you started drafting up your wishlist now!

Check out Limp Bizkits Hot Dog, live from Download Melbourne:

00:29

Victorian MPs to debate Aboriginal treaty "IndyWatch Feed Vic"

Gary Murray (left), an Aboriginal elder with the Victorian Traditional Owners Land Justice Group is critical of the Victoria Governments proposed treaty process. Photo CAAMA

MELBOURNE, AAP Proposed laws to create a treaty between the Victorian government and the states Aboriginal people will be debated in parliament.

Traditional owners are expected to join MPs in the lower house on Wednesday as they debate the proposed treaty, which the government says will give Aboriginal Victorians a bigger voice.

(The) treaty presents an opportunity to accelerate closing the gap by building a relationship that both acknowledges the wrongs of the past and shared goals for the future, Aboriginal Affairs Minister Natalie Hutchins said.

The states Aboriginal Treaty Working Group earlier this month recommended the establishment of an independent Aboriginal Representative Body.

The body would be made up of 30 traditional owners, who would design a framework for future treaty negotiations.

But the Greens and some Aboriginal Victorians are unhappy with the governments treaty process, which they say has sidelined elders and clans.

Treaties must be with the sovereign peoples of the land the clans, said Gary Murray, an Aboriginal elder with the Victorian Traditional Owners Land Justice Group.

The Victorian government must consult with and negotiate with the elders, who are the law in our culture.

The post Victorian MPs to debate Aboriginal treaty appeared first on Echonetdaily.

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Tuesday, 27 March

23:43

MEF PRESENTS ECCV WITH AWARD "IndyWatch Feed Vic"

 

 

 

MELBOURNE EMPLOYMENT FORUM PRESENTS ECCV WITH AWARD

Wednesday March 28th, 2018

The Ethnic Communities Council of Victoria (ECCV) is delighted to be presented with an award for excellence in community partnerships at the inaugural Melbourne Employment Forum (MEF) Awards.

The MEF is a leader in fostering innovative and collaborative partnerships with business, employment services and agencies to achieve improved employment outcomes for African Australians in Melbourne.

ECCV Chairperson Cr Kris Pavlidis says this important symbolic gesture galvanizes the strong collaboration between ECCV and MEF. We look forward to continuing our close working relationship with MEF to support African Australian communities within Victoria.

ECCV and MEF work together to provide opportunities to build the capability of African Australians and increase employment outcomes by promoting the strengths and needs of African Australians and presenting pathways into employment through education, training and work experience.

To address issues relating to employment, education and training, ECCV and iEmpower Youth Services will present the ECCV 2018 State Conference. The conference sessions will focus on topics such as changing technologies and diversity and inclusion in the workplace. Key leaders in the employment and multicultural sectors will share up-to-date sector reports, discussions and data.

The ECCV 2018 State Conference will be held on May 17th-18th, at the ibis Melbourne. To register, please visit www.eccv2018conference.org.au  

For more information and/or media comment, please contact Leenie Fabri, Communications & Media Officer, lfabri@eccv.org.au / 0422 480 319

Download Media Release

23:21

Victorian government backs push for solar on all new-build homes RenewEconomy "IndyWatch Feed Vic"

Vic govt unveils $2.18m plan to partner with land developers and home builders to supply zero net carbon homes rooftop solar included around Melbourne.

via Victorian government backs push for solar on all new-build homes RenewEconomy

23:00

March 28 On This Day in Australian History "IndyWatch Feed Vic"

1791 - Convict William Bryant, his wife Mary and their two children, and seven other convicts escaped Port Jackson in Gov Arthur Phillip's cutter. In April they reached Port Stephens, and by June they arrived in Kupang, Timor. Here they were arrested by Capt Edward Edwards of the HMS Pandora, the victim of shipwreck on the Great Barrier Reef.

1795 - Woods natives were blamed when Thomas Webb was wounded and his hut was plundered at the Hawkesbury. A spear was thrown at soldiers in a boat on the river.

1810 - The stork dropped off Edward Henty, the first permanent settler in Victoria.

 1818 - OOOh, ahh! Trouble for the Flogging Parson! Gov Lachlan Macquarie withdrew Rev. Samuel Marsden 's status as a JP and magistrate.

 1837 The Hoddle Grid of streets for Melbourne's central business district was eyeballed by Robert Hoddle.

1839 - The first recorded encounters at Langhorn's Ferry and Rufus River involved the combined parties of Coutts Crawford and McLeod and MacPherson, ( James Coutts Crawford with 700 cattle and George McLeod and Huntly MacPherson with sheep) who were attacked by a large group of Aboriginal people at sunset:
"The cattle were going into the point when a number of blacks came up at the head with their spears. Riley who was ahead ran for it. They chased him up to the drays where the men gave them a volley and drove them across the river. Took 4 spears "

1845 - Wera Maldera was Hanged outside Adelaide Gaol for the murder of George McGrath at McGrath's Flat, on the Coorong.

1854 - James Button ,Bushranger. Hanged at Melbourne Gaol for Shooting With Intent.

 1864 - William Lonsdale, pioneer administrator of the Port Phillip colony, popped his clogs aged 64.

1870 - William Prendergast was Hanged at Brisbane Gaol for the murder of Patrick Hartnett.

1873 - Ballarat City Rowing Club participated in the inaugural Inter-Colonial four oared race scoring a creditable second to a combined crew from the Melbourne clubs. 'The Boys from the Rush Beds' also defeated the much-fancied Sydney crew. The race was rowed on the Saltwater River (Footscray).

1876 - Academic work was got down to at Adelaide Uni with sheilas being admitted from the very start.

1877 - The first shearing machine was patented by that clever dicky bird Frederick York Wolseley.

 1885 The Queensland Navy was established with the arrival of two gunboats, HMQS Gayundah and HMQS Paluma from Britain. However, when HMQS Gayundah rocked up in Brisbane the Captain refused to relinquish his command and was removed by a boarding party of Queensland Police.

 1886 - The Convict system closed as a result of the crime rate in Britain and Ireland falling so low, only 300 convict...

07:51

Zero G - 26 March 2018 Episode 1177 "IndyWatch Feed Vic"

ZERO-G #1177

Title: Game of Tombs Podcast Title: Tomb Podder

Science Fiction, Fantasy and Historical Radio with Rob Jan & Megan McKeough. This week: interview with Isabella Vallette, about GAMESHOW OF THRONES at the Melbourne International Comedy Festival; and we check out TOMB RAIDER,the latest gaming reboot.

For playlists, show notes, and news see the 3RRR website at:

http://www.rrr.org.au/program/zero-g/playlists

Follow @zerogrobjan on Twitter and Facebook:

https://www.facebook.com/ZeroGRadio

07:39

Overland at the 2018 Feminist Writers Festival "IndyWatch Feed Vic"

Friday 25Sunday 27 May, Queen Victoria Womens Centre Three days of feminist politics, feminist perspectives and collective solutions. Catch the editor of Overland Jacinda Woodhead, with fiction editor Jennifer Mills and writer Natalie Kon-yu in conversation on mentorship in the arts then stick around for special event presented by Overland on writing and activism with Santilla Chingaipe, Tarneen Onus-Williams and Asher Wolf.

04:48

Trust police - They will leave you for dead literally "IndyWatch Feed Vic"

And this is only from a report that the general population are allowed to know about / read.

There is plenty more that is sealed and not available for the serfs to know about. 


How can one trust police when their actions are not isolated to one Corinna Horvath (pictured below) case.


You might as well throw the manual (as seen below) out the door ESPECIALLY the part:

protect life and property


See the two page report (84KB - really good for NBN speeds) the mainstream media did not link to:




From article on 27 Mar 2018 by news.com.au of the headline:

Action urged for Vic Police 'deficiencies'


Human rights considerations are among a raft of areas needing immediate improvement in Victoria Police's internal investigations, the corruption watchdog says.


Human rights issues were over...

04:39

Leadbeaters Possum may not survive extended Regional Forest Agreement and reassessment "IndyWatch Feed Vic"

Tuesday, 27 March 2018 - 1:34pm

 

  • Govt must place moratorium on logging possum habitat while RFAs reassessed
  • New East Gippsland Kuark Forest special protection zones need permanent protection
  • Environment department to run wildlife surveys; should be made public
  • Government must look at all forest services in reassessment, not just logging

The controversial Regional Forest Agreements (RFAs) will at least be reassessed after the Federal and Victorian Governments decided to extend the agreements for East Gippsland, the North East, and the Central Highlands for another two years.

Its not great that the Andrews Government has extended these dodgy logging agreements, but at least they have not been rolled over for 20 years as happened in Tasmania, and the government needs to make sure they are fully reassessed for the first time, said Wilderness Society Victoria Campaign Manager Amelia Young.

Regional Forest Agreements have been a disaster for our forests and endangered species, giving the logging industry a special exemption from national laws that protect endangered animals. Its outrageous that the industry thats perhaps the biggest threat to endangered animals gets an exemption from the the Environmental Protection and Biodiversity (EPBC) Act.

But now, taxpayers will still have to foot the bill for unsustainable logging thats exempt from national environmental law for another two years to supply the governments own sawmill at Heyfield and to supply a Japanese-owned paper mill with forests to pulp for paper.

The Wilderness Society welcomes governments commitment to modernise forest management to ensure forests are managed for the highest and best value use. Modern forest management must consider all forest services, not just unsustainable woodchipping for throwaway paper products.

In the meantime, the government must put a moratorium on logging that may affect endangered species while the scientific and economic reassessment is conducted. Its essential that a moratorium is placed on logging in the critically endangered Mountain Ash forests of the Central Highlands, the only home of the critically endangered Leadbeaters possum.

The government has at least given responsibility for pre-logging wildlife surveys to the Department of Environment, Land, Water and Planning,....

03:09

Last plane out of Sydney "IndyWatch Feed Vic"

Car parks make me jumpy...

There's been lots of talk about a Sydney exodus, so I thought I'd take a look at a few stats. 

Departures interstate are now at last increasing strongly from relatively subdued levels, but were still no higher than historical norms as at September 2017, at least according to the latest ABS estimates. 

Job security and higher stamp duty levies than in previous cycles are two factors to take into account here.


In saying that, more Sydneysiders are taking their equity out to the regional centres up and down the NSW coast, and inland too. 

In Western Australia, on the other hand, interstate departures have been tracking high as they have ever been on this series, with annual estimates hitting a peak of above 40,000 in the first quarter of calendar year 2017. 

Melbourne has lately been a key destination of choice for many interstate migrants, bucking historical trends. 

On a net basis, however, most departees from New South Wales and elsewhere are now heading to Queensland.

And the last plane out of Sydney clearly hasn't gone yet. 

01:20

FixedIt: rural Victoria was not stabbed "IndyWatch Feed Vic"

Yahoo 7 News reported that a man was arrested over the alleged stabbing of his partner and another woman who tried to help her.

The man was present in the headline but his victims were not.

Something like 80 percent of the headlines we see, we never click through to read the article. Were not necessarily thinking very much about the headlines we dont click on, but we see them. And without being consciously aware that its happening they are still describing something to us. When they fit our subconscious bias or when theyre underpinned myths about violence and repeat them over and over again, they reinforce them in our minds, but we dont really notice that its happening.

The things we dont notice are far more dangerous than the things we do notice.

Clarity in reporting and avoiding the passive voice and are among the first things journalists are taught. Which is why the constant use of passive voice and unclear reporting on violence against women stands out so much.

If all the violent crimes committed by men were reported in the active voice, with the perpetrators and their crime as the subject of every headline, it would be overwhelming. Because it is overwhelming.

We are journalists and it is not our job to erase the truth so our audience is not made to feel uncomfortable. Our job is to describe what is happening in our society. And the sad truth is that around 90 percent of violent crimes are committed by men. Avoiding this fact doesnt make it less true but it does make it much more difficult to address the underlying cause.

Headlines matter and this is why FixedIt exists.

FixedIt is an ongoing project to push back against the medias constant erasure of violent men and blaming of innocent victims. If you would like to help fund it even $5 a month makes a big difference please consider becoming a Patron


1800 RESPECT
Sexual assault, domestic and family violence counselling and support.
24 hours a day, 7 days a week. 
Ph: 1800 737 732
www.1800respect.org.au 

Suicide Call Back Service
24 hours a day, 7 days a week.
Ph: 1300 659 467
www.suicidecallbackservice.org.au

Kids Helpline
24 hours a day, 7 days a week.
Phone: 1800 55 1800
...

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Monday, 26 March

23:12

Renewables generated more power than brown coal over summer "IndyWatch Feed Vic"

Australias renewable energy sector is on the rise, generating more power than coal over summer . (file pic)

Renewable energy generated more power than brown coal, gas or oil during Australias long hot summer.

The 9,880 gigawatt-hours (GWh) from renewables during the summer months (1 December to 28 February) exceeded that from brown coal by 8 per cent and gas by 40 per cent in Australias main grids.

Even more impressively, Australias renewables delivered much of this power when it was needed most during the peak demand period in the middle of the day to early evening.

For the National Electricity Market, renewables delivered an average of 5,610 megawatts during the 11am to 7pm (NEM Time) peak demand period over summer.

This was 32 per cent greater than power from brown coal and 78 per cent higher than gas over this critical period of high demand for electricity.

In Victorias first summer without the Hazelwood Power Station solar alone more than stepped up to the challenge.

During working hours, solar generation smashed the maximum output from Hazelwood the previous summer.

GetUp Campaign Director Miriam Lyons said the latest Renewable Energy Index showed renewables were keeping the lights on while coal became increasingly unreliable.

Over summer renewables kept houses cool and lights on during peak demand times when people needed electricity most. Meanwhile dirty old coal plants are becoming increasingly unreliable in the heat. These ageing clunkers failed 36 times over summer!

Clean energy rescued people from blackouts this summer. When the clapped-out Loy Yang coal plant tripped, South Australias giant Tesla battery reacted in milliseconds to keep the power on.

Its clear that a smart electricity grid based on a combination of renewable energy and storage is the best way to deliver clean, affordable energy for all Australians. Malcolm Turnbulls do-nothing approach with the National Energy Guarantee will slam the brakes on renewables when we need as much investment as possible.

Its time for Turnbull to stop propping up dirty old coal and get on with delivering cleaner, cheaper energy for all.

REI Statistics: Renewables at work

  • In February renewables made up 17.6 per cent of the electricity generated in Australias main grids
  • En...

08:00

Stolenwealth Games Boycott A First Nations & eX-detainee Solidarity Statement 26/03/2018 "IndyWatch Feed Vic"

Members of the First Nations and eX-detainees from RISE have consulted to produce this solidarity statement and call for all supporters to boycott the Stolenwealth (commonwealth) Games which is to be held in Queensland, Gold Coast in Australia in April 2018.

Colonial theft, dispossession and genocide are no reason to celebrate and as such we call for all participating nations, athletes, artists and fans to boycott the games and to end colonial occupation and oppression in Australia as well the systemic abuse against our communities.

The Stolenwealth games are merely another cheap gimmick used to whitewash the realities and bloody histories of British colonisation across 6 continents. There is no unity through genocide. First Nations Elders and supporters working with RISE have made it clear that countries and individuals who are willing to participate in this grotesque pandering to a display of British colonialism are not welcome and are violating Indigenous sovereignty.

We encourage people to take responsibility for their own communities and organise actions at embassies of participating nations, contact activists from participating nations and publicly pressure athletes and artists to pull out of the games.

We also encourage people to support the Stolenwealth Games protest actions that will be occurring on the Gold Coast and around Australia from April 4th, 2018. Unite to resist continuing colonial occupation and imperialism. Anyone who is coming to participate in the Stolenwealth games or going to watch the games undermines the sovereignty of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples, and over 200 years of genocide and on-going oppression. Further, they are also complicit in the torture and indefinite detention of refugees in Australias onshore and offshore detention camps. This systemic oppression must end.

Australias colonial borders continue to oppress communities of colour and Black peoples living inside and outside these borders. We condemn the treatment of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples, asylum seekers and refugees in detention centres and prisons in this country. Every time you win a medal, you are winning a medal for colonization, genocide, occupation, systemic abuse and discrimination.

This is an international crisis. Deal with the root of the crisis and act now!

No Games on stolen land.
#BoycottGC2018 #SanctionAustralia #NotTheQueensLand

Media contact: Ramesh Fernandez admin@riserefugee.org / 03 9639 8623

Here are some actions you can take to boycott the Stolenwealth Games in Queensland, Australia 2018 and stand in solidarity with

1. Contact and organise actions at embassies of participating nations.
...

07:40

Why are Portugal. The Man one of the best festival bands around? "IndyWatch Feed Vic"

Theres a pretty strong chance that youve spent most of the last year unable to escape the infectious pop gem that is Portugal. The Mans Feel It Still, but did you know that the group have actually been rocking their hearts out (and annoying grammar enthusiasts) for 14 years?

Since forming back in 2004, Alaskas Portugal. The Man have been crafting some of the most intriguing and accomplished alt-rock and psychedelic-pop gems that the world has seen. With eight albums under their collective belts, it is pretty easy to see that these guys have gained themselves one heck of a dedicated following in all this time.

Ahead of the groups newest Aussie trek next month for Groovin The Moo, weve asked the enduring question, what makes Portugal. The Man one of the best festival bands out there?

In addition to delivering a mesmerising blend of 80s arena rock, 70s prog-rock, and 60s psychedelia, the groups charming nature makes them hard to pass up. Throw in a few covers as well, including David Bowie & Mott The Hooples All The Young Dudes, The Beatles Helter Skelter, and even The Dayman from Its Always Sunny In Philadelphia, and youve got yourself one unmissable live show.

Portugal. The Man are set to touch down in Australia next month for a series of performances at Groovin The Moo, in addition to a few sideshows in Sydney, Melbourne, and Brisbane. Tickets are on sale now, so be sure not to miss one of the best live acts doing the rounds today.

Check out why Portugal. The Man are one of the best festival bands around:

Portugal. The Man Groovin The Moo 2018 Sideshows

Tickets on sale now

Tuesday, May 1st
Enmore Theatre, Sydney, NSW
Tickets: Ticketek

Thursday, May 3rd
Forum Theatre, Melbourne, VIC
Tickets: Ticketmaster

Thursday, May 10th
The...

04:03

A tribute to Ben Leske, by Gillian Howell "IndyWatch Feed Vic"

How do we measure the legacy of a singing leader? It seems apt that, as I ask myself this question, a song comes to mind:

How many cabs in New York City?

How many angels on a pin?

How many notes in a saxophone?

How many tears in a bottle of gin?

(Paul Kelly, Careless)

How many songs were taught and were shared? How many connections and bonds were formed? How many experiences of being held or embraced in harmony, or of adding ones voice to a solid-gold, full-bodied unison? There are many ways that a singing leaders efforts and commitments can be traced. The researcher in me thinks about network analysis, imagines tracing a song on its pathway from leader to choir, from choir members to other leaders, from leaders to leaders. Or tracing connections and friendships, new choirs formed, new leaders inspired.

Benjamin Patrick Leske, musician, composer, researcher, community singing advocate, conductor and choir leader, passed away this month from brain cancer, aged 37. I am not the only one of his friends feeling bereft. There are many others who knew him longer, who had shared more songs and more conversations than I had with him. But in our short friendship, Ben and I bonded. We shared stories from the PhDs in community music that we were both pursuing at the time (his about the experiences of young LGBTQI singers in a Melbourne choir, mine about young music learners in war-torn countries[1]), and we shared our experiences of dealing with the compounding challenges of major illness and treatment during PhD study.

...

03:01

Building boom! "IndyWatch Feed Vic"

Construction bonanza

Melbourne undertook more dwelling starts than ever before through last year. 

But at the state level there are few signs of a structural oversupply, with the population growing by somewhere close to 150,000 per annum according to the latest estimates. 


The New South Wales building boom has been something else, with more than 70,000 dwellings kicked off over the year to September 2017. Wow! 


Supply is failing to keep pace in a sense in Sydney, with land prices doubling over the past half decade.

But as more and more residents head north to Queensland as well as to the state's regional centres there will clearly be a glut of apartments in some of Sydney's construction hotspots. 

See here, here, here, and here for some pictures of what I mean by that.
...

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Sunday, 25 March

23:00

March 26 On This Day in Australian History "IndyWatch Feed Vic"

1768 - Lieutenant James Cook RN, at the behest of Britains Royal Society, left Plymouth aboard the barque Endeavour for Tahiti to observe the transit of Venus.
The Admiralty supplied Endeavour paying captain and crew so once Cooks obligation to the Royal Society was satisfied he was free to open his secret instructions and search for; the British Admiraltys shadowy Great South Land.

1789 - Of the 7 soldiers charged with stealing from the stores on the previous day Marine Joseph Hunt, who it is thought instigated the plot, ratted. He turned kings evidence and escaped death. His six companions were found guilty death was a foregone conclusion.
About half-past 2 oclock they all Received Sentenced to Death and the gallows was erected before the Sentence was Cast upon them.

1795 - Bennelong's mate, Bing-y-wan-ne, had a really rough day at the Brickfields when a Burramuttagal man from Parramatta Yeranibe Goruey clubbed him to death when he found Bing-y-wan-ne with his wife, Mawberry.

1802 - Having run out of people he could brown nose name things and places after, Matthew Flinders named Investigator Strait after...(drum roll)...his ship.

1803 - John Brown was Hanged for feloniously entering the house of Thomas Neal of Richmond Hill.

1803 - James Connors was Hanged for feloniously entering the house of Thomas Neal of Richmond Hill

1812 - The Lady Nelson with Captain Overhand and Surveyor Evans shot through from Sydney for Jervis Bay to carry out a land survey.

1834 - Joseph Deane Bushranger. Hanged at Hobart.

1834 - Henry Rutland Bushranger. Hanged at Hobart.

1834 - Samuel (a 'man of colour') Hanged at Hobart for attempted murder at Port Arthur.

1838 - Joseph Wyatt was a former convict who'd made good and it was pretty obvious when he threw open the doors of the Royal Victoria Theatre in Sydney.

 1838 -  George Grey discovers evidence to suggest other Europeans had explored Australia's northwest hinterland prior to white settlement ; he discovered numerous Aboriginal cave paintings near the head of the Glenelg River. Some of the figures depicted seemed to be wearing long garments, with helmets or hats. Another cave held an unusual painting of a non-Aboriginal man's figure, over 3m long, wearing a flowing reddish gown. Theories suggest that these paintings were early depictions of Portuguese or Spanish mariners or priests who may have visited the area long before any European settlement on the western coast.

1839 - Aboriginal Protector George Robinson penned a letter to the Colonial Secretary on this day describing how,
 "...Melbourne was visited by a very large body of Aboriginal natives who were invited by the resident tribes to attend a confer...

21:00

Independent Artist Of The Week: Mildlife "IndyWatch Feed Vic"

Photo by Thomas Ross

Meet Mildlife the cosmic funk house band from Melbourne who are playing a party on the edge of the universe.

With a desire to push the musical boundaries of jazz, psych and disco into an irresistible groove, the sounds that Mildlife create are kaleidoscopic. For old friends James Donald, Adam Halliwell, Kevin McDowell and Tom Shanahan, songwriting is a constant process of teasing, tugging, expanding and refining. Sometimes it starts with an idea, and other times its bolstered by wild improvisation.

Its these small seeds of spontaneity that have grown into their long awaited debut album, Phase. Some of Phases sounds were planted as far back as the beginning of the band several years ago, forgotten and rediscovered in the albums making. Mildlife are adamant though, that they are not a studio band, and instead, they are driven by the excitement of a live show.

This excitement led the four piece to take time off touring and consider how they could make more complex and tangible improv, while still being able to produce as much of their music possible, live. For bass player Tom Shanahan, It feels more authentic. The energy can be in the song rather than sitting on top of it.

Onstage, the music of Phase moves into another dimension. Still with enough room for random outbursts of creativity, a Mildlife set emphasises rhythm that works it way into the bones. And if the reputation of their beguiling live sets alongside Krakatau and Harvey Sutherland are anything to go by, youre in for an epic cosmic journey.

Get into Zwango Zop below.

WHO: Mildlife Phase National Tour
WHERE: Fredas, Chippendale
WHEN: 8pm, Thursday May 11
HOW MUCH: Free! More details here
Phase by Mildlife is available now on Bandcamp, Spotify and Soundcloud
Tune into Up For It every Monday morning to meet your new independent artist of the week!

 

The post Independent Art...

10:34

Piracy is not copying software "IndyWatch Feed Vic"

Words get reused from the past to describe a particular action,  event or description from the present, sometimes being grossly inaccurate.

In the legal sphere the term 'freeman' today does not have the same meaning as used in the days of the Magna Carta, where many people erroneously try to shove that word into today's legal jargon.

The term piracy was used to describe an action involving people sailing on ships with the intent to commit criminal activity, specifically; stealing other people's possessions, murdering and kidnapping.

Piracy is illegal in Australia, as described in a law from Queensland from 1899, under the Criminal Code 1899, from Section 79;

act of piracy
(1) A person does an
"act of piracy" if the person, in relation to a ship travelling at sea, unlawfully

In Victoria a law called the Crimes Act from 1958 under Section 70A describes piracy as;

Piracy with violence Any person who with intent to commit or at the time of or immediately before or immediately after committing the offence of piracy in respect of any vessel


(illustration of a 'pirate' from the 18th century)

On the 28th day of April 1770, James Cook landed on the southern shore of today's suburb Kurnell in Botany Bay together with Joseph Banks and Dr. Daniel Solander.

Together they took 'possession' in the name of the crown under King George the Third of a land that already had inhabitants on it, without any 'compensation' or treaty with those people, an act of 'piracy'.

Conversely the indigenous people of New Zealand had a treaty with the crown of England irrespective of reports of how dodgy it may been written.

Today similarly the inhabitants of Australia are being shafted by the people in power with regards to the modern take on the word piracy.

Laws created in Australia are for the financial benefit and prosperity of corporations at the expense of the general population.

Ever since the commercialisation of the government resource called the Internet the actions of corporation...

01:22

On Parade: Greek Independence Day "IndyWatch Feed Vic"

Held yearly on 25 March at Melbournes Shrine of Remembrance, the Greek Independence Day parade has evolved into a particular representation of Greek-Australian culture. Dr Andonis Piperoglou explains.

Each year, Greek-Melbournians gather to commemorate the Greek War of Independence, acknowledged for restoring democracy (if only fleetingly) to the place where the concept first originated. Priests bless the event and speeches are made by community representatives and consular officials. The repetitive beat of military drums and the weaving of Australian flags alongside Greek flags are ever-present. Youths adorned in provincial folk attire march in unison with their peers and elders. Flower heavy wreaths are laid. This year 12 members of the Athens-based Hellenic Presidential Gard will be participating.

In Greece, ceremonial events on the day operate as symbolic representations of national sovereignty and religious jubilation. The day is a double anniversary -it commemorates the start of the Greek revolutionary war in 1821 and exactly nine months before Christmas it is recognised as the Feast of the Annunciation; a moment when Mary was informed that she would be the mother of Jesus. While the day holds religious and national significance in Greece, in Australia the day has become a form of public spectacle.

A multi-generation assortment of Australian, Cypriot, and Greek-born citizens come in their thousands. According to one commentator, the attendance of Greek-Australian youths affirms a commitment to Greek history and the Greek Orthodox tradition in Australia. As the only ethnically orientated event to be held at the public monument the parade holds a special place in the Greek-Australian psyche.

Holding the parade at the Shrine of Remembrance which architecturally mimics the Tomb of Mausolus at Halicarnassus reminds attendees that the sacrifices of Australian soldiers have been, and continue to be, compared to the revered heroes of antiquity. The cultural universe of Hellenism is intertwined with the ANZAC mythos. The revolutionary heroes of the Greek War of Independence and the Aussie digger share common ground.

Neos Kosmos, the chief Greek-Australian newspaper, has previously asserted that the parade reveals that the Greek psyche still remains unchanged. Collective emphasis has been placed on the importance of retaining our cul...

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Saturday, 24 March

23:21

The Revolution Will Be Hashtagged: On MeToo, Social Media, And Online Feminism "IndyWatch Feed Vic"

The face of activism is changing, writes Sanjana Pegu, and the sooner we all accept it, the better off well all be.

MeToo has been revolutionary in opening the floodgates for millions of women to share their stories of sexual abuse, harassment, and rape. It has unfolded and unleashed itself primarily over online spaces but with repercussions in the real, material world. And even though it may not be the best time to launch a defence of social media, its role in launching and sustaining this movement cannot be denied.

Any time feminism becomes radical enough to wrest back some power from everyday patriarchy, defenders of the status quo and protectors of male privilege spring up and bring their choicest diatribes in countering a feminism that has apparently gone too far.

Allegations range from a mob frenzy to McCarthyism to a false sense of victimhood to a Victorian mindset on sex. The latest to join the anti-MeToo brigade is Minister for Women, Kelly ODwyer.

The divide between older (read, due process champions) and younger feminists whose main objective is to break the silence around sexual harassment is supposedly so insurmountable that Vox ran a survey to find out if its true (it isnt, in case you wanted to know).

 

Why MeToo needs social media

But that there has been much unwarranted criticism of MeToo is undeniable. The most common complaint by older feminists (and some younger ones) is that it is merely an online movement of shrieking, hysterical women, portraying themselves as victims, and demonising all men to gain what? The details are sparse.

Some have criticised such online movements for bypassing the real, physical, traditional protest sites of marches and rallies. While there are legitimate criticisms of MeToo (for instance, that it hasnt made much of an impact on poor, working class women), admonishing feminists for fighting their battles through social media and other forms of internet discourse is nothing but a lazy, superficial argument.

Mass rallies like the Womens March can be an effective form of protest but they do not always...

22:00

March 25 On This Day in Australian History "IndyWatch Feed Vic"


1789 - *gasp* 7 marines were charged with robbery from the food stores....it's not like they were on tiny rations and starving, now is it?!

1802 - The infamous NSW Corps was reduced in number and power to that of a Peace Establishment on this day.

1803 - Timothy Mulch was Hanged for feloniously entering the house of Thomas Neal of Richmond Hill.

1812 - Surveyor George William Evans took Young Bundle on the Lady Nelson to Jervis Bay. They walked to the Shoalhaven River and returned north through the bush, crossing the entrance to Lake Illawarra and passed through Kangaroo Valley.

1826 - On this day the Sydney Gazette & NSW Advertiser reported that ;
"His sable majesty, Bungaree, attended at the Police Office last week, by order of the Superintendent, and received instructions to warn his own immediate liegis, as well as the chiefs of other tribes, that rioting, drunkenness, and disturbing the quiet of the streets at night, would invariably be followed by the punishment of the tread-mill, or, confinement with hard labour. Bungaree bowed politely, promised to use every exertion to carry the orders of their Worships into effect, and retired."

1838 - Bobby Hoddle played 'Eeny Meeny Miny Mo' with a map and picked the site for Geelong.

1863 - Having nothing better to do with his time, John Jardine set up camp - and a settlement - on the tip of Cape York Peninsula dubbed Somerset...which was nothing like the original Somerset back in the Old Dart.

1874 - Queen Nellie Hamilton, a Ngunawal woman,  had her horse stolen whilst she was working as a cleaner at a pub in Ginninderra (NSW) and, although it was then on-sold, she succeeded in taking the man to court for return of the horse on this day.




Remember this gorgeous abode I posted back in 2009 as being for sale?
Alas, it is no more; the large block attracted the lesser-liked beast The Developer who crammed as many units upon the sod as one could.


1877 - The Australian Immigrants Friend, Caroline Chisholm (who will never be confused with any Aussie pollie) shuffled off this mortal coil in London....

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Friday, 23 March

22:00

March 24 On This Day in Australian History "IndyWatch Feed Vic"

You can all begin by raising a glass to John Busby who was whelped on this day in 1765, and who began the 10 year construction of Sydney's first regular water supply known as Busby's Bore on his birthday in 1827.

1796 - Bass and Flinders did not find Lake Illawarra but instead fell over a noisy skinny dipping pool party.
They declined the invitation to join in due to their mortal fear of verdigris.

1804 - And after a plethora of names such as Mulumbinba, Coal River, Hunter's River,Coal Harbour, and King's Town they finally settled on calling the damn spot Newcastle.

1810 - David Collins dropped off the perch rather suddenly...probably been over-doing the little blue "performance" pills again, randy bugger.

1854 - An Act to Establish a Constitution in and for the Colony of Victoria or more commonly the first 'Constitution Act' was passed in the Victorian Legislative Council. This set out the principles and methods for Parliament and would comprise two houses the Legislative Council and the Legislative Assembly.

1862 - The Peeps in Power in NSW went completely nuts today when they madly threw open the Main North Railway Line from Lochinvar - Branxton.

1879 - The bridge at Murray Bridge in South Oz - as you can't have a Murray Bridge without a bridge - was opened for traffic. Playing catch up, as always, it was adapted for choo-choo's in 1886.

1883 - The Salvo's fish and chip wrapper newspaper Warcry was flogged sold for the first time in Sydney.

1890 - The train travellers were most pleased when the railway line from Burnley to Oakleigh (Vic) was flung open for intrepid tripsters.

1891 - Dr Richard Schomburgk, the Director of Adelaide's Botanic Gardens, suddenly dropped off the perch.
Read more about this former Prussian rebel who dreamt up fabulous flora for Adelaide that's still enjoyed to this day.

1891 - The peeps wot made decisions at that extinct beast Victoria Railways were sniffing some sort of adhesive when they closed the Dunkeld to Penshurst railway line.

1891 - But obviously not all of them at Victoria Railways were as high as Harry Highpants' Top Hat cos they opened the line from Fairfield Park to Riversdale.


1891 - They were on a roll when they opened the railway line from Maldon (Laanecoorie Junction) to Shelbourne (Vic).

1900 - In Queensland 1,280 acres were gazetted as an Aboriginal reserve at Barambah.

1907 - The world's first surf reel was dem...

21:03

70% crop losses due to extreme weather in Australia "IndyWatch Feed Vic"

It was always going to be a big ask for the nation's grain crop to reach last year's record breaker, but extreme weather events across the country have guaranteed the harvest is well down on last year. Some grain-growing regions have even reported a drop of more than 70 per cent on last year's harvest. In the north of the country grain farmers battled extreme dry, in NSW and Victoria a late frost and record rains damaged crops, and WA made a comeback late in the season with much-needed rain. Dry winter impacts yields For Matthew Dart who farms at Merriwagga in southern NSW it's a harvest he was happy to see the back of. "It was one of those years where any mistake in any given sequence you were penalised so heavily," he said.

11:27

Sexual Assault in the Greens and the left "IndyWatch Feed Vic"

Recently sexual assaults within the Australian Greens have been gaining more attention. Jasmina Brankovich lives in Perth, Western Australia and has been following this issue closely.

In this interview we talk about sexual assault within the Greens and the lack of structures to deal with them.

In the second part we talk about this issue in the broader left and anarchist community.

[Part 1]

http://www.radio4all.net/responder.php/download/96698/106243/118140/?url=http://www.radio4all.net/files/punkassneenja@riseup.net/1972-1-jasmina_greens_final_1.1_subversion1312.mp3

Jasmina: For the past few years especially last year I think weve had a number of allegations covering all shades I guess of a male sexual violence as I prefer to call it in the Greens, and its seemingly across all branches so I think that Ive heard about the New South Wales, Victoria, WA and at the very least those those main branches so what we had is basically a number of allegations across a number of branches portraying theres complete lack of interest in dealing with them, theres also lack of structures structure for instance a lot of branches and I know about WA one of those allegations arose do not have anything like the sexual harassment policy and processes to deal with them not-with-standing the fact that some branches and at them at the national level are developing their policy now.

These things were not in place when the allegations against the current Senator Senator Jordan Steele John published in the True Crime News Weekly so these allegations have been covered in the independent non mains stream press....

06:26

Ai Weiwei Highlights Treatment of Global Refugees in Human Flow Documentary and Sydney Biennale Installations "IndyWatch Feed Vic"

My latest post for Global Voices:

During a visit to Australia, Chinese artist and activist Ai Weiwei has blitzed the media with his concerns about the global treatment of refugees.

He is the headline artist with two major installations at the Biennale of Sydney that runs until June 2018. One, called The Law of the Journey located at the Cockatoo Island, features a black rubber, inflatable boat and figures. They were made with the same material used to produce the hazardous boats that some asylum seekers and migrants travel in while attempting to cross the Mediterranean.

...Ai also spoke at the Cinema Nova for the Melbourne opening of his documentary Human Flow, which features the stories of refugees in 23 countries in 2016.

...Kon Karapanagiotidis from the Asylum Seeker Resource Centre conducted a live interview on Facebook and Twitter that has since attracted nearly 10,000 viewers.

More: From Sydney Biennale Installations to Film Screenings, Ai Weiwei Highlights Treatment of Global Refugees

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Thursday, 22 March

21:08

Victorias bushfires reveal a failure to maintain electricity delivery system "IndyWatch Feed Vic"

Contributed by Ben Wilson

The flames have hardly gone out in the Victorian bushfires, and a pattern is emerging, around claims that faulty electrical infrastructure is to blame. This is raising some serious questions about the conduct of the supply companies and the nature of the Victorian government subsidies to these companies.

At Tathra, according to investigators with the Rural Fire Service, the fire was caused by faulty infrastructure in the electricity transmission network run by Essential Energy.

The Electrical Trades Union (ETU) has blamed funding cuts, which have led to a reduction of maintenance. Assistant secretary Justin Page said the union had long been concerned about a backlog of maintenance to clear bush around electrical poles, and the union was not surprised at the cause, and that the State Government and national energy regulator needed to explain why they cut funding to the network.

Justin Page said,

The Australian Energy Regulator cut the funding in the order of 40 per cent that Essential Energy are able to use for tree-trimming and clearing for powerline infrastructure.

The investigators found that the problem on Reedy Swamp Road was the likely cause of the bushfire on Sunday, which wiped out 68 homes.

Essential Energy has denied its responsibility in a carefully worded statement.

Preliminary internal enquiries indicate network protection equipment activated as it is designed, it said.

An initial review also indicates that asset and vegetation inspections and maintenance in the vicinity of Reedy Swamp Road are up to date and in accordance with prescribed standards.

At the Garvoc fire, where 18 houses were destroyed  along with 52 sheds, and at least 14,000 hectares of land was burnt, the cause was a faulty power pole that snapped during fierce winds.

Brendan Pendergast from Maddens Lawyers in Warrnambool, who is representing a class action being made by residents against Powercor, told the ABCs Statewide Drive, This pole has obviously been identified as being structurally compromised.

It had been patched up by attaching semi-circular sleeves to the pole. So that is sort of a band-aid means of extending the life of the pole.

Jack Kennawho lives at the Sisters near Terang,  said the blaze started on his farm.

The pole that snapped off was supported by two steel props, so obviously there had been a problem with the pole in the past and I suppose they wanted to get a bit more life out of the pole.

At Gazette, a bluegum limb in a plantation fell onto powerlines...

08:29

The finest police commissioner money can buy cleared Dan Andrews/CFMEU/Labor of rorting allowances "IndyWatch Feed Vic"

The ABC thought this was a story 2 years ago. Now, not so much. http://www.abc.net.au/news/2016-06-07/victorian-labor-party-cleared-of-misusing-election-staff/7487662 Labor Party cleared of misusing staff in 2014 Victorian election Updated 7 Jun 2016, 3:23pm PHOTO: Premier Daniel Andrews said using casual electorate staff was not against the law. (AAP: Joe Castro) RELATED STORY: Campaigning...

00:38

PTUA welcomes improvements to Shepparton line "IndyWatch Feed Vic"

The Public Transport Users Association (PTUA) has welcomed the governments announcement that the introduction of a fifth daily train to Shepparton will be brought forward.

Enabling work, including a new crossing loop and more train stabling, was originally to be completed by 2020, but the state government announced on Wednesday that construction will begin sooner than expected. It will allow trains to run more frequently and reliably on the Shepparton line.

PTUA Regional Spokesperson, Paul Westcott, noted that Shepparton-Mooroopna is one of the fastest-growing regional areas centres in Victoria, and deserves a faster, more frequent and more reliable rail service to Melbourne.

At the moment, train services to Shepparton/Mooroopna fall well short of those to regional centres such as Ballarat or Bendigo, he said. That has led to considerable dissatisfaction in the Goulburn Valley, and it has been an increasing problem as the population grows.

With more frequent trains, passengers will have more choice about when they travel, and not have to wait such a long time between trains, making trips to Melbourne more attractive and convenient, Mr Westcott said.

This investment in infrastructure and services on the Shepparton line is an important step towards a better-connected Goulburn Valley.

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Wednesday, 21 March

23:53

Some like it HOTA: The Gold Coast gets innovative and edgy "IndyWatch Feed Vic"

Criena Gehrke, CEO and director of HOTA: Home of the Arts. Photo supplied.

Things are changing on the Gold Coast; its no longer the cultural vacuum that many joked it was decades ago.

These days, thanks to the investment of The Gold Coast City Council, this coastal city is quickly making its name as an impressive arts hub. Just last weekend the council gifted the community a free Tim Minchin concert to celebrate the opening of the beautiful new 3,500-seater outdoor amphitheatre.

The Gold Coast Arts Centre has been renamed to signal a new direction and new commitment to the arts and the Gold Coast and hinterland community. HOTA: Home of the Arts.

Standing front and centre is Criena Gehrke, CEO and director of the precinct. Hailing from Melbourne, Gehrke relocated four years ago and was instrumental in developing the citys cultural contract.

Gehrkes background in theatre, and her passion for site-specific work and community engagement is evident in the upcoming programming planned for HOTA this year.

Art meets life

Part of what we are committed to here is creating a great place of community.Part of the change is that the Arts Centre has been a great and well-regarded arts centre and when you grow it into an arts precinct it has to be an experience. We have a lake, a parkland, and facilities come and swim in the lake, get your feet sandy, come and see a show. This is a place where art meets life.

Gehrkes vision is a less passive way of viewing art. Its about community getting engaged and involved in what is presented.

I would hate to see the demise of the proscenium arch play, but you have to encourage people to engage thats our ambition to be a platform for great national and international artists and our home-grown artists.

It seems too good to be true. A council that actually values arts and culture?

T...

06:04

Reka SCARLET "IndyWatch Feed Vic"

Australian contemporary artist Reka returns to his hometown of Melbourne to present SCARLET, his first new solo show in 4 years. A brooding mix of Berlin nightlife, Japanese Shibari rope bondage and post-cubist figurative studies, this is one of his most mature exhibitions to date.

Influenced by his graffiti background and techniques, as well as elements of pop-culture, cartoon and illustration, Rekas form has evolved into something greater than the sum of its parts. At times bacchanalian, his figures are playful, yet dark, tortured, but ecstatic.

His canvases offer up the entrancing curvatures of the human body, captured on canvas in the way the ropes ensnare his figures. Echoing the lines and textures of his paintings are a new set of sculptural pieces, with a captivating new exploration of stonework layers of tactile granite and marble set on steel solidify Rekas well-deserved place in the collections of institutions such as the...

04:24

NOFX have released a Stephen Hawking tribute they wrote last month "IndyWatch Feed Vic"

Punk icons NOFX are getting ready to kick off their Aussie tour tomorrow night in Brisbane, but that hasnt stopped the group dropping a brand new song, which just so happens to be a tribute of sorts to the recently-departed physicist Stephen Hawking.

Released via the Fat Wreck Chords YouTube account, Theres No Too Soon If Time Is Relative is a rather tongue-in-cheek to the noted physicist, who passed away on March 14th at the age of 76.

While some might assume that the track is in poor taste to have been released so soon after his death, the video for the track makes special mention of the fact that the tune was actually recorded last month, on February 10th.

Of course, the track has been met with some criticism by fans, with some in the YouTube comments section claiming the tracks content (which includes jokingly calling him so lazy he could only write A Brief History Of Time) is a little bit too harsh compared to some of their other humorous tributes.

Others however have claimed its as a perfect continuation of one of the greatest punk rock groups of all time, while NOFX seem certain that Hawking would have loved the tune, noting I bet in heaven theres a computer voice laughing its ass off.

NOFX are set to hit up Brisbane tomorrow night (who knows, maybe if you request this one, it might get a debut airing!), before they play Sydney on Friday, and wrap up their Aussie tour with an appearance at the inaugural Download Festival in Melbourne on Saturday. Tickets to all these shows are still on sale, so make sure you dont miss out on seeing one of punks most famous bands live!

Check out NOFXs Theres No Too Soon If Time Is Relative:

NOFX 2018 Australian Tour

(With Hot Water Music, Bad Cop/Bad Cop and Dad Religion)

Thursday, March 22nd, 2018
Riverstage, Brisbane, QLD
Tickets: Sele...

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Tuesday, 20 March

22:50

Workers at XXXX in Brisbane to strike over jobs "IndyWatch Feed Vic"

Contributed by Adam Carlton

Close to a hundred workers at the XXXX plant at Milton in Brisbane plan to walk off the job over job security and threats to lower working conditions.

About 40 jobs have been lost in recent years already, and Damien Davie, spokesperson for United Voice Queensland the union that represents these workers, said that company management needed to talk, otherwise disruption to beer supplies for the Commonwealth Games will come about.

We want everyone to be able to drink XXXX while theyre enjoying the Commonwealth Games, he said.

But management needs to come to the table, or theyll risk disrupting beer supply at this important time.

The walk off the job is expected to take place next Monday.

Tensions have been building for some time, and the turn towards industrial action is no surprise. Lion, the company that owns the brewery has for several years been trying to outsource labour. Rather than employ workers directly,  is opting to push in a system where a labour hire company supplies a casual workforce.

By doing this, agreed wages and conditions can be undercut, and the prerogative of management to hire and fire at will extended.

Damien Davies explained that XXXX management is threatening to shut down our legendary Milton brewery, if they dont get their way on shipping in cheap labour from over the border.

It this is true, Lion is determined to bring on the change, and the workers and their union are pushed into a major battle against it.

Lion claims that the union has been lying. It does however admit to be pursuing more flexibility in the use of labour, and the use of contractors when required.

It is obvious that the Commonwealth Games is a strategically good time for this workforce to engage in industrial action, and to take advantage of it maximises their bargaining strength.

Like other similar disputes, it is a mixture of existing industrial laws and more militant employers, urged on by the major employer organisations and government that has given rise to the situation.

The position of wage earners has been deteriorating in Australia, while corporations have been able to skim billions of dollars. Raising the pace of work, while decreasing the reward for doing it, is stepped up exploitation.

Nothing is more geared to raise the anger of the workforce. This is what has happened at XXXX.

These workers have an advantage,  If this turns out to be an ongoing dispute, they are in a good position to gain the sympathy of the public. This would cost Lion heavily, in terms of reputation and lost business. It is what Carton and United Breweries in Melbourne found two year...

22:00

March 21 On This Day in Australian History "IndyWatch Feed Vic"

DO YOUR BIT!!!
If we all adopt a country footy /netty club and take out even 1 membership it will help small country clubs.
And let's call a spade a fecking shovel here, boys and girls - once the footy team folds, the netball clubs go and then it's like a set of dominoes and towns disappear.
Don't let that happen to our fabulous country towns!!!



1792 - In a letter he jotted to the good Rev William Morice about the coastal Eora people coming in frequently to the convict settlement at Sydney Cove, Captain Richard Johnson stated,
" A Number of the Natives, both Men women, and especially Children are every day now in the Camp - Two native Girls I have under my roof,"

1802 Matthew Flinders was a busy chap, trotting off and finding all sorts of things on his explorative travels, like today's Show and Tell subject Kangaroo Island.
Yes, we have so many of the hoppity critters we had to name a whole lump of dirt after 'em.

1816 - After two years of severe drought, the Gundungurra (Gandangara) came down from the mountains to attack settlers in the outlying Cow Pastures (Camden) district, burning houses and sheds, spearing cattle and plundering crops. They killed four men employed by George T Palmer (son of Commissary John Palmer) at the Nepean River and three of Mrs Elizabeth Macarthurs stock-keepers at Camden.

1829- Windradyne, known to European settlers as "Saturday", was a warrior and resistance leader of the Wiradjuri people; he passed to the stars on this day following a tribal fight at the Macquarie River.

1855 - Raffaello Carboni was tried for treason over his involvement in the Eureka Stockade.
Of course he found not guilty.

1863 - Thomas Pedder was hanged at Perth Gaol for the murder of Thomas Sweeny, a shepherd, at Irwin River.

1864 The very first hansom cab turned up in New Zealand with its driver asking for directions as his Sat-Nav was on the blink.

1895 - The Chickybabes Suffrage Act got the gong from Queen Vicky in South Oz when it twas Gazetted, thereby giving the gals the right to vote and to stand for Parliament.

1917 Infamous,wonderful author Frank Hardy, brother to the equally talented entertainer Mary Hardy, was pupped today.

1918- Dunolly-ite made good; Harry Lawson, pupped in Dunolly, assumed the position as Premier of Victoria.
...

09:30

FINDING COMMON GROUND "IndyWatch Feed Vic"

Maceo Parker with The Meltdown in A Tribute to Ray Charles.

Maceo Parker with The Meltdown in A Tribute to Ray Charles.  (Image supplied)

QUICK PREVIEW

Melbourne International Jazz Festival, 1-10 June, 2018

Program details are now out for the 21st MIJF, which this year aims to demonstrate that jazz can happen anywhere. Over 10 days more than 100 events will feature almost 400 Australian, international and emerging artists.

The usual detailed preview of the festival will be published when time permits, but here is a taste of whats on offer.

There will be 26 venues across the city, from the Hamer Hall to...

08:03

Leaked video shows police brutally bashing young handcuffed father Noa Begic "IndyWatch Feed Vic"

A matter all too reminiscent of Corinna Horvath where she was brutally bashed by Victoria Police to an inch of her not remembering her name.

From the article by abc.net.au from 18 Mar 2018 of the headline:

Queensland Police in leaked bashing video were subject to dozens of brutality complaints




A Queensland police unit on the Gold Coast generated dozens of brutality complaints and a longstanding reputation among colleagues for excessive force before several of its members were publicly exposed in a leaked video.

The failed prosecution of former police officer Rick Flori over the leak opened up former members of so-called Surfers Paradise "Team Two" to interrogation over their disciplinary records, which revealed internal investigations of 21 allegations of serious misconduct.

Team Two was one of a number of patrol units operating out of Surfers Paradise police, each with a membership of 12 to 15 officers at any one time.

The ABC can reveal there were at least 21 other complaints of excessive force against another two officers within Team Two in the years leading up to the unjustified assault of Noa Begic in the police station car park in January 2012



Photo: Mr Flori was cleared over leaking police video in February this year. (ABC News: Josh Robertson)


A Police Ethical Standards Command (ESC) report from 2010, obtained by the ABC, noted the "inordinately large number of excessive force allegations", with ESC issuing a "med...

07:48

Mama Kin Spender on their musical affinity, finding remedy and taking risks with Golden Magnetic "IndyWatch Feed Vic"

[Tommy and I] have been friends for about 16-17 years now. You get less than that for most major crimes these days

Its a playful sentiment that echoes throughout Golden Magnetic, the debut album conceived by Mama Kin (Danielle Caruana) and Melbourne producer Tommy Spender.

But aside from being a stellar collection of tracks inspired by nature, connection, love and hope the duo have been breaking out of the records physical confines by incorporating choirs from across the country into their live shows.

Set to hit Sydneys favourite Basement in April, Mama Kin joined Chelsea on The New Thing to delve deeper into the origins of Golden Magnetic, future plans and how they find a sense of community within each choir they perform with.

Click the blue play button:

www.mamakinspender.love

GIG
Mama Kin Spender Golden Magnetic Tour
with Inner West Voice
The Basement, Circular Quay
Sunday, 29 April
Tickets

The post Mama Kin Spender on their musical affinity, finding remedy and taking risks with Golden Ma...

05:41

Dwelling prices up 5pc in 2017 "IndyWatch Feed Vic"

Prices gain ground

Dwelling prices increased by +1 per cent in the final quarter of 2017, to be +5 per cent higher over the calendar year. 

This is a slower pace of growth than the +7.7 per cent increase reported for calendar year 2016. 


The quarterly gains were again driven by Melbourne (+2.6 per cent) and Hobart (+3.9 per cent), while notably Perth (+1.1 per cent), Brisbane (+0.9 per cent), and Canberra (+1.7 per cent) notched quarterly gains. 

Darwin prices fell -6.3 per cent in 2017, with the declines continuing throughout the year. 

Hobart's annual gain increased to +13.1 per cent. 

The Tasmanian capital is small city with a population of under 225,000 and building approvals kicked off 2018 by rising to the highest level since 2011, but new supply takes time to be delivered and the housing market remains very tight.  


Sydney house prices declined very marginally for houses in the fourth quarter, while the attached dwelling price index was flat, leaving the city's index down -0.1 per cent for the quarter (though up +3.8 per cent for the year). 

02:40

March on Palm Sunday for justice for refugees "IndyWatch Feed Vic"

Adelaide

2pm, Victoria Square, march to Parliament House Facebook event here

Armidale

Central Park, 11am Facebook event here

Ballina

Lennox Head Bus Station, Beachfront opposite the shops  11am

Bendigo

Rosalind Plaza, 12.30pm

Bowral

Corbett Plaza, 6pm  Friday, 23rd March

Brisbane

1pm, King George Square Facebook event here

Canberra

1pm Garema Place Facebook event here

Darwin

Nightcliff Foreshore, 5pm

Denmark (WA)

11am Strickland Street

Hobart

2pm Parliament House Lawns, Salamanca Facebook event here

Launceston

12.30pm BYO picnic, Princes Square, 2pm march via the city centre to City Park for a multicultural celebration

Lennox Head

11am Ballina Rd bus shelter at Nth end of shopping centre Facebook event here

Margaret River
.........

02:34

Tired Lion "IndyWatch Feed Vic"

 

TIRED LION

Raw, visceral and loud.  The Music

Tired Lion have steadily climbed the ranks as one of Australias most talked-about bands.  Reverb.com

 They are, tbqh, just an excellent rock and roll band, and were lucky to have em turning out huge choruses like it aint no thang.  triple j

Perth rockers Tired Lion are set to hit some of the biggest stages of their career this June with the announcement today of the national Where Were You? headline tour.

The tour, which takes its name from their latest single Where Were You? is supported by triple j and will see the band play clubs in MelbourneAdelaidePerthSydney and Brisbane, beginning with Max Watts in Melbourne on June 1.

LISTEN TO WHERE WERE YOU? HERE

 After having a massive breakout year in 2017, that included releasing their critically-acclaimed, triple j Feature album, Dumb Days, Tired Lion has already had a huge start to 2018, playing sold out shows across regional Australia and performing at festivals like Party In The Paddock and the Pool House Party.

 Tired Lions Sophie Hopes says she and her bandmates cant wait to hit the road again, where they feel most at home. Were always looking for a good excuse to pack our suitcase and head off to play a bunch of shows. Weve managed to already tick off a tour of regional Australia this year and psyched to take it to the capital cities!

 

The post Tired Lion appeared first on The Zoo.

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Monday, 19 March

22:00

March 20 On This Day in Australian History "IndyWatch Feed Vic"

1802 Matthew Flinders followed in the tradition of brown nosing naming new places after influential bods back home when he dubbed Spencer Gulf in South Oz after a bloke on the Admiralty Board.

1834 Arthur Orton, the butcher from Wagga Wagga who claimed to be the long lost heir to the Tichborne fortune, was pupped.

1838 - Patrick Cuffy was Hanged at Sydney for robbery and assault on William Vivers at Bureen.

1838 - John Toole was Hanged at Sydney for robbery and assault on William Vivers at Bureen.

1844 Oh , if only for that blue telephone police box to pop back in time...Flogging off the land selling the first blocks of land at Seymour commenced today.

1846 Just to make sure Melbourne's Princes' Bridge was going to be built, the foundation stone was laid.

1856 William Gocher, a journalist, newspaper publisher and reformer of beach bathing swimming laws (he broke 'em) was spawned. Read more about beach bathing Billy-boy HERE.

1872 Pack away your fur capes theatre lovers, the Theatre Royal in Melbourne was gutted by fire.

1873 Longwood to Violet Town railway line was opened.
Pretty little line, it might surprise some in State Govt to learn it actually did carry trains that transported people, odd though it may seem.

1878 Needing to fill up the not-so empty spot that was a cemetery, Melbourne's Queen Victoria Market was opened...yes, right on top of buried bodies, too. Roughly 10,000 are under your feet as you park the car and wander about looking for that extra special something....

1885 Ruby Lindsay, the adored, beloved and worshipped wife of Will Dyson, sister to the famous Lindsay artist brothers and artists in her own right, was born.

1893 - Cooperabiddy was hanged at Roebourne for murder of James Coppin, a half-caste [sic], at the Hamersley Range.

1903 Lightning Ridge Opal fields was a'booming when it was opened up today.

1912 The SS Koombana sank near Port Hedland, Western Australia, during a tropical cyclone, with the loss of at least 138 passengers and crew.

1912 - Const. Frank Buttle, WA Police, died whilst travelling on board the SS Koombana.

1915 Swimming between the flags took on a competitive edge when the first state Lifesaving Championships were held at Bondi.

1916 The Australian and New Zealand Army Cor...

09:31

Madge Digest #150 March 2018 "IndyWatch Feed Vic"

  1. Please protect animals, plants and food by 12th April

  2. GMO-Free canola oil a huge success

  3. Family farm feeds the locals, restores soil and teaches kids

  4. Australian superfood eight times as nutritious as potato

1) Please protect animals, plants and food by 12th April

Once again, we are asking for your help. New techniques for altering life have been developed. Unless we act quickly Australia will allow them in our food, lives and bodies with no testing, labelling or public discussion. Farmers, gardeners and shoppers will not know what they are growing or eating. Please ask for all new techniques used to produce food to be regulated. Submissions close 12th April.

There is insufficient knowledge of the risks of these techniques and all of them should be regulated, according to Austrian government agencies. The Norwegian Environment and Development Agencies concluded further biosafety research needs to be done before these techniques are commercialised. New Zealand has ruled they are Genetic Modification and therefore need regulation. They cannot be used in organic food says the International Organic Federation IFOAM.

Under Australian law, these techniques are clearly gene technology and therefore should be regulated. Currently our technology and food regulators are holding consultations designed to remove th...

03:58

Joint Statement on Ms. Suu Kyi attending Asean-Australia Special Summit in Sydney, March 2018 "IndyWatch Feed Vic"

On the event of Asean-Australia Special Summit, we Rohingya community from Australia would like to call the Australian government to raise cases of ongoing genocide, ethnic cleansing against Rohingya community in Arakan (Rakhine) state of western Burma (Myanmar). The native Rohingya people have been facing total destruction and driven out from their homelands under the military powered government NLD led by popular Ms. Aung San Suu Kyi.

The military powered NLD government led by Ms. Suu Kyi defiantly blocked the UN Inquiry Commission, foreign officials, independent journalists, agencies and ration supplies. As well as, the NLD government has constructed fake stories, provided reverse information, and dismissed the crisis on the ground by forming commission after commission and fancily fingering the minor defense of Rohingya resistant group ARSA that has actually done same as other armed ethnic groups. Also, her government signed the repatriation deal with Bangladesh in order to topple international pressures from the account of genocide and ethnic cleansing.

Indeed, types of vigilant attacks, ways of indiscriminately and arbitrary killings and usages of arms, brutal violent abuses and rapes, massive destruction of historical buildings, homelands and identities and cases of systematic oppression, repression, restriction, confinement, persecution, unlawful arrest, corporal and collective punishments, practicing unlawful discriminatory laws and orders, permanent restriction in every social, cultural, welfare, health-care, education and livelihood sectors and cutting off of electricity and waters, are clear pictures of genocide, ethnic cleansing and war crimes.

The attack from 25 Aug 2017 in Maungdaw, Buthidaung and Rathedaung townships by government armed forces jointly with Rakhine armed force ALP and government trained Rakhine gangs, used fight helicopters, tanks, machine guns, rocket launchers and killed brutally and indiscriminately. Women and girls as young as aged 12 were raped in front of their relatives and in the public and shot dead brutally, children including babies were slaughtered, burnt and buried alive, laying landmines along the ways of fleeing.

MSF report showed about 10,000 dead among the arrivals of just in the first month. According to the ASEAN Parliamentarians for Human Rights (APHR) cited data from the Bangladeshi government that puts the number of lost parents as high as 43,700 people.

The death toll is significantly high If we count the number of parents lost for current 40,000 orphans plus family members who lost their husband, wife, children, siblings. Arrest including children and people who teaching Rohingya kids, distributing rations, language support workers, medical assistance providers, bearing phones, having radio and foreign contacts. Looting goods and cash, crops and animals. Up to date,...

03:10

Gallery: FBi Radio Presents Big Boi at Metro Theatre "IndyWatch Feed Vic"

Making his hugely anticipated return to Australia, the inimitable and illustrious Big Boi shook things up at the Metro. Diving deep into his solo-work, the Atlanta rapper iced his hype-worthy performance with a few Outkast gems. Melbourne young gun Baro and Sydney hero Joyride warmed things up, setting the vibe to electric from the on-set.

 

FBi Radio Presents Big Boi | 15.03.18 | Photos by Kurt Davies
...

Sunday, 18 March

22:08

State targets make energy plan immaterial "IndyWatch Feed Vic"

State governments are already driving enough investment in solar and wind power to cut the electricity sectors emissions by more than the Turnbull government wants, rendering its new energy policy near-useless.

Energy analysts RepuTex say the effect of state renewable energy targets, especially in Victoria and Queensland, means the proposed national energy guarantee will have a negligible impact on the market.

It says the do nothing scenario modelled for the Commonwealth understates the investment in renewables because it doesnt take into account state government targets despite assurances they will remain.

Queensland is aiming for 50 per cent renewables by 2030 while Victoria has legislated to reach 40 per cent by 2025 and South Australia has already nearly met its 50 per cent target.

This means the modelling from the governments advisory Energy Security Board starts with a higher baseline of emissions against which to measure the impact of the national energy guarantee.

Australia has committed under the Paris Agreement to cut its overall emissions by 26-28 per cent on 2005 levels by 2030, and the federal government has anticipated applying this cut equally across all sectors.

The boards model predicts the electricity sector will cut its emissions by 19 per cent by 2030 without the new national energy guarantee.

But RepuTexs own modelling, released on Monday, says once you incorporate existing state renewable energy targets, emissions from the electricity sector will actually drop 29 per cent.

It says this renders the national energy guarantee, details of which are due to be finalised by energy ministers in April, immaterial to the market.

Unless the target is more ambitious than where emissions are projected to be without the NEG, there is little need for the administrative complexity of the scheme, RepuTex associate research director Bret Harper said.

Already, state targets have driven investment in renewables fast enough that three times more new generation will join the system by mid-2018 than the ESB predicted.

The arms race between the states for renewable investment is well under way, with or without the NEG, Mr Harper said.

And state targets will stay the dominant signal for new generation unless the emissions cuts under the NEG is lifted.

Many say electricity generation should bear a heavier load of reducing Australias emissions because its one of the easiest areas to make changes and it can drive faster cuts in other sectors, such as transport, once they become more reliant on electrical power.

The post...

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