Monthly Archives: December 2012

End Slavery For Reindeers

Job Evaluation Day

Pretender

Pretender

A Trip Down Memory Lane

A year ago today, Occupy Melbourne tent monsters staged a “fashion parade” as a  reaction to Melbourne City Council’s disrobing of one of our monsters. The council claimed that a tent is not a dress, but who were they to dictate what constitutes proper attire?

This was the last significant event that came  out of the overnight occupation, which by that stage had been going for almost two months, despite daily council and police harassment for having “things” in the park. Some of us had the idea that the council would not be able to take our tents, if we wore them as clothes, but even that did not stop them, so this parade was staged as a humorous protest against the actions of council and police.

Action at DFAT in support of Julian Assange

Occupy Christmas – Imagine A World Without Money

Bradley Manning Update

Bradley Manning Testimony Reveals Brig Counselor Deception Regarding Abusive Treatment
Friday, 30 November 2012 12:00 Press Release Latest National News

Ft. Meade, MD–(ENEWSPF)– November 30 – Yesterday at Ft. Meade, MD, WikiLeaks whistle-blower PFC Bradley Manning testified for the first time. After occupying the stand over 5 hours for defense questioning, it was announced that the government’s cross-examination would begin today at 9:30am EST. Bradley Manning told a detailed story about his pretrial conditions from the time he was arrested and brought to Kuwait through his nine months of harsh Prevention-of-Injury (POI) watch in the military brig in Quantico, VA, and finally to his experience being transferred to Ft. Leavenworth, KS, in April of 2011.

Both the defense and prosecution have acknowledged that PFC Manning was having suicidal thoughts around the date of his transfer from Kuwait to Quantico. In his testimony, PFC Manning explained how isolation, restricted sleep, and lack of access to current news in Kuwait for his first two months of arrest skewed his sense of time and exacerbated his anxiety and depression. However, PFC Manning’s testimony mirrored that of the three brig psychiatrists who had already testified in that he said his mood and state of mind improved beyond thoughts of self-harm shortly after transfer to Quantico. He said that he resolved to carry on, but that he grew frustrated, as he felt nothing he could do would result in being removed from the highly restrictive POI status.

One of the most revelatory moments of PFC Manning’s testimony occurred when he informed the court that Gunnery Sergeant (GYSGT) Blenis, the brig counselor, told PFC Manning that his behavior was exemplary, and that it must be brig psychiatrists who recommended the POI status.

Defense attorney David Coombs showed the court a video in which GYSGT Blenis says, “I wish I had 100 Mannings,” a phrase PFC Manning said Blenis used around him often.

Blenis’s explanation for PFC Manning’s POI status, as related by PFC Manning, directly contradicted all three psychiatrists’ own testimony about their recommendations that his conditions be relaxed through downgrading his status.

President Emeritus of the Center for Constitutional Rights, Michael Ratner, attended yesterday’s hearing and emphasized how impressed he was upon witnessing Bradley’s testimony: “Bradley was dignified, articulate, smart and self-aware. After two and a half years it was miraculous to finally hear him describe the horrible cages he was in and the egregious conduct of his jailers. What was done to Bradley was inexcusable. I was deeply moved by his words in a day of testimony that was like an emotional roller coaster.

I cannot imagine what he must be feeling, but his incredible sincerity and strength was visible to all. We are lucky to have people with the courage of Bradley Manning.” More than 20 other supporters also attended the 10-hour hearing, including an Australian diplomat and Government Accountability Project Director and prominent Bush Administration whistle-blower Jesselyn Radack.

While the government has argued this week that PFC Manning’s harsh holding conditions met brig regulations, the defense continued arguing the unnecessarily severe nature of PFC Manning’s Quantico treatment with testimony from the garrison commander at PFC Manning’s current prison in Ft. Leavenworth, KS, Lt. Col. Dawn Hilton. At Ft. Leavenworth, Lt. Col. Hilton testified, PFC Manning was found through psychological interviews and observation to be a medium security prisoner, meaning he was allowed much greater freedom of movement, interaction with other prisoners, and an array of personal items. She continued that at Ft. Leavenworth, Suicide Risk watch was the status most comparable to POI, and her goal was always to downgrade prisoners from this status as soon as possible, by working with psychological staff. She testified that if a detainee’s condition was so severe that prison staff was unable to successfully downgrade their status within a few days, she would next work to have them transferred to a psychiatric ward, rather than remain in prison. Additionally, she testified that all prisoners were allowed at least 1 hour of outside recreation per day, in accordance with American Corrections Association (ACA) standards; for the first 6 months of PFC Manning’s imprisonment at Quantico, he was allowed a mere 20 minutes of sunlight per day. Unlike the Quantico military brig, the Ft. Leavenworth garrison is accredited as meeting 100 percent of ACA standards.

Both Jesselyn Radack (Government Accountability Project, former ethics adviser to the United States) and Michael Ratner (Center for Constitutional Rights) attended the proceedings and are available for interviews.

158th Anniversary of the Eureka Rebellion

“We swear by the Southern Cross to stand truly by each other & fight to defend our rights & liberties” – Eureka rebellion oath 1854

Eureka_flag_ballarat_1107_CRKate_Morris_largehttp://http://peacebus.com/Eureka/

They swore an oath
Beneath the Southern Cross
That they would stand together
And break the license laws
From twenty different nations
They gathered here as one
In Ballarat
Beneath the southern sun

No Maccas in Seaford

SAY NO TO McDONALDS IN SEAFORD

SEAFORD COMMUNITY RESIDENTS AGAINST MCDONALDS

This is OUR community, built with rate-payer dollars. McDonalds are not looking to contribute to the amenity of our community, they merely want to exploit it and our environment, drowning us in non biodegradable litter in their relentless drive for ever-greater profits – 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. McDonalds want to supersize our community by pushing low nutrition food onto our children; choke our streets with traffic; attract & foster antisocial behaviour; override municipal planning laws by locating a 24/7 commercial fast food chain on a residentially zoned site which backs onto the environmentally sensitive Kananook Creek and fronts Seaford foreshore.

HELP SAVE OUR SEAFORD BY DOING THE FOLLOWING

Attend community & council meetings & media shoots to help inform the community and bolster support from the residents. Show our strong opposition to this inappropriate development.

Volunteer to help collect signatures on petitions to council – don’t just leave it up to a few, get involved and have your say in your community. The more signatures the louder our message is heard.

Contact your local councilor to discuss your concerns and make your voice be heard. Make council aware of how strongly the residents feel about this threat to our community. Send a copy of your objection submission to them to help them gain a first-hand deeper understanding of the community’s grave concerns.

Help to make protest banners to erect on the site

Email your local Councillors to let them know how you feel about the issue.
North Ward
Councillor Glenn Aitken: councillors.office@frankston.vic.gov.au
Councillor Rebekah Spelman: CouncillorRebekah.Spelman@frankston.vic.gov.au
Councillor James Dooley: CouncillorJames.Dooley@frankston.vic.gov.au>
correspondence@frankston.vic.gov.au

WE NEED
To organise a community meeting time date & venue to discuss the way forward

A cohesive media awareness campaign strategy embracing print and electronic media.

To build a growing tide of resistance to the bullying tactics of McDonalds

Email nomcdonaldsinseaford@yahoo.com.au with your ideas or skills that you are willing to volunteer to help us in this fight for our community.

And please share this document with others that are interested in making their objections felt beyond the cyber forum.

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