Saturday, January 31, 2009

Kevin Takes His Cue from Washington on OS Abortion Aid

Such an inspiring photo, nicht wahr?

Remember all those criticisms of (ex-)PM John Howard in the media for being in "lockstep" with (ex-)President George W. Bush? Remember the way in which Howard was criticised for following the American President's lead and taking Australia into a war in which thousands of innocents perished?

Well, read this ("Bid to end abortion aid ban", The Age, Jan 29) and this ("Decision soon on lifting ban on foreign aid for abortions", The Age, Jan 31)and weep. We're not talking about "thousands of innocents" in THIS war.

Update: A bit behind the times, I am reading yesterday's edition of The Age this afternoon. Here are the opening lines of their Pontificating Decree (sorry, I mean, editorial):
Australia must lift its ban on abortion aid

AUSTRALIA stands isolated now that President Barack Obama, acting with admirable swiftness, has scrapped the US ban on funding abortion advice or services from foreign-aid money. It is a pity the Rudd Government, which has more than enough time to overturn Australia's even more restrictive policy, has not been more immediately decisive. After all, the ban, imposed by the Howard government to appease an independent senator, Brian Harradine, was always seen as contentious and politically opportunistic, as well as hampering Australia's international health-aid schemes. Now that America has reconsidered, how long will it be before Kevin Rudd does the same? ...
Note the logic: President Obama has done X, therefore PM Rudd is morally obliged to do X.

And this comes from the same editors who railed against John Howard taking his orders from George Bush.


At Saturday, January 31, 2009 9:47:00 am , Anonymous Tom said...

Without getting into Kevin Bashing, it's the consequence of bad philosophy and an even worse anthropology.

At Saturday, January 31, 2009 10:17:00 am , Anonymous matthias said...

I agree Tom and it could be put that under the guise of 'reproductive health' it is really cultural imperialism . just look at the debate about population growth in Australia and then "Pious' Bob Brown's comments about other countries populations being of an issue
what these countries really want is clean running water,accessible to health services and stable government so that their citizens can raise their families,not have them aborted.
I have doubts about KRUDD's ability to maintain status quo.

At Saturday, January 31, 2009 10:33:00 am , Anonymous Anonymous said...


David does raise an important point about the media bias, though. I do think we can partly blame that.


Letters to the paper and pollies...

At Saturday, January 31, 2009 2:24:00 pm , Blogger Joshua said...

Simple, really - Howard and Bush, even in terms of their faults, were not quite so in line with the prevailing Zeitgeist of loose morals and expediency, so were pilloried for all they did, good or bad; Obama (blessings be upon him) and Rudd are in line with what is politically correct (and so their whims and fancies are tolerated quietly, such as their quaint but acceptable attendance at some sort of Protestant and some sort of liberal Anglican churches respectively), and so all they do, be it objectively good or bad, is lauded to the skies - for moderns, especially those consciously on the Left, but also among those merely lost, the offer of secular redemption through politics is real, whereas the offer of everlasting salvation through Christ is spurned. Sad, really.

But remember, the early Christians endured 300 years of persecutions, and in the end, they triumphed.

And it is a great blessing to be a martyr, a particular sign of predestination from God I would go so far as to say... so await such "in fear and trembling"!

At Saturday, January 31, 2009 3:34:00 pm , Anonymous matthias said...

i can tell you Joshua,as far as RUDD PM is concerned ,you have hit the nail on the head. I wrote to him numerous times regarding the persecution of Christians in india-not a word came back ,so i have to ask the question is he fair dinkum in his commitment to Christ ,or is he afraid of not being politicaly correct if he were to show some backbone.
Secondly in THE AGE article it mentions that Non Governmenta organisations such as ,OXFAM are asking for the lifting of the ban. I have never supported them and will be less inclined to do so even more now.

At Sunday, February 01, 2009 4:36:00 pm , Anonymous Anonymous said...

The following from the Canberra Times is an insight into the ethical and intellectual standards of one of the leading parliamentary protagonists of the change. (Note, by the way, fellow commntators, that he is a Liberal.)

Plagiarising pollie was no accidental tourist
13/12/2008 10:21:00 AM
A Federal MP took a $33,000 taxpayer-funded overseas study trip, then plagiarised a large part of his travel report to Parliament.

In March and April this year, Western Australian Liberal parliamentarian Mal Washer spent $33,105 on a four-week trip that took him and his wife to South Africa, Britain, the United States, Ecuador, Peru and Bolivia.

Text amounting to some nine pages of Dr Washer's 30-page report to Special Minister of State Senator John Faulkner appears to have been cut-and-pasted without alteration or attribution from tourist information and other websites.

Presented as an investigation of United Nations World Heritage sites, Dr Washer's tour took him to Cape Town and Johannesburg in South Africa before travelling to Victoria Falls and the Chobe National Park in Botswana.

After brief stopovers in London and New York, he visited Quito in Ecuador, Cusco and the ancient Inca city of Machu Picchu in Peru, and La Paz in Bolivia.

Much of Dr Washer's description of South Africa's geography, climate, history and politics comes from the Drive the Big 5 website which promotes four-wheel-drive holidays in southern Africa.

The MP's description of Victoria Falls as ''one of the most memorable sights in the world'' is lifted from a Zimbabwean discount car hire website.

''Magnificent rainbows can be seen from all angles ... you can see antelope, vervet monkey, warthog and banded mongoose living amid the spray,'' the text says.

Dr Washer's description of the Zambezi River comes from a British tour company website while much of his discussion of Botswana is lifted from the website of, an ecotourism company ''dedicated to bringing together modern day explorers with worldwide destinations new and old''.

''Having a sun downer, unwinding in the glare of a sunset and hearing the sounds of singing birds and roaming game, it is easy to forget global troubles. Botswana is both a country to relax in and a country to have adventure in'', according to both Adventures Incorporated and DrWasher's report.

Reporting on his travels in South America, Dr Washer appears to have turned to to describe the city of Quito while provided him with words to describe the architectural delights of Cusco.

Dr Washer told The Canberra Times that ''a lot of this stuff is pretty standard information, I could have got this from briefings, and then I would have added a bit more to give the flavour of what I observed''. DrWasher does provide first-hand accounts of his activities which included few official meetings in the course of four weeks of travel.

''I visited the wine areas of Stellenbosch [in South Africa] and confess to tasting some of the brandies and wines of the area, the standard was excellent,'' he wrote. ''We were offered tastes of 12 and 15 and 20-year-old brandies accompanied by three different types of chocolates. I have to say this tasting was delicious.''

In his brief visit to London, DrWasher had meetings with two British officials and one parliamentarian on climate change and emissions trading issues, and a 20-minute meeting with the acting Australian High Commissioner, Frances Adamson ''regarding the general political situation in Australia and the excitement in anticipation of the visit from the Australian Prime Minister in the next few days''. He also spent half a day at the United Nations in New York.

Dr Washer says his $33,000 tour ''highlighted the significance of the UN World Heritage sites both in Africa and South America for the local population''.

His report concludes with the observation that information gleaned from his journey would be ''of immense value to the House [of Representatives] standing committee on climate change, water, environment and the arts and heritage''. Dr Washer is deputy chairman of the committee.

At Saturday, February 28, 2009 1:07:00 pm , Blogger Dalton Lee said...

This is NOT about funding abortions and never has been. It's about refusing women in developing countries any advice on how to control their own fertitily. Right-wing Christians and misogynists may disagree, but that's the fact. Ausaid does not, and never has, provided funding for abortions. If you can cite any evidence to the contrary feel free so to do. That Kevin Rudd didn't move on this sooner I put down simply to the logjam of policy priorities and the need for everything to go through his office and across his desk, a 'control-freak' tendency I hope the government outgrows.

signed, A Christian.


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