Three immediate thoughts arise on reading this article. My first …

Comment on Peace President Obama dispatcher of drones killing innocents by John Bell.

Three immediate thoughts arise on reading this article. My first thought is that the Chinese Embassy in Canberra and the Chinese state interests in the port of Darwin takeover and the Chinese investors in growing commercial ventures in the NT must be cheering the Pine Gap protesters from afar.
My second thought is that I am immensely saddened by the withdrawal of the American community at Pine Gap from Alice community life into “enclaves”, as Alex Nelson has noted. Very sad. Wonderful American friends whom I have known gave so much to Alice communal life through their amazing generosity of spirit down the years. The Bangtail Muster float is a small example.
My third thought is – what the heck are Kenny Rogers and Melanie Safka doing, holding the protest banner at the Pine Gap gate? Or do I need to go to Spec Savers – again? Nope. On second gecko, them thar baby Boomer hippies sure ARE Kenny and Melanie, goldarn it!

Recent Comments by John Bell

Can Jacinta Price sit in Town Council and Federal Parliament?
Warren Snowdon, a white native Canberran, was flown in to the NT with the full weight of the Labor machine on Capital Hill to cement him in the remote Aboriginal electorate which Labor cultivated in the Whitlam era.
I find it worrying that Labor has not produced an Aboriginal Territorian in all those years to replace an urban white man. I give full marks to local product Jacinta and her platform, regardless of whether she is Labor or Liberal.


Genocide in Australia – unthinkable?
This book review is a tribute to Dick Kimber’s meticulous fairness and integrity. While Professor Tatz presents contentious ideas and propositions, Dick Kimber is a scholar of impeccable honesty who treats every study – and every person – with due consideration and dignity.


Rampaging kids: Dale Wakefield drops the ball
Rampaging kids in the Alice. Rampaging gangs of teenagers “of African appearance” across parts of Melbourne.
The latest incidents down here in Mexico are getting pretty frightening. Trashing houses, wielding machetes, dragging old people from their beds and forcing them to hand over valuables.
A lenient juvenile justice system here is soft peddling on repeat offenders who re-offend while on bail in the hope they will be rehabilitated. A constant philosophical battle between advocates of zero tolerance and youth compassion. Hardline or handouts?
Until the debate is resolved, most middle of the road ordinary punters lock their doors and zip their lips for fear of being accused of racism or lacking in cultural diversity tolerance.
It is not a happy situation in the welfare suburbs of Melbourne … or the Alice … for potential victims of growing violence, or indeed for the parents of the young hooligans who are not too many steps away from criminal adulthood. Who has the answer?


Man in a hurry, surrounded by people who were not
“This an-idea-a-minute activist could call on friends in high and low places to get things going. Keeping them going was another story.”
Yes. That sums up the character that was Tracker, first known as Brucey on the footy field at Traeger in the 1970s.
In and out of the play on game day. Did some useful things. Quiet for extended periods of play. As in footy, as in life, like the vast majority of us sports types from the Boomer generation.


It’s not money that makes the NT political world go round
“There are no single donations of comparable size to the ALP; its funds were made up of multiple smaller donations.”
By coincidence, today’s The Herald Sun in Melbourne carried the news that the United Firefighters Union “campaigned aggressively” for the Labor party at the last election and is now the beneficiary of “tens of millions of taxpayers’ money” in a lavish new enterprise bargaining agreement approved by the Andrews government.
This tends to reflect the historical differences between the traditional funding bases of the two major political parties that can be traced almost back to Federation.
Labor has always had a solid funding base in the union movement, whereas the Libs, originally a get-together of independent members of Parliament, have had to rely on disparate donors.
This has helped fuel the development of the “Workers v the Bosses” mantra in Aussie political ideology.
China billionaires are now further blurring lines of demarcation between the two middle class parties by backing both horses for Chinese state interests. As the old folk song goes “The times they are a-changin”!


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