I would like to know the stats on this particular …

Comment on Former Turf Club manager charged with stealing by John Bell.

I would like to know the stats on this particular type of fraudulent activity since the late 1960s in Alice and remote community organizations in Central Australia.
There was a dramatic increase in phantom wages and managerial fingers in the till following the introduction of Training Allowances under the Holt government (1968) then the opening of the funding floodgates under Whitlam (1972).
Sporting organisations in town became a popular target. What is it about the Alice that has attracted this type of crime that is so destructive for the general community?
My guess is that despite police investigation integrity over the years, politics has played a big part in keeping a lot of these crimes from general public knowledge.
Transparency is the only way to ensure that the people of Central Australia are aware of, and can take appropriate action to combat a worrying problem of fraud in the community that nay well be a bigger problem than they know.

Recent Comments by John Bell

Inquiry into fracking: Giving it the green light?
No problems or worries about gas down here in Mexico. The Andrews government has a total moratorium on all land gas exploration and extraction, whether by conventional or fracking.
Plus the shutdown of Hazelwood. With summer upon us. And the hot air supply of Parliament House temporarily reduced with the pollies going on holidays.
Trillions of litres of gas by conventional means under our feet, the gift waiting for China in the fulness of time not too far away.
Ah yes. The Garden State. Utopia.


Local government: A lot of action beyond the 3Rs
“What role does the Council play?” is a vital question that needs to be addressed urgently by the Australian community in the most over-governed nation per head of population on planet earth.
With councillors around Australua zipping off on “professional development” trips to China hand in hand with State politicians, councils have become platforms to launch political careers and to pursue social engineering agendas way beyond the letter and spirit of council charter.
Our daily lives are being micro managed by
Looney Tune councils down here in Mexico a la Darebin, Moreland and Yarra, preaching social engineering philosophies that are moralistic, intrusive and extreme nanny state.
I hope the good people on the Alice Council resist the the heady drug of self-appointed greatness and power beyond their charter and stay true to the ideals of first class delivery of roads rates and rubbish collection that aren’t glamorous but serve the town best and keep the people happy and safe.


No gaol for Peace Pilgrims: sentence
@ Kieran Finnane. Cold War circumstances change with the times.
Once it was Russia. Now it is North Korea backed by China.
What’s the difference between a KGB-ruled Soviet Union and a despotic ally of the soulless atheistic materialistic Tiananmen China superpower that has vowed to take control of the Western democratic world by whatever means possible?
Australia is a bunny blinded by the China spotlight. Anti-American protestors a la the Peace Pilgrims are yesterday’s men (and women), way behind the times in their inability to see today’s reality.


No gaol for Peace Pilgrims: sentence
@ Horton: Agreed. A good and sensible outcome. From the outset, the right to public protest by the Peace Pilgrims has never been questioned. The real issue here is the concept of civil disobedience and its reasonable limits in a society that is ruled by a stable democratic government under the rule of law.
Justice Reeves got it right. The Pilgrims challenged the limits and received much public praise on their journey. Acquittal would have implied that civil disobedience has no limits, no matter what the cause and where and when the civil disobedience occurs. The sentences did not bring down the hammer of a jail term, but emphasised that the Pilgrims had exceeded the limit.

@ Fred the Phillistine: Your emphasis on the cost to the public purse is interesting. You say that the Pilgrims should have been allowed to do their thing, presumably whenever they feel like returning.
Down here in Mexico, the CBD at Flinders and Swanston has been seriously disrupted in peak hour every Friday arvo during the month of November by the Manus Island protest marchers. Ongoing and escalating loss of income, serious stress and inconvenience is being caused to countless city workers.
With increasing numbers of civil disobedience protest marches in this critical part of the CBD almost weekly for every cause under the sun, we are looking at untold loss of income for ordinary punters and their families going about their lawful daily business affairs.
My question to you is – where would you draw the line and set the limit, on the causes that justify civil disobedience and the number of times protesters of any given cause should be able to cause social disruption and financial damage?

[ED – It was up to the jury, as always in a jury trial, not the judge to find the defendants guilty or not guilty.]


Strange encounters: the Peace Pilgrim and the Police Sergeant
@Jackie Hu. You criticise Justice Reeves for instructing the ordinary punters of the jury on points of law.

However, in instructing the jury (and during the conduct of the hearing) in this symbolic, divisive and very public case, Justice Reeves would have been very conscious indeed of the standard of equality of treatment demanded of judges and opposing counsel towards unrepresented litigants, laid down in the decision in Tomasevic v Travaglini in the Victorian Supreme Court by Justice Virginia Bell.

No doubt he was mindful that appeal judges would jump on him like a ton of bricks if there was even the merest hint of apprehended bias, especially in instructing a jury of ordinary punters in this touchy Pine Gap case.

Judges have a long established habit of instructing juries in public interest cases, as in the Chamberlain case.

I always believed a dingo took Azaria and the jury got it horribly wrong; and I cheered when appeal judges without a jury gave Lindy justice.

Of course, the Green latte sippers in Lygon Street saw us as anti-dingo etc. We were most unpopular.

You no doubt will cheer if the jury sees it your preferred Pilgrim way. If not, there is always the avenue of appeal without jury.


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