ga('send', 'pageview');
John Passant

Site menu:

February 2011
M T W T F S S
« Jan   Mar »
 123456
78910111213
14151617181920
21222324252627
28  

Tags

Archives

RSS Oz House

Share

Authors

Subscribe to us

Get new blog posts delivered to your inbox.


RSS Blog RSS

Site search

Miniposts

Keep socialist blog En Passant going - donate now
If you want to keep a blog that makes the arguments every day against the ravages of capitalism going and keeps alive the flame of democracy and community, make a donation to help cover my costs. And of course keep reading the blog. To donate click here. Keep socialist blog En Passant going. More... (4)

Sprouting sh*t for almost nothing
You can prove my 2 ex-comrades wrong by donating to my blog En Passant at BSB: 062914 Account: 1067 5257, the Commonwealth Bank in Tuggeranong, ACT. More... (12)

My interview Razor Sharp 18 February
Me interviewed by Sharon Firebrace on Razor Sharp on Tuesday 18 February. http://sharonfirebrace.files.wordpress.com/2014/02/18-2-14-john-passant-aust-national-university-g20-meeting-age-of-enttilement-engineers-attack-of-austerity-hardship-on-civilians.mp3 (0)

My interview Razor Sharp 11 February 2014
Me interviewed by Sharon Firebrace on Razor Sharp this morning. The Royal Commission, car industry and age of entitlement get a lot of the coverage. http://sharonfirebrace.com/2014/02/11/john-passant-aust-national-university-canberra-2/ (0)

Razor Sharp 4 February 2014
Me on 4 February 2014 on Razor Sharp with Sharon Firebrace. http://sharonfirebrace.files.wordpress.com/2014/02/4-2-14-john-passant-aust-national-university-canberra-end-of-the-age-of-entitlement-for-the-needy-but-pandering-to-the-lusts-of-the-greedy.mp3 (0)

Time for a House Un-Australian Activities Committee?
Tony Abbott thinks the Australian Broadcasting Corporation is Un-Australian. I am looking forward to his government setting up the House Un-Australian Activities Committee. (1)

Make Gina Rinehart work for her dole
(0)

Sick kids and paying upfront

(0)

Save Medicare

Demonstrate in defence of Medicare at Sydney Town Hall 1 pm Saturday 4 January (0)

Me on Razor Sharp this morning
Me interviewed by Sharon Firebrace this morning for Razor Sharp. It happens every Tuesday. http://sharonfirebrace.com/2013/12/03/john-passant-australian-national-university-8/ (0)

Advertisement

Links:

The fight for equal love

The advertising revenue my site earns has collapsed – from a pittance to nothing. In fact that of all the sites in the Domain group has plummeted since December. 

The date may be significant.

The Domain group has a variety of writers – for example from Larvatus Prodeo to Clubb Troppo to Jennifer Mahorasy as well as me.

The National Forum runs the Domain group and also produces a very popular online political forum called Online Opinion. This gets thousands of hits on the five or so political articles it runs daily.  Here is how the website explains it:

In our first years of operation we have concentrated on building a community through our publication, On Line Opinion. In the last 18 months we have built our legislature – the iParliament; our speaker’s corner – The Domain; an area for conversations – On Line Opinion Forum; – an area for deliberative democracy – On Line Focus; and the first volume of our library has been put on the shelf – Issues Briefs. We have a lot more interactivity planned for the next 12 months.

I am part of the Domain, the speakers’ corner,  and have been for over two years. My readership averages about 1500 a week, making me one of the less well read of the Domain’s contributors. Respectable, but not exactly challenging Murdoch or Fairfax for mass working class readership.

In times of class peace in Australia it is not surprising that revolutionary analysis receives little attention. That will change when the masses enter onto the stage of history in Australia. 

The revolution in Egypt has seen people around the globe looking for better analysis than the pap the mainstream media offers turn to alternative media, including my site. 

In late November Online Opinion ran a muddled article by conservative Christian Bill Muehlenberg called ‘Dismantling a homosexual marriage myth’ which basically seemed to argue that gays wanted to change the world and were all promiscuous.

The gay and lesbian movement does want to change the world – they are fighting to be treated equally, just like everyone else and not be oppressed because of their sexuality. 

Oppression is an important part of the glue that binds us to the capitalist system and its extraction of value from us as workers. That oppression takes many forms – sexuality, gender and race  are the main three.

There have been magnificent movements against various forms of oppression – the equal rights movement in the US, the women’s liberation movement and the gay and lesbian liberation movement.

In Australia at the moment there is a great struggle for equal love going on. The next demonstrations are scheduled for March across Australia.

So what has this got to do with advertising? Well, it seems some gays and lesbians were upset by the Muehlenberg article and the end result has been a collapse in advertising on all sites associated with the National Forum.

Actually, comments below by Ringil give an entirely different view about the reasons the gay and lesbian movement were upset. It is not about the article but the moderation of comments on OLO and vilification. Here’s what Ringil says:

Just one comment: it’s very annoying that no-one has questioned Graham Young’s claims on this matter.

Young has repeatedly asserted that the objections of the “gay activists” were were to his publication of Muehlenberg’s article, when in fact the objections were to the moderation of comments on the article. This response to Young’s December blog post on the issue makes the distinction quite plainly. Far from being an attempt to stifle free speech, this story is about protection from vilification.

While all “The Domain” blogs moderate their comments, only at OLO does there appear to be a backlog of unheeded recommendations for deletion. If you, Jennifer Marohasy, SkepticLawyer, Larvatus Prodeo and Club Troppo want to align yourselves financially with OLO, then it would seem a simple matter of due diligence to ensure that OLO’s moderation values also line up.

As I pointed out in response to Ringil, I don’t align myself financially with OLO. I have no control over that site or any other site, other than my own.

Christopher Pearson is a conservative Catholic who writes for The Australian newspaper. He is evidently poised to use this drop in advertising as an argument against the gay and lesbian movement. No doubt free speech will get a  run too.

This is not about free speech. It is about gays and lesbians withdrawing their dollars and the opportunity to make dollars form someone who has published the views of the oppressor.

Now I have been critical of the pink dollar and its essential conservatism. Changing spending habits is a poor substitute for actually challenging the oppressors, as the equal love campaign does much more successfully.

But it is not for me to tell the oppressed how to organise their fight. In any struggle between the oppressed and the oppressor I stand with the oppressed.

Further, free speech is not a universal right, as those demonstrating in Tahrir Square against the Western backed dictator know and are finding out when the tyrant’s rocks and fires rain down on them and they get hit with tear gas canisters labelled made in the USA.

Free speech has to be fought for and won. The history of capitalism is the history of the struggle by workers and others for free speech, justice and democracy.  It is the struggle against the bosses and their oppression. 

That struggle has now broken out across the Arab world, demanding food and freedom, justice and jobs.

As part of the magnificent tradition of fighting back against oppression the gay and lesbian movement in Australia has organised equal love demonstrations to pressure the Gillard Labor government to recognise same sex marriage. Join us in those demonstrations.

The next rallies will be held in March across Australia. Some early details include:

Melbourne

March 26: Rally 1pm, State Library of Victoria (cnr of La Trobe & Swanston sts, Melbourne).
Facebook page here.

Brisbane

March 19 Rally, 1pm in Queens Park (opp Treasury Casino, cnr George and Elizabeth st, Brisbane City). Email equallovebrisbane@gmail.com

Sydney

19 March1 pm  Sydney Town Hall.

Update: Pearson did indeed write on this. It’s called Oversensitivity can only compromise the debate and it does as predicted use the fake free speech argument.

Kim at Larvatus Prodeo has also written about this in an article called ‘Online Opinion and the advertising and ‘free speech’ controversy.’

Further update: Larvatus Prodeo have now issued a statement distancing themselves from Graham Young, Online Opinion and Christopher Pearson and saying they, like me, reject homophobia and vilification.

Advertisement

Comments

Comment from Walter
Time February 4, 2011 at 1:25 pm

Good article John, and the fight for equal rights for the gay and lesbian community is sadly being denied by the government.

One quibble, however (I always have one!) You wrote “Oppression is an important part of the glue that binds us to the capitalist system and its extraction of value from us as workers.” Yet you go on to mention that “There have been magnificent movements against various forms of oppression – the equal rights movement in the US, the women’s liberation movement and the gay and lesbian liberation movement.”

Interesting that the bastion of capitalism, the USA, led the post-war world in the fight for women’s liberation (not ignoring Germane Greer’s contribution), the rights of blacks (how many western countries have elected a black leader?), the Vietnam war protests as an example of civil action and counter cultural activiries, the birth of the environment movement, and even reforms (is some states) of drug laws, laws about prostitution etc.

Isn’t there an equal argument John that capitalism also allows and even encourages the rise of anti-establishment movemements?

PS Have you managed to see ‘Generation Kill’ on ABC 2? I venture that no other countries except the US or UK vould make such a program illustrating the folly of the invasion of Iraq.

Comment from John
Time February 4, 2011 at 3:55 pm

Hi Walter. What quibble? Sounds sensible to me. I was radicalised by the anti-Vietnam war days.

Comment from Walter
Time February 4, 2011 at 4:33 pm

My headmaster tried to suspend me from school for wearing Moratorium badges and peace signs! Mind you, he still thought he was back in WW2 and treated the few Asian kids as if they were the Viet Cong.

Comment from Calligula
Time February 4, 2011 at 7:05 pm

Walter –
What a damned good letter.
My tiny quibble is that you are talking there about ‘social justice aware’ people who happen to be unlucky enough to be US citizens.
That’s probably why they have so bloody much to protest about.

There IS usually a big difference between the ideals of a people and those who oppress them.
Ask Howard Hughes (a capitalist) about his treatment by the USA.

Perhaps that’s what keys into John’s oppression is the glue – etc..

BTW – your schoolmaster. You’re lucky with one living back in WW2.

One I remember here in Qld – year 7 – 1964 was from the old Royal Navy.
Liked flogging kids. I mean ‘til the blood flowed on more than one occasion.

I mention this since you, John and, dare I say it myself, were there giving support to worthy principles.
Bickering aside, a very slippery slope exists sliding back to those days if any of us stop our caterwauling.
Bless you Walter.

Comment from John
Time February 5, 2011 at 7:41 pm

Calligula, I removed the crap from the Spearhead to which you are replying. Not relevant to the discussion. First time I have done that but they can’t to use my blog to promote their anti-woman ravings.

Comment from Ross
Time February 6, 2011 at 6:25 am

John,There is a lot more to this than the Gay and lesbian angle.They don’t like your political philosophy and they sure as hell don’t like me attacking the banking system.You however have refrained from doing so.Pehaps they want you to censor you comments as well.

If anyone thinks there is true freedom of expression in this country, then they are sadly mistaken.Large corporate money dominates our politics and media.

What we need to develop is alternate media advertising outlets.Blogs like yours need to get togther and offer advertising outlets to small /medium business under the banner of truthful and ethical societies.You can kill Sensis and Murdoch on price.

The alternate media is growing enormously and the elites want to control .Senator Jay Rockefeller said last yr,”It would have been better had the internet not been invented.” He wants total censorship,just like Egypt now.

There are thousands if not millions of alternate information sites.It just needs organising.

Comment from Sammy
Time February 6, 2011 at 11:36 am

Comment from Calligula
Time February 5, 2011 at 6:11 pm\

?????

Comment from Sammy
Time February 6, 2011 at 11:37 am

“Revolutionary reflections on this world of ours”

Revolutionary…..you stupid old fart.

Comment from Animal farm anyone
Time February 6, 2011 at 11:42 am

Comment from Ross
Time February 6, 2011 at 6:25 am

……Calligula, I removed the crap from the Spearhead to which you are replying. Not relevant to the discussion. First time I have done that but they can’t to use my blog to promote their anti-woman ravings…..

Comment from Ross
Time February 6, 2011 at 6:25 am

……If anyone thinks there is true freedom of expression in this country, then they are sadly mistaken.Large corporate money dominates our politics and media……

Gee I wonder why this site is dying….Derrrr

Comment from John
Time February 6, 2011 at 12:18 pm

I see the forces of reaction want to engage in nonsensical debates and fill my blog up with the pseudo-intellectual rants. Their stuff is irrelevant to the topics at hand and I have spammed most of it.

One point. My blog isn’t dying. Its readership is increasing as consequence of people wanting to find out more about the revolutions going on in the Arab world.

Comment from Ross
Time February 6, 2011 at 2:30 pm

Drrrrr …From Animal Farm anyone ,would not have the foggist’s of notions of the realities that beset the poor on this planet.

I’m not gay don’t support communism but see that John is genuine and has some intellectual substance to back it up,unlike our ad hominem detractors like Animal Farm who prefers the totalitarian corporate factory fodder mentality.

You suck animal farm,since you don’t have the intellectual rigor to back up your assertions.

Comment from eli cash
Time February 6, 2011 at 3:36 pm

“But it is not for me to tell the oppressed how to organise their fight.” But you are constantly doing this with the struggle in Egypt! Consistency? Or does what is happening Egypt not qualify as a struggle of the oppressed?

Comment from calligula
Time February 6, 2011 at 4:32 pm

Blowed if I know, John.
That WF Price was there when I opened your pages and so I took the time to reply in a way that bent the issue back a little to theme. Leastways I tried.
Mine, above, is certainly out of context now so perhaps you should remove it too?
May I ask what that other stuff is about – from that ‘Sammy’?

Where I come from most people educated here (up until the last generational sub-set or so) are well enough clued to be able to make inferences from a few lines of text.
I might be self- opinionated – but what the hey!

As for calling Mr Passant a silly old fart – such glib one liners match the dismissive performance of those in public life these days.
Seems to be a concerted move to dumb down the populace these days and seems that the project is going to plan.

I’ve just now taken a pause to review comments in response to articles I’d put in onlineopinion a while ago. They made me cringe. My response to them made me cringe more.
I don’t expect Mt Passant to be right (in other words state things I agree with) all the time nor do I expect him to be consistent (he’s human, not a machine).

But I’m pleased to say that his instincts and more importantly, his sentiments appear to be becoming more right every day with regard to the troubles in Tunisia and Egypt.

That, Mr. Animal farm, makes me very happy indeed.

Comment from John
Time February 6, 2011 at 5:36 pm

Eli, in fact I do make suggestions for the equal love campaign too. But if they think that by an advertising boycott on my site that that furthers the struggle, then so be it.

As for Egypt, of course it is a struggle of the oppressed and the exploited. My suggestions are in part aimed at clarifying what I would argue if a similar situation broke out in Australia, and to help others understand the situation in Egypt. You might like to compare my article Arm the revolution and this release from the Revolutionary Socialists of Egypt. http://www.facebook.com/?ref=home#!/note.php?note_id=188267344528583&id=704087414

Can an international socialist not have views on the way forward for struggles around the world based on history and class consciousness?

Comment from Ross
Time February 6, 2011 at 8:47 pm

Economically I see things getting a lot worse for us all this year.The US Fed has created $20 trillion in the last 2 yrs bailing out their mates.People like Tarpley and Celente say the derivative bubble is $150 trillion or 10 times the GDP of the USA.

When this begins to unravel with the collapse of the US $, I don’t want to think about how desperate things could become for us here because we are woven into this almighty mess.

We need a leader with guts like Jack Lang to take on the corporate establishment and stop the banks calling in mortgages.Both the major parties are impotent and directionless.

I wonder if the army here would walk hand in hand with it’s people if push came to shove.

Comment from John
Time February 6, 2011 at 9:19 pm

Ros, re the Army – unlike Egypt they are professional paid trained force divorced from the population so they are likely to shoot us in a mas revolutionary situation if given the orders. Unless they have been demoralised by a war and losses etc.

Pingback from Club Troppo » Troppo bullied by corporate thugs
Time February 6, 2011 at 10:35 pm

[…] on this topic – Skepticlawyer; John Passant This entry was posted on Sunday, February 6th, 2011 at 6:51 PM and filed under Law, […]

Comment from Calligula
Time February 6, 2011 at 11:47 pm

Three bits of plasticard, about three inches by four.
Codes green, yellow and red.
They dictate what force need be applied, how, and under what circumstances.
The ADF will deploy whenever and wherever it is ordered according to the chain of command and that order comes from the PM to the GG – back to the PM – down to the Defence Minister – to the CinC ADF – then down the chain of command.
The ADF is empowered to accept orders through that chain from state government and SHALL fire on Australian citizens if so ordered.

The defence act was essentially raped by Howard and no-one squeaked in complaint.
John – go read it.

Comment from ringil
Time February 6, 2011 at 11:49 pm

Nice piece, John, bringing together many different struggles around the world.

Just one comment: it’s very annoying that no-one has questioned Graham Young’s claims on this matter.

Young has repeatedly asserted that the objections of the “gay activists” were were to his publication of Muehlenberg’s article, when in fact the objections were to the moderation of comments on the article. This response to Young’s December blog post on the issue makes the distinction quite plainly. Far from being an attempt to stifle free speech, this story is about protection from vilification.

While all “The Domain” blogs moderate their comments, only at OLO does there appear to be a backlog of unheeded recommendations for deletion. If you, Jennifer Marohasy, SkepticLawyer, Larvatus Prodeo and Club Troppo want to align yourselves financially with OLO, then it would seem a simple matter of due diligence to ensure that OLO’s moderation values also line up.

Comment from Calligula
Time February 7, 2011 at 12:03 am

Ross –
Decades of unremitting hate against the USSR resulted in its collapse.

The cost of that had to be arranged somehow by a regime that was itself little else than smoke and mirrors.
They blew it out their arse too.

That isn’t the light at the end of the tunnel – that is, in fact, the freight train aimed precisely between Uncle Sam’s eyes.

All my adult life – being told ‘what to do’, ‘when to do it’ – ‘and how’.
In other words meekly sign up to paying off a ‘blockaland’ thenna ‘mortgage’ thenna ‘Holden’
Stap me! What a destiny.
What ‘they’ could never tell me is f’r chrissakes ‘why’.

Okay. I’m convinced, always have been – but how are you gonna break the news to poor bloody Walter?