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November 2009
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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)

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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
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Sick kids and paying upfront

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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)

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The Oceanic Viking – Rudd’s Tampa and St Louis

Some commentators are rightly beginning (at last) to see the similarities between Rudd and Howard on refugees. 

They have begun talking about the Indonesian solution (mentioned here well before the bright lights of the mainstream media picked up on it).

Some are even drawing comparisons between Rudd and Howard over the Tampa and the Oceanic Viking; between the Indonesian solution and the Pacific solution; between Rudd’s’ tough but humane’ racism and Howard’s racism.

Eventually one or two of them might even conclude that Howard’s 2001 election pitch – we shall decide who comes to this country and the circumstances in which they come – is actually the policy foundation for Rudd’s refugee racism. 

But it’s not just the Tampa that comes to mind.

There is also a striking similarity with another refugee boat, the St Louis. This boat left Europe in May 1939 with over 900 passengers on board, most of them Jews fleeing the Nazis.  Many paid a corrupt Cuban official in Germany for entry visas to Cuba. 

When the boat arrived in Cuban waters the Cuban Government refused to allow most of the refugees to disembark. So the boat headed to the land of the free. You know the one.

 It has inscribed on its Statue of Liberty the following words:

Give me your tired, your poor,
Your huddled masses yearning to breathe free,
The wretched refuse of your teeming shore.
Send these, the homeless, tempest-tossed to me,
I lift my lamp beside the golden door!

The US would not allow the Jewish refugees into America. Apparently they weren’t huddled or wretched enough.

I can imagine the reasons for rejecting Jewish refugees from the Nazis.

Taking the St Louis refugees might open the floodgates. America won’t be able to handle the extra people. We don’t want queue jumpers, or economic refugees.

And there might be terrorists among them.

Ok, maybe not that last one exactly, but I can imagine something along the following lines – there might be communists or socialists among them.

This is unlikely since tickets on the St Louis were expensive and in any event the Nazis had imprisoned or killed most of the left’s leaders in the early years of their rule in the concentration camps.

Any lie would do to keep the refugees out.

The St Louis sailed back to Europe and the jews on board found sanctuary of sorts in 4 European countries.  France, Great Britain, the Netherlands and Belgium granted them temporary asylum.

Then Hitler invaded Western Europe. The US Holocaust Memorial Museum estimates in a video of the story that 250 of the St Louis refugees died at the hands of the Nazis.

Kevin Rudd continues a grand tradition.

Readers might also like to look at Let the asylum seekers into Australia!; Unions: Support refugees; Howes on refugeesRazor Wire and beatings: Labor’s ‘humane’ racism; Tuckey: Rudd’s bastard son; Are the Liberals to blame for Rudd’s racist refugee policy?; Rudd’s refugee racism; Refugees: from Howard to Rudd the racist song remains the same and Refugees: Rudd continues Howard’s brutality

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Comments

Comment from Fred Ferdelberger
Time November 6, 2009 at 8:39 pm

I think all the things said in 1939 were true and still apply. There are millions today who would seek asylum in Australia if they could but we cannot take them all and why should queue jumpers get into this country ahead of others who have played by the rules.
Rudd is a fucking wanker playing the racist card that is for sure but he is tuned to the feelings of the vast majority of thinking australians.