Friday, January 23, 2015
Thursday, January 22, 2015
POLICE are reportedly investigating whether one of the victims wounded in the Martin Place siege was hit by a police bullet.The Australian reports that at least one of the hostages suffered wounds consistent with a bullet ricochet rather than a blast from the shotgun held by gunman Man Haron Monis.
Three surviving hostages were wounded when police stormed the Lindt cafe shortly after 2am on December 16, killing Monis to end the 16-hour siege.
Two other people, 34-year-old cafe manager Tori Johnson and 38-year-old lawyer Katrina Dawson were also killed during the siege’s bloody conclusion.
It is unclear at this stage which hostage is believed to have been hit by the police bullet.
The Australian reports only one of the highly trained officers who stormed the Lindt cafe was designated to target the gunman, and that fewer shots were fired than previously reported.
It’s believed Tori Johnson died when Monis, who had grown increasingly agitated and erratic as the siege drew on, fired his shotgun at close range, executing the cafe manager.
This shot is thought to have prompted the Tactical Operations Unit to smash in the cafe’s windows and take out the gunman.
The results from post-mortems carried out on the Johnson, Dawson and Monis have not been made public.
The news comes as Monis’s long-standing grudge against Channel 7 — whose Martin Place studios are directly opposite the Lindt cafe — becomes increasingly clear.
Fairfax Media reports the gunman had become obsessed with Channel 7, particularly its breakfast program Sunrise, following a 2007 interview which he believed incited terrorism.
Monis reportedly wrote to the Australian Communications and Media Authority (ACMA) in 2007 complaining about a broadcast from July 4 of that year, in which a guest commenting on the Glasgow terror attacks said “If you want to kill people, why not use the tools of your own trade like a plague or a disease or something? Why go into an area which you’re clearly unqualified in.”
Only the driver died in the attack, while five other people were injured.
Monis’s complaint to ACMA was dismissed following an investigation and the Attorneys-General under former Prime Ministers John Howard and Kevin Rudd reportedly told the gunman the broadcast was fine.
Monis’s obsession with the network continued for years. In 2012 he wrote on his website that the Sunrise broadcast ‘woke him from a deep sleep’.
“Sunrise woke me up! God can awaken a person by many different means even by a terrorist broadcast from the program Sunrise on Channel Seven from the Australian TV!
“I thank God and I won’t give up until the Australian government condemns that broadcast which was instructing terrorism”, Monis reportedly wrote on his now-suspended website.
One avenue investigators are looking into is that Monis initially intended to target Channel 7’s Martin Place studio, but turned his attention to the Lindt cafe when the network boosted security following anti-terror raids in September.
The Daily Telegraphhas reported that Monis was seen pacing outside the studios on the morning of the siege and may have intended to take hostages during the live broadcast of Sunrise.
The gunman’s grudge with the network extended beyond Sunrise.
A damning 2009 report on Today Tonight, which dubbed him a “Fake Sheik”, exposed his history of writing letters to the families of fallen soldiers. The program led directly to charges about letters to war widows, and Monis was placed on a two-year good behaviour bond for the offensive letters — as was his co-accused and widow, 34-year-old Amirah Droudis, who pleaded guilty to one count of aiding and abetting.
Soon after that report aired Monis visited Seven’s Martin Place studios on at least two occasions to hand out pro-Islamic leaflets.
The self-proclaimed Muslim cleric had been fighting the charges over the offensive letters for five years — a battle which came to a head on the Friday before the siege when the High Court refused to remove his case and dismissed his application.
news.com.au 28 Dec 2014
The authorities literally failed the victims, and as a result there should be a lawsuit against the government.
The police should also be charge with manslaughter, but will they?
Australia still importing 'criminals' as refugees in record numbers, deliberate policy or a 'mistake' ?
THE father of a Far Northern toddler undergoing cancer treatment in a Brisbane hospital has been arrested for trying to treat his daughter with medical cannabis.The Cairns man was arrested on Friday, charged with supplying dangerous drugs to a minor, who is receiving proper medical treatment at Lady Cilento Children's Hospital.
His two-year-old daughter, who cannot be named for legal reasons, was formally diagnosed with advanced neuroblastoma in December.
She started her first bout of chemotherapy last week.
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The father posted on social media yesterday that he had been charged, and that his bail conditions included no contact directly or indirectly with his daughter.
A Department of Justice spokesman confirmed the man had been charged with one count of supplying dangerous drugs to a minor and one count of possessing dangerous drugs.
His matter was mentioned in the Brisbane Magistrates Court and has been adjourned until January 20.
The father is estranged from his daughter’s mother, who is outraged by his alleged actions.
The father claimed on social media he and his ex-partner had implemented a “complementary medicine plan” along with his daughter’s chemotherapy to increase her “50 per cent chance of survival.
“My aim was to create an alkaline climate in her body, provide a nutrient-dense diet, alkaline water, essential oil therapy, and a healing environment of fun and positivity,’’ he wrote.
The mother, who also cannot be named, told The Cairns Post that her daughter’s doctors had initially raised concerns.
“It was the doctors who reported it (to authorities) because she was due to start her chemo, and they didn’t know what was already in her system,’’ she said.
“She’s great now. She’s had her first round of chemo and she’s still sick of course, but the tumour is shrinking,’’ she said.
The father has taken to social media to build support for the legalisation of medical cannabis.
cairnspost.com.au 7 Jan 2015
Whilst this is happening, the government 'allows' $200 million worth of drugs to get traded every week.
In the 1970's and 1980's the New South Wales police was the country's largest drug trader, a fact well known by the authorities, as they were supporting these actions.
THE gap between city and country petrol prices has opened up by a further $6 a tank in just six months, the consumer watchdog has found.And it intends to find out why, using “compulsory information gathering powers” for the first time, seeking evidence of cartel or anti-competitive behaviour.
Research published today by the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission proves drivers outside the mainland state capitals are being denied much of the 35 cents per litre (c/L) plunge in the wholesale cost of fuel since July last year.
The average gap between regional and metropolitan prices has widened from 5.7c/L in mid 2014 to 17.6c/L in December.
That extra 12c/L costs owners of the nation’s most popular car, the 50L Toyota Corolla, an extra $6 a tank, increasing the mark-up from about $3 per refill to $9.
Nationally, the biggest rort appears to be in Toowoomba, where motorists have gone from paying less than the major-city average to 21.1c/L more.
ACCC chairman Rod Sims said price falls sometimes took a while to flow through to regional prices due to lower sales volumes. But the savings from the oil price slump should have materialised by now, he added.
“This is a hell of a lag,” Mr Sims said.
Those powers are a “bloody great spotlight”, Mr Sims said.
The ACCC would be hunting for evidence of cartel behaviour. The locations to be studied aren’t being named because it would tip-off Big Petrol.
“Just the fact that we are looking will probably give the market a bit of a hurry up,” Mr Sims said.
Australian Automobile Association acting CEO James Goodwin said: “This is welcome but unfortunately, is long overdue. The motoring clubs have been calling for a detailed investigation into fuel prices in rural and regional areas for a long time.
“Reduced competition in many country towns is very concerning with locals being particularly hard done by because they usually drive larger vehicles and longer distances,” Mr Goodwin said.
“It’s not uncommon for the national average in regional areas to be 15 or 20 cents higher than in the city and in many cases this simply can’t be explained by higher transport costs.”
news.com.au 15 Jan 2015
The global petrol giants have been ripping Aussie motorists off for decades, where the so called Australian watch dogs / regulators have been letting them get away with it in 'money for mates' deals.
Corruption in the Australian government is rife, and there is NO stopping it until the people wake up.
Humans eroding the earth scientists warn
Humanity is disrupting the health of the earth and the future is grim unless changes are made to stabilise climate, biodiversity and fertiliser distribution says lead researcher ANU Professor Will Steffen.
That is the conclusion of a new paper published in the journal Science by 18 researchers trying to gauge the breaking points in the natural world.
Human activities are "destabilising the global environment", scientists are warning. Photo: Jonathan CarrollThe paper contends that we have already crossed four "planetary boundaries".
They include the extinction rate; deforestation; the level of carbon dioxide in the atmosphere; and the flow of nitrogen and phosphorous (used on land as fertiliser) into the ocean.
"What the science has shown is that human activities - economic growth, technology, consumption - are destabilising the global environment," said Will Steffen, who holds joint appointments at the Australian National University and the Stockholm Resilience Centre, and is the lead author of the paper.
Cleared land in Ecuador: the deforestation "boundary" has been crossed, scientists say. Photo: BloombergThese are not future problems, but rather urgent matters, according to Professor Steffen, who said that the economic boom since 1950 and the globalised economy have accelerated the transgression of the boundaries.
No one knows exactly when push will come to shove, but he said the possible destabilisation of the "Earth system" as a whole could occur in a time frame of "decades out to a century".
The researchers focused on nine separate planetary boundaries first identified by scientists in a 2009 paper. These boundaries set theoretical limits on changes to the environment, and include ozone depletion, freshwater use, ocean acidification, atmospheric aerosol pollution and the introduction of exotic chemicals and modified organisms.
The flow of fertiliser chemicals into the ocean has reached a critical level, the paper says. Photo: Peter BraigBeyond each planetary boundary is a "zone of uncertainty".
This zone is meant to acknowledge the inherent uncertainties in the calculations, and to offer decision-makers a bit of a buffer, so that they can potentially take action before it's too late to make a difference.
Beyond that zone of uncertainty is the unknown - planetary conditions unfamiliar to us.
"The boundary is not like the edge of the cliff," said Ray Pierrehumbert, an expert on Earth systems at the University of Chicago. "They're a little bit more like danger warnings, like high temperature gauges on your car."
Professor Pierrehumbert, who was not involved in the paper published in Science, added that a planetary boundary "is like an avalanche warning tape on a ski slope".
The scientists say there is no certainty that catastrophe will follow the transgression of these boundaries.
Rather, the scientists cite the precautionary principle: We know that human civilisation has risen and flourished in the past 10,000 years - an epoch known as the Holocene - under relatively stable environmental conditions.
No one knows what will happen to civilisation if planetary conditions continue to change. But the authors of the Science paper write that the planet "is likely to be much less hospitable to the development of human societies".
The authors make clear that their goal is not to offer solutions, but simply to provide information. This is a kind of report card, exploiting new data from the past five years.
It's not just a list of Fs. The ozone boundary is the best example of world leaders responding swiftly to a looming environmental disaster. After the discovery of an expanding ozone hole caused by man-made chemicals, chlorofluorocarbons, the nations of the world banned CFCs in the 1980s.
This young field of research draws from such disciplines as ecology, geology, chemistry, atmospheric science, marine biology and economics. It's known generally as Earth Systems Science. The researchers acknowledge the uncertainties inherent in what they're doing. Some planetary boundaries, such as "introduction of novel entities" - CFCs would be an example of such things - remain enigmatic and not easily quantified.
Better understood is the role of carbon dioxide as a greenhouse gas. The safe-operating-zone boundary for CO2 had previously been estimated at levels up to 350 parts per million (ppm).
That's the boundary - and we're already past that, with the current levels close to 400 ppm, according to the paper. That puts the planet in the carbon dioxide zone of uncertainty that the authors say extends from 350 to 450 ppm.
At the rate CO2 is rising - about 2 ppm per year - we will surpass 450 ppm in just a couple of decades, said Katherine Richardson, a professor of biological oceanography at the University of Copenhagen in Denmark and a co-author of the new paper.
Humanity may have run into trouble with planetary boundaries even in prehistoric times, said Richard Alley, a Penn State geoscientist who was not part of this latest research. The invention of agriculture may have been a response to food scarcity as hunting and gathering cultures spread around, and filled up, the planet, he said.
"It's pretty clear we were lowering the carrying capacity for hunter-gatherers 10,000 years ago," Professor Alley said.
Today there are more than 7 billion people, using an increasing quantity of resources, turning forest into farmland, boosting the greenhouse gases in the atmosphere and driving other species to extinction.
The relatively sudden efflorescence of humanity has led many researchers to declare that this is a new geological era, the human age, often referred to as the Anthropocene.
The Earth has faced shocks before, and the biosphere has always recovered. Hundreds of millions of years ago, the planet apparently froze over - becoming "Snowball Earth".
About 66 million years ago, it was jolted by a mountain-sized rock from space that killed half the species on the planet, including the non-avian dinosaurs. Life on Earth always bounced back from these shocks.
"The planet is going to take care of itself. It's going to be here," Professor Richardson said.
"There's a lot of emotion involved in this. If you think about it, the American ethic is 'the sky's the limit'. And here you have people coming on and saying, 'No it isn't, the Earth's the limit,' " she said.
Technology can potentially provide solutions to many of the environmental problems we face today. But technological innovations often come with unforeseen consequences. Professor Pierrehumbert said we should be wary of becoming too dependent on technological fixes for global challenges.
"The trends are towards layering on more and more technology so that we are more and more dependent on our technological systems to live outside these boundaries," he said.
"It becomes more and more like living on a spaceship than living on a planet."
theage.com.au 16 Jan 2015
What the corporate media are not really reporting on is that the Sun is actually getting hotter as it approaches a giant star, as a result not only heating up the plant Earth but also other planets in the Solar System.
It is NOT a matter of climate change denial, but rather at what really is causing the warming effect NOT only on planet Earth, but elsewhere.
VICTORIA Police will launch an unprecedented crackdown on evil child sex offenders.Tough new laws and a sweeping overhaul of police practices will see convicted paedophiles come under intense scrutiny like never before.
The Sunday Herald Sun can reveal the crackdown will include:
SINGLE mums being directly warned about starting relationships with dangerous sex offenders;
EVERY officer undergoing a course on the issue;
DIVISIONAL vans conducting daily routine checks on sex offenders’ homes;
SEX offenders forced to hand over detailed travel plans, and;
POLICE to be notified of change of residence within 24 hours.
Deputy Commissioner of specialist operations, Graham Ashton, said the laws addressed the balance between community safety and sex offenders’ liberties.
Single mums who unwittingly start relationships with dangerous convicted sex offenders will be warned by police that their children are at risk.
Police will be able to tell women in de facto relationships with paedophiles about their partner’s sickening past.
Mr Ashton said a small but significant number of women could now be notified.
“They’ve increased the powers so now, if we believe on reasonable grounds a child is at risk in a relationship, we can tell that person,” he said.
“If a registered sex offender enters into a de facto relationship, we can notify the other person.
“You definitely want to be able to tell someone if you find out that’s going on and we want to be able to tell them as soon as we can.
“Previously, we had to notify child protection and child protection could reach out to the family, but that was a cumbersome process. This streamlines it,” he said.
Mr Ashton, who has now resigned to take up a position as Deputy Commissioner with the Australian Federal Police, said the aim was for every officer to be concerned with tackling evil child sex offenders.
“We want every police officer to consider this area. It’s like road policing, you want every officer to be concerned with road policing and we want to include visits to sex offenders on our uniform patrol,” he said.
“Even just driving past the residence of a sex offender, you might see children’s toys on the front lawn ... some reason to stop.”
Registered sex offenders must also notify police of a change of address within 24 hours — before it was seven days. They must also tell Victoria Police of any travel plans, an oversight abused by low-life criminals to date.
“Travel is one thing we have been focusing a lot more on in the last 12 months,” Mr Ashton said. “The more you crack down in each jurisdiction, these people will network and travel overseas particularly, but also interstate, to engage in behaviours in those jurisdictions that we might not be aware of.
“We’ve increased our networking with the other jurisdictions but also, we’ve got increased provisions in this legislation that requires them to notify us of where they’ve been, to provide us with an itinerary, where they’ve travelled to and give us the full details of that travel, whereas before they didn’t have to.”
There are currently 5559 people on the Victorian sex offenders register and of those 1000 are regarded “high risk” or “moderate high risk”.
Mr Ashton said this number will continue to grow and it was “impossible to catch everyone that might be breaching it every time”, but revealed Victoria Police had developed a face-to-face training program and online modules that every officer will undertake to help pick up on signs of and tackle child sex abuse.
“There’s always going to be a risk of offending and we just have to try and have the best system we can to prevent it and obviously deal with it when it happens,” he said.
Mr Ashton ruled out making the sex offenders registry public, saying there is no evidence it would improve community safety.
“I would support such a concept but I just haven’t seen yet that evidence and I’ve certainly been looking for it,” he said.
“Most of the evidence (says) it doesn’t really make any difference to community safety, so until that occurs, I don’t think there’s a case for it.”
Mr Ashton said fighting evil child sex abusers was one of the toughest jobs in policing.
“We’ve got this job of trying to maintain a balance between them having their liberties and us trying to ensure the community is not at risk.”
heraldsun.com.au 17 Jan 2015
The policy is that the 'authorities' let loose the criminals and paedophiles into the general community in order to promote crime, yet apparently a 'romance warning' is going to save the prey from the predator.
Australia's 'criminal' laws are a joke at the expense of the community.
Proposed new data retention laws could help crack down on corruption as well as crime, according to the Independent Commission Against Corruption (ICAC) in New South Wales.
"Lack of availability of relevant telecommunications data has the potential to seriously impede the ability to investigate and to prosecute serious offences," the solicitor to the Commission, Roy Waldon, wrote in the ICAC's submission to a parliamentary inquiry.
The ICAC's submission followed similar public support for the Government's scheme from police and intelligence agencies.
The Coalition has said it wants telcos to be forced to keep data about their customers' phone and internet activity — known as metadata — and store it for two years.
Metadata 'whatever Government defines it to be'But the lack of detail in the legislation is causing concern, even from those who support the idea.
- For web browsing, "content" is anything user generated, e.g.: typing in a URL, clicking through to links or a Google search.
- "Metadata" is information the system automatically puts in around the user-generated content, e.g.: IP addresses, number of visits to a site and length of time on a page.
- An IP address viewed in the metadata would show a person visited a certain website, but would not show what specific pages they visited there, if they wrote anything there or viewed videos.
- Currently, authorities can request access to metadata from telcos/ISPs, but they require a warrant for access to "content".
Read the full explanation
Professor George Williams from the Centre for Public Law at the University of New South Wales described the bill as "little more than a shell for such a scheme".
For example, the legislation does not set out exactly what metadata is.
"If you look at the bill, it simply says metadata is whatever the Government defines it to be by way of regulation," Professor Williams said.
"So we don't even have that starting point."
He said he supported setting up a data retention scheme, rather than the current system, which he described as "ad-hoc".
"But my main concern with the Government's proposal is we don't actually have any detail on what that new regime would look like," he said.
"It doesn't give us clarity on who can access metadata and it will also enable whoever can access that metadata to do so on a self-serve basis."
But the ICAC argued the lack of detail in the legislation was precisely what was needed.
"The Commission supports these provisions," its submission to the parliamentary inquiry said.
"The use of regulations will ensure flexibility in adapting to technological change."
Police frequently use metadata in investigationsThe question of what police, intelligence and anti-corruption bodies could access was not the only aspect of the laws that caused concern.
How often they could access the data — and how easy it would be — has also been questioned.
Professor Williams said the bar needed to be set higher and suggested authorities be required to get a warrant first.
"This is highly private information for many people, it can reveal many intimate details of their lives," he said.
"I don't think it's acceptable that this sort of information can be accessed by authorities without some independent figure, such as a retired judge or even the Attorney-General, clarifying that it's OK.
"At the moment we have a scheme that it can be accessed on a self-serve basis without ministerial accountability, without giving full weight to the private information that can be accessed."
Submissions from state police forces to the inquiry showed metadata was frequently used in investigations.
Victoria Police made 63,000 requests for information from telecommunications companies in 2013/14 alone.
"You've got to ask whether the volume of access is because we don't have a warrant regime," Professor Williams said.
"Perhaps one of the issues here is when there's a laissez faire regime, where the agencies themselves are able to determine when they want the data, then that gives rise to greater calls upon the data than might be justified."
Submissions from the Australian Secret Intelligence Organisation and the Australian Crime Commission have been kept confidential by the Parliamentary Joint Committee on Intelligence and Security.
But the committee is scheduled to hold public hearings into the legislation next week.
The Federal Government hopes the bill — the third stage of its efforts to bolster national security legislation — will be passed by Parliament early this year.
abc.net.au 21 January 2015
The Australian government is literally the most corrupt organisation in Australia, therefore ANY so called laws that are brought in WILL NOT stop government corruption.