My forced absence from blogging caused me to miss writing about a number of recent issues and events in this blog, and that cheeses me off. It's not that I didn't realise these things were happening, it's just that I was either too sick, or too busy when I got back on my feet and had to return to work, to blog. So, instead of letting them slide off my radar, I thought I'd at least acknowledge them here.
Darn, Missed it! The Howard government decided it would go ahead and sell uranium to India despite the fact that India has refused to sign the Nuclear Non-Proliferation treaty, thus creating a minor international incident with Pakistan, whose nuclear weapons programme is aimed directly at the Indians, and potentially China, who are technically still at war with India and are the largest nuclear power in Asia.
The Howard government's promises that its deal with India over inspections and safeguards over India's non-military use suggest they're only thinking of short term economic gain from uranium exports and how much the Howard governement is captured by the uranium lobby, and how little they understand the geo-political situation in South Asia, and with China. While Howard may claim there's no threat of Austraian uranium turning up in Indian nuclear ballistic missiles, there's no denying that our uranium will free up their other uranium sources for weapons use.
Glad I missed it: the news media reported that Opposition Leader Kevin Rudd visited a strip joint while on a jaunt to the US – four years ago! Rudd said he'd had too much to drink, realised too late it was a crap thing to do, grovelled to his wife about it the next day (I hope she put him in the dog house when he returned to Brisbane), apologised for the poor judgement when the news broke last week, then pointed the finger at Foreign Affairs Minister Downer for leaking the story to the media. Far from creating the conservative or Christian backlash the leakers were hoping for, it kinda washed over the punters as many just shruged their shoulders and went on to the next story, after a while. Though some think that we shouldn't underestimate the impact of this revelation – especially with women voters. What do you think?
Missed it! A week ago, the Sydney Morning Herald broke the story that the federal government was actually spending a lot less on Indigenous communities than it claimed. The money either hadn't been spent, or had been spent to benefit all Australians. Apparently, the government was using creative accounting to boost the figures of what it spent on Indigenous Australians. The most galling was that, according to the SMH, "at least $30 million of the money the Government promoted as being for Aborigines was used to oppose native title and compensation claims". Aaagh! The sheer hypocrisy!
The government also included money that benefitted all Australians as specifically benefiting Indigenous people – such as the nineteen million dollars, "the cost of the National Museum of Australia's Indigenous galleries and programs to educate all Australians and overseas visitors".
What else did I miss?
- It was the sixth anniversary of the Tampa debacle on the weekend;
- right on the heels of losing his brains, Karl Rove, George Bush has lost his Attorney General, the highest ranking official forced to leave his administration due to criticism and scrutiny of the White House;
- oh, and Hurricane Dean – which developed into a Category 5 storm – hit Mexico, causing at least 12 deaths there, and another 17 in the wider Caribbean region. I was thankful that my mate Francisco, who is originally from Mexico, had no family or friends in the path of the hurricane. Considering how strong the storm got to, it is amazing the death toll wasn't much higher!