38 thoughts on “Sandpit

  1. @Megan

    I’m probably more inclined to believe it comes from “to woo someone”, or “pitching woo”, as in to flatter a love interest or potential customer.

    Which I think dates back further than >1850s magic revivalism and dimmable lights 🙂

    The kind of talk that makes you feel a bit giddy or “woozy” perhaps? Though that sounds like a later word.

  2. So, I guess Watkin is in the right ballpark when he’s talking about Amway salesmen on the net, flogging overpriced ‘health bars’ and ‘boost juices’ and whatnot…

    Which is largely about ‘personal health’ and ‘what’s good for you’, and flattering the customer by telling them how smart they are to now be in the know…

    It’s also about preying on people who are unhealthy or ill, or have relatives who are unhealthy or ill, and who quite possibly can’t afford proper treatment…selling ‘magic cancer cures’.

  3. Govt fearmongering ramps up another notch. The PM raises the possibility of beheadings happening in Australia:

    “it could happen in countries like Australia if we relax our vigilance against terrorism and potential terrorism here on our shores”

    Note that he weakens his argument by invoking ‘potential terrorism’ as there hasn’t actually been any terrorism here for decades and no sign that any is substantially planned. Yet another demonstration that an apparently well educated person can be enticed to make any feeble minded statement if they think it justifies their ends.

  4. Thanks, Nick, I you are correct.

    I think Klein may have looked at the figs on page 9 and the conclusion that the findings support Kahan’s thesis but missed the graph that showed geoeng had little impact on libs re risk assessment.

    I’ll have to read Klein more carefully in future.

  5. No worries, Watkin.

    Since Klein’s link was to another article, not the actual report, I get the feeling he didn’t actually read the report…

    I think he just went on faith that what the first writer said was true – which it pretty much was, and Klein probably just misinterpreted it.

    But yeah – not a good mistake to make in any case. But we all do it now and then 😉

  6. … there hasn’t actually been any terrorism here for decades and no sign that any is substantially planned.

    Right wing terror in Oz since turn of century:

    – 2001 attempted massacre at abortion clinic by Christian activist resulting in one death before perpetrator was stopped

    – firebombing of 3 Chinese businesses by white supremacists in 2004

    – white supremacists with at least one policeman as a collaborator fire shots at mosque.

    Zammit notes various foiled Jihad terrorist plans:

    … an unsuccessful al-Qaeda and Jemaah Islamiah-guided conspiracy to bomb Israeli and Jewish targets during the 2000 Sydney Olympics, a Lashkar e-Toiba-guided plot that was foiled in 2003, two self-starting cells arrested in Melbourne and Sydney in 2005’s Operation Pendennis, and a self-starting (but al-Shabab-connected) plot to attack Holsworthy army barracks in 2009.

    On the bright side, Zammit notes that we don’t have anything like the Jihadist problem France and Englad have.

    Anyway, with terrorism experts telling us that several thousand westerners including ~ 300 Australians are currently involved in Jihad in Syria and Iraq alone and one in nine returnees from previous Jihads became involved in terror back home, I complacency is not indicated.

  7. @Tim Macknay

    The champions of free speech and your right to know raced straight to court and have got a settlement from Crikey – liars and hypocrites:

    Crikey owner Private Media and News Corp have reached a legal agreement that prevents Crikey from hosting or further distributing the News Corporation Australia Weekly Operating Statement for the week ended June 30, 2013.

    As part of the agreement, Private Media has promised to destroy by 5pm today any hard and electronic copies in its possession.

    Presumably there would have been a few copies of the 270 page document downloaded from Crikey while they were up.

    News Corp are liars, bullies and hypocrites.

  8. @Megan
    That sucks. I thought Crikey was going to flip them the bird. But I guess the prospect of months in court and vast legal costs got to them in the end, even if the News Corp action was a bluff. As you say, liars bullies and hypocrites.

  9. @Tim Macknay

    The emperor tends to be a bit sensitive about his state of undress – that is, when anyone points it out to the gormless masses cheering his splendid outfit.

  10. @Watkin Tench
    Yes, remarkably little in the way of Jihadist inspired terror plots. The jailings that have occurred would probably have been caught under the existing criminal code. Complacency? Who’s saying that we’re complacent? I would expect the coercive arm of the state to act as necessary when they have well founded suspicions of a threat to the good order of society as opposed to wasting resources on fishing exhibitions.

    “Anyway, with terrorism experts telling us ”

    Well, they would say that wouldn’t they. Rather than ‘telling us’ maybe they should be made to produce some of the analysis on which they base their tales. I don’t think speculative statements about numbers of participants and what they may do when and if they return constitute much in the way of evidence. If there is any substance then further inquires should be made, all of which should happen before we pass a swag of new laws or start talking about beheadings in George street. Over to you …

  11. So over on the “Freedom of the press … ” thread it has become apparent that “Watkin Tench” is (the commenter formally known as) “Mel”, and “Yuri” is “Midrash”, and “J D” is somewhere in the mix as well. They all suddenly went wrong on that thread. It’s intriguing and I’m wondering if anyone can explain more about this.

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