thoughtsonthebus

15 stops. 40 minutes. each day.

Category: Uncategorized

days like today.

that permeating kind of sun,where as soon as you step into it, you can feel it through your entire soul.

that lack of breeze, no tips on the waves, just cool,glassy nudges across the shore.

that time of quiet, where the birds have stopped, but the cars haven’t started, and all you can here is the slow stir of neighbours as they tend to their children, their pets, themselves.

and sunday. that most holiest of day of rest.

no plans, commitments, rsvp’s. no deadline, no timeline, no decisions except which hat to wear, and do I go swimming down the beach, or in the rock pool.
i live for days like this. days like today. wish you were all here. xxx

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jump-er

This is one of those moments

where prose

exists in an alternate place

devoid of life yet space

envelopes it like a cold lover.

 

And yet it has appeared

from deep beneath the

subterranean fears

of failure and pointlessness

it’s a bit of mess

yet erase I do not

with this blue ink. stop.

This is one of those nights

where words

have no meaning

devoid of feeling

taunting me with their shy revealing.

Should I keep going

too-ing & fro-ing

pushing & pulling the ever tight jumper of acceptance.

Are you being served? Complaints against banks go unheard by independent committee.

In approximately 3 weeks ( NB- was originally written in Aug 2012 – still yet to make the floor) , a Private Members bill, submitted by Independent MP-Andrew Wilkie, will be presented to the Parliament.

The bill, known as the Banking Amendment (Banking Code of Conduct) Bill, requests the Australian Government to make it mandatory for all banks conducting business in Australia to adhere to a set of rules governing their behaviour towards individuals and small businesses, with breaches of this new code allowing APRA to name and shame the banks publically, and sanctioning fines for grievous or continuous breaches of the code.

New code?
That would mean there is a current code.
So, what’s wrong with the current code, and why would we need to change it?

Glad you asked.

Because if you have a bank account with a bank in Australia, if affects you.
If you have a credit card, car loan, home loan, overdraft with a bank in Australia, if affects you.
If you are a small business in Australia, it affects you.

It goes a little something like this:

The 1980’s – Systematic de-regulation of the Australian Banking industry. Recession.

1991 – A report, known as the Martin Report, was submitted to Parliament. This report was an investigation into the behaviour of banks, specifically, establishing a formal system of self-regulation, based on a government approved set of codes. It further raised the issue of the high-costs associated when there was a legal dispute between a customer and a bank, as customers were forced to fight them in the courts. Banks, as we have all seen, have an amazing amount of money, and legal expertise at their fingers. Individuals, small businesses, including farmers, do not. The playing field here was more like a black run in the ski-fields of Switzerland, than the level cricket pitch it is meant to be.

Thus, one of the recommendations laid down in the Martin Report, was to correct this, and allow any and all complaints to go through an independent body where a fair investigation would be conducted and decisions could be made without forcing people to go through the costly legal system.

However, instead of the Government taking this on board, and making it mandatory, the banks turned around and said “ Hey – fair enough, but we’ve got this. You don’t need to oversee it. We’ll make sure this happens”.

And so they did. They came up with a list of behaviours to adhere to, with hardly any of these codes aligning with the recommendations of the Martin Report, and they called it the “Banking Code of Practise (1993)” It took 2 years for it to be written, and another 3 years for the code to be adopted in 1998 and even then, it was a voluntary code, which APRA didn’t have to monitor (only have to regulate mandatory codes).

To date, 16 banks have signed up to it, each of them adopting only the parts of the code they wished to.

These early terms were very simple.
a) The banks would adhere to the terms within the code and
b) ANY and ALL complaints would be investigated.

In May 2000, The Australian Banking Association (ABA) appointed Richard Viney, to conduct a review of the code with industry, government and consumer advocacy groups. This happened at the same time the Minister of Financial Service and Regulation, Joe Hockey, was pushing for an increased level of “self-regulation” to occur within the Financial Industry.

The updated recommendations submitted were that small businesses would now be protected under the code, a Principle of Fairness charter would be added (requiring banks to deal “fair and reasonably towards [you] in a consistent and ethical manner”), and that a new, separate and independent Monitoring Committee should be established to investigate any breaches of the code. This group, created in 2004, was/is known as the “Code Compliance Monitoring Committee”, or CCMC, and was/is selected by, appointed by and funded by the very banks themselves.

This however, prompted the banks to reconsider the terms and wording of the entire Code, and in 2003, Gail Kelly (then STG CEO) and John McFarlane (ANZ CEO) presented the updated “Banking Code of Banking Practise (2003)”. The loopholes snuck into this new code of 2003, were such, that no longer would the CCMC be available to investigate any and all complaints, but that they were restricted to levels unimaginable.

This is because, shortly after the terms of the Code were changed, a secondary contract was put in place, by a group known as the Code Compliance Monitoring Committee Association, or CCMCA.

And the people within the CCMCA are who? Well, no-one knows for sure, because it is an “undisclosed” body, however it has been said to be a cartel, containing only Bank CEO’s. This contract, or “Constitution” was placed over the behaviour and operational activity of the Compliance Monitors.

The systematic gutting on the rules surrounding the terms of investigation have been so successful for the banks, that since 2003, approximately 2.5 million complaints have been lodged, with about 250 actually being investigated by the CCMC to have breached the code.

To give you an example, 2.5 million complaints to 250 investigations looks like this.
( You might need a magnifying glass..)

Image

Did the banks know what they were doing when they changed the Code wording, inserted their own terms upon their funded and appointed “independent” monitoring committee to monitor the very people, who were telling them what they could monitor in the first place?

This goes further than the often cited phrase of “Police investigating Police.” This is more like a Police officer charged with a crime investigating himself, based upon his own decision as to what he’s allowed to investigate, and what constitutes as “evidence”!

The bill being put forward will end the CCMC’s reign as we know it, requiring all code breach complaints to be investigated by APRA, a government body, already set up to regulate the banking sector.

It’s not perfect, but it’s a damn sight better than having only 3 people nationwide (who are appointed by the Banks), responsible for the investigation of all consumer bank complaints. It would not only penalise the banks, both financially and legislatively, and allow APRA to name and shame, but it would provide a level of transparency not seen before in the Australian Banking System.

When Andrew Wilkie announced his bill in August this year, it took only milliseconds for the ABA to reject his suggestions that the current Banking Code of Practise and the CCMC were “toothless tigers”, and that the Banks believe the current format was fair and equitable.

The ABA also suggested that “additional layers of regulation..make it more risky and expensive to lend to small business.”

More expensive? More risky? Perhaps, but “expensive and risky” has been in the lap of the consumer for far too long due to the lack of independence and the forcing of complainants having to go through the legal system, against the banks’ army of lawyers, to get any sort of justice.

The cash rate of the Reserve Bank has been slashed constantly over the past year, allowing the borrowing costs of banks to actually go down, especially when the full rate cut is failed to be passed on. By not passing on the most recent rate cut in October 2012, the banks are making an additional $6.2million per day. This is at a time where record profits have reached $24billion between the big four in 2010-2011.

More expensive? I believe they can afford it.

You could say that the extra $6.2million per day that they are making off us, is currently being spent on the army of lawyers who are needed to fight struggling small businesses, farmers and individuals in the courts. And of course, on a constant barrage of wonderful, if not misleading and deceptive, PR and marketing initiatives.

The current state of affairs deserves no less than a Royal Commission into the corrupt, misleading and deceptive behaviour and intrusion of the banks CEO’s into a supposed Independent complaints procedure, designed to protect the majority of Australian citizens.

I am therefore asking everyone associated with Occupy around Australia, the advocacy groups, the consumer protection groups, to contact their local MP/Media outlet, to give this bill oxygen and media coverage, so that the banks can finally be held accountable for their ongoing mistreatment of the Australian public.

Katie Sheppard
Citizen journalist.
OccupySydney participant
Ph: 0416 088 981

Sources:
www.bankinfoline.com
Senate enquiry S90 – Competition in Banking – Dec 2010
www.andrewwilkie.org
http://www.news.com.au/opinion/jessica-irvine-when-winning-banks-take-all
http://www.smh.com.au/business/banks-to-pass-on-rate-cut–eventually

without love, there is nothing worth fighting for.

5th October 2012.

This date has meaning for me, or at least it did once. Not sure though what it was, but it somehow resonates with me.

So it’s the beginning of the end of 2012. That could be more true than I actually mean it to be, with all the pomp & circumstance being peddled out by new age mystics about the end of the Mayan calendar.

We may just, however, be self-fulfilling this prophecy.

Countries currently in a state of conflict include Turkey v Syria, US v Libya (and every other freakin country under their military noses), China v Japan, Israel v Iran – and internal uprisings in Spain, Italy, Portugal – Currency wars are being played out, especially against Iran (at the moment), their currency value lost 20% in just one day.. try to even imagine that, imagine waking up one morning and everything costs 20% more than yesterday, plus  Israel is increasing their rhetoric against Iran, even at the UN with the comical ‘wars for dummy’s’ bomb poster.

We’re poisoning ourselves with GMO, Monsanto now (supposedly) even owns Blackwater, Bayer and Clinton have deals to insert 27million injections of birth control into African women, and yet even with all of this going on, yesterday I still had to see a friends status on facebook complaining that they’d missed out on their ‘Starbucks Gold Status card’ by just one day.

We have over 100,000 homeless men, women and children on the streets every night, our mining boom is almost over, our banks are ripping us off, unemployment is reaching 10%, the RBA is continuing to slash interest rates (which only effect the 30% of us with mortgages – yet strip money from pensioners, and cause inflation to rise), Gina Rhinehart wants ALL THE MEDIA and for us to all work for $2 a day ‘like the African’s (her words), and people wonder why the fuck we need groups like Occupy, Avaaz, Change.org and other socially morally upstanding non-political political groups.

You would probably think, that with all this SHIT going on, that perhaps I wouldn’t find it possible to locate peace within my heart.

Yet, this is far from true; for I have found a thousand brothers & sisters, I have found a strength I didn’t know I had, I have fire in my belly, and I can, and am, in love deeper and more sincerely than I have ever been in before.

Because I now know that this is why I fight. I know, that if I am to face up to the evil that dominates this world, I must do it with a smile on my face, music in my ears, and the pulsating eternal sound of love in my heart.

I now know, that this is all I have left. And it is marvellous.

As soon as they take away all that, then they have won.

And I’ll be damned if they are going to do it on my fuckin watch.

dreamt of dreaming dreams.

A morning like most others.

Dreams still drip through my mind

Into some form of therapy

 

A jolt – a true snap at 4.20 something,

awake in wonder as to any underlying reason for

This alarm.

 

Sleep again, not likely

Yet it finds me with ease

Cliff jumping flight into deep blue

My fall is long, but my entrance sweet

 

The waves pounded around me, and

The others with me

I’m concerned for my exit

Smooth rocks, rough seas.

 

Yet here I am already

Staring up the cliff face

So sheer

A rope to the top

Can bring me up once more.

 

“Wait”

Let me hook myself to you

Don’t you see it would help

Both of us travel back there.

 

I can feel the cracks in the face

As the winch takes us back

It’s not as smooth as I remember

This place I’ve never been.

not for lease.

Sometimes during meditation they say “ focus on your heart area”, and so I do

And it lasts about 20 seconds before I start to think of my knees, or elbows, or right shoulder.

But then, here at work, sorting through Taxi receipts,

I can feel my “heart area”

It has an ache to it, like a hangover

Hard to pinpoint, but not to acknowledge

I wish it would go away

I wish it wouldn’t start creeping up into my throat

To stop the words I’m not going to say

I’m not even trying to rhyme here, but some

Time

It happens.

Others are looking for my “heart area”

But I don’t want to give them directions

Or even let them

Know it exists

Because once they find it,

They want to live there

It’s warm, and encouraging, and full of

So many others things

I fear you’ll never find out.

I never wanted an older brother, but it seems I have a big brother.

“A Discussion Paper to accompany consideration by the Parliamentary Joint Committee on Intelligence and Security of a package of national security ideas comprising proposals for telecommunications interception reform, telecommunications sector security reform and Australian intelligence community legislation reform”

Some comma’s and full-stops in there would be helpful, and I could write this entire post on the spelling, grammatical and formatting errors I found in this document.

But I’m not going to.

What I’m going to do is try and make this as least painful as possible. Like a dentist. We don’t enjoy it, but we know it’s horribly necessary.

So, I’m only going to focus on Section 4 – which is the Attorney-Generals request to adjust/modify/increase/streamline ASIO’s access to your private life.

I know what you’re thinking (well. some of you, others I wouldn’t even try to understand your minds..), but I bet you’re wondering why someone like myself gives a shit about the powers of ASIO? I have no criminal background,  no arrests or charges laid, and I’m certainly not planning on peacefully overthrowing the government any time soon ( That could change if Abbott get’s in, and i know I’m not alone there..).

I am concerned, because I suppose I am now termed a “political activist”. This means I’m  truly interested in what the government is doing. This means I care. And this means, that the government can’t spoon feed me bullshit, while I say “Please sir, can I have some more?”

So, I’m going to grab paragraphs from this document, and I’m going to make my comments against them.

Stay with me. this is important. I will translate into actual english where I can.

” Chapter 4 – Australian Intelligence Community Legislation Reform” 

(a.k.a – shit we want to change to make it easier to spy on you)

 Page 40

“Proposed reforms seek to continue the recent modernisation of security legislation to ensure the intelligence community can continue to meet the demands of government in the most effective manner”

(blah blah – it’s hard to spy on you, technology is changing, and we want to save money)

At the same time, it is important that legislation governing intelligence agencies continues to include appropriate checks and balances on the exercise of their powers. ‘

(Yes please.) 

“Ensuring these agencies remain accountable for their actions helps to maintain public confidence in and support for the crucial work of intelligence agencies.”

(However.. in a previous section, they have requested that all ASIO employee’s are provided –

“protection from criminal and civil liability for certain conduct in the course of authorised intelligence operations”

NB: The “certain conduct” is the key phrase here, and this level of conduct is signed off and authorised by only one person – the Director. This leads to potential mis-use, corruption, blackmail and lack of discussion over what is considered “appropriate”. I believe it should go to a panel. )

Page 41

Variation of a warrant.

“Currently, the ASIO Act does not specifically provide for a warrant to be varied if the circumstances justify such a variation. A new warrant is required in every instance where there is a significant change in circumstances. A variation provision may be appropriate to ensure sufficient operational flexibility while maintaining appropriate accountability.”

(ok – I can see their point. But again, the issue here is in the ambiguous wording. Key phrase here “variation”. What concerns me, is at what point does a “variation” become ” a complete change to the details of the initial warrant”. A name change? A location change? These kinds of “significant changes”  should certainly have to go back to the courts to request a new warrant. But there seems to be no parameters describing their idea of “variation”.)

Page 42

Duration of warrants.

” All warrants under the ASIO Act currently last for a maximum of six months, except for a search warrant which must be executed within 90 days. A warrant enabling a search to take place within a six month period would provide operational benefits as the exact timing of the search may depend on a range of unknown and fluid operational factors. Indeed, there have been instances where ASIO was unable to execute a search warrant within the 90 day limit for reasons beyond its control, and a new warrant would be required. . (note the .. at the end of this sentence. not my doing)

To address this, the maximum duration of a search warrant could be increased from 90 days to six months, making it consistent with the other warrant powers in the ASIO Act.”

( Questions – 3 months isn’t long enough? Why not, and what were the circumstances surrounding the above mentioned “failure” to execute within 3 months. We all know, that many many things can change in 6 months.  And they also want to have unlimited access to renew this warrant. ( they don’t say unlimited, but nor do they specify a time frame.

I need to jump forward in the document a bit, in order to show how this really effects people – let’s go to:

Page 50.

Incidental Entry

“Sections 25 and 25A of the ASIO Act currently enable an officer, in the execution of a search or computer warrant, to do any thing that is reasonably incidental to the exercise of powers under that warrant. It is not clear whether this incidental power includes entry to a third party’s premises for the purposes of executing the search or computer warrant. Additionally, it may be necessary to enter a third party premises for the purposes of installing a surveillance device. Clarification of the scope of the incidental power would assist ASIO in executing search and computer warrants.”

(So.. give them extended warrants, which have unlimited renewals, and allow them into your mum’s house, local pub, local hang-out, friends house, workplace etc. to install listening devices. think about it. Unlimited access, for an indefinite amount of time, into any “third-party premises” without having to re-establish the initial reasons for the warrant.)

And then this just underneath

“Subsections 25(7), 25A(5A), 26B(4) and 26C(4) relate to the use of force when exercising a power under a warrant and when entry into a premises is authorised under the warrant. The headings to each of those subsections suggest that the powers in those subsections are limited to entry to the target premises. The provisions relating to use of force are not limited in such a way. Technical amendments may therefore be necessary to correct this drafting anomaly.”

(Drafting anomaly?? Really? Or is that those headings actually mean that the powers are limited to “target premises”, and that you would like them changed to ..well.. not specified.. but instead of specifying, you’ve instead termed it a “drafting anomaly”.. And if these subsections are limited to the target, and ASIO is using force outside of these parameters, then where are they getting the authorisation from?? Bit weird, that section.)

Going to stay on warrants for the moment..

Back to page 48

“Subsection 25A(5) currently restricts ASIO from doing anything under a computer access warrant that adds, deletes or alters data or interferes with, interrupts, or obstructs the lawful use of the target computer by other persons. This prohibition operates regardless of how minor or inconsequential the interference, interruption or obstruction may be.

To address this, section 25A could be amended so that the prohibition does not apply to activity proportionate to what is necessary to execute the warrant.”

(Can anyone say “plant information”?? )

“The ASIO Act currently contains the power to search a premises (section 25). Contained within this is the power to search a person who is at or near the premises where there are reasonable grounds to believe that the person has, on his or her person, records or other things relevant to the security matter (subsection 25(4A)).
Where ASIO assess that a particular person may be carrying items of relevance to security, a search warrant relating to a particular premises must be sought. It is only on or near the premises specified in the warrant that a person may be searched. However, it is not always feasible to execute a search warrant on a person of interest while they are ‘at or near’ the premises specified in the warrant.”

(Walking past the building – subject to searching. Not at the premises. “one way, or another, we’re going to find ya”.. and search ya – and remember.. for an unlimited amount of time, without having to re-prove their case. They are also asking for adjustments to be made, to ensure they can search any and all computers attached to one network..)

Ok – now for what kinds of scenario’s/activities would you expect them to be able to execute all of the above?

Page 52

According to section 9(1A)(a), before giving an authorisation to produce intelligence on an Australian person, the responsible Minister must be satisfied that the Australian person is, or is likely to be, involved in one or more of the following activities:

  • activities that present a significant risk to a persons safety;
  • acting for, or on behalf of, a foreign power;.
  • activities that are, or any likely to be, a threat to security (for this ground the Minister must also obtain the agreement of the Attorney]General);
  • activities related to the proliferation of weapons of mass destruction or the movement of goods listed from time to time in the Defence and Strategic Goods List (within the meaning of regulation 13E of the Customs (Prohibited Exports) Regulations 1958);
  • committing a serious crime by moving money, goods or people;

( You going to investigate banks?? I would love that, but I don’t think that’s where you are going with this..)

  • committing a serious crime by using or transferring intellectual property.
  • committing a serious crime by transmitting data or signals by means of guided and/or unguided electromagnetic energy; and
  • activities related to a contravention, or an alleged contravention, by a person of a UN sanction enforcement law.

(NB: a “serious crime” is considered anything with a jail term “over 12 months”. Not 12 months, but over.

My issue here is the wording ” is likely to be”. How is this determined? Because I am spending my time on a beautiful Saturday afternoon analysing an ASIO document, could they deem me to ultimately be “likely”  to do something. Adding to this, they also wish to include a new provision of ” involved or likely to be involved, in intelligence or counter intelligence activities”. There goes Wikileaks. And they also wish to include another section, which, if you publicly name an ASIO officer ( currently this has a jail term of 12months, thus not allowing it to be called a “serious crime”, to be added.)

There’s plenty of other dubious comments within this section, but seeing as it really is a lovely day outside, I kinda want to get amongst it. However, I am going to touch on one more section that truly concerns me, and that’s the overarching power of the Director-General of Security. As I mentioned before, I don’t believe power should sit so heavily in one persons hands. These are the terms of what he/she wants to be able to do.

Page 46

“With the enactment of broad overarching laws criminalising security related issues, many of those targets under investigation are involved in activities that breach the criminal law. Increasingly, those laws are capable of capturing the activities of persons who are associating covertly with targets, notwithstanding that their activities are for lawful intelligence collection purposes.

For example, under Part 5.3 of the Criminal Code, it is an offence to intentionally provide training to or receive training from a terrorist organisation where the person is reckless as to whether the organisation is a terrorist organisation. Therefore, if an ASIO officer or human source is tasked to collect covert intelligence in relation to a terrorist organisation, they may be open to criminal liability under the Criminal Code if, in the course of collecting the relevant intelligence, they receive training from that organisation.

An authorised intelligence operations scheme would significantly assist covert intelligence operations that require undercover ASIO officers or human sources to gain and maintain access to highly sensitive information concerning serious threats to Australia and its citizens. A scheme similar to the controlled operations scheme under the Crimes Act 1914 could be developed to apply to ASIO officers and human sources operating under the ASIO Act, with appropriate modifications and safeguards that recognise the scheme would operate in the context of covert intelligence gathering investigations or operations.
Should an authorised intelligence operations regime be pursued, it will be critical that it achieves an appropriate balance between operational flexibility and appropriate oversight and accountability. Key features that may contribute to such could include:

  • the Director]General of Security to issue authorised intelligence operation certificates which would provide protection from criminal and civil liability for specified conduct for a specified period (such as 12 months) 

( One persons say so. This DG could be manipulated, or manipulate these codes for personal/political use )

  • oversight and inspection by the Inspector]General of Intelligence and Security (IGIS), including notifying the IGIS once an authorised intelligence operation has been approved by the Director]General

(Again.. One person’s authority and oversight )

  • specifying conduct which cannot be authorised (eg, intentionally inducing a person to commit a criminal offence that the person would not otherwise have intended to commit and conduct that is likely to cause the death of or serious injury to a person or involves the commission of a sexual offence against any person), and

(that’s ok. But the opposite isn’t, where by they specify what they are able to do AND not get charged for it.)

  • independent review of the operation, effectiveness and implications of any such scheme, which could be conducted five years after the schemes commencement.

( Five years later? Bit fuckin late by then)

So, in summary, this whole section of the document is way too ambiguous, not specific enough, and allows too much power into the hands of one person. I for one, do not believe this is a way to ‘secure the country’ – I believe it is a way to grow the police state we are seeing increase day by day. Add these above issues, with the new legislation just passed allowing unlimited access to all of our internet history, and you can see we have some real problems heading our way.

Glad you made it to the end. I know it’s full on, and I’ve had to read it 2,3,4 times in order to get my head around it. I’m just worried that these ongoing, unlimited powers will be used against good people who just want to protest against what our government is doing to us, and not just be used against criminals who really need to be held accountable. Just the fact that I’ve mentioned the word ASIO in this document will ‘ping’ their systems to review my blog.

Comments welcome, and please correct me if I’ve read in error. I’m more than willing to discuss this, and my opinions – as we know, everyone has an opinion – and this is mine.

it’s saturday

i hate the way

the work week still lingers,

the sigh of sunday morning

has yet to reach my fingers.

I shake it out,

I shake it off,

i’m finding that it’s not too tough

to allow my shoulders

to remember

that sunny sunday,

that came in september

you held me close,

so close and tight

as we tried too hard to

ignore the light

that everyday

bursts through the door

and scatters shadows

across the floor

along the right side of my bed

where once you lay

in that pool of dread

we knew that it was over and done

until another september had come and gone.

Tip-toe

Tip toe

Tippy toe

Slow

I move so as not to disturb

your peace and quiet.

There is a game

I’m not going to play

with you.

Games denote competition

A battle, a duel

But fighting is not on my agenda

Neither is admitting defeat

For my goal is not a shining medal

Nor a shining knight,

See, I have my own light

Which shines within.

So, see.

See

my light does not wax

It does not wane.

only shifts in the flame

Of your smile.

 

Image

You say “Politician”, I say “Liar”

Do you believe the above is a fair statement ? And that a large percentage of the general public would agree with me?

I do.

I don’t need to conduct any fancy polls, or survey a certain percentage of the people – this is not a new situation, and is the slogan that has been drummed into me since I was 7.

My dad took me for a walk down to the local High School (where I would ultimately end up, but not until I survived 4 years of Catholic School.. God help me indeed..), it was election day. I have no idea which election, state/federal etc – but off we went all the same.  Strangly red hair, and probably Jiffy shoes on ( or none at all, more like it), wandering down the street, rating the gardens of the houses out of /10.

The schools got a really big hall, more so to a tiny little thing like myself. I remember the emptyness of it all – wondering why you would build something so tall, when people weren’t that big.. seemed such waste. Dad must have grabbed the papers and had his name scratched out, because the next thing I remember is looking down at this white paper,seeing the little pencil, and watching my dad draw a box above all the other boxes , write ” My mum” next to it, and then tick it. I giggled, and said      ” DAD!” You can’t do that, can you? Mumfie lives in england” ( Mum + Phylis , her name = Mumfie) He said ” Pfft.. There’s no one else on there that’ll do any better!”

Thus my introduction to politics.

And I’m sure some of you have similar stories – maybe you were watching the news, or Dad was reading the paper. Either way, we have all grown up with this slogan. Seen it across the news daily. To the point where we now have an addiction to not giving a shit.

So, what does that really say? If our parents taught us this about politics, then how long has it been like this? Will it always be this way because of human nature? Or is the power that corrupts?

I can tell you now. The majority of my friends and family- do not behave in anyway like what we see politicians get up to. Maybe I just have a good, solid group of friends – people who are trustworthy, and true. Well, not maybe – they are all of this and more. But are my friends so out of the ordinary? Are politicians truly behaving like people we know?

And more so. Are politicians behaving the way we need them to behave if they are to RUN THE FUCKING COUNTRY??

ffs.

It just seriously needs to stop. And re-boot. and burn it to the ground, in order for it to rise like the phoenix.

I truly cannot believe the callibre of Julia Guillard and Tony Abbott.

It’s like trying to decide if i want AIDS or Cancer. I facepalm myself constantly when I hear them on the news. Literally. And I live alone, so I’m not doing it for anyone’s entertainment. Although the cat finds it amusing. I can feel the tension rise through my chest and my arms at the mockery these leaders are making of us.

I could elaborate, but we all know the score.

These two, and all the other muppets, inspire me to go into politics.

Inspired, because I reckon I could do a better job. Not for the loftiness of the position – it’s a shit position, but just because somebody.has to do.something.

not the kind of inspiration I was looking for in our leaders. You know, you had that good teacher at school, who made you want to be a teacher? I think that’s how our politicians should beahve. Surely, it’s not a lot to ask for??

I don’t have any policies, or ideas about how to change it all – but I’d learn, I’m freakishly quick to pick up stuff ( taught myself some html on the weekend..), and I would ensure, because I know you can all take it, to tell you the gods honest truth. Sure, it might cause issues, but perhaps by one Leader speaking truthfully about this world, the others will start to take notice. Especially when the people would realise the respect I had for them by speaking truthfully.

Perhaps a revolution of truth is called for.

And it could cause my assassination, but hell.. there are worse ways of dying.

All I ask of people, is to acknowledge that their leaders are shit. They’re awful. They lie to us. About us. All the time.

Think about what can be done to ensure your kids don’t have to teach their kids the same.