Monday, June 25, 2012
Are Leftists the real bullies?
“Bullying” is a great Leftist theme at the moment. It’s an excuse for censorship. If you criticize homosexuals you are a bully; if you look cross-eyed at a black you are a bully and if you preach the Bible you are CERTAINLY a bully.
So it should be no surprise that the real bullies are Leftists themselves. Thuggery is never far beneath the surface with them. The story below from Australia is illustrative. There has been a Left-run government there since 2007. Julia Gillard is Prime Minister of Australia
The recent announcement by Julia Gilliard of a nationwide review on workplace bullying was so well received, it was almost disturbing– it seems that the culture of harassment and standover tactics within Australian places of employment is so ingrained and accepted that the detractors of this government initiative were few, and their criticism at relatively low volume.
Quite recently, the story of Darrell Morris began to generate buzz within Australia's social media circles, despite the apparent reluctance of mainstream media to become engaged in the hierarchical warfare of our public service departments.
By his supervisor’s own admissions, with the evidence collaborated by formal reports, Morris had been consistently “performing well” in his role with the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade. He's worked in the Canberra–based department for the better part of a decade. A quiet but conscientious man, he admits that this is the only job he has ever wanted to do, and he relocated his wife and very young family to the ACT on finishing university specifically to cater to this career.
A fairly typical Aussie guy, Darrell forfeited his weekend rugby games and essential time with his kids in order to advance his employment– putting in the extra effort that is an unspoken requirement of being a ’good employee’ in this country.
It was during late 2009 and early 2010, while on leave with out pay working for Liberal Senator Helen Coonan, that unfounded accusations of sharing classified information were leveled in Morris's direction. While DFAT issued him with a ’letter of regret’ over the incident, the subversive harassment continued and union officials report that the tone in meetings and other forms communication become between Morris and his superiors became increasingly hostile.
It was last year, 2011, that Darrell Morris first took medical leave for severe depression. While ComCare, the relevant workers compensation providers, declared his workplace a significantly contributing factor to his illness, they have a ’no fault’ policy and no blame was laid, or compensation sought.
Morris's return to work in late 2011 was plagued with accusations of poor conduct from senior staff members and inflexibility within his senior management in regards to providing a safe and secure work environment– every employers ethical duty of care to those in their employ.
Currently on his second round of medical leave for depression, the DFAT has instructed Morris that his claims of stigmatization are invalid and further claims will result in disciplinary action. On his return to work, he will be blocked from receiving any training or promotion within the Department for a period as yet undetermined– it could be as long as three years.
While stating that a blanket ban on individuals returning from medical leave is ’policy’, no formal evidence of such a policy existing has been presented, despite numerous requests.
On this story breaking in the social medias, the general reaction from readers was subtle disgust overladen with a cynical acceptance that this conduct is to be expected within Government departments and all layers of bureaucracy, not only within our country's capital but in our state departments as well– those employed within our public sectors often work under a cloud of silence and passive aggression.
Transparency in workplace practices is always welcome, and Gilliard’s review of workplace bullying is timely, significant and valid. But it needs to focus its attention on sectors that are publicly known for using discrimination and stand over tactics– the Government’s own recruitment, advancement, internal complaint handling and ethical practice policies in particular.
Is that even possible, with the current culture of terrified silence that surrounds the topic; when people are too afraid to put name to their experiences for fear of covert retribution? When the best advice anyone within the public sector can give Darrell Morris is to change jobs, change departments, walk away and don't make a fuss?
Results of the review, due out in October, may provide a clearer picture– But don't go holding your breath. Given the current atmosphere, it may take more than one government review board to break the covert ranks of conspiratorial silence that surrounds this bizarrely underground, curiously Australian phenomenon.
Truth about Britain’s feral youth: Small core of youngsters commit staggering 86 crimes by age 16
Which means that permanent incarceration of recidivists would hugely reduce crime incidence. Instead, recidivists are routinely released, if they are locked up at all
A tiny band of delinquents who commit around 86 crimes by the age of 16 are responsible for the majority of youth offending, according to a study. It also found that nearly half of juvenile offences can be traced back to a small number of thugs who make up less than 4 per cent of the teenage population.
The research by Cambridge University has been hailed as a ground-breaking study into Britain’s feral youth as it suggests for the first time that it is not opportunity which makes the thief, it is morality.
While the majority of schoolchildren know the difference between right and wrong, it was a tiny minority of 3.8 per cent of teenagers who were judged to have no morals that committed 47 per cent of the 16,000 juvenile crimes studied. This small group was responsible for the most serious property crimes such as burglaries, robberies and car theft.
Many of them were serial offenders who had begun committing crime before the age of 12 and were considered ‘highly versatile in their criminality’, regularly committing acts of violence, vandalism and shoplifting.
Researchers studied 700 teenagers over five years from the age of 12 to 16 in Peterborough, which was chosen for its average size, crime level and social make-up.
Youngsters were asked about their attitudes to crime and what offences they had committed, which was cross-checked with police and school records. A lack of moral compass, rather than the opportunity to commit crime or social background, was revealed to be the most important factor in youths breaking the law.
The research, which is the most comprehensive study of youth crime in Europe, found that teenagers who avoided crime did so not because they feared the consequences or lacked the chance, but because they saw it as wrong.
Of those surveyed, the 16 per cent most ‘crime-prone’ group who admitted having the weakest morals, being impulsive and short-sighted and having no self-control were responsible for 60 per cent of the 16,000 crimes reported by those surveyed, with the average racking up 86 crimes between the age of 12 and 16.
The 16 per cent most ‘crime-averse’ group who were judged to have the strongest values, accounted for just 0.5 per cent of the crimes reported.
The research also offers some insights into last year’s riots and why some young people went on the rampage in some areas while others did not. It suggested that certain urban environments provide triggers for crime where there is weak social cohesion and lack of community spirit. City centres, retail outlets, entertainment venues and rundown housing estates where no one is likely to intervene provide easy targets.
While deprived areas with a ‘higher level of social disadvantage’ and low levels of moral education tended to be the most crime-prone.
Professor Per-Olof Wikstrom, who led the Cambridge study, said: ‘The idea that opportunity makes the thief – that young people will inevitably commit crime in certain environments – runs counter to our findings. ‘Rather, only the “crime-prone” become vulnerable to said opportunities when taking part in environments with a moral context that encourages or at least does not discourage crime.’
He urged the Government to put more emphasis on teaching children the difference between right and wrong. ‘In prevention we need to focus on developing policies that affect children and young people’s moral education and cognitive nurturing, which aids the development of greater self-control, and policies that help minimise the emergence of moral contexts conducive to crime,’ he added.
The findings could have profound implications for policing with under-17s being responsible for 23 per cent of recorded crime nationally.
Yesterday academics around the world praised the report. Professor Michael Gottfredson at the University of California described it as ‘among the most significant works in criminology in decades’, while Professor Robert Sampson at Harvard University near Boston Cambridge Massachusetts said the research was a ‘breakthrough’.
But Camila Batmanghelidjh, the founder of Kids Company, cautioned against branding some young people as amoral. She said: ‘Society is lecturing children and young people about how well behaved they should be but it’s not behaving in a way that warrants respect. It’s a given that it’s a good thing to teach right from wrong, but really where children observe it the most is in experience: it’s “have you looked after me?” and “do you do what you preach?”’
Graham Beech, the director of the crime reduction charity Nacro, said: ‘In my view the key to preventing crime by the small number of young people who are most likely to get entrenched in crime is to get in early, instil positive attitudes and teach them how to solve their everyday problems in a better way.’
Britain's Stasi cops a setback
The exhaustive record keeping of the Stasi was legendary
Police will have to destroy mugshots of innocent people following a landmark case brought by a 15-year-old. The boy went to court after being told his image would be held until he reached 100 – even though no charges were laid against him.
The High Court ruled yesterday that retaining photographs of suspects who have never been charged was a breach of their human rights.
Police forces will now have to trawl through their records deleting images, including those of people cleared at trial.
The teenager from Peckham, South London, was arrested on suspicion of rape in April 2009 but no charges were brought when a witness failed to confirm an offence took place. When he asked to have his details removed he was told the mugshot could be retained until he reached the age of 100. He was 12 at the time.
The second claimant was a cyclist from Chelsea accused of assaulting a police community support officer who stopped her riding on a footpath in April 2007.
The 60-year-old, who was described as of good character, had DNA samples, fingerprints and photographs taken but the Crown Prosecution Service decided not to charge her with any offence. When she complained, the Metropolitan Police refused to delete her record.
The force’s policy, which is based on the Home Secretary’s code of practice, is to retain mugshots for a minimum of six years, although this can be extended indefinitely. Scotland Yard argued that it was necessary to keep the photographs to prevent crime and disorder.
But Lord Justice Richards said the policy drew ‘no adequate distinction’ between those who are convicted and those who are either acquitted or not even charged.
The judge, sitting with Mr Justice Kenneth Parker, concluded: ‘I am not satisfied that the existing policy strikes a fair balance between the competing public and private interests and meets the requirements of proportionality.
‘In my judgment, therefore, the retention of the claimants’ photographs in application of the existing policy amounts to unjustified interference with their right to respect for their private life and is in breach of Article 8 of the European Convention on Human Rights.’
The judge granted the force a few months to revise their policy. Home Secretary Theresa May now has two weeks to lodge an appeal on the ruling, which has implications for all police forces. The courts have already ruled that it is unlawful to keep innocent people’s fingerprints and DNA indefinitely.
But Lord Justice Richards said the Met would not have to delete details of the teenage boy’s alleged offence from the police national computer.
Yesterday John Wadham, general counsel for Equality and Human Rights Commission, which backed the test case, said: ‘There is no good reason why the police should hold on to information about people who have not committed any crime.’
A Home Office spokesman said: ‘We are urgently examining the implications of today’s ruling.’
Cowardly British firemen shown up by teenager
Once it would have been a simple job for a fire brigade happy to do its bit for the community. Not any longer. When Diesel the cat refused to come down from a 60ft spruce tree, he was stuck there for five days – because of health and safety rules. The local fire and rescue service feared its officers would be ‘putting their lives at risk’ if they tried to rescue him.
In the end it was a 15-year-old boy who came to the cat’s aid – without the benefit of the fire brigade’s ladders, safety nets or cranes.
As Diesel’s mews trailed off into silence and his owner feared he would die from dehydration, Kyle Watkinson simply climbed the tree and brought him down yesterday afternoon. Kyle, a keen climber, said: ‘It wasn’t hard and it isn’t even the worst tree I have climbed. I was scared for the cat but never for myself.
‘I am happy to have saved Diesel, but would like to send a message to the firefighters and the Scottish Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals that they should be helping animals in trouble.
‘They said it was too risky – but I just can’t see how, when I’m a 15-year-old boy and I got up and got the cat down with no bother at all.’
A border dispute between English and Scottish firemen only added to the problem, while an animal welfare charity said it was also unable to help.
Diesel’s owner Adele Harland thanked Kyle, but criticised Lothian and Borders Fire and Rescue for refusing to even attempt to save her 18-month-old cat. Mrs Harland added: ‘If I had gone out and tied Diesel to a tree the SSPCA would be here quickly enough, wanting to prosecute me for cruelty. But when I ask for help to get him down a tree, they don’t want to know.’
Diesel got stuck 60 feet up the spruce tree last Tuesday evening.
Mrs Harland, a nursery worker in the Borders village of Foulden, rang the local fire brigade, but was told it wasn’t its policy to rescue cats from trees. The SSPCA said the same thing.
The Northumberland Fire Service initially agreed to come out, but then said it could not sent a team across the border.
Mrs Harland spent four nights helplessly listening to her cat’s terrified cries before the weakened moggie went quiet. After a tree surgeon tried and failed to reach Diesel, a spokesman for the Borders fire service gave the following statement: ‘The cat has been up nearly a week now. ‘The cat was too high for the tree surgeon to reach and he was not going to put his life at risk by going any further.
‘Similarly, we are not going to put the lives of our firefighters at risk. The SSPCA are of a similar opinion.’
But help was on its way. By chance a friend of Kyle’s mother, Margaret Muir, had emailed her after hearing about Diesel’s plight. Mrs Muir, 38, said: ‘We have never met the people involved, but I called Kyle and we got straight in the car. I would never have put my son at risk if I thought he couldn’t do it, but it was fine. He wants to be a doctor but it seems he might have a back-up career as a firefighter now.’
A spokesman for Lothian and Borders Fire and Rescue said: ‘We advised the owner of the cat that we have a policy of not putting the lives of operation crews at risk unnecessarily.’
Mike Flynn, of the SSPCA, said: ‘We explained to the owner of a cat in the Berwick-upon-Tweed area that as a tree surgeon was unable to reach her cat and the fire service was unable to assist, unfortunately there was nothing further we were able to do.’
Disgusting wretches, all of them! -- JR
Political correctness is most pervasive in universities and colleges but I rarely report the incidents concerned here as I have a separate blog for educational matters.
American "liberals" often deny being Leftists and say that they are very different from the Communist rulers of other countries. The only real difference, however, is how much power they have. In America, their power is limited by democracy. To see what they WOULD be like with more power, look at where they ARE already very powerful: in America's educational system -- particularly in the universities and colleges. They show there the same respect for free-speech and political diversity that Stalin did: None. So look to the colleges to see what the whole country would be like if "liberals" had their way. It would be a dictatorship.
For more postings from me, see TONGUE-TIED, GREENIE WATCH, EDUCATION WATCH INTERNATIONAL, FOOD & HEALTH SKEPTIC, GUN WATCH, AUSTRALIAN POLITICS, DISSECTING LEFTISM, IMMIGRATION WATCH INTERNATIONAL and EYE ON BRITAIN (Note that EYE ON BRITAIN has regular posts on the reality of socialized medicine). My Home Pages are here or here or here. Email me (John Ray) here. For readers in China or for times when blogger.com is playing up, there is a mirror of this site here.