Sunday, October 24, 2021

More on Pru Goward, a prominent Australian conservative under attack

Her essay on the "underclass" has been widely condemned so I thought I might reproduce exactly what she said:

"As a shopkeeper’s daughter, I understood poor people; they obeyed the law, worked hard, sent their kids to the same primary schools I attended and were equally ambitious for their children. But the underclass, small as it then was, behaved differently"

So she was clearly NOT talking about the poor in general, only the dysfunctional segment of the poor. But all commentators that I have seen write as if the had condemned poor people in general, which she carefully said she did NOT do. But the Left chracteristically see only what they want to see so we should not be surprised by the response to Goward

She has not formally replied to her critics but The Guardian records a brief comment from her:

"Goward told Guardian Australia she was “deeply disappointed” that her column had been “so badly misunderstood”. But, she said, opinion pieces are “meant to provoke and I hope it’s helped the readers of the AFR think differently about those at the bottom of the socio-economic ladder”.

“I have applied a Marxist analysis which some might say is old fashioned but which explains to me why people judge others as unworthy,” she said.

Goward said Shoebridge was ignoring “all the wonderful things we did for vulnerable children” when she was a minister."

She is perfectly right. Marxists do define everything in terms of class and that is perfectly respectable among sociologists. There is a large literature on the "proletariat" or "underclass" so she is being perfectly routine in referring to that much-studied population segment. Her description was perfectly mainstream sociology. Coming from a Marxist it would pass without notice


A Quiet Attack on American Principles Is Going Unnoticed

The sanctity of American justice is predicated on the right to a fair trial. Trial by jury was one of the most important American principles at its founding, guaranteed in the body of the Constitution in Article III, Section 2, and in the Sixth Amendment. It was instituted as a protection of individuals against abuses by the government.

Earlier this year, police officer Derek Chauvin was convicted of the murder of George Floyd. Chauvin’s attorneys had hired highly experienced and respected retired forensic pathologist Dr. David Fowler as an expert witness. Fowler testified that Floyd died of “a sudden cardiac arrhythmia due to his [underlying] heart disease … during his restraint and subdual by the police” and not because of lack of oxygen. Despite Fowler’s testimony, the jury convicted Chauvin of murder.

Many trials end in decisions that seem wrong, and you may or may not agree with the conviction of Chauvin. But whether we agree with any particular decision or not, the American system of justice requires us to abide by it. Otherwise, the system falls apart.

The whittling away of the American justice system in this instance is not the government’s attempt to change a jury’s verdict; the government got the conviction that it wanted. In a dangerous precedent, the government is now attempting to ensure that future cases are more likely to result in the verdict it wants by making it clear that witnesses with whom it disagrees will be punished, ostracized, and have their careers destroyed.

Fowler, Chauvin’s expert witness, was Maryland’s chief medical examiner from 2002 to 2019. According to his resume on the website of the National Institute of Standards and Technology (pdf), Fowler was trained in forensic pathology at the University of Cape Town. He was an adjunct associate professor at the University of Maryland in the departments of pediatrics and pathology, and on the faculty at the National Study Center for Trauma and Emergency Medical Systems. Fowler is a past president of the National Association of Medical Examiners. He has authored numerous book chapters, scientific journal articles, and formal presentations. He currently serves as the National Association of Medical Examiners representative to the Forensic Science Standards Board.

Shortly after the trial, Maryland Attorney General Brian Frosh “received a letter from D.C.’s former chief medical examiner Roger Mitchell, and signed by 431 doctors from around the country, saying Fowler’s conclusions were so far outside the bounds of accepted forensic practice that all his previous work could come into question,” according to the Associated Press. Within 24 hours, Frosch, in consultation with Maryland Gov. Larry Hogan’s chief legal counsel, announced an investigation into Fowler’s prior in-custody death examinations (pdf). In September, Frosch announced the members of the audit design team (pdf). This development is very troubling.

I work as an expert witness in technology cases. I’ve participated in over 240 cases over 25 years. I’ve seen unethical behavior by expert witnesses, a small number of whom can be paid to say almost anything to support their client’s position. I’ve written about this unethical behavior and about the need to set stricter standards for expert testimony and more significant consequences for those who purposely misrepresent facts, use unaccepted processes, change testimony, or participate in other unscrupulous behavior.

The key, though, is that I challenge expert results in court after I’ve seen all the evidence, produced my own rigorous analysis, and come to my own conclusions. Many times, another expert will examine the same evidence, produce an analysis, and come to different conclusions. There’s no crime in being wrong. The jury listens to the experts, guided by the lawyers, weighs the evidence, and comes to a decision. Our justice system is far from perfect, but for the system to work and be as fair as possible, we all must abide by the judicial outcomes.

If any of the armchair medical “experts” in the world are allowed to bring down the career of Fowler, then few people will ever have the courage to testify contrary to the government’s case or the public’s desires. There may be no stronger or more serious undermining of the American justice system than this one. For the American justice system to survive, people must be free to testify honestly and without outside pressure.

For the sake of basic American principles of justice, honest expert opinions must be given openly, without coercion, and without the belief that the government could destroy your reputation and career if you testify the “wrong” way. This is one more move by those on the left who are working against American principles and attempting to destroy the very basis of our society. We must all work to stop it, especially in its most subtle forms.


San Francisco shuts down In-N-Out restaurant after company 'refused to become vaccination police' and enforce mandate among customers

This is reminscent of Nazi Germany, where private employers had to do the Party's bidding

The popular burger chain In-N-Out is sizzling mad after San Francisco shut down its indoor dining for refusing to check customers' vaccination status.

The company's Fisherman's Wharf location - the only In-N-Out location in San Francisco - was temporarily shut by the Health Department on Thursday for declining to enforce the state's stringent coronavirus restrictions.

Authorities said the burger chain had refused to bar clients who couldn't show proof of vaccination to dine indoors, as required by a city-wide mandate that came into effect on August 20.

In-N-Out ignored repeated warnings to enforce the vaccination rule, the department said, calling the mandate a matter of public health to keep COVID-19 from spreading.

Meanwhile, In-N-Out's chief legal and business officer Arnie Wensinger declared: 'We refuse to become the vaccination police for any government.'

The location has since reopened but without indoor dining.

In-N-Out was the only San Francisco restaurant that was closed for violating the mandate.

Wensinger maintained that the burger joint had clearly communicated vaccine requirements to customers via signage, only refusing a direct instruction from local health officials for staff to actively perform spot checks on customers' vaccine passes.

'Our store properly and clearly posted signage to communicate local vaccination requirements.

'After closing our restaurant, local regulators informed us that our restaurant Associates must actively intervene by demanding proof of vaccination and photo identification from every Customer, then act as enforcement personnel by barring entry for any Customers without the proper documentation.

'It is unreasonable, invasive, and unsafe to force our restaurant Associates to segregate Customers into those who may be served and those who may not, whether based on the documentation they carry, or any other reason,' Wensinger said on behalf of the chain.

In-N-Out operates 358 locations across the western United States, but only has one location in San Francisco.

The burger chain has proved a hit among citizens of the west coast, with many of the restaurants experiencing wait times of several hours, leading to pop-up stores in London, as well as in Australia and sparking physical altercations among impatient customers.

The Fisherman's Wharf location is the only restaurant in San Francisco to be closed down by the city's Health Department for violating the vaccine enforcement protocols, a health official said.

'Vaccines remain our best tool to fight this disease and come out of the pandemic,' a Health Department spokesperson wrote. 'Vaccination is particularly important in a public indoor setting where groups of people are gathering and removing their masks, factors that make it easier for the virus to spread.'

But Wensinger criticized the Health Department's decision as 'intrusive governmental overreach'.

'We fiercely disagree with any government dictate that forces a private company to discriminate against customers who choose to patronize their business.

'This is clear governmental overreach and is intrusive, improper and offensive.'

San Francisco's 'Safer Return Together Health Order' came into effect in August and mandates that most businesses operating an indoor service such as restaurants, bars, gyms and entertainment venues, must obtain proof of vaccination before allowing customers inside.

The city has some of the most stringent Covid laws in a state which is among the most restrictive in its public health policies.


Australian supermodel Elle Macpherson raises eyebrows after deleting 'Aborigine' ancestry remarks in Vogue makeup tutorial

image from

She obviously thinks she has some very remote Aboriginal ancestry but that is a very touchy topic

Australian supermodel Elle Macpherson has raised eyebrows for making a surprising remark about her ancestry.

According to The Sydney Morning Herald, the 57-year-old stated in a new beauty video tutorial for Vogue: 'My eyes are almost black, that’s the Aborigine in me.' 'Being seven generations Australian they don’t reflect light the same way blue eyes do,' she reportedly said in the clip.

According to the publication, the video was edited to remove those remarks when Macpherson was asked to clarify whether she was claiming to be Indigenous, or regretted using the term 'Aborigine'.

Born in Australia, Elle is the daughter of entrepreneur and sound engineer Peter Gow, and nurse Frances Gow. Her parents divorced when she was 10 years old. Elle later adopted her stepfather's last name, Macpherson.




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