No Illusions Podcast #52 – Stu Campbell, The Love Punks & Neomad

NEOMAD Cast

Neomad is a new iPad comic created by and featuring a group of energetic, talented and brilliant indigenous kids from Roebourne in Western Australia.

The guy who has helped them make it a reality is Stu Campbell. On today’s show, I talk with Stu, Max & Maverick about The Love Punks, Neomad, and life in a small Aboriginal township.

NEOMAD : EPISODE 1 : SPACE JUNK : FILM from Yijala Yala Project on Vimeo.

 

Link for Neomad, the iPad comic.

Also check out Stu’s other comic, Nawlz. It’s amazing.

Socio-Economics Is Like Soccer

economics is like soccer

We understand and accept this fact in sport. I tell my kids all the time “every member of the team is important”.

The same is true in socio-economics. The CEO can’t run a billion dollar company without the rest of the employees. The brilliant entrepreneur can’t bring that new gadget to market without the people who sweep the streets, pick up the garbage, grow the food, staff the supermarket, wait tables, and manage the petrol station. It’s all a giant web of interrelation. If we all need each other to make the whole damn thing work, then we should share the profit as well. This whole bizarre idea that the people who run companies or invent something deserve the 1% because they worked harder or are smarter is complete bullshit and easily falsifiable. I love Ayn Rand’s book, but the premise of Atlas Shrugged works both ways. Yes – when the entrepreneurs pack their bags and move to an island, society feels their loss. But if the rest of society up and left the entrepreneurs alone on the mainland, how long do you think they would survive on their own, without anyone to sweep the streets, grow the food and, by the way, BUY THEIR WONDERFUL PRODUCTS?

We all need each other. As Lester Freamon might say “All the pieces matter”.

Lonmin Marikana Police Massacre

lonmin marikana massacre

Around the world this year we have seen police violence whenever the people don’t submit themselves to the elite. Whether it is against Occupy Wall Street,  students in Pennsylvania or against rioters in Greece, the story always has the same ring to it – the people must submit or face violence.

Today the news out of South Africa’s third-largest platinum producer, Lonmin‘s Marikana mine, is the most chilling of all. Thirty striking miners were shot dead by police.

Al Jazeera has horrifying footage of the slaughter:

This is on top of the 8 workers who were killed last week at the same mine.

As of the time of posting, there is no mention of the latest round of violence on the (British owned) Lonmin website.

lonmin marikana website

According to Al Jazeera, the miners were getting paid about $500 a month and wanted a pay rise to $1500. They wanted Lonmin management to come down to negotiate with them but the management refused.  Possibly because their CEO, Ian Farmer, has recently been diagnosed with a serious illness. Lonmin has a market cap of $16 billion.

There had been a stand-off between the protestors and the police for a week and today it came to a bloody end.

The footage only starts with the protestors, who were wielding machetes, running towards the police when the shooting starts, but we can see what looks like tear gas behind them. Is it possible that the police shot tear gas into the crowd, who then panicked, and were mown down?

The AMCU (Association of Mineworkers and Construction Union) claims that Lonmin management might have been behind the initial violence via their indirect support of the National Union of Mineworkers (NUM), a rival union. Management setting up rival fake unions to create tension and conflict in the workforce isn’t a new tactic. See here and here.

http://www.miningweekly.com/article/amcu-blames-lonmin-management-for-mine-unrest-2012-08-14

 

I wonder how this incident maps to Lonmin’s stated corporate mission and values?

lonmin values

 

 

No Illusions Podcast #51 – Josh McDonald on Gun Ownership

UPDATE: Josh has clarified his thoughts on his blog. Good work.

My guest on NIP#51 is Josh McDonald (aka Sophistifunk), software developer in Melbourne and a former cigar buddy of mine when he lived in Brisbane.

Josh’s love of guns is something I’ve known about but we’ve never delved too deeply into it. When I chatted with him last week, I asked him to explain his reasoning to me. I’ll let you decide whether or not his arguments are compelling.

BTW, this is definitely NOT his blog.

No Illusions Podcast #50 – Aboriginal Suicide

Gundjeihmi hand stencil

I wonder how many of you are, like me, feeling terrible about the indigenous affairs situation in Australia.

Gundjeihmi hand stencil
Gundjeihmi hand stencil

My guest today is Justin O’Brien, Executive Officer of the Gundjeihmi Aboriginal Corporation (www.mirarr.net). The Gundjeihmi Aboriginal Corporation (GAC) represents the Mirarr traditional owners of the Ranger uranium mine area, the site of the proposed Jabiluka uranium mine, much of Kakadu National Park and parts of Western Arnhem Land. They are the royalty receiving entity for the Ranger uranium mine and intimately associated with the political and social advancement of Indigenous rights.

We talk about some of the factors relating to indigenous youth suicide and the general need for more non-indigenous Australians to spend time with our indigenous citizens so we can better understand their situation.

 

No Illusions #49 – Rob McNealy on Gun Ownership

Rob McNealy is back on the show (see gdayworld #329 for his last appearance four years ago) and he’s talking about gun ownership. Rob is a huge believer that citizens need to have weapons to defend themselves against a tyrannical government and for self-defence.

Just in time for the show, here’s a quote from a recent article by former PM John Howard:

Research published in 2010 in the American Journal of Law and Economics found that firearm homicides, in Australia, dropped 59 per cent between 1995 and 2006. There was no offsetting increase in non-firearm-related murders. Researchers at Harvard University in 2011 revealed that in the 18 years prior to the 1996 Australian laws, there were 13 gun massacres (four or more fatalities) in Australia, resulting in 102 deaths. There have been none in that category since the Port Arthur laws.

(Thanks Angus for the link!)

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