September 5th 2009

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Articles from this issue:

OBITUARY: Australia loses great champion of the unborn - Charles Hugh Francis AM QC RFD (1924-2009)

COVER STORY: Huge turn-out for Canberra marriage summit

CANBERRA OBSERVED: The Christian vote and Kevin Rudd

EDITORIAL: Bushfire Royal Commission ignores fuel-reduction burning

SCHOOLS: 'Historic leap forward' to shake up WA schools

ENERGY I: ETS will deter oil and gas exploration

ENERGY II: Renewable energy: what about the ethanol industry?

FINANCIAL CRISIS: World economy is still 'anaemic'

ASIA: Vulnerable Taiwan facing new trade challenges

QUEENSLAND: GP protests - we are doctors, not baby-killers

MARRIAGE AND FAMILY: Family the key to social inclusion and cohesion

OPINION: Patient ruling creates moral, ethical impasse

EDUCATION: ALP's 'education revolution' copies UK's failed policies

OPINION: Integration, the missing ingredient of immigration

CO2 and turf (letter)

Ian Plimer on Christianity (letter)

Treasury's role in OzCar affair (letter)

Governmental child abuse (letter)

AS THE WORLD TURNS: UK Health gives child molester Viagra; Vic. council paid $620,000 to a 'white witch'; Women in combat

BOOK REVIEW: FAIR WORK: The New Workplace Laws and the Work Choices Legacy, eds. Anthony Forsyth and Andrew Stewart

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UK Health gives child molester Viagra; Vic. council paid $620,000 to a 'white witch'; Women in combat

News Weekly, September 5, 2009
UK health service gives child molester Viagra

If I'd written a spoof column about a serial paedophile given Viagra on the National Health Service and then being freed by a court after he was convicted of molesting an 11-year-old girl, you'd think I'd finally taken leave of my senses.

Sadly not. Roger Martin appeared at Peterborough Crown Court this week and pleaded guilty to "inappropriately touching" a girl who was cleaning his sheltered accommodation to earn some pocket money.

Martin, 71, has a string of convictions for assaults on minors, dating back to 1978 when he was caught having sex with a 15-year-old babysitter.

It was revealed in court that he was being prescribed Viagra by his GP to treat diabetes. The probation service said it had no powers or any inclination to stop him taking the drug.

Spokesman John McAngus said: "We could not and would not restrict the use of prescription medication, be it Viagra or anything else. What we do is our utmost to help sex offenders address their offending behaviour."

Extract from Richard Littlejohn, "Why are we giving child molesters Viagra on the NHS?", Daily Mail (UK), August 21, 2009.

Vic. council paid $620,000 to a "white witch"

I've reread the Ombudsman's report on the Melbourne council that paid $620,000 to a "white witch". But nowhere do I see the words that most need saying: "Are you guys ... nuts?"

This is a pity, because Victorian Ombudsman George Brouwer is ... perfectly equipped to tell a home truth that now badly needs telling.

Fact is, those of us who worriedly measure the retreat of reason in Australia are fast running out of tape.

Take this decision by Port Phillip Council to pay a fortune for advice on "change management" from Caroline Shahbaz, devotee of pranic healing and astrology, and, she giggled last year, a woman referred to as a white witch.

Indeed, her skills are supernatural, as she describes them. According to Shahbaz last year, she has a special intuition, thanks not just to her masters of psychology, but her study with astrologist Stella Starwoman and pilgrimages to ashrams in India.

And here we get to the real scare in this story, so symbolic of these mad times in which global warming hysteria rules in a cooling world.

Shahbaz has indeed been given contracted work, all proper, by Victoria's Department of Sustainability and Environment, its Department of Planning, Parks Victoria, Melbourne Water and the Reserve Bank.

If you wondered what irrational folk left the state with water supplies critically low, forests dangerously overloaded with fuel, housing land too scarce, and useless wind farms scarring the coast, now you know. It's the kind of people who'd have a witch as guru.

Extract from Andrew Bolt, "Guru fever in Ombudsman's report is just nuts", Herald Sun (Melbourne), August 19, 2009.


Women in combat

Though women have known combat in isolated cases throughout history, the fact that such cases are rare is the exception that proves the rule. This wisdom is part of general revelation and thus the moral wisdom shared by virtually all cultures.

When women are injected into combat, the dignity of women is undermined. In the extreme conditions of combat, women are exposed to the very worst that human beings can do and a physical violence that exceeds the imagination.

There is no shortage of arguments against this practice. Biological arguments document differences of physical strength and stamina. Psychological arguments consider not only the psychological profile of women in combat but the difference the presence of women makes on men fighting alongside them.

The most important argument against the service of women in combat is moral. The decision to expose women to combat, to stretch and erase gender boundaries, and to normalise the exposure of women to violence represents a moral revolution.

Extract from Dr Albert Mohler, "A quiet circumvention of morality - women in combat", Albert Mohler's blog, US, August 20, 2009.

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TRANSGENDER: one shade of grey, 353pp, $39.99

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