The Gutter Trash

  • High Court finds Chaplains in Schools program is invalid
  • Millions spent on programs so far
  • Govt vows to fight to keep chaplains in schools

The Gillard Government is once again defying the High Court this time vowing to maintain the controversial “School Chaplains” program.

The program has attracted criticism for amounting to a form of taxpayer funded religious indoctrination, propaganda, and a recruitment channel for religious organisations who are given free reign to prey on vulnerable children who may be subjected to unwelcome religious “counselling.”

Originally founded by John Howard in 2006 and lauded by conservative Christians and the religious right, the schools chaplains programs has cost taxpayers some hundreds of millions of dollars on what many regard would be better spent on secular counselling services free from the influence of religious scripture.

Toowoomba parent Ron Williams successfully launched a High Court challenge against the chaplaincy program, arguing it violated…

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The Farnham Report

The following is an extract from Robert Gottliebsen’s article “Gillard’s Perfect Storm“…

The backroom people in the Labor Party must now realise that a series of almost irreversible forces are combining to increase the danger of an Anna Bligh style disaster if a federal election is held around the scheduled date late in 2013.

The first is, of course, the government’s carbon tax position.

Most businesses I talk to say the government underestimated the effect of the tax but its impact is really academic – Australia wide retail power prices are set to rise a massive 37 per cent between 2010-11 and 2012-13, including a 41.7 per cent rise in New South Wales.

Then we will have the mining tax. On the basis of current iron ore and coal prices the mining tax will yield nothing like current Treasury estimates.

By 2013 we will know whether the government…

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We’ve moved

It is now official. We have now moved into our new home. Comments have now been closed here.

Our new home is

I will keep this site as it is for a while until we work out what to do with it.

See you on the other side.

Message from reb

Hello fellow human beings (and Toilet Boss)

Tony has asked the question – “WTF is going on?” And I suppose it deserves an answer.

The following is just my view, and joni (and others) may have differing opinions; neither view is perhaps universally right nor wrong, and mine is just my own personal interpretation of how I see things. I guess I owe some sort of explanation.

As most of you know, virtually one year ago (can you believe it?) Tim Dunlop threw in the towel at with his blog site – Blogocracy. A few of us kept in contact via email, and from this early collaboration this new site “Blogocrats” was born..

The editorial content has been mostly written by me and joni with occasional guest posts from other bloggers. The debate has been lively and sometimes heated.

We have tried to be as open as possible – with anyone allowed to comment ‘without moderation’.

As you may be aware, joni and me both work full time, so we don’t really have time to review each and every comment before it is published.

Unfortunately, this has led to some occasions where bloggers have launched fairly personal attacks against other participants.

There have been calls for individuals to be banned, and in some cases this measure has been enforced.

I am sure I speak for both joni and myself when I say that I really feel uncomfortable with the idea of having to ban someone from participating, however this has been a step that some people have felt necessary to impose.

At this time I decided to open The Gutter as a no-frills, trailer-trash type of blog with no pretences about being anything intellectual or intelligent. I also wanted to maintain an “open comments’ policy.

Joni has been working on a new home to replace this site using new technology rather than the wordpress software. The new home is now working and live at

I imagine joni is making some final changes before announcing “The Launch” of the new Blogocrats web site, but for all intents and purposes people can start blogging there now. You will need to register before you can submit comments.

I think one thing that joni and I have always maintained is that Blogocrats belongs to all of us, it doesn’t belong to me, or joni. The site has evolved over time, with input from many of you, and is what it is at the new home.

I imagine that the lights will soon be switched off here soon, and you’ll be able to continue blogging at the new home…


Friday Footy with Tom!

For those that may be interested – Tom’s Footy Preview.

North Korean Science Sings

It’s refreshing to hear songs about Science, even if they do honour the “General” aka Kim Jong-il. The Schoolgirl’s Diary is the first North Korean feature film to be distributed internationally. The state of their film making in 2006 only outshone their Science. Let’s hope their nuclear and missile industries are similar fizzers.

For the Flicrit from MIFF 2009, please see:

The Schoolgirl’s Diary: Propaganda 101

Kevin Rennie

Single-Sex Marriage & Labor Policy

I admire Rudd for many things, but this particular issue has me livid with rage.

The ALP conference has kicked off and there is a few members from the Labor Left who want to adopt single-sex marriage as Labor policy. A futile effort, but one that I think should be tried now, at the next conference, the one after that, and so on until it is adopted. Regardless of how one looks at it, restricting the rights of marriage to us hetero couples is simply prejudice disguised as “family values”. Everyone knows my thoughts on the matter for this issue and it is shared by a majority of the bloggers here – so I won’t repeat myself.

What I will do is highlight the bloody hypocrisy of Rudd and the Labor power-brokers on this issue. Rudd states the following (my emphasis):

I fully accept that its a matter of controversy and there’ll be debate – and there should be – this is an open society where we can debate and discuss these matters

Yet he and his power-brokers are working as hard as possible to bury the debate completely or, at least, out of view of the public. So what Rudd means is that Labor can debate it and decide on these matters without the input of the public and/or their rank & file members. Now if debate is good & this is an issue that should be debated – why are there such strong political manoeuvrings to remove this issue from public sight?

I’m guessing that might be because they know (as we all do now) that ~60% of the Australian public are for a national civil union / marriage scheme that doesn’t discriminate against single-sex couples. Assuming that the Labor rank & file represents the general public (and I personally think they are a little Left of centre, but am ignoring that for the sake of argument) – this would mean a vote on the issue would go against Rudd and the Labor Right dominated power-brokers. In other words, they wish to deal with the issue behind the scenes because the public / rank & file members support something the leaders / movers & shakers of the Labor Party do not.

I just love democracy – don’t you? It’s just lovely when we as a nation and the rank & file members of the Labor Party are not allowed to have our voices heard because those that manipulate things behind the scenes don’t want us to.

Oh, and Rudd claiming a mandate on preventing single-sex marriage is the lowest form of double-speak I can think of. He promised more for single-sex couples than the Coalition, and now tries to imply that the Australian public think that is all that should be done! I don’t know which is worse – setting yourself a low bar so you don’t have to achieve anything (single-sex marriage, carbon polution targets, etc) or introducing something you know nobody wants in the hopes you can make it permanent before people vote you out (WorkChoices).

This is the t-shirt image that joni will be wearing at the protest on Saturday.

T-shirt for rally