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The Forum > Article Comments > Why arenít more people 'factful'? > Comments

Why arenít more people 'factful'? : Comments

By Don Aitkin, published 3/5/2018

Every group Rosling sought answers from saw the world as 'more frightening, more violent, and more hopeless - in short, more dramatic - than it really is'.

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Hi Don,

I've knocked around Indigenous affairs for fifty-odd years and have tried to support positions based on the 'truth', i.e. based on some solid evidence, and no misunderstandings and misrepresentations. It's been a disillusioning journey since so much of the current Indigenous Grand Narrative seems more and more to me to be precisely 'misunderstandings'.

For example, the 'Stolen Generation' assertion: how many cases won in court ? One. Does everybody taken into care have a file in their State Archives ? Very likely. Does it cost anything to find one's file ? Only in terms of hours spent.

And the 'Deaths in Custody' assertion: at the time, thirty-odd years ago, of the Royal Commission, 23 % of all people in custody were Indigenous; 22 % of all deaths in custody were Indigenous. What would one expect ? If only 3 % of all people in custody were Indigenous, then of course we would expect only 3 % or less of all deaths in custody to be Indigenous. Indeed. After all, if only 1 % of those in custody were Indigenous, would we expect no more than 1 % of all deaths in custody to be Indigenous ? Or 3 % ? Surely only 1 %. On there other hand, if 90 % of all people in custody were Indigenous, what should be there regrettably-acceptable rate of deaths in custody who were Indigenous ? 3 % ? No, 90 %.

And so many other 'misunderstandings': I've typed up all of the correspondence of the SA Protector up to 1913, more than eight thousand letters; he was the sole employee of the grandly-named Aborigines Department. He chastises one pastoralist on Cooper's Creek in one letter who has expressed an intention to drive Aboriginal people off his lease; he is reminded that

[TBC]
Posted by Loudmouth, Thursday, 3 May 2018 12:37:23 PM
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[continued]

that he would be breaking the terms of his new lease, which specifies explicitly that Aboriginal people are entitled to use the land as they always had done, foraging, camping, carrying out ceremonies, etc. 'as if this lease had not been made', i.e. a right to Aboriginal people which applies to unallocated Crown Land. That right commenced in the earliest days and is still alive and well in the Environment Act.

The one-man Aborigines Department therefore - as far as one can tell from 8,000 letters - clearly did not condone people being driven off their land; or, for that matter, 'being herded onto Missions', i.e. by the one- and two-man Mission staff, flat out building cottages, teaching, giving out rations and stores, providing medical aid, and supervising farm staff. No Mission, as far as I know, ever had a human-proof fence. People came and went as they pleased.

And of course, he big one: massacres. Amazingly, there have been few forensic investigations of notorious massacre sites. There may have been one recently, south of the Kimberley but that seems to have gone quiet. Why so few ? How can one know without such physical investigations - no of just one or two, of course, but of, say, twenty or fifty ? Surely evidence matters, and the corollary of that is that one can't make definitive statements without it.

So trying to hang on to a Narrative based on truth, evidence and the real world has been increasingly fragile. I want to believe, but truth keeps getting in the way :)

Thanks Don,

Joe Lane
www.firstsources.info
Posted by Loudmouth, Thursday, 3 May 2018 12:41:06 PM
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I think I mostly agree with Rosling. And see where patent pecuniary interest and the truth collide? Pecuniary interests prevail? Thus we see coal-fired advocates unable or unwilling to see climate change! And green advocates almost to a generic man unable or unwilling to accept CARBON FREE nuclear power as the only logical substitute for dispatchable, reliable, affordable, baseload power. Yes, we can do stuff with particle accelerators as some alleged green advocate claim, even as it is as always the most expensive option! They remind one of the political enthusiasts, who never ever let the facts get in the way of their political propaganda! Be it those reminiscing about coal-fired steam power or the other crown who want to depopulate the planet and turn it into a green wilderness where they, non-human species and only they dwell! As if that were actually possible and they as the non-aggressive survivours/dreamers, would actually survive? There's nothing wrong with building dream castles in the clouds, but plenty with moving in, as permanent residents! Alan B.
Posted by Alan B., Thursday, 3 May 2018 1:01:00 PM
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Apologies for the "Grammarly" Corrections. Where the app removed all the paragraphs! And turned crowd into crown. Never happened with Microsoft's word. The only problem with Microsoft's word, you don't own it for life and able to transfer it from device to devise? But pay and pay and pay for the alleged lifetime use of this correction application! Alan B.
Posted by Alan B., Thursday, 3 May 2018 1:09:38 PM
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Rosling had a point. But his point wasn't that because Al Gore exaggerated, humans are not influencing climate. Climate change won't destroy the earth, at least not in the next millennium or so, but it will make it different. One of the big losers in that will be a lot of humans.

As Rosling noted, it turns out that lots of people, even well educated people, are ignorant about the wider world around them. They spend too much time seeking out information that affirms their existing prejudices. This article is a bit of a case in point.
Posted by Agronomist, Thursday, 3 May 2018 1:55:30 PM
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I suspect that there is an evolutionary advantage in being cautiously pessimistic and therefore we ought not to be surprised that whatever we think we know is, on average, more pessimistic than it ought to be.

Of course, if that's correct then we ought to also assume that we are no less ill-informed and/or counter-factually pessimistic than all prior generations.

That things are much better than most think, that things have improved so much more than most think, is hardly disputable. Why most get it wrong is the issue and I'm of the view that we are built that way. How we overcome these deficiencies is an enormous problem and I fret that it can't be done. People don't want to be told to not worry.

Three examples from recent history:

* in the 1980s Julian Simon was saying that the doomsayers who asserted that we were running out of all manner of things like oil, food and various essential metals, were all wrong. That it's a fact we weren't running out of anything, we had never previously run out of any particular resource and that we wouldn't run out of any resources now. Famously he was ridiculed by many of those doomsayers, the most egregious being Paul Ehrlich of 'Population Bomb' fame. He and Simon had a bet that ten resources selected by Ehrlich would be more scarce (as measured by price) ten years hence. Simon won the bet on each of the ten resources selected. Yet Simon is largely unknown and Ehrlich continued to be treated as a prophet.

/cont
Posted by mhaze, Thursday, 3 May 2018 2:05:01 PM
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/cont
* Equally doomsayers were anxious to tell us in the 1960s and 70s that we were going to run out of food. Norm Baulaug thought that was wrong. He went out and created the green revolution, thus saving more lives than probably any other human who has ever lived. But Borlaug is relatively unknown and the doomsayers continue to garner fame for predicting the postulated forth-coming famine.

* the Y2K phenomenon. Pretty much anyone who was conversant with the computer industry in the 1990s knew that the Y2K problem was vastly overblown and would affect only some old relatively unimportant legacy systems. But the fear was easily fermented, especially because of the supposed significance of the date, and fortunes were made. In the end, the day came and went with nary a problem. Interestingly there was also major scares surround Y1K back in 999AD. We think we are so much more sophisticated than our predecessors, but ultimately we are all just humans with inherited human traits.

In the end we will remain fearful and factually ignorant because that's what the media feeds us. And they do so because that's what we want. I dream of a TV show or such like that spends its 30 minutes a night disabusing us of our factual errors and spreading good news. But I suspects such a show wouldn't last a week before ratings killed it
Posted by mhaze, Thursday, 3 May 2018 2:05:29 PM
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Loudmouth,

"For example, the 'Stolen Generation' assertion: how many cases won in court ? One. "

I assume you refer to Trevorrow. But he wasn't a example of a stolen child in the sense meant by the term 'Stolen Generation'.

The Stolen Generation were supposedly stolen due to government decisions to remove children purely because they were aboriginal. But Trevorrow was removed in contravention of government policy - that's why he won the case. So stolen by a wrong-thinking nurse, not by racist government policy.

Alan B,

Entirely OT but I thought you'd appreciate this...

http://www.nextbigfuture.com/2018/04/danish-thorium-molten-salt-reactor-receives-pre-seed-funding.html

Don't say I never do anything for you.
Posted by mhaze, Thursday, 3 May 2018 2:13:12 PM
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people are not factful because they love living a lie. That is why they reject their Creator, dream up fantasies like evolution and deny the truth personified (Jesus Christ). How else could the gw justify their ignorant conclusions.
Posted by runner, Thursday, 3 May 2018 2:53:34 PM
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Mhaze,

In which State was it government policy to remove Aboriginal kids just because they were Aboriginal ? None. Any evidence ? Any legislation ? Anywhere ? And in any case, it would all be on their files which are readily available in each State's Archives. My wife had little trouble getting her file, by registering with the Archives here in Adelaide, filling out a form specifying what she wanted, and waiting for an hour or so. No problems.

She was on a list of Aboriginal children whose mothers were being supported by the Children's Welfare and Public Relief Board (at least since the late forties) - i.e. far from taking children away, that Board paid single mothers to keep and look after their children.

All Aboriginal people down this way knew and respected Marj Angus, the social worker involved in the Trevorrow case. She's buried in the community cemetery at Point McLeay, the ex-Mission on Lake Alexandrina.

So, so far, only that one case. Any evidence of others ? Evidence is what counts, Mhaze.

Cheers,

Joe
Posted by Loudmouth, Thursday, 3 May 2018 3:04:58 PM
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Thanks, mhaze! And I won't ever say, you've never done nothing for me! Cheers Alan B.
Posted by Alan B., Thursday, 3 May 2018 3:30:00 PM
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Loudmouth,
'Twas never officially just because they were Aboriginal. But the Stolen Generations were removed from responsible parents whose actions were misconstrued as irresponsible (for instance the children being left with their grandmother for a few hours).
Posted by Aidan, Thursday, 3 May 2018 3:33:40 PM
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BINGO!

Sciency thing...yadda yadda yadda...climate change!

Nice one Don.
Posted by Bugsy, Thursday, 3 May 2018 3:39:53 PM
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Hi Aidan,

And that would be in their files, if it were the case. Bureaucrats don't usually get rid of files (except the odd Federal cabinet-full), so anybody who was interested can look up their file, in their State Archives.

Don't believe every sob-story you hear, Aidan. I was talking to a retired copper about families with grog and violence problems and he said, "Yeah, our car was on auto-pilot, it knew the way so well." I'd suggest that between thirty and fifty would be the number of call-outs by police, social workers, ambulances, etc., that would be recorded in the files of many children taken into long-term care.

A friend was put into care with his brothers (in one Home) and sisters (in another Home) for about a year since their family was destitute, the mother had had a bit of a break-down and constant child-bearing had worn her down. The father got a better job, the eldest boy went off to work and the family came back together and carried on.

As well, going back a few generations, many Aboriginal mothers died in childbirth, leaving a widowed father to somehow look after his kids and at the same time go out to work on farms or shearing: how to do both ? Often he might have re-married, but like anybody else, many times he would have had to put his kids into care, perhaps for a short time, perhaps for a loooong time. And fathers died, so mothers had no bread-winner unless they could get re-married, and - lo and behold ! - their teenage daughters are then packed off to the Girls' Home. It all would be in people's files.

Cheers,

Joe
Posted by Loudmouth, Thursday, 3 May 2018 4:00:58 PM
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Aidan, That is just another Left fantasy, but I suspect you know that. Children were removed because their parents were incapable, incompetent or unwilling to care for them. My grandmother was one of those children and I wouldn't be here if the white family who saved her had turned their backs.
Posted by calwest, Thursday, 3 May 2018 4:28:54 PM
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runner,
>people are not factful because they love living a lie.
That much is often true. But you also seem to love living a lie.

Evolution is a phenomenon, not a fantasy. There's overwhelming evidence for it, no evidence whatsoever against it, but you choose to dismiss it because you can't face the fact that the truth does not correspond to your flawed understanding of the word of God.

GW is also a phenomenon. Most people who deny it do so based on wishful thinking. When they discover things that the climate scientists have long known about and incorporated into their models, they immediately assume they've discovered things that the climate scientists are ignorant of. And when they read of new discoveries, they immediately assume a greatly increased significance (for example after it was discovered that higher CO2 levels reduce the amount of water going into the air by transpiration, one of the posters here wrongly took it to mean that higher CO2 reduced atmospheric water vapour levels.

But you're even worse than that, because you let the neocons fool you into thinking belief in GW is a religion (and therefore evil).
Do you understand that? I'll put it another way:
YOU LET THE LIES OF ATHEISTS DETERMINE YOUR POSITION ON GLOBAL WARMING! And now you do their bidding, spreading lies about what's happening in our atmosphere. And God detests that.
Posted by Aidan, Thursday, 3 May 2018 4:31:36 PM
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calwest,
Of course many children were rescued and taken away for good reasons. But the fact remains that thousands were taken away for dubious reasons.

Loudmouth,
I don't know whether it's in the files or not, but I'd caution against assuming bureaucratic allegations of neglect to be genuine.

"I'd suggest that between thirty and fifty would be the number of call-outs by police, social workers, ambulances, etc., that would be recorded in the files of many children taken into long-term care."
And I'd suggest the bulk of the Stolen Generations problem predates that.
Posted by Aidan, Thursday, 3 May 2018 4:48:50 PM
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LM,

"So, so far, only that one case. Any evidence of others ? Evidence is what counts,"

I afraid you've (somehow) misconstrued my point. I was only arguing with your claim that there was one proven stolen generation case. In my view Trevorrow wasn't part of the stolen generation and therefore there are no cases.

Lot's of people taken for whatever reason, and very large numbers removed (using Lois O'Donoghue's sleight-of-hand terminology) at the request or instigation of their parents but none, not one, taken simple because they were aboriginal.
Posted by mhaze, Thursday, 3 May 2018 5:19:30 PM
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Alan B - Have you tried doing in a .TXT document, won't take out the paragraphs and you can get it to show corrections but is up to you to accept them. No auto correct.
Posted by Philip S, Thursday, 3 May 2018 5:33:21 PM
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Aidan, You say "...the fact remains that thousands were taken away for dubious reasons." Name some - five will do - and define "dubious". Specific examples would be great.
Posted by calwest, Friday, 4 May 2018 12:56:34 AM
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Optimistic? I call bs, and think the author is delusional.

The UN have been been adopted as national sovereign and decides our Islamic refugee intake.

Muslims will double their population in western countries every generation, even without increased immigration.
Look at England, France and Germany, and what are they 20% ?

This nation will be utterly destroyed within 50 years.
Posted by Armchair Critic, Friday, 4 May 2018 7:27:46 AM
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Hey Loudmouth,
Go find the book 'Gungarlook - The Story of the Aboriginal Riley family of the Burragorang Valley'.

In it, on page 76 you'll find out why my great grandmother kept on the move, only once giving birth in the same locality, often stayed off the electoral roll and had her kids mostly all in different townships than where she had been registered.
Posted by Armchair Critic, Friday, 4 May 2018 8:09:31 AM
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Hi C,

So ..... you're saying that your great-grandmother and her kids were NOT put into care ? Are you saying that perhaps they should have been ? That the government should have taken them into care, but didn't ? Bastards !

Hi Aidan,

The point of Don's article, i thought, was that 'facts', evidence, whatever, are necessary to firm up one's assertions. Your assertions about the evils of bureaucracy may need some corroboration, it's not much use saying that there really is evidence but bureaucrats have destroyed it. After all, sometimes, the absence of evidence may well mean the absence of evidence.

As for your suggestion that " .... the bulk of the Stolen Generations problem predates that", sorry, predates what ? Before when ? And again, what evidence do you have for your assertion ? I analysed the School Roll from my wife's community, 1880-1960 or so, and found that out of 800 kids on the Roll over those years, 46 had at some time been taken into care, usually for less than a year before returning. Interestingly, the earliest child was an orphan (mother died, father died: ergo, orphan) taken to the Girls' Home in 1934 at eight. Is that the time period that you mean ?

All of us suffer the delusion of 'presentism' from time to time, the notion that, whatever is now, has always been the case. We forget that single mother's benefits didn't kick in in Australia until about 1971, after which the 'Stolen Generation' magically disappeared. Of course, kids were still being taken into care from drunken and violent parents, as they still are. Strangely, in ever-increasing numbers.

Just by the way, since many of us have a rock-solid belief that the purpose of stealing Aboriginal children was to raise them as white, extremely few Aboriginal kids were ever adopted by whites. I know of a couple, maybe three, and that's about it. So that 'policy' didn't seem to have many legs. Most kids taken into care were taken to homes, reformatories, etc., for a time, then returned back to their relations
Posted by Loudmouth, Friday, 4 May 2018 2:32:46 PM
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If you were trying to make a joke and say that my great grandmother and her kids should've been placed into care because they were indigenous, then I don't find it amusing.
Posted by Armchair Critic, Friday, 4 May 2018 3:38:54 PM
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Hi AC,

Were they ? No ? Then what's your point ? Was poverty prevalent for Indigenous people until recent times ? Yes, indeed. My late wife grew up in what was just a shed, in a small country town, up between the dump and the cemetery. Still, she ended up as a senior lecturer at a university.

But if, say, university graduate numbers or home ownership are very rough guides to how people are doing, i would suggest that, since the fifties, a middle-class has grown to make up around 30 % of the Indigenous population, and growing at about 3 % p.a. There's still a long road ahead, but many Indigenous people have taken it already, and many more will in the near future.

Joe
Posted by Loudmouth, Friday, 4 May 2018 3:48:12 PM
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Hey Loudmouth,
My point quite simply is that kids need not have ever been taken for families to be affected; in this respect I didn't really like you playing it all down.
Posted by Armchair Critic, Friday, 4 May 2018 6:11:15 PM
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Hi AC,

I certainly didn't mean to look like I was playing it down, as you suggest. I'm too bloody aware of the threats that poverty can bring to people in dire situations, my mother was under intense pressure to put us kids up for adoption back in the late forties after she had our father put under an order to stay away, as far as I can tell now, but what does six-year-old know ? Except the terror and dread of the very real unknown. At least these days, not too many people have to live on potatoes week after week. Yes, I agree, real poverty certainly is no joke. I don't think it ever leaves you.

But in your case, it's indicative that your great-grandmother DIDN'T lose her kids, she must have fought like buggery to keep them and she did. I have to admit that some families that I have known were very, very different; one woman I sort of knew, if you could call it that, was always, always pissed, i never saw her sober, usually at the tottering stage. One of my late wife's cousins (she never knew this) died of starvation in 1955, while her parents were on the piss. A couple of those cousins were taken into care until the mother gave up the grog. Actually, Bruce Trevorrow, the one-and-only-Stolen-Generation kid, was a sort of second cousin: her father's sister had married Bruce's uncle. I think the poor kid has Foetal Alcohol Syndrome long before it was ever described. That's how life was back then.

So I certainly apologise if you thought I was having a go at your wonderful great-grandmother: she must have been a real battler. And there were many, many strong and wonderful people like her back then. And their descendants take life seriously; I'll bet many of them have gone on to graduate from university. I think they and THEIR kids will drive the future for Indigenous people in the next couple of decades.

It's fascinating how discussions drift away from their original thread topic, ay ?

Cheers,

Joe
Posted by Loudmouth, Friday, 4 May 2018 10:20:36 PM
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It wasn't just aboriginals Joe, but most of us.

When men were demobbed after the war with a cheep civy suit & 10 quid it took them a while to get on their feet. Money did not help all that much, materials were just not available.

By 1950 my family had enough to buy a block of land on the outskirts of Bathurst, & build a dirt floor tin shed. WE lived in it for 3 years while gathering enough money & building materials to build 3 rooms of a 3 bedroom house.

I did not feel deprived as 40 other families were doing the same thing in that area. It was normal. Things were not available for years after the war. It took 2 years for us to get a small water tank, & another year to get a big, [2000 gallon for god sake] water tank.

The people three tin sheds down the road were aboriginals I was told, but who cared, they looked like us with a bit of a sun tan. The son played left prop, when I was hooker in the school rugby union team. We called him Toughie, because he had to play barefoot, even in the snow. He was not alone in that, but I at least had sand shoes.

Most people under 60 today have no idea of what life like was in the 40s & 50s. We had one thing in our favour. Even with 45 kids in a class we got a damn sight better education than the kids today are getting.

We moved to Young, but I ran into Toughie in Sydney 7 years later. We were both doing engineering, but at different universities. Those were the days when universities were full fee only, so us poor kids had to get a scholarship to get in. It took at least 2 first class honours & 3 "A"s in those days of real externally set exams, to get an engineering scholarship, so Toughie had pretty well from his tin shed.
Posted by Hasbeen, Friday, 4 May 2018 11:01:01 PM
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Hi Has been,

I agree with you. I'm not Indigenous, but plenty of people were in poverty after the War, well into the fifties. Around Chullora and Bass Hill where I partly grew up, there were no two-story mansions.

And yes, all through primary school, I was never in a class with fewer than forty kids - usually closer to forty eight. Luckily we had some very good teachers back then, teaching us the basics and enthusing us to learn, learn, learn.

Actually, in Bass Hill, an itinerant green-grocer used to take his horse and cart around the streets, I remember him as a very nice man, with two pretty daughters. One lent me her comb for my feral rats'-tails and I probably gave her nits in return. They were Aboriginal.

Cheers,

Joe
Posted by Loudmouth, Saturday, 5 May 2018 9:50:16 AM
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Notable that Loudmouth Joe still keeps pushing his South Australian 'research' as some sort of wide ranging example of things that were nationwide. Well Joe, you're more full of it than a sewerage pond.

Go and look at the results of various 'Protection Acts' that created 'Protection Boards' and subsequent 'absorptionist policies' had for Aboriginal people. "...people called them 'Destruction Boards' for they broke up families in a racist policy which operated dependant on the colour of one's skin." Broome 2010, p.96

Then there is the research of Peter Read who found that between 1909 - 1940 in NSW up to 5000 children removed and one reason was 'for just being Aboriginal'. Broome 2010, p.97

The argument against Stolen Generations based on a lack of court cases is a straw man. If there were no policies, and policies don't have to be official legislation, to take children of Aboriginal descent then there can't have been a Royal Commission and so many apologies from governments. Oh hang on...

To keep on coming out with so much sh!t proves one thing...got your head up your ar$e Joe.
Posted by minotaur, Saturday, 5 May 2018 12:20:44 PM
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Hi Minotaur,

Thanks for your usual well-informed advice. I've typed up 15,000 pages of old documents, but done very little research per se, except what springs out of the information from those fifteen thousand pages, inadequate as it may be. And although I've typed up some royal commission transcripts from other States, the 1934 Moseley Commission in WA, for example, and a few commission transcripts from Queensland around 1860, and from New South Wales around 1882, and a royal commission transcript from Victoria in about 1880, and the Bleakley Report of 1928 from the NT, and transcripts of national conferences, I don't claim to have done much work in relation to documents from those other States. I'll leave that up got some other idiot with time on their hands.

You can rely on second- and third-hand accounts like Richard Broome if you like, but all I've done - and presumably this is what has got up your nose - is transcribed old documents, mainly from SA, and tried to draw very general conclusions from them. Admittedly fifteen thousand pages is not the be-all and end-all, you've probably done far more reading yourself. But I just report what I've found.

And we keep coming back to it (and to the purpose of this thread): you have to run with the evidence, not with unsubstantiated passion which, as Stan Grant noted in his brilliant article last week, 'runs with a gallop'. Keep your passion, Minotaur, but occasionally pay attention to actual evidence, even if it contradicts your passion.

Joe
Posted by Loudmouth, Saturday, 5 May 2018 4:09:23 PM
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>>"Then there is the research of Peter Read who found that between 1909 - 1940 in NSW up to 5000 children removed and one reason was 'for just being Aboriginal'. Broome 2010, p.97..." What were the other reasons?

The argument against Stolen Generations based on a lack of court cases is a straw man. If there were no policies, and policies don't have to be official legislation, to take children of Aboriginal descent then there can't have been a Royal Commission and so many apologies from governments."

Those are assertions, not evidence. And the royal commission found...?
Nothing of consequence.

As for "apologies" - puhleeese! As credible as a tin bell.
Posted by calwest, Sunday, 6 May 2018 8:07:34 AM
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Hi Calwest,

Thank you. Yes, every person taken into care would have a file in their respective State Archives. It doesn't need buckets of money to find one's file, just stroll along to your State Archives, register, fill out a form setting out what you want, and wait until they drag it out of their vast store of archives, maybe an hour or two. I don't know how that can cost anything at all.

Yes, Peter Read knocked up his article on a 'Stolen Generation' one evening in 1979, plucking a figure of five thousand (why not ten thousand ? Fifty thousand ? A million ? No, that's probably a bit too unbelievable). So what proportion of children taken into care were from neglectful parents ? Drunken parents ? Absent parents ? What proportion were taken into care because a parent had died ? Or because, given the general level of poverty fifty, sixty or seventy years ago, their family was destitute ? Given the lack of birth control, and huge families after the War, how many mothers simply had break-downs, or whose health was severely threatened by the combination of poverty, insecurity of husband's employment, and poor health ? On my wife's small community (300-odd people), women were still dying in childbirth into the fifties, at about one every two years. Her father's first wife; her mother's aunt ? How does an itinerant worker look after his children AND look for work on his own ?

Of course, these factors impinged on the lives of other Australians, especially from the late twenties until well into the fifties. No wonder, after the War, so many Aboriginal men desperately seized the employment opportunities provided by the multitude of overdue infrastructure projects around the country, railways, electrification, pipelines, roads, dams, school building, re-afforestation and plantations, and so on, to leave their Missions and settlements. Their grandchildren now have opportunities that they never had, and fifty five thousand Indigenous people have taken up those opportunities to graduate from universities, once their families have found their feet. That's our common history.

Joe
Posted by Loudmouth, Sunday, 6 May 2018 9:56:27 AM
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Thanks for the 'I'm not very brite but can lift heevy things' response Joe. Quantity is no match for quality. And evidence comes in many different forms but you seem to only give credibility to documents created as part of the Master Narrative.

Stick to transcribing as you clearly are not a researcher. I'll keep reading credible historians who are in-depth researchers and have reputations for good quality work. Unlike that of a hack transcriber who doesn't seem able to look past the Master Narrative. Andrew Bolt would love you, Joe.
Posted by minotaur, Sunday, 6 May 2018 11:00:12 AM
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Calwest, how about a substantiated refutation instead of glib c.r.a.p..
Posted by minotaur, Sunday, 6 May 2018 11:04:26 AM
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Joe, if you're going to try a discredit a source then at least get the date/year right. What was I saying about credibility...on yeah, you have none.
Posted by minotaur, Sunday, 6 May 2018 11:06:43 AM
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Hi Minotaur,

Yeah, as a hack transcriber, what would I know ? It's easier to rely on someone who has got their information from an incredibly authoritative other source, which/who in turn has got his/her information from an even more authoritative source. Sort of daisy-chain research.

Anecdotally, of those families which left missions and settlements so that their husbands and fathers could find reliable work on infrastructure projects after the War, it may come as a surprise to you that not too many of those kids were ever put into care. From my incredibly limited experience, and access to dodgy records, it appears that the kids who WERE put into care tended to come from the more casual families left back on the Missions, and those who might have moved to country towns but whose fathers were in and out of work while hey grappled mightily with their grog problems.

From the School Roll at my wife's community, it appears that, apart from the families affected by the deaths of mothers or fathers, the 'bread-winners' (using the term broadly) of the families from which kids were put into care for a few months or so, tended to be indeed more 'casual' than average. One bloke who married twice (his first wife died of what used to be called St Vitus' Dance, Huntington's Chorea) and ultimately had around twenty kids, was a highly experienced 'casual' sort of bloke - around half of his kids were, at some time, put into care. As far as I can tell, they all either came back or married (i.e. Aboriginal partners) and went to country towns around southern SA. His second wife, a lovely woman, was also a bit of an imbiber, so some of her kids were put into care for weeks and even months at a time.

I aspired once to be a researcher like you, but I left it far too late, I'm only a transcriber now. If you can be kind enough to put me onto some of your voluminous research, i would be happy to learn from it.

Cheers,

Joe
Posted by Loudmouth, Sunday, 6 May 2018 11:28:35 AM
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Presenting a couple of anecdotal stories is not an argument for anything. It is deflection and distraction.

The fact remains that almost every state had laws specifically targeting Aboriginal people and imposed conditions upon them that white people would not have tolerated if they were subject to the same. Much of the legislation had terminology so vague that it was open to severe interpretation. 'Official reports', that you seem to rely so heavily upon, could be written up to suit any of the vague references in such legislation. There is a world of difference between a report and reality.

You may argue that the 'reports' are verifiable evidence. However, how reliable is that evidence if it was simply written to suit flawed legislation? To rely on such evidence without considering alternative situations is not something an inquisitive mind would do.

On a different note, it was interesting you mentioned Stan Grant in a previous post. Stan has been guilty of presenting fabrication as fact, such as when stating his father (and Aboriginal people in general) were classified as 'fauna'. I think one thing we can both agree on is that that is fabrication and even a basic bit of research establishes that.

Speaking of research, nowhere is it written that anyone who does research has to publish findings. There can be many different motivations for doing research on any topic. And one doesn't need to rely solely on primary sources when researching. However, a good researcher will follow up sources provided by a secondary source to see if they exist or are genuine.

That is how those such and Lyndall Ryan and even Keith Windschuttle (a fave of yours perhaps, given he is a fellow 'stolen generations' denier?) have been exposed as presenting fabricated and/or false information.
Posted by minotaur, Sunday, 6 May 2018 4:16:51 PM
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Hi Minotaur,

A bit circular: flawed policies (such as ?) covered up by vague legislation (such as ?) with only superficially verifiable evidence (such as ?). So ..... how do you know that any of that sort of thing happened at all, if you can't produce evidence for it ? I'm respectfully suggesting that, if a child was taken into care for any reason, it would be in his/her file, and all they have to do is look it up.

And i would also respectfully suggest that, since there hasn't been a flood of applications to courts, that the bogeyman didn't come in the night, perhaps nothing happened as you suggest, without evidence. The old Roman principle still stands: asserter gratis, negator gratis. So possibly no superficial evidence, no legislation and no policy. Still, it feels good to give governments a good kicking every so often. It feels good !

Belief and passion are wonderful things, but they can sometimes lead one astray, particularly when there is not a shred of evidence to back them up.

I wouldn't mind betting that, if he ever held such a view, Stan Grant has long abandoned the idiotic notion that Indigenous people were classified as flora and fauna. After all there is no such legislation in Australia, federal or state. In SA, there was (and perhaps still is) a Game Act, i.e. that specified that there will be closed seasons for the hunting of many species of bird and fish and even kangaroos, but that Aboriginal people were exempt from that Act, and were allowed to hunt and fish sufficient for their personal needs, using boats, guns, nets and other fishing and hunting gear provided by the Protector. Bastard ! Do you think that's what some idiot meant ? Oops, sorry, Linda.

How's your research going ? Is it evidence-based at all ?

Cheers,

Joe
Posted by Loudmouth, Sunday, 6 May 2018 5:20:57 PM
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You're wasting your time Joe.

You are talking to a "believer", who will only accept "evidence" that furthers their belief.
Posted by Hasbeen, Sunday, 6 May 2018 7:12:03 PM
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Evidence, Joe, as you should know comes in many forms. That includes personal testimony. You seem to ignore that though as it isn't the 'black and white' evidence of official record. And 'official records' are not infallible. Of course, neither is personal testimony.

Evidence is never cut and dried and can have many areas of grey. However, if you want to put more reliance and faith in official records written by whitefellas that is fine. It certainly puts you in the same category as Keith Windshcuttle.

Interesting though that you have never responded as to why various state governments had specific legislation, namely the 'Protection Acts'
that applied only to Aboriginal people...and made it far easier to remove Aboriginal children than white children.

Case in point (just one for example) being how the Aboriginal Protection Board (APB) in NSW lobbied for many years to have the 1909 legislation changed to allow them to bypass the court system when determining if an Aboriginal child was 'neglected'. They got their way when the 1915 amendments were made and gave them, or their proxy official (most often the local police constable), to make the decision to remove children from their families...and they didn't have to provide a legitimate court approved reason.

Unfettered power in the hands of those who would exercise it without restraint is not something desirable. Particularly when those exercising it may well be racist and looking for promotion from a rural area to an urban one. Do what it takes to please superiors in the 'city'.

Then a 21st century transcriber comes along and applies a definitive interpretation of 'yep, all good...it was official because the paper work says so.'
Posted by minotaur, Monday, 7 May 2018 4:56:35 PM
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'Evidence, Joe, as you should know comes in many forms'

its hotter than it should be, its colder than it should be, there's a storm, there should be a storm, its snowing, there is flooding, there is drought, president Trump was elected, all proof of global warming.
Posted by runner, Monday, 7 May 2018 5:09:47 PM
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Hi Minotaur,

Yes, you're right, I tend to ignore 'personal testimony' unless it can point the way to some actual evidence.

But let's re-cap on what you do and don't consider believable:

* Evidence: you discount any actual evidence, on the grounds that, after all, we don't hear about what hasn't been spoken or written about. You are a firm believer in the principle that 'Absence of evidence does not necessarily mean the evidence of absence.'

* Documentation: again, we don't hear about what is NOT documented, and have to rely on obviously biased and selective documentation, even if it amounts to thousands of pages. What about what wasn't ever written about ? Ay ? Yeah.

* Anecdotes: of course, all anecdotes other than your own are obviously biased and selective - few anecdotes go against what somebody already believes. Thankfully, your anecdotes are spot-on, accurate, dispassionate.

* Primary sources: these are obviously biased by the attitudes of the times, and we should rely on second- and third-hand sources, written by people who have not done any primary research of their own, such as Richard Broome's.

So what are we left with ? Personal accounts, memories, stories handed down through the generations, which are never misunderstood by their new recipients, never garbled, always 100 % accurate. Indigenous memory is an amazing thing in that way, so different from ordinary human memory. And of course, every story is true.

Minotaur, I respectfully beg to differ.

Cheers,

Joe
Posted by Loudmouth, Tuesday, 8 May 2018 9:59:05 AM
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Hi Minotaur,

My favourite example of how oral memory can get garbled:

My late wife's gr-gr-grandfather, Sewsty, is variously described as being born on Kangaroo Island, at Cape Jervis and at Rapid Bay here in SA. He is also described as possibly a Russian-Finn, although he looks pretty much Aboriginal in photos of a century ago;

In Tindale's massive data collection, 1939-1941, available at the SA Museum (ask for Ali Highfold), on the family tree sheet relating to Sewsty, he married the daughter of a man called a Russian-Finn, John Wilkins (perhaps an uncle of Sir Hubert Wilkins). He had worked with his father in Adelaide as carters, mainly for the Survey Department, from the late 1830s, according to the SA Gazette. Wilkins died from pneumonia in the late winter of 1860 at Penneshaw (where his wife had a lease of land), after rescuing passengers and crew from a ship wrecked on the coast there. In Cawthorne's Reminiscences of life on Kangaroo Island, written in the 1870s, the captain of the ship was described as a Russian-Finn.

I've been trying to understand how the captain of a ship could be confused with an Aboriginal bloke who would have been about twelve at the time. Oral memory loves the exotic, so I suppose 'Russian-Finn' has to be included in any and every story vaguely connected with the Wilkins family or with Sewsty, or even his descendants, 'Russian-Finn' is exotic enough.

I'm certainly not suggesting that people lie, just that oral memory - for anybody - is pretty unreliable: just try one of those Chinese Whispers games with a group of people and see how twisted a story can become after, say, half an hour. A hundred years or more is a long time in the process of oral transmission of stories, Minotaur. But hang onto whatever you want to believe, rather than evidence, or documentation, or anecdote if it makes you feel good.

Cheers,

Joe
Posted by Loudmouth, Wednesday, 9 May 2018 9:28:17 AM
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If you can believe in religious text you're capable of believing and disbelieving anything according to choice....truth, or facts, have nothing to do with it....Pope Erasmus 11
Posted by Special Delivery, Wednesday, 9 May 2018 1:43:00 PM
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Hi SD,

Yes, good point - one relies either on as much evidence as possible, positive AND negative, and makes one's own judgments, OR one relies on faith. Faith doesn't need evidence, only on fervent belief and passion. Yes, a reliance on faith and passion indicates that causes can easily become religious rather than rational (now I've pissed off not only Minotaur but Runner as well), and once that happens, believers respond to reasonable argument (using evidence, documentation and anecdote) with anger and outrage (i.e. the passion component) and eventually to abuse.

Alternatively of course, they try to counter a reasonable position with dead-silence, hoping it will go away. But it rarely does :)

In this case of a 'Stolen Generation': evidence ? One case. Documentation ? Everybody's file. Anecdotes and oral memories: yes, many [but see above].

Cheers,

Joe
Posted by Loudmouth, Saturday, 12 May 2018 11:08:33 AM
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