Tag Archive | Australasia

Maori Elder Sends TPPA Partners, Queen A Formal Notice of Veto of Trade Agreement*

Maori Elder Sends TPPA Partners, Queen A Formal Notice of Veto of Trade Agreement*

Kingi Taurua, a prominent Nga Puhi elder at Waitangi’s Te Tii Marae, has sent a formal notice of veto of the Trans-Pacific Partnership agreement to the embassies and trade departments of its

The document cites the Treaty of Waitangi and the 1835 Declaration of Independence of New Zealand, and states that the New Zealand government does not have “due authority” to sign the TPPA without the agreement of Maori elders, “which [agreement] has not been given”.

Mr Taurua claims that the TPPA would be void in respect of New Zealand’s involvement as a result, should it be signed.

NZ Food Security has obtained a copy of the document sent by Mr Taurua, which is titled “Notice of Non-Assent to the Trans-Pacific Partnership Agreement and Exercise of Constitutional Power of Veto in Respect Thereof”.

The public release of the document comes just as the TPPA is due to be signed in Auckland, New Zealand on February 4 by visiting politicians from countries around the Pacific.

Mr Taurua is currently meeting with other Maori elders at Te Tii Marae in preparation for a visit by John Key, prime minister of New Zealand, and other government officials on Waitangi Day, February 6, after the scheduled signing.

He has previously stated that Mr Key would not be allowed onto the marae if the controversial trade agreement was signed, although a trustee for the marae stated on February 2 that Mr Key would be allowed onto the land.

It is thought that the notice sent to the partner countries of the TPPA is being discussed at the marae in anticipation of the visit, as the document asks the Queen to stand in opposition to the agreement with Mr Taurua “and those other Rangatira o Te Whakaminenga o Ngā Hapū o Nu Tireni” – referring to the other chiefs gathered at the marae – that “agree to … my position”.

The document says that he “requests and requires” the Queen to intervene and act as “Protector” of New Zealand’s sovereignty from “attempts on the sovereignty of our Independent State” by “overseas corporate interests”. At least one other elder has already countersigned the document.

The language of the document echoes that of the Declaration of Independence, which was signed by Mr Taurua’s ancestor, Pareha of Ngati Rehia. He says that another ancestor of his, Te Kemara, was a signatory of the Maori version of the Treaty of Waitangi 1840.

Last year the Waitangi Tribunal found that Maori did not cede sovereignty when they signed the Treaty of Waitangi, and it is apparently this sovereignty by descent – or tino rangatiratanga – that Mr Taurua is claiming he is able to use to formally veto the trade agreement.

The document closes by stating that Mr Taurua “does not give [his] permission to the Trans-Pacific Partnership Agreement being signed in Auckland” by the visiting officials from overseas “which position I take to the full extent of my right to regulate trade in that district.”

The Declaration of Independence, which was approved by the Queen’s predecessor King William IV and ratified by the British government, states that Maori elders would gather at Waitangi each autumn in order to regulate trade.


Related Topics:

New Zealand Police Intimidate Anti-TPP Activists in Their Homes*

The NWOs TPP Will Be Signed Today, but Congress has to Approve It*

Protest Rally Ends with a Call for Fatwa against TPPA in Malaysia*

New Zealand Police Intimidate Anti-TPP Activists in Their Homes*

New Zealand Police Intimidate Anti-TPP Activists in Their Homes*

The New Zealand government is labeling anti-TPP activists as radicals and a threat to national security, while polls show 61% of people oppose the deal.

Police arrest anti-TPP protestors in New Zealand. (Photo: Cameron Burnell/Fairfax NZ

The government of New Zealand has taken a hardline approach that is clearly an intimidation tactic against those who oppose the TPP by calling them radicals and a threat to national security, while ordering police to visit anti-TPP activists at their homes to interrogate them regarding protests later this week, the New Zealand Herald reported Thursday.

“Police are checking in on ‘known activists’ around the country ahead of TPP protests later this week,” the daily said.

Scout Barbour-Evans, an anti-TPP activist from Dunedin, New Zealand, told the newspaper that police knocked on their door at 10 a.m. Thursday.

​As the New Zealand Herald explained, Barbour-Evans is transgender and goes by the gender-neutral pronoun “they.”

They said the police were inquiring into what plans protesters had in regards to their anti-Trans-Pacific Partnership action in Dunedin.

Scout said what the government is doing today regarding anti-TPP activists is comparable to incidents that took place in the country in 1981, when the New Zealand national rugby team was headed to South Africa to play against a local team. But activists in New Zealand protested, saying the game was like condoning apartheid. About 1,500 people were arrested after 200 protests across the country.

​The activist also criticized the presence of armed police at Prime Minister John Key’s State of the Nation address on Wednesday.

Although saying monitoring those who oppose the highly controversial trade agreement was “entirely predictable,” the police measure shows the “disrespect the government has had throughout to people’s right to voice their dissent about this negotiation and this agreement,” said prominent anti-TPP protester Professor Jane Kelsey.

She said the government has carried out many attempts to shut down democratic participation within the country, and more notably against all opposition to the TPP.

“One of the problems they’ve had is that the opposition has been a groundswell throughout the country of ordinary people from ordinary communities. If you look at the people who’ve been engaged in the marches it’s been grandmas and grandpas and people with pushchairs,” the activist added, saying,

“That’s an image the prime minister I’m sure is quite desperate to dislodge.”

Kelsey highlighted the fact the government is making a law and order issue out of the opposition to the agreement, by going as far as calling anti-TPP activists radicals who pose a threat to national security.

​”We’ve been seeing them progressively rolling out this strategy, or this attempt to redefine and create a law and order issue out of it,” she said.

Civil liberties lawyer Michael Bott said the police measure could have a “chilling” effect on freedom of expression and the right to protest.

“These people haven’t committed any crime and yet the police are going to conduct a search or an interview, and there are legal concerns with that,” Bott said.

The measure exposes the concerns the government has surrounding protests, and the fact that they know it is highly unpopular in the country.

The public polls are also very revealing, as the most recent one published by Itsourfuture.org.nx shows that 61% oppose the agreement, while 30% expressed no opinion. Only 9% approved of it, although they did express some reservations.


Related Topics:

Protest Rally Ends with a Call for Fatwa against TPPA in Malaysia*

This is what TPP Looks Like: World Bank Demands Argentina Pay French Company*

Japan to Lift Duties Vegetables, Most Fishery Products under TPP*

TPP Preparedness: New Bolivian Law Forces Investor Disputes to Be Settled Locally*

Obama Delivers the U.S. on TPP Platter*

12 Nations Sold their Sovereignty to a Controversial TPP Deal in Atlanta*

Canada under Pressure from Obama for Quick TPP Approval*

Australian State Leaders Move to Cut Ties with the British ‘royalty’*

Australian State Leaders Move to Cut Ties with the British ‘royalty’*

Australian leaders say the nation shouldn’t wait for the end of Queen Elizabeth II‘s reign to become a republic.

Seven of Australia’s eight state and territory leaders have signed a declaration urging for a home-grown head of state to replace the monarch.

The only state leader not to sign the document, on the eve of Australia Day, was Western Australian Premier Colin Barnett.

He said he was also in favour of a republic, but didn’t believe that “the time was right.”

Others are much more articulate about their support, though. South Australian Premier Jay Weatherill said it would be “the ultimate act of respect” on the queen’s part if she oversaw the transfer.

“She could do it in the elegant and expert way in which she has handled her relationship as head of Australia. I mean if you think about it, what are we waiting for? Are we waiting for her to die? I would have thought that it’s much more respectful to have her supervise this transition,” he told the ABC.

The regional leaders are in tune with the country’s federal leadership. Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull is a known supporter of the republic, pushing the cause in a failed 1999 referendum.

However, he has recently been somewhat less fierce about the issue.

“My own view…is that the next occasion for the republic referendum to come up is going to be after the end of the queen’s reign,” Turnbull said last year.

The republican and monarchist movements have stated their point, too.

Republican Movement Chairman Peter FitzSimons said that “all of Australia’s political leaders now support an Australian head of state.”

“Never before have the stars of the Southern Cross been so aligned in pointing to the dawn of a new republican age for Australia,” he said, referring to a constellation on the national flag.

Gabrielle Hendry, a spokeswoman for the Australian Monarchist League, told AFP “the system works” and provides Australia with “an impartial head of state.”

The U.K. crown’s power is regarded as mainly symbolic in Australia, with opinions divided over the issue. Some favour retaining Queen Elizabeth II, while others believe the monarchy is anachronistic and a colonial throwback.

Popular opinion on a republic is also divided. In 2014, a Fairfax-Nielsen poll showed that 51 % of 1,400 surveyed were in favour of the status quo, with 42% supporting the republic.


Related Topics:

Joint Statement on UN Declaration and the Doctrine Of Discovery

Australia: When Recognition Means the End for the Indigenous

Putting Australia under Raps*

Over 100,000 British Orphans were Sent Overseas as ‘child migrants’*

Now the Queen Can Go Back to Ruling Britain and 15 Other Nations*

The Five Eyes Silencing Snowden, Silencing Us*

What can be made of this Royal Conundrum?*

Keep it in the British Royal Family: Donald Trump and Hillary Clinton are Related*

Royal Babylon

Australia the Police State*

Australia the Police State*

By Melissa Dykes

Australian politician and independent federal member for Denison Andrew Damien Wilkie warned parliament that Australia is becoming a police state.

Wilkie then listed the 10 attributes of this police state:

  1. Surveillance of all electronic devices including phone calls SMS Email, SM and metadata will be stored and accessed without a warrant.
  2. Manipulation of the media, bullying techniques used by ministers against media.
  3. Manipulation of judiciary.
  4. Ludicrous level of secrecy especially in regard to irregular immigration or asylum seekers.
  5. Arrests for pre-crime, merely upon suspicion someone may do something in the future.
  6. People in Australia can be incarcerated indefinitely without trial.
  7. Disregard to international agreements and international laws that Australian Governments including ignoring their own statutes have signed off on (eg. The Rights of the Child and The Refugee Convention).
  8. Parliament is forbidden to debate upon important decisions such as the government secretly deciding to declare war on Syria. No debate, no vote by Australian representatives.
  9. Government safeguard mechanisms bullied and disregarded if they get in the government’s way (eg. the mistreatment on the human rights commissioner recently).
  10. Security agencies acting beyond their legal power, Border Patrol going beyond legal powers (no one lost their jobs, no one was held to account).


Does any of this sound familiar, America?


Related Topics:

Australia Discontinues Services to the People Whose Land It Took*

Australia Bans Children who Refuse Vaccination from Attending Kindergarten*

Australia Unleashes Mass Spying*

Australia Pre-Drugging Kids and Psychosis Risk Syndrome*

A Global Paedophile Ring Busted from Australia*

Australia Still Stealing Indigenous Children*

Australia has Stolen $360 million from Dipping into Personal Accounts*

Putting Australia under Raps*

Right on Cue: Australia Like Canada’s False ISIS Flag Brings in NWO Laws*

Malaysia the Only Country with Opt-out Clause in NWO’s TPPA*

Malaysia the Only Country with Opt-out Clause in NWO’s TPPA*

Malaysia is the only country to be granted an opt-out clause in a side letter to the Trans-Pacific Partnership Agreement (TPPA), Asian Development Bank lead economist Jayant Menon said.

“This actually allows Malaysia to withdraw from the TPPA without even trying to rectify it in Parliament. No other member country can do that.

“How Malaysia was able to secure this, I don’t know. But I think International Trade and Industry Minister Datuk Seri Mustapa Mohamed is a great negotiator,” he added, at the Asean Economic Forum today.

He said the TPPA had been labelled a gold standard agreement, but now that the negotiated text is available, it was significantly watered down to secure compromises.

“Malaysia has been perhaps the most successful in securing exemptions in many sensitive areas, including things like government procurement, reform of state enterprises or government-linked companies and protection in certain areas of intellectual property reforms.

“With so many exemptions, probably it is not a big deal for Malaysia to go through with the TPP after all,” he said.

However, Jayant added that the TPP itself might not become a reality if it didn’t get through the U.S. congress.

“There is no guarantee that it will. The Republicans have to be supported in large numbers as the Democrats are already opposed to it.

“Politics is playing a bigger role now. There is no guarantee that the TPPA will simply pass through Congress. We just to have to wait and see,” he said.

Jayant was speaking as a panel member at the forum on the evolving regional trade architecture and market reaction towards it. – Bernama, January 8, 2016.


Related Topics:

Corporation vs. State: Sweeping TPP Powers Strip Sovereignty*

Over 1,000 Plaintiffs File Lawsuit to Keep Japan out of TPP*

TPP Preparedness: New Bolivian Law Forces Investor Disputes to Be Settled Locally*

Obama Delivers the U.S. on TPP Platter*

12 Nations Sold their Sovereignty to a Controversial TPP Deal in Atlanta*

Japan to Lift Duties Vegetables, Most Fishery Products under TPP*

Canada under Pressure from Obama for Quick TPP Approval*

An Indigenous Australian Approach to Healing Trauma*

An Indigenous Australian Approach to Healing Trauma*

By Jonathan Davis

The Healing Power of Listening in Stillness

People have always experienced pain, and in the vast span of time before the colonial expansion of western culture, indigenous cultures weren’t without their methods of dealing with trauma.

For centuries we’ve largely ignored the wisdom of those among us who are still directly connected to ancestral ways of knowledge. As our modern lifestyle collides with the fact that our Earth is not capable of supporting our current way of life, we are finally starting to look to those who once lived in a state of indefinite sustainability and abundance, for a way forward.

“In order to have sustainable community you have to make sure the people are sustainable. This means healing trauma.” -Jarmbi Githabul, Narakwal / Githabul Custodian

What is Dadirri?

“Dadirri is inner, deep listening and quiet, still awareness. Dadirri recognises the deep spring that is inside us. We call on it and it calls to us. This is the gift that Australia is thirsting for. It is something like what you call ‘contemplation’.” -Miriam-Rose Ungunmerr-Baumann, Ngangiwumirr Elder

When Miriam-Rose Ungunmerr-Baumann speaks of dadirri, she speaks of a form of deep, contemplative listening that is nothing less than a personal spiritual practice. This type of listening in stillness is widely known all across the Australian continent, in many language groups under many names.

“When I experience dadirri, I am made whole again.” Miriam describes.

“I can sit on the riverbank or walk through the trees; even if someone close to me has passed away, I can find my peace in this silent awareness. There is no need of words. A big part of dadirri is listening.”

Miriam-Rose Ungunmerr-Baumann – artist, writer and public speaker

Learning and healing through listening

According to Ungunmerr-Baumann the act of learning, from a very young age, is all about waiting and listening; not asking questions. In a culture where everyone is so well practiced at listening that it becomes a spiritual art, it makes sense that when trauma occurred the people would come together and deeply listen to each other. For this reason dadirri also refers to a form of group trauma healing that brings the deep presence found in the solo practice of dadirri to a group setting. Details of dadirri as group practice can be found in Prof. Judy Atkinson’s book Trauma Trails, Recreating Songlines. The essence of dadirri, in this wider context, is the creation of a space of deep contemplative, heart based listening where stories of trauma and pain can be shared and witnessed with loving acceptance.

In my own experiences with original Australians who are deeply connected to country, I have felt that they are so grounded it’s almost as if the land itself is listening to you, through them.

“Healing country heals ourselves, and healing ourselves heals country.”
– Prof. Judy Atkinson – Jiman / Bunjalung woman, author of Trauma Trails, Recreating Songlines

Emotional Completion

According to Prof. Stan Grof, trauma healing comes from finally completing an experience emotionally that may have been physically completed long ago. The initial moment of pain may have become so overwhelming that we make a subconscious decision to ‘check out’; in other words, we emotionally dissociate. Every part of us screams “Stop, I don’t want to feel this!” The problem is that we don’t stop the emotional experience, we just press pause.

When we don’t have the courage or skills (because we are too young, or were never taught) to actually feel all of the emotions of a traumatic experience, we inadvertently trap the part of it we couldn’t handle, and store it away for later. Dadirri is a practice that allows us to open up this trapped pain and trauma in a sacred and held space and with the support of those around us, we can finally feel it in order for it to be released.

Trauma puts you in a disempowered position that makes it easy for you to be influenced. It interferes with your ability to make clear decisions for yourself.”– Jarmbi Githabul, Narakwal / Githabul Custodian

The importance of a practice like dadirri is that it is completely based on non-judgment. Over time, the story is shared on multiple occasions, and by doing so the telling begins to change. The emotional charge is released a little at a time as the circle around them offers an unwavering reflection of loving acceptance. Very often, the person who has suffered trauma starts to adopt this attitude of loving acceptance toward themselves.

Limbic Resonance and Revisioning

The reason this works, from the perspective of neuroscience, is because of: limbic resonance, mirror neurons and neuroplasticity. The notion of limbic resonance asserts that without consistent love and acceptance during childhood our brains don’t develop properly. The part that becomes developmentally stunted is our resilience against emotional distress. Similar problems can occur in people of all ages when they suffer trauma. The process of limbic revisioning is about rewiring the neural structure of a person who has suffered trauma or emotional neglect; in order for this to occur there needs to be an external example for the limbic brain to mimic.

Deep, respectful, contemplative, heart-based listening based on loving acceptance instead of judgment may well be the optimal reflection for a traumatised limbic system to use as a model for restructuring. Mirror neurons see this outer, compassionate reflection and fire internally in the same way; and neurons that fire together wire together. With a bit of repetition, neural re-wiring occurs (thanks to neuroplasticity) which gives a neurological explanation as to why dadirri is good for helping people who have suffered trauma.

I feel we’re fortunate to be living in a time where, whether we’re indigenous or non-indigenous, we’re waking up. We’re recognising the common threads between ancient and modern ways of healing ourselves, and by doing so discovering the techniques that actually work.

Miriam-Rose Ungunmerr-Bauman speaking about Dadirri at an Indigenous Theology Symposium


Related Topics:

Inuit Leaders Call for Healing and Education in Wake of TRC Final Report*

The New Year Blues: Saudade

The People of the Dreamtime

The Stolen Generation

In the Beginning

Their Story

What is Uluru

Traditions and Kinship Ties

Reclaiming Identity through Islam

Inspiring Muslim Woman Donates $1 for Every Hate Tweet She Receives*

Inspiring Muslim Woman Donates $1 for Every Hate Tweet She Receives*
By Amanda Froelich

The anonymity of the internet has given too many cowards false bravado. Shielded by a computer screen and miles of distance, it’s easy for individuals to nitpick and spout anger at others they do not understand or may be jealous of.

This, of course, is a form of cyber-bullying, one of the unfortunate side effects of the technological age.

When assaulted by hateful comments, one can either get mad, ignore the statement, or respond in a kind manner (which ends up getting exhausting). OR, they can do what an inspirational Muslim woman is doing, and turn the hostility of Internet trolls into a “force for good” – one hate-filled tweet at a time.

As HuffPost reports, Dr. Susan Carland is an Australian academic and well-known figure in the country’s Muslim community. An unapologetic Muslim woman says she has become all too accustomed to the “stream of toxicity” that deluges her Twitter feed on a daily basis.

She wrote in an op-ed for the Sydney Morning Herald: 

“I regularly get tweets and Facebook messages from the brave freedom-fighters behind determinedly anonymous accounts telling me that, as a Muslim woman, I love oppression, murder, war and sexism. Their online abuse ranges from requests to leave Australia, hope for my death, insults about my appearance (with a special focus on my hijab), accusations that I am a stealth jihadist, and that I am planning to take over the nation, one halal meat pie at a time.”

““I felt I should be actively generating good in the world for every ugly verbal bullet sent my way.”

At first, the brave activist tried to deal with the trolls by kindly engaging with them, blocking them, or simply ignoring them. But as a believer of Islam, none of the methods felt right.

“None of them felt like I was embodying the Quranic injunction of driving off darkness with light,” she wrote in the op-ed.

“I felt I should be actively generating good in the world for every ugly verbal bullet sent my way.”

That’s why Carland decided to do something incredibly unique: For every hate-filled tweet she received, she would donate one Australian dollar to UNICEF.

While her ‘haters’ weren’t too pleased, the ingenious method of dealing with cyber criticism quickly went viral in a very positive way.

Carland said she’s been “overwhelmed” by the outpouring of support.

She shared with the Morning Herald her specific reason for supporting the charity:

““I particularly liked the idea of giving to UNICEF, as so often they were assisting children who were in horrific situations that were the direct outcome of hate — war, poverty due to greed, injustice, violence. These children seemed like the natural recipients for the antidote to hate,” she said.

This week, both the American and Australian chapters of UNICEF took to Twitter to thank her.

Dr. Carland teaches at Melbourne’s Monash University and is married to talk-show host Waleed Aly. This isn’t the first time she’s been featured via mainstream. In 2009, Susan was named one of the 500 most influential Muslims in the world by the Royal Islamic Strategic Studies Centre.

While a large following is pleased and inspired by her method of dealing with trolls, it hasn’t actually worked, according to Carland. She told The Morning Herald that the haters haven’t been silenced, and, in fact, have even criticized her choice of charity. 

According to her, some haters just “can’t help themselves.” 

You cannot control others, but you can control how you respond to situations. She is embodying this principle in a brilliant and beautiful way.


Related Topics:
Blindfolded Muslim Man Tells Parisians “Hug me if you trust me.”*

A Small Act of kindness Disarms anti-Muslim Protester.*

Apology to German Muslims from the PEGIDA Movement*

Muslim Charities Are Helping To Raise Money for Burned Black Churches In The US*

Eritrea: Where Muslims and Christians Live in Peace*

Christians Join Forces with Muslim Group Hezbollah to Fight ISIS in Lebanon*