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April 2018

The very model of a modern Professor of the English language, from California's Fresno University.


That's tenured Professor of English at California's Fresno University, Randa Jarrar.

You may not believe what you are about to watch is real.  If that's so, thank your lucky stars, because the reality implicit in her continued employment is too awful to contemplate.

You may have anticipated the language warning, but if you're also sensitive about actively encouraging acts of terrorism, grenade throwing etc, perhaps you might think twice about watching and listening.

Is there any question that our civilisation is in decline?


Bush-hating Fresno State professor passes out fake number, floods crisis hotline with calls

Kaitlyn Schallhorn
a person wearing a scarf: Randa Jarrar, an author and professor at Fresno State’s Department of English, sparked an uproar after calling the late Barbara Bush "amazing racist" who raised a "war criminal."© Provided by Fox News
Randa Jarrar, an author and professor at Fresno State’s Department of English, sparked an uproar after calling the late Barbara Bush "amazing racist" who raised a "war criminal."

The professor who came under fire for celebrating the death of former first lady Barbara Bush has caused another college’s mental health crisis hotline to become flooded with calls after she posted the number online as her own.

Randa Jarrar, an English professor at the California State University, Fresno, attacked Bush online just hours after the 92-year-old died Tuesday.

“Barbara Bush was a generous and smart and amazing racist who, along with her husband, raised a war criminal. F*** outta here with your nice words,” Jarrar tweeted from her account, which has since been made private.

“I’m happy the witch is dead. Can’t wait for the rest of her family to fall to their demise the way 1.5 million Iraqis have,” she continued.

The social media post drew intense backlash online, with one user posting her Fresno State email address and phone number, the Arizona Republic reported. In response, Jarrar said she hadn’t yet activated her work number and posted a different one instead, according to the newspaper.

“If you really wanna reach me, here’s my number ok?” the tenured professorsaid.

But the number she gave out was fake and was really connected to a 24-hour crisis hotline at Arizona State University. It is run by EMPACT, a suicide prevention center. 

According to the Arizona Republic, the hotline was “inundated with phone calls.” While it normally receives about five calls per week, it was still getting between 50 to 70 calls an hour by Wednesday, an ASU spokesperson told the newspaper.

The spokesperson said it does not appear that Jarrar has any affiliation with the university, located hundreds of miles away from Fresno. 

“Your freedom of speech does not entitle you to have all these people spam an actual mental health crisis line. Please stop,” Dr. Eugene Gu, who the Arizona Republic said is a doctor at Vanderbilt University Medical Center, tweeted in response to Jarrar.

ASU said that the excess of calls to the hotline did not seem to have blocked anyone from receiving help who actually needed it. The Fresno Bee reportedthat the call center brought on additional staff to help with the influx of callers.


But Lori Prentice, who runs an in-home homeless ministry, told the newspaper that Jarrar giving out the phone number was a “kick in the teeth” for people who work with others dealing with crisis.

“There is a strong probability that someone who finally found the courage to contact the suicide hotline couldn’t get through due to Jarrar’s caustic misdirection,” Prentice said.

In a statement, Fresno State President Joseph Castro said the university “share[s] the deep concerns expressed by others over the personal comments made” by Jarrar. A university investigation is underway.

“Professor Jarrar’s expressed personal views and commentary are obviously contrary to the core values of our University, which include respect and empathy for individuals with divergent points of view, and a sincere commitment to mutual understanding and progress,” he added.


And here she is in full and in context.

From the state that brought you John McTernan, thinker in residence - the $300K part time chief innovation adviser

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There's Mr Hajdu proclaiming the discovery of Adelaide and Jay Weatherill by Al Gore.  Like it's a good thing.

What is wrong with the Liberal Party that causes their people to tolerate nonsense like this?

From The Australian today.

Innovation adviser’s $300,000 mystery job

Tom Hajdu was appointed South Australia’s chief adviser on innovation last year. Picture: Matt Turner.
Tom Hajdu was appointed South Australia’s chief adviser on innovation last year. Picture: Matt Turner.
  • The Australian

The performance of a Canadian entrepreneur hand-picked by former premier Jay Weatherill for a $300,000-a-year part-time job as South Australia’s “chief adviser on innovation” is hard to measure, the new Liberal government says.

Tom Hajdu, who moved to the state in 2015 on a federal distinguished-talent visa, was appointed by Labor last June without the post being advertised.

He was given a three-year contract “to disrupt our innovation system — to introduce new ideas and new ways of thinking”.

Industry Minister David Pisoni met Dr Hajdu last week but would not say whether he wanted the contract reviewed, and this was a matter for the ­department chief executive.

“Employment contracts are matters for the (department) chief executive,” Mr Pisoni said.

Neither Mr Pisoni nor a Labor spokesman could list Dr Hajdu’s key performance ­indicators.

A Department of Industry and Skills spokeswoman said the contract’s terms were not publicly available.

Dr Hajdu’s role is similar to Queensland’s “chief entrepreneur”, held by Shark Tank judge Steve Baxter.

Like his predecessor Mark Sowerby, Mr Baxter’s 12-month term is unpaid and centres on promoting entrepreneurship and investment in Queensland.

South Australian Premier Steven Marshall has promised to appoint a chief entrepreneur to lead the establishment and management of a $27.5 million entrepreneurs’ hub on the old Royal Adelaide Hospital site.

Mr Marshall’s office did not respond when asked whether this role would be separate to Dr Hajdu’s.

Dr Hajdu holds a PhD from Princeton University and co-founded music production company Tomandandy in 1990.

A digital entrepreneur and ­director of Adelaide University’s Institute for Contemporary Music and Media, Dr Hajdu was lauded by Labor before his appointment for helping establish GigCity Adelaide, which delivers ultra-fast internet to innovation hubs.

Dr Hajdu declined to say whether taxpayers were getting value for money from his work: “I welcome the new government’s vision to establish a higher rate of business start-ups in this state than anywhere else in Australia.

“It’s this vision that will help turn our great ideas into the businesses and jobs of the future.”


Here's Mr Hajdu in action in Sydney a couple of years ago.

I got to 4.20

And this is the great guru talking about Adelaide's revolution.


96 year old Wally Scott-Smith retires after 78 years guarding Martin Place Cenotaph on Anzac Day

Thanks to Jason Morrison for this inspiring story of selfless service to others.

Wally Scott-Smith retired yesterday after 78 years guarding the Martin Place Cenotaph on ANZAC Day.
He’s 96 years old, and tried to sign-up for WW2, but was ineligible because of bad health. So, he’s seen caring for the memorial as his service. 
Yesterday, after the Dawn Service, he was given a standing ovation and acknowledged by The Governor.
Wally would attend every major service across the year in Martin Place, and carried a box of tissues to “offer ladies who were overwhelmed and teared up”. 
Another of our finest generation.



Magnificent speech from the Prime Minister of France, Edouard Phillipe - at the opening of the John Monash Centre

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Prime Minister Edouard Phillipe delivers his speech in French (with subtitles) - he's introduced about 48 minutes in.

(It's definitely worth forwarding to the 1.08 mark to hear the French choir sing Waltzing Matilda!!!!!)


Mr Prime Minister,
Madam Minister,
Mr Prefect,
Members of Parliament,
Mr Chair of the Community of Communes,
Elected representatives,

“He is entirely alone now with his little life of nineteen years, and cries because it leaves him.” The young man who was crying was German. The man who wrote that was also German. It was Erich Maria Remarque. It is taken from his book “All Quiet on the Western Front” which was inspired by the horrors he, along with millions of others, witnessed in the trenches. Coming here, seeing this centre and tour, looking at the names of the 11,000 Australians who died for France and for freedom, I could not help thinking of the terrible loneliness which these thousands of young Australians must have felt as their young lives were cut short in a foreign country.

A foreign country. A faraway country. A cold country whose earth had neither the colour nor texture of their native bush. A faraway, foreign country which they defended, inch by inch, in Fromelles in the Nord region, in Bullecourt in Pas-de-Calais and of course here, in Villers-Bretonneux. As if it were their own country. And it is their own country. “The earth is more important to the soldier than to anybody else,” continues Erich Maria Remarque, “the earth is his only friend, his brother, his mother. He groans out his terror and screams into its silence and safety”. For many young Australians, this earth was their final safe place. For many of them, this earth was the final confidante of a thought or a word intended for a “loved one from the other side of the world”. Loved ones who would only learn the sad news several months later.

Prime Minister, as a keen student of history, I can tell you: it is rare to turn the tide of a battle. And even rarer to do so twice in quick succession. The first time was right here, on 24 April 1918. The Germans wanted to finish things off. In a letter to his wife in January 1918, Australian Brigadier General Harold Elliott, known as “Pompey”, wrote: “The enemy are sending all the best men from the Russian front, and any prisoners we get are full of tales of the preparations the Bosche are making to settle us for good this time.” One of the goals was to take Amiens. To get there, they had to pass through Villers-Bretonneux. On the 17th, it was raining shellfire. The Australian troops stood firm. In fact, they went one better because on the 24th, at 10 p.m., with the help of the British, they counter-attacked. After the fiercest of battles, parts of which took place on the very site of the memorial, they repelled the Germans and went down in history.

And that’s when the tide turned for the second time. It was then that a meticulous, wise and dogged man took centre stage. An engineer, the son of Prussian Jewish immigrants who had worked hard to pay for his studies and had quickly joined the army reserves of a young Australian nation. That man was John Monash. It was 4 July 1918. The Allies were back on the offensive. But thanks to Monash, they had a new attack strategy. They were combining tanks with infantry, using the tanks as “moving fire” to allow the men to advance in relative safety. After 93 minutes, the troops had completed their mission. This has been noted in history because Monash, with typical British composure and Prussian precision, had calculated that the operation would take 90 minutes. So he was not far off the mark, at a time in the War when, as you know, soldiers often fought for hours to gain just a few metres. This strategy, which even surprised the Germans, would subsequently be employed on a much larger scale, with the outcome which we all know. So this was how this Australian engineer, with his unerring instinct, came to be hailed as one of the best Allied tacticians, on par with France’s Estienne and Britain’s Fuller.

Then came the episode which perhaps struck me the most. It was when King George V of the United Kingdom and the British Dominions, Emperor of India, grandson of Queen Victoria, conferred a knighthood on the field of battle to the son of Prussian Jewish immigrants who had gone to Australia to start a new life. An act which has come down to us through the ages, and which reminds me of an act by another great king - this time a French one. I am talking about Francis I, who on 15 September 1515, at the battlefield of Marignano, dubbed Chevalier Bayard “the knight without fear and beyond reproach”. And so, after this gesture by George V, Australia had its Bayard. The Bayard of the bush.

We cannot relive these stories. The mud, the rats, the lice, the gas, the shellfire, the fallen comrades - we can never truly imagine what it was like. So we must tell them. We must show them. Again and again. Show the faces of these young men whose lives were snuffed out in the mud of the trenches. Show the daily lives of these 20-year-old volunteers from far away who listened only to their youthful courage, to their love for their country, or that of their parents or grandparents, to die here in Villers-Bretonneux. Show it with the help of modern technology, without taking our eyes off the names etched onto the memorial - names which are real, not virtual. We must also embody, experience and pass on the friendship which now unites the people of the Somme, the Hauts-de-France region and its representatives, and the thousands of Australians who come here each year to pay their respects. For them, I have just one simple message, which I believe all schoolchildren in the north of France now learn: “We will never forget Australians”. To which you reply in Australia, “Lest we forget”.

We will never forget their courage. We will never forget that they sacrificed their young, happy and peaceful lives to experience the horrors of war thousands of miles from their homes, when they had no obligation to do so. We will never forget that 100 years ago, a young and brave nation on the other side of the world made history by writing our history. “Lest we forget”.



Congratulations (and goosebumps!!!!) to Christian Li, winner of the Menuhin Competition

10 years old!  The youngest ever competitor to win the Menuhin Competition performing Summer from Vivaldi's The Four Seasons and Jaehyuck Choi's Self in Mind.

On the eve of Anzac day he reminds me of my great-uncle who won the open violin competition at the Royal South Street competition at the age of 17!

Congratulations Christian and to Leslie John and the musicians, writers, engineers, architects, doctors, artists and all those who gave their lives that we should live in peace and freedom........

Lest We Forget.

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Hillary feels so bad that people had to hide their support for her. Ask Anne Summers!

After 6 years we are right on the moment when the Slater and Gordon/GILLARD  "House of cards comes tumbling down" (as one of my legal advisors put it yesterday).

Bear with me - there are a couple of Is to dot and Ts to cross - but I can say it's the widows and orphans fatality fund that's the key to their undoing.

In the interim - on a scale of 1 to 10, where do we plot Hillary, Anne Summers et al in their disconnection from reality?