Thursday 20th of June 2019

Blogs

Fourth generation Australian, grandson of a Gallipoli ANZAC thoroughly disgusted with where Howard has led this country. (Gary B

John Howard didn't just appear on the political stage in the 1990's. He has decades of form. His record alone on race issues should have been enough to convince any fair minded person that he was not fit to be an Australian Prime Minister. This is the man who Malcolm Fraser says, alone in the Fraser Cabinet, opposed asylum for Vietnamese boat people; who vehemently opposed sanctions against the apartheid regime in South Africa; who raised the issue of Asian immigration and condemned multiculturalism; who voted in the Parliament against a resolution congratulating the Holt Liberal Government for abandoning the White Australia policy and reaffirming that Australia's immigration program must not be based on race. How any educated person could have voted for this man in 1996 is beyond my comprehension. Thanks for doing something to expose the true John Howard to more Australians.

Not Happy, Joh.......n! ()

TIM MILFULL submitted this review/mini-profile from up in Brizzy, which we thought we'd publish here as a blog entry. Tim is a freelance writer and critic up that way who hones in on the link between the Joh years and the subsequent determination of many Queenslanders like MK, whose political consciousness was forged in those grim times, to keep a very close watch on Australia's democratic freedoms elsewhere as a result. Tim interviewed Margo for QUT's UTOPIA Magazine last week, and I think a review/profile will be running in an upcoming July issue. Thanks, Tim - hope you don't mind our corny title.

Not Happy, Joh.........n! by Tim Milfull

Sitting with journalist Margo Kingston a few weeks ago, I commented on the skyline of inner-city Brisbane and how, on the Joh Bjelke-Petersen scale of economic success, Queensland must be doing something right with all the cranes dipping and bobbing over constructions sites.

Absolute tripe (Rob Bruce)

Hysterical, overblown and completely unsubstantiated. At least the spirit of Webdiary lives on, hypocrisy and selective interpretation rules.

Good show Margo, true to form. Fleece the punters to line your pockets.

One breath of fresh air, many more needed! (Ray Miller)

Thanks Margo for putting your book together, it is a breath of fresh air amongst the stench of neo-liberal ideals that have the illusion of democracy while attacking the very democracy of OUR communities in which we live. Books by an Australian author Sharon Beder

Offer from NHJ! reader/webhoster ()

NHJ! reader Andrewd writes with an offer to NHJ! punters:

From: Andrewd:
Margo and co,

I loved the book. And yes, what is happening in Australia is sooo wrong. So what I would like to do/offer if possible is to offer some free web hosting to any individuals and groups that feel they have something to say.

Jack wrote: Andrew: Great stuff, and thanks. Will stick your email up today - just to confirm, is it OK if I just put up your contact email address, and advise interested types to contact you direct?

Andrew: No probs with giving out my email on the list, and they can contact me directly. As far as 'interested types', it would be good to give young journalists a go, but as long as they are prepared to use the hosting package and have something to say, I will set them up.

Also the hosting package is for 1 year.

Thanx

Andrew D

NHJ! says: Interested types, drop Andrewd a

Side-stepping truth. Again. ()

So, it's two weeks since our book was released. We've been told, by Penguin and other reliable sources, that sales are going through the roof and people are going into bookshops demanding Margo's book. Thanks so much for all your support. Maybe we'll actually get a Mike Moore sales tally before we know it?!

As i said on Saturday, the Jewish News has avoided engaging the real issues in my chapter on Hanan Ashrawi and pro-Zionist lobbying in Australia. Over the weekend, Margo and I wrote a response to this, and it'll be appearing in this week's edition, out Thursday. If you want to see how Israel/Palestine is really covered in our media, check it out.

Now briefly, Iraq. With the so-called handover occurring last week in the war-ravaged country, we seem to be receiving mixed messages from our media outlets on the true nature of the country. The first appearance of Saddam last week was a momentous event, no question about it, but how much do we really know about what tran

Quick and honest review (S and J Daily)

Not bad Mango, indeed, very good.How-hard's legacy needs to be documented. Even if there are a few gaps. Guess that is the nature of getting a book up for publishing, quickly.You are not Mike Moore, as somebody said. (We live in Oz, don't we? Maybe he/she came onto wrong website...)

Prof. Flint's efforts to look after media diversity might have been mentioned - Aunty, like Fairfax, needs help too! All power to you for allowing some history to get out there, at this critical time. All the best.

Of What? The review or the state of the world? (Rossleigh Brisbane)

Milan Kundera wrote: 'The struggle of man against power is the struggle of memory over forgetting.' I must state that I am - like Osama Bin Laden, Saddam Hussein, the Labor Party, Andrew Wilkie, Margo Kingston, Mick Kelty et al - not one of the good guys. So therefore I guess my opinion can be ignored in this 'Dirty Harry knew how to deal with criminals' world we now inhabit.

But thanks for including in the public record your experiences of how the 'Conservatives' are anything but. I fear that most of your book, however, is a bit too esoteric to cause marching in the streets.

It only takes a single thought to move the world... In NHJ, I found more than Single Drop of Water! You, Margo, Antony, Jack and

Do I dare disturb the universe? - T.S. Eliot

The difference between this time and other times is that this time in my life there is a way of voicing my disturbing opinions thanks to the most dangerous medium of all, the web. It is comforting to read all the reactions to the book and the ideas behind.

In a perfect world we'd get more books and websites like this one: judicious, eloquent, and animated by compelling ideas ...You prepared for this book launch like many would for a flood, many Central European bloggers are amazed how alert Australian political debate is at this election.

So be alarmed if you aren't reading Not Happy, John during the Antipodian election fever of 2004, you're missing out. (smile). Always more interested in policy than politics, NHJ serves both. Margo started Webdiary in order to compound the power of all those who believe in social justice, giving children a decent start in life, protecting the environment, and Australia working in coope

ANZAC PM, NOT. (Mick Stevens)

First up. Congratulations on your candid book. It basically summarised the lies, spin and deceit of Howard and his cohorts. What many of us suspected but couldn't articulate you have said it all.

What disturbs me about John Howard is how he will use not only the Aussie armed forces but the ANZAC legend for his own grubby political gain. Every ANZAC day I always wait to see what stunt he pulls for his own political profit. As a former member of the RAAF I am disgusted with what he has done with the millitary, its image and those who made the ultimate sacrifice for OUR country and OUR democracy, everything that's a hinderance to our PM and his big business cronies.

On another point: it is one thing to write a book that engages those of us interested in such things. But the majority of Australians have no engagement with politics - it is those people who decide elections, not those of us who read books about Howard's crappy form of non-democracy. I hope your book DOES

Tim Milfull is a freelance writer and critic based in Brisbane. (Tim Milfull)

Sitting with journalist Margo Kingston a few weeks ago, I commented on the skyline of inner-city Brisbane and how, on the Joh Bjelke-Petersen scale of economic success, Queensland must be doing something right with all the cranes dipping and bobbing over constructions sites. Kingston smiled and squirmed hyperactively, her knees jiggling. She escaped Joh

A life changing experience (Tony Ramsden)

It's rare indeed that a book comes along and changes your life. This is such a book. I've never been so energized by anything - ever. Years of apathy have been blasted away by this unforgetable work of courage and love. Margo, you've created something vital here. It should be read by every single Australian. The battle lines are very clear now. This man Howard must be put back in his retrograde, narrow little 50's box until he's learned to treat others with respect and some simple human compassion.

Thank you, Margo for the hard work you've put into this book on our behalf. It won't quickly be forgotten.

Australian Democracy - Use it or Lose it! (Chris Saliba)

I read Not Happy, John in two days. Why? Because it's so much, to use the title of Anthony Trollope's novel on political corruption, The Way We Live Now.

Margo gives us a good memory jolt. There were so many things I'd forgotten that Howard had foisted upon us. Like the disgraceful lockdown of parliament just to let George W. Bush fly in and out again. Something is seriously wrong when citizens are barred from OUR OWN house.

As Margo says, Howard may be the major problem at the moment, but he will be moving on soon enough - whether booted out by Australians at the next election, or 'gracefully' exiting himself. The imperitive is to clean up the mess that's been left behind, to call for more genuine, straightforward democracy.

Mark Latham's words on grassroots democracy ring hollow for me. In his book The Enabling State he wrote: 'I do not share Dick Morris' view that direct democracy will be applied across the board. The Federal parliament

Bloody Good Read (James Woodcock)

Congratulations Margo, what a great book and what a great service to our democracy. I hope this website turns into a rallying point for people who share our values. I am reading NHJ again and going back to the Webdiary Archive to re read the events, opinions and narrative as they were happening in real time. Really powerful stuff and I recommend everyone use NHJ as sort of a guide or executive summary to Webdiary.

One comment: The old leftie in me says Margo's yearning for the old days of our democracy is just a little too nostalgic. Was it ever that good? Hasn't Howard simply made the power structures just more transparent and obvious to what they are anyhow? Having said that, the kind of social and economic change we need will not happen without the reform of political institutions and processes Margo advocates.

Rage/Thanks/empowerment/helplessness (Richard Crane)

A wonderful book. I laughed, I cried, I was apathetic to issues, it lit the fire in me for others. The only criticism I would make of it is that it does not go far enough into the deals etc that currently protect all political parties from citizen scrutiny - I recall a Radio National Background Briefing that covered in detail how the Privacy Act didn't apply to political parties.

Loved it.

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