This is an excerpt from a talk Green Left Weekly journalist Ewan Saunders gave at a Walkey Media Talk called "Trust me, I'm a journalist" on February 27 in Brisbane. *** In answer to the question have journalists lost the public trust, it depends on what media you’re talking about. I don’t think it’s the right question to be asking because the way the mainstream media develops and its trajectory is not changing.
Under the banner of the Lock the Gate Alliance, about 100 demonstrators assembled outside Brisbane’s Convention Centre for the Queensland Gas Conference and exhibition on October 9 to protest their exclusion from the Australian Petroleum and Production Association’s (APPEA) inaugural Coal Seam Gas (CSG) Conference and Exhibition. Lock the Gate formally requested that its observers be permitted entry to the conference seminars concerning “social licence to operate”.
About 300 people rallied for equal marriage rights outside today's Liberal National Party Queensland state conference in Brisbane July 14. Protesters waved banners and signs opposing the recently elected Campbell Newman government's recent attacks on lesbian, gay, bisexual, trans and intersex (LGTBI) people’s rights.
About 500 people took part in the Sydney part of the Global Bersih 3.0 actions, which were held in 85 cities outside Malaysia to coincide with a 250,000-300,000-strong mass mobilisation for free and fair elections in Malaysia on April 28. See also:
About 1000 people attended a food security forum in the Brisbane Convention Centre on March 12 to defend agricultural land and water against mining for coal and coal seam gas (CSG). The forum, chaired by controversial radio broadcaster Alan Jones, was organised by the Lock the Gate Alliance and GetUp! Country singer Lee Kernaghan, who is passionately opposed to the destruction of Australian bushland by the mining industry, opened and closed the forum with music.
A “free trade agreement” being negotiated by Australia, the United States and other countries could have profound impacts on crucial public policy issues including food security, natural resource management, access to essential medicines, public assets and more. Negotiations for the Trans-Pacific Partnership Agreement (TPPA) – including Australia, the US, New Zealand, Chile, Peru, Singapore, Brunei, Malaysia and Vietnam – are taking place in unprecedented secrecy.
Toowoomba’s Catholic community expressed shock at the sacking of Bishop William Morris after a five-year Vatican investigation. But Father Peter Kennedy, of South Brisbane church St Mary’s in Exile, wasn’t surprised. Sacked from the church in 2009 for “unorthodox practices”, Father Kennedy continues to front his congregation at the Trades and Labour Council building courtesy of the Queensland Council of Unions. He, along with many others in the St Mary’s community, is responsible for Micah Projects, now one of Australia’s most respected homelessness projects.
Environmentalist Bob Irwin, father of the late “Crocodile Hunter” Steve Irwin, said he will continue to protest against the coal seam gas (CSG) industry despite his arrest at a protest on April 12. Police detained Irwin along with Queensland Greens spokesperson Libby Connors and Queensland Party MP Aiden McLindon at a protest organised by Lock the Gate at Tara, 300 kilometres west of Brisbane. They were charged with disobeying a police direction. They will appear in court in May.
Residents of Queensland’s Western Downs and their supporters have witnessed arrests, police harassment and some exciting victories over the past week in their fight to prevent coal seam gas expansion on the Tara estate, near Chinchilla. During a protest organised by Lock the Gate Alliance on March 29 Friends of the Earth campaigner and Queensland Greens co-founder Drew Hutton was arrested and charged with impeding the construction of a coal seam gas pipeline. Mr Hutton refused bail conditions and faced 30 days prison, but was soon released on unconditional bail.
More than 100 protesters joined a March 14 blockade of the Queensland Gas Corporation (QGC) gasworks on the QGC-owned property “Kenya” near Tara, 300 kilometres west of Brisbane. The Kenya blockade, which received coverage on all major news networks, covered a number of entrances to the vast property. It was the first widely-publicised action of civil disobedience in the national “Lock The Gate” campaign. The “Lock The Gate” campaign — an alliance of farmers, landholders and environmentalists — is demanding a moratorium on coal seam gas (CSG) mining. See also:
Two hundred people rallied outside the Queensland parliament on March 5 to oppose plans by coal seam gas company QGC to expand its operations near the town of Tara, 300 kilometres west of Brisbane. Friends of the Earth campaigner Drew Hutton chaired the rally. Other speakers included Tara resident Scott Collins as well as campaigners and farmers from the Lock The Gate Alliance — a national campaign to keep coal seam gas companies off private land.
See also: Editorial: Floods and climate link cannot be denied John Pilger: Floods Australia's ‘Katrina’ Floods show need for public insurance scheme Venezuela: New laws, funds to cope with floods, homelessness Over the course of one month, Australia has seen a series of major flood events in Queensland, Victoria and Tasmania.
People who grew up in Queensland can tell you about the afternoon storms that heralded the start of summer. Like clockwork, shortly after the kids finished school, the clouds would start to gather. And then that strange quiet, before a great gust of wind would send leaves swirling and branches swaying. And then the rain would come. Huge droplets of rain that would smash down for maybe an hour, maybe more — and then it was over. Sure enough the next day it would come again — the monsoonal downpours that would cool everything down after a sweltering summer’s day.
The Aboriginal Rights Coalition (ARC) held the "Deadly Dance 4 Justice" on November 19, which drew 100 people to the Globe Theatre for a night of live music, poetry and spoken-word performance, and raised more than $1500 for campaigns. Headlining was Byron Bay act Fyah Walk, accompanied by "Didgtronica" artist Tjupurru, and local acts Kindling, Homeless Yellow and Joss. 4zzz-fm hosted the night and punters enjoyed an incredible vegan feast courtesy of Food Not Bombs. To get involved in the ARC, email Ewan at firstname.lastname@example.org or phone 0401 234 610.
More than 60 people attended Brisbane's premiere screening of a new documentary by Sydney's Actively Radical TV about the construction of the Alyawarr people's Protest House at their walk-off camp near Ampilatwatja in the Northern Territory. The film has interviews with unionists from across the country who worked with the community to build the house. It also features community members and leaders.
The coroner in the third inquest into the death in custody of Mulrunji Doomadgee on Palm Island in 2004, Queensland deputy chief magistrate Brian Hine, has handed down an “open finding”. This means no criminal charges will be laid against senior sergeant Chris Hurley. Delivering his report on May 14, Hine cited the unreliability of witnesses, who changed their stories many times throughout the various investigations and inquiries, as the reason for his inability to make a definitive finding. But he also said there was evidence of collusion by police officers to protect Hurley.