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When white is too white and black is not black enough.

On the Wednesday the 28th of September 2011 Justice Bromberg handed down his decision in the Racial Discrimination case Pat Eatock v Andrew Bolt and The Herald and Weekly Times Pty Ltd.

Andrew Bolt lost and without a doubt the judgement was a true and just judgement. Some people are claiming it is a denial of free speech. That’s garbage, what it means is you can not publish hate filled defamatory racist material. As simple as that.

I would not normally write about this topic as it falls outside the confines of this site which is Judicial Corruption. In dealing with judicial corruption I also cover political and police corruption to a degree as that is where a lot of the judicial corruption starts and is facilitated.

But the above case covers a number of things that this site has raised or have been raised about this site by various commentators. That being freedom of speech, defamation and fair comment.

What I find most disgusting about the Pat Eatock v Andrew Bolt case is that after losing Bolt and others have claimed he has been denied his right to freedom of speech, which is false. To run this argument really undermines and blurs a real freedom of speech issue that has been covered on this site, which also involves Bolt, and that is the Australian Prime Minister Julia Gillard trying to stop reporting on her corrupt past.

Click here to read the full judgement: Eatock v Bolt [2011] FCA 1103.

If the nine people who took legal action had of sued for defamation at least some of them if not all would have won (some were defamed more than others) and nobody would not be talking about some delusional denial of freedom of speech. 

This is what is says at section 423 of the judgement:

423: I have taken into account the value of freedom of expression and the silencing consequences of a finding of contravention against Mr Bolt and HWT. Given the seriousness of the conduct involved, the silencing consequence appears to me to be justified. The intrusion into freedom of expression is of no greater magnitude than that which would have been imposed by the law of defamation if the conduct in question and its impact upon the reputations of many of the identified individuals had been tested against its compliance with that law. Additionally, I take into account that the conduct was directed at an expression of identity. An expression of identity is itself an expression that freedom of expression serves to protect. That expression also deserves to be considered and valued. Identity has a strong connection to one of the pillars of freedom of expression – “self-autonomy stems in large part from one’s ability to articulate and nurture an identity derived from membership in a cultural or religious group”: Keegstra at 763.

Background of the case.

Andrew Bolt wrote two articles in April 2009 titled, “It’s so hip to be black” (online asWhite is the new black“)  and August 2009 titledWhite fellas in the black”. The articles on the links have been amended but are also at the bottom of the judgement un-amended.

Bolt named 18 people in those articles and 9 of them took legal action.

I have read the articles and the view that I came to is that Bolt is saying that the people in the articles are not really Aborigines at all and are only claiming to be Aboriginal so they could benefit financially by claiming grants and jobs set aside for the Aboriginal people and by doing this they are stealing from real Aborigines. My view is he is also saying that if you are part Aboriginal and have white skin and look European you should not claim to be Aboriginal as you are a fraud. The key evidence that Bolt is using is the colour of the people’s skin and as it turns out lies that he tells about their background and their decision to be called Aboriginal.

Under the law if you want to run that argument you can. You are entitled to your free speech. But free speech does not allow you make up lies about people and distort the truth to back up your argument. That is Bolt’s major problem. He actually named people and gave specific evidence to support his claims. With the exception of their skin colour, evidence that in large parts turned out to be untrue.

Some people think free speech allows you say anything and everything you want. It does not and never has. It does come close, but there are laws that restrict it and this is best set out by Justice Bromberg at section 238 where he says:

238: The right of freedom of expression at common law is, by definition, qualified by those exceptions otherwise provided by law. The law of defamation imposes significant limitations on freedom of expression. Other laws imposing limitations include laws dealing with blasphemy, contempt of court and of Parliament, confidential information, the torts of negligent misstatement, deceit and injurious falsehood. Further, a wide range of legislative provisions dealing with obscenity, public order, copyright, censorship and consumer protection place restrictions on the exercise of the right to freedom of expression. These laws recognise that there are legitimate countervailing interests which require the imposition of limitations upon freedom of expression.

What also should be put in there is that if you defame someone and there is also a racial element to that defamation then it is a breach of the Racial Discrimination Act.

Just after section 226 Justice Bromberg puts in the following quote:

Freedom of expression

WITHOUT Freedom of Thought, there can be no such Thing as Wisdom; and no such Thing as public Liberty, without Freedom of Speech; which is the Right of every Man, as far as by it, he does not hurt or control the Right of another.

Benjamin Franklin,

The New England Courant, Issue 49, 9 July 1722

The overall case is best set out in the summary of the judgement where at section 3, 4, 5, 6 and 7 where it says:

3. Ms Eatock complains about two newspaper articles written by Mr Andrew Bolt and published by the Second Respondent (“the Herald & Weekly Times”) in the Herald Sun newspaper and on that paper’s online site. She also complains about two blog articles written by Mr Bolt and published by the Herald &Weekly Times on the Herald Sun website.

4. Broadly speaking, the nature of her complaint is that the articles conveyed offensive messages about fair-skinned Aboriginal people, by saying that they were not genuinely Aboriginal and were pretending to be Aboriginal so they could access benefits that are available to Aboriginal people. Ms Eatock wants the law to address this conduct. She wants declarations and injunctions and an apology from the Herald & Weekly Times. She calls in aid Part IIA of the Racial Discrimination Act 1975 (Cth) (“the Racial Discrimination Act”) which includes sections 18C and 18D. She claims that by their conduct, Mr Bolt and the Herald & Weekly Times have contravened section 18C of the Racial Discrimination Act.

5. In order to succeed in her claim, Ms Eatock needed to establish that:

  • It was reasonably likely that fair-skinned Aboriginal people (or some of them) were offended, insulted, humiliated or intimidated by the conduct; and
  • That the conduct was done by Mr Bolt and the Herald &Weekly Times, including because of the race, colour or ethnic origin of fair-skinned Aboriginal people.

6. Mr Bolt and the Herald &Weekly Times dispute that the messages that Ms Eatock claims were conveyed by the articles, were in fact conveyed. They deny that any offence was reasonably likely to be caused and also that race, colour or ethnic origin had anything to do with Mr Bolt writing the articles or the Herald & Weekly Times publishing them. They also say that – if Ms Eatock should establish those elements which she needs to satisfy the Court about – their conduct should not be rendered unlawful, because it should be exempted or excused. For that purpose, they rely on section 18D of the Racial Discrimination Act.

7. Section 18D exempts from being unlawful, conduct which has been done reasonably and in good faith for particular specified purposes, including the making of a fair comment in a newspaper. It is a provision which, broadly speaking, seeks to balance the objectives of section 18C with the need to protect justifiable freedom of expression.

The defamatory lies.

The background of the people who took legal action are set out in sections 67 to 164 of the judgement.

Bolt either out-and-out lied about a number of their backgrounds or incompetently got it so badly wrong he should be ashamed of himself. Either way the number of mistakes was not one, two or three, it was extensive.

Justice Blomberg lists some of them at sections 398 to 407. Some are below.

398: In part, the cultural references where given, were erroneous. But more fundamentally, the Aboriginal cultural upbringing which was available to be presented at least in relation to nine of the eighteen individuals dealt with by the Newspaper Articles, was not included. Those facts were relevant, in the context of a comment in part based upon cultural considerations. Their omission meant that the facts were not truly stated. For that reason also, the offensive imputation was not a fair comment.

402: Mr Bolt wrote that Ms Cole was raised by her “English-Jewish” or “English” mother (1A-2; 2A-24). That statement is factually inaccurate because Ms Cole’s Aboriginal grandmother also raised Ms Cole and was highly influential in Ms Cole’s identification as an Aboriginal. He wrote that Ms Cole “rarely saw her part-Aboriginal father” (1A-3). That statement is factually incorrect. Ms Cole’s father was Aboriginal and had been a part of her life until she was six years old. Ms Cole later lived with her father for a year whilst growing up.

405: In my view, Mr Bolt was intent on arguing a case. He sought to do so persuasively. It would have been highly inconvenient to the case for which Mr Bolt was arguing for him to have set out facts demonstrating that the individuals whom he wrote about had been raised with an Aboriginal identity and enculturated as Aboriginal people. Those facts would have substantially undermined both the assertion that the individuals had made a choice to identify as Aboriginal and that they were not sufficiently Aboriginal to be genuinely so identifying. The way in which the Newspaper Articles emphasised the non-Aboriginal ancestry of each person serves to confirm my view. That view is further confirmed by factual errors made which served to belittle the Aboriginal connection of a number of the individuals dealt with, in circumstances where Mr Bolt failed to provide a satisfactory explanation for the error in question.

406: Mr Bolt said of Wayne and Graham Atkinson that they were “Aboriginal because their Indian great-grandfather married a part-Aboriginal woman” (1A-33). In the second article Mr Bolt wrote of Graham Atkinson that “his right to call himself Aboriginal rests on little more than the fact that his Indian great-grandfather married a part-Aboriginal woman” (A2-28). The facts given by Mr Bolt and the comment made upon them are grossly incorrect. The Atkinsons’ parents are both Aboriginal as are all four of their grandparents and all of their great grandparents other than one who is the Indian great grandfather that Mr Bolt referred to in the article. Mr Bolt did not seek to deny the evidence of Aboriginal ancestry given by the Atkinsons but insisted that their ancestry was accurately conveyed by the statements made and extracted above.

Another part is that Bolt said this in one of the articles: ”Larissa Behrendt has also worked as a professional Aborigine ever since leaving Harvard Law School, despite looking almost as German as her father … But which people are ‘yours’, exactly, mein liebchen? And isn’t it bizarre to demand laws to give you more rights as a white Aborigine than your own white dad?” and this is what Justice Bromberg pointed out: “To her knowledge, there is no German descent on either her father or mother’s side of the family although she assumes that because of her father’s Germanic surname, there may have been some German descent. Her paternal grandfather came to Australia from England. Mr Bolt also referred to her father as being white. Her father had dark skin.”

Fair Comment

There is a good chance that Bolt would have been protected by section 18D of the Racial Discrimination Act 1975 if he had got his facts right, or at least made a decent effort to get them right, but the judge found he did not.

Section 18D is simular to the Fair Comment defence in a defamation proceeding. It is best described like this:

“A comment is the subjective expression of opinion in the form of a deduction, inference, conclusion, criticism, judgment, remark or observation which is generally incapable of proof.”

“In order to be fair, it must be shown that the facts upon which the comment is based are truly stated and that the comment is an honest expression of the publisher’s opinion relating to those facts. Where a comment imputes evil, base or corrupt motives to a person, it must be shown that such imputations are warranted by, and could reasonably be drawn from those facts.” (Click here to read the full article)

Defamation

My view-point is that it is highly unlikely the News Ltd will appeal. Even if they were to win (which is highly unlikely and would be scandalous if they did), they are inflaming the chance for defamation proceedings which they would lose badly. Also  it would not be worth while to continue the damage that has been done to the reputation of Bolt and the company. 

A number of commentators on various sites have said that some if not all of my posts are defamatory. Well the only thing defamatory is by the people who make those statements.

The reason I can write what I do is because I always get my facts right and I am covered by numerous defences to any proceeding against me. Some of those defences are set out on Wikipedia as such:

  • Statements made in a good faith and reasonable belief that they were true are generally treated the same as true statements; however, the court may inquire into the reasonableness of the belief
  • Opinion is a defense recognized in nearly every jurisdiction. If the allegedly defamatory assertion is an expression of opinion rather than a statement of fact, defamation claims usually cannot be brought because opinions are inherently not falsifiable.
  • Fair comment on a matter of public interest, arguments made with an honest belief in their soundness on a matter of public interest (such as regarding official acts) are defendable against a defamation claim, even if such arguments are logically unsound; if a reasonable person could honestly entertain such an opinion, the statement is protected. (Click here to read the full article)

The bottom line is if you get your facts right and the comments that you make can be supported by the facts you can say what you want. I know I do and will continue to do so.

Bolt has been around a long time in the media and so have the editors and lawyers who approved the articles. They would have been fully aware that they were breaking the law and defaming the people, but did not care. Whether or not they knew they were breaking the Racial Discrimination Act, who knows, but the lawyers at least should have known and do now.

Justice Bromberg’s judgement only has an impact on people who want to defame others with racial overtones thrown in.

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25 Comments on “When white is too white and black is not black enough.”

  1. Arthur of Bendigo October 3, 2011 at 1:28 pm #

    Shane,

    To the best of my knowledge at no stage prior to the court proceedings was there much ‘noise’ relating to actual heritage about those whom Bolt wrote. Their discomfort was wrt the claims that they received career defining favours because of their “whiter shade of pale”. The suggestion that the tone of the two articles in question be likened to the Nazi regime was a disgusting and offensive courtroom tactic.

    Many have made much ado about the sloppy journalism by Bolt and for such an experienced writer as he there is no excuse, the fact is though that selective discrimination occurs in Australia, if the perpertators were upfront and transparent it would probably be more acceptable to those who lament the practice.

    The limitations of ‘freedom of speech” should now be tested by those who are likewise offended by the extreme rantings of some activists, it amazes me how intolerant those of the academic clique are to criticism of their mantra.

    Arthur of Bendigo

    • amcoz October 3, 2011 at 4:00 pm #

      Having partially studied the history for this RDA law, and a brief biog on the judge deciding the case, it seems to me that the case was viewed through a very heavy bias to one side of the ideological spectrum without balance from the opposite perspective, particularly for the meaning of the written (and implied) words.

      Notwithstanding errors, some of which seem rather trivial to me, and beside the real point I think Bromberg’s interpretation of some presumed, invisible words between the printed lines of BoltA’s columns is nonsense in the extreme and I wonder how the case would have been decided if the judge had overlooked, what seems to me, a stupid inanity in such presumption.

  2. VERONICA NICHOLLS October 3, 2011 at 3:49 pm #

    SHANE, WHY DID THEY NOT SUE FOR DEFAMATION? I BELIEVE THEY HAD MANY WELL KNOWN LAWYERS ADVISING THEM…VERY CURIOUS,
    I AGREE WITH WHAT BOLT WROTE AND I ALSO BELIEVE THERE SHOULD HAVE BEEN A PANEL OF JUDGES, WHY SHOULD ONE MAN BE GIVEN THE RIGHT TO ACT LIKE GOD.
    I AM SURE TONY ABBOTT AND HIS WIFE AND CHILDREN MUST BE DEEPLY OFFENDED AT THE VILE AND DEFAMATORY TWITTERING OF JULIAN BURNSIDE.
    SHAME SHAME SHAME OF YOU JULIAN BURNSIDE

    • Shane Dowling October 3, 2011 at 4:54 pm #

      I do not know why they did not sue for defamation. Probably because they wanted to make a point not get money. I think the reason why will come out in the not to distant future. Maybe they are using it as an initial case and will sue for defamation.
      Given the case maybe a panel of judges would have been a good idea. It does happen sometimes but rarely. That is up to Chief Justice Keane to make the call.
      You can not have it both ways. You support Bolt then bag Julian Burnside. A lot of people say what Bolt wrote was “VILE AND DEFAMATORY” which I agree. You say what Julian Burnside said was “VILE AND DEFAMATORY” which I also agree.
      But if people are going to support Bolt’s right to say what he said then they also need to support Julian Burnside’s right to say what he said. Otherwise they are not being consistent.

      • Pat McCann October 3, 2011 at 9:07 pm #

        If you compare the Burnside twit with justice Brombergs ruling, then it would appear the family of Tony Abbott are ALL entitled to take Burnside to court, otherwise we are not consistent!

    • Pat McCann October 3, 2011 at 8:59 pm #

      You are spot on,Veronica…the family of Tony Abbott have been defamed, insulted and lied about more than the Aborigines in the Bolt case!,,They were not called paedophiles! Bromberg accused Bolt of sarcasm and mockery, Burnside was much worse and even the apology was phrased as an insult! Ridicule from a Q.C., like Burnside shows how disgusting the judicial service has become, how can we trust those meant to uphold the law!

      • VERONICA NICHOLLS October 4, 2011 at 1:55 pm #

        THANK YOU FOR YOUR REMARKS.

        I WOULD ALSO LIKE TO SAY THAT MILLIONS OF AUSTRALIANS AGREE WITH WHAT BOLT SAID. HOW MANY WOULD AGREE WITH WHAT MITCHELL AND BURNSIDE SAID ABOUT TONY ABBOTT. TONY ABBOTT IS A GENTLEMAN AND I COULD NEVER EVER IMAGINE HE WOULD USE SUCH DISGUSTING LANGUAGE ABOUT ANYONE.
        TONY ABBOTT IS THE MOST SUCCESSFUL AND HARD WORKING OPPOSITION LEADER EVER ….JUST ASK THE LABOR PARTY.

  3. Michelle Burrows October 3, 2011 at 7:36 pm #

    I know the Bolt court case was about race or degrees thereof but I think a core point made in the Bolt articles will now go un-discussed and unaddressed from this finding. Namely corruption of the funding process. The example I’ll use is that allegedly a male homosexual lawyer identifying as indigenous received funding for a FEMALE Indigenous person to study ways to educate Indigenous kids. From this funding ALL homosexual persons are now able to enter or apply for whatever they please imho. In the past allegedly the lawyer involved has won funding without discrimination so in my view there is no reason for this person to also apply for and win funding for females. Indigenous females are a minority group that have a hard enough time getting education and funding imho. The last thing females need is to now be competing with males no matter what gender their sexual partner happens to be (and vies versa). I believe that homosexuality is not a choice. People are born with a sexual preference. It’s a DNA thing. However for funding people don’t supply a DNA test to qualify. They use a birth certificate. The gender assigned here is what society uses. Unless people alter their gender physically and on their birth certificate they need to use the gender assigned at birth for funding, employment, entry to competitions… you get the drift… And I’m not talking about people of a certain race, religion, culture, age, or sexual preference. I’m talking about all people. Otherwise in an effort to favour a few we discriminate against many. And sometimes these many are disadvantaged minorities in their own right deserving of a vigilant guard Imho as a blogger with no law training of course.

    • Shane Dowling October 4, 2011 at 12:17 am #

      You see that is what happens when people (Bolt) start spreading lies. This is what it says in the judgement at section 150 “He was also offended at Mr Bolt’s treatment of his receipt of the Black Women’s Action in Education Foundation Scholarship. He regards Mr Bolt’s account as misleading because the scholarship was open to indigenous men and women.” This went uncontested by Bolt and News Ltd so they are in fact saying they were wrong.

      What happens when they spread the lies? Someone like you spreads them even further. From what you say “From this funding ALL homosexual persons are now able to enter or apply for whatever they please imho”. Where did you get that from? The gay part has nothing to do with anything but now the story is spreading that it is gay people who are also a problem.
      The scholarship was open to indigenous men and women, no mention of gay. Where did the gay part get into the discussion? From Bolt. Why did he even put it in his story? He was meant to be running a story on how funding was being rorted, what has someone’s sexual preferences got to do with that? Who cares if he is gay. Personally I rather not know, none of my business and not relevant to the story, but Bolt felt it was relevant for some reason.

      • Paul October 4, 2011 at 2:34 pm #

        Perhaps Bolt (Bear of little brain that he is sometimes) was in a button-pushing mood that day.

      • Shane Dowling October 4, 2011 at 11:08 pm #

        Probably, but he went overboard and it is also the editors who have to take as much responsibility. And did they get it legalled? That’s what they employ the lawyers for, so they do not end up in court.

  4. Melba October 4, 2011 at 12:26 am #

    I tend to agree in principal with what Bolt wrote. For example, if you want to be called a jew, there is a criteria in which this is established. The religion is passed by the mother.
    It does not matter if your father or grand father or somewhere some one was jewish.
    It has to be stablish if indeed you are entitle to be called jewish. The question here is who is aborigine ???? How do we define the race???? by a great great grand father??? or a 1/5 part aborigine .Who is a full fledge aborigine….. I know that is in the nature of human being.. if they can get some benefit for it, anything will do to mould their indentity, in order to receive monetary gains and benefits.
    This is the question that we need to adress…

    • amcoz October 4, 2011 at 8:04 pm #

      I agree with you Melba as I, too, think that was all Bolt was trying to address. And, really, if an error and relied on what others may have written, whether it was my father, or grandfather, that was non-white, or whether my mother was an alien, as long as I can cite some minuscule DNA from 30,000 years ago I’ve got it made. The mere fact that we are all part of the one HUMAN race doesn’t matter either, because our stupid law says I can be offended by anyone who thinks I’m not entitled to get stuff for free. This can go on ……

    • Shane Dowling October 4, 2011 at 11:03 pm #

      Below is what people have to prove to get Aboriginal benefits and grants.
      An Aboriginal or Torres Strait Islander is a person of Aboriginal or Torres Strait Islander descent who identifies as an Aboriginal or Torres Strait Islander and is accepted as such by the community in which he (she) lives.

      I got it from a governemt report on exactly what we are discussing. I have not read it all but one thing that I found interesting is this quote from page 9.

      “To illustrate the inconsistencies the historian Peter Read, drawing on documented sources, has offered the following conflation:
      In 1935 a fair-skinned Australian of part-indigenous descent was ejected from a hotel for being an Aboriginal. He returned to his home on the mission station to find himself refused entry because he was not an Aboriginal. He tried to remove his children but was told he could not because they were Aboriginal. He walked to the next town where he was arrested for being an Aboriginal vagrant and placed on the local reserve. During the Second World War he tried to enlist but was told he could not because he was Aboriginal. He went interstate and joined up as a non-Aboriginal. After the war he could not acquire a passport without permission because he was Aboriginal. He received exemption from the Aborigines Protection Act—and was told that he could no longer visit his relations on the reserve because he was not an Aboriginal. He was denied permission to enter the Returned Servicemen’s Club because he was.3”

      The link for the whole report: http://www.aph.gov.au/library/pubs/CIB/2002-03/03cib10.pdf

  5. Joan Davidson October 4, 2011 at 2:30 pm #

    I agree with Andrew Bolt. This judgement is actually an attack on freedom of speech. If the article Bolt wrote is read properly, you can see that he is only stating that these people are receiving or have received grants intended for those disadvantaged aborigines who wish to proceed with their studies. The people who have actually received them do not appear to be disadvantaged by virtue of their colour. I know that there were a couple of minor errors of fact, but they really were only minor not huge errors of fact as so many people have tried to say.
    I also feel that the rude and insulting comments made many of the people outside the Court after judgement had been brought down were far more insulting and humiliating than anything said by Andrew Bolt – perhaps he should take THEM to Court for vilification!

  6. Michelle Burrows October 5, 2011 at 10:36 am #

    The Trial of Andrew Bolt (II): Real Aborigines versus Phoneys

    Keith Windschuttle

    https://www.quadrant.org.au/magazine/issue/2010/12/the-trial-of-andrew-bolt-ii-real-aborigines-versus-phoneys

    Some may find the above written by Windschuttle of interest.

  7. MikeO October 5, 2011 at 4:26 pm #

    I am disappointed in your bias Shane. I can only think that for some reason you have a personal wish to not understand what Andrew Bolt is saying. I have read his blog as have a couple of 100000 others have also and found him to be fair and honest. He tries to address social inequities and finds much in the system for aboriginals that produces this. My personal experience is that our aboriginal adopted daughter can obtain assistance for many things that gives her a distinct advantage over my white brother in law. Having neglected his teeth for many years he ended up in a serious situation and because he was on the dole we had to pay several thousand dollars for dental work. Our distinctly aboriginal married daughter also had some serious dental problems but all free for her. She has had opportunity thrown at her whole life yet she was raised entirely in white society and socially is not different from white society. The law that Bolt ran foul of prevents free speech about as the aboriginals call them “Phoney” aboriginals. I have had a life with advantage better than most I do not think I should have been able to claim extra privilege if I had found something in my heritage which meant I can claim aboriginality. I suggest you read http://www.quadrant.org.au/blogs/qed/2011/10/the-question-of-aboriginality and https://www.quadrant.org.au/magazine/issue/2010/12/the-trial-of-andrew-bolt-ii-real-aborigines-versus-phoneys. There are in Australia 75000 aboriginals who live in remote areas and in dire need of special provisions. The government spends $100000 each on them with little financial control. The sensitivities built up by the aboriginal industry to question where the money goes is beyond belief. An edifice has been built which absorbs billions of dollars for aboriginal welfare that cannot be questioned and does little to support those in need. That is what you are supporting Shane shame on you.

    • Shane Dowling October 6, 2011 at 11:17 pm #

      Mike you say that I do not understand what Bolt is saying, but the reality is you do not understand what I am saying. The key argument I put forward in my post is:
      “What I find most disgusting about the Pat Eatock v Andrew Bolt case is that after losing Bolt and others have claimed he has been denied his right to freedom of speech, which is false. To run this argument really undermines and blurs a real freedom of speech issue that has been covered on this site, which also involves Bolt, and that is the Australian Prime Minister Julia Gillard trying to stop reporting on her corrupt past.”
      He named people, lied about those people and then ridiculed them based on those lies all while implying that they are rorting the system because their skin is to white for his liking. Then he cries denial of free speech.
      There is no doubt that rorting goes on with aboriginal funding as it does with every other type of government funding and if people want to raise that and try and change it they can. But doing what he did is not the way to go about it.
      The free speech being closed down is a joke, people are debating it here, and you put a link to a site (same as Michelle in the comments) where they did a posting on it. And others are discussing it. So where is the free speech being denied?
      Most of the money being wasted that you talk about is probably being wasted on and by fat cats in Canberra.
      I am curious why you did not pay for your daughters dental work given that you say that you payed for your brother in laws. You say:
      “I have had a life with advantage better than most I do not think I should have been able to claim extra privilege”. It seems to me that you did claim extra privilege by failing to pay for your daughter’s dental work. Even more so given that you paid for your brother in law.

      • MikeO October 7, 2011 at 9:19 am #

        You are really are a biased person aren’t you? One who does not want too see. Windschuttle is liable in the articles I gave you links for. He as Bolt did had to name people in order to show there are phoney ones. If he had not then the argument comes back name one. The same as Robert Manne was challenged to produce 10 members of the stolen generation. Your ignorant reference to my family situation really does show you have an agenda. If I were to name my step daughter in order to give substance to my argument she could say she is offended and take me to court because she is of a different race. The law is saying that you cannot comment directly about particular person if they are of a different race. Ask yourself why are there numerous well qualified people saying that it is an attack on free speech. You are saying it is not just that you have to stick within guidlines that extend libel laws to offence if the is a racial difference. Pathetic just pathetic and totally blinkered.

      • Shane Dowling October 7, 2011 at 11:57 pm #

        I think that you will find that Windschuttle did not call any of them “phoney”, He was quoting other people. He also did not lie about anyone nor did he ridicule them for the colour of their skin. You can not compare the two. From a legal viewpoint Windschuttle is fine, but he was still able to name people and run an argument. See, no denial of free speech on the topic.

        The so called well qualified poeple you point to have got it wrong as there are many well qualified people saying the same as me.

        I did not ask you to name your step daughter. What I asked in the previous comment is below which you have not anwsered. I also note that now it is “my step daughter” before it was “our aboriginal adopted daughter”.

        “I am curious why you did not pay for your daughters dental work given that you say that you payed for your brother in laws. You say:
        “I have had a life with advantage better than most I do not think I should have been able to claim extra privilege”. It seems to me that you did claim extra privilege by failing to pay for your daughter’s dental work. Even more so given that you paid for your brother in law”.

  8. Lyn October 9, 2011 at 11:54 pm #

    Andrew may get carried away sometimes, but he does bring to our attention the crap Labor policies.
    He’s covered this scam carbon tax extremely well and exposed it for what it is.
    The interview with Tim Flannery who has stated that we wont expect to see ANY change in global temperatures for up to a thousand years after the country is crippled from this. It is the greatest hoax ever. What the hell is the point then? Because it’s a load of garbage.
    http://blogs.news.com.au/heraldsun/andrewbolt/index.php/heraldsun/comments/the_answer_flannery_refused_to_give_just_000005_degrees/
    After previously stating alarmist rantings the sea levels would reach 8 storeys high within a few years, but backed up with no facts the bloke is a moron.
    The IPCC climate change peer review have also had allegations of manipulating the science and totally biased, govt funded unscientific propaganda claims..Oh really!
    We then have the signed petition from 31,000 climate environmental scientists who reject the climate change ‘science’..
    http://www.petitionproject.org/index.php
    Leading scientists reject global warming scam http://blogs.news.com.au/heraldsun/andrewbolt/index.php/heraldsun/comments/gillard_deceives_again_i_am_not_alone

    Moderator (Shane Dowling) I have allowed this comment but it quickly goes way off-topic so no more off-topic Lyn.

  9. Guardianangel October 30, 2011 at 8:21 pm #

    Andrew Bolt’s opinion pieces usually zero in on the ludicrous, usually overly political correct aspects, of particular issues.
    The two articles which brought the court down on his head were about, at their heart, a wish for us to see, and for people of Aboriginal descent themselves to come clean with themselves about, what trading on the Aboriginal part of their heritage has become.
    Government funded incentives, bodies and projects aimed to “bring up” the disadvantaged Aboriginal people in our community have been utilised by those who obviously have a mixed heritage and who know how to take advantage of the opportunites which present themselves. He is simply pointing out that those that need real help probably haven’t got the wherewithal to work the “system”. It’s his observation and opinion and he laid it out for us to take in unabridged. . In so doing he gave offence to these paler skinned Aboriginal people who took him to court. This opinion piece was then pulled apart by Judge Bromberg , where not only did he find some factual inaccuracies which may be true, but he even challenged Bolt on his tone and manner. i.e. the way the pieces were written. This in itself is the outrageous part of the judgement. Bolt cannot write his honest opinion about this and by logic similar pieces without having to look over his shoulder. .We now have Big Brother.
    What this judgement has done is that it has actually made the perception of difference between human beings- what we call “racism”- more entrenched in our consciousness. We now have learned, because punitive powers exist to punish us if we step over the line, that we must be aware of the ‘otherness’ of that red yellow or black human being. We can’t treat them or think of them as we do of ourselves and not think of race. We have to notice their blackness and take care what we say.
    This is a step backward in relations between human beings and this law makes us all alienated from each other.
    To have Bolt forced to the courts for simply speaking his mind is a 1984 scenario which should be fought at all costs..
    This is totally about Freedom of Speech and Opinion.

  10. Pdq November 13, 2011 at 4:56 pm #

    I agree with the opinion of the majority of these posts. Bolts trial was a disgrace and a fundamental attack upon our right to free speech.

  11. Pdq February 15, 2012 at 4:46 pm #

    You’ve lost me Shane. Andrew Bolt expressed a perfectly legitimate opinion and was attacked and vilified for it. He was completely valid. An aboriginal must be full blood to qualify as such. Full stop. All fair skin Aboriginals are imposters.

  12. Sam August 7, 2012 at 3:46 pm #

    Why didnt bolt appeal? so you must be full blood? how can aussies call them selfs Australian by that logic, how does most of the world identify themselfs? you do know pure blood promotes inbreeding, just look at the royals

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