Sunday, February 21, 2016

Your ABC?

It would be remiss of the pond not to note a recent outpouring by a valiant fighter for freedom of ideas and speech, still fighting the culture wars of the last century ...

Indeed, indeed. The revolutionary Mr Uhlmann ...

Now of course there are dangerous radicals bemused by other spectres ... you know the sort that read The New York Times and What Happened to Jane Mayer When She Wrote About the Koch Brothers ...

But it seems these lickspittle lackeys are just followers of the wicked Frankfurt School academics who have introduced a virus into the United States ...

Indeed, indeed.

Now some might be off enjoying The Psychologists Take Power (currently outside the paywall), in which sundry shrinks sell their soul and the capacity for effective torture to the military, our brave, intrepid freedom fighter must stand alongside the Catholics, bashing the gays, because after all, they've only had two thousand years of it, and we can never have enough gay bashing, can we ...

Ah the tolerance police. That just had to pop out like a hoppy toad, allowing as it does the lavishly tolerant to express their tolerance of the intolerant by labelling the tolerant intolerant the tolerance police ...

Or some such thing. What a joke, and so the usual language unfolds, whereby heretics, new moralism, righteousness and the inquisitor's zeal - all the standard language of the Catholic church - is deployed in new form, in exactly the same way as science is turned, by fiat and magic, into a discussion of the new climate science religion, with its moralism, righteousness and superstition ...

Can George Orwell be far from us at this moment, with words flung around with careless indifference?

Yet for all the concluding blather about William Roper, as silly a man as his father in law, Sir Thomas Moore, honoured by the Soviets for his communist-inclined Utopia, stripped of their history and pressed into service by a second rate playwright of the stolid kind, the pond saw this little outing more as a job application for the reptiles than as anything meaningful or useful or insightful ... though it did incline the pond to write like More wrote, as Rosseus, about Luther ... and  "throw back into your paternity's shitty mouth, truly the shit-pool of all shit, all the muck and shit which your damnable rottenness has vomited up".

But that's actually a little too direct and frank, when confronted by mealy mouthed humbug of the usual kind.

Instead it leaves the pond with only one question, as Chris Uhlmann signs himself, in this opinion piece, as the ABC's political editor, and presumably took reptile coin for so describing himself ... with not enough a disclaimer that the "opinions contained herein and disinterred are the opinion of the author's and not the ABC's".

Is this your ABC at work?

Congratulations if it is, but it isn't the pond's ...

Are such simple proprieties now lost forever?

Is this where journalists endlessly talking to other journalists, and journalists endlessly opining to other journalists, has finished up, and is this where the ABC now finds itself?

There was a time when journalists just shut and reported the thoughts and deeds of others.

There is now a time when journalists just never shut up ... never stop tweeting ... and never stop making themselves the centre of the story and of the drama ... too often dressed up in the guise that they're freedom fighters for truth, justice and liberty, when it might just be blather about the right of Catholics to sail on in their bigoted way unencumbered by anyone daring to make mention of their bigotry ...

This heroic pose probably goes with the declining relevance and usefulness of journalists, but golly gosh, it's tedious all the same ...


  1. Hi Dorothy,

    How heartening it is to see Uhlmann defending free speech with his potted (or is that potty) history of Neo-Marxism. Who knew they had become so powerful, is a Global Marxist government just around the corner? Will we no longer be able to insult and abuse as the fancy takes us?

    I have however been a little disappointed that as a staunch defender of free speech, Uhlmann has remained so quiet on the gagging of his former colleague Nick Ross, who made the mistake of attempting to "speak truth to power" about the Coalition's NBN plan.

    Still I'm sure it is only a matter of time before the fearless Uhlmann exposes the cabal of "fellow travellers" in the highest echelon of the ABC's management, who are suppressing the truth from us all!


  2. Their rwnj lickspittle Uhlmann thinks r-a-t-b-a-g spells radical. He would wouldn't he.

  3. "There was a time when journalists just shut and reported the thoughts and deeds of others."

    But butt ... when journos just report the thoughts and deed of others, we damn them as "stenographers". So, damned if they do and damned if they don't and basically just damned all round.

    But I can't see why Uhlmann is so critical, other than rank stupidity (have you ruled out stupidity ?) of the American Tolerance Commissar for condemning Tones and the Reactionaries (name for a rock band ?). Surely the Commissar was merely exercising his right to free public speech ?

    As I am when I exclaim that 'Uhlmann should be jailed for fraud because he pretends to be a competent, thinking journalist when he is clearly neither'. Nobody should want to prevent me from saying that, should they.

    1. About the only thing journalists have learned to shut up about is facts, GB.

    2. Quite, Merc, but then "Whereof one cannot speak, thereof one must be silent."

  4. Dear DP,you have prosecuted the case against Uhlmann and like journalists with style, as always. Your links certainly added strength and munition against the modern neo-conservative traveler of the Uhlmann Institute.

  5. Some years ago, I attended a trivia night that was MC'd by Chris Uhlmann. He did quite a good job. Perhaps he should have just stuck with that sort of role?

  6. I think he got lost up his own butt.

    Yes, he copped vicious twitter flak for a pretty innocuous tweet.

    That's hardly a road to Damascus moment and certainly not a sure sign of a vast neoMarxist conspiracy to undermine freedom of speech.

    How is it that complete tools on twitter suddenly represent Western institutions?

  7. I see spawn of Seligman in your NYRB link DP. So much for psychology and science, eh DP? And so much done for prestige, power and money. Fucken psychs. Fucken warpigs. Fucken CONservatives. fucken shit for brains. And not only there, these scum sprouting phony science are fucken here also doing dirty business. Libtards love it. You couldn't make this shit up for tv, it's biblical, yeah, but too sciency... yet for real they do make it up.
    Professor Maximinus Friedrich Alexander de Crinis (29 May 1889 in Ehrenhausen near Graz – 2 May 1945 in Stahnsdorf near Berlin) held a Chair in psychiatry in Cologne and Berlin, and was a medical expert for the Action T4 Euthanasia Program who wrote the Euthanasia Decree, signed by Adolf Hitler on September 20, 1939.

    The New York Review of Books, February 25, 2016 Issue
    The Psychologists Take Power By Tamsin Shaw
    ...In August 2015, the psychologist Brian Nosek and 269 coauthors published a report, “Estimating the Reproducibility of Psychological Science,” on their attempts to replicate the conclusions of one hundred studies published in papers in three psychology journals. Only 39 percent of the replication attempts were successful. There has subsequently been widespread debate about both faulty and fraudulent methods used by psychologists. Such findings cannot have been encouraging for the Department of Defense if it has entrusted our national security to this branch of science.

    Mind Hacks
    The CIA’s inner circle of white elephant specialists
    ...Ekman was awarded a contract to train ‘behavior detection officers’ at US airports using a technique called SPOT (Screening Passengers by Observation Techniques) based on detecting facial expressions – part of a $900 million programme. It was widely criticised as lacking a scientific foundation, there has been not one verified case of a successful terrorist detection, and evaluations by the Department of Homeland Security, the Government Accountability Office and the Rand Corporation were scathing.

    The New Yorker, January 14, 2015
    Trying to Cure Depression, but Inspiring Torture​ By Maria Konnikova
    ...Since then, the findings have been expanded to a major longitudinal project, the Penn Resiliency Program. The program to date has included more than seventeen controlled studies and has measured the approach in more than twenty-five hundred children and adolescents. Its current projects include an ongoing one in two Philadelphia school districts; a sister program in South Tyneside, Hertfordshire, and Manchester, in England; an offshoot in Australia’s Geelong Grammar School; and a program specifically targeted at early adolescent girls, the Girls in Transition Program.

    1. CounterPunch, December 24, 2014
      Weaponizing Psychology By Geoff Gray
      ...With the publication of the James Risen’s book “Pay Any Price: Greed, Power and Endless War”and the release of the Senate Torture report, it has become abundantly clear that the American Psychological Association colluded with the CIA and DOD in enabling torture. A large number of military psychologists as well as private vendor psychologists participated in torture. The American Psychological Association provided ethical cover for the psychologists as well as for the Bush administration. A small number of the top leadership of the APA, including presidents Koocher and Levant, successfully pushed through guidelines designed to enable psychologists to participate in “torture by another name”despite the fact that the membership disapproved of them. ... Why did the American Psychological Association take this unethical course when every other healthcare discipline, including the American Medical Association, the American Nursing Association, and the American Psychiatric Association, did the very opposite and in no uncertain terms absolutely forbade their members from participating in torture?

      To understand how this happened, we need to consider the economically distressed position of the field of psychology in the early 2000s. While this is not an excuse for what happened, it explains why some in the APA leadership were responsive to anything that might relieve this distress...

      The Guardian
      Torture: Why did the CIA spend over $180m on bad science? By Martin Robbins
      ...The CIA built up a multi-million dollar system of bad science that insulated them from the truth about torture. The psychologists involved should be banished from the scientific community

      The Daily Beast
      The Luxury Homes That Torture and Your Tax Dollars Built By Michael Daly
      ...The CIA paid torture teachers James Mitchell and Bruce Jesser more than $80 million... As they now live out their wildest dreams, their barbarity has cost the U.S. far more. James Elmer Mitchell and John Bruce Jessen are not the first Americans to employ waterboarding and other “enhanced interrogation techniques” against our enemies. But they are almost certainly the only ones to get rich doing it. They did so by employing what is widely dismissed as “voodoo science” based on misapplied principles in a program that CIA records suggest produced little, if any, intelligence of significant value. And they might have gotten even richer. The Senate Intelligence Committee report says they secured a contract with the CIA in 2006 valued “in excess of $180 million.”

    2. Don't ya just love that "empirically validated work in the field of positive psychology" now? haha

    3. Master resilience training in the U.S. Army. Reivich, Karen J.; Seligman, Martin E. P.; McBride, Sharon American Psychologist, Vol 66(1), Jan 2011, 25-34. [record 10 of 14 for positive psychology > resilience]
      The U.S. Army Master Resilience Trainer (MRT) course, which provides face-to-face resilience training, is one of the foundational pillars of the Comprehensive Soldier Fitness program. The 10-day MRT course is the foundation for training resilience skills to sergeants and for teaching sergeants how to teach these skills to their soldiers. The curriculum is based on materials developed by the University of Pennsylvania, the Penn Resilience Program (PRP), and other empirically validated work in the field of positive psychology. This “train the trainer model” is the main vehicle for the dissemination of MRT concepts to the entire force. (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2013 APA, all rights reserved

      Truthout interview, James Risen: The Post-9/11 Homeland Security Industrial Complex Profiteers and Endless War - What is SERE and how did it become manipulated to support torture? SERE is the acronym for the military's survival training program, in which pilots and other personnel are put through a simulated prisoner camp and subjected to simulated torture. The CIA used the torture techniques simulated at SERE as the basis for its "enhanced interrogation" techniques against detainees. In Pay Any Price, I disclose that the agency used these techniques even though the best and most widely accepted research conducted on SERE showed that the techniques could not be used to elicit accurate information.

      Army’s “Spiritual Fitness” Test Comes Under Fire


    4. Just about on a par with men staring at goats. Maybe it's time for Jon to do an expanded and updated version of 'Them: Adventures with Extremists'.

  8. Freedom boi in Parliament! That will give Brandis and Bernardi something to think about.

  9. Quite apart from anything else, Chris Ulhmann, like most of his colleagues, is a shockingly bad writer. His prose style is as flat and arid as the Nullarbor Plain and the painful,nasally trademark whine he employs on the ABC seeps into his written work. His piece to camera after Abbott was deposed was hilarious. The poor petal was close to tears and his ashen little face was even more molten than usual. He and Mark Simpkin always reminded me of two little yap-yap dogs with a premature dose of political mange. I wonder when he will follow suite and jump ship and start advising Truffles?


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