Tag Archives: George Christensen

The non-knowing speak loudest

There is an old saying that goes back to the original circus, the days of Sir Alec Guiness, John Le Carre and the circus (MI6). Those who do not know speak and those who do will not. There is however a valid issue with that mindset. When it is merely intelligence and what some regard as spyshit, we tend to not care. It is their world and they tend to live by other rules even as they have the same lack of common cyber sense as some US generals, it is their choice to make. Yet when we see labour people like Michael Danby need to present evidence in regards to “an opposition Labor party MP, called on the Liberal-National coalition to block Huawei and fellow Chinese telecoms company ZTE from supplying equipment for the 5G network. “Both Huawei and ZTE must report to the Communist party cell at the top of their organisations,” he told parliament. “Let me issue a clarion call to this parliament: Australia’s 5G network must not be sold to these telcos.”” I am actually in the mindset that his seat should be put up for auction if he does not disclose a proper setting and give evidence as to the reasoning of all this. It becomes more pressing when we see “Mr Lord, a former rear admiral in the Royal Australian Navy, told Australia’s state broadcaster on Monday that these claims were “wrong”, adding that Huawei was not owned by any committee of government and posed no risk to Australia’s security“. It is not just because Mr Lord is a former rear admiral, more that the average naval midshipman tends to be more reliable than any politician. We get this from the Financial Times (at https://www.ft.com/content/1a2d19ba-67b1-11e8-8cf3-0c230fa67aec). In addition, when we get politicians start the scare tactics of ‘critical infrastructure pose a risk to national security’, there is a clear need for both Duncan Lewis and Paul Symon AO to get hauled in a chair in Canberra and ask them to openly answer the questions regarding any evidence that Huawei is a security threat. To blatantly accept the US on their ‘china fears’ is all well and good for Telstra, yet the setting is not a given and the fact that Telstra is nowhere near the technological levels of Huawei is not something that we blame them from, but they basically lost the 5G war before it started through their own actions and inactions.

Now if there is an actual national security concern, we should be open about that and when that happens, and evidence is presented, at that point we can all relax and state to Huawei that we feel sorry for the inconvenience caused, but such concerns are just too big to ignore. I think we have had quite enough of these presentations that reek of Colin Powell and his silver suitcase with evidence that no one ever saw in 2001. We cannot go in that direction ever again. We will not be the play toy of greedy telecom companies and their internal needs for stupidity and inactions; we can no longer afford such a nepotism environment.

That same issue can be said regarding Nationals MP George Christensen. Apart from him trying to undo a business deal of a 99 year lease, no matter how silly that deal was, Australia cannot be perceived as a nation that cannot be trusted at the business table. My second issue is why a maroon (Queenslander) is involving himself with NT politics. In that regard, why do we not see the responses form Vicki O’Halloran is she has any, is she not the appointed administrator? In this, the game is not over. The Australian Financial Review gives us: “Huawei faces the likelihood that Cabinet’s national security committee will veto it supplying equipment for the 5G network, based on the recommendations of security agencies, over concerns about the potential for cyber espionage at the behest of China’s leaders“. In this the question becomes, is there an actual security concern, or is it that the national concern is the devaluation of Telstra? In additional support we need to see the Sydney Morning Herald two weeks ago when they gave us (at https://www.smh.com.au/business/companies/how-a-huawei-5g-ban-is-about-more-than-espionage-20180614-p4zlhf.html): “The Sydney Morning Herald and The Age reported in March that there were serious concerns within the Turnbull government about Huawei’s potential role in 5G – a new wireless standard that could be up to 10 times as powerful as existing mobile services, and used to power internet connections for a range of consumer devices beyond phones“, as well as “the decision will have an impact on Australia’s $40 billion a year telecoms market – potentially hurting Telstra’s rivals“. the first part is something I wrote about for well over a year, the second one is important as we see ‘potentially hurting Telstra’s rivals‘, from my personal point of view it reads like the one lobotomised idiot in telecom country gets to decide through arm-twisting on how we need to remain backwards as they set the standard that they could not deliver for the longest of times (a little sarcasm regarding Telstra’s 2011 3.7G), I wrote about that recently.

ABC gave us yesterday: “it continues to be the target of criticism over its connections to the Chinese Government, including allegations it is involved in state-sponsored espionage“, yet the people have never been shown actual evidence, so where is that at? There might have been doubts to some degree for a while, but the Powell stunt is too clear in our minds and the USA does not have the credibility (or credit rating for that matter) it once had. The fact that the opposing former rear admiral of the Australian navy trumps two half bit politicians seeking the limelight any day of the week and some stay silent, the reason for that is only speculation, but we might not need to seek far and a few words ion Google Search might help find that answer (like ‘Telstra’ and ‘8000’). When we see some giving us: ‘Telstra Corporation Ltd (ASX:TLS) is betting it all on 5G‘ and we see the Telstra strategy briefing (at https://www.telstra.com.au/content/dam/tcom/about-us/investors/pdf-e/2018-Strategy-Update.pdf), we see on page 6, Leading with 5G, that would never be an option with Huawei in play as they are ahead by a lot, so the presentation given a week ago, whilst we realise that the presentation was prepared way before that is giving the setting that Huawei is no longer considered to be competition, that is what we now face! What some might call a backward organisation proclaiming to be leading whilst 8000 men will be missing through inaction. That page is even more fun when you consider the quote ‘new technologies like IoT‘, which is funny when you consider that the Internet of Things (IoT) is a system of interrelated computing devices. It is not a technology; it is a network that enables technology. In addition, when you start nit-picking in that 34 page event, we see all the bells and whistles we need to see, yet when you consider consumers and small business (the millions of people that Telstra charges) starts at page 9 and gives us 5 slides. We see ‘cutting edge 5G capability’ (by whose standards?), we see location devices (with the image of a dog), Access to rewards an tickets, a fully-digital relationship with Telstra (an implied no more personal interaction after the sales, merely a chatbot) and value added services, yet the value of a service like customer service and customer care are absent in that part of the equation, so how does this push the people forward, because I doubt that it actually will achieve anything in the long run and one flaw will anger the actual consumers without limits.

You see, personally I believe in the IoT, I believe in 5G, they are tools to enhance experiences and interactions, not make them obsolete and that is what  feel when I saw the Telstra strategy update. These two elements can enhance customer care, customer service and customer support, not replace them with ‘AI’ enhanced chatbots. So the moment we get a 2.0 version of ‘Telstra’s new chatbot, Codi, is making so many mistakes customers are furious’ (at https://www.businessinsider.com.au/telstra-codi-bot-backlash-2018-3), chatbots can be a great asset to get the information and channel the call to the right person, yet that again is merely enhancing and that can work fine. The presentation implies the loss of actual customer values and ignoring their need for interactions. That in an aging population might be the least intelligent stance to make ever.

Yet this does not give way to the issue on Telstra versus Huawei, as the Sydney Morning Herald states “Telstra has refused to exclude Huawei from its 5G tender, but that is seen more as a way of keeping its existing supplier Ericsson on its toes“, as well as “In other words, a ban could be bad news for TPG, Vodafone and Optus. Whether it is necessarily good news for Telstra – which has its own issues at the moment – is less clear“. In finality we get “Intelligence agencies tend to get their way on matters like these“, this beckons the question what are they actually after? The US seems to be in bed with Samsung and their 5G routers, so it makes sense that this will be the path that Telstra walks as well, time will tell how it ends.

So why is this such a big deal?

We are currently in danger of actually falling behind Saudi Arabia, yes, that place in a large sandbox is about to surpass us in 5G and other technologies. They had the audacity to reserve half a trillion dollars toward Vision 2030 and Neom. So when we got “Al-Khobar in the Eastern Province, of Saudi Arabia, has become the first city in the region to benefit from the fifth-generation wireless network or 5G network, according to a press statement issued by the Center of International Communication“, last month. There was not a surprise in my bone. You see, this will drive their Vision 2030 plans even further. So as Saudi Arabia is now the new pond to grow speciality in 5G, app designers can promote, test and deliver on knowledge that will be available whilst Telstra is trying to figure out how to get 5G installed. with “All the necessary national 5G policies and supporting administrative provisions are planned to be in place before the end of 2019, along with the award of initial batches of the spectrum to support the full commercial deployment of 5G technologies“, we see that Saudi Arabia had been taking this serious for a much longer time. This goes a little further when we see ‘the Middle East and Africa 5G Technology market (Egypt, Saudi Arabia, UAE, Nigeria, and South Africa)‘, so at this point, Saudi Arabia has a head start to not just push Saudi Arabia forward, they have quite literally first dibs on gaining a chunk of the 98 million Egyptians. Not all can afford 5G, we get that, but those who do are confronted with only Saudi Arabia as a Muslim player, you did not actually believe that they would run to Vodafone, did you?

So back to the 5G local ‘market’! For this we need to take a look at the Australian Financial review 2 weeks ago. Here we see (at https://www.afr.com/opinion/columnists/the-technical-reasons-why-huawei-too-great-a-5g-risk-20180614-h11e3o), with the title ‘The technical reasons why Huawei is too great a 5G risk‘, the start is good, this is what we wanted. Yet we are treated to paragraphs of emotion and alleged settings. So when we see: “Huawei presents unique additional risk beyond the “normal” risk of buying complex equipment. China has demonstrated a long-standing intent to conduct cyber-espionage“, so is ‘intent’ shown in evidence? How did the CIA and NSA acquire our data or Cambridge Analytica for that matter? ‘China is thought to be behind data breaches‘ is merely a statement ‘thought‘ is speculation, not evidence. Then we get: “The US Trade Representative’s Section 301 report from March this year details the very close cooperation between the Third Department of China’s People’s Liberation Army (3PLA is a military hacking unit, also known as Unit 61398) and Chinese enterprises“, I have to get back to this. We are treated to ‘At one extreme, Huawei could be asked‘, is a case of fear mongering and not evidence. In addition we get ‘it is certainly a possibility‘ which came after ‘Vulnerabilities may already exist. This may not be the most likely possibility‘ as well as ‘very likely‘ all emotional responses, none of them evidence in any way, so the article with included in the title ‘The technical reasons’, has pretty much zero technology and close to 90% ‘allegedly’, speculations and emotional twists, whilst we cannot deny the optional existence of vulnerabilities, yet these are found regularly in Cisco hardware and Microsoft software, so have those two been banned in Australia?

Now to get back to the Section 301 report (at https://ustr.gov/sites/default/files/Section%20301%20FINAL.PDF). It is 215 pages and I did not read that complete political US marketing behemoth. There is one that actually carries weight. On page 153 we see: “evidence from U.S. law enforcement and private sources indicates that the Chinese government has used cyber intrusions to serve its strategic economic objectives. Documented incidents of China’s cyber intrusions against U.S. commercial entities align closely with China’s industrial policy objectives. As the global economy has increased its dependence on information systems in recent years, cyber theft became one of China’s preferred methods of collecting commercial information because of its logistical advantages and plausible deniability“, which is basically good application of intelligence gathering. Please do not take my word for it, feel free to call the NSA (at +1-301-6886311, all their calls are recorded for training and quality purposes). Oh, and before I forget, the text came with footnote 970, which gave us “A number of public submissions provided to USTR state that the Chinese government has no reason to conduct cyber intrusions or commit cyber theft for commercial purposes, see CHINA GENERAL CHAMBER OF COMMERCE [hereinafter “CGCC”], Submission, Section 301 Hearing 16 (Sept. 28, 2017); that the US has not provided evidence of such actions by China, that China is also a target of cyber-attacks, and that the two countries should work together“, there is that to deal with and is that not a rare instance where we are treated to ‘the US has not provided evidence of such actions‘, how many times have we seen claims like that since 2001? Would that number be a 4 or 5 digit number?

The point is not whether it can or could happen, the question becomes did it happen here? let’s not forget that in most settings the section 301 report is about US interests and their technological advancement (which they lost by becoming iteratively stupid). Here we have a different setting. In the setting we face Huawei has a technological advance over all we have in Australia and most of Europe as well. Huawei was one of the first to realise the power of data and 5G and they are close to a market leader, the US is basically relying on Samsung to get them there. BT (British Telecom) is on the ball, but still not on par. They are in bed with Finland “BT has teamed with Nokia to collaborate on the creation of 5G proof of concept trials, the development of emerging technology standards and equipment, and potential 5G use cases“, so this sets the larger players in a field where Nokia and Huawei are now active. The SAMENA Telecom Leaders Summit 2018 and Saudi Telecom Company (STC) announced today that it is working with Nokia to launch a 5G network in 2018 within Saudi Arabia, yet the technology agreements show that it does include Huawei and Cisco, so they aren’t already active, the setting for the initial bumps in the road that Cisco, Nokia and Huawei will surely overcome is knowledge that we will not have in Australia long after someone was able to connect the 5G router to a power point (very presentable, yet the online green light seems to be broken).

So whilst politicians are considering who to be buddies with, Saudi Arabia joins the US and they will be the first 5G providers, which means that the UK and Australia are lagging behind and optionally not for the short term either.

So am I not knowing or am I all knowing? I actually prefer the first, because it is more relaxing; yet the need to speak out loud is becoming increasingly important even if it was only to place the loud mouth limelight seeking politicians like Michael Danby and George Christensen in their slightly too arrogant place. They are of course welcome to present ACTUAL evidence proving me wrong. #WishingForAMiracleHere

 

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A beefy certification!

There was an unsettling report on the news at 06:30 this morning. It showed issues with Halal classification with references to terrorism. Oh, the man was very ‘precise’ in stating there were at present no indications, it was all about clarity. So before we take a look at this, let’s take a look at George Christensen, a Liberal who seems to represent the people from MacKay going north, his area stops before Townsville, which beckons the question how many Muslims are there in his constituency? Did he meet with them, or with a Muslim spokesperson to discuss this BEFORE this was given to the press for HIS visibility? (Ne thinks not, but I could be wrong).

This part was the part I had an issue with: “I have never said there is any evidence of links between halal certification and terrorism in Australia. Consumers should be able to know where proceeds derived from all forms of certification go, including kosher certification. There is a clear reason why many Australian’s are talking about halal certification and not kosher certification. There hasn’t been any terror plots found in Australia nor have there been any terror attacks killing Australian’s in Bali or New York City or elsewhere that were masterminded by Jews or even extreme sects within Judaism

The first question in my mind is why? If I do not live for Halal foods, why have the interest on how certification is set and where proceeds go to? In my mind I am at times curious how Halal and Kosher certification is done, but that is for a mere academic curiosity. I would think that George Christensen should look into other meaty issues. Perhaps some will remember the scandal that had hit the UK a little over a year ago, on how 29% of beef had added horse to it. So George, how much Phar-Lap can we find in a Queensland hamburger? Have you looked into that part at present? You know, whilst having your Vegemite sandwich, as you come from the land down under!

You see, when we see news like ‘Campaign to boycott halal food gains momentum in Australia after yoghurt company ditches certification‘ (at http://www.abc.net.au/news/2014-11-20/campaign-to-boycott-halal-food-gains-momentum-in-australia/5907844), I wonder what is driving this. It is as I see it a deceitful approach to anti-Muslim sentiment. Australia is not and should never be anti-Muslim. Like the UK we are anti-Extremism and as such we keep our watchful eyes open, but to attack Muslims all over by becoming anti-Halal is like Idi Amin walking up to Mahatma Ghandi stating ‘Dude, you are too intense!‘.

Consider the quote regarding the anti-Halal movement “Its carefully anonymous leaders keep a low profile, directing their members to swarm target companies’ online profiles and boycott their products“, this reads like a page of the manifesto of white supreme-cysts letting the dumb masses do their dirty work. It is not unlike some early KKK approaches into changing commercial interests to fit personal needs.

When we consider the quote “I think it’s fair to say that people from all walks of life, should be able to ask are you halal certified? It’s not a hard question“, we need to ask another hard question. Why? You see, Halal is an issue for Muslims and Muslims alone. As far as I always have known it to be: ‘the animal must be slaughtered with a sharp knife by cutting the throat, windpipe and the blood vessels in the neck, causing the animal’s death without cutting the spinal cord. Lastly, the blood from the veins must be drained, it is done according to religious standards’ (I got this part from Wiki, because I was lazy formulating my view on this). In the back of your mind, these animals are slaughtered in a humane way (it sounds strange, I know), so this meat is prepared in a certain way, so that it is the finest beef, now consider the slaughterhouses Christians use (in mass quantities), one could consider that Kosher (Jewish), Halal (Muslim and Jhatka (Sikh) will always have the best meat. When we see in definitions ‘killing the animal whilst causing it minimal suffering‘, gives thought to a humane approach on preparing food, I can guaranty you that when you see modern slaughterhouses, ‘humane’ is a word we need to leave behind before we get within a mile of many slaughterhouses (isn’t there at least one in Christensen’s district?) I wonder if George Christensen ever took time to properly investigate matters before he started, you know, opening his mouth.

There is one additional part that should be looked at, which is that the killing of animals, in Islam is set in two categories: 1, for food and 2, to eliminate danger (like rabid animals). In response to this anti-Halal I would like to add the quote in the second article: “‘If they don’t change their ways and start acting as patriotic Australians, they deserve what they get. Its market forces,’ he said“. Is that so? In that case, I reckon their next change is to shut down EVERY Target and K-Mart, which should be closed until all the cheap $3 articles from Myanmar and Sri-Lanka have been removed and replaced by articles made in Australia. You see, when your members see the quality of life decrease as expenses go up from +50% to +150%, they will likely move away from sanctimonious statements regarding ‘patriotic‘. It seems to me that Certifications like Kosher, Halal and Jhatka do have a religious ground, yet behind that is a hidden quality because of these practices, making these certifications interesting to consumers all over the religious spectrum. In the end, we the people want good food, good quality items.

So when I see opportunists talk about ‘patriotic’, then I wonder if they are aware of ‘Value of ‘more sophisticated’ counterfeit goods increases by millions‘ (at http://www.smh.com.au/nsw/value-of-more-sophisticated-counterfeit-goods-increases-by-millions-20140426-zqzu8.html), where we see the two quotes “Among the 2012-13 seizures were 43,200 bottles of beer in Western Australia in March 2013” and “Up to 86 per cent of all goods are manufactured in China, he said“, so Mr Sanctimonious, when did you last buy your Australian beer on special? How Australian was it, or perhaps you could not tell the difference?

It seems to me that local certification is preventing counterfeit and forged processed foods just fine, by not letting this happen. A local market like that cannot cheat when there is a clear view of where things came from, from Cow and Lamb to final piece of red meat. Something the ‘mass-market’ seems to be completely unaware of, that part was shown a year ago when most European nations enjoyed Phar-Lap sprinkled burgers and sausages.

So back to George Christensen, why is he on this horse-meat to begin with? When I see the following in the ABC article referred to earlier “The trouble began for the Fleurieu Milk and Yoghurt Company last month when Mr Hutchinson received an email asking to confirm whether his company had halal certification. Six months earlier, the company had gained halal certification as a requirement to supply a $50,000 yoghurt contract with Emirates Airlines. ‘It was a $1,000 fee. It opened up a business market to continue to become viable. It was a necessary step,’ Mr Hutchinson said“, here we see a simple certification step, which brings a $1000 fee, but opens up a $50,000 market for an Australian company. I think that Fleurieu is doing a good thing here, they went to adhering to a market, which requires certain high standards, they met the challenge and they are in business, in this regard how UN-Australian are the people attacking this? Is this about where the $1000 went to, as George Christensen seems to question? If that is true, then I wonder what George Christensen is up to wasting our precious time on this issue (I do not care if he wastes his time on this, but his constituents might ask). What was this really about? If my ‘response’ would be a personal one, I might ask why this ‘entertainer’ (can we call George Christensen a politician when we read these facts?) is a Liberal member, he sounds like Labour party material at present. Yet when we see the mention “George Christensen wants halal certifiers to open up their books“, I wonder what he is really trying to get at, the people who paid for certification, or the list of certifying instances. When we see the $1000 fee, to make any serious contribution one would need many thousands of companies getting certified, I think that this is about something else entirely. That view became visible as I found a blog regarding Carol Vernon, running for the Greens in September 2014 (at http://mncgreens.blogspot.com.au/2014/09/george-christensens-statement-labelling.html), the quote is “Mr Christensen is referring to people who oppose the industrialisation of the Great Barrier Reef as terrorists and in the current climate that is utterly unacceptable, wrong and incredibly dangerous and irresponsible“, yet in August we see his statement that his approach was wrong (self-admitted by GC, at http://www.news.com.au/technology/environment/great-barrier-reef-federal-mp-george-christensen-says-i-got-it-wrong/story-e6frflp0-1227040230696), so what is this about? When we consider the site ‘they vote for you’ we see that George Christensen is labelled as ‘George Christensen voted very strongly against increasing marine conservation‘, this makes sense when we see his view on the Great Barrier Reef and on other matters. It seems to me that he is firmly in the pocket of ‘big business’, you see, as I personally view it, Halal, Kosher and Jhatka is all about quality oversight, something big business abhors. they want freedom of unaccounted actions (like the Phar-Lap burger), so, when we see businesses making changes that could be regarded as morally correct activities like Halal certification, we see that it is not about the dollars, but about the quality, an approach the connections of Christensen might not like as it undermines their profitability as they are stopped from dredge dumping and so on, Dawson has abattoirs and mining items in their constituency, which beckons other questions too. As a population wants a better quality, we see a better community, seems to me that Halal certification might be a threat to these abattoirs, for who do (or did) they cater to?

An electorate with 92,000 votes (at 94% turnout), is not that sizeable a community. So why was George Christensen bothering with all this?

Consider the quote “there has been some evidence in other countries that there has been dubious activities on halal certification“, so where is that evidence? George Christensen is outraged that his grocery spending could be propagating a religion, in regards to Vegemite (as stated by ABC news), we should consider the following: There are 22 million jars produced every year. Halal certification is $1000, according to one source stated earlier, which means $0.00454 per jar, which is less than half a cent, so when we consider this in regards to George Christensen, should he be regarded anything less than a joke? There was never a security issue, as I see it, there was never any issue on religious certification, it was as I see it a waste of time from beginning to end, perhaps to avert talk from his disastrous approach to the Great Barrier Reef. Which is of course a second joke (a story lacking humour in this case) when we see Julie Bishop state that there was no threat in response to the quote by President Obama “Mr Obama told the audience the ‘incredible natural glory of the Great Barrier Reef is threatened’ because of global warming and said he wanted to be able to return to Australia with his daughters when he had more time“, that statement that there is no threat, is of course debatable as George Christensen was extremely willing to use it as a dumping ground for dredging activities, which we see at “In January 2014, a proposal for Abbot Point was approved to dispose of 1.3 million cubic metres of dredge spoil“, so how will that ensure a long lasting reef? If we are to accept the report (at http://www.gbrmpa.gov.au/__data/assets/pdf_file/0019/17164/ShenNengGroundingImpactAssessmentReport.pdf), we see “contamination by TBT such as from anti-fouling paints is likely to have a significant and persistent ecological impact on biota at a ship grounding site and potentially the surrounding physically non-impacted areas“, which is just one quote from the 160 page document. As we saw that the captain was given a $25,000 fine, how large was the total fine for this one event, and how much will it take to fix the reef? In light of the fragility of the coral reef, how could any positive light ‘be given’ towards dumping sludge on ecology this fragile?

It seems to me that in regards to the reef, both sides have been playing it fast and loose towards the health of the Great Barrier Reef, when we see that 85% of Australia is all for a healthy GBR, we can only wonder why George Christensen is all about certification of red meat and not that much for a great reef.

Did I oversimplify matters again? Silly me!

 

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