Saturday 27 August 2011

Bryan Law: ''What I said, what they said.'

He may not have used a company credit card to pay for prostitutes, but Bryan Law is still a human headline in Far North Queensland.

The Cairns peace activist shares some of the communication he engaged in, in the lead up to attacking a $36 million Australian military helicopter in July, that may lead to a prison term or a hefty fine for this veteran of public action over 30 years.

Most notably, Bryan Law, along with a group of activists, broke into the highly-sensitive US Defense communications facility in the desert at Pine Gap in 2005. They were eventually acquitted of all charges under the Special Defence Undertakings Act 1952. Al Jazeera interviewed Law after the action, when, at the time, he had 30 arrests and 4 jail terms to his credit.

Here's his reflections of some salient points in the lead-up to the Rockhamption anti-war action...

Bryan Law says:

29 September 2010
Source: e-mail to defence, airport management, and peace networks.

“A small number of Christian and Buddhist peace activists are now prepared to take a ploughshares action against US military equipment during TS11, at Rockhampton airport or Shoalwater Bay Military Training Area. Mattocks, pruning hooks, hammers, and other garden implements will be used to damage the avionics of military aircraft to render them inoperable.

In TS09, there were more than 300 military aircraft movements into Rockhampton during the three weeks of the exercise. Security at Rockhampton airport is pretty slack, and our target aircraft are frequently parked on a very accessible part of the tarmac (eastern side, adjacent the general aviation area”.

“Around the world, and at Pine Gap in 2005, security systems have failed to prevent strong action by committed peace workers. I am confident that we’ll be able to disable a US aircraft if they continue to use the civilian airport at Rockhampton”.

20 April 2011
Source: Rockhampton Morning Bulletin

“I have already notified the defence department of my intentions. They know I’m coming, but I bet they can’t stop me”.

“If I can get my hands on a US military helicopter I will damage the avionics and communication as best I can”.

“I don’t rate security at the airport. It won’t keep me out”.

20 June 2011
Source; Peace by Peace Blog (Mid-term report)

“I want to carry out a “ploughshares action” at Rockhampton Airport between July 17 and July 24. I intend to disarm a US military aircraft with a mattock (or at least give it a very good try).

28 June 2011
Published photos of ADF Tiger helicopters parked at Rockhampton Airport.

30 June 2011
Source; Seven news

“and I will if I can get to a US military helicopter and damage it with a mattock”.

21 July 2011
Source: personal recollection

“You beauty, I’ve done it!”

"ROCKHAMPTON TIGER PLOUGHSHARES action successfully completed at Rockhampton airport, exactly where predicted. Against an ADF Tiger helicopter parked on the very spot shown in the blog photograph.

I did it in broad daylight.

I carried out my intentions despite the opposition of Rockhampton Regional Council, Queensland Police, Australian Federal Police, and the Australian Defence Force – even though I gave them 10 months’ warning.

How hard was it to gain access to my target?

I had to cut a $5 chain.

How embarrassing for all those security agencies that they can’t keep a fat fucker like Bryan Law away from their precious killing machines.

$200,000 to fix a 10 cm hole? Yeah, right. Sure it is."


Friday 26 August 2011

Councillor Di becomes a grandmother

Cairns Regional Councillor Diane Forsyth has today become a grandmother.

''Here's my beautiful grandson Tayler, we just love him to bits,'' Di Forsyth said from the Mater Hospital in Sydney.

42-year-old Cairns man charged with attempted murder

Cairns Police have charged a 42-year-old Bungalow man after an overnight incident.

The man will appear in the Cairns Magistrates Court this afternoon and face charges of attempted murder and supply a dangerous drug.

Police and emergency services were called to a Buchan Street house around 9pm and discovered a 36-year-old Westcourt man with serious injuries allegedly inflicted during an altercation, who remains in Cairns Base Hospital in a serious condition.

The government wants access to your txt messages, phone calls, and emails

The Cybercrime Legislation Amendment Bill, just passed by the Federal House of Reps, looks a whole lot like the invasive and disgusting US Patriot Act.

The Bill, which will now be debated in the Senate, would let Police force telecommunication companies to retain copies of customer's digital communication.

While cybercrime is a real problem, this latest move gives a massive ability for information-sharing between foreign governments, objectors say, especially when people are critical of other regimes.

In memory of Labor MP Craig Thomson

CAPTION CONTEST: Val and the Challenge Cairns lads

The recent successful Challenge Cairns triathlon was a fantastic event. Here's a pic that has just surfaced that gives an opportunity to put words in the mouth of our Cairns Regional Council Mayor, Val Schier.

As always, be funny and not too rude.

  1. ''Yes, I get this feeling around my neck every time I hear you talk about rates.''
  2. ''We couldn't fit anymore in our Council budget than you could pack in those lycra shorts, if we tried. Honestly.''
  3. ''If I had my way, I'd do away with all this red. Lavender with rose petals and lentil colour is my choice.''
  4. ''Well, voting Liberal will make you feel like that around the neck, and the sensation lasts for a year or two. But why on earth did they select Paul Freebody in the first place Val?''
  5. ........ your turn.......

Thursday 25 August 2011

Australian Defense claims $200,000 from anti-war activist Bryan Law

In a Affidavit sworn by Brigadier Neil Alan Turton, Director General Aviation of the Australian Army, the Government is seeking $200,000 reparation for damage Cairns peace activist Bryan Law did to a helicopter in Rockhampton on 21st July.

Assisted by Graeme Dunstan of the Peace by Peace network, Bryan Law rode a cycle across the Rockhampton Airport tarmac, and attacked a $36 million Tiger Armed Reconnaissance Helicopter.

Law undertook the symbolic anti-war action, in advance of three months of media and public statements saying he was going to carry out the action.
At around 9.30 am on 21 July Bryan Law cut a $5 chain and entered the Rockhampton airport. He then rode his red tricycle 80 metres to a brand new ADF Tiger helicopter, and plunged a garden mattock through the carbon fibre panelling, disabled the helicopter.

''I gave it a whack with my trusty garden mattock, and the moment it went through that helicopter, I felt so proud,'' Bryan Law told CairnsBlog. "My actions succeeded against the odds," Bryan Law said. "I announced my intentions well in advance.

Bryan Law was arrested by Rockhampton CIB on July 8th, two weeks before the attack, and charged with threatening an aircraft, however still managed to carry out the action.

"With God's grace it turned out so very simple to disarm that hideous death machine." Law said today. "Up close you can see the machine cannon and missiles of the kind that are responsible for so many civilian deaths in Afghanistan. These machines will soon be deployed to Afghanistan."

The photo shows the hole Law put in the side panel of the pilot’s enclosure.

Whilst in Rockhampton, Law successfully fought for the right to speak in public against Australian's involvement in war, after Police took him to court to close down his permit from the local Council.

Before Law released the Affidavit, he invited friends to make their own estimate of how much the repair might cost. Low bids ranged between $10 and $50, with mention of gaffer tape, bog, and even paint.

"How much do you think the hyper-efficient, lean, and experienced administrators of the ADF can fix this hole for?'' Bryan Law asks. ''Brigadier Turton has already conferred with Brigadier Andrew Mathewson on the matter. I wonder who’s got the gaffer tape?''

Law said that the closest 10 entries would win a month for two at the Capricornia Correctional Facility.

Here's the Affidavit by Brigadier Neil Alan Turton...

Farewell to Bosch, a loved Cairns police dog

Cairns Police are mourning the passing of their dog ‘Bosch’.

In a statement this afternoon, the Queensland Police says they are saddened to learn of the passing of Bosch, who died on Sunday as a result of a stomach-related issue despite veterinary assistance.

'PD Bosch', as he was known, had a distinguished career performing duties in the Cairns district for the past year under the watchful eye of his handler, Senior Constable Nathan Hester of the Cairns Dog Squad.

Prior to his stint in the far north, Bosch had worked for two years on the Gold Coast.

Senior Constable Hester spoke fondly of Bosch today and remembered him as a very capable partner with a distinguished policing career.

“Boschey was a great little operator,'' he said. “He was directly responsible for the apprehension of a number of offenders who were involved in vehicle thefts, break and enter and drug offences.”

PD Bosch came from a long line of career canines who have served throughout the world. His great-grandfather was a very successful and well regarded police dog in the USA. He leaves a legacy in the form of his son, a 12-month German shepherd pup who is currently undergoing training as part of the QPS Police Dog Program.

After a short break, Senior Constable Hester will travel to the QPS Dog Squad headquarters at Oxley in order to re-team with a new partner, prior to recommencing duty in Cairns.

Labor can't sustain MP Thomson much longer

The credit card sleaze story just keeps getting better and better, unless your name starts with Craig, or Julia.

Today the Health Services Union, who Craig Thomson headed in 2006, has dobbed him in to the Police, after they looked at more credit card records of huge dollops of cash withdrawals and no receipts.

''We know this is damaging to a Labor Government, we understand that, but our first priority is to members of the Health Services Union, not to members of the Australian Labor Party,'' Kathy Jackson of the Health Services Union said.

Thomson's name is all over the scandal, and the escort agency came out yesterday and revealed more damning facts.

During overseas trips for the Union 2004, Thomson chalked up $4,700, much of which was cash withdrawals, and a Union audit found "insufficient support for most credit card transactions" over a six-month period in 2007 while Mr Thomson was running for the seat of Dobell in Sydney.

"The executive should be aware that in the unlikely event of a GST audit by the Australian Taxation Office, replacement tax invoices may be needed," Ian Dick, principal accountant told the Health Services Union. Dick suggested Thomson covered up the purpose of the cash withdrawals.

I can't see why Gillard is holding on to this shaky MP, however the ALP have paid heaps to help defend him in the last eight months, but like all dirty laundry, it was bound to get aired eventually.

Not only in Queensland come next March, but Federal Labor has little chance of surviving.

Friday 19 August 2011

Libs dump Paul Freebody for 'gross breach of standards'

The Liberal National Party have reopened nominations for the State seat of Cairns today after ditching Paul Freebody as their candidate today.

The decision follows a week of scandal and bad publicity for the LNP surrounding an email Freebody sent out last Thursday, saying he hoped Prime Minister Julia Gillard follows the history of John F Kennedy.

"We have expelled Paul Freebody as our candidate for the seat of Cairns, as a result of the email," LNP state director Michael O’Dwyer said.

“The LNP state executive expects all candidates and elected representatives to behave with the utmost propriety and to uphold at all times high standards of behaviour, loyalty and integrity,” O’Dwyer said. “The LNP views any act of disloyalty and improper conduct by a candidate as a gross breach of the party’s standards.”

Federal Liberal Leichhardt MP, Warren Entsch, who publicly didn't support Freebody's candidacy and noticeably didn't turn up for the LNP preselection earlier this year, will probably push for former Cairns businessman, Bob Norman, to take the role.

Former manager of Sunlover, Terry Russell, who was to contend the preselection in February but didn't at the last minute, may be a strong contender for the nomination.

Other names that have been suggested are former Cairns Mayor Kevin Byrne, who is expected to re-contest the mayoralty in March 2012; mayoral aspirant Ian Thomas; and lawyer Brett Moller of Marino Moller.

Thursday 18 August 2011

Sir Paul Reeves 1932 – 2011

RIP to a truly great New Zealander, Sir Paul Reeves, former Governor-General and Anglican Archbishop of New Zealand.

Saturday 13 August 2011

Daniel Morcombe investigation announcement

Queensland Police are about to hold a media conference at 6.30pm at the Roma Street headquarters in Brisbane, regarding the disappearance of Daniel Morcombe from the Sunshine Coast.

The 13-year-old went missing in December 2003 when he was waiting for a bus at Woombye.

A person of interest in the investigation, has been taken into custody. The suspect known as "P7", who gave evidence to the inquiry into Daniel's death, had been detained in Brisbane.

A 41 year old man has been charged with one count each of murder, deprivation of liberty, child stealing, indecent treatment of a child under 16 and interfering with a corpse.
He will appear in Brisbane Magistrates Court on Monday.

Friday 12 August 2011

LNP candidate for Cairns Paul Freebody set to be dumped after he emailed assassination threat of Prime Minister

LNP candidate for Cairns Paul Freebody has been stood aside pending an investigation after he emailed an implied assassination threat of Prime Minister Julia Gillard.

Freebody also said Gillard and Senator Brown were the most evil people ever in power.
  • More to follow

Queensland Health flogs off surplus iPads at $150

If CairnsBlog readers are interested in getting an iPad, I can get hold of them through a contact.

These are straight, not “off the back of a lorry” – they are from a cancelled hospital contract due to the Government cutbacks.

The numbers are limited - he has twenty iPads going for less than half price – so it’s first-come first-served.

He has already sold one (photo attached so you can see what you are getting).

Drop me a line or add a comment below if you want one.

Cape Tribulation and Cape York make it to Mars

Here's an amazing photo taken by the NASA Mars Rover at Endeavour Crater on Mars.

The crater is named after British explorer, Captain James Cook's ship. The walls on the west have place-names like Cape Byron, Cape Tribulation and Cape York.

Sunday 7 August 2011


Three guys, 44 days, 11 countries, 18 flights, 38 thousand miles, an exploding volcano, two cameras and almost a terabyte of footage.

Three ambitious linear concepts based on movement, learning and food. Beautiful and compelling.

Saturday 6 August 2011

LNP's McIver is hardly a Messiah, he's just a naughty boy

I think a few local Libs in Cairns wouldn't call LNP president Bruce McIver a messiah, despite how the polls rate the main opposition in Queensland.

At the next state election, the LNP will very likely win but not because they're ready to govern, Labor have proven such incompetence and disregard for the public and even their own members for too long. It's also possible that the Greens and the new Queensland Party will feature in the results.

Emails I've seen between McIver and local members, especially over the affair when 20 members signed a damning letter in May 2010 expressing a series of concerns after the last State election, received a stonewalled response, and one by one, those that continued to question the reply, were ostracised from the party. After all, it's his party, and they can cry if they want to.

The next State election will show that the community at large has worn out of how they've been treated and taxed and put into $80 billion of debt for more than 10 years. Members in local committees have felt ignored and directed from Brisbane, despite a radical and compassionate national Party review by Bob Carr and other Labor luminaries. It was very critical of how the grassroots had been ignored and dictated to and that this was one of the primary reasons why opinion was now against the once union proud party.

The LNP in Queensland have a long way to go. Their media machine is well-oiled and has been extremely proactive for some time, trying to expose the contradictions in Labor's behaviour. It's important to have a strong and vocal opposition, regardless of who you support.

It's clear that Labor are worn out and lost the plot. Like a fart in an elevator, Labor is now wrong on so many levels.

Queensland is now the most highly taxed in the country. Our electricity, rego and Council rates in Cairns, for just three examples, have seen extraordinary rises in the last three years, outpacing CPI by amazing leaps, all the time we've been experiencing the highest unemployment and a prolonged economic depression in our region. Put simply, I wouldn't want to be running for Labor come March next year. It would be safer to be a suicide missionary in Iraq, as even Labor couldn't provide 72 virgins in their after life. They've sold their soul like a whore with their snout in the trough.

We're at a political crossroad in Queensland.

We're financially in dire straights. We're despondent about our economic future. We're tired of politicians at all levels from Council to State and beyond. We want change. We want to be listened to. We want honesty and compassion from our civic leaders. We want real engagement in local affairs, not consultants to design a $240 million entertainment centre. We want transparent in the Council's budget, not bullshit and mirrors and in-words like 'sustainability', 'robust' and 'resilient' to fob us off from a marketing department. We don't want a mayor to defend highly-paid officials from the Main Roads and imports from Willoughby Council who should be here to carry out the wishes of the community that live here. We want to create our own community. Piss off and let us design and create our City Place.

I don't want a Council that dishes up dollops of cash to visiting warships into what should be a peace-loving town. The contractions are repugnant.

Politics is dirty when you have those that want to take you through the courts for questioning and talking about them, and even forcing other Councillors to 'cease and desist' from even mentioning their name until after the next election. Truly amazing. All of a sudden, we seem to be living in State-controlled China.

I hope that the best man or woman wins at the next double State/local election in March. I also hope, nay pray, that we have a government that genuinely engages and listens and responds. Because you know, we don't have that now.

Friday 5 August 2011

Cairns Festival programme out now

The 2011 Cairns Festival programme is out today!

The Festival runs from August 19th to September 4th.

Click on the interactive programme below (complete with lazy music) or grab a printed copy from Council or the Festival HQ in City Place (that still doesn't have buses plouging through the middle).

Click, peruse, enjoy!

Bryan Law claims helicopter damage a successful "ploughshares" action

Veteran Cairns peace and anti-war activist, Bryan Law appeared in the Rockhampton Magistrates court today, claiming airport security is a disgrace, after he breached a security fence and damaged an unprotected Australian Defence Force $36 million Tiger helicopter.

57-year-old Bryan Law, who calls himself a peace preacher and protester, will appear in Rockhampton Magistrates Court facing multiple charges that could mean a prison term. Many of the charges are for alleged indictable offences.

At around 9.30 am on 21 July Bryan Law cut a $5 chain and entered the Rockhampton airport. He then rode his red tricycle 80 metres to a brand new ADF Tiger helicopter, and plunged a garden mattock through the carbon fibre panelling, disabled the helicopter.

Law is claiming his act as a very successful "ploughshares action". Ploughshares is a reference to the biblical prophesy of Isaiah they shall beat their swords into ploughshares, and their spears
into pruning hooks. Nation will not rise up against nation, nor will they study war no more.

"My actions succeeded against the odds," Bryan Law said. "I announced my intentions well in advance, and had even been arrested on 8th July by Rockhampton CIB and charged with threatening an aircraft."

"With God's grace it turned out so very simple to disarm that hideous death machine." Law said today. "Up close you can see the machine cannon and missiles of the kind that are responsible for so many civilian deaths in Afghanistan. These machines will soon be deployed to

An ADF Tiger helicopter costs $36 million a piece.

"These machines are the reason we don't have enough nurses and doctors in our hospitals, or teachers in our schools," Law says. "As a husband and father, and as a Christian I can no longer stand by while our political leaders commit us to a state of perpetual war. If good people don't act right now, well be at war in Syria and Iran within a year. We've been at war in Afghanistan for nearly 10 years. Solely for the US alliance."

"No More," Bryan Law claimed.

Law faces a smorgasbord of six charges relating to the ploughshares action, including indictable offences against both Commonwealth and Queensland laws...
  • 1 x wilful damage (s29 Commonwealth Crimes Act max 10 years)
  • 1 x wilful damage (s469 Queensland Criminal Code max 5 years)
  • 1 x threatening an aircraft (s24.1 Commonwealth Crimes (Aviation Act max 10 years)
  • 1 x unlawfully entering air side area (s3.17 (2) Commonwealth Aviation Transport Security Act)
  • 1 X breach bail (s29.1 Queensland Bail Act - max 2 years)
  • 1 x possess tainted property (s252(1) Criminal Proceeds Confiscation Act).
"My advice is that I face a period of actual imprisonment for some months or years for my actions," Bryan Law says. "While prison is an oppressive and punishing place to live, my conscience is at rest because Ive done my best to hinder and interfere with the prosecution of this abominable war."

Today's mention in the Rockhampton Court rescheduled the hearing for September 5th, when it is expected the Commonwealth government will present the costs to the damaged helicopter - that could be as much as $100,000.

Times are tough in the USA...

Just got this from a friend in the USA. It's probably true.
  • Banks are sending out pre-declined credit cards in the mail.
  • Wives are having sex with their husbands because they can't afford batteries.
  • CEO's are now playing miniature golf.
  • Exxon-Mobil laid off 25 Congressmen.
  • A stripper was killed when her audience showered her with rolls of pennies while she danced.
  • I saw a Mormon polygamist with only one wife.
  • If the bank returns your check marked "Insufficient Funds," you call them and ask if they meant you or them.
  • McDonald's is selling the 1/4 ouncer.
  • Angelina Jolie adopted a child from America.
  • Parents in Beverly Hills fired their nannies and learned their children's names.
  • My cousin had an exorcism but couldn't afford to pay for it, and they re-possessed her!
  • A truckload of Americans was caught sneaking into Mexico.
  • A picture is now only worth 500 words.
  • When Bill and Hillary travel together, they now have to share a room.
  • The Treasure Island casino in Las Vegas is now managed by Somali pirates.
  • Congress says they are looking into this Bernard Madoff scandal. Oh Great! The guy who made $50 Billion disappear is being investigated by the people who made $1.5 Trillion disappear! And, finally...
  • I was so depressed last night thinking about the economy, wars, jobs, my savings, Social Security, retirement funds, etc., I called the Suicide Hotline. I got a call center in Pakistan, and when I told them I was suicidal, they got all excited, and asked if I could drive a truck.

Tuesday 2 August 2011

What's pink, comes round every 5 years, and gets too personal?

In New Zealand, the Wizard of Christchurch famously never filled in a census questionnaire, claiming he was a work of art, often sailing out past the 12 mile limit to avoid being in the country on census night.

However the 8,191 Christchurch earthquakes since September, have put on hold their 2011 census.

The Australian Census will be counted on Tuesday 9th August, just one week from today.

Some of the 14.2 million census forms were delivered around Cairns over the weekend.

This time you will have the option to complete the census online. It took me around 15 minutes to complete. If you do this, local collectors will be alerted by SMS and won't bang on your door again in the middle of the night.

Funny Questions for 2011...