around the traps & thoughts on new laws

I've been going through various draft posts I haven't had time time to publish over the last couple of weeks. I threw away some draft posts screaming about the new anti-terrorism laws, particularly the ones I wrote before the laws were passed.

All I can think of now is the reaction of the cabbie who took me to the airport a few days ago (muslim, bearded, fits-a-profile). He hadn't heard about it yet and when I mentioned it he immediately said 'I better tell my girlfriend if I don't come home, she should call the police and check...' and wasn't really joking. He was a really nice guy, very passionate about his religion and terribly sad that people think it's a violent religion. He said it promotes peace, that extremists 'aren't muslims and don't represent islam'. He then helped me get my bags out of the boot at the airport and bid me a good day.

I keep thinking about him when the new laws are mentioned. What could he do if somebody decided he might be a risk? He'd be detained, maybe put under house arrest for months on end for absolutely no reason and nobody would ever know about it. Maybe he'd be allowed to tell his family. Maybe.

I mean, sure, so he could be a terrorist. But then I could be a bank robber in my spare time. My next door neighbour could be a disguised alien being beamed over from Mars. Personally I thought we lived in a country where "could" and "might" weren't good enough to lock people up.

At least, that's how it was when I was growing up. I guess it's a different nation now.


  • drjon: Terror Laws and the Australian Blogger...
  • Women want their men at work | Business | Breaking News 24/7 - (29-09-2005): 'There's no conflict about this: Australian women don't like it when their men work part-time,' says Jan van Ours, an international researcher who will today present a paper drawn from Australia's HILDA (Household Income and Labour Dynamics in Australia) survey. 'Australian women want their men in full-time jobs. They are least satisfied when they, themselves, have a job of more than 50 hours, and most satisfied when they are working part-time, or not at all.'
  • Police stake-out bar, hoping to catch man drunk | The Register : The journalist in question, Edmonton newspaper columnist Kerry Diotte, wasn't suspected of involvement in any crime. But Diotte had written a column criticizing the police force's radar and camera technology as being more of a cash cow for the force than an effective measure against road fatalities - and the story enraged the local constabulary.
  • Herald Sun: I shot the big cat [09oct05]: A Victorian hunter believes he may finally have solved the state's big cat mystery. Kurt Engel shot dead what is believed to be a leopard or a puma in Gippsland. The perspective in the photo is really strange. I'd be waiting for the DNA before I got excited.


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