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Michael Burrill

About Michael Burrill

Michael Burrill is a 24-year-old writer and contrarian. His hobbies include cheap Australian lager and existential dread.

“Tension” is the theme of this week’s Wrap as pressure builds over the Michael Brown shooting, the Libs fib, Ebola reaches fever pitch and Cairo talks collapse.


We begin where we left off last week – with Tony Abbott and friends seemingly telling porkies about the environment. After a report was released, headed by climate change sceptics Dick Warbuton, indications suggest the government will scrap the Renewable Energy Target (something which they ruled out before the last election) despite this report finding it didn’t really effect power bills. Despite claims by environment minister Greg Hunt and head of the Great Barrier Reef Marine Park Authority Russell Reichelt to the contrary, it has been revealed one of the government’s own scientists described the dumping of dredged sediment as part of the Abbot Point mining project as “environmentally and socially unacceptable.” A government who hires self proclaimed climate change skeptics to head a climate change related report lying about their intentions!?!? shocking I know…

Even as rich people attempt to destroy nature in Australia, nature has tragically been destroying poor people in Africa via the Ebola epidemic. The operations director of Médecins Sans Frontières Brice de la Vigne criticised Western responses to the crisis saying, “Globally, the response of the international community is almost zero,” while Ireland’s ambassador to Sierra Leone Sinead Walsh added, “We are gone beyond the stage of a health crisis. This is a humanitarian emergency now.” For anyone paranoid Ebola might spread to Australia, the early symptoms somewhat resemble a hangover. Enjoy your hungover Sunday people!

For over a week now, the world has been privy to protests over the use of disproportionate police force in the Michael Brown shooting in Ferguson, Missouri. This accompanies a week at home where Andrew Bolt was accused of racism on his own show (rightly in my opinion) and the Telegraph ran a story by Tim Blair labelling multicultural Lakemba “Muslim Land.” Just as with this latest case of seeming racism or racial stereotyping that led to the Michael Brown shooting where Americans are being forced to realise “no we cant solve institutional racism by just repeating ‘Yes we can’ over and over,” we in Australia must realise solving institutional racism is not as simple as saying “Sorry” or trotting out phrases like #TeamAustralia.

After the humanitarian crisis in Syria and Iraq led Immigration minister Scott Morrison to announce 4,400 refugee places to be set aside and Tony Abbott referenced the beheading of American journalist James Foley by IS in Syria as part of his continued attempts to sell new “anti terror” and intelligence laws, it was revealed the immigration department has endeavoured to repatriate Syrian asylum seekers. So let me get this straight, the danger and atrocities committed in Syria are enough to justify taking away our privacy at home but not enough to stop the punishment of desperate people for arriving by boat? …go figure.

The Middle East’s other conflict has hotted back up as talks in Cairo broke down and Israel resumed bombing missions allegedly in response to rocket attacks, something which both Hamas and the PLO (Palestine Liberation Organisation) denied. Israeli PM Binyamin Netanyahu went on to compare Netanyahu Hamas to IS while the US reiterated its support for Israel’s right to defend itself. Now I’m no legal expert but isn’t self defence supposed to be proportionate?


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