Tony Abbott lecture on Freedom of Speech

Tony Abbott will give the Fr Gregory Jordan, SJ, Memorial Scholarship Lecture in Brisbane on 29 April 2016. The title of the lecture is: FREEDOM OF SPEECH: THE RIGHT AND THE RESPONSIBILITY. Details of the time and place can be found Here.

Fr Gregory Jordan was a much loved and respected theologian and former headmaster of St Ignatius Riverview. Both Tony Abbott and Barnaby Joyce were at St Ignatius during his headmastership. They attended his funeral in July 2015.

A favourite accusation of Abbott’s army of unappeasable enemies in politics and the media is that he is a religious zealot, eager to force the Australian population to convert – or else. It is one of the most serviceable parts of the Abbott persona they have created, and they keep hammering it.

Those familiar with his background, however, know that Abbott is considered by many orthodox Catholics to be on the liberal side, far from the dogmatic finger-wagging zealot of the manufactured image. Indeed, he fits the image of the modern Jesuit. In his book Battlelines, he gave a short account of his main (religious) influences.

Apart from my parents, the church was the biggest influence on my early life. From 1966 till 1975, I was at St Aloysius and then St Ignatius College, Riverview, in Sydney. The college mottos, ‘born for higher things’ and (roughly translated) ‘do as much as you can’, give a good idea of the Jesuit ethos at that time, which I thoroughly assimilated…

The Jesuits who taught me wanted to bring out the very best in their students but didn’t expect them to be saints. They weren’t dis­loyal to the Pope or subversive of the church but often seemed impa­tient with the ‘scold’ side to religious teaching. ‘Don’t bother giving up chocolates for Lent’, Father Emmet Costello used to advise, ‘but do something positive like going to Mass more often’. ‘We are all the prod­ucts of those who have loved us or failed to love us’, he often observed, quoting, I think, the American Jesuit John Powell. For me, the mes­sage was that God preferred big-hearted people who might sometimes make mistakes rather than robotic rule worshippers.

Tony Abbott’s actions as a politician bear that out. There are numerous ordinary people who give accounts of his generosity and compassion – a sympathetic word, a phone call about a sickness or death. Then there are the public demonstrations – his working with the SES, his yearly stay with the Aboriginal communities in the north, the pollie pedal, and so on. He shows his faith in his works rather than in his words.

The organizers of the Fr Gregory Jordan, SJ, Memorial Lecture have chosen well.


Labor goes to the gutters

In the Godfather series going to the mattresses means going to war. When the Labor Party goes to war they go to the gutters – to filth beyond the inclination of the normal person. We have seen the foremost filth-throwers many times in action:

Gutless Jason Clare

Wife-deserter and disgusting hypocrite Tony Burke

Smarmy sanctimonious Mark Dreyfus

Loudmouth bully Stephen Conroy

These lying filth-throwers see no boundaries to what they are prepared to say – no boundaries except their gutlessness.

Former High Court Judge Dyson Heydon has an unimpeachable character and reputation. Indeed, the attainment of the position of High Court Judge presumes an unsullied character and a legal mind of the highest order. Commissioner Heydon was invited to give this year’s Sir Garfield Barwick Address to a group of Liberal Party Lawyers.

The Sir Garfield Barwick Address is not at the level of the stinking atmosphere of sweat, booze and moronic grunting of a CFMEU pub where CFMEU leaders boast about calling a low-level government official a ‘piece of shit’ for merely doing his job.

Only those with the finest legal minds are invited to give the Sir Garfield Barwick address and the audience expects nothing less than intellectual refinement, legal nuance and erudition. The overriding priority is the character and intellectual status of the speaker and the content of the address. Bland political partiality has no place if the speaker wants to be taken seriously.

Whether or not the occasion is called a fundraiser is beside the point and necessarily infers nothing about the political allegiances of the speaker or his character. Questions of character and intellectual status have already been settled – empirically. That’s why Commissioner Heydon was invited to give the address.

For members of parliament who are trained lawyers and have served or are serving as Australia’s alternative Justice Minister to call a High Court Judge a ‘stooge’ and a ‘bagman’ and totally unfit to conduct a royal commission is an outrage that must not be borne – if Australian government is to maintain a semblance of moral and administrative competence.

For the same reasons, Commissioner Heydon was appointed to the High Court, asked to give the Sir Garfield Barwick Address, and to head the Royal Commission into Unions – unimpeachable integrity and the finest of legal minds. Any government of whatever colour needs people like Commissioner Heydon.

In trashing Dyson Heydon Labor’s gutless creeps are trashing Australia’s system of government. They are trashing you and me.

Of course, there is a background to the cowardly attacks that plumb depths of hypocrisy unattainable by the ordinary person. Andrew Bolt could not give a better explanation of what’s at stake for the Labor Party HERE.

Gerard Wilson

Defending the only form of marriage

INVITATION from Terri M. Kelleher, Victorian President,  Australian Family Association

You are cordially invited to hear brilliant young U.S. author, and scholar Ryan T Anderson, PhD present the strongest defence of marriage as the union of a man and a woman as you will be likely to hear. Dr Anderson is on a one-week tour of Australia organised by the Australian Christian Lobby. (Click here to view flyer)

TOPIC:   THE COST OF EQUALITYWhat comes next with same-sex marriage may not be what you think. (Includes Q & A)

VENUE: Cathedral Hall, Australian Catholic University, 20 Brunswick Street, Fitzroy

DATE:    Thursday, 20th August 

TIME:      6pm

Bookings: Tickets must be purchased online: click here to BOOK NOW

 Ryan Anderson has been described as the most compelling and courageous defender of marriage in the U.S. He is the author of numerous papers and books on marriage. His latest book, Truth Overruled – The Future of Marriage and Religious Freedom, has just been released. Ryan was thrust into fame in America when he appeared on the Piers Morgan Live TV show with this well-reasoned defence of marriage before a hostile audience – click here to view.

Ryan Anderson’s address will make clear the emerging concern that legislating same-sex marriage will cost us our freedom, that it would not mean equality for the wider Australian community.


Magna Carta

The British Library has a website devoted to Magna Carta, explaining the document’s history, legacy and crucial influence on the formation and development of modern democracies – HERE. Below is their introduction to the document, emphasizing the principle of the rule of law to safeguard the liberty of the individual in community with others.


by Claire Breay and Julian Harrison

What is Magna Carta?

Magna Carta, meaning ‘The Great Charter’, is one of the most famous documents in the world. Originally issued by King John of England (r.1199-1216) as a practical solution to the political crisis he faced in 1215, Magna Carta established for the first time the principle that everybody, including the king, was subject to the law. Although nearly a third of the text was deleted or substantially rewritten within ten years, and almost all the clauses have been repealed in modern times, Magna Carta remains a cornerstone of the British constitution.Most of the 63 clauses granted by King John dealt with specific grievances relating to his rule. However, buried within them were a number of fundamental values that both challenged the autocracy of the king and proved highly adaptable in future centuries. Most famously, the 39th clause gave all ‘free men’ the right to justice and a fair trial. Some of Magna Carta’s core principles are echoed in the United States Bill of Rights (1791) and in many other constitutional documents around the world, as well as in the Universal Declaration of Human Rights (1948) and the European Convention on Human Rights (1950).

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