George Floyd
(Image: Unsplash/Maria Oswalt)

PROTESTS LEAD TO POLICE REFORM BILL

After almost two weeks of sustained protests over the police killing of George Floyd, ABC reports that Democrats will today introduce legislation, the Justice in Policing Act, that, amongst other changes, would:

  • create a national database of complaints against police
  • grant authority to the Department of Justice “to investigate state and local police for evidence of department-wide bias or misconduct”.
  • ban chokeholds — which, while already banned in multiple states, is something that can apparently be ignored. as the 2014 killing of Eric Garner demonstrated.

While public pressure has led to a series of other wins — including a majority of Minneapolis City Council members voting to disband the city’s police force, and New York Mayor Bill de Blasio pledging to trim the NYPD’s whopping $6 billion annual budgetThe Hill reports that presumptive Democrat nominee Joe Biden has rejected calls to start defunding US police departments.

PS: In new analysis at Too Much Information, investigative journalist David Sirota unpacks how America’s population grew by about 50% between 1977 and 2017 but state and local spending on police forces grew by a colossal 173%.

CLOSING THE GAP GOALS

According to sources at The Australian ($), the Morrison government will aim to reduce the number of Indigenous people incarcerated by reforming “Closing the Gap” goals between state, territory and federal departments and Indigenous representatives.

The goal, which would reportedly improve on a draft 2028 target, comes after tens of thousands of protesters attended Black/Indigenous Lives Matter marches last weekend; as The Guardian reports, it also comes after the number of Indigenous deaths in custody increased by five.

BP TO CUT 10,000 JOBS

According to the BBC, oil giant BP intends to slash 10,000 largely senior office positions after mass lockdown led to oil prices plummeting into the negative earlier this year.

While the company has paused redundancies amidst the pandemic’s peak, chief executive Bernard Looney emailed staff yesterday to say around 15% of the company’s global workforce — which includes 15,000 in the UK and, according to AAP, more than 5700 in Australia — will go by the end of the year.

PEAK-PEAK DEMAND: As Mandarin Premium unpacked last week, the news comes after Looney voiced support for a demand under the World Economic Forum’s new “Great Reset” campaign to end fossil fuel subsidies.

It also follows IEA and Carbon Tracker reports that found the pandemic led to a dip in demand for all energy sources but renewables, and, consequently, accelerated peak demand for fossil fuels.

STATE VIRUS WATCH: WA’S $444M HOUSING BLITZ

THEY REALLY SAID THAT?

The PM doesn’t doubt that there continues to be discrimination and racism but would not agree that this is a racist country.

Spokesperson for Boris Johnson

Shockingly, the prime minister who once joked about the Commonwealth’s “flag-waving piccaninnies” — and worked in a government that wrongfully deported at least 11 black English citizens that went on to die in unfamiliar countries — doesn’t think the UK might be kind of racist.

CRIKEY RECAP

Don’t count on that tradie-led recovery. The latest package is nothing to build on

“Have Scott Morrison and Josh Frydenberg lost their nerve on the economy?

“Having apparently spent more time leaking the details of its construction industry package than actually preparing them, the government yesterday released its ‘HomeBuilder’ policy to, at best, tepid enthusiasm in some quarters and harsh criticism in others.”


We forgot the Spanish Flu. Will we remember the coronavirus?

“The virus arrived in a world bruised and broken by four years of war. Nobody knows where or how a devastating deadly strain of H1N1 A influenza virus took hold in the spring of 1918.

“It could have started in Kansas, or in France, or China. In Spain, which stayed neutral during WWI, authorities didn’t censor the press to boost morale, leaving newspapers free to report on the virus. And that’s how it got its name: Spanish Flu.”


Without genuine war crime investigations, Australians could end up in The Hague

“With allegations of the commission of war crimes by Australian special forces in Afghanistan now appearing to be large scale, together with the emerging pattern of a policy of cover ups by special forces personnel at the scene of the crimes, Australia must ensure it conducts genuine and effective investigations, and where appropriate, prosecutions into all allegations of crimes.”

READ ALL ABOUT IT

Coalition to extend small business tax incentive for six months

NSW Police Minister says protests larger than 10 people will be deemed illegal

Top super funds increasingly vote down climate resolutions

A bitter election. Accusations of fraud. And now second thoughts.

Rivals unite to revive a live entertainment industry ‘on its knees’

‘We would rather have much more time’: Defence lawyer calls for MH17 trial adjournment

Two million fish to be released into Murray-Darling system

Inside the revolts erupting in America’s big newsrooms

World Bank forecasts worst global recession in eight decades

Prince Andrew’s lawyers hit out at US authorities over Jeffrey Epstein investigation

THE COMMENTARIAT

A stronger shelter for Indigenous heritage ($) — Ben Wyatt (The Australian): “The destruction of the Juukan Gorge rock shelters in the Pilbara two weeks ago has been extraordinarily upsetting on multiple levels. It’s heartbreaking for the Puutu Kunti Kurrama and Pinikura ­peoples, who have lost an irreplaceable spiritual and emotional connection to an ancestral past that continues to nourish their contem­porary cultural life.”

Recounting Abbott’s ‘contributions to Indigenous Australians’Luke Pearson and Nat Cromb (IndigenousX): “1. Cut $500 million from the Indigenous affairs budget. He was the Prime Minister that had a vision. One of police stations and more mines but that money had to come from somewhere, right? Mining companies cannot possibly pay fair prices for land and be taxed for what resources they take from the land.”

History has stepped on the accelerator and is taking Australia along for the ridePeter Hartcher (The Sydney Morning Herald): “In the past week, three important developments continued to accelerate the change to Australia’s place in the world. First, the Chinese government told Chinese citizens: ‘Do not travel to Australia.’ It’s unsafe in Australia because of racist violence against Chinese people, according to the Ministry of Culture and Tourism.”

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Peter Fray

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