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Hulled up in Darwin – thrift, theft and fish in the top end

When we walked through the gates of the Dinah Beach Cruising Yacht Association (DBCYA), we soon arrived at this little encampment,

and met Ray and his mate Ben. Ray is the brother of a friend back home in Djaara Country, and he kindly invited us to stay on his boat, which is ‘on the hard’.

Named after his sister who died from breast cancer, Crissy Anne is Ray’s steel hull boat, which he is working on in preparation to sail around the world next year. After we arrived, he invited us to join his local sailing cohort at the bar at DBCYA ,

where we spoke to many of the folk there of our desire to crew a boat over the drink to Timor Leste or Indonesia. We were advised to post our wish on the various yachting websites, and to put up a poster on the association’s notice board, which we did the next day,

coupled with doing some much needed washing.

The following days were spent adjusting to ‘Darwin time.’ We were a bit restless to explore this little city none of us had visited before. “Go slow and calm the farm,” Ray told us, and “drink a load of water first thing in the mornings.” We were still somewhat in our get-shit-done southerner harvest-season bodies, and we’d arrived to 32 degree celsius days with overnight lows of just 18. On our first day we walked a 6 km round trip to Mindil Beach Sunset Market, hoping for fresh produce. We got instead over-priced tourist food, though they didn’t skip on the sunset.

For we adults, while Woody sleeps, our morning tea ritual is a sacred time. Between Crissy Anne and the laundry, a large patch of Tulsi grows. A powerful herb of the subtropical regions of the world, Tulsi is a perennial basil and an adaptogen,

and a dear friend of the nervous system, especially in times of change and turbulence.

When Woody gets up, and has had his oat breakfast,

it’s time to get going. Our project on the third day was to go out to Ray’s other boat, Orfeo, which is moored in the harbour. Ray said we’d be welcome to stay on this old yacht, and help get our sea legs in preparation for crewing a boat. He suggested we travel back and forth to Orfeo by the canoe he was recently given. So we loaded up, and pulled and strained the old gal a few hundred metres,

down to the wharf, dropped the canoe into the water and left Meg on the landing, as we were concerned the load was already too heavy.

Patrick and Woody rowed over our packs, food bags and instruments, then came back for Meg. We all approached our new home with excitement.

While Woody fished, his parents cleaned up the galley and were settling in when it became evident that Orfeo was an ill-fated operation.

There were problems with the solar power system, so there was no electricity, meaning our perishable food was being cooked by the day’s heat collecting inside the boat. We tried to problem-solve with Ben by phone, but the multimeter was back on shore, and there was no way we could locate the problem. Then we discovered that the canoe was taking in water. Patrick used a cup to empty it and we repacked the little boat and rowed back to shore with our sea tails between our legs. We moved back into Crissy Anne and in the work area beneath her we lived, cooked, communed with Ray and his many friends, and in the quieter times Meg got some office work done for our dear friends and permaculture elders, David Holmgren and Su Dennett.

Patrick worked on Ray’s collection of bikes. We may not be sea savvy folk, but we are bike savvy.

Only one of Ray’s four bikes was in working order, so Patrick stepped into his mechanic body until they were all functional.

As soon as we hit the road on these cruisy contraptions, we began to feel more at home in Darwin. “You don’t get done for not wearing a helmet,” said Ben, “if you stick on the bike paths you’ll be fine. The cops have plenty of other things to deal with.” The cult of safetyism in Australia’s southern states was just not apparent here. Instead of KeepCups and lattés as the dominant cultural drug-milieu by day, it is stubby holders and beer up here, which creates a continual boozy social environment. For a family on bikes, we had to be vigilant.

The bike paths are numerous and the little city is mostly flat.

There were shouts of joy as we rode Larrakia (saltwater) people’s Country, and the warm wind whooshed over the stickiness of our skin. We explored fishing spots,

caught some lovely things such as Blue swimmer crabs,

and introduced ourselves to a shell fish we’d never seen before, and strangely couldn’t ID it.

We sat, reflected, listened and relaxed in saltwater Country,

and gleaned old line and tackle on the low tide, salvaging the useful parts and binning the potentially hazardous.

We caught a bunch of fish in the first part of the week we were in Darwin, but many of them were inedible (puffer and bat fish), or they were undersize (bream and trevally). The blue bike Patrick fixed, the best of Ray’s treadlies, was stolen from underneath Crissy Anne the night after it was back on the road. Alongside feeling relaxed here in Darwin, we have also felt an uneasiness; a discomfort.

After many conversations with locals it was becoming increasingly apparent that crewing a boat for a family of three with no sailing experience was a bit of a pipe dream. We were generously offered a passage to Indonesia with Sleepy Dave, but he isn’t going until August. India is calling.

Ray is a yacht race referee in Darwin. He presides over the organisation of a number of races and he told us many sailors stay in Darwin over the dry season to join these events or repair their boats.

Ray has been so generous, going out of his way to help us while in we’ve been in Darwin. But, having inhabited the belly of Crissy Anne for several days,

we don’t want to overstay our welcome. With a fair amount of reluctance we booked a short flight to Dili in Timor Leste, 720 kms away. For a little more we could go all the way to India, but that’s not the point of this trip, to travel so fast. Meg and Patrick haven’t been overseas for twenty years, and Woody never has. We were really hoping we could do it without flying. From Dili we intend to continue northward, island-hopping towards India. Now we’ve made that decision we have work to do. Foremost, biking our winter gear and sleeping bags up to the post office to send home,

op-shopping for summer wear,

by thrift and by chance,

and obtaining some US dollars for Timor.

It’s been a strange time in Darwin. It’s almost a segregated town, at least from an outsider’s view. There’s mob here that are not Larrakia people, who have come to Darwin from remote communities, or other parts of the country. Then there’s mob here that have big grief stories, who have turned to substances that bedevil them, which in turn keeps them exiled from their respective communities. These troubled street folk are treated sternly, sometimes viciously by settler shopkeepers, security guards and managers of supermarkets across all ethnicities. Visitors are warned by locals not to engage with blackfellas looking for coin, smokes or grog, so they are often ignored or avoided. Ben told us, “It takes about two weeks for newcomers to Darwin to become racist.” On the street you have drug and alcohol affliction, and then in the board rooms, shrewd tactics of corporate power use Aboriginal people and culture to both aggregate and make-look-civil the destructive extraction of Aboriginal resources, for empire. This reckless corporate mining company, for example, dons Aboriginal art in its foyer as false flags of progressiveness and care.

It’s easy for blow-ins to jump to conclusions about a place. We understand the problems here are complex because they are generational and because western civilisation is a sophisticated propaganda machine. Drugs and alcohol have different impacts in differing cultures, depending on peoples’ approaches. Clearer for us now, is how industrial grog and industrial mining come from the same mythos of greed and subjugation, and no good culture can come from these things. These activities done in an indigenous way would require ceremony and ritual, where over-extraction or over-consumption are not present because of the gratitude and connection these cultural expressions elicit. Indigenous activities done at a scale of bioregional accountability can never be systematically or globally harmful, can never produce man-made mass suffering. Suffering is an ordinary and sometimes necessary part of life, it is a great teacher, but not on the scale industrialisation causes. This, we’ve found, is a critical difference between industrial and indigenous ways.

Towards the end of our time in Darwin, we returned to the Fishermen’s Wharf and were reminded to speak to Saltwater Mother Country, a quiet ritual we often do down south. Before we fish at a place, we speak our intention for coming. “We’ve come to catch food for our family tonight, and we will only take a little of your abundance.”

Fairly shortly after we arrived and acknowledged Mother Country in this way, Woody’s rod started bending,

and the youngtimer began pulling them in.

Four beautiful bream (from $1.50 worth of chicken) made our dinner on the second last night.

Patrick’s attempt to add to the bag saw him bring in several little critters and this Moon fish, which is apparently good eating though, due to its size, he released it.

We are leaving Darwin with much gratitude for what Country and the people have taught us here. To slow down. To accept the stickiness. To acknowledge it takes time to adjust to new places and ways. To be with the disappointment of flying and not crewing on a boat. To better understand the life-wreckingness of industrial substances and extractions. To not reduce complexity to a facile judgement. To further behold the propaganda and hubris of this nation and its subservience to empire. What can a family do in the face of all this? Eat meals together, ask questions, meet people and find out our commonalities with them, and bring more love into the world.

We didn’t come to Darwin to catch trophy fish or take in the club life. We didn’t come for the burnouts of Supercars and military jets. We didn’t come to consume Aboriginal art or Aussie-ised Asian food. We came as pilgrims on an adventure seeking nothing famous or big, rather for the accumulations of everyday magic, provided by the goddesses of small things.

Thank you, Dear Reader, for continuing to follow our journey. We feel tremendously supported by our community back home, the community of subscribers here, and the community we’re meeting on the road.

Hot chips & cigarettes (or, how government regulators fail us, again and again)

A post by Dr Patrick Jones, audio version (approx. 5mins)

 

There’s a common argument in polite Australia that goes something like this, ‘Governments regulate industry and all is well in the world. We don’t need to watch corporate activity, our regulators have that all covered.’ But is this assumption naive and hazardous to our health?

I accompanied Blackwood and some friends to watch the cricket at the MCG last week. The advertising at the ground that bombarded us throughout the day included fast food, alcohol, gambling, and microbe extermination products. You can see this for yourself if you watch the highlights.

During the day, Blackwood, now a confirmed cricket tragic like his dad, was kindly offered a bucket of hot chips, and I agreed to let him have it. Although cigarette companies are banned from sports advertising (which took decades of activism including Australia’s own unique chapter, BUGAUP), this week I discovered that this small bucket of chips that Blackwood consumed may have had the same level of toxins as him smoking a bunch of cigarettes.

I’ve been invited to write a paper on environmental poisons for an Italian academic journal, which is providing an opportunity to update my research regarding environmental pollutants and toxins in both bodies and biomes. So, I thought I’d use this period (over the next several months) to share snippets of my research and publish interesting morsels here for readers.

This week I’m taking a look at the humble potato chip (or French fry, if you’re from the US), from the vantage point of a 2018 study on fried food toxins.

Our taste receptors are excited by salty and fatty foods. The fast food industry exploits our weak spot for such nutrients or chemical compounds, which were not so prevalent as we evolved into a species with unique human taste abilities.

If you’re a regular reader of this blog, I’m probably not telling you anything new. However, if you’ve been looking for research to back up your hunch that fried hot chips are likely very toxic in the body, then please read on.

Our family has been avoiding hot chips bought at a store for many years now, preferring to grow our own spuds and animal fats organically and cooking them at home. But, every now and then (like at the cricket) we soften our stance and indulge. Is this such a stupid thing to do?

A study entitled, Chronic non-communicable disease risks presented by lipid oxidation products in fried foods (2018), although limited in its frame of reference – i.e. it would have been more useful to switch butter for ghee, and add animal fats as part of the trial – it is nonetheless a good indicator of what we have suspected, intuitively for some time, that is – if you are buying hot chips from fast food outlets, perhaps don’t.

The study finds that in a “154g potato chip serving [the] aldehyde contents are not dissimilar to those arising from the smoking of a (daily) allocation of 25 tobacco cigarettes…”

That there exists cell-damaging, carcinogenic aldehyde toxins in supposedly benign foods like fried potato chips is yet another example of government regulation not serving people, but rather serving the profit interests of industry foremost, while simultaneously eroding human health.

Of course anyone paying attention knows governments and industry now sleep in the same bed, and as we saw so outstandingly with the Covid response, there is no longer even a covering up of their flagrant lovemaking.

To have fried foods duly regulated by government oversight is never going to occur within a political system that has been captured by every large industry across the globe. Such oversight can only come from individuals, households and communities getting informed from sources they can trust, and acting on what they find out.

But if we cannot trust, or haven’t got the time to research the things we consume, then living by a simple precautionary principle, like ‘if it’s fast it’s probably toxic,’ is going to serve us well, and keep us from the ever grubby hands of the pharmaceutical or illness industry.

Your comments, research and experiences with environmental toxins that have been enabled by falsely regulated industries and corporatised journalism, are most welcome here.

And lastly if you’d like to listen to a couple of sweet evolutionary biologists discussing the scientific paper mentioned in this piece, head here.

(The citation for the paper referenced is: Grootveld M, Percival BC, Grootveld KL. Chronic non-communicable disease risks presented by lipid oxidation products in fried foods. HepatoBiliary Surg Nutr 2018;7(4):305-312. doi: 10.21037/hbsn.2018.04.01)C

I’m closing out this post with a peg of Blackwood harvesting spuds in our home garden last year. Growing our own food is always the best medicine, and it means that low-income households like ours can afford organically grown food that is non-reliant upon the vulgar boudoir of the state-corporate nexus.

Politicians worldwide can no longer claim ignorance of harm – an open letter to an MP

Dear Catherine King MP,

This letter is long overdue, and long. The impetus to finally write it was inspired by the article, Politicians Worldwide Can No Longer Claim Ignorance of the WHO Power Grab, which was compiled by the World Council for Health and published a few days ago. Please consider the following open letter from two residents within the electorate you are currently the sitting member for.

Movements in Australia and globally are watching governments closely to ensure they don’t continue to hand over our basic human rights to unelected, questionable global organisations and so-called philanthropists.

We wish to participate within a democracy but we believe we are right to be skeptical at this time in history. This hand shake between the Australian prime minister (your boss) and Bill Gates (your other boss) earlier this year speaks to our suspicions.

In a poll in late 2022 that included 50,000 Australians, ‘[m]ore than half of respondents either said they regret getting vaccinated, or were unvaccinated and happy with their decision.’ Only 35 per cent said ‘they were vaccinated and would make the same decision again. Not a single person said they were unvaccinated and regret the decision.’ A year on, the figure of 35% is no doubt considerably less, as we will demonstrate a little further on.

It is our belief that large numbers of the population will not tolerate authoritarian governance and overreach again, nor will they tolerate directives from big industries and their captured organisations, such as the WHO.

In late 2021, somewhere between 500,000 and 800,000 people marched in Canberra [see crowd drone shots at 21:50] against mandates for so-called ‘vaccines’ that never prevented the transmission of the pathogen known as Covid. We, like thousands of Australians, were assaulted by LRAD weapons at that peaceful march. It was the Australian government who used this weapon on us, without our knowing. Patrick experienced vertigo for the first time in his life the next morning, and Meg experienced an intense eye bleed while we were at the march. The bleed latest for several weeks.

Will your government, at the very least, admit that mandating a medical treatment that never stopped transmission is akin to manslaughter when people have died from the shots? And will your government recognise that those of us who protested were also harmed and our basic human rights eroded?

We wish to supply you with the growing scientific evidence that the Covid injections have caused and are still causing widespread harm. For the literature please go here, here, here, here, here, and here, to quote just a few of the available studies. It is revealing to us that with the flood of excess deaths since the jab rollouts, and a surge of heart-related deaths, it has not warranted the government to call for a major scientific review of these ‘vaccines’.

We believe that if the TGA wasn’t captured by industry and were a proper scientific institution, thousands of deaths in Australia would have already been attributed to the vaccines and those ministers and health officials who signed deals with pharmaceutical companies who made themselves exempt from legal liability, would be duly held accountable for those deaths. But then again, if the TGA wasn’t captured by industry, fewer deaths would have occurred, and the shots would have been pulled after the first safety signals were recorded.

As of the 16 August 2021, there were over 462 deaths and approximately 49,000 injuries reported relating to Covid vaccines in Australia. We were sent this screen grab of these numbers recorded by the TGA at this time, which disappeared from public view soon after.

In early September 2021 we asked, ‘[w]hy has the Therapeutic Goods Administration taken offline (since August 31) its Database of Adverse Event Notifications (DAEN), including numbers of deaths caused by Covid vaccines?’

Patrick questioned you outside the town hall in Daylesford in March 2022, relating to unvaccinated people still being locked out of public places such as town halls, public libraries, public swimming pools and cafés and restaurants, despite the failure of the jabs to stop or even slow transmission. ‘Catherine,’ he asked you, ‘when will segregation end in Victoria?’ You dismissively replied, ‘When you get vaccinated.’

Do you regret replying in this way? As a non-medical person, do you regret giving personal medical advice concerning a novel therapeutic? Do you not see the human rights abuses and harm you and your colleagues have caused to members of the public who were (a) willing, (b) coerced or (c) unwilling to trust the state-Pharma nexus?

Your government’s misnomered Misinformation and Disinformation Bill is yet another red flag for us, and signals a path to more human rights abuses in the near future. It really should be called what it is – a censorship bill. When in history has it been good for populations to entrust a government (and its hand selected ‘experts’) to solely decide what is truth and what is not? Your government’s censorship bill and your government’s collusion with the WHO sends alarm bells into many communities across Australia.

Please be assured, the pushback to authoritarianism and overreach will grow in step with government fundamentalism, as it always does. As an MP and minister you are a servant of Australian democracy. You are not an agent for big industry, big banks, corporate power and so-called philanthropists.

Throughout Covid you failed us, our family and our community. You backed policies that harmed many in our community, irregardless of their jab status. You helped sow division over a GMO in a syringe that offered no sterilising immunity and was deceptively dressed up as a vaccine.

When we did this investigation back in August, the Office of the Gene Technology Regulator (OGTR) of the Australian government proudly stated that, ‘Several of the COVID-19 vaccines are either GMOs or made from GMOs,’ and that ‘[a]n example of GMOs as medicines is gene therapy,’ and they listed as examples of GMO medicines, Pfizer’s and Moderna’s Covid products. This is the screen grab we took then (accessed: August 9, 2023 at 4:43pm).

In early August 2023 we called the OGTR to inquire about their stated ‘Covid GMOs’ and ‘gene therapies’, and all we got were promises that someone will call us back shortly. A return call never happened. However, since that time the OGTR have changed the language on that same webpage. They’ve since deleted any reference to gene therapies. The webpage now looks like this (accessed: November 24, 2023 at 3:36pm):

The OGTR still admit however that both Covid shots, which are still available in Australia, are GMOs. AstraZeneca was quietly removed from use in March of this year.

Another so-called FactCheck stated, ‘[t]here are no genetically modified organisms in the COVID-19 mRNA vaccines.’ but doesn’t say whether these shots are themselves GMOs. So, is this another case of weasel words? Remember, as we’ve just said, the OGTR still states on its webpage several Covid shots (they mean mRNA shots) are ‘either GMOs or made from GMOs,’ thus are either GMOs or have GMO products in them. Can you see the potential confusion or deliberate manipulation here in the ‘FactCheck’?

So, who is misinforming who? Once upon a time there would be robust debate, and genuine points of difference would be respected. It is alarming today how truth is claimed by non-scientific institutions such as the Australian Government who since 2021 has threatened doctors with their livelihoods for speaking against the official health messaging, and boards such as the Australian Health Practitioner Regulation Agency (AHPRA) who gagged doctors throughout the pandemic from speaking about Covid vaccines.

Science is being radically politicised, and as a society we are fast losing the ability to respect different points of view or value what both the heterodoxy and orthodoxy contribute to democracy.

Many of us are watching what you and your government are doing, and we are keeping exact records of all your decisions, statements and policies to be judged by future generations.

As a servant of democracy you have brought much pain to our home, so we’re writing to let you know we are watching, and many of us are watching. While we know your government (it is not ours) spies on people (via the Five Eyes agreement, et al), we’re letting you know that rather than spying, we are watching. Legally, respectfully, critically watching.

 

Catherine, please desist from selling off our human rights to big interests that manipulate the WHO. Please desist from supporting the authoritarian Misinformation and Disinformation Bill, which is clearly designed to attack and erase free speech. Please desist from ever using toxic weapons such as LRAD on peoples who disagree with, and protest against, the government. Please desist from continuing to walk the path of medical fascism.

Yes Catherine, you are free to put whatever you wish into your arm or in your mouth, it is none of our business what you do with your own body, but please desist from pushing onto us, and advising us (as you did in 2022) to use toxic treatments produced and distributed by well documented corporate criminals.

As of a few days ago, ‘the take up of a [Covid] booster dose has stalled. Only 5.5 per cent of Australians aged 18 to 64 years [are] rolling up their sleeves for a jab.’ If this report is accurate, this means few now believe The [industry-captured] Science. Science and public health have been irrevocably damaged in the public’s eyes. The distrust is significant and the only way to attend to this wholesale mistrust of government and their regulators is to sever the very cosy marriage between regulator and industry.

While there are only a few of us who make the time to speak up against the corruption in the state-Pharma nexus, most people know now what’s really going on.

May this open letter inspire others to write similar missives to the politicians who are supposedly representing them, to put them on notice, and to call them out when they erode basic human rights.

Sincerely,
Dr Patrick Jones and Meg Ulman

 

Red flags and the state-pharma nexus

At the Munich Security Conference this week, Bill Gates stated he was saddened that natural immunity, not Promethean or paternalistic science, has effectively ended Covid. Just say it, Bill, natural immunity is superior, and science knows this about a virus. Well, hello to another week’s report from planet Crazyland. 🤪

We have found ourselves in foreign political company throughout this epidemic for being courageous – or foolish – enough to question the government-pharma revolving door. This is something we’ve long thought of as important critical work to be done by anyone interested in examining global power relations and what makes a fair and just world.

Our video this week takes a dive into left-right binaries, the anti-mandate movement, and the collusion between the state and the pharmaceutical industry.

As always we welcome your comments.

Hoping your crazy is not too crazy, and you have plenty of nuance, love and diverse relations in your life.
Signing off from here for now,
Artist as Family x

Here are our references (in order of appearance):

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=U70Q9WqbMFM
https://www.newsweek.com/video-appears-show-police-horses-trampling-canadian-trucker-protesters-1680847
https://thoughtmaybe.com/the-living-dead/
https://greenwald.substack.com/p/the-neoliberal-war-on-dissent-in
https://gript.ie/bill-gates-bankrolled-select-media-outlets-to-the-tune-of-319-million-including-the-uks-guardian-and-the-bbc/
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=HFM2B43cYT0&t=1512s
https://www.thebellows.org/as-workers-resist-the-left-recoils/
https://www.nytimes.com/2022/02/20/health/covid-cdc-data.html
https://www.abc.net.au/news/2021-05-14/cdc-says-people-dont-have-to-wear-masks-if-fully-vaccinated/100139754
https://www.theage.com.au/national/victoria/antivax-melbourne-gp-john-piesse-faces-suspension-by-medical-regulator-20170824-gy30qt.html
https://www.theage.com.au/national/victoria/unschooling-education-how-building-a-house-changed-daylesford-teen-zephyr-20160901-gr67hj.html
https://researchdirect.westernsydney.edu.au/islandora/object/uws:45008
https://www.proquest.com/openview/7373836e910f02d6a0396e01947c4a47/1?pq-origsite=gscholar&cbl=4425140
https://left.eu/covid-19-exposes-the-destructive-legacy-of-neoliberalism/
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qVapePALGgM
https://www.immunisationcoalition.org.au/about-us/
https://www.glasgowtimes.co.uk/news/19931641.covid-data-will-not-published-concerns-misrepresented-anti-vaxxers/
https://www.abc.net.au/news/health/2022-02-15/novavax-covid-19-vaccine-what-we-know/100828062
https://maryannedemasi.com/publications/f/are-you-waiting-for-a-protein-based-covid-19-vaccine
https://denvergazette.com/news/nation-world/cdc-under-pressure-to-work-natural-immunity-into-covid-19-guidance/article_b2982a07-c33b-59d6-af4a-4a917bbe4424.html
https://www.publichealthscotland.scot/media/11763/22-02-16-covid19-winter_publication_report.pdf
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=12y5Zx2Gz_Y&t=190s