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Local News

Joyce: ‘Foreigners can’t buy our farms’

The land we stand on is intrinsic to our values and identity as a nation.

By Caroline Overington
1. SHOULD foreign governments be allowed to own Australian property, including great Australian cattle stations?
Agriculture minister Barnaby Joyce doesn’t think so.
In an interview with The Australian today, the Minister said: “I don’t want to see agricultural land owned by foreign governments. The land we stand on is intrinsic to our values and identity as a nation.
“I wouldn’t want to see Australian farmland become under the control of the government of another nation.”
The issue is important, because the massive SK Kidman empire of 10 cattle stations, put together by “Cattle King” Sir Sidney Kidman in the 1890s, has been put on the market with a price tag of $350 million, and several companies owned by foreign governments are among the bidders.
The empire includes 185,000 cattle and the world’s largest cattle property, Anna Creek Station, on the edge of South Australia’s Lake Eyre.
2. UK police are urgently trying to locate three mothers and nine children who travelled from Britain to Saudi Arabia and did not return.
There is concern that the women and children may have ended up in Syria.
Some of the boys are teenagers, while many of the other children are still toddlers.
All are members of the Dawood family from Bradford, West Yorkshire. They were due back in the UK last Thursday.
Lawyers acting for two fathers said: ‘The suspicion, and main concern, is that the women have taken their children to Syria’ where ISIS is on the march, and actively recruiting jihadists.
Police said there has been no contact from any of the family since 9 June. Their mobile phones have not been active and their social media profiles have not been updated.
They left for Saudi Arabia on 28 May.
3. A GRIEVING mother has lost her bid to use her daughter’s frozen eggs to give birth to her own grandchild.
The Guardian reports that the mother, 59, wanted to carry her daughter’s child, but the British High Court says there is not enough evidence to say what the daughter wanted.
The daughter died of cancer at the age of 28. She had her eggs frozen to protect them from cancer treatment before she died.
Mr Justice Ouseley said the case was ‘very sad’ but the daughter did not leave a document saying that she wanted her mother to have a child with the eggs.
Her mother quoted her daughter as saying: “They are never going to let me leave this hospital mum – the only way I will get out of here will be in a body bag. I want you to carry my babies. I didn’t go through IVF to save my eggs for nothing.”
However, a form saying what should be done with the eggs was never signed.
The relationship was confirmed by Kristen’s Mum, Jules Stewart, who told the Sunday Mirror: “What's not to be accepting about her now having a girlfriend? She's happy. I've met Kristen's new girlfriend, I like her. What's not to accept? She's a lovely girl."
The actress previously dated Twilight co-star Robert Pattinson.
Jules said: “I accept my daughter loves women and men. It’s okay to be who you are in my world. We all choose our friends so we should be free to choose our lovers. People are good to do whatever they like as long as they’re not hurting people or breaking the law.”
4. IT IS Clinton v Bush.
Well, probably, anyway.
Hillary Clinton threw her hat into the 2016 presidential race some months ago.
On the weekend, she said she was hoping to become the youngest ever female president of the United States of America (she’d also be the first.)
Now Jeb Bush – brother of former President George W, and son of the first President George H. W. Bush – has thrown his hat into the ring. He’s a former Governor of Florida; and his wife is Hispanic. He speaks Spanish, as do all three of their kids.
Each of Bush and Clinton has to win their respective party’s nomination before the race can truly be called another Bush v Clinton battle, but we’re close.
For the record, (Bill) Clinton won the last one, beating out Jeb’s Dad. Round two, when it comes, will be wife versus son.
5. JULIA Gillard gave Kevin Rudd ‘false hope’ that he could stay on as Prime Minister, when actually, she was going to knife him.
The admission comes in tonight’s episode of the ABC documentary about the Labor years, The Killing Season.The Sydney Morning Herald says Julia will admit to perhaps giving Rudd the idea that he had more time to fix problems with his leadership in 2010.
She should have been ‘more clinical’ she says.
For his part, Kevin says he was devastated, because he regarded Julia as a friend and supporter, and ‘we shook hands.’ But again, want a friend in politics? Get a dog.
6. CONCERNS have been raised for the young and troubled Mrs Gabi Grecko-Edelsten, after she broke down in tears on A Current Affair last night.
The new bride, 26, says she is pregnant to her ex-prisoner husband, Geoffrey Edelsten, who is 46 years her senior.
Her pregnancy was announced just weeks after she admitted to extreme anxiety on Twitter. She wept as she spoke of enemies on social media, saying: “They don’t know what’s going on. They don’t want to make things better — they just want to attack me and my baby.”
Gabi said she wanted to call the baby Geoffrey and turn the room where she keeps her DJ equipment into a nursery. Take a look at the video below:
7. A WHITE university professor who pretended to be black has quit at least one of her civil rights agency jobs.
In a Facebook post, Rachel Dolezal said: “It is with complete allegiance to the cause of racial and social justice and the N.A.A.C.P (National Association for the Advancement of Coloured People) that I step aside from the presidency and pass the baton to my vice president, Naima Quarles-Burnley.”The New York Times says Rachel, 37, had “repeatedly identified herself as partly black. But when reached by reporters last week at their home in Montana, Ms. Dolezal’s parents — from whom she is estranged — said that, in fact, her ancestry is overwhelmingly white, with a small fraction being Native American, but not black”.
The parents produced photos of her as a fair-skinned teenager with freckles and straight blond hair.
It is not yet clear whether she will also have to give up her part-time teaching position in African-American studies at Eastern Washington University, and other positions.
“Please know I will never stop fighting for human rights and will do everything in my power to help and assist, whether it means stepping up or stepping down, because this is not about me,” she said.
“It’s about justice.”
8. DAME Helen Mirren has lent her voice to the reading of a US torture report.
US comedian John Oliver told his audience that he had asked the Oscar winner to voice the report after key members of the CIA – who are actually in the report – confessed to never having read it.
The report – or, more accurately, a 500-page summary of the actual torture report, which runs to 6700 pages – was released by President Barack Obama six months ago.
In releasing it, he admitted that the US had engaged in waterboarding and other extreme measures, saying: “We tortured some folks.”
John Oliver said he decided to make an audio book of the report, read by Helen Mirren, so relevant members of the CIA could “put it on the car and listen to it”.
9. Pedestrian smart lanes introduced to accommodate smart-phone addicts.
A smartphone company has introduced "text-walking" pedestrian lanes after they noticed a steep rise in the number of accidents that occurred as people crashed into others on the street because they were too caught up in their phones.
The lanes are currently in streets throughout the town of Antwerp in Belgium, and have already been quite popular with multi-tasking commuters.
A spokesman for the group behind the texting lanes, Mlab, said, "You probably walk through the streets while texting or sending Whatsapp messages to your friends and don't really pay attention to your surroundings – only to whatever is happening on your screen.
"This causes collisions with poles or other pedestrians. You could, unknowingly, even be endangering your own life while you 'textwalk' when you cross the street without looking up."
Only time will tell if this catches on. At the rate the world's smartphone addiction is going, it wouldn't even be all that surprising.
You can view the text-walking lane pictures here.

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