Trump adviser Steve Bannon dubs white nationalists ‘clowns’

Trump adviser Steve Bannon dubs white nationalists ‘clowns’

The chief White House strategist Steve Bannon has attacked white nationalists as “clowns” as the fallout from violent protests in Charlottesville continues.

Mr Bannon once headed the far-right Breitbart News, seen as both a major channel for nationalism and key in helping Donald Trump win election.

But he told The American Prospect: “Ethno-nationalism – it’s losers”.

Questions surround Mr Bannon’s future, with President Trump refusing to say if he had confidence in him.

Mr Trump has reportedly been urged to fire Mr Bannon, who in his role has enjoyed direct access to the president and whose influence has been seen in decisions like the US withdrawing from the Paris climate accord.

At a news conference this week Mr Trump would only say “we’ll see” when it came to Mr Bannon’s future.

Source: Trump adviser Steve Bannon dubs white nationalists ‘clowns’ – BBC News

Emotional Brandis savages Hanson for wearing burka in Senate

One Nation senator Pauline Hanson causes controversy by wearing a burka to Question Time in the Upper House.

An emotional Attorney-General George Brandis has been given a standing ovation in Parliament for slamming One Nation leader Pauline Hanson’s decision to wear a burka into the Senate.

Key points:

  • Pauline Hanson said she wore burka in attempt to highlight security risks
  • George Brandis criticises Senator Hanson for attacking the Islamic faith
  • Labor and Greens senators gave Senator Brandis a standing ovation for his response

Senator Hanson caused audible gasps of shock when she wore the full Islamic dress into Question Time, calling for the dress to be banned in Australia.

Liberal senator from Tasmania Jonathon Duniam was heard saying, “oh, what on earth”, before Senate president Stephen Parry said Senator Hanson had been identified before entering the chamber.

Senator Brandis was close to tears while criticising Senator Hanson for attacking the Islamic faith and undermining relations with the Muslim community.

“To ridicule that community, to drive it into a corner, to mock its religious garments is an appalling thing to do,” he said.

“I would ask you to reflect on that.”

Senator Brandis ruled out banning the burka.

Source: Pauline Hanson wears burka to Question Time in the Senate, slammed by George Brandis – ABC News (Australian Broadcasting Corporation)

#BREAKING: Hostage situation at Dutch radio station

Police have confirmed a hostage-taking situation in a building used by a Dutch radio station.

A hostage-taking incident is unfolding at the building used by Dutch radio station 3FM.

Dutch police have cordoned off the building in the city of Hilversum and have confirmed the hostage situation, public broadcaster NOS says.

The NOS says a man forced his way into the building after making threats to a couple outside.

Source: Hostage situation at Dutch radio station | SBS News

Stav Davidson goes public with ice addiction on Hit105: ‘I was vomiting blood’

LONGTIME HIT105 radio personality Stav Davidson revealed a former battle with ice addiction during a revealing segment on air this morning.

Speaking on Hit105’s Stav, Abby & Matt with Osher show, the comedian and radio host opened up about something that he’d only once talked about in public before, on co-host Osher Gunsberg’s podcast.

“I am Stav Davidson, and for about nine months to a year of my life I had an addiction to ice — methamphetamine,” an audibly nervous Davidson began.

The addiction took hold in the year before he started on radio, about 13 years ago. Even now, “not many people” in his life know — while his wife is aware of his past, he said he didn’t think the rest of his family knew…

Source: Stav Davidson reveals former ice addiction on Hit105: ‘I was vomiting blood’

Ford Focus mass recall due to fire risk

Ford to update software on 2013 Escape, Fusion to fix fire ... Ford is recalling nearly 43,000 of its Focus model cars, warning they are at risk of catching fire

Ford Focus models made between April 12, 2011 and September 29, 2015 have a fault in their carbon canisters which means they can be blocked by dust and ignite.

Ford will write to individual owners, but anyone worried about their vehicle is urged to contact their local Ford dealer to arrange an inspection.

Source: Ford Focus mass recall due to fire risk | Perth Now

Last night @TheBachelorAU went way too far. Slut-shaming at its worst

BACHELOR contestant Leah Costa has come out swinging after she was unceremoniously dumped for “hiding her past” in adult entertainment.

Our anaemic hero Matty J insisted he didn’t object to her topless waitressing history but couldn’t stand the fact she kept it a secret — which seems rather disingenuous, since the entire episode revolved around exposing Leah’s “dirty laundry” and cementing her role as the villain of the piece.

Beautiful, bland Matty was not at all perturbed to see the other women reduced to a gaggle of bitching, sniping harpies.

One by one, they took turns to make snide remarks to camera about their most hated rival’s seedy Achilles’ heel. Then came the convenient opportunity: Matty’s sister grilling each girl about the authenticity of their search for love.

They’d better be there for the right reasons! But wait, perhaps Leah is there for the wrong reasons, because — whisper it — she has a past

MORE: Bachelor Australia 2017: Leah’s exit is slut-shaming at its worst

‘This wasn’t the plan’: Trump staff left reeling as President goes off the rails

In a rage-filled press conference Donald Trump has confirmed two bleak facts about his character and presidency. Firstly, that he does not signal to the so-called alt-right with his incendiary statements and his regurgitation of online conspiracy theories, he is in fact an alt-right president. Secondly, that he is utterly uncontrollable by the senior staff who rapidly cycle through his increasingly chaotic White House.

Trump appeared ostensibly to talk about plans to revitalise infrastructure, then offered to take questions.

This was, you might remember, the third time Trump addressed the deadly violence that accompanied a rally organised by and for white supremacists to protest against the removal of Confederate monuments on Saturday.

That day, before one of their number drove into a crowd of peaceful counter protesters, injuring 19 and killing a 32-year-old woman, Heather Heyer, the far right crowd was filmed beating people and chanting slogans such as “Jews will not replace us,” “Blood and soil,” and “heil Trump”…

Source: Donald Trump after Charlottesville is the ‘alt-right’ president

Telstra in $4 billion market rout – five-year low

SHARES in Telstra have plunged to a five-year low as investors react to the telco giant’s announcement it will reduce its dividends this financial year.

Telstra announced a 1 per cent lift in its full-year net profit amid a tough market today but attention has centred on the announced cut to its dividend from next year.

Australia’s biggest telecommunications group says it will cut its dividend to create a battle fund so it can better fight new competitors.

The company said it expects to pay a total dividend of 22c a share, fully franked, for the financial year to next June after reassessing its dividend policy.

That is down from 31c in the year just ended.

In the wake of the move, Telstra shares plunged in morning trade today.

They were down 8.3 per cent, or 36c, early this afternoon, at $3.95 — the lowest level since September 2012.

The slump has wiped $4.4 billion from Telstra’s market value.

Telstra’s move takes it away from its historical practice of paying out almost all profit in dividends.

It now expects to pay out 70 per cent to 90 per cent of its earnings — a ratio it says is “more in line with global peers and local large companies”.

Chief executive Andrew Penn said the change was “about setting the business up for success in the future”.

Telstra’s profit from continuing operations was up 1.1 per cent at $3.9 billion for the year to June.

The group’s revenue from continuing operations grew 0.4 per cent to $26 billion, while its net profit of $3.9 billion was down 32.7 per cent.

A year ago, that tally was boosted by the sale of its stake in Autohome for $1.8 billion.

Source: Telstra results: Share price plunges as Telstra dividend cut looms | Perth Now

Business execs shunned Trump advisory panels BEFORE he disbanded them

WASHINGTON (AP) — President Donald Trump had pushed many of America’s top corporate leaders to the breaking point with his inability to decisively condemn white supremacists — so they huddled on an 11:30 a.m. conference call Wednesday.

The frustrated members of the White House policy forum — which included executives from General Electric, Wal-Mart, General Motors, Boeing, IBM and JPMorgan Chase — chose to dissolve their advisory panel. The White House was then phoned and Trump agreed that it was the right course of action, according to four people familiar with the talks who insisted on anonymity to discuss private conversations.

It was a shocking setback for Trump. The president had reveled in his ability to draw billionaires and corporate titans into the Oval Office, where he touted deals to invest in factories and add factory jobs. But by equating the white supremacists whose actions led to deadly violence in Charlottesville, Virginia to a group of counter-protesters, Trump had already inflicted damage on his manufacturing jobs council — which had seven departures by Wednesday morning.

So after learning about this latest loss of confidence by his former strategic and policy forum, Trump tried to put a more favorable spin on the defections.

He fired off a tweet Wednesday saying that he chose to disband his strategy forum and manufacturing jobs panel, “rather than putting pressure” on CEOs to stay. “Thank you all!” the president wrote.

The alliance with the White House forged in hopes of overhauling the tax code, cutting regulations and jumpstarting new infrastructure investments had turned into a risk for corporate leaders. For those CEOs with shared policy aims, Trump’s recent statements were distractions that risked alienating employees and customers in an increasingly diverse United States.

“It is a leader’s role, in business or government, to bring people together, not tear them apart,” said Jamie Dimon, chairman and CEO of JPMorgan Chase, in a statement. Dimon also chairs the Business Roundtable, an association of CEOs, that recently launched a multi-million dollar advertising campaign in support of Trump’s calls to cut corporate and personal tax rates.

GE’s chairman Jeffrey Immelt called the president’s remarks “deeply troubling.” The “ongoing tone” had made it difficult to foster policies that help economic growth, he said.

Companies were facing pressure on social media to denounce the president and resign from the White House advisory boards, while companies that had already cut ties were facing possible boycotts from Trump supporters. Only by acting together and having those panels disbanded would they be able to avoid harsher scrutiny not just from the public but also from a president with a track record of blasting individual companies that cross him on Twitter.

“The problem was it was quickly becoming a litmus test for companies, CEOs and brands,” said Timothy Calkins, a professor of marketing at Northwestern University. “This move takes away that issue — because it allows everyone to back away without being seen as backing away.”

After Trump’s initial equivocating on Saturday about protests that stemmed from a planned removal of a Confederate statute, executives began to leave his manufacturing and jobs council. First was Merck, then Under Armour and Intel, followed by the Alliance for American Manufacturing and the AFL-CIO…

Source: Business execs shunned Trump panels before he disbanded them