Throughout this afternoon embarrassed authority figureheads have been fleeing this press release like fleas from a drowning dog. So I joyously present it to you in all its Goebbels-like cold-bloodedness (highlights mine):
28-08-2015 - This weekend Australian Border Force (ABF) officers will for the first time join forces with a diverse team of transport and enforcement agencies to target crime in the Melbourne Central Business District (CBD) as part of Operation Fortitude.Like a couple hundred other Melburnians, I was on the steps of Flinders Street Station a few minutes after 2:00 to protest this absurd attack on democratic Australian society given a US-military-style cartoon monicker like Operation Fortitude.
Tonight and tomorrow evening (Friday 28 and Saturday 29 August 2015) Metro Trains, Yarra Trams, the Sheriff’s Office, Taxi Services Commission and the ABF will join Victoria Police as part of the inter-agency operation.
With a particular focus on people travelling to, from and around the CBD, the group of agencies will work together to support the best interests of Melbournians, targeting everything from anti-social behaviour to outstanding warrants.
ABF Regional Commander Victoria and Tasmania, Don Smith, is proud the ABF will be participating in the operation.
"While the ABF regularly conducts a range of compliance field-work, this is the first time we’ve been involved in an inter-agency operation of this nature and we’re very proud be able to support each of our organisations to achieve our common mission of promoting a secure and cohesive society here in Melbourne."
"ABF officers will be positioned at various locations around the CBD speaking with any individual we cross paths with," Mr Smith said.
"You need to be aware of the conditions of your visa; if you commit visa fraud you should know it’s only a matter of time before you’re caught out."
The inter-agency outfit will continue to work together on an ongoing basis to target crime in and around the Melbourne CBD to make the city a safer place for everyone.
Operation Fortitude will be launched by representatives from each participating agency at 2pm today (Friday 28 August 2015) on the steps of Flinders Street Railway Station.
To steal from one of my tweets: 'Operation Ineptitude/Turpitude/Platitude/Servitude/Ingratitude ... anything but Fortitude.'
I've been a permanent visa holder in Australia since 2008 but am not in the habit of having my passport on my person. It wasn't my plight that motivated me to hop a train and join the protest, however. It was the image of my exotic-looking wife, an Australian resident almost all her life, being stopped on a sidewalk by some dim-witted bootlicker questioning her right to be in this country. According to bright bulb 'ABF Regional Commander Victoria and Tasmania Don Smith' this wasn't an impossible scenario -- the press release unequivocally stated 'ABF officers will be positioned at various locations around the CBD speaking with any individual we cross paths with'. Imagining that scenario -- my Indo-Fijian-Australian wife, who's busted her ass to become a successful executive in the country her family relocated to when she was a child being grilled by some fuckwit who lives in his/her parents' basement in some far-off Melbourne suburb -- was what made being in front of Flinders Street Station at 2:00 mandatory.
Here's what it looked like:
By next week well-paid media spinners will no doubt provide an elixer for this catastrophic clusterfuck, and newly outfitted Border Force henchmen and women will be patrolling the streets of Melbourne like they were soldiers in the Korean DMZ.
But ... on this blissful Friday, people power prevailed.
And that, dear readers, is cause for celebration.
Lots of satisfying reading in the mainstream media this Saturday morning.
We Shut Them Up and a brilliant First Dog on the Moon cartoon from the Guardian.
A Case of Uniformed Insanity and Farce Leaves Tony Abbott Under Fire from the Age.
Greens, union demand answers over controversial cancelled Operation Fortitude on the ABC news website.
Border farce and hot air fills the leadership vacuum from the Sydney Morning Herald.
Even the ethical cesspool called the Herald Sun has a story halfway down its homepage titled 'Border farce: Backlash puts stop to visa crackdown'. I won't link to it, just like I won't walk into my kitchen and shove my head into the garbage can.
Also, I learned via late-night Twitter exchange with Van Badham that she's in New Zealand, meaning she was on the other side of the Tasman from Australia when she summoned people like me to descend on Flinders Street Station yesterday afternoon. She took zero credit for playing a role, but I disagreed.