Sophistry

Gillian Triggs is the 21st century sophist, employing clever but facetious arguments.  She obviously has a well remunerated post-HRC career plotted out delivering speeches to adoring crowds of acolytes. This by Tessa Akerman in the Australian. Triggs really has some hide – talk about a pot calling a kettle black. Here is a woman who consistently obfuscated and misled the Senate trying to preach that her critics are peddling ‘post truth’.

Gillian Triggs has said Australia is in the grips of the phenomena of “post truth” which compounds the problem of the overreach of executive power.

Giving the Michael Kirby Oration on Wednesday night at Victoria University, Professor Triggs said the idea of alternative facts which had credibility had created an ‘Alice in Wonderland’ world where words mean what we choose them to.

“This is what is increasingly concerning me particularly in the context of the current debate on marriage equality,” she said.

“The obfuscation of the truth, the failure to deal with the issues, to throw in great debating techniques and straw men and red herrings … are deeply troubling in an issue that should be lead by clear evidence-driven leadership through our politicians and senior members of the community.”

Professor Triggs said it was a “tragedy” that most Australians did not know enough about our system of government.

“We don’t have education in what might be described as ‘civics’,” she said.

“The basics of our democracy I think need to be taught at our schools, more clearly than they are, and more emphasis at our universities.”

She said there needed to be a focus on separation of powers, checks and balances and why Australia can’t have cabinet executive government assume a larger role to the detriment of parliament and the judiciary.

“I also believe it is time for us to revisit the work that’s already been done on the introduction of some legislative form of a bill of rights,” Professor Triggs said.

“I know very well there is very little political appetite for a bill of rights but it doesn’t mean that we should stop thinking about it.”

She said by creating the language of a bill of human rights across the country, people would be more aware when there was creeping legislation that in one way or another curtail those rights.

“I might note the paradox that the very people who have been demanding an end to identity politics, to political correctness, all want reform in anti-discrimination laws on race or sex, are the very same people who are now demanding new legislative protection on freedom of religion and freedom of speech,” she said.

About Lucius Quinctius Cincinnatus

I'm a retired general who occasionally gets called back to save the republic before returning to my plough.
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54 Responses to Sophistry

  1. Ƶĩppʯ (ȊꞪꞨV)

    I have met worms with greater self awareness then Gillian Triggs, She is a walking intellectual black hole, that sucks down the average IQ of people around her.

  2. Legislated human rights – that’s an oxymoron.

  3. harry buttle

    Finally I agree with Triggsypuff on something. A bill of rights!

    Lets start with freedom of speech, then the right to keep and bear arms, absolute castle doctrine, stand your ground, freedom from unwarranted search and seizure, freedom of association. I think we are off to a good start, I’m so pleased that Triggsypuff and I are in agreement about our bill of rights.

  4. C.L.

    Giving the Michael Kirby Oration on Wednesday night at Victoria University, Professor Triggs said the idea of alternative facts which had credibility had created an ‘Alice in Wonderland’ world where words mean what we choose them to.

    Like Michael Kirby’s alternative meaning for “marriage,” for example.

  5. Dave in Marybrook

    It’s pitiable that she’s latched onto the observation that the marriage traditionalist case has used great debating techniques.
    That’s how one wins a debate.

  6. Natural Instinct

    “I might note the paradox that the very people who have been demanding an end to identity politics, to political correctness, all want reform in anti-discrimination laws on race or sex, are the very same people who are now demanding new legislative protection on freedom of religion and freedom of speech,” she said.

    .
    Paradox = a seemingly absurd or contradictory statement or proposition which when investigated may prove to be well founded or true.
    .
    She really should not use such big words. She gets confused.

  7. Pedro the Ignorant

    “clear evidence-driven leadership through our politicians and senior members of the community.” quoth Triggleypuff.

    In other words, “shut your piehole, you ignorant plebs. We will make the rules.”.

    I was hoping this vile old hag would sink into obscurity after her fadeout from her taxgobbling HRC sinecure, but no, the horrible head keeps popping up over the parapet.

  8. Zulu Kilo Two Alpha

    I was hoping this vile old hag would sink into obscurity after her fadeout from her taxgobbling HRC sinecure, but no, the horrible head keeps popping up over the parapet.

    Well said, Pedro. I was hoping that the whole business of separate computer rooms for Aboriginal students at QUT would have shown her to be utterly irrelevant, but, no, here we go again.

  9. Natural Instinct

    SO it is true that “some people” want to get rid of restrictions (where they exist) and that those same “some people” may be arguing for protections of freedoms (where they do not exist).
    To her restrictions are good (calming the savage beast that is inside the dreaded unwashed public) whilst freedoms (that will inflame the beast) are bad.

  10. Religious freedom and sex education are not red herrings. The problems therein are related to SS’M’. Raising the possibility of polyamorous, incestuous, or interspecies marriage are not strawmen, they are attempts to draw out the premises or lack thereof of SS’M’ arguments and their weaknesses. However, when you turn to the Yes case we have fallacies aplenty. They continually beg the question, equivocate, and so on.

    Remember, we are reminded by this person that “words have meanings” even though she supports a movement that believes sex is something only an individual can assign to themselves.

  11. Natural Instinct

    Established in 2010, the annual Michael Kirby Justice Oration provides a platform for leaders within our community to share their experiences, deep understanding, knowledge and reflections on issues of justice.
    The Hon. Michael Kirby served on the High Court of Australia with great distinction for thirteen years (1996-2009). The annual Kirby orations pay tribute to his commitment to social justice and human rights and Kirby’s relationship as friend, colleague and mentor to Victoria University’s College of Law & Justice. He is an adjunct professor in the College.

    .
    2016 Oration: The Hon. Jeff Kennett
    Speaking to a lecture theatre at Victoria University’s College of Law and Justice, The Hon. Jeffrey Kennett posed the question “Is Australia’s system of government best placed for the 22nd Century.”
    .
    2015 Oration: The Hon. Julia Gillard
    Julia Gillard and Michael Kirby on education and opportunity
    Speaking to a full lecture theatre in the heart of Melbourne’s legal precinct, The Hon. Julia Gillard tackled equality and challenges to reform in her address at the annual Michael Justice Kirby Oration.
    .
    2014 Oration: Julian Burnside
    Mr Julian Burnside AO QC presented the 2014 Michael Kirby Justice Oration
    Internationally-renowned human rights and refugee advocate, Mr Julian Burnside AO QC presented the 4th Michael Kirby Justice Oration on refugee law and policy in Australia. His oration was entitled Unenlightened self-interest.
    .
    2013: The Hon. Justice Yvonne Murphy on church and state and the challenge of investigating child sexual abuse with religious organisations in Ireland
    .
    2011: Chief Magistrate, Ian Gray on sentencing and other controversial issues
    .
    2010: Michael Kirby on social justice and human rights

  12. Who was it who said that if you want to know what our enemies are up to, just examine what they accuse you of?

    Is it an Alinsky tactic maybe.

  13. Mark

    1) Projection is one of the most notable characteristics of the left. Identity politics is a good example. Not only does the left done its best to fracture society under the guise of curing differences, but in doing so they create their own hate categories, for example, the deplorables, who appear to have taken the place of the ‘bourgeoisie’. The loving left is built on hate, and pretends to want to cure it.

    2) Three quotes:
    i) Harry Buttle notes, in a comment above: ‘Lets start with freedom of speech, then the right to keep and bear arms, absolute castle doctrine, stand your ground, freedom from unwarranted search and seizure, freedom of association. I think we are off to a good start, I’m so pleased that Triggsypuff and I are in agreement about our bill of rights.’
    ii) [email protected] says ‘Legislated human rights – that’s an oxymoron.’
    iii) The article notes ‘She said there needed to be a focus on separation of powers…’

    The human rights Triggs wants are the post war ones, which are positive rights such as right to welfare and so forth. Negative rights, like the most important of those informing the US Constitution, are not quite so welcome. She does NOT want separation of powers. Rather, she wants a transfer of power from the legislature to the courts via a human rights doctrine. Judges are not elected and are effectively appointed for life. It’s a way for academia to control parliament, and seize control over the law. Judges would have a field day expanding all sorts of entitlements and socialist dreams, while claiming a necessity under an ever expanding interpretation of a human rights bill. Or worse, they would begin importing the idea that human rights are, as Navay Pillay said, universal, eternal, inviolable and thus must override legislation on metaphysical grounds. Read Bentham on natural rights.

    These days rights are a double edged sword. They have been appropriated by ‘progressives’ to destroy democratic restraints on government, rather than the original intention to limit it.

  14. Bruce of Newcastle

    Gillian Triggs has said Australia is in the grips of the phenomena of “post truth” which compounds the problem of the overreach of executive power.

    She’s absolutely correct. We are.

    The Left promulgate untruths. Climate change. SSM. Racism. Sexism. Aboriginal policies. Schools and education. Energy. It goes on and on. When you attempt to discuss or debate lefties on the merits of their policies and positions they always lose the debate, then tell you SHUT UP!!!

    Triggs of course is exactly the same, since she has spent her whole tenure at the HRC trying to squelch such debate and persecute truth tellers.

    But she is correct in this…even if she has it exactly arse backwards as to who is doing all the post truthiness.

  15. Tom

    How the hell is this remorseless communist tax thief still given even a column-centimetre of space or a second of airtime to campaign for open borders and the destruction of the Australian civilisation?

    Her only legacy is a terrible national lesson about the unsackability of some privileged public servants.

  16. Tintarella di Luna

    The post-truth poster girl for Sydney University’s unlearn truth from an expert

  17. iain russell

    White BoBo privilege in a skirt. Back into your Toorak tractor Triggsie and never darken the public hearth again.

  18. Cactus

    Please. Just go. Please. Just go.

  19. Empire GTHO Phase III

    “I might note the paradox that the very people who have been demanding an end to identity politics, to political correctness, all want reform in anti-discrimination laws on race or sex, are the very same people who are now demanding new legislative protection on freedom of religion and freedom of speech,” she said.

    Pure unadulterated Alinsky. She knows there is no paradox. Triggs is in Krooked Killary Klinton territory as a brazen liar and sick sociopath.

    Her very survival depends on doubling down every day. It won’t end well.

  20. one old bruce

    If she had joined the CWA instead of going to uni she might bake a decent Christmas Pudding by now. Show me a woman who doesn’t use words as weapons stripped of meaning, just to push buttons and get attention, or to signal which group she belongs to. Yes there are some, but they’re very very rare. It’s easier to study women’s speech as a from of bird song rather than waste time with the semantics. The words are often secondary. ‘Oh my Gooood. Oh. My. God. Oh. m’God. …’ Birds do this to signal position within a group. We are regressing to a baboon society, if we let the birds take over.

  21. Senile Old Guy

    senior members of the community

    … such as her, no doubt. This is a long way down the path to “some citizens are more equal than others”.

  22. one old bruce

    Non sequitur actually drain the meaning out of words.

    Whole speeches of NS’s are only meant to fascinate, the way Victorian women were taught to attract a man by ‘fascinating’ him. But nowadays women are so crude they attract attention by screaming, just as baboons do.

  23. duncanm

    Natural Instinct
    #2509258, posted on September 28, 2017 at 12:18 am

    exactly.

    (paraphrased): “I note the paradox of demanding an end to restrictions whilst simultaneously arguing for legislative protection of more rights”

    Gillian, I do not think that word means what you think it means.

  24. Bruce

    The “Michael Kirby Oration”………..

    There’s a big part of your problem, right there.

    No doubt, our taxes at “work”, again.

  25. Wouldn’t it be great if PM Leyonhjelm made the closing speech announcing that all future funding of human rights advocacy would be crowd funded.

  26. Chris M

    She obviously has a well remunerated post-HRC career plotted out

    She is very old and won’t last much longer. After death the judgement…. she will answer to the creator for her deeds. Pitiful woman.

  27. Mother Lode

    Post Truth would be the province of post-modernism.

    I am not surprised that a lawyer would fall for that.

    Post-modernism is based on the idea that anything that can be stated can be doubted. Any response to the doubt can also be doubted. Therefore there is nothing that can be held to be true.

    This is the woman who, when confronted by evidence that utterly contradicts what she claims, just doubles down. The senate hearings were great for this alone. Oh, don’t forget that accusation of hers that a journalist had misrepresented her – until they played it back to her.

  28. Old School Conservative

    For a highly educated woman she sure talks a lot of rubbish.

  29. Mother Lode

    Her claims of post truth are, of course, themselves post truth.

    The people she derides use exactly the same notion of evidence of truth, argument, contradiction, tautology as have been used since the enlightenment. Truth, for them, has not changed.

    Wrinkly old crone. She is a small person trapped in a big body – which is why her skin hangs so loosely on her.

  30. jupes

    I was hoping this vile old hag would sink into obscurity after her fadeout from her taxgobbling HRC sinecure, but no, the horrible head keeps popping up over the parapet.

    Wait till Labor is running the show.

    Maybe the High Court awaits for the vile old hag.

  31. Mother Lode

    She might be well educated, but I don’t think she is very intelligent.

    I think we have all seen Formally educated but stupid and Not formally educated but intelligent.

    Her ideal would be that the formally educated rule over the not formally educated – but that would mean a lot of stupid people ruling over a lot of intelligent ones.

    And worse, of the educated it is only the egotistical ones that want power. They are pretty uniformly stupid because the smart ones derive satisfaction from their skills.

  32. manalive

    Poor Gillian, I agree with Mark (1:53 am) she’s displaying the classic symptoms of psychological projection “… in which humans defend themselves against their own unconscious impulses or qualities (both positive and negative) by denying their existence in themselves while attributing them to others” (Wiki).

  33. H B Bear

    Wow, never heard of the Michael Kirby Oration. It’s right up there with the Sydney and Nobel Peace Prizes though.

  34. John64

    Wait till Labor is running the show. Maybe the High Court awaits for the vile old hag.

    Prime Minister Plibersek will appoint Governor General Triggs.

    You know it makes sense.

  35. Mark

    @Old School Conservative: ‘For a highly educated woman she sure talks a lot of rubbish.’

    ‘Over-educated idiots’ was the phrase used by an acquaintance born in 1915, as he looked towards the nearby Melbourne University. I suspect those idiots are nothing new. Perhaps sites like this that have sharpened our awareness of the rubbish they regale us with.

  36. EvilElvis

    The “Michael Kirby Oration”………..

    …may be a completely different show next year if SSM gets up. At least Michael may have a smile on his face.

  37. Just Interested

    She is right about this bit:

    Professor Triggs said it was a “tragedy” that most Australians did not know enough about our system of government.

    “We don’t have education in what might be described as ‘civics’,” she said.

    “The basics of our democracy I think need to be taught at our schools, more clearly than they are, and more emphasis at our universities.”

    However, if you get that bit right, you don’t need this bit:

    She said there needed to be a focus on separation of powers, checks and balances and why Australia can’t have cabinet executive government assume a larger role to the detriment of parliament and the judiciary.

    “I also believe it is time for us to revisit the work that’s already been done on the introduction of some legislative form of a bill of rights,” Professor Triggs said.

    “I know very well there is very little political appetite for a bill of rights but it doesn’t mean that we should stop thinking about it.”

    She said by creating the language of a bill of human rights across the country, people would be more aware when there was creeping legislation that in one way or another curtail those rights

    You get the civics education right you don’t need people like, umm…….Triggsy…….sitting in judgement as to who has what rights under a written code.

  38. EvilElvis

    It does crack me up that these wankers such as Gillian are only slightly removed from their Facebook/twitter, bottom feeding brothers in arms. They carry on as though they have to maintain the rage and continue the struggle when the world they live in is the actual result of their pathetic existence. It won’t be pleasant when the hatchet does come.

  39. Joshua

    Gillian Triggs criticising the “post-truth” phenomenon? The last time I saw a case of projection that big I was at an iMax.

  40. “We don’t have education in what might be described as ‘civics’,” she said.

    Never trust a lying leftard SJW biatch.
    What she REALLY REALLY means is we must brainwash our kids in the lefts version of civics.

  41. Tim Neilson

    The human rights Triggs wants are the post war ones, which are positive rights such as right to welfare and so forth.

    Mark, what we really need is a proper education system which teaches people like Triggs the difference between “rights” and “liberties”.

    The things most Cats value most are “liberties” like freedom of speech or freedom to start a business, which don’t impose any obligation on others. E.g. freedom of speech doesn’t entail any obligation on others to listen to us, let alone take us seriously or refrain from criticising us.

    Whereas “rights” like a “right to welfare” or a “right to employment” are really just a means of imposing obligations on someone else – e.g. the taxpayers who have to fund welfare or have to fund the makework “jobs” to fulfil the “right” to employment.

    Clear thinking on this distinction enables us to sort out people who are really interested in giving everyone opportunities to live their lives via liberties, and those who want to impose indentured servitude on some non-favoured others by asserting that the favoured have “rights”.

    Hohfeld’s “Fundamental Legal Conceptions As Applied in Judicial Reasoning” is the clearest exposition on the topic (though Hohfeld uses the word “privilege” instead of “liberty”, and the slow change in meaning of words over the last 100 years is likely to make that confusing if one tries to quote directly from him.)

  42. H B Bear

    She said there needed to be a focus on separation of powers, checks and balances and why Australia can’t have cabinet executive government assume a larger role to the detriment of parliament and the judiciary.

    The problem is that Triggsy regards any criticism of her as a breach of the separation of powers. I would argue a bigger problem is that there are too many QANGOs like hers running around without any control by a responsible Minister. Starting with the $1bn++ ALPBC.

  43. Up The Workers!

    If the Triggluddite has anything to do with it, I suspect that we’ll end up with a “Bill of Wrongs”, rather than a “Bill of Rights”.

    Sounds to me like the “Michael Kirby Orifice” was another load of Leftard crap.

  44. notaluvvie

    With Ms Triggs obviously suffering from relevance deprivation syndrome we now have our very own Ms Clinton.

  45. mizaris

    I’m no intellectual, and certainly not as well read as many who contribute to this site, but even I know socialist claptrap when I read/hear/see it. This old bag is another of the ilk of O’Bummer, Al Bore, Bill Shorton, Leo di Cabriolet et al, who all know what’s best for the rest of us, and who will force that onto us in any way they can. None of this actual “setting a good example” for them…it’s all “do what I say, not what I do”. Would that we had leaders in this country more like Mr Trump. And would that the people of this country rejected these lunatic socialists a bit more loudly and convincingly than currently.

  46. mizaris

    Forgo to include that prize twat Halal Mal.

  47. Tintarella di Luna

    We are regressing to a baboon society, if we let the birds take over.

    The Greeks knew, I wonder if they found out the hard way.

  48. What a load of Stalinist Orwellian piffle, laden with contradictions and ignorance.

    Professor Triggs said it was a “tragedy” that most Australians did not know enough about our system of government.

    I expect her definition of a system of Government is that the unelected elites tell the proles exactly what to do and how to think.

    “…evidence-driven leadership through our politicians and senior members of the community.

    Yep, there it is.

    We elites will provide the “evidence” for our decisions and you will obey. Hey, we could even have a Ministry responsible for this “evidence-driven leadership”, it could be named…ummm…let’s see… The Ministry of Truth!

    Then they could write a dictionary to help us all understand the true meanings of words rather than the “alternative facts” (seriously WTF?). Hope they include a definition for “post truth” since I have no bloody idea what that means either.

  49. Squirrel

    “Professor Triggs said it was a “tragedy” that most Australians did not know enough about our system of government.”

    It’s a much greater tragedy that the officials (most particularly the senior unelected officials) who run our government know so little about the pressures and problems facing so many Australians.

  50. Tintarella di Luna

    Mark, what we really need is a proper education system which teaches people like Triggs the difference between “rights” and “liberties”.

    I have been re-visiting Lord Acton’s speech on The History of Freedom in Antiquity. What a fine mind.

  51. Christopher H

    Gillian Triggs mainly spoke about executive and ministerial overreach. She discussed (with strong examples) the smothering of judicial independence, of parliamentary responsibility, and of international commitments to which we have agreed. Her speech was a robust defence of the need for effective checks and balances – in practice, not merely in name.
    Her mentions of ‘post truth’ politics and of the need for an Australian Bill of Rights were both brief mentions at the end of the address, illustrating the main points.
    The Australian’s report, from which you quote, did not represent the substance of her speech and your commentators consequently tilt at straw men rather than at real issues. A pity: many Catallaxy readers would be apt to support effective checks and balances, and to oppose unfettered executive excess, though perhaps not when a notorious thought criminal has taken that view.

  52. EvilElvis

    And you’d see Gillian as one of these ‘checks and balances’, right, Christopher H?

  53. Empire GTHO Phase III

    A pity: many Catallaxy readers would be apt to support effective checks and balances, and to oppose unfettered executive excess, though perhaps not when a notorious thought criminal has taken that view.

    A pity there is no readily available transcript and I’ll have to watch the video to dissect this.

    To be clear, Triggs isn’t a “thought criminal”. Where freedom of speech truly exists, thought crimes cannot. Triggs is a liar. There’s a difference.

    The abuse of the Federal Executive Council to effect government by unelected bureaucrats (as Triggs was) gets a run here regularly (same for the various state Governor-in-Council equivalents), so your claim is erroneous.

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