Sunday, 9 November 2008

Esse quam videri

Esse quam videri is a Latin phrase meaning "To be, rather than to seem".

The history of this phrase also from Wikipedia is as follows:

Esse quam videri is found in Cicero's essay "On Friendship" ("De amicitia", chapter 98). "Virtute enim ipsa non tam multi praediti esse quam videri volunt" (Few are those who wish to be endowed with virtue rather than to seem so).

Just a few years after Cicero, Sallust used the phrase in his Bellum Catilinae (54.6), writing that Cato the Younger "esse quam videri bonus malebat" (He preferred to be good rather than to seem so).

In "The Prince", Niccolò Machiavelli twists this phrase to Videri Quam Esse (To seem rather than to be) with respect to how a ruler ought to act.

Dave Hingsburger uses the motto Esse quam videri at the top of his blog "Chewing the Fat". It's what he believes in and is how he works as far as I can make out.

It appears that our rulers have taken up Machiavelli's twist and applied it earnestly.

They talk the talk of equality for people living with disability but they, who have the means and the power to make it possible, don't walk the walk. Our rulers, leaders, Prime Ministers, Disability Ministers talk a lot about our right to a life the same as them. They even pass laws and Standards that say that. But they continue to keep us in poverty living on a pension which is below the poverty line. They continue to deny us the means to full participation by denying us the support services and equipment to make it possible. They fluff around consulting us to death about "what we need".

They invoke the Disability Discrimination Act which makes it unlawful to discriminate against us. They then leave us with a toothless tiger, the Australian Human Rights Commission, who fluff around looking like they are upholding those rights. But AHRC don't have any power to enforce the DDA. We are left alone to fight it out in the Federal Court to stop such discrimination. We fail because we don't have the means.

It's about time that our leaders take up the motto "Esse quam videri" and apply it earnestly. Either that or just come out and say with honesty that they don't care if we have the same means as them.

Come on Prime Minister, Premiers, Treasurers, Disability Ministers Federal and State. Cut out the Videri Quam Esse.

Saturday, 8 November 2008

National Disability Strategy

This is my brief submission to the consultation:

1. What do you think should be included in the National Disability Strategy?

People with disabilities ONLY. NOT Carers, Families or Service Providers

2. What are the barriers to people with disability fully participating in the community?

Carers, Families or Service Providers

Lack of Access to:

- the Built Environment
- Transport
- Education
- Employment


Chronic Unmet Need in Support Services and Equipment

Societal misconceptions and discriminatory attitudes

3. What have been some of your own experiences?

As a person with a disability WITHOUT a Carer or Family I am sick of being ignored and becoming invisible because of the focus on Carers and Families.

4. What local and national actions could be taken to overcome these barriers?

Just provide what WE need. Concentrate on People with Disabilities themselves. We are not attached to other people as adults nor should we be. While some of us rely on other people we can provide for carers etc (if we have them) if we are paid an allowance to pay such Carers etc. Those who are cognitively unable to manage their lives themselves usually have (or should) a LEGAL representative (who may be Family if so chosen) to enable this. All carers or families who are supporting people with disabilities who are over the age of 18 and cognitively unable must be required to have legal guardianship or administrative authority to speak and act for the PwD that they are assisting. “Care” should not be assumed or assessed by a GP or Centrelink or Gov Medical Officer. Some carers, families actually abuse, control and deny. Application should be made and granted through Guardianship Boards.

5. What areas of research should be a priority for the NDS?

People with Disabilities themselves should be the ONLY priority. Carers etc should have their own Strategy to address their needs if really necessary. However this should not be necessary if we PwD, are given the means to provide for Carers (see Q 4)

6. What local action has made a positive difference to people with disabilities?

Just provide what we need. Stop treating us like second class citizens. Simple really.

7. Anything else?

Until we (PwD) are recognised as individuals in our own right we will never be able to be truly free and independent contributing members of society. NO OTHER MINORITY is forced into such dependence or control by others as adults. For crying out loud stop forcing us into dependence and poverty.

Sunday, 2 November 2008

New Photos and Sunny Warm Weather

I have just uploaded a whole bunch of photos in an album titled "A Tour round my garden". See the link under "My Photos" in the right column here. There's a lot there. If the pictures are blurry or pixelated in Slideshow mode (which is the easiest and best way to view them) then extend the time each slide is viewed to about 6 seconds and it will fix that.

So I have been busy gardening amongst my activist work. I have had the old raised garden bed down the side demolished as I couldn't get to it now I use a wheelchair. Now I can get right round the house again. You will see in the pics that I have set up a temporary raised bed with pots sitting on it for my Vegetable garden. So satisfying to have veges again and eat my own lettuce etc. Have put in tomatoes big and cocktail type, herbs - coriander, oregano, mint, sage, thyme, and have seeds for tarragon and spring onions, the spinach is still going well and the lettuce, radish, chives, and parsley I put in previously. I have also bought a Meyer Lemon for a pot and plan to espalier a nectarine and a feijoa on the bare corrugated iron fence out the front where there is more sun.

I am very chuffed with my rose which I espaliered on the back fence. It has over 200 buds on it and I can see it from my computer as I sit typing this. It was an ordinary standard rose but never got enough sun. Flourishing on the fence tho.

You will see my "lawn" is covered with top dressing as when the blokes were here doing my toilet modification they emptied all sorts of concrete slurry etc over it. What a mess. I went crook and so they top dressed it. While that's sort of ok it does make a mess of my tyres when it's wet and I track sandy dirt into the house. Grr. I have planted ground cover on one half of the lawn and plan to do the other side too. In a place that gets little foot or wheel traffic so that's good and saves on mowing.

It actually rained last night - hang on I better check the rain gauge... bugger, only 2mm but it sounded like more. Parts of South Australia have had up to 40mm overnight so that's excellent as we have had the driest 2 past months (this time of year) for over 100 years.