Soapbox Speakers

Speakers’ Corner news for Sunday, 22nd March.

In The News From Speakers' Corner. on March 22, 2015 at 11:52 pm

1. Lena Goldstein was a young Jewish woman who narrowly survived the holocaust of the Second World War. Her story is briefly told in ‘Earshot’, an ABC Radio National program produced by Irris Makler.

Irris:At the end of the war, when Lena emerged from the underground basement in Warsaw, she was bent double. It took weeks to be able to stand straight. Lena says straightening out mentally took her longer. 
 She married soon after the war. She met Oleg in Poland. When attacks against jews continued they left, and joined the flood of displaced people in Western Europe. They spent two years in a refugee camp. No-one wanted to take them, until in 1949 Australia said yes.
 On their first weekend in Sydney, Lena and her husband went down to the hear the speakers at the Domain.’ 


Lena: ‘Here we saw a lot of boxes and on each box there was somebody giving a speech. All the speeches were against something or somebody.’

‘For Lena the most surprising thing was the role of the police.’

‘He doesn’t arrest anybody. Nobody was being sent to a concentration camp or to a gulag. I couldn’t understand it. 
 And then it came to me. That this was freedom.

We didn’t know it in Poland. We didn’t know it in Germany.

This was freedom.

And then I fell in love with this country, and the love lasts until today.’

2. Speakers by the truckloads!  As you can see in the third column, the passers-by were busy. All had something to say and said it well. Further, they handled the hecklers with a plum.
Sorry, aplomb.

Here is a taste. A fiery Annette lets her feelings about war be known.

Annette

Peter AND Annette

In this video, Peter and Annette criticise the governments’ role in education. On their own these two are fiery enough. Together they are formidable combination. Resistance is futile.

For previous posts go to ‘The Weekly Posts’ in the archives.

The speakers and hecklers!

In Speakers and hecklers. on March 8, 2015 at 11:51 pm

“I would rather have a mind opened by wonder than one closed by belief.” 
Gerry Spence.

Some people say the speakers at Speakers’ Corner are a little eccentric. There might be a skerrick of merit in that point of view. Whatever the case, they’re an entertaining bunch.
Click here to see their 2014 highlights.
Click here to see their 2013 highlights.

The Speakers and Hecklers.

Steve Maxwell, historian and political commentator.

Steve Maxwell In various personas, but always engaging, Steve talks about Australian history and politics. Click here for highlights. To see more videos of Steve, go to the archives site. From his book, ‘Soapbox Oratory‘ Steve writes: ‘In a modern city, there must be a place where strangers can meet and discuss the issues of the day without fear of persecution; where the right to retain one’s individuality is allowed.

Helmut Cerncic, metaphysicist.

Helmut 4

Helmut once beat Arnold Schwartzenegger in a body building contest. He knows a lot about metaphysics, (more than Arnold Schwartzenegger), and is happy to explain why Isaac Newton was an ignoramus. But his battles with hecklers are fun. Here are some highlights. For more videos of Helmut, go to the archives site and to his own site, ‘Is Science the New Religion?’.

Peter, Commentator.

Peter - best

During the week Peter teaches students, and if he teaches them with the same verve he has for the Sunday passers-by, they are lucky students indeed. Click here for a few highlights. For more videos of Peter, go to the archives site.

Mirko Terzic, 21st Century inventor.

Mirko 

Mirko has created a phonetic alphabet to be used world-wide, and it’s better than Esperento. He has solved the problem of perpetual motion and has diagrams explaining how to get free unlimited energy from hydropower. Mirko knows how to think outside the square. Here are a few highlights of Mirko. For more videos of Mirko go to the archives site.

Ray, Christian.

Ray is concerned about your soul.

 Ray is passionate about spreading the word of God. He takes the task seriously but isn’t confronting. He is a gentle man willing to answer your questions. Here are a few highlights. For more videos of Ray, go to the archives site.

Mr Bashful, epiphany specialist.

Mr B 2

Mr Bashful, the epiphany specialist.

Mr Bashful calls his listeners his ‘grasshoppers’. (“You have much to learn, Grasshopper.”) Among other things, Mr Bashful talks about New Age scams,  happiness myths, and why we should burn the Mona Lisa. One thing he isn’t, is bashful.

Tony, atheist. (Speaker and  heckler)

Tony New-Zealander Tony is a fervent atheist and scathing of the Catholic Church. When he is not berating Christianity he is either sinking the boot into other religions, or supporting Palestine. In this video Tony expresses a few of his well considered opinions. For more videos of Tony click here.

Scott, heretic. (Occasional speaker)

Scott

Scott is a young man adept at independent thinking. Calm, thoughtful and considered, Scott takes commonly held views and turns them upside down – not for the sake of it, but because he seeks the truth.  Here are a few examples. For more videos of Scott go to the archives site.

Mitch: “All is consciousness” (Occasional speaker)

Mitch 2

Mitch claims everything is consciousness – even rocks and atoms. Mitch’s theory answers questions posed by Eastern religions, it resolves divine paradoxes, it addresses the mind/body problem and the free will problem, and it answers other philosophical dead-ends. Even acknowledging that everything is consciousness is a step towards Buddhist enlightenment, says Mitch, because we experience a different reality. For a glimpse of his theory click here. For a more detailed explanation go to the archives site.

 Jovo (occasional speaker)

Jovo

 Jovo is a charismatic man, which may explain why he is also known as ‘Rasputin’ and ‘The Wild Man of Serbia’. Throughout the world he is envied by monks, yogis and gurus for his ability to tap into a stream of consciousness and verbalise it. 

THE HECKLERS

Heckler highlights – 2013

Is it any wonder the speakers are a touch testy sometimes, with hecklers like these guys? Click here to see the heckler highlights for 2013.

Andrew, the exhibitionist. (Heckler.)

If you have any questions to ask of a flasher, Andrew is the guy to ask.

If you have any questions to ask of a flasher, Andrew is the guy to ask.

 Andrew used to be a speaker – he used to be the only flasher in the world prepared to stand up and talk about flashing, and support it. There are four entertaining videos of Andrew speaking.  Here is just one. For more videos of Andrew, go to the archives site. His award winning book about exhibitionism (flashing) is available on Amazon.

Arthur (Heckler)

 Arthur 1

Arthur is not what you call the shy type, and is generous with his opinion. I caught him searching for disciples.

David (heckler).

David is dead against any view supporting the existence of ghosts, telepathy, UFO’s, psychics, and any other new-age rubbish you might try to foist upon him, but when it comes to religion he is fervently agnostic. He leaves no stone unturned in his search for the truth.

John (Placid heckler.)

John is always gentle when debating his views.

John is always gentle when debating his views.

Philosopher, skeptic, atheist, and all around good guy, John makes his way to Speakers’ Corner just often enough to get a mention here.

Jack (Quiet observer)

 Jack

“The old grey owl sat on an oak. The more he heard, the less he spoke. The less he spoke, the more he heard. Now, wasn’t he a wise old bird?”

Click here to hear a few words from Jack.

Kevin (visitor)

Kevin Kevin speaks out against forced medication with psychotropic drugs.

 

 

This column is for you, the passer-by!

In For the passers-by. on March 8, 2015 at 11:50 pm

At Speakers’ Corner all passers-by are invited to step up onto The Ladder of Knowledge and speak, and become a part of Speaker Corner history. The brave souls who take the opportunity are a diverse lot, and enrich Speakers’ Corner considerably. 

How about you? Will you stand on The Ladder of Knowledge and tell us what you think?

Click here to see the 2014 passers-by and heckler highlights and full videos.
Click here to see the 2013 passers-by highlights and full videos.
Click here to see the 2013 heckler highlights.
Click here to see the 2012 passers-by highlights and full videos.

2015 passers-by.

Albert

Albert

Albert Morris has written a book, Civilisation Hijacked, in which he addresses questions like ‘Why do good people do bad things?‘  Click here to hear him speak.

Albert spoke twice. In this video he speaks about collective consciousness.

Annette

Annette

Annette lets her feelings about war be known. Click here.

Doug

Doug
Doug reminds us that at any moment we could all experience total annihilation in a nuclear war. He has a website, givepeaceachance.net

Brian

Brian

It’s good to see that people still care about Australian politics. Click here to discover what Brian says.

Tourist

Tourist

This perceptive man praised highly the humble Mr B.

Jacob

Jacob

Jacob dropped by to talk about transsexuality.  Click here.

Ingrid

ingrid

Ingrid tried to talk about women’s rights, but had to suffer an interminable question from Andrew Toth. Nevertheless, she did manage to make some sense. Click here.

Victoria

Victoria 1

Lawyer Victoria talks about the difficulty of maintaining a work/life balance. Click here.

Norm

Norm 1

Two weeks earlier Norm had heckled a speaker, saying that universities were wasting money. Today he happened to be speaking on The Ladder of Knowledge and he was asked about that claim. Click here for his response.

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