Title: The Well-Hidden Credit: Craig Young Comment Tuesday 31st October 2006 - 12:00pm1162249200 Article: 1466 Rights
Well, Family First launched its inaugural "Family Forum" during the weekend, and an old familiar face was present at the event. Who? Do the words 'Maxim Institute plagiarism scandal' ring any bells? To recap: On October 28, Family First held a get-together at Butterfly Creek, near Auckland Airport. They were addressed by Ian Grant (Parents Inc, fundamentalist parenting guru) Bob McCroskie (ex-Radio Rhema, Family First leader), Ian Wishart (what, no real journalists?), and David Yates of the Australian Christian Lobby, their version of our Maxim Institute. One hundred representatives of New Zealand Christian Right pressure groups attended the meeting, and Family First thoughtfully provided a list of the attendant organisations. Now, some of these pressure groups sound annoyingly familiar- Family First itself, For the Sake of Our Children Trust, Mary Grant's anti-Hero "Campaign for Our Children," Focus on the Family NZ, Family Life International, the Society for Promotion of Community Standards, Voice for Life (SPUC), Family Integrity (pro-belting), the Maxim Institute, Right to Life New Zealand (anti-abortion), Vision Network (fundamentalist umbrella group), Daystar and the New Zealand Catholic (Christian Right media). However, there were also an awful lot of tiddler provincial city "Little Zealand" grouplets opposed to sex work, porn, abortion access, sex education ad nauseum. Voices Waikato, Helensville and Hibiscus Coast were established to fight prostitution law reform, for example, and several individual fundamentalist churches attended. (Destiny Church and New Zealand weren't there. Brian Tamaki was otherwise engaged in self-publicity involving his new vanity press biography and the "Revolution the Event" extravaganza across the city). In addition, there was also an amusing inclusion, indicating that Family First are still somewhat new at this game. For, on their conference photos page, one Bruce Logan has rematerialised, overseeing the "Principles of Marriage and the Family" workshop. What, Bruce Logan? Bruce Logan, former Director of the Maxim Institute, editor of its defunct Evidence magazine, who retired last year after Paul Litterick of the New Zealand Association of Rationalists and Humanists detected repeated instances of apparent plagiarism in his newspaper columns? None other. (And incidentally, given that track record, exactly why is Logan's work still being published in the Otago Daily Times, as one can see from the summary bibliography below?) McCoskrie of Family First talked about 'scholars' of the Christian Right. I'm sorry, isn't it stretching it just a bit to call Bruce Logan a 'scholar,' given the above? And as for its tired rhetoric about 'marriage and the family,' we all know that the New Zealand Christian Right is merely regurgitating the highly selective and flawed partisan and sectarian research of the US Christian Right's so-called 'marriage movement', whose primary mission seems to be to attack same-sex marriage, and do nothing practical to keep low-income families together when faced with Bush era welfare slashbacks. Of course, real families have nothing to do with the Christian Right agenda. No, it's just an airbrushed romanticised nostalgic past version of The Family, where women weren't engaged in waged labour or as breadwinners, solo mums and their kids didn't exist, and we were padlocked behind our collective closet doors. Amusingly, they didn't seem to get much media coverage. Wonder why? Recommended: NZ Association of Rationalists and Humanists: See Litterick's "Fundy Post" for more details about Logangate. Post-"Logangate" Articles Bruce Logan: "How a Government Taxes is the Best Indicator of its Character" Otago Daily Times: 4 July 2006. Bruce Logan: "Real Men Should Be Strong and Good:" Otago Daily Times:25 August 2006. Bruce Logan: "Individuals Rights Lost in Rush to 'Freedom'" Otago Daily Times: 15 September 2006. Bruce Logan: "Denial of Evil Utopian Delusion" Otago Daily Times: 10 October 2006. Not Recommended: Focus on the Family NZ Family First Lobby Tragic tabloid gutter glossy and blog For the Sake of Our Children Trust Maxim Institute NZ Catholic Right to Life New Zealand Society for Promotion of Community Standards (pro-censorship) Vision New Zealand (NZ national fundamentalist umbrella group) Craig Young - 31st October 2006    
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