Ganja Queen

Jul 3rd, 2008, 05:44 PM
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Ganja Queen

I just watched this documentary (the name is Ganja Queen) about Schapelle Corby (sp?) who was arrested in Bali and charged with smuggling pot. I remember seeing it in the news when it occurred, and when the documentary was concluded in 2007 she was still in prison there, and two appeals so far had been unsuccessful.

So, I'm curious about what the feeling in Austrlia is about this? Do people think she is guilty? Is there a feeling that someone close to her snuck in the pot? Or was she a victim of baggage handler smugglers?
Toucan2 is offline  
Jul 3rd, 2008, 06:42 PM
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According to the Sydney Morning Herald
June 29, 2008

A MAJORITY of people in NSW believe Schapelle Corby is guilty of smuggling marijuana into Bali.

An exclusive Taverner Research poll conducted for The Sun-Herald found that 53 per cent of people believe she is guilty while just 15 per cent say she is innocent. Almost a third of people remain unsure.
Sarvowinner is offline  
Jul 3rd, 2008, 09:12 PM
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I think it has been proved that the baggage handlers played no part in it - and that was merely a fabrication by her lawyer.
prue is offline  
Jul 4th, 2008, 03:14 AM
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But it's also true that security in the baggage handling area of Sydney Airport, was, how shall I put it, less than best practice.

Wasn't there some guy who liberated a fancy dress outfit from someone's baggage and paraded around in it?
My memory of this story is hazy but I don't think I imagined it.

Can anyone offer more details?
afterall is offline  
Jul 4th, 2008, 06:18 AM
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It was a camel costume.
Sarvowinner is offline  
Jul 4th, 2008, 11:45 AM
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Do they have film of the camel prance? That I'd like to see.
Toucan2 is offline  
Jul 4th, 2008, 08:31 PM
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The whole Corby affair has become a tasteless and tacky low-grade media feast.

I must admit that I did have cause to think of the case when we landed in Denpasar last year on a late flight and (unerringly) ended up in a grindingly slow customs & immigration queue, beaten to the carousel by an entire planeload of passengers off a later JAL flight.

By the time we got through our bags had been helpfully taken off the carousel by a crew of larcenous porters - ample time for interference, even though we'd already cleared customs with not a hint of a baggage inspection. I was less than impressed to find that these guys had assumed stewardship of our effects, but it's hard to stay angry with Balinese for very long.

Toucan2, I read something to the effect that conditions in the Denpasar prison, while not exactly Hiltoneqwue, are so laid-back that Ms Corby doesn't want to serve out the rest of her sentence in an Australian jail. Last week she was said to be suffering from depression and was transferred to a hospital ward and allowed a day out at a beauty salon to cheer her up. Apparently supervised shopping trips are common.
Neil_Oz is offline  
Jul 4th, 2008, 08:37 PM
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What we think is irrelevant. Despite the fact that Lindy Chamberlain served a term in prison with no proof of her having murdered her child and despite her subsequent exhonoration, a large percentage of Australians persist in thinking she is guilty. Judging other people is not for either us or the Press to indulge in.
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Jul 4th, 2008, 10:55 PM
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I personally am less concerned about whether Schapelle Corby is or is not guilty of trying to smuggle pot into Indonesia. What I am more concerned about is that she got a 20 year sentence for presumably trying to take in pot when the Bali Bombers who blew up over 200 people in Bali have had their stints in gaol ( by the way that is how the word is spelt) reduced and are still smirking away happily. The leader of their fanatic group got off completely and so far no justice has seen to have been done. If killing people is less nasty than taking in pot then that is one weird/sick/corrupt society. The one thing that remains about the Corby case that stinks is that the Indonesians did not record or photograph the evidence and that in itself would not stick in any other country.
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Jul 4th, 2008, 11:59 PM
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My understanding is that several of the Bali bombers were sentenced to death and are awaiting execution. This is a harsher sentence that they would have received under Australian law.

There was insufficient evidence to link their alleged leader, Abu Bakar Bashir, to the bombing under Indonesian, or for that matter Australian law. I believe the Australian Federal Police concurred with the Indonesian prosecutor's conclusion in this.

On a less serious matter

"...gaol ( by the way that is how the word is spelt)"

While there are two accepted spellings of the word, both English dictionaries and educated usage in general have for many years favoured (or favored, if you will) 'jail'.

My edition of "Fowler's Modern English Usage" (1965, OUP) quotes the OED as follows: "...in literary and journalistic use both the G and the J forms are now admitted as correct, but all recent dictionaries give preference to the latter (i.e. 'jail')."

Fowler's adds "...the very anomalous pronunciation of 'g' soft before 'a' or 'o' (only in 'mortgagor' and the popular pronunciation of 'margarine') is a strong argument for writing 'jail'."
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Jul 5th, 2008, 12:04 AM
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wow i didn't think anyone used Gaol apart from historians.....
Smeagol is offline  
Jul 5th, 2008, 02:49 PM
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Some interesting responses indeed. I remembered just a bit about it in the Int'l news when she was arrested, and really hadn't given it much more of a thought until I saw the documentary. So, luckily the media feast you have had to endure wasn't something I had to observe.

So, the documentary was interesting to watch, to see those little snippets of life, but the one we saw (which I think was half the time of the one shown there by the same filmmaker) I think did a pretty good job of not trying to make a presentation of guilty or not guilty.

I don't have an inclination one way or another, but was curious about the "prevailing wind" there. And either way, the film was interesting.
Toucan2 is offline  
Jul 5th, 2008, 04:55 PM
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One aspect of the system in Southeast Asian countries that does outrage me is the extreme punishment imposed on low-level drug traffickers when many highly-placed corrupt officials are making millions out of the trade. Executing feckless mules, often driven by their own addictions, when local "Mr Bigs" are living high on the hog, constitutes cruel and sickening hypocrisy. Presumably it allows the governments concerned to parade themselves before the world as being tough on drugs. What a joke.

What did puzzle me about the Corby case is that she was caught taking dope into the country at all, given that there's a thriving trade in the opposite direction. But human greed and stupidity have no limits.
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Jul 5th, 2008, 05:17 PM
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Neil, the Fowlers Modern Dictionary may use the spelling of jail for gaol but out of the 67 dictioneries on line most of them use gaol using the etymology of the word as a guide. Smeagol: The USA has decided to change or alter the spelling of many words for reasons known only to themselves or because it makes it easier to spell for those who do not care about origins, but that does not make it right. For instance, the change to the spelling of paedophile to pedophile changes the meaning from someone who "likes"children to someone who likes feet - if you go back to the original etymology of the word. Another word that has been incorrectly "made up" is homophobic. Using the original style of derivation then that now means that a homophobic is someone who is who has a fear of (all ) man. Either you have etymology of words or you do not and perhaps the reason that young people today are not very good at English could be because they were never taught the Greek,Latin, French and German derivation in the first place, which, if learnt, opens word meanings up so that it makes it easier to spell and to understand the meaning. You really cannot have it all ways when it comes to language and history Smeagol, you accuse me of using an ancient form of a word but the everyday use of "gotten" in America instead of just "got" is using a form which was in use before 1400. Why then do you not also use the words beget and getten and why not change the spelling of Phoenix to Fenix? Is it only sometimes that you become "modern" and other times you use words like an Historian?
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Jul 5th, 2008, 11:37 PM
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I'm not American, I'm British and i live in England and we do not use the term Gaol in our everyday lives. Yes i have seen it on Blue plaques etc but we spell it jail. I wasnt accusing you of anything. If you re-read my post it was a comment and just that.
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Jul 5th, 2008, 11:54 PM
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smeagol: the use of jail as the spelling was started by Americans as was the dropping of the vowel u as in labour, colour etc, most probably because phonetic spelling makes a lot of sense but if you are going to do that then do it with most words and not just at random.
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Jul 6th, 2008, 01:56 AM
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Lizzy, the "jail" spelling and the dropping of the "u" in words like "color" were not in fact American innovations - but even if they were, so what?

Language is a moveable feast, and the idea of "correct" spellings is a relatively recent concept, certainly unknown in Shakespeare's day. What would you have us do - go back to speaking Old English, a Germanic dialect, because all change is by definition corruption? At what point did all your preferred spellings become the "correct" ones, to be set in concrete for all eternity? And why that point in time rather than another, when different conventions prevailed? The logic escapes me.

I'm surprised that all those online dictionaries prescribe a spelling that's now to all intents and purposes as antique as "governour", and I commend your industry in checking them all out.

You should tell all the major Australian newspapers and journals so that they can instruct their writers accordingly. Maybe you could let the editors of the OED know while you're at it.
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Jul 6th, 2008, 03:10 AM
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Back to the Corby case -

My observation of them is that they are what those of you in the USA call " Trailer Trash " .They are foul mouthed ( witness Roselee Rose swear like a trooper in the documentary )and not very smart , in fact quite stupid I think .

That said I agree that the sentence is extreme . There is clearly a line drawn with justice in Indonesia between those with money and those without .

Michelle Leslie,model and Australian was picked up on her way to a dance party in Bali about 2 ? years ago in possession of ecstasy and charged and imprisoned .But she had two things - $ and $ through her boyfriends family.She zipped her lips as did the family .They played the game , paid and she was able to have her charges reduced and ultimately was able to leave the country . Indonesia is corrupt so it can be beneficial for persons who know how to play by their rules .

The Corbys started a media circus from day one and dug there own graves as tabloid fodder in my view.They are not likeable .

I think most people are sick and tired of hearing about them and the media should let it slide .But just this weekend a cousin of her late father claimed that her father was a large scale dealer for years.They have denied it .

Her latest move from Kerobakan Prison to a hospital suffering depression has been viewed as a cynical exercise by many .Gossip is that the proposed bi-lateral; agreement between Indonesia and Australia for prisoner exchange is not attractive to her as our gaols / jails are tougher in terms of life inside because we are not corrupt and so trips to beauty parlours etc , as she had this week, would not happen .We do not commute sentences each Republic Day as they do .So whilst prison is terrible dollars spread top guards etc make life a lot easier .

Whilst in Bali three weeks ago and outside the Bintang Supermarket in Jln Legian we saw Mercedes Corby on a motorbike with a child drive in , head cocked to one side ,talking on her mobile which was wedged under her chin ,in a pair of shorts soooo low our jaws dropped .

But that said all the above is only my impression of them all .They may be quite different and I am sure she has many sympathisers .
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Jul 6th, 2008, 05:34 AM
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Like Neil, on Schapelle Corby's arrest in Bali I did think "why take coals to Newcastle?". Then it was pointed out to me but those who profess to know, that Australian-grown marijuana is of a far higher grade than that normally available on streets in Bali and there's a very profitable market for it there.

But a 20 year sentence in a prison with appalling conditions, I think is totally over the top, no matter how frightful her family appears to be. As JohnFitz has already pointed out, Michelle Leslie's parents paid out and shut up, the Corby's wouldn't have a clue.
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Jul 6th, 2008, 03:09 PM
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My impression of the family accords with JohnFitz's. They clearly didn't have a clue and if they had any decent advice must have ignored it. I've always found "trailer trash" a harsh term, but if it fits anyone it fits the Corbys, a "classless society" if ever there was one.

I remember them screaming abuse at the judge in the Bali courtroom when Schapelle was sentenced. That can only have hardened the authorities' attitudes in a society which places a high value on maintaining decorum - the quickest way to lose respect in most Asian countries is to be loud, aggressive and argumentative in public.

There was some unintentional humour this week when the family defended the old man's honour. Their case? He's far too lazy to have been a successful dealer!
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