Trigger warning:

This site may, in fact always will contain images and information likely to cause consternation, conniptions, distress, along with moderate to severe bedwetting among statists, wimps, wusses, politicians, lefties, green fascists, and creatures of the state who can't bear the thought of anything that disagrees with their jaded view of the world.

Dec 26, 2008

NYT bailout? "Churching the old whore."

HT: Libertarian Republican.

The New York Times seems to be in serious trouble advertising revenues have fallen by 20% for the year and circulation has dropped as well as having its bond rating falling to the point according to some reports into junk territory. Now from 24/7 Wall St. –

The New York Times (NYT) has to repay $400 million in debt in the first half of 2009. It does not have the money. It plans to mortgage its headquarters, but it is uncertain what that will bring in an uncertain real estatemarket. The firm’s Boston Globe and regional newspaper operations lose money, so they will be hard to sell. NYT is controlled by the Sulzberger family, which has super-majority voting shares. That won’t matter much when the company runs out of money. Another big media operation, perhaps News Corp (NWS) which owns The Wall Street Journal and The New York Post, will come in and auction off what it can and keep the flagship New York Times newspaper and website.

There have been a few suggestions that failing newspapers should be bailed out notably an effort in Connecticut for a state bailout of a couple of local papers the New Britain Herald and the Bristol Press. The Republican governor and the Democratic attorney general of Connecticut supported government intervention to save them. Following this seven state MPs sent a letter to Connecticut's Department of Economic and Community Development seeking help for the dying newspapers. The wording by seven legislators included: -

We share the sentiments of our nation’s leaders (Presumably meaning founding fathers) who wrote [in] the Bill of Rights that a free press is an essential part of democracy.”

They appear to believe newspapers have constitutional protection from failure.

It is quite likely that Democrats may find the idea of a bail out of the NYT to their liking as it still has some influence left in the community, and lefties need it as an 'unbiased authority' that can always be guaranteed to support their views. It would be difficult to choose whether NYT or Huffington Post was the most even handed in coverage of the last election.

NYT has built up a great deal of political capital with the Democrats. Since Grover Cleveland in 1880 they have only endorsed Republicans six times in thirty-two elections, the last being Eisenhower in 1956, therefore nobody under the age of seventy has voted for a Republican nominee on the basis of a NYT endorsement. 

They would be sorely tempted if calls came to save the paper. If the opportunity arose and they felt they could put enough spin on it such as the right of the public to information, saving jobs, preventing the failure of an American icon, etc I feel they would jump at it.

In reality under these circumstances, it would be simply a case of the Democrats, "Churching the old whore."

Editors note: The term "churching the old whore." is well known in Australian politics from its use by PM Gough Whitlam, to describe the relationship between the Liberal/NP coalition and the DLP. On the announcement of what became known as the “Gair Affair” Opposition leader Billy Sneddon asked “Who’s churching the old whore now.” The origin is from a play by (I think) Ibsen.

The Gair affair was an attempt by Whitlam to get an extra senate seat by persuading DLP senator Gair to accept the Ambassadorship to Ireland, thus creating an extra vacancy on the eve of an election, giving the ALP a good chance of taking it, as six seats would be vacant instead of five. This was thwarted by a ruse where NP leader Doug Antony and a couple of others invited Gair to a beer and prawn session and got him pissed as a newt, thus preventing him from getting his resignation in, while Queensland Premier Joh Bjelke Peterson held an emergency cabinet meeting declaring vacancies for five senate seats and rushing it to the governor and getting it signed.

Whitlam ridiculed Joh as the Kingaroy peanut and launched a High Court challenge on the basis that Joh knew that another position was vacant, however the court tossed it out as Joh  at the time of the meeting “Had not been officially informed.”

Fair dinkum, I’m not making this up.

Thanks, Suckers.

HT: The Agitator.

Blog Maverick has an excellent post on the cynical expenditure by Chrysler of $100,000 on an advertisement in the Wall St. Journal thanking America for “investing in Chrysler.” These executives just don’t get it. The ‘investment,’ better known to us as ‘the bailout,’ was done by the government not the people. If Chrysler wants to say thank you, they should have emailed it to Bush.

The American people voted with their purchasing power to sink them.

I thought when I saw it, it would be this one.

Dec 25, 2008

Hey; It’s Christmas and I’m different.

This time it’s a bit like a visit from the Ghost of Christmas Past, for some reason I thought this morning of some of my early Christmases, and got a bit nostalgic. Way back then after WW2 big families were the order of the day, and quite a few of them seemed to come to our place from all over.

We had one of those big old farmhouses with wide verandahs, and often there were up to about 20 kids and a heap of aunts, uncles, and older family members. Double beds were made up sideways to fit as many kids as possible while thee were beds on the verandahs for the rest. Christmas day saw the kitchen full, and food like you wouldn’t believe coming out of it. That reminds me, I haven’t tasted goose in a long time.

Anyway, looking around for something to post, I came across the following clip of Dr Strangelove, which kind of defined the era.

I guess it matches my rather dark sense of humor, hey I work underground. The music and images in the opening make it something special, somewhat contradictory, but the B52 has a beauty that kind of matches the music. 

Enjoy and stay safe.

Arianna has to be joking.

“We ask that the government undertake the obligation above all of providing citizens with adequate opportunity for employment and earning a living. The activities of the individual must not be allowed to clash with the interests of the community, but must take place within its confines and be for the good of all. Therefore, we demand: … an end to the power of the financial interests. We demand profit sharing in big business. …We demand … the greatest possible consideration of small business in the purchases of national, state, and municipal governments. …We combat the … materialistic spirit within and without us, and are convinced that a permanent recovery of our people can only proceed from within on the foundation of the common good before the individual good.” – From the political program of the Nazi Party, adopted in Munich, February 24, 1920

Arianna Huffington should probably quit using whatever it was that I feel she must have been smoking while writing her article, “Laissez-Faire Capitalism Should Be as Dead as Soviet Communism,” or at least cut back a bit. Alternatively she could vote LP in the hope that it may be decriminalized.

The cause of all of the current economic woes is, according to her laissez-faire capitalism; well she is a leftie. It seems that what we have currently is nothing short of unbridled free enterprise capitalism, unregulated, ungoverned, and untamed. In short we need, you guessed it, the introduction of bigger, better and more comprehensive regulation.

This must be news to every business owner in America, who seem to believe that they already labor under the groaning weight of federal, state and local government rules that influence every decision they make and cost a fortune in compliance costs. Arianna does not see it this way: -
…. But you can find all manner of free market fundamentalists still on the Senate floor or in Governor's mansions or showing up on TV trying to peddle the deregulation snake oil.
Take Sen. John Ensign, chairman of the National Republican Senatorial Committee, who went on Face the Nation and, with a straight face, said of the economic meltdown: "Unfortunately, it was allowed to be portrayed that this was a result of deregulation, when in fact it was a result of overregulation."

Or Gov. Mark Sanford, who told Joe Scarborough he was against bailing out the auto industry because it would "threaten the very market-based system that has created the wealth that this country has enjoyed."
If a politician announced he was running on a platform of "from each according to his ability, to each according to his need" he would be laughed off the stage. (But not apparently if it is couched as “Spreading the wealth around.”)
Basically the argument she uses is to selectively quote Bush and the people around him to promote the idea that Bush is in fact some sort of fundamentalist libertarian, when the opposite is in fact the case. She quotes a hit piece done by the NYT as showing “how the Bush administration's devotion to unregulated markets was a primary cause of our economy to ruin.”

The article in fact gives the lie to her claims: -

“Mr. Bush did foresee the danger posed by Fannie May and Freddie Mac, the government-sponsored mortgage finance giants. The president spent years pushing a recalcitrant Congress to toughen regulation of the companies, ....” (Government sponsored finance giants are not consistent with free enterprise, nor is regulation, - Bush was not laissez-faire.)

“And both Mr. Paulson and his predecessor, John W Snow, say the housing push went too far.” (OK a policy pushing an industry is social engineering, not free enterprise.)

“Mr. Bush, in Atlanta to unveil a plan to increase the number of minority homeowners by 5.5 million, ….” (As above.)

“…. $130,000 town house, bought with an adjustable-rate mortgage and a $20,000 government loan as his down payment — just the sort of creative public-private financing Mr. Bush was promoting.” (Free enterprise?)

“So Mr. Bush had to, in his words, “use the mighty muscle of the federal government” to meet his goal. He proposed affordable housing tax incentives. He insisted that Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac meet ambitious new goals for low-income lending.

Concerned that down payments were a barrier, Mr. Bush persuaded Congress to spend up to $200 million a year to help first-time buyers with down payments and closing costs.” (Enough said.)

Neither Arianna, nor Bush have any real perception as to what free enterprise, or laissez-faire capitalism for that matter consist of.

Dec 24, 2008

Palin; Conservative of the year.

Anne Coulter is not a favourite of mine, sometimes she comes across really well but is a rabid histrionic on others. This is one of her better days reporting on the ‘Human Events’ “Conservative of the Year,” award for 2008. She demonstrates her ability to use biting sarcasm to make her point: -

When McCain chose our beauteous Sarah as his running mate, the maverick was finally acting like a real maverick -- as opposed to the media’s definition of a “maverick” which is: “agreeing with the editorial positions of the New York Times.”

….. And then our heroic Sarah bounded out of the Alaska tundra and it became a completely different race. This left the press completely discombobulated and upset. They didn't know whether to attack Sarah for not having an abortion or go after her husband for not being a sissy.

I assume Palin was chosen because McCain had heard that she was a real conservative and he had always wanted to meet one -- no, actually because he needed a conservative on the ticket, but that he had no idea that picking her would send the left into a tailspin of wanton despair.

But if anyone on the McCain campaign chose Palin because she would drive liberals crazy, my hat is off to him!

True, Palin made some embarrassing gaffes.

She complained that we didn’t have enough “Arabic translators” in Afghanistan -- not realizing the natives don’t speak Arabic in Afghanistan, but rather a variety of regional dialects, the most common of which is Pashtun.

Speaking to military veterans one time, Palin said, “Our nation honors its unbroken line of fallen heroes -- and I see many of them in the audience here today.”

She bragged about passing a law regulating the nuclear industry that it turned out never became a law at all.

Some days Palin said Venezuela's dictator Hugo Chavez should suffer "regional isolation" -- but then on others she’d say she supported the president’s meeting with Chavez.

She told one audience about recent tornados in Kansas that had killed 10,000 people. In fact, a dozen people were killed in the tornados.

She referred to the “57 states” that make up the U.S.

Speaking of her eldest daughter’s pregnancy, she said Bristol was being “punished” with a baby.

As you probably know -- or guessed by now -- none of these gaffes were uttered by Palin. They are all Obama gaffes. Luckily, he made them to a star-struck press that managed not to ask him a difficult question for two years. …..

Palin was a kick in the pants, she energized conservatives, and she made liberal heads explode. Other than his brave military service, introducing Sarah Palin to Americans is the greatest thing John McCain ever did for his country. …..

Definitely one of Coulters better days and I recommend the full article, but following on from this is an interview with Palin herself by the Human Events editor, John Gizzi in which she gives her views on the bailout: -

I would have done what the GOP [senators] did yesterday and said ‘no’ to additional bailout efforts of one industry [the automobile industry, whose proposed federal bailout was stopped in the Senate December 11]. Picking winners and losers in Washington, D.C., is a dangerous thing to do when you’re talking about a system that supposed to be based on free enterprise. When you talk about rewarding for work ethic and good management decisions and then consequences are the results of the opposite of that, and those decisions lead to some mistakes that are made in some industries, taxpayer bailouts should not be looked to as the be-all, end-all solutions.

But back then, weeks ago, when that initial bailout [of financial institutions] was proposed, remember, it was considered at the time a rescue and not necessarily a bailout. Without having as much information as everyone has now, I did support that initial effort that was going to come from Congress. Of course, we saw [Federal Reserve Board Chairman Ben] Bernanke and others appear to change the rules right away, it seemed like, after that initial rescue plan or bailout was given the green light, then everybody in the public, including me, started hearing that the rules were changing on where those dollars would go and what the criterion would be. Unfortunately, that leads to distrust of decisions our politicians make on our behalf and bureaucrats make on our behalf.

Now the situation has changed, and I think the GOP did the right thing yesterday in saying, “Look, we still want more information before one industry -- in this case, the auto industry -- gets more taxpayer assistance until everybody knows what those dollars would be used for and how it will lead to success in this industry.”

Dec 22, 2008

Climate or Freedom?

Picture;Václav Klaus the President of the Czech Republic

Years ago I was the campaign director for the Progress Party (libertarian) in the Qld state election for the seat of Gympie. A guy called Reg Lawler was the Labor Party candidate and during the campaign I got to know him fairly well and we talked often. One of the things he told me was; “ I know where you are coming from, and you know where I come from, we are opposites so we understand each other, our beliefs are based on firm philosophies, the Liberals and Nationals have no idea where they stand or why.”

I was reminded of this by a speech by Václav Klaus the President of the Czech Republic, in a speech, “From Climate Alarmism to Climate Realism,” at the 2008 International Conference on Climate Change in New York. In it he shows a clear perception of the ways in which our liberty is threatened by the ideas of those who talk of freedoms as existing only within a social context.

Klaus seems to be a controversial character, possibly due to his free market perspective as seen from his membership of the Mont Perlin Society, articles in the libertarian free-market Cato Journal, and his the keynote address at the Competitive Enterprise Institute, a free market advocacy group. This is part of what he had to say: -

….. If I am not wrong, I am the only speaker from a former communist country and I have to use this as a comparative – paradoxically – advantage. Each one of us has his or her experiences, prejudices and preferences. The ones that I have are – quite inevitably – connected with the fact that I have spent most of my life under the communist regime. A week ago, I gave a speech at an official gathering at the Prague Castle commemorating the 60th anniversary of the 1948 communist putsch in the former Czechoslovakia.

One of the arguments of my speech there, quoted in all the leading newspapers in the country the next morning, went as follows: “Future dangers will not come from the same source. The ideology will be different. Its essence will, nevertheless, be identical – the attractive, pathetic, at first sight noble idea that transcends the individual in the name of the common good, and the enormous self-confidence on the side of its proponents about their right to sacrifice the man and his freedom in order to make this idea reality.” What I had in mind was, of course, environmentalism and its currently strongest version, climate alarmism.

This fear of mine is the driving force behind my active involvement in the Climate Change Debate and behind my being the only head of state who in September 2007 at the UN Climate Change Conference, only a few blocks away from here, openly and explicitly challenged the current global warming hysteria. My central argument was – in a condensed form – formulated in the subtitle of my recently published book devoted to this topic which asks: “What is Endangered: Climate or Freedom?” My answer is clear and resolute: “it is our freedom.” I may also add “and our prosperity.”

What frustrates me is the feeling that everything has already been said and published, that all rational arguments have been used; yet it still does not help. Global warming alarmism is marching on. We have to therefore concentrate (here and elsewhere) not only on adding new arguments to the already existing ones, but also on the winning of additional supporters of our views. The insurmountable problem as I see it lies in the political populism of its exponents and in their unwillingness to listen to arguments.

They – in spite of their public roles – maximize their own private utility function where utility is not any public good but their own private good – power, prestige, carrier, income, etc. It is difficult to motivate them differently. The only way out is to make the domain of their power over our lives much more limited. But this will be a different discussion. 

Dec 19, 2008

Spousal assaults, Can we please take this seriously?

The Victims, Denise Richardson and Louisa Rodas in happier times.

From Betty Jean: -
This is George Hartwig- In June he took a hammer to my 88 Lb. daughter's head for her pills. Monday Night he came looking for me - to blow my head off because I would not let him near my daughter . He found instead my other daughter and shot her in the head - My son and grandson stopped him just as he was about to blow denise's head off. His plan was to masacre the entire family that night! he has a 23 year history of vilolence.

Domestic violence is a silent crime that lingers among us as a festering sore that few want to talk about. I see figures from time to time some of which I hope are exaggerated, but who really knows? It seems to be a thing many of the victims keep quiet about, possibly out of fear of retaliation if the authorities don’t take it seriously, and there seems to be ample evidence that this is the case, as seen below.

The cases that make it to the papers or the media are only the tip of the iceberg, the ones that are so truly shocking or sensational as to make them newsworthy. At least one family member has to be killed, preferably two, or a child maimed to make us sit up and take notice.

I have had difficulty in posting on this crime, as its not just a report in the paper where some people somewhere have had the situation get out of control after the authorities have inadequately responded in the past, where you tend to say the appropriate thing and move on as you don’t know them. This time it is someone I have had regular contact with for a reasonable time and have grown to respect deeply. Betty Jean Kling is a founder of the women’s political group PUMA, sends out her regular newsletters “Free Me Now,” and has shown a strength of character few men can match.

It defies belief that a crime that would normally be taken very seriously if the perpetrator and the victim were strangers or just friends is not treated with the same degree of seriousness if the two are married or were married at some stage.

If a stranger were to enter the bedroom of a female terminal cancer victim, and attack her with a hammer to the head in order to steal her pain medication we all agree that he should go down for a few years at least, right. Only if he was her husband or former husband, could he cop a plea and be out in three months.

So what the hell is the reason for this?

Can anyone give me a serious reason that sounds even slightly plausible, why a wife or in this case an ex-wife being the victim lessens the seriousness of the crime?

Is there an ‘ownership’ angle to this in the law?

Here is Betty Jean on the subject: -

Louisa’s law Maybe? Keep the offenders away from these women not drive the women into shelters and away from their homes.

Do you have any idea how many women get their brains blown out daily in this country because we are too damned easy on men who abuse women? They abuse their wives and their families and the major reason they continue to do is because women have so little protection and because they are slapped on the wrist - they keep getting away with it till they finally blow someone’s brains out then they land in jail where a lot of them should have been kept in the first place.

Better yet - the first time they started to show disrespect for women and girls if we stood our ground- maybe it wouldn’t be a joke that that leaves me tonight looking at two daughters battling for their very lives! One from Cancer and the other from the gunshot wound to the head from the 23 year abuser who was left to become worse and worse till he finally became a would be murderer! ….

Just On June 16th 2008 this man attacked my sleeping cancer patient daughter with a hammer to the skull for her pain drugs. He spent 3 months in Jail then pled guilty to a lesser charge and they let him out ROR, and it ended up with her sister Louisa my youngest daughter’s brains on the living room wall last night! …..

A clearer picture emerges from the police report into this crime.

…… The Lodi Police Department arrived and found Mark Richardson, (D.O.B. 06/19/88) on the floor restraining George Hartwig. Responding police also found Louisa Rodas (D.O.B. 11/12/67) of 76 Louis Street, Hackensack, NJ., on the couch with an apparent gunshot wound to the head. Ms. Rodas was transported to Hackensack University Medical Center where she remains in critical condition. …

Investigation revealed that George Hartwig was involved in a domestic dispute earlier in the day with his wife, Denise Richardson, of 540 Main Street, Lodi. The two had a minor argument and Hartwig was forced to leave the residence by Mrs. Richardson’s mother, Betty Jean Kling, who was also present.

At approximately 8:40 pm, George Hartwig returned to 540 Main Street with a loaded shotgun. When Hartwig arrived, he began arguing with Louisa Rodas s, who is identified as the sister of Denise Richardson. Ms. Rodas managed to call her son and her brother during the dispute. As a result of the argument, Hartwig shot Rodas in the head.

Denise Richardson, who was the only other person in the residence at the time of the shooting, was unharmed. Ms. Richardson was able to call 911 and the Lodi Police responded. However, Mark Richardson and Tom Richardson arrived prior to the police and encountered Hartwig who was still in possession with the shotgun. Hartwig was subdued until Lodi Police arrived on the scene.
Louisa was there to care for her sister.

Update; Betty Jean can be heard giving the background to this here.

Dec 16, 2008

'Stranded Polar Bear' media scam.

This video is a segment from Australia's Media Watch program on ABC, and presents the real story behind the image of polar bears 'stranded' on melting ice. The image has been used by many media outlets to push the 'threat' of global warming and by Al Gore in a presentation.

Media watch slams errors, plagiarism, sensationalism, and various other media follies, including on occasions, their own home the ABC. The polar bear story starts about one minute twenty in.

Dec 15, 2008

GOE support for Jesse Nieto.

Photo from Gathering of Eagles website.

I have encountered numerous organizations in the US on the net, and one of those I respect deeply is the Gathering of Eagles, a veterans group which supports veterans in many ways.

I have posted on them here before: -
In February this year I first noticed references to a “Gathering of Eagles” on the Michelle Malkin site. Apparently in response to protests against the troops and the desecration of memorials some former servicemen had been trying to do something about it …….

As an Australian I have always held a deep sense of shame and revulsion at the way our Vietnam veterans were treated, for them there were no parades to welcome them home as their predecessors from both world wars and Korea, no great public speeches, no accolades, and little recognition.

These men served with honor and distinction, yet were vilified, they won their battles, yet were defeated, not by the North Vietnamese or Viet Cong, but by the treachery of the opposition and the gutlessness of the government who sent them there, and snuck them back at the end of their tours of duty like thieves in the night, as if their service was something to be ashamed of.

Gathering of Eagles, gained the support of most veterans groups, and turned up on the day in huge numbers, some reports indicate up to 30,000, which even if exaggerated as some claim, was a great effort. Anti war moonbats now know they are opposed.

Learning from their own experiences at the end of their war, they have applied that knowledge in ensuring that the new generation of warriors knows that they have the support of their elder brothers in arms. ….

Political correctness is one of the many enemies nations face, an insidious bastardization of language and cultural values that turns logical principles on their heads. Someone got it right in the following quote: -

"Political Correctness is a doctrine, fostered by a delusional, illogical, liberal minority and rabidly promoted by an unscrupulous mainstream media, which holds forth the proposition that it is entirely possible to pick up a turd by the clean end."
 Source Unknown.
Now it has permeated the Marines as the following demonstrates: -
Jesse Nieto is a 25-year Marine veteran whose honorable service to our nation included two combat tours in Vietnam. He achieved the rank of Gunnery Sergeant before retiring from the Corps. Since 1994, Nieto has worked as a civilian employee for his beloved Marines at the Marine Corps Base Camp Lejeune in North Carolina.

Tragedy suddenly struck Jesse Nieto on October 12, 2000. That's when Islamic terrorists killed his youngest son, Marc, and 16 of Marc's Navy shipmates when they bombed the USS Cole.

Ever since, Nieto has displayed various decals on his vehicle expressing anti-terrorist sentiments. These decals contain messages such as: "Remember the Cole: 12 Oct 2000," "No Quarter Islamic Terrorist," and "We Died, They Rejoiced."
On July 31, 2008, two military police officers (MPs) issued Nieto a ticket for displaying "offensive material."

Nieto refused to remove the "offensive" decals from his vehicle. Two weeks later, the Base Magistrate ordered him in writing to remove his vehicle from the base until all decals were removed. He further banned Nieto's vehicle from all other federal installations.

GET THIS: The order prevents Nieto from driving his vehicle to Arlington National Cemetery (a federal installation) to visit the grave of his fallen son. …..

The banning of these decals is political correctness run amuck in the military. Our troops are being killed by Islamic terrorists, 9/11 was caused by Islamic terrorists, Islamic terrorists want to destroy America, Islamic nations persecute Christians, and now the Marine command at Camp Lejuene is victimizing a father whose son was killed by Islamic terrorists while serving our nation. ……..
There are on one hand plenty of Islamic people living among us in peace and harmony, and have no association with terrorism and they should be respected. There are also other terrorist groups around the world so it can technically be argued that “not all terrorists are Islamic,” but the fact is that those terrorists attacking the US and other free countries are Islamic. To argue that there should be some sort of “Don’t ask, Don’t tell,” for people who are self proclaimed enemies of the nation is about as silly as it gets.

I have met a few ex marines over the years, none ever struck me as being particularly politically correct, certainly not the sort of pantywaisted Nancy boy wimps who instigated this directive.

Prohibition and gun control

Photo: David Leyonhjelm, the author.

The following is an excerpt from a speech by David Leyonhjelm of the Liberty and Democracy Party, at the “Shaken and Stirred Christmas Prohibition Speakeasy,” which sounds like an interesting gathering of those effected by government prohibition of the sort of activities that the press have been taught to consider “controversial.”

David has a great grasp of the subject and I recommend the full article.

One of my little mates, a bandicoot.

The main effect of the Howard gun laws as they have personally effected me, has been the proliferation of feral animals in my area which were previously kept under control by small landholders who are now disarmed. This is of course accompanied by a big decline in native species, especially bandicoots and native finches. Townies, if they notice this at all are probably not all that concerned as they are naturally more familiar and comfortable with dogs, cats, and rabbits, than they are with marsupials that look like large rats and dig holes in lawns.

By David Leyonhjelm

I wonder if anyone can tell me who said this:

“We will find any means we can to further restrict them because I hate guns. I don’t think people should have guns, unless they are police, or in the military or security industry. Ordinary citizens should not have weapons. We do not want the American disease imported into Australia.”

It was John Howard, the former Prime Minister. And my guess is he probably spoke for a majority of Australians. Quite likely a fair few people here too.

There were three assumptions implicit in his comment.

First, he assumed strict gun laws lead to gun control, which in turn leads to reduced levels of violence.

Second, he assumed the so-called “American gun culture” is bad and something to be avoided.

Third, he assumed it was perfectly OK for the government to have all the guns and for ordinary people to have none. ……

But it is a fact that gun laws do not control guns. And even if they did it wouldn’t reduce crime.

And the so-called American gun culture is derived from movies and TV, with a bit of media imagination thrown in. The reality is altogether different.

I recognise some people are reluctant to reconsider their opinion of guns. Even liberal minded people on things like drugs, censorship and prostitution tend to have a blind spot on guns.

Some people actually fear guns, like some fear heights or spiders. The term for fear of guns is hoplophobia. People who fear guns are not open to rational persuasion, just as some people can never relax when there’s a spider on the wall no matter how much scientific data is offered explaining how spiders can’t jump. ……

Unless you were a sporting shooter or hunter, or a farmer, you probably wouldn’t be familiar with the detail; you’ll have simply heard about “tough gun laws”. You quite likely assumed tough gun laws sounded good and never thought further about it.

Prohibition can be a bit like that. Unless you are directly affected, you tend not to notice when others lose a bit of their liberty.

So let me tell you a little bit about the Howard gun laws.

They banned civilians from owning self-loading (ie semi-automatic) rifles and shotguns, plus pump action shotguns.

They restricted magazine capacity on everything else, introduced individual registration of rifles and shotguns, and imposed a range of other restrictions on firearm acquisition.

In 2002/03 pistols with short barrels were prohibited, plus calibres greater than .38 or magazines holding more than 10 rounds. Additional licensing obligations were imposed too. ……

When the police come to my house, they are always in pairs and one stands back with a hand near their pistol, just in case I burst out the door and spray them with bullets. Of course they don’t do that when they visit one of my friends. He also has a gun but he hasn’t bothered with a licence, so they assume he can’t spray them with bullets.

The safe in which I store my guns in my home is subject to inspection at virtually any time. And if I am found with so much as a single 22 bullet not locked up, I’m likely to lose my licence.

In fact, it is very easy to break the law if you are a firearm owner. In some cases regulations were written to make compliance difficult in the hope it would discourage licence applications. ….

These days, politicians are protected by armed guards at taxpayers expense and the well-heeled hire armed security guards. Everyone else takes his or her chances.

In fact, you can’t carry a weapon of any kind. Even non-lethal alternatives like pepper sprays, mace and Tasers are banned. You are not allowed to carry a pocket-knife. Bullet-proof body armour is banned too.

In theory, the right of self-defence hasn’t been lost. Self-defence is still available as a defence and juries consistently refuse to convict those charged with serious offences whenever self-defence is established.

But it is no longer a practical option for a lot of people. Realistically, only the young, the strong and the agile have options. I often hear young fit men scoff at the idea that they need a weapon for self-defence. But they seem to forget about their grandmother, mother or sister. ……

Of course, some anti-gun people have disagreed. One of them is Simon Chapman, well known for his anti smoking lobbying. He pointed to more than a decade free of fatal mass shootings as evidence of the impact.

But mass shootings are rare and countries that did not introduce similar gun laws, such as New Zealand, also had no mass shootings. The Childers backpacker murders also showed that mass murder does not necessarily require firearms. (In June 2000 in Childers a misfit set fire to the Palace Backpackers Hostel killing 15 people.)

In fact, the worst mass murder prior to Port Arthur was a deliberately lit fire at the Whisky a Go Go disco in Brisbane. (another deliberate fire killing another 15 people.)

It should not really surprise anyone that the gun laws had no impact. It has been no different anywhere else in the world. There is no country in the world where strict gun control laws have led to a decline in violent crime. Australia was never likely to be an exception. ….

Time prevents me from providing detail, but here are a few examples.

Malaysia has one of the strictest gun control laws in the world including the death penalty for illegal possession of a firearm. That has not stopped criminals from obtaining or using firearms in crime, or of engaging in shoot-outs with police.

Britain banned pistols in 1997 following the Dunblane tragedy. In the following two years the use of pistols in crime rose by 40 percent. In the four years from 1997 to 2001 the rate of violent crime more than doubled. The chances of being mugged in London are now six times greater than in New York.

In Jamaica, in 1974 legislation was introduced banning the private ownership of firearms and ammunition. The Prime Minister Michael Manley told the country, “There is no place in this society for the gun, now or ever.”

The sentence for almost any firearms crime was life imprisonment. There was no bail for those charged.

The murder rate in 1973 was 11 per 100,000. It soon rose to 30 and peaked at 40 per 100,000 in 1980.

In May 2007 the World Bank issued a report which said, “Murder rates in the Caribbean (it was referring to Jamaica) – at 30 per 100,000 population annually – are higher than for any other region of the world and assault rates, at least based on assaults reported to police, are also significantly above the world average.”

The Republic of Ireland banned virtually all firearms in 1973, requiring their surrender within just three days, based on concerns about the IRA. The following year the number of murders doubled and stayed at that level for the next 20 years. Other violent crimes increased as well.

The ban was dropped in 2005 but guess what, the Irish Government is once again talking about banning pistols.

In the US, Washington DC has one of the worst murder rates in the country. But the murder rate was declining up to 1976 when a blanket ban on handguns and ready to use long arms was introduced.

Between 1976 and 1991 the murder rate rose 200% while the overall US rate rose only 9%. This ban was recently found unconstitutional by the US Supreme Court. .........

Since the early 1990s gun laws have been considerably relaxed in the US, particularly regarding self-defence, yet there has been no resulting increase in crime. The US national murder rate in 1991 was 9.8 per 100,000 but fell to 5.6 in 2006.

While America was liberalising its gun laws, countries like Australia, Canada and the UK were going the other way.

In America, violent crime rates fell substantially, with the biggest reductions in States that allowed people to carry concealed pistols for self-defence.

In Australia, Canada and the UK, violent crime rates either remained the same or rose.

The increase in US states that allow concealed carry had one other effect. Multiple victim public killings of the kind seen at Port Arthur declined. A study of all such shootings in the US from 1977 to 1999 found that deaths and injuries were 80 percent lower in states that passed laws allowing people to carry concealed pistols. To the extent that attacks continued, all but the smallest attacks took place where concealed handguns were banned such as schools.

Virginia Tech is one such gun-free zone.

Israel has had similar success in stopping mass public shootings. When it was realised that the police and military simply couldn’t be there to protect people all the time when terrorists attack, a change of policy led to Israelis encouraged to carry concealed handguns. Since then terrorist gun attacks have been rare.

Today about 15 percent of Jewish adults in Israel have permits to carry concealed handguns. Thus in large public gatherings many citizens – unknown beforehand to the terrorists – are able to shoot back at them. During waves of terror attacks, Israel’s national police chief will call on concealed handgun permit holders to make sure they carry firearms at all times.

About five million Americans across 40 states have concealed carry permits, just over two percent of the adult population. Numbers would have to increase about seven times to bring it up to the same level as in Israel.

Despite the lack of logic in disarming potential crime victims, those who implicitly believe in gun control, like John Howard, tend to maintain that belief irrespective of the evidence.

If there were another mass shooting in Australia tomorrow, we would inevitably hear a crescendo of calls for even stricter gun laws. ......

Dec 14, 2008

Police tactics.

One of my regular reads is Radley Balko “The Agitator.” One of the commonest subjects he deals with is the police warrantless and no knock searches. These have led on too many occasions to tragedy for police and innocents who as result of fears of home invasions end up in shoot outs. A number of police have been killed as well as way too many residents who believed they were defending their homes against criminals, owing to the police not identifying themselves.

In many cases the police have gone to the wrong address.

In the inquest into the London subway shooting some witnesses dispute the claim by police that they had identified themselves prior to shooting he victim.

LONDON (AP) — A British jury decided Friday that a string of police failures caused the death of a Brazilian electrician shot by anti-terror police after being mistaken for a suicide bomber — a ruling that prompted his family to demand a new investigation.

The jury at a coroner's inquest rejected claims by London police that they lawfully killed Jean Charles de Menezes, a 27-year-old shot seven times at close range by police who followed him onto a subway car. ….

De Menezes was shot by police as he sat aboard a subway train on July 22, 2005, a day after terrorists tried to set off bombs on London's transit system and two weeks after four suicide bombers killed 52 bus and subway commuters.

The two officers who shot him testified that they believed de Menezes was one of the failed bombers who had tried to attack subway trains and a bus the day before. De Menezes had an apartment in the same building as Hussain Osman, a subway bombing suspect later convicted in the failed July 21 attack.

But in their verdict, the 10 jurors rejected several claims made by police during seven weeks of evidence.

The jurors, responding to questions from the coroner, said in their verdict that they didn't believe the claim by a firearms officer that he shouted "armed police" before opening fire at de Menezes. They also disputed a police claim that the Brazilian had walked toward officers before he was killed. ….

London's acting police chief Paul Stephenson said de Menezes' killing had been a "terrible mistake."

Another issue dealt with by the Agitator is the growing use of swat teams and the militarization of police forces. He draws attention to an entry in “Popular Mechanics,” dealing with this issue: -

Sometimes, homeowners are killed in these actions; other times, it’s the officers. When a narcotics task force raided a duplex apartment in Jefferson Davis County, Miss., in 2001, they arrested one tenant, then burst into the adjacent apartment of Cory Maye. Thinking a burglar had broken into the bedroom he shared with his toddler daughter. Maye shot the officer fatally. Maye was convicted of murder and sentenced to death. However, his sentencing was overturned, and a motion for a new trial is still pending.

And, in a case that is now drawing national attention, 92-year-old Kathryn Johnston, who lived in a high-crime neighborhood of Atlanta, recently opened fire on police when they broke down her door while executing a drug warrant. They returned fire, killing her. It’s hard to believe any of this would have happened had the police taken a less aggressive approach in the first place.

One danger not usually dealt with in this is the issue that these tactics and the increasing lack of accountability, will create the situation where police forces attract more of the type of element who are attracted to the power, and lack of responsibility as well as the badges and guns. 

Dec 12, 2008

Global Warming, CFCs, and ‘Dirty’ Solar energy.

H/T Ron Kitching.

I have just read a great article by Robert A. Ashworth, “No Evidence to Support Carbon Dioxide Causing Global Warming!”

In the early nineties, some scientists were saying that carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions were causing global warming. This was disturbing to the author; a chemical engineer who has worked on coal conversion processes his whole life. Before it was investigated as to whether or not this was really true, the author developed a scheme to remove CO2 from power plant flue gas by bubbling it through a pond of water to form algae, then skimming it off, drying it and feeding it back to the power plant as a fuel to be blended with the coal. This would do two things, reduce the overall CO2 emissions to the atmosphere, and conserve our coal reserves. After investigating CO2 as a cause of global warming, it appeared at that time to be false.

In the late 1990's it was brought up again and in 2001, the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) announced that CO2 was causing the earth to warm and developed computer models to predict how much the earth would warm in the future. In 2006-2007, the author evaluated this again in depth and found the premise was clearly false. IPCC scientists did not relay that, during the time from the mid 1960's to 1998, the stratosphere cooled almost three times as much as the earth warmed. From this input, the author could prove that CFC destruction of ozone, not CO2, was the cause of the abnormal warming over that period. He wrote a paper that has been peer reviewed and in mid 2009 will be published in a respected technical magazine. However, putting this aside, does any evidence exist to support the premise that increased concentrations of CO2 in the atmosphere have caused the earth to warm?

I have mentioned in a previous post that there is evidence that CFCs had been pointed out as a possible cause of GW and this effect had peaked and was reducing owing to the cessation of their use. This is consistent with the current cooling of the Earth, which appears to be the case at present.

The greatest difficulty in promoting this theory is that so much political capital has been invested in the vilification of carbon dioxide that it will be almost impossible to move the current GW zealots away from their positions. Governments have committed themselves to the religion of GW to the point where they will simply refuse to back down, especially if the alternative offers no real prospect of huge taxation.

One of the favorite forms of alternative energy is solar panels but problems have now been found with these, as they rely on nitrogen trifluoride which is a greenhouse gas that is 17,000 times more potent than CO2: -

H/T Strike The Root.

Think switching to solar energy will make you green? Think again. Many of the newest solar panels are manufactured with a gas that is 17,000 times more potent than carbon dioxide in contributing to global warming.

Nitrogen trifluoride, or NF3, is used for cleaning microcircuits during the manufacture of a host of modern electronics, including flat-screen TVs, iPhones, computer chips—and thin-film solar panels, the latest (and cheapest) generation of solar photovoltaics. (Time named the panels one of the best inventions of 2008.) Because industry estimates suggested that only about 2 percent of NF3 ever made it into the atmosphere, the chemical has been marketed as a cleaner alternative to other higher-emitting options. For the past decade, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency has actively encouraged its use. NF3 also wasn’t deemed dangerous enough to be covered by the Kyoto Protocol, making it an attractive substitute for companies and signatory countries eager to lower their emissions footprints.

It turns out that NF3 might not be so green after all. “NF3 has a potential greenhouse impact larger than … even that of the world’s largest coal-fired power plants,” according to a June 2008 study by researchers at the University of California, Irvine. Because NF3 isn’t covered by Kyoto, few attempts have been made to measure it in the atmosphere. But last October, scientists at the Scripps Institution of Oceanography reported that four times more NF3 is present in the atmosphere than industry estimates suggest, and its concentration is rising 11 percent a year.

Compared with the damage caused by CO2 emissions, NF3 remains a blip because far less of it is emitted. But Ray Weiss, who led the Scripps team, thinks that, unless regulations require more complete greenhouse gas measurements, more unpleasant surprises will be in store. With NF3, he says, “We’re finding considerably more in the atmosphere than was expected. This [gas] won’t be the only example of that.”
Does anybody ever bother to check what these types of compounds do, before they toss them into mass production?

Dec 10, 2008

Thought police raid.

Sometimes advocates of free speech have a great deal of difficulty in justifying their arguments in the face of some of the idiocy that parades itself around the net today. I have no time for offences against children, be they sexual, physically of mentally abusive or whatever. The creators of child abusive videos of any kind should be hunted down and brought to justice for their actions.

Few if any libertarians would have any problem with these sentiments, as we tend to all agree with the concept of reasonable laws to protect children. I have no problem with people watching, downloading, or making pornography in the adult world, that’s their own affair, and it generally falls into the victimless activity between consenting adults category. I don’t seek it out but am not worried if others do.

Child pornography is on the other hand an outrage, as the making of it cannot be done without resort to child sexual abuse. There may be freedom of speech issues involved in possession of this material, however I tend to think that those who possess it are probably the sort of sick bastard who are probably inclined to carry out the sort of actions they want to view, and as such somebody else can argue their case if so inclined.

The following matter, which was reported in the Sunshine Coast Daily, is going to extremes.

For some time a video on YouTube has been doing the rounds of a man swinging a child by the arms. It has apparently been popular. On finding it today, I was appalled by it, not that it is violent but just dangerous and downright stupid. After watching it I am inclined to agree with some of the skeptics who hold the view that it is a fake, as some of the moves in it would cause serious harm but don’t appear to have done so.

My greatest problem with it is the danger that some idiot may try to emulate it and cause crippling injuries. This is the article.

Maroochydore resident Chris Illingworth had his home and business raided by pedophile busting police because he re published on the internet a viral video of a man recklessly swinging a baby.

The father of four has been charged with accessing, downloading and uploading child abuse material with the intent to distribute and is scheduled to appear in Maroochydore Magistrates Court on December 18.

The controversial video of a man swinging a baby by its arms – which Mr. Illingworth re published on the video sharing website Liveleak – has been published widely on the internet and shown on TV news shows.

Mr. Illingworth, 60, said he had uploaded hundreds of videos to Liveleak, a site similar to YouTube, over two years.

In a posted message on the site, he said officers from Task Force Argos – which specializes in combating child pornography and child groomers – treated him like a "common criminal" when they raided his home on November 30.

"I was visited at my home, with neighbours watching, by the gun wielding Task Force Argos," he said.

"My computers were forensically inspected – both at home and in my office."

Mr. Illingworth said he wanted to warn other uploaders and moderators to be careful of what they posted and approved when it came to children. ....

I have serious arguments with this as the video was openly available on YouTube and therefore in the public domain, and the accused guy did nothing according to the article other than download it and upload it onto Liveleak. Unless there is more to the story than we are led to believe, then it was probably a simple lack of understanding that the footage could be interpreted as child abuse. It would be difficult to see this person as having any criminal intent in his actions.

YouTube have removed the video, Liveleak also appear to have done so as the one I found posted from them would not download, and I found other sites where it wes now unavailable. I found it on a site which I will not name as I find it disturbing.

Dec 8, 2008

Blow for Obama, Oprah Unavailable.

I can only hope the President elect and his organization are not feeling too crushed today over the devastating news that Oprah will not serve in his cabinet; as ‘Town Hall’ reports: -

Although Oprah Winfrey worked hard on Barack Obama's presidential election campaign, she never considered going to work for the president-elect's administration, the talk show host said Friday.
"I have a few full-time jobs already and a few full-time commitments, you know _ contractual commitments that say I have to be where I am," Winfrey told AP Television. "So, it never ever occurred to me, not even occurred to me."

Winfrey said she would stay put, even if the president-elect came calling.

"Even if I was offered, I still have contractual commitments and what could I do?" Winfrey said. "I do what I do best on TV every day."

Earlier this week, Winfrey's production company confirmed she would host her Chicago-based talk show to Washington for at least two episodes during inauguration week. She'll have a live show from the Kennedy Center Opera House one day before the ceremony, and tape another one on Jan. 21. …..
There is no news as to why she made this announcement or why she thought it possible that Obama would “come calling.”

What with the giveaways on her show, and Obama’s intention to work more aggressively on bigger and better bailouts, it is possible that some speculation may have arisen in her mind, that she might be considered for Treasury Secretary.

John Coleman and scientists sue Al Gore.

KUSI-TV Weatherman John Coleman was he founder of the Weather Channel and has been involved in all things meteorological since an early age. He currently leads 30,000 Scientists in a lawsuit charging Al Gore with fraud in the Global Warming Scam. Also supporting the Scientists are 9000 PHD researchers.

For a great paper by him on the GW deceit follow this link.

Dec 7, 2008

Australia needs an opposition.

The Liberal party has surrendered all pretence of being the opposition in federal parliament and now appear to agree with Kevin Rudd that he has a mandate to do whatever he likes without hindrance. As I said in a previous post, “It is not the role of an opposition to vote against everything the government puts up, good or bad,” but the fact is that the Liberal Party and the Nationals were elected to represent the views of the members of those parties, and those views are different to those of Rudd and the Labor Party.

It is time for the Liberal Party MPs to start representing those supporters and their beliefs, not some political elitist idea that those who manage to acquire power have the automatic right to do whatever they like. If this were the case the opposition should simply stay home, and save us the expense of sending them to Canberra.

It seems that at the moment the opposition consists mainly of four National party senators, and the senior Liberals want them stopped. From today’s “Australian”: -

SENIOR Liberals are advising Malcolm Turnbull to review the Coalition agreement after Nationals senators defied the Opposition Leader's voting instructions twice in one week.

The Coalition tensions come against a backdrop of simmering dissent on the right wing of the Liberal Party about Mr Turnbull's policy direction, including the decision to give the Government's industrial relations laws in-principle support, and his stance on the Government's plans for an emissions trading scheme.

Senior Liberals are increasingly frustrated with the Nationals in the Senate, who were joined on Thursday night by two Liberals in voting against the Coalition party line.

But long-serving Nationals are accusing Mr Turnbull of being a newcomer who doesn't understand the needs of the bush or the realities of Coalition politics, while Liberals are questioning the Coalition's Senate tactics.

In shambolic late-night scenes on Thursday before parliament rose for its long summer break, the Liberal leadership decided not to block legislation setting up the Government's $26billion in infrastructure funds despite the Government's rejection of Coalition-supported Senate amendments imposing greater transparency on the allocation of the money.

But four Nationals senators, led by the party's Senate leader, Barnaby Joyce, refused to abide by the decision because the legislation also tipped the $2billion rural telecommunications fund negotiated by the Nationals during the Howard years into the Government's new Building Australia Fund.

Two Liberal senators - Alan Ferguson and Alan Eggleston - joined them, and all but five of the Liberal Party's 30 remaining senators abstained - including Senate leader Nick Minchin, who explained that he "went to the loo and had a cup of coffee". ….
I thought when the news broke, that Nick had at least developed enough backbone to refuse to support the bill by at least abstaining, but this effort is pathetic. As the leader in the senate he at least should accept the responsibility of giving the party some direction, not scarper when the going gets hot.
(Senator Minchin said) "We always review our tactics and strategy, but I think the Coalition in the Senate is working well - there have been only two instances like this in the past six months."

But privately senior Liberals were furious, saying that if the Coalition had blocked the bill the Government would have engaged in the "mother of all scare campaigns" over the Christmas break and it wouldn't have been Senator Joyce and the Nationals deflecting the criticism.
Why hell, they have been intimidated by the thought of the "mother of all scare campaigns," which seems to indicate that none of them are articulate enough to defuse such a thing, and therefore are incapable of fulfilling their role. A proper opposition would be saying, “Bring it on,” and welcoming the opportunity to duke it out in the war of words. The sooner the Liberals dump Turnbull, the better. About the only decent and courageous member of the party seems to be Peter Costello, or maybe Julie Bishop.

If the Liberals are not prepared to take on Rudd, then perhaps it would be better for the country, if they were to step aside and let the Liberty and Democracy Party step in and do the job.

Dec 6, 2008

Landmark marijuana decision by Bush appointee.

From Eric at Libertarian Republican.

The US Supreme Court, headed by Bush appointee Chief Justice John Roberts, has just refused to take a lower court case out of California on medical marijuana. Their refusal equates to a big victory for marijuana advocates, as explained by a release from Americans for Safe Access.

Washington, DC -- The U.S. Supreme Court refused to review a landmark decision today in which California state courts found that its medical marijuana law was not preempted by federal law. The state appellate court decision from November 28, 2007, ruled that "it is not the job of the local police to enforce the federal drug laws." The case, involving Felix Kha, a medical marijuana patient from Garden Grove, was the result of a wrongful seizure of medical marijuana by local police in June 2005. Medical marijuana advocates hailed today's decision as a huge victory in clarifying law enforcement's obligation to uphold state law. Advocates assert that better adherence to state medical marijuana laws by local police will result in fewer needless arrests and seizures. In turn, this will allow for better implementation of medical marijuana laws not only in California, but in all states that have adopted such laws.

"It's now settled that state law enforcement officers cannot arrest medical marijuana patients or seize their medicine simply because they prefer the contrary federal law," said Joe Elford, Chief Counsel with Americans for Safe Access (ASA), the medical marijuana advocacy organization that represented the defendant Felix Kha in a case that the City of Garden Grove appealed to the U.S. Supreme Court. "Perhaps, in the future local government will think twice about expending significant time and resources to defy a law that is overwhelmingly supported by the people of our state."
As Eric points out: “President Bush back in 2000, during his first Presidential campaign, was asked point blank by a reporter about the marijuana issue. His response was forthright. He pledged to appoint judges that would take a Federalist "Let the States decide" stance.”

I am personally against marijuana use but consider the current laws to be rather idiotic and counter productive. The only way to really keep kids safe from drugs is for parents to take responsibility and educate themselves on the hazards of drug use, and to pass that information on to their children from an early age. Reliance on good old Nanny State to do the job for you with prohibition is asking for trouble.

The more that oppressive measures like legal censure and not talking about the subject are used, the riskier the drug environment is. Kids who are given proper information by parents will, when inevitably they come in contact with it will be able to make an informed choice, those who do not get this will think its cool.

Now to get back to the subject, Bush has made some very good appointments over his term, not all of them of course, but some. Interestingly he has appointed more libertarians in his term than any other president including Reagan.

Dec 3, 2008

Parliament Silences Scientist; Turnbull fails to back him.

Opposition Leader Malcolm Turnbull; not worth feeding.

From Ron Kitching.

Dr Dennis Jensen, BAppSc (RMIT), MSc (Melb), PhD (Monash). MP, Member for Tangney (WA) is the only scientist in the Federal parliament.

He was elected to the House of Representatives for Tangney, Western Australia, 2004 and 2007.

On Tuesday, December 02, 2008 Andrew Bolt reported that a tabled document, pointing out that the regional models of global warming touted by the CSIRO are useless, a fact confirmed by other studies, was disallowed by the Federal Labor Party.

In other words they refused to hear what the only scientist in the entire parliament had to say on the matter relating to global warming.

Dr. Jensen remains unsupported by Opposition leader Malcolm Turnbull, who is as keen as Rudd is to embark on an Emissions Trading Scheme Tax.

It will be a massive tax, wrecking Australian industry and imposing unprecedented costs upon the population. And all for nothing but to enhance Rudd’s reputation with the IPCC and Turnbull’s zeal for easy profit.

What with an unreported news release from Senator Boswell and now Dr. Jensen’s censored and silenced dissent against the nonsense of the global warming religion, surely other members and senators of principle will soon join the revolt.

Andrew Bolt reports Dr. Jensen’s effort in his column: -

Dr JENSEN» (Tangney) (8:10 PM) —I support the motion put forward—in particular real assessment of the scientific data. The global water cycle atlas based on the IPCC fourth assessment report climate models by Lim and Roderick was published this year, using the same dataset for precipitation models as used by the fourth IPCC report. In the 39 models examined, the Australian average precipitation from 1970 to 1990 varied from—get this—190.6 millimetres to 1,059.1 millimetres per year.

The observed annual precipitation for Australia over the 20th century falls in the range of 400 to 500 per year. Hence there were large differences between model simulated precipitation and observations.

Of the 39 model runs examined for the A1B scenario, 24 showed increases in Australian precipitation to the end of the 21st century while 15 showed decreases. The overall average across all model runs was for a small increase in Australian annual precipitation of eight millimetres per year by the end of the 21st century. Within that average, some models predict a drop in annual precipitation of as much as 100 millimetres per year—notably CSIRO—while others predict increases of the same order. Note that CSIRO is one of the most pessimistic models in terms of future rainfall predictions. Guess which model the Garnaut report relied on.

Much discussion of the Murray-Darling Basin relates to inflows. This is fair enough in terms of examining what is important, which is water in the system, but allows blame to be attributed to climate change. This is baloney, as can be seen by the Bureau of Meteorology rainfall charts, where it can clearly be seen that rainfall in the Murray-Darling Basin is normal. The reasons for reduced run-off are more plantations in the top of the catchments; catchment-wide drainage management plans put in place in the 1980s and 1990s to lower water tables and more efficient water use resulting in less leakage…

So much for the science being settled; we now have bad policy based on bad science… At present, green ideology is inhibiting the correct definition of the problem, and the Murray-Darling will continue to suffer as a result. Mr Deputy Speaker, I seek leave to table these documents.

Leave not granted.
Dr. Jensen has raised serious doubts as to the figures being used by climate change guru Garnaut and the federal government in relation to efforts to introduce the proposed emission-trading scheme, and the total failure of his parliamentary leader to back him is not only lacking in moral fiber but irresponsible. I have already pointed out Turnbull and the Liberal Party refused to back National Party senators on opposing carbon sink tax breaks which will cause massive disruption of food production and push agriculture out into marginal country, with resultant food price rises.

Under the leadership of Nelson and Turnbull the opposition have surrendered on almost every major plank that they previously supported. It is not the role of an opposition to oppose everything a government does good or bad, but we appear now to have no serious opposition whatsoever.

Turnbull has to be dumped before he wastes any more oxygen.

Chambliss wins Ga; Dems fail to destroy Palin.

When Palin first took to the stage at the Republican National convention, the Democrats immediately recognized just what a serious threat to them she represented. Her attacks on Obama were stinging and effective, and suddenly the GOP was energized and ready to take on all comers. Worse for them she represented a new force on the national scene, a charismatic figure from outside the beltway with whom the electorate could identify with as one of their own.

The choice of Palin as VP nominee was probably one of the most inspired choices ever made in a Presidential election. While only the most optimistic of us could have hoped for a win under the circumstances, I believe that she was probably the reason why we were able to hold off a real disaster at the polls, it could have been much worse. Disillusioned conservatives and libertarians came back to the fold and in the process denied the Barr/Root ticket the three million votes many of us were predicting.

The result was of course one of the most vicious campaign of personal attacks, vilification, ‘investigation’, innuendo, downright lies, computer hacking, obscenity, and illegal acts, ever perpetrated in a Presidential campaign being launched, not only against her but her children as well by the Obama campaign.

In the Senate race in Georgia, outright victory was narrowly denied to the Republican candidate Saxby Chambliss by the Libertarian candidate who got around three percent of the vote. The result was a runoff election between Chambliss and the Democrat candidate Jim Martin, which was critical to both parties as a Democrat win would have granted that party a filibuster proof majority and the ability to do whatever they wanted without fear of serious opposition.

They went all out for it, with Bill Clinton and Al Gore, stumping for Martin and Obama doing radio ads and automated phone calls for him.

John McCain, Rudy Giuliani, Mitt Romney and Mike Huckabee, helped Chambliss but at the end of the day Palin arrived and was greeted by rock star type audiences, really carrying the day. The end result was the Democrats lost in a thirteen point flogging, a great result which should provide new impetus to the GOP.

While the DNC will undoubtedly continue with their underhand efforts to undermine Palin as that is their nature, it is clear that she has weathered the storm easily, and the public at large has rejected those efforts. Despite everything she is still a force to be reasoned with.

Fred Thompson; "Great news on the economy."

From Fred PAC.

Fred is still one of my favorite US politicians, or at least former politicians. The guy just has such gravitas that you just have sit up to take notice. Fred is a self made man, having moved from college dropout, small town salesman, successful lawyer, moving into acting when asked to play himself in a movie about one of his cases, then a Senator.

In the following clip he really takes the piss out of the proposed solutions to the current economic mess.

I love the following: -

“…. the intricacies of the economy that may be over the head of the average person who only applies common sense to these matters.”

“…. and Wall St repackaging those risky mortgages into even riskier instruments and selling them to even bigger fools than they were.”

“Now you may have noticed that the bailout plan changes every few days in Washington, but its not like they don’t know what they are doing.”

“….. Not just anybody can qualify for this bailout money, there are strict criteria, in order to qualify for a bailout the recipients must have screwed up on a monumental scale, no little screw ups will be rewarded.”

“…. But as the Washington experts and politicians have tried to explain to us, the way to get out of this economic mess is to double down on the stuff that got us into the mess in the first place.”

“Now for those of you who think that this sounds absurd, and insist on applying outmoded concepts of common sense, ….”

“So this holiday season, be extra nice to the kids, bless their hearts they have no idea what’s in store for them, but that’s their problem.”

“Ask not what your country can spend for you, ask what you can spend for your country, isn’t that what made America a great country.”

Global Warming Snake Oil.

The following is from an article in The Australian, “Cold snap fails to cool protagonists of global warming.”

EUROPE is shivering through an extreme cold snap. One of the coldest winters in the US in more than 100 years is toppling meteorological records by the dozen, and the Arctic ice is expanding. Even Australia has been experiencing unseasonable snow.

But the stories about global warming have not stopped, not for a second.

In May last year, The Sydney Morning Herald breathlessly reported that climate change had reduced the Southern Ocean's ability to soak up carbon dioxide, claiming that as a result global warming would accelerate even faster than previously thought.

The story was picked up and repeated in a number of different journals around the region.
But this week the CSIRO suggested the exact opposite. "The new study suggests that Southern Ocean currents, and therefore the Southern Ocean's ability to soak up carbon dioxide, have not changed in recent decades," it said. This time the story got no coverage in the SMH, and was run on the ABC's website as evidence the Southern Ocean was adapting to climate change.
CSIRO oceanographer Stuart Rintoul, a co-author of the study, said it did not disprove global warming and he did not believe its lack of an alarmist tone was responsible for the poor coverage.

But the story is being pointed out as an example of media bias on global warming. Critics argue that the ABC and the Fairfax media are the worst offenders. ….

Last week (the final one of spring), I was watching snow fall in New South Wales during some of the most miserable weather I have witnessed outside Tasmania. At the same time though the GW alarmists are still going strong, urging the government toward greater and more extreme action. I guess that if you are unable to persuade the public to act on your ideas then there are always those MPs who you can con into it by playing on their feelings of self-importance and desire to have more control.

The facts on GW tend to be distorted by blatant media and government bias towards the disaster scenario, which sells papers and makes people compliant. An interesting article on the contrarian point of view comes from Hannah Hoffman at the Oregon Daily Emerald, a student newspaper titled “A Global Farce,” which appears to have the left rather agitated judging by the comments.

One of the favorite ways to attack critics is to accuse them of being funded by private enterprise, which has happened here with regard to some of the sources. One of the replies was a classic as follows: -

I do not have the exact figures to hand, but I think that oil companies have funded research by about $12 million, while the USA have funded AGW 'research' to the tune of $5 billion.

Dec 1, 2008

The Road to a Green Brutopia.

Picture; Senator Ron Boswell.

The following is a press release from Senator Ron Boswell who seems to be one of the few voices of sanity in the Australian government, and one of the few who is able to recognize the stupidity of rushing headlong into destruction in the name of Global warming. With India, China, and most of the developing countries point blank refusing to comply with limits on carbon emissions, and Europe rapidly cooling towards it, Australia is at serious risk of finding itself alone in penalizing its industries in this way.

Incredibly Opposition Leader Malcolm Turnbull has ‘allowed’ Nationals to cross the floor in recognition of the fact that the tax breaks to forestry could hurt farming, but is supporting this legislation in spite of the fact that in hurting farming it will raise food prices to consumers and possibly result in shortages owing to the massive amount of agricultural land moved from food production into forestry. The mad rush to biofuels has resulted in price hikes and shortages of food and this policy can only exacerbate the problem.

It is no surprise to see a poll today showing that Turnbull would be defeated by a Julia Gillard led government in an election, the Liberals are offering no real opposition.

Australia seems to be determined to cut the throat of its productive sector in order to show the world how to do it.

Other National Party Senators, Barnaby Joyce, Fiona Nash, and John Williams have supported Ron. The ‘Liberal Revolt’ Bill Heffernan alluded to has appeared to fizzle, although I have not been able to confirm if the above senators received other support. I will update if they have.


“Carbon sinks are the down payment on a fundamental restructuring of the economy to be achieved by the government’s Carbon Pollution Reduction Scheme,” said The Nationals’ Senator Ron Boswell today.

The senate was debating a motion to disallow the Environmental and Natural Resource Management Guidelines made under Subsection 40-1010(3) of the Income Tax Assessment Act 1997.

“These guidelines facilitate a tax deduction for establishing carbon sinks which has the potential to distort land prices in major agricultural regions, moving food growing land to carbon sink land and undermining food security.”

“These guidelines artificially inflate the price of land out of reach of farmers who cannot afford the prices being paid by the carbon sink operators. This has the ongoing effect of weakening those strong farmers who can’t expand the size of their holdings.”

“As a result, more and more land will be taken from farming and food land and tied up in carbon sinks for generations. These guidelines create a discriminatory tax benefit with similar effects to the Managed Investment Schemes.”

“The importance of food producing land and food security in Australia is undermined through these tax incentive guidelines.”
“Today it is about impaired food security and the viability of rural communities and infrastructure. Tomorrow or certainly by 2010, it will be about the Emissions Trading Scheme, the equivalent of adding two bonds markets onto our financial system or $120 bn of issuances over 10 years (according to the Australian Securities Exchange General Manager, Anthony Collins).”

Senator Boswell said that it was not just the farmers, the millers and processors who are worried. “It’s the unions as well who opposed these guidelines in their submission to the senate inquiry”.

“Treasury modeling refers to ‘the Garnaut 25 scenario’ [that] sees around 40 million hectares of new forestry plantations established from 2005 to 2050’. The total area sown to winter crops in Australia 2008-09 was estimated to be slightly less than 22 million hectares.”

“This raises the question that if we put 40m ha into new forestry, where on earth do we put those millions of kangaroos that we’re supposed to farm according to Garnaut?”

Senator Boswell also pointed to answers just received from estimates that show the government does not know what their cost blowout will be under a CPRS.

“They haven’t done the work on it. Think of all the emissions from department buildings and cars. They expect business to cop it sweet and be ready in 2010 when government departments have not done their own carbon sums.”

“We must hold off from establishing an ETS before Copenhagen at least. It is crazy to self sacrifice jobs and exports with no chance of taking any carbon ground if the rest of the world is not with us in the trenches”.

“If this disallowance motion fails, then we have taken the first step in ushering in a Green Brutopia.”

“If there are moves that reduce food farming land, then tax the resource and energy intensive industries, then Australia is no longer Australia. We will be a land of forests and misery. We will be poor and unable to help the poorer.”

“We will be unemployed and unable to offer jobs to future generations.”