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.

Oct 31, 2011

Katter’s Australia Party recruit jumped ship to save own skin.

Cartoon by Bill Leak.

Queensland LNP MP Shane Knuth in defecting to the new KAP has listed a number of reasons for his decision, such as “not being able to represent his electorate with the LNP, the dirt files, (like Labor don’t have their own,) and the ‘unfair’ grilling of candidates. There is another reason that he is not mentioning, to save his electoral skin.

It is summed up in one of the various press reports, which points out, “His Charters Towers-based electorate had been seen as a seat that the KAP could win from the LNP at the next election.” Katter’s main strength lies in the north where he is based.

The curious thing about this decision is not really the reason why it was made, but what the KAP has to offer in the way of policy to attract members let alone professional politicians. It does not actually have a policy section, but a ‘core values and principles’ dropdown some of which may vaguely resemble policies.

Even this seems to be a vague diatribe of wishes, hopes, and essentially a list of feel good vanilla flavored references to church, motherhood, sunshine, warm feelings, a greater more caring nation, caressed in the loving arms of the right sort of government. In other words, the usual guff most parties adopt.

He wants ‘equitable distribution of income,’ freedom of speech with limitations, (mustn’t have any hurt feelings) and responsibility to contribute. There is even some guff about redistribution of population, but that gets complicated. There is even a borrowing from Jimmy Carter’s Community Reinvestment Act of 1977 with:
“Governments must ensure that all Australians have access to necessary finance at affordable prices and that financial institutions do not abuse their financial powers. If necessary, governments should intervene in markets to ensure that these principles are achieved and that government is involved in the process of the provision of finance and credit to provide inter alia a bench-marking.”
That one worked out really well for the Yanks.

Katter himself has never stood for anything, preferring to pitch himself as the guy who listens and cares about the little guy, and wants a better nation without actually offering much in the way of specifics. The party is a reflection of this, claiming to be a group of united independents, not bound by party unity except when voting on Bob’s obsessions, like Coles and Woolworths.

Bobs status as a political chameleon was borne out the other day by receipt of one of those regular right wing chain emails that tend to follow any right wing conservative around, this time supposedly from Bob. The last time this one came out it was supposedly from Pauline Hanson.

On the same day there appeared in the left wing ABC’s The Drum Unleashed, an epistle from a “former postgraduate student of UQ's School of Political Science and International Studies; currently studying a Master of Arts in writing; a left-wing, vegan social democrat; and a member of Katter's Australian Party,” titled, “Why the left should support Katter's Australian Party.”

It seems Bob has them all eating out of his hand.

Oct 30, 2011

Richmond Tea Party wants its money back.

Cartoon by Foden.

One aspect of the Tea party rallies that has been largely ignored by the press and government in their vitriolic response to their existence is the fact that the organization is orderly and law abiding while protesting against government intrusion and spending. Despite being portrayed as dangerous, racist, radicals, and anything else that comes to mind, they have not been involved in violence and tend to leave areas cleaner than when they went there.

The Occupy movement, which has the approval of the Administration from the top down, seems to be the opposite. Rowdy, confrontational, and without clear purpose other than being against capitalism, they have generally disregarded all rules.

Here is a comparison between the performances of the two groups.

Now the Richmond Tea Party has had enough of being disadvantaged by rules that the other side is allowed to flout. It has asked for the money paid in fees and charges for their rallies to be refunded:
The Richmond tea party is demanding a refund of about $10,000 from the city, claiming it unfairly charged them for rallies while allowing the Occupy protesters to use the same space for several weeks for free.

The political organization is sending the city an invoice for the charges incurred for three rallies held in Kanawha Plaza over the past three years. The Occupy protesters have been camped in the plaza since Oct. 15.

Richmond Tea Party spokeswoman Colleen Owens says it's not fair that her group had to pay fees for permits, portable toilets, police presence and emergency personnel. The group also had to purchase a $1 million insurance policy.

Tea party groups across the nation have raised similar concerns since the protests spread from New York earlier this month.
They make a good point here, however with the Occupy movement having the approval and encouragement of the President and his lackeys, it is likely that they will find that some protesters are more equal than others in the eyes of the law.

Bligh: $108 million pissed against the wall, saving of $8 mil.

Image: Courier Mail photo ofEducation Minister Cameron Dick describing the 'savings'.

For some years the federal and state governments have been touting the benefits of clean coal technology under which power station emissions are gathered and pumped into the ground. The attraction for governments was that it was unproven technology which existed only in theory which allowed them to claim they were taking the lead at the cutting edge of tomorrows advances.

There were also the side benefits of the ‘green’ mantle, and that it was to cost billions, allowing them to talk about huge ‘investments’ in the future of green technology, for a brighter more sustainable and a few other buzzwords, cleaner, greener lifestyle for future generations. Something like that anyway.

With this in mind the Queensland government raced ahead with massive spending in this area despite the Weller review of government assets in April 2009 described ZeroGen as “speculative” and the Government was told it was considered “very high risk” in 2006. The company has been placed in liquidation after chewing through well over a hundred million from the state, $43 million from the commonwealth, and $50 million from the coal industry.

Apparently though, according to the Bligh government there has been a net saving of eight million dollars on the deal. This is claimed to be on the basis that they were expected to blow $116 million and managed to only spend $108 million. The Education Minister Cameron Dick yesterday trumpeted the saving as he defended Labor's decision to "cut its losses" by shutting down the project two weeks ago:
ZeroGen was set up to be owned by the Government to develop carbon capture technology. Its key project was to be a $4.3 billion clean coal power plant in central Queensland, running by 2015, with the power to capture 90 per cent of coal emissions.

The confirmation of the financial losses come as photos have emerged showing former ZeroGen chiefs living it up in Japan and Singapore as they tried to secure backing of business giant Mitsubishi Corp. Former ZeroGen chief Tony Tarr and the company's corporate affairs manager Heather Brodie were snapped partying in kimonos and horseplaying in Singapore.

After scrapping the key "world-first" $4 billion central Queensland plant, the Bligh Government claimed ZeroGen would be given to the Australian Coal Association to ensure the knowledge it gained lived on.
It appears though that the Coal Association has not been informed of this ‘windfall’ and someone is telling porkies:
Ms Bligh, who had insisted the money was not wasted, had said it would become "an independent entity, owned and run by industry and dedicated to the accelerated development and deployment of carbon capture storage."

But ACA chairman John Pegler yesterday said the group knew nothing of its supposed involvement. "We have never, ever, ever been in negotiations to take over ZeroGen," he said.

Contradiction also emerged in the office of Treasurer Andrew Fraser yesterday, who insisted the intellectual property still belonged to the state and would be used in future. "The Federal Government was an equity partner in the venture and has been actively involved in the wind-up process," he said. The wind-up began in June.

But federal Resources Minister Martin Ferguson said the Commonwealth became aware only "in early October that the board may voluntarily liquidate the company."
Queenslanders are hoping that the government will put an end to these savings before they send us broke.

Oct 29, 2011

What the Second Amendment is Really For.

Texas state representative, Suzanna Gratia-Hupp, whose parents were killed by an insane gunman while her gun was out in the car, gives very moving testimony about the real reason that the second amendment was designed to protect American’s right to keep and bear arms.

The room was absolutely quiet throughout her testimony and the gun banners absolutely speechless as this she chews them up and spits them out. She has the experience to know what the 2nd amendment is really all about.

“I’m not mad at the guy that did this, and I’m not mad at the guns that did this, they didn’t walk in there and pull their own triggers. The guy who did this was a lunatic, that’s like being mad at a rabid dog. I’m mad at my legislator for legislating me out of my right to protect myself and my family. I would much rather be sitting in jail with a felony offense on my head, and have my parents alive.

Makes sense if you are not a liberal.

Oct 28, 2011

Iran releases jailed actress.

Cartoon: by Pickering. Bob Brown is one of those who believe in limits on Freedom of Speech. The limits are on things like GW skepticism, adverse opinions towards him, the Greens, and government policy, and to a lesser degree, yelling fire in crowded theatres.

It has been announced Iranian authorities have released that actress Marzieh Vafamehr, who was arrested and sentenced to a year in jail and 90 lashes for her role in the film “My Tehran For Sale”. Authorities there banned the film, which was funded by the Adelaide Film Festival and South Australian Film Corporation.

Significantly, it is not a matter of rethinking the idea of punishing her that caused her release. It is merely that the sentence has been reduced to three months in jail by an appeal court, with the lashings overturned.

It seems that in the mind of the regime, jailing someone whose exercise of freedom of expression is seen by that regime as bringing that regime into disrepute, does not in itself bring the regime into disrepute.

Given that the government there is a theocracy, the following is perhaps relevant:

“Protect me from knowing what I don't need to know. Protect me from even knowing that there are things to know that I don't know. Protect me from knowing that I decided not to know about the things that I decided not to know about. Amen.” – Douglas Adams.

Oct 26, 2011

Reduce Australian CO2 emissions and provide low cost power by … building new coal plants!

Cartoon: By Pickering.

From an article by Jo Nova & Tony Cox, 
based on an idea and research by Anton Lang.

By Viv Forbes, Chairman,

It’s the paradox that will torture the Greens. What if the best way to achieve their environmental aims as well as providing jobs and power was to build more coal fired power stations? Imagine if we could reduce CO2 emissions by more than 5%, supply 24 hour base load electricity, create jobs, and save thousands of square kilometres of Australian bush from industrial domination. Imagine if “New Coal” turned out to be the lowest cost alternative as well?

Old existing large scale coal fired power plants in Australia are all twenty to forty years old. Major advances have been made in coal-powered technology, and new coal plants are, incredibly, much more efficient, so much more efficient that they produce up to 30% less CO2. Who would have thought there was such a bonanza-cherry there, ripe for the picking?

“New large scale coal fired plants have generators that can produce considerably larger amounts of power, they use better turbines to drive the generator, have better boilers to make the steam to drive the turbine, and have better furnaces to make the heat to make that steam, and most importantly in this case, they burn less coal, do that more efficiently, and in the process emit less CO2.

"They are already using these new coal fired plants, especially in China, where large scale plants of this nature are being brought on line delivering power for consumers at the rate of one new plant a week."

We must start building new efficient power stations. We will do it in the end but it seems we must endure much cost and wasted resources before we can remove all the green fools from Parliament. In UK, Europe, Canada and soon Australia, the green tide has turned and politicians are going to feel the wrath of a betrayed and ripped off electorate.

Wayne Root endorses "Herman Paul."

The following from Wayne really says a lot about the candidates and the manner in which the press is attempting to decide the result. Unfortunately, he does not mention the deliberate shutting out of Gary Johnson by simply not including him in the polls and then claiming, he has not scored a high enough level in them to warrant inclusion in the debates.

The mainstream media seems to love the traditional status quo robots (Bush, Clinton, Gore, Bush Jr., Obama, Romney) who got us into this economic crisis of epic proportions - while despising and disregarding non-traditional candidates such as Ron Paul and Herman Cain.

They make sure that only a Mitt Romney or Barack Obama with a certain look (well-groomed, attractive, nice suits, good hair), certain education (always Ivy League), and certain views (support the Fed, support corporate welfare, won't cut spending too much, won't rock the boat) are portrayed as "popular mainstream candidates."

The candidates who don't fit this traditional role are portrayed as crazy, kooky, and extreme with "no chance of winning."

Yet, those status quo elitists with their Ivy League degrees and orthodox views led us right into this Great Depression II. Those "traditional" views about everything - taxes, spending, entitlements, Social Security, bailouts for billionaire bankers, the Fed, wars - led to the insolvency and bankruptcy of this great country.

Why would we celebrate and elevate the very same traditional thinkers who brought us to this point of disaster?

Even more damning, these same beliefs (taught at every Ivy League economics department) have led us down the very same path as Europe, which is right now at the edge of Armageddon.

Whether the masses of U.S. voters realize it or not, Europe's very survival is at stake over the coming days - all because of too much debt, spending, entitlements, taxes, free healthcare, and government employees with outrageous pensions.

Look back at the past few years. We have lurched from a bank debt crisis to a corporate debt crisis to now a much worse crisis - a sovereign debt crisis with entire European countries on the edge of implosion.

When banks and big corporations go under, countries save them. But who will save the countries? The world economy is at death's door. And, there is no cavalry to ride to the rescue.

Look at the leaders of each insolvent country now in crisis. They are the same person, cut from the same cloth. This "group think" of Ivy League spoiled brats, almost all born with silver spoons in their mouths, is at the root of all that ails America and the world.

World leaders lack common sense or blue-collar roots. Few have ever run a business. Even fewer are self-made. These types have destroyed the world economy. It is time to change our thinking . . . and change our leaders.

It is time to merge anti-heroes like Ron Paul and Herman Cain to create the perfect president. No traditional thinking found here. This newly merged "Herman Paul" is the kind of non-traditional, non-status quo president we desperately need.

Ron Paul was not just the first, he was the only politician to predict the debt bubble, housing crash, banking crisis, student loan crisis, and economic tsunami we are now experiencing.

He predicted the Community Reinvestment Act, Fannie Mae, and Freddy Mac would destroy the housing market. He predicted reckless government spending would drown the nation in debt. He predicted the high cost of college, driven by student loans, would enslave college graduates. He railed about "crony capitalism." He predicted the Fed would keep printing until the value of the dollar was destroyed. He was right about everything.

You'd think the media would celebrate Ron Paul as a hero, hailing him for his courage. But instead he is despised for making the Ivy League elite look foolish, ignorant, and reckless. He embarrassed the smartest guys in the room, showing them to be the dumbest guys in the room. They will never forgive him for it.

So, the media elite do the bidding of their former Ivy League classmates, painting the guy who was right about everything as "dangerous" and "extreme." So the very guy whose brilliant insights are most needed right now is slandered and ignored.

Then there's Herman Cain. No spoiled-brat privileged background here. He's the son of a maid and chauffeur who became CEO of Godfather Pizza - a self-made success. Those are the perfect qualifications for a president.

But the D.C. insiders, big business, and media elite hate Herman. Why? Because he is not a member of their snobby little club. He climbed the corporate ladder based solely on talent and relentless spirit. He makes the elite feel guilty and insecure.

So, they belittle the "simplicity" of Cain's 9-9-9 tax plan. They forget to tell you that Hong Kong has the best economy in the world with booming revenues and almost no unemployment - all based on the simplicity of a 16 percent flat tax, plus zero capital gains taxes.

Likewise they forget to tell you that the simplicity of Ronald Reagan's tax plan to cut income taxes from 70 percent to 28 percent turned the worst economic crisis since the Great Depression into the greatest economic boom in world history.

Simplicity and common sense are exactly what we need right now in a president. We need the kind of blue-collar common sense that comes from a country baby doctor Ron Paul and a son of a maid turned CEO Herman Cain.

We need to run away from elitists with traditional ideas and orthodox thinking who have destroyed the U.S. economy.

America desperately needs a President like "Herman Paul."

Wayne Allyn Root’s web site:

Oct 25, 2011

Reaping Green Dividends

By Viv Forbes, Chairman,

The battle for Carbon Sense will go on. We have no option but to fight until the Carbon Tax bills are repealed and the dead weight of the massive Climate Change Bureaucracy is removed from our backs. We hope you can support us in this fight. Please pass this on.

The carbon policies of the Australian government will destroy regional industry.

Most regional industry relies on adding value to the products of primary industries – smelters, refineries, processing plants, cement plants, sawmills, flour mills, abattoirs and rail and port infrastructure. These facilities require cheap reliable electricity, which will never be supplied by green energy toys.

Recently Xstrata announced plans to cease smelting and refining copper in Queensland. Then Blue Scope Steel decided to reduce production and shed workers. Now Rio has signalled the sale of its aluminium processing empire. Next we can expect that a large coal fired electricity generator will be unable to repay its debts. Cement plants will be squeezed and rail and port costs will increase.

All of these projects are denigrated in their own country because they have one thing in common - they rely heavily on carbon fuels such as coal and gas and thus are all threatened by the toxic carbon tax. None of these activities will cease because of our carbon tax. They will either pay foreign spivs for "carbon credits" or the business will transfer to other countries who will welcome our trashed industries.

Not one of these operations will survive if forced to use costly and unreliable wind or solar power.

The 74 green lemmings in Parliament have given us "certainty" – the certainty of capital flight and job losses.

Are we prepared for the new green future where jobless Australians survive from backyard vegie gardens, poaching kangaroos and wild pigs from carbon credit forests and cooking with biomass on a wood stove?

Of course we will enjoy pirate movies downloaded at the speed of light using the NBN (as long as the sun is shining or the wind blows).

The Carbon Dioxide Tax Game

So let the games begin.

The Carbon (Dioxide) Tax game, with the rules defined by fools, can have only one outcome - Bludgers Ten, Workers Zero. The boundary referees can look forward to endless disputes as those just above and below the line fight for (dis)possession of the ball - the 'right' to pay this infamous tax. The score will be overwhelmingly from penalty kicks. The stakes are high and the punters are laying their bets in the mother-of-all-gambles - trading not goods and services, but thin air. The aim is not more production, but doing as little as possible to avoid generating the life-giving gas, carbon dioxide.

The speculators behind the scenes are gloating over the prospects.

And our international competitors know they now compete against an injured player carrying a hopeless handicap.

Bring on the next election.

John McRobert

Speaking of elections, Ontario Wind Turbines Slice Liberal Politicians

Worldwide resentment towards the green agenda is rising. In recent elections in Ontario, Canada, seven Liberal Politicians who support the green energy and wind farms agenda were defeated. The casualties include the agriculture minister, the education minister and, most symbolically, the environment minister. The Conservatives won all seven of those seats.

Carbon Dioxide and the Politics of the Carbon Tax

See here:

Julia Gillard explains carbon dioxide to students:

Oct 24, 2011

Cartoon forces state heritage backdown.

Image, Spring Valley Cattle Dip. Courtesy, The gympie Times.

There seems to be no end to the stupidity of the heritage listing craziness that seems to sweep our nation at all levels. It seems that anything that has any age on it has a chance of being heritage listed, there was a public dunny listed the other day in Gympie! No bullshit. It is considered “a rare surviving example of an
early public toilet featuring Art-Deco motifs, demonstrating approaches to public hygiene in the early 20th century.”

Seriously, if you live in Queensland and have a derelict thunder box type crapper in the back yard that you just haven’t got round to getting rid of, do so now. It is possible that someone will list the damn thing on the heritage register, require you to restore it complete with original kerosene tin receptacle, and the appropriate newspapers from 1935 for hygiene purposes. You could then be compelled to open it to the public.

Recently a blue started between the regional council and the Department of Environment and Resource Management over plans to heritage list a derelict cattle dip:

Spring Valley Dip, a structure that would lead to your prosecution if you built it yourself (especially if you invited the public to visit), is apparently all ours if we want it.

Gympie Regional Council is currently resisting State Government moves to have us pay for safety improvements associated with plans to list it on the state's Heritage Register. But even with improvements, the site would remain dangerous, according to the council's Planning Committee chairman Ian Petersen.

One proposed safety improvement is a non-heritage steel grate to stop people falling into the potentially toxic water in the 1m deep concrete-lined pit, once used to poison ticks and parasites on cattle bound for the Gympie saleyards. No safety improvements have been proposed for the rotting timber and iron structure or the far from childproof fences that surround it.

Cr Petersen says the Department of Environment and Resource Management has rejected a proposal to fill the pit with roadbase. … "It's a hazardous site and a contaminated site.”
Now, a new report which is not online reveals that the decision may be under review, partly due to a cartoon by Jeff Douwes which was printed along with the report, and ridicules the heritage listing idea. It is also unfortunately not online.
“Councillors at their planning meeting this week heard that the Queensland Heritage Council may be reconsidering their decision at a meeting this month.”

“This is an indication that they may not proceed with it, because it is very unusual for a decision to be held over (and reconsidered),” committee chairman Ian Petersen told the meeting.”

“Then he added, “We need to acknowledge the assistance of The Gympie Times because the committee had in their possession a copy of the (Jeff’s comment ) Cartoon.”

“Mr. Douwes was somewhat bemused today as he considered his new role as informal heritage policy advisor and power broker.”

Oct 23, 2011

Ah, the Malaise Speech, now that takes us back.

Cartoon; Pickering’s current ‘Whitlam cartoon’ draws attention to the similarity between the US and here.

In 1976 the American people were in a mood for change and were ready to vote for someone who could promise them hope. The Democrats put up a relatively unknown populist from Georgia as nominee, and with the assistance of sycophantic, uncritical, and groveling press coverage Jimmy Carter was elected. The rest is history, four years downhill.

It is assumed that protocols were put in place to ensure that such a thing could never happen again. (Just kidding, guys.)

Today is the 32nd anniversary of his ‘Malaise speech’, shown here with some uncanny modern parallels:

So there’s outrage over cheap beer! Says who?

It appears our appointed moral, and healthy lifestyle guardians are on the warpath again. This time it’s about the discount chain Aldi’s offering cheap booze. Apparently under statist logic, being able to buy booze at lower prices is bad for us, and we need to have extra taxes to keep us on the straight and narrow:

The state's licensing authority has shrugged off warnings against selling super-cheap alcohol in supermarkets to give Aldi the green light for 34 outlets to stock beer for $1 a can and wine for as little as $2.25 a litre.

Health officials formally objected to the issuing of the new liquor licences, particularly in some regional and rural areas, insisting the increased access will "contribute to further alcohol-related harm and negative health outcomes."

… The alcohol will be sold unrefrigerated in a separate space to the grocery aisles although shoppers will be able to also use the liquor area check-out to purchase non-alcohol items.

Beer prices at Aldi stores start at $8.99 for a six-pack of Smith Clyde Lager to $19.99 for a carton of Storm Brewing Premium Light Beer. Four-litre casks of wine are available for less than $9 and bottles of sherry are sold for under $5.

The Ulladulla and Districts Community Resource Centre also complained to the licensing authority, saying there were already enough outlets "in a low-income area with high unemployment and major alcohol problems, and that another alcohol outlet was not needed."

Aldi has argued that its restrained opening hours compared with traditional bottle shops, and ban on quantity-based promotional offers such as two-for-one deals meant its impact would be negligible.
This comes from the people who have given us plain packaging on cigarettes, demanding the same for alcohol, want extra taxes on convenience food, and want everything they don’t consider good for us either regulated, taxed, prohibited, or censored:
The Australians were recently in the news after making the decision to wrap cigarettes in olive-coloured plain packages. With tangible patriotic pride, campaigners claimed this as a world first, and so it is, but it only scratches the surface of the plans Australia’s public-health lobby have in store.

Last week, the Preventative Health Taskforce published a report which, in its words, launched a ‘crackdown’ on drinking, smoking and the eating of ‘energy-dense, nutrient-poor’ food. This report made 122 recommendations, called for 26 new laws and proposed establishing seven new agencies to change the behaviour of Australians. To take just a few examples related to tobacco, the Taskforce called for the price of 30 cigarettes to rise to ‘at least $20’ (£13) by 2013, for a ban on duty-free sales, a ban on vending machines and a ban on smoking in a host of places including multi-unit apartments, private vehicles and ‘outdoors where people gather or move in close proximity’. They even contemplate a ban on filters and the prohibition of additives that enhance the palatability of cigarettes.

As in so many countries, Australia’s anti-smoking campaign has acted as a Trojan horse in the effort to fundamentally change the relationship between citizen and state. By no means does it end with tobacco. The Taskforce also wants to ban drinks advertising during programmes that are watched by people under 25 – a category so broad as to include virtually every programme – and calls for graphic warnings similar to those now found on cigarette packs to be put on bottles of beer. It also wants the government to establish ‘appropriate portion sizes’ for meals, to tax food that is deemed unhealthy and to hand out cash bonuses to those who meet the state’s criteria of a healthy lifestyle.

Oct 22, 2011

Defence Association opposes reopening Breaker Morant case.

Image: Breaker Morant.

Every few years there are calls for the case of Harry “Breaker” Morant to be reopened, usually over the discovery of new information in the case, which saw him executed by the British during the Boer War 110 years ago. Many doubts were expressed over the validity of the evidence used, and the Australian Government was only informed after the execution was carried out.

The Defence Association raises some interesting points in their objection to the current application:

Attorney-General Robert McClelland has revealed he will write to the British government requesting it re-examine Morant's case amid fresh evidence the Boer War lieutenant was following orders when he authorised 12 prisoners shot in 1901.

But Australia Defence Association Neil James said the decision could lead to an unwanted precedent.

“Our basic view is it is very dangerous for modern day activists to agitate for change without knowing exactly the historical circumstances of the time when decisions were made,” Mr. James told The Australian Online.

“Unfortunately it has become fashionable just to say, everyone in the past was dumber than we are now and therefore we need to change their decision. “It's a very arrogant, and in many cases dangerous, decision.”
Attitudes have changed considerably over the time since this case occurred and particularly over the last few decades. The defense of ‘just following orders’ was brought into perspective in the Eichmann case in the early 60s.

It is generally accepted that the prosecution was an effort to appease German outrage at the time and that a decision was made to make Colonials scapegoats in this effort. There is also little doubt that orders were made by Kitchener, which were carried out by Morant and others. There is also little doubt that he was guilty as charged.

Repeated attempts to review the case have been consistently rejected by British authorities. There is little reason to think that this effort is anything more than flogging a dead horse, and given that whether or not the order to execute prisoners was given is irrelevant in the modern era, there seems little point in raising it.

Given that actions taken in the past were carried out in the light of different social values, following this line creates the risk of some who are survivors of past conflicts being judged adversely for actions, which would have been considered honorable at the time they were taken.

Morant has been largely exonerated in public perception over the years and has been raised to the status of folk hero. He was no angel, and probably not a villain in his time. There seems to be little reason to disturb the status quo on this issue.

Oct 21, 2011

Abbott withdraws support for property rights.

Image: Coal seam gas wellhead.

The issue of mineral and petroleum extraction has been causing a great deal of angst within the farming community of late. Most of this is based on the situation whereby; once explorers obtain rights to operate over an area; farmers lose their rights to decide who has access to their properties. This is merely the latest issue in a long stream of losses of property rights by the rural sector.

Two months ago, Tony Abbott seemed to demonstrate an understanding of the basic issue with his statement on Allan Jones program on 2GB, “If you don't want something to happen on your land, you ought to have a right to say no.” He went on to add, “People are entitled to be concerned about any situation where miners are coming on to land against the wishes of landholders.” This sparked outrage among CSG stakeholders:

The comments in August sparked outrage from industry and the states, with the Queensland government accusing him of seeking to turn the clock back on 100 years of mining tenure.

The federal government accused Mr. Abbott at the time of planning to take a wrecking ball to the mining sector and placing billions of dollars of investment at risk.
Now, Tony has had a rethink, which appears to be based on the ‘what’s yours is the property of the state’ principle. Ditching the concept of private property rights, he has now grasped the collectivist logic of the ALP and Greens, that boosting the coffers of the state is way too important to allow a mob of yobbos out in flyover country have a say in what happens on their patch of land:
The Opposition Leader today said farmers deserved a fairer deal when it came to coal seam gas extraction, but the investment it produced could be too good to pass up. “Now my position is if there is the possibility of picking up billions of dollars we'd be silly not to take it,” Mr. Abbott said.

“Now an adult government does not lock the gate so to speak (to investment). “What an adult government does is try to find out exactly what all the facts are and manages things in ways that secure tomorrow.”

He said managing the gas industry was a question of balance and following scientific advice.
Allowing farmers the right to say no to these developments will not stop the CSG industry or any other. What such a measure would do is to create better outcomes for farmers. Exploration companies would be obliged to negotiate with them on a level playing field where they do not have the overriding right to enter whether or not the property owner agrees.

This would result in a better relationship between sides, a greater degree of cooperation, and the probability of a more profitable deal for those who choose to allow gas production to coexist with their own activities. Large swathes of rural Australia could reap the rewards of a valuable additional industry in their midst if farmers were allowed to negotiate better deals.

Abbott should drop his condescending attitude of being the only adult in the room. The issue is not as he would have it, merely "a question of balance and following scientific advice," unless he intends to ride roughshod over the individual rights of Australians in order to rob them blind in favour of revenues to support whatever grandiose plans he has to replace those of Gillard and Brown.

Ombudsman quits after colluding with Greens.

Former Queensland Minister for Everything, the late Russell Hinze famously stated, "Never hold an inquiry unless you know what the outcome will be." This seems to have been taken to heart by Commonwealth Ombudsman Allan Asher during a Senate estimates hearing on financing his office. Realizing that the right outcomes require the right questions, he wrote those questions and provided them to Greens Senator, Sarah Hanson-Young.

Apart from the obvious dishonesty of manipulating the hearing to suit his own ends, he placed his office, which has to be politically neutral in debt to the most extreme party on the Australian scene. He has resigned as his position has become untenable:

Mr Asher was questioned by Senator Hanson-Young in a Senate budget estimates hearing on May 24. He told the committee his workload had increased in recent months because of the rise in asylum-seekers reaching Australia but that he had had no raise in his $22 million-a-year budget.

Documents released to the Senate last week revealed Mr Asher had scripted Senator Hanson-Young's questions. They show the pair met a week before the May estimates hearing at Mr Asher's request, and that his office forwarded to Senator Hanson-Young a document headed “possible questions” the day before the hearing.

The questions were written as though they were a script - in the exact words that they might be asked.
It is reasonable to assume that Asher’s action were probably more an error of judgment than anything more sinister, but the fact remains that in accepting favors from the Greens he is obligated to them and has compromised himself. Greens leader Bob Brown is predictably ‘outraged’ at the government and opposition, although this is most likely a ploy to deflect his party’s culpability in the matter:
Greens leader Bob Brown said Mr Asher had been “politically assassinated.” He maintained neither Mr Asher nor Senator Hanson-Young had done anything wrong. “The government went after this good man, egged on by the Liberals,” Senator Brown said.

“His crime was to supply non-political questions - rather than answers - to Greens senator Sarah Hanson-Young, as a means of getting information on the public record.” “This unfair, nasty outcome shows that an apology for a mistake, far from being encouraged as part of political life in Canberra, will seal your fate.
It would be interesting to speculate whether Brown would feel the same way had Mr. Asher provided the questions to a Liberal Senator instead of one of his.

Oct 19, 2011

Aussie Politicians to get redundancy for losing.

'If the public purse supports you, would you give up work for good:
And the parliamentary member said, me bloody oath I would."
- (Adaption of “The Bastard from the Bush)

Cartoon: By Pickering.

The Remuneration Tribunal seems to be in an extremely generous mood this time around. Federal politicians who have just been granted a near doubling of their salaries, are to be given six months salary as a redundancy package if they have served more than one term. This currently amounts to over $70,000 but when the new pay scales kick in will increase to $125,000 for being kicked out by the voters.

It seems odd that there should be any form of redundancy for the position of member of parliament as it is includes by its nature, the risk of voted out at the end of their terms. Those entering into this occupation are aware of this and are well compensated for it. Many of those voted out tend to be given jobs, either by government, or in private enterprise consistent with their abilities, such as lobbyists, or spruikers for whorehouses and so on.

These conditions also flow on to state and local politicians:

The politicians' bonus is far more than the redundancy available to other workers. …

Given the Labor Party's leadership crisis - and the possibility of an early election - those MPs could be on the receiving end of the increased redundancy payments sooner than expected.

While politicians get a windfall, some NSW employees are entitled to as little as four weeks' redundancy while the most is 16 weeks pay for around 10 years, or 20 weeks for those aged 45 and over.

The MP payout is part of a trade-off promised in 2004 by former PM John Howard when he bowed to pressure from Labor's then leader Mark Latham and closed the generous taxpayer-funded superannuation scheme for MPs. …

The redundancy package already gives federal MPs three months pay worth about $35,000 but this will leap to 26 weeks for all MPs elected after October 2004 or those who took their seat earlier but do not receive their generous parliamentary superannuation until aged 55.

It is available to MPs who "retire involuntarily" such as those who lose their seat at an election or try to shift seats and fail. It will also be paid to those who lose their party pre-selection for a seat.

Oct 18, 2011

Where are Nero and Alaric when you need them?

In the post a couple down on Australian Treasurer Wayne Swan telling the world that we are willing to ‘pay our share’ to put Europe back on its feet, the following was said:

Over the last few months observers have got used to news of failing Euro zone economies and efforts to pull them out of trouble. These efforts usually come with conditions requiring austerity measures to reign in the runaway debt, which is causing the trouble. “The populations respond, showing their gratitude with riots, arson attacks, and general destructiveness which modern economists like Paul Krugman, believe creates vital stimulus.
Well we were not quite right about Krugman (yet) but none other than MSNBC's Joe Scarborough has made the claim. While he is not an economist he is a TV personality and thus able present himself as a pundit, which is much the same to a liberal:

MIKA BRZEZINSKI: … 951 cities in 82 countries were scheduled to take part in demonstrations after online organizers called for a worldwide rally. The mayor of Rome said $1.4 million in damage was caused after rioters who broke away from a peaceful protest smashed windows and torched vehicles around the city.

JOE SCARBOROUGH: Now, see, that will help with the construction industry in Italy.

(Cross talk)

SCARBOROUGH: No, you have to rebuild Rome because people burned it down. That’s actually a plus up. This Occupy Wall Street group, look at that, they are creating new jobs.
This led to some reflection on previous destruction of Rome in the past, such as that wrought by Nero, who it appears didn’t do a really good job, only lighting up enough to see the music sheet he was playing. It is understood though that enough of the city was leveled to provide room for a few more palaces. But hey, it needed rebuilding.

Now Alaric on the other hand was a pretty serious dude. He wasn’t just a 99%er burning a few buildings and luxury chariots; he sacked and burned the place. He wasn’t the sort of guy to settle for the odd mil or two of destruction, he went for stimulus on a big scale.

The only troubling aspect to this is that Rome didn’t really recover very well to damage that by modern thinking should have been the best thing for them since sliced bread. There some conjecture about whether the leaders of the day just weren’t fully with it, or lacked the benefits of collectivist thinking.

After some consideration, we realized that what went really wrong for them, is that they had no concept of Keynesian economics back then. It was just that little blind spot that robbed them of the sort of vision that could have persuaded them while looking over the devastation, that they never had it so good.

Had Carthage had the benefit of modern Keynesian thinking, history could have been a great deal different. They were invaded, sacked, looted, burned, the rubble scattered and the earth salted and the population dispersed. Is it possible that they failed to rise to the status of the great economic powerhouse of the Mediterranean afterwards, simply through the lack of an economist of the quality of Paul Krugman to let them know what a great advantage they had been handed?

Oct 17, 2011

The cost of accountability, government style.

These images are the most common reactions to this.

Accountability is very important in the disposal of government assets to ensure that we are not ripped off by corruption; nepotism, theft, misappropriation or whatever else could come into it.

It gets ridiculous though when the efforts at transparency end up costing unacceptable amounts, like the case of the parliament house billiard tables. Two of them went missing and were found to have been auctioned off for around $2,500 each. Senator Falkner is trying to get to the bottom of it, so far at a cost of over $100,000, itemized as:
$30,000, PricewaterhouseCoopers audit of the sales process:

$12,000 second PWC investigation into the origins and value of them:

$30,000 on an external review:

$5300 on an internal review of disposal policies, and:

$25,000 for an external investigation into a possible code of conduct breach by a member of staff.
At this stage the department involved is unable to come up with a figure for the actual costs to the government in selling the tables after a year of questions:
Mr Thompson and his deputy David Kenny did not know, when questioned, what it cost to remove the billiard tables from Parliament House, what it cost to store them, and what the auction house fees were.

"Who paid for that? I suppose we don't know that either,'' Senator Faulkner said. "God help us.”

"I'm just trying to find out the costs to the Australian taxpayer of the debacle of your department's billiard tables sale exercise and I've been asking this now for a year.” "And even at today's estimates, after all the circus surrounding it, we don't have any answers. Pretty ordinary, isn't it?”

"So far that sale for $5000 benefit has been $102,500 cost to the Australian taxpayer, plus other minor costs we don't know about. Well I want the whole lot _ every cost borne by the Department of Parliamentary Services in relation to the debacle which was the sale of these billiard tables.
Sir Humphrey Appleby would love this.

Australia, Happy to help Europe?

Cartoon: By Nicholson.

In a brilliant piece of satirical writing News Ltd is reporting on just how delighted, Australian taxpayers feel about helping to bail out Greece and other European basket case nations, hell why not all of them? They are only quoting one man, Treasurer Wayne Swan and yes, this is serious. Being Treasurer, Wayne is authorized to use the collective we to cover his decisions.

Over the last few months observers have got used to news of failing Euro zone economies and efforts to pull them out of trouble. These efforts usually come with conditions requiring austerity measures to reign in the runaway debt, which is causing the trouble.

The populations respond, showing their gratitude with riots, arson attacks, and general destructiveness which modern economists like Paul Krugman, believe creates vital stimulus. The reality is that entitlement raised populations believe that when their own nation’s money runs out, the international community should provide for them unconditionally.

Wayne maintains that Australia would contribute its share, without actually stating why we have to share responsibility for the plight of Europeans who have lived beyond their means:

"What we have said and what many countries have said today is that they are very supportive of the IMF having the resources that it needs to meet the challenges of the global economy," Mr Swan said.

"Australia would always contribute what its share would be, of the IMF. So we are not talking about doing something that would be over and above our normal share of any particular set of resources the IMF was seeking to marshal. …

"Australia's view is very clear - we stand ready, as do many other developed economies around the table today, to work together to ensure that the IMF has the resources that it needs, should they be required.”

Delegates for the US - a major contributor to the IMF - were among nations reluctant to see the body boost its commitments, namely the propping-up of European financial institutions.
In other words even the US is baulking, but we are just blithely going ahead with contributing to the welfare of foreign powers. Maybe he is doing the payback for his Euromoney award as worlds best finance minister, no matter what it costs the Australian taxpayer.

Since Labor assumed power, Swan has presided over an immediate move from budget surpluses to massive deficits, which is consistent with the history of Labor governments. In the middle of an unprecedented boom in mining commodities, he and his mob have pissed the proceeds up against the wall and borrowed more, to the point where we are $100 million per day down the chute for the entire duration of their incumbency.

We are being hit with two massive new taxes to support their spending, yet nothing is put aside to see out tighter times ahead. The boom will not last forever and the last thing we should be considering is propping up Europe.

Oct 16, 2011

Hurt Victorian Gaming Ministers witty bitty feelings, $12,000 fine.

“Nothing any good ever came out of Victoria.” – Queensland adage.

What sort of pathetic, simpering, whimpering, whining, narcissistic, delusion of grandeur suffering piece of slime, is Victorian Gaming Minister, Michael O'Brien? This idiot feels so precious that the government down there has is about to introduce draconian new limitations on the right of Victorians to freedom of speech, to make it a criminal offense to ‘insult’ him and his staff.

Seeing the Labor government voted out down there seemed for a brief time, like a breath of fresh air, however the Liberal Baillieu Government that replaced them have consistently proven themselves to be more statist than their predecessors. These guys are so bad for the image of the liberal party that they are starting to make Joh Bjelke Peterson look positively libertarian.

The act will make it an offence to "assault, obstruct, hinder, threaten, abuse, insult or intimidate" the minister or ‘authorized persons’ monitoring gambling systems:
The Baillieu Government is seeking changes to the Gaming Regulation Act which it says are "reasonably necessary to respect the rights and reputation of the minister and authorised persons". If passed, the ruling will become law.

The amendment proposed to the Act will make it an offence to "assault, obstruct, hinder, threaten, abuse, insult or intimidate" the minister or authorised persons exercising "due diligence" in monitoring gambling systems such as pokies.

State Labor has seized on the extraordinary amendment, with Opposition gaming spokesman Martin Pakula branding the minister "Windscreens O'Brien - because this proves he's got a glass jaw." "Is the minister so precious that he now needs legislation to protect him from insults?" he said. …

The bipartisan Scrutiny of Acts and Regulations Committee also raised concerns about the move last week, noting "the criminalisation of insults may capture behaviour that is unlikely to hinder the exercise of powers ... or impinge on anyone's rights or reputation."

Asked why the new "offence" law was necessary and what its intention was, a spokeswoman for Mr O'Brien, Emily Broadbent, tried to deflect attention away from the minister, despite his title being clearly attached to the legislation.
If O'Brien had any decency or pride, he would at least exclude himself from the legislation. If he were anything better than an authoritarian prick, he would pull the bill. Matters such as assault are already offences under other legislation, and those public servants who can't bear hurt feelings should be counselled to harden up a bit.

Policewoman mistakes her Glock for her Taser.

You have to wonder if some police are trigger happy, poorly trained or just bloody stupid.

Last month police shot a teenager after he had used a curtain rod as a weapon to drive off home invaders who had threatened his sister with knives. The shooting occurred when police arrived and ordered him to put it down:

"He went to put it down, but he (paused) and they shot him," a female witness said. He was rushed to Westmead Hospital where he underwent surgery to his stomach and was last night in a stable condition.

Mr McMaster's mother said her son had defended his family from the attackers. "It wasn't his fault. He was trying to protect his sister and his little brothers," she told the Seven Network.

The teen yesterday told family he would have attacked the officers with the curtain rod, but did not realise they were police until after he had been shot in the stomach, the Seven report said.
Now a New South Wales coroner has found that a policewoman who shot a mentally disturbed man mistook her Glock for her Taser. They had been called out in response to a report that the victim was stabbing himself. He also stated that the police had carried out a flawed investigation in order to avoid embarrassing the force:
The shooter, Sergeant Sheree Bissett, and other police claimed that Salter was threatening another officer with a knife and that lethal force was her only option. During the inquest, Mr Mitchell was told Sgt Bissett had shouted "taser, taser, taser'' before firing her gun.

"There is a very strong flavour of confusion and mistake and, given (that taser) cry ... I think it is more likely than not that Sergeant Bissett mistakenly chose her Glock, having intended to employ her Taser,'' he said. The shooting, he said, was swift and without just cause.

"Without any proper warning or even challenge, Sgt. Bissett fired the fatal shot ... apparently without taking time for any thoughtful consideration of the alternatives on offer,'' he said.
In such operations it is reasonable to assume that the officers would be under considerable stress and probably deserve some sympathy for the circumstances they have to deal with. Such situations would be bizarre and nerve wracking, but witness statements indicate that the victim was stabbing himself in the throat at the time the shot was fired. This is hardly a threat to officers.

A Taser certainly looks different to a Glock, and without having tested one would most likely have a different feel and weight. It is difficult to understand how the officer involved could make such an error if properly trained.

The irony in all of this is that the police are heavily in favor of gun control and tend to self righteously insist that the public are not to be trusted with firearms, although if they were the kid they shot might not have had to fight off attackers with a curtain rod. If they were as good as they claim, perhaps this incident would not have happened:
A 42-YEAR-OLD police officer has been transported to hospital after his firearm discharged and injured his leg at a training range at Gympie this morning.

The Senior Constable was participating with a group of officers and two training officers in a firearm retraining exercise when the incident occurred, according to a Queensland police statement.

The officer was re-holstering the firearm when the incident occurred. He suffered a wound to his leg and was transferred to Gympie Hospital for treatment. The injury is not believed to be life threatening.

Oct 15, 2011

Labor gets poll bounce on leadership speculation.

Cartoon: By Pickering.

As a rule, leadership speculation within a political party causes a its poll results to drop owing to the perception of instability. With Labor’s figures at rock bottom, and speculation of a potential coup by Kevin Rudd being barked by every dog in the district, it seems odd that the party should get a bounce in the latest polls.

A look behind the scenes into the various approval ratings on individual issues makes this even stranger. Labor has dropped in every category except asylum seekers, but even in this, the Liberals gained about the same amount to remain well ahead.

The Liberals are ahead in all but Health and Medicare in which they are even, (14% drop for Labor), and Industrial relations where Labor holds a slight lead after a 14% drop for them and an 8% rise for the Liberals. Labor maintains a slight lead in education, but have suffered a 14% drop there as well.

In the rest, after falls for Labor and rises for Abbott the Liberals lead:
Economy – Liberal lead, 47-28%
Interest rates – Liberal by 45-26%
Inflation – ditto by 48 – 24%
National security – Libs by 45-24%
Asylum seekers – Liberal lead, 44-17% and:
Climate change, Liberal, 31-28% after gaining 9% against Labor dropping 7%.

It is pretty clear from these figures that despite a 3% lift for Labor, the electorate really does not have any faith in them. There is no bounce from approval of their performance, so it has to be something else. The poll was taken prior to the passing of the carbon tax, so its not that.

The only things left is the possibility that it is nothing more than the proverbial dead cat bounce, or that voters are so disgusted with Gillard that Labor supporters are gaining some joy at the prospect of getting rid of her.

Oct 14, 2011

So, we’re supposed to blame Abbott for Labor’s stuff up.

Cartoon: By Pickering.

News Ltd has a wide variety of opinion expressed in their pages, from Phillip Adams on the far left, to Andrew Bolt on the far right. Just to be even handed they even cater for those suffering cognitive dissonance with Greg Sheridan. Greg has the that great unsung quality of being able to do an in depth analysis of some of Labors worst mistakes and be able to reveal where the blame really lies; at Tony Abbott’s feet.

In a sop to even handedness he claims both sides are equally to blame for illegal immigration:
The government's management measures - quicker processing, bridging visas, community detention - are simply a form of surrender. There is now no disincentive for anyone who wants to live in Australia, claim Medicare, get welfare payments, avail themselves of government schools and all the rest not to jump on a boat. Illegal entry by boats will now be quicker, easier and cheaper than the lengthy process of trying to come here as an immigrant.

The opposition deserves censure for the intensely irresponsible decision to deny the government the legislative tools necessary to enact the Malaysia Solution, and thereby ensure all offshore processing is legal. There was nothing wrong with that solution in principle.

The only question was whether it would work. By demonising it, the opposition demonised offshore processing. Even if it is elected to office, the Coalition cannot be confident that the courts will allow its preferred offshore processing options. And it is highly unlikely the Greens and Labor would allow legislative changes through the Senate to facilitate this. Abbott might think he could go to a double-dissolution election on such an issue but this would mean effective action on stopping the boats is years and years away.

Australia will now be subject to determined illegal immigration by people who have not undergone a selection process by Australian authorities. Such a process has been a disaster for Europe.
When Labor were seeking office they were scathing of the ‘Pacific Solution’ under which significant numbers of refugees were accepted but because of offshore processing, the boats stopped coming because there was no advantage to be gained by illegal entry. This system was immediately abolished and funnily enough, boats were arriving within days.

When the situation got out of hand, the government announced that they would introduce offshore processing in East Timor. The East Timorese government was outraged over this, as it had not been raised with them and they rejected the idea out of hand.

In order to have a Pacific solution that was different to Howard’s, Gillard then approached Malaysia. The Liberals rejected this out of hand, as Malaysia was not a signatory to the Refugee Convention and allegations of serious human rights violations. The deal went ahead, only to be struck down by the High Court. Abbott then expressed his willingness to negotiate appropriate legislation.

Rather than negotiate in good faith Labor then went ahead with a bill to legitimize the Malaysia solution despite knowing that it was completely unacceptable to the Liberals. Had this one country been taken off the table, the result could have been different.

In attempting to force the Liberals to back down to Gillard’s will, Labor has made a rod for its own back.

Still, a high proportion of the 20-30% who still support Labor will believe the spin.

Wayne Allyn Root opens FreedomFest.

Former libertarian VP nominee, Wayne Allyn Root was chosen to open up FreedomFest this year. Here is the video of his opening speech to start the event dubbed by the media as "the world's largest gathering of free minds." The speech is called "Why Government Fails at Everything It Does."

It will be interesting to find out if he has another go in 2012.

Oct 13, 2011

Slovak libertarian party blocks EU bailout.

Image: Richard Sulik, leader of SaS.

The world is becoming used to the daily round of news of European nations in financial crisis, Greece being the current centre of attention. There are constant updates on efforts by the more solvent members of the Euro zone to prop up failing members in exchange for financial reforms. Meanwhile, long-suffering taxpayers are becoming increasingly outraged.

A current effort to expand the European Financial Stability Facility to 440 billion Euros has been blocked temporally by tiny Slovakia. The ruling coalition there failed to approve the measure when the libertarian orientated Freedom and Solidarity (SaS) Party, voted it down. The measure is expected to pass with the support of the opposition, probably requiring an early election as a condition.

This should give heart to angry voters across Germany, France, and the rest of Europe:

A recently-formed libertarian political party which represents just 12 per cent of Slovakian voters and barely 0.2 per cent of the eurozone's 332 million voters refused to vote with the three other parties in the ruling coalition, bringing the continent's bailout agreement to a halt.

With a population of just 5.4 million the small mountainous country in central Europe is now the centre of frantic efforts to revive the July 21 bail-out deal, which expanded the European Financial Stability Facility (EFSF) to 440 billion euros ($A603 billion) and gave it new powers to help Greece, failing banks and shaky nations such as Spain and Italy. …

But Radicova's four-party coalition failed to muster the required numbers because the hardline free-market party Freedom and Solidarity (SaS) objected to the eurozone bailout as a profligate waste of money on bankers and Greeks who it says should be made to pay for their own mistakes and laziness.

Richard Sulik, the millionaire economist who helped to develop the country's 19 per cent flat income tax and founded SaS in 2009, was unrepentant about his resistance to bailing out the Greeks.

"I'd rather be a pariah in Brussels than have to feel ashamed before my children, who would be deeper in debt should I back raising the volume of funding in the EFSF bailout mechanism.”

Slovakians had lower average incomes than the Greeks and "an honest solution" to the crisis would be "to let Greece go bankrupt," he said.

Carbon tax passed.

Cartoon: By Pickering.

They are bringing in a tax and if taxes cooled the planet, the place would be an icebox. It is absurd. Using the same logic, every time you increase income tax the place would get colder, every time you reduce income tax it would warm up a little bit. – Senator Barnaby Joyce.

It has been a disappointing day today. Most of us held onto the faint hope that someone on the government side would adopt a sane approach, or at least bow to the need for self-preservation, but that was not to be. Labors economic suicide squad voted as a block, with the independents to pass the carbon tax.

The best estimates of the impact of the 5% reduction in greenhouse gasses by Australia, is that there would be at best, about a ten thousandth of a degree of temperature reduction. This is of course assuming that the rest of the world does not increase its output. As such a reduction is vastly less than China’s annual increase in emissions, this seems unlikely.

Most polling indicates that the population are against this tax by about 80/20% and we will have our revenge on the instigators of this draconian deceit. It will most certainly be repealed after the next election.

Labor is now determined to go out and sell the tax. The electorate, which is suffering buyers remorse over the election of the current government is not likely to be purchasing this lemon.

Oct 11, 2011

Escape custody, no problem, provide jobs, you’re in trouble.

Lets just try to figure this one out. Three Vietnamese detainees abscond from immigration and are picked up three weeks later. They were found to be working on the mango harvest at Adelaide River, about 110 Km to the south:

The men were being held at the Northern Immigration Detention Centre and were on a supervised day-release visit to a church last month when they slipped away. They had been missing for three weeks.

Northern Territory Police Watch Commander Bob Harrison says officers in the community of Adelaide River, about 110 kilometres south of Darwin, noticed a group of men in a car acting suspiciously and pulled them over. He says the men had been working while they were been on the run.

"The chap who was driving the car told them (police) they had all been picking mangoes in the Darwin region.”

Commander Harrison says the men have been handed over to immigration officials and do not face any criminal charges under Territory law. However, the people who had been employing them are likely to be investigated, he says.
The detainees apparently did no damage and used subterfuge to carry out their escape, and supported themselves by taking a job. However in any case of legal detention, escape is in itself a criminal act even if as in this case, they are only being held while their refugee status is checked. But in this case these guys deserve a bit of respect.

Back in the good old days though, providing a job was not a crime. The picking season for this fruit is short and critical, and producers would be anxious to take any willing worker, which is not unreasonable. It is an outrage that anyone can be made a criminal for providing a job without being an immigration snitch.

Iranian actress gets one-year jail, 90 lashes for part in Aussie film.

Image: Actress Marzieh Vafamehr. Source: The Advertiser

The Iranian Regime is well known for its brutality and barbaric punishment of dissidents and offences against Islam, especially homosexuals, female ‘adulterers’, (who in some cases committed the act by being raped,) protesters, and apostates. Christian pastor, Youcef Nadarkhani, has been sentenced to death for the thought crime, apostasy. While it has not been established that he was ever a Muslim, under Islam he is deemed to be one by family heritage.

Now actress Marzieh Vafamehr has been sentenced to a year in prison and 90 lashes for taking part in, My Tehran For Sale, a South Australian-produced movie critical of the Islamic regimes hard-line policies:

She was arrested in June after black market copies of the film began circulating in Tehran, showing Vafamehr in some scenes without an Islamic hijab which covers the hair and neck

The movie's plot is based in part on (the Director) Moussavi's own life and that of her friend Vafamehr but also on stories the Flinders University film graduate was told when she volunteered as a translator at the Woomera detention centre.

Internet images of officially administered lashings in Iran show victims being placed face down in a prone position and then being whipped with a long stick on the upper legs, back and buttocks. …

Vafamehr plays the character of a young actress in Tehran whose theatre work is banned by the authorities. She is then forced to lead a secret life in order to express herself artistically while at the same time trying to migrate to Australia.

The 2009 film was highly controversial in Iran only because it showed footage of uninhibited modernised Iranians at Western-style rave parties. Footage of those scenes would normally be censored by authorities for being subversive.
Reports indicate that the charges were that there was no permit for filming, although the producers say this is untrue. It is uncertain how such a permit would be obtained, however the South Australian Film Corporation was involved with taxpayer dollars, so it is possible that the regime thought that it was another propaganda ministry they were dealing with, just like their own.

Theocracy in all its forms through the ages has been produced by the same recipe, essentially, 'Mix a bowl of Fascism, add a liberal dash of vengeful God, stir well." The inclusion of religious doctrine within the framework of the state, especially the justice system, places decision making into the hands of those who consider their orders come from God, rather than from a rational secular set of rules. All too often this power causes then to act like psychotics in a clerical collar.

Iran is a perfect example of this form of government, and the best case for strongly maintaining separation of church and state.

Herman Cain: Blacks 'brainwashed'; Sharpton proves him right.

A few days ago, Presidential hopeful, Herman Cain caused a minor furor with the suggestion that a high proportion of black voters were brainwashed. He claimed they have been brainwashed into being closed minded, not even considering a conservative point of view and had received some vitriol simply because for running for the Republican nomination as a conservative.

In 2008 more than90% of the black vote went to Obama although recent polling indicates that this has declined significantly and he is unlikely to get anywhere near that if he is the Democratic nominee in 2012. This matches polling among other demographics that tend liberal.

While a number of liberal pundits have been scathing towards Cain on just about everything, Al Sharpton in his criticism proved Cain’s point. In claiming that black voters went with a Party that stood up for the Civil Rights Act of '64 and Voting Rights Act of '65, he either shows his complete ignorance of history, or has been brainwashed himself.

It is a well-documented fact that the 64 act was passed by Republicans over a Democrat filibuster led by Senator Robert Byrd. While most Democrats supported the Voting Rights Act of 65, Republicans supported it almost unanimously. Sharpton then went on to use the class warfare argument that Cain “has forgotten his roots:”

Rev. Al Sharpton said Friday that no matter how “black” presidential candidate Herman Cain is, his conservative views are fundamentally at odds with the rest of the black community — and white people only like him because he says what they want to hear.

Speaking on his radio program with Professor Karen Hunter — the same person who accused the Associated Press of racism for dropping the g’s in its reporting of a President Barack Obama speech — Sharpton essentially accused Cain of forgetting his roots when it comes to his politics.

“How could anyone in their right mind — they grew up in the south and saw what they saw — and act like everyone that is unemployed and that is not rich did it to themselves?” Sharpton said. “So I would assume he is either socially ignorant or playing games to get votes, that he couldn’t possibly have grown up and come to that conclusion unless he was one or the other.”
It seems that African Americans are only allowed to be properly black if they have the appropriate ticket from the Democratic Party, which is assessed on the basis of supporting liberal causes, backing plantation politics, and drinking the Kool-Aid. Sharpton appears to not only go along with the concept of a political litmus test for blackness and actively support it, but believes he has the right to decide such blackness.

He is definitely brainwashed.