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.

Mar 29, 2013

School kicks back at nanny state

Image: Pic: Mark Calleja Source: The Courier-Mail
Those of us who are over 30-40 years old can remember when lunch breaks at school were fun.  They were your time where you could do pretty much whatever you liked, although a teacher was usually out there to ensure that things didn’t get out of hand and to break up the odd fist fight.
Parents kicked in for play equipment such as balls, ropes, nets, cricket and baseball bats, etc, but kids had to supply their own toy guns, marbles, pocketknives and so on.  Scratches, bruises, and abrasions occurred occasionally, but these were treated as part of learning to be smarter next time and hardened us up.
Since then the dead hand of the nanny state has intervened.
Petrie Terrace State School deserves to be congratulated for the outbreak of common sense occurring there: 
… At Petrie Terrace State School, in Brisbane's inner city, cubby houses are tucked away and children are swinging from tyres roped to trees.  Other students are running through a tyre obstacle course fixed to the ground and teachers watch children sometimes stumble, pick themselves up and run on. 
It is a far cry from the school bans on cartwheels, tiggy and red rover amid what principals have dubbed "the litigious age". School principal Eunice Webb said she thought the fear of being sued had been behind an increase in playground crackdowns, but it was getting in the way of learning. 
"What I am more afraid of is children who don't know how to take a risk, that to me is a bigger fear," she said.  She said tight supervision was paramount and this was always in place. 
Parents are also behind the move, helping to build the playground. …
In fairness, litigation is a serious problem these days, especially with vulturous law firms swamping the media with their ubiquitous ‘here to help’ messages.  One of these days a judge will tell a plaintiff, “You are a pathetic sniveling loser and an opportunistic, litigatious grub. Piss off out of my courtroom and learn to harden the f*** up a bit.”
A man can dream.
There is a good critique of the overzealous use of H&S and fear of litigation here, ironically from a Pom:
Judith Hackitt, head of the Health and Safety Executive (HSE), accused schools and councils of using health and safety rules to avoid providing activities that might cost money or expose them to being sued. 
She said children's play and education had been damaged, with some playgrounds becoming joyless no-go areas, while science lessons had been hampered by bans on practical experiments. 
Hackitt warned the HSE would challenge bureaucrats who attribute "daft decisions" to ban innocuous activities to safety rules. 
Warning that "the gloves are off", she said the rules were wrongly blamed for decisions to make children wear goggles when playing conkers and ban running at a pancake race."The creeping culture of risk aversion and fear of litigation ... puts at risk our children's education and preparation for adult life," she told the Telegraph. 
"Children today are denied – often on spurious health and safety grounds – many of the formative experiences that shaped my generation. Playgrounds have become joyless, for fear of a few cuts and bruises."

Mar 28, 2013

Not having a tax is ‘uncertainty’

Cartoon: Gary Varvell

Mark Carnegie is getting his panties in a wad over the possibility of Tony Abbott binning the carbon tax and the pressure he claims this will put on the budget bottom line.  He is claiming that the tax represents a relatively painless way of raising a lot of money fairly quickly.
For a painless method, it has certainly cut a swathe through Labor’s electoral support as well as wreaking havoc in the non mining manufacturing sector which bears the brunt of the higher energy costs, other than favoured sectors that have been ‘compensated’.
In his diatribe though, he raises the point that large foreign owned energy companies ExxonMobil and Shell and BP have all claimed that a carbon tax provides them with ‘certainty’.  BHP Billiton called for one in order to ‘remove uncertainty’ prior to Gillard announcing her intention of breaking her word and introducing one:
MH Carnegie & Co founder Mark Carnegie said there was immense confusion about what Mr Abbott was going to do if he became prime minister, especially with the carbon tax. 
"He is going to turn around and roll back the carbon tax at a time when it is clear that the revenues of the budget are under immense pressure," Mr Carnegie told a business forum in Sydney on Wednesday.  "One of the least painful ways to raise a significant amount of money is with a carbon tax, forget the scare mongering." 
Mr Carnegie said energy giants ExxonMobil and Shell and BP had called for the carbon tax to stay as it would provide planning certainty. 
"The real question is, we know what Tony Abbott said he's going to do but what is he really going to do," Mr Carnegie said.  "That's the big question we've got to work out. 
"He is the person least committed to free market economics of the viable political leaders, of which there are four in Australia."  Mr Carnegie was referring to Julia Gillard, Kevin Rudd, Tony Abbott and Malcolm Turnbull.
Given the tendency of governments to view taxpayers, companies and the economy at large as prey, there is possibly some reason to think that tax is ‘certainty’ but this is a defeatist attitude.  Accepting this to be the case is the same as seeking out any remaining untaxed sections of the economy, (assuming that there are any) and demanding taxes on them to remove ‘uncertainty’.
As for the claim that Abbott is the “the person least committed to free market economics,” this seems somewhat hyperbolic even though Tony, like the others has no real commitment to market based economics.  Gillard and Rudd claim that tax is a market based solution, which trumps Turnbull who has no convictions at all.
Abbott tends to work through kneejerk reactions, which depending on the situation at hand means that there is around a 50% chance that he will come down on the right side.  This is probably better than the alternatives.

Mar 24, 2013

Energy Roulette Week (The antithesis of Earth Hour)

A Reality Game for those Concerned about the Future for their Families 
Media Statement by Viv Forbes
The Carbon Sense Coalition today called on electricity consumers to boycott Earth Hour grandstanding by pampered people too silly to recognise the realities and benefits of reliable electricity.
The Chairman of Carbon Sense, Mr Viv Forbes, is supporting an alternative proposal that “Earth Hour” be replaced by “Energy Roulette Week”. 
The Earth Hour people turn off a few lights on a balmy night for a romantic hour in candle-light (incidentally generating twice as much CO2 as light bulbs for the same amount of light.) This is unrealistic green tokenism. 
The tokenism of Earth Hour is further illustrated by holding it on the autumn equinox, a day half-way between the temperature extremes of mid-summer and mid-winter. This is the day least likely to be uncomfortable for the beautiful people who give up their electric lights, TV and air-conditioners for just one hour, while they have a pleasant hour sipping champagne (and releasing its carbon dioxide) on candle-lit balconies.
 “Energy Roulette Week” is a reality game designed to illustrate what the future holds if green governments continue to undermine 24/7 power (generated by coal, gas, hydro or nuclear), by increasing our dependence on fickle winds, the peek-a-boo-sun or smart-meter rationing. 
“Energy Roulette Week” will give all players a real insight into what life without reliable electricity would be like. The lack of power can be due to insufficient generating capacity or merely the inability to pay the power bill. The result is the same. 
Everyone will be encouraged to play this game. It is only a game, but because of its realism, most players will chicken out after the first “black day”. 
To maximise the learning potential of the game, “Energy Roulette Week” is best started on the summer solstice (21st December) or the winter solstice (21st June). Or if you are too weak for a real test, join the greens on a balmy equinox. 
To prepare for the game, take a well shuffled pack of cards and deal out 7 cards, face down, and place them in seven separate identical envelopes. 
These are the rules for playing:
On the start day at 5:00 pm select one envelope and take out the card. 
If it is a red card, just continue living as normal. 
If it contains a black card (soon renamed by the kids as a “black-out card”), go out to your power box and turn off all power and continue living your life to the best of your ability.  At 8:00 am next morning turn your power back on. 
If the card is the Joker, leave the power off until 12 noon the next day. 
At 5:00 pm that evening take out another card, and continue this process until all seven envelopes have been opened. 
Because black-outs are usually unexpected, the rules do not permit premature preparation of the evening meal, early showering or taping favourite TV shows. And because those trying to cripple carbon energy oppose the production of carbon dioxide, the rules also prohibit the use of kerosene, bottled gas, candles, petrol generators or motor cars. 
Hopefully you won’t get seven black cards! 
If you had a real-life “black-card” day, it would be due to local load shedding, or widespread problems with the generation network.
If you have real-life load-shedding, so does everybody else in the neighbourhood; so the rules prohibit slipping next door for a cuppa on your black-day! 
And if in real life it was due to insufficient generating capacity across the whole city, the blackout would probably last for days, not hours, and your experience would be magnified 100 fold. (So no visits to shops, no food, no refrigeration, no petrol pumps or traffic lights, no public transport, schools or hospitals, no security, no TV, no recharging iPods and iPhones! Even worse would be to live at the bottom of a hill and there is no power to pump the sewerage away, it may come gushing up out of your toilet.) 
You may appeal: “But I can’t play – I have a family member on a life-support device.” All the more reason for you to play, to ensure you always have a charged battery back-up to keep your loved one alive. If not, they could end up dead in the real energy roulette being imposed on us. 
Of course this will never be a popular game because it is not pleasant being without reliable electricity. 
But there are thousands of people who are already playing the game in real life, every day. They can no longer afford the cost of both green power and food so they turn the power off; or the power companies turn it off for them; or the wind drops or a cloud covers the sun, and green energy fails; or its rapid fluctuations cause a collapse in the electricity grid. For them it’s not just a few hours of inconvenience - it’s Perpetual Power Purgatory. 
If this is what you want for your children and grand-children that’s OK. If you don’t, start waving placards that say “Stop the War on Carbon - 24/7 reliable, economical power forever”.
The idea of Energy Roulette Week was inspired by a proposal from John Ibbotson from Gulmarrad, Northern NSW and published in “The Daily Examiner”.

Mar 22, 2013

Gillard stays PM

It seems that in everything Labor touches it simply can’t get it right.  Today after admitting to its latest failure, disillusionment with the leadership of the party reached such depressive levels that the anti Gillard forces decided to bite the bullet and call for a leadership spill.
Perpetual cabinet minister until now, Simon Crean did the honors with a call for a leadership ballot, claiming that the current chaos had to be ended so the party could get back on track.  Urging former PM Kevin Rudd to stand he stated he would offer his support and stand for a senior position.
Where it all went pear shaped was that Rudd had no intention of standing.  So what happened was that the party held a leadership spill with nobody to stand against Gillard.  With the record of the party over the last five years, we expect screw-ups from them, but this one really takes the cake.
Gillard has lost the plot and her parties support, but the problem for them is that the sentiment is mainly anti Gillard rather than pro Rudd or anyone else.  Rudd probably sensed that he was short on the numbers, rather than his stated reason of abiding by his promise of not challenging again.  He may be reasonably popular with the public, but he has a poisonous reputation among Labor parliamentarians.
It is reasonable to assume that Crean was genuinely attempting to resolve the speculation that is crippling the party, along with the incompetence of the current leadership; he seems an honest broker in this.  It is rather stunning though, that he would call for a spill without any serious contender in mind were Rudd to decline.
It is also a poor reflection on the party, that with Gillard/Swan so obnoxiously on the nose, there is no other possible contender than Rudd.
The leadership speculation over the last weeks has been so intense that experienced political commentators tend to check the news feed prior to posting in case anything has changed.  It appeared likely to happen today but fizzed.
The only winner out of these events is the leader of the opposition, Tony Abbott who would have had a lot of work to do had a change been made.

Mar 21, 2013

Gillard; going, ---- going ---- g...

Image; we may not have to wait for this. Courtesy Julia Gillard – Worst PM in Australian history 
Gillard has relented to pressure from her party and called a caucus meeting today to allow a ballot for leadership positions.  The move follows a call by Simon Crean to ‘end the stalemate’.
More news later.

Shooters and Fishers Party sell out right to remain silent

For a short time today it appeared that the Shooters and Fishers Party was going to do the right thing and block the draconian legislation of the O’Farrell banning the right to remain silent.  Early on, reports indicated that SFP was joining the Greens and Labor in blocking it, only to result in a later report that they had supported the government to pass it.
The right to freedom of speech is fundamental in all civilized societies, but has been under serious attack recently, especially by federal Labor after constant erosion over the years.  The right to remain silent is a fundamental part of the right to freedom of speech, in that speech is not really free if there is no right not to speak.  The government and the SFP are claiming the right to make you talk.  
Labor has little to hang its hat on in opposing this measure; they disagree with it because it is not strong enough: 
Opposition Leader John Robertson said Labor would vote against it because it was so "watered down" it was unworkable: "The Attorney-General clearly recognises the major flaws with this legislation, given it has been watered down to the point where it will barely be useable or enforceable. 
"If the Premier was serious about stopping organised crime he would use the legislation the parliament passed a year ago and ban the gangs who are shooting up Sydney streets.
Such a ban as Robertson is calling for is stupid and unworkable, as well as establishing a framework for banning any organization the government develops a dislike for.  The right to freedom of association is also critical to liberty.
Siding with the government is actually a stunning reversal by SFP given the statement in the earlier article by SFP MP Robert Borsak, a man who must have a very flexible set of principles with expedience being one of them: 
The Shooters and Fishers Party, which normally votes with the government, yesterday confirmed it too would oppose the legislation. 
Shooters and Fishers MP Robert Borsak said the minor party was concerned about how the legislation would affect their constituents.  "Given the terrible abuse of power that we've seen in relation to firearm dealers and law-abiding firearm owners, we could not possibly support this," Mr Borsak said. …
The record of the SFP has always been more about protecting their own turf, rather than supporting the rights of their constituency.  Two other parties with strong support for the rights of gun owners and fishermen are the Liberal Democratic Party, and the Outdoor Recreation Party.  Rather than supporting like-minded parties, SFP tends to give their preferences to the LNP, which was the party that passed the current gun laws shooters are angry about. 
They are considered so ineffective by the anti gun frantics, that they were preferenced into two seats in the recent Western Australian election by the greatest gun grabbers of them all, the Greens.  Former Greens leader, Bob Brown is on record for demanding tougher gun laws here using a shooting in Germany as a pretext.
It will be interesting to discover just what sort of underhand deal was done by SFP to secure their support, especially after such a strong statement of ‘principle’ by Borsak.  It could be some minor concession to shooters, or some benefits such as extra staff to their MPs.  Either way, everyone including their supporters have lost out on this decision.  It is now a case of, anyone accused of anything rightly or wrongly has lost their option to remain silent in the face of aggressive police questioning.
Borsak and his party need to understand that legislation should be based on the fundamental rights of the individual in a free society, and the rule of law, not on the basis of, “You scratch my back, I’ll scratch yours."

Mar 20, 2013

The Public Interest Media Advocate; draconian press control

Cartoon: A Pickering offering from the early 70s when Whitlam tried it 
For the most divisive government in living memory, Gillard’s crowd has done a great job in uniting the media. Talk of press control will do it every time.  It is amazing to see the Labor shills from Fairfax lining up beside News Ltd to campaign against the six media control bills being rushed through parliament.
With the benefit of newspeak, Finkelstein’s ‘super regulator’ has now become the more innocuous sounding ‘Public Interest Media Advocate’ or PIMA, as the position has become known.  It is the same animal, with the same powers to suppress dissent, but with a nicer sounding name.
While the term public interest has many great connotations of good to it along with images of rainbows and unicorns; it has to be remembered that in the eyes of government, ‘public interest’ has a remarkable tendency to coincide with the interests of the ruling class.
Cartoonists have produced some classics.

Nicholson has come up with a couple of beauties about the effect of media control on his ilk. 

Bill Leak offers up a more Soviet style concept of the future under PIMA 

The Herald Sun pointed out that the ultimate media regulator, is the public with its ability to vote for even handedness with its dollar: 

The world's most famous newspaper - The Times - took years to recover from campaigning throughout the 1930s for appeasement with Germany and Adolf Hitler.
When perhaps hundreds of potential political opponents, including the Fuhrer's best mate, Nazi leader Ernst Rohm, were executed on Hitler's orders, The Times insisted that "Herr Hitler, whatever one may think of his methods, is genuinely trying to transform revolutionary fervour in to moderate and constructive effort and to impose a high standard of public service on National Socialist officials." 
That was 1934. Ouch. 
The Times was selling 204,400 copies a day then. The News Chronicle, a bitter critic of appeasement, and calling for Britain to re-arm for the battle it knew lay ahead, was selling 1,320,000 copies each day. 
As always, the audience was in the driver's seat. 
It was legendary editor C.P. Scott who coined the phrase "comment is free, but facts are sacred", and newspaper editors have tried to live by it ever since, knowing how keenly each is observed by their readers.

Mar 15, 2013

Censorship wars; the Telegraph strikes back

The current government in Canberra has more than its fair share of losers and weirdo’s.  Probably the weirdest and most bizarre member though is the communications minister, Stephen Conroy whose obsession with to use his own words, “unfettered power” and his determination to bring the media to heel is the stuff of legends. 
Last September he stunned a group of US businessmen with the declaration: 
“I have unfettered legal power.” "If I say to everyone in this room ‘if you want to bid in our spectrum auction you’d better wear red underpants on your head’, I’ve got some news for you. You’ll be wearing them on your head.”
For some time he has been attempting to use his legislative power as a blunt instrument to intimidate the press with a ‘super regulator’ a fit and proper person test for media owners, and even talk of licensing journalists.  Finally, the Daily Telegraph has had enough with he following front page:
 Inside was an image of Conroy superimposed on Joe Stalin.
News Limited group editorial director Campbell Reid, defended the coverage stating, ” Do you seriously think that a reader of The Daily Telegraph thinks that we are accusing Senator Conroy of rounding up people? We're making a point about freedom of speech.”
Today The Telegraph doubled down on its effort with an ‘apology’: 
YESTERDAY we ran a picture of Federal Communications Minister Stephen Conroy depicted as Soviet dictator Joseph Stalin. 
It has since been pointed out that this was a grossly unfair and insulting comparison to make. And so we would just like to say: We're sorry, Joe. 
Yes, it is true that Stalin was a despicable and evil tyrant who was responsible for the death of many millions. 
However, at least he was upfront in his efforts to control the media instead of pretending he supported free speech and then suggesting that cheeky, satirical or provocative newspaper coverage might be against the law. We also note that, despite his well-documented crimes against humanity, Stalin at least managed to hold a government together for more than three years. 
Nonetheless, we pay tribute to our new Commissar Conroy and stand ready to write and publish whatever he instructs us to.
Conroy is in the process of spending an estimated $43 Billion on a national broadband network, and is seeking to regulate blogs that get 43 hits per day or more.  While there has been some speculation as to the logic of the number of hits being 43, it is possible that he picked the figure on the basis of one hit for every billion dollars spent on the NBN.

Mar 13, 2013

Jew annihilationist keynote speaker at Australian Islamic ‘peace conference’

 Recently, Australian Muslims were outraged as they often are about nearly everything; this time over the visit of Geert Wilders who was on a speaking tour.  Wilders they and their leftist fellow travelers explained was a divisive and racist person who vilified the religion of peace and its followers.

Australians responded with revulsion to the actions of Islamic rioters who were out in an orchestrated ‘spontaneous’ demonstration (left) against the rather silly video clip, ‘The Innocence of Muslims’ in which the participants carried signs calling for the beheading of those who insult the prophet or whatever. 
There was even more disgust over the image (right) of a young mother taking photos of her child with one of the signs to send off to the folks back home to let them know he was being brought up the right way.  She explained later that she was a 27 year old university student who was not aware of what the term ‘behead’ meant, which given the quality of the education system, could be plausible.
Islamic leaders responded by condemning the whole thing and declaring that it was not representative of their faith and agreeing to cooperate with authorities.
It seems though that they have now chosen to show their true colors in the guest list to what has been called “ The Australian Islamic Peace Conference” with the invitation of some right little bundles of joy as keynote speakers

THE imam of the Grand Mosque of Mecca, who has called for the annihilation of Jews, is scheduled to give the keynote address at the Australian Islamic Peace Conference in Melbourne this weekend. 
The attendance of Abdul Rahman al-Sudais will come despite calls from the Executive Council of Australian Jewry and several Christian groups for the imam to be denied entry to Australia. 
Sheik Sudais, who has called for violent jihad, has been denied entry to the US and Canada after describing Jews as "the scum of humanity" and "pigs and monkeys". The 53-year-old's name and face do not appear on the event leaflets, which were posted on the conference Facebook page on Sunday evening. 
Instead, they denote him as "Imam of Makkah" and show the Saudi in profile, with a cloth obstructing his facial features. 
They also note that conference guests "are subject to visa approval as well as their personal circumstances". Federation of Islamic Councils assistant secretary Keysar Trad said there was no comparison to be made between calls for Dutch anti-Islam activist Geert Wilders to be denied a visa on his recent visit to Australia, and similar calls regarding Sheik Sudais. … 
… Other invited conference guests include Australian Sheik Abu Hamza, who ridiculed laws that prohibit rape within marriage, and Sheik Assim al-Hakeem, from the United Arab Emirates, who has called for homosexuality to be punished by death and on his website compares gay people to "animals that seek only their sexual satisfaction through their weird ways". 
Sheik Sudais is not listed among the speakers on the conference website, which touts the occasion as the "largest, biggest and best ever Islamic event in the history of Australia" and says it aims to build links with other faiths and the broader Australian society.
Australia has had a 200-year history of living in harmony with the Islamic community within it who have been treated with respect during that time.  In the last decade though, this has changed with the introduction of a radical element which is determined to drive a wedge between Muslims and the rest of the population.
Moderate elements of the faith need to reject these halfwits, and just get on with their lives in harmony with the Australian people.  These idiots are totally out of touch with reality with their desire to build a power base on the planks of hatred and divisiveness.