Greens want to control our media


Dangerous totalitarians

Australia, that former democratic state, is heading towards a totalitarian regime, or it will be if the Greens have anything to do with it. Now they are a party of government, they are suddenly surprised that not everyone shares the same extremist environmental (Marxist) aims, so their immediate reaction is to shut down dissent and control the message. And unfortunately, the News of the World hacking scandal in the UK has proved the ideal excuse.

Senator Milne:

“The Murdoch press has been running a very strong campaign against action on climate change.

“The bias is extreme, in The Australian in particular.

“You’ll see column inch after column inch of every climate sceptic in the country … You’ll find day after day a real attempt at regime change…

“And one of the useful things about the hacking scandal in the UK is that it will lead to an inquiry into the media in Australia.

“We are at least going to see some real discussion … around issues such as the level of ownership and dominance of the Murdoch press in several capital cities in Australia.

“We’ll also have a look at a range of other issues, including who are fit and proper people into whether we need that test into people to be running media outlets. It’s time we had a good inquiry and certainly bias is certainly going to be one of the things that’s certainly to be looked at.” (source)

Of course, this allegation of “bias” only goes one way. You don’t see Milne complaining about the ABC or Fairfax because they pander to the Green/Left agenda, and you never hear the Right making the same demands for “media control”. Next they will be demanding the right to censor the opinion pages to make sure only views consistent with the “regime” are published. Scared yet?

It’s called a free press and it’s a cornerstone of a free society. And the Greens can’t abide it. If Brown and Milne get their way, living in Australia will soon be like living in the Soviet Union.

With luck, this will appal all decent members of society, and will further alienate the government from the people.

Australia's coldest Autumn "since at least 1950"


Autumn 2011 mean anomaly

From the Bureau of Meteorology (Weather Isn’t Climate Except When We Say It Is Department):

Australia has experienced its coldest autumn since at least 1950 for mean temperatures (average of maximum and minimum temperatures across the nation) with an Australian average of 20.9oC. This was 1.15oC below the historical average, and 0.2oC below the previous coolest autumn in 1960. It was also the coldest autumn since at least 1950 for Queensland and the Northern Territory.

Large parts of the country recorded temperatures more than 2oC below the autumn average (figure 1) with about half the country ranking in the coldest 10% of years (figure 2 – pictured right). The season was marked by consistent below-normal temperatures in most areas, with only a few individual areas recording their coldest autumn on record. These areas were in northern and central Australia including the east Kimberley, the central Northern Territory and small parts of northern Queensland.

The cool conditions experienced in autumn 2011 are largely a result of the strong 2010/11 La Niña event which brought heavy rainfall and cool daytime temperatures to Australia, before decaying in late autumn. Of particular significance was March 2011 – Australia’s coldest and wettest March on record for maximum temperatures and third wettest month on record (for any calendar month).

Read it here (PDF).

(h/t Hockey Schtick)

Václav Klaus in Sydney


Alan Jones, Václav Klaus and Ian Plimer (click for full size)

I was fortunate enough to attend the reception at the Wentworth Sofitel in Sydney last night, where the president of the Czech republic, Václav Klaus, spoke on “Climate Change: the dangerous faith”. Drawing comparisons between the totalitarian instincts of the Greens and the Communism of Europe, President Klaus spoke of the erosion of freedom in pursuit of environmental ends.

Professor Ian Plimer also spoke, and President Klaus was introduced by Alan Jones.

There were a number of high profile audience members, including Associate Professor Stewart Franks, Tom Switzer, editor of the Spectator magainze in Australia and Miranda Devine of the Daily Telegraph. Australian politics was also represented with Bronwyn Bishop, Craig Kelly and Senator Nick Minchin and his wife Kerry:

The author with Kerry and Nick Minchin (click for full size)

Embarrassing: Gillard wanted direct action approach to climate


You won't be laughing...

In other words, Julia Gillard wanted to pursue a policy very similar to that presently advocated by, er, the Coalition. Oops.

It’s common knowledge that Gillard opposed the ETS being pushed by Kevin Rudd in 2009, and now it has been revealed that she encouraged alternatives to a carbon [dioxide] price, which can only realistically mean some kind of direct action policy.

It’s also common knowledge that the carbon dioxide price is the Greens’ policy, but even so, the revelation that she favoured an approach other than a carbon dioxide price is deeply embarrassing for Labor and Gillard, desperate to force through a carbon tax without a mandate and in the face of huge public opposition:

JULIA Gillard faces new pressure over her climate change convictions as Tony Abbott seized on a report revealing she previously pushed for a bipartisan approach that didn’t involve a carbon tax or an emissions trading scheme.

Mr Abbott today questioned what Ms Gillard stood for, saying her post-election carbon tax plan had been dictated by the Greens.

“What that shows is that the Prime Minister’s attacks on our policy aren’t genuine,” Mr Abbott told ABC radio today.

“It demonstrates that the policy that the government is currently adopting is Bob Brown’s policy. Not Julia Gillard’s policy.”

The Australian Financial Review reports that Ms Gillard, as deputy prime minister, had encouraged the Rudd government’s “kitchen cabinet” to shelve plans for a carbon price in favour of other alternatives.

The revelation is extremely damaging for Ms Gillard, who with Treasurer Wayne Swan urged Kevin Rudd to dump his emissions trading scheme.

A spokesman for the Prime Minister today said the government did not comment on cabinet processes, but did not refute the story.

Mr Abbott said it now appeared Ms Gillard had backed the Coalition’s direct action policy.

“No-one can take her seriously,” he said.

“The nearest we get to ‘real Julia’ when it comes to climate change policy is the note that she gave to the inner cabinet just before she became prime minister herself where she said what the government should do is embrace the kind of policy the Coalition’s got.” (source)

Like Combet and the rest of her government, they have been blackmailed by the Greens to take urgent action on climate change, in direct opposition to Gillard’s previous position.

So when Gillard says “It’s the right thing to do”, she says that with a loaded gun to her head, wielded by Bob Brown and Christine Milne.

Few voters taken in by carbon tax bribe


Slightly less bad

It appears that a few Australians have fallen for the carbon tax propaganda over the last couple of weeks, lifting support for Labor by a couple of points. I guess that was inevitable: a small number of wavering voters were waiting for soothing words from the Government, and they got them. This isn’t the massive bounce Labor needs to get back into contention, that’s for sure:

VOTERS have warmed slightly to the carbon tax after two weeks of Julia Gillard wearing out her shoe leather selling the plan’s compensation package across Australia.

Support for the carbon tax rose six percentage points to 36 per cent, after sitting at 30 per cent for almost three months, according to the latest Newspoll survey.

The Newspoll, conducted last weekend exclusively for The Australian, found opposition to the carbon tax fell from 59 per cent to 53 per cent amid a government advertising campaign.

This is the first major poll since the $15 billion package was announced that has shown any improvement for the Gillard government.

Voters still overwhelmingly oppose the tax, but a shift in sentiment among men and young people, who were previously the least impressed with it, has offered some hope to the besieged Prime Minister.

Labor’s electoral support and attitudes to Ms Gillard have lifted slightly from historically low levels in the past two weeks, but there is no real statistical improvement overall. Dissatisfaction with the Prime Minister’s performance remains unchanged at a record high. (source)

And now the unions are forming an unlikely alliance with big business in opposing the tax:

ONE of the nation’s biggest trade unions has turned on the Gillard government, savaging Workplace Relations Minister Chris Evans as incompetent and unworthy of his office.

Days after strident criticism of the government by business leaders, Transport Workers Union national secretary Tony Sheldon yesterday likened Senator Evans to a corpse, accusing him of failing to implement Labor policy and endangering the lives of truck drivers.

The condemnation, rejected by Senator Evans, came as a trio of senior ministers dismissed a claim by Suncorp chairman-elect Ziggy Switkowski that there was ” a whiff of illegitimacy” about the government.

While the government has anticipated attacks from businesses affected by the [carbon dioxide] tax, it was blind sided by Mr Sheldon’s assault, based on the fact the impost — which he on Friday called a “death tax” — will apply to the heavy transport industry from 2014.

Mr Sheldon, whose 90,000- member union represents truck drivers, wants the government to prevent trucking companies from passing the cost impact to drivers and owner-drivers. The TWU argues that passing on the costs to drivers will lift stress and drive up accident and fatality rates on roads, not just for truck drivers, but also for all motorists. (source)

Arrogant Combet to plough on with carbon tax


Contempt for the electorate

Poor Greg. He’s got no choice of course. Blackmailed by the Greens into taking urgent action on climate change (thanks Adam Bandt for that bit of intelligence), Labor has the unenviable choice of either:

(a) abandoning the most unpopular tax in Australian history quickly, losing the Greens’ support in parliament, thereby precipitating an early election… which they will inevitably lose; or,

(b) forcing through the most unpopular tax in Australian history, and then having to survive until the next election… which they will, er, inevitably lose.

They’ve plumped for the second option and you have to admit Combet is playing the part well, with plenty of huff, puff and bluster and swagger (none of which he probably believes himself), and in the process managing to alienate even more of the electorate – if that were possible – with his play-acted arrogance and conceit:

Climate Change Minister Greg Combet has lashed out over criticisms at how long it’s taking the public to warm to the carbon tax.

It’s two weeks since the federal government released the long-awaited details of its carbon price, and the polls are still indicating a lukewarm response. [“Lukewarm”? More like freezing your nuts off – Ed]

Asked if the government will be forced to rework the tax or consider alternatives if support doesn’t pick up, Mr Combet gave an exasperated response.

“Give us a break will you, God, this is such rubbish,” he told Network Ten on Sunday. [Does he mean the tax or the question? – Ed]

“The detail (of the carbon price) has been out for two weeks. There has been months of deceitful, misrepresentative campaigning by (Opposition Leader) Tony Abbott, supported by some others.” [Which is of course nothing compared to the deceitful, misrepresentative campaigning by the Government on the carbon tax – see the Eight Lies – Ed]

He insisted the government won’t waver on its plan to price carbon at $23 a tonne starting July 1, 2012.

“The government is going to stick to its guns here.

“We will continue to explain this to people, in particular that the price impacts are modest.”

As always, they think that the public is plain stupid, and just by explaining it more they will learn to love the tax. But they won’t. You can’t polish a turd. And the carbon tax is a turd alright…

Richard Feynman on "Cargo Cult Science"


Feynman

Following a link in Lubos Motl’s post yesterday (see here) led me to an article by the wonderful physicist Richard Feynman. It’s worth reading the whole thing here, but there were some quotes that were highly relevant to the current AGW debate, in particular to the concept of scientific “integrity”:

But there is one feature I notice that is generally missing in cargo cult science. That is the idea that we all hope you have learned in studying science in school–we never say explicitly what this is, but just hope that you catch on by all the examples of scientific investigation. It is interesting, therefore, to bring it out now and speak of it explicitly. It’s a kind of scientific integrity, a principle of scientific thought that corresponds to a kind of utter honesty–a kind of leaning over backwards. For example, if you’re doing an experiment, you should report everything that you think might make it invalid–not only what you think is right about it: other causes that could possibly explain your results; and things you thought of that you’ve eliminated by some other experiment, and how they worked–to make sure the other fellow can tell they have been eliminated.

Details that could throw doubt on your interpretation must be given, if you know them. You must do the best you can–if you know anything at all wrong, or possibly wrong–to explain it. If you make a theory, for example, and advertise it, or put it out, then you must also put down all the facts that disagree with it, as well as those that agree with it. There is also a more subtle problem. When you have put a lot of ideas together to make an elaborate theory, you want to make sure, when explaining what it fits, that those things it fits are not just the things that gave you the idea for the theory; but that the finished theory makes something else come out right, in addition.

In summary, the idea is to give all of the information to help others to judge the value of your contribution; not just the information that leads to judgement in one particular direction or another.

The easiest way to explain this idea is to contrast it, for example, with advertising. Last night I heard that Wesson oil doesn’t soak through food. Well, that’s true. It’s not dishonest; but the thing I’m talking about is not just a matter of not being dishonest; it’s a matter of scientific integrity, which is another level. The fact that should be added to that advertising statement is that no oils soak through food, if operated at a certain temperature. If operated at another temperature, they all will–including Wesson oil. So it’s the implication which has been conveyed, not the fact, which is true, and the difference is what we have to deal with.

We’ve learned from experience that the truth will come out. Other experimenters will repeat your experiment and find out whether you were wrong or right. Nature’s phenomena will agree or they’ll disagree with your theory. And, although you may gain some temporary fame and excitement, you will not gain a good reputation as a scientist if you haven’t tried to be very careful in this kind of work. And it’s this type of integrity, this kind of care not to fool yourself, that is missing to a large extent in much of the research in cargo cult science.

Follow

Get every new post delivered to your Inbox.

Join 8,819 other followers

%d bloggers like this: