Wednesday, July 23, 2014

Meanwhile, over at denialist central, the UN and shearing the sheep is all the go ...

Oh yes, the good old days at the lizard Oz. Back on the 20th October 2012 there was a page given over to Letters: On the world stage, with bonus cartoon and dismissive remarks of this kind:

Yes, the reptiles always edit their letters page to make sure the political agenda of the paper is maintained. Not much point carrying on a crusade if you give too much space to dissidents. Onwards crusading readers ...

So how's it going in denialist central? How are the reptiles travelling?

Into the time machine. Fast forward.

Hey, the reptiles are all over that statesman Tony Abbott, and Julie Bishop as she struts her stuff in New York.

How lucky we are to have a seat on the UN Security Council. What an opportunity to put Russia and Putin in their place.

Remember this?

Mr Abbott said Australia's pursuit of the temporary seat was a waste of money and had distorted the nation's foreign policy priorities. 
 “All other things being equal, yes, better we are on the Security Council than off it. “But it was never worth the $40 million-plus that this government has spent just to win a bronze medal at the United Nations. 
 “And the problem with this whole Security Council bid is that it has cost money; worse it has distorted our priorities over so many years as so much time and effort goes into this, and not into managing the relationships which are absolutely vital to our future.” (denialist central here on 24th September 24 2012, behind the paywall because you have to pay to remember the past)

On and on he wabbotted:

The Opposition Leader today accused Ms Gillard of “swanning around New York”, pursuing a seat on the UN Security Council, when she should be closer to home dealing with the critical issue of unauthorised boat arrivals. 
 “She should be in Jakarta, not in New York, because that is where Australia's national interest is most at stake right now,” Mr Abbott told Sydney radio station 2GB. 
 “Rather than talking to African countries trying to drum up the numbers to get us a temporary seat on the UN Security Council, she should be in Jakarta talking to President Yudhoyono about how we can cooperate better with the Indonesians to stop this flow which is putting our border protection hopelessly under the pump.”

And now Abbott and Bishop strut about making the most of the Security Council position.

Oh there's rich ironies in politics no doubt about it, and so much room for hypocrisy.

Michael Gawenda, more polite than the pond, tried to point this out in a genteel way in Searching for the 'real' Tony Abbott  in the Business Spectator (may be paywall limited, can be googled):

It may be unseemly to point out that the Coalition was opposed to the efforts of Kevin Rudd and his government to win a place for Australia on the Security Council because, they argued, a place on the Security Council would not give Australia any greater influence in international affairs. The whole exercise, it was argued, was a distraction and a waste of time.  
The fact is though, that had Australia not had a seat on the Security Council, Tony Abbott and Julie Bishop could not have played the decisive role they have played in this terrible tragedy and its aftermath. 
 It is with some reluctance that I point this out. But the question no doubt in the minds of most political journalists and commentators, not to mention politicians of all parties, is this: when is the right time to make calculations about the impact in terms of domestic politics of Tony Abbott’s performance, given that the sorrow and anger of so many lives lost is still so fresh and raw? 
Some in the media have already started to make these calculations, at least in terms of what lessons Tony Abbott should learn from the way he has handled this difficult time. Some of his supporters in the media have argued that what Tony Abbott should learn from the last few difficult days is that he has been too controlled, too wary of being himself, too wooden, too contrived, during this first period of his prime ministership. 
 “Fearing the stereotypical criticism of being aggressive and out of control, Abbott started as prime minister too cautiously and appeared anodyne and weak,” wrote one Denis Shanahan in The Australian on Tuesday. 
 “While the MH17 incident has been an unwelcome test, it has displayed the best aspects of Abbott’s strength of character as a leader, a human and a parent.” In other words, Tony Abbott has not been the ‘real’ Tony Abbott until the last few days, though according to Shanahan, the real Tony Abbott was starting to emerge last week when, for instance, Abbott spent extra hours on a plane with Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe instead of ‘grandstanding’ in Canberra during the carbon tax debate in the Senate. 
Now, we have heard this before, have we not, about another prime minister? Who can forget the seemingly endless talk, about who was the ‘real’ Julia Gillard and why it was that the real Julia Gillard -- who was supposedly passionate, warm, funny and feisty -- couldn’t free herself from her self-imposed wooden and boring prime ministerial persona? 

And so on. With a cruel punchline:

It is too early to begin to know whether these past few days will one day be seen, as some commentators and supporters of Tony Abbott hope, as the time when the ‘real’ Tony Abbott emerged. Chances are, however, that the search for the ‘real’ Tony Abbott will be as unproductive as was the search for the ‘real’ Julia Gillard.

Indeed. And now the pond looks forward to Abbott shaking the paw of Vlad Putin in Brisbane, as jolly Joe Hockey wants ...

Meanwhile, there's one other bit of business arising from reading denialist central today.

Yes, it's a long standing, exceedingly boring bit of business, which sees the reptiles recycle and put a fickle gold bar on the Lomborgian rhetoric splashed in the rotating digital splash of doom:

Yes, the reptiles want you to fork over a gold bar, to pay to access the usual Lomborg climate denialism, routinely ignored by other publications, but reliably recycled by climate denialist central.

You can get a whiff of the usual Lomborgian chaff if you reward the reptiles with a click:

But as always, you can find Lomborg at his own Lomborg denialist headquarters.

Yes, there it is, the very same piece, published back on the 16th July, and belatedly recycled down under seven days later on the 23rd, stale and with a price tag attached.

No need to provide a link to the Oz. You can find the the Lomborg piece, for free, no gold bar attached, under the header Winds of Vanity.

And as a bonus - if you can consider it a bonus - Lomborg's denialist site manages to rustle up an image of Lomborg, which is more than the reptiles can be bothered doing, not when """ will serve:

Why do the reptiles do it?

Well it's denialist central, and every so often they feel the need to dogwhistle and feed the denialist flock of sheep, and if they can get the bleating mugs to pay for what is offered for free elsewhere, so much the better.

It seems you can still make an indecent living shearing the sheep, while sending the planet down the drain. Talk about a Murdochian win win ...

(Below: more Wilcox here)

Jolly Joe, more flubber than steel?

The Fin was all over jolly Joe this morning, as he plays the man of steel.

Clearly jolly Joe is suffering from relevancy deprivation syndrome.

So he set another hare loose. courtesy a word in Sky's mike:

Naturally everyone picked it up and ran with it. From the Graudian to SBS, via the Daily Terror and others (click below to enlarge if interested, though many will find that thought inexplicable). 

But here's the nub of it, courtesy the Graudian account:

"The Russians have said they will cooperate with all this – let's find out if they are fair dinkum or not," Hockey told Sky News while on an official visit to New Zealand. 
He said he hoped Russia would still attend G20 meetings, culminating with the expected visit of the president, Vladimir Putin, in November. "Rarely are great things achieved by excluding people from the conversation," he said. Ultimately, the decision about Russia's attendance rested with G20 members, not just Australia, he said. 
Hockey later clarified his remarks, saying they should not be taken as support for Russia's attendance at the Brisbane summit. His position was consistent with that of prime minister, Tony Abbott, a spokeswoman for the treasurer told AAP. 
On Tuesday Abbott said it was too early for any decision to be made about denying Russia a place at the G20 event.

Uh huh. Fair dinkum.

So jolly Joe hoped that Russia would attend the G20, but that shouldn't be taken as hoping Russia will attend the G20 in Brisbane. 

And while Tony Abbott says it's too early to talk about denying Russia a place in Brisbane, Joe Hockey thinks it isn't too early to talk about how he's hoping Vlad 'the impaler' Putin will attend, unless he doesn't, because perhaps jolly Joe isn't really hoping they'll attend the Brisbane summit, but maybe just G20s somewhere, sometime in the somehow future.

In any case, this is entirely consistent with Tony Abbott, because as everyone knows, Tony Abbott is notoriously inconsistent.

Uh huh. The pond is glad that one's cleared up ...

A man of steel? A tough, hard man of the kind needed right now?

Or an attention deprived, gibbering, cigar-puffing, contradictory idiot who does his best to help Abbott look and sound like a statesman?

Okay, there you go, there below is how the faithful flocked to reproduce jolly Joe's wise words, about as clear as the Delphic Oracle advising that one way or another, a great empire will fall. 

If you ask the pond, the economy might stand a better chance if we all started ferreting through the chicken entrails and aimed for a giblet-led recovery ...

How to strike a sour note, or Boris Johnson bangs an odious gong ...

(Above: gong banger Boris)

So someone had to go there and it had to be Boris Johnson.

There's Boris in Passengers die as Putin fans flames of conflict  indulging in some cheap point scoring and odious comparisons, by celebrating the behaviour of the glorious American democracy in the matter of Iran Air Flight 655, and contrasting it with Russia's current behaviour.

So what could the Ruskis take from the glorious democratic lessons?

Well you can fire surface to air missiles and kill 290 innocent civilians on board, including 66 children. You can do it by entering Iranian territorial waters.

You can make assorted errors, such as the minor one of mistaking the Iranian Airbus A300 for an attacking F-14A Tomcat fighter, though the Iranian F-14s had been supplied by Grumman in an air-to-air configuration only, with no known anti-ship capabilities.

You could dissemble regarding your responsibility even through your own Aegis Combat System recorded the flight plan as climbing rather than descending in an attack run, and a nearby fellow captain could wonder what you're on when you imagine a climbing plane as somehow in descending attack mode.

You could claim you tried to contact the plane on emergency frequencies, but fail to have your ship equipped with equipment used in civil aviation, and anyhoo it must be the fault of the civilian pilots for not paying attention when it mattered.

You could cite the wrong air speed to the pilots of the civilian plane.

And then having shot the civilian airliner out of the sky you could refuse to apologise, though in due course you might get around to expressing deep regret.

In the meantime, you could say it was a wartime situation and the crew of the Vincennes had acted appropriately, and you could trot out a psychological condition explanation called "scenario fulfilment".

Make sure you have someone like the vice president, a kind of George H. W. Bush figure, ready to say "I will never apologize for the United States (insert Russia/Ukraine rebels here) - I don't care what the facts are … I'm not an apologize-for-America (insert Russia/Ukraine rebels here) kind of guy".

 Repeat the message while mounting a presidential campaign. Make sure any successor - like a Clinton - also refuses to apologise.

Eventually get around to having a few people acknowledge that the Captain of the ship was unduly aggressive and inclined to go hunting for action and picking a fight. Some fight. A climbing civilian aircraft.

Then eight years later get around to settling a court case - that's right - eight years, full of the usual legal delays and obfuscations and a clear intent to reduce the size of the settlement - and then when it's all done and dusted, hand out medals to the entire ship's crew, with a Navy Commendation medal for the air-warfare coordinator.

Make sure you hand out a Legion of Merit to the commanding officer for "exceptionally meritorious conduct in the performance of outstanding service". Like teaching those bloody civilians a lesson for looking so threatening … but sssh don't mention the downed plane in the citation (and then appoint William C Rogers III to a teaching job at Point Loma to teach others how to do it in combat situations).

 Oh yes, there's plenty of take home lessons for anyone wanting to check on the glorious behaviour of the glorious democracy, as you can confirm by Greg Hunting the wiki on the matter here.

The reality is that the United States behaved in an appalling manner, as did the Russians in the matter of Korean Air Lines Flight 902, though the Soviets only managed to kill two passengers, here.

The Russians weren't so lucky when they shot down another Korea Air Flight 007, killing all 269 passengers and crew - Greg Hunt that here.

The only upside to that disaster was that the classified GNSS turned into the freely available GPS. But the behaviour of the Russians was appalling.

Oh go on you know you want to do a Greg Hunt on all these matters by heading off to the wikipedia list of airliner shootdown incidents here.

There's a particularly gripping Air Crash Investigations episode about the attempted DHL shootdown which saw the pilots use differential engine thrust to fly a plane with a missile-damaged wing back to Baghdad and land it safely (SO3E02 Attack over Baghdad).

Meanwhile, Boris should just shut up the blather.

He even shoots himself in the foot:

I will not pretend that the Americans were perfect in their handling of the Airbus tragedy. They never made a formal apology to Iran, and for some (incredible) reason the captain of the USS Vincennes was later awarded the Legion of Merit.

Not pretend?


It fitted with the modus operandi. The Americans were seriously irritated that the Iranians got in their way and made them look bad, and no matter that a bunch of innocents were involved and killed,.

And having done the dirty deed, through a multitude of errors, thereafter the United States' response was recalcitrant and offensive.

About as offensive as Boris's cheap point-scoring…

Not now, not at this time.

Not when it looks like the Russians are currently following their own and the American playbook.

Of all the things to be written about the current matter, this was the least needed, the least necessary, and the least useful. Inevitably the comments section attached to Boris's effort showed that he produced a reaction precisely contrary to the black and white, goodies and baddies point he was ham-fistedly trying to make.

Every so often Boris attempts to avoid sounding like a fop. But this was a mega foppish effort, and a reminder of behaviour best left to history ...

Tuesday, July 22, 2014

Sorry, the pond isn't sorry for Campbell Newman or the wretched reptiles and Caterists ... not when there's real sorrow in the world ...

The pond couldn't resist this juxtaposition of stories in The Graudian yesterday.

The pond is sorry for the state of the reef - read Great Barrier Reef 'in worst state since records began' and weep - but isn't so sorry for Campbell Newman, who is sorry for a nakedly and blatantly personal reason:

"We recognise that there are things we have done that have annoyed or upset Queenslanders," the premier said after a Cabinet meeting on Monday. 
"I'm sorry today, if I've done things that have upset people."
 He said he wanted to repair relations with members of Queensland's legal fraternity. "I want to repair those relationships," he said. "People want those arguments to cease and desist."  (here)

Uh huh. The pond was taught that loathing meant you never had to say you're sorry.

Or was that love? Whatever, why is the strutting gauleiter with the recently bloodied nose sorry he's upset people? And why should people cease and desist when Newman ploughed ahead on some kind of personal blitzkrieg?

Griffith University political analyst Paul Williams now predicts a 10 to 12% swing against the LNP at the next election. He believes the LNP will manage to hold onto power, but Newman is almost certain to lose his seat at the next state election and the LNP should already be looking for a new leader. "Given we've seen double-digit swings ... in the greater Brisbane area, the arithmetic just doesn't add up for someone to hold a seat that's on less than six per cent," Dr Williams said on Monday. 
"They [the LNP] will have to have a leadership succession plan in place now, and not have a public bloodbath in March or April."

Well there's a simple solution.

Sack Newman now before he lines up to get sacked. He's been an epic fail and it's not just the reef that's suffering. The pond promises to start the bidding on the memorial Campbell Newman feather duster, made up of the bantam's plucked feathers ...

Why is the pond so agitated? Cast your mind back to stories like 'We're in the coal business': Campbell Newman slams UNESCO Great Barrier Reef warning. and remember the bunkum and the lies about spoil and development designed to service the coal business ...

The pond can't wait to get into the used bantam Campbell Newman chook feather business ...

And speaking of past lies, isn't it handy to catch up on Media Watch online, sans antenna, and watch the reptiles get a serve for their naked peddling of big tobacco and IPA distortions and untruths.

You can watch the story here, and you can read the buried Oz story Heavy smokers take a breather here, provided you evade the paywall with a bit of heavy breathing - because buried it was, no front page treatment offered for this alternative view of the world:

Gasp! Credit to plain packaging?

The pond loves it when the reptiles are tanned and dried and displayed, and Mathieson's 264 word explanation as to why the story was buried on page 7 with 167 words was a ripper: a number of more significant stories that demanded our attention (and more prominent placement).

Yes, that'd be the barking mad commentariat, and the lies and distortions of climate science that routinely fill the rag's pages.

You know like the Caterists on promenade today:

Say what? The barking mad Nick Cater wants a carbon tax?

Oh you didn't fall for that classic bit of click-bait trolling did you?

It's been the reptiles' desperate form of late.

Everyone who specialises in the loons that daily promenade on the rotating digital finger of doom in the online lizard Oz edition know Cater - who has even less connection to science and scientists than the pond, and let's not underestimate what that means - is one of the standard, off the peg, ill-fitting denialists that routinely swamp the Oz's pages, and so prevent any space being provided for data that upsets big tobacco.

Once you click on the link, you see the click-bait trolling in action:

Before you rush off to reward the trollers, you should also be made aware that the column itself is also a classic bait and switch piece.

It purports to be about a carbon tax, but soon enough the Caterists are blathering on about compassion and socialism and welfare dependency and the nanny state.

Here's how it's done, and incidentally here's your text for googling if you decide you need to lose a few IQ points just to get the gloomy day off to a better start:

At first glance, a promise to bring back the carbon tax looks like a career-ending move that will condemn Labor to certain defeat in 2016 and consign Shorten to the dustbin of failed Labor leaders. Shorten, however, has been around long enough to appreciate the risks of picking a fight on this divisive political issue. He would understand the gulf between the planet-saving passion of the bien pensant and the indifference bordering on hostility it evokes in the population at large. 
His decision to stick with a policy that he could have quietly let slip is confirmation that the educated middle classes now form the nucleus of Labor’s core constituency. Yet the cold, hard numbers mean Shorten must also appeal to a broader, more conservative constituency. Placing a price on carbon, however small that price may be, is not a cause behind which the workers and the intellectuals are likely to unite. 
Labor is making ground, however, as the party of compassion, the defenders of those we used to call “the poor” but who we now know as “the vulnerable”, since poverty these days is so much harder to define.

Yes, bien pensant to you too, you useless mauvaise pensée ponce.

Poverty is so much harder to define these days?

Sleeping rough on the streets? Why in the pond's day we slept under cardboard boxes in middle of road and thought nowt of a car giving the box a right old clip. Eating cat food for dinner? Why in the pond's day that was considered sheer luxury. A bowl of Campbell Newman-approved coal was enough for a hearty dinner meal! Reliant on church charity and forced to listen to the bible bashers and god botherers as they dole out the supplies? Why in the pond's day, the sooner you dropped dead, the sooner you'd be eating pie in the sky and not so long in the sweet bye and bye ...

The Caterist doesn't even bother to roll out his denialist credentials and instead relies on some fear, loathing and paranoia:

Pick just about anything from the national reform agenda and the same dynamics apply. Whether it is tax reform, federalism, university deregulation or defence procurement boon­doggling, the Coalition risks ­becoming caught in the uncompassionate trap.

Dearie me, it's hard to see how.

Poverty is so much harder to define these days, except, as the judge said about pornography, you know it when you see it, unless of course you can't see it, because it's just a lot of welfare bludgers living like millionaires on Mayfair or perhaps Woollahra or Toorak in nanny state bliss ...

Oh wait, the PPL scheme will take care of them ...

About the only thing that can be said about Cater these days is that his mindless tosh always reminds the pond of Guy Rundle's priceless smack down for Crikey back in May 2013, here, may be paywall affected. 

A couple of samples:

Over in Anti-News Unlimited land, the vaguely North Korean festival of journalist Nick Cater continues. His book The Lucky Culture is being variously launched and spruiked by former PM John Howard and, of course, academic Geoffrey Blainey in various places round the joint. This paean to a meritocratic non-nepotistic culture has been praised to the skies by anti-News columnist Miranda Devine, the daughter of the late Frank Devine, an anti-News lifer. She’s the girl who went to Take Your Daughter To Work Day and stayed. She thinks Cater’s paean to individualism should be “taught in every school”. She would not actually see any contradiction in this...

... When you see Cater, Devine and Albrechtsen in action, you get an insight into the totalitarian mindset in all its glory. There are journalists there is no need to bribe, Dostoyevsky noted in The Gambler, because they are sycophantic by nature. Anti-News Limited isn’t killing people in large numbers — except when they’re spruiking foreign wars — but the enthusiasm to be salespeople of an agreed-upon line is the essence of the totalitarian style. They’d all feel as at home in Ceausescu’s publicity department as they do in Surry Hills.

Indeed. A poverty of imagination, minds, data and science isn't so hard to define these days, not when the reptiles at the lizard Oz daily show it's done.

But here's a tip for them. Please stop doing the click baiting trolling routine that suggests Nick Cater or Albrechtsen or any of the other toilers in Ceausescu's publicity department have seen the light about climate science, or compassion or any other issue that might come to mind.

They haven't and anyone with half a clue knows that the group think, the collective bee hive mind set is strong at News Corp and everything from cigarette data to climate science will be routinely ground to a pulp by the individualists, who think just saying "nanny state" solves everything ...

So putting up a splash that posits that Cater has 'turned' isn't clever click bait trolling. It's stupid and irritating and will only amaze and astonish those not in the know.

Finally, some time ago the pond made clear its complete disdain for Jonah from Tonga.

Now the show is about to get a release on HBO - on August 8th - in the United States and already the flak is heavy.

Now the pond doesn't mind that it's racist brownface, so much as that this lowest and vilest form of comedy isn't especially funny. After all, the pond will watch Leni Reifenstahl's Triumph of the Will for the skill of the film-making.

But what's the point of watching an offensive comedy which incidentally contains no laughs? Can someone at the ABC please explain?

Chris Lilley and his team are about to cop a pasting, at least if you read Cleo Paskal in Huffington Post, with Will HBO Give Platform to Racist Australian Brownface 'Mockumentary'?

Or the gentler questioning by Soraya Nadia McDonald in The Washington Post with Is brownface acceptable in new HBO show 'Jonah from Tonga'?

Even Salt Lake magazine in Utah territory - let's face it Utah wasn't the best place to visit in the days of the Mountain Meadows massacre - weren't amused, as you can discover in HBO makes a bad choice:

There's only two reasons a show like Jonah from Tonga could show up on HBO. 1. We have entered a very unfunny post-Borat entertainment landscape, and 2. HBO execs have never met a Tongan and possibly think they are a fictional people, like Swift's Yahoos.

Indeed. And so the momentum continues to gather. Even The Graudian joined in, though the show had previously aired in the UK without too much fuss, with the header purporting an even-handed discussion, Jonah from Tonga faces more 'brownface' criticism - is it fair?

Lilley, who has also played black and Japanese characters such as S.mouse, Ricky Wong and Jen Okazaki, told Esquire that he didn't think there "should be any rules" and that his humour is designed to be "confronting" and "challenging". But Jonah from Tonga feels less like a witty satire confronting racist stereotypes, and more like a coded way of reinforcing them. 

You can get away with transgressive or abusive humour, if it's funny or witty. Lenny Bruce was a pace setter in the art form, but setting up Tongans is about as clever as making a sheep joke about New Zealanders ...

And now back to the gloom ...

(Below: the cartoonists have been giving Vlad 'the impaler' Putin a pounding. Here's Rowe today, and more Rowe here, and Pope and more Pope here)

The Rowe features a wrinkle deployed by others, links to the sources of the cartoons here.

The pond has been startled to discover how many old fashioned Stalinists out there who think Russia Today actually offers truth in reporting, as if somehow they were different to chairman Rupert's minions while working for Vlad the impaler.

The Graudian's comments section in its coverage turned into a cesspit of rabid, heavily politicised comments, and already the most bizarre conspiracy theories were gaining an airing - though credit where credit's due, with RT setting the pace by suggesting the plane was shot down because Ukraine had confused the airliner with Putin's plane.

It's remarkable how the death of innocents and the death of innocence can turn into a rabid political argument. Which is why the pond sometimes prefers the obvious truths of cartoonists like Steve Bell, as alternative plane loads of the dead mount up on other killing fields. More Bell here, and below that, more First Dog here.

Monday, July 21, 2014

Tony Abbott and Greg Hunt implicated in fraud and hypocrisy ...

(Above: the lie, Rowe in 2010 with other cartoonists here, and Pope calling it in 2012, and more Pope here).

Watch out for this. It's a live one:

There's no point in linking to the AFR, which doesn't want to be part of the intertubes conversation, and prefers lurking behind its paywall, but the header is clear enough.

Does the pond regret its own header? Fraudsters and hypocrites?

Well no. Apart from developing a Huff Post/Daily Mail taste for outrageous trolling headers, if trading in international carbon permits comes to pass thanks to Hunt and Abbott - junk carbon so to speak - then:

(a) all the blather and carry on by Abbott and Hunt about trading schemes will have been shown to hypocritical hot air of the first water:

(b) all the blather and bluster about how the direct action plan will easily deliver the five per cent target will have been shown to a fraudulent lie.

Is it any wonder that the AFR also featured this story?

This story about dealing in carbon permits has been lurking for awhile - a couple of weeks ago the Fairfaxians ran with Buying carbon permits would be cheaper than Direct Action policy, Tony Abbott told. (forced video at end of link)

The report urges the government to reduce costs to the taxpayer and be more competitive by using a combination of domestic emissions reduction policies and the purchase of international credits. 
It finds the government could spend a fifth of what it plans to spend on its $2.5 billion Direct Action policy and buy enough international permits to reach an emissions reduction target of 19 per cent by 2020.

Yes, spend 20% of the risible direct action budget on offshore junk carbon.

And why would this be a problem?

Well there was Tony "climate change is crap" Abbott shooting off his mouth again:

Prime Minister Tony Abbott has been a key opponent of the purchase of international credits, which he described in 2011 as ''money that shouldn't be going offshore into dodgy carbon farms in Equatorial Guinea and Kazakhstan''.  

So if Abbott and Hunt go ahead with the proposal, they won't be just implicated in fraud and hypocrisy, they'll be guilty as hell outrageous deception of the first water.

But but but billy goat, you say, how rich and redolent is the level of fraud and hypocrisy. What does first water actually mean?

Please allow the pond to climb into its time machine and head back to the AFR in August 2013, Coalition may buy overseas carbon permits:

The Coalition has indicated it is prepared to consider raising the 5 per cent target but not until at least 2015. Many climate change experts believe the Coalition will need to buy international permits to meet the 5 per cent target. 
On Sunday, Coalition environment spokesman Greg Hunt denied the Coalition would use international permits to meet the 5 per cent target.

Denialism. The line then being that the direct action plan was in hand, and it would work.

And this:

The Direct Action policy states the Coalition “will ensure that all action taken to achieve our 5 per cent CO2 emissions reduction target also delivers environmental improvements here in Australia, not overseas”. 
In 2011, Mr Abbott said money spent by companies buying overseas carbon credits didn’t actually reduce emissions and was just “a massive transfer of wealth from this country to carbon traders overseas”. 
“It’s money that shouldn’t be going offshore into dodgy carbon farms in Equatorial Guinea and Kazakhstan,” he told 2GB. 
“That’s no way to improve the environment here in Australia.” 
 And on another occasion, he said: “We all know the potential for fraud, the potential for scamming. I mean, even the European emissions trading scheme has been riddled with scamming and that’s in a culture where administrative probity is held in wide respect, let alone some of the other countries where carbon credits will no doubt be available.” 
Under Direct Action, the Coalition has claimed it will purchase abatement from Australian companies from as little as $8.50 per tonne of carbon. 
But even if this is possible, it is still considerably higher than international carbon permits: the European carbon price is around $6.40 and the United Nations “Kyoto” permits are 85¢.

And that explains why Tony Abbott has a trust and competence deficit.

When it comes to climate science,  he's a proven liar, hypocrite and fraud, and if Greg Hunt gets his way on this one, Abbott will also have been shown to be a fool ...

But wait, there's more. Here's the cheap joke that Abbott led with, in his interview with Alan Jones, a transcript of which is thoughtfully provided by WA Liberals here, little realising it would hang around in the digital ether like a fart joke:

The thing that struck me yesterday though was that the Government, even on its own figures, even after all the time and trouble of this great big new tax, our emissions are still going increase. I mean we are going to put in place this massive tax that’s going to leave 3 million households worse off even on the Government’s own figures and that’s before the price just goes up and up and up and even with all of this we’re going to have significant increase in our emissions and the only way we can meet our emissions reduction targets is to spend about $3 billion buying carbon credits from overseas and that’s money that really should be invested in Australia. It’s money that shouldn’t be going offshore into dodgy carbon farms in Equatorial Guinea and Kazakhstan and all the other places that Kevin Rudd visits.

Ah that joke needs a new punchline.

Dodgy permits in Equatorial Guinea and Kazakhstan and all the other dodgy schemes that Greg Hunt and Tony Abbott routinely visit ...

There was a lot more in that interview - it now reads like a precious time capsule of nattering negativity - with Whyalla - it'll be wiped off the map - getting a mention, and this:

ALAN JONES: You made reference recently to the 2009 Copenhagen Consensus Panel which includes a trade economist, Jagdish Bhagwati, and three Nobel peace prize winning economists. Now that panel has ranked investment in technology, and this is what just some of the people on my staff were saying this morning, and versions of what you are calling the direct action plan are way above carbon pricing as the best way to tackle climate change even if you believed in climate change. TONY ABBOTT: That’s right, Alan. Carbon taxes and emissions trading schemes were ranked bottom of the list by these three Nobel laureate economists and we also have a whole lot of very distinguished European economists come out the other day in criticising the European Emissions Trading Scheme which they say hasn’t reduced emissions but has been widely scammed and it’s been, they say, an economic own goal because it’s driven industry offshore without reducing emissions and there’s been all this opportunity for fraud. So, this is, alas, the world that the Prime Minister is begging to enter.

So this is alas, possibly the world that Greg Hunt and by extension the Prime Minister Tony Abbott are now begging to enter because all the bluster and blather about direct action was a reprehensible nonsense ...

The pond has absolutely no idea how the Bolter and the reptiles would handle Abbott and Hunt joining the international trade in carbon permits. And the pond doesn't care. Who cares what fraudulent hypocrites think about fraudulent hypocrites?

Meanwhile, is there any other news? Well yes, Paul Sheehan does a spectacular imitation of Neville Chamberlain in Time for Ukraine to divide.

How to appease the dictator Putin? Why give him a huge chunk of Ukraine ...

Of all the tone deaf times to scribble such a tone deaf piece. Only Sheehan, only the Fairfaxians ...

It was such a bit of Chamberlain in Munich waving a sheet of paper performance that it left the pond speechless ....

Meanwhile, the tone deaf Netanyahu, already with a plane load of dead women, children and the elderly in tow, and that's before the other innocent civilians are added to the total, has claimed the world is on his side ...

What a joke. Israel itself is riven, as shown by the sacking of rabid right wing deputy defence minister Danon, who came out with this:

In the Ynet interview, Danon said "the prime minister is responsible for good or bad. If the result of the operation is negative, the responsibility for the failure is with the prime minister. There is no need to sugarcoat. Hamas decided when we started, when we will finish, and has set the score." 
The rightwing politician emphasized his disagreement with Netanyahu: "That is why I, as a senior member of Likud, say that this operation has been run like Zehava Gal-On is the prime minister. This is Meretz policy." 
"I saw the compliments Netanyahu received from Gal-On and Yachimovich, everyone is clapping for the prime minister because of the feeble policy which is the policy of the left, of Meretz, and I am sorry because we promised somebody different." 
The Netanyahu statement said Danon's remarks were grossly irresponsible, particularly given his present position: "They are used by the terrorist organization Hamas to taunt the Israel government, as can be seen by the organization's media outlets." (ynet here)

So the hard liner is being outflanked by the hard liners.

Cue Haaretz:

At the beginning of Tuesday night’s security cabinet meeting, after the cease-fire imploded like a badly made soufflé, Livni said, “I understand Hamas announced its surrender.” Netanyahu, who was poring through papers, looked up. “What??” he asked. “Yes,” Livni said. “They heard that you just fired Danny Danon and they’re totally discombobulated.” 

The exultation at Netanyahu’s dismissal of Danon – the deputy defense minister and a member of the prime minister’s faction, who really did not deserve to remain in his post a minute longer after his remarks – was apparent across the political spectrum. In Likud, where Danon has no allies, no one shed a tear, to say the least. 
It was interesting to hear what his colleague in the right-wing branch of Likud, Deputy Transportation Minister Tzipi Hotovely, had to say this week. His pool of votes is also her pool, though she espouses a totally different approach. “I don’t hold with the militant thrust of some of my friends in the party,” she said. 
 “What they’re doing is populism. It’s terrible what’s happening these days in Likud. The prime minister is isolated in his own party; it’s hurting us badly as the ruling party. Instead of uniting over issues,” added Hotovely, who plans to hold a conference in the Knesset next week on the subject of “economic disengagement” from Gaza, “we are using militant language, attacking the prime minister internally, and being dragged into dealing with the emotions of the public. No one is talking about strategic goals. It’s all personal.” 
Danon’s dismissal touched off a wave of jokes in the political corridors. Example: “Who says there have been no targeted assassinations of senior figures in this operation?” (It was the target himself who bandied that jest about.) Netanyahu absorbed everything, seethed and fumed, and warned Danon personally not to overstep his bounds in an angry phone conversation on the second day of the Gaza operation. But on Tuesday, after the cease-fire decision, when the premier was informed that aggressive, mocking comments made about him by Danon were being quoted in the Hamas media – he’d had enough. He instructed the cabinet secretary to draw up a dismissal letter and pass it around to the ministers. One minister who got home in the evening and found the letter thought at first glance that Foreign Minister Avigdor Lieberman was being fired: The reasons cited in the Danon letter fit him to a T. (behind the paywall here but can be googled)

The world's behind Netanyahu? Why he's finding it hard to rustle up a friend in his own party...

Anything else?

Well yes. It turns out that, after all,  Can do can't do:

Yep, Newman holds Ashgrove by 5.7%.

If you read Campbell Newman will today retreat from some of the Government's most controversial decisions, you'll get a sense of what Napoleon must have felt on the way back from Russia ...

Sheehan as Chamberlain ready to reward the Stalinist dictator Putin, Campbell "can't do" Newman ready to head off to Saint Helena, or maybe Fraser Island, and Abbot and Hunt doing a sterling performance of Vichy France and Marshal Pétain, or perhaps a couple of Quislings in the mater of carbon permits ...

That's too much history for a Monday ...

(Below: a grim David Rowe and more Rowe here).

Sunday, July 20, 2014

A Sunday meditation featuring the usual suspects, with bonus popcorn and bad movies ...

For some bizarre reason, the pond's television sets no longer get the ABC.

No doubt the problem will be fixed in due course, and the pond has set aside the paranoid theory that the federal Liberal government has set up a special frequency interference device designed to block the pond's access... though it has to be said that wearing an aluminium hat has improved the pond's ability to focus, and the pond's partner reports that razor blades now get much sharper under the pyramid.

Anyhoo, to cut a long story short, the pond has been forced to watch commercial television, last done back in about 1980, and was immediately stricken by an advertisement for a wretched service the pond will never make any use of.

Not that the pond minds the hint of blasphemy the ad carries as a sub-text.

If you can stand it, you can see the tablet-wielding Jesus featured above, in full on YouTube here (though "in full" is misleading, since the ad is completely devoid of class or meaning, and the pond explicitly denies any liability for any mental damage or emotional suffering for anyone clicking on that link).

What struck the pond this meditative Sunday was the way the ad has been out and about since May and there's barely been a whimper or a murmur about it.

Oh sure mUmBRELLA provided a link to the ad and a story about it, back in the middle of May here, and the comments below carried remarks by a couple of crazies, including one who promised to have the ad off air by the following week, only to have the pond suffer it in the middle of July ...

Clearly all that federal government money being spent on propagandist chaplains hasn't helped the spiritual cause. The secularists, even the most casual and wretched, go on about their business making use and abuse of the myths ...

Perhaps even more remarkable is the way Hollywood has taken to treating the bible as a form of fantasy science fiction.

The pond recently caught up on the worst sci fi film of all time - or at least the worst in the pond's memory, the direly lugubrious Johnny Depp vehicle Transcendence,  which had a bizarre mix of characters. There were the luddites and the anti-technology destroyers, who couldn't stand the thought of humans being fully wired, and computers becoming sentient, yet the best the movie could muster by way of government resources was a man on a jeep with a machine gun, a mortar and a single artillery unit. And on the other side stood the catatonic, almost comatose Depp proclaiming that humanity has always invented its own gods ...

The criminal responsible for the crime was Christopher Nolan's DOP Wally Pfister doing his debut as a director, but since the wretched Nolan was also an EP, you can share the blame how you will ... (don't forget writer Jack Paglen. As always forgive the actors. You can type this shit Jack, but you can't say it).

An even better example was Noah. What's that you say, it's not out on DVD in Australia yet?

Never mind, Noah was wonderful, a most peculiar mix of Tolkein creatures borrowed from Lord of the Rings, and silly sci fi nonsense.

How to feed all the creatures while at sea? Why just give them a good dose of fumes by wandering around the ship like a Catholic priest armed with a thurible burning a potent kind of incense ...

The movie didn't even begin to pretend it was dealing with anything other than myth, and up the front, it even flung in some conservation greenie and vegan rhetoric, just to alienate the fundies even further. It ran out of steam at the end, right as the drunken Rustie proved to be an empty vessel for the lord. Yes, there were family feuds and passion and incest and such like, and once again, despite having indulged in a right old genocide, the long absent lord had fucked up yet again.

Once more She'd allowed frail humans the right to make bad movies about sinful humans, and soon enough there'd be fundie Calvinists stalking the earth speaking tosh in Her name ...

Never mind, the point is that this clap trap generated some $359 million world wide, and is a secularist delight, and now it seems that the bible has become the last refuge for the desperate, not least that failed film-maker Ridley Scott, who is offering the world Exodus: Gods and Kings, with Christian Bale and dinkum Oz lad Joel Edgerton as the Egyptian pharaoh. (The trailer's up on Apple TV and YouTube and other places and looks like a total load of tosh).

Scott was responsible for the second worst science fiction film ever made, Prometheus, and it looks like he's going to treat all the miracles and nonsense in prime Cecil B. de Mille special effects style, and bung on all the plagues and the red river and such without a hint of shame.

Even more bizarrely, it seems before the first bit of tosh is in the cinemas, it's been reported that Scott is in discussions with Fox to do another old testament figure David:

Sources tell Variety that Fox has tapped Jonathan Stokes to pen an untitled pic inspired by the character from the “David and Goliath” tale and focusing on the King of Israel. Though the plot is under wraps, it’s likely that the film would focus on the king’s reign post-Goliath. 
Going by the working title “David,” Scott would produce through his Scott Free banner and along with Chernin Entertainment. 
It’s also unclear if Scott is considering directing. Scott is considering several projects for his next one following “Exodus: Gods and Kings,” including “The Martian,” starring Matt Damon, and the next installment of “Prometheus.” (Variety, here, paywall affected)

Oh do the sequel to Prometheus, really someone should challenge Transcendence for the title of the worst science fiction film ever made.

But why has the pond started to blather about the movies? Well the Sydney Anglicans are wildly excited:

I like the idea of putting the temple prayer of the tax collector “Have mercy on me, a sinner” into the mouth of Matthew as Jesus calls him, and it’s also very affecting that Jesus sees his upcoming betrayal and death in his mind’s eye as he shares the last supper with his disciples. Characters such as Caiaphas are a bit one-dimensional and Jesus is almost too gentle and doe-eyed, but Diogo Morgado does a laudable job in a difficult role and the crucifixion scenes are confronting and done extremely well. (here)

Yes the last thing you want is a gentle Jesus but thank the long absent lord at least he doesn't look Semitic or female in form, and at least there's a bloody good hanging with nails and spears and vinegar wine.

And so we come full circle. That'd be the last supper used to sell a takeaway food service ...

It's as if Plato's allegory of the cave and the shadows and shapes on the wall had yet to reach the angry Sydney Anglicans.

Meanwhile, the Jensenists continue to disgrace themselves. Here's Phillip Jensen conflating and confusing and obfuscating in Caring or Killing in a way that makes the world's worst science fiction movie seem like a step forward for humanity:

It was the eugenics movement of the late 19th century, which laid the foundation for racial breeding and the appalling racism of the 20th century. Racism is always in the heart of sinful humanity, but giving it an intellectual and moral basis created the worst outpouring of racism in history. Similarly, the discoveries of pre-natal gender identification, have allowed for the most appalling expressions of sexism. In some nations and communities, the majority of abortions have been of baby girls. Feminism’s freedom resulted in girls’ genocide!

Say what? Feminism's freedom resulted in girls' genocide?

How fucked in the head is that?

And this from a mob that have connived with and contributed to the persecution and killing of gays in Africa ...

But how about this for a capper?

Atheists’ view of humanity undermines their morality.

Uh huh. So the angry Sydney Anglicans will be immediately and forthwith cutting off all ties with the churches in Africa that aid and abet the persecution of gays?

In your dreams ...

You see, the angry Sydney Anglicans view of humanity undermines their morality ...

Which is why sometimes it's better just to talk about the movies.

A minute in the company of Sydney Anglicans and before you know it, the pond turns full-blown angry irritated feminist ...

What's even more irritating is that Jensen ignores the complications and complexities that Peter Singer was himself forced to recognise in relation to his arguments, way back in 1999 in an interview in The New Yorker with Michael Specter, which you can find in pdf form here ...

But simplistic distortions fit with simple-minded views of the world and a childish credulity in stories like Adam and Eve and Noah.

Yes, back in April 2014 there were the Sydney Anglicans running with John Mason's Engaging with Noah ...

Oh come on pond, you say, they couldn't take Noah and the flood seriously, could they, as a real God-produced event?

Hah. What they're liable to read in the bible, they're liable to think Jesus said was dinkum.

What is important for us here is that Jesus regarded Noah as a historical figure and treated the event of the flood as a reality. Just as the flood occurred, just as Jesus’ predictions about his own death and resurrection, and the fall of Jerusalem, were all fulfilled, so too will there come a day when he returns in all his glory. 
Heraclitus, a philosopher of ancient Greece, taught, ‘Unless you expect the unexpected you will never find truth, for it is hard to discover and hard to attain.’ And G.K. Chesterton once remarked, ‘Truth is stranger than fiction.’ 
Our danger today is the same as it was at the time of Noah. The people then were so taken up with their own lives, so proud of their achievements, that they forgot they were but creatures and rejected the reality of God. If only they had been humble enough to turn back to God while they had time (17:26f). Jesus’ reference to Noah and the flood is a chilling reminder that we ignore God at our peril. NOAH, the movie gives us an opportunity to talk with others about the larger realities of life.

It's a chilling reminder of just how close to the young earth, fundamentalist, literalist, creationist, complementarian Adam's rib mob the angry Sydney Anglicans have found themselves. Now that's a truth stranger than a bad Hollywood movie ...

Finally, the pond, in the old days, used to take an equal opportunity interest in the fundie Catholics, but that got lost when the Pellists headed off to Rome to get involved in the sordid world of the Catholic financial mafia. (Dear sweet long absent lord did they really put the Pellists in charge of the Vatican's social media transformation? Cardinal Pell might be a prime twit but will he show the way in Twitter and such like?).

But happily yesterday a pond correspondent provided an important link to an important text ... a Catholic view of masturbation written in 2010, and available here.

It's nothing new of course. There's a wonderful report on Le Livre Sans Titre, an illustrated warning of the deadly perils of self abuse, written in 1830, and full of illustrations of the result of the vice being practicsed.

And that's just for starters. You can find all sorts of wankers wanking on about wanking all over the internet.

Why if you're a wanker like Greg Hunt you'll do a wiki hunt here and find this exemplary warning:

Of course like Robert Frost the pond always recommends the path less travelled ...

Two roads diverged in a yellow wood,
And sorry I could not travel both
And be one traveler, long I stood
And looked down one as far as I could
To where it bent in the undergrowth;  

Then took the other, as just as fair,
And having perhaps the better claim,
Because it was grassy and wanted wear;
Though as for that the passing there
Had worn them really about the same, 

And both that morning equally lay
In leaves no step had trodden black.
Oh, I kept the first for another day!
Yet knowing how way leads on to way,
I doubted if I should ever come back. 

I shall be telling this with a sigh
Somewhere ages and ages hence:
Two roads diverged in a wood, and I—
I took the one less traveled by,
And that has made all the difference. 

The paths are clear enough. Bad movies about myths, or wankers taking myths seriously and abusing feminists for seeking freedom ... better a moral and physical wreck at 45 than heading down that latter path ...

And now, last but not least, a heartfelt plea from the heart of Newtown, spotted this very day:

In which the pond deals out a dish of contempt as a way of handling the gloom ...

(Above: you can find more Kal cartoons at The Economist, here, paywall affected)

Moving beyond the current contemptible attempts to taint and corrupt the evidence and deal cruelly with the victims of mass murder, the contemptible Putin poses a particular future problem for Tony Abbott.

The middle of November isn't far away, and the G20 is looming, so what does Abbott do?

Now the pond has always had trouble with the sort of Pilgerist apologists who present Putin's backing of mercenaries and terrorists in Ukraine as acceptable, and blame the west and Obama and anybody else within cooee for Putin's criminal behaviour and his criminal consorting with criminals.

Pointing to the idiocy of George W. Bush and the west's behaviour in Iraq and Afghanistan, or Vietnam if you want to go back a little further, is no excuse for Putin's own execrable behaviour.

The pond demonstrated against the idiocy of Bush, and his fellow travellers and deputy sheriffs, John Howard and Tony Abbot, not that it did any good at all, but is now too old and tired and poor to travel to Brisbane to protest, should Putin have the cheek and the front to turn up in Brisbane - he has more front than Melbourne Myers once had - but there will be others that will, and not just those directly affected by the crimes of the criminals in Ukraine. And good on them, the pond will be there in spirit should it come to that ...

Should Abbott and Campbell Newman have allowed the contemptible Putin to land ...

But if they do, what do they do then?

Turn the fire hoses of the state's paramilitary on the dissidents and protestors taking a stand against a man complicit in mass murder?

They should be standing in the street protesting with the protestors.

Bowing to the contemptible Putin would be a bad look, and there should be more at stake here than looks.

But do the parochial bully boys have the ticker to stand up to the much bigger bully boy? Seeing as how the nervous nellies and fellow travellers like Germany's Merkel and the dictators of China have already been wringing their hands ...

It becomes an even sharper matter for Campbell Newman, who this very day is now confronting an epic defeat.

Yes the Currish Snail has the full story in LNP concedes defeat in Stafford by-election as Labor secures more than 50 per cent of the vote, though you have to hunt for it.

So what did the contemptible Newman - though he's less contemptible than Putin, he's certainly contemptible enough - have to say for himself?

“We understand that many people weren’t happy with the need for an election,’’ he said.

Say what? That's the best you've got? They voted against you in plague proportions and it's all because they were grumpy about getting out of bed?

Surely you should be blaming dissidents and traitors, in best Animal Farm style ...

 “Clearly the attacks on the Government by the former member were a factor in this election as well. It did us no favours. It did Bob’s campaign no favours."

Does it occur to Newman that Campbell Newman, through his deeds and legislation and wayward inept behaviour did Bob's campaign no favours? Yep, here it comes, like extracting a molar with pliers:

“But I do absolutely understand that there are people that are unhappy with this Government, our Government and I just say this evening we know they’re unhappy because we have had to make many unpopular and strong decision.” 

Ah, the old Vlad 'the impaler' Putin strong man routine.

It's not the time or the place for that.

But you can smell the fear in this digital effort by the Currish Fail today:

What an ugly, sickening mix of tragedy and domestic politics.

But it's easy enough to see why.

If the dedicated Queensland runes reader heads off to Antony Green's site here, you'll find the real measure against which the current astonishing swing can be judged:

There was a 6.9% swing against Labor at the 2009 election with Hinchliffe defeated after a further 14.4% swing at Labor's landslide defeat in 2012.

The Stafford by-election was notorious for another matter, the introduction of the lowest and basest sort of Tea party measure, clearly designed to disenfranchise or discourage Aborigines, the poor and minorities from voting, by requiring some form of personal identification to be presented.

If you didn't front with the various forms of allowed ID, you had to complete a form to permit a declaration vote.

The contemptible Newman got exactly what he deserved for this contemptible form of trickery.

As for the dissident who dared to question the state dictator? Well he had a final word to say:

... Dr Davis said it was obvious Stafford voters had delivered a message Mr Newman didn’t want to hear. “I did my best to get the message to the LNP early on and the messenger was shot,” he said.

Dr Davis? As per Mr Green:

Davis was appointed Assistant Minister for Health when the Newman came to office. In 2014 he began to raise questions concerning the government's handling of the doctor's contract dispute in Queensland Hospitals, as well as changes to the Crime and Misconduct Commission. This resulted in him being dismissed as Assistant Minister. Davis subsequently raised concerns about the government's changes to electoral donation laws, missed the vote on the legislation and then announced his resignation from Parliament.

And there you have the contemptible "strong man" Newman's problems and wrong-headed behaviour in a nutshell.

So how did the Currish Snail handle the story?

Pages 16 and 17?

They might use the excuse of the contemptible Putin's crimes to try to bury the story, but here's the figure that counts, and it's a pretty clear one:

That tweet's here, and its link to the results is here.

So what is it with Queensland, and the roller coaster ride and the wild swings?

Well the pond's initial thesis is that it's the result of a lack of fluoride in the water.

Okay, we keed, we keed, but every day Queensland produces fresh wonders and marvels.

It was only yesterday that the Currish Wail was reporting Queensland Palmer United Party leader Alex Douglas says Clive Palmer walked out of ABC interview 'to be polite'.

State Palmer United Party leader Alex Douglas says Clive Palmer was right to storm out of an ABC television interview because women don’t have the “same capacity” to handle themselves during a combative conversation. 
The Gold Coast-based state MP said he supported Mr Palmer’s handling of the 7.30 Report July 10 interview, explaining the PUP leader walked out “to be polite” to the show’s host, respected journalist Sarah Ferguson. 
“In Australia you are marked severely for being rude to any woman,” Dr Douglas said. 
“You have to be able to give them (women) a better chance to represent themselves than you would for a man because a lady does not have the same capacity,” he said. 
“It’s a very blokey world. Women do not have an equal chance. 
“They have to be given greater capacity. You can’t bully them and you can’t swear at them.” Asked later to elaborate on his comment that women did not have the “same capacity”, Dr Douglas said that a man “has a natural advantage” when it came to a hostile confrontation. “A lady, if she wants to be abusive and shouting. particularly if the line of questioning is overtly hostile and aggressive, you are far better to say nothing at all because you can’t win the argument,” he said.

Only a Queenslander? Only in Queensland?

Here he is, with his PUP meister:

Oh dear that combination of shirt and tie rather says it all, not to mention the ill-fitting suit.

But wait, there's more:

In an interview with The Courier-Mail, Dr Douglas insisted Mr Palmer left the interview to be polite.

“He did not want to be seen to insult her (Ferguson) and he did not want to be seen to be uncouth,” Dr Douglas said. 
“It’s never acceptable to insult a woman. It’s never acceptable to be rude to a woman and it is not sexist to say that.” 
Dr Douglas also accused members of his former LNP of shouting down female Labor MPs. He said women were being put into a position of having to become “pseudo-men” to survive. 
“I think the majority of girls don’t want to do that,” he said.

The majority of girls? Soft, cuddly, all feminine girlies?


Oh for fuck's sake ...

But at least you know why the pond made a joke about the man's dress sense. It's the least he deserves.

Still, credit where credit is due.

The pond has been very gloomy these last few days - impotence and anger can do that to you - what with the under toad out and about in planes and in the occupied ghetto sometimes known as occupied Palestine, except if you happen to talk to George Brandis.

Wait, wait ... don't remind the pond, the bigot-loving, book-shelves loving, taxpayer book-buying Brandis who wants to be the Sauron of the intertubes is another Queenslander ...

Call the pond nutty, but it has to be the lack of fluoride in the water ... and maybe Vlad the impaler would be right at home, amongst strong men making strong decisions ... and keeping the riff raff away from the ballot box ...

(Below: and you can head off to Ronin here)

Saturday, July 19, 2014

Are we already - already? - in the last stages of mental and bodily exhaustion arising from self-pollution?

(Above: and more images at The Graudian here, though some might think they're NSFW)

Well others raised the subject, the question, the issue of the mental and bodily exhaustion that arises from onanism or self-pollution, and we see the matter paraded daily in relation to federal politicians.

You see the pond got paranoid the other day - well more paranoid than its usual paranoia, which rarely rises above the level of General Ripper contemplating precious bodily fluids.

Here's the rub of it. What if stray readers had ignored the link so thoughtfully provided by a pond correspondent?

What if they'd missed this?

Freedom and liberty, 100 years ago this month, were under threat as the gods of war awoke. Armies of empires stretching back before the Middle Ages were slowly moving to Armageddon—a world war with deaths of millions, the end of four royal houses and the beginning of wicked new orders of communist and fascist cruelty. This war ended realms of geography but brought in dominions of political terror imprisoning generations under dictatorship, ending hope, freedom and liberty for many until the collapse of the Soviet Union. Indeed, the war that began in 1914 with the invasion of Belgium was the second ‘Hundred Years War’, the war against tyranny, continuing from the Armistice, pausing in 1989, and resuming in 2001 in New York. The ‘Hundred Years War against Tyranny’ continues today on three fronts: first of all Islamist fundamentalism intent on caliphates destroying Western civilisation, especially religious freedom; secondly, democratic governments restricting freedom of speech and association, betraying hundreds of years of liberty; and, finally, leftists delegitimising all views other than their own, especially in media and education. 
Freedom and liberty are not abstract concepts. You either have freedom or you are not free. Whether I serve here for 16 days or 16 years, I shall always judge myself on how I have battled against tyranny and fought for the axis of enlightenment—that is, liberty of the individual, a free market, small government and low taxes. I will let others badge and brand and box me, as, in my great broad church that is the Liberal Party, my pew is a moveable feast. I have campaigned against dictator-loving Islamist fundamentalists in the Maldives; Sinn Fein- and PLO-supporting Labour candidates in London; and godless rebranded communists in Mongolia—not to mention the Queensland branch of the Australian Labor Party!

Barking mad, but wait there's more, much more - yes it's at Quadrant under the heading A Speech Worth Heeding - the barking mad heeding the barking mad - but the pond commends the correspondent's link here, with the Paul Éluard poem set out nicely at the bottom.

Éluard? A poet not of my politics, I confess ...

Well that's the understatement of the millennium. Even for the pond, accustomed to the daily parade of loonacy, it's passing wondrous that a man should be quoting the surrealist who eulogised Joseph Stalin his political writings, or so it seems if you Greg Hunt him here ...

Ode à Staline (1950) 
 Staline dans le coeur des hommes 
Sous sa forme mortelle avec des cheveux gris 
Brûlant d'un feu sanguin dans la vigne des hommes 
Staline récompense les meilleurs des hommes 
Et rend à leurs travaux la vertu du plaisir 
Car travailler pour vivre est agir sur la vie 
Car la vie et les hommes ont élu Staline
 Pour figurer sur terre leurs espoirs sans bornes. 
 Et Staline pour nous est présent pour demain 
Et Staline dissipe aujourd'hui le malheur 
La confiance est le fruit de son cerveau d'amour 
La grappe raisonnable tant elle est parfaite (here, you can get a rough translation into English in the usual Google way)

Yes you can take that and shove it up McGrath's woolly jumper. That's the trouble with rabid ratbags of all stripes, they all flock towards the convenient flag of fundamentalism.

But wait, you don't just get a Éluard poem, you get a set of steak knives suitable for carving up lamb, which might come in handy:

The first McGrath was a convict, rightly punished by a sensible judge and sent down to Australia. Family folklore has it was for stealing a sheep.

Yes, so much better if he'd starved to death and cut off the lineage right there and then.

It turns out that this McGrath worships one Eric Pickles, calling him a consummate grassroots councillor in touch with all things local.

Now the pond's correspondent cruelly drew attention to Pickles' startling resemblance to a thumb:

(You can find the original at the New Statesman here)

But the pond was more interested in the sort of pickle that Pickles created in his local sphere, and so resorted to the Hull Daily Mail's Groans as 'most arrogant' Eric Pickles survives David Cameron's cabinet reshuffle:

At yesterday's full council meeting, Hull's Labour leader Councillor Steve Brady could not hide his disappointment that Eric was still there. 
 "I would have loved any female, in fact anybody, to take over," he said. 
 Local Tories are not impressed with Mr P either. One rolled his eyes heavenwards when his name cropped up in conversation the other day. 
 "He is the most arrogant man imaginable," said my companion. 

It turned out that McGrath was most impressed by Pickles' political skills because he called the down under bum "Skippy".

So much for Pickles. Not even the wit or wisdom to call McGrath "Barking Mad Skippy"!

As someone who grew up in regional Queensland, I grew up with the ABC. But the ABC has left people like me and my constituents behind. I want to support the ABC. I like the ABC. But while it continues to represent only inner-city leftist views, funded by our taxes, it is in danger of losing its social licence to operate. I am calling for a review of the ABC’s charter. And if they fail to make inroads to restore balance, then the ABC should be sold and replaced by a regional and rural broadcasting service. In the meantime, Triple J, because of its demographic dominance and clear ability to stand on its own, should be immediately sold. 

Yes, and they play all this noisy wretched music, oh the muck and the stench and it's too much to bear, all those damned elitists spreading their noise into rural areas and scaring the sheep.

But what about JJ?

And what about the diggers?

In February this year I laid a wreath at the Brisbane Cenotaph to commemorate the fall of Singapore. With only six former prisoners of war of the Japanese left in Queensland, we should always honour and help those who did so much to defend our liberty in this hundred-year war against tyranny.

Oh dear, but not a word about the skill and honour of Japanese sub mariners!

Is the treacherous, subversive McGrath, as well as being off with the pixies, alienated from his very own government, and Tony Abbott's praise of Japanese submariners delivers a blow to nation's psyche?

But wait, there's more, much more:

Likewise, freedom of speech should never be restricted by government, because when speech is regulated in any manner, it is no longer free. People will say hurtful and bigoted and stupid and dumb things. People will make racist and sexist and homophobic comments. Those views are wrong, but the right to express them is not. If you believe in democracy, you cannot cleanse it of the views you disagree with. The true test of a democratic nation is not how we treat those with whom we agree but how we treat the rights of those with whom we disagree. The best way to deal with those with whom you disagree is not to force them into the dark shadows but to let the sun shine, to let the disinfectant of light and public scrutiny judge those offensive views.

Yes because mob rule on social media is so effective, just like mob rule in the streets, and if someone offends you, why just don a white sheet and organise a lynching party ... metaphysical and verbal of course.

That's why the hundred years war was fought. So Hitler and his mates could express their hurtful views!

Excluding, of course, filthy pinko perverted commie bastards, dangerous inner city 'leets, ABC listeners, lefties, greenies, and other rabid filthy types who are attacking this nation's precious bodily fluids! Let them not be heard, not at all, but let us instead point out how women and minorities ruin and wreck this nation's precious bodily fluids!

But wait, there's more, much more, and the pond now makes this solemn promise to dangerous inner city 'leets.

If you're not rolling around in gales of laughter and the depths of depravity by the time you've finished the read, the pond will refund the time you've wasted. And if you believe that, you probably think the Senate is still a house of review, as opposed to a circus full of barking mad buffoons ... as McGrath joins Bernardi and the cross-bench to ensure chaos and confusion and the nation is saturated with used tea bags ...

What else? Well last week was a bad one for jolly Joe Hockey, so the pond was immensely titillated by a story Joe Hockey 'won't trust Malcolm again', wife says, which is all about a new biography of the jolly rotund one, done with Hockey cooperation and due out next week. How's this for an opening flourish?

Prime Minister Tony Abbott sacked Treasury head Martin Parkinson a week after last year’s election, without telling his Treasurer Joe Hockey. 
And Hockey only found out Parkinson’s employment had been terminated after he was told by his Treasury boss.

Well that explains why this government's communications strategies are so remarkably effective, and its planning and strategies so cohesive. A real team of team players, geeing each other up, and going the extra yard to share vital information ...

And it wasn't just in the first week. We've seen that exceptional team work playing out every month since then ...

There's more, a lot more - there always seems to be more - and a lot of it involves some difficulties with Ian Macfarlane and residual bitterness about big Mal, but the real blast will come when the book turns up on the shelves next week ....

Leadership tensions?

Oh it's only just begun - you see jolly Joe doesn't want ever to return to opposition, but he still clearly has a hankering to lead, and only one can be at the top of the circus tent pole.

What fun it will be over the next year or so. Jolly Joe's budget strategy is in a total mess, and no one knows how to deal with the Senate - it is, after all, as McGrath so capably demonstrated, full of barking mad crazies - and last week's eruptions showed jolly Joe was feeling the heat.

Let the fun and games begin.

Speaking of big Mal, the pond had an agent on hand for the Malster's recent attendance at an industry gab fest:

The takeaway message?

The federal government is going to spend as much, if not more, than the original budget for the NBN, so reviled by them, and for what?

Well it's a rhetorical question, and the rhetorical answer is to end up with a half-baked, hodge podge mess of competing technologies that will take decades and much more expense to upgrade and make coherent and useful.

Big Mal's job, while ignoring the realities of climate science and everything he once accepted as necessary and appropriate on that matter, is to obfuscate, obscure and deny this simple NBN truth, which will emerge only in fits and starts over the years. In short, Big Mal is presiding over an epic fail ...

Such is the job of a toffy forelock tugger and knob polisher who sold his soul to retain a sense of relevance. Some soul, some relevance ...

There’s a wonderful scene in ‘Fame Is The Spur’ where Redgrave, now a Member of Parliament and laden with honors, is addressing a mass meeting when a small group of suffragettes bursts in to heckle him, “Votes for Women!” One of the suffragettes is his own wife, a principled bluestocking who supported his career from a mining pit to Westminister. The police beat up the suffragettes, and Redgrave is mute and passive as his wife is dragged out of the hall. His soul dies but he’s too far gone in surrender to know it. (here)

But you already knew all that didn't you?

Unless you happen to be a barking mad McGrath, blathering on about a hundred years war, without the first fucking clue about actually managing a country, an economy or modern technology ...

What happens to a politician's soul when it dies? Well with any luck it will live a comfortable life in Sydney's eastern suburbs and never mind the chaos and confusion in the rest of the land ...

It is not possible to criticise the new Coalition policy on climate change because it does not exist. Mr Abbott apparently knows what he is against, but not what he is for. 
Second, as we are being blunt, the fact is that Tony and the people who put him in his job do not want to do anything about climate change. They do not believe in human caused global warming. As Tony observed on one occasion "climate change is crap" or if you consider his mentor, Senator Minchin, the world is not warming, its cooling and the climate change issue is part of a vast left wing conspiracy to deindustrialise the world. 
Now politics is about conviction and a commitment to carry out those convictions. The Liberal Party is currently led by people whose conviction on climate change is that it is "crap" and you don't need to do anything about it. Any policy that is announced will simply be a con, an environmental figleaf to cover a determination to do nothing. After all, as Nick Minchin observed, in his view the majority of the Party Room do not believe in human caused global warming at all. I disagree with that assessment, but many people in the community will be excused for thinking the leadership ballot proved him right. 
Remember Nick Minchin's defense of the Howard Government's ETS was that the Government was panicked by the polls and therefore didn't really mean it. 
Tony himself has in just four or five months publicly advocated the blocking of the ETS, the passing of the ETS, the amending of the ETS and if the amendments were satisfactory passing it, and now the blocking of it. 
His only redeeming virtue in this remarkable lack of conviction is that every time he announced a new position to me he would preface it with "Mate, mate, I know I am a bit of a weather vane on this, but....." 
Third, there is a major issue of integrity at stake here and Liberals should reflect very deeply on it. We have an Opposition whose current leadership dismisses the Howard Government's ETS policy as being just a political ploy. We have an Opposition Leader who has in the space of a few months held every possible position on the issue, each one contradicting the position he expressed earlier. And finally we have an Opposition which negotiated amendments to the Rudd Government's ETS, then reached agreement on those amendments and then, a week later, reneged on the agreement. 
Many Liberals are rightly dismayed that on this vital issue of climate change we are not simply without a policy, without any prospect of having a credible policy but we are now without integrity. We have given our opponents the irrefutable, undeniable evidence that we cannot be trusted. 
Not that anyone would doubt it, but I will be voting for the ETS legislation when it returns in February and if my colleagues have any sense they will do so as well.   (Malcolm Turnbull in 2009 here, forced video at end of link).

Integrity? That's just another word for disgrace ...

It seems so long ago that the pond started with a link to an image of wankers in the final stages of dissolution.

Did that link offer up another image that suits the pond and its idea of a fun game?

So glad you asked ... the only trouble is, it probably excites some in the Liberal party more than it excites the pond ...