Wednesday, April 13, 2011

News Items and comments

I hope the compensation is $1
www.news.com.au
A BRITISH teacher sacked by a Sydney college for presenting a class to adult students on the use of the "f-word" could be compensated after having his termination ruled illegal by Fair Work Australia.
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Based on the assumption faith is not based on the reality of god.
www.livescience.com
People who live longer worry less about life after death, and thus become less religious.
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Not to be confused with AGW as the research fails to mention overall ice in Antarctica is increasing.
www.livescience.com
Warming temperatures in Antarctica may be partially caused by hot Pacific water.
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The federal government is committed to calling name change reform.
THE term "childcare" should be cut from job descriptions and names of government departments, an early childhood advocacy group says.
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How much has she been paid for this?
PAULINE Hanson has decided she will "go fishing" after losing by 1300 votes in her bid to win an Upper House seat in NSW Parliament.
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There is worse to come from ALP mismanagement.
AUSTRALIA'S largest compensation package will be paid to victims of dodgy super fund Trio, with 5358 investors in the failed scheme to be paid $55 million through a special levy on the super industry.
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This is getting close to the bungled pedophile op.
WHEN Melissa Cook went to Macquarie Fields police to file a complaint against her violent ex-husband, she thought the harassment would stop.
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Welcome to the world.
A 13-YEAR-OLD mother who became pregnant while in state care is at the centre of the latest scandal to shock welfare authorities.
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We need to build new and better coal power stations. That is the cheaper route.
RURAL and regional NSW families are set to be stung yet again with a minimum 17 per cent power price increase expected to be announced tomorrow, adding up to $325 a year to the average bill. And this ...
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Free fare days won't fix the problem.
NEW Transport Minister Gladys Berejiklian had her first taste of commuter rage yesterday as 100,000 passengers were stranded on the CityRail network.
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The tragedy here has been vastly overstated. This diminishes the heroism of Chernobyl.
JAPAN'S nuclear safety agency has raised the severity rating of the ongoing crisis at its nuclear plant to the highest level, on par with the 1986 Chernobyl disaster.

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My gout was caused by it.
A NEW report shows alcohol's sinister touch shoves 4000 Queenslanders into hospital every year.
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The ALP legacy. More ambulances are essential, but will bottleneck with emergency.
AMBULANCE officers are set to strike over a shortage of crews that is forcing them to arrive late to seriously ill patients. A union meeting will be held today to decide if action should be taken. In ...
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This is a hard road, but the right one too. Many in the media will use the liberty to smear her.
THE death of every DOCS child will be made public with the state's new Community Services Minister signalling an end to secrecy.
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Hog heaven

Piers Akerman – Sunday, April 10, 11 (04:11 pm)

If you’re looking for the perfect Pacific bar, you would not be too far off course if you set sail for W174.98 S18.65.
This will take you to within swimming distance of the Aquarium Café, proprietors Mike and Lori Smith, whose claims to fame are increasing daily but include the fact that they are the only Smiths in the Tongan telephone book.
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FIFTY MILLION MISSING

Tim Blair – Wednesday, April 13, 11 (04:58 am)

The Guardian, 2005:

Rising sea levels, desertification and shrinking freshwater supplies will create up to 50 million environmental refugees by the end of the decade, experts warn today.

Here’s a map – instructively titled “Fifty million climate refugees by 2010” – supporting those expert claims. Gavin Atkins reports:

The map shows us the places most at risk including the very sensitive low lying islands of the Pacific and Caribbean.

It so happens that just a few of these islands and other places most at risk have since had censuses, so it should be possible for us now to get some idea of the devastating impact climate change is having on their populations. Let’s have a look at the evidence …

Yes. Let’s.

(Via the GWPF)

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EQUAL OPPORTUNITY

Tim Blair – Wednesday, April 13, 11 (04:43 am)

You’d think it impossible, but Harvard graduate Lori Adelman knows otherwise:

It’s not just women that have abortions.

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PACHAMAMA IS GOING DOWN

Tim Blair – Wednesday, April 13, 11 (04:34 am)

Nothing against Bolivians, but their country should be strip-mined of everything, ploughed with radioactive salt and the resultant toxic hellscape left as a boiling death-zoo for sloths and flamingos:

Bolivia is set to pass the world’s first laws granting all nature equal rights to humans. The Law of Mother Earth, now agreed by politicians and grassroots social groups, redefines the country’s rich mineral deposits as “blessings” and is expected to lead to radical new conservation and social measures to reduce pollution and control industry.

Mother Earth rights include:

The right to life and to exist; the right to continue vital cycles and processes free from human alteration; the right to pure water and clean air; the right to balance; the right not to be polluted; and the right to not have cellular structure modified or genetically altered.

The right to “balance”?

The law, which is part of a complete restructuring of the Bolivian legal system following a change of constitution in 2009, has been heavily influenced by a resurgent indigenous Andean spiritual world view which places the environment and the earth deity known as the Pachamama at the centre of all life.

Hold on a second. Gaia has a rival? Do these Andean upstarts know with whom they are dealing?

Foreign Minister David Choquehuanca said Bolivia’s traditional indigenous respect for the Pachamama was vital to prevent climate change. “Our grandparents taught us that we belong to a big family of plants and animals. We believe that everything in the planet forms part of a big family. We indigenous people can contribute to solving the energy, climate, food and financial crises with our values,” he said …

In the indigenous philosophy, the Pachamama is a living being.

No! Gaia is the only true living earth being! AND SHE WILL DESTROY PACHAMAMA!

Who will win the battle of the Earth Deities?

(Via Jo Nova and Larry T.)

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TWO-WHEELED TAKEDOWN

Tim Blair – Wednesday, April 13, 11 (04:04 am)

Anti-bike bigotry is dealt with by real estate agent Ted Hanson and Lord Mayor Clover Moore.

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CAN’T SHAKE THE SHEIK

Tim Blair – Wednesday, April 13, 11 (04:02 am)

Greens senator and constant protest presence Lee Rhiannon attempts to put some distance between herself and a certain colourful community spokesman:

When asked by The Australian if she had spoken alongside Sheik Hilali at the first rally, Ms Rhiannon said: “I did not appear with Sheik Hilali as you state. I did not see him or hear him speak. I was not aware that he was at the rally.”

Reports of that rally, however, “list Sheik Hilali and Ms Rhiannon among the speakers, with Sheik Hilali denouncing Israel as a ‘terrorist state’ and Ms Rhiannon condemning the Israeli attack on an aid flotilla to Gaza as ‘a crime against humanity’.” Rhiannon’s response:

Shown the media reports, Ms Rhiannon clarified her movements on June 1, saying parliament had been sitting on the evening in question. “We jumped in a taxi to go down there and as soon as we got there, we were put on to speak,” Ms Rhiannon said. “I did not see Sheik Hilali.”

She also didn’t see the Sheik at a second rally:

Photographic evidence shows Ms Rhiannon and her former NSW upper house Greens colleague Sylvia Hale marching with Sheik Hilali at a protest in Sydney on June 5 last year, holding a banner that reads, “End the siege of Gaza – break ties with Israel” …

Shown the photograph taken on June 5, in which she is marching about 2m from the Sheik, Ms Rhiannon did not deny her presence. “I was not alongside Hilali and the photo shows I am not alongside Sheik Hilali,” she said. “The rally was about Gaza and that’s why I went along.”

It was a classical Blair’s Law rally.

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GORE STORE NO MORE

Tim Blair – Wednesday, April 13, 11 (03:36 am)

Former Al Gore senior aide Leslie Dach dared to dream:

In July 2006, Dach was installed as the public relations chief for Wal-Mart. He drafted a number of other progressives into the company, seeking to change the company’s way of doing business: itsculture, its politics, and most importantly its products.

Out went drab, inexpensive merchandise so dear to low-income Americans. In came upscale organic foods, “green” products, trendy jeans, and political correctness. In other words, Dach sought to expose poor working Americans to the “good life” of the wealthy, environmentally conscious Prius driver.

How did that all work out?

After suffering seven straight quarters of losses, today the merchandise giant Wal-Mart will announce that it is “going back to basics,” ending its era of high-end organic foods, going “green,” and the remainder of its appeal to the upscale market. Next month the company will launch an “It’s Back” campaign to woo the millions of customers who have fled the store.

Further from the Wall Street Journal:

Starting in May, Wal-Mart shoppers in the U.S. will see signs in stores heralding the return of fishing tackle, bolts of fabric and other ‘heritage’ merchandise that Wal-Mart reduced or cut out altogether as it attempted to spruce up its stores ...

There’s a lesson here for all manner of mass-consumer businesses.

(Via Currency Lad)

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THE LITTLE WORD THAT TRIES

Tim Blair – Wednesday, April 13, 11 (03:00 am)

Relaunched into wider usage a few years ago, “beclowned” continues to build mainstream acceptance – although sometimes in appalling circumstances. From the National Review Online:

When incompatible mandates of political correctness collide, the results can be amusing. But they can also be appalling, as in the New York Times’s recent coverage of the gang-rape of an eleven-year-old girl in Texas …

The Times being the Times, racial polarization became the dominant aspect of its coverage, and its account dwelled on the fate of the poor young black men whose lives no doubt will be disrupted if they are held criminally accountable for the gang-rape of a child — one who, as the Times helpfully reported, was said to have “dressed older than her age, wearing makeup and fashions more appropriate to a woman in her 20s.”

The paper’s readers howled in outrage, but the editors replied that their beclowned reporter, James C. McKinley, was merely repeating what he’d been told — a dunderheaded excuse in the circumstances.

Where there are dunderheads, there will always be beclownings. New York State’s Rome Sentinel reports:

The Bill of Rights means nothing to Senate leaders Harry Reid, D-Nev., and Lindsey Graham, R-S.C., who Sunday beclowned themselves by suggesting that somehow Congress take action to punish heretics and blasphemers.

(Via Grant H.)

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447 DAYS UNTIL LABOR’S UNANIMOUSLY OPPOSED TAX

Tim Blair – Tuesday, April 12, 11 (11:40 pm)

Agriculture is largely exempt from the iniquities of Labor’s planned carbon dioxide tax, but farmers hate it anyway:

The Victorian Farmers Federation will campaign against the proposed carbon tax saying it will make Aussie farmers uncompetitive.

VFF president Andrew Broad said the vote passed unanimously at the group’s policy council.

“The VFF now has a clear and definite position on the Federal Government’s proposed carbon tax. We oppose it and will actively campaign against,” Mr Broad said.

Business groups – usually timid, even in the face of legislation that will harm them – are also standing up.

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SET PHASERS TO POLEY

Tim Blair – Tuesday, April 12, 11 (11:36 pm)

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This is not the way to prove women are tough enough for combat

Andrew Bolt – Wednesday, April 13, 11 (10:15 am)

A good point, well made by Bob Ellis:

So women, it seems, are tough enough for service on any battlefront but not tough enough to be peeked at in the shower For the latter they need compassionate leave, counselling in depth, back pay and five parliamentary enquiries.

How do these two sentences, these two statements, these two propositions, cohere?

(Thanks to reader Stephen.)

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Who pays for all this?

Andrew Bolt – Wednesday, April 13, 11 (09:43 am)

How many times - and over how many years - does this Fijian woman have to be told she’s not a refugee before she’s shut out of our courts and told to go home?

The applicant states that she was born in Suva in 1952 and is classified as a native Fijian and a Fijian citizen by birth… The applicant claims she was persecuted by being ostracised by the native Fijian community because of her political opinion… The applicant left Fiji for Australia on 16 April 2001and travelled on a visitor’s visa class TR visa, sub-class 676 visa which was valid for three months from the date of arrival.

The applicant applied to the Department of Immigration & Citizenship for a Protection (Class XA) visa on 16 July 2001. A delegate decided to refuse to grant the visa on 5 December 2001 ... On 22 July 2002, the applicant applied to the Refugee Review Tribunal ("Tribunal") for a review of the delegate’s decision. On 31 January 2003 the first constituted Tribunal… made the decision that it did not have jurisdiction to review the decision, refusing to grant the applicant a Protection visa because the review application was received outside of the mandatory time limit and was not a valid application…

In March 2003, a s.417 request was forwarded to the Minister on behalf of the Applicant (CB 67). Aresponse from the Minister’s office dated 6 May 2003 indicated that, as the Tribunal did not make a decision on the merits in relation to the Applicant’s case, the power under s.417 of the Act was not available to be exercised (CB 70). On or around 2 July 2004, a further s.417 request was sent to the office of the then Minister supported by a statement from the applicant’s son (CB 72-74 and 75-76). In the response dated 2 March 2005, the applicant was informed, once more, that the power under s.417 of the Act was simply not available to the Minister in the circumstances of this case....

On 13 October 2009, the assistant manager of the Onshore Protection Support Team of the Department issued a letter to the applicant purporting to notify her of the decision made on 5 December 2001, to refuse to grant her an application for a Protection visa (CB 80)....

The applicant applied again to the Tribunal on 4 November 2009 for a review of the delegate’s decision. It is the decision of the second Tribunal constituted by the Tribunal member, Dennis O’Brien, RRT reference number 0908778 dated 23 December 2009 that is the subject of the application currently before this Court… I am not satisfied that the grounds contained in the further amended application are satisfied and the application should therefore be dismissed with costs.

(Thanks to reader Brian.)

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Officers damn Smith

Andrew Bolt – Wednesday, April 13, 11 (09:29 am)

Reader Chris Osborn is one of several officers and former officers appalled by Defence Minister Stephen Smith’s wild overreaction to the Skype Affair:

I read your article regarding the current Defence situation this morning, and I would like to thank you for being a tempering influence on what seems to have become a very one-sided view. I have recently retired from the Army after more than 40 years service which include about eight years on staff an both the Royal Military College, and the Defence Academy from the early 70s. I have no doubt that young Cadets get up to all sorts of things that the Military would rather not have to deal with, however, I also believe and have full faith in the Defence leadership to act appropriately and in a timely manner when these situations occur.

In my time in the above training institutions I have found that the situation regarding the stamping out of bastardisation has been a top priority for senior staff who have proved to have a no tolerance policy which includes mandatory yearly training for both staff and Cadets in these matters.

I wish to state that I have full confidence in the staff at all levels within the Officer training establishments to manage these situations appropriately if and when they arise and i sympathise with with staff when outside influences prevent them from doing their job. The standing down of the Commandant ADFA has been disgraceful and should be overturned with an apology.

Reader “Doubting Thomas” is furious:


I am a long-retired RAAF officer, a Wing Commander for what that’s worth nearly 20 years since I last served. But it does mean that I was senior enough to have a reasonably accurate idea of how the system worked, and I also had the advantage of having been employed for many years in the RAAF’s Personnel Division (as it then was) where matters such as the ADFA scandals - insofar as RAAF personnel were involved - were ultimately dealt with.

During those many years, from 1975 until I finally retired in 1994, I served under many Chiefs of Staff, and many Ministers of both parties. In all those years, I cannot recall a Minister for Defence making a public statement such as that made by Stephen Smith… What Stephen Smith did was to intervene in a disciplinary process where he could have had no idea of the facts. He reacted emotionally in a situation where emotion should have played no part.

Is he really saying that a woman who had knowingly, deliberately and quite dispassionately (by her own account) had breached ADFA’s non-fraternisation rules is such a delicate little petal that disciplinary proceedings for entirely unrelated but militarily quite serious charges should not be proceeded with in the normal course of unit routine until she had recovered from the embarrassment she suffered from the wide dissemination of the offending videos of her otherwise consensual sexual activity? Is he really saying that what are essentially “slack and idle” civilian standards of propriety and discipline should apply in a military officer training school?

The reports in the electronic media that I have seen, including the vapid preachings of the obligatory feminist commentariat, seem to be blaming ADFA for failing to protect this woman from herself. They are also blaming ADFA for the aberrant behaviour of one of its male cadets who, like many of his contemporaries in the civilian society from which he came, has morals well beneath those of the proverbial alley cat. The whole purpose of ADFA is to turn such morally confused and illiterate civilians into disciplined, principled military officers.

And to put the cap on his stupid behaviour, Minister Smith has also effectively ordered the CDF, Air Chief Marshal Houston (whose boots he is not fit to polish on his very best day), to negate or to short-circuit an essential and well-defined disciplinary process at the top of which the Minister himself effectively sits as the last line of appeal. How can the disciplinary process now take its normal course now that Smith has effectively made a decision without considering any of the relevant evidence?

Smith made a very serious and stupid mistake and should not be allowed to get away with it.

Reader cretsho:

As a colleague of Commodore Kafer, I feel obliged to state that I consider him one of the finest officers, as well as human beings, that exist in the ADF. I would have no hesitation placing my children in his care at ADFA.

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Rewarding Shaun’s bad manners

Andrew Bolt – Wednesday, April 13, 11 (07:07 am)

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IF Shaun Murray were one of the children he teaches, you’d know exactly what to do with his sort.

If they stacked a tantrum you’d ignore them. Maybe punish them.

But only a fool would reward them.

I’m sure even Northcote High, where Murray teaches, has rules like that.

But Murray is not a child—not in age, at least—and had his own tantrum rewarded on Monday by a man who should have acted as almost every parent in the state would have preferred, knowing that giving in just buys you more trouble.

You see, Murray was one of five green activists who ommed into the foyer of 1 Treasury Place - home of the Premier’s office - and chained themselves to a ladder they happened to have on them.

This was an activists’ version of a hissy fit to get what they weren’t entitled to, which in this case was an instant meeting with Energy and Resources Minister Michael O’Brien.

Why O’Brien was expected to drop everything to be harangued by five people who couldn’t even be bothered making an appointment is a puzzle, until you remember that to the toddler “I want” means “they must give me”.

Nor did it seem to trouble the protesters and their friends chanting outside that what they wanted was not what the rest of us would vote for in our right minds—the ending of government funding for a planned dual brown coal and gas demonstration plant at Morwell meant to save the state from blackouts.

So by now you’d know exactly how such people should have been handled. You’d either punish them, by, say calling the cops, or you’d ignore them, and let them stay chained to their ladder all night, if need be, with the toilets locked and lights and heating off, to save the power that these protesters honesty think is frying the planet.

But what did the Energy Minister do? Let them into his office to lecture him.

And later the Environment Protection Authority even praised their tantrum as a sign of “passion”. Sigh.

So did Murray learn the lesson he badly needed about bad manners?

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American pride bleeds to death in Libya

Andrew Bolt – Wednesday, April 13, 11 (06:57 am)

LIBYA is the war that Kevin Rudd wanted and even Bob Brown backed. No wonder it’s the one heading fast to disaster.

The rag-tag rebels that the United States and its allies hoped to help with air cover are now in deep retreat.

Dictator Muammar Gaddafi seems safe, and all that’s been achieved is a stalemate in a civil war.

As US General Carter Ham, who led the air campaign until NATO took over, said last week, it was now unlikely the rebels could beat Gaddafi: “I would assess that as a low likelihood.”

You’d laugh, if people weren’t dying, and America’s growing weakness was not so dangerously exposed.

Foreign Affairs Minister Rudd and Greens leader Brown, like US President Barack Obama, were against the 2003 war to topple Saddam Hussein, Iraq’s genocidal and dangerous dictator.

They opposed that successful war because the United Nations Security Council hadn’t ticked off on it. Process trumped judgment.

But four weeks ago, on March 17, the Security Council did approve a no-fly zone over Libya—an act of war Rudd noisily lobbied for in the Middle East.

And oh my God. The UN decision had already been fatally delayed by Obama’s dithering, giving Gaddafi time to re-organise his forces just when it seemed the revolt against his autocratic rule was mere hours from ending it.

By the time the no-fly zone was enforced, Gaddafi had pushed the rebels almost all the way back to their eastern stronghold of Benghazi, which he threatened with a bloodbath.

That was the final excuse for the UN to step in, to stop the massacre that Rudd and others warned was likely.

True, there has been no massacre, and Gaddafi’s forces at first were bombed half the way back to Tripoli.

But that hypothetical success looks increasingly threadbare a justification for a war that started with no clear goals and now has no clear exit.

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One girl’s tears do not excuse this attack on our military

Andrew Bolt – Wednesday, April 13, 11 (06:52 am)

THE Gillard Government’s wild overreaction to the “Skype affair” is sure to cause more harm than it hopes to fix.

Just why Defence Minister Stephen Smith has called six separate inquiries into the allegedly sexist culture of the Australian Defence Forces is a mystery.

You see, the excuse for this massive attack on the ADF - Chairman Smith’s Cultural Revolution - is actually trivial, despite the mad hype since.

Some low-life lout at the Australian Defence Forces Academy had sex with another cadet, an 18-year-old girl who should have known better, and got six of his mates next door to secretly watch the gymnastics via Skype.

Yet another cadet blew the whistle and the ADFA called the police, who decided no crime had been committed. Not satisfied, the ADFA decided to find some other excuse to punish the creeps who so humiliated the girl.

But in the meantime the ADFA commandant, Commodore Bruce Kafer, punished the female cadet for two earlier breaches of his academy’s strict rules - drinking alcohol and being absent without leave.

He reportedly gave her the option of delaying the hearing, given her distress over the Skype betrayal, but she allegedly said she’d rather get it over with, and received a mild punishment.

So far I’m struggling to find in this narrative a crime so terrible as to justify Commander Kafer now being damned by his Minister, vilified in the media and told to take leave by his clearly unwilling superiors, bowing to their masters.

I certainly don’t see in this an excuse for Mr Smith declaring war on our military, and giving a professional feminist a blank cheque to reorganise the way the ADF hires and promotes women.

I agree, the male cadets involved in the Skype Affair deserve punishment - the sack would be excellent - but not once have I heard it said that they were going to be let off by Commander Kafer.

As for the girl, now described as “innocent” and even “slender”, is it really so strange that Commander Kafer wanted to impose discipline on her, too?

In just two months at his academy, she’d already broken three rules and then rushed to the media to demand the justice her superior was working on.

This does not strike me as the behaviour of a cadet who’s officer material, likely to inspire respect and loyalty among those she’ll one day lead, and Commander Kafer would have betrayed his duty to the rest of us to have overlooked it.

Nor does the betrayal of this girl by her lout of a lover and his drooling mates tell me anything about the culture of the ADFA or armed forces.

Commander Kafer was dealing here with eight young Australians who’d been at his academy for less than 10 weeks.

If anything, they were products of the wider and wilder culture outside, and Commander Kafer was the man who now had to civilise them with punishments none had ever been troubled with before.

Big scandal. Not.

But then along comes Mr Smith, once a leftist lawyer, and goes, “Aha!”

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If the CSIRO’s warming predictions are right, why does it keep snowing?

Andrew Bolt – Wednesday, April 13, 11 (06:33 am)

The snow keeeps refusing to vanish as the CSIRO predicted in 2008:

Scientists say Australian skiers should prepare for shorter ski seasons because of global warming…CSIRO climate change expert Dr Penny Whetton says Australia’s mountain snow cover could be reduced by up to 54 per cent by 2020.

Or how the CSIRO predicted in 2003:

A 2003 CSIRO report, part-funded by the ski industry, found that the resorts could lose a quarter of their snow in 15 years, and half by 2050. The worst case was a 96 per cent loss of snow by mid-century.

Instead, just nine years from that skiers’ nightmare Whetton predicted, we again see promise of yet another great snow season:

The wet weather which lashed southern Victoria overnight has also reached the high country, with Mt Buller, Falls Creek and Mt Hotham all reporting good snowfalls since the weekend.

With the official start to the ski season still two months away, the snow continues to fall across Mt Buller today after temperatures fell below zero last night. At 9.30am the temperature had climbed back to minus 0.2 degrees after plunging to minus 1.6 degrees. About 10cm had fallen at Mt Buller by 9am.

At some stage the CSIRO should explain if it still stands by its predictions, and, if not, how it got them wrong and what this means.

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Costello: 10 years of watching Gillard, and I never spotted this new real Julia

Andrew Bolt – Wednesday, April 13, 11 (06:29 am)

Peter Costello doesn’t buy the new-new-new old-fashioned Julia:

Fresh back from the United States where she announced her undying love for America, the Prime Minister, Julia Gillard, let us in on a secret no one could have guessed. She is an old-fashioned traditionalist.

In an interview for Australian Agenda on Sky News, Gillard declared she opposed euthanasia, opposed gay marriage, and wanted people to study the Bible. She doesn’t sound too different from Tony Abbott. He is a one-time Catholic seminarian - now married with children - who deeply opposes euthanasia and abortion. She is an atheist who keeps her unmarried partner in the Lodge. But when it comes to traditional family values Gillard wants you to know they are Tweedledum and Tweedledee.

I sat opposite Gillard for a decade in the House of Representatives and it never occurred to me - not for a minute - that she was a moral conservative.

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Did Rhiannon really not hear Hilali’s hate-chant?

Andrew Bolt – Wednesday, April 13, 11 (05:58 am)

Remember when Greens leader Bob Brown damned Opposition leader Tony Abbott for simply standing near a “bitch” protest sign held up behind his back?

Senator Brown, who has written to Ms Gillard expressing his disgust at the behaviour of some protesters, says the posters were “particularly offensive, really quite disgusting”.

“The amazing thing for me is that politicians of such experience as Tony Abbott and his senior colleagues ... did nothing about the banners,” he told ABC Radio.

With those high standards, what will Brown now do about his own senator-elect, Lee Rhiannon:

THE Greens continue to be tied in knots by their stance on Israel, with NSW senator-elect Lee Rhiannon forced to admit she marched in protest with Taj Din al-Hilali after initially denying any association with the controversial Islamic cleric.

Photographic evidence shows Ms Rhiannon and her former NSW upper house Greens colleague Sylvia Hale marching with Sheik Hilali at a protest in Sydney on June 5 last year, holding a banner that reads, “End the siege of Gaza—break ties with Israel”.

Press reports of another rally four days earlier, including reports in Green Left Weekly, list Sheik Hilali and Ms Rhiannon among the speakers, with Sheik Hilali denouncing Israel as a “terrorist state” and Ms Rhiannon condemning the Israeli attack on an aid flotilla to Gaza as “a crime against humanity”....

When asked by The Australian if she had spoken alongside Sheik Hilali at the first rally, Ms Rhiannon said: “I did not appear with Sheik Hilali as you state.

“I did not see him or hear him speak. I was not aware that he was at the rally. I reject The Australian’s attempt to associate me with controversial views held by Sheik Hilali. I condemn Sheik Hilali’s comment comparing women in casual clothing to cat meat. I oppose all forms of racism, bigotry and sexism.”

But shown the media reports, Ms Rhiannon clarified her movements on June 1, saying parliament had been sitting on the evening in question. “We jumped in a taxi to go down there and as soon as we got there, we were put on to speak,” Ms Rhiannon said. “I did not see Sheik Hilali.”

Shown the photograph taken on June 5, in which she is marching about 2m from the Sheik, Ms Rhiannon did not deny her presence. “I was not alongside Hilali and the photo shows I am not alongside Sheik Hilali,” she said. “The rally was about Gaza and that’s why I went along.”

Here is Hilali at that June 1 rally, fomenting hate of Israel with his chant “Down, down Israel”:

This is the rally at which Rhiannon spoke, too.

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Smith’s department at war

Andrew Bolt – Wednesday, April 13, 11 (05:54 am)

An insight into just how badly Defence Minister Stephen Smith has strained his relations with Defence chiefs with his rush to judgment and his overreaction.

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Combet’s fake promise - higher prices make us better off

Andrew Bolt – Wednesday, April 13, 11 (05:38 am)

Two things are troublingly clear from this “reassurance” of free money:

Climate Change Minister Greg Combet will today reveal that more than 50 per cent of the revenue raised from the carbon price on polluters will be used to assist households.

In a speech at the National Press Club in Canberra, Mr Combet will announce that “millions of households” will be better off under the carbon price and that the assistance will be permanent.

First, the carbon dioxide tax involves - or is the excuse for - a massive new income redistribution scheme, in which “millions of households” will be made better off by giving them money taken from millions of others.

Second, this claim of compensation-for-all that’s now swallowed uncritically by so many journalists is built on a deceit. It’s suggested that the carbon dioxide tax will involve no real pain because all the money raised is (the Government promises) to be returned in compensation. But what is ignored is that this tax is specifically aimed at driving us away from cheap coal-fired power so that we use vastly more expensive “green” power instead. That is its sole purpose, that that involves necessarily costs that cannot be compensated for.

The carbon dioxide tax must hurt to work, and no promises of compensation will make that hurt go away.

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A no-face fined

Andrew Bolt – Wednesday, April 13, 11 (12:02 am)

I didn’t think they’d dare yet:

FRENCH police fined a woman for wearing a full-face Islamic veil, the first reported enforcement of a ban on the garment on the day it came into effect, a police source said today.

The young woman, born in 1983, was fined $206.60 “without incident” in a shopping centre in Mureaux, northwest of Paris, early yesterday evening, the source said, without elaborating on exactly what she was wearing.

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Another boat, so why no talkies on that detention centre?

Andrew Bolt – Tuesday, April 12, 11 (01:25 pm)

And another:

Another asylum seeker boat has arrived in Australian waters.

Home Affairs Minister Brendan O’Connor said HMAS Bathurst boarded the vessel east of Christmas Island on Tuesday morning.

“Initial indications suggest there are 44 passengers and two crew on board,” a statement from Mr O’Connor’s office said.

Any sign of that East Timor detention centre Julia Gillard promised to stop these boats?

Answer: no:

EAST Timor’s President Jose Ramos-Horta says he has not discussed the plan for a regional processing centre in his country for months, despite Australia insisting negotiations have been ongoing.

Surely the Gillard Government didn’t tell us a lie?

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