Miranda Devine – Wednesday, April 20, 11 (01:43 am)
In the end, not even celebrity bleeding hearts John Pilger and Naomi Klein could save Marrickville Council from itself, as the tiny Greens dominated inner-western Sydney council tonight buckled to pressure not to boycott Israel. During a fiery meeting that lasted more than three hours, eight of 12 councillors voted to abandon the council’s controversial support of the global Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions campaign against Israel, with Greens mayor Fiona Byrne voting with two fellow Greens and an Independent on the losing side.
Here’s a glimpse of the meeting, above, as more than 400 people packed the room and spilled down two flights of stairs onto the street where a half dozen police were gathered in case of unrest. Activists from both sides waved banners and flags, shouted, applauded, harangued, mocked, jeered, booed and a couple even walked out, as Byrne at times struggled to keep control and threatened to throw out the entire public gallery. There was much complaining about vilification, threats, bullying, intimidation and lies from “Zionist-controllled media”.
By the time it was all over in a confusing flurry of motions and amendments, the crowd had spent its fury and drifted off quietly. The councillors were left to talk quite cordially about parks, rates and graffiti - which some of their ratepayers have been arguing is what they should have been doing all along.
Tim Blair – Wednesday, April 20, 11 (04:19 am)
If the human race survives its own nest-fouling, we’ll owe a debt of gratitude to people like Al Gore.
Tim Blair – Wednesday, April 20, 11 (04:03 am)
Gaia’s greatest annual carbon-creation haulfest is underway! Send shots of your planet-polluting, habitat-hating, ecology-erasing rides to Iowahawk (hit the link) for a chance to rejoice in the Hawk’s hard-won approval.
Be warned. He’s a malevolent judge, sometimes influenced by violent alcohol-induced mood swings. It could just be that in 2011 Iowahawk decides, out of a spirit of savage mockery, to award his coveted Earth Week prize to a contestant from a country currently planning to introduce a carbon tax. Enter your own agents of Australian Gaia-smashery NOW!
Tim Blair – Wednesday, April 20, 11 (03:47 am)
Journalist Paul Solotaroff describes recent bear events:
There hadn’t been a bear-caused fatality in two and a half decades in Yellowstone. And over the course of six weeks, two people were killed. One, a most unfortunate episode in which a botanist was wandering in an area that had just been visited by grizzly bear study team and they’d found a grizzly and they’ve knocked them out to take hair samples, tooth samples and the like. And they didn’t post signs, warning that they were there and it was a bear that had been sedated. And so this poor guy wandered into a clearing, and there he found the bear waking up. And the bear killed him and ran away.
Read on to discover that the author believes this attack to be caused by global warming. Solotaroff continues:
Six weeks later, a tragically thin mother bear and her three cubs wandered onto a campsite where they smelled cooking fish and they attacked several campers, and then finally wound up killing and devouring an EMT from Michigan.
For such an allegedly emaciated creature, Mama Scrawny sure packed some power. Probably she was annoyed by her idiot son.
Tim Blair – Wednesday, April 20, 11 (03:13 am)
Piss Christ – Andres Serrano’s urine-based artwork, much admired by Jill Singer – has been destroyed. Currency Lad reports:
I look forward to lefties taking an understanding tone towards the protesters and condemning Serrano – as they took an understanding tone to Muslims while condemning Pastor Jones.
The Guardian – clueless to both irony and hypocrisy – manages to mention Ronald Reagan and Jesse Helms in a piece devoted to charting the frightening growth of fundamentalism in France. That’s Christian fundamentalism, of course.
Bonus correction at the Guardian: “This article was amended on 19 April 2011. The original referred to the Senator Jesse Helms as Jesse James. This has been corrected.”
Tim Blair – Wednesday, April 20, 11 (02:12 am)
Tim Blair – Tuesday, April 19, 11 (11:54 pm)
The Prime Minister throws it down:
Julia Gillard has hit back at business criticism of her proposed carbon tax and thrown down a challenge for corporate Australia to outline its alternative.
Here’s one: no carbon tax.
UPDATE. Paul Kelly:
The omens are now unmistakable - the government’s effort to price carbon is a policy that is losing support in the community, within industry, inside the trade union movement and silently within the Labor Party …
Labor and most of the media are addicted to misreading Abbott. They always fail to read the match. They savaged Abbott for the sin of appearing beneath some offensive banners but missed completely how he targeted and turned the workers against the carbon tax. Don’t expect such misjudgments to be rectified.
They never are. And it works to Abbott’s advantage.
Tim Blair – Tuesday, April 19, 11 (10:58 am)
The Daily Mail reports:
Crazed cult leader Charles Manson has broken a 20-year silence in a prison interview coinciding with the 40th anniversary of his conviction for the gruesome Sharon Tate murders – to speak out about global warming.
Andrew Bolt – Wednesday, April 20, 11 (07:05 am)
This is getting way, way out of control - and could hurt us all:
THE United States is facing the possible loss of its prized AAA credit rating for the first time, as global markets begin to question the ability of the world’s biggest economy to rein in its ballooning debt.
In an unexpected move that sent shivers through the markets, ratings agency Standard & Poor’s has cut its outlook on the US from ‘’stable’’ to ‘’negative’’.
The move was widely seen as a warning to Washington to overcome bitter political disputes over how to handle its $US14 trillion in public debt.
Maurice Newman expects terrible trouble - and worse if we don’t ditch the planned carbon dioxide tax:
THE world economy is on “life support”, living beyond its means, with the threat of a cataclysmic shock within the next eight years, ABC chairman Maurice Newman warned yesterday.
The former chairman of the Australian Securities Exchange, who is also a director of the Queensland Investment Corporation, said the Australian economy was better placed than many others to withstand the potential major shock to the world trade and financial system.
But he warned that Australia had only a few years to get its economic house in order—improving the competitiveness of the economy, avoiding new taxes such as the carbon tax, balancing its budget, reducing energy costs, streamlining business regulation and moving towards a more flexible industrial relations system.
“Nearly three years since the global financial crisis, the world economy remains on life-support, despite the trillions of dollars of stimulus and monetary easing… We are nearing an endgame...”
The US was now facing a budget deficit of $US1.65 trillion ($1.57tn) compared with the $US580 billion predicted by the Obama administration only two years ago.
Youth unemployment in Britain was now running at 20 per cent. In countries such as Britain and others in Europe, the state now made up more than 50 per cent of the economy.
Andrew Bolt – Wednesday, April 20, 11 (06:55 am)
Yet another broken promise? Surely not, but Julie Novak insists:
Two days before the 2007 federal election Rudd said it struck him as “passing strange that this government that supposedly belongs to the conservative side of politics has not systematically applied the meat axe to its own administrative bloating for the better part of a decade”.
Unfortunately, in the intervening period the only axe wielded in Canberra seems to have been the one used to cut down Rudd and even he has only shifted from one job to another.
In fact, according to the Australian Public Service Commission the number of commonwealth employees rose from 155,421 people in 2007, the last year of the Howard government, to 164,596 last year, an increase of 6 per cent during the period.
Andrew Bolt – Wednesday, April 20, 11 (06:43 am)
THE Labor Party was once different. So different, that even I twice worked for it.
But three things this past week showed why it’s now nothing like the party it was . . . and which it desperately needs to be again.
First, The Australian’s front page yesterday showed Liberal leader Tony Abbott drinking with workers in the once heavily unionised Pilbara - like he belonged there.
Could either of Labor’s past two Prime Ministers - Kevin Rudd or Julia Gillard - seem half at home at the bar, talking about jobs, wages and prices?
Before that we heard the Australian Workers Union boss, Paul Howes, warn Gillard, whom he’d helped to install, that he’d fight her carbon dioxide tax “if one job is gone” - an impossible test.
More ominous for Labor was the reason he gave for this threat. He said he’d gone to six mass meetings of his members in 10 days and “I now appreciate just how upset workers are about the carbon tax”.
Here is a union leader being told by his members that Labor is madly out of touch, pushing policies of the Left that he’d better damn well block.
Never before will Howes have had to face such a stark choice between his party and his union, and I doubt he’s finished showing which he’ll stick with.
The third warning came from another AWU leader, SA state secretary Wayne Hanson, who claimed the industrial cities of Whyalla and Port Pirie would be “wiped off the map” by Gillard’s tax.
Leaders of other unions - the CFMEU and the AMWU - are also under pressure from members to do more to save their jobs in the mines, steel works and factories from the policies pushed by Labor, which seems in the thrall of inner-city Greens and ABC viewers.
This fault line is at the heart of Labor’s decline, and the carbon dioxide tax is just one symptom of it, albeit the most lethal.
All over the country, the Labor brand is in decline. In three years, Labor has lost office in Western Australia, Victoria and now NSW. Queensland is almost certain to be lost to Labor next year.
This general decline cannot be blamed on the carbon dioxide tax, or any other one common factor. In NSW, for instance, the Labor brand was trashed by mismanagement and indiscipline.
But it’s also clear that Labor is far too preoccupied with the moralising causes of the urban Left that have little relevance to many workers and the poor - other than as a threat.
Andrew Bolt – Wednesday, April 20, 11 (06:40 am)
Puzzled historians will one day ask how the great global warming scare died so suddenly, in mid scream.
“We’re all going to dieaaaargh,” it gargled.
And it did. Right there, leaving the booga-booga Gillard Government looking like a bride at a wedding with no groom.
What happened? How did we go in just three years from being a country in which “everyone” believed we had to Do Something about terrifying man-made warming, to one in which Labor politicians are now widely reviled as dupes and scam-merchants for peddling such a gimme-cash fraud?
Don’t let yourself forget how fast this transformation has been.
I certainly haven’t, since it gives me such smug satisfaction to recall that in 2008 the boys from the ABC’s Chaser comedy team toured the land with a stage show in which they showed a giant map of Australia with a pink dot to indicate the location of our last global warming sceptic.
That single pink dot in that entire expanse was plonked right over my Southbank office.
To be absolutely specific, it was over this very keyboard on which I’m now so gleefully typing as I cackle.
How I’d love to see Chaser now do an encore. The pink dot factory would have to work double shifts to pump out all the props.
But how to explain how millions abruptly came to their senses, turning global warming from a faith to a joke?
And that’s when I drag out Tim Flannery.
No, no, no - I’m not blaming Flannery, the 2007 Alarmist of the Year, for single-handedly destroying the global warming movement that just two elections ago had stampeded both sides of politics into promising an emissions trading system to a public that now wants no bar of any such folly.
Rather, I consider Flannery, now our $180,000-a-year Climate Commissioner, a symbol of all that’s made the warming faith incredible and even ridiculous.
I knew the moment the Gillard Government appointed him to sell global warming that it had instead delivered the coup de grace to its carbon dioxide tax. And so it’s proved.
See, Flannery, author of The Weather Makers, was already an embarrassing reminder of how much the warmist movement had relied on wild claims of imminent doom that are now proving baseless.
Andrew Bolt – Wednesday, April 20, 11 (06:22 am)
This could be embarrassing:
BARNABY Joyce’s plan to prise a lower house seat from independent MP Tony Windsor hinges on the Queensland senator first overcoming the NSW Nationals’ preselection rules, which require him to live in NSW before making a bid for a local seat.
Andrew Bolt – Wednesday, April 20, 11 (05:52 am)
The Business Council of Australia declares war on Julia Gillard’s carbon dioxide tax in this letter to the Prime Minister:
It’s astonishing that the BCA should only now - years too later, when Gillard cannot retreat - point out the bleeding obvious about this tax. First. that it’s suicidal for Australia to lead a reluctant world in slashing our emissions and giving up the competitive advantage of cheap coal-fired electricity. Second, that it’s is madness to do something so expensive that will do zero to cut the world’s temperature.
Gillard’s response is just typically petty politics, entirely without substance, pointing out that the Coalition also backs her stupid and unrealistic target of cutting emissions by five percent of 2000 levels by 2020:
JULIA Gillard has challenged big business to declare whether it supports Australia’s bipartisan 5 per cent emission reduction target and a market-based approach to get there…
‘’I would appreciate it if, on behalf of the BCA, you are able to indicate whether or not you support [it]. I would also appreciate your views on whether the BCA agrees that the preferred means of achieving this unconditional target is through using a market mechanism to put a price on carbon.’’
Journalists who have for so long failed to ask the right questions about a mad tax they support, are now badgering the BCA with empty objections. Here’s Michelle Grattan, claiming to detect an international will that simply isn’t there:
Many other countries, however, have already taken action. The BCA has previously acknowledged the bipartisan targets. It supports a market approach.
The omens are now unmistakable - the government’s effort to price carbon is a policy that is losing support in the community, within industry, inside the trade union movement and silently within the Labor Party…
Finally, remember that industry has its eyes and its ears open. Beyond this, it can smell the weakness of Gillard Labor, the loss of its authority, the stench of Labor’s vulnerability. It is emboldened because Labor is weak and because Labor is weak it is failing to consult properly with industry.
This is a lethal political atmospheric for Julia Gillard.
The only positive note to take from that, is that this is a government and a Prime Minister in utter self-destruction mode. They are careering to disaster.
Bradley has a simple, very clear answer to the question the PM intended to ask him. No.
Expanded, he might want to say something like: unconditionally reducing our emissions by 5 per cent in a world that is going to increase global emissions by hundreds of times that makes no sense. Indeed, it is pointlessly destructive.
He could then follow through with a question: Why exactly has this government and this PM embarked on an attack on the nation’s prosperity, to no point?
The fact that it is bi-partisan merely demonstrates the yawning gap between the political class and reality - the reality in which the other 22 million Australians live.
Lights are going on all over Canberra. Peter van Onselen:
Labor’s carbon tax is fast becoming the sort of political dead animal you can’t bury fast enough to get rid of the smell. Yet as the days go by in this debate the chances of it even being legislated are looking less likely.
What was assumed to be a first step that couldn’t fail could now be blocked from a variety of directions: the Greens, unhappy with the amount of compensation going to business; one or more of the independents worried community support for climate change action has dissipated; even by sceptics in the government.
Andrew Bolt – Wednesday, April 20, 11 (12:02 am)
Prime Minister Julia Gillard claims carbon dioxide is “pollution”:
I would reiterate my call to Tony Abbott today not to continue to play the role of wrecker, but to actually join the multi-party committee, which will work through all options for putting a price on carbon pollution in the national interest.
I think calling carbon dioxide a “pollutant” is a deliberate falsehood, intended to deceive. Why else is carbon dioxidenot listed as a pollutant by the Gillard Government’s own Department of Sustainability, Environment, Water, Population and Communities?
(Thanks to reader Popeye and Lloyd.)
Andrew Bolt – Tuesday, April 19, 11 (07:30 pm)
Odd, but I love the idea of brainfood:
KINGS and queens will not be confined to history classes for children in Armenia, where chess is being added as a compulsory subject in primary schools.
The former Soviet republic aims to boost its reputation as one of the world’s leading chess-playing nations by teaching the game to every young child for two hours a week alongside a normal curriculum.