Saturday, March 16, 2013

Sat 16th Mar Todays News

Happy birthday and many happy returns Laurent Boiteux. You will succeed.

So many years of no warming means it’s time to rethink

Andrew BoltMARCH162013(9:39am)

 Global warming - dud predictionsGlobal warming - general
Astrophysicist Dr David Whitehouse:
In retrospect, nobody predicted that in the age of global warming the annual average global temperature would remain unchanged for so long…
It is incontrovertible that the global annual average temperature of the past decade, and in some datasets the past 15 years, has not increased. Year-on-year fluctuations, and any trend over this period, are within errors of measurement. The only justifiable statistical description of the global temperature during this period is a constant. Technically, this standstill can be seen in the datasets produced by NOAA, NASA, the BEST consortium, HadCRUT3, and especially, its successor HadCRUT4. This standstill has occurred as atmospheric CO2 has increased from 370 parts per million (ppm) to 390 ppm, providing an increasing forcing factor that will raise global temperatures.
Some argue that the duration of the standstill is too short to be meaningful. Thirty years is taken to be the baseline for observing climate changes and fifteen years is too short. This report argues that 15 years is not an insignificant period; what has happened to make temperatures remain constant requires an explanation. The period contains important information and should not be dismissed as having no climatic importance. The recent warming period began about 1980 after four decades of globally stable temperatures thus the years of constant temperature are about equal to years when temperatures increased. This is not a trivial observation 
Calculations based on ensembles of climate models suggest prolonged standstills of about ten years can occur once every eight decades. Standstills of 15 years are much more difficult to explain. This report shows, that if we have not passed it already, we are on the threshold of global observations becoming incompatible with the consensus theory of climate change.
(Thanks to reader Jamie Spry and others.)


Fight these anti-speech totalitarians

Andrew BoltMARCH162013(9:15am)

 Free speech
Are these people insane?
The broadcaster Alan Jones could have been jailed for up to three years for labelling Lebanese Muslims ‘’vermin’’ and ‘’mongrels’’ who ‘’rape and pillage’’, under a proposed overhaul of NSW racial vilification laws…
The Jewish Board of Deputies and the NSW Community Relations Commission are pushing for a radical overhaul of the laws in submissions to a parliamentary inquiry into whether it should be easier to criminally prosecute cases of serious racial vilification…
The inquiry was ordered by the Premier, Barry O’Farrell, who was concerned there has not been a prosecution since the laws began in 1989…
The Jewish Board of Deputies argues there is ‘’a serious gap’’ in the law and suggests a new offence of ‘’conduct intended to harass on grounds of race’’. The change would mean criminal prosecutions could be pursued over racial harassment that involves threats, intimidation or ‘’serious racial abuse’’, whether or not a physical threat is involved.
The submission argues the maximum penalties should be a fine of $27,500 or two years’ imprisonment for individuals and fines of up to $137,500 for corporations. It also says the offence should be included in the Crimes Act, be subject to a jury trial and include online abuse.
The Community Relations Commission argues for similar changes and proposes a maximum penalty of three years in jail.
Jailing people even for on-line abuse? How many jails must we build?
And have these anti-free-speech advocates considered how such laws will be used by activists and the professionally thin-skinned to silence even “good” opinion through expensive and intimidating litigation?
This crusade against free speech, so recklessly encouraged by O’Farrell without a skerrick of evidence, must be stopped.
To the Jewish groups so foolishing pushing laws which will be used against Israel’s defenders before its enemies I say this: the Holocaust happened not because Hitler was free to preach hate. It happened because none were free to preach against him.
So which of the two worst racial abusers identified in the NSW Anti-Discrimination Tribunal’s annual report should be jailed?
One involved a man with a Jewish wife who used the word Shylock when arguing with another Jew.
He apologised, but insisted he’d spoken in terms of the Shakespearean Shylock.
The other was an Aboriginal woman at a golf club who had to wait to collect her pokie winnings while the bar manager served a white man. A misunderstanding, insisted the club, which has many Aboriginal members.


Gillard no longer has the backing of her MPs

Andrew BoltMARCH162013(9:09am)

THE numbers inside Labor’s federal partyroom are now such that Julia Gillard couldn’t call a spill to end leadership speculation even if she wanted to.
Doing so would see Kevin Rudd secure enough votes to return to the prime ministership, albeit narrowly. Or the Prime Minister’s victory would be so small as to cripple her leadership even further, dividing a warring party more than it already is.
This is why nearly every Labor MP I have spoken to in the past week believes something must happen next week when parliament resumes. Rudd supporters need to find their Kevin Andrews to force a spill of the leadership.


They lie to survive

Andrew BoltMARCH162013(8:54am)

WHAT do you do when you end up with a government which from the Prime Minister down lies so completely, so seamlessly and so continuously?…
The 457 exercise captured [Julia Gillard’s] calculating cynicism, dishonesty and willingness to sacrifice anything—in this case, basic good policy—on the altar of her personal political survival.
The key to the decisions of the past fortnight - the assault on the 457 visa scheme, the raft of industrial law concessions to the unions and the media package - is that they appease the party and indulge the faithful but discredit the government.
Take, for instance, the new proposals to further control the media:
This proposal is bad public policy and defective administration. Labor has singularly failed to identify the exact problem such laws are to solve. It testifies, again, to the defining quality of this government - its addiction to new forms and levels of government intervention in virtually every area of public policy in the utopian delusion that more regulation is the sure path to progress and public satisfaction.
Chris Kenny says if Communications Minister Stephen Conroy wants the media to be more accurate, he should set a far better example. Among the more for-instances Kenny gives:
No journalist could consider Conroy’s period as minister without focusing on his commitment to high-quality broadband. He outlined his plans on the ABC’s Inside Business on February 10, 2008.
“What we have said is that we won’t contribute more than $4.7 billion, whether it’s a fibre-to-the-node or fibre-to-the-home proposal,” he told Alan Kohler. “So fibre to the home has some wonderful potential but it is more costly and people have got to build the business case; they can’t expect the government’s going to give more than $4.7bn.”
No doubt many took Conroy at his word, especially some of the more, shall we say, regulated media. Yet we now know he went for a National Broadband Network based on a fibre-to-the-home model and rendering that $4.7bn pledge redundant.
On Lateline on September 29, 2010, Conroy said: “The government will only need to put in $27bn at most.” Fair enough; time for the media to adjust numbers - by 600 per cent.
By the way, on Lateline on August 8 last year there was an update. “The capital cost of the NBN is $37.4bn,” said the Communications Minister.


So why is this Government spending more borrowed billions?

Andrew BoltMARCH162013(8:49am)

If we’re sliding so fast in the red, why is the Gillard Government promising to spend many more borrowed billions on welfare programs?
THE federal budget sank $4.6 billion further into deficit in the first four weeks of the year, without any sign of the revival in revenue that had prompted forecasts of a surplus.
Treasury figures released yesterday showed the deficit had reached $26.8bn for the first seven months of the financial year, far from the $1.2bn surplus forecast in the mid-year review by the end of June....
A spokeswoman for Finance Minister Penny Wong said yesterday that revenue was continuing to fall, with total receipts now more than $6bn below the level forecast in the mid-year budget update…
In the first seven months of the year the government’s revenues have risen 7.7 per cent above the same period of 2011-12, while spending is up by 3.6 per cent.
So cuts that damn spending already.


On the free-speech hypocrisy of Eureka Street

Andrew BoltMARCH162013(8:29am)

 Free speech
Eureka Street, the Leftist magazine sponsored by the Jesuits, has been curiously silent about the Gillard Government’s latest vindictive attempt to muzzle journalists.
Is this another craven case of the Left defending not a principle but a side? 
Is this another case of monstrous hypocrisy - an acquiescence to government censorship of speech the Left doesn’t like, while demanding every freedom for itself? 
There is, in fact, one story defending press freedom in Eureka Street today:

No, it is not about the Government attacking press freedom - the story every big media outlet in the land is covering - but about mining magnate Gina Rinehart allegedly doing so. Here isEureka Street editor Michael Mullins: 
Freedom of the press is about freedom to report, not to dominate....
During the week, in which the press freedom debate has raged, this core principle of reporting has been challenged by one of Australia’s up and coming media barons.
Mining magnate Gina Rinehart is pursuing legal action that has led to the issue of a subpoena to Fairfax journalist Adele Ferguson, author of the unauthorised biography, Gina Rinehart — The Untold Story of the Richest Woman in the World.
It demands she hand over emails, text messages, notebooks and any recordings of interviews made between Rinehart’s eldest son John Hancock and the journalist since September 2011. Ferguson has until the end of this month to comply or be charged with contempt of court. A conviction could carry a jail term. She told the ABC she’d go to jail rather than violate the confidentiality principle…
There has been scant coverage of Ferguson’s plight in some of the major media outlets. Free speech defender Andrew Bolt, who is Rinehart’s media commentator protege, was slow off the mark with a token reference…

It’s left to concerned citizens to fight for this important principle...
Mullins could not have made the moral framework of Eureka Street clearer - the collective must be defended, but principles not.
First to the gratuitous insult. Rather than being “slow off the mark”, I criticised Rinehart’s action on the very day I read of it:
I like Rinehart and do not understand the legal argument here, but this is not a good look for someone on the board of the company employing the journalist...
My point is that Rinehart is perfectly within her rights under the law to pursue this action, but Ferguson feels bound as a journalist not to comply. This puts her at risk of contempt of court, which can carry a jail sentence. For a major shareholder of Fairfax and board member at Channel 10 to take action which could ultimately see one of her company’s own journalists jailed is indeed a terrible look.
But Mullins misstates what is at stake. This is not an attack on free speech, for all his sneers.  Rinehart’s subpoena does not question Ferguson’s freedom to say what she has. Ferguson’s freedom to speak is simply not at issue.
Nor is Rinehart seeking to force Ferguson to “reveal sources”, as Mullins suggests. Ferguson has already declared the source for her report is Rinehart’s son.
At issue is the confidentiality of Ferguson notes and the protection of her source, John Rinehart. Ferguson will not want to hand over any material which may (or may not) reveal he broke a confidentiality deal with his mother.
If journalists do not defend their sources our ability to get information is compromised. Ferguson is defending a tool of her trade, even if means protecting someone who may have broken a legally binding agreement to say nothing.  And I would do the very same.
So there is a principle to defend, but it is not as grand, fundamental or ethically clear-cut as Mullins suggests. Nor do we know which way the courts will decide, if it gets that far. it is for the courts, not Rinehart, to establish whether the freedom of the press is at stake, and whether it is worth defending.
So why is Eureka Street going to town on this issue while staying silent on a far broader attack on a free press and the free speech - an attack not by an individual but by a government, and not on one journalist but all?
Well, first, of course, because Rinehart is a wicked miner and Ferguson, a Leftist journalist from Fairfax, is “one of us”.
That is not a mere jibe. Mullins himself declares:
By way of disclaimer, Adele Ferguson’s partner is a member of the board of Jesuit Communications, publisher of Eureka Street.
Second, the Gillard Government is Left-wing, out to punish the wickedly conservative Murdoch media, employer of the evil Andrew Bolt mentioned above.
Again, that is not a casual insult.

Eureka Street 
is not at all the defender of free speech it suddenly pretends to be. It actuallysupports limiting free speech when it is exercised by a conservative.
For instance, it backed the decision of the Federal Court to declare two of my columns unlawful and ban them from republication. See, Eureka Street didn’t like their tone or content. (I’d argued we should not insist on “racial” divisions, and I questioned why some so-called “white Aborigines” identified solely as Aboriginal when, I unlawfully argued, their mixed ancestry suggested they had other options open to them.)
Here is how Eureka Street reacted to my own free speech being denied not in theory but in practice:
Andrew Bolt’s article was simply an egregious example of such bad communication. It was indefensible on ethical grounds… In my judgment, the opponents of the law under which the Bolt case was brought have yet to make a persuasive argument.
Didn’t like it, so let’s ban it.

Eureka Street 
again, airily dismissing the fact that my free speech was indeed being denied:
Some voices in the media have presented the case as a challenge to free speech in Australia — political correctness gone crazy. However, this case is not about silencing critiques of the construction of race or ethnicity, nor Bolt himself.
Spencer Zifcak of Liberty Victoria notes that a balance must be struck between ‘the right to be free of racial intolerance and discrimination on the one hand, and freedom of expression on the other.’…
In the end, as David Marr explained in the Sydney Morning Herald, freedom of speech may not be the issue at stake here. Bromberg was simply attacking lousy journalism. 
Well, that’s OK then. So do I get to ban journalism I think lousy, too? Perhaps starting with Mullins’?
In fact, Eureka Street is so committed to the principle of banning speech it doesn’t like that it vanishes even its own writers:
On Thursday, Eureka Street published a commentary by Scott Stephens on the Parliamentary Apology to Stolen Generations. The article has been withdrawn. It argued that the Prime Minister’s motivation was self-serving, and his action empty rhetoric. Eureka Street, the Australian Jesuits and Jesuit Communications do not necessarily support the views expressed in our published articles. The publishers specifically disagree with the substance of this article. We apologise to those who were hurt or offended by allegations contained in it.
Eureka Street has falsely insinuated that I do not defend free speech if it is attacked by a friend.
But Eureka Street in fact does far worse. It defends only the speech of its ideological friends, and positively welcomes the silencing of its foes.
Reader Roman makes an excellent point, part of which I have now worked into my piece above: 
Andrew, I think you are wrong in your position regarding Gina and the action she has taken. It is not up to individual citizens (whether company board members or not) to consider whether their legal actions have the potential to place another at risk of contempt of court. We all have a right to access the court system to address grievances involving other parties. It is up to the court to decide if the right to privilege of confidentiality, held by the journalist, is worthy of preservation in each case. Let the parties argue their cases in court - and let the court follow precedent, or create new case law in the process. The law does not exclude Rinehart from taking action.


A desperate, vindictive government muzzles the media

Andrew BoltMARCH162013(7:12am)

Peter Hartcher, close to the Rudd camp, finds Labor Ministers split on whether the Government’s attack on the free press is driven by revenge or self-interest
Accepting they are likely to lose the election, Labor’s leaders wanted to punish enemies - the Murdoch empire - and reward friends - the trade unions - as they head for the exit, runs the theory held by some senior ministers.
But there is another explanation, too. ‘’Conroy’s view has been that the media stuff isn’t the worst thing in the world, and it’ll distract from leadership speculation and get us through to the end of next week,’’ says a senior Labor figure. ‘’Gillard’s entire world is an inside game,’’ of how to hold the leadership against any Kevin Rudd recrudescence.
Note: no one Hartcher talks to thinks it’s driven by principle.
From a man who has already seen politicians muzzle the press:
JOURNALIST Joseph Fernandez has lived under heavy-handed government regulation of the media before and is alarmed by the prospect of once again seeing freedom of the press under attack by a government he says should know better.
As editor-in-chief of Malaysia’s Daily Express for 14 years, until 1992, he worked under the threat of arrest, intimidation and unemployment by the government of Mahathir Mohamad, which saw the regulation and the licensing of newspapers as acceptable while banning publications that were deemed critical of the government.
“I am quite taken aback that, in this day and age, Australia, a country that has participated in all sorts of endeavours in the region to fight for freedom in countries lesser-equipped, and with such a strong track record trying to be an international voice to be reckoned with, is getting up to such ill-considered methods to control the freedom of expression,” said Fernandez, the head of journalism at Perth’s Curtin University. 
“There are no ifs or buts about whether this amounts to government regulation. This legislation represents a raft of regulations with very serious consequences for the free exchange of ideas on matters of public interest.”


Helping Tim help

Andrew BoltMARCH162013(7:10am)

Tim Blair notes First Bloke Tim Mathieson is about to do more work for charity:




What's meso-American for "You sunk my battleship?" .. Nacalli ixpolihui would be Nahuatl for "my boat is destroyed." 

~ DWIGHT D. EISENHOWER, president of Columbia University, speech to luncheon clubs, Galveston, Texas, December 8, 1949.The New York Times, December 9, 1949, p. 23.


Come to Me, all you who labor and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest.—Matt 11:28

Beloved, God knows the desires you have to take good care of your family. The most responsible thing you can do, however, is not to get worried and stressed out, but to let go and rest! 

Rest in God’s love and favor toward you and your family, and believe that He wants to protect and provide for you and your loved ones—all the time. 

Believe also that where you can’t, He can. So step aside and let Jesus do for you what you cannot do for yourself or your family. And when you let Him do it, not only will there be more results, but you will also experience more rest and peace!

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You HAVE to watch this 1 minute video! - The most powerful wisdom you will ever hear - by 109 year old Holocaust survivor Alice Herz-Sommer.

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Though I am surrounded by troubles, You will protect me from the anger of my enemies. You reach out Your hand, and the power of Your right hand saves me (Ps 138:7, NLT).
Today at the Conservative Political Action Conference (CPAC) outside of Washington, I launched the American Dream Challenge, where we want to know what your American dream is.  
Join us by taking the challenge and answering this question:
What is your American Dream and what are you doing to make it happen? 
Simply click on the link and let us know what your dream is and what you are doing to attain it.
We at Patriot Voices are committed to starting a candid conversation about what Americans see as their American dream and what can be done to make it happen.  Each of us has our own idea about what it is to attain the American dream, and we want to share those ideas as part of this discussion.
I look forward to hearing about your American dream.  
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Hi everyone! Here's the newsletter for March 15th. Enjoy!

From the Blog

Time to opt out of creepy fed ed data-mining racket


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