Monday, June 24, 2013

Mon Jun 24th Todays News


Happy birthday and many happy returns CamMie DuBill LuuPhilip Ly andGanesha Edu Tour. Born on the same day, across the years. On your day is celebrated the birth of the greatest Jewish prophet, John the Baptist. In 1571, Spanish conquistador Miguel López de Legazpi established a council to govern the city of Manila, now the capital of the Philippines. In 1717, The first Masonic Grand Lodge, the Premier Grand Lodge of England, was founded in London. In 1880, "O Canada", today the national anthem of Canada, was first performed in Quebec City, Quebec, during a Saint-Jean-Baptiste Day banquet. In 1937, The United States' first two "fast battleships", the North Carolina class, were ordered from the New York and Philadelphia Naval Shipyards. In 1994, A United States Air Force B-52 Stratofortress based at Fairchild Air Force Base in Spokane County, Washington, crashed, killing all four crew members, and later providing a case study on the importance of compliance with safety regulations. But you don't need a case study to comply with safety regulations. Your day is for feasting. You don't lose your head, you explore and your song is as sweet as the kindest Canadian and as inexorable as a fast battleship. Cheers!
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The Age wants Gillard to go but can’t admit the reasons why

Piers Akerman – Monday, June 24, 2013 (12:30am)

THE Left-leaning sob sisters of the print media are now calling for Julia Gillard to quit the prime ministership.
Their argument is a couple of years too late and billions of dollars short to be of any possible benefit to the Australian people.
As the latest Newspoll in The Australian newspaper shows, Gillard’s popularity continues to decline and she is still sliding as preferred prime minister.
What is drolly amusing is that the old Spencer Street Soviet, the Melbourne Age, long moved from its Spencer Street block house, is finding itself in the firing line of the rabid feminist lobby and the Leftist activists who still see Gillard’s prime ministership as some sort of a watershed in Australian politics.
It is, sort of, but for all the wrong reasons.
A genuine champion of the Quota Queens becomes Australia’s first female prime minister through the manipulation of a bunch of faceless trade union bosses and a handful of their puppets in parliament – what a joke.
She is again named prime minister after a deal involving two Independents who counter their wishes of their electorates – another joke.
But in the simple minds of the Left, this makes Gillard some sort of a Labor heroine.
God help the nation and those befuddled enough to believe that she is the answer to something.
The Age editorial is largely self-indulgent hand-wringing because it can’t bring itself to state that Gillard was a dud because it actually likes her failed policies.
Instead, it says Opposition leader Tony Abbott is getting away with murder because the electorate prefers to trust him and his suite of ideas.
It doesn’t particularly like the nebbish-in-waiting, former prime minister Kevin Rudd, because it supported his overthrow.
However, it is prepared to see him return because, even though it is yet to be convinced he has changed as he says he has, it thinks he would “lift Labor’s stocks”.
Nothing about the better leader – just a better chance for Labor.
It wasn’t so when Graham Perkin, the award-winning editor of The Age wrote of the Whitlam government in an editorial titled “Go now, go decently” on October 15, 1975, the day before Perkin unfortunately died: : “We will say it straight and clear and at once. The Whitlam government has run its course; it must go now, and preferably by the honourable course of resignation – a course which would dispel all arguments about constitutional proprieties, historic conventions and ‘grabs’ for power. It must go because it no longer has the degree of public support and acceptance that permits governments to govern effectively.”
I have had my own experience in editorialising about failed governments and under a front-page headline “Fight for a future” demanded that Victoria’s Kirner government quit in June, 1992.
My reasoning was clear. Unemployment had reached 11.8 per cent, the government was lurching from disaster to disaster and Kirner and her team were a national polka-dotted joke.
Neither Perkins nor I wanted a shuffle of deck chairs, we wanted radical change for the better.
That The Age can’t see that need or bring itself to seek remedies to the national malaise beyond recalling an already rejected Labor prime minister reflects not only the lack of intellectual rigour to be found in its editorial team but also the malaise Labor and its adherents suffer.
They don’t see that it their ideology that is at fault, that it is their system that has failed them.
They think this is about personalities.
It isn’t.
It is about the future and Labor, at this stage, doesn’t have one.
Wake up you dunderheads and smell the stench of the Labor-wrought disaster instead of closeting yourselves in hideaway coffee shops and thinking like children that real world problems can be solved by wishing for fairies.

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SUPERBAD

Tim Blair – Monday, June 24, 2013 (2:18am)

Bad Newspoll for Labor: 
Tony Abbott has opened his biggest lead ever over Julia Gillard as preferred prime minister as Labor’s primary vote fell below 30 per cent for the first time in a year.
With parliament entering its final sitting week before the election, the Opposition Leader now leads the Prime Minister by 12 percentage points after trailing by 30 points as the preferred prime minister when Ms Gillard became leader in June 2010. 
Bad internal poll for Labor: 
An internal ALP report containing polling for 40 seats across Australia, and circulated among selected members of Julia Gillard’s leadership group, shows Labor would be lucky to retain 30 to 35 seats after the election …
It warns that Labor, with an overall primary vote of 32 per cent, would likely only retain between 30 and 35 seats in the 150 seat House of Representatives – a loss of more than half its existing MPs. 
Bad signs for the Prime Minister: 
If she leads Labor to victory in 48 seats or fewer, Labor will be worse-placed than it was after the 1996 Keating debacle.
An even more dire historical note would result if Labor secures 42 or fewer seats. That would place Labor, in percentage terms, below the 1975 figures obtained under Whitlam. 

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ART OF WAUGH

Tim Blair – Monday, June 24, 2013 (2:06am)

Cricket teaches you things. In my case, it taught me I can’t play cricket. But others may draw bigger lessons.
In the early 1990s, for example, Australian batsman Mark Waugh demonstrated principles of force and momentum that apply just as much in politics as they do in sport.

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MOVING FORD

Tim Blair – Monday, June 24, 2013 (1:34am)

Ferocious Fairfax feminist Clementine Ford describes Amanda Vanstone back in 2008: 
Poor old Mandy. She really got the raw end of the deal when she was Immigration Minister. It served the Liberal Party well to install an overweight, middle aged battleaxe with a blow wave into one of the Howard Government’s most troublesome portfolios. 
And here’s her take on Jane Lomax-Smith: 
Honestly, does anything this woman says ever have a trace of sincerity? 

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CARS ARE THE STARS

Tim Blair – Monday, June 24, 2013 (1:21am)

Click and click again for the first two episodes in the latest series of Jerry Seinfeld’s Comedians in Cars Getting Coffee, featuring an E-Type Jaguar and a V8-engined Volvo station wagon.

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SHORTEN ODDS

Tim Blair – Monday, June 24, 2013 (1:18am)

Bandana-wearing birthday book author Peter FitzSimons predicts: 
Let’s say Julia Gillard is rolled this Friday – as I suspect – and Bill Shorten takes over as PM. 
He’d be good value, at least for gamblers. Bill is paying $13 at Sportsbet. 

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ALLAN SIMONSEN

Tim Blair – Monday, June 24, 2013 (12:54am)

Brilliant Danish driver Allan Simonsen was killed this weekend in a crash at Le Mans. Australian fans may recall this extraordinary local lap: 

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MAD MONKS

Tim Blair – Monday, June 24, 2013 (12:52am)

Religious conflict in Burma
After a ritual prayer atoning for past sins, Ashin Wirathu, a Buddhist monk with a rock-star following in Myanmar, sat before an overflowing crowd of thousands of devotees and launched into a rant against what he called “the enemy” — the country’s Muslim minority.
“You can be full of kindness and love, but you cannot sleep next to a mad dog,” Ashin Wirathu said, referring to Muslims.
“I call them troublemakers, because they are troublemakers,” Ashin Wirathu told a reporter after his two-hour sermon. “I am proud to be called a radical Buddhist.” 
According to the report, over the past year Buddhist lynch mobs have killed more than 200 Muslims. As “Islamist” denotes extreme Islam, we now need a word for extreme Buddhism.

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FASCINATING FAMILY

Tim Blair – Monday, June 24, 2013 (12:39am)

As Jessica Rudd tells it, she was in her father’s office when Julia arrived to measure the joint for new furnishings: 
On June 23, 2010, the night before Mr Rudd stood down as prime minister, Ms Rudd got a call from her mother, Therese Rein, saying: “There’s some rumours going around. Do you mind popping up to the House?”
“I was there with Dad when it happened,” Ms Rudd said. “I was shocked by it. I was sitting with Dad in his office when the now Prime Minister came in. I left and I sat outside on a couch, waiting with the rest of the nation to find out what was going on.” 
The ABC’s Insiders panel – a noticeably sad Insiders panel – seems to doubt Jessica’s version of events. Speaking of sad, check our Mr Enthusiasm here:


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UPGRADE INSTALLED

Tim Blair – Monday, June 24, 2013 (12:21am)

The Taliban are now a race

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RETRO SPOOK

Tim Blair – Sunday, June 23, 2013 (6:16pm)

It’s an old-fashioned Moscow getaway
United States intelligence fugitive Edward Snowden has left Hong Kong on a flight bound for Moscow, reports say.
The South China Morning Post, quoting what it says are credible sources, said he was due to arrive in Moscow on Sunday evening.
It said Moscow would not be his final destination. 
Constantinople, perhaps?

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Muslim hate-preacher incites a fifth column

Andrew Bolt June 24 2013 (6:37pm)

Australian Islamist Musa Cerantonio is just one of many of that “tiny minority” who shout hatred and wink at extreme violence, stirring a potentially lethal anger. Here is one of his talks, from April:

The military headquarters of the U.S.A. is in the Pentagon. In Islam, if a plane happened to fly into the Pentagon – would they be considered innocent or not? They are not innocent. These are the ones who plan the wars on Islam. Yet you find Muslims responding by saying that 9/11 was forbidden. Ask yourselves. I am only giving you what Islam says. I’m not saying anything. Ask yourselves. Forget their financial center [The World Trade Center], which, according to many scholars, is also a permissible target. As for the one [attack] on the Pentagon – even if a Muslim happened to be there that day – is it now forbidden?…
So even if you happened to be in the Pentagon on that day, you [should] realize that your life is at your own risk. We, living here [in Australia], in the land of the infidels… If the Islamic army or state were to attack, our blood would not be protected. Yes, they should not target us [Muslims], but if they happen to kill us – we are guilty of having lived in this land. It is a risk that we took and we are responsible for.
So was the Pentagon a legitimate target? There is no doubt about it that it was a legitimate target. Yet you find Muslims mocking, attacking… By God, how dare you? They bomb us night and day in your silence, yet when the center of their military headquarters is hit, you are ashamed of this. This is not our Islam.
This in not our Islam, whereby you have condolences for three of them [i.e. Boston marathon bombing victims]. Of course, we are sorry. We don’t like to find that innocent people died – if they truly are innocent… But Islam has a way to go about this. You pay their blood money, and you get on with it. The blood of the Muslims is more dear.
MEMRI profiles this hate preacher, who seems to be to be fomenting an internal armed response by Muslims to Western foreign policy:

Musa Cerantonio, an Australian Catholic convert to Islam who currently lives in Egypt, hosts the live English-language TV show “Ask the Sheikh,” on which he answers viewers’ questions about Islam. The program, aired on the Saudi satellite network Iqraa, is shown daily in Europe, the U.S., Australia, Africa, and Asia. Cerantonio also voices his opinions and responds to readers’ questions and comments on his Facebook page, which currently has close to 6,000 followers.[1] His Facebook page indicates that, in addition to English, he speaks Italian, and that he travels extensively to give talks in many parts of the world, including Germany, Italy and, Egypt. In addition to “Ask the Sheikh,” he has presented another series titled “Our Legacy,” on Muslims in world history.
In his shows and Facebook page, Cerantonio promotes an extremist brand of Islam, praising jihad and jihad organizations, such as Al-Qaeda and the Somali Al-Shabab Al-Mujahideen. He supports the cause of implementing shari’a law in various countries and ultimately establishing a global Islamic caliphate, encourages Western Muslims to join the fighting on the jihad fronts, condones intolerance towards non-Muslims, and denounces democracy and the West. He also expresses objectionable views on women, saying, for example, that women who do not follow the strictest Islamic dress code are asking to be abused…
In a talk that was posted on YouTube on November 30, 2012,[12] Cerantonio said: “Reestablishing the Islamic state is eventually going to be a military matter, and it is a matter that concerns a large part of the Islamic nation. So how do we go about doing this?… The advent of Imam Mahdi and the return of the Caliphate is going to be a time of great warfare and tribulation. Every single prophet, from Adam until Muhammad, warned their nation about this time. The greatest strife is going to be at the time that the Antichrist appears on the Earth.
“The answer to Palestine is not by holding hands with the infidels. It’s not by pleading to the U.N. to accept Palestine as a nation. The answer is, as the Prophet said, to fight the infidels until the religion belongs to Allah.
“The primary goal or strength that we are going to have is in physical warfare. For me and you today, this is not our utmost concern, being in Australia, but no doubt, as a nation, this is what we have to focus on. This is what we have to focus on… This isn’t going to come cheap. It’s not going to come easy. It is going to come with our effort, our life, our sweat, and our blood. I ask Allah to grant victory to all of those mujahideen who fight for His cause, to uphold the banner of “There is no god but Allah, and Muhammad is His Messenger..."[13]  

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Newspoll confirms Labor deader than ever: 43 to 57

Andrew Bolt June 24 2013 (2:17pm)

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Newspoll suggests a swing big enough to wipe out 30 Labor seats:

Based on preference flows at the last election and the ALP’s primary vote of 29 per cent versus the Coalition’s 48 per cent - down a point - the two-party-preferred result is 57 per cent for the Coalition and 43 per cent for Labor.
For a long time Labor convinced many Canberra journalists that Julia Gillard’s lead over Tony Abbott as preferred prime minister was a significant advantage:
... the Opposition Leader now leads the Prime Minister by 12 percentage points after trailing by 30 points as the preferred prime minister when Ms Gillard became leader in June 2010…
Ms Gillard’s support as preferred prime minister dropped from 35 to 33 in the latest Newspoll survey,,,
Support for Mr Abbott went from 43 to 45 per cent in the past three weeks, a rise of seven points since the beginning of March.
That suggests Labor last, desperate trick - to smear the other guy - is no more successful against Abbott than it was last year against Campbell Newman:

Ms Gillard revisited Labor’s central attack on Mr Abbott 10 days ago, accusing him of being old-fashioned, anti-abortion and claiming he would diminish women if he became prime minister.
UPDATE
Labor figures leak an internal poll to prove Gillard is even more poisonous than Newspoll suggests:

An internal ALP report containing polling for 40 seats across Australia, and circulated among selected members of Julia Gillard’s leadership group, shows Labor would be lucky to retain 30 to 35 seats after the election …
It warns that Labor, with an overall primary vote of 32 per cent, would likely only retain between 30 and 35 seats in the 150 seat House of Representatives – a loss of more than half its existing MPs.
UPDATE
Essential Media poll today: Labor 45, Coalition 55.

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Age forgets to mention more voters want the carbon tax scrapped than saved

Andrew Bolt June 24 2013 (9:43am)

What the warmist Age reported:
Tony Abbott’s insistence that the election will be a ‘’referendum on the carbon tax’’ has been undermined by polling showing that< just a third of voters support the Coalition's plan to abolish it.
... a poll of 1009 people, conducted by JWS Research for the Climate Institute, found just 37 per cent of them now supported the Coalition’s intention to wind the tax back in favour of its ‘’Direct Action’’ policy…
Even fewer people - 34 per cent - would back an Abbott government calling a double dissolution election to fulfil its ‘’pledge in blood’’ to repeal the tax.
What The Age failed to report: the poll also showed only 27 per cent of voters said the carbon tax shouldn’t be scrapped.
That’s 37 per cent for the Coalition plan and only 27 against.
Now, why was that detail omitted?
(Via Tim Wilson.) 

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Tasmanians revolt against the greens

Andrew Bolt June 24 2013 (9:31am)

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Tasmanians are revolting against the green movement that has helped drive their state broke:
THOUSANDS at a pro-mining rally have had enough - they are fed up with their futures being held to ransom by the environmental movement…
In one voice, 3000 people at the Smithton rally shouted “unlock Tasmania” and told the environmental movement they would no longer be allowed to hold the state hostage…
Deputy Premier Bryan Green, who has relied on the votes of mining and forestry workers, was booed and heckled as he tried to speak to the Smithton rally…
Yesterday’s rally follows one in Tullah last month that attracted 2000 people and one in Burnie last year that drew a crowd of 3000.
(Thanks to reader Tassierooster.) 

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Giles tells the Left to stop feeding off Aboriginal misery

Andrew Bolt June 24 2013 (9:26am)

The language isn’t good, but I think Adam Giles will get the attention his determination deserves:

CRITICS of a controversial Northern Territory plan to lock up alcoholics in treatment centres with fences and guards have been accused of feeding on Aboriginal disadvantage.
NT Chief Minister Adam Giles has also revealed a review of the federal indigenous housing program, citing concerns over Labor waste, the day after Julia Gillard threatened to withhold funding if he did not reverse cuts to education and sign on to her Gonski education reforms.
In a speech to his party’s central council, Mr Giles attacked his critics as “leftie, welfare-oriented people who rely on the misery and the poverty to sustain their own personal economy”. “Get out of the way. Piss off,” he told them.
(Thanks to reader Baden.) 

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Boris the sceptic

Andrew Bolt June 24 2013 (8:49am)

London mayor Boris Johnson, tipped by some to be Britain’s next Prime Minister, is outing himself as a climate sceptic:
For more than 20 years now, we have been told that this country was going to get hotter and hotter and hotter, and that global warming was going to change our climate in a fundamental way. Do you remember that? We were told that Britain was going to have short, wet winters and long, roasting summers…
They said we were never going to have snow again, and that we should prepare for southern England to turn gradually into a Mediterranean world…
That’s what they said: the BBC, and all the respectable meteorologists – and I reckon there were tens of thousands of people who took these prophecies entirely seriously…
I hope I don’t need to tell you that we have not experienced a Mediterranean climate – not since they started to tell us to expect it. On the contrary, we have had some pretty long and miserable winters – including the last one, in which I saw snow settle in London on four separate occasions – and ... now these so-called weather forecasters and climate change buffs have the unbelievable effrontery to announce that they got it all wrong. They now think that we won’t have 10 years of blistering summer heat; on the contrary, it is apparently going to be 10 years of cold and wet.

(Thanks to reader Ian F.) 

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Carbon tax dying, Labor’s credibility dead

Andrew Bolt June 24 2013 (8:38am)

Julia Gillard shattered her credibility by giving us a ludicrous carbon tax that won’t last two years:

WILL he, won’t he? Will she, won’t she? Maybe only her hairdresser knows for sure. But regardless of whether Labor’s soap opera ends with a bang or a whimper, one thing seems a sure bet - the carbon tax, a year old next week, won’t survive to a second birthday.
Nor should any tears be shed at its demise. The tax’s premise was that the world was moving to binding agreement on emissions reduction, with Treasury assuming a “co-ordinated international regime” would ensure “a harmonised world carbon price” by 2016. Scarcely believable when it was made, that assumption is now plainly delusional.
With the first commitment period under the Kyoto Protocol over, not one of the world’s five largest emitters (China, the US, India, Russia and Japan) has enforceable abatement commitments in place, and there is no prospect of any such commitments being given.
As for emissions trading schemes, they cover barely 7 per cent of global emissions. And with the European Union’s scheme in tatters, they are no healthier than the international regime.

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Ministers deny Rudd - and Labor - the unity that is their only hope

Andrew Bolt June 24 2013 (8:32am)

Julia Gillard’s supporters are making sure a Prime Minister Kevin Rudd can’t sell himself as a healer in charge of a newly united Labor party.
Communications Minister Stephen Conroy says he would serve under Rudd:

But I don’t believe I would be in a position to be on a front bench.
Treasurer Wayne Swan suggests he won’t either:

I made my position clear on these matters some time ago.
School Education Minister Peter Garrett is sticking by his promise to quit if Rudd returns:

That’s what I’ve said before and my position hasn’t changed.
Energy Minister Gary Gray says Rudd lacks the guts and strength for the job anyway:

He doesn’t have the courage and the strength that’s required to do this job. What he can do is spread confusion. What he can do is get himself into the media. What he can do is create a lot of torment. What he can’t do is govern and what he can’t do is lead the Labor party.
If ministers are refusing to offer Rudd a smooth transition to the leadership they are also denying Labor the one thing that offers any hope of making Labor competitive at the election.
I doubt Rudd is interested in the leadership under those conditions.
UPDATE
Gillard loyalists spend their hours now drawing up tables showing Kevin Rudd is a wrecker:

Kevin Rudd’s three-stage siege on the Labor leadership has cost the party direct political support and could destroy it for a generation according to a Gillard camp review of opinion polls before and after his two previous leadership tilts…
The figures, based on the results of the monthly Fairfax-Nielsen poll, the fortnightly Newspoll, and others, show Labor’s standing with voters has headed south immediately following the last two raids on the top job by Mr Rudd and his backers.

It shows Labor trailed by just four points with 48 per cent of the two-party-preferred vote to the Coalition’s 52 per cent in Newspoll’s March 10 survey.
However, this gap quadrupled to 16 percentage points in the Newspoll taken just after the March 21 leadership crisis in which Mr Rudd forced a spill, but then failed to stand.
In the corresponding Fairfax-Nielsen poll, Labor’s deficit blew out from eight points to 14 points across the two polls taken before and after the March 2013 no-show.
In February last year, Labor’s poll deficit also more than doubled from six points before the ballot - which Ms Gillard won easily by almost two to one - to 14 points in the month after the contest, according to the Fairfax-Nielsen poll…
The Gillard camp assessment of the impact of the leadership tensions reveals it wants to leave no doubt as to who is to blame for the destabilisation, as the gloves come off before the final sitting week of Parliament.
What the poll assessment does not factor in, though, is the negative impact of a series of political blunders and tactical errors by Labor which have rocked the confidence of MPs in Ms Gillard’s political judgment and brought the government into disrepute.

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What’s good for Rudd is good for Labor

Andrew Bolt June 24 2013 (8:30am)

Politics - federal
NO, Kevin Rudd doesn’t simply want to replace Julia Gillard. He wants to win the election.
That’s why there’s still a good chance he won’t blast out Gillard this week.
That’s not because he’s a coward, as Resources Minister Gary Gray sneered last week. 

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The lethal price of mercy to rapists and killers

Andrew Bolt June 24 2013 (8:27am)

The new morality
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WE’VE heard plenty about Jill Meagher because she was pretty and worked for the ABC before she was murdered by a serial rapist on parole.
But now there’s also a 29-year-old single mum bashed to death in her home in country Victoria, with her traumatised young child within earshot.
The man charged with her killing a couple of months ago is a 30-year-old who’d already served jail for a violent rape of a much older woman.
He was 22 when he ambushed that woman at knifepoint, handcuffed and gagged her, raped her twice and started to choke her. 

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What Gillard promised us three years ago today

Andrew Bolt June 24 2013 (8:10am)

Politics - deceits and stuff ups
Happy anniversary, Julia Gillard.
Three years ago today, Gillard knifed Kevin Rudd, and in her first speech as Prime Minister made these commitments:

I believed that a good Government was losing its way…
Today I want to make some commitments to the Australian people.
I want to make firstly a commitment that I will lead a strong and responsible Government that will take control of our future…
I can assure every Australian that their Budget will be back in surplus in 2013…
It is my intention to lead a Government that does more to harness the wind and the sun and the new emerging technologies…
I believe human beings contribute to climate change. And it is as disappointing to me as it is to millions of Australians that we do not have a price on carbon.
And in the future we will need one. But first we will need to establish a community consensus for action.
If elected as Prime Minister I will re-prosecute the case for a carbon price at home and abroad. I will do that as global economic conditions improve and as our economy continues to strengthen.
There is another question on which I will seek consensus and that is the proposed Resources Super Profits Tax.
Australians are entitled to a fairer share of our inheritance, the mineral wealth that lies in our grounds. They are entitled to that fairer share…
I can understand that Australians are disturbed when they see boats arrive on our shores unannounced. I can understand that Australians are disturbed by that… I am full of understanding of the perspective of the Australian people that they want strong management of our borders and I will provide it…
I also believe that it’s important if you lead a team to rely on the collective efforts of the team. We are all enhanced by working in a team together. So it is my intention as Prime Minister to lead a Government that draws on the best efforts of my Cabinet and ministerial colleagues, on the best efforts of each member of our parliamentary executive and the best efforts of each member of our caucus to ensure that our Government is on track.
When Labor asks itself why the public has stopped listening to Gillard, it should resist the comforting fancies some are peddling - that it’s because voters are sexists or the Murdoch media evil.
They should merely read Gillard’s first speech as leader and ask: did she deliver? If not, why believe any other of her promises? 

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Labor plans another assault on the MurdochMurdochMurdoch

Andrew Bolt June 24 2013 (7:52am)

The very last time I had a conversation with Stephen Conroy I warned him his obsession with News Ltd was unhealthy and his conspiracy theory about News Ltd plotting “regime change” was unfounded.
Unfortunately Conroy - and many in Labor - cannot stop peddling this self-pitying but dangerous fantasy, absurdly centred on a newspaper that sells fewer than 125,000 copies a day, Monday to Friday:

STEPHEN Conroy: We’ve struggled at times to get our message up . . . we struggle to overcome the perception pushed by papers like the one you’re the editor-at-large for, The Australian, manufacturing crises about debt . . .
People want to hear about why The Australian newspaper can attack the National Broadband Network . . . what The Australian has been running on for a week or so now is to try and smear up the NBN with an asbestos issue . . . That’s the premise in which The Australian is trying to smear up the NBN; it’s a campaign that’s been going on for three years. The Australian started a campaign a couple of years ago saying “We shouldn’t be building fibre optic network; wireless is going to replace an outdated fibre optic network” . . . even The Australian has stopped running it. So this is just part of an ongoing campaign . . . we’ve got world record take-up rates. I’d love to see that on the front page of The Australian . . .
Which leads Conroy to plot his latest assault on what the Greens called “the hate media”:

LABOR is considering taking a revamped package of media laws to the election, with Communications Minister Stephen Conroy warning any further concentration of the Australian media would be unhealthy…
Senator Conroy - who during his Sky interview criticised The Australian’s reporting of the National Broadband Network and The Daily Telegraph’s coverage of Labor’s leadership ructions - denied Labor wanted to regulate the press.
Labor is a menace to free speech and your freedom to choose what to read. When did we last have a peace-time government so determined to control what newspapers said?
Conroy’s paranoia is just another form of the denialism that has Julia Gillard truly convinced she is just the victim of sexism.
Here are people who believe they are great and their unpopularity just the result of evil people spreading evil stories. 

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Newspoll has Labor’s vote falling to under 30 per cent

Andrew Bolt June 23 2013 (9:31pm)

Labor’s primary vote has dropped to below even 30 in the Newspoll to be published tomorrow. Astonishing that Julia Gillard is still preaching defiance. Can that now continue?
UPDATE
Labor speechwriter Bob Ellis cannot believe it and demands the head of Newspoll be jailed.
UPDATE
Still, Nielsen recorded a primary vote of just 29 per cent for Labor last week without it shaming Gillard into resigning. 

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Faith of barbarians

Andrew Bolt June 23 2013 (9:24pm)

Sick, that a faith can be said to licence this:

PAKISTAN’S Taliban movement has claimed responsibility after nine foreign mountaineers and their Pakistani guide, on an expedition to one of the world’s highest and most treacherous peaks, were shot dead early today when gunmen stormed their camp in the remote north Pakistan district of Gilgit Baltistan.
Police said the climbers from Russia, China and Ukraine were killed this morning at the Diamir base camp, from where they were planning their ascent of the 8126m Nanga Parbat - the world’s ninth highest peak known as “killer mountain” for the many who have perished trying to climb it since early last century.

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INTEREST SPEECH BY Matt Ridley IN THE UK HOUSE OF LORDS: Must We Go On Making These Mistakes?

House of Lords, 18 June: My Lords, I begin by declaring an interest in coal-mining on my family’s property, as detailed in the register, but I shall not be arguing for coal today but for its most prominent rival, gas, in which I have no interest.

I thank my noble friend the Minister for her courtesy in discussing the Bill and welcome the fact that the Government have grasped the nettle of energy policy, especially on the issue of nuclear power, after the deplorable vacuum left by the previous Government.

However, I am concerned that we are being asked in the Bill to spend £200 billion, mainly on the wrong technologies, and that we will come to regret that. We are being asked to put in place a system that will guarantee far into the future rich rewards for landowners and capitalists, while eventually doubling the price of electricity and asking people to replace gas with electric space heating. That can only drive more people into fuel poverty.

We have heard a lot about the needs of energy investors and producers. We have not heard enough about consumers. If the industry gets an 8% return on the £200 billion to be spent, just two offshore wind farms or one nuclear plant would be declaring profits similar to what British Gas declares today. That will be an uncomfortable position for the Government of the day.

The Bill is a dash for wood and wind—two medieval technologies—and it is twice as big as the dash for gas of the 1990s. Between 6 and 9 gigawatts will have to be built a year for the next 16 years, compared with 2 gigawatts a year during the dash for gas. I am not sure it can be done, let alone affordably. In the case of biomass, the only way we can source enough is by felling trees overseas. As the noble Lord, Lord Berkeley, said, Drax will soon be taking more than 40 trains a day of wood pellets from North America. That is not energy security.

Under the Bill,
“‘low carbon electricity generation’ means electricity generation which in the opinion of the Secretary of State will contribute to a reduction in emissions of greenhouse gases”.

Shades of Humpty Dumpty: a word means just what I choose it to mean. We are being asked to pretend that the most carbon rich fuel of all, wood, is not a source of carbon. According to Princeton University, trees used for biomass electricity generation increase carbon dioxide emissions by 79% compared with coal over 20 years and by 49% over 40 years, even if you replant the forest.

We are through the looking glass.

Offshore wind, meanwhile, is a risky technology with a track record of engineering problems, sky- high costs, disappointing lifespan and problems of decommissioning. At the moment, we generate less than 1% of total energy, or 6% of electricity, from wind, despite all the damage it has already done to our countryside and economy. We are to increase that to something like 30% in just a decade or so, may be more if nuclear is delayed. It is a huge gamble, and if it fails, the only fallback is carbon capture and storage, a technology that has repeatedly failed to meet its promises at all, let alone affordably, a point made earlier by the noble Baroness, Lady Liddell.

Even if this wood and wind dash is possible, under the contract for a different system proposed in this Bill, while better than the renewable obligations that preceded it, the subsidy to renewable energy will quadruple by 2020. That is only the start.

On top of that, there are system costs for balancing the unpredictability of wind; transmission costs for getting wind from remote areas to where it is needed; VAT; the carbon floor price; not to mention the cost of subsiding renewable heat and renewable transport fuels. Hence, at a conservative estimate, the Renewable Energy Foundation thinks that we will be imposing costs of £16 billion a year on our hard-pressed economy for several decades.

Why are we doing this? We are doing this because of four assumptions that were valid in 2010 but, as my noble friend Lord Lawson pointed out, are no longer valid to the same extent. First, we assumed we would not be acting alone, so we would not damage our competitiveness. Instead, not only is there no longer a Kyoto treaty, but China is planning to build 363 coal- fired power stations; India 455. On top of that, the European trading system has collapsed to less than €5 a tonne of carbon. Our carbon floor price is more than three times that: £16 a tonne, rising to £32 a tonne in 2020 and £76 a tonne in 2030. Acting unilaterally in this way does not save carbon emissions. It merely exports them and the jobs go with them. Northumberland’s largest employer, the aluminium smelter at Lynemouth, has closed with the loss of 500 jobs, almost entirely because of carbon policies.

The second assumption behind the Bill was that the cost of gas would rise, thus making the cost of energy rise anyway. The Committee on Climate Change said recently in a report that:
“Consensus projections are that gas prices will rise in future”.

This remark has been described by the utilities team at Liberum Capital as “genuinely amazing” in the light of recent events. Now that we know that gas prices have plummeted in the United States to roughly one-quarter of ours, thanks to shale gas; now that we know that Britain probably has many decades worth of shale gas itself; now that we know that enormous reserves of offshore gas near Israel, Brazil and parts of Africa are going to come on line in years to come; now that we know that conventional gas producers such as Russia and Qatar are facing increasing competition from unconventional and offshore gas; now that we know that methane hydrates on the ocean floor are more abundant than all other fossil fuels put together and that the Japanese are planning to explore them; in short, now that we know we are nowhere near peak gas, it is surely folly to hold our economy hostage to an assumption that gas prices must rise.
We will need the gas anyway.

The intermittent nature of wind means that we will require increasing back-up and we cannot get it from nuclear because it is not responsive enough to fill the lulls when the wind drops. Far from replacing fossil fuels, a dash for wood and wind means a dash for gas too, only this time we will have to subsidise it because the plants will stand idle for most of the time and pay a rising carbon floor price when they do operate.

Having distorted the markets to disastrous effect with subsidies to renewables, we are now being asked, under the capacity market mechanism, to introduce compensating countersubsidies to fossil fuels.

The third assumption was that the cost of renewables would fall rapidly as we rolled them out. This has proved untrue and, indeed, as the Oxford Institute of Energy Studies has shown, the cost curve for renewables inevitably rises as the best sites are used up, not least in the North Sea. I am told by those who work in the offshore wind industry that, at the moment, the industry has every incentive to keep its costs up not down, as it sets out to strike a contract with the Government. They will not have to try very hard. Even at low estimates, offshore wind is stratospherically expensive.

The fourth assumption on which this Bill is based was that the climate would change dangerously and soon. Once again, this assumption is looking much shakier than it did five years ago. The slow rate at which the temperature has been changing over the past 50 years and the best evidence from the top-of-the-atmosphere radiation about climate sensitivity are both very clearly pointing to carbon dioxide having its full greenhouse effect but without significant net positive feedback of the kind on which all the alarm is based.

The noble Baroness, Lady Worthington, and the noble Lord, Lord Stern, both mentioned Professor Myles Allen and they will be aware, therefore, of his recent paper, which found significantly reduced climate sensitivity. If that is the case, the dash to wind and biomass may well continue to do more harm to the environment as well as to the economy for many decades than climate change itself will do.

However, leaving that on one side, as my noble friend Lord Lawson said, the argument against subsidising wind and biomass does not depend on a benign view of climate change. It stands powerfully on its own merits, even if you think dangerous climate change is imminent.

In 1981, my noble friend Lord Lawson, ignoring the prevailing wisdom of the day, as he sometimes does, decided against the predict-and-provide central planning philosophy and instead embraced the idea of letting the market discover the best way to provide electricity. The result was the cheapest and most flexible energy sector of any western country.

We have progressively turned our backs on that. Under this Bill, the location, the technology and the price of each power source is determined by one person—the omniscient Secretary of State. Recent occupants of that position have an unhappy history of not making wise decisions.

Remember ground source heat pumps? They do not work as advertised. Remember electric vehicles? They have been a flop.

Remember biofuels? They have caused rainforest destruction and hunger. Remember the Green Deal? Must we go on making these mistakes?

We have returned to a philosophy of picking winners, or rather, from the point of view of the consumer, of picking losers. Not even just picking losers, but hobbling winners, because of the obstacles we have put in the way of shale gas.

America has cut its carbon emissions by far more than we have, almost entirely because of shale gas displacing coal. By pursuing a strategy that encouraged unabated gas, we could halve emissions and cut bills at the same time. Instead, I very much fear we will find we have spent a fortune to achieve neither.

House of Lords, 18 June 2013

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Holes in the Border As Big As the Holes in Their Amnesty Bill

Just like they did with Obamacare, some in Congress intend to “Pelosi” the amnesty bill. They’ll pass it in order to find out what’s in it. And just like the unpopular, unaffordable Obamacare disaster, this pandering, rewarding-the-rule-breakers, still-no-border-security, special-interests-ridden, 24-lb disaster of a bill is not supported by informed Americans.

I am an ardent supporter of legal immigration. I’m proud that our country is so desirable that it has been a melting pot making a diverse people united as the most exceptional nation on earth for over two centuries. But I join every American with an ounce of common sense insisting that any discussion about immigration must center on a secure border. The amnesty bill before the Senate is completely toothless on border security.

It’s beyond disingenuous for anyone to claim that a vote for this bill is a vote for security. Look no further than the fact that Senator Rubio and amnesty supporters nixed Senator Thune’s amendment that required the feds to finally build part of a needed security fence before moving forward on the status of illegal immigrants who’ve already broken the law to be here. And if shooting down the border fence wasn't proof enough, they blew another chance by killing Senator Paul’s “Trust But Verify” amendment which required the completion of a fence in five years and required Congress to vote on whether the border is actually secure before furthering any immigration measures. And then they blew it yet again, nixing Senator Cornyn’s “Results” amendment, which also required border enforcement standards. Now the Senate’s pro-amnesty crowd is offering a fig leaf to security via the Corker-Hoeven Amendment, but this is really nothing more than empty promises. It’s amnesty right now and border security… eh, well, someday.

If this bill was genuinely concerned with border security, it might include practical solutions for those states that live with the problem every single day. Pass-through grants could be given to border states to actually build a fence. The most responsive and responsible level of government is the most local, and since governors accept pass-throughs all the time, this is a workable solution. We could also free up more federal lands along the border to be privatized. The farmers and ranchers would have a clear incentive to keep their private property secure from the flow of illegal immigrants and/or other illegal activities trafficked across the border onto land they’d cultivate. There are plenty of other commonsense solutions, but this bill isn’t about fixing problems; it’s about amnesty at all costs.

When every commonsense, concrete, and verifiable measure to secure the border is stripped away, despite politicians’ promises, what are we supposed to rely on to ensure that our currently unsecured border will be fixed in the future? If D.C. expects us to just sit back and “trust” them despite our permanent political class and Washington bureaucrats proving themselves so very untrustworthy, then I have a bridge to somewhere in Alaska to sell them. Our government is awash in one scandal after another involving blatant lies and violations of our basic liberties, and the leader of the pack ventures out on one road trip after another to avoid accountability.

Just like they did for Obamacare, the permanent political class is sugaring this bill with one goody after another to entice certain senators to vote for it. Look no further than page 983 of the bill, which contains a special visa exemption for foreign seafood workers in the 49th state despite huge unemployment numbers in the American workforce. This is obviously a hidden favor designed to buy the votes of Alaska Senators Murkowski and Begich.

And just like Obamacare, this amnesty bill fails on every level of economic sanity and sane reform. It offers no solutions. It will barely slow the flow of illegal immigration, which means we can expect millions and millions of new illegal aliens in coming years. Sort of what happened when we passed amnesty in 1986 without securing our borders first.

According to the CBO, the bill won’t stop illegal immigration, but it will drive down wages for average hardworking Americans. These would be the same blue-collar working class voters of every ethnicity who chose to sit home in 2012 instead of turning out to vote in the swing states we needed to carry in order to stop Barack Obama’s promised “fundamental transformation” of America. I note this just as a helpful reminder to those who believe the hyperventilated new hype claiming that conservatives need to support this bill in order to win future elections. That’s 100% wrong. The crony capitalists in D.C. and their corporatist friends on Wall Street might think this amnesty boondoggle is a great idea, but the average American worker in our middle class who'll soon see lower wages is the one left out in the cold, along with those hard working immigrants who followed the rules and are working here legally.

Passing this bill with an unsecured border and within a growing welfare state under Barack Obama is economic insanity. Have people already forgotten that our bankrupt government is running up massive unsustainable deficits every year? We can’t afford to pay the piper now, much less the trillions of dollars more in welfare and entitlements for the millions who are here illegally today that will be granted this bill’s benefits. According to the Heritage Foundation, the bill provides only a temporary delay in granting illegal immigrants eligibility for all U.S. welfare and entitlement programs. We’re looking at an explosion of costs in the very near future. There is no way to pay for the added untold millions of new enrollees in these growing government programs. Pass this, Congress, and Obama will have succeeded in fundamentally transforming America.

Again, I am supportive of legal immigration and am as sympathetic as the next person to the aspirations of people who come here to work hard and live a better life than the poverty and unfree environments they left behind. So many are drawn here because we are an exceptional nation where freedom provides an equal opportunity for everyone to work hard and make something of themselves. But a key part of American exceptionalism is the rule of law. Border security is fundamental to the rule of law, as is incentivizing those who follow the legal path to citizenship instead of punishing them by promoting lawbreakers. This is non-negotiable.

It’s time our lawmakers remember that we are a sovereign nation of laws. This bill ignores that, and ignores the will of the people. The continued porous border goes against what politicians assured us was in this mountain-high bill, and in typical D.C. style it flies in the face of what many politicians campaigned on. I heard their campaign promises. You heard them, too.

It’s time for concerned Americans to flood our legislators’ phone lines with the input they need to hear from We the People. Join the mama grizzlies who are rearing up tirelessly to swat away false claims that amnesty is a good thing. Michelle Malkin rightly said the issue is not secure the border first, it’s “secure the border. Period.” Laura Ingraham and Ann Coulter have also offered superb warnings on amnesty’s economic impacts to the middle class.

As the Senate moves to pass amnesty, the only bright spot in this travesty is the rallying revolution we can look forward to. For just as opposition to Obamacare became a rallying cry for the 2010 midterm elections, opposition to this fundamentally transforming amnesty bill will galvanize the grassroots in next year’s elections. And 2014 is just around the corner.

- Sarah Palin

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Family and the State in Early Modern Revenge Drama

Economies of Vengeance

By Chris McMahon

Published 22nd December 2011 by Routledge – 250 pages


In this book, McMahon considers Early Modern revenge plays from a political science perspective, paying particular attention to the construction of family and state institutions. Plays set for close study are The Spanish Tragedy, Hamlet, The Revenger’s Tragedy, The Malcontent and The Duchess of Malfi. The plays are read as unique events occupying positions in historical process concerning the privatisation of the family (by means of symbolism and concrete household strategies such as budgeting and surveillance) and the subsequent appropriation of the family and its methods by the state.
The effect is that family becomes an unofficial organ of the state. This process, however, also involves the reform of the state along lines demanded by the private family. McMahon’s critical method, derived from the theory of Bourdieu, Bataille, and Girard, maps capital transactions to reveal emotionally charged, often idiosyncratic responses to issues of shared concern. Such issues include state corruption, the management of women, the performance of roles according to gender, the uses of surveillance, and the ethics of sacrifice.

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However, it should be pointed out that Rudd's '07 success was based on lies .. claiming to be an economic conservative, claiming to have a fairer way of treating asylum seekers and claiming to have better IR laws Not only were they lies then, but it is apparent they have no such policy now - ed===

It's still snowing nicely here. 21cm of new snow. The place is looking better by the minute! Two happy new staff heading home after a morning carving up the fresh delights. Perisher
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"The uniqueness of anti-Semitism lies in the fact that no other people in the world have ever been charged simultaneously with alienation from society and with cosmopolitanism, with being capitalistic exploiters and also revolutionary communist advocators. The Jews were accused of having an imperious mentality, and at the same time they're the people of the book. They're accused of being militant aggressors, at the same time as being cowardly pacifists. With being a chosen people, and also having an inferior human nature. With both arrogance and timidity. With both extreme individualism and community adherence. With being guilty of the crucifixion of Jesus and at the same time held to account for the invention of Christianity... Everything and its opposite becomes a reason for anti-Semitism."
This is how irrational anti-Semitism is. Whatever you hate, that's what the Jew is.

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Stopping by Woods on a Snowy Evening
by Robert Frost

Whose woods these are I think I know.
His house is in the village though;
He will not see me stopping here
To watch his woods fill up with snow.

My little horse must think it queer
To stop without a farmhouse near
Between the woods and frozen lake
The darkest evening of the year.

He gives his harness bells a shake
To ask if there is some mistake.
The only other sound's the sweep
Of the easy wind and downy flake.

The woods are lovely, dark, and deep,
But I have promises to keep,
And miles to go before I sleep,
And miles to go before I sleep.

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