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Some thoughts about mooted changes to Media ownership law in Australia



People are creatures of habit and it is only that so many people are habituated to buying the news papers that any are still being sold at all. Just take any kind of commute on public transport and consider how many people are reading a paper and how many are staring at a screen instead. Some certainly may be playing games or even watching video but I expect that they will be out numbering those who are still reading dead tree editions of the MSM.

Then there is the things in the paper that people buy them for, most papers are not exclusively about politics and current affairs anyway, so some readers will be buying the paper for its coverage of sport, lifestyle or even just for the crossword puzzles.  My point is that the political classes (in particular those from the left ) just look at the raw sales figured and they think that every reader of the Herald Sun is in the thrall of Rupert Murdoch and that the owners dictate to their readers directing their opinions. The reality is that all media entities write to their audience. If they don’t their audience wither away quite quickly.  With the coming of the internet this is even more how things work Online entities are even more in an endless quest for readers so you have to play to what your readers want rather than thinking that you can manipulate their thinking. I have been writing a blog for nearly a decade now and I have noticed just how quickly particular readers flit in and out its the same now with the way that people read things online from the likes of Murdoch, Fairfax or even the Guardian People don’t just get their news from one source any more no matter what the subject is they will read what several sources say about it and then make up their mind. This behaviour is the same when it comes to broadcast TV people flit form one channel to another seeking different perspectives. My argument is simple, if the media  consumers have changed their habits then perhaps there is something in the notion that media diversity laws from the last century should perhaps reflect those changes as well.

Cheers Comrades


Rudd’s rant – so f*cking what?

This video, that’s making all the headlines, was actually made some time ago, when Kevin Rudd was still PM. It’s a ‘blooper tape’ of Rudd attempting to record a message for the Chinese New Year, getting frustrated with it and letting fly with a few adjectives.

Obviously he knew the camera was still running so you’d reckon he felt pretty sure it’d be secure and not become public. It’s equally obvious that whoever posted it did so in an attempt to damage Rudd’s chances of retaking the leadership from Julia Gillard. At least that’s what’s implied in this Age article ‘Rudd row gets dirty’:

A Labor insider said the video could only have come from the Prime Minister’s office, which stores such clips. If true, that would suggest a bitter escalation of the leadership crisis between Ms Gillard and the Foreign Affairs Minister.

Gillard, of course, denies it came from her office. Then again, she also denied that the stirring up of the tent embassy people on Australia Day came from her office too. I reckon this will backfire on her just like that event did.

Quite frankly, I don’t think there’s anything in the video for Rudd to be ashamed of. We all know that, as PM, he had a reputation for not suffering fools and throwing the odd tantrum. So what? He wouldn’t be the first PM to bang his fist on a table and come out with a few expletives to describe the idiots around him. Keating comes to mind. So does Hawke.

The reality is that good leaders don’t have to be Saints or even liked by their underlings. This is politics and sycophantic nice guys do not good Prime Ministers make. I also like the fact that Rudd is not afraid to show his feelings about – and dislike of – the Chinese:

Mr Rudd has previously used disparaging remarks in relation to Chinese officials. It was reported in June 2010 that he had privately told journalists in Copenhagen amid climate change talks: “Those Chinese f*ckers are trying to rat-f*ck us

Way to go Kevin. Bring him back … please!

Bob Brown’s Paranoia about the USA

If  Greens like to think that they are a party of the future why is it that their thinking is so much in the past? Take Bob Brown’ intention to make a fool of himself when we have the long awaited visit from Barrack Obama. Not that making a fool of himself is anything new for our Bob, he does so every time he goes on like pork chop about just about everything. The thing that I find truly stupid is that he really seems to believe that being a snivelling coward on a global scale is in  Australia’s best interest.

The far from Christ like Bob Brown (click for link)

The global reality is that this country won’t be attacked by China or by our nearest neighbour either because we make our long-standing alliance with the USA stronger and more overt Islamic Jihadists will still hate us and consider us a viable target (think of the bombing of our embassy in Indonesia and the Bali bombings) so nothing changes in any real sense. The Chinese clearly realise that they can achieve the hegemony that they so clearly crave through the use of their factories and their under-priced currency, Indonesian lacks the ability to invade, or even attack us, India well its far to obsessed with its eternal struggle with Pakistan to even consider attacking us. So just where does Bob see the “increased threat” coming from?

Maybe the Greens leader has been enjoying too much of another kind of “Greens” and that smoke coming from the chimney of his cottage was not in fact coming from a heating fire at all. There must be some reason for his silliness …

Cheers Comrades


The only way that they can even dream of propagating the faith is with the point of a bayonet on the barrel of a Green gun

Everybody Dance Now!!!!!

I have been saying for ages that there is a very large measure of totalitarian imperialism in the imagination and intentions  of followers of the Green Religion and I found it revealing that a piece in today’s Age would be so frank about advocating the use of force to make sure that the requirements of the  climate change catechism are met  by those of countries who don’t want to fall into the right rhythmically approved climate dance.

If we are to make peace with the climate, we must first win the struggle against the carbon-industrial complex and its proxy wars (over climate science and renewable baseload electricity). We only deserve to win if we are prepared to enforce climate security through trade sanctions or, ultimately, force itself. We need a powerful international environment court to remove the social licence to pollute. The climate polluter that undermines clean technology is the Napoleon of our era.

A coalition for climate protection will be able to take action without waiting endlessly for an impossible 100 per cent consensus.

Our best and brightest economists will be able to redesign trade law to fairly reward those inside and penalise those outside the treaty, in the most economically efficient way possible.

Nothing short of this will generate momentum towards zero emissions in the developed world and low emissions in the developing world and China. An enforceable regime of climate law will, like 19th-century treaties of Vienna, require an alliance based around at least some great powers. But staying with a non-binding treaty model means we are all unhappy and the planet is doomed. Good diplomacy is, as always, about taking what you can get.

Dan Cass was the Australian Conservation Foundation’s official observer at the Earth Summit in Rio in 1992. He is a lobbyist.


There is a certain desperation among the Profit$ of the faithful because the credulity of the public is in such serious decline that the only way that they can even dream of propagating the faith is with the point of a bayonet on the barrel of a Green gun. Hmm does anyone remember that Lenin said once  “all power comes from the barrel of a gun”? well its seems that those purveyors of this ideology are at last being honest enough to say in public what has been obvious for a very long time; if you can’t convince people that what you say is true then they will just have to be forced to believe it or else!

Cheers Comrades

the dance man Pictures, Images and Photos

Half a million page views at the Sandpit

I know that statistical miles stones are really meaningless but that does not stop you feeling pretty good when you reach them. Well if you keep an eye on the hit counter at the bottom of the page some time today I expect that you will see the counter tick over t0 the magical “500,000” mark . That is pretty good for a modest blog written as a bit of fun .

Thanks very much to all of those who take the time to read what I and my friends put up  here and a special thanks to all of those who take the time to comment and argue with what is on this web-page. Commentary and argument is the life blood of blogging and long may it keep pumping at the Sandpit.

Cheers Comrades

This was bound to happen sooner or later

I must say that this sad event shows that the state government is not really that serious about protecting the Great Barrier Reef, so for the cost of insisting that ships are under the guidance of a pilot we now face a truly devastating environmental disaster.


Premier Anna Bligh yesterday said “a very serious” investigation would be launched into how the coal carrier came to be more than 15 nautical miles away from the nearest shipping lane in a restricted zone.

Maritime Safety Queensland had concerns the ship could break apart, which would most likely result in an oil slick reaching the coast at Shoalwater Bay. “Where the ship is at the moment, it would be very difficult for it to actually sink because it is on the ground, but it is in danger of breaking its main structures and breaking apart, which is a serious situation,” Maritime Safety Queensland general manager Patrick Quirk said.

The grounding has raised questions about maritime safety around the marine park after it was revealed the ship was not required to carry a pilot and was not being tracked at the time of the accident. Mr Quirk said the Shen Neng 1 could have been warned of the danger if a second Vessel Traffic Service – the marine equivalent of air traffic control – had been in the area.

What precisely was the captain thinking ? In these days of GPS and modern navigation aids how on earth could he have been so far off course?

So obviously the next step would have to be working out a way to take off the nearly 1000 tons of heavy fuel oil that this ship has aboard followed by its cargo… I don’t know if that is even possible. But one thing that we all know is that all levels of government are responsible for this and if they do not make a very big effort to digitus extractus then this disaster is going to get worse by many orders of magnitude.

Angry Comrades


Its all about activating the guilt chip in the heads of the latte sippers

The guilt chip is clearly evident in this Latte sippers brain. It is the one that you can see right at the front.

Warministas love to counter the citation of extreme winter conditions (as proof that the world is not warming) with the suggestion that it is only “weather” and that “weather is not Climate“. Personally i have always thought that such a distinction is rather spurious. Spurious in the same way that saying that the millimetre marks on a tape measure are not a measurement in the same way that the metre marks are. It is all a matter of scale. Despite the Warministas denouncing any citation of any weather event that contradicts their argument they are still rather fond of citing weather events that fit with their own prognostications

The Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change based the claims on an unpublished report that had not been subjected to routine scientific scrutiny – and ignored warnings from scientific advisers. The report’s author later withdrew the claim because the evidence was too weak.

The link was central to demands at last month’s Copenhagen climate summit by African nations for compensation of $US100 billion from the rich nations.

However, the IPCC knew in 2008 that the link could not be proved but did not alert world leaders, who have used weather extremes to bolster the case for action on climate change.

Kevin Rudd last November linked weather extremes to the debate over the government’s emissions trading scheme.

“We will feel the effects of climate change fastest and hardest, and therefore we must act this week, and the government will be doing everything possible to make sure that can occur,” the Prime Minister said at the time.

British Climate Change Minister Ed Miliband has suggested floods – such as those in Bangladesh in 2007 – could be linked to global warming.

US President Barack Obama said last year: “More powerful storms and floods threaten every continent.”

Last month British Prime Minister Gordon Brown told parliament that the financial agreement at Copenhagen “must address the great injustice that . . . those hit first and hardest by climate change are those that have done least harm”.

The IPCC has now been forced to reassess its report linking extreme weather to climate change.

There is a clear dissonance here between the “weather is not climate” mantra and the “weather events prove Global Warming is happening” rhetoric that we are getting from The likes Of Obama and Brother Number One and it is obvious to me that the rhetoric is intended to activate the guilt chips in the heads of the worlds progressives this enables the aforementioned leaders to bring about fundamental changes to our society by stealth. Changes to the energy economy and changes to the world’s political institutions. But then hasn’t that been the desire of religion since men began to draw pictures on the stone walls of their caves? Like the measuring tape I mentioned earlier it is all a matter of scale and finding the marks on the tape that fit the liturgy.
Oh yeah its also another reason to think that the UN in general and the IPCC in particular is as useless as titties on a bull.
Cheers Comrades

A lead injection for his trouble

The regime in China is obviously brutal and essentially totalitarian and I have no love for its so called justice system but it makes no secret of its willingness to execute criminals even if they are not Chinese citizens. Smuggling 4kg of Heroin is not a trivial offence in any jurisdiction but I find it very hard to believe that it is worthy of a capital sanction. The Chinese obviously consider the crime worthy of the ultimate punishment.

Family members said that they hoped China would show clemency because, they say, Mr Shaikh suffers from bipolar disorder that makes him mentally incompetent to understand fully what is happening to him.

Akmal Shaikh was said to have been duped into being a drug mule due to his mental state

His daughter, Leilla Horsnell, said she was not optimistic. She told the BBC: “I’d like to be hopeful, but time just seems to be running out.”

She said it was a good thing that the Chinese authorities had kept from her father the information that he faced execution tomorrow until just 24 hours before the sentence was to be carried out. “And so I don’t think him being told would mean anything … it might make it worse if he was aware of what was happening.”She said it was unclear how far his mental state had deteriorated. “We do know in one of the appeals he insisted on giving his own statements and he couldn’t even speak properly, and what he was saying wasn’t making much sense.”

Two cousins, Soohail Shaikh and Nasir Shaikh were accompanied by British consular officials when they visited Mr Shaikh at a secure hospital in Urumqi, capital of the restive, mainly Muslim Xinjiang region, this morning.

I have no doubt that by the time this post has been published that Akmal Shaikh will have been executed , the Chinese have repeatedly shown that they are indifferent to what anyone else thinks about the way that they provide “justice” in thier country. However it seems to me that the argument that because Akmal Shaikh has bi-polar disorder he would not have been competent to understand that smuggling heroin  was wrong or that countries like China may give you a bullet in the back of the head if they catch you trying to do it. As soon as you suggest that someone has any kind of mental illness many people think that it is a “get out of jail free card”, Personally I think that the sort of disorder is important because not every type of mental illness makes someone incapable of appreciating the gravity of their actions.

I suspect is that the family are holding on to the mental illness idea because then they can maintain the belief that Akmal Shaikh is still worthy of their love, and that he does not deserve his fate.

Akmal Shaikh did the crime  and by now he has paid the price so the lesson to be learned here is don’t be a stupid as this chap and you won’t get a lead injection for your trouble.

Cheers Comrades


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