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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


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

Democracy has spoken in Holland

The results in the Dutch election are most interesting , most especially with the very strong result for Geert Wilders and his Freedom party.

But I can’t help wondering just how pleased my learned friend will be at the news because the reason  (apart from its policies being popular) that Geert Wilders party is now is such a strong position is the fact that Holland has proportional representation, so popular support for his policies has been translated into his party being in the running to be part of the next Dutch government.

I am just waiting for someone to whine about how this is a terrible result. But if you want to argue that PR is an unmitigated good thing then a result like this has to be accepted and even celebrated. After all this is a  most democratic result.

Cheers Comrades


Another hit on the credibility of the IPCC

Sinking: The IPCC wrongly said half the Netherlands was below sea level

This post will undoubtedly upset those poor Warministas who have been reliant on  the ascendency of their faith as proof of the rightness of their belief. Put simply the heat is going out of the Warminista message and more and more people are turning their backs upon the cries of “repent Ye climate sinners!”  If the trend evident in this survey is sustained then I reckon that the Warminista faith will be history by this time next year!

A growing number of Britons are sceptical about global warming, a poll has revealed.

It found around 26 per cent – a rise of 10 per cent in just three months – do not believe the world is getting hotter.

And it showed that the proportion of those who think climate change is a reality has fallen from 83 per cent to 75 per cent since a similar survey was carried out in November.

These results come as yet another aspect of the last IPCC report is found to contain a significant error of fact, further undermining the credibility of the organisation. (as if it have mush credibility left after the recent bloopers that have been discovered)

The new error appears in the second volume of the IPCC’s 4th Assessment Report, a 980-page document which predicts the likely impacts of climate change.

It warns: ‘The Netherlands is an example of a country highly susceptible to both sea-level rise and river flooding because 55 per cent of its territory is below sea level where 60 per cent of its population lives and 65 per cent of its Gross National Product (GNP) is produced.’

Although the Dutch National Bureau for Environmental Analysis has taken responsibility for the mistake, the error has fuelled criticism that key parts of the panel’s report uses unreliable information and unscientific reports.

I have lost count of the times that one Warminista or another have genuflected to the IPCC as if it is the embodiment of divine wisdom when it comes to the climate of our planet But yet again we find that this tome is unreliable even it the way that it describes the way that the planet actually is. If we can’t rely upon the IPCC to get the details of the planet’s current geography right then how can we rely upon the predictions it makes about the future?

Cheers 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

Take them at their word

SimitarI “love” the way that my Latte sipping friends want to insist that Islam and its nutters do not want to conquer the world . Mainly because it seems to me to be a valiant imitation of the ostrich’s defensive head burying behaviour. The fact of the matter is that among the motivated believers  a world dominated by their faith is what they imagine on their pillows every night, they desire a homogenised world where the only vision of the deity is their own. Fortunately for the world there is  a greater percentage of the faithful who are rather more interested in the welfare of their families than in building the caliphate.

None the less  I think that it is wise to take note of what these nutters actually say that they want to do, in fact I think that we should take them at their word when they say they want to rule the world:

“There is no doubt that the huge growth in the population of Asia, together with its economic and military development, will make Australia into lebensraum — to use the European term,” writes Mr Hamid. Lebensraum, meaning living space, was a term used by Nazi Germany as a motivation for territorial conquest.

Asia, Mr Hamid writes, is facing a population explosion “while Australia is nearly empty of people, apart from scattered groups of white residents”.

Residents of “the Israeli outpost” at the other end of Asia are likewise warned to return to their countries of origin or face an “unequal conflict”.

These warnings, however, are marginal to the central vision offered in the article — the emergence of a vibrant pan-Asian identity in which Islam, and the Taliban in particular, constitutes a powerful moral and cultural force but not an exclusive one. Its emphasis on pan-Asian political identity rather than pan-Islamic sets it apart from al-Qa’ida ideology. The Taliban article does not call for jihad, although it hints at the possibility of “peaceful Islamic expansion” and the linchpin role in the “Asian Age”, as the author terms it, is ceded to non-Islamic China.

Western power is fading fast, he writes, “to the benefit of Asian giants, and first and foremost among them the colossal economic and human power of China”.

Of course  the reality of our geography make a storming of our beaches most unlikely, and even less likely to succeed, but the real threat comes from those we allow into the country who share  the same vision of the world as Mr Hamid then actively seeking , as Jean Luc would say,  to “make it so” .  The best way to avoid this happening  would have to be ensuring that all of our people have a primary identity as Australians and that we should  discourage the creation of insular ghettoes as they have failed to do in places like the UK and the Netherlands. Just look at the social problems there and you can see what we can expect in the not too distant future if we don’t address the problem now.

A lot of the problem is a side effect of the information revolution. When my family came here in the early sixties communication with my homeland was either slow or too  expensive. There was no choice but to become fully invested in this country. Now the net  and cheap telephony makes the sort of disconnection form the homeland that any  migrant needs to fully commit to the new life almost impossible and we see too many people who are here physically but their loyalties  remain entirely with their old life and their old culture with all of its old  baggage .

Am I the only one who thinks that this is the  problem?
Cheers Comrades


The end of air travel

I am delighted to announce that there will be no further air travel and that all aircraft will be decommissioned and used for other more socially beneficial purposes. The story I quote to day give just one example of how these death traps of the sky can be put to good safe use.

The safe way to use an aircraft, as a class room.
The safe way to use an aircraft, as a class room.
Back a bit, back a bit. The plane is edged gingerly past the glass windows of the school
Back a bit, back a bit. The plane is edged gingerly past the glass windows of the school

Head teacher David Lawrence said the plane will be fitted with its wings and kitted out with whiteboards, desks and laptops to make it a ‘user-friendly learning space’ for a class of 30 pupils.

Of course this decision will be something of an inconvenience for those who will become unemployed as a result But the leaders of the G20 (who are responsible for the decision) have released a statement to the effect that  that the reality of climate change has made this decision absolutely imperative.

Well how about that ? An end to air travel and politicians being honest for once.
Cheers Comrades

Boeing 737-800 √√√√√

I know that I have an anti-flying reputation and I can assure you all that my attitude to air travel has not changed but this is the second air crash in recent weeks that has left me gob-smacked.

Emergency workers gather near the cockpit of the Turkish Airlines 737 in Amsterdam. Picture: Reuters

Emergency workers gather near the cockpit of the Turkish Airlines 737 in Amsterdam. Picture: Reuters

AMSTERDAM: Nearly all 134 people aboard a Turkish Airlines plane, which broke into three pieces when it crash landed in a Dutch field, have survived.

At least nine people died when the Boeing 737-800 crashed short of the runway while attempting to land at Amsterdam’s busy Schiphol Airport.

About 50 people were injured, 25 of them seriously, when the plane landed in the muddy field just metres from homes. Dutch NOS television said about 50 people escaped unharmed from the wreck.

No fire appeared to have been sparked on the plane, which left Istanbul’s Ataturk Airport at 8.22am (5.22pm AEDT) bound for Amsterdam. Schiphol Airport spokesman Rudd Wecer said the cause of the crash, which happened in normal weather conditions, was unknown.

Turkish Airlines chief executive officer Candan Karlitekin said in Ankara there were 127 passengers – including a baby – and seven crew aboard.

The reason that I am so pleasantly surprised is firstly there was no fire,  a blessing in any air crash and secondly the new generation aircraft has not disintegrated on impact and I suspect that that is down to the use of light weight composites in the machines construction. Both of these factors must have made a significant contribution to the survivability for those on board.

OK, none of this is enough to get me in the air but I will give very big tick to the engineers at Boeing on behalf of those who do fly in their planes.

Cheers Comrades 😉

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