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An open letter to Victoria Rollison

Dear Victoria Rollison

As one of those who voted for the Abbott Government I feel duty bound to address the points that you have made in your open letter because I do believe that you are very much mistaken in your missive:

I’m seriously unhappy with you. You might think that you understand why this is the case. You might think that I’m disappointed because the Labor Party is no longer in power, and it would be a lie for me to say this doesn’t contribute to my dissatisfaction. But what’s more important, and what’s driven me to write this letter to you all, is something far larger than the people who get elected. My issue is with you. You personally, and your greed and your selfishness, and your decision to put a fractional increase in your electricity bill ahead of your responsibility to provide a sustainable future for my planet. The planet I live on. The planet I am hoping will provide my children and grandchildren with a place to live. Yes, I’m hoping you haven’t contributed to the death of my offspring. This is how seriously outraged by you I am. This is personal.

It was neither greed no selfishness that motivated me to vote for the Abbott government, it was a profound disappointment with the six years of labor government, I was disappointed when its two leading lights Rudd and Gillard    dissipated their electoral capital with their  eternal self serving power struggle> I was also horribly disappointed by the fact that Labor never seemed to be able to manage  even any of their sometimes laudable ideas properly into fruition> But when it comes to the Climate change policy they pursued  I was angry at both the needless impost upon the cost of living and the clear futility of their grand plan. If the AGW theory is correct nothing that Labor did and that we are all collectively paying for is going to make a scrap of difference to the future of the planet.

So you probably noticed, or more likely didn’t unless Kyle Sandilands/Stefanovic mentioned it, that approximately 60,000 Australians turned out on Sunday to rally for action to combat climate change. You know, climate change, that thing that you deny, discount, laugh at, and generally ignore every time you have the opportunity. And yes, if you’re an Abbott voter, I do believe it’s fair to put you in this bucket. If you even begin to tell me you want action to reduce the catastrophic effects of climate change and that you also voted for the man who vowed to ‘axe the tax’, the very mechanism that was reducing Australian emissions and contributing to a world-wide acceptance of the need to do something about climate change, I will tell you you’re a moron. A dangerous moron. And this leads me to my reason for writing you this letter. I want you to know that I’m not just pissed off with you. I’m furious* (*not a strong enough word). And I’m not pandering to you anymore. This is a call for those who share my anger not to pander to you either.

I was well aware of the rallies you mention Victoria, but I think that you need to put the numbers that you are so proud of into perspective. We have more than twenty million people living in this country which means that as a proportion of our national population the turnout was truly miniscule. You may or may not be aware of this but the claims of a pending climate apocalypse have been rather oversold and like the boy who cried wolf its most vehement proponents are less than credible anymore. Like you I care very much about the fate of the planet that we share and will leave to our offspring and I’m even angry too. But I’m angry that so much effort and treasure has been wasted on the futility of mitigation rather than making us so much more flexible in our thinking and so much more capable of adapting to any changes that actually occur to the climate.

I know what you’re thinking. You’re thinking that climate change rally-ers have been out in the streets before, with similar rallies calling for similar action to do something about climate change. Yes, we’ve been out before. But I think it’s time things changed. I think it’s time to talk about what’s happened in Australia. I think it’s time to call you all out for what you have done. Australia had action and emissions were reducing. But now Abbott is undoing it, because you supported him to do this. Because you elected Abbott, you have brought about an outcome which equates to you personally choosing a few dollars in your pocket over the safety of the planet. You don’t seem to care about your taxpayer dollars being wasted on Abbott’s ludicrous tree-planting exercise, Direct Action. Nor do you care that every credible scientist – and most economists – know that this policy will not work. This waste of money scheme is going to end up costing you far more personally, through your tax dollars, than the Carbon Price would ever have cost you. And no one has yet been able to explain to me in words that make sense how you processed this decision into a rational thought.

Yes I understand that its the same people who turn up to such events and I even share some of your cynicism about Tony Abbott’s Direct Action plan but it at least has a chance to do some good for our environment even if the AGW theory is a load of old cobblers. That said there is no chance at all that the Labor scheme will make a scrap of difference to either the climate or to the environment in general. I just can’t understand why you cling so desperately to such a futile scheme that will enrich spivs and shysters.

I actually think it’s pointless that we, those who want action, rally quietly in huge numbers and then go back to our day jobs on Monday and tell our work colleagues that we were there at the rally and how it’s going to help. We’re talking to work colleagues who, in their majority, have used their democratic vote to empower a man who everyone with half-a-brain knows is a climate change denier, for the personally convenient purpose of maintaining his friendship/donor relationship with the likes of Gina Rinehart.

The thing is Victoria you have to want more than just “action”, you have to want “effective action” and there was no way under heaven that the Labor scheme could have ever given you that. All it could have ever been was an act of climate piety, an empty indulgence that would make an almost immeasurably small change to the climate even if the science is right and the Jury is out on that point.

But that’s the thing about Tony Abbott. You people, the ones who voted for him, invented him. Like a disturbingly incoherent Frankenstein thug, you needed someone to tell you that climate change wasn’t a problem. You needed someone to maintain your comfortable status quo, to tell you that your pastimes of shopping and buying credits on your Candy Crush iPhone game were perfectly justifiable ways to spend your spare time and money. You needed this man to give you a reason to do nothing, and to campaign against action when someone tried to do something about the biggest problem our society has ever, and will ever, encounter, to make you feel like you’re not doing something wrong by doing nothing. But that’s the thing. You’re not just doing nothing. You’ve given Tony Abbott a mandate to undo the only action we had. The action we, the responsible Australians, rallied for. You’re the handbrake, you’re the ‘control z’ that could destroy the lives of my future offspring. You don’t care that people are already dying in countries you’ve heard of but never visited, as long as your electricity bill isn’t more than it was last month, which it probably isn’t because you spent half the month in Bali drinking 50c beers and buying $1 copies of Breaking Bad Season 2 so your plasma TV wasn’t on for 18 hours a day. And this is the point I want to make.

The simple truth is Victoria that there are a lot of people who voted for the Abbott government who did so out of entirely altruistic reasons, we just want the government to soundly administer its programs and departments. We want our government to put the interests of Australians ahead of the making futile acts of climate piety. Nor are we all crazy slaves to consumerism many of us tread just as lightly on the planet as you yourself do. Some of us would never even consider taking the sort of overseas holidays you and so many of the participants and your climate rallies  have on your CVs.

Climate change is not a debate. You have no right to an opinion on climate change. You’re not a climate scientist, I can guarantee it. Climate change is happening. It’s killing people now. Whether you like it or not in your comfortable little greed fest, we’re having more regular and more severe storms, droughts, floods and fires across the planet because of climate change, right now. People like me don’t go to rallies because we have nothing better to do on a weekend. And personally, I’m sick of the attitude that we, as a community of people who want to do something, should pander to people like you who refuse to listen, who refuse to understand what scientists are saying (note I say ‘understand’ and not ‘believe’ because this is not a fairy in the garden that you can choose to believe in or not). This is real. And it’s affecting those who want to do something about it just as much as it’s affecting you. But since you voted for Abbott, the coal companies are back in charge. Now we have a government who doesn’t even bother to attend the Warsaw climate conference, where the world is discussing plans to do something. Now we have an environment minister referencing Wikipedia to justify his denial.

This is where you go oh so wrong Victoria, everything in science is open to debate, without that its just not science, it is then nothing but a sort of religious dogma and it does otherwise intelligent people no good service to so misunderstand the principles of science and the scientific method. likewise it does you no good to inappropriately insist that only the priests (climate scientists) of your climate faith  have any right to an opinion on the changes that you wish to impose upon our society and the whole world. We live in a democracy Victoria and the people have spoken, you seem to be implicitly arguing for some sort of totalitarian dictatorship to “save the planet” would you really want to live in such a society? To have every aspect of your life controlled for the sake of the planet?

So this is my statement: I’m not pandering to you anymore. I’m not pretending it’s a good use of my time to try to convince you of the completely and utterly proven fact of climate change. Polite diplomacy has not got us anywhere. You need to know loud and clear that you’re the problem. And you need to take responsibility for what you and your selfish lifestyle, and your prioritising of dollars on your electricity bill have done to the continuation of the planet we all live on, the same place where we all hope to see our children live without being destroyed by your selfishness and greed.

The planet will endure well enough without the Carbon tax et al, in fact the Australian economy and environment may well do better without out its odious burden. But beyond that I share your wish for us all to tread lightly on the planet. Like you I eschew the consumer treadmill In fact I am personally a great practitioner of the the mend and make do school of thought so all of my furniture and many appliances are on their second lives. The thing is such frugality is sadly less common from people of all political percussions, and it should be an underlying imperative for all of us.

Your legacy is a country which convinced other wavering, weak societies that there was no point taking action, because it would just be un-done if they did. You will be remembered, and studied by future generations as the people who had the chance to do something, but were too selfish, mean, greedy and self-centered to sacrifice just a small amount for the benefit of the future. I don’t give a shit if this statement upsets you. You deserve to feel upset. You deserve to feel like total cowards. You needed to think of people in the future, and all you could think of was an insignificant sacrifice on your electricity bill which might affect how much, ever so slightly, you can afford to spend on your lifestyle today. You could have just made the easy and smart decision to cut down on your electricity usage, which was really the point of the Carbon Price in the first place. But this was an inconvenience to you. Your mindset is a complete outrage. You’ve democratically elected the most dangerous person you could possibly have voted for at a tipping point in the future of humanity, and you argue in favor of this disastrous decision with all your energy whenever you can. This is beyond wrong. Your behaviour is reprehensible and it’s time we told you so.

Where your argument falls down is in your misplaced faith in the ability of humanity as a whole to consistently work together for a single purpose not just for a sort time but forever. Surely with your interest in politics and history you must realise that such cooperation is just totally at odds with the totality of human existence?  We are by a very nature a quarrelsome creature who just can not play together well for long enough to make any Global scheme work. So you are just going to have to face the reality that the plan can n0t be made to work. Which means we have no choice but to adapt if and when the climate changes.  There is just  no point in doing anything else.

Next time you’re in the tea room at work equating climate change to the Y2K bug, I think someone should tell you you’re a blight on our future. Next time you spout your bullshit about the science not being settled on my Twitter stream, or you write loony comments on my blog to justify why you don’t want to do anything about climate change, I’m not going to engage in a debate with you as this just gives you the idea you’ve got some credibility in the argument. You have no credibility. I’m going to tell you you’re selfish and greedy. And I’m going to bring up this conversation with you rather than letting you ignore it. I’m calling on others who are as concerned as I am about the path this country has chosen not to pander to you anymore either. This is not a debate. This is you choosing to play Russian roulette with the lives of my unborn children. It’s not time for me to try to convince you to do the right thing because you’ve already had the chance to do the right thing and you spectacularly didn’t do it. Those who are worried about climate change aren’t going to get anywhere by being nice to you people. It’s time to get angry. It’s time to explain to you the gigantic error you have made. You voted for Tony Abbott. Now you have to live with what that means. It’s time to pop your comfortable little bubble. You’ve done the wrong thing.

Well I actually have children Victoria and I can tell you one thing and that is children certainly focus your attention on the future so I am doing my best to make sure that they are practical resourceful people who can make the most of what life throws at them. But I am also trying very hard to protect them form the sort of millenarian thinking that has clearly affected you on the issue of climate change. Our individual lives are oh so short and we are all rather insignificant.  so all that I can do to close is suggest that  when it comes to the climate we need to heed the wisdom serenity prayer even if you are, like me, an unbeliever:

God grant me the serenity
to accept the things I cannot change,
Courage to change the things I can,
And wisdom to know the difference

We both as individuals will not be able to change the climate and it is nothing but a vain conceit to think otherwise so the only way for you to get past the pain and anguish you feel at present is to gain the wisdom about  that which you can and can not change

Yours Sincerely

Iain Hall


Tony Abbott says “Workers will find that I am their best friend”

Tony Abbott doing his press conference at Andrews Meats, Lidcombe, Sydney, has said “Workers will find that I am their best friend”.

Well at the very least he will encourage business which will make jobs more secure.

What that means is if he ever becomes Prime Minister, he will cut penalty rates, working conditions, low wage, unsafe work places, flexibility (to be fired), no union protections, no protection from your wages being stolen… and prison time for attending union meetings (sound far fetched? just ask Ark Tribe, who went to prison under laws to make construction industry more flexible, but not safe) sounds just like WorkChoices.

These claims are just the wild imaginings of a paranoid extreme leftist who is so mired in the tenets of Marxist ideology that they are unable to realise that the world has moved on form the workers vs the bosses dichotomy.

Why is this necessary? To save us from a couple of cents carbon “tax”? Working peoples wages will be slashed by a third – as they are in Greece – because this is the economic model that Tony Abbott thinks is good for business.

This claim is so full of hyperbole that it is hard to distinguish 99’s rant from something dreamt up to satirise the far left.

And if you’re a working person who truly believes that Abbott will deliver higher wages… take one look at who he is making promises to – Gina Rinehart, Clive Palmer – these people will never have the best interests of the working class and small business owners at heart.

The working people were promised by Julia Gillard that “there will be no Carbon tax under a government I lead” yet we now have a rather useless carbon tax burdening the entire economy so its a bit rich for the author to insist that the voters would trust the current government’s word more than a commitment made by Abbott who has had the good sense to notice what electoral poison it is to say one thing to be elected only to do the opposite once you are in the lodge.
Finally even a devote of the politics of the left should make an effort to think of politics through a lens bigger than their own ideology if they expect to be taken seriously.
Cheers Comrades

Turn Left 2013

Tony Abbott doing his press conference at Andrews Meats, Lidcombe, Sydney, has said “Workers will find that I am their best friend”.

What that means is if he ever becomes Prime Minister, he will cut penalty rates, working conditions, low wage, unsafe work places, flexibility (to be fired), no union protections, no protection from your wages being stolen… and prison time for attending union meetings (sound far fetched? just ask Ark Tribe, who went to prison under laws to make construction industry more flexible, but not safe) sounds just like WorkChoices.

Why is this necessary? To save us from a couple of cents carbon “tax”? Working peoples wages will be slashed by a third – as they are in Greece – because this is the economic model that Tony Abbott thinks is good for business.

And if you’re a working person who truly believes that Abbott will deliver higher…

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The media landscape when the sheep begin to meow

As someone who has taken a stick to the minions of Fairfax journalism on a regular basis I find the panic among the Latte sippers rather amusing. Watching Dave and Jezza’s sycophants having conniptions in the soon to be closed Pure Poison comment threads just makes me roll with laughter. The biggest joke of all is this notion of “editorial independence” that is thrown around by the fans of Fairfax with gay abandon as if it means anything worthwhile. In the age of the internet if you want “independent” journalism then you have only one option and that is to turn to bloggers who do it for love rather than “journalists” who write for a pay cheque. I think that the age of professional interlocutors between the political action and the public is in serious decline, especially when just about very person with a fancy phone and an internet connection can upload footage of events in real time well ahead of the professionals who massage the story to suit their own agenda.

Of course I may well be a bit ahead of the wave here and it may be a while before the old media has its machine that goes ping turned off and it ceases to make any money at all for its proprietors so in that indefinite interim we will see some big changes like the takeover of Fairfax  by Gina Reinhardt who I suspect sees the possibility of making a quid out of its digital service rather than its big city mast heads in Sydney and Melbourne. With the move to a more digitally focused service does anyone want to bet that we won’t see more of its journalism being casualised or that they will be paid on piece work basis rather than them being on an expensive salary? Remember though that a casual worker who wants to earn has to try harder to please their boss…

If my scenario is correct, and it could be, what does it mean for the people in terms of them getting  clear and factual information? I certainly don’t think it means that we will be totally at the mercy of Gina’s personal agenda  quite simply because the voices that she sponsors through her  media interests will certainly be a long way short of any kind of a monopoly on the eyes and ears of the people. I am sure that for most of us who are interested in politics these days no longer rely entirely on any one source as it was in the golden age of the newspaper. Therein lies the problem for anyone who wants to make a quid from news and reporting it in world with every person can be the eyes and ears of the world even if its just once in their life time what value is there in paying large amounts of cash for someone to, for example, watch fuzzy wuzzy   twitter and write silly articles that no one wants to read?

I think  that the angst felt by many of my friends form the left at the decline of newspapers boils down to a very simple idea from totalitarians of the past, namely if you control the information that gets to the people then you can herd  them towards your desired ideological standpoint. However if you can’t have a monopoly on their attention because there are so many voices vying for it in the internet age, then  it becomes less like herding sheep and  more like herding cats and anyone who has tried to corral them knows that it is another thing altogether.

  Cheers Comrades


Jo Chandler’s prospects after the axefest at Fairfax

So the axe is going to fall on Fairfax, and form the look of things its going to fall hard, I can’t say that I’m that surprised that they are going to take to their expensive infrastructure and substantially reduce their overheads by reducing their staff by 1900.

Click for source

Of course the influence of Gina Reinhardt may even bring Fairfax a bit closer to the centre politically and won’t that set up a wailing and moaning in the latte belts of both Sydney and Melbourne ? One would hope that they hold onto their best journalists but maybe they can take this as an opportunity to shed some under-performing ‘senior writers” Like Jo Chandler. Its very clear   though that there are  writers at Fairfax who are worth reading and its inevitable that Fairfax will consolidate their titles published in different cities into a single entity eventually, after all so much of the content is shared across the empire anyway.

I can’t help wondering just what  Ex Fairfax staff will do with themselves  once they have collected that final pay cheque, after-all in a  shrinking sector they can’t all expect to find new gigs as journalists, some may try the old standby of writing books (that however may result only in failure) others may try to turn their dalliances with the internet into a money spinner but its hard to see how they can make a quid out of that especially if their previous experience on the net was to harass and stalk humble bloggers who happened to disagree with them about politics and anonymity on the net.

Oh well perhaps they need to get some ruby slippers and hope that when the click them together and say “there is no place like home”  and be thankful that they can draw upon their potential inheritance while they dream their Marxist dreams and sip  a Chai latte while avoiding being caught in the rain (because it plays havoc with their hair)

Cheers Comrades


The shareholder that they love to hate

I bet there will be fear and loathing in the Latte dens this morning as the Luvvies discover that the woman who backs Andrew Bolt’s TV show on makes a bid to own more of Fairfax media.

Click for source

I expect that our learned friend will be going bright red with rage at the idea that someone should dare to exercise their right to buy shares in a public company and the thought that this person, GASP!! may not have the right ideological underwear to suitably nurture the collective at the Age. I wonder if Bolshie “senior” writers like Jo Chandler are, as you read this post, plotting to organise staff protests to let the public know that the “Journos (and senior writers) united will never be defeated” Isn’t this all just a rich vein for the Luvvies to deliver an angst riven campaign about the evils of the right?

Ah, we live in interesting times…
Cheers Comrades



Our learned friend goes for the sour grapes approach to this news

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