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TPP 2.0 to further open immigration floodgates - Article by Leith van Onselen

The Australian Council of Trade Unions (ACTU) has unleashed on the revised Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) trade agreement (dubbed “TPP11”), which will reportedly allow employers unfettered access to ‘skilled’ migrant workers from member nations. From The Guardian:

Hungarian PM Viktor Orban accuses EU left of hiding agenda behind humanitarianism

"We cannot hide the fact that the European left has a clear agenda. They are supportive to migration. They actually import future leftist voters to Europe hiding behind humanism. It is an old trick but I do not understand why we have to accept it. They consider registration and protection of borders bureaucratic, nationalist and against human rights. They have a dream about the politically constructed world society without religious traditions, without borders, without nations. They attack core values of our European identity: family, nation, subsidiarity and responsibility. [...] We have a heartfelt compassion for the people who left their homes. They are victims of the bad governance of their own countries. They are victims of bad international political decisions. And they are victims of our bad European policy as well which raises expectations that are impossible to be fulfilled. They are obviously victims of the human traffickers. But considering them victims must not turn ourselves into being victims. Just because we do not consider them enemies we must not act against ourselves. Our moral responsibility is to give back these people their homes and their countries. It can’t be our objective to provide them with a new European life. Right to human dignity and security are basic rights. But neither the German, Austrian nor the Hungarian way of life is a basic right of all people on the Earth. " (Speech of Viktor Orbán at the EPP Congress in Madrid, on the 22nd of October in 2015 - more than ever, relevant today.)

Let's take Australia Day to a new level!

The history of Australia as a nation has been brutal to the humans who lived here first, to the animals and birds, and brutal to the landscape. Australia needs a day to stop and reflect on what has been done, where we are now and where we are going. We cannot fix the problem by continuing to do the same thing that caused it. Current discussion about Australia Day focuses on the way colonisation affected and continues to affect the aboriginal population. In addition to the injustices and atrocities, Australian Aborigines have been, and continue to be, overwhelmed by sheer numbers from elsewhere. The non-Aboriginal population born here is now being overwhelmed in the same way. The fast growing population as a whole has ongoing devastating environmental impacts on this land. It has social impacts too, as it enriches a very few members of the growth lobby, while the rest pay for population growth.

Another idiotic housing affordability “solution” emerges - Article by Leith van Onselen

Leading real estate rent-seeker, the Property Council of Australia (PCA), is pushing for another idiotic policy “solution” to fix Australia’s housing affordability woes: offering a government-backed low deposit home loan scheme.

Immigration hype and immigration reality - enforced by the bulldozer

St Kilda Road and Hoddle Street widening to accommodate larger volumes of road traffic in Melbourne means bulldozing hundreds of beautiful, mature trees, cultivated in a time when people appreciated the importance of natural shade and beauty. This vandalism is caused by willful promotion of overpopulation by the Victorian State government. Furtively supported by an equally venal Opposition, invited economic mass immigration-caused population growth marches on like an invasion preceded by bulldozers, jack hammers and all manner of violence towards our environment and display of might by state governments. Australia grew by over half a million people between July 2016 and July 2017, although natural increase actually declined, almost certainly due to rising costs affecting Australia's fertility opportunity.[1]

Are you really alright, Jack? Pollyanna-ism and the 99% in Australia - article by Sally Pepper

(Article by Sally Pepper.) On New Year's Day, January 1st 2018, as I surfaced around 10.00 a.m, I heard on the news that power prices and tolls on roads around Melbourne will both increase and, that this year many Victorians will experience additional economic hardship. My immediate defensive thought was, "Well I don't use tollroads and I guess I can be more frugal with my use of gas and electricity."

Starving brood-mares in Mt Eliza - Animal Cruelty Hotline report

These are photos of horses on a property on Moorooduc Hwy, Mt Eliza, in Victoria, Australia. People have expressed concern at the condition of these horses, which looks dire, and the paddock, where there appears to be no grass at all - only dirt. One horse photographed has gross leg deformities, although this could be a birth defect. The person who took the photos says that the RSPCA has informed them that they are working with the owners. The photographer has expressed alarm at how long this is taking and fears that the delay will doom these horses. Barrie Tapp of Animal Cruelty Hotline has passed this information on to candobetter.net because it needs public attention. Please let your local member of parliament know. Animal cruelty hotline is Freecall 1800751770

New patch aims to turn energy-storing fats into energy-burning fats

A new approach to reducing bulging tummy fats has shown promise in laboratory trials. It combines a new way to deliver drugs, via a micro-needle patch, with drugs that are known to turn energy-storing white fat into energy-burning brown fat. This innovative approach developed by scientists from Nanyang Technological University, Singapore (NTU Singapore) reduced weight gain in mice on a high fat diet and their fat mass by more than 30 per cent over four weeks. This is good news for fat mice, but fat humans will need to wait until human trials start.

Reserve Bank policy and Recent immigration impact on Australian workforce

Luci Ellis, Assistant Governor of the Reserve Bank (Economic), is very pro immigration. Some have wondered whether she may be making the running on this question behind the scenes more than is Philip Lowe, the Governor. Recent migrants may be somewhat more likely to hold degree-level qualifications than locals but this does not mean that their professional qualifications are well suited to the Australian labour market. (We should also ask ourselves, what is it about the Australian education system that makes Australians less likely than some immigrant streams to hold degree-level qualifications?)

Port Campbell Group rejects DELWP's 'Smart Planning'

"The proposed “Smart Planning” must not proceed in its current form. The Group does not support fast tracking development, weakening permit or planning triggers or referral requirements, or permit exemptions, or the removal of appeal rights." Inside find Port Campbell Community Group Inc's submission to the Victorian Planning Provisions Discussion Paper.

Credlin: Give us a debate and vote on Australia’s population - Article by Leith van Onselen

Chief of Staff to former Prime Minister Tony Abbott, Peta Credlin, is the latest to question Australia’s mass immigration program, which flooded NSW (read Sydney) and VIC (read Melbourne) with a record 185,500 net overseas migrants (combined) in the year to June, further crush-loading our two biggest cities. This article was first published on Macrobusiness at https://www.macrobusiness.com.au/2017/12/peta-credlin-give-us-national-debate-vote-australias-population/ on December 15 2017.

Mammal long thought extinct in NSW resurfaces in State's west

A Crest-tailed Mulgara, a small carnivorous marsupial known only from fossilised bone fragments and presumed extinct in NSW for more than century, has been discovered in Sturt National Park north-west of Tibooburra.

Divide and Conquer: Developers set to carve up Mornington Peninsular via Tootgarook Swamp

Check out the advertising: “Divide and Conquer Unsurpassed Development Opportunity.” Tootgarook Swamp on the Mornington Peninsula is under widespread threat from developers. They need your help. 92 Elizabeth Ave, Caple Sound, is for sale for 'environmentally friendly' residential development (a contradiction in terms). Environmentalists suggest that this might be the least developable block on the entire Mornington Peninsula, due to flooding risks alone. Meanwhile, the site's biodiversity values are incredible and that’s without even considering the site's implemented VCAT order for illegal clearance, P2706/2016. The site's values and species need your help to step forward and make a stand for biodiversity on the Southern Peninsula. The site serves as critical habitat for one federally listed wetland bird, and is also utilised by many migratory and state listed species. Please write to your Councillor, you State and Federal Members requesting that this site be acquired by purchase and protected forever. Please share this message with those who care about Tootgarook Swamp and the Peninsulas biodiversity.

Video Happiness in the Rat Race cartoons our overpopulated predicament

What does happiness mean to you? We tend to search for it in material things, substances, and career achievements, but often lose sight of what really matters to us in the process. London-based artist and animator Steve Cutts is taking a long hard look at this ‘rat race’ to which we’ve all found ourselves tied, and is examining our modern sources of joy in a satirical new short film that depicts us as the ‘rats’ we’ve become in the eyes of the system. It’s titled after that mysterious high we’re always chasing; “Happiness.” Take 4 minutes out of your busy day and watch the clip for yourself below, and tell us in the comments if you think Cutts hit the nail on the head.

Video: Bashar Al-Jaafari responds to ISIS having burnt alive captured Syrian fighter pilot

Syria's permanent representative to the UN, Dr. Bashar Jaafari (pictured left) speaks on the burning alive of the Syrian pilot Syrian Air Force pilot Azzam Eid (pictured right) by ISIS.

In reality, the United States' supposed war against ISIS is a sham and only a cover for its own efforts to overthrow the popular, democratically elected Syrian government using its local proxies, including ISIS.

Residents excluded from planning privatisation - Article by Prof Michael Buxton

"Labor is developing what is meant to be the most fundamental restructure of the Victorian planning system since the 1996 introduction of the Victoria Planning Provisions, the new Smart Planning program. [...] A simpler, more efficient and certain planning scheme is long overdue, but Smart Planning is not the way to provide it. This is a $25 million program managed through the Smart Planning program Rules team. If the system is simply to implement five minor changes, along with online access, then the program is a massive waste of money.

Residents excluded from planning privatisation - Article by Prof Michael Buxton

"Labor is developing what is meant to be the most fundamental restructure of the Victorian planning system since the 1996 introduction of the Victoria Planning Provisions, the new Smart Planning program. [...] A simpler, more efficient and certain planning scheme is long overdue, but Smart Planning is not the way to provide it. This is a $25 million program managed through the Smart Planning program Rules team. If the system is simply to implement five minor changes, along with online access, then the program is a massive waste of money.

Christine's Thoughts on ‘Smart Planning’ and the Victorian Planning Provisions Discussion Paper

This is dismantling planning schemes, removing impediments to what developers want, and allowing development on developers’ terms. What is happening under “Smart Planning” has no relationship to either of those words. Read it and weep – or get angry, and loud. This is essentially about making a single planning scheme for Victoria, controlled by the State government (and whoever may have its ear). You are having YOUR planning scheme stolen from you.

Malvern East Group reproves Vic Gov on so-called 'reform' of planning

"The MEG Committee expresses its anger at the entire lack of contact between DELWP and residents’ groups such as ours. DELWP’s actions re the Discussion Paper seek to exclude residents from being informed of the proposed changes and from taking part in the decision-making process about the area in which we live." ..."VicSmart must not be broadened. It is quite clear that there is enough of the ‘fast tracking’ for so-called ‘simple’ planning applications. The Discussion Paper indicates that “the sky’s the limit.” When VicSmart was introduced the then Opposition (now the Government) vigorously opposed it saying that it really meant “the sky’s the limit” with regard to fast-tracking Planning Applications and this was to be deplored. The same Party (now in Government) has put aside such quibbles and enthusiastically adopted fast-tracking of applications and the Discussion Paper is mere tokenism."

Ashburton Residents reprove Vic Gov Planning 'Reform' dictatorship

We need stronger not weaker planning controls at the level of local government and more community involvement. We need to empower local government and communities by ensuring that projects other than minor modifications to existing properties are scrutinized by council in consultation with the community. It might be more time consuming and cumbersome however it will be well worth the additional effort if we can avoid a planning disaster while at the same time achieving better planning outcomes. To achieve a good result, we need to give Councils the right to veto or modify a proposed development application and in the case of a disputed application that cannot be resolved at the level of local government, I would like to recommend that we replace VCAT by appointing a democratically elected community jury with the power to veto or modify a project. Overpopulation, planning and overdevelopment and building safe, attractive and cohesive communities will be the over-riding themes in the upcoming election campaign. Any further action in relation to the proposed changes should be deferred until we elect a new government in 2018 to allow the people to decide whether or not they support further deregulation and privatisation of the planning process and the removal of appeal rights. (A. Walker, Ashburton Residents Action Group)

Brilliant Green Wedges letter from Rosalie Counsell to Casey Planning Manager

"While Melbourne’s green wedges are generally considered to be a legacy of the 1972 – 1981 Rupert (Dick) Hamer State Government, they were established as part of the 1968 – 1971 Melbourne Metropolitan Board of Works planning process. They were protected by what was then called the Landscape Interest A zone, with a minimum lot size of twenty acres (eight hectares). For some thirty years, this zoning worked admirably. Then Melbourne started to experience growth pressure and the speculators moved in with their propensity to buy influence. The visionary Melbourne 2030 blue print for Melbourne and its rural fringe came under siege and has been slowly but relentlessly eroded by both sides of Government ever since." [...] "It is the role of councils and State Governments to provide sound, thoroughly researched, enforceable planning policies that support the big picture for the long-term future. It is absolutely critical to halt this tsunami of South Eastern suburban sprawl with its lack of supporting infrastructure, and to provide certainty to all stakeholders. Without such resolve, speculation will run rampant and uncontrolled ad hoc development will be the order of the day. Traffic to and from the area is already appalling well beyond the normally accepted peak hours. What are you thinking, putting exponentially more cars on these road networks that are not designed to take them? Casey is heading down a vortex of engineered chaos."

Submission to Victorian Planning Provisions Discussion Paper - Sustainable Population Australia

[Address for submissions. ]The discussion paper fails to acknowledge fundamental truths about our modern society and how we live. The built environment profoundly affects residents, visitors, and indeed other species every day. As such, as in other disciplines, it is incumbent upon government to exercise the “Precautionary Principle” in how it plans for Victoria’s future. A fundamental part of proper planning is to acknowledge the importance of local input and longstanding local knowledge of an area. From the discussion paper on “Reforming the Victoria Planning Provisions” residents have been excluded from the both the technical and advisory groups to the “Smart Planning” process. Long standing and hard fought for citizens’ rights, previously accepted and adopted into our Planning provisions have been swept away. What is proposed is government and developers operating as a combined growth machine pitted against the residents without residents even being given a seat at the table as a minority voice. Where has our democracy gone? [Candobetter.net editor: For a history of how this has come about in Victoria, check out our 'bad laws' section.]

The end of Daesh - Why isn't the west celebrating?

President Assad and President Putin met on 21st of November to celebrate the defeat of Daesh in Syria, but we hear little of this in the western media, which is distracting people with Hollywood scandals. In this brilliantly documented episode of The Debate, Iranian Press TV has conducted an interview with Janice Kortkamp, a journalist from Washington, and Jonathan Fryer, a London-based writer and lecturer, to discuss "the end of Daesh" terrorist group in Syria and Iraq.

Why is the US Media and Foreign Policy Establishment Targeting Russia?

The antagonism towards Russia by U.S. media and foreign policy elites goes far beyond allegations of Russian interference in the U.S. elections. Paul Jay of The Real News interviews
Larry Wilkerson, retired United States Army Colonel and former chief of staff to United States Secretary of State Colin Powell. Wilkerson was the 2009 recipient of the Sam Adams Award for Integrity in Intelligence. This hour-long interview goes much further and wider than most on this issue. You won't agree with every idea expressed here, but you will be stimulated by many of them, because Wilkerson is intelligent, learned, and unfettered. I have not previously seen a debate cover so much history and geography. They look at the Middle East, Syria, of course, and at petro-politics and climate change. Russia's motives, attitudes. Bill Clinton's incursion into Georgia. Nazis in Ukraine and US encouragement of them. They look at the rise of China and the one belt road. At the reasons for conflict within Saudi Arabia. And they worry about the United States and MSN beating the war drums for Iran. At the end Wilkerson says what strategic advice he would give Trump, if he had the opportunity. Part of that advice is that America has too many enemies and how Trump might reduce the amount. And, finally, how the US, which is trillions of dollrs in debt, with about 20% of the productivity it had in its heyday, might go about partly sharing with and partly relinquising power to China.

Oz Intention to ratify ILO Forced Labour Protocol crucial step in combatting slavery

The Law Council of Australia has applauded the Australian Government’s confirmation that it intends to ratify the ILO Forced Labour Protocol as a vital development in combating forced labour, trafficking, and slavery-like practices.

Norfolk Island economy headed for disaster following Australian Government intervention, new report claims

An independent report on the economic situation on Norfolk Island following the Australian Government takeover of governance of the island last year, released today, warns the island’s economy is heading for disaster as a result of spiralling costs and inappropriate regulation. Problems include the widespread imposition of Commonwealth and NSW regulatory regimes; the planned introduction of Australia's Modern Award System; the failure of the Australian Government to take up the responsibilities previously held by the Norfolk Island Government, such as for the promotion of tourism; the loss of direct passenger airline services between New Zealand and Norfolk Island; restrictions placed on primary producers and agricultural pursuits; and the removal of the general revenue raising powers of the Norfolk Island Government.

AGM Vic Branch of Sustainable Population Australia Nov 25 Hawthorn Library

Public Seminar with two speakers: Jack Roach, immediate past president of Boroondara Residents Action Group and Adrian Whitehead. Adrian Whitehead will speak on "Population Perspectives, from global to local." Public Welcome. Free Parking near venue. Financial members may nominate for any committee positions. See details inside re how to nominate.

Declassifying JFK with James DiEugenio

Video: Jesse Ventura and Brigida Santos revisit the assassination of President John F. Kennedy. Witness David Wallace reflects on the events from that day and shares rare photos from the crime scene. Expert JFK researcher James DiEugenio dissects newly-declassified documents. What does the US Government have to hide about the assassination of John Fitzgerald Kennedy after 45 years? If Lee Harvey Oswald really killed the President, then what is the big deal in releasing unredacted documents? Obviously the government has plenty to hide and this gives us every reason to question the official story. The documents have been released with huge gaps in them due to whiting out and other forms of illegibility.

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