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Miscellaneous comments from 4 December 2012

If you have anything you would like to raise, which is likely to be of interest to our site's visitors, which is not addressed by other articles, please add your comments here.

Comments made on the previous Miscellaneous comments page from 16 October 2012 can be found here.

Comments

The following was adapted from a post on John Quiggin's Web site. Please feel encouraged to add to the discussion there as well as on this site. - Ed

Taking property without the consent of the owner is theft

Whether or not the property was 'paid' for is beside the point. Given that governments are so ineffective at providing public services, only a fraction of what was 'paid' for the assets has, in any case, benefited the public. Most of that money also went to private corporations or into the pockets of their government and public service glove puppets.

The consent was never obtained from the owners of the public property that was privatised in recent decades --- Telstra, the railways, power generation, ports, banks, insurance companies, retirement income, land, housing, buildings, butcher shops, abattoirs, etc. --- by those who flogged it off -- Keating, Carr, Howard, Beattie, Bligh, Kennett, etc.

Frankston Council is supporting the construction of a 8 storey high rise office block on the banks of Kananook Creek between the town centre and Frankston's main beach. The width of the building extends for an entire city block from Playne Street to Wells Street. This will house South East Water's new headquarters.

We applaud Council's intention to attract 700 jobs to our city but there are alternative sites or ways of doing this.

We are seeking your help to prevent this outrageous development, which will set a precedent of similar highrise that will cut Frankston's off from it's foreshore.

Final approval for this will be decided at the Council meeting at the Civic Centre on Monday the 10th December at 7:00pm.

Artist's concept pictures of the building are attached to this email (don't be deceived by the misleading images - it is planned to be 8 storeys, and potentially 10 in future). Furthers concerns are explained at the following links:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Bea6cROV214
http://longislandresidents.wordpress.com/

If you share these concerns, please take the following actions:

URGENT ACTIONS:

1. Send this message to your own contacts so they are informed regarding this development.

2. Contact local Councillors to request them to vote against this proposal on the 10th December or to defer the decision to allow a proper period of public consultation. Coucillor contact details are listed below.

3 Please attend the Council meeting on next Monday the 10th December, to show your opposition - numbers count

4. Ask the Councillors to rescind the motion to exempt this development from complying with the usual planning requirements.

5. Attend the Public information session at the Frankston Surf Life Saving Club on Thursday 6th December (4 to 7pm) and Saturday 8th December (10 – 12 noon) to voice your concerns.

COUNCILLORS CONTACT DETAILS:

CouncillorRebekah.Spelman@frankston.vic.gov.au

CouncillorSandra.Mayer@frankston.vic.gov.au (Ph: 0400 236 107)

CouncillorColin.Hampton@frankston.vic.gov.au (Ph: 0400 236 109)

CouncillorMichael.OReilly@frankston.vic.gov.au

CouncillorJames.Dooley@frankston.vic.gov.au

CouncillorBrian.Cunial@frankston.vic.gov.au (Ph: 0400 236 97)

CouncillorDarrel.Taylor@frankston.vic.gov.au

CouncillorSuzette.Tayler@frankston.vic.gov.au

Councillor Aitken email : Councillors.office@frankston.vic.gov.au (Ph: 9786 3274)

Thank you for your support!

CONCERNED FRANKSTON RESIDENTS

Thousands of Aussie cows are to be sent to Pakistan where 21,000 sheep were brutally slaughtered. Exporter Elders was preparing to send a shipment of nearly 3000 breeder cows, 2000 of which were destined for Pakistan, where they would be under the supervision of the same government department that carried out the cull.

Last month’s episode of Four Corners saw Sarah Ferguson present the results of an investigation into the brutal slaughter of 20,000 sheep at an abattoir in Karachi. It was followed up by shocking video evidence of the cruelty. Tens of thousands of Australians marched on parliament buildings around the country last month to call for an end to the trade.

What a disgrace, so soon after 20,000 healthy Australian sheep were brutally attacked and buried alive! Where's the guarantee the same won't happen to the cows? Animals are not cargo, and never should be. The level of democracy in Australia, a so-called "democratic" nation, is abysmal. Rallies, phone calls, petitions and letters make no difference, and neither does all the tragedies and cruel disasters of the live export trade. Australia is contributing to the globalisation of lower animal welfare standards, and the normalization of cruelty. Where's the accountability in Canberra?

Lyn White of Animals Australia says: "Why would you send further animals into a country before you have completed your investigation into what happened to a shipment that has been horrendously treated?"

AUSTRALIA FIRST PARTY
Whatever will benefit Australia - that we are for;
whatever will harm Australia - that we are against. William Lane.

PRESS RELEASE

Nominations for the Native Australian Award

THE ORDER OF THE TOAD

are invited from Australian Citizens, to be formally declared on AUSTRALIA DAY 26th January 2013

GENERAL CRITERIA.

This award is derived from the vernacular heritage of Australia’s pioneering peoples, who applied the term to those who betrayed fairdinkum values, or undertook what were considered un-Australian activities. The graphic symbol of the award, Bufo Marinus, [Cane Toad] should exemplify the character of any nominee - a terminal despoiler, necessitating complete removal from any influence in our Australian civilisation.

Nominations are restricted to individuals who could be classed either as Native Australian

.

Persons nominated should have excelled in the prevailing Traitor Class:- Globalists and internationalists working against the European derived identity of the Australian Nation, and the Great Cause of Independence for Australia; bourgeois liberals; media sycophants; quisling politicians; money changers who advance economics as the prime determinant in society; Australia-hating multicultists undermining our Aussie culture and heritage; Aborigine Race destroyers, proponents of over population through mass immigration, advocates for fake refugees, exploiters pillaging the environment and adding to the destruction of the eco-systems of our Native Land.

Please forward the name and address of the person to be nominated, with full particulars, including references to support the nomination, by 20th January 2013, to the address below. Include your own name and address.
AUSTRALIA FIRST PARTY
Identity - Freedom - Independence
P O Box 223 Croydon 3136. www.australiafirst.net email: ausfirst [&nbsb;AT ] hotmail.com

Voting for other than AUSTRALIA FIRST is now just a waste of time

PRIME Minister Julia Gillard's goal of Australia having one of the top five schooling systems in the world by 2025 has been thrown into doubt after the nation received disastrous results in the latest international reading, maths and science tests.

Australian children were beaten by students from 26 countries in year four reading in the 2011 Progress in International Reading Literacy Study.

(The Age) Australia - a disaster in education

Could it be that decades of high immigration from non-English-speaking nations has inhibited educational excellence and strained resources? Not only this, but the costs of providing teachers, schools and resources must continually stretched due to State budget "shortages" of funding as a result of accommodating population growth? Due to "skilled" migration, TAFE and university educational investment is less of a priority for domestic students - it's all too easy to import the skilled from overseas.

Perpetually accommodating growth can only stretch and strain resources - including economic ones - and keeping abreast with international standards set in countries with relatively stable populations.

It seems only too obvious that if you have classes where, say, one child in four (perhaps more like 1in 6; I do not have actual statistics) does not have English as a their native language then education of a class of children becomes less effective and overall standards may drop.

Overall, the school funding/child has probably fallen as numbers have grown, which, as mentioned by nimby, will also effect teaching standards.

I believe that the Gonsky report is just another elaborate way of disguising this lack of funding. ie requesting more funding without actually acknowledging that the need for this, or cause, is the increased numbers of children, including many who lack basic English comprehension and skills.

The only mention of this on MSM was a very brief comment on the 7.30 report, by an academic.

I do not know a lot about Finland and Russia, both scored well in the test, but I would suggest that their 'success' was very much owed to their low population growth and monocultures.

''A worker shot the horse once, did not ensure the horse was dead, and then tied the horse to a tractor and dragged him across 60 metres of concrete and gravel after which he was found to still be breathing." -- investigators account from the Coalition for the Protection of Racehorses.

It was covered by The Age. Another shocking report of animal abuse at a knackery -- just 20 minutes' drive from the where the Melbourne Cup is held.

This wasn’t the first time. And it won't be the last unless Racing Victoria commits to a retirement plan for racehorses -- and uses a fraction of the industry’s massive profits to make sure these animals are retrained and rehomed.

The Coalition for the Protection of Racehorses has been overwhelmed by the response.
Change.org Petition

Each year, about 18,000 racehorses are shot and killed -- most of them bought by meat buyers and turned into pet food.

This is what the footage the Coalition for the Protection of Racehorse took during Melbourne Cup week exposed: beautiful racehorses were being hoarded into cages not much bigger than the size of their own bodies -- and shot in the head. Some lay twitching and struggling until a final shot by the handler killed them.

The Age: Slaughter of horses causes outrage

MORE than 3600 Victorians have died awaiting elective surgery in the past five years - many spent their final months in pain or immobile. (Herald Sun, 31 Dec)
Records obtained by the Herald Sun via Freedom of Information laws document for the first time the age and sex of each of the patients and the surgery needed.

Read more: http://www.heraldsun.com.au/top-stories/thousands-of-victorians-die-waiting-for-elective-surgery/story-e6frfkp9-1226545438603#ixzz2Gadb6eUx

The data shows more than 400 patients who died were aged under 65. The most commonly needed procedures were knee and hip replacements and bladder explorations.

The warped and lethal priorities of our State government must take the blame for some of these deaths. Health care needs to be a priority, not an optional extra. So much revenue is sourced from Stamp duty on new housing, and this means pumping up our population growth - perpetually. Population growth is outstripping infrastructure, jobs and housing, and it leave insufficient funds for essential services such as hospitals and health care etc.

Ironically, Victoria's health-care funding was slashed by our Federal government because our population growth was not enough!

The growth-based economic model served us well in the past, but we should be heading towards an era of catching-up and enhancements/improvements. People shouldn't be dying while waiting for surgery and treatment - like those in third-world countries.

Sunshine Hospital's maternity unit was built 20 years ago to cater for just 2000 babies a year.
In 2008, 3,800 were born. This year 5000 were born. That is a ridiculous and obviously dangerous increase. Apparently maternity staff were delivering 17 babies a day in November with only 10 'birthing rooms'.

The attitude in the hospital seems to be to put up with this unsustainable pressure and to expect their staff to simply increase their workload. This is typical of irresponsible hospital attitudes all over Australia. Faced with continuously rising undue patient loads which should be controlled by controlling immigration downwards, management do not raise an uproar. No, they go along with increased danger to patients and physical and mental stress for staff in a situation which is clearly unsustainable and which they should be strongly protesting and demanding changes in policy for.

Source of data was http://www.heraldsun.com.au/news/victoria/a-record-breaking-5000-babies-were-born-in-sunshine-hospital-last-year/story-e6frf7kx-1226545853628

Fiscal Cliff: Nowhere to go But Down- Richard Heinberg
Everybody agrees the U. S. national debt is too high, but no one can agree on what to do about it. The Fiscal Cliff is a symptom that we have run into the limits to growth advertised in the 1972 book of the same name.

Economic growth means increasing population and increasing per capita consumption. There’s nothing magical about it. Economic growth means more and more “things" such as consumer goods, and it takes more resources to make it happen. Things tends to run out. Peak Oil, Peak Water, Peak Everything as Richard Heinberg called it - and our finite planet Earth has only so much to go around.

Fiscal Cliff - nowhere to go but down

Huge economies have to reach across their borders for natural resources, and their pollutants go international too.
Resource shortages, pollution, climate change, congestion, and biodiversity loss are all results and indicators of economic (or uneconomic) growth, as Herman Daly calls it.

According to Richard Heinberg, (post Carbon Institute), the only way to steer clear of the cliff is for the President and Congress to agree on somewhat smaller spending cuts and tax increases that would substantially reduce federal deficits over time.

What if, as U.S. economist Robert Gordon speculates in his paper “Is U.S. Economic Growth Over?”), the nation’s ability to expand its economy has effectively dissipated?

Since 2008 Federal Reserve actions have forestalled a banking crisis, while government deficit spending (initially via stimulus programs) has generated a temporary "recovery". In fact the key thing to do right now is to recognize that growth is over. It was a temporary and anomalous condition that cannot be extended into the future. Furthermore, it is becoming increasingly apparent that infinite growth is impossible on a finite planet. The problem that we are seemingly unable to countenance is the end of growth.

All environmental problems track with GDP growth, and it’s no coincidence. The relationship between economic growth and environmental impact is causal, just as gaining weight is causal of bad knees.

The relatively easy way to deal with the Fiscal Cliff is to slash defense spending, raise taxes on the rich, abolish factory farms drastically reduce meat consumption - which would reduce medical expenses- reform the economy along the lines of ecological economics, slash immigration and stop illegal immigration, and start building the infrastructure for a much smaller economy based on something sustainable.

No recent academic publications resulting from whale research can be found. This is despite the Japanese Government saying such strong papers are there, but are simply ignored by the Western media.

Past results are loosely based on demographic data, on age and range. Their "research" is about managing whale resources and actually justifying more commercial whaling. Most genuine research is done non-lethally, on living whales in their habitats.

Japan's whale slaughter has nothing to do with science, or needing more meat to eat. Their "science" is based on data that could easily be got non-lethally, and there is a stockpile of 5000 tonnes of whale meat. The whaling is about national pride, of malice against Sea Shepherd, and not "losing face". Japan must "win" against the West - and preserve their historic Samurai warrior reputation!

It's a case of Prisoners' Dilemma - both the Australian and Japanese governments would be better off if they ended the war against whales. However, neither wants to be the first to surrender, or take action and end the folly. Free trade agreements have priority for our government, and for Japan, they must uphold their hatred for Sea Shepherd, and defy the West!

There is already a 2008 injunction against Japan's killing whales in the Australian Whale Sanctuary, under the EPBC Act. Our government could act, but they are reluctant to do so. The International Court of Justice might get to hear the case this year. Maybe. If we are lucky!

It's a war of wills, and the whales are the hapless and innocent victims.

Film star Brigitte Bardot says she will join Gerard Depardieu unless France stops the deaths of two elephants at a zoo in Lyon. The animals, named Baby and Nepal, are owned by a touring circus and were ordered to be put down by a Lyon court as a precautionary measure due to their having tuberculosis.

"If those in power are cowardly and impudent enough to kill the elephants... then I have decided I will ask for Russian nationality to get out of this country which has become nothing more than an animal cemetery," Bardot said in a statement.

http://www.abc.net.au/news/2013-01-05/bardot-warns-she27ll-quit-france-over-elephants27-welfare/4453642

Authorities in the central city ordered the elephants be put to sleep last month, prompting an outcry that resulted in them being granted a temporary reprieve over Christmas. She said last month that her fellow actor, who was branded "pathetic" by Prime Minister Jean-Marc Ayrault, had been the "victim of extremely unfair persecution".

“I’m not convinced they are less cruel to animals in Russia compared to France,” one tweet said.

Pioneering initiatives in Russia are gaining the increased attention of animal rights groups working towards a more humane world in which cruelty towards animals disappears altogether, whether this be cruelty for fur, cruelty for meat or cruelty for laboratory testing. Another initiative Russia has been involved in recently is the scheme to protect polar bears, backing the USA's proposal that the status of polar bears be increased to the maximum level at the next meeting of the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Fauna and Flora (CITES) in March 2013, effectively banning international polar bear trade.

http://english.pravda.ru/science/earth/11-12-2012/123114-animal_welfare-0/

The dark side of humanity, of infinite depth and fathomless depravity, is often exposed through their treatment and torment of animals. Bardot is a hero for animals, and has acted against the clubbing of live seals, and the inhumane halal slaughter.

Animals Australia have exposed another scandal and tragedy for the $1 billion live export trade. The deaths of 65 pregnant cows, heading towards Mauritius, comes after the horrific culling of over 20,000 Australian sheep in Pakistan - bludgeoned and buried alive!
According to Australian government paperwork, none of the 2061 cattle that left Australia on October 5 were pregnant, but two cows allegedly gave birth during the usual 10-day voyage, four cows were found to be pregnant when slaughtered and further testing revealed many more cattle pregnant in the feedlot. The supply-chain simply isn't working!

The importer was furious when it discovered the cattle were pregnant, because it is illegal in Mauritius to slaughter animals in that condition. Local police are now investigating how the cattle died and allegations they may have been poisoned.

Scandal hits live export trade as pregnant cattle are shipped [1]

The fact remains that once animals are out of Australia, there is no way they can be protected on the horrendous sea journeys, packed like sardines, and no way that conditions can be controlled. Once animals are in foreign lands, Australia's control of them is basically ended.

There are a lot of "healthy" and "good" economically viable industries, and the slave trade was one of them. Europeans didn't want to work in the humidity and the heat of the cotton plantations. Like the slave trade of the past, the $1 billion live export trade can't be morally or ethically justified. Animals are not static or inanimate cargo, but living, sentient creatures. Poisoning could be the result of a mafia-like vendetta against the Australian trade.

This is one more arrow into Australia's shameful live export scandalous trade!

Footnote[s]

[1] At http://www.theaustralian.com.au/national-affairs/foreign-affairs/scandal-hits-live-export-trade-as-pregnant-cattle-are-shipped/story-fn59nm2j-1226548526700 (Most of the story is behind a pay-wall. - Ed)

In Surabaya, Indonesia cattle were lifted by crane with nooses around their necks and suspended in mid air. Have a look at the photo in "The Australian" today.

It matters little where the animals pictured actually come from. To see this picture in “The Australian” is sufficient evidence that cattle we export will certainly suffer immense cruelty in Indonesia.

Anger over 'cruel' Indonesian cattle mistreatment of 8 Jan 13 at http://www.theaustralian.com.au/national-affairs/anger-over-cruel-indonesian-cattle-mistreatment/story-fn59niix-1226549380157

One's reaction on seeing the photography and article that gave rise to Quark's comment, "...and another act of extreme cruelty" is to get really angry with Indonesia and Indonesians who are not speaking out against this. We are already angry with Australians who are permitting live transport to Indonesia. Is there anyone reasonable with whom we can have a dialogue on candobetter.net via the comments function who can tell us how to help to stop this absolutely disgusting and intolerable, utterly stupid and depraved treatment of animals in Indonesia?

Sheila Newman, population sociologist
home page
Articles Copyright to the author. Please contact sheila [AT] candobetter org or the editor if you wish to make substantial reproduction or repu

Kelvin Thomson MP has contacted the Indonesian government about animal cruelty in response to this. See his blog http://kelvinthomson.blogspot.com.au/2013/01/animal-cruelty-in-indonesia.html
Maybe contacting Joe Ludwig's counterpart in Indonesia- the Minister for Agriculture would be the most effective.

''Fracking kills, and it doesn't just kill us,'' Ono said. ''It kills the land, nature and, eventually, the whole world.''

Yoko Ono, her son Sean, and the late John Lennon bought a farm and now are fighting to prevent coal mining - fracking. They and other activists delivered 50 boxes of what they said were 204,000 anti-drilling comments to the state Department of Environmental Conservation.

The Age - Ono you don't: Yoko fights fracking

“Fracking" is when oil and gas companies blast millions of gallons of water treated with chemicals into the ground to force oil and gas from hard-to-reach places deep inside the earth. Coal Seam Gas mining has proven to have disastrous impacts on water quality, livestock and agricultural health and the natural environment in other countries around the world.

As traditional oil and gas reservoirs become more expensive to find and produce, alternatives like CSG and shale gas, have become attractive.

America's new "glut" of natural gas was due to high prices that provided an incentive for using expensive technology to drill problematic reservoirs. We have "100 years of abundant gas supplies", says President Obama. However, the gas reserves in Australia, the US and elsewhere may still be vast, but increasingly expensive to extract, and reportedly overstated.

Shale-gas producers face opposition from environmentalists who object to the industry's heavy water usage, fugitive methane, use of chemicals, and a small risk that fracking could lead to contamination of aquifers and even cause earthquakes.

Revenue in Australia's oil and gas sector will surge this year, making it the standout sector as the mining boom fades, research shows.

While it might bring us welcome revenue this year, there's no similar assurances for the future. According to ASPO, (Australian Association for the study of Peak Oil and Gas) there are serious risks of global oil shortages, and a common but unfortunate tendency in Government and business to overlook or discount crucial risk factors.

As US peak oil expert, Richard Heinberg says: we live on a finite planet, yet we have an economic system based upon infinite growth. Thus, at some point, when we have reached our limits of natural capital, growth as we know it will end.

We have a window of opportunity to adjust to the end of growth but governments and economists would rather head-long hurtle towards big economic growth, and "big Australia, leaving future generations to face the fallouts.

It's pointless to have a cannibalistic industry if in the process of extracting energy for profits, it leaves poisoned water, more greenhouse gases, chemicals in the ground and a sterile landscape!

Residents of Youngstown, Ohio, suffered recent earthquakes measuring 2.7 and 4.0 on the Richter scale, respectively. Scientists believe it was caused by fracking. Water supplies are being stretched even thinner as rivers and farms are poised to be drained for drilling and fracking.

The short-term financial benefits associated with this industry is compromising the food security, health and welfare of future generations of Australians.

Anti-coal protester Jonathan Moylan has said the main reason for his ANZ sharemarket hoax was his concern about the health impacts of coal mining at Maules Creek.

Creating hoax media releases is not normally something that should be endorsed, but it's a case of a means to an end - of trying not to exacerbate
patterns that are already hostile to the inhabitants of our planet. His concerns were purely altruistic regarding the Whitehaven's impact on farmers, the largest remaining forest in the Liverpool Plains, the climate and public health.

Earth is the only habitable planet in our solar system, and there's only a thin layer of atmosphere protecting us from uninhabitable space. Even a small rise in temperature could mean accompanying changes in cloud cover and wind patterns, with systematic feedback effects. It's foolish to gamble with the only piece of rock suitable to live on.

James Moylan should be thanked for waking the media and public out of their slumber, and apathy.

Growth and profits, the ones who should be charged with environmental crimes.

Ono warned that the fight would not stop, even if hydraulic fracturing were approved.

Melbourne's newest freeway is expected to open within days, with an announcement from Premier Ted Baillieu on Wednesday.

The premier and roads minister Terry Mulder will announce the opening date for the $759 million Peninsula Link, which spans 27 kilometres from EastLink in Carrum Downs to the Mornington Peninsula Freeway in Mount Martha.

Read more: Peninsula Link to open within days, 16 January 2013
at http://www.theage.com.au/victoria/peninsula-link-to-open-within-days-20130116-2csjh.html

The government claims that the new freeway will cut the time of travelling between Mount Martha and Curram Downs by 17 minutes, and saving 40 minutes in peak time. Do the public really this is a magnaminous effort to reduce the driving times for communters?

With 1500 new arrivals to our city each week, thanks to our goverment-engineered rampad population growth, the Peninsula's green wedges will be more accessible and thus be nibbled away for urban sprawl - and our housing market. We will hear Matthew Guy, also magnaminously, spouting that he is trying to fulfill the Baillieu election promise of creating "affordable housing". That means more land will be opened up for housing, and more of our environmental and social capital will be flogged for population growth.

It won't be more affordable - prices will be maximised by good "location" for prime real estate, and the heavy competition from potential buyers.

Welcome to Victoria, a paradise for developers!

Eleven adults and one infant calf were brutally slaughtered in Tsavo East National Park in southern Kenya by poachers to feed the demand for ivory in Asian countries.

Entire elephant family killed for their ivory: Care2

The family was gunned down with automatic rifles before their tusks were hacked out with machetes, while the calf is believed to have been crushed by its mother as she fell after being shot.

This attack is the latest in an increasing number of elephant deaths that KWS figures show have risen from fewer than 50 in 2007 to 360 in 2012, according to the Telegraph.

Humans believe they are above Nature, and can take any natural resources for their own use, even from living and sentient animals as magnificent as elephants!

Less than a month ago Bouba N’Djida National Park in northeastern Cameroon was home to 450 elephants. Today, at least half of those elephants are gone, slaughtered by armed horsemen who traveled hundreds of kilometers, probably from Sudan, to kill the animals for their valuable ivory tusks.

It is expected that the poachers will soon travel back to Sudan, carrying the ivory on horseback and on camels, where they will be sold in the markets at Khartoum before heading to their most likely destination: China. Coveted in Asia, their tusks bring in handsome sums that are funding wars across the continent. Many game wardens hardly stand a chance against the slaughter.

Around 500,000 elephants still live in Africa, but poachers kill several tens of thousands of them each year, and that number is on the rise. Customs officials seized over 23 tons of smuggled elephant tusks in 2011, the highest amount in 20 years. But Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesman Hong Lei said his government has taken a firm stance on ivory trafficking.

The level of butchery is a throwback to the 1980s, when an estimated 100,000 elephants were being killed every year, according to WWF.
The number of Cameroon’s elephants was last officially estimated in 2007, with ‘Definite’ and ‘Probable’ figures amounting to less than 1000 elephants altogether.

Bloody Ivory- sign the petition

Ed. We have commented out a comment that railed against the role of Africans and Chinese in poaching elephants. The comment went over the top in racialising the guilt for this unfortunately. We understand how upset the commenter is by the appalling race to the bottom in this evil trade. Unfortunately, while European countries as well as Chinese and others continue to profit from Africa after having dispossessed its people and leaving them little choice in how they make their living, and replace old values with commercial ones, then the guilt must be shared by those non-Chinese, non-Africans, who profit from Africa's distress. The fact that the natural world is damaged beyond recognition with all its biodiversity is a tragedy beyond any human tragedy; it is even more fundamental. The writer who we have commented out hoped for a deadly virus to take care of poachers. One might say that it has already; money is the deadly virus; it kills all local social and environmental stability and will eat us all up ultimately.

Australia’s economy is predicted to fall out of the world’s top 20 by 2050, according to new research by PwC (Pricewaterhouse Coopers).

PwC’s report, released today, was based on estimates of future purchasing power, growth in the working population, workforce education and growing prosperity among low-income countries.

New world order: 2050 Australia to fall from world's 20 largest economies

"The report found countries with emerging economies such as Nigeria, India and Mexico will reap the benefits of a younger workforce and a faster-growing population,

pushing Australia further behind in the global ranks".

On the contrary, Mexico’s government must control population growth in the Mexico valley area in order to protect the region’s water resources. Around 46.2% of Mexico's total population lives in poverty, mainly in urban areas.

President Goodluck Jonathan of Nigeria said people were having too many children, and went on to back birth control measures. BBC Nigeria correspondent Will Ross says population growth is increasing pressure on the land which is a major trigger of violence in the country.

India's soaring population is expected to increase from 1.2 billion today to above 1.6 billion by 2050 – by when it is expected to have overtaken China's ageing population to become the world's largest nation. Rather than "young" population, a report, by the United Nations Population Fund, found the number of over-60s will increase from around 100 million today to more than 300 million by 2050. The population pyramid can't be evened out by adding more young people!

According to United Nations projections, the number of people on the planet will rise to 9.3 billion by 2050 — the equivalent of adding another India and China to the world.

Clearly, despite Australia's world-record rates of population growth, it isn't producing prosperity. The world's largest populations may have the biggest economies in gross terms of the amount of currency turning over, but it robs people of per-capita wealth. It increases poverty, and means that future generations can't be assured of a place in an increasingly overcrowded planet.

Size or GDP should not be the measure of the success of economies, but indicators such as environmental integrity, natural protected resources, living standards, health care and "smart", futuristic economies that will survive the tumultuous times ahead.

As Australia Day draws near, the celebration of what it means to be Australian again will focus on the greatness of Multiculturalism. According to the article, '"I am Australian" is a fine way to celebrate multicultural patriotism' - an oxymoron really - "We understand ourselves to be unambiguously multicultural, as befits a country where more than 45 per cent of the population was either born overseas or has a parent who was. A country where almost 20 per cent of us speak a language other than English at home". It means that about 45% of the population celebrate their "diversity" and are stilled tied to, and identify with, the culture of the country of origin, not Australia!

Read more: http://www.brisbanetimes.com.au/opinion/politics/grounds-for-patriotism-20130113-2cnei.html#ixzz2IlRXUIqL

New-comers will be celebrated for being part of this Multicultural nation, assuming that Australia is devoid of an original culture, heritage, and traditional occupants who forged this nation.

Australia Day will be an effort to quash any overt emotional outbursts of patriotism, and it will be a chance to celebrate our great immigration policy, and the benefits of 'diversity". We are supposed to be united by our differences?

Victoria's Maribyrnong Council has been labelled un-Australian for its failure to embrace any community celebrations on Australia Day. Maybe they are not fooled by the façade, and that their strong population growth is actually crippling their budget, so allocating any funds to it is impossible.

Australia has the largest housing market classified as ‘‘severely or seriously unaffordable." This is a great contrast to the "Lucky country" a few short decades ago! We used to have the highest rate of home ownership in the world, and houses affordable even by the working classes on fixed incomes.

The housing and construction industry has been successful in vastly "improving" Australia's housing market, and now they are victims of their own success. Prices have largely outstripped the capacity of locals on average pay-packets to buy them.

HIA Chief economist Harley Dale says that "the time to reform the immigration system to support the specific skilled labour requirements of residential construction, something it currently fails to do".

There is a persistent shortage of skilled labour in some trades despite weakening housing conditions, according to the HIA. Thus they want more skilled immigrants to make more affordable houses for all the immigrants arriving here!

A select committee from the House of Lords in the UK inquiry concluded that there was no discernible economic benefit to the existing population of the United Kingdom from high immigration.

"Immigration only expands overall GDP roughly to the extent that it expands the working-age population. But if the well-being of the members of our society is the primary aim of government, what matters is the effect upon GDP per head, roughly equivalent to the real income of individuals, and on other broader measures of individual welfare. The benefits of immigration to the average individual are trivial in relation to average incomes and may be slightly negative."

So, per capita wealth is sacrificed for a bigger GDP!

It also reports that "the higher population size and density arising from immigration imposes congestion costs, diverts investment to new infrastructure and housing, impinges on space and amenity, and accelerates the output of waste and greenhouse gas emissions."

The benefits of high growth are negated by the costs of fixing the accelerating problems.

" If current levels of migration persist, however, their most striking and permanent effects will be to increase the population size of the country by 15 million by mid-century. That would do no good to housing quality and other amenity, wildlife and environment and would accelerate the UK contribution to global warming."

House of Lord report into immigration 15th Oct 2007

Stablising our population would make houses available, and most would already exist. Our manufacturing industries are disappearing, so housing construction is the way of providing "jobs, jobs, jobs" - mainly in construction and service industries.

Property developers are on top of the political power pyramid, and apex predators. Housing is a self-fulfilling, moribund industry kept on life-support, propped up by injections of high immigration. Housing affordability is ultimately bogged down by population growth, causing rising costs of utilities, shortages of infrastructure, and increasing costs of materials and land.

YourView: Continued population growth will deplete our resources

Log in and vote YES! and write something to erroneous counterbalance cornucopia thinking.

Six Brisbane suburbs boast a population with more people born overseas than in Australia, a new state government report shows. Population is booming.

According to "Diversity Figures 2011", census data shows more than half of all residents in Robertson, Stretton, Macgregor, Sunnybank, Calamvale and Runcorn were foreign-born, with China dominating the list of nations contributing to each area's multiculturalism. Mandarin is the most common language other than English spoken across Brisbane's most diverse suburbs.

Prime Minister Paul Keating in a speech to the Australian Chinese Forum in Sydney on October 12, 1995 said "Asia is emphatically where this country's security and prosperity lie. It is where an increasing number of our people come from and - unambiguously and wholeheartedly - it is where we want to be... Our efforts on free trade, multiculturalism, and education and training are all part of the same strategy." The Asianisation of Australia is part of the government's grand plan for Australia.

More than 3600 houses and residential unit lots would be affected by Brisbane's flood. Despite the threat to the population centres of Brisbane and the Gold Coast, the focus was on Bundaberg as emergency crews raced the rising Burnett River to clear people from the danger zone. It cannot be controlled, according to Premier Campbell Newman.

The Australian Psychology Society calls for a communication strategy to raise the health sector’s knowledge and awareness of the health impacts facing the population from the increased risks of extreme weather events. Associate Professor Marion Carey, a public health physician at Monash University, says:

“Extreme weather events will present increasing threats to population health and well- being under climate change. These impacts are likely to be disproportionately felt by the most vulnerable in society, including those who are homeless. The capacity of community health and welfare services to cope with increasing service demands has not been adequately addressed to date, and effective policy solutions are needed to protect those who are among the most vulnerable in our society.”

“By 2050 an extreme heat event in Melbourne alone could typically kill over one thousand people in a few days if we don’t improve the way we forecast, prepare for and manage these events. It is likely that Brisbane would face a similar death toll, with Adelaide, Sydney and Perth also increasingly impacted. To put this in perspective 173 people died in the Black Saturday fires in Victoria in 2009 and 35 in the floods in Queensland in 2010-11. However, more than 370 people died from extreme heat in Victoria in the same week as the Black Saturday fires. The morbidity impacts from future extreme heat events are likely to also be very large. Those who are affected come disproportionally from the vulnerable groups in our community.”

http://blogs.crikey.com.au/croakey/2013/01/25/as-our-future-heats-up-how-well-prepared-is-the-health-sector/

Australia Day has been hijacked by the immigration-lobby and their pro-growth agenda of celebrating "diversity" and immigration! Little is being said to celebrate Australia's foundations, and our natural heritage. Those who forged this country, and the pioneers, are being overlooked. It assumes that Australia is a blank-canvas, to over-write with the ethnicity and cultures for overseas! We have our own art, architecture, folk songs, ballads, rock legends, and literature.

The impacts of extreme weather, predicted to increase with climate change and impacts from disturbed ecosystems, from human overpopulation, is being ignored.

Queensland's northern coastal communities are at high risk of experiencing a storm surge – but the state remains under-prepared to deal with the hazard.

“Australia's network of storm tide gauges is sparse relative to the length of coastline and the expanding vulnerable coastal populations,” report by Griffith University Centre for Coastal Management concludes. The pro-growth lobby groups are causing risks to human lives as more people are made vulnerable to extreme weather, property losses and deaths.

This looks like a good idea at fixtracking.com:

Ads following you everywhere? Stop those and worse.

A Guide by DuckDuckGo

The page contains add-ons that stop you from being tracked and which prevents scripts from running without warning.

It has versions for Firefox, Safari, Opera, Internet Explorer (IE), Chrome web browsers (but, sadly not for the open source KDE Konqueror web browser)

I am about to install the plug-ins If I experience any problems, I will advise site visitors.

First published at RT
Published time: 12 Dec, 2015 09:19
Edited time: 12 Dec, 2015 09:51

Saudi Arabia is holding municipal elections on Saturday, in which for the first time women will be allowed to vote and run for public offices. The ballot is being ignored by the majority of Saudi citizens and no women may be elected in the end.

The ultraconservative Arab kingdom was the last nation on Earth to introduce universal suffrage. During the previous election in 2011, King Abdullah did not allow women to participate, but promised this would happen in 2015. His successor Salman has delivered on the late monarch’s promise.

Municipal elections are the only kind that Saudi Arabia allows. Two thirds of the seats in 284 councils are up for grabs with the remaining officials being appointed by the ministry of municipal affairs. The councils have limited power to run things, such as cleaning the streets and looking after public parks.

There are about 5,938 men and 978 women competing for the vacant offices, according to the BBC. The count of registered voters is similarly disproportionate – 1,360,000 men versus just 131,000 women – and is only a small fraction of Saudi Arabia’s 20-million population. Bureaucratic obstacles, a lack of awareness of the process and gender segregation laws all hinder female participation.

“People are put off by segregation and restrictions. They think: ‘Why should I bother?’ That is true for voters and candidates. Registration is difficult because you need to bring a lot of documents. They are not accustomed to voting and don’t have a lot of faith in it. To a lot of people it feels like a waste of time,” said Jeddah journalist Samar Fatany as cited by the Guardian.

Campaigning for female candidates was more difficult than for their male competition as well. While both genders were banned from publishing their photos under election rules, for women it was almost impossible to meet voters. Social media and online chats were the main means of communication for female candidates, although some recruited their male relatives to act as proxies for speaking to the public directly.

While many women rights activists in Saudi Arabia see the introduction of universal suffrage as a milestone, there are fears that no female candidates will win a seat in 2015.

“What if no woman wins? My fear is that at this stage we have momentum, but once things settle, and if women are not elected, life goes back to normal,” Fatin Bundagji, a board member in Jeddah’s Chamber of Commerce, told the Foreign Policy.

Hope remains that even without a single win some female officials may be appointed to councils. Saudi Arabia has been slowly drifting towards allowing women take a greater part in public life. Women have lately served in executive positions in big companies and as cabinet-level officials. They are not barred from the Sharia Council, an appointed body advising the royal family on legislation.

Heavy resistance remains in Saudi Arabia’s conservative circles against giving women more rights, which is perceived as crippling westernization by critics. Women are not allowed to drive, travel alone, arrange marriages or apply for jobs without a guardian’s consent. Neither are they allowed to meet with male non-relatives.