Q&A tonight: Upcoming ABC shows on population and a Big Australia

I note that the ABC is planning to air Four Corners and Q&A programs on the issue of population and a ‘Big Australia’. The topic of a ‘Big Australia’ is a contentious issue in public debate. Several opinion polls show more than 50 percent of Australians believe Australia has enough people or should not grow any larger than 30 million people. On the other hand, the major political parties (including the Greens) are in lockstep marching to the tune of a Big Australia. Thus there is a major gap between elite opinion and the general public. In view of this the ABC has a special responsibility to ensure that its Editorial Policy number 4 — Impartiality and Diversity of Perspectives — is fully achieved in this case.

Diversionary tactics, smokescreens and the Electoral Funding and Disclosure Bill 2017

To me the “Electoral Legislation Amendment (Electoral Funding and Disclosure Reform) Bill 2017” is more of the same – putting out a spot fire/diversionary tactic. The bill may be aimed at so-called charities that provide political advocacy while at the same time accommodating such advocacy through the back door, the bill may claim some smaller fry that are, to the government, collateral damage. Instead of addressing political donations head-on, we pathetically tinker around at the edges. As the dust settles the sharks that were dominating the pond are still there while the sardines have been thinned out!

Australia and Singapore record overall decline in trust in institutions

Every year there is an international survey, called the Edelman “Trust Barometer” carried out in 28 countries to measure the level of trust its citizens hold with institutions such as Governments, media, business, and NGO's. Australia, for the second year in a row along with Singapore were the only countries that recorded an overall drop in trust in all categories. Across all 28 countries an average of 42% of people thought their government was the most broken institute but in Australia the figure was 56%.

What's going on at Seaford Rd intersection? Letter to Ministers and Councillors

"Until a few days ago, traffic travelling towards the beach on Seaford Rd in Seaford and turning right down railway parade would only back up in the worst of peak times. But several days ago the light sequence was changed, now it is almost permanently backed-up for several hundred metres, up on to the bridge over the freeway. [...] People in the local community are suggesting that the light sequences are deliberately being changed to cause jams so as to justify level crossing works. Certainly there is something suspicious about an intersection which rarely backed up several days ago and now is almost unusable."

Frightening new Victorian Local Government Act 2018 Submissions due March 16

“We are all an involuntary part of a social revolution, where political parties feel entitled to take ownership of our individual rights to real and personal property, and where our civil and political rights are abused and overridden by the many politically created entities within the Australian Government System.” (Larry Hannigan).

An ecological and humanistic response to Breunig & Fabian's defense of massive immigration to Australia

I found what struck me personally as egregious growthist propaganda dressed up as an academic research article on The Conversation, yesterday: "Blaming immigrants for unemployment, lower wages and high house prices is too simplistic." [February 23, 2018 11.26am AEDT]. The article was headed up by professor of economics, Robert Breunig from the Crawford School of Public Policy, Australian National University, and co-authored by Mark Fabian, Postgraduate student, Australian National University. Professor Breunig disclosed that he receives funding from the Productivity Commission, which I think is a leopard with continuously changing arrangement of spots according to whatever political background it needs to blend into for survival. Leith van Onselen's debate with Migration Council's CEO Carla Wilshire of the on the ABC’s National Wrapdocumented here, seems to illustrate this, but for all I know the professor and his student actually believe what they write.

Sustainable Population Australia comments on Tony Abbott and Peter Dutton on migration

Australia has no coherent population plan other than to inundate the major cities with people. Instead of a well though-out population policy, the strategy has been to stoke overall economic growth to support big business. This suits the property industry and retailers but GDP per capita growth is stagnating while ordinary Australians are worse off.

Australian ABC needs to widen sources on Syria - letter to producer

Dear Marina,

As producer of the segment this morning about the current campaign to liberate Eastern Ghouta from its terrorist besiegers, I would like to offer this alternative perspective on what is actually happening in Syria. I understand only too well that all Western governments, NGOs and UN organisations, including Amnesty International, speak with one voice, but they still present the situation in Damascus and its suburbs in completely misleading and false terms.

Demand on behalf of Melbourne Residents to stop St Kilda Rd damage

DEMAND
We, the residents of Melbourne demand that the
Government stop its plan to damage St Kilda Road and that
they make alternative plans such as an alternative route via
Kings Way and linking it into South Yarra Station, or deep
tunnelling the entire length or stop work , re-focus and re-
plan, in meaningful consultation with the people of
Melbourne.

Voted on and approved unanimously by the attendees at the
Public Protest at The Domain Interchange on the 21 st
February 2018

Big line up of speakers at rally to save trees in St. Kilda Road

Yesterday between 1 and 1.30pm a rally was held to save the trees in St. Kilda Road destined for removal to make way for the new underground metro. It was organised by the combined forces of Planning Backlash, Protectors of Public Lands and Walk in St. Kilda Road and environs Approximately 80 people attended including the 9 speakers listed below. The M.C of the event was Mary Drost , Convenor of Planning backlash.Prof. Michael Buxton was unable to attend and Dr. Ernest Healy , Vice President of Protectors of Public Lands Victoria deputised by reading Prof. Buxton's speech. Feelings for the impending loss of ancient trees and for those already lost ran high. The general consensus from the speakers was that the damage envisaged for avenue of trees in Melbourne's beautiful boulevard, St. Kilda Road was not necessary to accommodate the project and that a better way must be found. A statement to this effect will be sent to Shadow Minister for Planning, to be read out in both houses of Parliament.

A marsupial in wolf's clothing - First 3D digital models reveal convergent evolution

Researchers from Museums Victoria and the University of Melbourne have CT scanned all 13 known Tasmanian tiger joey specimens to create 3D digital models which have allowed them to study their skeletons and internal organs, and reconstruct their growth and development. This has revealed important new information about how this unique extinct marsupial evolved to look so similar to the dingo, despite being very distantly related.

Women’s Rights in Syria - by Mark Taliano

Syrian women are helping to save Syria and all of humanity against the scourge of Western-supported terrorism. The Canadian government, [Candobetter.net editor: and others, including Australia's, supporting the US-NATO agenda] on the other hand, is destroying women’s rights (and all human rights) in Syria and beyond.  If the truth were ever accepted by broad-based populations, then our government, led by those who project progressive fronts, would be exposed as the misogynist, life-hating rot that it is.

Leith van Onselen tackles the growth lobby monster - by Leith van Onselen

Tonight, [Feb 18, 2018] I appeared on the ABC’s National Wrap to debate the Migration Council’s CEO, Carla Wilshire, on Australia’s mass immigration program. Below are notes from the debate explaining my position and refuting Ms Wilshire’s key lines of argument.

Protest: St Kilda Road vandalised 21 Feb, 1pm in front of the domain building

St Kilda Road, Melbourne's Champs Elysees, is being vandalised for population growth that we don't need, but big business is imposing. Join a public protest Wednesday 21 Feb 2018, 1pm-1.30pm. The meeting is now in the reserve which is outside 1 Albert Road. It’s a triangle of land in the fork of Albert Road. Some more details and yellow arrow on map inside.

Interview with Cristine Hong: What's happening on the Korean Peninsula

In this podcast interview inside, Christine Hong speaks about the Korean history not told in corporate media, present day moves towards peace on the peninsula, and more. The interview is by journalist Eva Bartlett.

Video: Koreans talk peace - positive analysis by Crosstalk

The games have begun. The younger sister of North Korea’s ruler Kim Jong-un has captured the attention of the media, while US Vice President Mike Pence was mocked as a dud, even undiplomatic. The two Koreas are engaging each other. This makes the Washington foreign policy swamp fume. CrossTalking video with Brian Becker, Gregory Elich, and Myung-Koo Kang. This Crosstalk video pretty much covers the major bases in 30 minutes, with a stunningly well-informed cast.

What is the most credible conspiracy theory you know? [Translation from French version]

[This is a translation from the French version, "Quelle est la théorie du complot la plus crédible que vous connaissez?"] The mass media is the mouthpiece of the corporate world. It pretends to reflect the opinions of we masses but, in reality, it tries to create a perception that the exploitative economic system benefits us. Noam Chomsky's Manufacturing Consent is about this conspiracy. Chomsky shows how people are convinced that the corporate media reflects the opinions and thoughts of ordinary people, even if it isn't true. Ordinary people continue to read the corporate media, believing that it will represent them. They finish up adapting to what is presented to them as the opinion of their equals, even though this is rarely true.

The idea of 'fake news' is a feature of this propaganda machine, which now characterises all criticism of its prejudices as 'fake news'. This distortion of reality is more exaggerated and obvious in video games and social media, which exploit a younger, naive, social cohort, who lack classical education.

I think that one of the principal results of this media has been the stigmatisation of nationalism. When you think of it, what other concept can unite a country? Initially, small localities resisted the notion of 'nations' because they feared that nations would overwhelm their self-determination, their identities, their societiies and their local economies. In many cases, they were right, although the French system of communes within the roman (Napoleonic) system, resisted this better than the Anglosphere systems.

Quelle est la théorie du complot la plus crédible que vous connaissez?

Les médias de masse sont le porte-parole du monde des grandes entreprises. Ils prétendent refléter l'opinion de masse mais, en réalité, ils essaient de créer une perception que ce système économique exploiteur est à notre avantage. Le livre de Chomsky, Manufacturing Consent, traitait de ce complot. En francais ce livre s'intitule, La fabrication du consentement : De la propagande médiatique en démocratie. Il y en a qui disent que depuis Chomsky a ete coopté dans la disinformation, neanmoins ce livre montre comment les gens ordinaires sont convaincus que les médias reflètent ce que les gens ordinaires pensent, même si ce n'est pas vrai. Les gens continuent à lire les mass media, croyant que cela les représentera et ils s'adaptent à ce qu'il leur present comme l'opinion de leurs egaux, bien que ce soit rarement la vérité.

L'idée de «fausses nouvelles» est une caractéristique de cette machine de propagande, qui désigne désormais toutes les critiques de ses préjugés comme de «fausses nouvelles». La distorsion de la réalité est plus exagérée et évidente dans les jeux vidéo et les médias sociaux, qui exploitent une classe plus jeune, naïve et sociale, plus bovienne, sans éducation classique.

Je crois que l'un des principaux résultats de ces médias a été la stigmatisation du nationalisme. Quand vous y pensez, quel autre concept unificateur peut unir un pays? Au départ, les petites localités ont résisté à la notion de «nations» parce qu'elles craignaient que les nations ne subsument leur autodétermination, leur identités, leur societés et leur economies locales. Dans de nombreux cas, ils avaient raison, bien que le système de communes français dans le systeme romane (napoleonique) ait résisté à cela mieux que les systèmes de l'anglosphere.

Trust me, I'm an economist


It seems that tax cuts are all the rage with the PM praising Trumps bold initiatives and vowing to push through similar (but smaller) cuts in Australia. Bill Shorten, while not opposed to this form of pea & thimble trick has tentatively suggested that the the government ought to say how these cuts could be funded. Well the answer is all there in the history books. Ronald Regan while not the first to use tax cuts was however the one who tried to justify it by claiming the cuts would so boost the economy that tax revenues would increase even more than the loss incurred by the cuts. It became know as trickle down economics which then morphed into voodoo economics when it was found that the national debt had doubled. To his credit John Howard learnt two things from this débâcle - tax cuts win votes and any problems created will be inflicted on the next government.

Is Melbourne Water removing trees near you? What about the wildlife? Locations inside

Animals are losing their trees in droves. The cause is population growth. There is a new tree removing policy for all dams and retarding basins in Victoria, treating small retarding basins as if they were big dams, and treating trees as problems, where previously they were considered desirable. See inside for locations. This policy applies in other states as well. VicRoads is also suddenly removing trees en-masse from roadsides and median strips! None of these policies gives adequate consideration to wildlife habitat or cruelty impacts. There is no overall coordinating policy for Australia to ensure the preservation of wildlife and wildlife corridors at local, state and national levels, nor to avoid heat-island creation and local climate change, or citizen despair. With constant clearing for new suburbs and roads all over habitable Australia, tree removal by governments and contractors is reaching the level of a national civil emergency.

AWPC - Melbourne Water correspondence on tree removal wildlife impact Lee St Retardant Basin

AWPC writes that only two of its questions were answered satisfactorily. It asks Melbourne Water what happens to the wildlife after the clearing? “The AWPC, wildlife rescuers and shelters regularly experience the fallout of such projects. Consultants and wildlife handlers are contracted at a premium price, only to hand over displaced, orphaned and injured wildlife to either vets or local wildlife shelters who are then expected to deal with these sentinel beings at their own cost. Quite frankly this is unacceptable and needs to stop, which is why the AWPC ask you the following questions once again.” Inside, full correspondence to date.

How mathematics became what it is today

In a project funded by the Austrian Science Fund FWF, a philosophy research group at the University of Vienna investigated how "structuralism" became established in the field of mathematics and decisively influenced its current success.

Mathematics is a special science in the sense that it is not entirely clear what it is about. How real mathematical objects are and what significance this question has is something people have been pondering since ancient times. For the practice of mathematics, it is sufficient to define certain properties of mathematical objects, such as natural numbers, using some simple statements called axioms. But this does not explain what numbers actually are.

Peter Cook's very useful submission on immigration to Dept Home Affairs

[Candobetter.net Editor: This submission was made available as a pdf attachment to an earlier article. It is such a useful document that we have converted the pdf version to a web document for easier reading.]

Managing Australias Migrant Intake Submission Dept Home Affairs

It is a peculiarity of Australian policy making that a decision with major import for our society, economy and environment — namely the size of our annual intake of permanent migrants — is made in virtual secrecy and announced in an obscure line of the annual budget papers and an equally obscure line of a Departmental press release. The decision is important because our prescribed annual migrant intake (last year it was set at 190,000) makes a large contribution to Australia’s annual population growth.

According the Australian Bureau of Statistics, in the year to 30 June 2017, our population grew by 388,100 to 24,598,900 people. We are adding people in numbers equivalent to a city the size of Canberra, every year. Net overseas migration (NOM) contributed 245,400 or 63.3% to this increase, while ‘natural’ increase was only 36.8% or 142,700 people. NOM is overwhelmingly the biggest contributor to our annual population increase, which at an annual growth rate of 1.6% is one of the highest in the OECD, in third place after Luxemborg and Switzerland. These facts are worth re-stating here because many people may not be aware just how much immigration is contributing to our very high rate of population growth (including a red-hot 2.3% in Victoria).

In turn, this population growth is putting pressure on housing prices, infrastructure, services and the environment.

However, a small change has occurred this year. For what is probably the first time, the Department of Home Affairs (formerly Immigration) has sought public submissions on the question of what are the ‘right’ settings for migrant intake. I have contributed a submission here (PDF). It is possible that this new step has been taken as a result of the recommendations of the Productivity Commissions report on Migrant Intake into Australia. This report, to which yours truly contributed two submissions, is a major work of synthesis which draws on a wide range of community and expert evidence.

It is important that the findings of this report be fully studied and the major recommendations implemented. One of the most important is Recommendation 3.1, for the Australian government to develop an explicit population policy to serve as a context for making decisions about migrant intake. A significant part of the Commission’s findings and recommendations are for more public consultation and input into the development of the proposed population policy, and into decisions about migrant intake in particular. In short, the Commission is calling for an injection of democracy into this whole policy area.

Chas Licciardello pours out high-immigration propaganda on ABC TV's program "Planet America"

When listing high-immigration bias at ABC and SBS, we tend to forget the many ABC shows now aimed at the younger demographic (where the ABC had been losing audience dramatically). The ABC have hired a lot of youngish talented comedians out of the vast pool of stand-up comedy talent among young Australians. It’s mostly smart-arse stuff without much pretence to news value, but there are some shows like The Chaser and Planet America that hybridise comedic style with serious debate on current affairs. These are in effect part of the ABC News stable, and their biases matter more.

The problem is that the ABC seems to have selected its comedians for having the right political and social views. One reason these comic shows seem a bit dull, especially to anyone over 30, is that there seems to be almost no difference of opinion or political stance among these comedians. Think how much more interesting it would be if the comedians on these panels actually had different points of view, instead of merely having different comedic styles!

AWPC: Bush Heritage big assertions on kangaroo culls need evidence before any action

"Bush heritage makes some rather big assertions about the impact of kangaroos at their Scottdale reserve and the impacts this wildlife species is having on the biodiversity there. If Bush Heritage is serious about their claims then they need to be a little more transparent," writes Craig Thomson, President of the Australian Wildlife Protection Council.

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.)

War in Syria / U.S., a wounded predator, spreads chaos in Middle East

U.S. imperialism’s deteriorating position in the Middle East was confirmed on Jan. 17, by Secretary of State Rex Tillerson’s bold assertion for U.S. plans in Syria. The arrogant statement was followed, within hours, by almost immediate backpedaling.

Tillerson’s talk at the Hoover Institution at Stanford University confirmed that the only hope of maintaining U.S. domination is another desperate attempt to close all borders and dismember the entire region. But the latest plan has also created a rupture in NATO, the oldest and largest U.S.-commanded military alliance. [Article first published on Global Research at https://www.globalresearch.ca/war-in-syria-the-us-a-wounded-predator-spreads-chaos-in-middle-east/5627212]

Lee Street Frankston Retarding Basin trees due to be felled 'late January' more details here

Alan Hood is a Flood Researcher. Melbourne Water owns this Retarding Basin and their maintenance contractor, John Holland - KBR Joint Venture intend removing trees and various works in "late January" - any day now. This could be an attempt to cater for increased suburban stormwater runoff without increasing the capacity of the chain of retarding basins. Although prepared for dams which would normally be at least 10 to 15 m high, ANCOLD guidelines can also be used to assist with decisions on smaller dams, particularly where such dams create potential loss of life or significant damage. The attached Planning map shows Special Building Overlays (SBO) for Frankston; the identify areas likely to be flooded.

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