Palmer pursued. . .


Why did they bring this up this week?” Mr Palmer said. “Why is the government, ministers and the departments handing stuff to Rupert Murdoch?”

Quite right Mr Palmer, why is the Abbott government handing “stuff” to Rupert Murdoch?

“The Clean Energy Regulator is currently investigating whether Queensland Nickel Pty Ltd has made any payments towards the debt in the last 24 hours,” a spokeswoman for the Clean Energy Regulator said.

“We have no record of payment having been received at this stage”.

Already well and truly on the public record is Clive Palmer’s objection to the carbon tax with Palmer stating in November last year that, “the Abbott government should sue him if they want to get the $6.17m in carbon tax owed by his company Queensland Nickel“.

However to Clive Palmer’s credit,

Palmer United Party federal leader and Member for Fairfax Clive Palmer will abstain on voting on the Abbott government’s carbon tax repeal legislation package despite the party’s opposition to the carbon tax…

“I’m applying company director standards and stepping out of this debate as there’s currently a potential conflict of interest,” Mr Palmer said.

This being a most refreshing attitude coming from the right of politics where conscience and money are never normally an issue.

The fact Clean Energy Regulators is/was “currently investigating” came as a huge shock. . .  just to know that the CER is still with us.

New prime minister Tony Abbott wasted little time after the swearing-in of his conservative Liberal National Party coalition, delivering immediately on his promise to repeal or dismantle all institutions and policy measures involving climate change and clean energy.

Therefore even more of a shock is Tony Abbott’s statement of yesterday that Clive Palmer should forthwith pay his taxes, taxes which are a direct result of the price on carbon.  Surely there should be some sympathy given Abbott’s endless rants against the carbon tax, including that Whyalla would be wiped off the map.  So incensed was Tony Abbott that he called on Labor and the Greens to “repent”.  However, not to get between a politician, some pre-election rhetoric and a dollar, Abbott has now insisted that Clive cough up.  **Apparently Mr Palmer has paid, but that wasn’t going to stop The Australian running the story anyway.

Prime Minister Tony Abbott has insisted that Mr Palmer should respect the law and that his company should pay its outstanding taxes.

But I thought that Tony Abbott was so vehemently against the price on carbon that he will call a double dissolution election should he fail to get a repeal through the Senate.

“. . .if an incoming Coalition government can’t get its carbon tax repeal legislation through the Senate, well, we will not hesitate to go to a double dissolution.”

I would say, bring it on Tony.  If your grandstanding about Palmer not having paid a bill which he has in fact paid is the best that you can currently dredge up, I would suggest that you go back to your knights and dames.

The ‘new look’ Dept of Climate Change

Typing in these days takes you to the Department of the Environment. It used to take you to the Department of Climate Change – back in the days when we had a government that had climate change as a high priority.

The big bold headline you are now met with is . . .

Carbon tax to be abolished from 1 July 2014

Rather presumptuous, don’t you think?

We clicking on a link invited to do so, we see . . .

The Australian Government will abolish the carbon tax from 1 July 2014. This will lower costs for Australian businesses and ease cost of living pressures for households.

Not only presumptuous, but now a bit of bullshit has been added for good measure. Here’s more of the bullshit:

Why are we removing the carbon tax

Repealing the carbon tax and the Clean Energy Package is designed to:

  • Reduce the cost of living – modelling by the Australian Treasury suggests that removing the carbon tax in 2014-15 will leave average costs of living across all households around $550 lower than they would otherwise be in 2014-15.
  • Lower retail electricity by around 9 per cent and retail gas prices by around 7 per cent than they would otherwise be in 2014-15 with a $25.40 carbon tax.
  • Boost Australia’s economic growth, increase jobs and enhance Australia’s international competitiveness by removing an unnecessary tax, which hurts businesses and families.
  • Reduce annual ongoing compliance costs for around 370 liable entities by almost $90 million per annum.
  • Remove over 1,000 pages of primary and subordinate legislation.

Rather odd, isn’t it?

I could have swore that on their site I read somewhere the claim that ‘We contribute to developing climate change solutions, reducing greenhouse gas emissions, and adapting to the impacts of climate change‘.


Image courtesy of

Image courtesy of

Why are we arguing about climate change?

Image courtesy of Joe Raedle/Getty Images

Image courtesy of Joe Raedle/Getty Images

The first I ever heard about global warming was 1968 when it was mentioned by my school teacher at the time. A billion things have been mentioned since and I have listened to both sides of the argument and whether it is caused by A, B or C.

But today I read something that is the most profound of all the arguments:

The overwhelming consensus among climate scientists is that human-caused climate change is happening. Yet a fringe minority of our populace clings to an irrational rejection of well-established science. This virulent strain of anti-science infects the halls of Congress, the pages of leading newspapers and what we see on TV, leading to the appearance of a debate where none should exist.

Bingo. Got it in one.

The rest of the article isn’t bad either. 😉

It’s hotter in LA since Andrew was there

A year ago I wrote a piece for The AIMN titled “Andrew Bolt: the glob-trotting weather presenter” in response to an article – ridiculing climate change nonetheless – he called “Almost too cold to type this message to a warmist“. He wrote:

As it happens, I am in Los Angeles, freezing my backside off in an unusually cold spell . . . The world is not warming as was predicted.

Well, Andrew, LA ‘s damn hot a year to the day later. From conditions where you found yourself freezing your backside off . . . to this:

A record-breaking heat wave combined with gusty Santa Ana winds has created extreme fire conditions across parched wild lands in the Southland, forecasters warned.

Red flag warnings for Los Angeles and Ventura counties have been extended until 3 p.m. Friday with abysmally low humidity worsening already tinder-dry conditions. Wind gusts of up to 50 mph are possible in mountain areas, the National Weather Service said.

Downtown Los Angeles hit 85F (30C), tying a daily record set in 2009. Bob Hope Airport in Burbank recorded a high of 86, breaking by one degree a record for the day set in 1976.

It’s funny how the weather can change so much in one year. Or maybe you were just using “an unusually cold spell” to support your opinion that climate change doesn’t really exist.

What happened to the Carbon Tax?

From The Australian rossleigh of The AIMN found this interesting quote:

“The Prime Minister said cabinet had today signed off on the legislation to rescind the carbon price, which would ideally occur at the end of the financial year.”

I only have one thing to say: Wasn’t it supposed to be a “carbon tax”? After all, that’s what Tony Abbott had been calling it right up until the election.

Funny how it’s now a price, according to him. Mind you, that’s what we’ve been saying all along.

Carbon tax pledge

Have we earned our place in the future?

A few coming events in our planet’s future – some predicted, some certain – will see the human race wiped off the face of the earth, literally. Of course there’s also the unpredictable, such as a rogue comet sending us the way of the dinosaurs or the absurd such as the sky eventually crashing down because of the ‘carbon tax’. There might also be a virus, currently unknown and exposed to life on earth that delivers a catastrophic pandemic and of course there is always a religious loony warning that God will strike us dead with a bolt of lightning if we keep sinning. Steven Spielberg likes to assure us that creatures from another galaxy will one day develop a taste for human flesh and every one of us will end up on a galactic dinner plate; a fate that could have already befallen us if it weren’t for the likes of Flash Gordon or Sigourney Weaver.

But, science tells us we are all doomed unless there is some intervention or miracle to save our battered souls.

Ignoring the unpredictable, we could face our first real crisis in roughly 100 years, according to Professor Frank Fenner, emeritus professor of microbiology at the Australian National University who has predicted that the human race will be extinct within the next 100 years:

He has claimed that the human race will be unable to survive a population explosion and ‘unbridled consumption.’

Fenner told The Australian newspaper that ‘homo sapiens will become extinct, perhaps within 100 years.’

‘A lot of other animals will, too,’ he added.

‘It’s an irreversible situation. I think it’s too late. I try not to express that because people are trying to do something, but they keep putting it off.’

Since humans entered an unofficial scientific period known as the Anthropocene – the time since industrialisation – we have had an effect on the planet that rivals any ice age or comet impact, he said.

Well, that’s his opinion, rightly or wrongly. None of us will be here to see if his crystal ball was working, however, I can’t disagree that humanity has played a big part in sending the planet on a downward spiral. It’s up to our generation, to a large degree, to ensure that humanity is still here in a 100 years. Our generation could cause either the demise of the human race or the seed of its longevity. Let’s face reality; we can’t always rely on science to repair what we have broken.

If we survive Fenner’s prediction, and those with similar apocalyptic prophecies, science tells us that the unstoppable forces of evolution conspire to ensure our demise anyway, in roughly 10 million years, unless of course science or nature can discover a way to halt the unstoppable. We males will be the first to go:

Among the more alarming rumors prompted by genetics research was the impending  extinction of the Y chromosome. The classic male marker seemed to be shriveling.  Would the human race become an all-female species? The Y is, after all, just a  tiny nub of a chromosome, having undergone serious shrinkage in the past.

The time frame of 10 million years was heard on a radio show some months back, so it’s only speculation. But I’m not going to argue if it’s right or wrong.

There has already been a significant shift in the gender balance in my life time. In the mid 1960s males represented 51% of the human population. They’re now on the skids, making up 49%. Unless there are sperm banks on every street corner in 10 million years time it will be very hard to find a dancing partner.

Of little interest to any of us is the unavoidable obliteration of the planet from the dying sun. Of this we are doomed:

The sun is dying, and when it finally kicks, it will take Earth with it. We probably won’t be around to see it, though: The sun’s death throes will have taken out life here well before it swallows the planet.

The good news? We’ve got a very, very long time before any of this happens.

A panel of scientists at the annual meeting of the American Association for the Advancement of Science described the situation in 2000, and it still holds true. Astronomers generally agree that the sun will burn up its hydrogen fuel supply sometime in the next 5 billion to 7 billion years. As it does, gravity will force the sun to collapse into its core, which will ratchet up the heat on the remaining hydrogen and cause the sun to expand into a red giant.

At this point, the sun will swallow the Earth.

“Earth will end up in the sun, vaporizing and blending its material with that of the sun,” said Iowa State University’s Lee Anne Willson. “That part of the sun then blows away into space, so one might say Earth is cremated and the ashes are scattered into interstellar space.”

By then, the sun will be hot enough to burn all its stored helium and the sun will fluctuate in size. The sun isn’t quite massive enough to explode in an awesome supernova, so it will merely collapse into a relatively cool white dwarf.

Perhaps a moot point, though, because we’ll most likely be long dead before this occurs. As the sun revs up to its red giant phase, it’s getting about 10 percent brighter every billion years. At that rate, scientists estimate that all the water on the planet will evaporate in the next billion years.

That gives us a mere billion years to find way of getting off this rock and re-establishing our species on an Earth-like planet orbiting a distant star. Not everyone can go. If the human race was to survive past this point then it would be with thanks to a handful of intergalactic pioneers.

In a billion years the human race will find a way of ensuring it survival, subject of course, to having survived every other uncontrollable threat to it extinction along the way.

But I want to go back to the more immediate threats and our immediate future. Do we really deserve to be a part of it? Just look how we’ve shamed ourselves over the last 100 years; killing ourselves with war, turning a once fertile planet into an infertile lump of rock, wiping other species off the planet at an alarming rate, and choking the life out of every waterway, paddock or city.

We have a poor record. Since the beginning of the last century we have killed an estimated 200,000,ooo fellow humans in wars alone.

We have polluted the planet so badly that it is estimated that 40% of all deaths worldwide are caused by the damaging effects of pollution. And that’s just us humans.

Pollution is one of the primary ways in which humans have caused drastic modifications of wildlife habitat. Historically we have regarded the air, water, and soil that surround us as waste receptacles and have given little consideration to the ecological consequences of our actions. As a result, wildlife populations are confronted with a bewildering array of pollutants that we release into the environment either by intent or accident.

Not content with wiping ourselves out, we are also intent to wipe out all life.

The planet would be better off without us. Have we earned our place in the future? Unless we can evolve into a higher level of consciousness we’d better start looking for another planet about a billion years earlier than expected.

But as it is, the earth is a very dangerous place. Nobody gets off alive.


It’s good to see that not everybody is listening to Tony Abbott

Last November the Liberal Party released a publication called The little book of big Labor waste, which you can gain access to here. Their introduction stated that:

The Coalition has today released a book listing the top 50 examples of Labor waste and mismanagement since the overnight coup that installed Julia Gillard as Prime Minister.

The little book of big Labor waste shows that waste and mismanagement was not just a feature of the Rudd Labor Government; it is also a hallmark of the Gillard Labor Government.

One of the initiatives they targeted as an example of Labor’s waste was this:

Hundreds of thousands of taxpayer dollars are going to promote the carbon tax to toddlers as part of Labor’s multi-million dollar carbon tax campaign. The Department of Climate Change has provided grants for:

1. $150,000 to Dirtgirlworld Productions Pty Ltd – producer of children’s television program popular with toddlers.

2. $200,000 to Green Cross Australia to run carbon tax ‘Show and Tell’ programs in primary schools.

Personally, I consider that spending money on climate change education in schools is money well spent. Let’s look at what’s happening in one particular school, in Perth, which sadly I am unable to name. The following text was taken from one of their student projects:

Sustainability Research


As you guys know, our school has two great sustainability projects:

  1. The solar panels.
  2. The wind turbine.

It’s your job to find out how they work and what they’re doing for our school.

The Solar Panels

The system here generates about 50kWh a day when it is sunny. Your average school uses about 100kWh a day. So this system generates about half our energy use when it is hot.

Here is the power production for Wednesday the 3rd of April. Look closely at the graph and how the power gets produced (graph removed as it names the school).

  1. Why do we need electricity?
  2. How do solar panels work? Why is the graph shaped like that?
  3. What kind of days should produce the most power and what time of year would be best?
  4. Describe renewable energy? Why is it important?

Here is our power production for the month of MARCH. Compare this to the climate data below for Perth for the same period (graph removed).

  1. Which day produced the most power and which produced the least?
  2. What was the average daily power production?
  3. Can you see any trends between power production and the weather data? If so explain them.
  4. How much total power did the panels produce in March?

Here is one of our power bills for mid-February to mid-March. This is about the same each year and close to the period covered by the graph above (bill removed, amount due was just under $10k).

  1. Assuming that our panels generate roughly half our electricity, how much money will we save for the month of March?
  2. Extrapolate this for the entire year and how much will we save?

Go to the Sunny portal website at (link removed). This shows our solar power production on the web. Log in to ‘our school’s’ website and answer the following:

  1. How much total energy have we produced?
  2. How much CO2 we’ve avoided.
  3. Why is it important to reduce our CO2 production?

Wind Turbine

This is a one kWh system and was connected at the same time the solar panels were. Study the power production graph below for the first half of March (graph removed).

  1. How many kW were produced for the 14 days of the graph?
  2. How much would this be for the month assuming the second half of March was the same?
  3. Does the wind turbine produce more or less power than the solar panels and what is the difference?
  4. Which days produced the most power and why? Do these days fit with the Perth weather data table above?
  5. Which days produced the last power and why?
  6. Is the any relationship or pattern between the best wind days and the best solar power days? How about the worst days?
  7. Is it the case that the wind turbine works best when the solar panels are at their worst? Explain.
  8. What can you say about the 6th, 11th and 12th of March in terms of power production?

Reflection Questions

  1. What have you learnt about these items in class?
  2. Do you have any other environmental measures at your school?
  3. Do you have any environmental programs at your school?
  4. What have you learnt about the environment at school?
  5. Why do you think we should take care of our environment?
  6. How do you think we could get more people to care about the environment and save water/energy?
  7. Why is saving energy/water important?
  8. How can you help your school to save energy/water?
  9. Which ideas could you use at home?
  10. Describe renewable energy? Why is it important?
  11. Do you have any handy hints for helping the environment.

Brilliant, isn’t it? But according to the LNP all this is a waste of taxpayer’s money. These initiatives are being undertaken by hundreds of schools around the country while the best Tony Abbott can do is wave a pensioner’s power bill in Parliament lamenting an increase due to that lousy ‘carbon tax’. Meanwhile, the people who don’t listen to Tony Abbott spend $50K on solar panels and reduce their electricity bill by $4.5k a month.

It’s good to see that not everybody is listening to Tony Abbott.

Andrew Bolt: the globe-trotting weather presenter

This was posted today over at The AIMN and is reproduced here.

Believe in climate change or not, there is no denying that the most vociferous and fanatical arguments come from those kitchen table scientists who do not believe we are on the eve of a catastrophic event. Their media bosses let them loose on anybody who even merely says “it’s hotter today than last week”.

Somebody must have said such a thing recently; enough to inspire Andrew Bolt to dedicate five of his last eight blog articles to attacking proponents of climate change.

His latest piece, Almost too cold to type this message to a warmist does nothing for his argument. Or his credibility for that matter.

Absent from his blog for a few days, we learn from Andrew that:

As it happens, I am in Los Angeles, freezing my backside off in an unusually cold spell.

He’d better prepare himself for some fairly nasty weather: I’ve just checked the forecast for Los Angeles for the rest of the week and they are expecting Arctic-lke temperatures of 25, 26, 27, 27 and 27 over the next five days. Those temperatures are in Celcius, mind you. Don’t go outside, Andrew. You’ll be snap frozen.

Andrew also tells us that Los Angeles has been experiencing record low temperatures yet assures us that:

I wouldn’t be so stupid or dishonest as to claim that weather in one part of the world says anything about the climate everywhere.

Before coming out with this gem:

Fact: to measure what we call “global warming” we need global records, not anecdotes about temperatures in Australia or California. And what those global records tell us is that the rise in temperature paused 16 years ago . . . The world is not warming as was predicted. And gloating over some bushfires in Australia does not changed that central truth. Indeed, it strikes me as dishonest.

(Now might be a good time to read Bolt’s short article in its entirety before continuing here).

While Andrew is sitting in front of the open fire while Los Angeles shivers he might want to pick up the local Los Angeles Times and read this article: 2012 was among the 10 hottest years on record globally. Here’s what it says:

The average global temperature in 2012 was among the 10 hottest since official record keeping began in 1880, with most of the world — from North America to far northeastern Asia — experiencing higher-than-usual temperatures, according to related reports issued Tuesday by the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration and the National Aeronautics and Space Administration.

Last year’s average global temperature was about 58.3 degrees Fahrenheit, or about 1.0 degree Fahrenheit warmer than the mid-20th century baseline, NASA said, making it the ninth-warmest year on record. NOAA’s evaluation showed that 2012 was the 10th-warmest. The agencies’ reports are based on slightly different methodologies and data.

Still, the two agencies concurred that the data point to a planet that has grown warmer swiftly and looks to get even hotter in the near future. The reports noted that except for 1988, the nine warmest years in the 132-year record all have occurred since 2000. And 2012 was the 36th year in a row that the global average temperature was above the 20th century mean of 57 degrees Fahrenheit.

Now, Andrew, who is being dishonest?

Andrew Bolt

The ‘El Gordo Effect’

Anybody who has been to Hong Kong recently would have noticed it is suffering from the dreaded el gordo effect. The condition is terminal.

“What is the el gordo effect?” you ask. Let me digress a bit in order to explain.

Arguments have been raging for some years now as to whether the planet is faced with the horrible prospect of world-wide climate change or not. I believe it is, but that’s not the argument I’m presenting here. I don’t have any problem with people arguing that climate change is just a big beat up, but I do disagree with the blinkered argument they thrust upon us. The disappointing argument they continually push is that in the case of Australia, as we only contribute 1.34% of the planet’s carbon dioxide emissions it is hardly worth the while for us to initiate any action about climate change. We’re too small. Too insignificant.

So then is Hong Kong, who only contribute 0.13%. In carbon dioxide emissions per capita we leave them in our wake, scoring 18.3 metric tonnes to their 5.5.

Hong Kong thus sounds like a squeaky clean place. But it is not. Again I must digress.

A further disappointing argument from the opponents of climate change is that they see no problem with polluting the country, again based on the argument that we are too miniscule to cause any damage to our environment. It’s quite OK to pollute the waterways, the soil and the air because, after all, we are so insignificant. Goodness, we only contribute 1.34% towards the planet’s carbon dioxide emissions so who really cares what we do? With any luck we’ll slip by unnoticed.

Hong Kong is a shocking example of where unrestricted pollution can choke a city despite being a minnow, like Australia, in the emission charts. Subsequently, it has fallen victim to the dreaded el gordo effect.

I now return to the question, ‘what is the el gordo effect?’

The el gordo effect is the result of:

sterilising a country because it’s OK to ignore climate change as it doesn’t matter to us so we can continue to trash ourselves.

So then, what has the el gordo effect had on Hong Kong? Simply, it is ecologically dead. It is a sterile lump of dirt where nothing can live in its natural state. There are no flies, spiders, insects or even ants. It is too sterile for them to survive. You won’t see any birds. It is too polluted for them. If you don’t like bird shit or spiders then you’ll love Hong Kong, unlike the thousands of people who walk the streets wearing face masks as the air is too putrid for them to breathe.

A bit like the Sydney of the future, really.

Is the el gordo effect coming to a city near you?

In the year 2050

Tony Abbott has lamented that the introduction of the carbon tax has not been “absolutely catastrophic” but warned Australians they will be $5000 worse off by 2050 unless it is abolished. Because of that dastardly Julia Gillard the carbon tax will take $2.53 a week out of our pockets for the next 38 years, quipped Blogotariat.

So that’s the worse thing Abbott reckons can happen to us and our future generations over the next 38 years. I can live with that.

In 2050 Australia will probably be a good place. Thanks to a long-gone Prime Minister way back in 2012 we’ll awake to clear blue skies and we’ll have jobs to go to. Our economy will continue to be the envy of the world and our telecommunication systems have been modeled around the world, as have our green technologies.

There is no such thing as a minority group as Australia will be a country where all people are equal. Even our Indigenous brothers and sisters can walk down the street without being racially vilified.

Tertiary education is affordable and there are enough hospital beds to house the sick.

The image of Australia in 2050 paints a very attractive picture.

But I wonder what it’ll look like had Tony Abbott have been Prime Minister way back in 2012. Allow me to amuse myself with the following picture.

Those people lucky enough to have jobs – and there aren’t many of them – will don face masks before they leave for work. The streets will be empty; acid rain has been forecast.

Twenty people have been killed by the riot police in Melbourne’s shanty town.

The nation’s capital, Port Hedland, now has a population of four million.

Areas of Western Australia that were once sacred sites containing art work from a lost civilisation are now big holes in the ground.

Prime Minister Thomas Rinehart dismisses calls to end Australia’s ties to the monarchy.

Meanwhile, the war with Malaysia goes well. It’s also good for the economy and helps line the pockets of the billionaires.

The unemployment rate of 46% is steady.

Refugee boats are sank as soon as they enter Australian waters. Tony Abbott’s long ago promise to stop the boats has been a success.

The reintroduction of the assimilation policies have failed so Aborigines are again sent to reserves.

Gay marriage is illegal.

It’s now been 12 years since a fish has been caught in the Murray. The waters are too polluted to sustain life.

Plans are being drawn up to move the major coastal cities inland due to the rising tides. This should help employment.

Meanwhile the war with India goes well.

There is great excitement in the country after the Government announces the go-ahead of a National Broadband Network.

In the finance sectors, interest rates have dropped to 26% and the dollar is 35 cents against the Greenback.

A new university is planned for Port Hedland. The country will then have five universities.

Religious Instructions are compulsory in primary schools.

The skies are black, the riverways are murky and the beaches are sludge. Nothing grows.

The billionaires thank Tony Abbott for their lucky life. And for a white Australia.

Meanwhile, the war with Somalia goes well.