Barnaby Sells Out?

4 Oct

From the Australian:

BARNABY Joyce, who has built his political career opposing foreign investment, is under fire for hypocrisy after giving his blessing to the sale of two of the Northern Territory’s best known cattle stations to Indonesia’s biggest live cattle importer.

The Agriculture Minister, who two weeks ago asked Australians to “make a big noise” and oppose the Indonesian government’s plan to purchase a million hectares of cattle country, said he supported the latest sale after talking to the Northern Territory cattle industry.

The Santori company – a subsidiary of the Indonesian agribusiness Japfa group – is purchasing two large Northern Territory cattle properties, Riveren and Inverway stations.

Mr Joyce said last night he made the decision to support the sale after talking to northern Australian cattlemen.

“They wanted the sale to go forward,” he said.

The Deputy Nationals Leader said the purchase of the two cattle stations was a joint venture on lease-hold land, that would kick-start the live cattle trade to Indonesia.

He dismissed the charge of hypocrisy, declaring the Greens wanted to “shut down the trade all together” and Labor had created the slump in cattle exports in the first place. “We are just trying to sweep up the dishes they dropped,” he said.

Mr Joyce’s decision to support the sale is a stark departure from his public call – about two weeks ago, before being appointed to the ministry – for Australians to “make a big noise” and oppose a similar plan from the Indonesian government to buy farmland and raise cattle for the domestic market.

“I cannot possibly see how it is in the national interest, what benefit is it to Australian farmers, to Australian taxpayers, if another entity buys our land to breed their cattle, exports them to their own facilities and pays tax in another country,” Mr Joyce said at the time.

The Nationals deputy leader’s about-face received a mixed reception from his party colleagues yesterday. Some of them have flagged a tough fight on the potential sale of Australia’s largest listed agribusiness, GrainCorp, to US firm Archer Daniels Midland if it is approved by Joe Hockey.

NSW Nationals senator John Williams said Australia should own its own farmland, with the profits going back into regional and rural towns.

“Have the owners of those stations had them on the market for a long time?” Senator Williams said. “Are they desperate to get out? If they can’t get a local buyer, then I wouldn’t blame them for selling to a foreign buyer. But I like to see Australians own our farmland. I want to see the profits of those farms spent locally in our regional towns.”

Queensland LNP MP George Christensen said Mr Joyce was only meeting the demands of industry.

“You have to talk to the local industry, and my understanding is that they are all behind it.

“In that case, as Australia’s Agriculture Minister, he is (fulfilling) the wishes of the Australian agricultural industry,” he said.

F*ckwit Fisked

4 Oct

clive_hamilton_narrowweb__200x252

Enjoy seeing a smug, holier-than-thou “public intellectual” being rebutted, point by point?

So do I.

Cross-posted from Andrew Bolt’s blog:

Professor Clive Hamilton, the abusive and dictatorial Gaian climate catastrophist, seems to me to be a racist as well. As well as being totally irrational, that is:

binge-drinking and obesity are two signifiers of the curse of speaking English

Hmm. How long has Russia been English-speaking?:

Today, according to the World Health Organization, one-in-five men in the Russian Federation die due to alcohol-related causes, compared with 6.2 percent of all men globally. In her 2000 article “First Steps: AA and Alcoholism in Russia,” Patricia Critchlow estimated that some 20 million Russians are alcoholics in a nation of just 144 million.

Large swathes of Europe must have also started to babble in English from under the table:

THE world drank the equivalent of 6.1 litres of pure alcohol per person in 2005, according to a report from the World Health Organisation… The biggest boozers are mostly found in Europe and in the former Soviet states. Moldovans are the most bibulous, getting through 18.2 litres each, nearly 2 litres more than the Czechs in second place.

Again and again, Hamilton makes spurious links between English-speaking and some sign of depravity or lack of self-control:

Being fat and English-speaking seem to go together.

Once again, the facts contradict Hamilton. From the World Health Organisation:

According to WHO estimates, more than 75% of women over the age of 30 are now overweight in countries as diverse as Barbados, Egypt, Malta, Mexico, South Africa, Turkey, and the United States. Estimates are similar for men, with over 75% now overweight in, for example, Argentina, Germany, Greece, Kuwait, New Zealand, Samoa, and the United Kingdom. Notably, the Western Pacific islands of Nauru and Tonga have the highest global prevalence of overweight where nine out of every 10 adults are overweight.

Hamilton tries again:

It is now widely believed throughout the West that rich countries are experiencing social fragmentation and “moral decline”. To the extent that this is true, the decline is being led by the Anglophone countries… When English-speakers marry the partnership is more likely to founder.

Once again, the facts contradict his anti-Anglo theory:

image

Again, Hamilton exaggerates:

Along with television viewing, use of recreational drugs is a response to boredom and anomie. In Anglo countries, cannabis use is much higher than elsewhere.

In fact:

About 180m people aged between 15 and 64 smoked weed in the past 12 months, compared with around 160m a few years ago. The drug is most popular in New Zealand and Italy.

So it strikes me that Hamilton simply wanted to believe the very worst of English speakers, regardless of the evidence. Indeed, some of the pathologies he seizes upon as evidence of the hazards of English speaking are in fact evidence of greater wealth. And he lets loose on people of Anglophone countries with a stream of abuse that if applied to any other “racial”, ethnic or language group would have him and the ABC (which published his rant) in danger of a breach of the Racial Discrimination Act:

If binge-drinking and obesity are two signifiers of the curse of speaking English, another is television viewing, and the decline in social life that goes with it… Anglo-narcissism …  Badly behaved children are to be found everywhere, but they are more likely to have their tantrums in English…

Nations encouraging the introduction of English can expect that, over time, their citizens will become more individualistic, more materialistic and less compassionate. They are also likely to want to watch more television, eat more junk food, become fatter, marry less and divorce more often. Their children will become less disciplined, more likely to need drugs to calm them down, and to binge on alcohol when they reach their teens.

Not Just The Best … The Coolest Film Ever Made

3 Oct

dread-pirate-roberts-1

My all-time favourite movie. Russell Crowe’s too, or so I’ve read.

From The Vine:

Silk Road crushed

Bad news, lovers of buying drugs on the interwebs: Silk Road has been shut down by the Feds. Yes, the online drug marketplace that you went “seriously? If that exists and I know about it, then surely someone in law enforcement also does,” currently boasts the same sort of shutdown notice you saw on that site a few weeks after going “any movie on the planet? If that exists, and I know about it, then surely…”.

They’ve also arrested the site’s owner – 29 year old Ross William Ulbricht, an American tech kid who went by the name Dread Pirate Roberts in yet another piece of evidence that The Princess Bride is in fact the best film ever made.

At Least He’s Not A Hypocrite … IF He Goes Through With It

3 Oct

Actions speak louder than words.

As with climate change itself, I am perfectly content to wait and see whether 32 years-young Eric actually goes through with his twin commitments, before drawing any conclusions about his sincerity.

From Investor’s Business Daily:

Crying Like A Schoolgirl Over Global Warming Report

Hysteria: A weeping meteorologist says he’ll forgo jet travel and having children because he’s upset by last week’s climate change report. He will likely be the object of much mockery. But might he also be a victim?

Eric Holthaus appears to be a publicity hound crying out for attention. His tweet explaining how he broke down in tears to his wife upon hearing that the United Nations’ Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change say it’s 95% certain man is warming Earth is surely self-serving.

So, too, is his claim that on Friday he was boarding “the last flight I ever take” because flying is “not worth the climate.”

The former Wall Street Journal weather writer also pledged to have “no children” and was “thinking of a vasectomy” to help him keep his promise.

It’s OK to laugh at Holthaus. Grown men reacting like schoolgirls should be hooted at with great pleasure.

But maybe it’s not all his fault.

The global warming alarmists have created a climate of madness. Their incessant warnings of worldwide disaster and unspeakable human suffering due to man-made warming have sent some people into a frenzy.

Almost five years ago we wrote on these pages about climate change delusion. The first case diagnosed was in a 17-year-old Australian who refused to drink water because he thought it would cause millions to die from the drought-effects of global warming. He was eventually hospitalized in a psychiatric unit, having been depressed for months before being committed.

At that time, we also mentioned that the psychiatrist in charge of that unit told the Boston Globe that he “has now seen several more patients with psychosis or anxiety disorders focused on climate change.”

There were also stories of children “having nightmares about global-warming-related natural disasters” booking appointments with doctors.

We reported, as well, about the American Psychological Association’s effort to condition the public to believe that humans are causing an environmental crisis, an objective it was confident it could achieve because it knows “how to change behavior and attitudes.”

Is Holthaus a victim of an attempt to whip up hysteria over global warming? Or is he part of the campaign?

Whatever the truth, we now live in a world where it’s fine for a grown man to cry over a modern fable like a child frightened by tales of witches and ghosts.

UPDATE:

Some think he’s not really committed …

Screen shot 2013-10-03 at 1.44.40 PM

ASIC Begs The Question On RBA Scandal

3 Oct

ASIC is in full ‘fire control’ mode, as a result of its astonishing failure — begging the question of complicity — in the RBA corruption scandal.

But it seems many just aren’t buying their lines:

Screen shot 2013-10-03 at 11.07.51 AM

RBA “A Culture Of Systemic Lying And Greed”

1 Oct

Cross-posted from Macro Business:

It is one of the more weird characteristics of Australian economic commentary that the Reserve Bank of Australia enjoys an untouchable position. Bank economists and economic observers all hold the central bank in very high esteem, to the point where it is borderline criminal to question the monetary authority.

The reason for this is pretty straight forward. The world of employed economists in Australia is very small and you don’t want to be marked as a trouble maker if you intend, as many do, to move between public and private offices over your career.

Which brings me to last night’s Four Corners episode that recounts the allegedly corrupt histories of the RBA subsidiaries, Securency and Note Printing Australia, as well as at the bank itself.

If you missed the program I suggest you set aside 45 minutes to watch it in the near future. It is here. I’ve been aware of most of the allegations for years but to see the entire story told from beginning to end is really something else. It is shocking.

The program describes a culture of systemic lying and greed, of economics without ethics, of total failures of governance, of group think and entitlement throughout the elite levels of the RBA’s subsidiaries and perhaps at the bank as well. I have had my faith in the institution shattered and only a full and open inquiry has any hope of restoring it.

I have no idea if anything will come of the investigation. Probably not. But the stain upon the Reserve Bank of Australia will thus be all the more indelible.

Good.

It is this blogger’s fervent hope that this scandal will prompt many more people to begin to ask questions about the RBA.

Leading, most importantly, to the question of why we permit it to exist at all.

“We Exaggerated” – IPCC

1 Oct

From the UN IPCC Fifth Assessment Report (released in full last night), Working Group I Contribution To The IPCC Fifth Assessment Report Climate Change 2013: The Physical Science Basis – Final Draft Underlying Scientific-Technical Basis, Chapter 9, Box 9.2: Climate Models and the Hiatus in Global-Mean Surface Warming of the Past 15 Years, page 31, (bold emphasis added):

(c) Model Response Error

The discrepancy between simulated and observed GMST trends during 1998–2012 could be explained in part by a tendency for some CMIP5 models to simulate stronger warming in response to increases in greenhouse-gas concentration than is consistent with observations… This finding provides evidence that some CMIP5 models show a larger response to greenhouse gases and other anthropogenic factors (dominated by the effects of aerosols) than the real world (medium confidence). As a consequence, it is argued in Chapter 11 that near-term model projections of GMST increase should be scaled down by about 10% (Section 11.3.6.3). This downward scaling is, however, not sufficient to explain the model-mean overestimate of GMST trend over the hiatus period.

Another possible source of model error is the poor representation of water vapour in the upper atmosphere… However, this effect is assessed here to be small, because there was a recovery in stratospheric water vapour after 2005…

In summary, the observed recent warming hiatus, defined as the reduction in GMST trend during 1998–2012 as compared to the trend during 1951–2012, is attributable in roughly equal measure to a cooling contribution from internal variability and a reduced trend in external forcing (expert judgment, medium confidence). The forcing trend reduction is primarily due to a negative forcing trend from both volcanic eruptions and the downward phase of the solar cycle. However, there is low confidence in quantifying the role of forcing trend in causing the hiatus, because of uncertainty in the magnitude of the volcanic forcing trend and low confidence in the aerosol forcing trend.

Almost all CMIP5 historical simulations do not reproduce the observed recent warming hiatus.

 

%d bloggers like this: