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sydney alternative media - non-profit community independent trustworthy
Sunday, 25 October 2009
Sunday political talkies: Greens profile on refugee human rights, major parties cold
Mood:  chatty
Topic: aust govt


Author’s general introductory note   

This is not a well packaged story. It’s a contemporaneous traverse of the Sunday television free to air political talkies indicating the agenda of Establishment interests: Better to know ones rivals and allies in Big Politics and Big Media. Perhaps the greatest utility is the headline synthesis above of the 3 or 4 shows followed in this session.


For actual transcripts and/or video feeds go to the programme web sites quoted including Riley Diary on 7. And note transcripts don’t really give you the image content value.


Other sources of pollie talkies on Sunday include SkyNews paytv Sunday Agenda, Radio National Monica Attard Sunday Profile show. And of course Sunday night shows SBS Dateline, Sixty Minutes and now Sunday Tonight on 7.  


Media backgrounders.  

1. To confirm the increasing irrelevance of the Coalition the Iraq war party farewelled Brendan 'war for oil' Nelson from parlaiment with ex PM Howard and ex Treasurer Costello and current embattled Opposition leader Turnbull all in attendance.  

2. The new shrunken business/sport section of the SMH is surely the first step to a more tabloid format as revenues bleed to the web. How long until the AFR is in that fold in an amalgamation of both newspapers? This would parallel the increasing doubts about the financial viability of The Australian broadsheet also.  

3. Meanwhile we notice increasing engagement of ABC figures into News Corporation (Uhlmann in The Oz this weekend, Colvin/Sales on Punch webstie, Masters now ex ABC in Daily Telegraph) leaving such as Marg Simons at Crikey/freelance/Monash Journalism School and this writer wondering why. Partly to rival Crikey? Partly to moderate News Corp viciousness to the public broadcaster. Partly Mark Scott empire building with reassurance of strong govt subsidy and web/NBN expansion any time now. 

4. With all the controversy over "influence peddling" in NSW Planning we noted ex minister Sartor met one or other Medich developer some 4 times in some reportage somewhere (or did we, it gets so confusing in the deluge). Sartor refused to answer whether he was lobbied by Obeid and Tripodi MPs in a parliamentary inquiry last week.

Now as we did our tax late this week we came across this scrap of notepaper out of the shoebox literally - quickly scrawled in a coincidental conversation with an off duty abc journo on a city train ride mid 2008.  

The timing indicates many people knew Mr Vereker was an unlikely big ALP party donor in 2008. We don't know what the Mr Ell reference is exactly, but we notice his name in the press also this weekend some 15 months later (shown). Mmm.

5. Laurie Oakes uh oh moment came in estimates last week when West Altas oil leak was revealed as potentially 2000 barrells a day, after Oakes attacked Greens Senator in print for daring suggest more than 400 barrells on bum steer from ALP resource mates/ministers. But in a strong redemption Oakes runs Senator Brown in a balancer today on Today 9 tv show. That's what we call a fair go too LO.

6. Here is that picture of Julia Gillard gotcha moment we sought from last week with LO on Today 9, when she realises her own 2003 media release is being quoted at her regarding "another boat, another policy failure". Gotcha maybe but we saw it as human expression of due shame for a shameful period in Australian politics over 5 years ago now, and best left there. The lips are wide not to speak but quick inhalation during listening mode, followed by a deep blink as if to wipe the slate and start again with a new script. A real CSI moment. And she didn't pause indicating quite some steel in this politician.


7. KKK aka Minister Kristine Kershner Keneally, theology and politics graduate with a flair for bright red outfits, described as "a knockout" by the News Corp press gallery man Salusinsky, is like air freshener sprayed to disguise rotting dead cat in the rafters. A sickly sweet experience that you know is unhealthy. Part of the theatre is a gender righteousness (eg on display on NSW Stateline). Trouble is the ALP have a problemmatic record on gender as red herring so to speak when it comes to integrity issues : Yvette Andrews - exposed here on SAM - was 18 months the general manager at Addison Rd Centre in Marrickville on $60K a year (possibly pro rata) without any competitive job selection, indeed refusal of the board to advertise, then resigned just as a controversy involving her husband assaulting a tenant caused shockwaves there. A rolled gold scandal. And Andrews just happens to be co-author and former staffer to Meredith Burgmann's famous Ernies, beloved of the sisterhood. She liked to run her gender righteousness too. It takes a sleazy party to run interference like that.

8. Boris Johnson the newish Mayor of London, and hardly a raving socialist, had a cracking piece in our local press regarding banks as giant vampire squid. They 'don't get it' was his premise and 'call in the regulators'. Strange times indeed.

10 Meet the Press:  8- 8-30 am 

Intro on national broadband network NBN - $42B. Rudd and Turnbull. Press roundup on ‘plane people’ in Sydney Tele etc.  

Conroy is the talent. Boilerplate on boat people re global patterns of instability. Telco Industry Ombudsman report huge increase in consumer complaints across the sector. Out take is Joyce and Feilding going at eachother. Grab from Nick Minchin re Telstra legislation allegedly rushed through.  

Panel is Hewitt News Corp and David Crowe of AFR. Minister says reshape the industry as competition has not delivered, higher prices, less innovation. Crowe penetrating questions for a newbie in this forum. 

Out take Nicholson Indon solution speaking strine.  Intro grabs – Stone, Tuckey, Rudd etc.  Senator Sarah Young on 78 boat people still moving around. Questions of open door. Location means much less than other countries. Boat arrivals miniscule but safety issue is highest. [Presents like ex Senator Kerry Nettle as very articulate.] Open door? Presses refugee convention signatory, never let this happen again with Jews in WW2.  Q whether tamil fighters on board. Assessment. Should accept real refugees. Regional solution okay, neighbours should sign refugee treaty, build up cooperation. Hewitt looking suitably impressed by young bright senator of similar proportions. Is good.  

Meet The Press - Watch Political Video Online - Channel TEN.


Riley Diary 7, from 8.40am 

Start runs into Oakes interview. Advert for national swine flu programme. ETS dynamics, tennis metaphor, best of bucks fizz, Trioli finger twirl, Rudd on Rolling Stone.  Aaa mate, for a in Copenhagen, the island state 



9 Sunday newshour Laurie Oakes interview 8.44 am 

Senator Bob Brown Greens with LO [balancer for attacking Greens on leak rate at 2000 barrels  a day said only 400 barrels, good deal LO]


Sanctions on Sri Lanka push factor. Bradfield and Higgins byelection. Greens versus the Coalition in both seats. Susie Gemmell, and Clive Hamilton, very tough to win, vote will grow and promote democracy.


Claims Greens shepherd the $42B stimulus package versus Coalition. Pushes equity of payments to households not polluters. Polluter pays. Happiness is not related to consumer excess. Prosperity too.


Tone is real fireside chat material. Get out of destruction of Australian forests and woodlands get 20%.


Oil leak in north west WA, judicial inquiry rejected, brought machine from asia not locally took too long, same company new area to explore. Rewarding the polluter. Govt ecologically irresponsible. Peter Garrett has a lot of questions to answer from.


Treasurer Ken Henry in news re kangaroo industry 50M cull per year.  Bob Brown says he’s an admirable Australian and guided Greens approach on economic policy.




Insiders 2: 9- 10am


Riley style package on asylum seekers re morality, with Sarah Hanson Young. Profound footage of PM Rudd rejecting Tuckey. Parliamentry adversarialism prominent.


Panel is Schubert Fairfax (centre left), Coorey Fairafax (centrist/centre right), and Glen Milne News Corp (centre right).


Talent is Stephen Smith Foreign Minister boilerplate on humane balance re asylum seekers talking the issue out of oxygen and then onto Afghanistan and trade/Stern Hu issues with China.


Vox Pop Tas amongst the horsies, why Rudd so popular. Is it the money?


[refer cartoon from 6 months back, clipping in due course].


Terrorists in boat people – was it outrageous or unremarkable? Milne says not – [but that’s wrong as per Alan Jones ramp up of fear mongering]. Danby plea for correct language re refugees. Big issue re temporary visas again or not re Pacific Solution. Coorey says Rudd won’t backslide to that again.


Paul Kelly basically agrees with Rudd SE Regional approach. Population discussion by panel – is a serious issue.


Nelson farewell, Costello grabs x 2. Clive Hamilton for Greens – litany research material that could be used to embarrass. Milne rubbishes as far left. Canberra based.  


Dutton Bowen mutual sledges.


Interview of US figure on NZ television about Australia not a deputy sheriff.


Merits of Canberra. Talking pictures with Alan Ramsey with book, fantastic Ward ONiel cartoons [like AFR guy today David Rowe]. War story about calling PM Gorton a liar from the gallery and almost lost his job. Piles of hard copy in his office.  Grand Old Man tone.



  Inside Business with Alan Kohler  

Refer http://www.abc.net.au/insidebusiness/


Posted by editor at 11:24 AM NZT
Updated: Sunday, 25 October 2009 12:24 PM NZT
Saturday, 24 October 2009
Perfect song for Don Lane farewell plays over Penrith
Mood:  bright
Topic: local news


This song with the luscious base synthesiser played yesterday on Penrith commercial radio, satellite city to Sydney Australia. We were listening to it in 35 degree heat all around mesmerised. 

American-Jewish guy and big tv entertainer based here in Australia, called Don Lane, died the day before in Sydney. Apparently he was highest paid tv star in his time 70ies and 80ies in Australia. Perhaps the mutual love in was that he chose us all the way from modern Rome, so we Austalians chose him (though this writer not so much). Perhaps he just didn't believe in the Vietnam war?

So you see the craft of this song captures the emotion again and again for people in the entertainment industry. Nice one DJ, nice one. We grabbed this image of Don Lane looking for all the world like an Andy Kaufman character. May he rest in peace.

And Nightshift refers to two departed artists the year before in 1984. One the famous Marvin Gaye. The other Jackie Wilson here on YouTube. And the parallel with Jackie is even more spooky. Lane was laid down with dementia. Wilson was in a coma 9 years after a heart attack while performing at a benefit concert according to the wikipedia entry.

Jackie Wilson looks and sounds very much like the original 'Elvis Presley' here on YouYube - without the due credit. We know better now it was always going to be a coffee coloured future, ain't that right Mr President.



Posted by editor at 4:57 PM NZT
Updated: Saturday, 24 October 2009 5:30 PM NZT
Sam Haddad reverses Judge David Lloyd in 2000? The curious case of Dixon Sands at Maroota
Mood:  not sure
Topic: legal


Picture above:  Lands Dept aerial photo 1998 of Maroota district showing sand mining with gold star indicating unlicensed water pumps of different operators at various times over the last 20 years in Maroota: 

Our source advises that Senior Planner Sam Haddad has been associated with approving a controversial, environmentally destructive development in the past, well before the now famous Catherine Hill "land bribe" finding by Justice David Lloyd of the NSW Land & Environment Court (LEC) , or murder of Mr McGurk causing a parliamentary inquiry into planning issues.

Indeed Judge Lloyd's name comes up again  hold the line on good planning practise in 1998, as does Planning officer Sam Haddad and an allegation of "two green lights" being issued according to a sand miner applicant with his gun barrister to load on the pressure. Read on.

Dixon Sands (Penrith) Pty Ltd out at Maroota 45 km north west of Sydney (in the picture above) were shut down by Baulham Hills Council in 1998. It went to the LEC and David Lloyd's reputation as a hanging judge was in action with this devastating decision against the sand miner costing them millions of dollars in a shut down. Here is the decision:

(From Land and Environment Court of New South Wales; 18 December 1998; 42 KB)

Land and Environment Court of New South Wales

Record of hearing

Judge Lloyd J

Number 98/40130

This was during what became known locally as The Sand Wars between various miners and local community groups reminiscent of a Mad Max script.

The decision of Lloyd J late 1998 is very severe, to quote (with bold added):

57. I have come to the view that the applicants should not receive the benefit of the Court's discretion for the following principal reasons.

* the sand mining is now being carried out on the land without consent;

* the sand mining being carried out on the land is designated development. The development thus has special status under the Act, which includes the involvement of others as well as the applicant. The Act requires the views of members of the public and other authorities to be taken into consideration before such development is to be permitted. It would be contrary to the scheme of the Act to allow the development to continue without consent;

* the development has been carried out in breach of several of the conditions of the consent and in breach of the provisions of the EIS and the supplementary report to the EIS. I have referred in paragraphs 10-48 above to these breaches, some of which are continuing;

* many of the breaches of conditions and of the provisions of the EIS have been influenced by considerations of commercial expediency. That is to say, where considerations of commercial expediency have, in the respondents' views, outweighed the requirements of the conditions of development consent and the provisions of the EIS, the considerations of commercial expediency have prevailed;

* apart from the hours of operation, the haulage road and the five year limit to the term of the consent, no application has been made to modify those conditions of consent or provisions of the EIS which are said to be commercially impractical. The respondents have instead unilaterally decided that any inconvenient conditions or provisions will be simply ignored;

* many of the breaches have had adverse environmental consequences. For example, the failure to grant the right of way for the haulage route has resulted in traffic being adjacent to the area occupied by the rare plant kunzea rupestris; the ineffective sediment controls have resulted in sediment entering bushland on the adjoining Crown land; sand mining has been undertaken within the 50 metre buffer to the kunzea rupestris, thus compromising the survival of that rare plant; the absence of the ten metre vegetative buffer has meant that there is no visual screening to the development; the excavation below a depth of 15.2 metres has thus created a deeper excavation which in turn makes compliance with condition 2 impractical and rehabilitation more difficult; the breach of operating hours, intended to limit the times at which trucks enter and leave the site, may well have had an adverse impact on residents who live along Old Northern Road; and the abandonment of the extraction plan and of staged extraction and rehabilitation has resulted in almost the whole site remaining in a disturbed state;

* the applicant is the body charged with the duty and responsibility of administering the Act within its area. It is thus acting on behalf of the public and in the public interest. The Court is thus less likely to deny relief than it would in litigation between private citizens;

* it seems to me that the respondents have, throughout the whole of the period of the consent, been motivated by considerations of commercial expediency when such considerations conflict with the conditions of development consent and the provisions of the EIS;

* as noted by Mahoney JA in Warringah Shire Council v Sedevcic (at 346):

"The courts have, under the various planning regimes, emphasised the significance of compliance with planning requirements and the danger of allowing individual hardship in particular cases to erode the general operation of planning schemes. These considerations are no less relevant at the present time."

This consideration, it seems to me, has even greater force where the case is one which involves designated development;

* the present predicament in which the respondents find themselves is entirely of their own making. They knew when the development consent was to expire. The have only belatedly set about preparing a new EIS for a new development application to continue the sand mining. They have belatedly made an application for the modification of the consent pursuant to s 96 of the Act by amending Condition 6 to provide them with an additional period of twelve months;

* in short, I do not think that the respondents can be trusted. I have considerable doubts as to their willingness to comply with all the conditions of the development consent and the provisions of the EIS which are in conflict with considerations of commercial expediency. The respondents' conduct suggests the contrary;

* whilst there may be some financial penalty as a consequence of the respondents' activities being restrained, I note that there is evidence that the subject land is not the only source of income of the first respondent. It has other sand mining activities elsewhere, which will continue to provide it with income. I also note that the agreement between the first respondent and the land owners (the second and third respondents) may be terminated by them if sand extraction is no longer possible. If as a consequence of the Court's orders in this case the agreement is terminated, then the land owners would, it seems, be free to enter into another agreement with some other operator.

58. Accordingly I make the following orders:

1. The first and second respondents, their respective servants and agents abstain from using, permitting to be used or causing to be used the land being lots 196 and 29 in Deposited Plan 752025 within the Parish of Cornelia and County of Cumberland and being contained in Folio Identifiers respectively 196/752025 and 29/752025 situate on Old Northern Road at Maroota for the purposes of an extractive industry and sand mining (except for works of remediation or restoration) until such time as a development consent permitting any such use is granted.

Meanwhile the dubious operations of PF Formations Pty Ltd, commercial rival of Dixons, in the same Maroota locality went on their merry way apparently with Council staff blessings.

This perceived differential of local council treatment, as well as intrinsic impacts, was at the heart of the conflicts with the local council and the local objectors also.

 Picture: Dixon Sands operation in 2008 EIS for extension of their development approval area.  

What we find most fascinating is this scenario according to our source: Patriarch Ken Dixon, who is now an invalid, and his heir apparent, son David Dixon having been burned badly by Lloyd J, then organised a conference with non other than senior planning officer Sam Haddad, over a year later in 2000. Also was present was the barrister for Dixons by the name of "Phipps". Our source now thinks it was Jerrold "Cripps" but we don't know. There is no barrister currently called Phipps in NSW according to our search of the bar assocation here 9 years later.

We don't know if it was Jerrold Cripps, later to become Chief Judge of the LEC, and head of ICAC. Dixons apparently wanted '"the best". Cripps resume' does suggest he was in private practise during this time as here via open source



2004-present - Commissioner, Independent
Commission Against Corruption

2000-present - Member of the Court of Arbitration of

2001-2004 - Acting Judge of the New South Wales
Supreme Court and Court of Appeal

1992-1993 - Judge of the New South Wales Supreme
Court and Court of Appeal

1985-1992 - Chief Judge of the New South Wales Land
and Environment Court

1980-1985 - Judge of the New South Wales Land and
Environment Court

1978-1980 - Judge of the District Court of New South Wales

A barrister is obliged to accept clients according to the taxi rank rule and we can't say the miner or their lawyer did anything wrong pressing their case. What we worry about is the selective open door policy by the Dept of Planning or as Quentin Dempster calls it "influence peddling".

David Dixon reportedly then told our source after the meeting with planning officer Sam Haddad that "we got 2 green lights". Meaning they would be approved by Planning way ahead of the actual public process, to recommence sandmining and so it turned out apparently. This set off another litigation in 2004 here in favour of the sandmine via the NSW Dept of Planning:

Diamond v Minister for Planning New South Wales and Another (No 2) [2004] NSWLEC 254 (24 May 2004) [36%]
(From Land and Environment Court of New South Wales; 24 May 2004

But what has got us puzzled is what is meant by "two green lights" back in 2000, which then led to an amateurish, failed community legal challenge? Was that private meeting official planning process? Absent public submissions and application of planning rules according to merit? 

Was the meeting in 2000 transparent, recorded on file notes or not, as per scrutiny of more recent cafe meetings with Graeme Richardson for an unrelated development reported on NSW Stateline, as here in due course, last night 23 October 2009?

All very interesting because we have heard allegations that another council Penrith, with a big sand mining sector was running a bribes book by one of the officers many years ago. Whether the book still exists we don't know.

Posted by editor at 3:25 PM NZT
Updated: Sunday, 25 October 2009 10:44 AM NZT
Swimming pool regulation in NSW: Nanny state or essential intervention?
Mood:  d'oh
Topic: legal

We noticed 'the freedom party' candidate in Australian Big Media aka Miranda Devine tub thumping recently:

Nanny state helps to drown us in our own stupidity October 22, 2009

Well as Forest Gump might say, stupid is as stupid does/writes, eh Ms Devine?

We have vague recollections of writing a legal briefing note on the original pool legislation in NSW in the early 1990ies. We suspect it may have been for the Environmental Defenders Office at the time, as we sniffed around which green group we might contribute the most.

Here is the current Act here:



And then we saw this above  last weekend, picture taken today - and yes that is a childrens play slide about 5 metres from an unfenced/broken fence pool, albeit raised off the ground. And yes that is the open driveway from the street at left foreground theoretically accessible to neighbourhood kids. 

We were hurried along by an occupier so we don't know if it was filled with water or not. Nor did we see any children nearby. A week earlier in another location we drove along a street in the Hawkesbury at 7 am on a Monday, street quite empty, and we noticed a 3 year old healthy happy child wandering the street alone complete with grubby barefeet and coloured pencils in one hand.

Suffice to say with the help of a local taxi driver - including brief report via taxi radio to the local coppers - we encouraged this brave little adventurer who apparently woke up with the early sunlight to go home quick smart . An old lady sweeping her front told this writer she had noticed this wandering angel several times and that "It's dangerous".

Get it? The reality of unsupervised kids and unfenced pools?

If the pool legislation saves only one child from drowning - will it be worth it? Probably.

We also noticed another property frontage in the local 'hood, we think 'freedom loving' Ms Devine would feel quite at home

Posted by editor at 1:39 PM NZT
Updated: Saturday, 24 October 2009 1:44 PM NZT
Tuesday, 20 October 2009
West Atlas deluge technique exemplified by Kuwait Fires doco 1992
Mood:  rushed
Topic: ecology



The concept of the water hose 'deluge technique' to assist capping rogue oil wells at risk of ignition (for example sparking from drilling machinery) is shown in this 36 minute IMAX documentary movie (also available at a local DVD store):


This remarkable movie was nominated for an Academy award and relates to a 9 month, 10,000 strong workforce, project. Initial estimates were 5 to 10 year schedule.

There are many differences between the West Atlas oil leak situation and the Kuwait situation in that the oil leak has not ignited here, and no doubt that's the way it's intended to stay; The Atlas leak is a few hundreds metres under the ocean while in Kuwait there were some 700 burning land based oil wells.

However the movie does indicate the high drama involved. When initially extinguished by various means including ventura pipe, jet engine blast or explosive charge, this intervention was accompanied by a deluge of sea water via high pressure hoses to keep temperatures low enough for machines to approach. And secondly to prevent re-ignition with super heated surroundings just prior to extinguishment.

Posted by editor at 2:00 PM NZT
Henderson malice against ABC figure masquerading as media analysis?
Mood:  irritated
Topic: big media

Gerard Henderson is an ideological dolt speaking as a lawyer with a bit of community media experience.

His column back in lead place on the opinion pages today  is all square wrong on the issue of legal reportage of a big controversial terrorism trial. We commented just now on the Sydney Morning Herald page and await moderation:

This slur is sly and wrong, indeed a cheap shot.

Cameron like all real journalists, not slick opinion writers, has an obligation to not bias a jury or a court, or be seen to be pressuring same in the big media. For her to load her language one way or the other would be wrong. To say "so called" evidences due agnosticism appropriate to the ABC prior to the jury decision.

In this sense GH is simply projecting his own jaundiced view of the ABC given his side's long known view that the ABC 'is our enemies talking to our friends'. In other words projecting his own prejudice against the national broadcaster.

The World Today reporter does not have that same logic given the timeline. But legal reporting is notoriously challenging: Will it go on appeal? What was the evidence actually led by both parties. Why did it take the jury weeks to decide?

This is all consistent with 'the golden thread' as Rumpole/Mortimer states being 'innocent until proven guilty'.

What Henderson and the Sydney Morning Herald need to address is this: What is the funding source for "Gerard Henderson ..executive director of The Sydney Institute". Because famously the SI refuse to reveal their corporate and political donors.

Now that's circumstantial evidence of bias.

Posted by editor at 11:44 AM NZT
Updated: Tuesday, 20 October 2009 11:54 AM NZT
Rewarding farmer land clearing lobby with carbon bio-sequestration welfare payments?
Mood:  lazy
Topic: globalWarming

Mr Peter Cosier


We hear this last 24 hour news cycle Peter Cosier - sincere earnest scientist of the Wentworth Group of Concerned Scientists - urging inclusion in any government scheme the opportunity for carbon sequestration via soil and other biomass fixation by big agriculture. He wants to leverage our natural advantage of large land mass while sanitising our real land use history:

Here he is quoted on ABC World Today show yesterday: Scientists cite soil as significant at http://www.abc.net.au/worldtoday/content/2009/s2717777.htm

ELEANOR HALL: The Coalition may want agriculture excluded from the ETS but the nation's top climate scientists are calling on the Federal Government to include soil and vegetation in Australia's emissions trading scheme.

A report released by the Wentworth Group of Scientists says that unless this is done, it will be "next to impossible" to achieve the emissions cuts needed to avoid the worst effects of climate change.

The ABC's environment reporter Sarah Clarke has been speaking to Wentworth Group scientist, Peter Cosier.

PETER COSIER: Well, our analysis shows that if we increase the amount of carbon stored in vegetation and soils across our landscape, it has the potential not only to make a profound contribution to meeting our carbon pollution reduction targets but it also presents a unique opportunity to address a raft of other seemingly intractable environmental problems.

In other words we can use soil and vegetation carbon to help address climate change but we can get win-win outcomes if we design our institutional structures properly.

SARAH CLARKE: Is that the problem - that there are no institutional structures in place now?

PETER COSIER: Well at this stage we don't have those structures in place because we don't have a terrestrial carbon market but if we do introduce a CPRS and if the Government does extend the ability for polluters to offset their pollution by storing carbon in soil and vegetation then we will create a very large terrestrial carbon market.

SARAH CLARKE: How effective is soil and vegetation? How effective are they in storing carbon?

PETER COSIER: Well the analysis that we have looked at which follows on some work by CSIRO for the Queensland Government is that if Australia were to capture just 15 per cent of the biophysical capacity of our landscape to store carbon, you would offset the equivalent of 25 per cent of Australia's greenhouse gas emissions every year for the next 40 years.

SARAH CLARKE: Are other governments recognising soil and vegetation as an effective way of storing carbon?

PETER COSIER: Some governments have recognised it. In the United States for example the legislation going through the United States does recognise soil and vegetation offsets as part of their legislation but Australia is rather uniquely placed because, because we are relatively small economy with a large landscape the contribution that terrestrial carbon can make to our carbon pollution reduction targets is actually far greater relative to other nations.

SARAH CLARKE: What is the market worth then?

PETER COSIER: Well, if we were to achieve, capture 15 per cent of the potential that CSIRO estimate is possible, we could potentially create a terrestrial carbon market in Australia of between $3 billion and $6 billion per annum as I said, every year for the next 40 years.

The actual market created would depend of course, on the size of the reduction target the Government commits to.

SARAH CLARKE: How would farmers do this though? Would they have to put land aside to simply use that soil to store carbon or could they continue farming and producing fruit and vegetables and their produce?

PETER COSIER: Well, at the moment the CPRS does allow offsets into carbon forestry as it is called, Kyoto-compliant forestry. If farmers chose to, they would be able to use some of those opportunities to plant carbon forests or biodiversity plantings if they chose to on parts of their property and that would give them a new income stream.

Of course there is a risk that if we don't properly regulate the market we could also see large areas of agricultural land taken out of food production and converted into these carbon forests so we need a balance but if we get the balance right, the potential benefits to agriculture in terms of new income streams, the benefits for restoring degraded landscapes and biodiversity conservation are enormous.

ELEANOR HALL: That is Peter Cosier from the Wentworth Group of Concerned Scientists speaking to our environment reporter Sarah Clarke.


Here he is for instance quoted 3rd of August:

According to Peter Cosier, executive director for the Wentworth Group of Concerned Scientists, terrestrial carbon must be taken into account if Australia is to meet its carbon reduction targets.

"If we increased sequestered carbon stock in terrestrial landscapes by 15%, it would offset emissions emitted during the entire industrial revolution," he said.

Cosier pointed out while Australia was best placed to take advantage of terrestrial carbon offsets, we were still suffering under a "perverse rule" from the Kyoto Protocol to counter all emissions from soils, not just human use.

"Australia is unique; we have a massive advantage with terrestrial carbon. We have 20 million people on a continent of 7.5 million square kilometres. The proportion of the potential for offsetting carbon is vastly greater than any other developed country in the world," he said.

"What's stopping us is that if we have a drought and soil carbon is lost, we have to pay for it."

at http://www.fromthesoilup.com.au/news/australia-s-massive-advantage-in-bio-sequestration

Cosier is so right in theory but the political economic history is way against him.

What he is not facing up to is that the famous PR programme called Landcare alliance between the National Farmers Association and Australian Conservation Foundation pioneered by former ALP Prime Minister Bob Hawke in the late 1980ies involved just 10% of farmers as members. Only 10% nationally at best supported environmentally friendly farming by that measure, though this report suggests as high as 1/3 in Victoria:


The good farmers are in the stark minority. The bad farmers are proceeding with record land clearing to the tune of millions of hectares in Queensland and New South Wales. In other words as the good book says - know them by their actions.

Cosier at best is speaking wishfully for 10% of farmers, maybe more given the greater awareness up to 2009. Or even with a doubling to 20% is still an 80% dinosaur cohort majority: See these credible figures 1991 to 2000:

The findings clearly show more favourable environmental attitudes with increasing level of involvement in landcare, although among all rural landholders with income from agriculture and/or properties larger than 50ha, those who rated themselves as ‘actively involved’ amounted to eight per cent of landholders. The marked difference between the eight per cent figure and the membership levels of 28 per cent and 43 per cent mentioned above highlights the sensitivity of estimates of landcare group membership to both the definition of the base population and of participation in landcare.

in  Australian Farmers' Attitudes to Rural Environmental Issues.

Reeve, I. 2001 Australian Farmers' Attitudes to Rural Environmental Issues. 1991-2001. Final Report to Land and Water Australia.



That's why farmer traditional political representation in the National Party state constantly they won't vote for an Emissions Trading Scheme under any circumstances.

This is the real record of those carbon storage champions in big agri in Australia:

Queensland land clearing ban inadequate, could worsen clearing ... 21 Apr 2009

The World Today Archive - Land clearing in Australia 20 Nov 2001

ACF - Land Clearing Versus Bushland Re-planting in Australia ... 

ACF - Facts About Land Clearing in Australia Australia has the fifth highest rate of land clearing in the world. We clear more bush each year than poverty-stricken countries like Burma, Mexico

The Wilderness Society — New data on Australian landclearing rates ...New research from NSW and Queensland has found that Australia's landclearing rates are much higher than reviously estimated. The independent research ....

Posted by editor at 8:33 AM NZT
Updated: Tuesday, 20 October 2009 8:52 AM NZT
Australian Prime Minister rejects, repeals* refugee treaty
Mood:  sharp
Topic: human rights

* pedants will say the treaty has not been 'repealed' as per this title and remains on foot, but that's meaningless where the treaty is effectively a dead letter regarding rights of asylum seekers. (For local readers think part 3A effective repeal of the 1979 Planning Act in NSW where the principal Act remains on the books but has no effect for big developers waved through by the NSW Govt.)


This front pager last Wednesday (6 days back) in the News Corp broadsheet says it all.

What is not being expressly commented on very much though is that Prime Minister Rudd, in the lead up to the huge equity issues at Copenhagen on climate, has effectively repudiated Australia's ratification of the refugee treaty we signed years ago. Indeed it was this same dishonest approach that helped see the back of former Prime Minister John Howard, the infamous deputy sheriff of George W Bush.

The Sydney ABC public broadcaster compere Deborah Cameron, previously stationed in Japan, and with the Sydney Morning Herald broadsheet captured a mood of dismay, saying yesterday of PM Rudd 'you can be strong and wrong' and 'Is he just a populist?'. Yes and yes.

A now famous phrase is often quoted in this policy area, namely John Howard PM in 2001 who famously bought full page adverts in the final week of the federal election stating something like 'We will decide who comes to Australia and the manner in which they come here'. All stirring nationalistic tub thump.

Only it's stupid. We already decided as a nation who we would accept and how they might come to be here by reference to their refugee status, when we ratified the Refugee Treaty: That is we will accept refugees however they arrive because we are a freedom loving human rights type country. It doesn't say we will take 'em by plane but not boat, or economic student overstayers yes, but darkies via Indonesia no.

So Howard then, and Rudd now are simply saying we want to selectively repeal the treaty we signed. To weasel out of our promise to the world. And alert people know this including within Rudd's own ALP. If PM Rudd and Howard before him were honest they would say we want to repeal the refugee treaty. But they know that will have global diplomatic consequences. Hence the weasel words.

A prominent unionist Paul Howes, normally associated with the same Govt Party of PM Rudd has noted the sleazy approach with this quote in the last 24 hours (even allowing for soap brand choreography, same factory) here Union wants welcome mat laid out for refugees at http://www.abc.net.au/pm/content/2009/s2718322.htm


MARK COLVIN: So far the Labor movement has been broadly uncritical of the Prime Minister's approach on the Sri Lankan asylum seekers.

But now the head of the Australian Workers' Union and vice president of the ACTU, Paul Howes, has broken ranks.

Mr Howes says the Government should put out the welcome mat to the asylum seekers now docked in west Java.

He's urged the Government to seize the moral high ground and ensure there's no return to the divisive debate of 2001.

At the same time the fate of another 78 asylum seekers rescued by the Australian Navy remains in limbo as the Australian and Indonesian Governments decide where they should be sent.

From Canberra, Alexandra Kirk reports.

ALEXANDRA KIRK: Kevin Rudd runs a tight ship. But not everyone on the good ship Labor is happy with his stance on asylum seekers; more particularly the 250 Sri Lankans sent to Indonesia courtesy of the Indonesian Navy's interception.

That's ignited an immigration debate union leader Paul Howes doesn't like the look of.

PAUL HOWES: I mean the 2001 election was a real dark blight on our nation's history. You know, I would expect rhetoric and crass racism to come from the Coalition.

But I expect that Labor should and must take the moral high ground on this matter because this about social justice, this about upholding the rule of law, this about doing the right thing as a first world developed nation and it's about doing the right thing for our communities.

ALEXANDRA KIRK: And what in your view is doing the right thing?

PAUL HOWES: Well, bringing these people in.

ALEXANDRA KIRK: Paul Howes heads the powerful Australian Workers' Union. He says Australia should roll out the red carpet and welcome the Sri Lankans with open arms.

He's urging the Labor Government take a leaf out of former Liberal prime minister Malcolm Fraser's book.

PAUL HOWES: In the same way that Malcolm Fraser did several decades ago in dealing with the boat people crisis after the fallout of the Vietnam War. There was much community resentment and opposition to Vietnamese refugees being brought into our country.

But now several decades later no-one could dispute the fact that it has been a positive thing for our nation, a positive thing for those individuals and the Vietnamese boat people of the '70s have made a lasting and incredibly valuable contribution to the development of our nation.

And we need to make sure that with future waves of migration that we don't make those same mistakes time and time and time again.

ALEXANDRA KIRK: The Government argues not allowing boatpeople to land on Australia's mainland deters people smugglers. Paul Howes sees it differently.

PAUL HOWES: Of course we don't want to see illegal syndicates profiting from the smuggling of people. I mean that is an abhorrent issue, but the fundamental point is is that what message is this sending to the Australian community about those individuals who are on the boats?

Not the men driving the boats but the individuals on the boats: those children, those women, those men fleeing circumstances of which most Australians couldn't even imagine.

ALEXANDRA KIRK: The Sri Lankan asylum seekers, who are docked in West Java, ended their hunger strike at the weekend, saying they'd agree to leave the boat if a representative from the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees agreed to meet them.

It's the job of the UNHCR to assess asylum seekers' claims for refugee protection. PM asked the UNHCR in Canberra if any of their officers in Indonesia had spoken to the asylum seekers. The UNHCR says it's ready to register and asses the Sri Lankan's international protection needs if asked by the Indonesian Government. But the UN agency hasn't received such a request.

Immigration lawyer David Mann says that's the problem.

DAVID MANN: What's clear is that the Sri Lankans on the boat want to meet with the UN refugee agency so that they have a fair chance and a fair process to have their claims assessed against the refugee's convention.

And that hasn't happened yet, despite persistent requests.

ALEXANDRA KIRK: David Mann says all those involved should ensure the UNHCR is asked to act.

DAVID MANN: Well look, Australia simply can't wash its hands of this situation when it's having such a big say in relation to the fate of people who are warehoused in Indonesia and so significantly bankrolling the warehousing and processing of asylum seekers there and where Australia is really one of the only small amount of options for resettlement in the future.

ALEXANDRA KIRK: Paul Howes says Australia shouldn't ship asylum seekers back to countries that aren't signatories to the UN refugee convention, such as Indonesia - urging Australia accept the 78 asylum seekers now aboard the Australian customs vessel, the Oceanic Viking.

The asylum seekers' boat got into difficulty in international waters off Indonesia. The patrol boat, HMAS Armidale, asked the Oceanic Viking to pick them up. And that's where they remain - in Indonesia's search and rescue zone, while the Federal Government decides where they should be sent.

PM's been told that sending them to Indonesia would set a precedent and could breach Australia's international obligations, all the government will say is it's not a straightforward matter.

MARK COLVIN: Alexandra Kirk.


Posted by editor at 8:00 AM NZT
Updated: Tuesday, 20 October 2009 12:03 PM NZT
Sunday, 18 October 2009
Sunday political talkies: Bonfire of the Wedges quickening as Rudd's refugee treaty breach cruels Copenhagen role
Mood:  sad
Topic: aust govt

Picture: The good and evil angels of a tired, flushed Deputy Prime Minister Julia Gillard nominally of the Left within the federal ALP government. At one point she is ambushed, totally becalmed and takes an intellectual broadside - a quote from her own 2003 press release attacking the Howard Govt on boat people. She didn't pick it in the question and the image of her expression was unique. We hope to get it off the web as soon as practical, if possible. Veteran Oakes has still got it, and the Big Media know the Govt are wedged big time, bring it on we say.

Author’s general introductory note   


This is not a well packaged story. It’s a contemporaneous traverse of the Sunday television free to air political talkies indicating the agenda of Establishment interests: Better to know ones rivals and allies in Big Politics and Big Media. Perhaps the greatest utility is the headline synthesis above of the 3 or 4 shows followed in this session.


For actual transcripts and/or video feeds go to the programme web sites quoted including Riley Diary on 7. And note transcripts don’t really give you the image content value.


Other sources of pollie talkies on Sunday include SkyNews paytv Sunday Agenda, Radio National Monica Attard Sunday Profile show. And of course Sunday night shows SBS Dateline, Sixty Minutes and now Sunday Tonight on 7.  




Media backgrounders. (this section under construction)


 1. Federal govt are rolling out soft face of the govt like Wong and Gillard given ruthless denial of refugee obligations via interference in governance in Indonesia. Which will all feed into Rudd reach at CopeH for being an international laggard and unprincipled wanker. 


2. John Mangos on 9 year old Brinda on Thursday arvo journo forum ABC Sydney 702 to the effect of 'I saw my 9 year old mother from Greece after WW2. She was a refugee.'  Meanwhile in the big media generally it’s the bonfire of the wedges, Coalition on ALP (refugees), and ALP on Coalition (on climate change policy). Leigh Sales on Friday Lateline referred to 'Tony Abbott MP on the refugee issue in the Sydney Daily Telegraph earlier today'. Only it wasn't in the paper copy. Ah, new media actually!


Here it is to quote:


Prime Minister Rudd said this week that the Government’s policy towards boat people was both “hardline and humane”. His difficulty is that it’s next-to-impossible to be hardline and humane at the same time. A hardline policy will seem inhumane to refugee advocates. A humane policy will seem like a welcome mat to people smugglers and their clients.

There’s no doubt that the Rudd Government has watered down John Howard’s border protection policies. In particular, it has replaced temporary protection visas with permanent residency; provided people on offshore islands with additional appeal mechanisms; and stopped sending would-be arrivals to places such as Nauru and PNG. Last year, the Government wanted to stress how different it was from its despised predecessor. The message might have been intended for voters in inner city electorates but it was also picked up by people in troubled third world countries. With boat people arrivals ten times greater than in 2007, Mr Rudd now wants to stress how tough the Government will be. Unfortunately for him and for the integrity of Australia’s borders, desperate people are more interested in the Government’s actions than its words.

Tough talk at doorstop media conferences and phone calls to the president of Indonesia won’t stop boat people from risking their lives at sea. The only way to stop the flow is to make it clear that the chances of staying in Australia aren’t worth the dangers and expense of making the trip. Giving permanent residency to the Afghan men who blew up their boat in April sends precisely the wrong message. Funding street theatre in Sri Lanka and providing handouts to potential boat people likewise could send the message that Australia is a soft touch.

Mr Rudd looks ridiculous trying to be Mr Nice Guy and Mr Tough Guy in the same breath. A humane policy towards boat people means that more will come. Life in Australia could look pretty good to millions of people with potential access to a boat that might survive the trip. On the other hand, if boat people are to be deterred it has to be crystal clear that getting here doesn’t mean staying here. Keeping people in detention, turning around boats, holding people overseas and denying refugees permanent residency are hardly high-minded polices but they might be necessary to prevent a form of peaceful invasion.

* * *

The Daily Telegraph says that the Rudd Government is about to change the law to help loved ones to track missing persons. This sounds suspiciously like Centrelink’s programme to allow people who have lost track of each other to get in touch. This was suspended a few weeks ago after a paedophile used it to renew contact with an accomplice. On boat people, the Government wills the end but not the means. On this issue, the Government wills the means but not the end. To the public, or at least those who are paying attention, it must seem like a government with a radical disconnect between what it says and what it does.

Join Tony in his live blog at 3pm. Send questions below

Abbott makes commentary throughout the 21 comments posted. And no we haven't read it all, nor do we support or oppose. But it should be kept close for the record.

3. Talk about cop out – if your brand is being exploited by a sleazy politician, that’s okay then? Not.  

Caroline ShepherdPosted Wednesday, 14 October 2009 at 1:51 pm | Permalink

On behalf of Amnesty International, I’d like to clarify a few points mentioned in this forum. Amnesty International Australia has never revoked the membership of any member, or requested that anyone return their badge.As it is for anybody, Phillip Ruddock’s choice to wear the AI badge is his to make. Amnesty International Australia calls on anyone representing Amnesty International in this way to live up to the values enshrined in that badge – of promoting and defending all human rights, for all people in the world.Amnesty International has many thousands of members in Australia. Our focus continues to be on our human rights work and not on any particular individual’s membership of AIA.

Caroline Shepherd

Media and Public Affairs Coordinator


4. Image via link off Crikey comment recently re Big Media failure to use correct language, in that case Leigh Sales apparently regarding asylum seeker versus 'unlawful', reminiscent of squatter for 'illegal settler' : 



5.  Vale Fred Bell champion with Milo Dunphy and others of the foundation of Total Environment Centre in Sydney in 1972, and a guiding light for this writer. Reportage here recently A sustained passion for survival Fred Bell, 1932-2009

A life dedicated to saving the planet ... Fred and Joan Bell with their seven grandchildren.


6. We would hear from Fred every now and then, and though we have cleared out old emails we notice these, one of which gave us a real jolt lately, being an automated reply from his relatives:

7. This follows another moving obituary for a pioneer of animals rights issues here Marjorie Wilson who we also knew from various annual conferences of Nature Conservation Council and launch of such stirring books as The Kangaroo Betrayed at NSW Parliament House.

Animal protector put roos on a pedestal

July 18, 2009
"We are opposed to any kangaroo products whatsoever'' ...  Marjorie Wilson at her  home in 1981 with a sculptured friend.

"We are opposed to any kangaroo products whatsoever'' ... Marjorie Wilson at her home in 1981 with a sculptured friend. Photo: Briony Davidson

Marjorie Wilson, 1918-2009


8. Refugee numbers mean we are 'harvesting the world wind' says bogus ex minister Ruddock. What about the real issue of harvesting the record economic immigration levels and the record predictions of a population boom? The real taboo and displacement by the major parties, audience and big media, is that simply substituting refugees for economic immigration would be an easy solution. But they won't go there because they know economic immigration is a public policy racket for big shopping mall and high rise residential builders. Big Party developer mates.

9. Stateline NSW continues to be an abc tv show of import and record on planning controversy every Friday night and now is webcast from the following Monday. In the capable hands of Quentin Dempster.

10. Regarding the $2 Billion blowout in projections for Sydney Metro, in story broken by News Corp tabloid this week located close to Central Station, one recalls PM Rudd having a secret tete a tete with the Fairfax Board at Darling Island about the time the metro was launched ... to expensively cross the harbour to .... Fairfax at Darling Island.

That's one way for the ALP to pander to the Big Media, but what about the wider Sydney transport task and the public interest PM?

Picture: SAM editor's limousine parked outside new-ish Fairfax offices in May 2008. Yep it's the bicycle.


11. On Crikey ezine strings we have taken to calling PM Rudd 'Science' as an ironic term indicating his lack of solid principle or conviction about anything including latest topic humane refugee policy. Indeed as a news grab in search of a conviction. Similarly climate policy with King Coal lately. And before that Tasmanian forest policy where the tag originally arises as explained here:

Posted Sunday, 18 October 2009 at 9:32 am | Permalink

From another string:

Ah yairs, explained elsewhere on the comment strings here, only recently though.

Back on early election when Rudd was questioned on Tasmanian forests, and Michael O’Connor was appointed onto the national ALP execuitive from Forestry union within CFMEU (having condoned violent union protests against anti logging folks), Rudd said to the effect of:

We will decide forests on the “science”.

But over 100 best biologists wrote a letter Howard as PM prior to 2004 election where Latham flamed out, saying in clear language most of that forest should be saved. It was hard to reference but I found the list, first linked to defunct Earthbeat, also published by me at the time.

But Rudd didn’t follow the science. He is a, and I mean this in a front bar room and also legal technical sense, a big f*cking liar. The forests policy fraughtness is emblematic of Rudd on king coal climate (iCoal 2.0 indeed, as per Get Up).

So there we have it Kevin “Science” Rudd. A logical hook for him as an accomplished academic to grab at, his default rhetorical indeed. But when he said it under pressure in an interview, it was without sincerity or conviction. He is thus hoist on his own hook/petard. Science is a purely ironic term.

The fact he looks like a walking lab coat only amuses more even more. It’s a slow fuse this tag and joke. But it bears repeating, repeating, repeat ……..”

12. Brinda of refugee fame, an articulate 9 year old innocent, was only upstaged briefly in big media stakes here by Falcon, 6 year old intrepid balloonist (not). Actually he was just a naughty boy hiding in the attic, because it seems he knew the baloon in his childish mind was 'for a show' and there he had gone and released it, or an unscheduled showing. That's our take out, no hoax, just show off kid with the made for tv name wanting to 'help'. What the poor kid exhibiting significant hybrid vigour will no doubt reflect on as his very own 'oh sh*t' moment.We know of another mixed race marriage here in Sydney which a 5 year old named Tiger also of significant hybrid vigour.

13. What can you say about the Hawkesbury Nepean Community Legal Centre in their new office at Windsor? We applied with other droves no doubt for a solicitor job there lately but also that we wanted to volunteer regardless because we need 12 months service to fully recommence practice. Seems they don't have space for volunteers, not from a home office using web databases for research, not via the huge public library complex 100 metres away. The last time we attended to loan our CLE papers to them (defamation, data base work) we were pursued by a desperate local wanting legal advice.

And he's not the only one. So here we are with practicising certificate and goodwill to offer and high local need but restrained from legal work by NSW Law Society red tape, closed shops at least to us, having qualified over 19 years ago with years of experience. As we said to their principal - this situation 'is not OK'. Should we organise a volunteer legal advice service in parallel to the official bureaucracy? That would be sure to attract attention but also would be illegal without a supervising solicitor with an unrestricted certificate. Unions don't just run building sites.


10 Meet the Press:  8- 8-30 am 

Footage of coalition re ETS and Tamil refugees (lose the long beard ‘Alex’)


Wong is the talent to shore up credentials of Govt as ethnic despite stance against refugees before Copenhagen. She bats off claim causing 25 refugee deaths. Says Tuckey doesn’t want action on climate (probably right, given heat in Kalgoolie, wants us all to cook like him).


Humour out take is Bob Brown grace in face of name calling Steve Fielding. A real hoot. Panel is Wilkinson smh, Farr Telegraph, both centrist types. Confusing grab Joe Hockey re USA scheduling.


Q re timing rush. Strong response – not new, 12 years, business groups, more countries gives momentum, public do want. (not one mention of science imperative – dumb aussies don’t care about that?). Boilerplate about targets at Copenhagen – increase the costs to delay – stronger point.


Grab about coal and power industries – Vic premier wants energy security. Skips question of MW re scare campaign about blackouts. Boilerplate. Q re China how serious? Sings their praises re level of investment, level of access, Pres Hu, Willing to extend parliament.  Discordant tough and choir – jarring re Rudd. This PM is given to moralizing. Failed to hurdle it this week. Fantastic quote from the strongest of gospels St John re lukewarm.


Panel re press re coalition Lenore Taylor, Stuchbury ended refugee hunger strike,


Outstanding GetUP satire advert iCoal 2.0 out take.


2nd break swine flu Mummy Govt advert. Expect more of these in fed govt profile build.


Last third, greenpeace action stunt, John Connor in ALP spiv suit mode as “CEO” of “Climate Institute”. [Garrett clone, when’s he going to shave his head too?.] At home with the beltway is our “John”. His line re rear vision here last of G20 in energy efficiency, need policy changes for that. Talks about CopeH re purpose financial framework etc. Regarding polling only 7% don’t want any action. “Dinosaurs” in big business.


Meet The Press - Watch Political Video Online - Channel TEN.



Riley Diary 7, from 8.40am 

Ute advert pre segment with brown natives acting goofy. The blackface scandal all over again? Racism in advertising? 


Satire game show on Rudd interviewing himself. Real element of disrespect in the tone.  Lights out moment for Rudd. Turnbull on climate still serious and always be contention. Wilson grab. 


9 Sunday newshour Laurie Oakes interview 8.44 am 

Totally weird Barbie camper advert pre segment. Non stop glamour whaaa?


Picture: Former shining light of the Rudd federal Govt is reduced to hand signals postage stamp split screen, as if for deaf viewers on the occasion of aspiring round the world yachtie 15 year old girl/woman. And see images above at intro.


Late start clash with Riley, yacht girl question, refugee boat in distress. Tub thump about Warren Truss accusing loss of 25 lives – no evidence via google, irresponsible. Fake email affair and still at it. Wants to be deputy prime minister. [strong rebuttal but is she right or not?] 

Q. each boat a policy failure? Dodges the question, shows flummoxed, ill prepared or uncertain. An important lapse. Dated Gillard presser 2003 – looking really nonplussed and dismayed by that ambush but cops it on the chin indicating her steel with hardly a second lapse. This is a brutal real politik exchange.  Looking cooked both in makeup and crease on forehead.


Much happier on climate policy wedge in reverse direction. 



Insiders 2: 9- 10am


Riley style package of Coalition ramping refugee wedge. Rudd “balance tough fair”. Turnbull both sides of the street re door wide open and did see heart breaking Brinda 9 year old plea.


Guest is shadow Sharman Stone.


Chris Uhlmann – Turnbull to get restricted hunting licence on climate. Doesn’t believe DD, noted Wong on MTP give more ground, go to grab, extend parliament if necessary.


Sharman Stone rams home the wedge on refugee issues – refer transcript.


Vox pop on refugee status with word games.


Panel chat gets excitable but within reason. Footage of NT mp running off at the mouth, let loose by PM Rudd.  Fran Kelly says not so much organized crime behind boats, rather desperate fisherman.


Paul Kelly encyclical – Indonesia solution for refugees. Panel chat.


Grab of Ross Garnaut on 7.30 Report re economics, observed also by Stutch ETS policy ‘worse big issue conduct’ quoting RG. Doyen says winding stimulus back necessary. Taylor depends on forecasts ‘above trend growth’. [Trouble with that is forecasts are crap proven regularly.]


Panel has growl, good tv. Fast pace, a bit Westy too (meaning West Wing).


Hilarious grab of Alan Jones interview with Joe Hockey, with AJ apparently on uppers in last week or two [also on front page of Daily Telegraph].


Talking pics – very amusing, Downer talking up to Obama etc. Rudd attacks “Right”wing The Australian.


Essential transcript of Stutch re The Australian and Rudd Govt. Taylor on panel ignored being centre left, Stutch centre right.




Inside Business with Alan Kohler  

Refer http://www.abc.net.au/insidebusiness/



Posted by editor at 12:00 PM NZT
Updated: Sunday, 18 October 2009 1:50 PM NZT
Wednesday, 14 October 2009
Spirit of Rex Crane stalking POW frauds, winged keels and sacred cows generally?
Mood:  quizzical
Topic: big media

Now we have the big Ben Lexcen winged keel story, and claims of Dutch involvement first page of the Sydney Morning Herald:

America's cup

The 'lie' that captured the America's Cup

Dutchman claims he created Ben Lexcen's winged keel that led Australia II to historic 1983 triumph. 

Callers to Sydney abc radio are contradicting the Herald angle with strong information of their own in support of Lexcen. One presumes the truth is somewhere in between.

What we believe is that the shocking fraud of Rex Crane, exposed a week earlier, is sending shock waves through the whole Establishment and people are questioning all kinds of sacred cows in this "topsy turvy" world to quote radio jock Adam Spencer.

For this Alternative Media website, we enjoy this grist, and it might even be our very own raison d'etre they seem to be getting their teeth into lately. We wonder if these latest big media stories can be bracketed with the shocking Rex Crane case where a so called 'POW survivor' and 'veteran' has been found to have defrauded the taxpayer of some $1/2 million in benefits. Real veterans (eg on Australia All Over Sunday morning abc radio) are shaking their head how the formidable federal govt bureaucracy was fooled for over 20 years.

Here is one story about Crane recently:

Police move against fake survivor of Burma rail


October 4, 2009
‘‘It’s me living a lie, isn’t it?’’ ...  Mr Crane in Brisbane last week.

‘‘It’s me living a lie, isn’t it?’’ ... Mr Crane in Brisbane last week. Photo: Paul Harris

THE Australian Federal Police are investigating the president of the Ex-Prisoners of War Association of Australia, Rex Crane, after he was exposed as a fake.

Veterans' Affairs Minister Alan Griffin said he was disgusted by the revelations.

"I know these allegations will be distressing for the veteran community and I fully understand why. Those who have sacrificed so much for our country are rightly outraged when fraud of this nature occurs," Mr Griffin said.

Lynette Silver, one of the three women who uncovered Mr Crane's true past, yesterday said former POWs were disturbed by the revelations.

''The POWs I have spoken to, they are appalled, shocked and disgusted, and they feel betrayed," she said.

Mr Crane has received $405,000 in Commonwealth payments since 1988, when he applied for the highest level of war pension, which is designated for totally and permanently incapacitated veterans.

Yet he was never a prisoner of war and never served in any military force.

For almost 30 years he had told his family, friends and the federal government that he had been forced to enlist in 1941 in Malaya after he was abandoned there at age 15 by his parents.

He had claimed that he served as a member of a behind-enemy-lines unit before being captured, imprisoned in Singapore's Outram Road Jail and sent to the Burma-Thai railway, where he said he had endured crucifixion and other forms of torture at the hands of the Japanese.

Mr Crane was instead attending Adelaide High School in 1941 before taking up a boiler-making apprenticeship not far from where he was living in Prospect, South Australia.

Confronted by The Sydney Morning Herald on Wednesday, Mr Crane confessed, saying: "It's me living a lie, isn't it? I can see me doing 15 to 20 years here."

Mr Griffin said he had alerted the federal police on Thursday, after the Herald contacted his office.

"Personally, I think for anyone to impersonate a prisoner of war is disgusting,'' he said. ''It is a betrayal of all the values our veterans stand for.

"Should these allegations be proven, it will illustrate to what lengths some individuals will go to to defraud our system and the large amounts of money that can be involved."

Ms Silver said: "This matter should be pursued to the fullest extent of the law and I am confident that the AFP will do so. I am gratified that the minister thinks this is as serious a matter as the three of us always thought, and that Mr Crane will be made to answer to a court of law for his disgraceful action."

Ms Silver was convinced the man was lying. ''I also knew that he definitely could not have been in Outram Road Jail. We have got the complete list of people that went into that jail. I knew that Rex Crane was definitely not on the list.''


Posted by editor at 10:11 AM NZT
Updated: Wednesday, 14 October 2009 10:16 AM NZT

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