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sydney alternative media - non-profit community independent trustworthy
Friday, 12 March 2010
Dear Kevin, politics is like a surfboat race*
Mood:  lyrical
Topic: aust govt


True there is no insulation in an old style wooden surfboat.

But there are many possible metaphors to draw from the sport of surfboat racing. Earlier today Adam Spencer abc 702 amplified a story about state parliament being like The Muppets. It was funny.

This got us thinking in some tangential creative fashion about those days of rowing (not paddling!) a 415kg tub around the bay in Warrnambool. Indeed PM Malcolm Fraser dropped in one day to have a go in the same seat as ours 2nd stroke oar, as per the pictures in our old scrap book above and below.

Now the boats are 210kg speedsters out of fibreglass and hollow carbon fibre oars, apparently including women's crew. Not in my day but it's all good moving with the times.

We went to a 29th year school reunion (not 30th, go figure) and recounted with pleasure an anecdote of the 1980 Austalian Titles - the only junior boat crew to finish our heat. And this is where the prime ministerial metaphor kicks in:

There we are at Wanda beach, Sydney, all the way from the Bass Strait, South West Victoria. A young crew with 2 years left in the age bracket. It's all good experience. The surf is running high.

Bang goes the starter pistol. Leap over the gunnel like jumping a barb wire fence, feet to land on the foot straps on a diagonal board. Easy to say, hard to do. Slide on the seat with your togs wedged up bare arse. Dig in hard to overcome the monolithic inertia of boat on shallow water, like a cockroach with 5 legs: 4 rowers and 1 sweep oar to steer.

Only - as rarely happens - Lee the sweep calls out "DIG IT IN" abrupty. It's all on trust.  Our backs are to the waves. We know the drill. If a wave is breaking in front of us, we have to stop to avoid being crunched, then start again which lifts the bow safely over the theshing whitewater and on again. In this sense it's a race of skill with ourselves never mind the other 5 crews.

We trust Lee as only teenage lads can investing in our sports coach. And he delivers us out of the jaws of the thrashing broken wave. Off we go again with "PICK IT UP!". But in seconds  he screams "DIIIGGG IT INNN!" a second time. Uh oh, not good. Never done this twice before. We are in the crunch zone now. It's pure faith. We should be rowing hard not making like a sitting duck. The curling water smacks the ocean surface, like a low mortar round deep in earth going "WHOA-UMP". As it breaks just in front we manicly pull on the heavy oars simply to hold position and prevent being swatted all the way back to the beach - the ulitmate embarrassment - going backwards. Teenage forearms and fingers strain to hold the boat in place. Not a word though. In the moment. It's bodies and training, and trust and teamwork. And Lee screams over the din "PIIICCKKK IT UP!"

We peek at the crews at left and right struggling beside us as we raise the blades out  of the water and literally point them at our rivals before dipping them back in. One at least is blown away as the line of surf varies along the shore line. But the real foe of we puny human beings has not finished with us yet.

Can't remember if Lee called out. Can't remember if we cried "Come on" 20 years before Leyton Hewitt ever won a grand slam. Probably we did like all those times before at 1/4 time and 2 goals down in local VFL (later AFL). The time was now, the players were us.

The biggest wave in the set was now heading straight for us and there was only one way out, forward, and over the top. And we pulled frantically short choppy strokes to get momentum. Not enough time or open water. Already sweaty. Breathing hard. And up we turned.

The body knows what the eyes can't see behind us. And up. And up. The length of a 25 foot boat at 45 degrees and then air. Like forever with oars swinging useless in mid air but only really a second or two.

Like a race memory it flashed before us, first time out in novice C grade seniors at Jan Juc carnival year before, relocated from Torquay because the surf was too big. We flipped, with oars flailing wildly. We knew what to expect when it all turns to custard.

And then another THUMP more wooden this time of boat and ocean reconnecting.

We look around to see if arms, legs, boat, crew were still intact. Lots of shouting. Some scrambling going on at first stroke oar. What the f*ck? Ricky is jumping into the sweep position with his curved blade. Where is Lee? The horror dawns on us - we lost the sweep in the deluge. Goodbye Captain! More shouting. There are no other boats either side. Smited. Everyone of them, and good riddance too. The Victorian wannabes were in town!

Was it schadenfreude that spurred us on? Was it crazy brave? Off we went, like a side winding crab, 2 versus 1 imbalance in the oars and Ricky steering. I rowed alone on my side the rest of the 500 metre course. Half way to the bouy we realised there was a time limit on each race. And we had to navigate the swell back onshore too. We made it in a race of one.

I had a photo of our boat flying over the 3rd cruncher wave but it got spoiled by spilled coffee a few house moves ago. I will always remember a comment back on the beach - "you guys are too smart to be boaties". This is a sly variation on the old self mocking boast of boaties around the club "we're not very smart but we can lift heavy things".

We got eliminated very next race by bigger older rowers in crews out of the central machine of the surf life saving movement in NSW and Qld.  But it didn't matter. We had a memory we could hold dear for decades, at school reunions and blogs and stuff. The beer tent was looking good, another thing that's changed over the years.

Which brings us to Mal Fraser PM and Member for Wannon going for a row down on a flat, flat day at Warrnambool beach with the senior boat crew in 1982. He copped a rogue wave which even made the cartoons.

It seems to us insulation is like a big wave set. Getting wet is okay, just don't let it wash you onto the beach going backwards.

* This story dedicated to Lee Oakley (sweep), Ricky Clissold (1st stroke),  Lewis Atkinson (2nd bow), Tom McLoughlin (the writer, 2nd stroke)), and  Peter Ryan (bow), Victorian State Title holders junior boat crew 1981-82 for Warrnambool Surf Life Saving Club.



Posted by editor at 11:08 AM EADT
Updated: Friday, 12 March 2010 11:44 AM EADT
Even tame green lobby upset over koalas ... you won't read on 'dirty' Woodford blog
Mood:  energetic
Topic: independent media

What wicked ways the state ALP have with their financial, access and careerism hooks in the NSW green movement. But even umbrella groups dependent on govt grants spit the dummy every so often.

Here is a letter you won't read on the unreal, sanitised so called "real dirt" blog of James Woodford based on the south coast of NSW. It was forwarded via a non signatory (ironic) being the convenor of ChipStop being Harriet Swift, an authentic regionally based (Bega) authority figure on forest conservation, former journalist, tree changer, artist with blowtorch (literally). H confirms just now that the omission was incidental and it's "a good letter".

And so it is, only it's somewhat hypocritical too, in varying degrees, given the same lead green group (former staff and board) and Jeff Angel still current mentioned in the letter, were financed by the Carr Govt to reach exactly this corrupt "resource security" outcome for industry in publicly owned forests. We know because we resigned from the board of the same Nature Conservation Council over this very issue in 2000, having been elected twice to the position. Notice this sent recently:

Sent: Wednesday, March 10, 2010 6:25 PM
Subject: resource security and shuffling deck chairs ... Re: [chipstop] 40 NGOs ask the Premier to save the Mumbulla koalas

If and when the koalas are saved it will be at the price of other forest and other animals in the absence of broad logging industry reform. It might even be Brown Mountain in East Gippsland across the border depending on how litigation goes there. Or forest in the Upper Deua catchment which was once identified wilderness quality. Or giant brown barrels in Coolangubra. No one really knows. But it will mean shuffling the deck chairs.
People will say you have to make a stand somewhere. I agree. But I know this is no lasting solution either. The loggers will move to the next forest, with quolls, Yellow Bellied Gliders etc. This is the terrible terrible consequence predicted as far back as 1991 by this text in this leaflet here
which was the covert price NSW NCC chair and director of the TEC signed up to with 20 year logging guarrantees as per the Regional Forest Agreements. It was also implied in the peace plan agreed by select players in the 1995 state election campaign. These were pre emptive buckles by the green movement. Under duress no doubt.
According to Dailan Pugh/NEFA quote in The Australian weekend magazine in 2008, only 1/4 of the forest identified by the scientific process for a comprehensive, adequate and representative reserve system was achieved by the NSW Govt decisions 1998-2000.

So here is the official greenie letter and below that again is a screenprint from the dirty Woodford blog waxing lyrical about in his words "one of the nation's most loved creatures" in the extinct form ..... but not on the Woodford blog when it involves loggers from the spouse's former employer (NSW State Forests as a PR officer).

Below that a speech from Harriet Swift to a public meeting at Tathra town hall earlier this month which is actually the real business free of ALP land use corruption.


[PDF file from ChipStop website]

Woodford ommission of this koala logging furore, yet he dares write about extinct koalas here:

The last word to the admirable Harriet Swift SE NSW town hall meeting last Monday night:

If this hall had a back window, in a few months or weeks from now we could look out from here and see this logging. What are we doing about it?
  1. SERCA reps have met with the State Minister for the Environment, local MP Mike Kelly and advisers to the federal Minister for Forestry and the Environment.
  2. We have approached all Japanese paper companies asking them not to buy native forest woodchips from the Eden chipmill because it cannot guarantee that they don’t come from koala habitat. 13 Australian ENGOs signed. We have a strong group of major Japanese groups approaching Nippon Paper asking for the same thing.
  3. A group of all the major conservation and animal welfare groups in Sydney is making a joint approach to the State Premier and Ministers. For many of these groups this will be the first time they have involved themselves in forests and logging issues.
  4. Those stories about the SE koalas that have been in the national media over the past couple of weeks are not just good luck. They represent an enormous amount of work by many people.
  5. Well over 1,000 people on Facebook have signed on to a group called Save the Mumbulla and FF koalas
  6. Local groups are forming to resist the logging, but – importantly, working together. I’m not one of those who sneers at people for looking after their backyards. On the contrary, I believe we have a special responsibility to. If we don’t, who will? It was logging in Tanja State forest on our boundary many years ago that first got me into the forest campaign in a serious way and I’d like to think I have given FNSW a few headaches in that time. However, as a forest campaigner I have also always been strongly opposed to arguing for my backyard at the expense of somewhere else. My local forest at the expense of the one down the road or Australia’s forests at the expense of those in some other country. It’s not an ethical message. Forests NSW always tries to force us into that paradigm and we mustn’t fall for it. They always offer what appear to be “concessions” in terms of what they call “resource neutrality.” That means the forest must yield the same amount of woodchips whether they get it from one place or another. If they make a provision for a powerful owl, it doesn’t mean less forest is logged, it just means it’s logged more intensively in the places that don’t have a powerful owl roost.
  7. Right now, the industry doesn’t need most of this wood. The woodchipping industry is still suffering from the GFC. In 2009 it spent most of the year on a 4 day week. For weeks at a time it was closed altogether. Its stockpiles of chips and logs were enormous. It was asking contractors to store logs in the forest rather than deliver them to the chipmill because it couldn’t store them. It had to clear bush inside the chipmill to expand its log storage area. Forests NSW has take or pay contracts with SEFE that can force them to keep on taking logs even when they don’t want them. We might even be doing them a favour if we could persuade State Forests not to take any pulplogs from these forests.
  8. One final thing: there has been some suggestion that we will do better if we pretend we are not greenies. I take issue with that. I am a greenie and why should I be ashamed of that? In the longer term, the more politicians realize that greenies are well informed, ethical and energetic and numerous, they’ll start to pay more attention to the environment.
 - Harriett Swift



Posted by editor at 9:10 AM EADT
Thursday, 11 March 2010
Carr's guilty conscience on east coast forests in redgum plea?
Mood:  cool
Topic: nsw govt



Picture: Contrary to NSW govt PR logging intensity as high as ever 2001 Upper Deua wilderness.

Former premier Bob Carr was forced out in 2005 as his polling crashed, allowed by the ALP machine to limp along in the job until his 10th anniversary before resigning.

Not many people have really analysed the net environmental consequence of Carr's main boast of forest protection of NSW eastern division forests. The story is not nearly as good as Carr would have people believe. Carr is known as a thespian so a reality check is again in order.

Especially because Carr has leapt into PR mode in the last few days via Get Up organisation urging protection of redgum forests in south west NSW. A good message from a damaged messenger. And if he is acting out of a guilty conscience, at least it's in evidence unlike ex PM Paul Keating who failed Australia's forests dismally with his initiative of so called Regional Forest Agreements.

We recently briefed south east region conservation groups and Get UP organisation as follows:

Subject: [chipstop] Links re Carr's dodgy green credentials, prior to redgums in GetUp Re: [chipstop] RE: [SERCA] FW: Join Bob Carr: Save the River Red Gums

Yes history of the 90ies is stale 10 years old, but the current ALP is a product of it's past with same habits.
On redgums Carr is surely posturing for the next state election. And he might be well motivated. And he might be riddled with guilt! Who knows. The message is right, but the messenger is damaged goods. 
I remember in harness for TWS in 1994 pre election he promised to save wilderness areas. But his policy actually said 365K ha out of 713K ha identified under the legislative process Wilderness Act 1987 passed with bipartisan support.
Alan Hansen who worked for Opposition Env Minister Pam Allan rang me personally to complain about exposing this detail in the official newsletter of TWS. They seemed to think the green movement were ALP serfs.
This was the best clue the ALP were unreliable later in the 90ies, as I said regarding RFA decisisons 20 year resource security industry holy grail. It was also why the ALP cut me and TWS out of negotiating "a peace plan" pre 1995 election. Too independent, and too honest. They were ALWAYS going to cut forests in half. This regarding the late 90ies decisions:
 "To hide this reality Carr went the big lie PR option - ‘biggest forest decision in the world’. I still remember The Wilderness Society putting out a list of bigger conservation decisions worldwide - about 20 of them - in a brutal lampooning of Carr’s arrogance. With environmental friends like Carr who needs enemies."
Here is that TWS media exposing Carr going the proverbial big lie, which I web posted for posterity years back (at Carr ALP dodges 1995-99 refer "Box 4" breakout item) including this:

Apart from deliberately and dishonestly conflating the notion of "forest protection" with "new national park", the other variation on Carr's boasting was that his government had created one million hectares of reservations in NSW and this was a "world record". The Wilderness Society as quoted in Parliament by Ian Cohen MLC has shown convincingly using World Conservation Monitoring Centre figures that NSW as a unit is still behind 74 other countries in terms of terrestrial protected areas, and just below the 6. 29% of land area conserved on average per country. For the 4 year term of office Carr has made less significant conservation decisions than

  • Brazil (3.5 million ha in 1990, 6 million ha in 1979-82),
  • Indonesia (3 million ha in 1978-81,
  • 2.5 million ha in 1980-82),
  • Columbia (2 million ha, 1977).
  • Even in Queensland in one year 1977 a million hectares of national park was created, and in NT nearly a million hectares in 1990.
  • There is not space here to list other protection decisions in China,
  • USA (4 different states) or
  • Venezuela

that outstrip or equal Bob Carr's "world record" fantasy.

Just as the RFA maps dishonestly conflated existing national park with new national park decisions - in order to dwarf the large swathes of logging area, actually much bigger than new national parks. I have those maps here:
Saturday, 25 July 2009
I have posted an original copy of that TWS leaflet of 1991 this morning about the logging industry holy grail of resource security on public land, initially defeated but back with a vengeance now, regretably:
The Wilderness Society brief on 'Resource Security' 1991
Who knows, maybe Carr is trying to make amends with the Redgums to do the full job? Miracle if it's true.
Yours truly, Tom
Sent: Wednesday, March 10, 2010 9:40 PM
Subject: [chipstop] RE: [SERCA] FW: Join Bob Carr: Save the River Red Gums

 We saved the South East forests, the North coast icons and the Pilliga. These were all generous conservation outcomes, and no unemployment resulted.
Im sorry but what the? hes such a liar. still good on him for doin the get up thing & your right sean - great exposure. -still, in case anyone has forgotten whose signature is on the RFAs, Bobs got a lot to answer for.

To: serca_members

This is fantastic.   Can we get the same exposure for our koalas?


To: Sean Burke
Subject: Join Bob Carr: Save the River Red Gums

--- A message to GetUp members from Former NSW Premier Bob Carr ---

Dear GetUp Members,

From the air they are bands of green that emerge from the Great Dividing Range and run along the banks of our major rivers as they snake west. On ground they are stately silhouettes, mighty arms akimbo, hefty trunks streaked red on white: statuesque, unmoving, some hundreds of years old but with the look of eternity. The river red gums are the guardians of inland Australia.

Enter these forests. Set off a mob of kangaroos. Then hear the silence settle. Look around and be filled with the wonder of being in ancient Australia.

Log these? Log them for another 5 years until the old ones are all gone and we are left only with straggly regrowth? Log them when 80 per cent of the landscape along the Murray has already been cleared? When on some stretches 75 per cent of the trees are already dead or dying or stressed because of drought and climate change? Log them for firewood and railway sleepers and fence posts?

Many parts of our country are in flood, but the Murray-Darling, food bowl of our nation, is still cracked and dry. The River Red Gums that stand guard on its banks are a gift to future generations. They are of national significance, and it falls to all of us to protect them.

The NSW Government has announced that 80 per cent of the red gums will be protected as national forest, but reports suggest some 16,000 hectares will be logged for another 5 years. I intend to seek clarification of this, but you may wish to let NSW Premier Kristina Keneally know you think the future of these mighty trees is very, very important:


The most reliable estimate is that there are only 136 jobs in red gum logging on public lands across NSW. Timber jobs are 0.2 per cent of employment in the region. All can be accommodated in new national parks.

How can I be so certain? First, because Victoria has just done it. As of June 30 last year, logging stopped forever in 91,000 hectares of red gum wetlands. The outcome is jobs positive because there are 30 new park ranger jobs in four new parks, 10 jobs in forest management and 24 jobs in the tourism sector.

Second, because NSW offers loads of experience in world-significant nature conservation made possible through industry restructuring without job losses. We have had 30 years of these arguments. Each has ended with decisive conservation victories, and the outcomes have been endorsed at state elections. In my experience - and I was environment minister in the Wran government between 1984 and 1988 - the case made by conservationists starts by looking over-reaching. But it always ends up being vindicated.

My Government led Australia on nature conservation. I am proud of creating some 300 new national parks. We saved the South East forests, the North coast icons and the Pilliga. These were all generous conservation outcomes, and no unemployment resulted. We can do it with the river red gums, but Government need to be reminded that nature conservation has public support:


In their bones country and city people alike know that as the continent's population climbs (to more than 40 million by mid-century, according to the latest estimates) we will count precious every hectare of national park this generation has declared.

Bob Carr

Bob Carr was the longest continuously serving NSW premier.

This message was sent through GetUp.org.au and your personal details have not been shared with Mr. Carr or anyone else.

Posted by editor at 1:38 PM EADT
Updated: Thursday, 11 March 2010 2:18 PM EADT
Monday, 8 March 2010
Lucie Thorne master songstress
Mood:  lyrical
Topic: culture

Memories of coffee and chocolate ...


Posted by editor at 11:24 AM EADT
Sunday, 7 March 2010
Peter Costello badly out of his depth on unsafe nuclear reactor energy
Mood:  loud
Topic: nuke threats


We read recently former federal treasurer wax lyrical in the Sydney Morning Herald recently how the insulation 'debacle' has involved more fatalities than nuclear energy has over the same time frame. or something like that.

But how would Costello know, (long term lap puppy of former PM Howard pictured above).

We posted this very real threat to humanity in a western country, here on a crikey comment string late last week:

Infant Deaths And Childhood Cancer Drop Dramatically After Nuclear Plants Close
November 30, 2001, New York, NY”

Dramatic declines in local infant death and childhood cancer rates occurred soon after the closing of eight nuclear power plants, according to a new report announced by New York State Assemblyman Richard Brodsky, Radiation and Public Health Project, and the STAR Foundation. The study documents a 17.4% reduction in infant mortality in the downwind counties within 40 miles two years after reactor closing, compared to a national decline of just 6.4%. Large declines occurred in all eight areas near closed reactors, and remained above national trends for at least six years after closing. The information appears as an article published in the March/April 2002 edition of Archives of Environmental Health.

We finally have reliable peer-reviewed accurate data attaching the nuclear power plants to death and injury in the host communities, this is a sobering and significant scientific study and we all need to take it seriously,” stated New York State Assemblyman Richard Brodsky. “It is critical that more studies of this type be performed, so that we fully understand the risks posed by nuclear reactors,” added Westchester County legislator Thomas Abinanti.

Nuclear power is a failed experiment that is expensive and dangerous,” said Scott Cullen, Executive Director of STAR. “This study confirms the best of public health principles: that when you remove a known cause of illness, health improves,” said Cullen. “What is gratifying about the research is that it showed childhood health measures increasing so dramatically and quickly after the reactors closed and provides good news that we can strive towards.”

In three of the eight areas with available data, cancer diagnosed in children less than five years of age declined 25.0% in the seven years after reactor closing, compared to a 0.3% increase nationally. Children exposed to radiation are of increased risk for cancer, says Joseph Mangano, MPH MBA, the principal author of the study who is affiliated with the New York research group Radiation and Public Health Project.

This study is most relevant to New York City because over 8% of the nation’s population lives within 50 miles of the Indian Point reactor. Counties downwind and within 40 miles of Indian Point include the Bronx, Dutchess, Manhattan, Nassau, Putnam, Queens, and Westchester in New York, and Fairfield County in Connecticut. Over 8.5 million persons live in these counties, where 110,000 babies are born each year. “




with link to http://www.radiation.org/spotlight/closed.html

Posted by editor at 11:39 AM EADT
Sunday tv talkies: PM's white coat persona in PR clash with rival wichetty grub Action Man
Mood:  chatty
Topic: aust govt

Pictures: Lifted off Fairfax press 4 March 2010, Sydney Morning Herald and Brisbane Times respectively.


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.  

- Our image last Sunday of Rudd in doctors gown seems to have scooped the big media by 48 hours. It was a cliché that was always going to happen, and sure enough it did on front page of the Sydney Telegraph and tv pictures. But the green light was obvious first with Ruddster body language leaning into the camera during the interview on Insiders which is why we ran with the image ahead of the rest. Exhibit 1: Tragic life watching wonky political media.



- Keating’s Lend Lease sponsored giant phallus over land at Barangaroo reminds of Keating as overdevelopment consultant to Westfield at Bondi – regional sized facility in sub regional centre sucking life out of family retail elsewhere. This was around 1997 and we were councilor at Waverley in Bondi Beach ward. Keating consultancy was covert, revealed some years later. In 1996-7 a similar Mac Bank – Lend Lease private proposal for heavy rail station in the park at the Beach – raising the prospect of … you guessed it high rise over Lend Lease air space rights … on the water. The locals rejected this potential monster out of hand. In conclusion as we always say with Keating – self interest is always trying – just like his declared consultancy for power privatization with Wylie Lazzard investment bank. So was Keating now or then a covert paid consultant for Lend Lease in 1997 over the Bondi Rail private development proposal.



- Opinion section of SMH on web is now “National Times” so can’t get a line on leading article so easily anymore. Also to compete with Crikey?



- Front of SD Telegraph off their web front page again can’t easily guage their press front page blowtorch. Maybe international web access until we get to the local library like this http://www.pressdisplay.com/pressdisplay/viewer.aspx



- This week SAM noted Frank Ernest Sartor NSW Env Minister talking frogs, to learn the SD Telegraph has a frog logo on their environment blogger rip of SAM here which also uses a frog for years now? Go the Frogs.



- Marginals in Sydney in play over redgums and other forest  like Marrickville, Balmain, Strathfield, Coogee and no doubt more.  In this sense big Saturday telegraph story about redgum sawmillers is right about politics but they ignore the science which is all for conservation via Govt Resource Audit Council.



- PM Rudd getting aggressive in echo of rival Abbott over health, or is it his father’s death coming back in his dreams?



- Peter Costello hopelessly wrong about safety of nuclear power in his Fairfax opinion piece in cheap shot at insulation fatalities by comparision. Notice this quote and links from a US public interest study on closure of 8 reactors, as posted by SAM on Crikey comment string late last week:



Infant Deaths And Childhood Cancer Drop Dramatically After Nuclear Plants Close
November 30, 2001, New York, NY”



Dramatic declines in local infant death and childhood cancer rates occurred soon after the closing of eight nuclear power plants, according to a new report announced by New York State Assemblyman Richard Brodsky, Radiation and Public Health Project, and the STAR Foundation. The study documents a 17.4% reduction in infant mortality in the downwind counties within 40 miles two years after reactor closing, compared to a national decline of just 6.4%. Large declines occurred in all eight areas near closed reactors, and remained above national trends for at least six years after closing. The information appears as an article published in the March/April 2002 edition of Archives of Environmental Health.”



With full quotes at


with link to http://www.radiation.org/spotlight/closed.html


- We helped with a charity case in the Supreme Court NSW Equity Division which is still to have a costs hearing. Now we read in this weekend SMH that Justice David Lloyd who found the state govt involved in “land bribes” has retired from the Land and Environment Court – which is big news in itself. We had another charity case smashed by Justice Lloyd on the basis the client was a bankrupt – at the hands of corrupt sandminer and council mates.



Now Lloyd the respected Beak is being blocked it is implied in SMH by politicians in the state Govt to work on in the Supreme Court Equity Division. Interesting because we wrote up case #1 mentioned above (we are named in the title as next friend for the client with mental illness) in the Equity Division and sent it to the media officers for the Supreme Court for the information of the chief judge. As evidence of where the legal system has worked to protect the most vulnerable.



A natural fit for Justice Lloyd surely. The NSW govt could be heading to ICAC over this one a la Tim Moore/Greiner Affair (Moore is a Commissioner at same L&E Court today) if ICAC were not so disempowered. Former chief of ICAC was Justice Cripps – who we understand in private practice made face to face deals with Sam Haddad around 2000 for a sandminer client, when previously Cripps was Chief Judge of the L&E Court 1985-1992, and then appointed boss of ICAC 2004-2009. Wheels within wheels eh in the State of ALP.



The ICAC website doesn’t seem to show Cripps biography anymore. But we grabbed it in a previous SAM post, and notice he is working with another Govt appointment the Sentencing Commission or something. Lloyd must be pondering such favour ….


 THE HON JERROLD CRIPPS QC2004-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 

10 Meet the Press:  8- 8-30 am 

Intro film wrap curriculum, health reform. Dep PM Gillard is guest.


Bonge in the chair.


JG crocodile tears for Belinda Neal lost pre-selection. [Metaphor for crony ALP loss in next NSW state election?] Gillard State Govt’s will go broke paying for health. Q. Politics of referenda, senate vexed. Grab of Abbott compare with insulation competence.


Humour out take more revealing for pollies using children again. Big Media are starting to notice the exploitation.

Panel is chubbies Glenn Milne News Corp, Fran Kelly. Grab of Chris Pyne host of policies not implemented. Tough questions on implementation from Milne, answered quite well with confidence and strong detail but th Humour out take cartoon of giant pill or sopository. Adbreak is work choices reprise “the phrase work choices is dead” credibility attack advert. Tim Baxter health bureaucrat for Kennett and Carr. Implementation is the key. Agrees with Dep PM serious adjustments for costs in state bureaucracy. GST increase?    

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


Riley Diary 7, from 8.40am 

Work safe tear jerker advert PR sponsored by NSW Govt. Manipulative politicking?PM focus apology with John Cleese show. Policy wonk. Abbott referred to as Slugger. Q& A at end Riley says Rudd is back on the policy front.



9 Sunday newshour Laurie Oakes interview 8.44 am 

Minister Roxon in black style clothes, too formal methinks. Perhaps for gravitas. Preselection on Neal. Anzac Day. Missed a fair bit of it.





Insiders 2: 9- 10am


Uhlmann in the chair. Pop package PM Rudd focus. Laura Tingle AFR (smart), Brian Toohey, Phil Coorey – all Fairfax.


Dwell on Belinda Neal replacement. Deborah O’Neil has the goods by sound of her.


Joe Hockey as shadow treasurer and guest. Blah blah.  Vox pop as usual. Panel on PM apology and education. Toohey says Rudd is a bad policy maker who thinks he’s good.




Inside Business with Alan Kohler  .


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


Posted by editor at 11:13 AM EADT
Updated: Sunday, 7 March 2010 11:25 AM EADT
Saturday, 6 March 2010
Death by dehydration?
Mood:  sad
Topic: local news

If there is no evidence of a sinister crime, could a 3 year old child walk such a long way and die of dehydration? Trying to find where the planes fly? Or even be abducted and released get lost and similarly die of heat and dehydration?

From our uni science classes we always recall the surface area volume ratio of living things. Smaller volume (as for a small child) means relatively bigger surface area to lose heat and perspire. Some UN and other web pages discuss dehydration mainly in respect of global problems of Acute diarrhoeal diseases:

The symptoms become increasingly severe with greater water loss. One's heart and   respiration rates will increase to compensate for decreased   plasma volume and   blood pressure, while body temperature may rise because of decreased sweating. Around 5% to 6% water loss, one may become groggy or  sleepy, experience headaches or  nausea, and may feel tingling in one's limbs ( paresthesia). With 10% to 15% fluid loss, muscles may become spastic, skin may shrivel and wrinkle, vision may dim, urination will be greatly reduced and may become painful, and delirium may begin. Losses of greater than 15% are usually fatal. [1]http://rehydrate.org/dehydration/index.html

We actually walked from Melbourne Airport in January 2010 all the way to the first tram stop which must be about 5 km. It was hot dry flat country. We did find a tap along the way. We had bad shoes we threw away the next day.

Our purpose was to learn more about the layout of Mebourne complete with compass. We walked to and from Kingsford Smith airport in Sydney same trip partly to avoid the outrageous premium on the train ticket.

We've done similar at Avalon to train line at Lara in Victoria in 2006 or so. A bit eccentric but it's also quite interesting.

Posted by editor at 10:03 AM EADT
Updated: Saturday, 6 March 2010 10:06 AM EADT
Friday, 5 March 2010
Memo Environment Minister, rare frog not quite top order predator extinction
Mood:  smelly
Topic: nsw govt

 Picture: Spot the non carnivore? It's a trick question from this zoology grad pseudo lawyer. They are all carnivorous, not least 'talking turkey' Minister Frank Ernest Sartor top middle. But give him time and he might yet surprise in the environment portfolio ...


'The ecological equivalent of a Tasmanian Tiger. Sounds like a motor bike. '

Oh gawd. Which is the biggest clue this is a PR choreography, with timing at the control of the government, perhaps even to offset the growing furore over forest destruction reported here on SAM recently? (Redgums and koalas in southern NSW):

Sky News: 'Extinct' yellow frog reappears in NSW4 Mar 2010

'Extinct' super frog back from dead - Local News - News - General ...

Minister Frank Sartor is interesting. He appears to have starved the Riverina sawmill so they pre emptively buckle (still to be confirmed), and run a choreography frog story yesterday tv, radio etc to offset all the forest noise. He's a clever bean. He actually might even like the environment too - he is very effective, just selfish as sin joining the ALP.
Sartor will love to deal with other chess players in back rooms. He famously got Harry '100M population' Triguboff of Meriton Apartments in to get things moving while Mayor of Sydney (CBD and nearby, not the whole metro).
Now don't get us wrong. We love frogs. It's our logo of think tank ecology action archive link (on the image below and at the left hand column on this very page):


Because frogs are vulnerable (like us), hang in precariously (ditto), and suffer from pollution and regular exctinctions (err ...hope not). Who knows the yellow spotted bell frog might even be a metaphor for our struggling career back from the civil dead.
By coincidence the current top order native predator - Tiger Quoll was found in the suburbs of Canberra recently by one Steve Taylor. There is a Quoll pictured above (bottom left).

Posted by editor at 10:19 AM EADT
Updated: Friday, 5 March 2010 10:40 AM EADT
Fran Kelly with Prof Lindenmeyer on logging in wet forest promoting bushfires
Mood:  hug me
Topic: wildfires
Earlier today Radio National/Fran Kelly ran Prof Lindenmeyer on forests and logging and bushfires.
Here is the link:
Our guess it's probably run in The Age in Melbourne as well recently covering the coronial inquiry into the Victorian bushfire catastrophe Feb 2009.
This echoes our understanding from as far back as advocacy documents since 1995 as here at Bushfire science, with quality science over 3 continents now reinforcing these diagrams 15 years later.
All too late for so many bereaved, especially as it relates to landscape conversion over the last 50 years of wet forest types. Really it's common sense that wet forest type is a natural bushfire fuel management system . But these forest types are all but lost in the dry winds through the dusty schleophyll regrowth.

Posted by editor at 9:44 AM EADT
Updated: Friday, 5 March 2010 10:24 AM EADT
Kangaroo survival behaviour when attacked by dogs
Mood:  don't ask
Topic: local news

Child death is a terrible thing.

Here is this story leading the web press today:

Boy drowns walking dogs

Police SHANNON TONKIN Luke Selwyn, 6, fails to return after going for a walk with his family's two dogs as police find his body in a dam.
We understand Ms Tonkin writes for the Hawkesbury Gazette owned by Fairfax for the last 3 years.
The story reminds us of Phill at Cattai whose dog was drowned in the neighbour's dam. For this reason -  the dead boy is reported as going for a walk with 2 dogs about 5 pm.
This might be barking up the wrong tree but here goes: Kangaroos are out feeding in the open about that time around Cattai (eg Cattai NP picnic area off Wiseman's Ferry Rd) which is on the opposite bank of the same stretch of Hawkesbury River. Or perhaps a bit up river at Wilberforce/Ebeneezer.
According to our neighbour Phil last year before we moved places, the kangaroos being harried or harrassed by dogs will lead them close to water and then drag them in and drown them. His own dog was found drowned in that way. Another limped back and survived.
We simply offer this background without drawing any conclusions one way or the other. No doubt the authorities will investigate fully. Our sincere condolences to the family who must be devastated.

Posted by editor at 9:09 AM EADT
Updated: Friday, 5 March 2010 10:30 AM EADT

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