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sydney alternative media - non-profit community independent trustworthy
Tuesday, 3 July 2007
SAM news website pageviews for month of June 2007
Mood:  happy
Topic: independent media


 

 

May 2007 - 9, 059

April 2007 - 12,087

March 6,684

February 5,372

January 2800


Posted by editor at 11:08 AM NZT
Updated: Sunday, 5 August 2007 11:10 AM NZT
Monday, 2 July 2007
Liberal author blows whistle on Howard climate policy cheat
Mood:  special
Topic: globalWarming

Quoting the Canberra Times today below, (and see also 4 Corners February 2006 interview in an episode called The Greenhouse Mafia ):

Are Australians getting the whole truth on global warming?

 2nd June 2007

Liberal attacks PM on climate
Natasha Rudra

A Liberal Party member and former ministerial speechwriter issues a book today which depicts the Prime Minister with a stranglehold on environmental policy, deliberately surrounding himself with climate change sceptics.

Bungendore-based author Guy Pearse wrote High and Dry after seven years of academic research at the Australian National University, and a career with a former senior government minister as well as lobbying.

He has come to the conclusion that John Howard has a deliberately skewed vision of an Australian economy heavily dependent on mining and other high-pollutant industries.

"He has never genuinely believed climate change to be that serious," Pearse said.

"At every level, if you look closely, you'll find that he has promoted sceptics around him."

Pearse, who is originally from Queensland, worked as a speechwriter for former environment minister Robert Hill from 1997 to 1999.

He said that his experience and research into climate change forced him to rethink his political ambitions within the Liberal Party.

"In about 2005 I really reached a fork in the road where I either toed the line and went back to Queensland and set up for a political career, or I took this issue on," he said.

"I arrived at the conclusion that the issue was more important.

"The deception was too great, and the deception is even worse now than it was then.

"I don't see in any way that I'm betraying the Liberal Party.

"I think this is a case of the leader betraying the party's legacy on extremely important issues.

"Even though I'm a Liberal Party member and have been for almost 20 years I just felt we had reached the position where I had an obligation to do what I'm doing."

He hoped his book would spark extreme change in the Liberal Party's policy, saying that it could take a spell in opposition to achieve this.

"I hope it drives change faster than would otherwise occur," he said.

"It's to fix the policy," the author said.


Posted by editor at 7:04 PM NZT
Updated: Monday, 2 July 2007 7:44 PM NZT
Oo oo, ee ee .... doing the monkey with the ABC
Mood:  lyrical
Topic: big media

Images of Australian Broadcasting Corporation open day for tragics yesterday 1st of July 07 in Sydney. We particularly liked the opera devil banner from Mozart's Don Giovanni. We rang ABC corporate affairs this morning and suggested an obscure picture (which had fallen down the back of a desk and visible to the public) of a certain disgraced modern pop artist might need to be removed ... pronto.

The image of broadcaster Trioli looking suitably haughty in Italian operatic style also revealed a character trait. The wan ABC science presenter, James Vallentine inspired poise with a swelling audience in his capable hands.

150,000? Well maybe on the churn. Maybe 50,000. In any case it was a buzz as shown by the long queue walking through the tv sets. "I love the ABC" wrote one old guy in the guest book. "But does it love you?" I asked rhetorically. "I'm a member of the Friends" came the rebuke, avoiding the question really.

We had a longish talk with ABC International display and very friendly they were too. They have a far bigger audience than the ABC within Australia.

Sad to say we didn't cycle in having a load of 2nd hand books to sell. But notice cycling fan Adam Spencer involved in this October 17th 2007 . For those indoors abc.net.au/rollermache.

Postscript #1

How ironic that editorialist at The Australian would be criticising anyone, let alone the ABC of "bias". How mediocre. How hypocritical. Here it is if you can be bothered. Truth is the ABC is fiercely centrist committed mainly to itself whatever the actual facts or truth are. A bland conflation of so called balance and compromise of political power and money. That's why the environmental radio show Earthbeat was cut, while agri industry has a full hour every day, and it's own tv show.

And The Australian has the impertinence to say the ABC is "deep green Left". This is the typical News Ltd 70% press national coverage bully pulpit that discredits that self aggrandising joke media organisation.


Posted by editor at 12:01 PM NZT
Updated: Tuesday, 3 July 2007 2:29 PM NZT
Sunday, 1 July 2007
Sunday political talkies 'fundamentally' untrustworthy federal government? Politics of a higher purpose? Voter jury still out.
Mood:  caffeinated
Topic: human rights

Author’s general introductory note (skip this if you know this regular weekly column):

 

 

 

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.

 

 

Indeed it’s the tv version monitoring task similar to what Nelson

 

 

Mandela refers to here in his book Long Walk to Freedom (1994, Abacus) written in Robben Island prison (where he was meant to die like other African resister chiefs of history in the 19C), at page 208

 

 

“..newspapers are only a shadow of reality; their information is important to a freedom fighter not because it reveals the truth, but because it discloses the biases and perceptions of both those who produce the paper and those who read it.”

Just substitute ‘Sunday tv political talkie shows’ for "newspapers" in the quote above.

 

 

For actual transcripts go to web sites quoted below except with Riley Diary on 7. And note transcripts don’t really give you the image content value.

 

 

Media backgrounder:

-          Costello chief of staff in serious hit and run. Whoa, that’s heavy.

-          Failed Errorism attacks in Britain will travel politically will feed into atmospherics of APEC with protesters the least of issues: Bus prisons pictured in recent SMH.

-          Attack as usual by $2 Tim Blair in Sydney Telegraph yesterday sounding in existential doubt

-         Radio National Saturday slot with Jacqui Katona was a zinger. She should be our Governor General if you ask me, wow talk about articulate Black woman, feisty independent, smart.

-         character issues for NSW Govt kicks on re Ab welfare failings front SMH Saturday.

 

10 Meet the Press 8-8.30 am

Hints in Sunday press of Howard Iraq exist policy? One wonders.

 

Mal Brough – Stephanie Peatling SMH, Mark Kenny Adelaide Advertiser

 

Child welfare detail 11,000 kids in NT remote areas, many thousands not attending school. Shortage of resourcing. Good probing questions in from both on panel re detail.

 

Workman like fairly mild interview.

 

USA ambassador ….. “fundamental” (twice), there is that word again, blather on climate change with credibility gap like a huge millstone as he drowns in words. But one thing resonates – grandstanding at APEC on this. Sounds shaky on ‘staying the course in Iraq.

 

 

 

Transcript in due course www.ten.com.au/meetthepress

 

 

 

7 Weekend Sunrise, 8.35-40 am Riley Diary  -

Teaser has protesters showing the PM overboard – very amusing image.

Light piece on Bennelong fete, electioneering. Dwells on “when it comes too” verbal artifice of Rudd speechmaking, but nothing turns on it – it’s the 15 sec electronic media grab which only runs …. Once. That’s the cross tv journos at pressers should bear.

Polls on Tuesday. Rudd lacking

Criminal convictions of 2 Herald Sun journalists Harvey and McManus – underspending on veteran entitlements by $1/2 billion.  Self described rant against conviction for just doing their job. Reflects “very poorly on our democracy”. [I can feel a Big media traverse coming on this week.]

Andrew OKeefe “didn’t work at Nuremberg but works here” throw away line. Ouchy. Referring to Public Servants must just follow orders as per Mike Cartlon view of Shergold chief of staff to PM “just follow orders”. Couldn’t agree more with the OKeefe Carlton view of morality in modern govt – fuck that.

http://www.seven.com.au/sunrise/weekend

 

 

Sunday 9

Cross to Glasgow news update on terrorism attack.

 

Sue Gordon former magistrate 18 years. Very top down views. Knows the players. Wants to attack alcohol abuse. Presents like a battle axe with a good heart.

 

[Hints at the humbugging issue – if selective with quarantining then stable functioning families will be humbugged for money for drugs from relatives. Stay tuned for a report coming up in the major foreign press.]

 

US Iraq militarized society feature story. Long long story shows Sunday is having to lean a lot on easy content?

 

Laurie Oakes interview with Tony Abbott health minister –  parlt recalled maybe by late July but complexity delays too.

 

22K indigenous kids in NT to be health tested. Oakes drilling into the detail. Compulsory or not?

 

Varies with conditionality like immunization. What level of compulsion?

 

Oakes says :sliding around on this” in the question and sounds like it.

 

Mal Brough said compulsory on the announcement. Skating around, says Laurie.

 

PM compulsory at Sydney Institute. Telling porkies. Abbott claims some grace on this for the difficulty of the situation.

 

Oakes drills in – in the week since AMA constitutes assault.

 

How much cost? Tens of millions PM talking through his hat says Oaks. Abbott again asks for grace – work in policy progress. Have to address this “terrible situation”. Will pay as the bills fall due.

 

Why not acted earlier. Says Herron as Ab minister in 1996 was active on this.

 

Reference to Duffy column. Abbott read it, and his biographer. Cynicism is not the right response here.

 

[Abbott had cut through here – A higher purpose. I feel a big big election funding package in gestation – on both sides.]

 

73% voted yes state premiers

 

DNA test story of HMAS Sydney.

 

NSW Workplace safety tv advert paid for by NSW Govt. Politics of a higher purpose.

 

[go the little buffalo in the footage, solidarity bro]

 

http://sunday.ninemsn.com.au/sunday/default.asp

 

 

 

Insiders 2

 

Opposition spokes Jenny Macklin on Aboriginal child welfare, strong rhetoric of unity, sidesteps ALP premiers critique, call for unity. Culture jams PM message with “will it make children safer”

 

Juxtapose persuasive Rex Wild QC and Noel Pearson similarly persuasive but quite different positions re NT at least.

 

English as a second language. 200 extra teachers.

 

Land issues. Why? Govt fudging.

 

Jim Middlton for Paul Kelly back from Iraq – late and heavy handed on Ab welfare but playing well for Howard. Problem in the detail unwinding. [Jim got a bitchy sledge from crikey.com that I don’t share – he seems very objective to me.]

 

Everyperson segment has cultural workers multiracial reflecting the various responses.

 

Tony Abbott footage: Style and emphasis – police in, social work out. More law and order.

 

Panel jumps into the land grab issue. Footage of PM – not the aim, can see a lot of double talk from Howard. Poisoning the initiative – just like the poisoned water holes of yesteryear?

 

Barry Cassidy leads double standards segment which is very very impressive. Tip our hat. Underage consensual sex by 16 and 14 year old versus miners immorality – highly differential. Religious orders footage of PM – highly differential.

 

[even so no excuse for action either]

 

Mal Farr argues my point about revenue cycle. Karen argues both revenue and electoral.

 

Karen does a stirling job hanging onto the land rights agenda in the face of huge emotional violence.

 

Emerging consensus we all share blame for this misery.

 

Talking pictures segment mostly about Ab welfare issues.

 

Talk of August election  possible. Footage of Howard very gingerly holding a baby. Rudd similarly folksy local radio.

 

Warren Mundine loose language. Criminal convictions of Harvy and McManus. Vic Govt pardon?

 

Humours Blair  footage [but as with all genuinely funny people this often a technique to mask genuinely flawed personality traits – read Iraq failure.]

 

 

Home page is http://www.abc.net.au/insiders/


Posted by editor at 12:02 PM NZT
Updated: Monday, 2 July 2007 10:05 AM NZT
Friday, 29 June 2007
Advertisment: Historic list of exhibiters at Addison Road Gallery for NAIDOC day
Mood:  special
Topic: indigenous

naidoc_card_1


Posted by editor at 11:19 PM NZT
Updated: Monday, 2 July 2007 10:07 AM NZT
Thursday, 28 June 2007
Noel Pearson, Keating, Howard and their politics of money, power and shame
Mood:  irritated
Topic: health
 

 

When you read Noel Pearson in the Daily Telegraph today it flies along until the very last line where he reveals his hyperbole and indeed excess:

Here is the column here: Noel Pearson: We must all help to stop abuse

and the offending sentence here

"Those people will the protection of Aboriginal children to fail the same way and as vehemently as they will failure in Iraq."

The headline for Noel's Sydney Daily Telegraph piece 28th June calls for unity of purpose but the conclusion drives a dagger of emotional violence into the hearts of anyone who dares to vary not so much on goals, as methods. Lawyers like Noel Pearson, and this writer, are taught in law school this is known as 'blowing hot and cold'. It's a big no no in professional advocacy actually due to overt inconsistency.

The assertion by Pearson that some people in our political community actually will Iraq to fail in terms of the horrendously savage civil war  is plain wrong, and so much so it's actually a form of emotional violence on anyone daring to simply observe the truth that the Iraq Occupation has failed, past tense.

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Celebrate Aboriginal Australia: 

 Linda Burney MP launches NAIDOC week action at Addison Gallery Marrickville 2pm Sunday 8th July 07
..........................................................................................................................

You are either for us or against us. Absolute truth. And this is our sophisticated Black leader?  It's surely a calculated form of rhetoric by Noel Pearson to pander to the Howard govt with the purse strings this side of the federal election. It is also a give away to Noel's limited objectivity let alone diplomacy.

A few weeks ago Noel was claiming in the pages of The Australian greens like this writer with a staunch commitment to Aboriginal social justice wanted billions of people to suffer and die. And there we were thinking we were trying to stop dangerous sea level rise to save millions of lives: Refer our website here for the details:

Sunday, 10 June 2007
John Howard's betrayal of practical reconciliation with broken $40M 1996 election promise for Cape York Land Use Agreement
Mood:  sharp
Topic:  indigenous

including analysis there of a slippery provocative article, egregiously airbrushing the true history of the Cape York Land Use Agreement neutered by lack of funding despite its grand substance:

The ideal equilibrium | The Australian Your Say Blog 

 

We understand Noel's megaphone is fundamentally a federal govt funded operation there at the Cape York Institute as shown here in Cairns 

We notice a Board member Ms. Lisa Paul is Secretary of a federal govt department who presents like another Howard loyalist Catherine Murphy at the head of the ultra political National Association of Forest Industries (read woodchippers like Gunns Ltd). And what an extremely political operation Murphy has run quite comfortable with overt industry violence on greens both physical and emotional.

To be fair there is also Geof Gallop former WA Premier on the CYI board. But there is also  Chairperson - Professor Marcia Langton a long time green hater (especially versus a heroic achiever for the environment being The Wilderness Society) whose academic career was in part built on financial support from ERA uranium miner if memory serves. ERA were responsible for the Jabiluka uranium mine farce in 1998 within Kakadu World Heritage national park, near Jabiru, which actually prefaced the failed Statehood referendum later that year, and then 2001 election loss of power from CLP's Shane Stone to the ALP's Clair Martin in the NT. Stone was a strong ally of Howard.

jabiluka_card_small.gif

As the old saying goes - he who pays the piper ....

Thus Greg Sheridan a keen right winger lauds Pearson today and eagerly joins in the emotional and psychological kicking of many experts who have very justified concerns over 11 long years of the Howard Govt to question not just motives but far more importantly capacity or mentality for change, as distinct from grandstanding.

Similarly the editorial  tub thumps about "shameful protest" when the shame can be liberally apportioned on this topic:

- the 11 year delay by the Coalition federal govt let alone National Country Party in the NT up to 2001

- the shameless opportunism of an election context

- the amateurish glossing of detail by Minister Brough on 7.30 last night

- the fierce 'ownership' of misery and the cures of same by the centre left parties of the ALP, whether successful or not, in an obvious form of territorial defence.

Only a fool would think this is an easy problem from any side of politics. Addictions in particular are never so easy as just "law and order" let alone a very big cultural divide. But the effort must be made too.

Everyone is holier than thou that the children should come first, as per the Sydney Morning Herald editorial 28th June. Well that's about the only thing I've heard so far that rings true: Actions and money speak a whole lot louder than anything else.

Thus Pearson reminds us of that other great articulate advocate Paul Keating in the great debate over the 'true' modern history of reform in the Australian economy, starting out on Lateline - 07/06/2007: Paul Keating on the lead-up to the federal ... which morphed into Q & A in federal Parliament and then grew like topsy including:

21/6 Wayne Swan: Howard, Costello in state of denial | Opinion |

22/6 Peter Costello: Productivity all Greek to Rudd | Opinion | The ...

23/6 Productivity should be a spin-free zone - Business - Business ...  

23/6 The latest jobs blarney comes out in the wash - Opinion - smh.com.au

23/6 Both sides belabour a skills issue | Features | The Australian

25/6 We gave Keating free ride, says PM | The Nation | The Australian

25/6 Editorial: Reform is key to economic growth | Opinion | The Australian

back to Keating again with

26/6 Paul Keating: Libs are making it up | Opinion | The Australian

The ex PM makes some fantastic instructive points while periodically trashing his credibility with throw away hyperbole as if the bike has got the wobbles at high intellectual speed sommersaulting over the handlebars - saying for instance at one point interest rates were not an issue in the 1996 federal election. Err fraid so Paul. Just like they must have been for Howard in 1983. Whether Keating wins in the end on points I don't know, though I suspect he does actually.

This big economics debate is about who did what, when, did it work and who gets the credit, and the brickbats just like failure of welfare for Aboriginal children. There is plenty of blame and maybe praise to go around in my book. 

The issue of chronic poverty and cyclical abuse is intrinsically tricky, and when the debate is paralysed with confusion and emotion you can be pretty sure we are in the realms of power struggles rather than fact or truth. It's as old as human nature and group dynamics.

The timing of this latest govt action perhaps results from another more subtle influence - the embarrassment of budget surplus where no politician can with any moral sense ignore this festering problem with an excuse of too busy on something else.

As always the truth is a synthesis of many different angles and perspectives which is what democracy actually is. So we would recommend more listening and less emotional violence directed at political rivals. And more honest transparency about vested interests.

And listening doesn't mean suspending disbelief either. That's not realistic or honest.

As always it's mostly about the money and how it's managed, which is how those poor Aboriginal People got in this terrible mess in the first place. With economic sovereignty annexed by the Empire in their born to rule arrogance, then the stolen wages, then racial denial of citizens rights, and now hugely disproportionate life opportunities and welfare services, in a non English speaking remote culture. ESL programmes anyone?

It's all about the money for the Cape York Institute, to the major party spoils of the next federal election, to the funding not provided this last 11 years (eg $40m for CYLUA, 1996 broken election promise by John Howard, 1998 broken election promise by Robert Hill), to election promise$ up to Nov. 2007, to the free media the Howard leadership craves. How much indeed for the life of an anonymous child of different race and language who won't ever speak for themself or complain or cause embarrassment. Who effectively dies silently. The South in our North. And answer that honestly.

Up untill recently that black kid's life has not been worth very much at all. And everyone knows it. That's what Australia really is stripped back to the fundamentals. Pretty ugly isn't it? It's our character test and we've been failing it a long time now.

doug nichls and boy.jpg
From the movie Australian Atomic Confessions
Postscript #1 29th June 2007
We found Gavid Mudd's contribution on Crikey.com very instructive and worth repeating here (below) in full given this front page article in The Australian  today
Howard, Rudd dodge indigenous 'land grab' claims
which we have to say shows some serious editorial independence given the other blatherings in the newspaper of late. The Sky News guy on Trioli 702 picks up the theme too. These echo crikey.com's Bob Gosford lead story yesterday, we notice also
Howard's land grab: The (d)evil is in the permit detail
The overall impression is that funding for welfare has been withheld to leave a mess and move on in over the social disaster as if some heroic rescuer above moral reproach. Is the Howard Govt really that evil? They certainly took a torch to the CYLUA as explained above.

"Bininj culture really strong. You have to look after country. For your grandfather country, like mother country, take care." Yvonne Margarula, Mirarr Senior Traditional Owner.

Over to Gavin Mudd here 27th June Using children to nuke Aboriginal land rights:
 "As an environmental engineer, Gavin Mudd has over ten years' experience in issues concerning Aboriginal land rights and mining. He is a lecturer in environmental engineering at Monash University, and a concerned Australian. He writes:
It is ironic that at the time of the 40th anniversary of the 1967 referendum John Howard is in the middle of gutting the Northern Territory’s Aboriginal Land Rights Act 1976 (ALRA) -- the Commonwealth legislation made possible by that referendum.

The land rights were long overdue, hard fought for and won by Aboriginal people, but they are about to be critically undermined, not just by the politics of military-style interventions in problematic Aboriginal communities, but by a more insidious, as yet unrecognised agenda -- mining and nuclear waste on Aboriginal land.

The ALRA gives legitimate powers such as access permits for entry to Aboriginal freehold lands, a veto over exploration and mining and other activities. As noted by the 1974 Woodward Land Rights Inquiry, to deny Aboriginal people the right to prevent mining on their land is to deny the reality of their land rights.

Since gaining control of the Senate, the Howard Government has finally had the parliamentary power to gut the ALRA, which they are doing, but have needed a massive diversion before they introduce the most controversial reforms: radically altering the mining royalty regimes, and potentially remove the veto provision for exploration and mining.

It is no coincidence that many of the communities targeted for “military style intervention” are also areas that are heavily targeted for minerals exploration, particularly uranium, as well as for potential nuclear waste dumps. This includes Western Arnhem Land and Central Australia, where numerous known uranium deposits are being actively investigated by various wanna-be uranium producers.

I have personally visited numerous Aboriginal communities, including some with major social dysfunction and others which have escaped the tyranny of petrol sniffing, grog and domestic violence. This was achieved by the communities and took hard yakka over a decade (or more). Now, they are vibrant, positive and functional communities proud to be truly sustainable. Mining has rarely aided this process.

The use of “social issues” as a diversion to hide the gutting of Aboriginal land rights is malicious and cold-hearted. As with almost everything Howard does, there is clearly more at play -- perhaps it’s time to have a real debate about problems, true partnerships and the future.

As noted by Yvonne Margarula, Senior Traditional Owner of the Mirarr-Gundjeihmi clan of Kakadu and on whose lands the Ranger uranium mine and Jabiluka project lie, “None of the promises last, but the problems always do!” "

The editor met Yvonne Margarula of the Mirarr and Goldman Award winner (and beware the faulty link there to the Mirarr site which could be cyber squatting) in 1997, and at Jabiru going to court in 1998 (she faced a charge of 'trespassing' on her own traditional land for time immemorial!), and we hold her in the highest esteem here at SAM news site. We understand her family have been victims of mining industry culture in the past in the most extreme and fatal ways.

 

Postscript #2 This brutal, damaging article on the economics debate ran on June 28th a day after the first roughly drafted, and now much better edited, version of this article, to add to my list of a flurry of articles:

Michael Costello: History backs Keating's claim on economy


Posted by editor at 4:09 PM NZT
Updated: Monday, 2 July 2007 6:25 PM NZT
The dirty bear pit of NSW Government
Mood:  down
Topic: nsw govt

The news coverage today reinforces the dirty nature of NSW politics in this "good government".

The Greens are railing against this alleged pay off here:

MEDIA RELEASE
28 June 2007


Is Fred Nile waiting in the wings to be new Asst Deputy Upper House
President?


Greens MP Lee Rhiannon says the NSW government*s plan today to create
a new position of Assistant Deputy President in the Upper House is
unnecessary.

*The Labor government has given no justification for creating a new
position of Assistant Deputy President. This move seems to be designed
to assist Labor politically rather than improve the running of the NSW
Upper House,* Ms Rhiannon said.

*The NSW Upper House is already well served with a President, a
Deputy President, and seven Chairs of Committees who assist the
President on a daily basis.

*This new position will be filled tomorrow and at this stage it
appears Reverend Fred Nile is the only nominee.

*The new position is most likely to attract extra pay and perks. The
NSW Parliamentary Remuneration Tribunal in the past has ruled that way.


*If Rev Fred Nile does take this position Premier Iemma should be
embarrassed as quite recently Rev Nile advocated a moratorium on Islamic
immigration and for decades has bred hostility against the gay and
lesbian community and manoeuvred to dismantle a woman*s right to an
abortion.

*Apart from the *moral* issues that the Christian Democrats back
Reverend Nile has consistently supported the government of the day in
promoting a conservative agenda.

*He voted with the government when they weakened workers*
compensation laws; watered down community consultation in the planning
process; dismantled public ownership of Sydney*s water supply;
restricted the availability of public housing; and made it harder to
stop land clearing.

*As Labor does not have the numbers in the Upper House Rev Nile*s
vote has been crucial on many government bills.

A motion to appoint an Assistant Deputy President was put to the NSW
Upper House today. Tomorrow the Upper House will vote on who fills the
position.


For more information:  Lee Rhiannon - 9230 3551 or 0427 861 568



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 The Bower for recycling, reuse and repair 142 Addison Rd Marrickville, see our website here 

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Today we corresponded briefly with a radio jock curious at my oblique sleding in these terms about the dirty water in Warragamba as follows:

Sent: Thursday, June 28, 2007 9:44 AM
Subject: Re: a friendly reminder

Well without getting too deep just a spontaneous response I suppose based on
 
1. I just had coffee and was a little fiesty
 
2. ....I find the whole Warragamba plume story a 
false diversion from Nathan Rees culpability for Breaking the Silence 
failure by him and Orkopoulous, that Stoner was thrown out of the parliament
for yesterday. Notice Koperberg says - there is no problem. It's classic PR
management.
 
And the crypto trauma etc of 1998 is why they won't go water recycling now,
but its so cocky to jam the Aboriginal child abuse problem with a Warragamba
non threat. I mean get real. It's been raining for 2 weeks and they only now
have a worry about turbidity?
[
Polluted dam may see shift to reservoir ]


Rees is the real fear. He worked for Iemma. Almost certainly breifed against 
Bryce Gaudry - deselected.
 
My thesis is Iemma knew all about Orkopoulos scandal well before his press
conference in 2006 getting in front of the curve ball. That's the point.
 
3. Minister for 'Callan Park' Verity Firth - ...- when she is a demonstrated sleaze on broken election promises
 
a. dry boat store in Rozelle Bay
b. M5 East
c. Anvill Hill opposition.
 
As MP for Balmain she should be slam dunked for selling off mental health 
services for a university campus ...... let me guess which one.
...

Yours truly, Tom
...................................................................

Today we also have this story of inquiry into dirty election donations for the duopoly gerrymander up there in the dirt pit:

Coalition wins vote for donations inquiry THE Coalition has won a battle to establish an upper house committee to examine the issue of political donations, as the ALP advertises "business dialogue" packages costing $102,000 for business people to meet State Government ministers.

Here are the Greens again:

MEDIA RELEASE - 27 June 2007

Upper House backs Greens call for inquiry into donations

Greens MP and donations spokesperson Lee Rhiannon today welcomed the decision of the NSW Upper House to establish an inquiry into donations to political parties and candidates.

"This Inquiry is long overdue. There is growing public disquiet about the millions of dollars political parties receive to run their election campaigns", Ms Rhiannon said.

"I will ask that the Inquiry request that key political figures including Paul Keating, Carmen Lawrence and Bob Carr who have spoken publicly about the political party donation process give evidence to this Inquiry.

"The Greens campaigned for this Inquiry in the recent state election campaign so we are very pleased that we won the support of all MPs to undertake this important work.

"The Inquiry will be undertaken by a select committee of six Upper House MPs", said Ms Rhiannon.

The terms of reference for the Inquiry requires that the committee investigate -
·all matters associated with electoral funding and disclosure,
·the advantages and disadvantages of banning all donations from corporations, unions and organizations to parties and candidates,
·the advantages and disadvantages of introducing limits upon expenditure in election campaigns,
·the impact of political donations on the democratic process, and any related matters.

Contact:  Lee Rhiannon  0427 861 568

...............................................

Yesterday ICAC wrote back to us in these terms about the dirty way a litigant who could have really damaged, but didn't, the Iemma govt in the lead up to the State election magically obtained a favourable affidavit from Treasurer Costa, police minister at the relevant times, and reportedly a six figure payout. Get it? Evidence volunteered, not put to the proof via subpoena, or via cross examination. How convenient. As a former litigation lawyer for a big firm here in Sydney I would have loved to have affidavits from the opponents like that.  ICAC wash their hands, as I imagine the Auditor General would too if flicked there. They should know it's not just 1 in ten burglaries that are being solved: One burglary in 10 is solved, reveals auditor

"MORE than 90 per cent of all household burglaries in NSW are left unsolved, making it the second worst-performing state in Australia, according to a report by the state's Auditor-General."

I would say its one in ten corrupt govt activities as well. Just look at the regular "investigations" with no convictions for wanton land clearing in regional areas, all too hard or what? Corruption by inaction is our accusation.

 

"[27th June 2007]

Thank you for the information you provided to the ICAC on 21 May and 14 June 2007 regarding the NSW Government.

 

The ICAC understands your concerns to be that:

  • Government Minister Michael Costa provided evidence by way of affidavit, and not by subpoena, in support of Mr Tim Priest’s court action against the NSW Government.  You state that Minister Costa should have withheld any such affidavit until he was compelled by legal process.  This would have avoided any conflict of interest and the Minister’s duty to protect the public revenue.
  • Minister Costa may have offered an inducement to Mr Priest to self censor any role in the NSW election period in order to obtain a favourable affidavit of evidence enabling a substantial payout to satisfy the $2.5M claim by Mr Priest.  Minister Costa has wasted substantial public revenue for failing to adequately support the legal defence to Mr Priest’s legal claim.

 

The ICAC Act 1988 sets out the ICAC’s functions, which include investigating and educating the NSW public sector and the community about corrupt conduct and how to combat it. 

 

The ICAC can only deal with corrupt conduct as it is defined in the ICAC Act. In simple terms, conduct is corrupt when it:

 

·        Results or could result in a public official or agency exercising their functions or authority in a partial or dishonest way, breaching the public trust or misusing information or resources, OR

·        Adversely affects or could adversely affect the way a public official's duties are exercised and which could involve any of the matters set out in s.8(2) of the ICAC Act, AND

·        Is serious enough to constitute a criminal or disciplinary offence, or reasonable grounds for dismissing the services of a NSW public official. 

 

The ICAC does not investigate all matters received and, even if a matter involves corrupt conduct, the ICAC Act requires the ICAC to focus its attention on serious and systemic corrupt conduct.

 

Your matter has been carefully considered by the ICAC's Assessment Panel. The Assessment Panel is a committee made up of senior ICAC officers, and is responsible for determining what action the ICAC should take on each matter received. The Assessment Panel has determined that the matter should not be made the subject of a formal ICAC investigation.   

 

In making its decision, the Assessment Panel took into account a number of issues, including that the information that would be provided by way of affidavit compared to by subpoena is likely to be similar.  It would be difficult to prove that the motive for Minister Costa’s affidavit was for reciprocal assurances from Mr Priest to “self censor” during the lead up to the State election.  There do not appear to be any lines of enquiry to support the allegation that the Minister acted corruptly in providing the affidavit.  There is also no information to indicate that Minister Costa unduly influenced the decision by the Police Commissioner and the Police Minister for a financial settlement with Mr Priest.  The allegations do not indicate the occurrence of systemic corrupt conduct by Minister Costa or any other NSW Government official.

 

Thank you for bringing this matter to our attention. Although we are unable to investigate every matter we receive, your information is important to us as it can help us improve our understanding of corruption risks and trends in the NSW public sector. While the information you have provided may not on its own be sufficient for us to commence an investigation at this time, it will be retained and may well assist in future matters. The information you have provided may also be used to inform our corruption prevention and education work.

 

For more information about the ICAC’s decision?uro;‘making processes, please read the enclosed Information Sheet or visit our website at www.icac.nsw.gov.au.

 

In any further correspondence to the ICAC please quote the reference number provided."

 

...........................

The bear pit is a dirty dangerous place based on any of the above.It reminds us tangentially of a particularly revolting tv advert prominent at the moment. It's for a financial company in a corporate workshop scene where a coloured guy is dressed as a bear and gets an arrow in his head and dies. All on prime time tv. Laugh? It's revolting.

What kind of a sad rotten society is this exactly as violence is condemned in Aboriginal communities, and this advert runs on prime time under the cover of satire. Meanwhile NSW governance actually is, no satire, such a demonstrably dirty game run by meglomaniacs like Treasurer Michael Costa?

You can complain about that tv advert  too at www.advertisingstandardsbureau.com.au but I wouldn't expect any change there just like NSW politics. Apparently it's all voluntary standards of behaviour. Do you think children would wash everyday to avoid sickness if it was voluntary, or wallow in dirt and ignorance? Just asking.


Posted by editor at 1:15 PM NZT
Updated: Friday, 29 June 2007 11:04 AM NZT
Pasha Bulker refloat web cam is a blast, as beach closed for safety
Mood:  bright
Topic: local news

web link here

Postscript #2

2nd July 8.30 am screenprint from coastal watch at the link above, showing stranded bulk carrier has been dragged maybe 130 degrees heading out to ocean.

 

 


Posted by editor at 12:17 PM NZT
Updated: Monday, 2 July 2007 10:29 AM NZT
Climate shakeout of politics and market gathers momentum
Mood:  not sure
Topic: globalWarming

Picture: Forum at Marrickville Town Hall Sunday 24th June 07. A coal ship looking suspiciously like the Pasha Bulker is on the banner famous now for being stranded by extreme climate, owned by Japanese interests, with 40-45% of our coal exported to …… Japan to make more climate change!

 

Last Sunday 24th June we attended a meeting evidencing backlash in the local Marrickville area against the Anvil Hill coal mine decision by the increasingly loathed Planning Minister Frank Sartor. It was a who’s who of the green movement leadership including the ones we saw –

 

-         Senator Bob Brown, Lee Rhiannon MP, John Kaye MP, Cr Rochelle Porteus all of the Greens Party

-         Ben Pearson, Climate Change Coordinator for Greenpeace Australia

-         Christine Phelps, local landholder litigating against the NSW Govt decision

http://www.smh.com.au/news/national/landowner-thorn-in-miners-paw/2007/05/20/1179601244377.html

 

-         Peter Gray, Newcastle Uni archivist and successful litigant against the NSW Govt who revealed that after the State election he has been monstered with 3 protester charges for jumping on the Premier’s car, 6 weeks after the event.

 

 

We found the speech of an 18 year veteran of the coal industry Graham, now retired, very instructive:

 

-         1/3 increase hours worked, 1/3 reduction in pay, overall wages higher

-         Local community in the Hunter is destroyed with 60% divorce rate in Singleton and no time for social groups

-         He spoke without notes for 10 minutes with weary experience like the determined teacher in Stand and Deliver http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Stand_and_Deliver

 

There were representatives of Greenpeace, Nature Conservation Council, horsebreeders, winegrowers and mining on the platform. Senator Bob Brown in his speech leaned heavily on the latest profound science advice about dangerous ocean sea rise, such as this:

 

The World Today - UN accused of underestimating sea change

 

He really spoke well. Second impressive politician of the day with Rudd on Sunday 9 show earlier in the day. I told him myself before the meeting – that’s what you have to be Bob and shook his hand, calm, focused, insightful, energetic. And he didn’t disappoint. Our pictures show the highly attentive Hunter miner and horse stud representative and local landowner all very impressed with the Senator. Bob is getting older but he still has star quality, and not just for Greenies:

 

Some quotes:

 

“They tell us it will be good for the economy. They are totally wrong. Where is Peter Garrett? Whose going to save us from the coal industry? “

 

“They talk about 18 [tbc] thousand jobs for 20 years, but there are 63 thousand jobs on the Great Barrier Reef that will be destroyed in 40 years. That’s jobs in perpetuity at risk.”

 

“In Canberra we have the endangered balding lesser coot. Whereas the red necked drongo is in plague proportions. Theres talk of a cull in November.”

 

 

200 people in Marrickville Town Hall, in the heart of marginal seat of Grayndler stuck around until the end. The Greens gave out their slender Climate Futures Bill 2007 and second reading speech.

 

The Anvil Hill state based land use controversy about our moral role in destroying the Hunter, and coal production to China and Japan helping to destroy our very own long term future, is sincere and quite real. There are disturbing echoes here:

 

UN chief blames Darfur on climate | The World | The Australian

 

We send the coal so China can make crucial manufactures for us to buy back, like the the 6 foot alphabet caterpillar, face mask, the Kernot boas, my favourite - the Gorilla novelty slippers, and the cricket and thong carry bags. Essential? I don’t think so.

 


 

 

And China’s rhetoric has a strong resonance to it about the West deliberately “outsourcing” this dirty business, none more than our own gerrymander Coalition and ALP major parties pandering to the coal miners:

 

Industrialized countries outsource CO2 emissions to China
mongabay.com

June 2, 2007

 

Facing criticism as it surpasses the U.S. as the world's largest producer of carbon dioxide, China says that industrialized countries are hypocritical for criticizing its greenhouse gas emissions while buying its products, according to the Associated Press. China argues that developed countries are effectively outsourcing emissions by shifting manufacturing to its factories,

"The developed countries move a lot of manufacturing industry into China. A lot of the things you wear, you use, you eat are produced in China," Foreign Ministry spokesman Qin Gang is quoted a saying by the A.P. at a news briefing. "On the one hand, you shall increase the production in China, on the other hand you criticize China on the emission reduction issue."

And the stinging criticism is local too. As Morris Iemma inanely claims there is no environment without the economy (really) Cr Porteus gripes with Minister Verity Firth for the policy sleaze of the last election with broken election promises all over the place:

 

“During the election campaign, Ms Firth stated she was opposed to both the Rozelle Bay dry boat store and the Anvil Hill coal mine. Both have now been approved.” Lobby Groups fired up after coal mine gets nod, p14 19/6/07 Inner West Courier

 

To that list add the M4 East Extension back on track (IWC 19/6/07 )free way for more smog.

 

But there are at least 2 really big shakeouts under way in this terrifying future of escalating sea rise. Don’t believe all the denial talk either. When News Ltd get on board you know the times they are a changing and we won’t all have holiday enclaves in the mountains or economic slaves to keep us afloat like the big business executives:

 

News Limited to spread climate message | The Nation | The Australian

 

Even if most people, not least the big politicians, don’t realise Going green - Environment - smh.com.au - is not the end of the world and can even provide a thriving economy in Sweden apparently.

 

The big economic shake outs underway in NSW are:

 

Firstly energy production and transmission assets are going to be privatised in part or whole in NSW. We’ve recently written about how ruthless Treasurer ‘the worker’s friend’ Costa is and he will shaft them as night follows day. It’s because both sides of the major duopoly political parties understand the creative destructive capacity of capitalism to restructure and prune and re-orient the coal based energy sector as western society moves to a low carbon energy industry over 10 to 20 years, with planning decisions any time now. The strains of politically inevitability are everywhere

 

NSW could do with more privatisation - Business - Business - smh ...

 

Time for change

 

Climate changes privatisation debate

Nor will warnings from the unions change this reality

 

Unions warn Iemma on public sector plan | The Nation | The Australian

 

Nor will faith based assertions of clean coal technology some 20 years away and non existent really

 

Cleaning up China

 

Or pompous denials by blimps like Christopher Pearson amateurish blathering one foot in the big media graveyard

 

Christopher Pearson: Politics of empty gesture | Opinion | The ...

 

A much higher level of international finance and politics is driving this situation:

 

Climate hot issue for APEC by Glenda Korporaal

We need co-operation on climate | The Australian Paul Kelly Blog

 

 

The business community seems to know its all about building renewable energy capacity

 

www.smh.com.au - Sun King pours energy into hunt for bright sparks

Dr Shi takes a shine to the PM | Business | The Australian

 

(And similarly business editor of The Australian Andrew Main on Trioli 702 radio praising Dr Shi this week 26 June 2007.)

 

Clean energy needs big commitment (offline p10 Resources section 23-24 The Weekend Australian) quoting national leader for Deloittes Ron Loborec calling for massive increase in capital investment like the IT industry.

 

And sure enough the coal industry have announced $400M over 10 years but it looks like a pipe dream still NSW coal industry agrees to contribute $400m to clean coal which the Greens sledge mercilessly here:

 

 

Clean coal announcement is industry con job
 
Media Release: 27 June 2007
 
Greens NSW MP and energy spokesperson John Kaye today dismissed the
coal industry's supposed $400 million investment in clean coal
research.
 
Dr Kaye said: “Spending crumbs from a rich man’s table on a technology
that may never work is no solution to global warming.
 
"The coal industry thinks we can't divide by ten.
 
“Their supposed $400 million contribution to clean coal research is
over ten years. In reality it is only $40 million a year which for an
industry the size of coal mining is nothing but crumbs.
 
"The 20 cents per tonne levy amounts to less than 0.3% of the sale
price of coal.
 
“The coal corporations would hardly notice the levy. It would be buried
in the day to day fluctuations in the sale price of coal.
 
“Mark O’Neill is surely being ironic when he says that if this is a
public relations exercise, it’s a very expensive one.
 
“For an industry that produces more than $9.5 billion worth of export
coal each year, $40 million is a very cheap down payment on securing the
myth that coal is about to be clean.
 
“The industry is trying to buy its way out of trouble.
 
“None of the serious clean coal technologies have ever been
demonstrated to work on a commercial scale. Even the most enthusiastic
proponents say that it would take more than a decade to make a reality
out of the idea of carbon capture and storage – burying the carbon
dioxide from power stations underground.  
 
“What is needed to solve this state’s greenhouse gas emissions crisis
is serious investment in renewable energy and energy efficiency,” Dr
Kaye said.
 
 
 
For more information:John Kaye 0407 195 455

 

………………………………………………..

 

 

The second major climate change market shakeout is the implementation or not of energy and financially expensive desalination for water supply in a growing population. The NSW Govt are embracing renewable energy sources as an indication that this is the obvious way forward for all industry and society. And the green washing is barely placating a very angry electorate:

 

Higher dam levels be damned: state pushes desalination - Environment

Controversy dogs winning consortium - Environment - smh.com.au

Mad and getting madder: Kurnell steps up protest - Environment ...

No stopping desalination even if dam spills over - Sydney Morning Herald

 

Desal throws ups some jarring notes. We wrote 27th June of Minister Nathan Rees – formerly chief of staff of alleged paedophile Milton Orkopolous – glossing over the green energy consequence in context of the whole energy sector failure to actually retire dirty coal sources.

 

It’s quite clear this NSW Government are unreconstructed dinosaurs grudgingly playing populist politics, who haven’t got a clue on sea rise threat advised by the best world scientists. Premier Iemma is even reported on “the imminent decision on a coal-fired power station (which he called the biggest economic decision in a decade for the Government)”: Iemma happy heading in the same direction - National - smh.com.au

 

Obviously the major party politics and their gerrymander of the electorate has really failed to embrace renewable energy capacity building and now imminent power shortages

 

Inquiry to look at why gas supply fell short.

Water bill up $100 Electricity up $100 Gas supplies cut

 

are forcing the gigglying dinosaurs in charge of NSW Govt to rush into more tired old unsustainable solutions.

 

 

 

 

So there you go. The environment is all dependent on the economy, when I thought it was the other way round.

 

And that folks is why the idealism of such as Get Up cyber activists is probably all too late, and probably futile:

 

Sent: Wednesday, June 27, 2007 11:19 AM
Subject: Next Thursday, the climate's changing

Dear friends,

With all that GetUp members have achieved in cyberspace, imagine the collective force we could be if we could meet and act face-to-face - a GetUp community in each neighbourhood, leading the charge on issues like climate change from the grassroots up. A pipe dream? On Thursday 5th of July, we're making it happen.
 
Welcome to 'GetTogethers' - where we take our movement for change from the behind the computer screen and into cafes, pubs and homes across the nation. It's an opportunity to meet other GetUp members who share your concerns and your postcode, and work together for change with the help of new friends, right in your own local area.
 
Next Thursday, July 5th from 7pm-8:30pm, GetUp members like you will be 'getting together'. Click on the link below to find a GetTogether already organised in your neighbourhood - or host your own.

www.getup.org.au/community/gettogethers/

This first event's aim is to take real action on climate change in your local community, reaching out to fellow voters through stories on climate action in your local newspaper, TV or radio. All you need to bring is energy, enthusiasm and a willingness to make a difference. The GetUp team will make sure you get all the information and support you need.
 
We've just built an entire new website to facilitate this kind of local action - GetUp 2.0. It's all about connecting us together to build power in your community.
 

Ready to give the next step in the GetUp movement a go?
Reckon climate change action needs the whole community working together? Click on the link below to RSVP for Australia's very first GetTogether.

www.getup.org.au/community/gettogethers/

We'll see you there,
The GetUp team
 
PS - You can also make your thoughts known on our
blog regarding the Prime Minister's controversial NT plans. And if you haven't already, join our campaign for Indigenous health equality here.

PPS - GetUp's Save Our Senate campaign has launched, check out the press coverage
here.

 ------------------------

GetUp is an independent, not-for-profit community campaigning group. We use new technology to empower Australians to have their say on important national issues. We receive no political party or government funding, and every campaign we run is entirely supported by voluntary donations. If you'd like to chip in to support GetUp's work, please
click here. If you have trouble with any links in this email, please go directly to www.getup.org.au. To unsubscribe from GetUp, please click here.

...................................................

 

Postscript #1 28th June 2007

 

Rowan Callick has various stories about China today offline in The Australian pages 32, 33 including

 

- Pollution: Foreign firms get the blame

- Fuelling the world's factory

 

 

And we aren't sure if this is a real or enhanced image in the Herald today:

Here also is a report of Al Gore trying to engage the professional communicators in the advertising sector, with a stinging comment one step along about the PR/lobbyist sector spreading ignorance: On climate change, the medium is Gore's pointed message

And this for the Quixotic files

THE MESSAGE In a green world, brands battle for relevance

Nigel Marsh NIGEL Marsh, a self-proclaimed "boring, middle class" advertising professional who hasn't washed his hair for nearly a year, happened to be in Cannes last Saturday to collect Australia's only Titanium Lion for the Earth Hour climate change project. more

 

Postscript #2 Big Media follow our story above with this:

Tim Flannery an idiot, says Costa - National - smh.com.au

Michael Costa: colour him brown

Costa's climate jibe pure colour: Iemma - National - smh.com.au


Posted by editor at 12:07 AM NZT
Updated: Tuesday, 3 July 2007 1:47 PM NZT
Wednesday, 27 June 2007
Character questions for 'Desalination Minister' Rees and Treasurer Costa getting serious
Mood:  sharp
Topic: nsw govt
The Hon. Nathan REES,  MP

Minister Nathan Rees has been conspicuous in the news defending Premier Morris Iemma's decision to build a super sized desalination plant. His boss Iemma is sounding like the proverbial buyer of an extra set of steak knives at a cheaper price from the big multinationals worried about all this rain ruining their project too.

There was Nathan Rees on the Trioli radio 702 show earlier today 27th June swearing blind the green energy scheme neutralises any greenhouse implications and talk back callers were thus misinformed. And we heard Premier Iemma 26th June same show argue the green energy component further helps on climate issues by cranking up the renewable energy sector with a chunky client.

.................................................advertisement.................................................


Celebrate Aboriginal Australia: 

 Linda Burney MP launches NAIDOC week action at Addison Gallery Marrickville 2pm Sunday 8th July 07

.............................................................................................................. 

But as Jeff Angel, Director of the Total Environment Centre in strained tones made clear on Trioli yesterday 26th June, all new green energy to be generated should be going into retiring dirty energy already streaming into our economy. In other words there is no net reduction in greenhouse gases.

(Though to be fair there is a premium in public policy terms in building the critical mass of the renewable energy sector in order to achieve more actual substitution in the future ...maybe. That much we concede to Iemma.)

But Nathan Rees was sounding too cute by half this morning airbrushing this reality, scolding the public along the way, always a risky move for a politician in the media.  It's a green energy lite sort of justification for this much bigger desalination plant compounding the broken 30% water storage threshhold election promise.

It's a population and higher consumption type of future this ALP is planning for, thus No stopping desalination even if dam spills over

But if Nathan Rees has a political character trait that glosses this situation involving some $1.7B in public funds expenditure, what other issues of character might he be accountable for too? Have we been here before?

Today there is also this devastating story about his former boss Minister Milton Orkopoulos:

Minister did not act on abuse - adviser

As this Lateline programme notes Nathan Rees was the chief of staff to Orkopoulous in 2006, broadcast 10/11/2006:

Iemma vows minister scandal will not affect govt

to quote reporter Simon Santow:

"SIMON SANTO: Long-term Labor MPs in the Hunter are promising to cooperate with any police investigations. Morris Iemma says he's avoiding contact with anyone who may end up as witnesses in court cases.

MORRIS IEMMA: What I am not going to do is interfere. There will be no interference in police investigations or court process.

SIMON SANTO: But he has quizzed his staffer, Nathan Rees, who was Milton Orkopolous' chief of staff until a few month ago.

MORRIS IEMMA: He gave me that assurance and he, in what was stated yesterday, if he can assist the police he'll make himself available to do so, as is proper.

SIMON SANTO: The Opposition says the Premier is applying double standards.

PETER DEBNAM: He has questioned a member of staff but refuses to question MPs. you've got to ask why."

We don't claim Rees is covering up for anything. But the very real public interest question arises, what did he know, and what role if any did he play in Orkopoulos's portfolio failure alleged in the Herald article above?

This very same question was raised in a phone conversation with a shadow minister to this writer 2 weeks ago when I initiated some lobbying.

If Rees was a mere flunky it would perhaps be an easier question. But Simon Benson who is often a conduit for praiseworthy stories for the NSW ALP govt

[the way Glenn Milne is for Peter Costello and Adam Spencer was described to be for the Iemma Govt (in a bitchy sledge by retired Fairfaxer Alex Mitchell)]

writes today:

Explosive battle of Right and Left looms or the web headline Opinion: Left and right do battle

where Benson states:

"Nathan Rees (emergency services) has emerged as a bull-terrier with an intellect to match his aggressiveness."

Clearly veteran state political reporter Simon Benson does not think Nathan Rees, Orkopoulos's former chief of staff is a fool or a flunky. On the contrary.

So what did Rees know and when did he know it, if anything? More on the whole grim affair before the courts now here Sex abuse: MP approached - National - smh.com.au

An otherwise popular MP Bryce Gaudry was damaged indirectly by the Orkopoulos affair if only by unlucky association and again not claiming any wrongdoing on Gaudry's part. Bryce was deselected causing a real controversy in the state election seat of Newcastle.

Yet Rees has sailed on and is now doing Iemma's misleading rhetoric on green energy allocations in an economy already up to its eyeballs in coal fired dirty energy. Character indeed.

...................

Postscript #1 5.30 pm 27th June 2007

The NSW Govt has pulled on a dirty plume in Warragamba Dam story, which is a non story because they already admit there is no threat to water supplies. But it seems to be working with this leading the Herald web news page:

Warragamba pollution threat

ANDREW CLENNELL 4:15pm | Heavy rain over the past week has triggered a massive plume of pollution in Sydney's main dam.

This despite National Party leader Stoner via 4pm and 5pm ABC radio news reports having been booted from parliament on the Rees character question of the Breaking the Silence report while he was chief of staff in the relevant portofolio but Glover ABC 702 for instance are studiously ignoring the much more sinister scandal as above. 

Unlike the Daily Telegraph here

Nationals MP thrown out of parliament

NSW Nationals MP Andrew Stoner says he is happy to be ejected from parliament if it brings attention to the abuse of children in the state's indigenous communities.  Read more

Ironic given it was Rees dissembling on the desal green energy with Glover yesterday that got us riled up over his character, as it did with Glover actually at the time in the interview. Rees deserves no favours.

Postscript #2

This editorial last Saturday about Treasurer Costa and the NSW Iemma Govt having alot to be embarrassed about over lack of credible response to the Breaking the Silence report resonates: Editorial: Iemma Government must follow Howard's cue. What a shame it takes a cynical Howard Govt shamelessly playing the angles to expose another shameful State Govt on Aboriginal child welfare. Disgusting really.

It was Iemma soon after March 07 election that confidently asserted this was "a good government" and to ignore claims otherwise.

No we didn't buy it either. Notice this quote last weekend in It's the economy, stupid: Costa's tough stand - National - smh.com.au by Andrew Clennell, chief state political reporter for the Sydney Morning Herald, regarding power drunk Treasurer Michael Costa

"[Costa] defends a decision last year not to hand over $20 million to $40 million to three ministers who wanted it for a program to tackle Aboriginal child sex abuse, saying his policy and that of the Premier was that ministers needed to find savings in other areas if they wanted new initiatives. "I haven't knocked anything back," he says. "I said, as I say to all ministers, these are important initiatives; when you come up with important initiatives you ought to look at the initiatives that are not working and see whether you can transfer resources."

This is the same Michael Costa who, as then NSW Labor Council secretary of the union movement was making real gains on the issue of workers compensation insurance levels when he suddenly was appointed to the financially comfy Upper House to replace an ALP vacancy of the Carr Govt.

This was Costa's stirring clarion call via Workers Online in 1999 until he got a new job offer:

"The NSW Labor Government was also sent a blunt message: 'Fix up the crisis. Make employers comply with no cut back to benefits.'

Addressing the rally outside Parliament House, NSW Labor Council Secretary Michael Costa said: 'Workers comp is got to be put back on track. It's got to be put back into a form which does what it was originally set up for. And that is to protect workers rights, to protect workers interests and to ensure they get fair compensation if they are injured.' "

The campaign struggled on and was making serious headway by 2001. Then just as it was getting sticky for Carr's govt on this big financial issue Costa sold out that campaign and joined the NSW Upper house Nov 2001. Not for him any public anxiety or hedging like Greg Combet most of 2007when he was urged to go into federal Parliament from the ACTU. No Costa jumped in a flash as we recall.

Here is Costa vowing to carry the torch for the workers in his new comfy job 20 April 2001

"Costa To Join Della’s List


Labor Council secretary Michael Costa last night added his name to Della's List and vowed to continue his fight for fair workers compensation ahead of his move to the NSW Upper House in August.

 

 
 

 

 

Costa formally announced his resignation from his position at Labor Council to take effect from August 30. He will move to the NSW Legislative Council to fill the vacancy left by ALP stalwart Johnno Johnson.

His departure come after 13 sometimes turbulent years at the Labor Council. He rose to notoreity first as a Wollongong activist, then as a rank and file official with the then AFULE rail union.

Costa survived Presidential inquiries and a stint as General Manager at 2KY to become an activist secretary.

He earned the eternal ire of Friends of Currowong, the hatred of the Daily Telegraph, the respect of the Carr Government and the joyful bemusement of his trade union colleagues.

"Former secretaries have told me that this is the best job I could ever had," Costa told delegates, "and they're right.This is a fantastic job and I have loved every minute of it,"

Costa has vowed to continue fighting the workers compensation campaign and has been asked to be placed on the List of MPs supporting amendments to protect injured workers "provisionally". " [bold added]

In reality the gathering Union campaign momentum for strong workers compensation levels and legal system fell apart from the time Costa was bought out to the benefit of the NSW budget. John Robertson struggled on manfully but was too new and unknown to cut through.  The legal integrity of the system was smashed at the expense of injured workers as per this "devastating" report here by The Australian's legal editor Chris Merritt May 18th 2007 page 24 whereas Costa jumped ship to a cosy seat, and now as Treasurer. Betrayal of trust and public duty? We think so.

Postscript #1

Big Media follow our story here 29th June 2007

Minister rues remark about 'kiddie fiddlers' - National - smh.com.au


Posted by editor at 12:44 PM NZT
Updated: Tuesday, 3 July 2007 1:33 PM NZT

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