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sydney alternative media - non-profit community independent trustworthy
Monday, 14 April 2008
Time for Evan Thorley MP to admit discreet ALP agenda in seed funding of Get Up?
Mood:  quizzical
Topic: aust govt

 Evan   					Thornley

We like and respect Bret Solomon of self described "independent" Get Up not least for his career history with fiesty charity Oxfam, but we also well understand he cannot escape the covert ALP provenance and seed funding of Get UP not least via Evan Thorley MP in the machine Vic Upper House perch and IT entrepeneur rich man former CEO of Looksmart.  

Picture: Owner of Sydney City Hub Lawrence Gibbons once told this writer the reason disgraced share trader Rene Rivkin was being picked on in the Big Media was because 'he is Jewish'. We scoffed at this. Sometimes we get the impression Gibbons has an affirmative action agenda given his cultural background as here too with Bret Solomon? Just asking. And no criticism either, Solomon also appeared on the back page of a Australian Financial Review Boss colour mag because he is indeed influential.

Here is Thorley explaining his business pedigree out of the USA back on 26/7/2003 to the ABC business show:

 Business Breakfast - 27/06/2003: LookSmart chair discusses plans ...

Internet entrepreneur Evan Thornley is pursuing less technological pursuits, having just returned to Australia after nearly seven years in the US.

The founder of the Internet search company, LookSmart, Mr Thornley is one of the few survivors of the tech crash that claimed so many of his dot-com peers.

He remains chairman of LookSmart and is taking a particular interest in ways of improving Australia's export strategies.

Evan Thornley spoke to Michael Rowland about his plans for the future, now that he's settled back in his home town of Melbourne.

Solomon himself admitted in a talk we attended at the Sydney Mechanics in Pitt St on 4 April 2007 that Thorley was his source of income: Here is our report at the time:

Wednesday, 4 April 2007

And to show we are not trying to pick on Get Up out of jealously for their huge reach and effort online (as we try and wannabe), here was our balancer a few days later:

Thursday, 5 April 2007

Thorley presumably has fanchised here the US Democrat cyber model of political outreach of 2003-2005, and such as MoveOn.org financed by such as billionaire George Soros long time advocate for "open societies".


Here is Get Up's full on engagement with the 2020 Summit in 5 days indicating both genuine enthusiasm and endorsement of the narrow scope of the event - because they are inside the tent.

Maaate. It would be naive to expect very much cutting critique from Get Up about the 2020 summit?:

Sent: Friday, April 11, 2008 8:31 PM
Subject: What's your 2020 vision?

Dear Tom,

Only 1000 people will be deliberating Australia's future at next week's 2020 Summit - but that's not to say your voice won't be heard. Incredibly, 118 of the chosen delegates are GetUp members, including our Executive Director Brett Solomon, so we're starting a conversation to make sure that your voice is added to theirs before they begin their dialogue about Australia's future.

Have your say on what you want our country's future to look like on our 2020 forums - and we will deliver your ideas direct to the decision makers heading to Canberra:



The forums have been started by GetUp members attending the Summit, and they're keen to make sure your ideas are heard. Add your comments and your new big ideas to our online forums - to make sure the Summit recommendations reflect the issues that are important to you.

The Summit is a golden opportunity to let the Australian Government - and a whole range of people representing the Australian community - know where we'd like our country to go. We'll deliver the top ideas from each forum to the Summit delegates, so add your idea now and vote for the ones you care most about:


It's rare to have such a concrete opportunity to look beyond the immediate political term in Australia - but it's forums like these where nation-building ideas are born. This is your chance to let those on the inside of 2020 know what you think.

Thanks for making it happen,
The GetUp team

PS - If you're a GetUp member going to the Summit and we haven't been in touch yet, please let us know by emailing Sally@getup.org.au.

PPS - It's National Youth Week - an important time to remember the thousands of homeless young people living on our streets. Click here to hear Tegan talk about her experiences. Tegan is a homeless young person involved with the Oasis youth centre, which was featured in a documentary, 'The Oasis', screened on the ABC last night.


Postscript #1 15 April 2008

Brett Solomon makes a call in to discuss the above post: As I get what he says - '

pre and post Rudd election Get Up is all about building "a progressive society", that GU is not a front for the ALP, the Democrats, or the Greens.'

It was a rattling good discussion and there is no doubting Brett's communication skills. But we did more talking than he did about the lessons of co-option in real politik, and that maybe the ALP have more reason to maintain a covert role of influence in the past of Get Up than to exploit their idealism than Get Up will ever have for covering up their past. Noted New Matilda restructing by way of comparison.

We added that issues of independence in the lead up to the 2020 Summit this week are an even greater reason for consideration of issues of independence even accepting that its' a grey, grey world with an amalgam of admirable and less motives in every time and space/event. He had to bail out of the vibrant discussion after about 10 minutes in his busy life, with good grace too.

We do agree Get Up have some proud and worthy initiatives post Rudd election, on Sorry, Tibet, Pay Equality, Pulp Mill, Climate Change. This is all to the good in terms of individual identity of Get Up non aligned.

We noted the highly strategic timing of the appointment of the new GG to sanitise brand ALP especially in NSW and post conversation we note that Get Up on such a large stage and influence is only as good as it's last tennis match. We urged Brett to stay on that "highway of diamonds". It wasn't exactly advice he asked for but he listened a bit I would say.

Posted by editor at 9:27 AM NZT
Updated: Tuesday, 15 April 2008 11:16 AM NZT
China Inc's catspaw: Brainwashed youth diaspora crank Olympic nationalism in Sydney streets here?
Mood:  sharp
Topic: human rights

As a uni student in 1989 and 1990 we lived with two different Chinese households in Canberra in the suburbs of Downer and Curtin. They were very good housemates, if less than western standards of house cleaning. Being a bit of a bush pig here that was okay. It was an indicator of perhaps '2nd world' social standards of the mechanic, a motel worker, an academic who explained the concept of the internet (in 1990!).

It was a cold winter. We literally lived on $4500 income, food, rent, books, before getting a job with Baker & McKenzie big corporate law firm in Sydney.

Recently we spent 6 months tutoring a great 16 year old I will call  'Lucy' (as in actress Lucy Liu) of Chinese Australian background but born in China. Always with grandma hovering.

Her English was pretty good for a second language but had some rough patches.

Lucy got over 90 in the end in her HSC even after fainting at school a month prior to the exams. We didn't know if it was a serious medical condition or not. That's when we had the "It Takes Personal Courage Talk" in earnest tones. It went like this: 

Ok. So we don't know if it's a serious medical problem or nothing. The truth is no one else is going to do this for you. Really. Others can help like me as your tutor. But you have to decide to fight for your own corner, and your future. It takes commitment.  No one else can make this choice for you.

That was it, right between the eyes, no hedging, no escapes, no excuses. She was young enough and tough enough to take it and it's what she needed to hear too, based on a trust we had worked on for months.

I was never prouder than when she went on and completed her HSC and got access to a tertiary course. For doing herself and her family justice. Bravo. It does take courage and she had it. Where is she now I have no idea.

She suggested I could make alot of money working in China using my English or such like, and tried to set me up with a relative. She taught me a maths multiplication game ambitious kids play over there. Told me about the cut throat lassez faire Shanghai rip off merchants and con artists. How one had to be at the top of your game just to hang on to your dough.

And with the Beijing Olympics on the way in a few years she was right as long as I avoided disease carrying rats (like Rudd famously was threatened by early in his diplomatic career). But that's not our vocation. Rather it's harrassing anti environmental corporate fascism via crikey.com.au and here.

But the broader point is this - It may have been the discussions over Macbeth where the nature of democracy, and good governance came up: Violence for political power versus say Gandhi philosophy? The Mao dictum of "political power grows from the barrel of a gun", or in Macbeth's case a sword in that famous profound Shakespearean play.

Image:Charles Kean as Macbeth 1858.jpg

I suggested "a metaphor" beloved of HSC study guides using the Chinese Revolution over so called Emperor's noblesse oblige (not a very credible claim but at least analogous).


The memories are all a bit misty now like the witches bedevilling Macbeth in the picture above. But what I do remember clearly is this : Lucy, this otherwise perky teenager was extremely reticient to make even study talk about the flaws of a Chinese Govt regarding power through violence.

I pressed her on this dogmatism in someone so young - why not? It's only a student's essay and study, and it's a sound point too about the themes in the play about rivalry for political power, whichever side you take.

Oh no, I don't think that's a good idea. To criticise the govt of China. I just don't think so.

It was a fear she had no words or emotional equipment to articulate, as I saw it. It was a bridge too far for this otherwise ambitious bilingual teenager with the rebellious interest in gangsters, working to fit into two cultures - east and west. 

Indeed there was still ill feeling in the family about the father insisting on taking out Australian citizenship, not least after Tiananmen Square in 1989 (which even if exagerating reportage was surely a disaster for democarcy in China).

This intelligent gutsy Lucy's fear and awe of the central Beijing Govt suggested brainwashing to not even manage criticism in a student essay. I could feel a chill hand in the room. We feel this same chill hand sanitising Beijing relations with Tibet has been on display in the main streets of Sydney CBD yesterday in a rally 13th April 2008. An unquestioning loyalty as per ABC tv coverage here:

News Video | Sun, 13 Apr 2008 17:58:00 +1000 | Duration 2m 4s, Over one thousand demonstrators have gathered in Sydney to call for fairer and more objective reporting on events in Tibet.

This is my firm feeling. Proud of their emerging world power status - go China - will be the emotion. But it's a brainwashed loyalty. If "some western media" are "liars" as per the placards about the devastations of Tibet, much like the Japanese raped Nanking, then why simply is there no free press in Tibet?


  Japanese soldiers entering

In Tibet and Beijing both, no transparency to foreign eyes. No freedom of speech to criticise or organise a rival political party or media outlet for 50 years now.

Most Chinese born and raised, and likely diaspora in Australia too, with their satellite tv media consumption, don't even know what Tiananmen was about really.

But I can report that Martin (not his real name) on that day in 1989 was stomping through the house very upset "Chinese Govt very stupid" he kept saying "Very stupid" over the reportage of Tiananmen Square tanks rolling into the student protests. Because when he knew what was happening he reached an opinion for himself.

That's what professional media reportage is all about. Telling the truth and letting that truth take it's course. In short the Big Media should be aware this brainwashed effect of a closed society under the control of Beijing central is not going away. It's a preferred tactic of soft power by this enormous world power including through it's own diaspora here.

In this Olympic season though it's somewhat of a two way street of communication including at grassroots level. Though the road rules are a little lacking in this engagement still too. Let's keep this two way flow going. That's a constructive way forward for both parties, with truth as our guide.


Postscript #1, 14th April 2008

Crikey.com.au 14th April 2008 runs this revealing sheet sourced to the Chinese Embassy here organising public rally support:

An anonymous tipster writes:

The following points are based on an internal document circulated by the Chinese authorities in Australia to the Chinese Students Association of 7-8 April. It has two options for public action appended. The large "spontaneous protests" witnessed in Sydney yesterday are an indication of this kind of mobilisation effort. The following is a direct translation of the original document:

Executive Summary: This activity is a voluntarily organised and spontaneous peaceful patriotic activity. The aim of this activity is prevent the disruptive actions of Free Tibet campaigners (the Chinese used is Zang du fenzi - Tibet Independence Elements) and Anti-Chinese elements from interfering with the Olympic torch relay.

Roles and Duties: The National Flag Group -- is to hand out Chinese flags and Olympic flags to friendly onlookers; The Picket Group -- will maintain order under the direction of the group leader. All members will follow instructions to protect the Olympic torch; The Propaganda Group (i.e., the PR team) -- will hand out leaflets to standers-by, onlookers and others; and, The Visual Recording Group -- will record the words, pronouncements, provocations and malicious actions of Free Tibet campaigners. Moreover, this group will record all other useful material.

Discipline: Obey orders, act collectively. Prevent all actions that can in any way be detrimental to the image of China, including words, comments and provocative behaviour, or any use of force. When confronting provocation you must be aware that the media will exaggerate even your most minor actions without any basis in fact while willfully ignoring those of the Free Tibet campaigners. You must remain calm and cool. The Visual Recording Group must be sure to be timely in taking footage of the provocations and destructive activities of the opposition. There must be reasonable use of the national flag and slogans. Do not drop any or leave any behind. When speaking to outsiders firmly maintain that this is entirely a spontaneous activity. You must accept no media interviews in the name of any group or collective. Keep a reasonable distance between yourself and the torch-bearer. Maintain a smiling face to onlookers, the media and other peaceful demonstrators. Demonstrate the good behaviour of the Chinese. Wear light and casual clothing. We suggest that you wear light colours.

Costs: The organisers will pay costs in advance. However, if any participants wish to pay for themselves they will be most welcome.

Promotional Strategy - Option 1: The Canberra leg of the Beijing Olympic Torch Relay will begin at Capital Hill where Parliament House is located. The harmonious flame of the Olympic Torch will set alight the emotions of this garden city. The Australian Chinese Youth Exchange Promotion Association cordially invites all patriots, Chinese students studying overseas, patriotic young people as well as all of your friends and relatives to join hands as witnesses of this historical moment, to raise your arms and cheer! The aim of this activity is to share the Olympic Spirit and Great Chinese Civilisation with the whole world. The organisers will provide bus transportation from Sydney to Canberra return, as well as breakfast and lunch. Participants will also be presented with Olympic keepsakes. We will cooperate closely with the police to ensure the safe protection of the Olympic torch. Whenever any willfully disruptive individual is found they will immediately be handed over to the police to be dealt with.

Signed: The Australian Chinese Youth Exchange Promotion Association (a non-profit organisation sponsored by the Embassy of the People’s Republic of China in Australia).

Promotional Strategy—Option 2: Chinese Students in Australia Welcome Committee for the Olympic Torch The Australian Chinese Students Association (ACSC) hopes that the vast majority of Chinese students studying in Sydney will participate in the welcoming ceremony for the Olympic Torch in Canberra, and by so doing cheer on the Beijing Olympics. We welcome the enthusiastic participation and mobilisation of all students, as well as their friends. We welcome people from all walks of life to sign up, regardless of gender, age or nationality. We will provide free transportation as well as breakfast and lunch. Our buses will be available at five different locations for pick-ups. Protesters have to apply to demonstrate ahead of time! Therefore any protesters who attempt to disrupt our force must be handed over to the police immediately.

Signed: The Australian Chinese Students Association (a non-profit organisation sponsored by the Embassy of the People’s Republic of China in Australia).

Posted by editor at 7:41 AM NZT
Updated: Monday, 14 April 2008 9:48 PM NZT
Sunday, 13 April 2008
Sunday tv talkies: Rudd mediates China Inc, Canberra security Industry sell out free speech?
Mood:  chatty
Topic: aust govt

Author’s general introductory note (skip this bit 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 – this section under construction till later Sunday/Monday

   Sunday 9 

Greenwood story with Minister Sherry over pipe dream of 15% super [not least because it’s a waste of lifestyle NOW when the future is almost certainly a dark chasm with 5-10 metre sea rise in 20 years, taboo subject that in the political economy].


Priceless footage of ALP MP/Sydney Mayor (at same time) Pat Hills flaming underpants “gotcha” on steps of Sydney Town Hall in 1956, as first reported by Crikey.com.au


Fanning gives space to Free Tibet campaigner in the studio, but it’s mostly a set up, with footage of jostling, water on the flame being called “violence” while in Tibet, Beijing govt shoot protesters. Where is the real violence? No footage of dead bodies in Tibet. 9 is part of the corporate fascism really.  IOC/AOC taxpayer funded security servant Ted Quinlan whines about free speech protests potential in Canberra [echoes the fascist suppression of Stop Bush Coalition at APEC in Sydney 2007]. Shaky camera of colour and movement in San Fransisco supposed to be more “violence” – as if.


Free Tibet guy talks up”fantastic” outreach and awareness, and nonviolence approach, softy spoken. “Mixed message” blah.


Quinlan is blatantly part of the big security industry financial trough, retirement age sincure beating up the situation for more business. Totally unreliable and unsafe source on how to conduct a democracy.


Feature about pre natal testing. Skipped it to watch Riley Diary. Likely important to all breeders.


Laurie Oakes (LO) with leader of the national party – what’s his name (!).


Bouncer starts with Nelson “going nowhere”. Talks up loyalty to Nelson. LO drives in the nail red dodgy national tour. Turnbull? Truss acknowledges skills, how luke warm? Yep, talks up lots of time, wants to stall. Agree with Rudd criticism of China, trap question. Truss does endorse free speech. Publicly? Yes. Both traps given LO column in the SDT yesterday.


Hammer blow, re Nelson in tangle in public way. Pathetic? Mature relationship, sticks to the sound position, leaves Nelson stranded.



    10 Meet the Press:  8- 8-30 am 

No show today, golf tournament. US masters?


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

   Riley Diary 7 Great film footage in both UK and Beijing of Rudd tour. Cute images of Queen brass band going through their paces with pop songs, and small talk wasted opportunity. Also acronym man Rudd descending into bureaucratise is a window to his soul. Unwise name games with Hu and Wen Chinese leadership with satire of Abbott & Costello famous skit, like Bill Leake in The Australian. But it’s got a dangerous hint of racial disrespect there, ironic because the Chinese have pretty much the same superiority complex and with that we have real potential for social and geo political disjunction between countries. This is not Big Media leadership worth following. In fact it’s dangerously dumb given the world power status and infamous soft power stalking by China Inc. Wake up Riley! Wake up Bill Leak! The best satire recognizes and leverages fact like shooting a satellite out of space to warn the US off bombing their oil supplier Iran, in January 2008. Get it? 



Insiders 2: 9- 10am


“Effusive” praise of Rudd world trip. True. And praise is fair too. Rudd’s historic responsibility is to mediate discourse with enormous world power China. And he is up to that job, thank God for that, not least language skills. He can have that comment for free identified by this writer way before the election.


[Reminds of my eldest sister Catherine McLoughlin about his Rudd’s generation and a Mandarin speaker if memory serves, having heard of or spoken to her for way too long. Based in Melbourne somewhere. My brother who works in PMC somewhere really should make use of that family connection, do me no use at all on this micro news website, in respect of either! Black sheep territory!]


Shadow foreign minister Andrew Robb doing as much cover as on Nelson, making him look worse for having to explain and interpret him, which actually is the leader’s job to run cover for wayward ministers. In short Robb by his competence is making Nelson look bad.


Robb has a narrative about Rudd which is quite insightful indeed re superficial, poor judgment skating over everything – manic activity trying to do too much not well [there is resonance here like a star footy player in a bad team run ragged and achieving little – just manic, poor judgement]. Again highlights Nelson lacks “a narrative”.


Robb does not condone “violence” of protests. Again a joke analysis given shot dead in Tibet by China. Disruption that leads to violence is not acceptable but must defend our values.


Genocide in  Tibet? Barry Cassidy declines the term unlike George Brandis – 40-50 years history, closed by China leaves a real question. Exactly right, like 2 million dead in famine in North Korea in closed society. Cassidy sanitizing China looks like a sell out for Rudd achieving very very little except barely holding the democratic line in face of huge soft power pressure.


Every person segement looks like Sydney Uni climbing gym, or maybe Tempe. Could be anywhere. Very bright yoof one guy with a voice like Silverchair lead.


Panel – extra plane for Rudd ego? Crabb, Meglo, Milne.


Polling shows Rudd even more popular. Points for performing on the world stage. Milne agrees with some of Robb manic superficial stuff risks Rudd. Trouble with the analysis is that PM keeps meeting the bar, and indeed growing in the job, maybe as a result of having to rival Howard and learn his ways. [The key to Rudd is that he keep growing in the job, and civil society and free press play a big role in that process, not always friendly to his personilty cult.]


Uhlmann notes some indulgence at Brookings Institute and “fit of acronyms” like Riley above. Dangers? Cometh hour of China, cometh Rudd? World stage would be political domestic death.


Milne coverage effusive even gushing. Need perspective. Tibet message never to play in China, used PR of energy security from Australia instead. Exactly.


Cassidy interprets China gesture re Tibet in the next few months. Not very arms length comment. More sanitizing?


Crabb notes Robb conservative agrees with protesters having the right. Not just Richard Gere. PM Rudd has another engagement on 24 April to avoid the torch relay in Sydney, has sport minister (Garrett of the protest history?).


Meglo runs profound Steketee article line on ministers having space from PM [ letting a 1000 flowers bloom, and avoid Rudd daisy cutter of other ideas and talent as per Button career exemplar].


2020 Summit – Milne says accelerant including Republic – policy benchmarks that Rudd will be measured against [no but raising expectations, AC uses my term re 1000 flowers].


Nelson is a constitutional monarchist, not a royalist. Cruel ridicule of Nelson voting for two teams in AFL, voting Lib and ALP.


Moves to leadership discussion – Nelson must perform by the budget. Milne re Abbott deserves fair go and time but can’t win election. Only needs a small shift to lose the job


[what is missing in this analysis is that Turnbull is not nearly as fit or sharp as he was in his younger days. Took a $2M campaign to hold his seat of Wentworth. Has cut through, could do a lot better than Nelson but may descend into stodge. Needs a sound moderate exercise regime and diet probably to keep up to the game against a profound Rudd operation].


Nelson back on track if does well on budget speech and Gippsland by election. Looks bad chickens out on playing a few cords. Unlike Clinton on saxophone, or Obama jiving, or Costello’s Macarena.


Discussion of budget, Swan from Washington/IMF street interview not really a “doorstop”. A lot of informed speculation. Moves to Reserve Bank must handle the media. Meglo says no should be a circus performer. Pay him to call it as he sees it. Milne says should show compassion.


Microphone dead air troubles AC and GM,noticed 3 times in all.


Talking Pictures – cartoonist for WA Newspapers. Leak re Tintin but David Rowe has got it Enter the Kevin [Dragon]. Mike Bowers cracking joke “give back Harold Holt”. Footage of London public meeting, [wonder if Marina Ritossa was there]


Rudd the media creation given a menace about his ego ordering people around when they have a loudest gets the question.


Precious footage of John Button. Sad tone amongst all the panel there at his death. Predictions missed them.

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

Posted by editor at 12:17 PM NZT
Saturday, 12 April 2008
Is Tim Blair perverse in his focus today or what?
Mood:  d'oh
Topic: big media

Tim Blair has exceeded himself again. He's gone all greenie, animal rights obsessive again - meanwhile every other newspaper and even his own newspaper has actually covered the human rights protests over the Beijing Olympics, as above. Here is the Crikey.com.au profound image that makes Blair look like wet lettuce:

Blair's column is less a red herring as a limp pinkish sardine given the intrinsic drama and geniune humour in seeing the might of the IOC and Beijing spin machine humbled by grassroots activism across the globe. We were laughing during all the live radio coverage of the San Fransisco farce while power walking the Cooks River Trail. What a hoot. Talk about perverse airbrush.

Obviously this saturation coverage of the civil society groups in a good cause of Tibetan human rights was just too much for poor Tim such that his ideological blinkers saw saplings while surrounded by a veritable forest! That's sad.

How much other dysfunctional stuff does our resident Dr Jekyll/Mr Hyde have in that mixed up mind of his? Yes one does feel clammy just going there.



Posted by editor at 10:35 PM NZT
Updated: Sunday, 13 April 2008 11:23 AM NZT
Developer heaven in NSW as the Big Media 'ordered' in 2005-6?
Mood:  sad
Topic: nsw govt

As much as we like to see this NSW ALP Govt get a good kicking as they do front page of the Sydney Morning Herald today in a strong story about nexus between major developer donations and planning outcomes, there's a major missing piece in the chronology there:

By which we mean the Big Media exhortations to increase housing development to boost the NSW economy in 2005-06, which in turn have amplified the developer donations to get the formal approvals.

Our view is that a suite of articles in 05-06 had a major impact on the trashing of the Environmental Planning system and major increase in developer donation$ by way of gratitude for the Part 3A repeal of about 7 different protection acts. For instance Sydney Morning Herald, referenced below, but also Sydney Daily Telegaph as well on the demise of Carr's premiership. The message implicit in the Fairfax, and Daily Telegraph, menace was clear, crank the economy or get a Big Media thrashing.

And so new Premier Iemma and loyal Planning Minister Sartor did by fair means or foul, and getting ever more cosy with developers and their donations in gratitude at least at administrative level.

To integrate this fact into the Herald chronology in no way excuses the blatant conflict of interest of developer donations to the ALP machine while waiting on planning minister discretionary decisions. It is not only a "perception of conflict" that Iemma acknowledges. It is an actual conflict of interest regardless of Chinese walls between policy and admin within the ALP.

Still it remains the case quite arguably that it was the Big Media that caused the quantum shift of this ALP Govt to intimate relations (as here in my post on a New Matilda string about developer donations earlier today):

Tom McLoughlin 12/04/08 6:17PM

You will notice that my traverse above was written quite early this morning.
Notice I mention a shift from Parliament to the executive. Secondly a shift in govt approach from about "2.5 years ago".
This was all written by me without the knowledge or reading of the lead story on the front page of the Sydney Morning Herald today by Wendy Frew and others. I’ve just finished reading it. It’s a strong story and Planning shadow minister Hazzard is making hay over this "rotten" situation earlier today on radio and now I know his factual platform:

"Files expose sway of developers" 12 April 2008, Sydney Morning Herald


The Herald story corroborates nicely my analysis [below] in a direct example of developments in the Hunter. As good as Frew and colleagues are and professional too, what the story omits editorially speaking is the corporate self awareness at Fairfax that the ALP under Iemma moved to accelerate any and all economic development as a direct reaction to both major newspapers signalling that they were going to go feral and fatal on the NSW ALP govt if the economy didn’t turn: Here are some samples via google:

- 7 Feb 2006 Slump hits home - National - smh.com.au

- 2 Sept 2005 Harder they fall: Sydney’s biggest housing slump - National - smh …

- 2 July 2005 NSW’s economic slump hits home - Business - Business - theage.com.au

- Sydney boom bleeds NSW economy - Business - Business - theage.com.au , By Ross Gittins, August 16, 2005
"It’s now clear that the NSW economy is the worst-performing among the states and its once-booming housing market is at the heart of the problem. Question is, who’s to blame?"

It saddens me to provide political logic for the ALP spivs but that’s the real politik reality. They trashed the integrity of the planning system as a matter of parliamentary majority. That’s what Part 3A is for vertically integrated into the electoral majority.

This was around 2005-6. At which time I totally gave up the Environmental Planning and Assessment Act as a dead letter, that Wran had pioneered in 1979 to keep integrity in the planning system.

Sad huh? Keep going independent media sector. Keep going.


This comment just extracted  builds on a story on New Matilda 

NSW Politics 9 Apr 2008 What's with the Back Flip? Lee Rhiannon and Norman Thompson

NSW Labor's plan to ban political donations comes after years of dodging calls from the Greens and community groups to do just that

and my first comment earlier today as follows:

Tom McLoughlin 12/04/08 6:59AM

To preface my comment, first I was a Green Party member 1993-2000 then lapsed to non aligned status. Second was a Cr at Waverly similar 95-99.
That declared I suggest the Greens via Norman Thompson and sponsor Lee Rhiannon have been unduly modest in their role in the long build up to this situation at the Gong being exposed which actually is the ALP State Machine proper, only caught red handed in one geographical location. And only because stand over men were leveraging the BAD reputation of ICAC for doing precious bloody nothing for years always deferring to the woefully under resourced Ombudsman role (mal administration short of corruption) and no doubt under resourced Auditor General (waste again short of corruption). ICAC itself likely very under resourced.
I saw ICAC chief commissioner at the Gong hearings get stroppy with Cr Gigliotti for being duped by the stand over men claiming to be ICAC officers milking $500K out of their victims. But the Commissioner should be looking in the mirror too, because like top movie The Departed there is a smell of a rat(s) like ICAC manager of Investigations McCabe by coincidence leaving to work in a high paid job at the Maritime Authority of NSW working with now infamous Scimone in what he thought was a safe parking station.

Only I don’t believe in coincidences like that as a lawyer admitted in 1990.

(As Egan in Opposition, later NSW Treasurer, said to Carr early 90ies - ‘you will live to regret this ICAC bill’ - revealing several things: Many like Egan in the Parliamentary and machine upper house ALP never believed in transparency or honesty as per ICAC goals, and/or knew their own party were dirty, like Askin before and had alot to fear. While Carr the populist, maybe idealist, wanted to consolidate the gains represented by North Coast land developer scandals of the late eighties/90ies.)

The Greens have been unduly modest, even as an ex member, because as Michael Duffy has pointed out, hardly your card carrying Greenie, in his SMH column perhaps a year ago now, this website of the Greens dishing the chapter and verse on the sophisticated laundering of developer donations

(undoubtedly for policy via Mark Arbib as machine boss at Sussex St , as now retired Hotel Lobbyist Thorpe freely admitted - was he drunk? - to the SMH last week)

that website of research and detail was highly educational. Highly instructive of the best democracy money can buy:


Duffy a well known conservative wrote that he was going to vote Green in the last state election. There is nothing more profound to say than that - as surprising as Kissinger getting a Nobel. And Duffy is wise and right even coming at this from the Right because credit where credit is due. Honest business people who want to make a buck are being tainted and ripped off in the endless game of playing favourites. It’s moral chaos here in the governance of NSW.

On Stateline NSW last night footage 11 April 08 played of Sartor as planning minister, highly implicated in a pattern of developer donations, stating there is not evidence whatsoever of any ‘development decision that was not based on the merits’ under what’s known as Part 3A, which is the minister’s call in and discretion to decide power.

This like Nazi propaganda is a lie, applying the big lie will work best approach. How so?

Anyone who googles the Environmental Defenders Office or the NSW Nature Conservation Council briefing papers, will find that Part 3A amendments to the pioneering Environmental Planning and Assessment Act 1979 ere all about repeal of merits criteria. Lets run through some of the systemic check and balances that Part 3A repealed:

Assessments under

- The Heritage Act
- Threatened Specied Act
- National Parks & Wildlife Act
- Rivers and Foreshores Improvement Act
- Coastal Protection Act 1979
- Fisheries Management Act 1994
- Native Vegetation Act 2003
- Rural Fires Act 1997
- Water Management Act 2000, or predecessor 1912 Water Act where still in force

are all formally over ruled.


Picture: Protest by civil society/green groups around June 2005 at trashing of the Planning Act by 'Part 3A' amendment for state significate developments repealing a multitude of checks and balances.

But you have to watch carefully with sophist Sartor - and this is how sophisticated this abuse of power really is: The developers still have to address many of these concerns under "DOP directors requirements" but you see these are discretionary now, and weakened with omissions and unenforceable. All these LEGAL checks and balances have all been shifted out of the Parliament into executive discretion.

Looks sound but it’s as rotten as a house with termites. The environmental assessment process has always been limited and flawed for lack of auditing, and discipline on liar ‘expert’ guns for hire. Under cl.283 of the EP&A Regulation it is indeed an offence to "knowingly" lie about material in an EIS or similar document BUT one can simply plead "it was a mistake, an error, an oversight" and these documents are routinely 2 inches thick anyway. It takes an expert auditor to audit them. In short the integrity of the EIS process, not least under flexible director’s requirements, has been pretty much trashed.

You will find a summary and links about these repeals to the EDO, NSW NCC material at a submission to the NSW Dept of Planning on some of the latest sandmining cowboy operators here Jan. 08:

"1/08 Maroota sandmining"

Sartor wants to style himself as the expert benevolent dictator planner who get’s it right on "the merits" so nothing to see here, move on, but really he is sanitising the worst excesses of dictatorship by completely unravelling the 1979 Act and putting in place env assessment by yes men and client dependents of his discretion in either public service career, or developer decision making, or access as per the infamous phone call to a developer to attend his fundraising dinner ‘which he can’t recall’ anymore but Stockland do as reported in the SMH by expert state roundsman Clennell.

The situation stinks and the coincidences of developer funding for approvals keep piling up, but it is rotten, and its not a coincidence.

But here is the taboo in all this - about 2 1/2 years back both the Herald and the Telegraph Big Media ran a unity ticket to beat up the ALP Govt on depressed economic conditions - presumably damaging their profits.

Newly installed Iemma, Sartor etc made a quite blatant shift to destroy the EPA Act which elected Neville Wran in 79 (via his praetorian minister Paul Landa) in oder to crank the economics of the State. So the Big Media have some real responsibility for creating this monster of subjective development and rotten donations culture. They wanted the economic pedal to the metal and the ALP spin machine took them at their word. And it worked up to March 2007 state election too. Now the chickens are coming home to roost for all as amenity and common decency and self respect all go south.

Which is also why such as New Matilda are so important, as are all the other indy media sector, and are the ethical journalists still in the Big Media monoliths grovelling away at the truth of money politics.

God help us in NSW. Actually God will if we help ourselves and throw off these spivs and liars.

Posted by editor at 8:34 PM NZT
Updated: Monday, 14 April 2008 10:25 AM NZT
Grown ups summit a tame affair with climate change credibility gap?
Mood:  party time!
Topic: aust govt

The front page of The Australian yesterday was profound - for a certain inscrutable expression of Rudd the man, possibly humbled by a self awareness of the awesome responsibility of mediating discourse with enormous power in the Land of the Emperors. Great photo-journalism that, worthy of page 1 too:

The youth summit of bright sparks kicks off today and good luck to them too. Even for the fast tracked privileged brats, the nepotism, the precocious ambition. One only hopes they have more individuality than these loyal soldiers of the Chinese Empire above. We particularly like the natural curiousity in the eyes of a mere one or two young crack troops - therein rests the hopes of the world.

The emperor of the summits, PM Kevin Rudd also returns to Aussie today too, and no doubt glad to see our sky, ocean, that old barely forgotten feeling of home.

On the other hand the summit next week 19th April in the open age bracket is looking a very controlled, indeed suppressed, affair with a firm Rudd brand on the forehead of every participant:

- 11 April 08 (offline) Talkfest to start with dinner date [for 10 group leaders which includes News Ltd's John Hartigan] in Sydney Daily Telegraph at p17.

- 11 April 08 (offline) Future productivity is all down to people power Warwick Smith Sydney Daily Telegraph p39

Indeed expert observers on several of the ten headline groups have scored some serious intellectual points about the limitations and flaws of representation: Indeed it's the 5th estate and less so Big Media critique that keeps the flame of independent thinking without fear or favour alive in the face of this vanity affair:

- 20 March 08 My boss shouldn’t be involved with Rudd’s gabfest | Mark Day Blog ... which echoes the bolsheviks apparently on the staff of The Age, owned by Fairfax, over their own editor Mr Jaspan also attending, as reported yesterday on crikey.com.au

- On the Defence and security bunch, via crikey.com.au 'Your say' section 7th April 2008 by Tony Kevin, author and retired public servant:
 Here is a case study. In the group on "Australia’s future security and prosperity in a rapidly changing region and world", chaired by Michael Wesley, in a field I thought I was reasonably familiar with (foreign policy and national security); I think I recognized only about 28 from the 90 names, and I know personally about half of those. I feel a bit uncomfortable not recognizing the names of over 60 people - I must be really out of touch. (I thought perhaps I had failed to recognize international trade specialists - not my field - but then I saw that is part of an economics-oriented committee). Here are some of the names not on the list for the 'foreign affairs and security' committee -commentators and writers Bruce Haigh, Peter Mares, Dick Woolcott, Allan Behm, Nic Stuart, activists Helen Caldicott, Sue Wareham, Margo Kingston, controversial persons Andrew Wilkie, Lance Collins, Richard Butler and yours truly, academics Owen Harries, Coral Bell, Alison Broinowski, Stuart Harris, Tony Milner, Desmond Ball. Of course some of these - myself included - may not have applied. And most of my names here are over 55s. I wish the summit well.

- Regarding the sustainability group refer Mr Merkel and our own deconstructions found here:

Monday, 31 March 2008
and here compared with this list from 2004
- On the creativity list here via New Matilda here:

- On the education group's background papers here:

 10 April 08 Debate will stick to ALP script | The Australian

 - 10 April 08 The truth hurts, but it's good for you | The Australian By Mike Steketee who has deeper ALP connections and so higher profile these days in The Oz who says for instance

"There are ministers who have the intellect and strength of personality to play the part of the iconoclast, among them Finance Minister Lindsay Tanner, Infrastructure and Transport Minister Anthony Albanese and Special Minister of State John Faulkner. But they may not have the inclination: the Government is popular, Rudd is a control freak and the mantra is that disunity is death. ....

Button wrote about the political system's "frightening conformity" and his life in Parliament House: "The prisoners are confined to the punishment area from 9am to midnight each day. (Make that 7am under Rudd.) At midnight they are transferred in black cars to sleeping cells, under the direction of a transport officer."

The idea of Rudd's 2020 Summit is to cast the net for ideas far wider than normally. But if the background papers are to be the guide, many of the debates will take place within a framework that fits the Government's agenda and highlights the Howard government's failings.

Button's challenges to the orthodoxy were not always successful and his solutions were not always correct. But at least he asked the questions.

Post-World War II secretary of state George Marshall, architect of the Marshall Plan, insisted on frankness from advisers. "Unless I hear all the arguments against something, I am not sure I have made the right decision," he said. Hopefully, Rudd has told colleagues something similar."


Steketee's comment for more free thinking for democratic health resonates with an accompanying piece by Nicholas Gruen, of Lateral Economics here:

10 April 08 Much to learn from Hayek on efficiency | The Australian


As we wrote today on a New Matilda string today:

Obituary 9 Apr 2008 The Trouble with Button Plans

"Thanks for this great post. Also Nicholas Gruen’s piece in The Australian 10th April 08

(the same Gruen, surely related to big knob at Fed Treasury, who Gittins as SMH economics editor urges be selected for the 2020 mutual w*nk fest because at least he’s got new ideas)

is highly instructive about a similar phenomenon : "Much to learn from Hayek on efficiency". Sounds dry but given I’m not a proverbial bootstrap of an economist, I still found this great. How so? Because it applies to economic efficiency theory what I call the The Thin Red Line (movie) principle.

That war/action movie on careful re watching is all about a smart officer in the field bucking the chain of command and refusing a stupid order to make cannon fodder of his troops. So they have to look for another way forward even as his field officer’s career is shredded by the discipline system. John Cusack character (from memory) infiltrates the Japanese machine gun bunker high on the bluff. Some of the most thrilling action film drama you will ever see. But macho testosterone aside, and not forgetting the really really great sound track, the movie is about (USA culture of) democracy beating (Nippon Rising Sun) totalitarian hierarchy as a model of social wellbeing. All else being equal in terms of soldierly commitment and ability.

Democracy leverages the God given brains of each and every little man and woman in the social machine as imperfect and eccentric as the communication/synthesis of those eyes and brains can be. As in Guadalcanal, so it is Port Kembla steelworks or washing machine factory, and harth and home.

A centralised engineer’s plan’s just cannot synthesise all the complex human sourced data in a sufficiently contemporaneous and useful way. It’s arrogance to think otherwise. (This reality is also why the chaotic anarchic information sharing of the internet is so very powerful for speeding up that process.)

And what I most like about John Button personally, apart from being a Truman Capote sized charmer, is his brutally honest take on the evil native forest woodchipping industry back in 92-3, advisedly, as per the Resource Assessment Commission 3 volume report 1992, as here:

"Wednesday, 9 April 2008
John Button’s spirit at the 2020 Summit regarding forests: ‘Woodchipping’s a bastard of an industry’"


God bless John Button’s memory, and his courageous independence. On reflection I think this ‘little’ man must have realised early on that everyone knows something, even the shortest smallest guy usually overlooked (literally in his case) in a crowd, and he must have decided to honour that and himself too in defiance of all those thrashings as a kid, and he leveraged that grand truth into a grand political career. Wow. That’s a very charitable and inspiring example of quality thinking. Everyone does know something and how to unlock that and honour that, indeed a vote of confidence in people’s innate creativity and talent, is the key to a happier world.

The power of democracy no less."

Not inside the Summit but outside it in the democratic sinews of the country before, during and after. Just as well to avoid a cult of personality over the boy off a Qld dairy farm.

Like a certain 702 morning presenter off a Hawkesdale dairy farm in south west Victoria who we do wonder was confirmed in the gig by hard man strategist CEO Mark Scott in our biggest city late last year at least in part to stay onside with the Nambour protege now PM elected November 24th 2007?

Indeed it was exactly this fiesty boisterous indeed wild quality that we submitted in our defiant application to the big knobs Summit here free of stultifying conformity, with a sting in the tail (!) in bold, and so it has proved to be, Mr 'Tintin in Beijing' PM:

My presence will assist a successful event: A principled dedicated non smoking teetotal community media practitioner who will report back fairly to the community sector with an independent legal and ecological eye, with no personal agenda; An enthusiastic respectful participant in forums. Our history of knockabout experience, good education, and ecological achievement will add a powerful flavour to the discourse dominated by proud over achievers in other fields. My qualities, off a very humble base, are a premium for social and economic restructure in a massively carbon constrained future, and which this summit - already with something of a credibility gap - needs.

This was one humourous photo of Kevin Rudd back 2007 when he was a mere wannabe PM at the national ALP conference:

The photo is intended to amplify the choreography and alleged control freak aspects of bureaucrat turned politician now PM Rudd.

As to the credibility gap of PM Rudd inspecting so called clean coal experimental plants when he could be ramping up renewable energy transfers. What chance of taboo topics like this at the 2020 summit as it relates to climate?

- 3 March 2008 An inconvenient truth about rising immigration (By Ross Gittins, economics editor)

- 7 March, 2008 Hitting the 'non-existent' limits (Gittins again)

And notice this quite damning assessment from those party poopers at the Green Party in federal parliament:

Sent: Friday, April 11, 2008 11:00 AM
Subject: [Greens-Media] Are we headed for coal's biggest ever budget bonanza?

Are we headed for coal's biggest ever budget bonanza?

Canberra, Friday 11 April 2008  Australian Greens climate change
spokesperson, Senator Christine Milne, today called on the Rudd
Government to focus its Budget priorities on existing climate solutions
such as energy efficiency and renewable energy, not offer up even
greater subsidies to the hugely profitable coal sector.

Senator Milne said "Prime Minister Rudd's visit to a coal fired power
plant in China instead of one of their world-leading solar or wind sites
is yet another ominous indicator that his Government intends to protect
the coal sector from real, competitive climate solutions.

"The coal sector's hype of 'clean' coal has been badly tarnished in
recent years and months, with little or no progress in research and
development, while renewable energy technologies have been moving in
leaps and bounds, increasing their efficiency, reducing costs and
developing improved energy storage technologies.

"Even John Boshier, head of the National Generators Forum and one of
Australian coal's loudest advocates, has said that early confidence in
the techno-fix is fading amid growing concerns over cost and timeline
blowouts, and the realisation of the mammoth scale of the problem -
burying some 300 million tonnes of CO2 every year in Australia alone.

"Coal is simply being out-competed, and its desperation is evident in
the increasingly strident calls for government hand-outs to one of the
world's most profitable sectors.

"The Rudd Government's first Budget must deliver a level playing field
for energy technologies that puts a price on climate pollution. When
that happens, those technologies that are ready to deliver substantial
emissions reductions now, like energy efficiency, solar thermal power
and wind energy, will out-compete 'clean' coal.

"Instead of delivering a level playing field, Rudd looks set to continue
the Howard Government policies of 'picking losers' with increased
support for the coal sector.

"The coal sector is old, polluting and well entrenched. Even if climate
change were not an issue, it would be outrageous that our governments
add billions every year to the coffers of the rich multinational
corporations that run the sector. When you add climate change
considerations to the mix, ongoing fossil fuel subsidies become one of
the most perverse and destructive government decisions imaginable. The
polluter pays principle tells us that the companies that have profited
from polluting for so long should be the ones to shoulder the burden of
cleaning up their act, not the taxpayer.

"The Greens have proposed that a portion of the billions that would be
saved by cutting fossil fuel subsidies should be channelled towards
further research, development and commercialisation of renewable energy
and energy efficiency technologies through a Sun Fund, and to pay for
the early stages of a systematic and systemic retrofit of Australia's
housing stock for energy efficiency set out in our EASI policy.

"I will be watching the Government's first Budget carefully to see if
its priorities follow Martin Ferguson's industry-fuelled hype, or a
sensible, realistic path to clean energy."

Tim Hollo
Media and Communications Adviser
Senator Christine Milne
+61 (0)2 6277 3063
+61 (0) 437 587 562

We reported on the dangers of carbon capture sequestration here recently:

- Friday, 4 April 2008 Energy Minister Ferguson gambling on safety of CO2 carbon capture after Norway report?
Mood:  blue
Topic: globalWarming

 Meanwhile The Greens have a point about a high powered 2020 gopher for the ALP Rudd machine:

Saturday, 12 April 2008

2020 boss should stand aside - Brown

The head of the Rudd government's 2020 summit secretariat, Linda
Hornsey, should stand aside while various accusations about her probity
in Tasmania are investigated, Australian Greens Leader Bob Brown said in
Canberra this morning.

"It is alleged that Ms Hornsey, as Premier Lennon's department chief,
interfered to block the appointment of a magistrate because he
criticised Gunns. This is a serious matter but it is not the only
concern about Ms Hornsey's use of power. It is not appropriate she
preside over the 2020 process which so much depends on goodwill and good
process," Senator Brown said.

Only 17 Tasmanians were selected to the 1000 delegate conference

Further information: Ebony Bennett 0409 164 603

For those annoyingly active and boisterous folks there are various consolation prizes for 'the losers' not invited to the 2020 "shindig" and presumably have no place in the bunker after a nuclear holocaust either!:

10 April 2008 www.smh.com.au - Pull your head out, Sydneysiders


Postscript #1 13 April 2008

As for the Governance group they seem to be taking some water here regarding allegations of pre determined outcomes, but also 2 VIP retired judges bailing out:

 12 April 2008 Judges abandon Rudd's summit | The Australian

11 April 2008 Mad game to tinker with our great system | The Australian


Postscript #2 14 April 2008

We like and respect Bret Solomon of self described "independent" Get Up not least for his career history with fiesty charity Oxfam, but we also well understand he cannot escape the covert ALP provenance and seed funding of Get UP not least via Evan Thorley MP in the machine Vic Upper House perch and IT entrepeneur rich man. Solomon himself admitted in a talk we attended at the Sydney Mechanics in Pitt St that Thorley was his source of income.

Thorley presumably has fanchised here the US Democrat cyber model of political outreach of 2003-2005, and such as MoveOn.org financed by billionaire George Soros. Here is Get Up's full on engagement with the 2020 Summit indicating both genuine enthusiasm and endorsement of the narrow scope of the event - because they are inside the tent. It would be naive to expect very much cutting critique from Get Up?:

Sent: Friday, April 11, 2008 8:31 PM
Subject: What's your 2020 vision?

Dear Tom,

Only 1000 people will be deliberating Australia's future at next week's 2020 Summit - but that's not to say your voice won't be heard. Incredibly, 118 of the chosen delegates are GetUp members, including our Executive Director Brett Solomon, so we're starting a conversation to make sure that your voice is added to theirs before they begin their dialogue about Australia's future.

Have your say on what you want our country's future to look like on our 2020 forums - and we will deliver your ideas direct to the decision makers heading to Canberra:


The forums have been started by GetUp members attending the Summit, and they're keen to make sure your ideas are heard. Add your comments and your new big ideas to our online forums - to make sure the Summit recommendations reflect the issues that are important to you.

The Summit is a golden opportunity to let the Australian Government - and a whole range of people representing the Australian community - know where we'd like our country to go. We'll deliver the top ideas from each forum to the Summit delegates, so add your idea now and vote for the ones you care most about:


It's rare to have such a concrete opportunity to look beyond the immediate political term in Australia - but it's forums like these where nation-building ideas are born. This is your chance to let those on the inside of 2020 know what you think.

Thanks for making it happen,
The GetUp team

PS - If you're a GetUp member going to the Summit and we haven't been in touch yet, please let us know by emailing Sally@getup.org.au.

PPS - It's National Youth Week - an important time to remember the thousands of homeless young people living on our streets. Click here to hear Tegan talk about her experiences. Tegan is a homeless young person involved with the Oasis youth centre, which was featured in a documentary, 'The Oasis', screened on the ABC last night.

Posted by editor at 9:51 AM NZT
Updated: Monday, 14 April 2008 9:26 AM NZT
Friday, 11 April 2008
Retrospective on Shell stalking of Woodside, as China Inc seek share of BHP resource giant
Mood:  not sure
Topic: aust govt

Another dimension of the great China engages with the world story, apart from the Olympics corporate circus is the question of whether and to what level China Inc (that is vertically integrated to the heart of the one party central Beijing Govt) should be permitted to invest in flagship companies in Australia, with Australian assets:

- 10 April 2008 Securing a stake in the big Australian | The Australian

-  10 April 2008 Chinese whispers give BHP extra ammo | smh.com.au

Pure market economics suggests their money is as good as anyone's only China Inc is not orthodox market participants given the political economic control by their Beijing Govt overlords. They can be expected to exercise their political influence in favour of China every time even to the detriment of Australia or even their own Australian based company.

Similar questions came up with Shell stalking Woodside to appropriate future profitability of the North West Shelf. All kinds of sophistry was used to justify approval through the Foreign Investment Review Board. Then Treasurer Costello rejected all these blandishments and shallow claims of being anti free market.

We tracked the very serious political fight way back then here:

23/4/01....Comment by ecology action founder on Treasurer Costello rejection of Shell bid for Woodside ... "Shell's every move across the Planet is haunted by Ken Saro-Wiwa's ghost."

23/4/2001...Treasurer Costello formally rejects Shell bid for Woodside "in the national interest

April 2001...Ian Kortlang Shell PR operative on Woodside bid: The treacherous Australian?

16/3/2001 - News release Woodside take-over: Nigerian refugee tells 'Shell's domination of industry, puppeteering of govt, rampant pollution, political murders'

6/1/2001...Shell bid for Woodside: Letter to editor - 'Not a fit and proper corporate citizen'


2/2000...Sydney Harbour oil spill by Shell ship transport contractor, indicative of rogue multinational, Submission to NSW Parliamentary Inquiry


Similar issues of probity and integrity might be expected to apply to China Inc seeking a share of BHP.

Posted by editor at 4:11 PM NZT
Updated: Friday, 11 April 2008 6:26 PM NZT
China/IOC Inc play their 'Muslim terror' bogey man trump card today
Mood:  not sure
Topic: corporates

The biggest global corporate circus every 4 years known as the Olympics has been getting the open society treatment as it did in Sydney 8 years ago.   

We have 15 cm pile of clippings in two ring binders from back then including this choice reference to the racketeers in the IOC:

 A bit strong? We think it's the reality. Only this time the Big Media willingness is amplified by the fact the venue is a notorious closed society in Beijing also known as China Inc.

Crikey.com.au ran this profound image Thursday 10 April 08 too:


Hence the saturation coverage of the International Olympic Committee brand getting badly damaged yesterday as per the front pager above (top left), which has been succeeded by the 'popular authoritarianism' of an alleged terror threat to the 'global games' (at top right).

But the consensus in the open society west still looks to be pretty much in favour of a massive dose of Big Media salts through the terrifyingly manipulative central Beijing Govt.

One fear and loathing spin story about security threat does not a summer make especially by contrast with this report on SBS Dateline regarding the long time oppressed minority labelled as sinister evil doers:

  • Wednesday, 5th March,2008

    With the Olympics fast approaching, China's human rights record is, more than ever, in the spotlight.

  • Rebiya Kadeer

    Posted by editor at 3:37 PM NZT
    Updated: Sunday, 13 April 2008 11:01 AM NZT
    ABC to "traffic reporter" Vic Laruso: Time to go, politically non aligned, don't you know!
    Mood:  a-ok
    Topic: big media

    We understand from a source that Vic has cruelled his own work for the Australian Traffic Network commercial service provider, at least as far as the ABC is concerned, by becoming politically aligned in the latest State ALP PR campaign.

    In fact we rang the 702 folks about bushy tailed, eager Vic doing traffic updates on the "Swiss neutral" ABC while so obviously identified with the new somewhat controversial $12 Billion dollar metro train plan.

    They took the concern on notice. We are advised that they were already discussing the issue "in parallel" and have reached the conclusion to ask ATN "to roster someone else".

    Presumably high flying Vic in the helicopter was handsomely paid for his PR work for Morris Iemma and the ALP team because it looks very much like he won't be on ABC radio again anytime soon.

    ATN's Director Bill Pezzimenti was unavailable for comment.NSW Manager Ian Wallace declined to comment until formally confirmed.

    Posted by editor at 3:05 PM NZT
    Sydney Telegraph goes Pontious Pilate on grog adverts, Herald still angsty?
    Mood:  quizzical
    Topic: big media

    Last Monday 7th April 08 the Daily Telegraph grasped the nettle ... sort of ... regarding binge drinking amongst youth turning up poisoned in hospitals, and used their front page to blame their parents:

     Parents face tough laws to curb drunken children | The Daily Telegraph  7 April 2008

    Which is convenient given the many full pages of grog adverts only 3 days later.

    The Sydney Morning Herald are still in moral confusion mode about their own full page grog adverts living off the revenue of this highly deceptive legal drug trade.

    See for instance this front pager:

    Cyclist tells: I slid into alcoholic hell - Beijing2008 - Sport ... 7 April 2008


    And this earlier

    Sports should 'drop booze sponsors' - Breaking News - SMH 20 March 2008

    No such qualms anymore over at Holt St. They probably decided it's really the parents fault rather than the huge sophisticated advertising industry over a cold one at a nearby boozer like the Evening Star Hotel (aka Evil Star), or maybe the Shakespeare Hotel, or Stawberry Hills Hotel, or the other 4 pubs nearby their office? Maybe they are indeed being more honest in their own revenue addiction than the Herald?

    Posted by editor at 2:22 PM NZT
    Updated: Saturday, 12 April 2008 11:04 PM NZT

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