JoNova

A science presenter, writer, speaker & former TV host; author of The Skeptic's Handbook (over 200,000 copies distributed & available in 15 languages).


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Green-socialist-autocrats generate bluster, media copies it

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I realize non-Australian readers are only so interested in the mining tax debate down-under, but the techniques for an unfair fight are the same everywhere. Instead of answering green-socialist-autocrats on their own ground, we need to raise the debate and expose the way they add confounding fog.

There are rhetorical tricks that friends-of-Big-Government use to promote their own political aims. They reframe debates entirely, and are expert at pouring confusion. Watch how these coalition of Green-Unionified groups appoint themselves as speakers for the people, then ignore the people, they create a false conflict, and turn groups of productive entrepreneurs and hard working employees  into an inanimate entity (the enemy). Read between the lines, the voters are turning away from the option these advocates prefer, therefore the public are easily misled (code for not-too-bright, you know, easily fooled by adverts from billionaires).

“Fairness” is apparently what the anointed decide it is, not what voters actually vote for. These groups believe in a fake democracy. The will of the people only counts if it’s also the will of the anointed.

SMH: Tax debate must return to average Aussie.

Which comes from AAP, which took most of it and rephrased bits from the ACTU media release.

A coalition of national organisations, representing social services, workers, environmental and consumer interests, have called for the voices of ordinary Australians to be heard in the mining tax debate.

The argy-bargy over the proposed Resources Super Profits Tax (RSPT) is being dominated by taxpayer-funded government advertising, and that of powerful vested mining interests.

Prime Minister Kevin Rudd is under pressure to give ground to the miners, as polls show the battle is hurting Labor in the electorate.

But the ACTU, Australian Council of Social Services (ACOSS), Australian Conservation Foundation (ACF) and Consumers’ Federation of Australia on Monday urged the government not to baulk at necessary reforms to make the tax system fairer.

Without the tax, it would be left to ordinary wage earners to make up the shortfall in government revenue, the groups said.

The fake spokespeople

The union-green groups claim they want the “ordinary Australians” to be heard. But ordinary Australians are speaking through the polls and their words are “No Thanks”.

As for ACTU (Australian Council of Trade Unions) they can hardly be described as working for their members whose jobs are at risk. Instead they’re working to save their own power and status in the political arena. Since the unions are officially tied to the ALP (the Labor Party) they’ll do anything to try to rescue their team (and influence) in government, even if it means sacrificing their own members. Union officials have their careers to think of after all…

The fake war

Running a country ought to be about negotiating between all the interested people to see how we can find some balance that is bearable for everyone. This commune-of-the-confused instead pits this as a battle, a war (don’t give in!) between the people and the mining entities. But the mining entities serve the people, are made of people, and already pay money to the people in the form of profits, salaries and taxes. Half a million of those taxpayers are also shareholders and these shareholders are some of the largest payers of tax there are. There is no neat division (though it may seem like it if you earn your salary from government grants or from donations from people who earn theirs from government largess).

The fake choice

The green-union groups paint the situation as a two-horse-race where one horse gets to pay for the euphemism called a “revenue shortfall”. They make out that this is about people versus companies (“powerful vested interests”), yet forget that companies don’t have brains, can’t vote, and if there were no skilled humans putting in the work, taking the risks and making the effort, the mining company would be at best a slab of words on paper; at worst, a failed venture. In short, miners are people too.

Plus there are an infinite number of horses which could be in the running in this race.

The mislabelled money

Speaking of “shortfalls” in revenue…  really this is code for the vast sums of money squandered by the government in stimulus packages. They’ve relabeled the massive debt ($40 odd billion dollars) that Rudd created from a surplus as a “revenue shortfall” as if the money needed to repay it was money that was already coming in, instead of new money that needs to be sucked out of something.

And what happens to that imaginary revenue if the new tax crushes the mining industry (as just about everyone associated with the industry suggests), how much tax can the government extract before the independent consenting adults leave Australian mining to use their skills and capital elsewhere?

The government makes out like it can take money back from those nasty (and gullible) foreigners, but forgets that those foreigners don’t have to own Australian shares and provide the capital for Australia’s mines. In a global market they are free to put their money into safer bets like say Chile or China.

Vilify the enemy

According to the anointed, free speech is “fine”, but if they don’t like the message, they’ll ignore it’s content and attack the messenger.

ACTU secretary Jeff Lawrence said the big miners had hijacked the tax debate.

“Mining magnates are putting at jeopardy improved superannuation savings for the workforce of more than 10 million, billions of dollars of infrastructure spending that our nation needs, and a cut to the company tax rate for 770,000 businesses,” he said.

So miners are not just speaking, they’re “hijacking”. Miners being all super rich magnates of course, and not thousands of mum and dad shareholders and workers. In the twisted PR-world miners are not the industry the creates 37% of our exports which keeps most super-accounts alive and kicking, instead they’re jeopardizing the super (that they helped create).

Spruik the baseless claims

“The RSPT misinformation being spruiked by the big miners is a disgrace.”

What particular “misinformation” would that be? Nowhere is there any specific description. If there is misinformation, then it’s in the public interest to have it spelled out, but otherwise this is just a baseless claim that amounts to nothing more than waste-our-time-bluster. The miner’s information is coming from big name auditors like KPMG, from the latest Tax Office information, and from their audited company accounts (which, if wrong, can led to jail terms for company officers). The anointed are using a foreign student’s research, six year old tax data, and the best spin their PR team can muster.

What’s a news service for?

AAP (Australian Associated Press) claims it produces  “quality news that’s ready to use”.

Quality news? The SMH, which reprinted this press release, does the country no favours by unquestioningly being a voice-piece for the confused. If AAP or the SMH were real journalists, they would have rung the coalition and asked for specifics to back up the big claim. If there are none, then they should either ignore the bluster, or print it with the reply about the specifics as well. Newspapers ought to give every interested party a voice, but “quality news” means helping to clarify exactly what the claims are and substantiate them. This is when the media serves the people.

Communication Pollution

One of my central philosophies with communicating science is that the more complicated the topic, the simpler the language has to be… and this applies just as much to an economic or political debate too.

Those who want to help the people call a debt a debt. Those who want to confuse the people call a debt a “shortfall in revenue”. Printing unsubstantiated bluster is what PR agencies do. It’s not investigative journalism.

Sloppy communication is a weapon against the people, wielded by those wishing to deceive.

H/t to Linda M for the SMH story. Thanks!

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104 comments to Green-socialist-autocrats generate bluster, media copies it

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    janama

    but wait – there’s more……

    The conference in Sydney, organised by the Federation of Australian Scientific and Technological Societies, is part of a long-term effort to develop a ”national communication charter” for major scientific organisations and universities to better disseminate the evidence for climate change.

    Australia’s chief scientist, Penny Sackett, will address the conference, and those attending will include representatives of the CSIRO, the Bureau of Meteorology, Australian Academy of Science, the Department of Climate Change and Energy Efficiency.

    The government – which has postponed its emissions trading scheme until at least 2013 – committed $30 million for a ”national campaign to educate the community on climate change, including on climate change science, in the budget last month.


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    The Socceroos really stunk up the place yesterday against Germany. The Germans here are going nuts -now thinking they are going to win it all!
    What happened!


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    Adolf Balik

    Each sophisticated system of dictatorship includes a new-speech. It is interesting that now a new-speech and AGW confession go hand in hand so often.


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    Adolf Balik

    To Janama 1:
    In communistic jargon such communication assembly body was called agit-prop (derived from agitation and propagation).


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    Henry chance

    Slogans and jargon. Spending binges create debt. It is future revenue shortfalls created with intentionality.


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    Rereke Whaakaro

    Nice piece Jo.

    I have not done the research, but I am wondering what proportion of the mining companies shareholding are onshore institutional investors – finance companies, superannuation funds, insurance companies, banks, et cetera.

    I would be surprised if the superannuation funds, and probably a lot of the investment companies, did not have sizeable share holdings as part of their portfolios.

    In those cases, the number of shares equates to the apportionment of dividends which equates to the dollar amount of profits which equates to the level of retirement income.

    I wonder how many Australians realise that this attack on “super profits” is actually stealing from their own future security and earnings.

    Hell, it will be stealing from your grandparents today, if it goes ahead.


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    Janie

    There is a discussion about this very topic under way on Andrew Bolt’s blog.

    Well worth reading!

    Rudd’s fall:-

    http://blogs.news.com.au/heraldsun/andrewbolt/index.php/heraldsun/comments/rudds_fall/

    It is interesting if you read about the “australian council of social services” you can’t help notice the RED background for their website…….

    Then there is the BS, for example……
    # We act as an independent public voice
    # We are non-party political
    #We are transparent and consult widely

    Doesn’t sound like it!

    Then there is their support for the global warming FRAUD….

    http://www.acoss.org.au/policy/climate_energy/

    They are nothing but another Leftist group!

    And the ACOSS CEO is Clare Martin, one-time ABC reporter in the NT and a major failure as the ALP Chief Minister in the NT. In that latter job she ignored the reports of indigenous child abuse and failed totally to do anything about the shame of aboriginal housing. And now she is the public face of a mob of professional bleeding hearts!


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    Ross

    I saw a Glenn Beck interview on Fox a few days ago which was with a Russian born professor ( he has been in the US for many years) about a book which I think is called
    ” Road to Serfdom”
    During the cold war it was illegal to have it or read it ( off to Siberia if you read it or shot if you sold it).Adolf might be familiar with it. It was about why the socialist system and central control, was all wrong.
    This professor did manage to read it when he was student and it shaped his thinking from then on. BUT the most interesting thing he said in the interview was that what he saw happening in the US today was what the book was arguing about or against when it was written.


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    [...] This post was mentioned on Twitter by Natalie Neal , Natalie Neal and Conservative outcast, Conservative outcast. Conservative outcast said: Green, Socialist-autocrats generate bluster, media copies it http://bit.ly/9EGfC5 #rnc #gop #tcot #tlot #ocra #sgp #twisters #tppatriots #rs [...]


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    Great Post Jo! It seems to describe the process used by the IPCC to create their assessment reports, as well. It is incredible that with so much of the material in the reports generated by the IPCC containing such a glut of non peer reviewed information that they tout it as the “Gold Standard.” What a pathetic joke!


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    Jack Walker

    One of my central philosophies with communicating science is that the more complicated the topic, the simpler the language has to be… and this applies just as much to an economic or political debate too.

    I was in the finance Industry for a while, and there was a rule of thumb even though we demand data and lots of it for business finance applications, the worse an application the more words there were.

    Seems some in the media, think that throwing a belief statment containing hundreds of words is an economic argument. Not understanding where the tax is levied and what or more imporantly who it is levied ied upon instead concentrating on spending noble purpose, is not policy it’s a wish list.

    If mines close or are capped from further development, the end sum of social services or noble goals are defeated. I can’t understand how any organizational leader can be so weak in finance management, yet the so called caring part of the debate led in part by the head of the AIG all have no basic finance skills let alone national accounting skills..

    Mining is not an internal national market. Australia is not the only game in town, either by destination or in supply, so carrying on like crime gangs doing protection in a squalid slum is not national economic leadership or even worthy commentary.

    Nice one as usual Ms Nova.


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    Jack Walker

    Oops did not get Jo’s block quote right.


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    val majkus

    Remember Rudd marching in Brisbane on May day saying ‘we want to get a fair share for all Australians’ and ‘increase superannuation for all Australians’ (or something like that)

    Stephen Bartholomeusz has a good article on those points:

    http://www.businessspectator.com.au/bs.nsf/Article/The-RSPT-is-not-a-tax-on-the-rich-pd20100615-6ESNY?OpenDocument&src=sph

    The RSPT taxes everyone

    One of the more perverse aspects of the resource super profits tax is the way that it is being characterised as a kind of class struggle, with the champions of the proletariat (aka Kevin Rudd) set in an unfair battle against the mining plutocrats (Andrew Forrest, Clive Palmer and Gina Rinehart).

    That is an easy caricature to draw, given the visibility of Forrest and Palmer in particular in the debate, and the incongruous sight of Rinehart shouting “axe the tax” in Perth last week.

    The reality of the tax is somewhat different. While the RSPT undermines Fortescue Mining’s financing model – and indeed, if implemented, would spell the end of the project financing model used by most emerging miners – the most affected by the tax are the big long-established mines.

    BHP Billiton and Rio Tinto will pay a high proportion of the tax because of their very profitable operations in the Pilbara and the coalfields of Queensland. BHP’s effective tax rate is estimated at 55 per cent if the tax is introduced.

    While the government and its supporters have tried to demonise the big miners, referring to them as greedy foreigners, corporate entities are just vehicles for collective investment. The owners of the miners are either individuals, local and foreign, or institutions investing on behalf of individuals, local and foreign. A majority of BHP’s shareholders are Australian, as would be the case for most of the smaller mining hopefuls.

    The concept of the dividend imputation system was that corporate earnings would effectively be taxed once, in the hands of shareholders. With the top tax rate and the corporate tax rate misaligned, of course, that’s not entirely the case.

    Across the sector, however, the underlying truth is that the RSPT ultimately impacts individuals and their savings and the industry, as opposed to a couple of billionaires, is trying to protect those savings and their future growth rather than the bank accounts of a few rich individuals.

    The $9 billion a year (probably more and certainly more if China is able to continue growing at the rate it has) comes out of the savings of shareholders, directly or indirectly through their superannuation fund.

    Over time, as the RSPT impacts investment decisions and brings competing investment decisions into play, it will push investment and jobs offshore.

    The more immediate effect, however, is to diminish the savings and income of existing shareholders. If the RSPT were introduced as it is now constituted, the net present value of many existing mines would be ravaged and sharemarket prices would adjust to reflect that.

    Australian shareholders would lose both capital (as a consequence of that one-of adjustment) and the income flowing from it.

    BHP has said that its effective tax rate in Australia under the RSPT would be about 55 per cent and Wayne Swan has conceded that some mines would pay the theoretical maximum of 58 per cent.

    That is the position of the company. For the local shareholders, to the extent that BHP’s earnings (and those of other tax-paying companies like Rio) are distributed, they receive a rebate at the corporate tax rate under the imputation system.

    There will be no credits or rebates for the RSPT, which means that the effective tax rate for individuals on resource company income, particularly for those on the top marginal rate, will be significantly higher that the effective tax rate levied on the companies. The effect on personal incomes will be even greater if and when the corporate tax rate is lowered to 28 per cent in 2014-15.

    If you impose a tax as substantial as the 40 per cent RSPT on a sector the impact is obvious. It is less profitable, it invests less in the high tax jurisdiction and it is less attractive as an investment destination. Not just for billionaires but for individuals and the institutions investing on their behalf.

    If there is class warfare inherent in the debate between the miners and the government, then it is not the clichéd and anachronistic war of the rich on the poor but, given our compulsory superannuation system and the level of participation of individuals in the market, something far more akin to a civil war.
    (end of quote)
    The Govt can’t even get its figures right; some are saying it is only a 40 per cent tax. But my understanding is of the 60% left the RSPT will take another 30% corporate tax after deducting the RSPT, that will leave well less then 50 per cent. I’m no economist but if the Govt thinks business will invest large sums when the business receives less than half the potential profit but incurs all risk and does all the work, the Govt is dreaming.
    If the Govt is so keen to share in the profits then why does not the Govt fund and mine these resources rather than sit back and do nothing but take the majority of the profits.
    The truth is that the Govt is looking to the RSPT to back up the ‘pie in the sky’ budget figures which indicate with it the budget will be back in the black in 2013 and that is only the first year even if all the budget predictions prove correct that the deficit will start to be paid. We need surpluses and lots of them before the debt this wasteful Govt has created will be paid and in the meantime we are borrowing $100 million per day for the interest on the debt.


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    Speedy

    Morning All

    I need a second verse….

    Penny had a little plan
    To fleece the punters so,
    And though the plan was very bent,
    She thought we’d never know…

    I have a second verse already, but reckon that there’s enough talent at this site to do something better. Challenge accepted?

    It would be extra good if the second verse can put us back on thread, otherwise Jo will be likely peeved.

    Cheers,

    Speedy


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    Baa Humbug

    Speedy: #17
    June 15th, 2010 at 10:57 am

    Kevvie also had a plan
    To fleece the miners so,
    And though the plan was very bent
    He thought we’d never know


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    Jack Walker

    Addendum.

    In addition to the Commentary at V Markjus, which is terribly salient.

    This would appear to be a first step over all towards Industry in general, we know the treasurer’s belief system from Postodes in the general distibrution of wealth, so the miners themselves appear logically a first step. We have news today (or gossip) that the miners tax is a troika designed policy with, Kevin Rudd formerly known as the economic conservitator, Wayne Swan who in fairness has never pretended at anything but his hard left socialist beliefs and of course Ken Henry whose substatials bloc work was ignored in the majority with two parts of 90 cherry picked and one policy reversed.

    I read daily “Banks next” in general commentary everywhere, but why would they even stop there, the argument consistently put forward in defence, it is our minerals, it’s our money, therefore the excuse can be extended ad infinitum until partial nationalisation occurs across Industry in general.

    Personally I think Labor now faces electoral destruction, not seen since the time of Whitlam, my thinking is based in two areas, one Australia after two decades of reform has never been more franchised as a work force and secondly as pointed out by VM above super annuation is the second biggest asset after a house a person owns. People have become more financially literate.

    This is communism albeit a limiting form instead of the usual over arching formal system. The miners are completely correct to state retrospectivity is a sovereign risk issue. It was their risk, their Industry and most importantly their success these petty gangsters now decide to racketeer profit from, because of their fiscla incompetence.

    Now we know who Kevin Rudd is. He will be lucky to last a week.


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    Baa Humbug

    Now both their plans are off the rails
    Kevvie, Penny on the nose,
    Despite all their effort at spin
    The public surely knows.


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    Jack Walker

    Ring, ring a round the Rosie,

    their all upon the nosey.

    A fabric a tissue

    They all fall down.


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    Bulldust

    Here’s the link to the SMH AGW piece:

    http://www.theage.com.au/national/scientists-to-tackle-scepticism-20100614-ya7j.html

    “Scientists to tackle skepticism”… intriguing headline given that scientists are supposed to be skeptical by nature. I think they may have spoken the truth accidently LOL. The usual suspects out themselves as blinkered AGW supporters… i.e. BoM, CSIRO etc…

    In case there was any doubt that we are headed for an election, Labor has a war chest of funds for advertising:

    http://www.theage.com.au/national/16m-for-labors-fast-broadband-ad-20100614-ya7m.html

    To quote:

    “The government’s May budget allocated $114 million over the next four years for advertising campaigns on broadband policies, climate change, tax reform and health.”

    That’s your tax dollars paying for Labor Government advertising. If I want to find out about any of those topics I research it on the web… I don’t need Government, nay taxpayer, sponsored advertisements on TV to tell me about them.

    But the lunacy does not stop at our doorstep. Notice the green autocrats in Europe actually praise the GFC for lowering emissions:

    http://www.theaustralian.com.au/news/opinion/europe-sets-crazy-course-on-climate/story-e6frg6zo-1225879604829

    No doubt they will be ecstatic when the real depression hits. It has already started and Greece was just a tremor.


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    Bulldust

    PS> That should have read “The Age” not “SMH”, but they are basically the same paper.


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    Baa Humbug

    For the benefit of our non-Aussie friends….

    Australians have never disliked miners or mining.

    BHP used to be (and still is in some circles) known as The Big Australian

    When the merger between BHP and Billiton was first tauted, there was an outcry from the public who feared we may lose BHP to the Brits. The merger only got our blessing when the company assured Australia that it would remain in Australia

    KRudd chose the wrong industry to pick a fight with. The banks would have been a better target. They also make super profits (consistently) and are despised by most.


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    John Watt

    Seems that no one cares for facts. Bluster and bludgeon rather than logic is the order of the day.

    Three easy questions:

    What role does CO2 play at the molecular level in climate change?

    What is the real value of Australia’s mineral wealth?

    What resources rent are the mining companies paying to Australians for the right to extract such minerals?

    So let’s rise above thë childish personal attacks on the various public figures in the debates and set about assembling the answers to the above…or would that be too boring?


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    Jack Walker

    Baa Humbug

    and the major Banks are owned by Super funds and levels of Government, Even Union super funds, (share holders mostly institutions, thats who I always thought the boss and owner was for 15 years) but a media term “Banks”, gives them a cloak and a handlebar moustache when they don’t normally tie orphans to railroad tracks, unless it’s orphan Wednesday of course.

    It’s all the old revolutionary agit prop rubbish, substitute Bank or Miner for filthy Jew as rich target for sovereign theft.

    They did not pick a fight with miners, they picked a fight with investors and owners.

    And Australians by and large are not haters. Listeners.


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    Bulldust

    John Watt @ 25:

    Hmmm let’s see… a small amount of direct warming (a little over 1C for a CO2 doubling I heard, all else being equal), how long is a piece of string, and depends on the legislation in the various states and territories, but is all public information. In the case of WA the royalties are decsribed adequately here:

    http://www.dmp.wa.gov.au/4407.aspx

    The policy with WA royalties is that companies pay the equivalent of approximately 10% of the resource value at the notional minehead. In practice it is easier to charge FOB rates of 7.5% for ores, 5% for concentrates and 2.5% for metals. The mining companies, therefore, have an incentive to value add as they pay progressively less tax for increased levels of processing. Note that these royalties come “off the top” (i.e. from revenue) with few deductions, unlike the PRRT or proposed RSPT.

    So we can get back to the childish attacks now?


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    FijiDave

    Now I know why my letter to the Editor was not published, whcih said in part:

    Dear Editor
    It is indeed disappointing that Colin Philp should mar his interesting journal on the voyage of Uto Ni Yalo (FT 6 May 2010) with a plug for the discredited alarmist Al Gore documentary An Inconvenient Truth.
    I quote from an article here http://www.canada.com/topics/news/story.html?id=50e42b47-ca21-47c1-bbb1-caf456348677 of 11 October 2007 where it states inter alia:

    Now there appears to be a major putsch once again to ram down our throats the same old garbage

    http://www.fijitimes.com/story.aspx?item=leader

    Perhaps someone more erudite than I might like to try their hand at letter to the same editor?


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    Roger

    Looks like we have a NEW TROLL in our midst by the name of “John Watt”.

    Chairman rudd is mustering his useful idiots……


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    Wendy

    Subject: SCHOOLS WATCH – HOW TAXPAYERS BILLIONS ARE BEING WASTED BY JULIA GILLARD AND LABOR

    http://www.theaustralian.com.au/in-depth/schools-watch

    The waste is absolutely sickening!


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    Bulldust

    This piece is well worth reading in The Australain:

    http://www.theaustralian.com.au/news/features/novices-at-the-wheel-of-state/story-e6frg6z6-1225879617496

    It certainly explains why much of the policy direction and policy sell has been so naive. One wonders how many days Rudd has left in office.


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    John Watt

    Buldust,

    At least we agree that the attacks are childish.

    Maybe my three questions aren’t so simple.

    Google “John Nicol greenhouse” to get some idea of the molecular behaviour of CO2.

    As for the resources rent issues even the miners agree that there are shortcomings in the current system. Surely the antics of BP in the Gulf of Mexico warn resource rich nations to protect themselves against the inevitable blunders of the resource extractors.

    For example what price should Queensland put on prime agricultural and grazing land when issuing gas and coal extraction leases?


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    Bernd Felsche

    One of the great furphies re the mining tax is that the wealth of minerals belongs to all Australian people.

    As far as I can tell, Australia’s Constitution doesn’t give the Commonwealth rights over minerals; other than to impose “bounties” on export. Also, if you dig up anything in Western Australia appropriate permits, then you are breaking the law. All minerals belong to “the Crown”.

    Just because you sit on the dirt, doesn’t mean that you own it.

    States collect royalties on mineral removed so that the whole State can grow as a result of mining activity. States that do not have mineral wealth are out of luck. Those States with mineral wealth that cannot be exploited due to government policy need to change the government (/policy) so that they too can reap the benefits.

    There are many thousands of people who make money from mining. They work in the industry. Only those who work in the inductry are entitled to profit from it. They are, after all, the ones who’ve taken the risk to invest, to explore and to develop the resources.

    All others who seek to profit are rent-seekers.


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    Speedy

    Baa Humbug / Bulldust

    Ever notice the warmists lack a sense of humour? Personally, I like humour because it often makes people think. Whereas the warmists prefer large turgid documents full of weasle words because it stops people from thinking. Refer IPCC etc.

    I think we all know about Arhenius 1896 etc. So the fact that the CO2 molecule has a resonant frequency at 14.5 microns is not news to us. It’s just not signficant, given that there’s already enough CO2 in the atmosphere to absorb the overwhelming majority of the 14.5 micron fraction. Any more CO2 is just competing for a diminishingly small amount of energy. About 400 million years ago, the CO2 content was about 8000 ppm – compared to the 400 ppm today. Yet we have the James Hansens of this world telling us to panic when the CO2 hits about 500. Why? (We’ve already established that solar dimming accounts for only 4 degrees Celsius, by the way.)

    Anyway, to carry on with the poetry:

    Penny had a little plan
    To fleece the punters so,
    And though the plan was very bent,
    She thought we’d never know…

    She told her story long and loud,
    But the sceptics quickly learned,
    Her story was a fairy-tale,
    So Kevin crashed and burned.

    Cheers,

    Speedy


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    Three easy questions:

    1.What role does CO2 play at the molecular level in climate change?

    2. What is the real value of Australia’s mineral wealth?

    3. What resources rent are the mining companies paying to Australians for the right to extract such minerals?

    John, #1 why bother focusing only on the molecular level? What we need are policies that relate to the planetary level. Sure, we’ve talked at length already on this site about the molecular level, as well as the atmospheric level, the feedback level, the oceanic level and the ecomonic level. Perhaps you could use the Index? There are 241 posts on this site, 90% of them about CO2, and this isn’t one of them. It’s just a tad impolite to arrive late at the clubhouse and repeat questions which you can’t be bothered to go look in the archives for.
    #2. Fair question. As I’ve asked previously, why are we proposing to charge a wildly higher rate than everyone else? Perhaps minerals are worth more, but the rest of the world doesn’t think so. Perhaps we should be “ahead of our time”? Perhaps there are benefits to downsizing one of the pillars of the Australian productive economy? Perhaps not.
    #3 The minerals are owned by the states and they charge royalties. Yes we could discuss whether we should change the constitution and centralize power. I think the Rudd government is the perfect example of the dangers of giving more power to less people. With more state control at least the random influences of a few dominant personalities is less.
    #4 Re “BP” – are you confusing our Petroleum tax with our mining tax?


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    It would be constructive at this point if we could get back on topic. Can anyone think of other ways to expose the sloppy rhetoric (apart from in my blog) and help raise standards of communication? (Poor communication being a good weapon for tyrants and the selfish.)

    What practical things can people do to get these newspapers to start acting like investigative journalists. My thinking is that a Shame Campaign on professional standards would be the cheapest and most effective. These journalists do have pride… (but there is only one of me.) It would be good to have a strategy.


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    MadJak

    John Watt,

    “Surely the antics of BP in the Gulf of Mexico warn resource rich nations to protect themselves against the inevitable blunders of the resource extractors”

    So you think it’s a good idea for we the people to foot 40% of the bill of any similar disaster as the one made by Beyond Petroleum? You do know about Beyond Petroleum – totally onboard with AGW rubbish, wants to help out the banking sector with an ETS etc. You know, a friend of the left and all that.

    Honestly, anyone who thinks hitting the miners won’t end up hitting Joe public in the pocket needs their head read.


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    Bulldust

    Bernd Felsche @ 33:
    100% correct, but I think the line of reasoning can be augmented somewhat. One should remember that there are resource rich states like WA and relatively resource poor ones like Tasmania. Because WA collects a fair bit of state revenue from royalties our share of the Federally controlled GST funds is reduced, while the share for states like Tasmania is augmented.

    This is why you find me harping on about the point that the Feds actually “steal” the royalties indirectly from the states through the Commonwealth Grants Scheme (CGS). Thus when WA collects an extra $1 billion in royalties, the state will only get to keep a very much smaller portion as the rest is indirectly rediistributed by the CGS.

    You can see how this is important when considering the “royalties for the regions” program as well. While I whole-heartedly agree that the regions need more attention from the state government, pegging that contribution to royalties is very hard to balance in the Treasury.

    For example if we commit 25% of state royalties to the regions, but the CGS leaves us with only 20% of our royalty revenue then the state is out of pocket 5% of the royalties. These numbers are hypothetical, but you can readily see the implications for state development.

    While I say hypothetical, the 25% is accurate, and I doubt we get to keep the 20% of rotyalties after the CGS is done with us, but I would need to research this further. I know WA only gets about 6.8% of the 10% GST returned. The other 3.2% is allocated to the rest of the country.


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    Ross

    In answer to Jo’s question about better communication etc. I think television is the area that is “ripe for the picking” . NB I’m in NZ so I’m not totally up to date with Aust. but I imagine it no different to NZ , USA or UK where the standard of current affairs programs is terrible compared to what it once was. How easy would it be for some independent journalists start up good investigative program that could be “syndicated” if successful? Maybe it could start, slowly, by screening on You Tube to attract attention. Andrew Bolt might put onto his blog site along with Jo ???


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    Jack Walker

    Jo thanks for blue Heeler thread management.

    1. Journalism itself has not caught up with technology. I think if we look back at the CO2 Global fear mongering. It was not until
    we could show with a simple graph comparison, that CO2 increase basically a slope at 40degree v temperature anomaly (whatever that really is) basically a flatline over a decade that the hyperbole was removed. Simplicity is elegance if it is truth or factual. However journalists don’t use charts they use words, this is their guild’s basic criteria and they have been caught on the hop without multimedia skills (or even a set of destop apps word,PP and excell).
    Here I blame editorship, in that it remains constrained in some old paper construct of picture and prose layouts. We are used to charts being the story, they see pictures only as eye candy. Tis changing but slowly.

    2. Economics, high level economics is stuck in some kind of political time warp, socialists v capitalists, when the real world and even real world politics tends to swing around some centre line between the two philosophies. I call this centrism, the public seem to understand this concept better than political classes and economists. Econometrics itself an out standing tool when applied with statistical and mathematical precision is often abused for poltical or polit economic purpose. Economics should really be National or international accounting on observables, whether the observable is profit in society or social outcomes delivered.

    3. Journalism, hyperbole and dramatics. If it bleeds it leads, I can’t see how you get around it, they learn it in the high school newspaper and it is reinforced in Uni and honed in the profession. Balanced reporting does exist but it tends to be abnormal rather than the norm, There are some excellent factual balanced journalists. (A simple word is integrity )

    But in summary, the blogsphere creamed the warmers, on numerics charts and logical discussion by the best minds available unfettered by group pressure, by group finance or group consensus with no help from the MSM.

    For the Journalist and Media guild in my honest observation/watch, true accountability is rare, retraction a sin.

    In the age of technology they don’t want to discuss technology and it is everything.


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    Jack Walker

    as for strategy, barring an asteroid collision, clicks will decide a writer’s fortune and future. People turn off.

    IN the age of paper and paper books. The intelligentsia could flourish and censor thought.

    Nevermore.

    Think Guttenburg on steroids ;-)


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    J.Hansford

    Well done Jo and well said.

    “Fairness” is apparently what the anointed decide it is, not what voters actually vote for. These groups believe in a fake democracy. The will of the people only counts if it’s also the will of the anointed.

    Lenin, Trotsky, etc, came to the same conclusion when they realized Marx had it wrong. That the workers weren’t going to rise up in spontaneous revolution as capitalism collapsed…. Indeed the workers did quite well negotiating for the benefits of capitalism…. Therefore Lenin decided that there must be a Vanguard. An elite group of “egalitarians” to lead the righteous revolution for the “unsophisticated” workers….

    Yep. We’ve all been here before…… Like the dog returning to it’s vomit, as Kipling puts it, or perhaps better still, as Chaucer puts it in more ye olde eloquence…. Ye trespassen so ofte tyme as dooth the hound that retourneth to eten his spewyng.


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    Adolf Balik

    To Ross 11:

    You are right, if you had a book or an article of Fridrich August von Hayek (e. g. Road to Serfdom) in a communist country you could go to jail as his work used to be considered a terrible ideological diversion. Von Hayek was an Austria born professor and the most important representative of so called Chicago School of liberal economy. He is an iconic person for all adherents of liberal economy and many libertarians. These who dreamed about liberal market economics under communistic rule dreamed about the system that had been described in von Hayek’s books and essays. Then the Russian professor you mentioned probably fled to US hoping for von Hayek’s world. When Chinese communist permitted von Hayek in China some of his books became best-sellers. He wrote that it is law-governed that state ruled economic system cannot be so effective and prosper like a free market liberal system. He also wrote how government interventions to economics are very dangerous even if they are driven by good intentions. He considered it way to hell paved with good intentions. The Road to Serfdom is about it. He claimed that Hitler’s power grab wasn’t his work but a long run work of governments to bossiness economics especially in response to the economic crisis. They effectively destroyed institutions and processes of society’s freedom with regulations, then the serfdom was actually enthroned by the regulators with noble aims and the dictators only took the opportunity and grabbed the authority that actually just had the power to rule the society. The current development considering fight for environment protection, fight crisis and many of “noble” targets is the same fight that gradually led the society to serfdom and Hitler only completed the only last step of the long work.

    Considering von Hayek theories we are very far on the Road to Serfdom and a new Hitler is knocking our doors.


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    Speedy

    Afternoon All

    One of the things to watch is how things get subtly manipulated by the warmists. For instance, Kerry O’Brien, Clarke&Dawe etc are suggesting that Rudd’s popularity took a dive BECAUSE he back flipped on the ETS. No doubt they were personally disappointed at his decision, but the reality is that people started walking away from Rudd when they realised his ETS was jsut bad policy based on bad science.

    It was “The Emporer is Naked” moment.

    If we allow the warmists to cling to this lie, we grant them a legitimacy they don’t deserve.

    Cheers,

    Speedy


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    Adolf Balik

    To Baa Humbug 24:

    He probably cannot choose his enemy deliberately. Fight against “global warming” and for “environment” is a fight of monopolistic groups of capitals with asymmetric positions to society and economic system and with corruption influence in politics. They fight developing and innovative capital groups who can compete to their privileged positions. CO2 permissions are barriers against grow of competing industry and a way how to allot economic grow only as a patent and feudal tenure. Power electric companies, insurance companies and banks of old system defending their environment against hot conditions with hot competition against growing, innovative and expanding industry are the good boys and the competitive industry seeking grow is the evil capitalist.


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    Jack Walker

    agree Speedy, it was a good decision, a pragmatic decison but all his previous histrionics killed just about all his hydra heads.

    But the thing that continually amazes me is how the Greens trip lightly over the quogmoire If the Greens had taken an advance move, with Turnbull Troeth and the other one I can’t remember the name.

    ETS was done and dusted.


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    MattB

    Speedy: It was “The Emporer is Naked” moment.

    Do you say that without realising that in the tale the emperor, once he realises he is naked, just keeps strutting his stuff and the crowd love it and he is more popular than ever. Had he cowered away then the crowd would have thought he really thought he had clothes on at first – what a loser.

    Message: Rudd should have kept on walking.


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    val majkus

    JO at 36; What practical things can people do to get these newspapers to start acting like investigative journalists. My thinking is that a Shame Campaign on professional standards would be the cheapest and most effective. These journalists do have pride…

    I accept that journos do have pride but while each are acting in a ‘group think’ environment that pride is fulfilled; I don’t think that the general population can educate journos quickly – it’s too late once the journos become employed in a ‘group think’ organisation such as the ABC; journos are the product of their environment as each of us is and that includes their employers and their upbringing and education; in the same way politicians are the product of their environment and we the readers are also are a product of our environment;

    I don’t think readers can change the standard of journalism immediately but readers can become more educated on the stories of the day and ask more searching questions and come to different conclusions to journos (in comments to the papers and letters to the editors); I’ve given up on the ABC

    the best example of my view in action is the ‘climate change’ skeptic movement which is active on the net but not in the MSM and journos still don’t know the difference between carbon and carbon dioxide

    If we want to change the depth of journo questioning then we the readers have to demand more in depth quality and we are the ones who have to show a demand for that; we have to integrate with the msm and leave the comfort of like minded blogs as much as possible to do this for it is only in the wider world that we can make our voices heard


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    grumpy old fart

    If everyone’s so against the mining tax, what other suggestions do people have (apart from Bulldust’s excellent idea) of slowing down the boom-and-bust mining cycle so that we don’t wreck Perth with boom wealth?

    we need a sustainable industry that is capable of supporting our grandkids when they enter the workplace. Mining isn’t it. So what is?


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    Adolf Balik

    Red and Green €Urocrats seeking a global socialistic revolution – Merkel and Sarkozy – call for a global bank tax, thus, a tax impost to everyone for everything. They wrote a letter to the president of G20 appealing for it.


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    val majkus

    grumpy old fart at 50 the debt industry is looking good at this stage


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    Jack Walker

    Broadband and IT and education.

    Cost of Living is too high, for manufacturing exported goods.

    Food, we can feed half the world with the right dams and infrastructure.

    That is the nutshell.


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    John Watt

    Joanne,

    Thanks for the overview comments. My apologies. I was way off topic.

    However just to briefly elaborate:

    The molecular CO2 issue is one of getting the basic physics/chemistry exposed and accepted. If Dr Nicol is right and CO2 has no effect at the molecular level and therefore has no impact at the planetary level then we have no need for an ETS or for the quasi-political rhetoric about double-dissolutions and the like. My assumption is that getting back to basics will provide a way forward for everyone who can take an open-minded approach to climate change. Thusfar we have not reached an understanding of the causes of climate change. Until we do it is very likely that any action taken will be a waste of scarce resources and will not help us live with climate change.

    The resources rent issues need to be addressed outside the political arena. I suspect reference to some historical parallels may help us clarify our thinking. Once the minerals are gone Australia descends into pauperdom. Currently we have a pretty healthy economy and relatively low unemployment. Do we need greater growth levels? Why further ignite the boom? Don’t accelerate the level of mineral depletion because that simply reduces the time we have to prepare for life in a resource-depleted Australia.

    The reference to BP is simply a very timely example of what happens when resource extractors take risks with the environment. Resource rich nations need to levy insurance premiums on resource extractors to help clean up the inevitable messes that accompany resource extraction. Such a premium has to be a key component in any calculation of a resource rent.


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    Jack Walker

    I would sign off on 18 bill for independent national BB in a heartbeat.

    Beats the s** out of windfarms and every other fad, I respect Australian innovation and I would unleash the beast, I would let Aussie intellect and innovation get viral internal.


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    Bob Malloy

    MattB:
    June 15th, 2010 at 6:36 pm

    Message: Rudd should have kept on walking.

    Exactly Matt, with all his human deficiencies on show. But wait they’ve all been on show for all to see for some time.


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    Scott

    Jo at 36; Can anyone think of other ways to expose the sloppy rhetoric (apart from in my blog) and help raise standards of communication? (Poor communication being a good weapon for tyrants and the selfish.)

    What about a ‘mediawatch’ website/blog, similar concept to the ABC mediawatch program, only not so smarmy and self important as the presenter there, and actually naming and shaming the sloppy reporters/articles, etc. A large following could be encouraged through linking that would eventually put pressure on journos to do their research and report factually without fear or favour other than the fear of being named and shamed.


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    Jack Walker

    This is what is called a negotiation.

    Re iteration.

    1. Damages before Law precedings are 10 bill damages on offer.
    2. In the information age Monopoly is not accepted.
    3. The need of Australia comes first.
    4. Access is land and jurisdiction.
    5 All assets are fully depreciated through taxation and therefore good will.
    6 all assets in ground are failing technology.

    We expect nothing more or less than a fair or just outcome, before all legal expectations and all legal possibilities are explored.


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    Louis Hissink

    AIG News Issue 100 has policy statements on this at http://www.aig.org.au under newsletters, June 2010.

    Also the Raff Report of 1 June is mandatory reading for the economic illiterate (www.henrythornton.com).

    Gerard Jackson weighs in on the economic fallacy of a Resource Rent Tax at http://www.brookesnews.com

    Keep the fight up folks, the Mining Super Profits tax is pure Marxism but Rudderited to make it look like something else. Rudd’s three, 30 year old, advisors could be blamed for the whole mess.


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    Louis Hissink

    Val @ 49

    Have you read Bernard Goldberg’s two books about the US Media, Biased, and Arrogant? He explains it well and they can’t change, sad to say.


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    val majkus

    Louis thanks for that comment; no I haven’t read those books but I’ve just had a look at http://www.climateconversation.wordshine.co.nz/2010/06/when-will-our-bloody-journalists-wake-up/
    quoting in part … How obvious must the lack of credibility in AGW become before New Zealand’s so-called journalists wake up to it?

    Their disconnection from reality now transcends mere embarrassment for the onlookers; it has become actually humiliating, because the only remaining reason for our nation’s professional journalists to hold to the IPCC line on dangerous man-made global warming is an intentional neglect of the facts.

    end of quote
    one of the comments by Andy is pertinent Andy says:
    June 12, 2010 at 8:32 pm
    By the way, in response to your original question “When will our bloody journalists wake up?”, I think it’s time to give up on MSM. The blogosphere is where I get my news from these days.

    I have presented a few number on the ETS above in a fairly rushed manner, but there are some serious questions to be asked here regardless of whether you think manbearpig is the greatest threat to humankind. I have asked questions to government staff of the above and will continue to do so until I understand why the NZ government is pressing ahead with the ETS.

    In times gone past, journalists used to do this kind of thing. Now it is up to bloggers to do the work. This, sadly, is the state of the media and their political claque throughout the western world.

    end of quote
    and judging from Climategate and how far behing the blogosphere the MSM were it’s best to direct our research efforts there rather than relying on the MSM for informed comment


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    MadJak

    John Watt@54,

    The reference to BP is simply a very timely example of what happens when resource extractors take risks with the environment.

    Ok, I can play that game. Let’s just consider for a moment what would happen if the current federal government was responsible for fixing the oil leak.

    They would do… uhhmmm.. thinking about this…. beat their chest at Beyond Petroleum and then get to work doing…… uhmmmmm…. throw some money at some schemes to clean up the mess…. oh wait… tried that…. ended up with electrocutions…… Can’t have that, it’s politically distasteful.

    Maybe the insurance could be underwritten by AIG?, or maybe we could establish our very own Freddy Mac? Oh wait, that doesn’t seem to work either….

    Here’s a better idea, cut back on Government bureaucracies and instead of seeking “rents” from Businesses which will just be passed onto the middle class of Australia (again).

    It’s not their money, this is not tax reform, it is Just Another Tax to feed an unnecessary deficit which has been generated by an Ideology in the hope that the CPRS would cover the gap. Pity the CPRS was based on advocacy based science.

    A Bit inconvenient that, eh mate!


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    Either Jack Walker is on too much Johnny Walker or I’m on too much Bundy Rum. I can’t make head or tails of his posts. Am I the only one?

    ——————-

    I’ve edited. Hopefully Jack will try to explain what he means and post a few less one liners. Jack, you do realize your comments are going out in emails to lots of people? — JN


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    Jack Walker

    Summary.

    John Watts. The mining rent tax is a dumb idea by dumb people who do TV and not policy to cover dumb uncontrolled spending.

    Short 100 billion dollars.

    The terms are Prime Minister and Treasurer bankrupt and incompetent.

    The term is dismissal.


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    Jack Walker

    Jo is that simple language, your blog.


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    Jack there is a big difference between simplifying things and dumbing them down. Speaking with clarity and without clutter is one of the hardest tasks and ought be the highest aim of any communicator. Any idiot can complexify something. (And any half wit can say the obvious). It’s about the quality of the content…


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    Henry chance

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DALcHFTKlzA

    The arctic is evaporating.

    Now Algore has been found that the heat comes from friction. apparently he uses his massive carbon footprint and track down a little action. Tipper his wife can’t trust him. so he:

    Al Gore’s split from wife Tipper after 40 years of marriage was a shock to everyone who thought theirs was the ideal marriage. Now Star can exclusively reveal that the former Vice President was having an affair with Larry David’s ex-wife — for the past two years!


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    Tel

    If everyone’s so against the mining tax, what other suggestions do people have (apart from Bulldust’s excellent idea) of slowing down the boom-and-bust mining cycle so that we don’t wreck Perth with boom wealth?

    Oh come and wreak me with too much wealth. I can take it! :-)

    Sounds like the sort of problem you have, when you don’t have any real problems to worry about.

    Here’s a bit of a tip for surviving the boom & bust: save a bit when times are good. Pretty simple stuff huh?

    As for my grandkids, I don’t want my parents telling me how to live my life, I’m not arrogant enough to try to tell my grandchildren what jobs they must be doing. I agree that mining all on its own won’t run the country (not even today) but there are plenty of other industries in Australia.

    Part of the reason we have trouble with manufacturing is the high wages for low-skilled labour, but another part is the high price of electricity, the high price of transport, the high price of industrial land, the general resistance to automated technology (e.g. robots, etc) and I’ll also point out that engineers with high levels of skills can without exception earn better wages outside Australia (and large numbers do leave the country).

    The other problem with manufacturing is that it is seriously competitive, and getting more competitive. If you are even a tiny bit behind (and believe me we are) then you get further behind. Trying to fix this with redirected tax dollars and “wealth transfer” is a failed strategy. We can see this with the recent “Building Education Revolution” where they pretended to be helping our kids future by putting down overpriced buildings into schools. No one even considered actually paying the teachers more, or providing better educational facilities, just more buildings. Is the building supposed to teach? It always happens with tax spend… it gets dumped into the most outrageously inappropriate projects.

    Makes a lot more sense to let people try what they want to do and see how it goes — some of them will be successful. Diversity can only come from freedom, not from some authority telling people which activities to undertake.

    The only people with strong incentive to allocate resources properly are people with a sense of ownership, who are closely involved with the activity. That it why central planning never builds a strong economy. China only achieved economic growth when they allowed individuals to run businesses and make profits. Russia discovered the same thing, central planning was too cumbersome and too prone to corruption.


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    Anna

    Subject: Alarmists all at sea

    Matt Ridley has his book The Rational Optimist fact-checked by five warmist scientists, including our own alarmist, Ove Hoegh-Guldberg. Conclusion:

    After reading their critiques, I stand even more firmly behind my conclusion that the threats to coral reefs from both man-made warming and ocean acidification are unlikely to be severe, rapid or urgent.

    He explains why. And then starts fact-checking Hoegh-Guldberg instead…

    http://blogs.news.com.au/heraldsun/andrewbolt/index.php/heraldsun/comments/alarmists_all_at_sea/


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    Bob Malloy

    February 3,1983 Bill Hayden steps down as leader of the Australian Labor Party (In opposition at the time) to avoid another leadership challenge from one Robert Hawke. At a press conference he states that “..a drovers dog could lead the Labor Party to victory at the present time.”

    Now I admit I voted Labor in 2007, but could it be that the drovers dog did actually did lead the party to victory.


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    Inky

    Jo, like all sound policies, the solution to the Fairfax press’ bad journalism resides in market forces — and market pressures

    So far we have seen circulations of the Age and SMH decline rather steeply, especially at the Age, which cannot be long for this world, as the word in Melbourne says it now produces profitable editions only two days out of seven. And that would seem to be the fulcrum for reform — don’t waste breath criticising the papers’ journalism, target the advertisers, whose feedback is more likely to be heeded.

    If you see some piece of rank, self-righteous silliness, consult the nearest display ad to the story and call the proprietor. Them him or her how distressed you are to see their business supporting nonsense and note that it does his business no good to be to be seen in such company.

    I have done this several times, and in each instance the managers I contacted expresed their gratitude for the feedback.

    Fairfax is currently run by a very dim man called Brian McCarthy, who pionered a cynical and corrosive editorial policy while overseeing the Rural Press country chain: Cut staff cut staff, cut staff and then replace that lost local content with syndicated twaddle and cut and paste press releases. He could get away with it in the bush because most country towns have no alternatives to his rustic monopoly. As his bush rags’ circulations declined, he compensated by upping ad rates and gouging local advertisers, who have had no option but to pay more for less.

    In the more competitive atmosphere of the Big Smoke, that doesn’t work quite so well, which hasn’t stopped McCarthy from implementing it. The Age staff has been decimated and the paper is now devoted to cheap, shallow nonsense, mostly reported by credulous children in their twenties. Editors retain their positions by dent of fealty to McCarthy’s delusional business model. How else to explain the continued presence of Burge and Gill atop the Fininacial Review/BRW group. They have pushed circulations so low that the Financial Review is no longer eligible to enter PANPA’s major Best Newspaper category, yet that pair of dolts remain firmly in charge as the franchise fades.

    So contact the advertisers. With Fairfax’s revenue stream so parlous, McCarthy and his sheltered workshop of senior aides will likely pay attention. Nothing concetrates the mind quite so readily as the prospect of imminent death.

    And if we really wanted to make the point, we could settle on one Fairfax advertiser and select it for an organised boycott. I have no time to mount such an effort, but if some energetic soul were to do so, it would have my enthusiastic support.


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    pat

    it’s reached a point where i want a “carbon-free” warning at the beginning of all TV and radio programs so i know CAGW advocacy will not feature in any way in the program before i watch or listen to it. with newspapers, i simply don’t buy them and that is something we can all do. “hands off CO2″ T-shirts which we could make ourselves is another option to counterract the media “spin”:

    16 June: Shaun Carney: Labor’s destructive path
    Indeed, some unions are leading the way in trying to hive off parts of the movement and to attach them to the Greens. In Victoria, the electricians’ union is considering disaffiliating from Labor, and the manufacturing workers union wants to help the Greens unseat finance minister Lindsay Tanner from the seat of Melbourne…
    Obviously, Rudd’s decision to defer the carbon pollution reduction scheme legislation after its defeat in the Senate last December is a key driver of the shift.
    But in the context of what really happened, moving to the Greens is a curious way of punishing Labor, typical of the confusion within the contemporary centre-left in Australia. Labor crafted the carbon-reduction legislation and voted for it in the Senate. So did two Liberal senators, leaving the government five short of a majority. If the five Greens senators had voted for it, it would now be law. The Greens opposed Labor’s scheme because they regarded it as too soft on big polluters. But the polls suggest that the voters who have deserted Labor over its deferral thought otherwise.
    Labor’s support remained strong through the summer and into the autumn, and collapsed after the deferral announcement. So voter unhappiness is not over any weaknesses in the scheme, which is the Greens’ gripe, but over the government’s failure of will. The paradox of this shift in sympathies that is now apparently so strong is that the three parties that stand to benefit are the ones that did not vote for the carbon-trading legislation.
    For the Greens, mopping up all the extra Labor votes could turn out to be a pyrrhic victory. If Tony Abbott becomes prime minister, there will be no emissions trading scheme and no real attempt to put a price on carbon. Indeed, the Coalition parties are, in the bulk, not believers in significant man-made climate change, either in their party room or their party memberships…
    http://www.smh.com.au/opinion/politics/labors-destructive-path-20100615-yd60.html

    13 June: ABC: Parties point fingers over shelved climate scheme
    In his Deakin Lecture on Saturday night, the former opposition leader Malcolm Turnbull said Prime Minister Kevin Rudd had shown a lack of courage by shelving his emissions trading scheme.
    “Right now we have every resource available to us to meet the challenge of climate change except for one, and that is leadership,” Mr Turnbull said.
    “Our efforts to deal with climate change have been betrayed by a lack of leadership – a political cowardice – the likes of which I have never seen in my lifetime.”…
    http://www.abc.net.au/news/stories/2010/06/13/2925889.htm

    16 June: SMH: AFP: Whale poop fights global warming
    But this is only a part of the picture, according to the paper, published in the British journal Proceedings of the Royal Society B…
    In a heroic calculation, Australian biologists estimated that about 12,000 sperm whales in the Southern Ocean each defecate around 50 tonnes of iron into the sea every year after digesting the fish and squid they hunt…
    http://news.smh.com.au/breaking-news-world/whale-poop-fights-global-warming-20100616-ydl6.html

    15 June: BBC: Richard Black: Sperm whale faeces offset CO2 emissions
    http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/science_and_environment/10323987.stm

    btw there are literally thousands of google results today advocating carbon pricing in one form or another, despite:

    Prof Phil Jones, director of the University of East Anglia’s Climatic Research Unit, has admitted that for the past 15 years there has been no ‘statistically significant’ warming, has conceded the possibility that the world was warmer in medieval times than now, has admitted he may have actually lost relevant papers, that his record keeping is ‘not as good as it should be’ and in testimony to the House of Commons Science and Ttechnology Committee, when asked how often scientists reviewing his papers for probity before publication asked to see details of his raw data, methodology and computer codes, he replied: “They’ve never asked.”

    http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-1250872/Climategate-U-turn-Astonishment-scientist-centre-global-warming-email-row-admits-data-organised.html

    http://www.guardian.co.uk/environment/cif-green/2010/mar/01/phil-jones-commons-emails-inquiry

    Mike Hulme, Professor of Climate Change in the School of Environmental Sciences at the University of East Anglia says ‘the IPCC consensus was phoney’ and the actual number of scientists who backed that claim was “only a few dozen experts,” in a paper for Progress in Physical Geography, co-authored with student Martin Mahony:

    (see pages 10 and 11)
    http://www.probeinternational.org/Hulme-Mahony-PiPG%5B1%5D.pdf

    it’s a nonpartisan struggle we are involved with, and it’s a battle for the future credibility of science.


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    Speedy

    Morning All

    Winston Churchill said that a joke is a serious thing and as a method of communication it packs quite a punch. In earlier times, what we now know as nursery rhymes were sometimes composed around real people and events – for example:

    http://www.rhymes.org.uk/little_jack_horner.htm

    In those days there was no free press of any description and no blogs of course so these little ditties became a way of communicating the issues. Many of the words and nursery rhymes lyrics were used to parody the royal and political events of the day, direct dissent would often be punishable by death.

    One nursery rhyme was about Humpty Dumpty, which was supposed to have been a large and critical cannon involved in a siege during the English Civil War. My version:

    Kevin the Rudd stands by his tax;
    Kevin the Rudd faces the axe,
    ‘Cos all the voters and all Rudd’s men,
    Won’t believe a word he says again.

    Alternatively, I could say that Rudd’s chief and only weapon has been spin, that his credibility has been mortally wounded by his ineptitude and that, as a result, Rudd is a spent political force.

    Not fussed which one you prefer – as long as the message gets across. Personally I find it easier and more compact to communicate with humour – hence my Clarke and Dawe parodies.

    Cheers,

    Speedy


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    Roger

    Checkout this LUNATIC US senator who is obviouslt a global warming FANATIC and a supporter of the FRAUD…….

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=KJJB7zFsFFE


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    john of sunbury

    Inky @73

    Very good suggestion. I have often complained direct to the publication about poor journalistic standards but it is generally unsatisfying. I will adopt your approach in future.


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    Roger

    Impoverished SE Europeans turn to wood for heating BECAUSE OF THE HIGH COST OF ELECTRICITY.

    IT IS ONLY A MATTER OF TIME BEFORE THE SAME THING HAPPENS IN AUSTRALIA, THANKS TO THE FANATICAL GREEN POLICIES OF AUSTRALIAN GOVERNMENTS MAKING THE COST OF ELECTRICITY UNAFFORDABLE!!

    http://www.euractiv.com/en/enlargement/impoverished-se-europeans-turn-wood-heating-news-494816


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    grumpy old fart

    Oh come and wreak me with too much wealth. I can take it!
    Sounds like the sort of problem you have, when you don’t have any real problems to worry about.
    Here’s a bit of a tip for surviving the boom & bust: save a bit when times are good. Pretty simple stuff huh?

    Yeah, but people are stupid and aren’t saving. Instead we’re buying badly built houses for far more than they’re worth. See Ireland for what happens when the boom stops and the migrant labour leaves…they’re demolishing up to 20% of their real estate. The same *will* happen here unless we do something about it.

    As for my grandkids, I don’t want my parents telling me how to live my life, I’m not arrogant enough to try to tell my grandchildren what jobs they must be doing. I agree that mining all on its own won’t run the country (not even today) but there are plenty of other industries in Australia.

    Like what? And if there are other industries, how long will they last when all the workers go to the mines? The mines pay such huge salaries to get people, no other industry can really compete. AS you say the major reason we don’t have a manufacturing industry here is that labour costs too much to compete. The reason labour costs so much is that any manufacturer is competing with the mines. The problem is that the mines *can’t* last and *will* run out, leaving us with an overpaid unskilled workforce. All the other reasons for not having industry here are irrelevant (electricity should be cheaper here considering our vast hydro, solar, wind, gas and coal generating abilities, we’ve got more industry-suitable land than anywhere else in the world, and no-one wants high-skilled engineers here because the low-skilled labour costs too much, so they go elsewhere).

    The other problem with manufacturing is that it is seriously competitive, and getting more competitive. If you are even a tiny bit behind (and believe me we are) then you get further behind.

    So we should just not try? Why not use our mining wealth to get ahead with another industry, instead of spending it on overpriced, badly built second homes down south? Much better than running out of iron ore and letting our grandkids try and catch up with no excess wealth, surely?

    Trying to fix this with redirected tax dollars and “wealth transfer” is a failed strategy. We can see this with the recent “Building Education Revolution” where they pretended to be helping our kids future by putting down overpriced buildings into schools. No one even considered actually paying the teachers more, or providing better educational facilities, just more buildings. Is the building supposed to teach? It always happens with tax spend… it gets dumped into the most outrageously inappropriate projects.

    Yeah, but you get the government you vote for, and pollies are a nightmare for thinking short term, next election, populist crap. Krudd’s talking about putting the revenue from the super tax into superannuation, as an obvious ploy to the retiring boomers. He should be shot.

    Makes a lot more sense to let people try what they want to do and see how it goes — some of them will be successful. Diversity can only come from freedom, not from some authority telling people which activities to undertake.
    The only people with strong incentive to allocate resources properly are people with a sense of ownership, who are closely involved with the activity. That it why central planning never builds a strong economy. China only achieved economic growth when they allowed individuals to run businesses and make profits. Russia discovered the same thing, central planning was too cumbersome and too prone to corruption.

    Yeah, OK, so why are the people with the sense of ownership ploughing all this wealth into crappily built overpriced ‘investment’ homes, when it’s obviously a complete waste of money? Even the worst Soviet mismanagement didn’t get this bad…


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    Speedy

    Roger

    This is mad! The reason they banned coal fired fireplaces in London was to prevent the pea-soup smogs that literally killed people up unitl the 1950′s. Now an “environmental” solution (raising electricity cost to reduce CO2 emissions) is bringing this all back again.

    The cure is worse than the disease!

    Cheers,

    Speedy


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    Off topic since not sure where to post…

    For your consideration & please freely re-distribute:

    Rescue from the Climate Saviors

    http://hockeyschtick.blogspot.com/2010/06/rescue-from-climate-saviors.html


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    Wendy

    Australian Ski-fields enjoy best opening of the season in years – GOODBYE TO GLOBAL WARMING!!!

    Have a read of this…..

    http://globalfreeze.wordpress.com/2010/06/14/australia-ski-fields-have-enjoy-best-opening-of-the-season-in-years/


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    pat

    andrew bolt has the following, read the extracts:

    Butterfly broken
    The Age was very excited in March by the latest research of climate alarmist David Karoly…
    In fact, the study that so pleased The Age was so dodgy that some PhD student, Marc Hendrix, now comes along and blows it to pieces with a quick letter that the Royal Society considers so convincing that it’s obliged to publish. The main charge is cherry picking. Some extracts: ….
    of course, the correction will receive none of media publicity that Karoly’s original scare did.
    http://blogs.news.com.au/heraldsun/andrewbolt/index.php/heraldsun/comments/butterfly_broken/


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    Baa Humbug

    Hockey Schtick: #80
    June 16th, 2010 at 1:22 pm

    That was one of the best links I’ve seen in a while. Thnx.
    I recommend it to anyone interested.


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    Jennifer Parfenovics

    This is a snipet from the WORLD NET DAILY website. There is a definite parallel between Obama and Rudd as far as they are cold blooded fakes who are branded for and by the media and scyophantic journalists who continue to sing their praises even though the majority of people have woken up that they are nasty crazy extreme leftist con men who are deliberately destroying Australia and America.

    From an article re Democratic senators ( creepy Carville ) and BP which has spent millions rebranding itself as BEYOND PETROLEUM green renewable nonsense instead of doing what they should have been doing, drilling for oil safely and efficiently !

    quote ;

    Brand crisis

    In 2005, filmmaker Rachel Boynton produced an award-winning documentary, “Our Brand is Crisis,” a title reminiscent of Rahm Emanuel’s often repeated admonition, “Let no crisis go to waste.”

    Boynton got extensive inside access to film the consulting efforts of GCS advisers Greenberg, Rosner and Carville in Bolivia, recording their focus group sessions as well as consulting sessions with Sánchez de Lozada during his 2002 campaign.

    “Our Brand is Crisis” has received widespread critical acclaim for the cynical view exposed of public relations packaging of political candidates by consultancy firms such as Greenberg Quinlan Rosner and their GCS affiliate.

    The documentary “opens a window onto a troubling trend: the export of high-tech, American political consultants to countries around the world,” wrote film critic Jason Silvermanin for Wired.com. “Making the most of what seems like unlimited access to Goni and his advisors, director Rachel Boynton paints a portrait of a cold-blooded political campaign that’s more responsive to polling data than to the real needs of citizens.”

    Matt Stoller at My Direct Democracy, MYDD.com, wrote, “What is remarkable about the film is the behind-the-scenes look at how these guys operate. The firm is the Greenberg Carville Shrum group, and their cynicism and arrogance is laid bare as they use modern American marketing tools to play God in a country about which they clearly know nothing.”

    In one of the film’s more memorable moments, Carville advises on camera, “A campaign is like intercourse – you never know when it’s going to peak.”

    GCS principals continue to provide advice to the Obama administration.

    A video clip of a March 31 Christian Science Monitor breakfast meeting shows Carville and Greenberg spelling out how President Obama can “repackage” his economic plan to improve poll ratings.


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    Geoff Sherrington

    About 1990 I spent many hours with QCs and other legal people, because the ownership of minerals was vested in the Crown in the form of the States. The situation with Territories was less clear, but there was no Federal Mining Act that remotely resembled the State Mining Acts.

    At the time I was President of the NT Chamber of Mines and Energy, this being by far the biggest NT industry sector. The Aust Constitution provides that where a Federal and State (or territory) law is in conflict, the Federal law will prevail. There were some promising indications of new mines in the NT on mining leases granted by the Feds, with conditions that a minimum annual expenditure go to each lease for exploration/mining; but then the Feds got involved with World Heritage treaties and one outcome was that no mining or exploration was permitted on World Heritage land. So there was an obvious conflict because the Feds said that we both to mine, and to not mine.

    Our draft Federal Mining Bill was drawn up with property rights in mind. Very briefly, it noted that undiscovered mineral wealth was the property of the land owner. If, through prescribed processes, a person or corporation discovered minerals of value, the discoverer was obliged to negotiate a compensation agreement with the landowner for land use – there were provisions for mediation, etc..

    The critical aspect was that the newly-discovered minerals, which could be worth billions, belonged to the discoverer. Recognising that there was a need to spread the wealth, there was provision for royalty payments to the States or Territories enclosing the mineral deposits.

    To my knowledge, there is still no Federal Mining Act resembling the State ones, except perhaps for offshore fossil fuels. Nuclear materials have special Federal provisions.

    I mention these matters because we often hear the comment “The minerals belong to the people” and that “The people should expect a return from the mining of their minerals.” To be fair, the main component of ownership of the minerals should rest with the discoverer, who can have spent a lot of money at high risk. If John or Jane Citizen have contributed no money to the newly discovered mineral wealth exercise, why should they expect to share the profits? The logic is similar to saying all people should get a tax return from potato farmers because each potato takes a way a little of the value of the land that everyone owns. (So look out when potato farmers start making large profits).

    Strictly, if the minerals attracting a proposal for a super tax on profits are in West Australia, the people of other States and Territories (except perhaps Hutt River) have no entitlement to super profit redistribution, except by illogical and distorted procedures by the Feds.

    And that, precisely, is what we are getting. No wonder Australia’s sovereign risk for mining has suddenly gone orbital.


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    MattB

    Just my opinion of course, but I do wonder if headings like “Green-Socialist-Autocrats” have broad appeal.


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    george

    Do headings like “Green-Socialist-Autocrats” have broad appeal? Well, I suspect such people actually exist;

    http://www.businessinsider.com/how-were-going-to-handle-the-oil-leak-2010-6

    I recall reading recently (probably seppo right-wing propaganda, who knows?) that a contributing factor to the Horizon woopsie was the reticence of the Obama administration to approve drilling for oil in shallower waters or in Alaska – ostensibly for environmental reasons. If true…oh, the irony…note the segue towards the end of the rant about renewable energy.

    Eddy et al from the Home of the Brave, any more background info to this?


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    Mark D.

    George @ 87

    There is truth to the notion that we are drilling that far off shore because it was imagined to be “safer for the environment”. The politics around where we drill is insane. Remember that BP gave a huge sums to the Obama campaign. Then let your mind take a walk around why they might want to cut our domestic production. I have a hard time believing the Deepwater Horizon explosion was sabotage, but I do believe that the mess is going to be played by politicians and they are prone to political sabotage. In the end who knows.

    Right now Obama has shut down all Gulf deep drilling which has idled some 33 drill rigs. With the Gulf tourism economy teetering already (because of perception not oil) this Obama shutdown is a triple economic hit to the Gulf states.

    Since the Drill rigs are floating, they may be on their way soon to other than USA drill sites. http://www.reuters.com/article/idUSN1115006620100611

    When you look at the gulf states and how they voted here, you might imagine some politics behind the problem:
    http://politicalmaps.org/wp-content/uploads/2008/11/2008-election-map-wash-post.gif

    Obama is either cunning or inept depending on which outcome you want his actions to cause.


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    Mark D.

    Sorry the map I linked to has no key.

    Blue = counties voting Obama
    Red = Counties voting McCain


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    val majkus

    Geoff at 85 I understand the legal position is that the ownership of minerals lies with the States who charge royalities to the miners; (don’t know what the situation is with the Territories); WA’s AG has indicated there will be a constitutional challenge if the proposal goes ahead – that is if RSPT legislation is passed – I did read an article by a WA academic – sorry can’t find a link to it now – saying that if legislation was carefully worded it would not impinge on State’s rights as the Feds have taxing power and corporations power; royalties are to be covered by tax credits – don’t know what the situation is with losses; the ‘minerals belong to all the people’ is just the Govt spin to get punters on side and from reading lay comments in the Aust and the National Times this has worked with some punters; they’ve been some articles about the constitutionality – I recall one by Prof Flint in the Quadrant Online – but so far the Labor States have remained silent – they can still charge their royalties if the RSPT goes ahead and lift them as the result is RSPT tax credit; thanks for sharing your experience; I’d like to see your comment published in the National Times or the Australian


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    Geoff Sherrington

    val majkus

    Thank you for your kind comments. The situation is of course more complex than can be put into a few simple sentences.

    You mention the so-called Corporations Power. From meetings to prepare for the Federal Constitution prior to 1901, many papers have been preserved. If you study these papers, you find that the origins of the corporations power are with a few companies who, at that time, were trading internationally. The start of the Federation could change their legal status and so there was a need for a transitional provision so they were not disadvantaged. Even now, the wording of the Corporations section is vague. It is to make laws for “51 (xx.) Foreign corporations, and trading or financial corporations formed within the limits of the Commonwealth: ”

    Various Courts have extended the interpretation far from that intended by the Founding Fathers, often by contorted logic and disregard for original intent. That is a shame, because it places great power where none was intended.

    Corporations will accept Federal scrutiny in some of their affairs, such as regulation of cowboy traders, uniform safety laws, etc., but in a more ideal country the Federal Parliament would not poke its nose into every nook and cranny of corporation business. It goes without saying that I believe the competence of a room of top corporation people far excels the quality of a room of politicians. I have met many of the latter and felt disinclined to invite many home for dinner.


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    val majkus

    Geoff thanks for your reply and I accept what you say – I’ve found an article here http://www.smh.com.au/business/setback-for-miners-in-antitax-campaign-20100525-wafh.html
    quoting in part

    The constitution bars central government from taxing the property of the six states, and mineral resources are treated in Australia as though they were the property of the states.

    But the two experts told Reuters today that Western Australia, home to the nation’s $35 billion-a-year iron ore industry, would be very unlikely to overturn the tax in court, citing the proposed structure of the tax and legal precedents.

    “Challenges rarely succeed and there haven’t been any for some years, partly because the law itself is pretty clear that there is great scope for how the Commonwealth (the central government) levies a tax,” said Professor George Williams, a constitutional lawyer at Sydney’s University of New South Wales.

    Another expert agreed, noting that the tax would not, strictly speaking, apply to mineral resources themselves. Instead, it would apply to the profits derived from them.

    “Depending on the drafting of the law it seems that a tax on company profits derived from resources, which have become company property, would be unlikely to fall into these limited categories (of unconstitutional taxes),” said Peter Mellor, tax specialist at Melbourne’s Monash University.
    end of quote
    However s 114 of the Constitution could come into play which is Prof Flint’s view and I’ve googled quite a good article here http://www.upstreamonline.com/live/article215592.ece which discusses that aspect as well


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    Dodger

    Further to Inky’s comment on fairfax above, Crikey reports today that the Age is laying off eight more hacks.

    The lines for circulation, staffing and revenue are all converging — on zero.


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    Siliggy

    Plus there are an infinite number of horses which could be in the running in this race

    Maybe some camels also:
    http://www.reuters.com/article/idUSTRE65D0OH20100614
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=cQNQfaTNK14


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    Thomas

    RUDD’S ELECTION STRATEGY REVEALED……

    PATHETIC LEFTIST LABOR DRIVEL WOULD BE AN UNDERSTATEMENT!!!

    http://blogs.news.com.au/heraldsun/andrewbolt/index.php/heraldsun/comments/labor_goes_positive_on_abbott/P40/


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    Baa Humbug

    I’m no expert on taxation matters nor mining.
    But I am a Queensland citizen and as such a quasi “owner” of the minerals in the ground. My thoughts on taxing mining comes from the folowing hypothetical..

    Take 2 mines A and B. Operating next to each other, digging up the same stuff, Obtanium, which has a world wide market price.
    Mine A is well managed, has good relations with staff and has kept up with and invested early in the latest technology and best practice.
    Mine B is the opposite of the above, old equipment, bad relations inadequate practices.

    We would assume, under most circumstances, Mine A would be more productive and profitable than mine B.

    Regards taxing these two mines, a tax on their profits would yield more from mine A than mine B.
    I don’t like that, effectively we would be punishing the more productive mine per tonne of Obtanium, especially if it slips into the “super profit” category. We would be providing an incentive for mine A to NOT slip into super profits, either by way of accounting, or production levels or any other way the mine executives and their accountants devise.

    However a royalty tax, taken off the top on a per tonne basis, leaves the rest of the Obtanium for the miner to maximise his profits through good management and best practice.
    The more profitable mine (unpunished) is more likely to spend a portion of profits back into the local community, (I believe).

    thats just my opinion


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    Paul Kenyon

    A new term has surfaced here: Gang Green. Perhaps you folks can put it to approproiate and effective use.
    Paul


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    Mark D.

    Excellent Paul!

    Gang Green. The treatment for a serious case is?


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    Geoff Sherrington

    val majkus:
    June 17th, 2010 at 10:56 am

    I agree that the Feds can ride on their taxation powers, rendering the ownership of minerals rather academic. However, in its original form, the Constitution at 51.ii mentions “Taxation, but so as to discriminate between States or parts of States”. That’s where I’d be looking for prededents.


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    val majkus

    well Geoff maybe I’m misunderstanding you as to discrimination but if for example the inhabitants of one State contribute more tax to the Aust tax coffers because more are employed or earn higher salaries or sell more capital gains taxed properties or whatever as opposed to the inhabitants of other States I don’t believe that could be argued to be discrimination if the same tax levels apply to the whole of Aust and (subject to all the other legal arguments) I would treat the RSPT tax receipts similarly


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    ROM

    Resources Super Profits Tax.
    The definition of a resource can cast a very wide net so what of the taxation future for other industries if such a tax was implemented.
    Irrigators use government owned water resources to derive income.
    Fisherman use the government resources, the continental shelves to derive an income from the oceans of those continental shelves.
    We no longer own the water that falls on our land as rain as all runoff resulting from that rainfall resource is now controlled and owned by the government and income is derived from that water resource in the form of crops and pastures.
    The cattle stations and a lot of other commercial enterprises in the outback are all on 99 year leases and the land resource is therefore owned by the government and income is derived from that government owned land resource.
    Underground water is a government owned resource and is essential to human habitation in some parts of Australia and is used as an income producing resource by way of enabling animal husbandry, tourism, outback enterprises and etc to derive income from the area that relies on the government owned underground water resource as it’s main water supply.

    The list is quite enormous if the numerous forms of other government owned “resources” are defined in a similar manner to the mineral resources.
    And there are very close definition similarities in all of these other resources to the definition of government owned mineral resources.

    Once implemented such a RSPT could be extended by definition to a very large range of Australia’s largest to smallest industries and companies right down to individuals who might possibly make a government defined “super profit” in some years from government owned resources as defined again by the government.

    This tax and the way it is proposed to be structured has all the possibilities of being diabolical in it’s effects on business and individuals if it ever got into the hands of an uncontrolled spendthrift government that had got itself into serious economic difficulties.
    Uncontrolled spendthrifts as defined by the political organisations that we now have that supposedly pass as governments in the federal sphere and in most states.


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    I do think diferrent because my family use another trade name.It’s comfortable and i love it’s very much.But next drill driver I am going to think of this as drill driver stuffs which you present.Appreciate!!!


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