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Troll Hunting by Australian journalist Ginger Gorman is a new book which examines the world of online hate and its human fallout. Along with interviews with a small number of trolls and general reflections upon this hateful world, Gormans book Continue reading
Despair breeds profits; disturbances supply opportunity. The genius and venal nature of human nature will always see a possible buck from an impossibly cruel situation. Globally, a study should be done about how many billions goes into the supply of contracts, tenders and sweetheart deals to companies with a hand in the business of stopping
Headlines today announce that the Bureau of Meteorology has upped the rate of warming in recent times. Jo Nova and others have been on this case for some time. Her latest commentary.
See also some of the series of posts on Climate Change: The Facts 2017 last year like this one documenting some of the games that the BOM plays.
You know, that incentives are necessary to promote productive activity and that an economy must encourage the supply-side of the economy if output is to grow. The article is about how Orangutans make complex economic decisions. As they conclude:
Optimality models suggest that orangutans should flexibly adapt their foraging decisions depending on the availability of high nutritional food sources, such as fruits, said Josep Call, researcher at the University of St. Andrews. Our study shows that orangutans can simultaneously consider multi-dimensional task components in order to maximize their gains and it is very likely that we havent even reached the full extent of their information processing capabilities.
Meanwhile Alexandria O-C and her Green New Deal think this is a worthwhile idea: if you are unwilling to work they will still pay you an income.
Interestingly this particular proposal is unanimously rejected by the students in this video, once they are told whats in the GND.
The students interviewed are big on buzz-word ideologies they know virtually nothing about, but still with a few elements of common sense if more is explained. There is hope for us after all, slim as it may be. Perhaps these kids are smarter than the average orangutang, but they would be a rare breed on the left.
Some time in the first half of 2019, the third conservative Australian prime minister in five years will be compelled to call an election, which his Coalition government will lose. That man is Scott Morrison, the dodgily-selected member for Cook, representing one of the whitest and most racist areas of Sydney.
The career best of Scott Morrison is a thing called Operation Sovereign Borders (OSB) which h e co-designed with former army general and now Senator Jim Molan, a man repeatedly and credibly accused of war crimes in Iraq. The multi-billion dollar policy rests on the entrenched false assumption that refugees who arrive by boat to seek asylum are a threat to national security.
There is literally no evidence for the proposition. None.
Like his predecessor, Morrison took the office in August 2018 by a secret ballot in the Liberal Party room. He ascended from chief persecutor of refugees via the Human Services ministry and its vicious and lethal cashless welfare and Robodebt policies; and Treasury, in a government that has doubled the national debt to over $350 billion. His government allocates vast sums of public money, in blocs of up to $500 million, to private sector interests, shell companies, charity fronts, and white nationalist legacy projects which I wrote about here, like $498 million to a war memorial which does not honour the Frontier Wars and $100 million on a single general in France.
Apart from the monumental waste represented by these fiscal facts, we have the grotesque spectacle of a parliamentary press gallery absolutely wedded to continually reproducing and disseminating the received wisdom that Coalition governments are stronger on the economy and border protection. Their pretzelesque reasoning? Polls indicate that voters believe these lies, so the media can and should keep publishing, rather than refuting, the same lies.
For the record, the last Labor government (2007-2013) was lauded globall...
Tensions rose between Europe and Australia over trade with the EUs head man in agriculture talking tough here this week. read now...
Opportunity cost provides the best way to think about the recent
decision to reject a new coal mine at Rocky Hill. Thats the central
theme of my
latest piece in Inside Story and also of my forthcoming book,
in Two Lessons. Given a tight budget of the carbon dioxide and
other greenhouse gases we can afford to emit while stabilizing the
global climate, every new source of emissions comes at the
opportunity cost of an existing source. Since phasing out coal is
among the cheapest options any new coal mine comes at the expense
of faster closure of existing mines. Almost invariably, its more
costly to open a new mine, than to maintain production at an
existing mine. So we should not start any new mines and, in
general, not expand old ones.
Ive spend the last few days at a workshop on the transition to a renewable energy supply for Australia, which focused primarily on electricity. The presentations should be available soon, and Ill write a longer post if I get time, but here are a couple of quick points I took away.
my view is that philosophers do better to paint a picture in which we urge trust in the consensus of the scientific community,based on features of that communitys social organization. (Winsberg p. 161)
Philosophy and Climate Science (Cambridge 2018) appears to be the first book of its kind, promising a thorough and rigorous investigation of the philosophical and methodological issues that arise in the problematic and controversial field of climate science. It is long overdue because the scholars in the history and philosophy of science have by and large neglected this particular science. The two outstanding exceptions are Philip Kitcher and more recently Eric Winsberg, Professor of Philosophy at the University of South Florida.
Philip Kitcher recently retired from Columbia College NY with a claim to the title of the premier philosopher of science of his generation due to his list of publications and the chairs that he has occupied. With Evelyn Fox Keller he wrote The Seasons Alter that portrays a dystopian future in a warming world that probably represents Peak Alarmism. Any advance on a pandemic that kills billions of people?
In a similar vein but less flamboyant mode Eric Winsbergs Philosophy and Climate Science is a sustained defence of the methods and conclusions of the International Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) and those who share its mission to promote alarm about the future of the planet. Consequently this book is not a solution to the apathy of the philosophers of science in the face of the shortcomings in the mainstream of climate science but instead it is part of the problem. This book cannot be recommended even at a remainder price unless you are looking for yet another example of the failure of the academic dogs to bark a warning.
to be continued
People have a tendency to expect history to repeat itself. Of course, it often does, but that doesnt suit the point Im making, so Ill pretend Im Tony Abbott and just ignore history so that I can make my point. Quite simply what people like one moment, can be unappealing later on. For example, when
The post Morrison: Drop Everything And Start Talking About Boats, Not Votes appeared first on The AIM Network.
This week, John Wren catches up on Tony Abbott, gives us the details on Tim Wilson's corruption and also the Medevac Bill passing. read now...
The pond would have skipped the latest bout of climate science
denialism from Lloydie of the lizard Oz, except for the poignant
juxtaposition the digital subs managed to produce
Honduras is a key nation in the US-backed war on drugs. I visited there to report on what this meant for civilians, many of whom flee in fear to the US.
Heres my story in the new US outlet, Filter, covering drugs domestically and globally, on the grin reality in Honduras and why so many of its citizens are leaving in despair:
New Publications from the Centre for Independent Studies.
Post of the week. Jo Novas commentary on Australias dash to disaster, leading the world in the Green Energy race (to the bottom).
The Australian Taxpayers Alliance. Campaigns.
The German Green Energy Transition. Higher prices, unstable grid, negligible reduction in CO2 emissions. The German Trifecta of Failure.
Libertyworks. Nationalisation of lobsters in Western Australia (great picture of a lobster btw).
Stephen Hicks is coming.
Join Dr Hicks on a journey to advance civilization
From the Enlightenment, to neo-Marxism through to 3rd generation postmodernism: diagnosis, perils and overcoming the obstacles
The program for the tour in four states and more information. See his contribution in The Spectator just out.
The Portal to Our partners
In no particular order. Australian Institute for Progress,
The Institute of Public Affairs IPA, the Centre for Independent Studies
CIS, The Sydney Institute, Mannkal Economic Education
Foundation, Quadrant On
Line, The Australian
Taxpayers Alliance, Tim Blair,
Andrew Norton, the
classical liberal in Carlton, Rite-ON admirable Queensland
activists!, The Menzies
Research Centre, Jim Rose Utopia You
Are Standing in It. LibertyWorks. On Line Opinion.
Still building and looking at more specialised sites.
In the years to come were going to have plenty of motley parliaments, with fewer major party parliamentarians and larger crossbenches of independents and minor parties holding the balance of power. We better get used to it.
At the Commonwealth level, the minority Coalition Government is dealing with eight crossbenchers in the House of Representatives and 19 in the Senate, each holding the balance of power.
The number of crossbenchers in the House will probably be unchanged after the federal election, so while most observers expect the federal election to deliver a Shorten Government, a poor result for Labor might mean it only wins minority government and still requires the votes of crossbenchers in the House.
In the Senate, Labor is expected to pick up seats at the expense of the crossbench thanks to the 2016 deal between the Coalition and Greens to change Senate voting rules, but it will still fall well short of a majority. And the crossbench will still have a significant green-tinge despite the plunge in voter support for the Greens party.
Minor party voters who oppose the Greens will go for one of the Liberal Democrats, One Nation, the Christians, Conservatives or Katters party. Regrettably, most of these voters will fail to preference all the anti-Green parties with the result that, under the new Senate voting rules, its more likely none of these parties will gather enough votes to beat the Greens for the last Senate seat, at least in some states.
Its clear why the Greens wanted these new Senate voting rules, but why the Coalition wanted them is anyones guess. (Note to voters: if you dont like the Greens, fill in a lot of preferences for non Green parties!)
At the state level, motley parliaments are the new norm. One in seven state parliamentarians is a crossbencher, and these crossbenchers hold the balance of power in each of the state upper houses. At the upcoming NSW state election the size of the crossbench is set to swell with minor party candidates like Mark Latham and me looking to join the ranks.
The cause of this swelling of the crossbench is clear; voters are turning off the major parties.
For more than three decades the internet has allowed far-flung people to form new connections. Increasingly, people identify with niche groups rather than a mass movement, and also support niche parties. This includes single issue parties like those focussed on science, the arts, seniors, anti vaxxers, animals, marijuana and assisted suicide.
The formula of the major parties of attempting to appeal to everyone and offend no-one by being heavy on platitudes and light on principle doesnt cut it anymore.
Whether the overall influence of crossbenchers is positive or negative depends on the quality of the crossbenchers.
Crossbenchers can stop governments doing bad things, such as when crossbenchers in the Senate (me included) stopped the Coalition Go...
By 2353NM The human mind is a wonderful thing. We all have different interests, ideas and methods of doing what is needed to stay alive. We also have different beliefs. Some will tell you that the contrails left in the sky following the passage of aircraft are a 24/7/365-day aerosol assault over our heads made of
Ok. TAFKAS reckons this post will set the cat amongst the pigeons.
In the 1995 movie the Usual Suspects, character Roger Verbal Kint made the most profound of observation:
When people consider powerful and pernicious unions, most minds default to organisations like the CFMMEU. Well think again.
If the purpose of a union is to use all tools available to improve the pay, conditions, power and competitive positioning of its members, often (but not always) at the expense of non-members, then the CFMMEU cannot hold a candle to the big 3 the Pharmacy Guild, the medical unions (AMA and various specialist colleges) and the various legal unions (law societies and bar associations).
If the CFMMEU and the ACTU want a lesson on how to use best practice political and regulatory capture and how to impose restrictive work practices, then they really need to better study these organisations.
Strategy number one dont let people think you are an industrial organisation but rather a professional organisation. Strategy number two present yourself as always acting in the best interests of the community and the nation.
TAFKAS will write about the pharmacists and the doctors another time, but let us just consider the legal profession and consider 2 particular work practices that have long disappeared from industrial sites:
Oh. And if you want to ply your trade in another state or jurisdiction, you cant just show up. You need be recognised by the local union (professional organisation). Even doctors can work cross state border.
And how do you measure the success of a union? Start with looking at the pay and conditions of its members and the operation of the market for member labour. One would imagine that if there is an area of the economy earning supernormal profits, those profits would be eroded away by new entrants. According to the AFR, in 2015, there were 41 law schools in Australia and:
The number of law graduates has reached a record high with 14,600 graduates entering a legal jobs market comprising just 66,000 solicitors.
But somehow, lawyer salaries are increasing. Yes, there are demand factors also, but according to the AFRs numbers, the entire legal labour force can be turned over every 4 years.
And then, when the...
Queensland was hit by forest fires, and the Queensland Premier was at it, blaming climate change (and the Australian government): If you want to know what caused those conditions, Ill give you an answer its called climate change, the Queensland premier told reporters. It is only the LNP who could watch Queensland burn and 
Media Release The report delivered by the parliamentary committees inquiry into mechanisms for compensation for non-GM farmers has disappointed consumers and GM-free farmers alike. While we are grateful for the opportunity to have this inquiry we are dissatisfied by its findings and find it astonishing that there are no recommendations at the end of this
The post Farmer Protection GM inquiry fails GM-free farmers and consumers appeared first on The AIM Network.
Environmental mismanagement runs deeper than the ecological tragedy gripping the Murray-Darling Basin. read now...
After a hiatus worthy of The Descendents, entertainment editor John Turnbull returns with a bunch of new music worth your attention. read now...
The passage of amendments to the Migration Act 1958 (Cth) by the Australian House of Representatives and the Senate this week was less a case of celebration than necessitous deliverance. The mental well-being of asylum-seekers on Manus Island and Nauru, or lack thereof, has been documented extensively from Australian legal representatives to members of Mdecins
The post Sickness and Paranoia: The Morrison Governments Refugee Problem appeared first on The AIM Network.
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