In this war on truth, Trump has several important allies. One is the shameful silence of Republican politicians who don’t challenge his misstatements for fear of giving offense to his true-believing base. Another is a media environment far more cluttered and chaotic than in past decades, making it easier for people to find stories that fit their preconceived ideas and screen out those they prefer not to believe.
As alarming as his record is, though, it would be a serious mistake to think of Trump as the only or even the principal enemy of truth and truth-tellers. There is a large army out there churning out false information, using technology that lets them spread their messages to a mass audience with minimal effort and expense. But the largest threat to truth, I fear, is not from the liars and truth twisters, but from deep in our collective and individual human nature. It’s the same threat I glimpsed all those years ago at George Wallace’s rallies in Maryland and on that factory floor in China: the tendency to believe comfortable lies instead of uncomfortable truths and to trust our own assumptions instead of looking at the evidence.
By Eileen M. Ahlin | (The Conversation) | – The accusation of sexual assault against Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh, made by California professor Christine Blasey Ford, has been met with a variety of responses.
Among those responses has been the idea that what happens when someone is young should not be held against them, especially if they’ve led a commendable life ever since.
My research and that of others on criminal justice shows that, in fact, that’s not the way the system treats offenses committed by minors, especially if they are a person of color. Their crimes often haunt them for the rest of their lives.
This generation being born now… is the last free generation. You are born and either immediately or within say a year you are known globally. Your identity in one form or another –coming as a result of your idiotic parents plastering your name and photos all over Facebook or as a result of insurance applications or passport applications– is known to all major world powers.
Normal Australians by and large do not randomly assail total strangers with abuse about their appearance, their sexuality, their race, their political views or their religion. Of course, it does happen in both the real and the virtual worlds, though with vastly more intensity and frequency in the latter. Our society would disintegrate if the rancid abuse of Twitter was the norm in civil society.
From Prime Minister Scott Morrison down, Liberal Party men are pushing back against women pressing for cultural change within the party. They don’t want to share power for ideological reasons: conservative men like women to know their place, and that place is not in the House of Representatives or the Senate. This ethos is intensifying as fringe and evangelical Christians make ever deeper inroads into Liberal Party branches and preselection processes.
Respected Liberal women like former Liberal Party vice-president Tricia Worth and former Liberal senator Sue Boyce have poured scorn on the internal party mechanisms proposed so far to deal with the problem. They point out the implausibility, for example, of making a bullying complaint to Victorian Liberal Party president Michael Kroger who denies such bullying exists.
Read more: A ‘woman problem’? No, the Liberals have a ‘man problem’, and they need to fix it
Liberal Party women face an immediate choice. They can be cowed by the “quota girl” sledge of hostile male colleagues, and other unsupportive comments by these men’s female enablers such as NSW Liberal Senator Concetta Fierravanti-Wells.
Victorian Planning Minister Richard Wynne said people were drawn to Melbourne due to its “booming economy and lots of jobs”.
“We’re building for growth with game-changing projects like the Metro Tunnel and the Melbourne Airport Rail Link, and we’re planning for the future with the Suburban Rail Loop, as well as pouring billions into hospital upgrades and new schools,” he said.
“The Liberals did nothing but cut crucial services for four years and Matthew Guy has promised to send a million extra people into the outer suburbs.”
Recognizing that it’s the right thing to do — both for their local economies and for the world we’re leaving to our children — U.S. states are now leading the charge on clean energy. Already this year, New Jersey voted to establish a target of 50 percent by 2030. Colorado regulators approved a plan from the state’s largest utility to move to 55 percent renewable energy by 2026. California, the world’s fifth largest economy, just joined Hawaii in making an impressive commitment to 100 percent clean power by 2045. Florida’s solar development soared to make it the nation’s second biggest growth market in the first quarter of this year. In fact, six of the top 10 solar growth markets were states that have Republican governors. Texas has continued to dominate the U.S. wind market.
Reflecting on the many different people and places of America’s clean energy success story, two things are clear. First, that our love of homegrown renewable energy is one thing that unites this divided country. And second, despite headwinds from Washington, states can and will power our country with clean energy.
Fact: Fox News USA came well before Andrew Bolt whose job is simply to stage a Fox News franchised event in Australia as if original. (ODT)
To Attack Sen. Elizabeth Warren’s newly proposed legislation that would make public companies disclose risks to their business posed by climate change, Fox & Friends brought out a non-scientist climate denier to claim Warren will sue companies for causing “bad weather.”
And then he called scientific research witchcraft from the Middle Ages to defend his global warming denier friends.
But to Fox and Friends that makes him an expert!
Private job-seeking operators are stripping people of unemployment benefits without consulting government departments, leaving them with few avenues of redress despite up to 1 million mistakes being made last year.
If the Liberal Party has a woman problem, the Barnaby Joyce sexual harassment saga reveals the National Party to have a woman disaster.
Let’s face it Murdoch was caught out with the fake photo shoot at the Alfalfa Club in Atlanta in an effort to boost Tony Abbott’s stocks in his Daily Telegraph and they were both cought out in that lie too.(ODT)
Mr Turnbull challenged Mr Murdoch over the coverage of his government in News Corp newspapers and its Sky News television channel, arguing the media company was intensifying the leadership turmoil.
Fairfax Media has been told Mr Murdoch played down his part in fuelling the leadership speculation, saying it was primarily a matter for his son Lachlan, who is his co-chairman and a stronger presence in the company’s Australian operations.
“Angus is bringing back a package of things right now to see how we can get greater investment in what I call fair dinkum power, that’s the stuff that works when the sun doesn’t shine and wind doesn’t blow.”
Personally I suspect that the day “the sun doesn’t shine” we’ll all be in a lot of trouble, but hey, I just love that they’re trying to get greater investment in “fair dinkum” power. Bloody bonza, mate. This is more important than a few sheilas being bullied, eh? God, if you can’t stand the heat, get back to the kitchen where youse belong.
Ok, that was just a little audition in case Scooter Morrison needs a speech writer. It’s a job I wouldn’t mind because – at my age – I don’t like taking on long-term jobs, prefering short term contracts.
A 12-YEAR-OLD CHILD is gravely ill. She is self-harming and making repeated attempts to end her own life. She is being refused medical treatment.
If this was happening in Australia, there would be outrage.
But this scenario is unfolding on Nauru — the “invisible” land where people who have committed no crime, even innocent children, are sent by Australia to be imprisoned and forgotten.
Moscow blamed Israel for the crash, saying the reconnaissance plane was caught in the crossfire as four Israeli fighter jets attacked targets in northwestern Syria.
“The Israeli pilots were using the Russian aircraft as a shield and pushed it into the line of fire of the Syrian defence,” ministry spokesperson Major General Igor Konashenkov said in a statement on Tuesday.
China has warned it will have no choice but to retaliate after US President Donald Trump announced he will impose 10 per cent tariffs on $US200 billion worth of Chinese imports.
One of Europe’s largest railway manufacturers Alstom has launched the first CO2-emission-free train powered by hydrogen. Dubbed ‘hydrail,’ the Coradia iLint train began operating in Germany.
According to the Right-Wing of the Liberal Party and a secret source of Sky News after Dark( ODT)
Does the Coalition really think it is on the right track ignoring farmers, scientists, tourism operators, firefighters, surf lifesavers, the Australian Defence Force and 73% of the Australian public on climate change? Simon Black reports.
The IPA website proclaims it, “accepts no government funding, and is supported by thousands of individual members and donors; your tax-deductible donation to IPA research will ensure the IPA remains a loud voice for freedom in Australia”.
The IPA which, like its American counterparts, recruits the best and brightest, (IPA staff list here https://ipa.org.au/people-ipa ) is in my opinion, a defacto policy arm of the state and liberal governments. Over the years Liberal government sacked independent public servants who routinely applied SWOT (strengths, weaknesses, opportunities and threats) analysis to policy development.
The IPA is the antithesis of Rodin’s vision of science and philosophy. If you are sceptical about my claim, read Jennifer Marohasy’s critique of the Bureau of Meteorology. This clap-trap is just one missile in the institute’s arsenal of weapons deployed in the on-going war against climate change science.
The nation’s greatest publicly funded think tank the Australian Broadcasting Corporation remains in the crosshairs of the right. And Australian universities are not far behind. Somehow the Australian National University managed to survive a right-wing onslaught led by Tony Abbott on behalf of the Ramsay Centre, to establish a degree course in western civilization.
Expect more of the same.
Australia’s Democracy corpratized and brought to it’s knees for over a decade. (ODT)
Malcom Turnbull’s demise as Australia’s 29th prime minister was unusual for many reasons, and truly unique for one: his was the first known prime ministership to be the subject of a billionaires’ tug of war between the nation’s most powerful media moguls.
How is it that was never really reported.? (ODT)
In this context, bear the following in mind: Rupert Murdoch was in Australia the week Turnbull was toppled. The Sun King and the Crown Prince of Point Piper spoke by telephone before the Liberal leadership was spilled on August 24. The media proprietor denied his empire was campaigning for the PM’s ouster, besides The Australian. “Boris [nickname of the paper’s editor-in-chief Paul Whittaker] is the only one”.
But only days earlier, Murdoch met with Seven West proprietor Kerry Stokes and implied the very opposite. “Malcolm has got to go,” he told the Perth billionaire.
protesters, many dressed in fatigues and wearing shirts that identified them with groups such as Proud Boys, Oath Keepers, Bikers for Trump, the Alt Knights, and a militia group called American Patriot the III%, gathered in a gravel parking lot in Deposit, New York. They had come for the “Second Annual Ride for Homeland Security.” Pickup trucks, cars, and motorcycles were adorned with American flags. Deposit, a depressed rural community in upstate New York with a population of 1,577, is located at the confluence of the Oguaga Creek and the West Branch of the Delaware River near the border with Pennsylvania.
The protesters, several driving all night, planned to ride past a small community called Islamberg, an enclave of two hundred mostly black Muslims in nearby Hanover, with seventy acres of farmland and woods. The community, with its modest homes of wood and cinder blocks along dirt roads, is a punching bag for right‐wing conspiracy theorists.
But more importantly, this is California, the world’s fifth-largest economy and home to 40 million people, making a huge statement of intent that it’s serious about solving the climate crisis. And not just making a statement – SB 100 will mean the state reshapes its power sector and replaces dirty coal, oil, and gas facilities with wind, solar, and other clean energy technologies to do it.
If you think this bill sends a message to the rest of the country that if California can go all in on clean energy, there’s no reason they can’t too – you’re right. And fossil fuel companies have every reason to be terrified.
Liberal MP Ann Sudmalis will quit politics at the next election, blaming “branch-stacking, undermining and leaks”, in a major blow to Prime Minister Scott Morrison’s efforts to increase the number of women on his team.
Energy Minister Taylot running in the footsteps of IPA, News Corp and Abbott (ODT)
New energy minister Angus Taylor has launched a new and extraordinary attack against wind and solar, saying they cause “de-industrialisation” and claiming that Labor’s 45 per cent emissions reduction target would send a “wrecking ball” through the Australian economy.
The comments came in an interview on Sky News on Sunday night, and little more than a week after Taylor told radio shock jock Alan Jones that there was already “too much” wind and solar in the grid.
The fact that the right-wingers Jones and Kenny hold such extreme and ill-informed views about climate and energy is well known, and not of great consequence.
But the fact that the country’s energy minister goes on to their programs and agrees with them, despite all the evidence to the contrary, is deeply troubling – for investors and consumers.
These are scare tactics reminiscent of the Abbott and Joyce attacks against the then carbon price – remember the ‘Whyalla will be a ghost town’ campaign, and the ‘$100 lamb roasts’? For a quick rebuttal of these South Australia energy myths, this might be useful.
Unlike Tony Abbott, Malcolm Turnbull did not hang around in parliament, which must be a major relief for Scott Morrison – one baleful ex-prime minister glowering from the backbench is more than enough.
But also unlike Tony Abbott, Malcolm Turnbull did not promise “no wrecking, no undermining and no sniping”. And, particularly unlike Abbott, if he had, he almost certainly would have kept his word.
Michael Regan, the popular Northern Beaches Council mayor who was elected in 2012 with 56.33 per cent of the vote, played down the idea that he would contest Mr Abbott’s blue ribbon Sydney seat of Warringah as an independent but he stopped short of ruling it out.
In pointed criticism of both sides of politics, he said the community was “fed up with the power plays and ego-driven games taking place in Canberra”.
“Our Parliament’s become a laughing stock and all of us deserve better,” he told Fairfax Media.
Friday’s vote has again exposed the deep rift between moderates and conservatives inside the Liberal Party.
As the world marks the 10th anniversary of the worst financial crash in recent history, it’s worth looking into who was held responsible for knowingly issuing fraudulent mortgages that led to the crisis.
Guess if Andrew Bolt can self declare that he was educated at Adelaide Uni without ever having a degree anything goes on Murdoch Media when it comes to fake Expertise and commentary (ODT)
The Daily Beast further notes that Loudon’s new book’s cover, the one whose “true psychological theory” she declared proved Trump’s mental awesomeness, falsely states she has a Ph.D. in psychology, along with other dubious references to her professional acumen. According to The Daily Beast, the publisher claimed it had “simplified” her Ph.D. credential because her subject was in “the field of psychology.” The publisher promised, “We will be updating” her credentials in future printings and marketing materials. However, the publisher would not say whether Loudon reviewed and approved of the jacket copy before publication, as is customary.
Loudon also says she’s a member of Trump’s “2020 media advisory board” which seems to be an informal, two-person “board” at most. Yet, after The Daily Beast’s exposé was published, Trump tweeted his enthusiastic support for her:
Watch Hannity say he’ll “rely on the fact that you are a psychologist” to Loudon below, in a Daily Beast video. It also shows her introduced as a “psychology expert” repeatedly on Fox and Russia’s RT.
The Amazon boss’s philanthropy fund flies in the face of the way he treats his workers. Yet he wants to be seen as a messiah
“Where illegal Au Pairs are made legal and legal Asylum Seekers are made Illegal…the land of the FAIR GO” (ODT)
For the past month, Nima has been bedridden with severe depression and trauma. He has recently stopped talking and eating, communicating only with his fingers. The one-bedroom house he shares on Nauru with his partner, Ashkan, is always dark. His eyes can no longer tolerate light. “He is lying on a bed like a corpse,” Ashkan, a Kurdish refugee, told me last week. “Too sick even to go to toilet himself.”
I wrote about Ashkan and Nima a year ago, for The Monthly. The two men have been on Nauru for more than five years. Both have been recognised as refugees. Nima fled Iran, where homosexuality is punishable by death, but instead of securing asylum in Australia he found himself on Nauru, where homosexuality is also illegal. He and Ashkan, who met on Nauru, have experienced harassment and homophobic attacks. They have both attempted suicide and live virtually imprisoned within their home.
Nima was suicidal before the Australian-United States refugee deal was announced. Briefly, it pulled him out of depression. But the deal has not changed his circumstances. “When we were in Iran, we lived under [President] Ahmadinejad,” Nima has told me. “When we fled Iran to come to Australia, we encountered Tony Abbott and then – what’s his name? – Scott Morrison, and, after, Peter Dutton. They told us to send us to America and now face Donald Trump. They play like a toy with us. We are human being, like every everyone else, we have also hope but they killed our hope, they took our lives, made us gone mad, made us sick and made us mental.”
“Calls to kick her butt, expel her, send her to reducation programs along with her parents, or even remove her from her family tells us it’s Spring Time For Hitler once again. (ODT)
This week, nine-year-old Queensland school girl, Harper Nielsen, was threatened with suspension by her school for refusing to sing the Australian national anthem. The heated and at time preposterous reaction to the story adds fuel to a question that has been lingering in public debate for a while now: is Australian nationalism on the rise?
Why aren’t new laws that stop the banks ripping off working people the government’s first priority?