Category: Power

Power can be taken back by exposing our oppressors

We should examine the oppressor, not the oppressed, otherwise all hope is lost, writes Gerry Georgatos. OPPRESSION IS NOT a phenomenon of modernity but a deliberation through the human ages. We are born with inherent rights to live in ways that warm the soul, but human beings have devolved to ways birthrights and choices are denied to us. Those who resist become outlaws. All recorded human history describes the oppressor and the oppressed and has imbibed punch-drunk justifications for ruling classes, tyrannies and carceral estates.

Power can be taken back by exposing our oppressors

Power at Any Price: The LNP’s Preference Deals – » The Australian Independent Media Network

Conclusion

These two preference deals show the conservative parties either playing disgusting political games or exposing their true roots. Whatever the motivation/s, the point is clear: power at all costs. Such unscrupulous deals, and the odium of the proposed partners, surely undermines the legitimacy of any government so formed.

Power at Any Price: The LNP’s Preference Deals – » The Australian Independent Media Network

‘Renewables capital of Australia’? Port Augusta shows off its green energy credentials – Business – ABC News (Australian Broadcasting Corporation)

Sundrop Farm on the outskirts of Port Augusta, which uses solar energy to desalinate water and grow tomatoes.

What Murdoch’s Media denies (ODT)

Renewables boom boosts Port Augusta

Thirteen renewable energy projects are underway or under consideration — from wind farms and pumped hydro-electric power to solar with storage that can shift electricity made when the sun’s shining to meet peak demand in the evening.

“The one great resource we have here in Port Augusta and the upper Spencer Gulf is this wonderful natural resource called the sun,” Mr Johnson said.

“It’s no different to having a massive uranium deposit, a massive gold deposit, a massive copper deposit.”

In a country drenched in sun, this natural resource is particularly abundant in the arid landscape around Port Augusta, and there are also plenty of flat expanses on which to build the facilities needed to exploit it.

Framed by the Flinders Ranges, stage one of the Bungala solar farm stretches over 300 hectares of land owned by the Bungala Aboriginal Corporation about 10 kilometres north-east of town.

Bungala uses a solar photovoltaic technology, with panels mounted on a tilting axis that can follow the sun’s path from east to west, maximising output and efficiency.

via ‘Renewables capital of Australia’? Port Augusta shows off its green energy credentials – Business – ABC News (Australian Broadcasting Corporation)

Trump Official Lobbies for British Ultranationalist at Breitbart’s Request

Last month, U.S. Ambassador to Germany Richard Grenell made headlines when he suggested he aimed to empower the far right across Europe, drawing the ire of critics at home and abroad. Yet a new Reuters report reveals he’s hardly an outlier within the Trump administration.

According to the international news agency, Sam Brownback, a former Kansas senator and governor, who currently serves as U.S. Ambassador-at-Large for International Religious Freedom, lobbied Britain’s envoy to the U.S. to release infamous ultranationalist Tommy Robinson following his 13-month conviction for contempt of court. What’s more, Brownback appears to have acted at the behest of Breitbart, the far-right news site whose former chairman, Steve Bannon, previously served as Trump’s senior White House adviser.

via Trump Official Lobbies for British Ultranationalist at Breitbart’s Request

Amber Harrison faces possible jail after Seven pursues her for contempt

Amber Harrison is facing a potential jail term

One needs to ask if this is a systemic case of the the institutional  Corporate protection of power hierarchy. It certainly puts bed the case of Geoffrey Rush who whose been accused by a system that protects one’s accuser at all costs as once did the Spanish Inquisition and their townhall drop boxes. Ch 7 needs ask what it is supporting here and  in whose interests. (Old Dog)

Amber Harrison faces possible jail after Seven pursues her for contempt

Elon Musk: Tesla reaches halfway point of construction on ‘world’s biggest’ battery – ABC News (Australian Broadcasting Corporation)

Tesla boss Elon Musk has held a party in South Australia’s mid-north to mark the halfway point of construction of the world’s most powerful lithium ion battery.

Source: Elon Musk: Tesla reaches halfway point of construction on ‘world’s biggest’ battery – ABC News (Australian Broadcasting Corporation)

The truth about soaring power prices: wind and solar not to blame – ABC News (Australian Broadcasting Corporation)

Wind and solar are much cheaper than coal, and rising electricity costs have more to do with gas prices and network costs than any green scheme, writes Ian Verrender.

Source: The truth about soaring power prices: wind and solar not to blame – ABC News (Australian Broadcasting Corporation)

Electricity crisis: AGL boss rebukes Turnbull government plan to keep coal power stations operating for longer

Malcolm Turnbull says AGL may be open to selling Liddell to another operator who would be willing to keep it operating.

Source: Electricity crisis: AGL boss rebukes Turnbull government plan to keep coal power stations operating for longer

The World’s Most Powerful People 2016 | Forbes

There are nearly 7.4 billion humans on planet Earth, but these 20 men and women make the world turn. Forbes’ annual ranking of the World’s Most Powerful People identifies one person out of every 100 million whose actions mean the most.To compile the list, we considered hundreds of candidates fro

Source: The World’s Most Powerful People 2016 | Forbes

People power – » The Australian Independent Media Network

Never has there been a better time for people to exert their power. As we have seen, nervous politicians with a very tight margin seem to have a great deal of influence.  They can even bring down Prime Ministers. Whilst the Coalition won 76 seats, 12 of them were by a margin of less than…

Source: People power – » The Australian Independent Media Network

The ‘institute’ with no members embarrasses Senate committee

In the cash-soaked world of American politics it’s known as “astroturfing” – or the use of artificial grassroots to create an impression of widespread support for a particular political agenda.

Source: The ‘institute’ with no members embarrasses Senate committee

Enlisting psychology in the fight against terrorism

We are in the midst of a wave of soul searching trying to understand the Lindt Café siege in Sydney. In a sense we’ve been collectively holding our breaths for years wondering if Australia would ever fall victim to a terrorist act.

Terrorism has many definitions but by and large usually refers to the use of violence and intimidation for political purposes. Its goal is to produce widespread fear and anger. The purpose is to polarise opinion and progress a political battle. It’s like throwing an accelerant on a fire: it forces the opposing parties to respond and fight.

Conditioned responses

There is a term in psychology called operant conditioning – it’s so intuitive to most people it barely needs description. It describes how we learn (at least in part) according to the outcomes of our behaviours. If you’ve ever raised pets or kids you’ll be an expert. So if I’m rewarded for a behaviour I’m likely to do it again. If I’m punished I’m likely to do it less. If a dog wees in the garden instead of the carpet and you pat it or give it a treat, it will soon learn to go outside every time it needs to urinate.

What can operant conditioning teach us about terrorism? How can we use our knowledge of emotions and conditioning to search for ways to undermine the success of terrorism?

First on the agenda is the fear and anger. We need to contain the fear and address the anger.

Our leaders need to stand up and promote calm to give the message that we are prepared for such situations and that our response is appropriate and considered. They also need to address our natural response of anger and blame. They should not jump to conclusions about events being terrorist in nature, they should encourage people not to start the blame game prematurely. My impression from the Lindt siege was that our politicians tried to convey calm and control, but didn’t quite achieve their goal.

The media is in a trickier position. The less attention they give to terrorism the better. However, unlike in decades gone by, where a smallish group controlled most of the media, there are now hundreds of thousands of players – especially online. There is less ability to give a measured response. Hysteria sells, it’s a crowded media market place and competition is fierce. I think it is reasonable to expect the ABC to prioritise reason over ratings, but I think the commercial networks cannot be expected to have the same balance.

Despite this, I was mostly impressed with the coverage. There were constant calls for calm, constant stories trying to quell racism against Muslims, and various attempts to provide a balance between information and understanding. Most media outlets refused to air videos made by the perpetrator in the cafe. The constant news on multiple channels was unfortunate, but unavoidable.

Can we separate ideology from actions?

Terrorism is no more about religion than rape is about love-making

We need to somehow separate the act of terror from the cause it claims to support. Terrorism is no more about religion than rape is about love-making. It’s about power, control and violence. I’m not a religious person but my impression is that religion and spirituality aim to provide meaning and hope. By and large they promote humanity and peacefulness. I know many wars and unspeakable acts have been done in the name of religion, but my sense is that these acts reflect people’s desire for control and profit – religion just gets hijacked as a vessel.

Psychology has turned its hand to trying to understand terrorists, but it’s hard. Terrorists don’t volunteer for experiments! What we know is limited, and more driven by opinion than evidence. The limited evidence out there suggests terrorists are angry, disenfranchised, feel victimised, powerless and believe violence is not immoral.

Psychologists are also trying to understand the dynamic interplay between terrorists and government responses. For example there is some evidence that excessive responses to terrorist acts can encourage more people to join terrorist organisations.

Programs aiming to reduce terrorist behaviour tend to focus their efforts on addressing peoples’ fears of cultural annihilation, highlighting the common humanity between different religious groups and challenging the dream versus reality of terrorist involvement. These programs have a long way to go, but surely are a step in the right direction.

Why use violence?

Violence is a popular weapon for people chasing power – it’s never been the weapon of choice for people spreading ideas. Violent acts say far more about the perpetrators personalities and life experiences than they do about their beliefs. Resist the temptation to blame a belief system for the way people act.

Finally, amongst all the soul searching, take time to recover. Spare some thoughts for the victims, their families and those who put themselves at risk to respond. Protect your kids from over-exposure and teach them how to react with compassion and consideration. Just like our leaders, we need to try to respond without fear and anger – the antidote to terror is calm, understanding and tolerance. Regardless of your ideological background, don’t jump to conclusions. Take some time to read the views of others and then spread your ideas…. with words.