Australians Beware: Soon The Climate Science Deniers Will Be In Charge

Liberal leader Tony Abbott

by Graham Readfearn, via DeSmogBlog

Anyone who places stock in safeguarding the current and future climate (and for that matter anyone who doesn’t) should prepare themselves for the risk that very soon, climate science deniers, contrarians and skeptics will be running the show in Australia.

All the polls suggest that a Liberal-led coalition will sweep to power at next year’s Federal election in Australia – the world’s biggest exporter of coal and on track to be the biggest exporter of liquified natural gas.

Current Liberal leader Tony Abbott, if we care to remember, once described climate change as “crap“. Views shared among Abbott’s parliamentary coalition ranks are that climate science is a “leftist fad” and a “work of fiction”.

The Liberal-National Party’s new Queensland Premier Campbell Newman and his environment minister Andrew Powell are currently presiding over a massive boom in coal and gas projects. Both have said they’re unable to accept the evidence of human-caused climate change, going against the scientific findings of the country’s main science agency the CSIRO and the country’s Bureau of Meteorology, plus every major science academy on the planet.

Instead the Newmans and Abbotts of this world would rather stake the future of their constituents, our economies, our food supplies and our coastlines on the ideologically-blinkered pseudo-science of narrow vested interests and free market fundamentalists.

The latest snapshot on this inglorious race to the bottom came last week during the Queensland LNP state conference with a motion proposed by the Noosa LNP member Richard Pearson.

Pearson’s motion called on the state’s education minister John-Paul Langbroek to “remove environmental propaganda material, in particular post-normal science about ‘climate change’, from the curriculum and as adjunct material at exam time”. The motion was passed with party members overwhelmingly in favor.

LNP state representative Glen Elmes recently thanked Pearson in parliament for helping him win his Noosa seat at the state election earlier this year (perhaps those visits to Noosa by fake climate experts Christopher Monckton and Professor Bob Carter have rubbed off on the Sunshine Coast community).

As reported on Brisbane Times, Pearson said: “Few people understand that the so called science of climate change is really what can be defined as ‘post-normal’ science,” before apparently arguing that climate change went beyond traditional understanding of science based on experimentation and falsifiable theories.

To Pearson and others, the experiments of John Tyndall in 1859 which established the warming properties of what we now know to be greenhouse gases just didn’t happen. Not in existence either, are the reams of scientific papers over many decades which have attempted but failed to falsify the “theory” that burning fossil fuels is causing the world’s average temperature to rise, the oceans to become more acidic, the sea levels to rise and the ice at the poles to melt.

Also not in existence is last week’s study by almost 400 scientists (they’re everywhere) which showed that greenhouse gas emissions were increasing the likelihood of extreme weather events.

So far, Premier Newman has clarified that while Pearson’s motion has been passed by the party, this doesn’t mean it will be adopted by the parliamentary group which he leads.

“We will always do the right thing by Queenslanders ahead of the LNP”, he said, forgetting that just a few weeks ago he told Queenslanders the state was actually “in the coal business”.

Regardless, reaction to the motion has been damning. Anna-Maria Arabia, the chief executive of Science & Technology Australia, which represents almost 70,000 scientists and technology experts in Australia, described it as “extremely harmful”.

The secretary of the Queensland Teachers’ Union Kevin Bates told The Australian that it was important schools taught children to have an “open mind” (but presumably not so open that your brain falls out). “Our greatest concern is that this is a government that is going to interfere in the education process,” he said.

One blogging research scientist wrote that the motion was “preparing our children for future ridicule“.

Helping in this process is the Institute for Public Affairs, which has been sending out a discredited book on climate change to Australian schools. The book How To Get Expelled From School, written by Professor Ian Plimer, a member of the board of two of Gina Rinehart’s mining companies, was launched by former Prime Minister John Howard.

At the launch, Professor Plimer said “one of the aims of this book is to maintain the rage, because we have an election coming”.  Clearly, Professor Plimer sees his book as a political tool.

While consistently claiming that school children are being brainwashed by climate change “propaganda”, those who push this line rarely (if ever) produce any actual evidence. Pearson didn’t define what he meant by “propaganda” or “post normal science”.

Plimer’s genuine piece of propaganda was described by the Commonwealth Department of Climate Change, which analyzed his book, as “misleading” and based on “inaccurate or selective interpretation of the science”.

It should not be forgotten that Tony Abbott isn’t afraid of pushing his own misinformed climate dogma on young schoolkids when given the chance.

In 2010, the Catholic Jesuit told a class of five and six year-olds in Adelaide: “OK, so the climate has changed over the eons and we know from history, at the time of Julius Caesar and Jesus of Nazareth the climate was considerably warmer than it is now.”

Nobody should be surprised that conservative politicians are unable to accept climate change science. A survey of political representatives at local, state and federal level carried out in late 2009 found that acceptance of climate change science was divided along political lines.

The University of Queensland survey found only about one third of Liberal/National politicians accepted the world was warming because of human activity. This compared to nine out of ten Labor politicians and practically all Greens.

Then there’s the “conservative white male effect” discovered by scientists (yes, them again) in the US linking the described demographic to the denial of human-caused climate change.

The Australian conservative political movement’s lurch towards the denial of human-caused climate science is like a mirror-image of the same enlightenment-crushing ideas of many US Republicans.

None of the recent candidates for the Republican presidential nomination (excusing possibly  John Huntsman) were able to publicly back climate change science, with some reverting to scepticism after previously accepting the issue.

Also in common with the US, is the existence of Tea Party-style “grassroots” activism in Australia helped along by free market think tanks that claim regulating greenhouse gas emissions is an attack on our freedom.

But rather than have an honest debate about a policy response to a real world risk, they sink to trying to discredit climate science while telling the public that carbon dioxide from burning coal is just “food for plants”.

Earlier this week the climate skeptic organization the Galileo Movement, founded by two retired Noosa (is there something in the water there?) businessmen, tweeted a link to a document written by Viv Forbes claiming coal was not dirty and CO2 was plant food. No mention anywhere in the document that Forbes is a director of Stanmore Coal.

Galileo’s patron is Sydney radio host Alan Jones, who recently told a crowd that climate science was “witchcraft” and a “hoax”.

Our descent into the deluded world of pseudo-science occupied by astrology, creationism, crystal healing and homeopathy is almost complete. It’s a place where progress dies and business-as-usual thrives.

Graham Readfearn is an independent journalist based in Queensland, Australia, with 15 years experience as a reporter and writer on newspapers, magazines, radio and online. This piece was originally published at DeSmogBlog and was reprinted with permission.

39 Responses to Australians Beware: Soon The Climate Science Deniers Will Be In Charge

  1. Jeff Huggins says:

    The Big Picture and Our Culpability

    Our national inaction regarding climate change in the U.S., and the present silence about climate change in our politics, enable and facilitate the deniers here and also contribute to the difficulties of politicians in other countries as some of them try to face and address climate change.

    In other words, Obama’s inaction and silence HERE are partly responsible for this backward-like change of events in Australia, and for the continuing risk of such events. (I’ll assume that I don’t have to explain why.)

    By the way, will CP cover the results of the Pew Global Survey from a few weeks back, in which two or three questions were asked about the world’s perception of President Obama’s performance regarding climate change, relative to expectations when he was elected? If so, great. If not, why not? It was a remarkable survey, and results were reported from a large number of countries.

    The climate movement needs to get its act together. Partly because of the inaction and silence of the U.S., and because of disasters like that of the Rio+20 conference, forward progress around the world is much more fragile than it should be, and the risk of backward-trending changes like this one in Australia is high. It wasn’t so long ago when the best news (and perhaps only news) about governments talking seriously about climate change came from Australia. Now this! Our lack of progress here is partly to blame.

    If there is an urgent meeting set for all the leaders of the climate movement, within the next four weeks, to get together and entirely revisit the movement’s strategy and theirs, great. If not, there should be. Our progress has been dismal — let’s be honest — and new approaches are called for.



  2. Solar Jim says:

    It is an interesting use of terminology to call a corporate fascist instead a “liberal.” Clearly, dumbing down “education” is at minimum a theocracy, since truth is contrary to vested, entrenched special interests in a type of influence-managed petro-state corporate dictatorship.

    Isn’t the political power of the rich, including those enabled by mineral extraction and contamination, amazing to behold?

    “No one told me there would be days like these.” (John Lennon, RIP) It’s getting hot in here.

  3. Progress dies, but if business-as-usual “thrives,” it won’t be for long.

    An inherently short-lived victory, the right to sink your own ship (and everyone else’s along with).

  4. Lou Grinzo says:

    You know, every time I think that I have finally, at long last, achieved a properly scaled understanding of the towering stupidity of humanity, something like this post comes along and makes a mockery of my conclusion.

    Oh well — back to the cynicism mines I go…

  5. M Tucker says:

    “Soon the climate science deniers will be in charge.”

    Soon?! They are in charge! They have always been in charge! That is why nothing is being done about AGW. These multinational corporate barons live by the big lie and greed. Lies have been working. The ignorant masses love the lie. The political stooges love the lie. The lie works. They don’t have to defend it they just need to keep repeating it. Oh, the political stooges are not interested in the future 20 or 40 years from now and in the US this is not restricted to conservative white males, just ask Herman Cain.

  6. Byron Smith says:

    While the dog-whistle barely-coded denial from the Coalition is laughably short-sighted (or would be, were it not also cause for tears given current polling), the minority Labor government is only barely better. While no questions are raised about the basic science from Gillard’s party, the current policy (a very modest carbon price with major giveaways to big polluters) has the barely better than nothing goal of a 5% reduction on 2000 levels by 2020. And international offsets are allowed (with Treasury expecting them to account for more than 50% of the “reductions”). Yet even this deeply compromised package was only gained by the gun at the head the Greens have managed to bring (since the minority ALP requires Greens support to govern).

    Meanwhile, Australian coal exports are expected to double in the next couple of decades (hence all the new port infrastructure in Queensland mentioned above), totally dwarfing any domestic emissions saving and making a mockery of the official targets through a quirk of international carbon accounting that enables major carbon pushers like Australia to gain the economic benefit of digging up the fossil carbon while passing the burden of emissions elsewhere.

  7. scarecities says:

    If Tony Abbott says climate change is crap, then voters will flock to hem because that’s what they need to believe too
    its simple human nature, vote for the guy who says everything is going to be ok. he may be an idiot, but he’s saying what his fellow idiots want to hear

  8. Dustin Carey says:

    I really wish more political leaders had the climate conviction of Angela Merkel

  9. Toby says:

    To think we thought the Age of Stupid was over when George W. Bush left office!

    Little did we know that science deniers would just double down on the crazy all over the world.

    The hope has to be that denialism is entering its last decadent, desperate phase. These politicos and their paymasters will crash eventually, but how much of the human biopsphere will they take with them?

  10. Andy Revkin posted an article about the U.N. in today’s Dot Earth. The takeaway message, from my point of view, is that in order to tackle climate change we will have to empower the U.N., or some other international body to do some policing.

    Australia’s coal exportation is a good example. The profits go to a few mine owners and their cronies, but the damage is felt everywhere.

    Most of the Australian coal, as I understand it, is going to China. And if the Chinese are singled out because of a steady rise in their greenhouse gas emissions, they will just point the finger back at the developed countries.

    Every country wil find an excuse to pollute. “Oh, we’re developing.” “Oh, we can’t slow down economic growth.” “Oh, we need jobs.”

    Only enforceable international rules agreed upon by the majority of nations — with no veto from a few privileged countries that happened to be in power at the end of WWII, as is currently the case at the U.N. — will actually curb emissions.

  11. quokka says:

    The biggest export market for Australian coal – both coking and thermal – is Japan, followed, I believe by South Korea. Australian coal exporters must be delighted with the shutdown of most of Japan’s nuclear power plants.

  12. Merrelyn Emery says:

    Yes, there is a risk of a win by the LNP at the Federal level in 2013. However, here are a few more factors to consider:

    -polls taken over a year out from an election have almost no predictive power

    -deniers are have been variously estimated at between 18% and 30% and we have compulsory voting

    -Abbott and his extremists are extreme on other topics as well including IR which is very close to the hearts of many Aussies

    -consequently many ‘liberals’ are disturbed about the directions the party has taken as are some in the party itself. Watch that top spot!

    -Australia is not a pacifist nation in the sense that we just quietly turn up to vote – whatever the big issues of 2013, there will be active campaigns and demos, for and against, as we saw in the run up to the carbon legislation.
    It is not over yet, ME

  13. Tony Abbot has used the success of your Tea Party as a model for his political campaigns. It is anybodies guess what he will actually do if he ever gets into power. (The polls say the LNP will win but that the voters don’t like Tony.
    Interestingly enough the national LNP did some interesting things before losing power. For example, it introduced one of the few worlds few effective emission trading schemes . It gets little attention here because, like your acid rain scheme, it is an offset trading based scheme so it has much less effect on power prices that carbon price based emission trading schemes like the EU system. It is a shame that more people don’t understand the advantages of off set credit trading based emission trading schemes.
    The Liberals also were also world leaders when they made high efficiency light globes compulsorily. At current Australian globe and power prices the globes would pay for them selves after less than 250 hrs (assuming inefficient globes are free) and then SAVE the consumer $230/tonne CO2 abatement.
    The current Liberal environment shadow minister is a dedicated supporter of climate action.

  14. Mulga Mumblebrain says:

    They got John just when he could have proved a real nuisance to the neo-feudal project.

  15. Mulga Mumblebrain says:

    The imbecile ‘Climate ‘Debate’ Daily’ is interesting in that it brings together the effluent of denialist mendacity, stupidity, hypocrisy and viciousness in easily accessible form. And by perusing the excrement, if your stomach prove strong enough, you can see that the denialists are growing ever more deranged as the facts prove ever more destructive of their evil imbecilities. Exactly as one would expect. This is a text-book example of moral evil in action, worthy of a ponerological investigation, one day, by our survivors, if any exist. One day Limbaugh, Delingpole and (fill in your favourite) will be up there in the popular imagination with Beelzebub and Lucifer.

  16. Merrelyn Emery says:

    See the figures for deniers in my comment below. Nothing to do with human nature – most Aussies know it isn’t OK now and is going to move even further from OK in the near future, ME

  17. Merrelyn Emery says:

    See the figures for deniers in my comment below. Nothing to do with human nature – most Aussies know it isn’t OK now and is going to move even further from OK in the near future, ME

  18. Merrelyn Emery says:

    I’m sorry M but from the international perspective your comment that deniers are in charge is simply a nonsense. Earlier this year I had to spend some time at international conferences in Europe and the only people who showed any evidence of being influenced by deniers were from the USA. They were not only corrected but laughed at, ME

  19. ozajh says:

    For those of you who don’t know Australian geography, Noosa is an up-market resort/retirement area on the Queensland coast (which means that it is in an area which itself gets plenty of rain). So, lots of wealthy old folks with the political views on average you would expect from such.

    I’m sure there are equivalent areas in the US.

  20. Mulga Mumblebrain says:

    Lou, those are ‘realism mines’. These days cynicism is dead, outdone by reality, as satire ‘became obsolete’ when Kissinger won the Nobel Peace Prize, according to the marvelous Tom Lehrer.

  21. Mulga Mumblebrain says:

    Merrelyn, in fact the deniers are in charge in the USA, Canada, Australia (the risible 5% reduction in greenhouse admissions by 2020, and Gillard’s insistence on coal-mining going on ‘for generations’ is evidence of barely concealed denialism. And that’s not to address the imbecile horrors unfolding in New South Wales, Victoria and Queensland under Generalissimo Newman, with the Tony Abort regime yet to come)and the UK (also thinly disguised) so, as with much that is detestable and evil, this is a real Anglosphere disease.

  22. Diego Matter says:

    Queensland Premier Campbell Newman and his Government also slashed Queensland’s Solar Bonus Scheme feed-in tariff from 44 cents to just 8 cents for new Scheme customers from 10 July 2012 and has sparked a rush on systems. 110000 residents opted to install a system until next year. Exactly the opposite what the Newman Government wanted to achieve. At least one short-lived win. They also slashed a bunch of other environmental and renewable energy programs. Easy to see whose Campbells friends are…

  23. Mulga Mumblebrain says:

    The hypocrisy of pretending to reduce emissions,(by the worst possible method but most ideologically acceptable to the malevolent Right, the imbecility of ‘carbon trading’), while continuing to export more and more coal is stupefying. Lying and coerced stupidity are now so omnipresent in our morally insane society that the only political force that addresses this auto-genocide through greed and idiocy, the Greens, are being subjected to a co-ordinated campaign of hatred and vilification from the two Rightwing mainstream parties and the entire sewer of the Rightwing MSM. Make no mistake-either the Right are utterly moronic and ignorant or they want the catastrophe to occur, and are becoming increasingly aggressive in so moving. This is exactly how psychology and ponerology predict that morally evil psychopaths would behave, and here is a real life illustration of the accuracy of their predictions.

  24. Mulga Mumblebrain says:

    It is as much a matter of conjecture what Abbott would do as it was with his idol, John Howard. The MSM liars pretended that Howard had changed, but anybody who had studied his career (political entomologists for example) knew precisely the depths of deeply held bigotry and hatred that he would display, and the unscrupulous nature of his machinations, and so it proved. Very soon the Rightwing MSM propaganda ghouls had turned his bigotry into ‘moral values’ and his obdurate stubbornness to get his way into ‘strength of conviction’. Abbott is of exactly the same ilk, so you will get environmental vandalism, ‘climate change is crap’ denialism, savage cuts to welfare, education and foreign aid, increases in military spending, tax increases for the poor and cuts for the rich and all the baggage of end-stage Rightwing pathocracy. Bet your life on it.

  25. Mulga Mumblebrain says:

    Generalissimo Newman is also destroying the Wild Rivers wilderness laws, selling cattle stations bought for national parks back to agriculture, allowing more tree logging, more mass tourism in national parks, cattle grazing in parks and much more, and he’s just been elected. And he and his droogs spout venom about ‘green extremists’ almost every time they open their mouths to exude sulphurous vapours.

  26. Merrelyn Emery says:

    Get real Mulga and start looking below the surface and beyond your prejudices. Of course the PM didn’t say she was going to slowly strangle the coal industry but we know as well as she does that it isn’t going to be around for generations to come.

    Yes, it’s a big political ding but if you have the slightest interest in reality, have a look at Diego’s comment below, ME

  27. quokka says:

    Yes, Abbot and co may shoot themselves in the foot over industrial relations because they are unable to contain themselves long enough to win an election. But it’s difficult to be optimistic after the Qld state election train smash. As we all know, without Qld, Labor cannot win a federal election.

  28. Aussie John says:

    Tony Abbott and the so called “Liberal” party have been been mimicking the tactics of the Tea Party/Republican movement for some time now.
    Their political party tacticians have visited the US several times in the last few years to observe and learn how to best apply these methods to the Australian political environment.
    He has never let Australia’s “National Interest” or the well being of future life on planet Earth override his ruthless quest for the prime minister-ship.
    He is willing to allow the science of global warming to be trashed; he allows deniers in his party free rein to reiterate misleading and thoroughly discredited claims sourced from the denier industry.
    I wonder how long honest fellow party members allow this grievous miscarriage of truth to go on? Surely there must be some proud Liberals remaining who have sufficient personal integrity to speak out against such evil tactics.
    To borrow an apt quote “We don’t usually think of history as being shaped by silence, but, as English philosopher Edmund Burke said, ‘The only thing necessary for the triumph [of evil] is for good men to do nothing.’”

  29. Mulga Mumblebrain says:

    Merrelyn, sorry to annoy, but I remain confident that I’m correct. Gillard is a prevaricator interested in nothing but retaining power for its own sake. Like the odious Rudd and the rest of Labor. She and other of her Ministers like the unmentional Morron Fungussonn, have repeated their devotion to coal over and over again, and if not coal then nuke or gas. Dead losses. Gillard only went with a carbon price (in the worst possible form) because she was given no choice by the Greens. Now the corpse of the Labor Party, that has sold out every moral principle that socialists ever held dear (like all so-called ‘social democrats’) is savaging the Greens in cahoots with Murdoch. I supported Labor for years, but it went the instant Rudd intoned the vicious imbecility of a ‘5% reduction’ in greenhouse emissions by 2020. That was the final straw. I look forward to Abort, in league with Newman, Baillieu, Rinehart, Palmer and O’Farrell, because the Land of the Zombie Lotus-Eaters’ deserves him.

  30. dash_bannon says:

    I think we need to follow the money on candidates that deny global warming. I’d wager every time we’ll find the fossil fuel industry backing them.

    How hard would it be to find credible evidence for this?

  31. David Lewis says:

    Recent polling in Oz indicates that although climate science deniers are liable to win an election is one was held tomorrow, it is not clear to the average citizen there what these deniers would do about the Oz carbon policy.

    Oz citizenry has opposed the government’s carbon policy from the first day it was proposed. The Jun 25 2012 figures are 54% opposed 35% in favour. But the tax had at that time yet to come into effect.

    Now that it is in effect, it is possible that the debate will become a bit more tied to reality. Everyone will see if the apocalyptic consequences the opposition has been baying to the moon about are actually happening.

    Opposition leader Abbott pledged “in blood” he would repeal the tax once he got into power, but he’s pledged “in blood” about a lot of things. Oz voters are split about what he means on this carbon tax: current figures are 44% believe his promise “in blood” means he’ll do it, 40% say when Abbot promises “in blood” he’ll do something, it means he’ll do the opposite.

    Senator Christine Milne, Leader of the Oz Green Party was interviewed on Oz radio recently. She says the Opposition has been backtracking on their “written in blood” promises about what they’d do on carbon policy in several important areas and she predicts they won’t repeal the tax.

    Milne: “The coalition opposed the carbon farming initiative throughout and filibustered it and so on, then when we got it through we heard a small squeak out of them oh well now its actually gone through we won’t repeal the carbon farming initiative. So that was that one. Then the Clean Energy Finance Corporation. Well that was written in blood – that was going. And now that we are getting it set up and are about to legislate it through Joe H said the other day oh well after the election they’d talk to the bureaucrats about how much money had been spent and how far things were locked in and the like…. So on the energy efficiency front I don’t think they’d repeal what we’ve succeeded in putting in place there either, so that leaves the main emissions trading scheme. And their big problem there is the big revenue hole that they’ve got. They’ve gone out and convinced people that the carbon price has to go but they have said they want to reduce emissions by 5% themselves which means they’re going to have to pay for that somehow and whereas we’re getting it from the polluters, and that is then going to come through to the community as compensation Tony Abbot is actually going to have to raise that money from the community to pay the polluters which means he’ll have to introduce taxes to do that. And I have never seen a government repeal a revenue stream”. (Full interview here Quoted text is from minute 39:50)

    In British Columbia when a carbon tax was enacted by the right wing government there the left wing forces detected there were votes to be had by championing the cause of rural voters who are addicted to driving around in gas guzzling 3/4 ton pickup trucks. The leader of the left wing party, called the NDP, foamed at the mouth with her “Axe the Tax” campaign. Getting rid of the BC carbon tax was the most important thing in the world. After she lost the election campaign and people in BC had a chance to live with the tax for a while and everyone could see British Columbia didn’t drop off the face of the earth over it, the left wing party in BC dropped their opposition.

    So although I’d say as an outside observer that the prospects for carbon policy in Oz don’t look good, I’m not that sure what will happen. The carbon tax there will have been in place for almost a year by the time the election is held.

  32. M Tucker says:

    Nothing is being done about AGW! And how many days has it been since Kyoto? How many international meetings of climate negotiators have done absolutely nothing?

    Is the world using less fossil fuels or more? Have we ended deforestation or does it continue?

    You do not need to actually deny the science to be an active participant in the disaster. Anyone who says we need “clean coal” is part of the problem! I’m talking about you President Obama! If you are not part of the solution you are part of the problem. By your inaction you support the denier cause! By continuing your policy of developing coal and crude on public lands it is clear who you are actually loyal to. But Obama is just doing what EVERY OTHER nation rich in fossil fuel resources is doing. The relentless development only escalates and these folks ARE NOTHING MORE THAN TACIT DENIERS!

    I repeat THE DENIERS ARE IN CHARGE. Nothing has changed. A few wind and solar projects are not sufficient. WE MUST END FOSSIL FUEL USE and that will never happen without an international binding plan of action.

  33. Merrelyn Emery says:

    You don’t annoy me Mulga and you are certainly entitled to your black/white views. I just don’t find them helpful to anybody, particularly those who are working to move the country towards a more environmentally sane and adaptive future, ME

  34. Merrelyn Emery says:

    By the time of the Federal election, Q’landers will have had at least 17 months to evaluate the consequences of their ‘train wreck’. I wonder how many by then will want to replicate it at the national level, ME

  35. Merrelyn Emery says:

    Thanks for the quiet voice of realism David, ME

  36. Mulga Mumblebrain says:

    Glad to know that I’m not annoying you. You are correct to say that my opinions are doing no appreciable good, so far. They will only be useful if people agree with me that the situation is hopeless, both major political parties are wedded to fossil fuels, both, in cahoots with the entirely Rightwing MSM and business, wish to destroy the Greens, the only half rational party (but also showing fissiparous tendencies in the manner of the now pernicious German Greens)and things are already beyond major tipping-points. Then, if they see what I see, and reject optimistic delusions of reasoning with the morally insane and hoping that they will spontaneously acquire consciences, then they might do what is really required. And that, plainly, is not to plead with the omnicidal system, not appeal to its non-existent understanding, not hope that market capitalist ‘democracy’ can throw up any other than servants of money power, and, instead, concentrate on destroying the irredeemable system, and replace it with one that values human life more than money. Gillard, Rudd, Obama, Abbott, Cameron et al are morally, intellectually and spiritually incapable of such a transformation.

  37. Mulga Mumblebrain says:

    I agree entirely. Gillard’s position is either closet denialism or ignorance of the real situation of stupefying depth and extent. The service to the money power that all politicians must display in capitalist sham ‘democracies’ is taken as given. I admire your masterful understatement that the ‘carbon price’ farce is ‘deeply compromised’. It is, as Marx might have observed, both tragedy and farce at one and the same time.

  38. Mulga Mumblebrain says:

    There are no true ‘Leftwing’ parties tolerated in capitalist societies, including British Columbia. The NDP sold out long ago, and only the Rightwing MSM brainwashing apparatus pretends that they are Left. A real Leftwing Party would stand on principle, and support any progress, while arguing against capitalism, the root cause of all our predicaments. Any such party would, of course, be attacked by the establishment, the MSM, business and the security apparatus with savage determination.

  39. Merrelyn Emery says:

    Mulga, you are not the only person in the world who believes the root of the problem lies in ‘capitalism’ and representative democracy. Some of us are working to show people alternatives to both, which exist, but e.g. when Economic Democracy discussed his work with you, you were negative about that too. I have yet to hear anything about the details of the alternatives you are proposing, and until I do, I will continue to regard your opinions as more likely to induce defeatism in others rather than action in the right direction, ME