« February 2008 »
1 2
3 4 5 6 7 8 9
10 11 12 13 14 15 16
17 18 19 20 21 22 23
24 25 26 27 28 29
Entries by Topic
All topics  «
about editor
aust govt
big media
contact us
donations to SAM
election nsw 2007
election Oz 2007
free SAM content
human rights
independent media
local news
nsw govt
nuke threats
publish a story
zero waste
Blog Tools
Edit your Blog
Build a Blog
RSS Feed
View Profile
official indymedia
ecology action Australia
ecology action
Advertise on SAM
details for advertisers
You are not logged in. Log in

sydney alternative media - non-profit community independent trustworthy
Tuesday, 12 February 2008
NSW energy public assets: Rudd tries to 'assasinate' democracy in $25B sell off, union in 'hospital induced coma'?
Mood:  sharp
Topic: aust govt


Killing democracy in East Timor aka Timor Leste has been a deadly national 'sport' there since at least the invasion by Indonesia 30+ years ago, and by neglect of coloniser Portugal for probably a century or longer before that: 

Location of East Timor

 Ramos-Horta to make 'full recovery'8:49am | But East Timor President remains in coma and will undergo more surgery. | Democracy under the gunAnalysisStan GrantStrife aheadUN reaction

But when Australian PM Rudd correctly seeks to reinforce and consolidate a revived democracy in the face of assassination attempt(s) over there the complexity of this calculating man in relation to NSW democracy is brought into stark relief:

For it is a direct contradiction for PM Rudd to support sale of the huge ($25B) publicly owned natural monopoly on energy in NSW as he did yesterday/today in the 24 hour news cycle in a transparently set piece PR gambit, last shot in the locker for the yes case (as the whole plan was unravelling politically and conceptually over the last weekend): 

Rudd backs Iemma's power sell-off | The Australian 

Iemma welcomes Rudd sell-off support | Herald Sun 

Rudd backs NSW electricity privatisation - Breaking News ...

But will it be enough when it is opposed by 86% of the public in NSW? This is a stratopherically high number in such surveys even higher than Rudd's ascendant popularity figures, hence websites like this organised by Unions NSW:

Shock A Pollie

1. Get informed

Understand the dangers of privatising power by reading the materials on this site.

2. Get connected

Join our Stop the Sell-Off mailing list and email this site around to your friends and family.

3. Get Active

Use the 'Shock A Pollie' to send a direct message to the Premier that you do not support the power sell-off.

Take Action Now - Shock A Pollie!


This democratic opposition is "problemmatic" as per Rudd's press statement in the way the very principle of democracy is to East Timor hit men who put President Ramos Horta in a hospital induced coma. (May God and those good surgeons help him survive.)


The picture is becoming quite clear about PM Rudd as a real politik grifter. If it were just the unions with a limited representative base of 15-20% then no matter. But the survey unionist Thistlethwaite is brandishing speaks for pretty much everyone on this issue:

" DAMIEN O'CONNOR - NSW ALP LEFT FACTION: It is an issue about traditional Labor versus spiv Labor.
IAN MACDONALD - NSW ALP MLA: The Hogg/Egan proposition is a suicide note to the Australian Labor Party.
DR PETER BOTSMAN - UNIVERSITY OF WESTERN SYDNEY: If this goes ahead, it means privatisation of everything will be sanctioned. It means that every state Labor Party, every federal Labor Party across the country will embrace privatisation of essential services. "

in Proposed Privatisation of NSW Power Industry Ch9 Sunday 31 August 1997

Bob Carr was a very popular Premier having brooked no reversal for nearly  2 years since his election March 24 1995. Then he was slam dunked on public energy assets sale proposal in 1997. That's the real politik precedent for popular leaders like Rudd selling out the public interest to remain cosy with the big end of town. That's what the whole work choices industrial relations campaign was about - economic justice.

To be sure Rudd's stock of real politik capital is very high in this angel dust, honeymoon period not least clothed in the moral veil of the national apology tomorrow which the public and Big Media rightly support:


And therein is the logical strategy of getting Rudd's public endorsement for Iemma by the NSW ALP Right against democratic feeling on our public energy assets.

The public are surely right and Rudd is wrong. And even this early Rudd has very real credibility gaps on serious policy:

- as Noel Pearson points out today in a moving feature about views from the crest of a giant sand dune, how sincere can it be to rule out compensation from a $30B surplus and unequivocally support a national apology?

 - NOEL PEARSON: When words aren't enough

 It doesn't quite gel, and indeed it isn't right as Michael Mansell, Bob Brown and many others correctly note. It's grasping PR on the apology without addressing an important policy implication. The failure to even read an embargoed advisory text to Opposition leader Nelson underlines the grasping Rudd ALP posturing. On this Nelson has a point and Kudelka reflects this in his insightful cartoon today, main page The Australian:

- The 2020 Summit of Rudd is widely seen "as a joke" to quote The Daily Telegraph online headline

 Rudd's summit fast becoming a joke | The Daily Telegraph 11 Feb 2008

, which diverges greatly from the print headline by the by ("Hardly a guest list to inspire the nation"). And there are many more threads to that thick rope of scepticism in the Big Media this last 5 days from Clarke & Dawe, Andrew Bolt, Barry Cassidy, Kerry OBrien etc.

- The there is the doozy of them all: Dangerous Climate Change. Signing an exhausted almost redundant Kyoto is nice symbolism but junking medium term strict reduction targets as Ross Garnaut, as Rudd's man has been talking up, is indeed a joke: Crikey - Garnaut loses the plot - Garnaut loses the plot by Clive Hamilton 29 Jan 2008

 Will Rudd go the growth fetish as implied by the expanded energy/immigration/dinosaur growth economics that got us in the cross hairs of dangerous climate change? You bet. This is what he means by "fully support" Iemma's asset sales - to build a $5B truck tunnel to a Bay dredged, expanded Port Botany whose biggest export is empty containers on very climate unfriendly foreign multinational owned jumbo ships with hugely greenhouse embedded retail junk. In other words Rudd's commitment to real climate change discipline is a bald and exposed as his Minister Peter Garrett's scalp. It's a carpet baggers' sincerity.

- And here is more reality check on climate change funding: Of $643M in budget cuts notice Glenn Milne in Hello, budget pain | The Australian 11th Feb 2008 

Trouble was, back at the National Press Club, Tanner was mounting the inflation case for cutting precisely the programs Wong was promoting in Melbourne. Immediately after his speech, the Finance Minister issued a statement detailing an immediate $643 million in spending cuts as a down payment on the promised rigours of the May budget.

The line items appeared obscure. But closer examination revealed that at least three measures - the defunding of the Asia Pacific Network for Energy Technology and the Low Emissions Technology and Abatement program, and the reduction in money for the Renewable Remote Power Generation Program - were going to contribute $49.2 million to Tanner's budget bottom line. And then there was the $3 million knife taken to the funding for the CSIRO research vessel Southern Surveyor. ..... [bold added]

In other words, the Southern Surveyor is an example of just the sort of "scientists, engineers and (research) capacity" Wong lauded in her Melbourne speech as being essential to the frontline battle against the effects of climate change.

This column brought these anomalies to the attention of Wong's office. In mitigation they say the Low Emissions Technology and Abatement money had not yet been committed and the Asia Pacific Network for Energy Technology constitutes an overlap with existing research and development programs.

These details aside, the fact remains that the Tanner-Wong episode is an important symbol of an inevitable transitional phase for the new Labor Government. And the transition is from the high-minded rhetoric of election promises and goals on issues such as climate change to the realities of government, dirtied by the hard stuff of inflation and interest rates.

 - And this credibility gap today:

Lobbyists still roaming unchecked | The Australian 11 Feb 2008

MINISTERIAL meetings with lobbyists are still going unrecorded, with the federal Government's register of lobbyists not yet in place despite plans to have it up and running before parliament opens this week.

Nine weeks after Kevin Rudd released his long-awaited code of conduct for ministers, the Government has no way of implementing its ban on contacts with lobbyists not on the public register.

A spokesman for Special Minister of State John Faulkner confirmed the Department of Prime Minister and Cabinet had not finalised the register but said it expected to put it on its website once complete.

"It's still under construction and it will be available as soon as it's humanly possible," the spokesman said.

More than 600 lobbyists currently have unsupervised access to Parliament House via a special pass system, with non-profit groups, industry associations and commercial lobbying firms all beating paths to new ministers' doors since the election.

Concerns about the role of lobbyists have been heightened in recent years by the controversy surrounding former WA premier and lobbyist Brian Burke.

Rudd is a rich man who only believes in open slather economic growth of a materialist kind to appease institutional economic forces and promote his own political career. On some of these issues like the apology it happily coincides with public interest, on others like the public's hard earned and profitable energy assets it almost certainly does not:

Why do the public oppose the sale anyway?: Multinationals will exercise capitalist creative destruction on the sector in their pathological pursuit of profit as per doco The Corporation.


This is systemic, it's not 'a few bad apples', it's the main game, the modus operandi:

That is well understood. The unions have lots to fear from that private equity foreign, multinational barbaric corporate tradition of

  • cut costs,
  • slash workforce,
  • increase prices,
  • draw down huge dividends to reward investor shareholders in the takeover.

It's transparently the method.

But corporations are an invention of society's legal system. And society should decide what corporations can and can't do with natural monopolies on questions of economic and environmental justice, so embarrassingly illustrated by the Yes Men here:


Otherwise it's just a sell out of democracy to corporate capitalism. An accessory to assasination. In East Timor its bullets, in Australia words are bullets.

The unions/workers' basis of concern to save their jobs and their very lives is therefore clear. But what of the environmnet? If prices go up surely that will reduce greenhouse emissions with reduced use, even at the expense of cold poor people in winter, for the greater good and all that?

But that's not how corporations work. They will maximise production and sales to increase income. They will price the poor out of their energy and sell at comparative volume based discounts to their mates in Big Business making profitable widgets of any description to maximise their own sales. Energy use will massively increase. Highly mechanised operations will make labour insecure and workplaces fatigue ridden high risk and fatal worksites. Unions will be banished. One can hear Big Business revving already:

Greiner backs power sell-off | The Australian 11 Feb 08

The King Penugiuns of the Sub Antarctic will be extinct anytime soon

King penguins in peril as planet warms | NEWS.com.au 12 Feb 2008

as most every government pays lip service to dangerous climate change yet sleep walks on as per capitalist tradition,  as will be extinct alot of pensioners and poor people prone to every latest bug going around in their cold run down residence. Not the rich pollies with their corporate donations. The poor people.

The alternative to really addressing dangerous climate change is to reduce reuse refuse recycle on a huge scale and conserve energy supply. And subsidise new clean forms from the public sector in terms of labour expertise and know how. For that we need a union movement's social capital. We don't need PM Rudd's sophistry.

But Rudd will smile angelically as he did with Laurie Oakes last Sunday on 9  in a sunny glow and cut the ribbon of the $5B truck tunnel

 $5b secret road under Sydney | The Daily Telegraph 1st March 2007

 and any other PR opportunity and democracy will have been betrayed.


Postscript #1 13th Feb 2008

Richard Farmer of Crikey.com.au writes today of yet more credibility gap for angelic PM Rudd:

The Headline seeker. Kevin Rudd is a skilled man in the search for a headline and the 10 second television news grab. On 18 November he promised that Parliament would meet before Christmas. The impression of a new Prime Minister keen to get on with the job was well received. Parliament met for the first time yesterday. On 29 November he promised that there would be no holidays for his new ministry but for Christmas Day and Boxing Day. Once again, the image of a team keen to get on with the job. In truth the government went into the normal Christmas holiday hibernation with Mr Rudd at the cricket and his deputy Julia Gillard acting as boss. And yesterday we saw the extent of another Labor promise – the promise that Parliament under Labor would sit for five days in a week not the four or even three that marked the Howard years. When the Leader of the House Anthony Albanese unveiled changes to the standing orders setting out the rules for this new "full-time" parliamentary week it became clear that the extra sitting day on a Friday would be nothing more than a Clayton's sitting day. There will be no question time, no votes and no quorums; what Parliament will have is a talk fest day where members can be present if they want to get something on the record while having no real need to be present at all.

And Simon Benson of the Daily Telegraph takes the 'way it is' line with this apathetic piece about crude ALP power politics aka 'spiv ALP':

Simon Benson: Labor pulls plug on unions

Postscript #2 15th Feb 2008

Other press updates on this hard fought debate at the highest levels of politics in NSW and Australia that we have noticed:

- Costa confirms talks on new power station - National - smh.com.au 13th Feb 2008

- Bulldoze old power stations, says adviser - Environment - smh.com.au 14th Feb 2008

- Shipping emissions twice level of airlines SMH Feb 14 2008

- from back in 2007 the hugely greenhouse embedded super container ships First China-made 8530-TEU container ship delivered

Posted by editor at 9:22 AM EADT
Updated: Friday, 15 February 2008 5:58 AM EADT
Sunday, 10 February 2008
TV political talkies 2008: Sunday 9 swinging hard, Rudd in the Summer of his life, reptiles poised
Mood:  caffeinated
Topic: aust govt

Picture: To fit the scheduled sorry day event this week at the national Parliament, Grass Seed Dreaming - like Van Gogh's Sunflowers (series of paintings)  raft of themed works - based on the artist Barbara Weir's experience of hours spent as a child sent to hide in the long grass from the govt man whose job was to take her from her Indigenous family in Utopia, Northern Territory. These artworks can sell for tens of thousands today. As explained here and here and here, and here:

Author’s general introductory note (skip this bit if you know this regular weekly column): This is not a well packaged story. It’s a contemporaneous traverse of the Sunday television free to air political talkies indicating the agenda of Establishment interests: Better to know ones rivals and allies  in Big Politics and Big Media.



Indeed it’s the tv version monitoring task similar to what Nelson Mandela refers to here in his book Long Walk to Freedom (1994, Abacus) written in Robben Island prison (where he was meant to die like other African resister chiefs of history in the 19C), at page 208



“..newspapers are only a shadow of reality; their information is important to a freedom fighter not because it reveals the truth, but because it discloses the biases and perceptions of both those who produce the paper and those who read it.”



Just substitute ‘Sunday tv political talkie shows’ for "newspapers" in the quote above.




For actual transcripts go to web sites quoted below except with Riley Diary on 7. And note transcripts don’t really give you the image content value.



Specific introduction for today


There have been some usual sly subtexts and gambits in the weekend and recent press, balanced up with some good old fashioned skeptical bollocking of the 2020 Rudd Summit spin vehicle. In short democracy working sort of:


Well the tv scheduling has changed to a much more contested furious remote control button changing situation, but the same shows are back. We don’t have pay tv so the Sky 9am show today is not covered as usual.


We say extra use of the remote but actually good old pen and paper too as we can't type our brainstorms direct when such as Laurie Oakes is in Q&A with PM Rudd on 9, while Barry Cassidy is grilling Mal Turnbull as Opposition Treasurer on 2 at 9.05 am. Or similarly Van Onselen on 9 is dishing the dirt on macabre face tilt, koala eyed ex MP WA lobbyist Grill, while Mark Riliey goes through his amusing insightful paces at 7 at 8.35 am.



The last Sunday Talkies here on SAM micro news website was literally 2 months ago Dec 2nd 2007 here




and notice this late last year too Nov 25th 2007:


Sunday TV political talkies: (delay in transmission) it’s a new same ol’, same ol’

Yet in truth its been a busy busy 8 weeks plus for the new federal govt as most political watchers know, and in this respect see our Sunday 9 comments re interview with Mr Oakes who is definitely baaack.



Media backgrounder


- First praise where it's due: Garrett has identified $16M for a joint World Heritage bid and management authority with PNG government of the magnificent Kokoda Track environs. We visited the Lae cemetry in 1990 and there's no forgetting those headstones of 18-25 year olds, loved brother, son, husband. Conservative MP Charlie Lynn MP makes the same point about this values expanding journey and he's spot on. No forgetting:

Rudd to fast-track Kokoda listing | The Australian

We find this impressive because, rather than a few 'big men' in the village(s) getting some action, as claimed by a local guy who put me up all those years back, and those few sending their kids to private school in Australia, maybe they can all get a school on location? We said as much on abc 702 morning radio last week and got sledged later in the morning for nonsense by the ex PM Howard aligned spinner Bob Lawrence, but listen up BL, winners are grinners, losers weepers:

Kokoda Track protest stage-managed | The Australian

- so it is with a heavy heart (well not really) we bring this blast from the past 1998 when Shane Stone was Chief Minister of the Northern Territory and Peter Garrett was busy organising his career as the ALP Minister for the Environment (in the guise of green group ACF President), only we activists targetting Jabiluka uranium mine in solidarity with traditional owner Yvonne Margarula just didn't know it: As crime writer Malcolm Brown notes June 8th 2004 in the SMH:

The Greens leader, Bob Brown, warned Labor politics would "stymie" the enormous contribution Mr Garrett had yet to make to Australia's future.

"The prospect of Peter being inside the party that, for example, is woodchipping Tasmania's ancient forests at the greatest rate in history, concerns me for Peter's sake," Senator Brown said.

The executive director of the Australian Conservation Foundation, Don Henry, said he was "grateful for the work" of Peter Garrett as ACF president, a position he has held since 1998.

Holding the office of president of one of the peak environment groups puts Mr Garrett at odds with the Labor Party on the issue of Tasmania's old-growth forests.

The ACF wants immediate protection for 240,000 hectares of Tasmania including all high conservation old growth forests and wilderness areas. But the Labor Party has said it will not jeopardise timber industry jobs by abandoning the existing Regional Forests Agreement.



Speed and ambition. But truth to tell we also find this picture impressive because who hasn't been just a little confronted by the dress wearing man, sometimes a Sydney experience, and here we see Garrett when he was on the side of the angels if not fairies, in the lead up to Mardi Gras season (!), in sympathetic non judgemental mode. That actually takes guts and a moral centre so for this we give respect. While exploiting the NT editor's cynicism 10 years later (!). PG sort of lost that centre in our view: Those wicked ALP carpet baggers like Bob Carr, and all those years of ego bending cheering crowds.
Here is a picture of Garrett same issue of the NT News which did not lead under the heel of CLP Stone's regime, tucked away at p6:

and in modern times

"Bininj culture really strong. You have to look after country. For your grandfather country, like mother country, take care." Yvonne Margarula, Mirarr Senior Traditional Owner.

- the proposed sale of the profitable $15B public energy assets in NSW took a weird turn in the big business friendly Sunday Telegraph: The editorial blathers on trivialising the huge issues of principle and economic justice as mere personal power games. Indeed the cynicism of Costa jumping from Labor Council (now Unions NSW) to a ministerial career back in 2003 or so, and widely held view he will jump in typical ammoral style to big business asap, is somehow reversed (in typical ALP mind f*ck style) as a smear on Bernie Riordan as prominent opponent of the sale. It's all about sewing dissension and disaggregating solidarity in the union movement.

The stories appear offline including the editorial:

- The power struggle over energy sell-off at p89 10 Feb 08 complete with soft PR pics of otherwise reviled Iemma/Costa, and grey haired Riordan under. There's nothing new in the story by Linds Silmalis suggesting she is on the Premier's office drip. It's woeful coverage with 85% of the public against the sale;

- The lights are on but no one's home at p83 which is little more than a union bash, echoing the same anti union folks at Fairfax we covered here


Contrary to the spin in the Big Media we think removal of Iemma and Costa from NSW politics can only be progress for working people.

Mr Riordan's advocacy was quite convincing and credible on ABC Stateline last Friday and that would have hurt Iemma and Costa's agenda:

08/02/2008 Bring It On! The ALP versus Mr Iemma

 John Kaye MP, another vigorous and effective critic refers to "rumours of dealmaking" here 10 Feb 08 (media release)

"For the Greens, public ownership of the retailers is not negotiable.

"Reflecting widely-held sentiments in the environment movement, the party is deeply concerned that the electricity industry will need to change dramatically to slash emissions.

"Public ownership of the retailers is essential to protect consumers from what will be an increasingly volatile and dangerous wholesale market.

"Retailers driven by profit will not be willing or able to work with households to reduce total demand.

"Retailer privatisation would squander opportunities to create a low carbon industry that also makes sure electricity bills don't skyrocket.

"While there are rumours of a deal being brokered by the Labor leadership, we urge all unions and party members to stay firm on protecting public ownership of the retailers.

"Trading off the sale of the retail arms of Energy Australia, Integral and Country Energy to keep the generators in public hands would be a pyrrhic victory.

"We should see this rumoured deal for what it is: an attempt to divide the opposition to privatisation.

"If it goes ahead, there is no doubt that Treasurer Costa or one of his successors will come back and finish off the job," Dr Kaye said.

And Kaye jumped on this from amongst others News Ltd US abandons joint clean coal experiment | NEWS.com.au and ABC Clean coal loses funding in United States - 06/02/2008The World Today - Clean coal research hits tax hurdle: Here is Kaye's take on the situation:

Collapse of US clean coal facility another blow to NSW privatisation
Media Release: 5 February 2008
The decision by the US government to abandon the FutureGen carbon capture and storage project undermines yet another argument for privatisation of the NSW electricity industry, according to Greens NSW MP John Kaye.
Dr Kaye said: "A major component of NSW Treasurer Costa's $15 billion privatisation was a massive private sector investment in carbon reduction technologies, which is increasingly looking like the impossible dream.
"The Iemma government justifies the environmental risks of long term leasing of the state-owned generators and the sale of the retailers by arguing that it would encourage investment in clean coal technologies to reduce carbon emissions.
"The collapse of the world's largest clean coal project makes a mockery of Treasurer Costa's attempted green washing of privatisation.
"The Iemma government's sell-off scheme relied on ensuring that the private sector would invest between $3 to $4 billion in retrofitting the state's existing power stations with carbon capture and storage and would pony up the additional money to build new base load generation with low carbon technologies.
"The Bush administration has just delivered a body blow to carbon capture and storage.
"By pulling their $2 billion investment out of the FutureGen project in Illinois, the US administration has delivered a massive vote of no confidence in clean coal and consequently in Michael Costa's electricity privatisation deal.
"The electricity industry in NSW is responsible for 57 million tonnes of CO2 each year.
"It makes no sense to hand over 35% of the state's greenhouse gas emissions to private owners when carbon reduction technologies are increasingly looking farcical," Dr Kaye said. 
 For more information: John Kaye 0407 195 455

Minister Macdonald in the NSW Govt has rejected the interpretation but they do sound worried in this undated statement presumably on or about 5th Feb 08.

- big advert from anti Genetic Engineering food campaigners at p5, The Australian 7th Feb 2008. We will write on this in a new article having interviewed Bob Phelps by phone last Friday but more background is here:

GM ban bolsters state split | The Australian

- As explained in greater depth in the segments below the ALP have moved into spin mode defending their "talkfest" 2020 Rudd ideas summit: Queue forms for Ruddfest | The Daily Telegraph. At Insiders segment below:

Discussion of the 2020 summit at some stage: Correctly notes as we did on SAM the 7.30 Report riposte 'conflict of interest' of the media getting involved. Cassidy refers to 'skepticism around' about this talkfest (see media backgrounder above in due course like Nelson to replay public questions as rival claim on public opinion/participation.) Bolt gets in a second fix over what sounded like a revelation that his boss John Hartigan will be participating in the summit, but went on to say it's a conflict of interest being there and criticising later.

And notice our coverage back here:


Certainly is a level of scepticism (with thanks to SMH, link to one of their product adverts):


- We did write to Blair along greenie lines re cancer operation pending despite pointed colour coding of the tumour he had removed from his plumbing as green gremlin. We suggested that it would be hypocritical to offer false sympathy but still we offered the Maker might have a Saul/Paul Damascene conversion in store for him if he got through because the green sector does a good line in "redemption". He's running pictures of presumably himself post operation at his personal blog:



It's a matter of record he didn't but this headline does indeed suggest he's been thinking about it. And he does keep refering to correspondence from a greenie hater called Global Warming. Methinks the mountain is moving a bit despite this bravado, and no we don't approve of hate mail even to Tim Blair:

How I survived to fight the Greens another day

 - speaking of News Limited journos spinning off into Weird Joe Hilderbrand appears to be experiencing some existential angst with this dangerously risky flirtation with domestic violence as a suitable topic of satire. 'Things that batter' faux par by Alexander Downer comes to mind. Some things are just not funny: Domestic violence is one of them.

Which is sort of what his side column indulges in too. Attacking Deborah Cameron at the ABC, but why bother? Is Joe getting envious of thethe ABC gig of Telegraph cartoonist Warren, or what? Otherwise we can't explain it except to say Joe is a b*tch. Here he is:

Women aren't funny - am I right? | The Daily Telegraph with side bar offline Ode to the glorious delights of Deborah p87 Feb 9 2008.

To which we just now submit this:

Joe, Joe, Joe.

You seem to be losing your way a bit mate. Very talented writer but why the implied misogyny even under cover of satire? Take a breath mate and step back from yourself a bit. How many female comics literally have careers being funny? Your premise is indeed whacky.

And the flirting with domestic violence - which is oh so real and contemptible in our society - as a suitable topic for satire. I don't get it. You are so not that guy.

Is that writing on the public energy asset sales, a $15B gambit, making you question your place in this institutional world?

And why go at Deborah Cameron who is doing fine. Are you secretly envious of such as Warren with his own gig on ABC? Do you in fact need a change my friend?

- If you ever had any doubt about the broad social support for reaching out to Aboriginal Australians this week it's the matriarch of famous son Rupert Murdoch who controls the News Corp global media behemoth in surely an authorised picture. Any News Ltd journo who doesn't take the hint doesn't want to keep their job, run in rival Fairfax too:


- A variant on the 2020 ALP PR gambit to mind f*ck the public intellectual life of the nation via vain flattery, rather than focus on heavy issues like intractable economic troubles (inflation, skills deficit, reliance on hyper immigration to crank retail and building sectors): It's a "We feel your pain" puff piece on Tanya Plybersek's life work balance feature p78 9 Feb 2008 Saturday Daily Telegraph called Having it all comes at a price (offline)

- Those cynical "fresh food people". Macca ABC radion Sunday morning had a cracking talk back caller who said, dripping with cynicism, that 'the peanuts sold by the fresh food people are from China, not Kingaroy' and  'the oranges sold by the fresh food people are from California not Mildura'. Ouch. Now we see this rather brazen PR sticker inserted in to the Sunday press. It's another weird mind f*ck and cynics might say its easy to show solidarity after it rains:

- In the cynicism stakes what about this deal by western corporations who donate hand over fist to political parties who support bombing Iraq to bits and occupying forever, then offer to be paid in oil to help Iraq pump more oil:

Payment in kind suits oil giants fine, p12 Resources section in Careers of Weekend Australian 9-10 Feb 08.


- Meanwhile Glen Milne praises California's Republican Governor Schwarzenegger for his economic clout behind climate friendly economics, back on Jan 21 2008. This is the direct opposite of the oil sands in Canada which is hitting climate policy turbulence: Climate change, economic reality hit oil sands Wall Street Journal via The Australian p27 Thurs 7 Feb 08 (offline).

- That wacky environmentalist James Woodford, down on his south coast hobby farm with gaggle of children, has figured out in his inimitable way that kangaroo meat is better than domesticated bovines or sheep, not realising perhaps that mass production of meat without systemic parasite controls made possible by that very domestication could lead to a further escalation in hydatid to rural communities:

Landline - 23/10/2005: Tapeworm continues to thrive in wild dog ...

Hydatid can be lethal, especially to children and is found in the offal of kangaroos of interest to dogs then to you, and given millions of kangaroos are being gutted each year one does wonder the risk factor.

Wild dog in a cage
Hydatid tapeworm
Hydatid tapeworm eggs

The wild animal hunting industry don't like to talk about the natural evolutionary pressure always present from parasites (as we wrote here and here) which cannot be nearly as easily managed in a domestic situation. It's all under control they say, but being financially conflicted, they would wouldn't they?

The Herald continues it's Eating Skippy agenda without addressing this scary subtext.

- How green indeed: How green was my campus | The Australian of 30 January 08. A good question for anti green Fred Hilmer busy ruining the green credentials of the UNSW as all bean counters tend to do:


Monday, 19 March 2007






9 Sunday 7.30am- 9.30am

Rueful wincing smiles at the earlier start all round. [More sympathy for the ABC morning presenter shift now?]. Bait set from the get go of "bombshell" revelations about Brian Bourke still playing footsies with WA ALP ministers. Still, says smiling partner in palsied bluff Julian Grill held in a freeze frame like a smiling Kraken of developer corruption.

The other bait right off the mark is PM Rudd 'to appear in just over an hour with big Laurie Oakes'. You might call this the quid pro quo pre election of Nov 24, not to suggest any favouritism by LO but LO made a big difference to the credibility of brand Rudd on the way up for presumably sound journalistic reasons.

Long chunky adbreaks, sold at a lower rate?

Ross Greenwood back in Q& A with compere Ellen (presumably to soften departure of alpha male Ray Martin from the station) on consolidation of the resources boom 'for the next 20 years' [itself echoes Tim Blair poison blog yesterday Sydney Daily Telegraph] reference to $165 billion BHP/Rio Tinto takeover bid

All very upbeat but also noting two stroke economy of interest rate rises to home owners suffering inflationary effects of resources boom.

[Huge flaw in this analysis - dangerous climate change which all the narrow corporate analysts are sleep walking into based on ... tradition. More fool them and us. They won't believe it until they can like St Thomas see it, put their hand in the wound, in this case say 2 metre sea rise.]

 Underbelly gets predictably long promo just after 8am to cruel MTP kick off on 10. 

Next we see is political presenter youngish blade Van Onselen, tv friendly looks, bit beefcake like to be tough (?) accessing Julian Grill in WA spinning 'nothing to see here, move on', normal money politics (!) being the strong implication, while premier Carpenter is looking down the cameral barrel 'I'll sack yer' if ministers work with Grill/Bourke.

An eloquent portrayal of why the ALP and democracy itself is broken in WA and NSW via corporate and PR influence. Tough talking Carpenter now sporting a paunch riding his desk for all it's worth is contra mundum his own corrupt Party. No wonder Geof Gallup was depressed and left it to a younger man to tilt at the windmill of money politiks

As said above Grill is like a carpet bagging tilt faced wide koala eyed macabre palsied undertaker. Truisms about age and treachery over youth and talent come to mind.

Then Oakes interview with PM Rudd:

- The guy is in the summer of his life, blonde, fit, alert, clearly happy with his achievement and meaningful role. LO opens with a cracking good human interest question in a generally soft toned interview, which is also a deceptive volume because it can mean the unseen spider web, the trap wherein lies the hammer blow, the crescendo of pain. But the old lethal fangs were sheathed today, no fatal ambush by the 4th estate coppers, not least because history must be nurtured up to this Wednesday and most all want to share this moment 200 years coming:

Q.  Are you used to being called PM?

Seemingly innocent soft potentially lethal expose of hubris at the season opener: The answer was equally disarming: 'No, look over my shoulder to see where the other guy is'. Quips about having been Humphrey, Bernard and the PM in Yes Prime Minister.

It's all in the delivery. He's very much at ease. The guy has resolved something quite deep in the id. On the sorry day event he mentions an hour an a half with an 80 something victim of the stolen generation of the 1930ies. (It's like he's seen his beloved mother again who died in 2004. ) The guy is glowing like he's got a halo. Oakes is actually deferential which is quite a thing to see.

And it's true enough this is a holy moment coming up and Rudd is quietly rejoicing in it like a sincere Christian might.

100 Aboriginal representatives will have their expenses paid to attend said with a tiny quaver. Howard ex PM said not to be attending. Some ex ALP PMs not available also. Makes it sound like the door is open to Howard yet like some antipodean Lord Marchmain simply dragging his feet?

After the adbreak the second half of the interview kicks off on what should traditionally be more fraught and pressure filled topics but somehow are veiled with angel dust from the earlier topic: Inflation, education, skills, uni policy, no change to tax cuts, interviews himself on whaling. without denying for a moment 'big difficult complex problems' like State Govt dependance on pokies revenue which he's 'been looking at' which surely is ominous for shareholders in Aristocrat, including quite a few bruvvers on his side of the fence.

In summary it's easy to believe Rudd is doing a good job, and whether he is or not is buried under the fact he is definitely enjoying the job. We may be seeing the goofy Kevin Rudd in action as distinct from the grey man we've always known. These can be brilliantly inspired phases of one's life however short or long they last.










10 Meet the Press:  8- 8-30 am

Hard to keep with with this and Ch9 in parallel. Treasurer Swan sounding earnest and a bit flat and embattled like he's running hard to stay in one place. Standard ALP boiler plate about financial discipline re rates rise, inflation, supply side reform of skills and infrastructure.

Fran Kelly abc RN, Mal Farr News Ltd SDT, on the panel which actually are heavyweights (ha ha) in the national press gallery fillip to MTP nervously up against 9.

All the elements of higher level contest yet still lacking spark somehow. Nicholson cartoon was mildly funny about ego of PM Rudd with Howard/Costello in soup line. 

Skip to US theatrical contest but I tuned out as over it, though other viewers probably like it (?).



Transcript in due course www.ten.com.au/meetthepress ,



Myspace web address: www.myspace.com/meetthepeople




7 Weekend Sunrise: 8.35-40 am Riley Diary  -

Amusing and insightful at the standard we've come to expect conceptually and visually. First big clue is very healthy moustache of a punter, laced with spaghetti western audio track, and then grabs of both Rudd and Nelson referring to a mythical "silver bullet" to fix inflation or whatever other real politik is threatening. Entre to footage of squeaky clean Lone Ranger a la Hollywood invention segue to "Kevinator" tag (ie Terminator of ex PM Howard) - a bit of a stretch but hey it is satire. Cutting use of Tonto "not make sense". Which fits nicely with the bullshit detector sounding off over the Summit 2020 plan.

 Indeed in the Q&A post video Riley refers to this Govt needing a "Minister for the Banking Sector" which is actually very cutting because 1. It's likely true to control the rampant gougers 2. Opposition Turnbull implied as much earlier in the week and 3. Kevin Swan as Treasurer is supposed to be that minister, or maybe Lindsay Tanner as minister for Finance.

In other words Riley has not been bluffed by the Monday last Summit PR gambit to annexe his editorial on say the interest rate rise the next day. Nor have any of the other serious big media, and that's all to the good for a functioning 4th estate, let alone junior 5th estate here.

 Deputy Leader Bishop plugging away on AWAs for WA (!).

Seven makes likely sincere positive noises about the reconciliation sorry day event via compere Andrew OKeefe and Riley due acknowledgement.

MR brilled shorter hairstyle for the new season.








Insiders 2: 9-10am
We finally get back over to 2 from 9 barrelling along with film review to its 9.30 or so business segment.
Panel is Bolt in pink shirt like Elvis and his blue suede shoes, and somehow works for tv, if only as an implicit right wing gibe at 'socialist ABC'. Safe hands Lenore Taylor of AFR and Annabel Crabb of the at times breathtaking prose. Bolt gets snookered on ALP needing support of cross benches in the Senate effectively saying A=B=C, with C being Green Party are good, as the out take shows Bolt holding his head in dismay.
Mal Turnbull as Opposition Treasurer right at the opening reveals a haughty swagger with his big brain and references to Orwellian flexibility over economic data by the Rudd Swan team literally as Rudd is skating over the same on 9. These are the highlights in an avalanche of arguments and sidetracks. Bolt just before the final credits states 'he's not ready for prime time, needs coaching'. Ouch. True and discipline on a big dangerous talent.
Discussion of the 2020 summit at some stage: Correctly notes as we did on SAM the 7.30 Report riposte 'conflict of interest' of the media getting involved. Cassidy refers to 'skepticism around' about this talkfest (see media backgrounder above in due course like Nelson to replay public questions as rival claim on public opinion/participation.) Bolt gets in a second fix over what sounded like a revelation that his boss John Hartigan will be participating in the summit, but went on to say it's a conflict of interest being there and criticising later.
But Bolt got some revenge with challenging who was stolen in the stolen generation. Stay tuned came the response eventually.
All the bollocking of the 2020 summit still conceded the vain will climb over themselves including from their own media sector as per this report in the Sunday Telegraph.



Home page is http://www.abc.net.au/insiders/

Posted by editor at 8:59 AM EADT
Updated: Monday, 11 February 2008 10:07 AM EADT
Heath Ledger nailed the Skip role in Lords of Dog Town cultural docu-drama
Mood:  lyrical
Topic: culture

For those skeptics of the Heath Ledger career check out his pivotal role in this movie available at most DVD shops. As one wit on YouTube has pointed out, the whole movie was underpinned by his character role as Skip the flawed brilliant haughty entrepeneur of Zephyr skateboards 'based on a true story'. The first image below is a stand alone clip here.

The other images are a full trailer at the link to the collage. Not surprising his friends went to the ocean for his wake - which surely is a metaphor in our dreams and our life for the emotional journey we are all on in some way. We Australians blend in with the ocean, as one, knowing its huge and overwhelming, teaching respect. We have no doubt Heath Ledger was emblematic of coastal and therefore most Australians of his generation.


Posted by editor at 8:14 AM EADT
Updated: Sunday, 10 February 2008 8:56 AM EADT
Saturday, 9 February 2008
Addison Rd Centre General Manager 'Job Vacancy' closing date 1st April 2008
Mood:  a-ok
Topic: local news

Recently arisen, how brightly you shine



Addison Road Centre

Senior Management





The Addison Road Centre (ARC) is an equal opportunity employer and values the diversity of its workforce. This means that the person most capable of doing the job will be chosen, without discrimation based on age, sex, pregnancy, disability, race, colour, ethnic or ethno religious background, descent or nationality, marital status, homosexuality, transgender identity, or carer’s responsibility.



The ARC is an independent organisation pursuing the goal of providing a site where organisations and individual practitioners in the arts, culture, community and the environment can work together in a community-owned asset. The ARC aims to be a showcase of how diversity of communities defined either by locality, ethnicity, sexuality, gender, age, ability or interest can operate together to achieve social and environmental outcomes in a context of economic self-sufficiency.






Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander People, people with disabilities and people from culturally and linguistically diverse backgrounds are encouraged to apply.



General Manager – Salary $65K per annum

Job Ref No: GM08/01



Are you an energetic and experienced manager with excellent interpersonal skills and management experience willing to be a central part of a team committed to servicing the infrastructure and administrative needs of clients?



An opportunity is available to join the team of the Addison Road Centre, Marrickville as it moves forward with a vital program of community service.



The General Manager will be a key role in the provision of best practice administrative services for over 40 tenants and 5 staff. You will need to be committed to protecting the interests and dignity of people in a wide range of community activities. The organisation is experiencing strong growth in the demand for its services and is undergoing organisational change. You will be working with the Board of elected representatives to achieve long term change.



Selection criteria:  We are seeking a senior manager with extensive experience in a client service organisation who can demonstrate outstanding leadership and management capabilities. The successful candidate will have experience in significant and successful organisational change and process strategic planning and financial management skills. A sound knowledge of the issues facing community centres on community land are contained in the information package available.


The operations of Addison Rd Centre are located on 3.4 hectares at 142 Addison Rd, Marrickville in the Inner West of Sydney.



The position has a remuneration package of $65,000 per annum.



Inquiries: Yvette Andrews (02) 9569 7633


Information Packages:  Terry Cutcliffe 9518 3709, 0412 590 779


Applications Marked “Confidential” To: Applicants can apply by email to mainoffice@addisonrdcentre.com.au


Closing date: April 1st 2008


Posted by editor at 6:52 PM EADT
Updated: Saturday, 9 February 2008 8:02 PM EADT
Friday, 8 February 2008
Community media in Sydney pushing on-line in 2008
Mood:  quizzical
Topic: independent media

Better late than never!

Alternative Media Group which is a struggling for profit independent press business in Sydney has made it's first tentative steps into the web sphere.

The decidely pinkish AMG notwithstanding the green coloured get up above, and no relation to this SAM website Sydney Alternative Media though our editor did work for AMG 2002-early 2007, has always "wanted to build up their web presence" according to "group manager Chris Peken. In fact this writer urged this approach a few months before the quite mutual fork in the road Feb last year.

So now it is so.


On another Sydney front re community media capacity building, the decidedly non profit Sydney Independent Media Centre, highly interactive self publishing website with somewhat national and globalised linkages has announced an open meeting for later in February 2008.

Again no relation to SAM here though we have been a dedicated contributor there too over say 10 years.

Additionally we here at SAM reported recently our webpage view figures up to 19-20K per month up from a previous 11K in December. Time will tell the significance of this jump in readership stats.

Meanwhile, over at the Big Indy taxpayer funded ABC media, somewhat hobbled by balance obligations as opposed to 'truth' obligations, we notice the last Sunday Telegraph was gracious enough to carry a letter from a 20 year ABC veteran senior executive, one Peter Wall of Lindfield. He praised mid morning jockey Deborah Cameron pictured with said letter, and the thrust was similar to our own observation here on SAM 2 weeks back that DC has the capacity and quality professional and personal in terms of standards which is not always the same as ratings. This remains our view as long as she gets the sleep to perform this demanding daily gig.

We presume this is the News Ltd Sunday Tele's way of saying their negative coverage the week before was a mere tickle up care of the brutish commercial sector. As said 2 weeks back "all things being fair which they are not" DC ought to do fine in that tough gig. And cannabilistic reptiles have plenty to move on with too given the general coverage today of Ray Martin embracing freedom from the private equity barbarians at Ch9:

News results for ray martin

Ray Martin quits Nine Network - 3 hours ago
RAY Martin last night quit Channel 9 after 30 years as one of the network's biggest stars. Sources said a simmering feud with management led to a final ...
Melbourne Herald Sun - 35 related articles »
Not the retiring type: Martin quits Nine - Sydney Morning Herald - 24 related articles »
Ray Martin resigns from Nine Network - NEWS.com.au - 30 related articles »


Posted by editor at 11:52 AM EADT
Updated: Friday, 8 February 2008 4:35 PM EADT
Power sale debate Herald's neurotic growth fetish?
Mood:  sad
Topic: nsw govt

Michael Costa MP, at present the Treasurer of NSW gets a moderate leg up by the anonymous Herald editorialist today:

www.smh.com.au - Costa's critics short-circuited

They claim Costa is full of "political courage" taking on the unions. That reads like Yes Minister style foolhardy unsustainable politics.  

The Unions are just off a big big federal election win for their side and they have the 85% backing against the power public asset sale and a grassroots campaign 'Your rights at work' infrastructure in place. And they are not backing off:

Quit now, Labor chief tells Costa - National - smh.com.au

This is the kind of democratic movement on industrial relations in 2006-7 that the big knobs at the SMH would be none too comfortable with - it's economic justice that comes off their shareholders' dividends and senior executive bonuses. And one presumes that's the case with a $15B power sale too - less income for the corporate owners of Fairfax.

There is one line in the Herald editorial that reflects at the core their narrow neurotic capitalist approach to the political economy:

"New capacity is vital if the state economy is to continue to grow; NSW cannot continue to defer its long-term energy future."

This beauty of a sentence captures so many things:

- the sincere, genuine confusion manifested by the non sequitor of long term energy future in the 2nd leg as if it can be guarranteed by "new capacity/economic growth". One only needs to read the most grim foretelling (below) about dangerous climate change to show that this old style growth festish political economics is suicidal.

- For all the populist Eco pages and general environmental news, the Herald is essentially a growth capitalist institutional pillar with overpaid staff and owners, that doesn't get ecological sustainability because otherwise it would be talking about conserving capacity and reducing demand, not feeding the monster;

- the subtext of endless immigration even up to 150 million, as provocation, which just adds to individual consumption problems, underpinning demand which most thinking people have long realised causes a false housing shortage for greater corporate market and profit. Far better to increase our aid and support - like Cuba's medical diplomacy - to other countries than flog to ecological death our own land. Record levels of immigration are in fact out of control, and that's from someone who believes in a coffee coloured multicultural future, higher refugee intake, with all the curiousity, inspiration and hybrid vigour that brings a country (indeed underwrites) economic success. The 'wide wide open door' is a big business racket for such as Westfield retailers and Meriton high rise.

- it echoes the defiant ecological denialism of Costa, a proud 'brown MP' himself degrading the norms of behaviour in the NSW Legislative Council with his boorish rhetoric that the coal industry must expand and that the Green Party have no merit raising their generic concerns in general and on climate specifically. In short the swaggering Costa is a dinosaur on questions of environment and sustainable planning (eg Stateline April 2005) and this is well know: Attack of the Spivs | newmatilda.com

The combined union movement whose business is social capital, who deal in management, control, guidance, service to working people are not so arrogant as to rule out of real politik consideration the warnings of the ecological scientists and green movement especially on climate: Because dangerous climate is the biggest humans rights and security issue going around this 21C (only now being taken seriously by security experts as per ABC's Leigh Sales in her reportage yesterday) along with nuclear weapons proliferation.

Our politicians, captured by big corporate donations (read orthodox market capitalism), are not serving the working people of Australia sufficiently in relation to this climate threat, just as the ultra hierarchical 'corporate' communist party of China is not either with their endless growth projections affecting even their so called Green Olympics.



More than 60 tornadoes were reported in the Southern states on Tuesday and Wednesday, killing dozens of people and injuring hundreds.

And don't think we won't see cyclonic impacts on Sydney in our lifetime to compare with Cyclone Tracy. We at SAM believe we will within decades. Imagine what that will do to the power industry and working people. It's the biggest human rights issue of our lifetime but the neurotic Herald hasn't resolved that reality within its own editorial writer's clique.

Take a look at this article that ran in 'The Crimes' ie The Canberra Times earlier this Febuary 2008. It's a very grim foretelling. The ferocity of the lethal twisters pictured above this last few days in the USA just seems to reinforce the point.  


To: Subject: [NCEC] Fwd: Climate Code Red Released 4 Jan 2008

recommended reading....


Adrian Whitehead <zeroemissionsnow...> wrote:

Hi all,

One of the most important documents to be written for the global
climate campaign has been released on the web.

The document makes the case that the science is being misread and
miscommunicated and that the situation is far worse than most climate
commentators choose to explain, it then looks at appropriate goals and
solutions and argues for rapid reduction in atmospheric greenhouse gas
concentrations now.

Written by David Sprat and Philip Sutton the document is a must read
for any serious campaigner.

Down load the pdf from http://climatecodered.net/

The authors have asked that people do not email the PDF directly but
instead direct others to the website.

Also see article published in Canberra Times below signature block.

Best wishes


Adrian Whitehead
Zero Emission Network
Level 2, 140 Bourke Street
Melbourne, Victoria 3000

0403 735 118

Canberra Times Article  02 February 2008 - 10:05AM

Report attacks climate policy

Rosslyn Beeby

The Rudd Government's climate change policy has already been overtaken
by new science and will impose a "death sentence" on Australia unless
urgently updated, say the authors of a new report.
Former Victorian government adviser Phillip Sutton and David Spratt,
founder of climate change group CarbonEquity, say the Government's
policy lacks scientific depth and has been cobbled together from
reports now surpassed by new data on the rate and scale of global
In a hard-hitting report for Friends of the Earth Australia, they
claim the Government's commitment to reduce greenhouse emissions by 60
per cent by 2050 locks Australia into supporting a dangerous 3 degree
rise in global temperature and is based on a United Nations report 12
years out of date.
The Melbourne-based policy analysts also cast doubt on the scope and
relevance of the climate change review being conducted for the Federal
Government by Australian National University economist Professor Ross
Prime Minister Kevin Rudd has said the review's findings will guide
future policies on climate, but Mr Spratt claims its terms of
reference pre-date the groundbreaking climate change report by British
economist Sir Nicholas Stern.
"The Rudd Government urgently needs to review and update its terms of
reference if the inquiry is to remain relevant, otherwise it's like
batting information back and forth like a tennis match, so the
Government can keep avoiding responsibility," he said.
The report, Climate Code Red: The Case for a Sustainable Emergency,
accuses the Rudd Government of adopting a timid "culture of
compromise" and low expectations in mapping a national response to
climate change.
"We contend that current proposals to establish caps of 2 degrees or 3
degrees as reasonable for avoiding climate change are not being
informed by the likely impacts and expert elicitations, but have been
shaped by the world of diplomacy, political tradeoffs and compromises
driven by narrow, short-term and national aspirations," the report
It urges the Rudd Government to treat global warming as a national
emergency requiring lower temperature targets, tougher emission
reduction targets and innovative energy strategies. The authors say
the greatest reduction in Australia's greenhouse emissions, and the
most economically efficient, can be made by comprehensive energy
efficiency programs and technologies that reduce per capita
electricity consumption.
"The scandal is that sometimes the most energy-efficient domestic
technologies and appliances aren't even on the market, or businesses
and consumers are not aware of the choice."
The report is endorsed by Ian Dunlop, former chief executive of the
Australian Institute of Company Directors, Opposition environment
spokesman Greg Hunt, Australian Greens climate change spokeswoman
Senator Christine Milne and United States policy expert Professor
Dennis Meadows.
Federal climate change minister Penny Wong is attending a climate
change conference in Hawaii and was unavailable for comment.
Mr Dunlop said the report offered a balanced analysis of the
challenges of climate change, "unadorned by political spin" and
proposed a realistic framework to tackle the emergency.
"The stark fact is that we face a global sustainability emergency. But
it is impossible to design realistic solutions unless we first
understand and accept the size of the problem. We know those
solutions, but what is lacking is the political will, firstly to
honestly articulate the problem and secondly to implement those
solutions," he said.
Senator Milne said global warming was now accelerating faster than
scientists had predicted, "leaving policy so far behind it is outdated
as it is released." She said the Greens pre-election climate change
policies, previously viewed as ambitious, were now conservative in the
light of new findings.
"Where then does that leave our new Federal Government, elected on a
platform of climate action far weaker than the Greens?"
Senator Milne said although the Spratt and Sutton report called for
policy makers to set aside politics, she feared "none of the people
now charged with setting Australia's emissions target ... have grasped
that this is a state of emergency ..."

End Article

Adrian Whitehead
Zero Emission Network
Level 2, 140 Bourke Street
Melbourne, Victoria 3000

0403 735 118

We are faced with social and environmental collapse within this century due to climate change and global warming. Given what is at stake, to do anything but advocate for the best and strongest chance avoiding this outcome is an act of an immoral and criminal nature.

What we must do is to reduce atmospheric greenhouse gas emissions as fast possible by implementing a goal of zero emissions across all sectors combined with undertaking human assisted sequestration options such as re-vegetation and bio char, while supporting natural sequestration. This is the goal of the Zero Emission Network.

We have perhaps 5-10 years to implement these goals or we will face unacceptable impacts and a risk of runaway climate change, hence goals set later than 2020 are meaningless.


This ran in Crikey.com.au yesterday:

Electricity services in NSW:

Jenny Haines writes: Re. "Why have Iemma and Costa woken the privatisation gorilla?" (Yesterday, item 10). Iemma and Costa have created this situation, and they can undo it by pulling back from the decision to privatise and giving the whole planning for future electricity services in NSW some more thought. Mark Byrne of the Public Interest Advocacy Centre recently recommended in New Matilda that if NSW wants access to more electricity at peak times, we could build a new power station Iemma and Costa's favoured option); we could source more power from interstate or we could encourage greater energy efficiency. The Owen Report only looked at the need for more baseload generation. Even if we do need more electricity, it does not mean we need another baseload power station. The company responsible for running the $7 billion dollar electricity market in Australia, NEMMCO, recommends using a peaking or intermediate plant. It also suggests paying end users to reduce their demand in peak times. Mark Byrne says that without the need for a new baseload plant, there is no need to privatise electricity in NSW. None of these ideas have been seriously addressed by Iemma or Costa and I suspect that the Unsworth Committee will not address them either. There is a way out for Iemma and Costa and they should take it. Drop the proposals to privatise and consider more options for the future of our electricity system in NSW.

Posted by editor at 9:21 AM EADT
Updated: Friday, 8 February 2008 3:18 PM EADT
Wednesday, 6 February 2008
Chicken shop explosion calls up range of possible motives
Mood:  quizzical
Topic: local news
This story ran recently from inner Sydney, said to be in Ultimo but that's a little deceptive. Here is an image in The Australian  

It's actually the outer edge of the very big Broadway retail shopping precinct including major mall complex. To airbrush that geographical relation sounded curious to us and maybe a bit of corporate spin, so we went down there yesterday to have a sniff around.

We know this area quite well from our years of street press delivery and most recently leafleting for a public meeting at nearby UTS regarding the huge desalination debacle.

In particular we were interested in several coincidences: One is this ugly fire attack in neighbouring Glebe of a Chinese Temple which actually is only about 1 km away and only a week before hand, as per Sydney Morning Herald Jan. 31st reportage (we know this Temple too which is a very nice serene place): 

Burnt out ... fire has damaged Sydney's oldest Chinese temple.

Burnt out ... fire has damaged Sydney's oldest Chinese temple.
Photo: Andrew Meares


"Leichhardt police crime manager Peter Bailey said there was evidence of a forced entry but it was too early to say who might be behind the fire that badly damaged an office." 

No wonder the police are all over the firing of Nandos. We saw Police Rescue and Forensics removing some window frames yesterday maybe for tests, as pictured below.

Ultimo is known as a high Chinese Australian area too.

A completely different angle which might not involve ethnic issues at all in this latest destruction is that the shop was robbed earlier that Sunday night according to Edmund Tadros in this report in the Herald:

Blast shop victim critical - National - smh.com.au

In all the stress of that robbery could someone have forgotten to turn off the gas? That would be a very natural error to make, especially if the robbery involved weapons.

Another curious aspect of the Nandos fire and blast is that only 50 metres away opposite is this scene of destruction from the firing of St Barnabas in May 2006 as reported by the Herald again here:

St Barnabas Church in flames in the early hours. Photo: Sky News

St Barnabas Church in flames in the early hours. Photo: Sky News

We made our own artful photo collage in mid 2007 of 'St Burnabas' (self described):

Monday, 18 June 2007
St Barnabas one year after the big fire
Mood:  spacey
Topic: local news

And yet another curious aspect totally and quite possibly irresponsible speculation is this coincidental (?) state of affairs:

- the Mountain St Quadrangle residential complex over the Nandos is only about 6 or 12 months completed with those 1000 or so resident consumers.

- These 1,000 plus locals would be an important customer base for the fast food chicken retail sector. Nandos intersected the previous pathway of Quadrangle residents to the rival busy Oporto one block closer to Broadway mall complex, which it might be said is looking a little tired. Certainly they will be the retial outlet of choice again now.

We don't say there is any connection at all. But in our cynical mind we do notice the circumstances. We recall a hair dressing competitor who got in the habit of arson attacks by fire on his competitiors:

'Shampoo arsonist' jailed - National - smh.com.au 21 Sept 2007

And yet another potential angle is that chicken shops are fairly notorious for causing smoky fatty emissions (called pyrolysis) onto their closest neighbours - we know this from an Oporto shop dispute, in that case, at North Bondi going some 20 years in our local government days. Here is a sample from SSROC of how neighbours slowly can build up quite a head of steam unless they have really good carbon filtered air scrubbers etc (which cost comes straight off the profit - such that some shops prefer to mostly cook off site and transport in):

[PDF]  Goal To have a healthy community free from the effects of air ...

We took these photographs ourselves yesterday 2 days after the big blast with the acrid smell of fire still quite strong. Windows in the street frontage and Telstra pay phone opposite had already been fixed. Tiny glass fragments still littered the path opposite too:






Posted by editor at 8:07 AM EADT
Updated: Wednesday, 6 February 2008 8:02 PM EADT
Tuesday, 5 February 2008
Media briefs after a restful weekend
Mood:  lazy
Topic: aust govt



1. Imre and the Sunday press cover the $15B NSW power privatisation genuinely hanging in the balance. We think the sale is motivated by the wrong reasons - avoid the legacies of bad governance by pump priming cash injection into the political economy via asset sales, leaving the same bad governance when the money is gone. Stories here:

Power privatisation stand-off down to the wire | The Australian

Sparks fly in struggle over private power

We remain suspicious this impending spectacle of an internal ALP meltdown over wanton public asset fire sale was the PR imperative of a national summit diversion yesterday by PM Rudd. Because the sale income will crank the $5B truck tunnel etc in Sydney and allow Rudd to claim action on holy "infrastructure" even if it destroys city wide amenity and health.

1.A Riley Diary on 7 last Sunday back ahead of the other Sunday Talkie shows with summary here:

Amusing mobile phone stuff up by now ex-Speaker Hawker at new federal MP orientation.


Satire on Rudd highly repetitive “core” political business promises, re inflation, industrial relations?, infrastructure, climate barely sneaked in, whales no mention


Twee Mr Smith goes to Washington



compared to ALP Stephen Smith foreign Affairs:


 [Noteworthy that Cond Rice has balance of power advantage versus neo con hawks re invasion of Iran. Watched the Pentagon Papers with James Spader 2003 and it’s a doozy complete with Life of Gandhi book image.]


[Compare Tim Robbins far more cutting view of US politics in  Bob Roberts than Frank Capra's approach - gets a sledge from Gore Vidal in DVD special feature.]




Cute use of black and white footage past to present.


Q&A refers to Treasurers Red Book very important information.


Sorry to Indigenous People big symbolism first actions tend to define govt. ‘Good moment for the country’, ‘long overdue’.


2. Mick Keelty, Australian Federal Police chief gets a bollocking all over the place in the wake of barrister Keim for Mr Haneef being cleared of professional misconduct. Only conservative stalwart Gerard Henderson has a kind and predictably selective word to say. Keelty's bad press seems mainly to have turned on history of political leaking allegedly by, or for, the AFP in the past including the Haneef case. The press see this as a matter of standing up to such bullying tactics to provide political space for a valid defence case: Here's one only broadsheet coverage

Out in the open | The Australian 

We do wonder to what extent the AFP are being smeared for the actions of sections of the Qld police leaking to their journo contacts at Brisbane based Courier Mail as allies of the then Howard Govt. Regardless, Keelty is still wearing it. We do have sympathy for the view based on legal theory that neither side of a big serious terrorism ie criminal law, case should indulge in deceptive narrow leaking which could well contaminate the jury/judicial process. This is distinct from fair neutral reportage keeping the legal system open, justice seen to be done, quite separate one hopes from sly spin and shouting headlines as happened with Haneef.

The main charge against the AFP chief by such as leading Victorian defence lawyer Rob Stary is one of hypocrisy and it does resonate for reasons that will follow:

In other words, the case against Haneef was already being spun against him off the record by government officials. Only then did Keim decide to respond with counter-leaks.

Melbourne lawyer Robert Stary, who has represented a range of terrorism suspects, says Keelty's comments were "breathtakingly hypocritical".

"The usual practice of the AFP in the arrest of any terror suspect in this country is to firstly issue a press release sprinkled with allegations that are either embellished, exaggerated or distorted," Stary wrote in a letter to The Age newspaper. "Often the charges and evidence presented before the court do not reflect those details distributed through the media."

Keelty's criticism of Keim's ethics rings hollow when he has remained silent about those government-sourced leaks that are aimed at working to the AFP's advantage.

Beyond this, Keelty is also media savvy and not shy about engaging in his own modes of spin. He speaks regularly off the record to editors and to certain senior journalists to promote his point of view.

So Keim is justified in saving his client. Editor of legal mag Justinian, Richard Ackland would likely agree as per this disapproving tone:

Look out, reptiles, here come Keelty's size 12s - Opinion - smh.com.au

But we also say our legal system is left quite tatty for open slather leaks which is surely the Big Media self interested agenda. To this narrow extent we agree with Keelty - trial by media by untrained journalistic goof balls is not a safe way forward, Ackland etc excepted.

That being said we add our experience: At a Supreme Court matter over APEC freedom to protest we happened to chat to a barrister bystander. He attended a conference with Keelty as speaker and reported to me comments attributed to Keelty something like: 'I've had discussions with judges

'You don't know what these people [terrorists] are like, what they are capable of. We've not seen anything like this before. We have to change our usual legal approach to meet the threat.'

We wrote about this fairly contemporaneous back in Sept 07:

Big Mick Kelty lobbying the judges out of court 2 years back?

You will notice the reference to passing the card of our barrister source to David Marr (see further below)

If truly out of Keelty's own mouth, on one view it suggests he's been seeking special treatment from the judges outside what's allowed by the legal norms of evidence or parliament. This might play under Howard PM never one much for the rule of law hobbling govt but many including in the ALP Govt probably have a higher opinion of the separation of powers and independence of the judiciary.

We have relayed this experience direct to prominent solicitor Adam Houda based on the concern for integrity of our legal system and his part in that process.

On another view Keelty was simply advocating his cause in open conference mode. But in private conversations away from the public eye? Did it happen? Over to you Mr Keelty.

On another tack top quality writer David Marr submits this last weekend "Top cop, bad time" in Sydney Morning Herald p23. It's offline which is a bit startling in itself. Of significance is:

"High ranking officers talk of colleagues too eager to agree with Keelty, too keen to tell him what he wants to hear".

We call this the daisy cutter hierarchical model of doing things under such as PM Howard.


3. The 'Part 3A Planning Act etc' institutionalised dictatorship of 'Mussolini Sartor' seeking to pump prime any form of ecoomic activity to similarly cover up poor governance of the NSW ALP is gathering a real head of steam. We have a good traverse of this generally unsatisfactory system in the initial sections of our submission to government recently on a very specific developement:

Thursday, 31 January 2008

Not surprisingly People quite like the amenity of their neighbourhoods and their democracy including at Local Govt level and the backlash is on with the assembled mayors here:

Mayors launch $500m revolt against Sheriff Sartor - National - smh ...


Councils are nearing melting point - Opinion - smh.com.au (go Genia!) 1 Feb 2008


State tried to pass on contamination costs - National - smh.com.au 2 Feb 08

with another echo in the burb press here (a clownish NSW governance?):

and here targetting MP for Balmain Verity Firth, no slouch in the PR spin game herself (front page of card at top above, overleaf below):


and the govt backlash on the backlash

Sartor threatens to name council hoarders in infrastructure funds ... 2-3 Feb 2008


4. The old dirty game of the ALP patronage machine discipline and support in equal measures depending on green lighting of the destruction of the environment, by the very environmentalists entrusted to protect same, is exemplified here with the rehabilitation of Peter Garrett's ministerial career: It's no accident this has happened in the wake of rubber stamping the dredging of Port Phillip Bay subject of major legal challenge, silence on dredging damage to come at Botany Bay in his own electorate and this:

Garrett gives go-ahead to Gunns to clear land for mill

AM - Garrett back in court over Port Phillip dredging

and SAM report here:

Saturday, 26 January 2008

The career reward is here for these displays of loyalty to the ALP gangsters:

Garrett powers back to climate change action

Don't think we don't know Peter Garrett selling out our environment for your own career advancement. We have exposed Jeff Angel as an ALP trusty in NSW and you won't get anything less. Your choice and your betrayal. You could have joined the Green Party and made a real difference along the party political spectrum. But your ego was too great.

It would be too much to expect Garrett taking any stand against this threat to Blue Whales, the holy grail of conservation of species:

Oil survey explosions a threat to sick whales - Whale watch - Specials

Just as the ALP are ineffective on this:

Sea Shepherd ship out of fuel in whaling chase - ABC News ... 

Japan vows to continue whaling, despite Greenpeace chase - ABC ...

Garrett is a PR champion no doubt as per a a little grab in the Strewth column 31 Jan 2008 about UNESCO listing of convict sites. But the question is whether he is a moral and real politik weakling wholly owned subsidiary of the ALP. There is little doubt in this writer's mind he's in a gilded cage, and must be read down accordingly.

5. Last and definitely not least, in fact probably presaging the end of the world as we know it either ecologically, and or culturally:

 By 2015, China will need half world's resources The Australian 2 Feb 08 p9 inside the careers section

The article quotes Rio Tinto , which is quite revealing given the Stephen Mayne soliliquy this morning just now on 702 radio with jockey Cameron re Rio Tinto 10% shareholding annexed by Chinese giant ChinAlco covertly through the London Stock Exchange. This puts rather a whole new perspective on some sad and ugly local happenings in inner Sydney, just when police and us here at SAM were congratulating ourselves how calm the Australia Day weekend was:

PM - 'Sacrilegious' temple fire rocks Chinese New Year celebrations

Posted by editor at 7:27 AM EADT
Updated: Wednesday, 6 February 2008 8:02 AM EADT
Monday, 4 February 2008
The trouble with Mr Rudd's summit
Mood:  energetic
Topic: aust govt


The Rudd led Govt made it pretty clear they wanted an injection of real talent when they threw open their own staffing to advertising in the national press late 2007. Here's one rare reference in crikey.com.au despite lots of googling which suggests serious lack of Big media coverage: 

Pre-empting the weekend job ads Friday, 30 November 2007

These ALP staffers are now washing into Canberra apparently.

A sound approach reinforced by Rudd himself getting a job with Premier Goss via a newspaper advert in 1989. Rudd seems to be very catholic about these things annexing the talent, including a country music singer for Australian of the Year seemingly from another constituency.

So what did that approach late 2007 say about the federal ALP machine? That they are big and mature enough to know they have a problem and go poaching new talent a bit like brilliant thinker Ainsley Hayes in the West Wing tv show?

             Emily's Bio                                       

Or simply that they are desperate to avoid the stodgy result of nepotism and tribalism in their own ranks? That they really do believe in meritocracy?

Now we hear PM Rudd has called a summit in April for 1000 dinkum smarties with a catchy '2020' PR tag on the front page of both broadsheets today, described on AM here. Opposition Leader Nelson is quick to agree with the idea perhaps for getting in trouble for being too contrarian over Indigenous matters.

(Maybe Mr Nelson got too carried away with friendly obituaries for (in)famous curmudgeon PP McGuiness? Secular saint of scepticism | The Australian).

Kerry Packer's corporate lieutenant Sam Chisholm famously stated "Losers have meetings ..." which might have been more a comment on the ultra hierarchical PBL world - Big Kerry throwing a cricket ball full force at a lackey from the behind the desk is one way to 'meet' I suppose.

But there is an element of losers all the same: The ALP in NSW are f*cked morally having so compromised themselves on donations, reviled by their own union base for flogging the family silver in terms of public assets, and in the target sights of every press baron in town. And the WA Labor Party are in trouble too. No wonder Rudd feels the need to run interference on the PR train wreck damaging his own brand with a circus style 'look over here'.  A vaudeville involving intellectuals, and an event arguably of real merit, but the controlled timing is there all the same.

Many questions arise re this 1,000 best and brightest, which itself is a problemmatic criterion. The Govt panel decides. It is already a broadsheet kind of thing and hardly a mention in the Sydney Daily Telegraph today. Even chattering natural constituency ABC 702 jockey Cameron asks today 'why so soon after the federal election which promised new leadership? Exactly.

Sure it could be a Hawke style consensus building exercise as per the subdued Party Liners segment on 702 today. Not just a smart arse diversionary PR gambit which it has genuninely achieved already. It could be about consensus and injection of new talent. But 1983 was a very differen time, being the first ALP team back after the corrosive 1975 dismissal 8 years before. People still felt aggrieved about their democracy getting done over. Nothing like that here. It was the me too election after all.

Labor leader Kevin Rudd also promised to keep most of the Government's $34 billion worth of tax cuts outlined on Monday, except he would defer some of the $3 billion tax cut for people earning over $180,000, who would receive a reduced amount. In Rudd outlines tax vision Phillip Hudson October 19, 2007 - 4:36PM

It could be a natural flow on of those new ALP staffers wanting some serious intellectualism to engage with beyond the loyal stodge: The boredom factor. It could be.

But the PM's imprimatur just smells of real politiking, of pants on fire trickery:

1. As above the immediate benefit of diversion from very big brand ALP financial governance woes like this $15B doozy. My corner shopkeeper asked me today whether she ought to fix the interest on her mortgage today before the deadline. That question is so revealing of the very real troubles people are experiencing and the anger and blame they may be looking to apportion the government's way. [Our answer was 'not a financial adviser ... US recession possible ... inflation rising ... Rory Robertson ... very awkward juncture ...50:50 ...ACTU caution to Reserve Bank ...lots are fixing today ....yeah probably should!]  Then there is inflation threat up another .2% in a month;

2. the immediate reaction of most public intellectuals including this pseudo one is 'do I make the grade?'. This is a favoured cynical dynamic created by Big Parties leveraging flattery, access, status that goes with incumbency. It's essentially a form of disempowerment on robust critics with a 2 month burn time just when the ALP need it to obscure other troubles. In this sense the SAM micro news blog accepts the challenge. We wouldn't expect to be invited and would have a real quandary even if we were in case we also found our pants on fire trying to report it:


3. Will there be genuine indy community media reportage at this event? I don't think so. For all the talk by ex WA premier Geof Gallup about new technology, and Glyn Davis of Melb Uni saying 'contrary thinkers are included', we just can't see it happening. Which raises the real agenda here ....

4. The federal ALP need to regain the intellectual initiative they and any government are increasingly losing to ... the uncontrolled blogosphere. The 'interwebby' thingy. Web 2.0. Indeed the intricate control and patronage machine and revolving door between Big Politics and Big Media is being seriously diluted now. (We recently watched Sean Penn in All the Kings Men (2006) reflecting the real life and death of Huey Long, Governor then Senator for Louisiana 1928-1937: A great parable amongst other things about the crossover between Big Media staff to Big Politics. )

 Huey Long

We say the 'best and brightest' are already in effect summiting in cyberspace. And crucially are not branded by the incumbent ALP. What those who attend this Rudd summit risk for themselves is becoming not the best and brightest but the luckiest and vainest:  It's the siren call of status and access for the rich and privileged. Indeed the Think Tanks are keen with all their vested interests and hackneyed rhetoric:

Think tanks welcome 2020 Summit

5. Indeed this phenomenon of unaligned blogopshere is underlined by the diminished role of an aligned 'left wing' Get Up cyber network post federal election, which is widely viewed as having lost its raison d'etre of removal of the Howard Govt. Get Up have now effectively lost it's contrarian traction and been left to echo the Govt publicity. Worthy or not. Why bother? But the bloggers and crikey.com.au etc do not reheat their editorial. So how does the ALP get control of this burgeoning unaligned sector which is the defacto tendency of all Big Parties? The potential post Rudd election 'Get Up alter ego' which itself might yet turn on the Rudd ALP? A conference of knobs and those jealous wannabe knobs is a reasonable start to annexe the unaligned sector.

6. Which calls up our own view of meetings with, and organised by, politicians. They want to pick your brains, maybe recruit you, definitely control you. The unaligned blogosphere can be annexed as much as anyone if they take the bait with all the flattery and what is known in the trade as 'pissing in your pocket' - a warm feeling that turns decidely cold and unhygienic after a short time.

7. The ALP are in reality a struggling outfit when it comes to genuinely intractable problems - ignorant materialistic growth economics just won't cut it anymore as ecological oblivion bears down via dangerous climate change. The intrinsic contradiction in their soul is there, promoting biggest container ship access to shallow ports in Sydney and Melbourne, more tollway roads, and promoting forest destruction. Grist, a high level environmental news site in the US is already reporting we stuffed it as a human project. In this light a summit meeting of 1,000 will hardly change anything except to quieten the voices of dissent or intelligent public critique. Just as the Bali conference achieved no change for the better as such but was a great hand wringing voyeuristic face saver for doing nothing. 

It may be apparent we don't really believe in meeting process anymore.


Postscript #1 5th Feb 08

On one view it appeared PM K Rudd confirmed the attempt by the ALP to subborn public intellectual life with an on air invitation to ABC 7.30 Report's Kerry O'Brien 'to attend and report or participate'. It's all in the invitation. An amused KB mumbled a post script about conflict of interest participating and reporting - all on air. But he'd been flattered so the objective was achieved, 'one of the 1,000' by implication. This is the sleazy flattery that goes with Big Politics. Been there done that. KB has been there too. Take note 5th Estate and honest brokers everywhere that politics and idealism are only vaguely related. This is what Rudd is really worried about as the Reserve Bank considers interest rate rise today

The PM on his inflation battle plan

Of course the riposte is that this is all too jaundiced and cynical. But is it? Willy Stark in All The Kings Men suggests not possible.

Postscript #2 6th Feb 08

We keep recalling a brazen summer clerk at litigation firm Baker & McKenzie in 1990, much more assimilated in that culture than we ever were, sparring with the supervising partner about her "experience" in relation to some work matter. I was impressed and shocked with her quick fire comment "our experience is our experience". In other words, it's not for free and I don't give such away for nothing. A very precocious attitude but she was on the mark for an advice based industry. A very acquisitive Ayn Rand style of philosophy that underpins why lawyers get rich, but a summit of free ideas for brand ALP seems to me to the other extreme akin to the tragedy of the commons where pearls will either be cast into the mud, or creator totally gazumped.

For instance we recall apocraphyl stories of entrepeneurs (Dick Smith? Macquarie Bank as per Stateline Fri 1 Feb 08 transcript in due course? ] 'stealing' good ideas rather than 'supporting' the originator. A cynical way to get rich. Or in this case build political capital with minimal respect for the founder? Compare Stephen Mayne - still acknowledged as "founder" of Crikey.com.au, a serious media outlet, though onsold and no longer a controlling influence for a good 2 years. But there he is still the "founder" as per ABC slots and fair enough to. Hard to imagine brand ALP leaving that kind of space. Goodbye creative recognition?

We are talking intellectual property here. But also who gets the due status and brand control. The creator or the financier? Or both?

Of course balanced against this is the patriotic motive to serve our country for the common good and share but it seems very naive to serve the systemically corrupt ALP not least in NSW. Much better to build an alternative conceptual framework in genuine creative competition that can't be annexed with the tribal ALP brand burned on (or Coalition for that matter) with their fat wages and cronyism and dishonesty. Indeed as here just give destabilising ideas on a blog for instance to everyone before it can be hidden away in a box by Party or business cynics.

Postscript #3 8th Feb 2008

Resident 7.30 Report satirists have also cut loose last night with a quite cutting and jaundiced piece on the big 2020 event We feel that this was always likely to happen because it defied credulity to think that sooner or later someone (like SAM here) would call the ALP spinmeister's bluff and decide they didn't need or want the flattery of an invitation to feel good about oneself.

Indeed once a few trendsetters in public intellectual life expressed this sincerely it was always likely that roughly 20M less the actual 1000 would be offended either for 1. not being chosen or 2. being manipulated emotionally to be 'nice' for 2 months of critical real politik while waiting for same invite:

John Clarke & Bryan Dawe tackle Kevin Rudd's summit

We submit the underlying lesson for students of political communication from the amusing scorn of the inimitable duo (best viewed on the tape rather than transcript) is this: Don't do emotional manipulation, it's not nice between friends, and ditto government to citizens.

Posted by editor at 11:53 AM EADT
Updated: Friday, 8 February 2008 4:30 PM EADT
Readership pageviews of this SAM micro news website: January 2008
Mood:  lyrical
Topic: independent media


We made a quantum change in readership figures this month jumping by nearly 100% to just under 20k page views. We haven't looked very closely at which story or set it was, but it may have been the 1,600 odd hits in one day regarding the Iranian frictions/Gulf of Tonkin/US Primaries around the time of the GW Bush visit to the region, and here also leveraging our understanding of the fabulous doco The Fog of War.

To be factual we peaked several days ago above 20K per month and coasted. We had our material for traditional Sunday Media Updates posting yesterday to stay up there but for the first time in maybe 6 months we were buggered and slept instead after consuming Riley Diary on 7. Glorious sleep, beaut dreams, shopping at Metro and watched the last Pirates of the Caribean blockbluster instead. We will post that Media Updates later today too, 1-2 days stale but still useful to readers.

But that doesn't fully explain the jump. It may be that our intellectual work is just getting better some 2 years down the non grog road, and here's a toast (!) to radio jock Steve Price taking the cure this Feb 2008. For instance we like to add some pithy praise/rebukes on the www.crikey.com.au threads which hopefully are meaningful and even witty. We've even got into the habit of 20 sit ups and 20 (bludger) push ups every day.

The google ranking for searches of 'sydneyalternativemedia' either local or global setting are quite suitable.

So now we are thinking about the managing of a moderate level of interest rather than how to get it. A higher class problem. Issues of balance, responsibilities over accuracy and corrections, personal sustainability but mostly how to enjoy the work while building my own social capital without running dry, like the Yangtze here in 2007:

We notice the '20-20 Summit' federal PM initiative also reported here in another broadsheet (though barely the tabloids?) in the Big Media coverage today and we will have lots to say about that in our next post and it may not be very pleasing to the ear of the federal ALP machine, but there you go: As the banner reads "sydney alternative media - non-profit community independent trustworthy". If anything they will find it relevant.

Previous monthly reader pageview figures for 2007 verified by screen shot (web host provider monthly pageview account details) posted on or about 4th day of the month found in this thread:

  • December 11,627
  • November 10,220
  • October - 9, 100 
  • Sept -  8,100 (roughly, no screenshot)
  • August - 8,845
  • July - 7475
  • June - 9675
  • May  - 9, 059
  • April  - 12,087
  • March  - 6,684
  • February - 5,372
  • January 07 -  2800 (3rd Jan - 3rd Feb 07)

Posted by editor at 10:34 AM EADT
Updated: Monday, 4 February 2008 11:40 AM EADT

Newer | Latest | Older