The Blame Game

Time for a new topic.

I’ve spent all day looking at comments on Facebook and Twitter and in the media from deadheads who say the whole bushfire catastrophe was entirely the fault of the Greens and/or “greenies”, depending what you read. They all seem to believe the Greens have been in government for years because they all rave about Greens policies “locking up” national parks. Some idiot on Twitter assured me Tony Burke and Adam Bandt had personally “locked the gates” of all our national parks. I pointed out the federal government controls only six national parks, none of which are in NSW and none of which are on fire. The states control all our other national parks. He then started blaming the Queensland government for the fires in both Queensland and NSW.

I was going to write a thread starter on this, but then I found something which says it all far better than I could have.

I found this letter on Facebook, I think it’s brilliant. I have corrected the spelling, fixed capital letters, but I have not changed the words. It’s exactly as Bruce Walker of Wytaliba RFS wrote it.

Hi everyone.

My name is Bruce Walker, you might remember me from ABC TV yesterday, I’m one of the survivors of the Wytaliba fires of last Friday, 8th November 2019, responding to this well informed fuckwit here – Anthony ×××××××

So mate – first up, I’ve been an RFS volunteer for close to 20 years, and am part of the highly regarded Wytaliba RFS – one of the most respected and hardened crews on the Northern Tablelands and beyond. Our crew number over 50 and include decorated vets of Ash Wednesday and many other national disaster catastrophic level fires.

Regarding hazard reduction. let me fill you in.

For my time here, we used to do managed hazard reduction whenever it was viable in winter. However – sadly, the moment Gina and Rupert went halves and purchased the LNP wholesale, we saw a MASSIVE increase in wholesale industrial logging across the nation.

Tell me, Anthony – do you garden? Do you use MULCH?

Compare a mulched garden to a non-mulched garden. You’ll see a near instant difference. If you’re not schooled on how soil works, try standing all day in the sun with no hat on. What happens?

That’s right, Anthony. Your head gets fucking hot.

That’s what’s happened to the planet. Now as anyone who’s dabbled in, you know… physics, will spell out better than I can – an increase of just one degree is quite significant.

Another neato thing physics talks about is the water cycle, Anthony.

You see, part of the water cycle is this cool thing called “transpiration”

It’s part 4 of this essential way in which trees send up moisture to meet clouds, creating low pressure troughs which draw rainfall inland In fact, it’s physically impossible to get rain on the lee side of a mountain, without trees doing this very thing. Impossible. Ask the residents of the Atacama Desert in Chile – who haven’t had rain for one THOUSAND years. Why? No fucking trees, Anthony.

So anyway, back to the Greens enacting a ban on burnoffs – that time we elected them to majority government and they had the final say.

When was that again, Anthony? I’ll wait.

Nah. lets move on, since we ALL know this was never a thing . Ever.

So anyway – here in Wytaliba, we used to have an incredibly green lush valley – right up until industrial loggers finally broke in to compartments to our north. Right about this time there was a near instant and significant drop to our vital streamflow.

This happened again after each and every highland logging operation – and with LNP slashing and burning every national park in sight, well… you know, let’s not go there. Climate change is a hoax, right?

So wholesale burn quotas came in with LNP too. This… well.. I just want to pause here and say “wow” because this did indeed make us say wow.

In recent years, we’ve seen hazard reduction burns take place completely surrounding our once green, lush valley. So much so that after the last July burn of an area once supplying most of our water – well… 27 years of no burn had left a healthy and regenerating semi-arid rainforest. Now it’s simply arid nothing.

Despite this burn and 3 more last year, we got the following result – fires flared up in this dry, mulchless wasteland and burned for 6 weeks, destroying 2 more former rainforest areas, leaving them also tinder dry and unable to transpire – hasn’t actually rained a drop since then. Weird. almost like cause and effect took place.

Clouds pass over, for sure. they get rain on the tablelands even – but – as physics reminds us, when air drops, it warms, expands, and rather than raining, sucks even more moisture from trees and soil.

Oh well.

I mean, this is normal for Australia, isn’t it? Watching 200 or more year old trees slowly wither and die right in front of you. That’s normal. Happens all the time. Rivers dry up too, even though ours is home to platypi – who aren’t known for travelling much – and hasn’t dried up in probably 100,000 years minimum.

Until last summer, and it’s been bone dry since August.

This has never happened in my entire 25 or so years here. No local elders remember such a thing. Wow!

Now, we all know about the Bees Nest and Kingsgate fires and the hundreds more around the state. My crew and many other heroic RFS volunteers have been fighting them for months on end.

Yet another backburn actually got lit up about a month ago, on our south side, just half an hour before high southerly winds were due. The responsible paid agency then ran out of paid hours, packed up and left it to spot onto our property and threaten 80 homes.

We’re like the Mujahadeen of firefighting though, so we got it after about 10 days nonstop hectic battle.

This brings us up to date, Anthony. We’ve got bare, blacked-out dust for 50 km in all directions. Right up to the actual eaves of half the homes here, which is why Friday’s hellstorm caught all of us by surprise, Anthony

A mushroom cloud went up at 3 pm, 20 or so km away. Within 30 minutes, high winds turned that into a 20 km long front – strangely, this front was on ground burnt black as recently as 3 weeks ago. Crown fires too, since every tree was literally a giant matchstick with dead leaves and nothing else.

This then switched to 80km/h southerlies and rained hell on 3500 acres of already blacked out ground.

Well… you can’t say we didn’t prep or do hazard reduction redneck style, can you, Anthony? Or can you?

Curiously, within 1 hour we’d lost 20 homes, a school, a fire shed, and a concrete fucking bridge – meaning only 2 outside units even got in to help. Falling trees in the hundreds blocked the old Grafton road, so no one could even help neighbours.

By dawn, of 80 homes in our community, 52 were lost, 2 dead (one a Sex Party voter, the other apolitical – this one is for you, Barnaby fucking Joyce. 😉 We had many injured, thousands of local animals died, and it looks like a war zone here. Which it did almost before, except we had homes.

So, Anthony ××××××× and ALL you fucking armchair experts out there, tell me again. How was this the Greens fault?

Thanks. Looking forward to your well thought out response.

Bruce Walker, Wytaliba RFS member and survivor. 🙊🙉🖕”

605 thoughts on “The Blame Game

  1. I’m starting to think the Coalition has set up a roster for someone to say something WTF!!! each day. It sure as hell draws attention away from Scrott and his government and off into the scrub with Mick Mack or the Barnyard Rootrat etc.

  2. I read that facebook message and could only sigh.

    Then I started theorizing. Who would be a better Leader of the Opposition? It might just be a kind of non-capital parochial thing, but, I’d rather like to see Catherine King as leader.

    Experience? She’s been in parliament since 2001. 18 years so far.

    Style? She’s sharp and to the point in most of the times I’ve seen her speak.

    Charisma? I felt a little awestruck seeing her in person. She’s a tall lady, around 6 ft, and when I spoke to her I could tell she was listening. I liked that.

    Attention to detail? She ran rings around Dutton and Hunt in the Health portfolio. And while I haven’t heard much of her since the election, mainly because every article in the media about Labor is mainly about how shit it is, at least I haven’t heard her be like Fitzgibbon.

    Location? She’s the MP for Ballarat. A rather large regional district (by Victorian standards anyway) where I think by now she would understand the challenges for all of city, suburban and rural voters. And she holds this division by a 61-39% margin, achieving a +3.6% swing at the 2019 election.

    But this is probably my own bias slanting my view. Does anyone else picture her being able to bring down Morrison or Dutton at the next election and run a good government?

    • I think she would be a good choice for leader, certainly much better than any of the men likely to put themselves forward, but would the media give her any support?

      The usual suspects have it in for Labor no matter who is leader.

  3. @Leone

    That’s true. Maybe I’m thinking too much into the value of her surname and how the media was portrayed in the UK version of House of Cards, but, having a political leader with the surname “King” could be something that they might enjoy, if only for how creative they could get with headlines.

    Of course Murdoch’s lot will fling crap at her no matter what if she opposes their agenda, but, I see a potential of her being able to break through that if she plays her cards right.

  4. Still one of the very few Labor pollies who seem to be doing anything useful. Nice to see Claire O’Neill in action too.

    The others – the men, that is – seem to be concentrating on making outlandish statements or trying to be more Liberal Party than the Libs .

    And what is Albo up to? Determined to prove there is absolutely no difference between Labor and the Coalition he has joined in the “we must not politicise the fires” chorus. Shame on him!

    The people of the NSW far north coast WANT to talk politics.

    Fire-hit residents turn on Anthony Albanese and NSW Labor MP Janelle Safin, accusing them of ‘having a circus’
    https://www.abc.net.au/news/2019-11-12/anthony-albanese-met-with-anger-during-fire-press-conference/11697056

    • Albanese heard the trigger words “Adam Bandt” and back pedalled as fast as he could
      Those residents are very upset, and once one expressed anger, the chorus grew. You can see why the Morrison circus was criticised for only talking to the old folk who had been evacuated, old folk tend to be grateful for any help

      In the past Bob Carr was filmed delivering a carton of VB to Victorian firefighters on New Year’s Eve
      Kevin Rudd waded through floodwaters helping in Brisbane floods

      Maybe Albanese should stop touring fire areas, he isn’t in a position to offer anything. Perhaps help in one area like around Taree serving off duty fire fighters or evacuees

    • Getting back to Albo . . .

      On Tuesday more than a third of the population of Australia was under threat from catastrophic fire conditions.
      The Victorian CFA was deployed to the Hunter Valley to protect coal mines, if they caught fire ==> it’s goodnight NSW/Earth

      These fire conditions will not ease until it rains which isn’t likely until April so there is plenty more catastrophic fire days ahead

      Albo needs to craft a better response to Climate Change questions rather than digging into the NRA playbook

  5. Good morning Dawn Patrollers.

    Shane Wright explains how wages growth is starting to slow despite record low interest rates and public infrastructure spending, fuelling expectations the Reserve Bank will be forced into unconventional monetary policy to boost the economy. And what will it do to the rather heroic current budget assumptions? The continued forlorn hope is demonstrate by the chart.
    https://www.smh.com.au/politics/federal/inextricably-linked-wage-growth-flatlines-as-report-shows-jobless-rate-hurting-economy-20191113-p53a94.html

    The Coalition’s wages projections are beyond a joke – and there’s bad news all round chimes in Greg Jericho.
    https://www.theguardian.com/business/grogonomics/2019/nov/14/the-coalitions-wages-projections-are-beyond-a-joke-and-theres-bad-news-all-round
    Michael Pascoe writes that at 11.30am yesterday, the Australian Bureau of Statistics made a joke out of the Reserve Bank’s inflation target and the federal government’s budget policy. He says the central bank’s inflation outlook credibility has been trashed and the government is promising most Australians a poorer future and concludes that trickle down doesn’t work, but that’s all that’s on offer.
    https://thenewdaily.com.au/money/your-budget/2019/11/13/pay-wages-rba-abs-bad/
    This bit of satire from Judith Ireland is well worth reading!
    https://www.smh.com.au/environment/climate-change/how-good-is-this-carbon-tax-psst-pm-s-speech-falls-off-the-back-of-a-truck-20191113-p53a9h.html
    The Berejiklian government is split over bushfire policy as the state continues to burn, with Environment Minister Matt Kean and Nationals leader John Barilaro clashing over hazard reduction.
    https://www.smh.com.au/politics/nsw/as-fires-rage-coalition-at-loggerheads-over-hazard-reduction-20191113-p53ada.html
    The NSW government is all over the place trying to prevent discussion on the link between climate change and bushfire behaviour.
    https://www.smh.com.au/national/nsw/environment-minister-blames-miscommunication-for-bushfire-message-to-staff-20191113-p53aam.html
    NSW needs a building commission, not just a single commissioner, to fix the state’s troubled construction industry, according to a NSW parliamentary inquiry reports Alexandra Smith.
    https://www.smh.com.au/politics/nsw/commissioner-in-a-supehero-cape-not-enough-calls-for-building-commission-20191113-p53a7f.html
    Liam Maddox writes that Barnaby Joyce’s claim that changes to the sun’s magnetic fields were linked to the bushfires burning out of control across NSW have been rubbished by climate scientists.
    https://www.smh.com.au/national/barnaby-joyce-says-sun-s-magnetic-fields-cause-bushfires-science-says-20191112-p539xb.html
    Professor of environmental change biology David Bowman tells us that there really is a limit to fighting fire with fire. He says that one of the egregious claims is that environmentalists have had undue influence over fire management policy.
    https://www.smh.com.au/national/reality-check-there-are-limits-to-fighting-fire-with-fire-20191113-p53ac0.html
    A nice contribution from Pru Goward on the history of firefighting I Australia.
    https://www.smh.com.au/national/long-before-the-anzac-legend-our-national-character-was-forged-in-the-flames-of-the-bush-20191112-p53a0v.html
    Professor Janet Stanley asks why the government is refusing to link bushfires to climate change. She says that if the Morrison government seriously wanted fewer Australians to experience a bushfire crisis, it would use the current situation to galvanise public sentiment, shift the political agenda, and make meaningful inroads into emissions reduction.
    https://www.smh.com.au/national/why-is-the-government-refusing-to-link-bushfires-to-climate-change-20191113-p53a7l.html
    Grain and cattle farmer Pete Mailer reckons the National Farmers’ Federation’s drought strategy is like shuffling the deck chairs on the Titanic. He says that if we do not start to develop and implement climate adaptation solutions that are backed by research and development, the agricultural sector in Australia will be unbankable.
    https://www.theguardian.com/commentisfree/2019/nov/13/the-nff-and-governments-drought-strategy-is-like-shuffling-the-deck-chairs-on-the-titanic
    Australia’s firefighters need concrete support, not just the PM’s ‘thoughts and prayers’ writes Sydney firefighter Jim Casey.
    https://www.theguardian.com/commentisfree/2019/nov/14/australias-firefighters-need-concrete-support-not-just-the-pms-thoughts-and-prayers
    It is notable that the NSW State Government has recently cut its fire services, writes Tarric Brooker.
    https://independentaustralia.net/article-display/gladys-berejiklian-slashes-fire-service-budgets-while-nsw-burns,13307
    Meanwhile on the other side of the world Venice’s mayor called the city a disaster zone on Wednesday after the second highest tide ever recorded swept through it overnight, flooding its historic basilica and leaving many squares and alleyways deep under water.
    https://www.smh.com.au/world/europe/venice-mayor-blames-climate-change-for-second-highest-tide-on-record-20191113-p53a9s.html
    Judith Ireland tells us that Stuart Robert concedes the NDIS is “not always living up to high expectations”, but insists it is on track to include half a million Australians within five years. He is fronting the NPC today.
    https://www.smh.com.au/politics/federal/not-always-living-up-to-high-expectations-robert-to-release-final-stage-ndis-plan-20191113-p53a9p.html
    Most consumers don’t want to know the details of the energy market. They want more renewables, more cheaply and with no risk of blackouts writes Jennifer Hewett.
    https://www.afr.com/companies/energy/energy-arguments-stuck-in-the-grid-20191113-p53abi
    Katharine Murphy reports that In a new discussion paper to be released today, the AEMC says technology has previously limited consumer participation in the energy grid but the advent of smart devices and virtual power plants has created the opportunity for a fully fledged two-sided market.
    https://www.theguardian.com/australia-news/2019/nov/14/australia-told-to-prepare-for-completely-new-two-sided-energy-market
    Patrick Hatch reports that Australia’s health insurers are putting pressure on the federal government to overhaul how much they pay for knee and hip replacements and other devices in private hospitals, after saying attempts to rein in those costs have failed. They say that the amount its members pay for common prostheses is often two or three times higher than in comparable countries
    https://www.smh.com.au/business/companies/health-funds-pressure-canberra-over-700m-medical-devices-failure-20191113-p53a9k.html
    Sydney dwelling prices are expected to jump between 10 and 14 per cent while Melbourne home values are set to rise by up to 15 per cent, even without further interest rate cuts.
    https://www.afr.com/property/residential/sydney-melbourne-prices-to-surge-up-to-15pc-20191111-p539ji
    Doctors overseeing the transfer of asylum seekers to Australia for medical treatment have raised concerns about delays in their advice being presented to Peter Dutton in the latest official snapshot of activity under the medevac regime.
    https://www.theguardian.com/australia-news/2019/nov/13/medevac-laws-doctors-complain-advice-is-not-being-given-to-peter-dutton-quickly-enough
    Sarah Martin uncovers another rather questionable project supported by the regional jobs heme. This time it’s a Wollongong dog breeder who was awarded a $205,000 federal grant for an aquaculture project for which he tried to raise more than $5m on the blockchain market by issuing “aqua tokens” that offered a return to investors based on the price of fish.
    https://www.theguardian.com/australia-news/2019/nov/14/wollongong-dog-breeder-given-205000-for-aquaculture-project-under-regional-grant-scheme
    Facebook has rebuffed an appeal by the ACTU to take down fake tweets purporting to be from Sally McManus and Bill Shorten, arguing the content doesn’t violate the social media giant’s community guidelines.
    https://www.theguardian.com/australia-news/2019/nov/14/facebook-wont-take-down-fake-posts-about-sally-mcmanus-and-bill-shorten
    New Zealanders are bound for a referendum on euthanasia next year after a tight conscience vote in Wellington. If only we could do the same.
    https://www.smh.com.au/world/oceania/new-zealand-to-vote-on-euthanasia-in-referendum-after-bill-passed-20191113-p53aef.html
    Decorated sports journalist Alan Attwood defends the ABC’s decision to not cover the next Olympics on radio.
    https://www.smh.com.au/national/ignore-the-howls-of-anguish-the-abc-has-made-the-right-call-20191113-p53a8d.html
    The SMH editor gives conditional approval to a new technology being tested in NSW to detect drivers using mobile phones hands-on/
    https://www.smh.com.au/politics/nsw/technology-can-crack-down-on-mobile-phone-use-while-driving-20191113-p53abg.html
    The New Daily tells us why ATMs are set to become a rarity on Australia’s streets.
    https://thenewdaily.com.au/money/finance-news/2019/11/13/atm-cash-disappear/
    Stephen Bartholomeusz writes that the fallout from the Hayne inquiry and regulators’ steely-eyed focus on stability in the wake of the financial crisis appear to be putting a brake on bank lending.
    https://www.smh.com.au/business/banking-and-finance/have-apra-and-asic-stripped-the-gearbox-of-the-economy-20191113-p53a8g.html
    The Greens are pushing to strip former governor-general Peter Hollingworth of his generous retirement salary over his handling of child sex abuse allegations.
    https://www.canberratimes.com.au/story/6490904/greens-push-for-hollingworth-to-lose-pension/?cs=14350
    Samantha Dick writes about Scott Morrison’s crackdown on secondary boycotts sparking quite a backlash.
    https://thenewdaily.com.au/news/national/2019/11/13/secondary-boycotts-climate-activists/
    Chloe Adams looks at Australia’s apprenticeship problem and how to improve it.
    https://thenewdaily.com.au/money/work/2019/11/13/australia-apprenticeship-crisis/
    Labor has stated that it will not support the Coalition’s Ensuring Integrity Bill, writes William Olson.
    https://independentaustralia.net/politics/politics-display/despite-amendments-alp-still-rejects-union-busting-bill,13309
    Fergus Hunter reports that media industry chiefs say the government is open to reform after meeting with the A-G, while journalist Annika Smethurst’s case continues in the High Court.
    https://www.theage.com.au/politics/federal/media-bosses-encouraged-by-press-freedom-negotiations-as-smethurst-case-continues-20191113-p53a9r.html
    Missed NBN Co appointments are costing consumers more than $15 million a year in lost time, new analysis has shown.
    https://thenewdaily.com.au/life/tech/2019/11/13/nbn-missed-appointment-cost/
    Doctors and radiographers in Melbourne’s west have warned patients’ lives are at risk unless a 24-hour hospital is built in Melton by 2022.
    https://www.theage.com.au/national/doctors-campaign-for-new-outer-suburban-hospital-as-emergency-wait-times-blow-out-20191112-p539vt.html
    The corruption watchdog has forwarded its brief of evidence against the former Australian of the Year finalist and alleged fraudster Eman Sharobeem to the director of public prosecutions to consider laying charges.
    https://www.theage.com.au/national/icac-sends-brief-on-corrupt-former-australian-of-the-year-finalist-to-dpp-20191113-p53a7p.html
    Professor of law Ben Matthews unpicks the High Court decision on Pell and explains what will happen next.
    https://theconversation.com/what-did-the-high-court-decide-in-the-pell-case-and-what-happens-now-126757
    The floods have exposed Johnson – he is equal parts reckless, careless and useless says Martin Kettle.
    https://www.theguardian.com/commentisfree/2019/nov/13/floods-boris-johnson-north-england-election

    Cartoon Corner

    David Rowe is not letting up on Morrison’s thoughts and prayers!

    Cathy Wilcox has had enough!

    Andrew Dyson on Joyce.

    From Matt Golding.





    John Shakespeare with a hot PM.

    Mark David rolls out JWH.

    Peter Broelman with a Barnaby warning scheme.

    Zanetti can’t be criticised for this one.

    Alan Moir goes to extremes here.

    Johannes Leak in full flight for his employer!
    https://cdn.newsapi.com.au/image/v1/77127050191f2394114b2ebe21986681?width=1024

    From the US










  6. A fireworks display over Sydney harbour on Wednesday evening has been described as “stupid” and insensitive given the bushfires.

    People have taken to social media to express their shock at a fireworks display in Sydney amid a total fire ban in New South Wales.

    Bushfires have raged out of control along the News South Wales coast and hinterland with up to 17-emergency level fires over the last week. They have since been downgraded but many residents have evacuated their homes under threat of flames.

    Despite the fire ban, Sydney residents reported a 20 minute firework display taking place over the harbour on Wednesday night, with many expressing shock it could have gone ahead

    https://www.news.com.au/technology/environment/nsw-rural-fire-service-commissioner-warns-of-long-way-to-go-as-crews-battle-bushfires-in-new-south-wales-and-queensland/live-coverage/becc66b8cebfc7a4ea6769cf5e338d3c

  7. Just a reminder –

    I remember seeing Bob Brown smirking his way through a TV interview the night he killed that vote, he was obviously thinking he had been terribly, terribly clever. He said the Greens had a better policy and when they had control of both houses they would get it legislated. We are still waiting for that control to happen. Wouldn’t it have been better to vote for Labor’s policy and then work towards having it amended and improved?

  8. I look forward to him getting the arse from parliament. Sadly it will likely mean he willthen get an even better paid job with some fossil fuel mob.
    .
    Joel Fitzgibbon agreed with Scott Morrison that people need to chill on the climate change debate while the fires are burning, because that’s his role now

    “I’m with the Prime Minister on this one, and
    https://www.theguardian.com/australia-news/live/2019/nov/14/stuart-robert-brushes-off-questions-about-ndis-secrecy-politics-live

    • It’s a shame he didn’t get booted out in May. I know Labor didn’t want to lose a seat, but it would have been worth it, to get rid of this twit.

    • I didn’t know much about him until he became tangled in a scandal with a Chinese woman during Rudd’s time as PM. It was very controversial and he eventually admitted he had breached the ministerial code of conduct and resigned.

      He should never have been allowed back into the ministry, but he wormed his way back when Julia Gillard became PM and now he’s a shadow minister.

      He does not deserve that position. For me he will always be a dodgy character, and his recent behaviour, which seems to be aimed at winning back the voters who deserted him for Hanson, makes him seem even dodgier.

  9. Now “Catastrophic Tuesday” has been and gone the media seem to have lost interest in the bushfires. No more live streams, no more rolling coverage, now it seems they have decided that because the threat to Sydney has ended (for now) it’s all over.

    Well, it isn’t.

    Today I woke up to the heaviest smoke cover I’ve ever seen, heavier than any we have had since bushfires first hit here at the end of July. I think that smoke was what woke me up. When I looked outside at about 7 this morning I could not even see the houses at the end of this little cul-de-sac of 10 homes, they were hidden in the haze.

    The smoke has cleared a little now, but it’s still very smoky. I can’t see the sky (getting used to that) all I can see is smoke and haze.

    The fires here are still burning, they will burn for months. Not all are under control. Every time we get a strong wind or a very hot day they flare up again. The thinking is to contain the edges and let them burn out while protecting homes and farms close to them. There’s nothing else that can be done. Most are burning through what was dense bush, much of it inaccessible, mush of it mountainous.

    Greg Mullins, today, talked about his proposed meeting with the PM in April, the one that never happened. He said back then his plan was to lease a lot more tanker aircraft from the northern hemisphere, but now their fire season overlaps ours and those leases are not possible. Our governments have left it too late to come up with a plan for this summer. Will they manage to get their act together for next year? Probably not.

    Here’s a thought – instead of spending billions on new submarines that are already obsolete, and spending more billions on the flawed and still unusable F-35s, why not put those funds into a fleet of air tankers? We need them far more than we will ever need 20th century war machinery.

    Our enemy is not China, or whatever country our government decides we will be hating or fearing this week. Our enemy is climate change. It is already causing destruction and loss of life while our farce of a government dithers around refusing to admit there is such a thing as climate change. We would be far better off spending money on the best possible fire fighting equipment, including aircraft, than on useless defence toys.

  10. If an ordinary person had admitted they impersonated a police officer the full weight of the law would have descended on them, but this arrogant bastard does it and he is let off with no further action required.

    CRIMES ACT 1900 – SECT 546D
    Impersonation of police officers
    546D IMPERSONATION OF POLICE OFFICERS
    (1) General offence A person who impersonates a police officer is guilty of an offence.
    : Maximum penalty–Imprisonment for 2 years, or a fine of 100 penalty units, or both.
    (2) Aggravated offence A person who, with intent to deceive–
    (a) impersonates a police officer, and
    (b) purports to exercise a power or function as a police officer,
    is guilty of an offence.
    : Maximum penalty–Imprisonment for 7 years.
    (3) An offence against subsection (1) is a summary offence.
    (4) In this section–
    “impersonation” does not include conduct engaged in solely for satirical purposes

    http://www7.austlii.edu.au/cgi-bin/viewdoc/au/legis/nsw/consol_act/ca190082/s546d.html

    One penalty point equals $110, so Elliott could have been facing a substantial $1100 fine. At the very least.

  11. You know what I would’ve done if I was the Labor leader right now?

    Spend most of my waking hours for a week working in a volunteer donation centre for bushfire victims. Yes, cameras and all that may be needed to bring publicity for it, but not all the time. I’d spend my whole week doing that.

    I remember in the 2009 Black Saturday fires, the following Monday, my shop closed temporarily for a few hours while we filled sacks with food for animals. Dog food, cat food, horse food, sheep food, cow food, all sorts of food for the millions of starving animals that would be suffering in the aftermath. I feel proud of doing that. And I’d feel even more proud if as a major political leader I’d do the same, but for both humans and animals that had suffered so much through the ordeal.

    • If Albo did such work it should be without notifying the press or dragging along his press officers. Just do it quietly without fanfare. Anything else would look just another pollie ‘photo-oping’. Keep a very low profile and let word of mouth and his actions rather than words do their stuff.

    • @KK

      True, but, given the current media landscape, I think Murdoch’s bunch of merry bastards would happily ignore it if they could help it and keep on painting the royal blue on the shitstain that is the Coalition.

      Maybe working for 5 days first, then bring in the media scrum; or, if brought on early, call on caring Australians to pitch in and help those who have been hurt. Remind us that we’re all here together and give some pushback against the current neo-liberal ideology of “every man for himself”.

  12. Kirsdarke

    I’m sure Labor could arrange for social media to spread the word about Albo’s “low profile” good works.

    • @KK

      I’d think so, but as things are now, probably not enough to drown out the fake crap on social media that spooks the uninformed into believing crap like “Labor sees bushfires as sufficient sacrifice to their emperor-god Vladimir Lenin” or whatever they are.

      I don’t indulge in social media much so I wouldn’t know.

  13. The fires handed Labor a fantastic opportunity to beat the government around the head about their refusal to have any policy for dealing with climate change. (Lies about meeting our emissions target don’t count as policy.)

    So what did they do? All the Labor pollies who spoke about those fires parroted the government line -“We can’t talk about that while people are fighting fires, we can’t politicise this disaster.”

    The reaction Albo and Janelle Saffin got up north should have given Labor’s strategists a wake-up call, should have told them they are on the wrong track with the incredibly stupid “Let’s agree with the government on just about everything” tactic, but I would bet it had no effect at all.

    Albo should have done exactly what Kirsdarke suggests, worked his arse off as a volunteer. There were plenty of evacuation centres begging for people to come and help set up yards for animals, cook meals for people who had left their homes, collect donated goods, even just people to be good listeners to those who just needed to talk through the trauma over a cuppa. Albo should have been acting like a Labor leader by helping out, instead he went for the same stunts FauxMo had already pulled – the carefully staged visits to RFS teams with full media crew in tow. It didn’t do much for FauxMo, it did even less for Albo.

    • At the same time I wondered why people accused Albo and Janelle and never or rarely the govt? It didn’t seem to be right. But yes I agree with you leone.

  14. leonetwo

    “they are on the wrong track with the incredibly stupid “Let’s agree with the government on just about everything” tactic, but I would bet it had no effect at all.”
    .
    Yep, it give exactly ZERO reasons for someone to change votes. As RWNJ Le Pen noted , people always prefer the original to the copy.

  15. Good morning Dawn Patrollers

    The day of reckoning for the Morrison government is rapidly approaching warns Shane Wright and it will have to come to light in next month’s MYEFO.
    https://www.smh.com.au/politics/federal/evel-knievel-would-fail-to-jump-the-gap-between-economic-rhetoric-and-reality-20191114-p53ani.html
    According to Wright the Morrison government is looking at ways to deliver tax relief to middle income earners after the nation suffered its biggest one-month fall in jobs in more than three years.
    https://www.smh.com.au/politics/federal/government-looks-at-ways-to-cut-taxes-as-jobs-market-stumbles-20191114-p53apm.html
    Jacqui Maley reports on Julie Bishop warning that he world is at an “inflection point” with the international rules-based order under threat from a rising tide of populism and trade protectionism, including from “populist leader” Donald Trump.
    https://www.smh.com.au/national/frustrated-and-angry-bishop-fears-a-backlash-against-globalisation-20191114-p53apv.html
    Fergus Hunter writes that a former intelligence officer is the target of a police investigation into the leak of classified information to journalist Annika Smethurst.
    https://www.smh.com.au/politics/federal/documents-name-ex-intelligence-officer-as-alleged-source-of-leak-to-smethurst-20191114-p53aq5.html
    David Crowe explains Morrison’s union crushing legislation saying that those who say the government has no agenda may soon discover there is one and that they do not like it. When that happens, they will want the heavy machinery of the Senate to move even more slowly.
    https://www.smh.com.au/politics/federal/union-busting-prime-minister-takes-the-stage-20191114-p53aq7.html
    Dana McCauley tells us that Christian Porter says he won’t let Labor’s Senate inquiry into wage theft delay his plan to criminalise the worst cases of underpayment by employers, and is pushing ahead with plans to introduce legislation (which has been cautiously welcomed by unions) early in the parliamentary new year.
    https://www.smh.com.au/politics/federal/porter-on-track-to-criminalise-wage-theft-by-early-next-year-20191114-p53an0.html
    Rod Meyer suggests that Frydenberg’s infrastructure tax cut for offshore companies is being driven by powerful interests.
    https://thenewdaily.com.au/money/finance-news/2019/11/14/infrastructure-tax-cut/
    Why the secrecy? Most of the Big Four’s audit inspections are blacked out; huge chunks redacted by the corporate regulators. In what other field would multiple breaches of the law be tolerated? asks Michael West.
    https://www.michaelwest.com.au/audit-blackout-gatekeepers-cuddled-while-sleeping-on-the-job/
    Italy’s government is set to declare a state of emergency in flood-ravaged Venice to swiftly secure the historic city funds to repair damage from the highest tide in 50 years.
    https://www.smh.com.au/world/europe/italian-government-set-to-declare-state-of-emergency-in-venice-20191115-p53ast.html
    Andy Marks tellingly contrasts the political responses to extreme weather events by leaders in London and Venice and other places to those in Australia.
    https://www.smh.com.au/environment/climate-change/in-london-and-venice-the-c-word-isn-t-a-dirty-word-20191114-p53ap2.html
    And Phil Coorey goes into how the Coalition became a lightning rod for climate rage.
    https://www.afr.com/politics/federal/how-the-coalition-became-a-lightning-rod-for-climate-rage-20191113-p53aco
    Michelle Grattan says that when the firiefighters call him out on climate change, Scott Morrison should listen. In the article she considers three factors now weighing on the PM.
    https://theconversation.com/grattan-on-friday-when-the-firies-call-him-out-on-climate-change-scott-morrison-should-listen-127049
    Sourced from the New York Times The New Daily presents an article that decries Australia’s efforts on facing up to climate change.
    https://thenewdaily.com.au/news/2019/11/14/while-australia-burns-the-world-watches-our-credibility-go-up-in-smoke/
    Paul Karp was at the NPC yesterday and tells us that Stuart Robert has defended the governance of the National Disability Insurance Agency, but refused to sign up to more ambitious targets to get younger people out of aged care.
    https://www.theguardian.com/australia-news/2019/nov/14/ndis-minister-stuart-robert-defends-governance-of-disability-agency-after-series-of-controversies
    AustralianSuper chief executive Ian Silk has said both Coalition and Labor governments had been unwise to make taper rates more precipitous, and the issue should be a matter of priority for the retirement income inquiry.
    https://www.afr.com/companies/financial-services/retirement-inquiry-should-look-at-pernicious-taper-rates-ian-silk-20191113-p53ae1
    The Coalition has defied a Senate order demanding it table documents to justify decisions made under the scandal-ridden $220m regional grants program with Canavan advising the Senate that the government would not be complying with a production of documents order relating to the grants program.
    https://www.theguardian.com/australia-news/2019/nov/14/coalition-defies-senate-order-on-scandal-ridden-regional-grants-scheme
    Labor may consider targeting research and development spending at specific areas that could deliver large economic gains.
    https://www.smh.com.au/politics/federal/targeted-r-and-d-may-be-best-way-to-use-scarce-dollars-labor-20191114-p53ami.html
    Students of faith will be “isolated” and “punished” as a result of the ACT government’s incoming school chaplains ban, an opposition backbencher has claimed.
    https://www.canberratimes.com.au/story/6493035/punishment-politicians-clash-over-school-chaplains-ban/?cs=14225
    Research funding announcements have become a political tool, creating crippling uncertainty for academics bemoans physics professor Jody Bradby.
    https://theconversation.com/research-funding-announcements-have-become-a-political-tool-creating-crippling-uncertainty-for-academics-126919
    While unbiased reporting is essential, at times it is important for the media to recognise that sometimes an issue doesn’t have two sides, writes Noely Neate.
    https://independentaustralia.net/politics/politics-display/lies-from-both-sides-in-the-game-of-politics,13312
    The cost of mailing a letter in Australia is set to rise after the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission waved through Australia Post’s request to hike stamp prices by 10 per cent. The justification was based on falling sales volume – classic cost accounting death spiral stuff!
    https://www.smh.com.au/business/companies/stamp-prices-set-to-rise-as-watchdog-approves-postal-rate-increase-20191114-p53ajp.html
    China Mengnui Dairy Company has been given the green light for its takeover of the popular infant formula group Bellamy’s – but there are conditions.
    https://www.afr.com/politics/federal/treasurer-approves-chinese-bid-for-bellamy-s-20191114-p53ah0
    Following a review of the flaws in NSW Labor, Chris Haviland suggests some recommendations in which it could be improved.
    https://independentaustralia.net/politics/politics-display/lavarch-review-its-time-to-fix-nsw-labor,13308
    Clancy Yeates reports that ASIC has rejected as myths claims that small business credit growth is being crimped by responsible-lending laws, amid a government push to improve small firms’ access to finance.
    https://www.smh.com.au/business/banking-and-finance/asic-hits-out-at-business-credit-crunch-myths-20191114-p53amh.html
    US corporate lawyer James Phillips writes that if Trump is unfit for office, his impeachers need to convince swinging voters.
    https://www.smh.com.au/world/north-america/if-trump-is-unfit-for-office-his-impeachers-need-to-convince-swinging-voters-20191113-p53a9d.html
    A Guardian editorial says that Trump’s impeachment is a grave and necessary process.
    https://www.theguardian.com/commentisfree/2019/nov/14/the-guardian-view-on-donald-trumps-impeachment-a-grave-and-necessary-process
    Yet another US school shooting with multiple casualties.
    https://www.smh.com.au/world/north-america/shooting-reported-at-saugus-high-school-in-california-20191115-p53asw.html

    Cartoon Corner

    David Rowe with the impeachment process.

    From an acerbic Cathy Wilcox.

    Simon Letch and Andrew Dyson on Morrison’s union busting efforts.


    From Matt Golding.





    Jim Pavlidis goes west.

    Mark David at a bushfire emergency meeting.

    Zanetti just won’t give up!

    From Glen Le Lievre.

    Johannes Leak is cementing his tenure here.
    https://cdn.newsapi.com.au/image/v1/258390a81498b55879c04d10a7f4f2a8?width=1024

    From the US











  16. More tax cuts for middle-income earners – what a bunch of fools we have in government.

    The last round of tax cuts did nothing to stimulate the economy. More cuts will just mean less revenue in the budget for essential things like health and infrastructure. Less money also for social security payments, so the most disadvantaged will be squeezed even more.

    How will the economic geniuses in government manage with less revenue? More lying, I suppose.

    How will tax cuts create more jobs? The last cuts have now hit taxpayers’ bank accounts and the result was increasing unemployment and increasing under-utilisation of the workforce. Surely more tax cuts will just mean more of the same.

    This country needs an economic stimulus – an increase in wages, a massive infrastructure program to provide jobs and new apprenticeships, an across the board increase in social security payments. We do not need more tax cuts for those who already have enough.

  17. Another smoky morning – today I couldn’t even make out the roof of the house across the road.

    Paul Bongiorno has done a very optimistic podcast where he tells us the government is now admitting climate change exists. I’m not seeing that happening. I suppose he will have an article along the same lines in The Saturday Paper tomorrow.

    https://7ampodcast.com.au/

    The government can’t say the fires caught them by surprise. We have all seen the letters sent to the PM by Emergency Leaders for Climate Action, letters FauxMo ignored.

    The group held a press conference yesterday.

    And there’s this –
    Former fire chiefs ‘tried to warn Scott Morrison’ to bring in more water-bombers ahead of horror bushfire season

    “We have tried since April to get a meeting with the Prime Minister,” Mr Mullins told ABC Radio on Thursday morning. “It’s clear now we won’t get that meeting.

    “We had some pretty simple asks that we wanted to talk to the government about.

    “Funding for large aerial fire tankers. People would have seen the images the other day of the Hercules coming in and dropping in 15,000 litres of retardant at Turramurra. I watched that with great interest because I was in charge of the fire there in 1994 where 17 homes were lost. That cut the fire off immediately.

    “We’re only going to have seven of those [aircraft] this year. I’ve just come back from California and they had about 30 on one fire.

    “Had we spoken back in April, one of the things we would’ve said is to try to get more aircraft on lease from the northern hemisphere because (we knew) this was going to be a horror fire season. They can be a decisive weapon.

    “If they (the government) had spoken to us back then, maybe they could have allocated more money to have more of those aircraft, but they didn’t and they’re probably not available now.”

    https://www.abc.net.au/news/2019-11-14/former-fire-chief-calls-out-pm-over-refusal-of-meeting/11705330

  18. Has anyone in the media realised one little fact?

    Australia is now a country people seek asylum FROM.

    Behrouz Boochani is considering seeking asylum in New Zealand, asylum from the harsh treatment he has endured at the hands of the Australian government for more than six years.

    He’s not the first to escape and seek asylum overseas.

  19. leonetwo

    The cartoonist Jon Kudelka has the same thoughts/////////////

    @jonkudelka
    ·
    3m
    Australia now graduated into a country people seek asylum from.
    ***
    Great job Scomo, award yourself another trophy

  20. A bit of a contrast in the treatment he has been receiving. It would be a bit disorientating to go from where he was to……….
    .
    .

    The city of Christchurch has welcomed Behrouz Boochani with a civic reception and a traditional Māori mihi whakatau – a formal welcome – as his presence, and liberty, in New Zealand

    Boochani was formally greeted from the plane by the mayor of Christchurch and the city’s Māori leaders, who told him he was welcomed by the mountains, the rivers, and the people of the city.

    https://www.theguardian.com/world/2019/nov/15/behrouz-boochani-calls-christchurch-welcome-a-reminder-of-kindness

  21. Kristina not feeling the love from Behrouz Boochani
    —————————————————————————————————————————————————
    Labor welcomes news @BehrouzBoochani has had the opportunity to depart PNG. We look forward for Mr Boochani having the opportunity to permanently resettle in a third country as soon as possible, wherever that may be.Full statement pic.twitter.com/0047vn2PZu— Kristina Keneally (@KKeneally) November 14, 2019
    .
    .

    Such a rediclilius and unacceptable statement by Labor Party. You exiled me to Manus and you have supported this exile policy for years. I don’t need you to welcome resttlement for me in a third country. https://t.co/XHIBCcrUQY— abor welcomes news @BehrouzBoochani has had the opportunity to depart PNG. We look forward for Mr Boochani having the opportunity to permanently resettle in a third country as soon as possible, wherever that may be.Full statement pic.twitter.com/0047vn2PZu— Kristina Keneally (@KKeneally) November 14, 2019

    • I suppose she had to say something. But it does sound awful. You can see on his face how much he’s suffered. Poor man. And all the others. Doesn’t she want them too to resettle “as soon as possible”?

      Thanks again to Jacinda.

    • Labor really has no right to comment, a Labor government re-opened the off-shore detention centres and a Labor government created the vile “if you come by boat you will never settle in Australia” policy.

      Boochani was one of the first victims of Labor’s heartless policy. He was sent to Christmas Island in July 2013, then shipped to Manus Island a month later, all while Rudd was PM for the second time. He has been on Manus ever since – until yesterday. He has every right to be angry with Kristina Keneally’s comments. I think he has been remarkably polite.

      Anything any Labor politician says now is sheer hypocrisy.

    • Remind me to avoid the hospital this “quiet Australian” works at.

      ———————————————————————————————————————————————-

      “I think the clincher came for me when [Labor leader Bill] Shorten stood beside the electric car and started carrying on about electric cars,” she said.

      “And it was just idiotic. I just went, ‘Oh my God’. And I just thought, ‘I think you’ve lost it’. And I was convinced from that point.

      “I like practical, down to earth, real solutions, things that you can actually do and achieve. Not all the la la land stuff.”

    • Yes indeed they sure came across as being pretty rusted on. Poorlene would probably be attractive to several.

  22. It’s a shame around 50% of Australian voters didn’t give a rat’s arse about climate change in May.

    Now NSW and Queensland are on fire these idiots suddenly become “concerned”.

    Too late now, they should have thought of that in 2013 when the same lot all voted for Abbott.

    • He does not have to hope, the MSM will report all his fantasies as fact. Just like they always have, just like Abbott’s utter bullshit as LOTO and PM never was. Jpurnos are hired to do a job. The press is all about power, political power and the plutocrat owners don’t have your welfare at heart.

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