Preposterous Political Posturing

By July 29, 2020Other

I just couldn’t believe it. ‘Coon’ is no longer to be the name of a well-known style of cheese. Apparently its use offends people, and one man has been campaigning for twenty years to have the name removed. What’s it to be called now? Why can’t I believe it? Well, Coon Cheese is named after the man who invented it, Edward Coon. It has had nothing whatever to do with racism. Edward William Coon (1871-1934) was an American inventor who used high temperature and humidity to produce cheddar cheese quickly. The process he patented in 1926 is called ‘cooning’. Now ‘coon’ is also a racist term in the United States of America, but not, at least in my experience, in our country. Boong? Abo? Darkie ? Gin? Yes, but not ‘coon’. Wikipedia says it is primarily one from the USA and the UK, but notes it is also an Australian term. If so, I’ve never heard it or seen it in print. For what its worth, ‘Gub’ or ‘Gubba’ are Aboriginal terms for non-Aboriginal people, but I know no one who is offended by their use.

Nonetheless, Stephen Hagan, a persistent agitator, has been trying for a long time to get the word ‘coon’ removed from the cheese. He failed in 1999 with the Advertising Standards Bureau and again in 2001 with the Australian Human Rights Commission. Australia’s involvement in the BLW agitation seems to have been the signal for change, and the Canadian owners of the brand have allowed the local company to remove the offending term. Who is offended, apart from Mr Hagan? And why on earth is he offended?

To me this agitation is the height of ridiculousness. Imagine if the twitchers (bird-watchers) decided to seek the removal of ‘Birdseye’ from the frozen goods that bear this name, perhaps on the ground that they, if not the birds themselves, were offended. Birdseye is also named after the inventor, in this case, Clarence Frank Birdseye (1886-1956) who is generally thought to be the father of the frozen foods industry. Goodyear tyres are named after Charles Goodyear, who invented the vulcanisation process in 1839. You haven’t had a good year? Well, it’s not Charles’s fault. You find the surname ‘Ramsbottom’ to be offensive? Well, if Mr or Ms Ramsbottom goes on using it, why should you be offended? In any case its origin is straightforward, and has nothing to do with bums: a valley (bottom) where rams are kept or where wild garlic grows, take your pick.

All this reminds me of the new belief that in universities there should be ‘safe spaces’ where students don’t have to think about unpleasant things. For my part, universities are places where students are challenged to think. Being able to think carefully and critically is perhaps the real lifetime advantage of having gone to university. ‘Safe spaces’? For heaven’s sake.

I go on to mention that Professor Peter Ridd has had his legal victory over James Cook University over an unfair dismissal overturned by the Federal Court. There is much debate over the outcome, and Professor Ridd will go on to the High Court. He needed something like $750,000 to support his position, and that was raised by crowd-funding. I will donate to his appeal fund. Why? Because I feel that James Cook University originally behaved in a draconian way, overlooking the fact that its own Enterprise Bargain (at clause 14.1) required the university to act in a manner ‘consistent with the protection and promotion of intellectual freedom’. Clause 13.3 says that the JCU code of conduct ‘is not intended to detract from Clause 14.’ 

Publicly disagreeing with your colleagues over matters of science is apparently ‘uncollegial’. Sacking the disagreeing professor apparently does not infringe the notion of protecting ‘intellectual freedom.’ The judges who wrote the majority opinion also referred to ‘safe spaces’ and ‘content warnings’ as though these new demands from students  somehow vitiate the notion of intellectual freedom. They don’t, of course. I used to start my first year Politics course by telling the students that they were lucky to live in a society like ours, where this dangerous stuff could be talked about freely. There were other societies in which this was definitely not the case, and you could be shot for doing so. That usually caused a bit of extra attention.

We are in a strange new world of political correctness, and I greatly object to it, and these instances. If you want another, consider the case of Bari Weiss, a journalist hired by the New York Times to widen the paper’s readership. After three years on the job, with some successes to report, she has resigned, and her letter of resignation is here.

It is a long letter that contains some telling statements about what is happening, like this one:

The paper’s failure to anticipate the outcome of the 2016 election meant that it didn’t have a firm grasp of the country it covers.

And this one:

… the lessons that ought to have followed the election—lessons about the importance of understanding other Americans, the necessity of resisting tribalism, and the centrality of the free exchange of ideas to a democratic society—have not been learned. Instead, a new consensus has emerged in the press, but perhaps especially at this paper: that truth isn’t a process of collective discovery, but an orthodoxy already known to an enlightened few whose job is to inform everyone else.

And this one:

Why edit something challenging to our readers, or write something bold only to go through the numbing process of making it ideologically kosher, when we can assure ourselves of job security (and clicks) by publishing our 4000th op-ed arguing that Donald Trump is a unique danger to the country and the world? And so self-censorship has become the norm.

When I lived in the US the NYT was my Saturday reading, and it was huge, about three inches or more thick. I trusted it. I don’t any more, for the reasons that Bari Weiss gives, and she has had to put up with a lot of hate email and similar abuse from the paper’s staff.

Where is this leading to? I don’t think we are in the same situation as the US, partly because we don’t have a presidential system or a political leader as divisive as Donald Trump has become. Nonetheless, we tend to follow the US in matters of style, if not of substance, and I can see examples of this precious political correctness in our society right now. There are many other examples I could give, and some readers may have their own pet hates too.

It’s easy enough to say, oh well, they’ll find something else to talk about soon enough. In my view, you need to stamp on this pernicious stuff when you encounter it. The slogan on my masthead is a great truth — we learn by disagreeing with one another. Or, a more home-grown version: we learn by trial and error, as long as we learn from the errors.

Join the discussion 103 Comments

  • Karabar says:

    “a political leader as divisive as Donald Trump has become”
    What the Hell is that supposed to mean?
    Don Aitkin has ideas which obviously conflict with snowflakes that require a “safe space” Does that make don “divisive’?
    I strenuously object to the idiotic notions that some people espouse about the gas of life, CO@. Does that make me “divisive”?
    POTUS 45 expresses opinions and ideas that are shared by the “silent majority” of which many ruffians are simply not capable of comprehending.
    How does that make Donald J. Trump “divisive”?

    • Don Aiktin says:

      Karabar, the President has become divisive because his opponents have vilified him, as the Bari Weiss letter points out. He didn’t set out to be divisive. He just is, whether he likes it or not. He was vilified before he won election, and the intensity of that vilification has increased since he took office. I’m sure he would prefer a smoother ride, but he wasn’t allowed one. There is a tendency in the US to rally behind the President, but that wasn’t possible for him. You are probably right that there is a substantial proportion of the American electorate that supports him, but the mass media don’t, and so he appears, always, as a divisive figure, and in our media too.

  • Neville says:

    I agree with you Don, but these con merchants will never stop and we must never give in to them.
    I’ve known for years that their so called CAGW is ridiculous and yet nearly all of the OECD countries seem to lack the ability to check simple data and evidence. Even Dr Hansen told us that COP 21 is just BS and fraud and is like a belief in the Easter bunny and the Tooth fairy. Yet the religious extremists still believe.
    And of course their fraudulent mitigation fiasco won’t make any measurable difference to temp or climate by 2050 or 2100.
    And we must fight their cancel culture whenever it shows itself and we must fight this new censorship that is trying to close down our essential freedom of speech all over the world.
    I will be donating to Prof Peter Ridd’s challenge in the High Court as well.

  • John says:

    Despite what people seem to think, no-one should have a right to not be offended.

    I blame the parents who pander to their child’s every whim. I blame the schools that have watered down discipline, adopted the “every participant gets a prize” mentality and preaches a “we are all equal” meme in everything when it’s clearly false. I blame the universities for bending to the demands of the academically less bright who seem to think they deserve a tertiary education even if it means universities must lower their standards. I also blame the whole legal system – police, courts and quasi-legal bodies – for supporting the same pandering to the whingers and those who blame others.

    People should work to improve their position in life, but to lift themselves up rather than drag others down. Or it it that they can’t do that lifting themselves and put the onus on others for them to get what they want?

  • Chris Warren says:

    Civilisation and respect for humanity have all risen since the days the NYT was 3 inches thick so some new culture can be expected. This was what the 1960’s was all about.

    Consequently – today, because of social and political events, COON risks the same impact on marketing goods as would hit Pepsi or Coca-Cola should they release a Goebbels branded variety.

    • Don Aitkin says:

      Chris, that is, surely, utter rubbish. A man is objecting to the name of a style of cheese because it looks like a racist slur. But it isn’t, and wasn’t. Your suggestion is absurd, in my opinion.

      • Boambee John says:

        This matter brings to mind the bureaucrat, IIRC in the Washington DC local council, who complained that the budgetary allocation for a particular function was “niggardly”. After some furore, he was, again IIRC, forced to apologise and resign. That the “offending” word was not a racial slur was not considered reason to excuse him!

        • Boambee John says:

          PS, what is to happen to towns like Coonabarabran and Coonamble? Are those words not actually derived from the local indigenous language?

      • Chris Warren says:

        Don

        You have missed the point. Coon is a racist slur although not obviously when used as a surname or a brand name. However the level of our culture w.r.t. aboriginal rights has risen to such a level, that public display of ‘coon’ automatically invokes the spectre of our racist tradition. If it was not for our past history, no issue about coon would arise. Would you buy shoe polish marketed as “nigger”?

        While the campaign against the name was based on an anti-racist crusade – the actual decision of the local firm was probably based on preempting any loss of commercial competitive position given there is a new community general adversion to coon that may impact sales whether of cheese or anything else. It is not political posturing. It is not utter rubbish. A lot more is going on.

        All this reflects a changing political, social and cultural environment that is rightfully critical of how relations between whites and aborigines were in the 1960s. Before people get too excited over this they could spend some time looking at:

        https://www.sbs.com.au/nitv/video/48729667555/Blood-Brothers-S1-Ep2-Freedom-Ride

  • Dave Barnes says:

    Better renames the town of Gin Gin near Bundaberg, QLD.

  • Colin says:

    I agree with you Don however mymemnory when in PNG from 1972-1976 was that expats referred to the local people as “Coons” I was never sure why

  • Colin says:

    I agree with you Don however my memory when in PNG from 1972-1976 was that expats referred to the local people as “Coons” I was never sure why

  • Alice Thermopolis says:

    Thanks Don

    Black & Gold barley sugar probably next on the list.

    On the subject of sugar, Richard Ligon’s (1590-1662) True & Exact History of the Island of Barbados has a lot to say about it and how “England got its sweet tooth”, apparently from the blood, sweat and tears of slaves. Many were branded like cattle.

    A day that changed the world: 23 August, 1833, Parliament passed the Emancipation Act. Wilberforce died a month earlier.

    When Africa is 40 per cent of the world’s population later this century, black lives will matter more because there will be more of them.

    Developing countries already control the UN.

    Once/if bogus “climate reparations” are paid, there will be no money in the kitty for ‘slave reparations”.

    Or will politically correct governments just keep printing “helicopter money” until we get hyper-inflation.

    As for the Ridd case, there is a bust of a philosopher near the reflection pond at UWA’s Winthrop Hall.

    The inscription: “This undercroft is dedicated to Socrates, who sought truth always by the path of open discussion and free enquiry. May his spirit preside here at all times.”

    If only……..

  • Bryan Roberts says:

    A Senator Coons is sitting in the US Congress.

  • Tony says:

    Coon is most definitely used here in Straya. Or was. I haven’t heard in in a while.

  • Stu says:

    Don, you wrote “ Karabar, the President has become divisive because his opponents have vilified him, as the Bari Weiss letter points out. He didn’t set out to be divisive. He just is, whether he likes it or not. He was vilified before he won election, and the intensity of that vilification has increased since he took office. I’m sure he would prefer a smoother ride, but he wasn’t allowed one. There is a tendency in the US to rally behind the President, but that wasn’t possible for him. You are probably right that there is a substantial proportion of the American electorate that supports him, but the mass media don’t, and so he appears, always, as a divisive figure, and in our media too.”

    Please tell us you are playing with sarcasm here to generate some interesting discussion. As someone who toyed with political science your view if true is astounding and sad. I fear, if the view is genuine, that (and forgive me for getting personal) you are in early stages of dementia as it so out of the character exhibited in much earlier writing.

    To back my case I point you to the things we knew before he was elected. He was an admitted “pussy grabber” and philanderer with no shame, someone who diddled his creditors, presided over many failed businesses, exhibited objectionable behaviour such as leering threateningly behind Clinton during one debate, and has demonstrated very low level ability in dialogue, etc etc. He won the nomination by manipulation of a broken system, with too many players. At no stage did he secure strong support in the primaries until exhaustion took over. In the election hatred of Hillary prevailed, not love of Trump and he did not win the popular vote. And since election he has delivered basically nothing of what he promised. The swamp is overflowing and he is the chief alligator. His constant breaches of the emoluments clause of the constitution is arguably the least of his corrupt activities. He “hires the best people” most of whom have since left. He really does exhibit all the signs of a narcissistic sociopath. He fired the pandemic team and plans left by Obama and the whole world is paying the price. I trust you are safe in your retreat.

    If you still think him a worthy president I am even more astounded, the man is clearly a bloody moron. His abdication of US leadership in the world and ignorance of diplomacy is now widely agreed. I assume you did some economics along the way and know that it is US manufacturers and consumers who are paying his tariffs and not the Chinese. As an acknowledged observer of politics the current slide into authoritarian (fascist) rule in America with the help of Barr should be alarming to you. The emergence of an unmarked and fast growing secret police force is Orwellian. The use of the Dept of Justice as a personal tool of the president is both shocking and perhaps unprecedented. The presidency is not a game show or reality TV, but clearly he thinks it is with his obsession with ratings. His process of demeaning the press as the “enemy of the people” is very dangerous and could well lead to dangerous, even bloody, outcomes in the near future. There are too many guns on the loose in America on both sides for this not to be a worrying time for those who actually care for the USA and its survival as a player in the world order.

    Then again, perhaps you get too much of your “news” from Sky and have been poorly informed. So be it. Cheers.

    • spangled drongo says:

      A “mouth in your trousers” man is much superior to a “pussy grabber” any day, hey, stueyluv?

      But when our prize enuresistics like stu’n’blith can weep along with aboriginal agitators who have no relationship to the word “coon”, it perfectly demonstrates their logic on all things particularly CAGW.

    • Boxer says:

      Stu, you’ve got to the bottom of trolling when you make a deeply offensive comment about Don like that one. What makes you want to do this?

      After that one, I don’t think you are someone qualified to pass judgement on Trump.

  • Boambee John says:

    Stu

    I was going to draft a detailed response to this diatribe, detailing inter alia Bill Clinton’s known sexual malfeasances, Hillary C’s known political and financial corruption, and Obama’s use of the IRS, CIA, NSA, FBI and other arms of government against his political enemies. On re-reading it, however, it is obvious that this would be pointless, your mind is closed to anything outside your fixed world view.

    I would only say that, if you can descend to suggesting that Don has dementia to try to discredit his argument, then you should flounce off for the umpteenth time, and never return. You are a disgusting excuse for a human being.

    • Neville says:

      BJ our donkey 2 is a first rate fool and while I’m very confident Don is mentally sound, I’m also sure that D 2 can’t think straight.
      Anyone who can yap about his so called CAGW and at the same time ignore 30 years of co2 data and recent increase and source of that extra co2 has to be either abysmally ignorant or up to no good.
      The Wiki graph and individual countries’ co2 emissions since 1990 have been linked to repeatedly and yet D 1 & D 2 always go missing. They are a joke.

  • Neville says:

    BTW here’s Dr Christy’s talk to the GWPF last year and his thorough coverage of their so called GAGW. He puts all their claims to the test and certainly throws doubt on their so called MSM coverage.

    https://www.thegwpf.com/putting-climate-change-claims-to-the-test/

    And here’s Prof Humlum’s latest state of the climate report to the GWPF. This is his May 2020 report up to end of 2019.

    First is the summary and the link. One interesting finding is SLR via the gauges is 1mm to 1.5mm per year compared to about 3.2 mm per year via the adjusted satellite data. That’s about 4 to 6 inches by 2120 from the gauges and about 12.8 inches via the adjusted satellite data by 2120.

    https://www.thegwpf.org/content/uploads/2020/05/State-of-the-climate-2019.pdf

    1. According to the instrumental temperature record (since about 1850), 2019 was a very warm year, but cooler than 2016. 2. In 2019, the average global air temperature was affected by a moderate El Niño episode, interrupting a gradual global air temperature decrease following the strong 2015–16 El Niño. 3. Since 1979, lower troposphere temperatures have increased over both land and oceans, but more so over land areas. The possible explanations include insolation, cloud cover and land use. 4. The temperature variations recorded in the lowermost troposphere are generally reflected at higher altitudes too. In the stratosphere, however, a temperature ‘pause’ commenced in around 1995, 5–7 years before a similar temperature ‘pause’ began in the lower troposphere near the planet’s surface. The stratospheric temperature ‘pause’ has now persisted for about 25 years. 5. The 2015–16 oceanographic El Niño was among the strongest since the beginning of the record in 1950. Considering the entire record, however, recent variations between El Niño and La Niña are not unusual. 6. Since 2004, when detailed recording of ocean temperatures began, the global oceans above 1900 m depth have, on average, warmed somewhat. The strongest warming (between the surface and 200 m depth) mainly affects the oceans near the Equator, where the incoming solar radiation is at its maximum. In contrast, for the North Atlantic, net cooling at the surface has been pronounced since 2004. 7. Data from tide gauges all over the world suggest an average global sea-level rise of 1–1.5 mm/year, while the satellite record suggests a rise of about 3.2 mm/year, or more. The noticeable difference in rate (a ratio of at least 1:2) between the two data sets still has no broadly accepted explanation. 8. Since 1979, Arctic and Antarctic sea-ice extents have had opposite trends, decreasing and increasing, respectively. Superimposed on these overall trends, however, variations of shorter duration are also important in understanding year-to-year variations. In the Arctic, a 5.3-year periodic variation is important, while for the Antarctic a variation of about 4.5-years’ duration is seen. Both these variations reached their minima simultaneously in 2016, which explains the simultaneous minimum in global sea-ice extent. This particularly affected Antarctic sea-ice extent in 2016. 9. Northern Hemisphere snow cover extent undergoes important local and regional variations from year to year. Since 1972, however, snow extent has been largely stable. 10. Tropical storms and hurricanes have displayed large annual variations in accumulated cyclone energy (ACE) since 1970, but there has been no overall trend towards either lower or higher activity. The same applies for the number of continental hurricane landfalls in the USA, in a record going back to 1851.

  • Karabar says:

    Somebody has been swallowing the propaganda on the ABC, SBS, Nine etc.
    POTUS 45 is the first president in 240 years to have actually delivered all that was promised. EVERY. SINGLE ONE. POTUS 45; the greatest living human!
    In a scant four years these stand as a few of his accomplishments:

    * Trump recently signed 3 bills to benefit Native people. One gives compensation to the Spokane tribe for loss of their lands in the mid-1900s, one funds Native language programs, and the third gives federal recognition to the Little Shell Tribe of Chippewa Indians in Montana.
    * Trump finalized the creation of Space Force as our 6th Military branch.
    * Trump signed a law to make cruelty to animals a federal felony so that animal abusers face tougher consequences.??
    * Violent crime has fallen every year he’s been in office after rising during the 2 years before he was elected.
    * Trump signed a bill making CBD and Hemp legal.??
    * Trump’s EPA gave $100 million to fix the water infrastructure problem in Flint, Michigan.
    * Under Trump’s leadership, in 2018 the U.S. surpassed Russia and Saudi Arabia to become the world’s largest producer of crude oil.
    * Trump signed a law ending the gag orders on Pharmacists that prevented them from sharing money-saving information.
    * Trump signed the “Allow States and Victims to Fight Online Sex Trafficking Act” (FOSTA), which includes the “Stop Enabling Sex Traffickers Act” (SESTA) which both give law enforcement and victims new tools to fight sex trafficking.??
    * Trump signed a bill to require airports to provide spaces for breastfeeding Moms.
    * The 25% lowest-paid Americans enjoyed a 4.5% income boost in November 2019, which outpaces a 2.9% gain in earnings for the country’s highest-paid workers.
    * Low-wage workers are benefiting from higher minimum wages and from corporations that are increasing entry-level pay.
    * Trump signed the biggest wilderness protection & conservation bill in a decade and designated 375,000 acres as protected land.
    * Trump signed the Save our Seas Act which funds $10 million per year to clean tons of plastic & garbage from the ocean.??
    * He signed a bill this year allowing some drug imports from Canada so that prescription prices would go down.
    * Trump signed an executive order this year that forces all healthcare providers to disclose the cost of their services so that Americans can comparison shop and know how much less providers charge insurance companies.
    * When signing that bill he said no American should be blindsided by bills for medical services they never agreed to in advance.
    * Hospitals will now be required to post their standard charges for services, which include the discounted price a hospital is willing to accept.
    * In the eight years prior to President Trump’s inauguration, prescription drug prices increased by an average of 3.6% per year. Under Trump, drug prices have seen year-over-year declines in nine of the last ten months, with a 1.1% drop as of the most recent month.
    * He created a White House VA Hotline to help veterans and principally staffed it with veterans and direct family members of veterans.??
    * VA employees are being held accountable for poor performance, with more than 4,000 VA employees removed, demoted, and suspended so far.
    * Issued an executive order requiring the Secretaries of Defense, Homeland Security, and Veterans Affairs to submit a joint plan to provide veterans access to access to mental health treatment as they transition to civilian life.
    * Because of a bill signed and championed by Trump, In 2020, most federal employees will see their pay increase by an average of 3.1% — the largest raise in more than 10 years.
    * Trump signed into a law up to 12 weeks of paid parental leave for millions of federal workers.
    * Trump administration will provide HIV prevention drugs for free to 200,000 uninsured patients per year for 11 years.??
    * All-time record sales during the 2019 holidays.
    * Trump signed an order allowing small businesses to group together when buying insurance to get a better price??
    * President Trump signed the Preventing Maternal Deaths Act that provides funding for states to develop maternal mortality reviews to better understand maternal complications and identify solutions & largely focuses on reducing the higher mortality rates for Black Americans.
    * In 2018, President Trump signed the groundbreaking First Step Act, a criminal justice bill which enacted reforms that make our justice system fairer and help former inmates successfully return to society.
    * The First Step Act’s reforms addressed inequities in sentencing laws that disproportionately harmed Black Americans and reformed mandatory minimums that created unfair outcomes.??
    * The First Step Act expanded judicial discretion in sentencing of non-violent crimes.
    * Over 90% of those benefitting from the retroactive sentencing reductions in the First Step Act are Black Americans.
    * The First Step Act provides rehabilitative programs to inmates, helping them successfully rejoin society and not return to crime.
    * Trump increased funding for Historically Black Colleges and Universities (HBCUs) by more than 14%.??
    * Trump signed legislation forgiving Hurricane Katrina debt that threatened HBCUs.
    * New single-family home sales are up 31.6% in October 2019 compared to just one year ago.
    * Made HBCUs a priority by creating the position of executive director of the White House Initiative on HBCUs.
    * Trump received the Bipartisan Justice Award at a historically black college for his criminal justice reform accomplishments.
    * The poverty rate fell to a 17-year low of 11.8% under the Trump administration as a result of a jobs-rich environment.??
    * Poverty rates for African-Americans and Hispanic-Americans have reached their lowest levels since the U.S. began collecting such data.
    * President Trump signed a bill that creates five national monuments, expands several national parks, adds 1.3 million acres of wilderness, and permanently reauthorizes the Land and Water Conservation Fund.
    * Trump’s USDA committed $124 Million to rebuild rural water infrastructure.??
    * Consumer confidence & small business confidence is at an all time high.
    * More than 7 million jobs created since election.
    * More Americans are now employed than ever recorded before in our history.
    * More than 400,000 manufacturing jobs created since his election.
    * Trump appointed 5 openly gay ambassadors.??
    * Trump ordered Ric Grenell, his openly gay ambassador to Germany, to lead a global initiative to decriminalize homosexuality across the globe.
    * Through Trump’s Anti-Trafficking Coordination Team (ACTeam) initiative, Federal law enforcement more than doubled convictions of human traffickers and increased the number of defendants charged by 75% in ACTeam districts.
    * In 2018, the Department of Justice (DOJ) dismantled an organization that was the internet’s leading source of prostitution-related advertisements resulting in sex trafficking.
    * Trump’s OMB published new anti-trafficking guidance for government procurement officials to more effectively combat human trafficking.
    * Trump’s Immigration and Customs Enforcement’s Homeland Security Investigations arrested 1,588 criminals associated with Human Trafficking.
    * Trump’s Department of Health and Human Services provided funding to support the National Human Trafficking Hotline to identify perpetrators and give victims the help they need.
    * The hotline identified 16,862 potential human trafficking cases.
    * Trump’s DOJ provided grants to organizations that support human trafficking victims – serving nearly 9,000 cases from July 1, 2017, to June 30, 2018.??
    * The Department of Homeland Security has hired more victim assistance specialists, helping victims get resources and support.
    * President Trump has called on Congress to pass school choice legislation so that no child is trapped in a failing school because of his or her zip code.??
    * The President signed funding legislation in September 2018 that increased funding for school choice by $42 million.
    * The tax cuts signed into law by President Trump promote school choice by allowing families to use 529 college savings plans for elementary and secondary education.??
    * Under his leadership ISIS has lost most of their territory and been largely dismantled.
    * ISIS leader Abu Bakr Al-Baghdadi was killed.
    * Signed the first Perkins CTE reauthorization since 2006, authorizing more than $1 billion for states each year to fund vocational and career education programs.
    * Executive order expanding apprenticeship opportunities for students and workers.
    * Trump issued an Executive Order prohibiting the U.S. government from discriminating against Christians or punishing expressions of faith.
    * Signed an executive order that allows the government to withhold money from college campuses deemed to be anti-Semitic and who fail to combat anti-Semitism.
    * President Trump ordered a halt to U.S. tax money going to international organizations that fund or perform abortions.
    * Trump imposed sanctions on the socialists in Venezuela who have killed their citizens.
    * Finalized new trade agreement with South Korea.
    * Made a deal with the European Union to increase U.S. energy exports to Europe.??
    * Withdrew the U.S. from the job killing TPP deal.
    * Secured $250 billion in new trade and investment deals in China and $12 billion in Vietnam.
    * Okay’d up to $12 billion in aid for farmers affected by unfair trade retaliation.??
    * Has had over a dozen US hostages freed, including those Obama could not get freed.
    * Trump signed the Music Modernization Act, the biggest change to copyright law in decades.
    * Trump secured Billions that will fund the building of a wall at our southern border.
    * The Trump Administration is promoting second chance hiring to give former inmates the opportunity to live crime-free lives and find meaningful employment.
    * Trump’s DOJ and the Board Of Prisons launched a new “Ready to Work Initiative” to help connect employers directly with former prisoners.??
    * President Trump’s historic tax cut legislation included new Opportunity Zone Incentives to promote investment in low-income communities across the country.
    * 8,764 communities across the country have been designated as Opportunity Zones.
    * Opportunity Zones are expected to spur $100 billion in long-term private capital investment in economically distressed communities across the country.
    * Trump directed the Education Secretary to end Common Core.?????????
    * Trump signed the 9/11 Victims Compensation Fund into law.
    * Trump signed measure funding prevention programs for Veteran suicide.??
    * Companies have brought back over a TRILLION dollars from overseas because of the TCJA bill that Trump signed.
    * Manufacturing jobs are growing at the fastest rate in more than 30 years.
    * Stock Market has reached record highs.
    * Median household income has hit highest level ever recorded.
    * African-American unemployment is at an all time low.(was until covid bullshit)
    * Hispanic-American unemployment is at an all time low.
    * Asian-American unemployment is at an all time low.
    * Women’s unemployment rate is at a 65-year low.
    * Youth unemployment is at a 50-year low.
    * We have the lowest unemployment rate ever recorded.
    * The Pledge to America’s Workers has resulted in employers committing to train more than 4 million Americans.
    * 95 percent of U.S. manufacturers are optimistic about the future— the highest ever.
    * As a result of the Republican tax bill, small businesses will have the lowest top marginal tax rate in more than 80 years.??
    * Record number of regulations eliminated that hurt small businesses.
    * Signed welfare reform requiring able-bodied adults who don’t have children to work or look for work if they’re on welfare.??
    * Under Trump, the FDA approved more affordable generic drugs than ever before in history.
    * Reformed Medicare program to stop hospitals from overcharging low-income seniors on their drugs—saving seniors 100’s of millions of $$$ this year alone.??
    * Signed Right-To-Try legislation allowing terminally ill patients to try experimental treatment that wasn’t allowed before.
    * Secured $6 billion in new funding to fight the opioid epidemic.????
    * Signed VA Choice Act and VA Accountability Act, expanded VA telehealth services, walk-in-clinics, and same-day urgent primary and mental health care.??
    * U.S. oil production recently reached all-time high so we are less dependent on oil from the Middle East.
    * The U.S. is a net natural gas exporter for the first time since 1957.
    * NATO allies increased their defense spending because of his pressure campaign.
    * Withdrew the United States from the job-killing Paris Climate Accord in 2017 and that same year the U.S. still led the world by having the largest reduction in Carbon emissions.??
    * Has his circuit court judge nominees being confirmed faster than any other new administration.
    * Had his Supreme Court Justice’s Neil Gorsuch and Brett Kavanaugh confirmed.
    * Moved U.S. Embassy in Israel to Jerusalem.??
    * Agreed to a new trade deal with Mexico & Canada that will increase jobs here and $$$ coming in.
    * Reached a breakthrough agreement with the E.U. to increase U.S. exports.
    * Imposed tariffs on China in response to China’s forced technology transfer, intellectual property theft, and their chronically abusive trade practices, has agreed to a Part One trade deal with China.
    * Signed legislation to improve the National Suicide Hotline.??
    * Signed the most comprehensive childhood cancer legislation ever into law, which will advance childhood cancer research and improve treatments.
    * The Tax Cuts and Jobs Act signed into law by Trump doubled the maximum amount of the child tax credit available to parents and lifted the income limits so more people could claim it.
    * It also created a new tax credit for other dependents.
    * In 2018, President Trump signed into law a $2.4 billion funding increase for the Child Care and Development Fund, providing a total of $8.1 billion to States to fund child care for low-income families.
    * The Child and Dependent Care Tax Credit (CDCTC) signed into law by Trump provides a tax credit equal to 20-35% of child care expenses, $3,000 per child & $6,000 per family + Flexible Spending Accounts (FSAs) allow you to set aside up to $5,000 in pre-tax $ to use for child care.
    * In 2019 President Donald Trump signed the Autism Collaboration, Accountability, Research, Education and Support Act (CARES) into law which allocates $1.8 billion in funding over the next five years to help people with autism spectrum disorder and to help their families.??
    * In 2019 President Trump signed into law two funding packages providing nearly $19 million in new funding for Lupus specific research and education programs, as well an additional $41.7 billion in funding for the National Institutes of Health (NIH), the most Lupus funding EVER.
    * Another upcoming accomplishment to add: In the next week or two Trump will be signing the first major anti-robocall law in decades called the TRACED Act (Telephone Robocall Abuse Criminal Enforcement and Deterrence.) Once it’s thelaw, the TRACED Act will extend the period of time the FCC has to catch & punish those who intentionally break telemarketing restrictions. The bill also requires voice service providers to develop a framework to verify calls are legitimate before they reach your phone.
    * US stock market continually hits all-time record highs.
    * Because so many people asked for a document with all of this listed in one place, here it is. No links provided to remove bias as Google search is easy. Print this out for family, friends, neighbors, etc. I encourage you to drop this list off to voters before the 2020 election too!
    *Trump did all of this while fighting flagrant abuse and impeachment charges.
    And all the while under shelling from the rich and powerful elite of the Deep State. Please explain to me why you have a problem with the 45th president? Because he has misspoke a few times? Tell me when you find a perfect person, please….I’ll wait!
    I’ll tell you why, because the media has skewed him in such a negative light and unfairly report his accomplishments to undermined those achievements!
    Why? Because the media is complicit in every single thing this man is trying to undo!
    Start thinking for yourself!

    • Stu says:

      Mate, you make me laugh. Did you actually read through that list or just copy and paste. Not much of it is actually down to the clown. And you really ought to update it post Covid, much has changed due to his ineptitude.

      Presumably, from the way you write, you are a seppo so should have a good understanding of your system of government and it’s strengths as well as very significant weaknesses. I support the view that the colonies rebelled too soon and ended up with a flawed de-kinged version of a monarchy. The Australian system, now 120 years old, seems to work much better, but then we have two main parties who respect the other parties right to exist and even to win office. Contrast that with the current Trump rhetoric that “they hate the country and want to destroy it”.

      Don’t come back whinging when you descend into a broken system run by the fascists hiding behind Trump. I refer to Miller and Pompeo but there are many others. The Republican party has been completely taken over by a populist tag team, complete with adoration of the dear leader. (I assume you have watched some of the bullshit at the rallies).

      Another thing defining your plight well is the left/right, authoritarianism/libertarianism. The USA, all current players excepting Sanders, fit into the top right quadrant of that split. To put it another way, your national politics are all to right of centre. On the same scales our right wing Liberal/National mob are probably left of your Democrats. Europe is largely the same, hence we all have reasonably fair systems of taxation and safety nets for health care etc. You have all collectively drunk too much of the “American exceptionalism” kool aid.

      Have a look at this video which will explain it. https://youtu.be/ULYWIDcUOY4

      Now tell me you think Trump has handled the pandemic really well, world affairs are in better shape by his actions, the economy is booming, unemployment is how much? Give me a number on final deaths in USA and how well do you think CBP is doing in curbing unrest. You may not realise but you are sitting on a powder keg if both sides decide to turn up at events with powerful weapons on their chests.

      Sleep well.

  • Rafe Champion says:

    Thanks for that post Don, another demonstration of your status as an Australian Treasure.

    As for Donald Trump, from day one of his run I was saying there is a Good Trump and a Not So Good Trump and if he won we had to hope that the Good Trump would have more impact than the other. He has certainly performed up to my most optimistic expectations as Karabar has shown.

    Turning to the roots of identity politics, they are lodged deep in the fabric of Western Civilisation in the works of Plato and particularly in his theory of collective justice expounded in The Republic. You can draw a pretty straight line from that theory to the policy of affirmative action enshrined in the US Civil Rights Act of 1964. Karl Popper’s critique of Plato’s theory of justice is in Chapter 6 of The Open Society and Its Enemies and I would like to ask Don how much use he made of that text in his teaching career and whether he noticed other people using it. For a condensed version of that chapter http://www.the-rathouse.com/OpenSocietyOnLIne/Chapter-6-Platonic-Justice.html

    On affirmative action, Jacques Barzun wrote that affirmative action would only perpetuate racism rather than correcting it, that was in the Preface to the second edition of his book on racism originally printed in 1937. It was reprinted in 1965, after the Civil Rights Act of 1964, but Burzun had access to quality periodicals so he would have articulated his concern in poublic before the Act passed. He is probably forgotten now, he was born in 1907, but he was on the cover to Time magazine in 1957, possibly on account of his book The House of Intellect.

    • Stu says:

      You wrote “On affirmative action, Jacques Barzun wrote that affirmative action would only perpetuate racism rather than correcting it, that was in the Preface to the second edition of his book on racism originally printed in 1937. It was reprinted in 1965, after the Civil Rights Act of 1964, but Burzun had access to quality periodicals so he would have articulated his concern in poublic before the Act passed.”

      Can you elaborate please? You do not mention the current strife surrounding BLM but there is just a hint that you conflate affirmative action with current problems. Is that so? Would you agree or not that the BLM movement is more rooted in ongoing systemic anti black racism in America?

      • Rafe Champion says:

        I would not.
        The book was reprinted in 1965 and the Preface “Racism Today” makes interesting reading half a century later. He wrote “As long as people permit themselves to think of human groups without the vivid sense that groups consist of individuals and that individuals display the full range of human differences, the tendency which twenty-eight years ago I named ‘race-thinking’ will persist.” (ibid, ix) Individuals should be treated according to their personal characteristics such as their fitness and qualifications for particular tasks but as long as the qualities required for the tasks are not race-related there is no need to make race an issue. If it is made an issue then “race-thinking” will continue to generate muddled thinking and inappropriate actions with potentially dangerous unintended consequences. He insisted that giving up race-thinking means equal opportunity but not affirmative action. Because there are no positive or negative traits that are race-related it follows that “sentimental or indignant reversals of the racist proposition are false and dangerous. The victims of oppression do not turn into angels by being emancipated… Race-thinking is bad thinking and that is all.” (ibid, xiv)
        On the topic of affirmative action he wrote “When injustice is redressed, the hitherto outcast and maligned group must not benefit in reverse from the racism they justly complained of. They do not suddenly possess, as a group, the virtues they were previously denied, and it is no sign of wisdom in the former oppressors to affect a contrite preference for those they once abused.” (ibid, xv) He recalled a report from a Fullbright scholar in Paris who witnessed a memorable celebration in the Latin Quarter. A contingent of white writers and artists led by Negro writers and accompanied by French and American students had ceremonially burned the white race in effigy! He regarded that as an emblem of suicide by both parties because inverting the racial hierarchy leaves race-thinking intact and probably even stronger than before because it is sanctified by the self-righteous sense of correcting a great injustice.

        Barzun went on to address the situation when a representative of a group is depicted in a work of art or literature in a way that some people find offensive. He instanced the repeated attempts to have The Merchant of Venice banned and Huckleberry Finn removed from library shelves. Nowadays he would be referring to the removal of statues of Confederate soldiers and politicians. “This anxious wrangling which goes on about books and plays seems at times trivial but it is in fact fundamental. If democratic culture yields on this point no prospect lies ahead but that of increased animosity among pressure groups…In social and cultural relations the law rarely intervenes effectively; the protection of rights and feelings only comes from decency and self-restraint.” (ibid, xvi my italics)

        • Boambee John says:

          Rafe

          “Individuals should be treated according to their personal characteristics such as their fitness and qualifications for particular tasks but as long as the qualities required for the tasks are not race-related there is no need to make race an issue.”

          A wise man put it very well more than half a century ago, when he sought a world in which his children would be judged by “the content of their character, not the colour of their skin”. The Stus of this world love to indulge in “preposterous political posturing” as pointless virtue signalling, with no concern for the damage they cause.

      • Rafe Champion says:

        I think it is more rooted in anti-white racism. I have been saying for years that mandated affirmative action is the most obvious form of official racism since the Jim Crow Acts. Did you get the point of Popper’s critique of collective justice? That has been around almost as long as the 1937 edition of Barzun on racism.
        Affirmative action has many bad results, it puts a question mark over every qualification and appointment of the favoured people, it does not get to the real causes of any disadvantage that they suffer and so in the way of failed leftist reforms they just try harder instead of accepting the mistake. It gives white trash who may be equally disadvantaged in many ways a legitimate cause for grievance.
        Adding to the impact of the affirmative action program, the Great Society welfare program practically demolished the Afro-American family that had stayed strong up to that point.

  • Stu says:

    Rafe, you do not surprise me. But how would you classify the GI bill at the end of the war? Was it affirmative action for whites or just plain racism. The obstacles in the way of blacks obtaining any of the benefits lead to an extension of the Jim Crow era in the south and ultimately much of the wealth and opportunity gap still seen today. Property Red lining based on race and pushing black students into black only colleges accentuated the disadvantage.

    To this day poorer groups, black, white and the rest, suffer educationally through the general funding model whereby schools are paid for mainly with property taxes. Hence if you live in a poor neighbourhood you typically have poor educational facilities and therefore opportunity. Our state based funding model is not so afflicted, except of course for the new federal funding of private schools. And in the USA the advent of Charter Schools funded with vouchers seems to be heading down the same road.

    The series “1619 Project” in the New York Times provides quite a good explanation of how the US got to where it is race wise and the consequences of that history.

    The big change now with BLM is that it is so widely supported by non black people of all colours and not just in the USA. Perhaps, depending on November 3, we are about to see significant change there. Presumably the racist elements of white society will continue to resist so it could be messy.

    • Boambee John says:

      Stu

      “The series “1619 Project” in the New York Times provides quite a good explanation of how the US got to where it is race wise and the consequences of that history.”

      The author of the 1619 Project, in a moment of honesty, admitted recently that it is more about protecting a “narrative” than about actual history.

      But you keep believing in that narrative. It will keep you happy but deluded.

      • Stu says:

        That “narrative” is full of historical facts. Show us where it is false. Presumably you have a better “narrative” to quote from. Please go ahead.

        • Boambee John says:

          Stu

          The “historical fact” that the US was founded on black chattel slavery is the false narrative. I have no doubt that there are facts in the project, but its aim is to reinforce a particular narrative. The Pilgrims fled religious persecution, they did not emigrate to found a chattel slavery state.

          That you seem to think so shows a shallowness of knowledge that belies your ever confident prognostications on US politics. But so does your wilful blindness to the weaknesses of the Clintons and Obama. Trump is far from perfect, but he is certainly no worse than those three.

          Have you apologised to Don yet?

          • Stu says:

            Oh BJ, go back and check your history mate. This is not about the pilgrims. The first british settlers were in Jamestown in 1607. It was their descendants who hit upon the brilliant idea of free labour. The pilgrims arrived later in 1620 and yes they seemed to have higher ideals, except in dealing with the native Americans. But they settled in the north whereas the Jamestown crowd were in the south. Ultimately the Jonestown mob /expanded further south and west expanding their use of slave labour. Ten of the first twelve presidents were slave owners. Even when importation of slaves was outlawed the trade continued. Visit Baltimore and read the history of the slave breeding program that followed, producing “workers” to be sold in the plantations of Georgia, Mississippi and Louisiana. The north, while comparatively righteous prospered from the slave trade through cheap cotton from the south that could mill and export at great profit.

            Then followed the civil war, ostensibly about states rights but ultimately led to the abolishment of slavery. The period of reconciliation was fairly positive but soon regressed under the Jim Crow ethos into the mess that lingers to this day, particularly in the south.

            Were the anti-miscegenation laws, that took until 1967 to be finally repulsed in all US states an example of affirmative action (for the whites) or just plain racism?

            Anyhow the current line here reminds me once again of that interesting correlation between extreme right wing politics, climate change and now it would appear racist attitudes. Food for thought.

            Don’t lecture me about history.

          • spangled drongo says:

            “Anyhow the current line here reminds me once again of that interesting correlation between extreme right wing politics, climate change and now it would appear racist attitudes. Food for thought.”

            “Don’t lecture me about history.”

            Particularly MY version of it.

            But even in spite of your errors It’s a pity you don’t look half as closely at climate history, stueyluv.

          • Boambee John says:

            Stu

            To use the title of this thread, ease off on the “preposterous political posturing”. It makes you look even more pathetically puerile than usual.

            That slavery exisilted in the US is undisputed. That it existed pretty much world wide in that era the same. That does not make it the founding principle of the US.

            Perhaps you should focus your ire on locations where slavery still exists. The disastrous Obama/Clinton intervention in Libya brought active, overt, slave markets back there.

            Apologised to Don yet?

          • Boambee John says:

            Stu

            PS, the “Jim Crow ethos”, like the KKK, was bjilt by the Democratic Party. You seem to have missed that bit of your “history”!

  • Stu says:

    BJ, “That it existed pretty much world wide in that era the same. That does not make it the founding principle of the US.”
    Perhaps not but it soon became entrenched in the psyche of the Southerners and was neatly overlooked 150 years later when they wrote the Declaration of Independence and later the Constitution. They even specifically covered the slaves in the latter doc with the three fifths of a person counting of them for representational purposes. And then they went on with slavery way past the rest of the world then modernising through the industrial revolution, and needed a bloody war to bring it to an end, had you forgotten that?

    As for relating the policies and character of the Republicans and Democrats back then and now, you need to try again. Of course that is a standard trope of the modern Republican, or should I say Trump, party, trying to leverage the reputation of Lincoln. The actual story is much more complicated and twisted that. Unfortunately for them that link has been usurped by the “Republicans against Trump” in the form of the Lincoln project, but I guess you would not have seen any of that material.

    • Boambee John says:

      Stu

      Tell that to the 1619 project, they seem unaware.

      Not interested in taking on the issue of modern slavery? And after all the efforts of Obama and Shrillary to bring it to your attention.

      Have you apologised to Don yet?

      PS, I am aware of the Lincoln Project, and its Russian link.

      • Stu says:

        “I am aware of the Lincoln Project, and its Russian link.”

        Now you really are getting desperate. Go check on Putin the puppet master. We may still see the peepee tape, but anyhow all the other indiscretions are going to catch up with your mate Donald before too long.

        • Boambee John says:

          Stu

          So you aren’t aware that one of the founders was a registered Russian agent forca while? Better do some more research before you do any more preposterous political posturing. You might look a bit less of a fool.

          • Stu says:

            Shock horror, oh dear, Weaver signed a contract with a Russian outfit to help them promote nuclear energy in 2019. That does not make him a “Russian Agent” with all its negative connotations. And I thought you were totally in favour of expanding nuclear. Anyhow the difference between him and the Trump outfit is that he complied with the legal requirement of registering the contract with the proper US authorities. He has since terminated the contract. Weaver is as true a republican as you can find, his history working on campaigns for Bush and McCain is well documented. Have another go.

      • Stu says:

        And to put that another way give me one good reason why Putin would want Biden in the WH rather than Trump, who continues to weaken the western alliance and take actions favoring Russia.

        • Boambee John says:

          Stu

          “weaken the western alliance and take actions favoring Russia.”

          Do you think that “after the election (he) will have more flexibility”? Oh, sorry, that was Obama speaking, wasn’t it?

          You need to try harder.

  • Stu says:

    Here is one you guys will not have seen because I don’t think Fox or Sky show such stuff. It seems to cover all the bases.

    https://youtu.be/dpIkl2QnJeI

    • Boambee John says:

      Keep digging Stu, the bottom of that hole is down there somewhere.

      Have you apologised to Don yet? No, thought not. Progressives never apologise.

      • Stu says:

        What’s wrong BJ, lost your sense of humour, or did you never have one?

        • Boambee John says:

          Stu

          Unlike you, my sense of humour does not extend as far as people who make offensive assertions about their host. It might have slipped your mind, but you have this platform only because Don makes it available.

          You remain a disgusting specimen of a (barely) human being.

          Apologise!

          • Stu says:

            BJ, You make a pretty good fist of insults for someone who professes nicety. Regarding Don, my remarks were prefaced with “forgive me” and in any event were an expression of my fear of a situation not an accusation of fact. If you like a literary construct. But then, you have frequently shown yourself to be poor at comprehension of the written word. If Don, was in fact offended, of course I apologise, as I consider I did in the beginning. Or is it perhaps guilt by association. Perhaps you felt insulted because you hold extreme views and therefore you thought I might also fear for your mental state. From relatively recent interaction I can assure you I think Don is of very sound mind and hope he continues to thrive. As for yourself I have no idea nor perhaps badly, care.

          • Boambee John says:

            Stu

            “Perhaps you felt insulted because you hold extreme views and therefore you thought I might also fear for your mental state.”

            I suspect that your definition of “extreme views” amounts to opinions that differ from yours. On that definition, I also could feel that you “hold extreme views and therefore you thought I might also fear for your mental state.”

            “Judge not, lest you be judged” is an adage you might adopt.

  • Chris Warren says:

    Looks like our denialists are in hot water now …

    Spencer has just released his latest LT temp for July giving a July anomaly of 0.44C.

    This is the highest July temp on record – except for 1998 El Nino conditions. This is truly shocking given we are heading into La Nina territory.

    https://www.drroyspencer.com/wp-content/uploads/UAH_LT_1979_thru_July_2020_v6.jpg

    The linear LT trend – for July – is now 1.3 C per century.

    • spangled drongo says:

      Yes blith, it warmed from 0.43c in June to 0.44c in July.

      Truly “shocking”.

      And our blith is convinced that a 40 year linear trend – which, if taken to the nearest whole number would be zero – is really predicting our catastrophic future.

      It must be that Canberra weather that is unhinging him.

      • Boambee John says:

        SD

        Nah, just more preposterous political posturing from an alarmist suffering from Attention Deficit Syndrome. The Kung Flu has taken all the headlines.

  • Stu says:

    A bit more affirmative action in USA, of the negative type. Would this have happened to four white girls?

    https://youtu.be/RU-UuLyn-bQ

    • Boambee John says:

      Stu

      You mean like the white mother who was murdered in front of her child for telling a BLM activist that “All lives matter”? Or wasn’t that one mentioned in the daily Demorat talking points email?

    • spangled drongo says:

      Stop being mindlessly selective, stu.

      You sound like billionaire Oprah denouncing white privilege.

      • Stu says:

        You guys would fit in well in Trump’s America. You have a neat way of always avoiding the question by deflection, never addressing an issue. Meantime you should watch the Axios interview of Trump by Jonathon Swan. It is quite revealing. For just once you should actually watch the piece I refer to rather than assuming the content.

        https://youtu.be/ywa1fqPVp9o

        • Boambee John says:

          Stu

          So you do not feel any concern about someone being murdered for saying “All lives matter”?

          Sick.

        • spangled drongo says:

          When it comes to avoiding questions, no one beats our stu in ducking this question I have been asking him for yonks.

          Please tell us what is happening today climate-wise that hasn’t happened in the last 10,000 years?

  • Stu says:

    All murders are illegal, immoral and to be condemned, no ifs or buts. As if that needs to be said by anybody.

    • Boambee John says:

      So why did you not say so immediately?

      • Stu says:

        Because it does not need to be said you idiot.

        • spangled drongo says:

          Stu, you just said about me; “You have a neat way of always avoiding the question by deflection, never addressing an issue.”

          When are you going to address my question?

          • Stu says:

            You are presumably not an accredited climate scientist and neither am I. Nothing I quote here as a reference will convince you so no point trying. Suffice to say I go with the considerable and growing preponderance of publishing scientists and their work that says we are experiencing an alarming, accelerating and probably unprecedented period of rapid climate change. Those people across many disciplines have an aggregated story that to me is very convincing. That you choose to follow the path, that has the perhaps unfortunate link to fossil fuel funded interest groups, is entirely your prerogative. It is true that nothing is certain but where there is room for doubt there is no room for delay. The risk factor says, “we may not be sure but the risk of staying on the current path is more dangerous than doing nothing”. In another space Don is arguing that China and India are ramping up development of coal power. And that is a fact. But both are also rapidly growing their renewable energy at global leading rates, faster than coal. They can see where things are heading but have to make short term decisions, requiring short term dirty power to meet rapid growth requirements. Both also have massive air pollution problems and will modify future behaviour accordingly. One of the great myths perpetuated by your crowd is that “we” want to deprive developing nations of cheap power. That is just bullshit. And in fact in the bottom level countries that need power, they actually lack distribution networks, and are well suited to more distributed renewable energy solutions, particularly as those are now proven to provide cheaper power solutions than coal. And don’t bother to mention “clean coal”, it does not exist.

          • Boambee John says:

            Stu

            “the path, that has the perhaps unfortunate link to fossil fuel funded interest groups,”

            And how many of your publishing scientists have unfortunate links to renewable energy subsidy harvesters?

            Or don’t they count?

          • spangled drongo says:

            Stu,

            Nothing in what you said answers my question:

            “Please tell us what is happening today climate-wise that hasn’t happened in the last 10,000 years?”

            All your waffle about evidence-free conjecture means nothing.

            We have warmed and cooled at greater amounts and faster rates in the recent past with low atmo CO2 and while “science” would love to change those facts, and do so at every opportunity, they cannot escape the evidence, yet you choose to be convinced.

            Try the honesty pathway instead of the political one for a change.

          • Stu says:

            “We have warmed and cooled at greater amounts and faster rates in the recent past with low atmo CO2“

            Prove it.

          • spangled drongo says:

            Just as I thought, stueyluv. You’re in denial, like the IPCC.

            How many hundreds of peer reviewed papers would you like?

            Try googling tree line evidence.

            Or Holocene sea levels.

            Those provide empirical evidence but if you want to use proxy data like your cli-sci mates, just check Ice Cores.

            But don’t forget to give us your “yes” or “no” answer.

          • Boambee John says:

            I see that Stu has managed to convert a thread about political posturing into one about climate change.

            Appropriate really, when you think about it.

          • spangled drongo says:

            Yes BJ, very appropriate with our stu.

            All his cli-sci has never been anything other than political posturing.

        • Boambee John says:

          Stu

          Yet, strangely, you seemed to consider that I should condemn this event:

          “A bit more affirmative action in USA, of the negative type. Would this have happened to four white girls?”

          Were you seriously expecting that I would support it?

          And your reaction to me mentioning the murder was to head off on a tangent about Swan interviewing Trump. Deflection anyone?

          • Boambee John says:

            Stu

            Here’s one for you.

            “The 1619 Project does not offer any new insights into the past. Rather, it seeks to contaminate the past and render it toxic. Indeed, one of the main contributors to the project, Nikole Hannah-Jones, admits that its principal objective is not to shed light on the past, but to undermine the moral authority of the present. ‘I’ve always said that the 1619 Project is not history’, she writes. ‘It is a work of journalism that explicitly seeks to challenge the national narrative and therefore national memory. The project has always been as much about the present as it is about the past.’ ”

            Always good to hear what the author really had in mind.

            Not history, setting the narrative. But you already knew that, didn’t you?

  • spangled drongo says:

    It is interesting how stu’s preposterous political posturing can never permit him to respond to any evidence which contradicts his beliefs.

    That way he can wallow in his well washed brain and go on calling sceptics “deniers” and never come to grips with the fact that it is he who is in denial of evidence and truth.

    • Stu says:

      At least acknowledge that you deniers, both the scientific ones and the unqualified, are in a tiny minority compared with the mainstream of knowledge. That does not prove you wrong but it does in a probability sense indicate you are on very shaky ground (perhaps I should say thin ice). As for your peer reviewed papers that comparison becomes profound, when comparing those pro and con the argument. Finally climate science relies for its conclusions on the totality of the research not cherry picked papers on single narrow aspects of the debate, which you then try to use as some trivial repudiation of all the research. The research or mostly just observations you seem to quote ad nauseam, do not cut it.

      • Boambee John says:

        “Finally climate science relies for its conclusions on the totality of the research not cherry picked papers on single narrow aspects of the debate,”
        Sure, Stu, whatever you say!

        I’m still waiting for your offer on that bridge, surely my two line prospetus was convincing enough for you?

        How goes your deep investigative research on the 1619 Project?

        • Stu says:

          1619. So the USA was based on peaceful, non slavery principles, great. So when they first had a go, they simply stopped the importation of slaves from Africa. But breeding of slaves and selling them off was ok, yes? That went on for a long time after and took a civil war to end. Yes indeed the 1619 proposition is all rubbish, not. Go and visit Baltimore, as I have, and see the memorials and plaques which depict the horrors that went on, long after slavery itself had no actual function (for labour) in the east but was a fine trade for making money breeding slaves for the cotton fields of Mississippi. If you can’t see that and still think the “1619 project” is a hoax then I cannot but assume that you sir are racist at the core. But I fully assume you will claim some wiggle room out of that uncomfortable position.

          • Boambee John says:

            Stu

            When have I denied that slavery existed in the US, and elsewhere? Or that it continues to exist in many parts of the world today (a reality you seem most reluctant to acknowledge)?

            What I have pointed out, accurately, as admitted by one of the authors, is that the 1619 Project is about modern politics. Your refusal to accept that suggests that you support its political objectives. That is your perogative, but don’t pretend that your concern is anything but political.

            As for your absurd and offensive claim that I am “racist at the core”, it is more a reflection of the weakness of your argument than reality, from which you seem to be completely disconnected. As an insult, it has long lost any force due to overuse, your pathetic effort being a good example of that.

          • Boambee John says:

            PS, did you actually read my comment at 0735 this morning?

          • Stu says:

            BJ,
            They don’t quote individual day figures, they use averages and other statistical techniques to enable determination of long term trends etc, that is why your approach of pulling two numbers out of a table is so amateur. Have you ever studied statistics or science beyond high school?

          • Boambee John says:

            Stu

            “Have you ever studied statistics or science beyond high school?”

            Actually, I graduated from university in Pure and Statistical Maths.

            And you?

      • spangled drongo says:

        You got that right stu.

        Empirical evidence is always cherry picked [from fact] whereas broad inaccuracies are always based on a totality of speculative assumptions.

        But never mind, if you do ever come across a single piece of evidence to support your foolish blither, I’m sure you will inform us.

        In the meantime, check what’s happening outside:

        https://www.9news.com.au/national/weather-news-australia-snow-falls-south-australia-flinders-ranges-tasmania-records-lowest-temperature-on-record/93f0bdc4-ac89-4517-bbd5-8b7ba7e5cbb1

        • Stu says:

          Oh my god, it is cold, global warming is a hoax. Wake up Richard, the word is that as things warm, we still get cold snaps, just less often, and they are offset by more warm periods. Or can you not follow that logic? You appear to have zero understanding of science.

          • Boambee John says:

            Stu

            “You appear to have zero understanding of science.”

            Rich, coming from someone who has admitted to not being scientifically trained!

            And it shows.

          • spangled drongo says:

            But if you put the totality of all that Richard-sci together we should be getting ever-increasing SLR.

            So, what’s your excuse for mean sea levels falling, stueyluv?

            http://www.bom.gov.au/ntc/IDO70000/IDO70000_60370_SLD.shtml

          • Stu says:

            “Falling”. You must have your computer tilted or maybe it is time to visit Specsavers.

          • spangled drongo says:

            What hope have you ever got for rational understanding and discussion, stueyluv, if you don’t get that a MSL of 1.048 m in June 2020 is 63 mm LOWER than 1.111 m in May 1914?

            Or is it that you just can’t handle “cherry picked” empirical evidence?

          • Boambee John says:

            Poor old Stu, he has made his climate change bed, and now he must ignore all contrary evidence, so he can lie in it.

            Remember Stu, record cold for one day is only weather, but record hot for one day is definitely climate! Sinking sea levels mean nothing, the models tell you it cannot be true, therefore it is not true.

            Keep believing brother, salvation awaits!

          • Stu says:

            Hmm, a day in may 1914 compared with June 2020 looks awfully cherry picked to me. Would you like a lesson in tides and sea level in general?

          • spangled drongo says:

            “Would you like a lesson in tides and sea level in general?”

            I’m waiting with bated breath, stueyluv.

            But do spare us the usual garbage from satellites that are based on whatever algorithms the “experts” choose.

            You are even welcome to submit your own carefully catalogued observations over your lifetime [if you have any, that is].

          • Boambee John says:

            Stu

            “Hmm, a day in may 1914 compared with June 2020 looks awfully cherry picked to me.”

            I dunno. The climatologists set arbitrary baselines all the time (1910 as a start point, for example, to avoid including the Federation Drought). Sauce, goose (= climatologist), gander?

          • Stu says:

            BJ,
            They don’t quote individual day figures, they use averages and other statistical techniques to enable determination of long term trends etc, that is why your approach of pulling two random numbers out of a table is so amateur. Have you ever studied statistics or science beyond high school?

          • spangled drongo says:

            Stu,

            If you’re not happy with the first ever recording of monthly MSL compared with the latest monthly recording why then don’t you just run a graph of those monthly figures and show us how they present?

            Now’s your big chance to provide some evidence.

            Don’t hang back.

  • Boambee John says:

    Stu

    “Have you ever studied statistics or science beyond high school?”

    Actually, I graduated from university in Pure and Statistical Maths.

    And you?

    • Boambee John says:

      I also studied Applied Maths, Physics and Chemistry.

      And you?

      • Stu says:

        BJ, Then use that knowledge properly, or was it so long ago you have forgotten it all. Age will do that to you. Look at the number of long retired professors tilting at windmills outside their fields of interest. People like Nils Morner, Easterbrook, Piekle, Happer etc

        SD, why do think they issue “tide predictions” not actuals? Ever heard of atmospheric conditions affecting tides. The height of the tide is not of itself “sea level”.

        We have been down this path before. I see no point continuing to go round in circles. As I said, admit that you are part of a tiny and shrinking minority of “opinion”, it would be overkill to call it science.

        • spangled drongo says:

          Stu, how can future tidal advice ever be anything other than “predictions”?

          And what have tide “predictions” to do with these records?

          These records of Mean Sea Level are measurements of what actually occurred and they control minimum construction levels everywhere.

          High and low tide levels can fluctuate well beyond the norm due to daily weather influences whereas MSLs supply the most consistently reliable figures.

          The only sea level path you have been down before, and which terrifies you, is where you are in denial of the fact that sea levels have done virtually nothing for over a century and it absolutely destroys your climate change political groupthink.

          And please refrain from criticising scientists who deal in evidence as opposed to your assumption-based science.

        • Boambee John says:

          Stu

          Thank you for that patronising advice.

          You might consider whether your own (unspecified) skills are up to scratch also.

          Meantime, if you are simply accepting the ideas of selected scientifists, consider that you are actually cherry picking to suit your prejudices.

  • Boambee John says:

    Stu

    Given your apparent lack of knowledge of either science or the scientific method, it is probably sensible for you to go with “consensus science”. That spares you the embarrasment of having to consider matters beyond your ken.

    Similarly, the engineering problems of frequency control and grid-wide frequency stabilisation are probably beyond you.

    I remain puzzled, however, by your inability to understand, or even recognise, the problem of the early morning/early evening “gaps”, when the sun contributes little, and wind is often low to absent. Apart from lots and lots of batteries, which themselves need to be charged, what is your proposed solution?

    Then there is the issue of the resources needed (cobalt, rare earth minerals et al) to construct the wind and solar generators needed for renewable energy generation. Again, you seem uninterested in these.

    As Julius Sumner Miller might have said “Why is it so?”

  • spangled drongo says:

    That’s strange, this didn’t make the headlines:

    “A new temperature reconstruction indicates today’s sea surface temperatures are colder than all but a few millennia out of the last 156,000 years”:

    https://climatechangedispatch.com/study-southern-ocean-site-has-just-cooled-to-ice-age-era-temperatures/

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