The message still hasn’t sunk in

Nearly a fortnight after Donald Trump became President-elect of the United States we are still reading commentary in the media that suggests the writers still can’t believe it. Something has gone badly wrong with the world, and that bad wrong must be put right. The day after the result Michael Brune, Executive Director of the Sierra Club (for which outfit, climate change and the need to stop it are more important than anything else) put out this message: This hurts. There’s no way right now to ease the shock and dismay of what we’re facing this morning. The pain is real — and so much of the people and places that we love — and the values that we hold dear — are now threatened. I called home late last night to hear that my kids cried themselves to sleep, and I know that for millions of people the fear is even more visceral.

Two days later came this one: It’s been 2 days since Trump won. I’ve barely slept. End of Paris climate deal. End of the EPA. End of federal clean energy. More drilling. More coal. More pipelines. More lives destroyed. More wildlife bulldozed. It’s all on the line.

Brune is still putting out these messages, encouraging the faithful to donate money. OK, he is partisan, and he sees his endeavours to be in danger. But many mainstream reporters,  commentators and analysts seem to be infected with the same cataract-like vision-impairment. From the Australian papers I have read has come a stream of annoyance, ‘horror’, outrage and general angst at an election outcome in another country. It wasn’t supposed to happen, and some still don’t get it. Suddenly what our politicians are doing and saying has to be interpreted as part of ‘Trumpism’. So Bill Shorten is speaking out on 457 visas is taking a leaf out of Trump’s book, Barnaby Joyce is said to be doing the same, though I can’t see any real change in his behaviour or utterances. And the stuff I read sometimes seems way off, at least to me.

One of my favourite columnists (no names needed — I’m not pursuing individuals) has written to suggest that we are likely to see the rise of a fascist dictatorship in the US. He quoted Noam Chomsky (who is about as far to the left as you can be in the US) predicting before the election as follows: I don’t think all this is very far away. If the polls are accurate it is not the Republicans but the right-wing Republicans, the crazed Republicans, who will sweep the next election. Well, the polls didn’t ever say that, as far as I can remember, and the crazed Republicans, whoever they are, didn’t win the election. Hillary lost it, as the numbers are increasingly showing. She just didn’t draw the numbers outside her heartland, indeed compared to 2012 Democratic voters for President in 2016 were 2.4 million fewer. Trump campaigned in the disaffected states, and he drew the votes in sufficient numbers to win.

But what caught my eye especially in the column was the following. The challenge [at a meeting in the USA about health-care]…was to develop a  public health manifesto in the period before the swearing-in of the American President-elect. In reality, such agendas should be supported by all international organisations and all people of good social conscience who are concerned about divisiveness, inequity, misogyny, ignorance, hate, racism, marginalisation and persecution of minorities. Why on earth, in reality, should the rest of the world support an American health manifesto? There is a thumpingly large assumption in all this, if you think about it, which is that these concerns are superior to everything else. And they can’t be, for everyone. Other Americans have other concerns about jobs, about schooling, about retirement, about falling living standards, about immigration — about all sort of things. We in Australia have another raft of concerns, aside from those listed. To the surprise and even indignation of the progressives, the rest of America stood up and voted for someone who was talking about issues that concerned them, not those that are the current concern of ‘progressives’.

So I ask again: why did the columnist think all people of good social conscience in Australia should be supporting the development of a public health manifesto in the USA? The answer, I think, is that he and all right-thinking people — those who see themselves as progressive, who see the world as full of problems that need to be solved tomorrow, who listen to and watch the ABC and read the ‘better newspapers’, and so on — see these as the real issues in today’s society. Other things, like defence, jobs, poor transport, the size of the debt, access to water for irrigation, suicides in regional areas, the creeping strangulation by red tape in many parts of our life — these aren’t the real issues, and they are boring too, unless they are connected to the real issues, which are those the columnist listed above.  Moreover, there is an assumption that all these issues are solvable, by government action and a groundswell of popular support. But they’re not.

Think about it. Take divisiveness. What exactly are we talking about here? It’s a new word, though the Latin root is part of a lot of English words. Even the Internet dictionaries make it only the noun version of divisive, and bring in notions of discord and unrest. I don’t know what the columnist had in mind. I wasn’t cheering for Tony Abbott’s Team Australia, when it came out, but he was presumably asking us to not be divisive. I might be concerned about it if I knew what it applied to. If it means reacting to immigrants, or Jews, or Muslims, or soccer fans, then it’s been about for a long time. How governments can stop it I don’t know. What it has to do with a public health manifesto isn’t clear either.

Take inequity, another buzz word of today. It is a word you’ll find in the Shorter Oxford, and has meant a want of justice, or an example of unfairness, since the mid 16th century. There seems to be a view that there is more inequity now than there used to be. Maybe so, maybe so not. Maybe there’s more inequality (not the same thing) than there used to be. Again, maybe so not. How much inequality ought there to be? There seems to be a shared fantasy that governments can make us all equal. I’ve written about this before (here, here and here). It is simply rubbish.

Misogyny? Literally, from ancient Greek,  woman-hating. What does that have to do with a public health manifesto? In terms of government, we in Australia are hearing a lot about ‘domestic violence’, whose incidence seems to be slowly declining, while it is a steady item in the news. We have laws about it, and the laws are applied. Today’s police will intervene in cases of it, whereas in the past there was some reluctance to do so on their part. Ignorance? About what, exactly? Health? Who won the American presidential election? Hate? Heaven help me. Hate about what? What is government supposed to do about it? Marginalisation? Persecution of minorities? In Australia? By whom, which ones, where, evidence?

My columnist has listed a string of issues that concern him, issues which he thinks should be at the top of everyone’s worries. In fact, they are a group of poorly defined and rather abstract issues, and most of them are salient for relatively small groups of our citizens, and of the citizens of the USA. No matter. They are the ones that appear again and again on news broadcasts, in what politicians say and in the pages of the better newspapers. Readers and viewers might be inclined to think that they are the whole. But they are not. They are a small subset of the issues that concern the people of a whole society. Like ‘climate change’, which really concerns about seven per cent of Australians, they are important for small numbers of people. That doesn’t mean we should ignore them. But it does mean that we should remember, from time to time, that most people out there are trying to make a living, buy a house, bring up kids, get them to school, make sure they keep within a budget. They have other anxieties to grapple with.

And from time to time the electorate heaves an angry sigh and points to these more humdrum, but real and daily concerns that ordinary people have. It takes commentators some time to sort it out, I agree. There is still a sense, as with Brexit, that the people got it wrong, or even that some of them shouldn’t be taken seriously. That’s why I like decent elections.

Join the discussion 130 Comments

  • Peter Kemmis says:

    That range of “progressive” issues is a bit of a chapel of cards, erected and supported by faith, but take one away, and the rest may fall. Those “deplorables” (clearly unfit to vote) don’t share that faith, and don’t consider those issues inscribed on each card to be especially significant. More than that, many probably find them irritating, distracting from what to them are far more important matters. It does say something about the US political system, that no other Republican presidential candidate had the wit or the gall to call the bluff of that “progressive” chapel, to call it for the regressive chapel it is.

    It took a loud-mouthed character with little capacity for self-reflection, to have that gall. So he is an easy target for the progressives to tear into with their teeth. I think he’ll survive all that – he has a hide thicker than a rhino’s. (Actually, I think they just look thick, but are not – but I’ve never tried to spear one, through deficiency of courage, acceleration and stamina, or even motivation.) And why so much anger, such a wailing? I think it is precisely because it has been a chapel of cards, and its fall will be like a slow train wreck.

    Trump’s major significance may not be so much in what he does, but in what his rise introduces – a new swathe of politicians who will be more conservative than radical. They will have been emboldened, first with Brexit, and now Trump. And the economic skies will not fall – in fact, they are likely to lighten.

    2016 has seen the start of the 50 year pendulum, swinging back, but not back to the mid-60s. Its next apogee will be in a different place, and the swing may be less than 50 years.

  • Nga says:

    “So I ask again: why did the columnist think all people of good social conscience in Australia should be supporting the development of a public health manifesto in the USA?

    You have a tin ear, Don, as we have seen time and time again. A general public health manifesto for the USA is essentially a generic manifesto applicable to all western countries. That is how I read it and I assume that is what Moore meant.

    Trump has made a bewildering array of outrageous and hopelessly contradictory statements on public issues over the years, so many progressive commentators have worked themselves into a lather about it. The conservative pundits do the same when progressives get elected to office. Funnily enough, you never call them out on it.

    My view, as a progressive, is that the burden of office will straighten out many of Trump’s kinks. Trump will not achieve much, any overreach will be wound back by the next Democratic Party president and American life will go on as usual, being great for the rich, insecure for the middle class and hellish for the vast reserve army of poor:

    But Don’s alright, Jack, and the poor aren’t really poor and they only have themselves to blame in any case and I wonder what Jo Nova’s having for dinner tonight …

    • JohnM says:

      No tin ear. A public health manifesto in the US means little if anything at all to other western countries because they all have their own health systems for better or worse. Some are nationalised (e.g. Sweden), some are part nationalised and part private (e.g. UK and Australia) and some are fully private but tiered regards coverage and cost (e.g. Switzerland).
      I don’t see any big problem with Trump, after all any ideas that he might have generally need the support of the congress and senate. The biggest problems to date are that Democrats won’t accept that their candidate lost ad that the US media is showing its usual bias by not calling out the protesters. You can be darn certain that if Trump had lost and his supporters were doing the protesting, the media would slam them very hard.

  • Boxer says:

    I remember feeling the same sense of rage and fear when Reagan was elected. It was one of the reasons why we moved out to live in the bush because I thought that with a few guns, a lot of ammunition, good land and plenty of water we could survive whatever came next. We spent a long time living out there, really enjoyed it, and the kids grew up into independent teenagers who left home about 25 minutes after they finished high school and are now strong capable adults.

    When the Berlin Wall fell I was relieved that the world had not come to and end because of Reagan, but there was probably a little sadness at times that the Club of Rome was so hopelessly stupid and I took them and their ilk seriously, and the Misunderstood Soviet Union didn’t destroy us because of dastardly provocation from the Beastly USA. Reagan gave them a little push and they fell over.

    My fear of The Reagan Apocalypse was something within me, and nothing to do with the rest of the world. I hope is that the current crop of prog-liberals will get over it in time, after they march in a few rallies and scream themselves hoarse. Maybe like the anti-bullying activist Ms Ward, they can get some therapeutic satisfaction by assaulting a bystander who was wearing a tee shirt with a message that was supportive of Trump.

    Seems to me that a lot of the public displays of hate we see demonstrated at the moment are actually from the various progressive Luvvies who are not getting what they want, immediately, from democracy. The Luvvies are ones wearing the brown shirts. They are becoming militant, they have identified “The Other” to hate (and how fortunate, they can lump Jews in there with the rest of us to maintain a link to the past), and all they need now is a prominent charismatic leader to whom they can pledge allegiance until death or victory. But then perhaps my past fascination with catastrophe is bubbling to the surface again.

    • Nga says:

      “My fear of The Reagan Apocalypse was something within me, and nothing to do with the rest of the world. I hope is that the current crop of prog-liberals will get over it in time … blah blah blah …The Luvvies are ones wearing the brown shirts … they can lump Jews in there … snort burp hiccup …

      OK, so you’ve flipped from one dumb extreme to another. That suggests to me that you’re a peanut by nature.

  • margaret says:

    I find this “essay” impenetrable. But towards the end AWM really goes for it.
    “Ignorance? About what, exactly? Health? Who won the American presidential election? Hate? Heaven help me. Hate about what? What is government supposed to do about it? Marginalisation? Persecution of minorities? In Australia? By whom, which ones, where, evidence?”
    That reads like a Greg Sheridan rant on that program (no name needed), the one that “conservatives” (meaningless inverted comma use) love to hate because it’s a waste of their taxes (the ones they can’t avoid, at least).

  • mike r says:

    I find it interesting that Nga pontificates about “what jo nova is having for dinner” or that boxer is a “peanut” sounds to me like
    this attitude shows a lot of deep understanding of what people like Jo and Boxer conclude about issues after much thought and
    reflection of scientific evidence and historical facts or are looking at more boring childish comments and name calling.

  • Colin Davidson says:

    Everyone is a “progressive” at 10. Most are not by 30.
    Noel Pearson is a clear example.
    Like most people who don’t sit on their brains, he has concluded that each person is responsible for playing the cards which they have been dealt. The outcome is a personal responsibility, not a societal one.
    Our job as a society is to remove the bad cards. There are some problems with this:
    1. Too much safety net always results in cargo-cult behaviour. “Progressives” don’t get that.
    2. The worst of all the bad cards is a totalitarian government, where the government does everything and the citizen nothing. “Progressives” don’t get that either.
    3. There is a tendency to blame the cards rather than individual choice, and therefore mis-identify the problem. “Progressives” don’t get that because 10 year-olds don’t get personal responsibility.
    4. Mis-identifying bad cards leads to serious problems. A prime example is the Racial Discrimination Act, which assaults the foundation of our civilisation – freedom of speech. “Progressives” don’t get that because they know that intentions are better than outcomes.

  • Chris Warren says:

    I think you are crusading out of context.

    The writer of “to develop a public health manifesto in the period before the swearing-in of the American President-elect. In reality, such agendas should be supported by all international organisations and all people of good social conscience who are concerned about divisiveness, inequity, misogyny, ignorance, hate, racism, marginalisation and persecution of minorities.” was Michael Moore the CEO of the Public Health Association of Australia and president of the World Federation of Public Health Associations.

    He was reflecting, not only on Chomsky but also on Richard Horton the editor of “The Lancet”.

    So it is perfectly reasonable for Moore and Horton to reflect on the public health systems anywhere in the world particularly in a period of possibly radical, adverse change.

    If I was an activist in public health, concerned for the future of public health in any State, I too would call on “all good people” to do something. And this applies to any issue – climate change, labour rights, poverty and etc. Although my definition of all good people is probably different to Edmund Burke’s.

    The “rest of America” did not stand-up and vote for someone who was talking about issues that concerned them, not those that are the current concern of ‘progressives’.

    Trump only received a vote from 25% of the US adult population due to the undemocratic voting system – discretionary, work day, obtuse registration / identity requirements.

    So now the 50% of Americans who were not engaged in the political process, plus the 25% of those who voted Clinton will have their say. And, so far, they do not like Trump.

    If you do not have decent elections, you can run society off a cliff.

  • Alan Gould says:

    Does Trump worry me? Yes.
    Do other things worry me MORE out of the entire US Presidential fanfare? Yes.
    What are these? ….

    1. That the American people had such an abysmally poor choice of candidate.
    2. That Trump’s opponent, Hillary, was particularly vacuous, promised a Presidency of cabal, favourites an secrecy, and by her very candidature augured that counter-democratic trend in America toward dynasticism that we have seen in the Bush, Kennedy ambitions.
    3. That this fellow, who turned out to be the choice of the American people, was being so roundly and pre-emptively demonised from all quarters, his intended counsellors ditto, his entire franchise ditto, all this many weeks before he had actually taken office and had opportunity to provide evidence of his demon. To curry this demonising seemed to me to flout that spirit of fair-go so utterly critical in the process if the idea of giving people a choice in their leadership is to work. To damn the choice pre-emptively like this is to try and subvert the morale of the very people with whom the Elect must deal.
    4. The conversion of Trump’s election into something dire, unprecedented, millenarian, rather than the cooler and (I think) more realistic look at the event, namely that it proceeds from an old dynamic in American history between one set of forces and another, is to stoke the millenarian appetite that is abroad in our epoch. WE cultivate alarm; THAT is the sickness revealed by the US election result, not the actual choice of a mavericki, or maverickism.
    5. By pandering to the appetite for alarmism that characterises our age, this pre-emptive demonising of Trump makes no allowance for the sheer resourcefulness and unexpectedness with which Life actually takes its course. All the Trump excess in his scathing, his pledges, his gestures, his manners, is going to strike the hard realitiy of the Cabinet Table where pledge and gesture must be converted into policies. To predict that these can only precipitate Armageddon is to impose on life’s texture a rigidity and downcast that is unfair to it.

    Rather than painting everyone as racists and crazies, I reckon the lesson of the Presidential Election, given the surprise of its result, might be for all those who do not like Trump to ask themselves, “Well, since so many other people have made him their choice, what is it about MY ATTITUDES that has so disaffected them?
    If the man solves an evident Mexican border problem, reverses the US drift into economic slough, communicates the idea that paying for the Pax Americana might be more fairly distributed among the other nations of the Earth, then perhaps all the ado about his charmlessness and blowhard might be allowed a perspective.

    • David says:

      “If the man solves an evident Mexican border problem, reverses the US drift into economic slough, communicates the idea that paying for the Pax Americana might be more fairly distributed among the other nations of the Earth, then perhaps all the ado about his charmlessness and blowhard might be allowed a perspective.”

      Alan they are a “courageousness” set of iffs. And what if he does not achieve these goals? What does it tell you about conservative ideology that this “blowhard” needed to resort to these tactics to sell the idea.

  • Don Aitkin says:

    For those who find the essay impenetrable and those who think I’m crusading out of context, I suggest a close reading of what JMO has had to say above.
    But I’ll add a little context, something that has been written before here, many times. Moving a nation-state ‘forward’ — that is, reducing the number of bad cards (thanks, JMO) is best done by being highly specific and quite incremental. Implementing ‘visions’, like NDIS, NBN, and the like, based on the fantasy that everyone can have an equal share or an equal opportunity or an equal access, quickly bogs down in the reality of the lack of a clean slate. All societies are dynamic, moving all the time. And every advance comes with a cost. Popper said all this a long time go. Be careful with what you legislate.

    Now look at the list of ‘concerns’. They are all vague, abstract and unimplementable. Moreover, none of them has anything much to do with a public health manifesto, unless it too is to be vague, abstract and unimplementable. I think these things are a waste of time for readers, however satisfying they are to the writer. And, unlike Chris, I see no reason why good people in Australia should be asked to give their support to a public health manifesto in the USA. We have our own real needs in Australia. And I am one who is irritated with foreigners telling us, usually without much knowledge of the reality here, what we should do in our own country. I would think Americans would be even more irritated.

    • Nga says:


      “… I suggest a close reading of what JMO has had to say above.”

      Ah the irony- JMO hasn’t even commented on this thread.

    • Nga says:

      Don Junior:

      ” Implementing ‘visions’, like NDIS, NBN, and the like, based on the fantasy that everyone can have an equal share or an equal opportunity or an equal access, quickly bogs down in the reality of the lack of a clean slate.

      Don’s great great great grand daddy:

      ” Implementing ‘visions’, like … [an age pension, telegraph poles and the electoral grid] … and the like, based on the fantasy that everyone can have an equal share or an equal opportunity or an equal access, quickly bogs down in the reality of the lack of a clean slate.

      Every generation is held back by old farts who say nothing can be improved and I’m alright Jack.

      • Don Aitkin says:

        Great at insults, but not great and either reading or thinking.

        So READ AGAIN: ‘Moving a nation-state ‘forward’ — that is, reducing the number of bad cards (thanks, JMO) is best done by being highly specific and quite incremental.’ The telegraph powers came incrementally, as did the telephone lines, the railways, the roads and the ports. I don’t know what the ‘electoral grid’ is.

  • Neville says:

    A mate of mine always says that you don’t argue with a fool. The left have been wrong on just about every important issue over the last 50 years.
    Just look at the idiotic predictions of Erhlich , the 1970 Earth day ramblings, Club of Rome garbage, coming ice age in the 1970s, nearly all the CAGW icons like extreme SLR, deaths from extreme events, polar bear numbers, droughts, floods, Antarctic warming etc, etc.
    Let’s hope that Trump turns off the CASH tap to these gutless parasites and ;leave them to their own resources. Jo Nova has a good article on the Marrakech meeting and the fear expressed by some of these donkeys that the US cash well may soon run dry. Of course the so called mitigation of their so called CAGW is the greatest con slash Ponzi scheme in recent history. In fact co2 emissions will actually increase by 34% by 2040. Thanks mainly to developing countries like China, India etc. Here’s the link from Obama govt’s 2016 EIA report AGAIN.

  • tripitaka says:

    Has it “sunk in” to you that Trump is now the president of the USA? If so, why do you continue to focus on what the losers are doing?

    Why not tell us what good things are going to happen now you have had a “good election” and Trump will stop the evil lefties and those other deplorable people who are taking away your white male privilege?

    Those inner city leets and me lol who amazingly lives in a country town in Queensland among the silly misguided sheepies who have voted for the LNP for yonks are not wanting this free stuff for ourselves. It is for my right wing deplorable neighbours that I protest about the stupidity of right wing policies. It is my neighbours who are poor because of LNP policies that have taken their jobs, jothing to do with unions or the aborigines taking their houses – remember all that bs when land rights was a thing?.

    It is your liberal policies and businesses like Trumps that have taken the way of life we used to have in my country town when there were people who looked after the community; when there were people who gave of their time and effort to do community work to be on hall committees and progress associations – all gone now that we understand that there is no society just individuals who want to be left alone by evil governments.

    It is right wing policies that have allowed the seven deadly sins to be used to market the ugly stupid products and the disgusting consumerism we see now. It is they way people have been fooled into paying money for poor quality food and adopting lifestyles that t has made my neighbours fat and unhealthy so they need free health care and their kids head off as soon as they leave school for the big city where the kids can climb ladders and leave their parents to be put in old age homes that are run for a profit and not for the benefit of the aged.

    And doesn’t that make you wonder why people like Trump suddenly care about those who are not doing well? I wonder. Surely in your ideology these stupid people who are not doing well are just Hockey’s ‘leaners’ – bad cards even – who didn’t work hard enough and who made the wrong choices? What’s going on that suddenly everyone is concerned with their lack of prosperity and the fact that they are not relaxed and comfortable?

    • Don Aitkin says:

      Tripitaka, Mr Trump is the President-elect, not the President. Mr Obama has almost another two months left as President. The rest of your contribution starts with so many wrong assumptions that there is no point in responding to it.

      • tripitaka says:


        Oh dear how very disappointing that you can’t be bothered to point out even one of my wrong assumptions.

        Could you please deal with just one issue? I’d very much like to understand this concern for the deplorables who voted for Trump, you know those poor white men who are doing it tough, when it seems clear that they are in fact just leaners who didn’t work hard enough, didn’t make the right choices and now they are envious of those who did manage to do well during the good times.

        So sorry to exceed the tree a day post limit but I’m very anxious to understand why this sudden concern for those who are doing it tough.

  • margaret says:

    Yes, tripitaka. To live in Canberra (the “bush capital” – what a joke), is to risk becoming institutionalised without being aware of it.
    I don’t know what it’s like to live there now, but I believe I was smug and ‘not-noticing’ when I did live there, and oh, it’s a pleasant feeling.

    • tripitaka says:

      The country town I live in Margaret is a lot smaller than Canberra and is one of the lowest SES areas in Australia.

      There are two type of people here; oldies on a pension like me who use the town as a free range retirement village until they get too sick to drive into the nearby bigger town for medical care, and a growing number of young families who want to live in a neo-traditional way with a stay at home mum and a working dad. Houses are relatively cheap and young families can afford to buy but the breadwinner has to travel to work or work as fly in fly out workers. They are hoping they will be able to find work locally in the future. Fat chance with more LNP trickle down economics that has taken all the jobs.

      The young women are awesome. They have resurrected the small school, started a P&C, a sporting group and a play group but these are the only community things going on. The local hall still stands but is not used as it used to be and the old people (who have overwhelmingly voted for their own demise) mourn the old days when there were community events, when there were prosperous dairy farmers, public servants and community minded professionals in the town – it was much bigger when the railway went through – who did society building stuff on committees and had the skills and motivation to plan and organise events that brought people together.

      The well off people now – the elites – are neo-liberals who breed race horses and corporate farmers who have no interest in the hall. They don’t drink at the local pub because they serve cheap and nasty meals and it is daggy and full of out of work deplorables who have no idea what happened to their way of life and no understanding of who took it from them.

      But I may be missing it but I don’t see that these deplorables are impressed with Trump. I do know a couple of Pauline Hanson voters and they remain loud, incoherent and aggressive in their support for Trumpism but their smash it all because I don’t like it attitude doesn’t seem to be getting the support that elities like Don Aitkin seem to imagine it is among the LNP voters.

      Check the polls – 53 to 47 I think for Labor. Come on Labor get it together to be more left wing and we might make this country good.

      It seems to me and I say this to my neighbours often and in various ways that western civilisation and those great white men who built things, have clearly abandoned – as they always have done when the chips are down – all of the values that they have been claiming as civilised values.

      The superior white man has so easily jettisoned civilised values in favour of revenge on the left because it is we who have always pointed to their deplorable hypocrisy and we will continue to protest the way supposedly civilised white men have resorted to the most mean spirited impulses of revenge and gloried in the elevation of the lowest of the low to power.

      And I insist that they admit that Margaret Thatcher was wrong and there is such a thing as society and we want it.

      • margaret says:

        Great rant tripitaka – I concur. Here in the SW of Vic. this town risks becoming another of those places where the workers who provide the services that the tourists and wealthy retirees enjoy, will no longer be able to afford to live in the township. It has happened in places like once very beautiful Lorne where on the census night before the last debacle census, there were hardly any lights on because no-one was fully ‘living’ there, mainly holiday houses and accommodation.

        • tripitaka says:

          Did you see that Don won’t answer my questions? One would think that he would be concerned to tell me where and how I am so wrong but at least be doesn’t delete my comments like other right wing sites have done to similar comments I have posted. Perhaps next blog he will tell us just how Trump when he is actually president of course will make America Great Again. 🙂

          • margaret says:

            Men AND women have seven ages. How did we get to be called crones? Perhaps preferable to a pantaloon. Those women who voted for Trump must be epigenetically affected by centuries of being infantilised, worshipped, ditched and then ignored as they reach that so called invisible (read: no longer gorgeous by the eagle eye standard of beauty) age. At least by then they don’t have to put up with so many mansplanations.
            I cannot work out which age Trump has reached or become arrested at.
            “ALL the world ’s a stage,
            And all the men and women merely players:
            They have their exits and their entrances;
            And one man in his time plays many parts,
            His Acts being seven ages. At first the Infant,
            Mewling and puking in the nurse’s arms.
            Then the whining School-boy, with his satchel
            And shining morning face, creeping like snail
            Unwillingly to school. And then the Lover,
            Sighing like furnace, with a woful ballad
            Made to his mistress’ eyebrow. Then a Soldier,
            Full of strange oaths, and bearded like the pard;
            Jealous in honor, sudden and quick in quarrel,
            Seeking the bubble reputation
            Even in the cannon’s mouth. And then the Justice,
            In fair round belly with good capon lined,
            With eyes severe, and beard of formal cut,
            Full of wise saws and modern instances,—
            And so he plays his part. The sixth age shifts
            Into the lean and slippered Pantaloon,
            With spectacles on nose, and pouch on side;
            His youthful hose, well saved, a world too wide
            For his shrunk shank; and his big manly voice,
            Turning again toward childish treble, pipes
            And whistles in his sound. Last scene of all,
            That ends this strange eventful history,
            Is second childishness, and mere oblivion,—
            Sans teeth, sans eyes, sans taste, sans everything.”

        • JMO says:

          And Hazelwood in SE Victoria will probably become like your town after March next year. Another town sacrificed on the altar of climate stupidity. More destructive work from the regressive Greens. Oh, and the lights will be off also, Margaret, because those who have been thrown on the Green climate scrapheap will not afford the increased electricity prices from the unreliables. (wind/splar power stations – they are NOT farms).

          • Nga says:

            Ah yes, the good old glorious Hazelwood Power Station. JMO ignores:

            – how hundreds of Morwell town’s folk had to evacuated during the Hazelwood coal mine fire
            -the $18 million cost of the fire, which the power station operator refused to pay
            – how thousands nearby residents were subject to days of toxic ash and smoke
            – the sevenfold higher rate of asbestos related disease among Latrobe valley power industry workers
            – the health cost resulting from the pollutants released when coal is burned
            – the multi-billion dollar mine site rehab bill taxpayers will be left with thanks to the coal industry, including Hazelwood
            -etc …

            But but but these are just facts and only a poopy pants could think solar/ wind/ batteries can create jobs and replace those old dead trees that Jesus put there for our benefit … and change is scary when you’re 0oo0oOld!

          • tripitaka says:

            Nup, JMO, there are very few deniers left in this town. Even the pub owners have woken up and won’t listen to the few Pauline Hanson idiots in town. Seriously these pub owners shut down the keno games when they saw that one family were spending too much of their money playing.

            It is clear to all of us that solar and wind set ups would be very good for the town. The local university is building a solar array and the local land care association is involved. We want localism and it is clear that renewables would be part of that. The motto is think global, act local.

            The town is growing because of the young families as I said and the energy and social entrepreneurial attitudes that they have and the commitment to building a community for their children. You don’t think that young families who move to the country for quality of life are deniers do you? They seem to be neo-hippies and want to live a simple life that does not rape and pillage the earth for their own selfish comfort that has brought about so much unhappiness ill health and obesity.

            And the older people who have always lived here do not want or need all the comforts and security that you whine on about. Once they realise that it is not the left who have created the consumer society, they begin to reassess the whole pack of lies about neo-liberalism and they see that this is what has taken their way of life and not social justice warriors or any conspiracy about climate change.

            There is an interesting way of rationalising that some of the former deniers have come up with to save face and it is to say that even if climate change isn’t being caused by us, it is a better life we will have if we stop being so greedy and wanting so much and stop digging coal out of the ground.

            We have always had dodgy power services out here because we are poor – the well off have generators and will be buying Tesla power walls. Outside the metro areas powers poles and the other infrastructure are not maintained as they are for those inner city leets. Your outrage about outages is quite sad really and shows how lacking in self-reliance and community spirit climate change deniers are.

            Lots of us grow our own food; we buy bath milk from the farmer down the road. We won’t suffer or whinge about stuff like that, we do things for ourselves and for each other. You selfish and greedy individualist right wing people are not very self-reliant are you? Our kids can look after themselves and know how good it is to live without the stuff that rich kids need.

            I see this town being the model for societies of the future.

          • David says:

            Yep to Hazelwood I say “don’t let the door hit you on they way out”

  • dlb says:

    There seems to be a bit of angst in the comments. Perhaps the message is starting to sink in.
    Second stage of grief?

    • tripitaka says:

      dlb, what is the message? The message for me is that a lot of people have not done well from trickle down and Trump won’t make anything better for them.

      Seems to me that Trumps ‘victory’ is the final touch for the death of neo-liberalism, for greed and selfishness, for the myth of the great white leader, for profit at all costs being the way forward.

  • Chris Warren says:

    So it seems the message is starting to sink in. Trump is a rightwing liar. He now says;

    “…that he had no intention of investigating Hillary Clinton, despite that being a common theme during his campaign.”


    He also lied about the Great Big Wall which is now mostly a fence for some of the distance.

    He used lies to mislead and goad the electorate using Moslems and Mexicans as scapegoats, and 25% of US adults fell for it.

    Now that he is in power, as an usurper, too many weak people are genuflecting to him just because he is to be the next President for 4 years.

    I thought Fraser and Thatcher were bad, well Trump could be much, much worse.

    His plan to cut expenditures but build up the military will destroy Americas social welfare net unless he plunges the economy into more debt.

    So clearly – there is a wrong that must be righted.

    • spangled drongo says:

      “So clearly – there is a wrong that must be righted.”

      D’ya think it is possible, chrissie, that the real message sunk in a while back and the US is finally waking up?

      Total Personal Staff members for US First ladies:

      Mamie Eisenhower: One – paid for personally, out of President’s salary.

      Total number of Personal Staff Members paid by Tax Payers

      Jackie Kennedy: One

      Lady Bird Johnson: One

      Pat Nixon: One

      Betty Ford: One

      Rosaline Carter: One

      Barbara Bush: One

      Hilary Clinton: Seven

      Laura Bush: One

      Michele Obama: Twenty-two

      Yep….your eyes don’t deceive you. You want to read WASTE? ….Scroll on down.

      Michele Obama’s personal staff: Take a closer look

      One.. $192,200 – Sher, Susan (Chief Of Staff)

      Two.. $160,000 – Frye, Jocelyn C. (Director of Policy And Projects)

      Three.. $133,000 – Rogers, Desiree G. (White House Social Secretary)

      Four.. $122,000 – Johnston, Camille Y. (Director of Communications)

      Five.. $120,000 – Winter, Melissa (Deputy Chief Of Staff)

      Six.. $110,000 – Medina , David S. (Deputy Chief Of Staff)

      Seven.. $104,000 – Lilyveld, Catherine M. (Director and Press Secretary)

      Eight.. $ 95,000 – Starkey, Frances M. (Director of Scheduling and Advance)

      Nine.. $ 90,000 – Sanders, Trooper (Deputy Director of Policy and Projects)

      Ten.. $ 85,000 – Burnough, Erinn (Deputy Director and Deputy Social Secretary)

      Eleven.. $ 84,000 – Reinstein, Joseph B. (Deputy Director and Deputy Social Secretary)

      Twelve.. $ 82,000 – Goodman, Jennifer R. (Deputy Director of Scheduling and Events Coordinator)

      Thirteen.. $ 80,000 – Fitz, Alan O. (Deputy Director of Advance and Trip Director)

      Fourteen.. $ 77,500 – Lewis, Dana M. (Special Assistant and Personal Aide)

      Fifteen.. $ 72,500 – Mustaphi, Semonti M. (Associate Director and Deputy Press Secretary)

      Sixteen.. $ 70,000 – Jarvis, Kristen E. (Special Assistant for Scheduling and Traveling Aide)

      Seventeen.. $ 65,000 – Lechtenberg, Tyler A. (Associate Director of Correspondence)

      Eighteen.. $ 63,000 – Tubman, Samantha A. (Deputy Associate Director, Social Office)

      Nineteen.. $ 60,000 – Boswell, Joseph J. (Executive Assistant to the Chief Of Staff)

      Twenty.. $ 56,000 – Armbruster, Sally M. (Staff Assistant to the Social Secretary)

      Twenty-One.. $ 55,000 – Bookey, Natalie (Staff Assistant)

      Twenty-Two.. $ 55,000 – Jackson, Deilia A. (Deputy Associate Director of Correspondence)

      That’s a Total…$2,075,200 in annual salaries – all for someone we did not vote for and apparently have no control over

      5 staff are Muslim and 13 African-American.

      There has NEVER been anyone in the White House at any time who has created such an army of staffers whose sole duties are the facilitation of the First Lady’s social life.

      This does not include:

      “Makeup artist” Ingrid Grimes-Miles, 49,

      “First Hairstylist” Johnny Wright, 31,

      Both of whom travelled aboard Air Force One on ALL Trips, Europe included.

      As of 11/15/2015 the Obama Family has spent over $1,300,000,000 (one billion, three hundred million dollars) on personal family trips. They were personal, not political or Government related.

      How things have changed! If you’re one of the tens of millions of Americans facing certain destitution, earning less than subsistence wages stocking the shelves at WalMart or serving up McDonald cheeseburgers, prepare to scream and then come to realize that the benefit package for these servants of “Ms. Michelle” are the same as members of the national security and defense departments and the bill for these assorted lackeys is paid by YOU.

      Copyright Canada Free Press

      Yes…… The Canadian Free Press had to publish this, perhaps because America no longer has a free press and the USA media is afraid that they might be considered racist.

      • Chris Warren says:

        spangled drongo

        You are not making much sense.

        • Don Aitkin says:

          Assuming that the numbers are correct, what does not make much sense, Chris?

          • spangled drongo says:

            Don, Chris always has prollems with the bleedin’ obvious.

          • Nga says:

            Oh for God’s sake, Don. Spangled Drongo routinely picks up articles like this that circulate on right wing nut job fora. This one has been around since 2009. Fact Check and Snopes have both dealt with it. According to Snopes:

            The 2008 White House Office Staff List, issued during the final year of President George W. Bush’s tenure in office, included sixteen different staffers with the words “First Lady” in their position titles — exactly the same number as that listed for Michelle Obama in 2009. The 2008 White House Office Staff List, issued during the final year of President George W. Bush’s tenure in office, included sixteen different staffers with the words “First Lady” in their position titles — exactly the same number as that listed for Michelle Obama in 2009. If all staffers listed with “Social Secretary” in their titles are included as part of the First Lady’s retinue (as was done with the Michelle Obama example cited above), then Mrs. Bush had at least 18 people working for her in 2008 (not including any of the various personnel listed only as “Staff Assistants,” some of whom may also have worked for her directly or indirectly).

            White House staffing is fluid, with people and positions coming and going, but according to Anita McBride, Laura Bush’s former Chief of Staff, Mrs. Bush had between 24 and 26 staffers working for her by the end of her husband’s second term in office. It’s therefore fair to say that the size of Michelle Obama’s staff is not “unprecedented,” but rather on a par with her immediate predecessor’s.


            Don, neither yourself or any of your followers behave like genuine skeptics. Quite frankly, I have rarely seen such gullibility.

          • spangled drongo says:

            Enge luv, you need to fact-check the fact-checkers too. Don’t get too starry eyed. Hang sceptical, now:


          • Don Aitkin says:

            Once again, Nga, READ and THINk before writing. Did you somehow miss ‘Assuming that the numbers are correct…’?

            My question was directed to Chris, not to you. It is not my task to go through and check everything that commenters say, unless they rush to print too quickly and involve me — like you, Nga.

          • Nga says:

            “Once again, Nga, READ and THINk before writing. Did you somehow miss ‘Assuming that the numbers are correct…’?”

            Not good enough, Don. Prima facie the numbers were absurd and false. Moreover, in the short time I’ve been reading this blog, the supplier of those numbers, Spangled Drongo, has repeatedly cut and pasted nonsense from disinformation websites. Anything SD posts must be presumed false.

            You might as well have written “Assuming the universe is run by leprechauns …. “

        • margaret says:

          Chris, you may not realise that Don and Spangles have a special bond that transcends the necessity for Spangles to make sense. They both love Betoota.

          • spangled drongo says:

            I thought we both felt sad about Betoota, Margie.

            Not quite the same thing. You’re getting more like enge every day with your loose assertions.

      • dlb says:

        I really do think Trump should keep the hairstylist though.

    • spangled drongo says:

      “will destroy Americas social welfare net …..”

      Yes, that would be even more deplorable, hey chrissie?

      What is it about “what one person receives without working for, another person must work for without receiving” you lefties never understand and if the US [and Aus] did something about limiting this crazy welfare we would all be better off.

      When half of the people get the idea that they do not have to work because the other half is going to take care of them, and when that other half gets the idea that it does no good to work because somebody else is going to get what that half works for, that is the beginning of the end of any nation.

      So many swamps, so little time…….

      • Chris Warren says:

        So you think more beggars in the streets and more property theft is making people better off.

        Social welfare is civilised capitalism.

        You are uncivilised.

        • spangled drongo says:

          Capital doesn’t vote, chrissie but welfare recipients do.

          Do you collect more than you contribute in income tax, by any chance?

          • Ross says:

            Drongo starts ‘lashing out’.
            Look out folks. I fear this thread is about to go ‘Drongo’ with his version of the ‘wall of sound. Post after post after posafterafterpostafterpost.
            Off you go, Drongo.
            (Hey, no trial for Hilary! I guess Donald wasn’t telling you the truth, after all. Ever felt like you’ve been played?)

  • Don Aitkin says:

    Before the current slanging match goes any further, let me make a thing or two clear, especially to new arrivals.

    First, this website has been going for four and a half years, with now 11,500 comments. Virtually all of them have been decently civilised, even if sometimes in high temper. This is not the place for insults. If you can’t comment or respond to a comment without insulting people, please go somewhere else. Insults put off the readers, of whom there have now been more than 60,000.

    Second, it is not my business to check everyone’s comments for sense or validity. I do my best to ensure that for my own essays, but then this is my website. If I make mistakes then I have to live with the results. If I discover that I’ve made an error I say so.

    Third, this website is not supported by the taxpayer or by any organisation. There is no tip jar and I do not ask for donations. I am the editor and moderator as well. There are rules about frequency pf posting, and three a day is the maximum. SD, you have exceeded your daily limit. Please wait until tomorrow for your next. I do not sit on the website all the time, and I don’t always notice what is happening there. I do other things.

    Fourth, I look for discussion. It can be light-hearted, or serious or a mixture. Readers can point to other sites, but if the number of links passes one WordPress simply puts your comment into trash. If you want to point to another site or link or source, by all means do so, but explain why. Nothing is more boring to a reader than to be told to go to somewhere else without there being any indication of the reason. By and large, quick slights on others may be fun to do but they tend to be boring for others, especially if that’s all the commenter does. Too much of it, and as editor I will reduce the person’s capacity to post comments by insisting that there must be one, or two, substantial contributions for each smart-arse comment.

    Finally, I will respond personally if I feel the commenter has missed the point (a sign that I did not write clearly enough), or of there is a genuine request for help, or if I am challenged in a substantial way. But I feel no need to respond to wisecracks or hothead stuff. I have enough to do as it is.

    I hope that helps.

    • Nga says:

      Don, a fish rots from the head down. You established the culture of childish and unproductive comments on this blog by using terms like “climate botherers” and “alarmists” in your essays to sneer at those who think public policy should be guided by mainstream science. You are also responsible for the post-truth nature of this blog by, for example, inventing facts, such as your false claim that the AEMO ‘s official position was that the SA blackout was caused by wind turbines failing in excessive wind.

      • Don Aitkin says:

        Rubbish. I do not control the comments except as outlined above. At the moment, Nga, you head the list of the childish and unproductive commenters.

        • Nga says:

          “At the moment, Nga, you head the list of the childish and unproductive commenters.”

          Don, can you point to any lies or dissemination of disinformation on my part on this blog? What about you? You have shown yourself to be an inveterate liar, for instance you told us that you carefully read the AEMO SA blackout report and you said the report identified the failure of wind turbines in strong winds as the cause of the SA blackout. Your claim was a lie. I have repeatedly asked you to tell us why you lied but you refuse to do so.

          • Bryan Roberts says:

            Hilarious. “When did you stop beating your wife?’
            Oh dear…

          • Don Aitkin says:


            I strongly object to being called a liar, even worse an inveterate (‘hardened’) one. You’ve used the term ‘liar’, ‘lies’ and ‘lied’ about me in this comment. In the wider world yours would be an actionable statement. I have gone back through the last few weeks’ essays and comments to check on what I did say.

            In my essay about the SA outage (30/9) I said twice that we didn’t know what the cause of the outage was.

            On 2/10, in a comment, I quoted the AEMO as follows (relevant bit only): ‘The preliminary report explains how severe weather moved through South Australia on the afternoon of Wednesday 28 September 2016, with high winds, thunderstorms, lightning strikes, hail, and heavy rainfall. The weather resulted in multiple transmission system faults including, in the space of 12 seconds, the loss of three major 275 kV transmission lines north of Adelaide. Generation initially rode through the faults, but at 16:18hrs, following multiple faults in a short period, 315 MW of wind generation disconnected, affecting the region north of Adelaide…’

            On 2/11, I said in a comment that ‘It was a combination, including the rapid failure of wind turbines when the winds grew too strong’. That is the official position’. I made that statement on the basis of the AEMO’s preliminary report. There had been another later report, and Nga and I argued about its meaning. Nga said, in one of her comments, ‘Your claim that the wind turbines failed when “the winds grew too strong” is not what the AEMO says. May I ask for the source of this claim?’ A month earlier mine was a permissible inference to draw from the AEMO’s preliminary report (see above). The second AEMO report put the cause down to technical problems with the software on the wind turbines. I felt the second report was still cagey about exactly what went wrong, partly (and reasonably) because a lot of things happened together.

            What Nga has written above is not what I said. This statement: ‘you told us that you carefully read the AEMO SA blackout report and you said the report identified the failure of wind turbines in strong winds as the cause of the SA blackout’ is simply incorrect.’ It runs together two separate remarks made a month apart.

            Nga goes on to say: ‘Your claim was a lie. I have repeatedly asked you to tell us why you lied but you refuse to do so.’ I made no such claim, and even had I done so, it would not be a lie (a false statement made with the intent to deceive’). It would be an error, a mistake. I do not knowingly make false statement in order to deceive.

            We do not yet know the outcome of what I understand are three separate enquiries into the outage. It may well be the case that the software problem was the prime cause. And until I know more I will reserve my judgement about the cause of the outage and its implications for the future. Indeed all I had said in judgment was that (comment at 2/10) ‘It seems that the cause may have been a bit of both..’ (that is, transmission towers down and wind-power failure).

            It is tedious in the extreme to have to do this sort of post-hoc re-assessment. I am satisfied that my remarks were based on evidence and were not over the top. Nga has me at 4/11 accusing ‘the AEMO of being part of a pro-wind conspiracy’. I did nothing of the kind.

            Nga, from now on your posts go into moderation. I will snip them of insults and then (if anything remains) return them to the Comments section.

    • tripitaka says:

      If there were more jobs there would be fewer welfare recipients. That is the way it worked when we had that Australian way of life that we all loved.

      There were so many jobs that there was no chance of registering for Social Security as it was known before it became Centrelink.

      What happened to social security? Why did people love it when Thatcher said that there was no society? That question gets my right wing voting neighbours wondering.

      But we did have a society once, didn’t we? What happened to that society?

      What was it that took the jobs and the comfortable conservative way of life?

      I think it is was the neo-liberalism of our society; the ideas that there was so society, that Capital needed more help from government to turn workers into serfs and that tax is theft rather than being a contribution to a decent society that is made up of a diverse range of people and abilities.

      I know a lot of people who are desperately looking for work. Who else knows any actual “dole bludgers” and/or rorters of the disability pension?

      • margaret says:

        I worked for Social Security at Wynyard Sydney for a couple of months before I took up my teachers college scholarship. I was not going to be there long so I was given jobs like sorting the pensioners cheques alphabetically. I couldn’t type otherwise I expect I would have been put in the typing pool. I caught the 390 bus from Bronte where I was living with my grandmother and aunt, into town each day and ate my lunch in Wynyard Park.
        I sorted the pension cheques and bundied on. There was no shopfront like Centrelink has. It was the government department. The year was 1966. Apropos of … when a young person who lived in the city could finish school and get a temporary job in a government department.

        • margaret says:

          There were no schoolies parties on the Gold Coast and people didn’t ‘automatically’ take a year off after finishing school. I suspect these days the ones who do take a year off do so as much to find a job as to find themselves.

  • margaret says:

    I like to make connections. Some may say facetious ones. I take tripitaka’s point though that certain questions/ideas thrown into the forum go unanswered or ignored even though they are not facetious. Take Betoota anyway – it strikes me as an interesting ghost town that I’d quite like to see on a road trip. But then take a town that any of us may actually live in as tripitaka has described her own and realise that she’s describing something that is a new paradigm for a different life – not a ghost town that was forged in a particular time long ago that is now tumbleweed. Fine, go to Betoota, be sad. Knock all the First Ladies for their wasteful ways.
    When Melania Trump (who no doubt had to marry Donald to save herself from a life of nude modelling or worse – sorry Melania I am sorry that to come to the home of the free and the land of the braves [sic] you found the choices were actually very narrow for a woman), when she decides that she doesn’t want to live in the White House but instead stay in Manhattan, imagine how much money that will “waste” in security.

  • Chris Warren says:

    Just out of interest, has any so called ‘climate botherer’ or ‘alarmist’ stooped as low as Neville who in one post cried:

    a fool.
    gutless parasites

    Those targeted with labels such as alarmists, climate botherers, fools, idiots, donkeys and gutless parasites have rights too.

    There’s your problem.

    • margaret says:

      “Margaret, you were, and are, an annoying troll, who contributed no information and little entertainment. Read the Catallaxy advice again.”
      I don’t believe that was correct.

  • dlb says:

    Lighten up Nga, this is a blog for discussion, facts and ideas up for debate. The way some carry on you’d think Don is in charge of Government policy.
    “Climate bothers” and “alarmists”, well I never… such disrespect for the new establishment!

  • tripitaka says:

    Read all about how the country folk are going to get some jobs from renewables

    “A $200 million project is set to transform a rural area near Pittsworth, bringing new jobs to the region.

    Yarranlea Solar is a utility-scale photovoltaic solar plant planned about 45km away from Toowoomba.

    It will have the potential to generate about 100MW of electricity, powering 32,000 homes and contributing to the Australian government’s climate policy.

    It will take about one year to construct and will include a 1.8ha vegetation buffer to the perimeter of the site, an electrical substation and 400,000 solar panels on mounting structures across the site.

    It is designed to produce electricity for about 30 years.”

    • spangled drongo says:

      “Read all about how the country folk are going to get some jobs from renewables”

      Yeah, warms yer heart, hey trip?

      Did you forget the sarc tag? Or are you really serious?

      $200 million to build a power plant which is already built and which will have to be retained to stand by for when base load power is needed.

      In workers country [the bush] all solar power does is keep the beer cold in the daytime. When no one is home.

      Major energy requirement is after the sun goes down.

      Check out off-grid Windorah where the Qld Labor govt built a Solar PP at ~ $100,000 per house [ 25 houses for $2.5 mil] and the town had been previously using 100,000 litres of diesel fuel per year to generate power from a diesel generator.

      After spending that money, guess how much diesel fuel is now used for back up power?

      100,000 litres per year !!!

      Solar requires 100% back up.

      And spending $200 million of taxpayers money to create a few temporary labouring jobs when Queensland is horrendously in debt and when those jobs could be created for a fraction of the price in other fields [not to mention the actual increase in ACO2e emissions that will result] just displays the stupidity [lunacy?] of lefty govt philosophy.

      So many swamps…..

    • Bryan Roberts says:

      If you’re so worried about jobs, how about moving to a place where you can get one? If you live in a dead-end dump, a bit pointless asking for sympathy.

      • tripitaka says:

        You seem to be missing the point and imagining things I haven’t said.

        I’m not looking for any sympathy. Good grief, wherever did that idea come from?

        I do hope you are not calling Chinchilla a dead end dump!!!

  • dlb says:

    The high priest of Scientism, Richard Dawkins has spoken:
    “The two largest nations in the English-speaking world have just suffered catastrophes at the hands of voters—in both cases the uneducated, anti-intellectual portion of voters. Science in both countries will be hit extremely hard: In the one case, by the xenophobically inspired severing of painstakingly built-up relationships with European partners; in the other case by the election of an unqualified, narcissistic, misogynistic sick joke as president. In neither case is the disaster going to be short-lived”

    Oh the irony! Those self interested deplorables have just voted for a selfish meme, it would never happen in nature mind you. Junk DNA getting up and expressing itself, what ever next!

  • BoyfromTottenham says:

    Gee, Don, we live in interesting times when your humble blog can create such a storm of invective from those who apparently take umbrage at your mild discussion of the wafflings of the unnamed Aussie journo. It may be relevant, but a family friend, a respected senior government bureaucrat until his retirement, recently told my wife that he has decided to stop watching and reading political news and current affairs altogether. This started a discussion between my wife and I which resulted in us both deciding that our lives would benefit from a similar change. Obviously I have not eschewed all politics, otherwise I wouldn’t be posting this, but I do feel that at my stage of life I can well do without the constant aggression and divisiveness that currently seems associated with all political dialogue here and in the US. Obviously certain commenters on your blog feel quite differently!

    • PW1202 says:

      I agree. I once enjoyed this blog and took some time to craft decent posts. But I have lost interest, and with FAMILY FEUD on 7 days a week, I have a pretty busy schedule now.

      I say give the NUCLEAR CODES to Trump. He probably will not understand them (he may think they are telephone numbers and start calling people), but should he punch them in correctly, then as long as it does not disturb FAMILY FEUD, then I cannot see a problem.

      • margaret says:

        Try Pointless on “our ABC” – my days are brighter for it. Pointless.

        • margaret says:

          Or, there once was Mastermind.
          Basil: “Can’t we get you on Mastermind, Spangles? Next contestant Spangled Drongo from Betoota, special subject the bleeding obvious.”

    • tripitaka says:

      A storm of invective? Not here, surely? I must have missed that; all I can see above is more of the usual low grade sniping and sneering from spangled drongo.

      But Boyo, I can certainly understand why you and some other people would be withdrawing from any political involvement. Me, I am energised and keen to get out more and talk to the locals about what really has taken our way of life. I think they are ready for something different and Pauline Hanson just isn’t cutting the mustard in terms of intellectual ability. So sad.

      It really isn’t looking good for the LNP for neo-liberalism or for conservatism. Marx and Engels were so right about the end of Capitalism.

    • Don Aitkin says:

      I feel the same about TV news. It is partly that everyone with an iPhone can send on whatever nasty thing they have seen. Partly that the Internet makes everything everywhere available. Partly that there seems no real sense of what is important — and I don’t blame them (the editors). I would find it hard to decide what was really important. I have a clearer sense of what is not important!

      • tripitaka says:


        Can you explain how you got to have this “clearer sense of what is not important”?

        I realise it is off topic but I do feel that a lot of us could benefit from understanding this. Perhaps you could do a new post about this and provide a way for a lot of these unhappy old blokes to calm down and live the rest of their lives without the angst that seems to get them going.

        I do worry about spangled drongo and how demented he must be every morning when he wakes and sees that the world is still turning left.

        • margaret says:

          I too would like to know what is not important in the world of men of a certain age. Chinchilla sounds like a town that is alive. Free range retirement village coupled with young community minded women and men and interesting progressives technologies.
          I’d like to grow all our current regional cities into real little cities of about one million people max with the infrastructure to travel within and to them.

          • tripitaka says:

            I don’t live in Chinchilla Margaret but I’m sure it isn’t a hell hole at all. My little town is closer to Toowoomba up on the Downs and much much smaller than Chinchilla.

            Toowoomba is doing very well as a multicultural community. The university has a large overseas population and I met some very interesting young people who have studied there. We have a number of Nepalese because up here is the coolest place in Qld and the Christians spend a lot of effort to support and integrate the Sudanese people they bring here.

            I did part of a Vis Arts degree at USQ and the drawing teacher was – still is – a Muslim. He is a Scotsman who converted when he married a Muslim woman.

            I had mistakenly assumed that it was just a lifestyle choice and once suggested to him that all the one God religions were basically the same and were all problematic. He took great pains to tell me that he rejected Christianity because of the idea of the holy trinity which was something he couldn’t accept and that Islam offered a better way for people to learn how to behave well toward each other.

            Quite an amazing man and a wonderful teacher but I’m still an atheist. He has done a lot of travelling including a walking trip along the Silk Road and he videod these adventures – and other places like Alhambra and the Marrakesh markets – just for his students.

            I so totally agree that the small towns up here which are dotted all over the place usually with a Hall or School of the Arts still standing could be the foundation for a great country. I am told the distance between them that is about 10 minutes drive is the distance that a horse team can travel without a drink.

            If we all lived in villages that were connected by the internet and in which the aim of the community was to give very child the same start in life, especially the immigrants who come here for a better life, we could have the best society in the world and all our children would grow up to be happy and well behaved adults rather than the spoiled children we see around us now.

          • margaret says:

            Interesting tripitaka. Years of Sunday school and a secondary education at at school run by the community of the Sisters of the Church (an Anglican order who I now have respect for as I understand their history of providing soup kitchens for the poor and education for girls), make it difficult to proclaim as an atheist but I’m not pro hierarchical religious institutions. I believe in freedom of belief in any faith that isn’t fundamentalist though and it’s obvious that it helps many people to live good lives.
            Sunday Christians and those who enter a church to be married, christen their kids and never set foot in one again (even though that was basically me) don’t cut it. Going to church can be like going to your club unless you do something for the community as well through your attendance.
            Immigrants and refugees have to be given the support you describe otherwise situations like Cabramatta and second generation Vietnamese who weren’t given sufficient support inevitably evolve. That doesn’t negate the tremendous contributions made by Vietnamese and all nationalities that have come to white Anglo Australia (usurped from the first Australians in a pitiless way), with their determination and gratitude for a better life than the one they left behind.
            Our major cities are ridiculously large, the people who live in them are massively stretched psychologically and physically unless they are living in leafy suburbs that have basically become gated communities for the wealthy.
            Capitalist ‘society’ has not delivered to the many but has given out of proportion reward to the few.

        • Don Aitkin says:

          Quickly, what is not important. Prince Harry, at almost any time. Every drive-by shooting. Stuff sent on a mobile phone about how a car in the US was cut in half by a train but the occupants in the front seats walked away.The next medical breakthrough. Bad news for the sake of bad news.

          • margaret says:

            So many fillers because no news has happened in Australia that day. The Royal Family is not news for sure. They should profile more of Australia than the doings in Canberra and take us to our near neighbours in Asia to view other ways of life and politics. I don’t want to see Barnaby Joyce’s new hat or Michaelia Cash’s odd delivery, Malcolm Turnbull’s desperate cheeriness or Bill Shorten’s dreary sarcastic self-righteousness.
            I watch the news from habit and frequently endure a shout “That’s not news!” from the man next to me on the couch.

          • Don Aitkin says:


            My wife also went to a school run by the Anglican nuns of that order, this one in Adelaide (St Peter’s). The order also started Canberra Girls Grammar in the late 1920s. Was yours one of the St Michael’s?

          • margaret says:

            Interesting, yes CCEGGS was first called St.Gabriel’s. It was started up by the Sisters of the Church and the school in Birrell St. Waverley was also St. Gabriel’s. It was sold and pulled down in the late sixties (before green bans saved so much from the wrecking ball – it was an historic little mansion before it was a school) and became a F-ING bowling green! I think the Melbourne school is St Michael’s.

        • Don Aitkin says:

          Sorry, I didn’t answer your real question. Living a long life. Living and working in several different countries. Visiting every Asian country at least twice (save Mongolia). Travelling over the greater part of our own country.Growing up in the country, living in the city and returning to the country a lot. Reading a lot. Writing a lot. Having a wide circle of acquaintances.Thinking.

        • spangled drongo says:

          Trip pontificates: “when he wakes and sees that the world is still turning left.”

          You mean like the US Presidential elections?

          Or are you betting on the Dutch and their future in the Euro community?:

          What is it about the blithering left and the bleedin’ obvious?

  • spangled drongo says:

    Maybe the message has only sunk in where it is ever likely to.

    Trump is starting to look better all the time:

    ” That’s why there is such an alarm within US government, since Trump’s statement about temporary suspension of migration of Muslims to US until US authorities make sure there is a proper concept of safe penetration of US territory.

    People are stunned to learn that the head of the U.S. CIA is a Muslim! Do hope this wakes up some!

    Until it hits you like a ton of bricks read it again, until you understand!

    We now have a Muslim government in the US!

    John Brennan, current head of the CIA converted to Islam while stationed in Saudi Arabia.

    Obama’s top adviser, Valerie Jarrett, is a Muslim who was born in Iran where her parents still live.

    Hillary Clinton’s top adviser, Huma Abedin is a Muslim, whose mother and brother are still involved in the now outlawed Muslim Brotherhood in Egypt!

    Assistant Secretary for Policy Development for Homeland Security, Arif Aikhan, is a Muslim.

    Homeland Security Adviser, Mohammed Elibiary, is a Muslim.

    Obama adviser and founder of the Muslim Public Affairs Council, Salam al-Marayati, is a Muslim.

    Obama’s Sharia Czar, Imam Mohamed Magid, of the Islamic Society of North America is a Muslim.

    Advisory Council on Faith-Based Neighborhood Partnerships, Eboo Patel, is a Muslim.

    Nancy Pelosi announced she will appoint Rep Andre Carson, D-Ind, a Muslim, as the first Muslim lawmaker on the House of Representatives Permanent Select Committee on Intelligence, of all things! It would make Carson the first Muslim to serve on the “Committee that receives intelligence on the threat of Islamic militants in the Middle East !” He has suggested that U.S. Schools should be modeled after Islamic madrassas, where education is based on the Quran!!!

    Last but not least, our closet Muslim himself, Barack Hussein Obama.

    It’s questionable if Obama ever officially took the oath of office when he was sworn in. He did not repeat the oath properly to defend our nation and our Constitution. Later the Democrats claimed he was given the oath again, in private. Yeah, right.

    Valarie Jarret wrote her college thesis on how she wanted to change America into a Muslim friendly nation and she is an Obama top advisor!

    Conservative Congresswoman Michele Bachman, R-MN, was vilified and verbally tarred and feathered by Democrats when she voiced her concern about Muslims taking over our government!

    In his book Obama said, “if it comes down to it, I will side with the Muslims.”‘

    • margaret says:

      I have a new name for the AWM – star spangled drongo. Although Nga’s strangled dingo I thought very good. Surely that is an insult that could get me into trouble …

  • Chris Warren says:

    Spandled drongo

    There is no problem with people being Muslim that does not apply with people being Jews or Jesuits etc.

    This does not make any sense:
    ” Last but not least, our closet Muslim himself, Barack Hussein Obama. It’s questionable if Obama ever officially took the oath of office when he was sworn in. “

    • spangled drongo says:

      Interesting point you make, chrissy.

      Can’t see any difference in problems between Muslims, Jews, Jesuits etc?

      You mean you experienced Jews and Jesuits recently crashing planes into high rise buildings of our allies?

      I missed that bit.

      And how about the history of relationships since the inauguration of those same Muslims, Jews and Jesuits?

      What is it about the bleedin’ obvious that you have such a hard time with?

      • Chris Warren says:

        Only Anglo-Saxons used nuclear weapons.

        Only Germans gassed hundreds of thousands.

        Only British spread smallpox deliberately.

        But sensible people do not spread loony tunes based on this.

        • David says:

          Chris, I warn you, Spang will get cranky if you start introducing facts into the argument.

        • spangled drongo says:

          “But sensible people do not spread loony tunes based on this.”

          I’m pleased you said “sensible”, chrissie luv. That lets you out.

          If we are so bad, why do you suppose they all want to come and live with us.

          Or, if they are so good, why don’t you go and live with them?

          Does the bleedin’ obvious only strike you when you want it to?

          • Neville says:

            Spangled I don’t know where you get your patience from, but I suppose you may educate some of these kiddies occasionally. Tokyo has had the earliest snowfall in Nov for 54 years on the 24-11-16. In 1900 snow fell on 17-11, but of course this is weather not climate. But remember we were told in recent times that kids wouldn’t know what snow was like, something similar to silly Flannery’s forecast of terrible droughts where we wouldn’t have enough rain to actually fill our dams. BTW we’ve just had the wettest winter in the MD Basin on record. Here’s that Tokyo early snow report and some photos.


          • tripitaka says:

            If we are so bad, why do you suppose they all want to come and live with us.

            Some people have always wanted to move around the earth you silly man. That is how we human beings came to be everywhere almost.

            Specifically a lot of those who find it difficult to fit in are the product of the things that western civilisations have done to their part of the world. We have ruined their countries, their tribal and religious boundaries even if we only begin to look at the way we mismanaged the area after WWI. Not to mention the stupid Iraq war which of course you were sure was a good thing.

            “Or, if they are so good, why don’t you go and live with them?”

            Some people don’t like to move away from their families; that is why we need jobs out here, and we like it when other cultures come here and we can enjoy the diversity. We have Sudanese – mostly Christians because the local churches sponser them – in the closest big town and a Mosque and it is just wonderful to see those beautiful tall women wearing their colourful African clothes and the creative way young Muslim women wear their hijabs.

            Have you noticed how tall and healthy the men look and how beautiful and smooth and blemish free that incredibly black skin is. Then I look at a typical middle class white man and see so much poor health. So sad.

            I think your “bleedin’ obvious” is a very small category that you have idiosyncratically constructed on the basis of your delusion that you are a great white man.

          • spangled drongo says:

            Trip, stop offering such pathetic, feeble excuses and admit that our Anglo-Christian culture has produced wonderful advantages in Australia, Canada, the USA etc compared with Muslim countries where not only does democracy not exist but when they adopted western culture last century their religious leaders soon caused various revolutions to end it.

            Just as they would eventually change our easy going culture into the restrictions of Sharia.

            Go and have a talk with Ayan Hirsi Ali if you are so mentally challenged.

        • Bryan Roberts says:

          Only Mongols sacked Beijing, killing most of the inhabitants.

          Get a life.

  • Neville says:

    Dr Roy Spencer has a very good post looking at some problems for climate science since the election of Trump. He actually considers that the idea that we can do anything to mitigate climate is a hoax. Simple maths, evidence and data easily backs up his opinion. I’ve tried to highlight this mitigation fra-d every which way I can, but we still have our cultists who refuse to see reason. Suffice to say that even Dr Hansen their top CAGW crusader knows that Paris COP 21 is just BS and fra-d. And the best EIA projections we have from the Obama govt show that co2 emissions will increase by 34% over the next 23 years. Also the Royal Society and NAS report informs us that we will not see a reduction in co2 emissions for thousands of years. Here’s how Dr Spencer finishes his article.

    “We The People aren’t that stupid.

    So now climate research is finding itself at a crossroads. Scientists need to stop mischaracterizing global warming as settled science.

    I like to say that global warming research isn’t rocket science — it is actually much more difficult. At best it is dodgy science, because there are so many uncertainties that you can get just about any answer you want out of climate models just by using those uncertianties as a tuning knob.

    The only part that is relatively settled is that adding CO2 to the atmosphere has probably contributed to recent warming. That doesn’t necessarily mean it is dangerous.

    And it surely does not mean we can do anything about it… even if we wanted to”.

    Here’s his link for a very good read.

    BTW here is the present TOTAL world energy produced by Geo, Solar and Wind. This is from the EU based IEA with inputs from all countries. S&W ( less geothermal) produce now about 0.5% of TOTAL energy according to Lomborg’s quote using IEA data and this may increase to about 2.5% by 2040. IOW ZIP impact at all.

  • spangled drongo says:

    Are we there yet? Has it sunk in yet? Will the woossie poossies ever suck it up?

  • tripitaka says:

    “Trip, stop offering such pathetic, feeble excuses and admit that our Anglo-Christian culture has produced wonderful advantages in Australia, Canada, the USA

    White men like you have been the beneficiaries of this Anglo Christian culture not me, I look at how fat and ugly and unhealthy the right wing men are in these dying rural communities and wonder if it is their karma for making the wrong choices and that I should not worry because they must deserve to be so unhappy. After all, they chose to stay here rather than taking jobs in the city.

    it does seem a shame though that as well as physically unhealthy they are also emotionally bereft and unable to enjoy these wonderful benefits that you see. Did you realise that life spans for poor white people are dropping in the USA? You can google it if you want to.

    All this wonderful wealth and prosperity that you enjoy has been at the expense – stolen even – from peoples who were judged by the great white men, to be less evolved and unable to use their resources productively. How wealthy would you be if your ancestors hadn’t stolen land from the Aborigines?

    I’m happy to discuss the lack of rationality and self-serving self-regard in the way John Locke constructed the flawed argument that justified taking the American Indians land and their way of life if you want to go there.

    “compared with Muslim countries where not only does democracy not exist but when they adopted western culture last century their religious leaders soon caused various revolutions to end it.”

    Are you seriously suggesting that western civilisation and our meddling in their affairs did not have any effect on their politics? Lumping all the Muslim cultures together and making this erroneous statement only compounds the conclusion I have come to that you are very ignorant and perhaps suffering from the cognitive process that is called the Dunning-Kruger effect. You can wiki this if you do not understand the term.

    “Just as they would eventually change our easy going culture…”

    Easy going? Perhaps for some Australians the political correctness of white male culture was easy going but I didn’t find it so. I do remember a lot of angst and unhappiness from adults in my life who were crushed by the old fashioned kind of political correctness that kept people in their place back in the ’50’s.

    So many women – oh just silly women who are so emotional and lacking rationality – having ‘mental breakdowns, shock treatment and needing mothers little helpers to get through the day. Prior to no fault divorce there was a lot of angst that even as a child I heard about. So I think you are looking back with rose coloured glasses and from your privileged perspective as one of those for whom this culture was constructed.

    And I have to ask, if it was so good why did so many Australians want to change it?

    I suppose in some ways it was easy going as it seemed to me that it was more acceptable to be poor and not aspire to be well off or well connected.

    I do remember that my father called a lot of people snobs and social climbers and disdained people like that and those who went all out to become rich were called money grubbers and we were a bit sceptical about people who big noted themselves saying if your head gets any bigger your hat won’t fit. The tall poppy syndrome was a bloody good thing when the poppies were as lacking in any values and morals as they are now.

    “into the restrictions of Sharia.”

    If you ever lived in any place where the immigrants were in the minority you would see that there is no way that people who are doing well will change to adopt the restrictions of any other culture; but we do take the good things from other culture and that has made my life more enjoyable.

    There are some good things about Sharia law especially the first law which is to obey the laws of the country in which one lives. So clearly those who do not obey this law are not proper Muslims.

    “Go and have a talk with Ayan Hirsi Ali if you are so mentally challenged.”

    Sigh, spangled drongo why do you keep making these stupid insults?

    Is it like a tic or something and you can’t help yourself,just a habit you can’t break or do you think that it hurts? Why do you want to hurt other people?

    Years ago when I first began to see what was happening in this country, how neo-liberalism was winding back the freedoms and the progress we had been making were in the ’70’s, it was disturbing and hurtful to be so misrepresented but it is so common now to be abused by right wing people who can’t see what hypocrites they are that it only serves to reinforce the evidence that right wing people are psychologically damaged. I can provide references but the book ‘The Reactionary Mind’ is a good source.

    Lefites don’t want to hurt you; we want to be free from your political correct rules that blight our more adventurous and creative lives. You denigrate diversity and insist on mono cultures that are not sustainable and always lead to feast and famine.

    How would it help to talk to Ayan Hirsi Ali? She is one voice among many. What is the argument you make to conclude that she has all the answers?

    • margaret says:

      You have triggered a memory tripitaka – … “and Winnie! the silly little fool!” My grandmother bad-mouthing my mother who was in country NSW for ten years traipsing from country bank home to bank home (all sub standard) with my father as he raised his sights to bank manager after putting in the hard yards, and being a bit skewed after WWII. Somehow my mother got the blame as Bill could do no wrong and women in those days were happy to have their daughters married off (aren’t they still?) under a patriarchal system. Meanwhile my aunt had a nervous breakdown because of a love affair gone wrong and in the long run ended up having deep sleep therapy at the notorious Chelmsford. Her father had been reduced to a shell of himself after serving as a stretcher bearer on the western front and so my grandmother basically tried to hold the show together. These were not stupid people. Women eh? So emotional.

      • margaret says:

        Ah thankfully, that was not deep sleep therapy that she had, although it was tragically practiced there. My aunt had electro convulsive therapy (nice term).
        These are the things that happen in families that oawm and even owm don’t want to think about. It’s all hunky dory on the home front and I’m alright Jack.

  • spangled drongo says:

    Trip, your foolish logic is exceeded only by your by your arrogant assumptions.

    I worked for a fair amount of my life in the district you talk about, living in a bush hut with a big mortgage, drove an old work vehicle, never collected a cent of govt welfare and always paid income tax.

    Yet you think you are entitled to taxpayer funded “more adventurous and creative lives.”

    You clearly have a whinging, entitlement mentality and you will never change but let me give you some sound advice which you seem to never have been aware of in your life:

    Always spend less than you earn and never feel entitled to other peoples’ money.

    If people think like that they can do and survive most things.

    But when they choose to play the Race, Victim and every other card in the pack like you do, they deserve all the problems they can possibly invent.

    • tripitaka says:

      “But when they choose to play the Race, Victim and every other card in the pack like you do, they deserve all the problems they can possibly invent.”

      I keep telling you that I don’t have any problems myself. I am very happy and consider I have done well despite the odds.

      It is my right wing voting neighbours who are suffering from the ill-effects of the neo-liberal ideology that has been forced on us for the past 3 decades.

      They are the ones who need more tax dollars to make up for the way they have been ripped off by the toxic ideology of neo-liberalism. They chose to aspire to the goodies that capitalism offered and they are the ones who are now so disappointed with their lives and achievements.

      it seems to me that these are the same sort of people who are said to have voted for Trump in the hope that he will bring back manufacturing and all the jobs that they want.

      Trump’s election is the death rattle of Capitalism; it is certainly not a resurgence of right wing thinking. Feel free to believe a little longer that the right will make a comeback but I do hope you are not putting too much faith in him being the messiah. He’s just a naughty boy and you will be disappointed, although I suppose your hatred of the evil left and people like me, is strong enough to keep you warm.

      Do you understand why you hate me so strongly?

      • spangled drongo says:

        “I keep telling you that I don’t have any problems myself. I am very happy and consider I have done well despite the odds.”

        “White men like you have been the beneficiaries of this Anglo Christian culture not me, I look at how fat and ugly and unhealthy the right wing men are in these dying rural communities”

        “All this wonderful wealth and prosperity that you enjoy”

        “It is my right wing voting neighbours who are suffering from the ill-effects of the neo-liberal ideology that has been forced on us for the past 3 decades.”

        Just let me get this straight, trip luv:

        1/ You’re happy and doing well?

        2/ I’m fat and ugly but 3/ benefitting too?

        4/ But your right wing neighbours are suffering?

        Well, trip, what are you whinging about?

        It seems that, with the possible exception of 3/, all your wishes have been granted.

        So stop complaining and enjoy the ride.

        But when you are so confused I suppose you need all the help you can get.

        So here’s some more free advice:

        Conservatives believe in individualism and free markets and doing things as well as they possibly can. Trump is just the tip of the iceberg that is about to wreck the lefty, proggy, ship of fools that has had us wallowing for decades.

        As Don says, and you are a prime example, the message still hasn’t sunk in.

        Stay tuned.

  • Chris Warren says:

    spangled drongo

    “Always spend less than you earn and never feel entitled to other peoples’ money.”

    Too right – This is exactly the point made several years ago by Karl Marx.

    UNfortunately Australian capitalism is based on accumulating wealth from workers and land from original owners.

    • spangled drongo says:

      Well, well !! Chrissie’s into Marxism. That explains a lot about his ignorance of the bleedin’ obvious.

      But, but, chrissie, I thought communism was trying not to run out of other peoples’ money:

      “UNfortunately Australian capitalism is based on accumulating wealth from workers and land from original owners.”

      Please show us how the murdering of multi millions meme would have done a better job.

      • Chris Warren says:


        But Australian capitalists murdered millions to get the land. So what is your point?

        The same happened in the United States too. So what is your point?

        The same happened all through South America. So what is your point?

        • spangled drongo says:

          “But Australian capitalists murdered millions to get the land.”


          There were only 1500 Aboriginals living in the whole Sydney area when the First Fleet landed in 1788 and less than a million in the whole continent.

          And you’re other claim of deliberate smallpox introduction is likewise very questionable.

          You not only don’t know any history, chrissie luv, you are quite unhinged.

          This now throws new [dubious] light on some of your climate “science” claims.

        • Neville says:

          Chris you’ve just proven why you are not worth the effort. How old are you? That anyone could be so ignorant is mind boggling to say the least. The entire Aboriginal population of OZ was certainly under one million when the first fleet arrived and smallpox was by far the greatest killer for many years.
          Armed conflicts with Aboriginals were very rare and certainly deaths from these conflicts occurred on both sides, but the numbers were very small. Before European arrival Aboriginal tribes were very territorial and death rates were very high when tribes were fighting over land. Just read Blainey’s “Triumph of the Nomad ” and you’ll learn about death rates and their causes.
          But you’ve just shown that you really do live in a fantasy world, so I don’t think there’s much hope for you.

  • margaret says:

    Thanks Jack Mundey etc.

  • Chris Warren says:


    Please try to answer the question.

    • spangled drongo says:

      Chrissy luv, what don’t you understand about when a question is based on a false premise, it cannot be answered?

      Plus you are happy to claim that Marxism, a totally failed ideology that was known to be responsible for probably 100 million deaths last century is superior in morality to the free markets that made our country and western civilisations the envy of the world.

      Unhinged is putting it mildly.

      Pardon me if I terminate the discussion and go to bed.

  • […] gender or women, even in the Index. Few of the issues that exercised the columnist I wrote about in my last essay even get a mention. For these reasons I expect that the book will get a drubbing in several of the […]

  • Chris Warren says:


    If the question had a false premise then this means you had no point.

    I kinda thought this was the case.

  • tripitaka says:

    spangled drongo

    I hope you slept well but it seems not since you cannot seem to refrain from attacking people even when well rested.

    There was an interesting discussion on Radio National this morning on Geraldine Doogues Saturday Extra program about how well Toowoomba is doing and just after I had been talking up the things that are happening here. The Wagners are even touting high speed rail for the area!

    Is Geraldine a fool, unhinged and suffering cognitive dissonance?

    The next segment is the interesting one that I’d like to bring to your attention because I heard the word that I imagine sends you into a frenzy of hate, Marx. I can imagine the red mist rising before your eyes. Perhaps you should do some relaxation exercises before you listen? Or maybe you could have another look at check the new world famous scientist telling us that the reef is just fine to put you in a good mood before you venture into enemy territory and listen to the heresies that this woman is allowing to be aired in public. Heavens above what is the world coming to?

    The brief description of this segment goes thusly; “Realpolitik has been adopted by many foreign policy makers and the term has been re-shaped, criticized, used and abused since it was first coined in 1853. But what did Ludwig von Rochau mean by realpolitik and how can it be applied to today’s conflicts, particularly in the Middle East?”

Leave a Reply