The Dog’s Bollocks

Truth is like a dog’s bollocks – pretty obvious if you care to look.

Education is not a just a matter of supplying teachers

Victoria commented about her unhappy experience in moving from professional Pharmacist to teacher:

Well, nice utopian try but, as I alluded to previously, I tried to fill that hole last year and even though my intentions were pure I came up against an entrenched opposition. That is, teachers already in the system have a very negative attitude to those seeking to transfer into teaching from other professions, as is on the agenda of many State governments by way of a solution to the Teacher shortage crisis.

As I began replying to Victoria it kinda grew (maybe ‘cos it’s the second day back at school) so I thought it worth a promotional post: Read the rest of this entry »

Filed under: Big Picture, Economics, Education, Politics

Green libertarians? I thought they only came in blue!

Having some sympathy and regard for the more reasoned analyses of enviromentalists and libertarians, I thoroughly enjoyed South Sea Republic’s article Geolibertarians. Especially after stoushing with some of the more rabid extremes of libertarian at Catallaxy this afternoon.

A thoughtful and informative analysis, I especially liked the conclusion:

We live in a time of large governments, where legislation structures and directs many aspects of our economic and environmental lives. Now that the political and cultural ground on climate change has shifted, that means government will need to move too: it will be activist and dynamic reorganisation, or a failure. The ten tonne koala leviathan is on the move already, and when government moves, it usually moves power to itself. This week the Howard government proposed taking control of the Murray-Darling river system, without, of course, this being balanced by additional state autonomy in any other area. Soon the 500 tonne gorilla in the east Pacific will be on the move too. Without an environmental sensibility libertarians will be catapulted into further irrelevance. Without a libertarian sensibility green policies will be servants of a brittle, stifling, central state.

Filed under: Environment, Politics

Iraq – and my part in its downfall

Alex Downer is either desperately spinning or seriously delusional. To blame the debacle in Iraq on those who criticised it from the outset makes as much sense as suggesting that if everyone had supported the English Cricket team they would have retained the Ashes. In both cases, they were on a hiding to nothing from the toss of the coin. Read the rest of this entry »

Filed under: Big Picture, Nonsense, Politics

Global warming alarmists at it again

That well-known hot-bed of left-wing ideologues (no, not the ABC) the United Nations is about to release its latest propoganda on the state of global warming and climate change.

Containing contributions from 2500 scientists, citing 6000 reports and reviewed by 750 experts operating under a United Nations banner, the first part of the report will be released on Friday after line-by-line consensus is reached on its conclusions.

The most important paragraph in the 1200-page report is the strength of the scientific statement on the question that has most inflamed climate change sceptics — what is driving global warming — according to internationally recognised climate expert Dr Graeme Pearman, a former CSIRO chief of atmospheric research.

“It makes a much stronger statement about unequivocal evidence of air and ocean temperature rises, of the melting of snow and ice and the raising of sea levels, and that the effect is from human activities,” he said. The report says the human influence on climate is at least five times that of any natural variation of the sun.

Thank god we have the IPA and its minions, Andrew Bolt and others, working overtime to quickly discredit this outrageous report by quoting some industry-sponsored dissenters and save us from these party-pooping conspirisists who would seek to undermine our way of life in the greatest country on earth purely from the self-serving desire for personal profit and furthering of their careers.

Disgraceful and un-Australian!

Filed under: Big Picture, Economics, Environment, Politics, Science

Wither the comet…

Comet McNaught from The AgeWe saw the comet tonight around 10.00pm in the clear south western sky over the horizon of the Otway ranges. Pretty cool thing. A screaming burning hunk of spunk flung from the burning star of some distant galaxy, on its orbit around our part of the universe, and thought to be returning this way in around a million years time.

Kinda puts things in a different perspective. Will human kind still be around in a million years? And if so, in what form might they be? And where do I fit into all this? Who are these other people around me? How can we live peacefully and prosperously?

I guess that up against questions like that, it’s not surprising that as individuals we tend to seek understanding either through spirit with the hope of salvation, or strive to grab what we can while we have the opportunity ‘cos when you’re dead you’re dead.

Filed under: Big Picture, Science

Tim Flannery named Australian of the Year

From ABC Online:

Leading environmental scientist Tim Flannery has been named the 2007 Australian of the Year.
The Prime Minister John Howard has announced the winner of the nation’s highest honour at a ceremony in Canberra.
Mr Howard says as an explorer, writer and climate change crusader Professor Flannery has helped millions better understand the environment.

An astute piece of symbolism from the Howard government, and a worthy recipient. Makes a change from sports players. Must be an election in the offing.

Filed under: Big Picture, Environment, Politics, Science

Referendum for National Water Management

From ABC Online:

Mr Howard says parochial differences need to be put aside in order to protect Australia’s water resources. He says water management is Australia’s greatest environment challenge and must be approached on a national basis.

As with the Snowy River Hydro Scheme, I suspect that it would only be a matter of time before the federal government of the day would then want to privatise the whole scheme. Create a national monopoly and then flog it off to the highest bidder with some hefty consultancy commissions to be made by corporate patrons.

In principle, I support a national approach to managing the Murray-Darling Rivers, so let’s have a referendum on the matter to transfer power to federal administration, and include a second option to amend the constitution to prevent any government ever privatising it.

Filed under: Environment, Politics

Our flag’s colours never run!

FlagWith politicians and commentators arguing that the Australian flag isn’t being used for various political agendas, I came across this sticker today on an office door at a factory where I’m having some metal fabrication priced. As I contemplated its meaning (colour-fast washing?) I noticed two more stickers above it – one for Winchester ammunition and the other for a hunting magazine. I presume the sticker is meant to indicate that the sticker displayer supports the War in Iraq and that we should not cut and run, or perhaps something altogether more sinister, like paramiltary white supremacy or something.

Definitely an example of the Australian flag being used in an overtly political manner, and the implication that if you disagree, you are un-Australian.

I contemplated this while waiting unacknowledged as the office manager allowed a lansdscaping contractor client to do all his design alternatives and thinking out loud so he could work out what it was that he actually wanted priced. I waited like a shag on a rock for 10-15 minutes. I was going to complain, but those stickers were rather unsettling – flags, guns and ammo can do that to you, especially in urban Australia.

Filed under: Politics

I feel the earth move under my feet…

The Ozpolitics report on the latest Morgan poll puts Labor with a 15% two-party preferred lead over the coalition. Surely reflective of a groundswell shift in the fortunes of Howard’s government?

It will obviously be an interesting year in the run up to this year’s federal election. Expect some desperate politics and big spending in an attempt to stench the bleeding. I think the Howard era and the great neo-con experiment is experiencing its death throes after a decade of lazy economic leadership and ideological politics made possible by coupon-clipping the commodities boom. Read the rest of this entry »

Filed under: Politics

The economics of denialism vs alarmism

There is a polemic device often found in thread commentary at blogs such as Jennifer Marohasy and elsewhere which claims that environmental ‘alarmists’ are motivated by funding and furthering of academic careers. I guess the logic from a denialist perspective is that as there is no proof of anthrogenic global warming, for example, then anyone working from the point that AGW is a serious concern, must only be motivated by furthering their own careers, whereas denialists are the only ones doing objective, unbiased, serious science, free from any motive but determining evidence-based truth.

Given reports of corporate funding for environmental denialism, I’d like to see evidence-based comparative data about the funding sources, funding levels, and career path opportunities for people working in the denialist and alarmist lobbies. Given that most governments are not that interested in environmental issues such as climate change, where does this funding come from to further the careers of all the alarmists?

Does anyone have any comparative evidence-based data comparing denialism vs alarmism?

Filed under: Economics, Environment, Politics, Science

The Dog’s Bollocks

What they say

The Dog's Bollocks: "Bollocks" is one of my favourite words, and this is now one of my favourite blogs and I've only been reading it for five minutes. – John Surname

This is the person who tried to analyse Hayek. This is actually a person who needs a shrink. – JC

Shut up slim. You’re an idiot.
Just you stay honest and keep that thinking cap on. – GMB

Insightful perspectives on politics and discussion of matters epistemological? I’m sold! - Bruce

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