The Dog’s Bollocks

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

Party on like it’s 1999!

Manilla TyphoonDenialist lobby shills and hacks are pleased with their tiny contribution to the relentless propaganda campaign to undermine public confidence in science which has resulted in an Observer poll that finds the majority of the British public is still not convinced that climate change is caused by humans – and many others believe scientists are exaggerating the problem. Mind you, if scientific understanding depended on public opinion we’d probably still be banging rocks together in a cave somewhere.

The finding is not surprising as Britons are starting to feel the burden of actually doing something about energy consumption and carbon emissions. Much easier to believe that there’s nothing that can be done without Greater Asia following suit so we may as well party on like it’s 1999! It’s not our problem, even if it exists. I dare say the Filipinos in the picture above may have other ideas.

Glad we sorted that one out.

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Filed under: Ass Hattery, Big Picture, Environment, Pseudoscience, Science, Society,

2020 Summit – the real story

The 2020 Summit is upon us as 1000 of the ‘best and brightest’ gather in Canberra to brainstorm a vision for Australia in 2020. It has been the subject of much hysterical cynicism from the MSM — always looking for an angle and invariably missing the story — the same tired old hacks who spent all of 2007 opining that Howard was unbeatable and that Rudd would never win.

The real story was that the electorate wanted a different style and direction of government and Howard wasn’t it. There are too many issues facing Australian society that Howard simply ignored or treated with cynical tokenism — issues that the invisible hand of the market couldn’t fix.

The conservatives and much of the MSM are still in denial. In 30 months time, the electorate will realise how shallow and ineffectual Rudd really is and then they’ll coming running back for a real government and business as usual. Yeah, right.

You’d expect it from a dolt like Bolt and his ‘1000 of Rudd’s Mates’, but Misha Schubert in The Age today shows us how clever she is with her ‘scoop’ accusing Rudd of stealing his childcare vision from Tony Blair and calling it his own in Rudd’s 2020 hindsight.

So fvcking what?! He wasn’t claiming it as his Own Original Idea. More pertinently, is it a good idea, or not? Worthy of discussion or what? Pathetic. I’m not aware of a proviso that any ideas being brought to the Summit must be entirely original. I’m sure any 2020 participant asked what their idea for the Summit is would begin, “Well, my idea is …” How many truly original ideas do any of us have? It’s so not the point. But it makes for a ‘clever’ story. The MSM commentariat are willing the 2020 Summit to fail and are busily positioning themselves to say ‘I told you so’.

What the hell is wrong with having a workshop for the vision of the whole nation? You can’t have ideas unless they’re already implemented? Give us a break. You have to start somewhere. Every corporate and government entity in Australia has been doing this very kind of thing for decades. ‘Where do you see this company/department in 5 years time, 10 years time?’ ‘What are the obstacles that might prevent this from happening.’ ‘What are the opportunities?’ ‘What would need to happen/change?’ Standard strategic planning stuff – mission statement, objectives, priorities. It works. So why not for a nation? We don’t elect a government of experts. We elect a government to represent us. And this one, by having a ‘talkfest’, is willing to listen. This doesn’t sit easily with authoritarian Howardians. It’s much more Australian to be a knocker and suspicious of anyone who might be an intellectual or has differing ideas. Fancy having the gall to speak Mandarin to the Chinese! He must be up himself.

The dogs may bark and the cynics carp, but the 2020 Summit will be productive, if for no other reason than it is tapping the electorate’s desire for a narrative. A narrative that isn’t about narrow self-interest and fear — a narrative for a better, more inclusive future.

His detractors underestimate Rudd — they always have. In these early days, all evidence indicates that he is hard-working and ruthlessy efficient and methodical, so there is little reason to doubt that he will also be quietly very effective. Sure, there will be policy and political failures along the way, but have no doubt that Rudd will inexorably reshape Australia towards the narrative visions given voice by the 2020 Summit. That’s what the concervatives are really worried about. If Rudd is even partially successful in making progress toward that vision, the conservatives will still not be electable by 2020. They think they do, but they just don’t get it.

Filed under: Australian values, Big Picture, Howardians, Media, Politics, Society, ,

Of Faith, Hope and Charity

The Oasis: Australia’s Homeless Youth, a heart-rending documentary on homelessness filmed over two years in the life of Salvation Army Captain Paul Moulds as he helps a myriad of broken people. People whose spirits have been crushed by neglect, abandonment, and abuse. People dependent on alcohol and drugs to numb the pain as close to death as you be without being dead.

Captain Moulds, himself abandoned at birth, is a man with a deep faith in the humanity of man. Through his steadfast charity in all his actions he has delivered hope for a better, brighter future to countless young human beings. Faith, hope and charity — the ideal virtues of Christianity, and indeed of all religions.

Perhaps not quite so in the free market place. The homeless are a product of ourselves and the society we create. They are not the ‘other’. They are us. What we do unto them we do unto ourselves.

When Paul gives $30 to one girl from his own pocket, fellow soldier Ken complained that they never give even 20c back to the Salvos. That’s why they never have any money. You have to give as well as receive. The economically rational approach to this problem is for us to give the necessary resources to begin changing the conditions which give rise to the problem. But it will take faith, hope and charity, not consumerism, cynicism, and greed. And we need to do it right.

Congratulations to Kevin Rudd for having the courage to raise the issue again and commissioning some up to date analysis indicating the extent of the problem — a problem neglected and ignored during the Howardian years in pursuit of healthy budget surpluses to spend on handouts come election time.

We have enough information about what works. Now we need sustained public investment rolled out over the next ten years to turn this around. It’ll actually be good for the common wealth and well-being of our nation.

Filed under: Australian values, Howardians, Ideology, Media, Politics, Society, ,

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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