Category Archive: Spin

Oct 23 2013

Anti-politics 4: Discrediting neoliberalism

This is the fourth part of a series about the Australian “anti-politics” attitude and how the green left should respond to it. Part 1 lays out evidence for the attitude and speculates on its causes. Part 2 argues the green left needs to distance itself from political elites. Part 3 discusses how we should communicate …

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Oct 15 2013

Climate change a laughing matter to coal industry

In public, the coal industry proclaims that it accepts the mountain of scientific evidence that humans’ burning of fossil fuels are warming the planet. But a secretly recorded conversation at an American coal industry conference between Arch Coal executive Matt Ferguson and lobbyist Lauri Hennessey revealed that in private, they believe climate change is not …

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Oct 05 2013

Cool reaction to IPCC needs a reality check

Last Saturday, two momentous events occurred. Firstly, the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC), a globally respected Nobel-Peace-Prize-winning international scientific institution, released a summary, vetted line-by-line by all of the world’s governments, of what may be the most thoroughly researched and meticulously reviewed report ever produced in human history: its Fifth Assessment Report (AR5), a …

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Aug 24 2013

Tony Abbott’s manipulation of public perception

Australia’s Opposition Leader Tony Abbott says in today’s newspaper: The problem with the Parliament at the moment is that almost nothing is ever said which isn’t basically crude political head-banging. Both sides are guilty but I think that as prime minister Gillard was particularly bad at it. Abbott’s hypocrisy is staggering. In reality, it is …

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Jul 14 2013

Rudd ignites carbon trading time bombs

I must be psychic. In March when the Australian Industry Group demanded the Australian government immediately move from its fixed carbon price to its planned future emissions trading scheme (ETS), I wrote that “I was very pleased to see the AIG proposal met with tripartisan categorical rejection” but “I remain[ed] vigilant, even pessimistic” because of …

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Jul 08 2013

Eulogy for the hung parliament

The last week of June was the last sitting week of Australia’s 43rd parliament and first hung parliament since 1943. It also turned out to be the week in which the Prime Minister who presided over the hung parliament, Julia Gillard, was replaced by her Labor Party colleague and predecessor Kevin Rudd. ABC journalist Chris …

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Mar 19 2013

The many faces of climate change denial

There is much debate in Australia, particularly in the political sphere, about who is a climate change denier. To answer that question, we first have to clarify what we mean by climate change denial. The book Climate Change Denial by Haydn Washington and John Cook helpfully distinguishes between several different stages of denial: literal, interpretative, …

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Jan 27 2013

Liberals Part 4: Australia has a legitimate government

This is the fourth part of a series examining the Liberal Party of Australia. Part 1, Part 2, and Part 3 examine the party’s climate policies. This part debunks their allegations that the incumbent government is illegitimate. Illustration: Stephen Wight There has been a persistent campaign by the conservative Coalition, led by Tony Abbott and …

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Jan 16 2013

Liberals Part 3: False crimes of a climate crook

This is the third part of a series examining the Liberal Party of Australia. Part 1 covers the party’s climate change denial and intention to abolish various existing climate policies. Part 2 examines the climate policies they promise to introduce. This part defends them against incorrect criticisms of their climate policies. To use language which …

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Oct 14 2012

A terrible week for the climate

This week’s events illustrate (not that further illustration was needed) that both of Australia’s major political parties are in the pocket of the fossil fuel industry, though Labor hides it behind a veneer of greenwash while the Liberals are overt about it. On Monday in New South Wales, the Planning Assessment Commission approved the Ashton …

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