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Voter beware! Rudd solution to mortgage debt compounds debt

Rudd and the banks' 'solution' to poverty, debt and homelessness is no solution at all. It drives up the mortgage burden in the long-run and relies on business as usual returning in an increasingly uncertain future. Forget debt, let's dump the banks.

Institutionalised cruelty to lab-chimps in USA exposed by US Humane Society

It would be much harder to condemn the New Iberia Research Center (NIRC) in Louisiana if the institution had obviously made a great effort to compensate its experimental chimpanzees by giving them trees and a lovely environment between 'sessions'. But they have confined these forest creatures to an environment as friendly as a toilet block for life. A nine-month-long undercover investigation by The HSUS has exposed the mistreatment of nearly 300 chimpanzees and other primates. These chimps, living lives of deprivation and misery, are among the more than 1,000 chimps languishing in laboratories across the United States. Video available here. I describe the video contents in the article, if you need to fortify yourself first. It is a thoughtful video; I could cope. Please act, whatever you do.

GDP per person falls in every state of Australia because of population growth

The Treasurer, Wayne Swann, says that "the Government is doing everything in its power to cushion Australians from the worst impacts of the global recession," but the figures show that growing the population is the worst thing the Rudd Government can do. Using per capita GDP as a measure of well-being in Australia, Tasmanians fared best in the downturn.

Simple natural solutions to fire and flood

"If you purchase two copies of The Age this Saturday, soak one in the bath overnight and read the other. Think of the copy coming out of the bath, as the landscape prior [to the impact of repeated fires] and the dry paper, as the landscape is today." (Article by Duane Norris for Natural Sequence Farming)

"Jump!" Paul Burnett's New Internationale for Post-Industrial times

Feeling really angry about the way governments all around the world are giving all our taxes to the Churches of Global-trading, Growth Economics and their ministers of government and friends? Got something to say to them?

Well, check out this song on you-tube.

The Sheahans and Mitchell Shire Council - Fire-breakers or law-breakers?

Andrew Bolt's story, "Green rules, black forests" is one of many mainstream media sources to keep alive the legend of the brave Sheehans' fight for justice and safety against their philistine greenie neighbours. But there is even more to that story than the press have so-far published. Read on...

Woodchip cargos drifting offshore without buyers

Just in via the bush telegraph, more on woodchip sales downturnLast week there were TWO woodchip carriers moored just off the south head of Twofold Bay (site of chipmill) for several days before one departed without loading any chips. The other is still there and has not loaded any chips. The talk around Eden was that as many as FIVE chip carriers might be expected there, all at once.

The reason is: it is cheaper to park a boat there (avoiding port fees) than sail around aimlessly hoping that someone will buy some woodchips needing shipping.

Gunns woodchip mills drastically downsize production

Guns' mills are faltering. The Japanese company, Nippon, has just bought the Latrobe Valley's Paperlinx factory, at a time of major downturn in woodchip prices. It seems like a very risky purchase - even if they got it dirt cheap. But is this a buyers' market or a fire-sale?

Bubble Economy 2.0: The financial recovery plan from Hell

Michael Hudson, argues that President Obama's 'recovery' plan will actually prevent recovery by diverting precious resources towards servicing debt thereby crowding out spending on goods and services. He argues that, instead, Obama should re-establish the practice of writing down of debts to reflect the debtor's ability to pay, restore the power of state attorneys general to bring financial fraud charges against the most egregious mortgage lenders, and for the re-establsihment of taxes on site-rental value, in order to discourage land speculation.

Originally published on Global Research on 11 Feb 09.

Help Stop the Commercialisation of National Parks

NSW Government trying to bring weaker national park protection laws to permit development of damaging private accommodation, such as cabins, lodges and ‘eco-resorts’ in our national parks. And we need to stop these laws. The NSW Government has not even asked the community if they want national parks developed! Public Meeting on 26th Feb.

Why we should think carefully about Rudd's $42 billion Nation Building and Jobs Plan

Writer and ecologist, Hugh Spencer, kicks off discussion here about Kevin Rudd's proposed $42 billion Nation Building and Jobs Plan. "The only component of the scheme that I can wholeheartedly agree with is the roof insulation - but even then, it requires a far more coherent energy target - as 'roof insulation' can mean damn near anything...."

Jaws 2009 coming soon to your shores

The final version of Jaws dwarfs all the others. This new monster is eating towns up alive. This is not just a battle to the death; this is WAR! In the novel, Jaws, the monster was not really a white pointer shark, it was the property development lobby, which metastasized with the colonisation of a modest fishing town by rich people from other places. Developers drew power from the wealthy tourists and sea-changers. They took over the original fishing town for their own purposes and democracy seemed fatally wounded. Right to the point of the shark (the developers) trying to eat the boat (symbol of the fishing industry which had begun the town). Until an odd bunch of people had the guts to stand up to the big developers.

Ziggy Switkowski, Population Numbers and Nuclear in the Australian

Some people were surprised to see an article by Ziggy Switkowski in Thursday's Australian newspaper questioning population growth "Populate without perishing" and wonder if an awareness of this issue is finally beginning to permeate the mainstream [press]. Dream on...
See also: "Scanlon report underpins threat to Australian democracy"

Well done GW: It's a dirty job but someone has to do it

Political analyst, Dr Ted Trainer, takes political spectators of the world to task for their harsh judgement of President Bush's achievements. He calls Bush's detractors, "Not just uncharitable but lacking in insight about the way the world works and what has to be done to maintain our way of life." He says, "President Bush has done a great job here in very difficult circumstances, and he does not get due credit", and explains just why...

The Final Garnaut Report; A Radical Critique of its Energy Assumptions

The Garnaut Report has failed to discuss the energy assumptions underlying its conclusions. Tim Flannery argues that the core assumption that alternative energy technologies can be scaled up by the huge magnitudes required to replace fossil fuels is invalid. This failure should invalidate the Garnaut Report.

Sheila Newman (Ed.) The Final Energy Crisis, 2nd Edition - A Review

With The Final Energy Crisis, the editor, Energy and Population Sociologist Sheila Newman, gives us the opportunity to examine the theory, measurement, history and future of fossil-fuel depletion within a social paradigm where thermodynamics is the primary social constraint. This is 'applied peak-oil' - a multi-authored, but tightly integrated, collection of social and physical science writing, where the authors test the strength of the hypothesis that industrialised society faces an imminent energy crisis which will bring civilization as we know it to an end.

See also: Review of The Final Energy Crisis by Mark O'Connor author of Overloading Australia (RRP AU$20) on page 8 of the December 2008 newsletter (pdf 923K) of Sustainable Population Australia.

"Cash strapped" NSW squandered over AU$120 million on World Youth Day

Those who have accepted the necessity of the current fire sale of NSW government assets and the recent "slash and burn" budget, which is taking that state into recession, may be amazed to learn of the staggering blow-out in the costs of the World Youth Day celebrations held in Sydney in July 2008. In addition the Minister for State Development is prepared to bill NSW taxpayers up to $AU86million over three years to pay for planned V8 supercar races to be held at Olympic Park.

See also: NSW Electricity Privatisation, "Youth day ran $100m over budget" in SMH of 27 Nov 08 and more subdued reporting in "World Youth Day bill $100m over budget" in the Australian of 26 Nov 08 , NSW Auditor-General's World Youth Day Report (pdf, 45K)
"Why the V8 Supercars will be taxpayer-injected" in SMH of 29 Sep 08, "O'Farrell vows to restore free travel" on the ABC on 13 Nov 08, "Say no to v8 supercar racing at Olympic Park" on Lee Rhiannon's website, Parliamantary debate of V8 Supercar Races at Sydney Olympic Park of 24 Nov 08

The economic and social differential

Clearly we are at an early stage of globalisation. Only the seven plagues are globalised: mafias, commerce, robbery, exploitation, subordination of women, ransacking of natural resources and planetary poisoning… Here economics are based on the simplest of rules: work travels to wherever it costs less. (Lire la version française)

Our Society Is Not Sustainable by Brishen Hoff

Brishen Hoff, President of Biodiversity First, makes a simple point. Per capita GNP is fast becoming inversely correlated with a growing GDP, which in Anglophone countries is being fed by immigration. Stop immigration, reduce births, shrink population, and individual shares of wealth increase. Common sense. Sorry. If it was common every one would have it.

Should the US bail out General Motors?

Should the US government bail out a company that has resisted government and community calls for stricter environmental and safety standards?

The Global market crash and peak oil

Hubbert's USD peak? Can the October 08 global market crash be linked to oil prices, oil depletion or peak oil?

Urgent environmental action must be maintained in bad economic times

Current economic difficulties are largely caused by failing global ecosystems and resource scarcity, and are not an excuse to reduce environmental commitments, warns Ecological Internet.

Originally published on 15 Sep 08 on

Will industrial society's collapse follow Wall Street collapse?

Jan Lundberg, former oil industry analyst, predicts that a total collapse of industrial society will follow the current meltdown of the U.S. financial markets.

Original article published as Collapse of Wall Street precedes complete disintegration of system. About those "green jobs"... on 16 Sep 08 on Culture Change.

Economic report on Channel Deepening too shallow to fathom

Greens MLC Greg Barber and committee member said; "The Committee's report confirms that the number of big ships that might need a deeper channel is quite small."

'Self-storage' industry growth not an indication of improved quality of life

ABC Radio National's By Design program of 30 August ran a story which seemed to depict the growth of the 'self-storage' industry as somehow positive. The fact that so many of us can no longer store our accumulated possessions where we live and must, resort to paying to rent space to store them is yet another indicator of our declining standard of living.

Bloomington USA - An oasis of sanity in a sea of growthist madness?

Could this be happening in the Land of MORE, MORE, MORE? Bloomington, Indiana supports a steady-state economy! You heard it right….

The Rubber band snaps at 140 USD-per-barrel?

The OECD’s IEA is able to admit that future oil supplies will not meet likely or probable demand, but the US EIA and other diehards have not yet made that cultural revolution.


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