The news you have when you’re not having news (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Claytons): NSW environment minister Robyn Parker was not only running behind the news last Thursday when she ‘announced’ so-called reforms to coastal management legislation but she also gave Byron Shire residents little chance to find out more.
The Northern Rivers Catchment Management Authority’s draft Northern Rivers Catchment Action Plan (CAP) for 2013–2023 is on public exhibition (www.northern.cma.nsw.gov.au ) until November 9. In addition, a meeting to explain the plan will be held on Thursday October 25 at the Bangalow RSL Hall at 10am, the temptation of morning tea at 9.30am.
In a week in which most of the mainstream media managed to focus on a member of the royal family’s anatomy, contrast was provided by a Californian twat producing an amateurish anti-Islam video for the Media For Christ group, which went viral on YouTube, 21st-century technology inflaming machismo already fuelled by religious extremism.
It is a sad coincidence that the federal government’s so-called ‘Stronger Futures’ legislation comes into law the same week as NAIDOC (National Aborigines and Islanders Day Observance Committee) celebrations. A sad coincidence or a sick joke.
Perhaps the legislation could be called ‘Stranger Futures’. Strange that many of the very people it is meant to help have strong objections to it. This is surely not an appropriate consensus over sensitive issues when the federal government imposes its will from above.
The latest gabfest on how to stop the human race – and by extension, the planet – stewing in its own juices will be held at the home of summits and street parades, Rio de Janeiro, on June 20–22. For those interested in historical coincidences, on June 20 in 1947 Benjamin ‘Bugsy’ Siegel was murdered at the mansion of his girlfriend Virginia Hill, in 1977 piping of crude oil from North Alaska began, and more auspiciously in 451 Flavius Aetius had a victory over Attila the Hun at the Battle of Chalons.
We’ve looked at the impact of misinformation by vested interests on public perception of climate change, but the mindset against acceptance of the evidence probably needs deeper investigation. (I’m not talking about folks who just reject climate science out of hand without any research.) The denial probably lies in the realm of classic human denials such as of death and of the failure of love.
The United Nations climate change conference (http://bit.ly/zCJycu ) in Bonn, Germany, from May 14 to 25 managed to generate a fair amount of heat but not much light.
The talks were meant to give legs to the so-called Durban Platform, hammered together in South Africa last December, but rich and developed countries resorted to bickering rather than negotiation. The African Group, a coalition of over 50 African countries, said it was disappointed by the current levels of emission pledges, and wanted developed nations to do more to reduce their emissions.
Among the major threats to the environmental health of Earth – and to our own survival – are rogue corporations.
As early as 1881, that wonderful American journalist Ambrose Bierce defined a corporation as ‘an ingenious device for obtaining individual profit without individual responsibility’. (You can read his Devil’s Dictionary online at www.richardgingras.com/devilsdictionary.)
In recent years ‘think tanks’, originally intended as the repository of brain power in researching important issues, have gained a dodgy reputation as many of them are lobbying forces for vested interests which skew the ‘research’ to recognise desired conclusions. Less thinking and more ‘tanking’, the computer gaming term for attacking in a forceful manner.
It’s not as though there hasn’t been any warning. Special interest groups have been banging on for years about the approaching age avalanche. Our federal government has even committed some funds towards it.