Archive for the ‘Politics’ Category
Benjamin Netanyahu has said that any long term peace agreement must include the recognition of Israel as a Jewish state.
It sounds a reasonable enough request.
After all, Israel is only about one sixth of one percent of the land of the Middle East. The Jewish people have a longer association with that land than any other ethnic or religious group. For most of the last four thousand years, Jews have been a majority of the population there.
Being a Jewish state has not stopped people of any other ethnic or religious group from having full and equal rights under Israeli law. It is the only country in the Middle East where such equality under the law can be taken for granted.
Israel is surrounded by countries which describe themselves as Arab nations and muslim nations. No one, including Israel, suggests this is inappropriate, or that such states do not have the right to exist.
So how can Israel’s request that its neighbours recognise it as a Jewish state possibly be a deal breaker in peace negotiations?
On this day, September 11, Muslims burn US and UK flags outside the US embassy in London:
Other choice lines include ‘Queen and country go to hell!,’ ‘Burn, burn, USA!’
I think I agree with the loutish looking guy who appears near the end and tells them they are scum who should go back where they came from.
Interesting how placid the police are – they never express frustration or irritation as these loons trot out the usual nonsense: the US and UK are murdering Muslims in Iraq and Afghanistan, and are there because they hate Islam and want the wealth of those countries.
It astonishes me that Western political leaders still so absolutely and blindly refuse to believe what Muslims themselves say: that they want democracy to burn, that Allah will kill the kaffirs.
If someone says he intends to kill you and your family, and destroy everything you hold dear, how many times do you let him try before you believe he is serious, and do something to stop him?
Back in NYC, the mainstream media report ‘duelling protests’ as they try desperately to give the impression that as many people turned out to support the ground zero mosque as to oppose it.
Not a chance. It was more like 2000 to 40,000.
Jeremiah 6:14 ‘They have made light of the wounds of my people, saying “Peace, peace,” when there is no peace.
Whether we like it or not, war is upon us.
Democracy and reason have an implacable enemy in Islam – these are the words of its leaders.
Many of that enemy now live amongst us, and believe, because their holy book tells them so, that the pretence of friendship, lies and violence are all acceptable methods of bringing about the ultimate victory of Islam.
We can choose to be Chamberlain or Churchill. But we can no longer cry “Peace, peace.”
On 16th August the Sydney Morning Herald published a column by Paul Sheehan. Sheehan was writing about Gillard’s pork pies. He described her as a serial, brazen liar.
At the end of the article, he talked about the problems that arise for any country when a substantial part of the population becomes addicted to government spending – when the pie eaters begin to outnumber the pie makers.
People who demand, and feel entitled to, subsidies for their park, or industry, or art fest, or who rely on government benefits, schemes, funding or stimulus payments, are pie eaters. They have strong reason to vote in a big taxing, big spending government.
People who risk their own savings to begin business ventures which will produce goods and services, pay tax, and employ others, are pie makers.
The problem is that there comes a point when the pie eaters punish the pie makers so much, through taxes and over-regulation, that there is no incentive to risk anything, try anything, do anything. The temptation is for the pie makers to become pie eaters.
Then the economy grinds to a halt, because without profits, there are no taxes, and if there are no taxes, there are no subsidies, no social services.
When I was at university, I was taken in by the slogan ‘People before profits.’ Now I know that people need profits, that the whole structure of social welfare, health, roads, schools, etc depends on profits.
Some young people are wiser than I was. Ben-Peter Terpstra has been talking to some of them: young people who are willing to study and work, and who have a vision for Australia.
Future pie makers.
On Kangaroo Island, we have just been through a record breakingly wet Winter.
There have been floods on the mainland too, but water restrictions are still in place in capital cities.
The excuse for not building new dams has been that it isn’t going to rain any more. But then why have state governments been subsidising the installation of rainwater tanks at private homes?
‘Solutions’ like desalination plants are being built around Australia. But these massively expensive by comparison with dams, use large amounts of energy, require high levels of maintenance, and are untested over the long term.
There has been no overall reduction in rainfall on the Australian continent over the last century, so why are we still being given the ‘no point, no rain’ excuse?
Australia is a country of extremes. Long droughts followed by massive floods. Overall, there is plenty of water for everyone.
The problem is not that there is not enough water, but that there is not enough water storage.
The more water storage we build, the better we will be able to cope with the perfectly predictable dry periods, and the less damage will be done by floods (because more of the water will be captured).
Even if rainfall was reducing, this would be a reason to build more dams, not less.
Julia Gillard wants to redefine Labor’s heart, promising to dump the culture of spin that marred Kevin Rudd’s leadership, demanding fresh ideas from her MPs and promising to keep her door open to her colleagues.
The spin that marred Kevin Rudd’s leadership? Ha, ha, ha. The woman’s got a hide like a rhinoceros.
Julia Mark IV, slightly slower, more comfortable upholstery, still inclined to oversteer.
It certainly worked for her. Maybe that’s all that counts for her, or all she can see.
When the final result was delivered by two independents whose own electorates vastly preferred a Coalition government, it is hard to see any sense in which the system has worked for the Australian people.
The blighters were just playing games when they checked Tony Crook’s intentions.
What was the point of that? Just to prove that they are the big boys now? No one in the playground is going to push them around, cause it’s their turn to do the pushing?
Based on their performance over the last week, these guys will be holding the country to ransom for as long as this dismal government lasts.
I wasn’t fond of the title ‘The Three Amigos.’
But maybe it is not so inappropriate. In the film of that name, the three amigos were really three complete drongos, pretend cowboys in flashy outfits, who were so dumb they thought ‘infamous’ meant really, really famous.
Maybe our three amigos thought the same thing. Except that now it’s the two amigos, Max Hatter having decided to go it on his own and support the Coalition.
Except that a better title would be ‘tushki.’
It sounds like it should mean ‘little arse,’ and that would be appropriate too, but it doesn’t
In February of Viktor Yanukovych won the Ukrainian presidential election with the smallest possible margin, and the support of probably about a third of Ukrainians.
Following that election, 16 parliamentary delegates deserted their own party, and the people who had voted for them, to enable Yanukovych to form government.
They have become known as the tushki. It is a Russian word, used as an insult. It means ‘roadkill.’
As the German political scientist Andreas Umland noted in late March in the Kyiv Post, “Ukraine is now less democratic than it was. . . . With their change of allegiance the tushki have grossly misrepresented the preferences of the Ukrainian voters.”
Welcome to the new Australia.
Tomorrow, Tuesday, we will hear that Tony Abbott is to become the next Prime Minster.
Earlier today we heard that the three independents had sought a commitment from WA Nationals MP Tony Crook that he would not block supply or support Labor in a no confidence motion, should the Coalition form government.
It seemed to me unlikely they would seek such an assurance if they had already formed the view that they would support Labor. They would have no need to do so.
If the three supported Labor, it would not matter what Tony Crook did.
With the independents on side, Julia Gillard would not need to be concerned about Tony Crook. His vote could only threaten the stability of the government if the Coalition were in power.
So the fact they sought this assurance from Tony Crook almost certainly means that they intend to support the Coalition if the assurance is given. Of course, they may just be playing games, which, given their behaviour over the last week, is not impossible.
Tonight brings news that Crook has given that commitment. He will not block supply under a Coalition government, and will not support any no confidence motions against a Coalition government.
Tony for PM!
That means that we will end up with exactly the numbers I predicted the day before the election – Coalition 76, Labor 74.
Or I could be very embarrassed tomorrow!
From Victor Davis Hanson at National Review Online:
The truth about Iraq is that, for all the tragedy and the loss, the U.S. military performed a miracle. After nearly seven years, a constitutional government endures in that country.
It is too often forgotten that all 23 of the writs for war passed by the Congress in 2002 — from enforcing the Gulf I resolutions and stopping the destruction of the Kurds and Marsh Arabs, to preventing the Iraqi state promotion of terrorism, ending suicide bounties on the West Bank, and stopping Iraq from invading or attacking neighbors or trying to acquire WMD — were met and satisfied by the U.S. military.
It is also too often forgotten that, as a result, Libya gave up its WMD program; Dr. Khan’s nuclear franchise was shut down; Syria left Lebanon; and American troops in Saudi Arabia, put there as protection against Saddam, were withdrawn. Perhaps a peep about some of that—especially the idea that in an oil-short world, Saddam Hussein might have been more or less free to do what he pleased again in Iraq. (The verdict is out on Iran; playing a genocidal Hussein regime against it was morally bankrupt. Currently, Shiites participating in consensual government could be as destabilizing to Iran in the long run as Iranian terrorists are to Iraq in the short run.)
Furthermore, the destruction of al-Qaeda in Iraq helped to discredit the entire idea of radical Sunni Islamic terrorists, and the loss of thousands of foreign radical Islamists in Iraq had a positive effect on U.S. security — despite the fallacy that we created them out of thin air by being in Iraq.
Kurdistan was, prior to 2003, faced with the continual threat of genocidal attacks by Saddam Hussein; today it is a booming economy.
All that would have been impossible without U.S. intervention.
With a bit of help from Australia and others.
Brandt has signed up with Labor after Bob Brown was promised a carbon tax. Wilkie has signed up with Labor after he was promised a renovated hospital in Hobart.
Tony Abbott now needs to be absolutely clear about three things.
Firstly, the Liberal party will not be buying votes. It will not be making infrastructure or funding promises to independents or anyone else, if those promises come at the expense of other Australians.
Mr Abbott needs to make it clear that funds will allocated in line with policy and need. There will be no sweetheart deals. He will not be pressured into making unreasonable promises to a few, which the many will have to pay for.
Secondly, there can be no unconditional promise to remain in government for the full three years. Such a promise would be unreasonable at any time. It is completely unreasonable at this time.
The Greens and their Labor buddies will control the Senate. It is almost certain they will use that power to block supply or stop or delay crucial legislation. If the Liberal party is able to form government, it will only govern with the consent of the Greens and Labor.
That is not a situation in which a party and its leaders can responsibly promise to stay in government for a fixed term.
Finally, Tony Abbott and the Liberals must now emphasise, over and over again, the fiscal responsibility of the Coalition, the consistently better economic results under a Coalition government.
The Liberals may still lose this election, and if they do, the country will find itself suffocating under a staggering level of economic incompetence.
The next few years will be dire for small business, for the mining and manufacturing sectors, for rural and remote communities – for everyone who actually produces useful, valuable goods and services.
I hope Tony Abbott can still win. That would save us from the worst of the combined malice and ineptitude of a Greens/Labor alliance.
But if not Tony, then at least lose with honour.
I know Andrew Bolt (and a thousand other people) have already posted these videos:
But the contrast between the practice of the uncaring right wing despoilers and ravagers of the environment and the gentle earth loving supporters of Obama is just too great too pass without comment.
The more I think about it, the more I believe that the fundamental difference between right and left, or conservative and progressive if you prefer, is a willingness to take responsibility.
In 2009 Greg Sheridan wrote a brief and thoughtful, if confronting, article about the Rudd government’s misuse of the office of the Governor General.
The article was not primarily about Quentin Bryce’s political views, but about the then Prime Minister’s willingness to use any means, even obviously inappropriate means, to lobby for a seat for Australia on the UN Security Council, something that was widely seen as potentially adding weight to Mr Rudd’s assumed personal UN ambitions.
Even earlier, in 2008, Andrew Bolt had questioned aspects of Quentin Bryce’s speech at her swearing-in, and these words in particular:
I promise to be open, responsive and faithful to the contemporary thinking and working of Australian society.
Which Andrew interpreted to mean:
Contemporary thinking for Bryce will be what the Left agrees it is, whatever the more conservative majority may say in opposition.
Certainly the Governor General has spoken out on political issues rather more freely than we have been accustomed to, and has consistently spoken from a leftist perspective, on issues such as the 2008 apology for the ‘Stolen Generations’, and on global warming.
This makes a mockery of claims by some of her friends, including Tony Fitzgerald, QC, that Quentin Bryce is so impartial that after havng known her for nearly fifty years, he still has ‘no inkling of her political persuasion.‘
I haven’t know Quentin Bryce for nearly fifty years. I spoke with her for about five minutes at a dinner at Government House in Brisbane a few years ago. She struck me as a graceful, capable and intelligent woman.
But her comments on disputed political matters make it very clear where her sympathies lie. That is a pity, because it brings her ability to act impartially into question.
It is a nonsense, for example, to claim that any concern about possible conflicts of interest is ‘a storm in tea cup.’
Bill Shorten, Quentin Bryce’s son-in-law, is a Labor politician. This has lead to calls for her to recuse herself from any decisions about who should form government after the recent Federal election.
It is not just that Quentin Bryce’s son-in-law is a Labor politician. As others have pointed out, political connections as strong as those of Bill Hayden or Paul Hasluck were not seen as undermining their ability to act appropriately as Governor General.
Quentin Bryce is a sensible woman. Mostly.
I think she would try to make the right decision, without regard to the feelings of her daughter Chloe, or of Chloe’s husband Bill, even though Bill may well be a future Labor leader. Possibly in the near future.
But just as justice must not only be done, but must be seen to be done, so for the dignity of the office of Governor General, decisions must not only be made impartially, they must be seen to be made impartially.
Quentin Bryce’s willingness to involve herself in political debate has made that a problem.
From Family Security Matters writer Fiona Kobusingye, co-chair of the Congress of Racial Equality Uganda:
I wish I had a shilling for every time someone told me spraying homes with DDT to prevent malaria is like using Africans in evil experiments. I would be a rich woman.
That claim is a blatant falsehood. Even worse, it hides the many ways poor Africans really are being used in environmental experiments that cause increased poverty, disease and death…
Bluntly put, environmentalists are using African parents and children in anti-DDT experiments. Against all the evidence from decades of using only nets and drugs and maybe other insecticides, they want to keep ignoring DDT as a long-lasting spatial insect repellant. They want to keep us doing what has at best worked only partially, on the assumption that maybe it will work better next year – or that a 30% malaria reduction is good enough.
They are playing with our lives. So are the government agencies, health NGOs and others who support their policies. This is wrong and immoral. And it is only one of the ways they use Africans as experimental laboratory animals. They are also denying us access to other modern technologies that can improve and save lives…
600 million people in sub-Sahara Africa live on two million shillings ($900 USD) or less per year. Nearly 700 million never have electric power for lights, refrigeration, schools, shops and clinics – or have it only a few hours per week. Millions die from diseases that would be prevented, if they did not have to burn wood and dung, and had safe water, better healthcare and higher living standards that reliable, affordable electrical power would bring.
But environmentalists constantly block coal, gas and hydro-electric power plants. They want us to live in experimental societies where people get whatever limited electrical power can be generated day to day with wind turbines or solar panels. They pressured the World Bank to reject loan applications for power plants in Ghana and South Africa, and support President Obama when he says Africans should focus on wind, solar and bio-fuel power, instead of fossil fuels.
Meanwhile, they live in wealthy countries, with all the electrical power they need. With the health, opportunity and prosperity electrical power brings. With freedom and mobility that cars and fossil fuels bring. With blessings most Africans can only dream of.
There’s more, and it’s all worth reading.
I haven’t always been a fan of Michael Kroger, or at least, I regretted the apparent division between him and Jeff Kennett, and the harm it did the Victorian Liberal party.
But boy I am a fan now.
We really do need more politicians and business people to stand up to the arrant nonsense peddled by people like Wayne Swan, who, never having run a business themselves, and having no idea how to do so, ceaselessly lecture those who do, and who therefore generate tax income, employment, and useful goods and services.
via Tim Blair: