Utopia: An Aboriginal perspective, Black Feminist Blogspot, BY TRACKER, JANUARY 7, 2014 Award winning investigative journalist John Pilger’s new film Utopia will be a powerful weapon to raise awareness about Aboriginal Australia, according to Arrente writer Celeste Liddle*. On flicking through the UK reviews of John Pilger’s new documentary film “Utopia”, one thing quickly becomes apparent: Pilger has created a hard-hitting film that is of extraordinary importance.
The ABC is uniquely placed.. because it is not beholden to commercial interests. Rather than leading the day’s news with a story about Justin Bieber, because that will generate the largest audience, Aunty tells people what they need to know.
Cover up and secrecy in Abbott’s Australia, Aljazeera, PM pans ‘unpatriotic’ national broadcaster for holding govt accountable to its electorate Fiona Broom, 7 Feb 14, Australian Prime Minister Tony Abbott has something in common with Egypt’s military government – he expects the government-funded Australian Broadcasting Corporation to be a cheerleader for the country and decries the reporting of stories which portray Australia negatively.
Howard government appointments:
Donald McDonald – Liberal Party member and long-time friend of the Howard Family.
Michael Kroger – Liberal party powerbroker and former president of the Victorian Liberal party. Member of the right-wing think tank the Institute of Public Affairs (“Ding!”)
Judith Sloan – Right-wing labour market economist, News Ltd Columnist and outspoken critic of the ABC. Associated with right-wing think tanks the Centre for Independent Studies, the HR Nichols Society and the IPA (“Ding, Ding!”)
Ross McLean – Former Liberal party MP for Perth.
Leith Boully – Member of the Murray-Darling CAC with close ties to the Liberal party. Former member of the NT Young Country Liberal Party.
Maurice Newman – Close friend and confidant of John Howard and founder of the Centre for Independent Studies, a right-wing think tank identical to the IPA (“Ding, Ding, Ding!”)
Janet Albrechtson – Right-wing columnist for News Ltd. Associated with the CIS and IPA (“Ding, Ding, Ding, Ding!”)
Ron Brunton – Former right-wing columnist for News Ltd. Climate change skeptic, critic of the stolen generations report and Director of Indigenous Affairs at the IPA (“Ding, Ding, Ding, Ding, Ding!”)
Steven Skala – Former director of the CIS (“Ding, Ding, Ding, Ding, Ding, Ding!”)
Keith Windschuttle – Right-wing historian. Outspoken critic of the ABC and regular keynote speaker for the CIS and IPA (“Ding, Ding, Ding, Ding, Ding, Ding, Ding!”)
Peter Hurley – President of the SA Hotels Association and major donor to the Liberal party and right-wing think tanks…oh bugger it (“Ding, Ding, Ding, Ding, Ding, Ding, Ding, Ding!”)
Jonathan Shier – Right-wing opponent of all public broadcasting. Was appointed with a mandate to attack the ABC but resigned after 19 months. Guess who called for this guy’s appointment. (“Ding, Ding, Ding, Ding, Ding, Ding, Ding, Ding, Ding!”)
Mark Scott – Former staffer to NSW Liberal minister Terry Metherell.
James Spigelman – No known political affiliation.
Julianne Schultz – No known political affiliation.
Cheryl Bart – No known political affiliation.
Fiona Stanley – No known political affiliation.
Jane Bennett – No known political affiliation.
Five ABC board appointments fall vacant in the current government’s term.
What Malcolm Turnbull thinks. ”……the fact is that Tony and the people who put him in his job do not want to do anything about climate change. They do not believe in human caused global warming. As Tony observed on one occasion “climate change is crap” or if you consider his mentor, Senator Minchin, the world is not warming, its cooling and the climate change issue is part of a vast left wing conspiracy to deindustrialise the world……”
“there is a major issue of integrity at stake here and Liberals should reflect very deeply on it…..”
Many Liberals are rightly dismayed that on this vital issue of climate change we are not simply without a policy, without any prospect of having a credible policy but we are now without integrity. We have given our opponents the irrefutable, undeniable evidence that we cannot be trusted……
When You Have Advisers Like Newman Why Would You Need Scientists? The Australian Independent Media Network BY JOHN LORD 2013 on JANUARY 1, 2014 In The Australian newspaper December 31 (otherwise known as the official newsletter of the LNP) there appeared an article by the Prime Minister’s business adviser Maurice Newman. Creditable broadsheets would not have given it a column inch but that’s Murdoch for you. What follows is lying at its most blatant.
In one of those rare moments I have momentarily found myself lost for words so I have decided to rely on the commentary of others with the final word left to Malcolm Turnbull….
In an interview, Mr Newman said protection of climate change policies and the renewable energy industry by various state governments smacked of a “cover-up”…… Continue reading
Tony Abbott blasts national broadcaster: ABC takes ‘everyone’s side but Australia’s’ Canberra Times, Judith Ireland, 29 Jan 14 Reporter Prime Minister Tony Abbott has berated ABC News, arguing that it is taking ”everyone’s side but Australia’s” and that journalists should give the navy the ”benefit of the doubt” when it comes to claims of wrongdoing.
In comments that also suggest the media should act as cheerleaders for the country, Mr Abbott ramped up his recent criticism of the ABC…….
Acting Labor leader Tanya Plibersek defended the ABC on Wednesday as a “longstanding part of Australia’s cultural fabric”.
“From emergency broadcasts in times of trouble to coverage of the events that shape our nation, the ABC is there, free for all Australians,” she said.
Ms Plibersek said that every government had been subjected to close scrutiny by the ABC since the broadcaster began, “and we should all welcome that”. http://www.smh.com.au/federal-politics/political-news/tony-abbott-blasts-national-broadcaster-abc-takes-everyones-side-but-australias-20140129-31lt8.html#ixzz2rozai1tE
John Pilger’s damning new film about indigenous Australia SMH, Julian Drape, December 31, 2013 ”……London-based Pilger returns to outback Australia for this documentary film to find little has changed since his 1985 work The Secret Country.The Utopia of the title refers to the Northern Territory region north of Alice Springs…….
Pilger, 74, sees a treaty and genuine land rights as the key to improving the position of the original owners of Australia. Anything less, including the current talk of constitutional recognition, is simply a “distraction”, he says.
The film opened in the United Kingdom in mid-November and screens in Sydney on January 17. Subsequent limited dates include Melbourne, Brisbane, Perth and Alice Springs. Pilger would have been delighted to show Utopia in Australia first but no local distributor offered a cinema run.
“One Australian distributor refused to take the film because he said it was ‘too dark’ and ‘it might upset people with its myth-busting’,” the veteran journalist says.The film was commissioned by ITV in Britain and funded entirely in the UK…..
Pilger doesn’t apologise for taking such an uncompromising view.”Unlike the US, Canada and New Zealand, no treaty was ever negotiated between the lawful owners of Australia and those who took their land,” he says. “International law is clear – there has to be a treaty.
“If the Australian political establishment believes it can continue to look the other way and deny the first Australians their basic rights they are seriously mistaken.”……
Pilger reminds the viewer that Bob Hawke in the 1980s walked away from genuine land rights in the face of a racist scare campaign from the mining industry. He draws parallels with Julia Gillard’s decision to fold on Labor’s mining tax in 2010.
“The revenue lost is estimated at $60 billion,” the director says in the film. “Enough to fund land rights and to end Aboriginal poverty.”……
Child abuse is one of the rationales for taking children away, yet the NT has one of the lowest rates of reported child abuse in Australia, Pilger says. He argues Australians shouldn’t still need educating about the plight of indigenous Australia, but if they do he hopes Utopia helps.
“Utopia tells them the truth,” he says. ”If people choose to ignore the research and evidence in this film then their prejudice is unshakeable.”….. Utopia is on limited released in Australia from January 17. Details at utopiajohnpilger.co.uk http://www.smh.com.au/entertainment/movies/john-pilgers-damning-new-film-about-indigenous-australia-20131231-303tf.html#ixzz2povi3A9Z
Murdoch and Abbott combine to silence the ABC, Independent Australia, 3 January 2014 Reports on the Abbott Government and News Corporation’s coordinated assault upon Australia’s public broadcaster have ignored numerous key factors, writes Alan Austin.
The Abbott Government is ramping up endeavours to reward its principal promoter Rupert Murdoch with greater media control.
Ministers are now openly attacking the Australian Broadcasting Corporation’s foreign television service. As usual, neither Murdoch’s nor the Coalition’s people are telling the truth.
This week’s mini-furore started whenThe Australian ran a front page beat-up attacking the national broadcaster’s management ofAustralia Network, headed ‘ABC put on notice over foreign TV’. Continue reading
Utopia - a powerful film about the subjugation of Aboriginal First Australians 09/11/2013 An interview with the maker of Utopia, John Pilger John Pilger, the renowned investigative journalist and award winning film maker, has recently completed a new film, Utopia, which deals with the subjugation of the Aboriginal First Australians. Niall Mulholland interviews John about the film’s themes, followed with a review of Utopia. Socialistworld.net
Your new film, Utopia, is a powerful and harrowing look at the legacy of colonial genocide and successive government policies on Australia’s indigenous people. What made you return to this theme?…….. Continue reading
How to block Murdoch Independent Australia, Torin Peel 3 November 2013 Sick of News Corp spin? Technology whiz Torin Peel explains how to erase Rupert Murdoch’s propaganda from your computer screens completely. IF YOU’RE ONE OF THOSE PEOPLE who simply won’t stand for Rupert Murdoch’s crap anymore, now might be the time to completely erase him from your computer screens for good. There are many ways to do this, and they’re remarkably simple.
If you’re ready to block News Corpse, the first way we can do this is using a plugin for Google Chrome. If you don’t use Chrome, I recommend you download it. It’s a lot faster and more modern than Internet Explorer. It’s also a lot easier to use and works better with most web pages, including websites like Twitter and Facebook.
The Google Chrome plugin is called Murdoch Block, and can be added to Chrome with relative ease through the Chrome extensions library…… http://www.independentaustralia.net/business/business-display/how-to-block-murdoch,5861
If you believe that the main obligation of journalists is to the public right to know, the results of this study are truly alarming. Journalism is about reporting contemporary events as accurately as possible. There could be no better example of the importance of this than the reporting of climate science.
News Corp’s coverage seems to be more about production of ignorance than informing people so they can participate in debates about solutions. If people are confused or ignorant about potential threats, they cannot be expected to support action to confront them.
Big Australian media reject climate science The Conversation, Wendy Bacon,1 November 2013, Australia has the most concentrated press ownership in the world. What does that mean for significant issues such as climate change?
In 2011 and 2012 we at the Australian Centre for Independent Journalism at University of Technology, Sydney collected data on climate science coverage in ten Australian newspapers. We published the results yesterday in a report: Sceptical Climate: Part 2.
We found that Australia’s concentrated newspaper ownership has a significant effect on how climate science is covered. One third of articles in Australia’s major newspapers do not accept the consensus position of climate science: that human beings are contributing to climate change.
That’s a very high level of scepticism when you consider that these stories are rejecting findings that over 97% of the world’s climate scientists support. Recently the International Panel on Climate Change found there was 95% certainty that people were contributing to climate change.
How did we decide what was sceptical? Continue reading
Climate change: a note from our Letters editors http://www.smh.com.au/comment/smh-letters/climate-change-a-note-from-our-letters-editors-20131021-2vvjd.html October 21, 2013 Julie Lewis and Marc McEvoy Letters editors rarely make the news. This month the Los Angeles Times letters editor, Paul Thornton, did just that with a story on letters from climate-change deniers. He said he would not print letters that asserted “there is no sign humans have caused climate change” because “it was not stating an opinion, it’s asserting a factual inaccuracy”. This attracted headlines declaring “Los Angeles Times riles climate-change sceptics by banning letters”. Unsurprisingly, we’ve been asked how we treat letters from climate change deniers.
Herald editor-in-chief Darren Goodsir recently reiterated the paper’s stance on global warming. “The Herald believes unequivocally in human-induced climate change,” he told an audience at David Suzuki’s City Talk. “It is an established fact. What we are much more interested in is not the sideshow over whether this phenomenon exists or not, but on how it should be tackled.”
We do not ban writers whose views suggest they are climate change deniers or sceptics. We consider their letters and arguments. But we believe the argument over whether climate change is happening and whether it is man-made has been thrashed out extensively by leading scientists and on our pages and that the main debate now is about its effects, severity, and what society does about it.
Climate change deniers or sceptics are free to express opinions and political views on our page but not to misrepresent facts. This applies to all our contributors on any subject. On that basis, a letter that says, “there is no sign humans have caused climate change” would not make the grade for our page.
Let’s be honest – the global warming debate isn’t about science by Dana Nuccitelli Friday 4 October 2013 theguardian.comThe scientific evidence on human-caused global warming is clear. Opposition stems from politics, not science.The 2013 Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) report states with 95 percent confidence that humans have caused most, and probably all of the rapid global warming over the past 60 years. Approximately 97 percent of climate experts and peer-reviewed climate science studies agree…….
Politically biased media climate coverage is not a coincidence
The scientific evidence is what it is, and it has no political bias. The same is not true of the media outlets that cover the topic. It’s not a coincidence that politically conservative tabloids and newspapers like the Daily Mail, Telegraph, Australian, and Wall Street Journal spend a disproportionate amount of time amplifying the voices of the less than 3 percent of climate contrarian scientists, as well as many non-scientist contrarians.
It’s certainly not the case that David Rose has some brilliant insight into the state of climate science that climate scientists don’t have. He and his fellow climate contrarians simply approach the question backwards. They start from their political ideological opposition to climate solutions and work backwards, seeking out cherry picked evidence to justify their predetermined conclusions, thus ignoring the 97 percent of inconvenient scientific evidence. This climate contrarianism ideological bias is illustrated in a new study, summarized by Graham Readfearn: Continue reading
Reward and punishment: the making of media policy The Age October 2, 2013 Sally Young How will the government reward News Ltd for its wholehearted poll support? News Corp Australia (formerly News Limited) played an unusually active role during the election campaign in promoting a Tony Abbott-led Coalition government. The more cynical among us might be wondering then how long it will take for some form of quid pro quo to emerge in media policy.
……What News Corp did during the 2013 election campaign was unusual by Australian standards. We haven’t seen anything that aggressively partisan and directive since 1972 and 1975. ……hat might News Corp want from the government?
Any News Corp wish list will include ways to limit the ABC. Eighty years after the Lyons/Murdoch deals and in a new world of internet paywalls, the biggest newspaper group in the country still frets about competition from the ABC. Stopping the NBN and key recommendations from the Convergence Review can already be ticked off. But other desires may include watering down cross-media ownership rules and the anti-siphoning list that prevents Foxtel acquiring rights to televise certain sporting events, plus a crackdown on online piracy that infringes News Corp copyright.
The wish list might be larger and more ideological than mere commercial interests ………: http://www.theage.com.au/comment/reward-and-punishment-the-making-of-media-policy-20131001-2uqnz.html#ixzz2gbEFPL21
The nuclear advertising film ‘ Pandora’s Promise’ will be showing around Australia, and in Edinburgh and London in the next couple of weeks. It is largely funded by people from the pro nuclear Breakthrough Institute, including people like Bill Gates, who has his own nuclear power company Terra Power. It is directed by passionate nuclear enthusiast, Robert Stone, who does Q and A afterwards, and over-talks any critical questioners.
Weaknesses of this film include the way that it:
- mocks anti nuclear opinions as a bunch extremists and zealots. It makes no effort to portray any sensible opposing opinion.
- minimises the health effects of ionising radaiation with downright untruths, for instance, telling us only that Chernobyl killed 56 people. It leaves out that a United Nations World Health Organization agency predicts 16,000 more will die from Chernobyl cancers and that the European Environment Agency estimates 34,000 more. It omits that non-fatal thyroid cancer struck another 6,000, mostly children
- does not mention the crippling economics that is now closing nuclear plants in USA (Florida, Wisconsin and California), nor the imperative for tax-payer subsidy
- does not mention insurance: the nuclear industry, alone among industries is exempt from risk through USA’s Price Anderson Act, as well as every home owner’s insurance policy stating that this policy does not compensate you for any radiation damage from a nuclear power plant.
- avoids the economics of Small Nuclear reactors (SMRs) Even under the best of circumstances, there will be no SMR prototype for as long as a decade or more. There are serious questions over the economics of mass producing these, over their safety, and the huge costs of maintaining security over thousands of little nuclear reactors scattered around the land. None of this is discussed in the film.
- promotes Integral Fast Reactors (IFRs) – fast breeder reactors. but doesn’t mention the past failure of these, in USA , France (Super Phoenix) Japan (Monju), and their enormous cost.
- Dishonestly minimises the nuclear waste problems of IFR’s. Film does not explain that the final wastes, while smaller in volume, are far more radioactive and dangerous than existing nuclear wastes, and therefore require the same amount of storage space and security.
Top physicist accuses The Australian newspaper of misrepresenting his climate change views Graham Readfearn 24 Sept 13 IN a column this week in The Australian, writer Gary Johns tried to argue that the science of human-caused climate change was “contentious”, that climate change might not be that bad and that we shouldn’t bother to cut down on emissions.
The Australian newspaper has a record for favouring climate science denialism and contrarianism above genuine expertise.
Columns and coverage like this come along in the pages of the Rupert Murdoch-owned press with such regularity that you might think [blush] that they’ve got some kind of an agenda. Honestly, you could really think that.
In the latest column – “Let’s get realistic about reducing carbon emissions” – Johns writes approvingly of a project called the Nongovernmental Panel on Climate Change (NIPCC) while finding disparaging remarks about the United Nations Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change.
Johns doesn’t mention that the NIPCC is run by the fossil-fuel funded Heartland Institute in the United States, which advocates free market ideology within which businesses should be allowed to do pretty much whatever they like, such as using the atmosphere as a free waste dump.
But in one section of Johns’ column, he quotes and paraphrases Professor Richard Muller, a respected American physicist who was once sceptical of human-caused climate change. As reported in The Guardian and elsewhere, a couple of years ago Muller led a team based at the University of California which analysed more than 14 million temperature readings from 44,455 measuring sites from around the world going back to the mid 18th century.
Professor Muller found the world had warmed by 1.5C in the last 50 years and that burning fossil fuels and other human industrial processes were “almost entirely” the cause. Continue reading