Antinuclear

Australian news, and some related international items

As Julian Assange faces extradition to USA, global press freedom is endangered

 

October 12, 2020 Posted by | AUSTRALIA - NATIONAL, civil liberties, media, politics international | Leave a comment

Murdoch media monopoly – an ‘arrogant cancer on our democracy’

A cancer’: Kevin Rudd calls for royal commission into ‘Murdoch monopoly’, The New Daily,  Cait Kelly, 10 Oct 20, 

October 12, 2020 Posted by | AUSTRALIA - NATIONAL, media, politics | Leave a comment

Julian Assange could face life in America’s most dreaded ‘Supermax’ prison

October 1, 2020 Posted by | AUSTRALIA - NATIONAL, civil liberties, legal, media | Leave a comment

Australia’s media disgrace – the deliberate neglect of the Julian Assange extradition hearing

”Fair” castigates the international media for ignoring the Assange case – the “Media Trial of the Century”.   But hey !   What about the  Australian media?   Julian Assange is an  Australian.  When our citizens overseas commit murders and drug trafficking, it is all over our media, about their plight in the overseas justice system  – pages and pages, TV and radio broadcasts. Then the benevolent  Australian government bends over backwards to save their bacon.  But when it comes to Julian Assange – only  courageous mentions  by the soon to be demolished ABC .

Our whole media – News Corpse and the ABC ran a big campaign on “Press Freedom” –   Assange didn’t get a mention.  Why should I expect them to?  Decades ago they pillories Wilfred Burchett for reporting on Hiroshima bombing victims.  Kowtowing to USA is the system here.

September 26, 2020 Posted by | AUSTRALIA - NATIONAL, Christina reviews, media | Leave a comment

The media ignores Julian Assange and the Media ‘Trial of Century’ 

The United Nations has condemned his persecution, with Amnesty International describing the case as a “full-scale assault on the right to freedom of expression.” Virtually every story of national significance includes secret or leaked material; they could all be in jeopardy under this new prosecutorial theory.

President Donald Trump has continually fanned the flames, demonizing the media as the “enemy of the people.” Already 26% of the country (including 43% of Republicans) believe the president should have the power to shut down outlets engaging in “bad behavior.” A successful Assange prosecution could be the legal spark for future anti-journalistic actions.

Yet the case has been met with indifference from the corporate press. Even as their house is burning down, media are insisting it is just the Northern Lights.

Julian Assange: Press Shows Little Interest in Media ‘Trial of Century’  https://fair.org/home/julian-assange-press-shows-little-interest-in-media-trial-of-century/, ALAN MACLEOD   25 Sept 20,

Labeled the media “trial of the century,” WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange’s extradition hearing is currently taking place in London—although you might not have heard if you’re relying solely on corporate media for news. If extradited, Assange faces 175 years in a Colorado supermax prison, often described as a “black site” on US soil.

The United States government is asking Britain to send the Australian publisher to the US to face charges under the 1917 Espionage Act.  He is accused of aiding and encouraging Chelsea Manning to hack a US government computer in order to publish hundreds of thousands of documents detailing American war crimes, particularly in Afghanistan and Iraq. The extradition, widely viewed as politically motivated, has profound consequences for journalists worldwide, as the ruling could effectively criminalize the possession of leaked documents, which are an indispensable part of investigative reporting.

WikiLeaks has entered into partnership with five high-profile outlets around the world: the New York TimesGuardian (UK), Le Monde (France), Der Spiegel (Germany) and El País (Spain). Yet those publications have provided relatively little coverage of the hearing.

Since the hearing began on September 7, the Times, for instance, has published only two bland news articles (9/7/209/16/20)—one of them purely about the technical difficulties in the courtroom—along with a short rehosted AP video (9/7/20). There have been no editorials and no commentary on what the case means for journalism. The Times also appears to be distancing itself from Assange, with neither article noting that it was one of WikiLeaks’ five major partners in leaking information that became known as the CableGate scandal.

The Guardian, whose headquarters are less than two miles from the Old Bailey courthouse where Assange’s hearing is being held, fared slightly better in terms of quantity, publishing eight articles since September 7. Continue reading

September 26, 2020 Posted by | AUSTRALIA - NATIONAL, media | Leave a comment

News Corp, Facebook and disinformation about climate and pandemic

With its stranglehold on daily newspapers and online news, News Corp in Australia has created the most rightwing media culture in the English speaking world, and they aren’t really accountable to anyone.

Facebook is also the place where we see the two disinformation crises overlap.

Just like Australia, disinformation is thriving during the US fire crisis  https://www.theguardian.com/commentisfree/2020/sep/19/just-like-australia-disinformation-is-thriving-during-the-us-fire-crisis

Jason Wilson  20 Sept 20 In both countries, fake news about arson proliferated while the role of climate change was obscured.

isinformation successfully obscured the real causes of Australia’s catastrophic bushfire season. Now the same thing is happening around me, as I report on a disastrous wildfire season in the American west.

In both countries, the response to a pandemic is also being complicated by disinformation, as conspiracy theorists refuse isolation, refuse masks, and ready themselves to refuse vaccines.

A lot of the fundamental problems are the same, but there are differences in detail.

In the western United States in recent days, backroads vigilantism has seen civilians set up armed road blocks, and journalists held at the point of loaded assault rifles.

Australia does not have the complication of American gun culture, which is itself one marker of the clash of ideologies and identities in a deeply divided nation, and also raises the stakes on every other social conflict.

That may be, but it’s easy to forget that one of the major stumbling blocks to stricter gun laws in the United States is a bill of rights.

We can argue whether the right to bear arms is a sensible thing to constitutionally enshrine, but Australia has no such constitutionally defined individual rights, beyond those that the high court has seen fit to torture from the document.

The absence of such rights also contains the real world effects of conspiracy theories – the people recently arrested for incitement in Victoria over the promotion of Covid conspiracy theories and anti-lockdown protests would likely enjoy first amendment protections in the US. Whether or not people ought to have the liberty to promote ideas which are, frankly, insane, and a threat to public order, is beyond the scope of this article.

In other ways, Australia is worse off. It is easy to make the mistake of thinking that Fox News, or other skewed or tabloid media, is representative of US media as a whole. Continue reading

September 21, 2020 Posted by | AUSTRALIA - NATIONAL, media | Leave a comment

Australia’s mainstream media dutifully parrots out Government spin about gas

September 17, 2020 Posted by | AUSTRALIA - NATIONAL, climate change - global warming, media | Leave a comment

Following the UK court hearing on the extradition of Julian Assange

Your Man in the Public Gallery – Assange Hearing Day 8, Craig Murray  September 10, 2020  The great question after yesterday’s hearing was whether prosecution counsel James Lewis QC would continue to charge at defence witnesses like a deranged berserker (spoiler – he would), and more importantly, why?

QC’s representing governments usually seek to radiate calm control, and treat defence arguments as almost beneath their notice, certainly as no conceivable threat to the majestic thinking of the state. Lewis instead resembled a starving terrier kept away from a prime sausage by a steel fence whose manufacture and appearance was far beyond his comprehension.

Perhaps he has toothache.

PROFESSOR PAUL ROGERS

The first defence witness this morning was Professor Paul Rogers, Emeritus Professor of Peace Studies at the University of Bradford. He has written 9 books on the War on Terror, and has been for 15 years responsible for MOD contracts on training of armed forces in law and ethics of conflict. Rogers appeared by videolink from Bradford.

Prof Rogers’ full witness statement is here.

Edward Fitzgerald QC asked Prof Rogers whether Julian Assange’s views are political (this goes to article 4 in the UK/US extradition treaty against political extradition). Prof Rogers replied that “Assange is very clearly a person of strong political opinions.”

Fitzgerald then asked Prof Rogers to expound on the significance of the revelations from Chelsea Manning on Afghanistan. Prof Rogers responded that in 2001 there had been a very strong commitment in the United States to going to war in Afghanistan and Iraq. Easy initial military victories led to a feeling the nation had “got back on track”. George W Bush’s first state of the union address had the atmosphere of a victory rally. But Wikileaks’ revelations in the leaked war logs reinforced the view of some analysts that this was not a true picture, that the war in Afghanistan had gone wrong from the start. It contradicted the government line that Afghanistan was a success. Similarly the Wikileaks evidence published in 2011 had confirmed very strongly that the Iraq War had gone badly wrong, when the US official narrative had been one of success.

Wikileaks had for example proven from the war logs that there were a minimum of 15,000 more civilian deaths than had been reckoned by Iraq Body Count. These Wikileaks exposures of the failures of these wars had contributed in large part to a much greater subsequent reluctance of western powers to go to war at an early stage.

Fitzgerald said that para 8 of Rogers’ report suggests that Assange was motivated by his political views and referenced his speech to the United Nations. Was his intention to influence political actions by the USA?

Rogers replied yes. Assange had stated that he was not against the USA and there were good people in the USA who held differing views. He plainly hoped to influence US policy. Rogers also referenced the statement by Mairead Maguire in nominating Julian for the Nobel Peace Prize:

Julian Assange and his colleagues in Wikileaks have shown on numerous occasions that they are one of the last outlets of true democracy and their work for our freedom and speech. Their work for true peace by making public our governments’ actions at home and abroad has enlightened us to their atrocities carried out in the name of so-called democracy around the world.

Rogers stated that Assange had a clear and coherent political philosophy. He had set it out in particular in the campaign of the Wikileaks Party for a Senate seat in Australia. It was based on human rights and a belief in transparency and accountability of organisations. It was essentially libertarian in nature. It embraced not just government transparency, but also transparency in corporations, trade unions and NGOs. It amounted to a very clear political philosophy. Assange adopted a clear political stance that did not align with conventional party politics but incorporated coherent beliefs that had attracted growing support in recent years.

Fitzgerald asked how this related to the Trump administration. Rogers said that Trump was a threat to Wikileaks because he comes from a position of quite extreme hostility to transparency and accountability in his administration. Fitzgerald suggested the incoming Trump administration had demonstrated this hostility to Assange and desire to prosecute. Rogers replied that yes, the hostility had been evidenced in a series of statements right across the senior members of the Trump administration. It was motivated by Trump’s characterisation of any adverse information as “fake news”.

Fitzgerald asked whether the motivation for the current prosecution was criminal or political? Rogers replied “the latter”. This was a part of the atypical behaviour of the Trump administration; it prosecutes on political motivation. They see openness as a particular threat to this administration. This also related to Trump’s obsessive dislike of his predecessor. His administration would prosecute Assange precisely because Obama did not prosecute Assange. Also the incoming Trump administration had been extremely annoyed by the commutation of Chelsea Manning’s sentence, a decision they had no power to revoke. For that the prosecution of Assange could be vicarious revenge.

Several senior administration members had advocated extremely long jail sentences for Assange and some had even mooted the death penalty, although Rogers realised that was technically impossible through this process.

Fitzgerald asked whether Assange’s political opinions were of a type protected by the Refugee Convention. Rogers replied yes. Persecution for political opinion is a solid reason to ask for refugee status. Assange’s actions are motivated by his political stance. Finally Fitzgerald then asked whether Rogers saw political significance in the fact that Assange was not prosecuted under Obama. Rogers replied yes, he did. This case is plainly affected by fundamental political motivation emanating from Trump himself.

James Lewis QC then rose to cross-examine for the prosecution. His first question was “what is a political opinion?” Rogers replied that a political opinion takes a particular stance on the political process and does so openly. It relates to the governance of communities, from nations down to smaller units……….  https://www.craigmurray.org.uk/?fbclid=IwAR1SSVvRVbh8_y-5pargeR-U2E6JHQDcGUq_752VyejbktpjIbMY-g-MdnA

September 13, 2020 Posted by | AUSTRALIA - NATIONAL, civil liberties, legal, media | Leave a comment

Julian Assange’s extradition hearing in London. What can we expect?

What’s at stake at Julian Assange’s long-awaited extradition hearing?,    ABC 8 Sept 20, Julian Assange is fighting an attempt by the United States to extradite him to face charges on what it says was “one of the largest compromises of classified information in the history of the United States”.

It marks the culmination of a nearly decade-long pursuit by US authorities of the Australian-born WikiLeaks founder over the publication of secret documents and files in 2010 and 2011.

Assange’s extradition hearing had initially begun in February but was delayed for several months, and the coronavirus pandemic added additional delays, meaning Assange has been kept on remand in Belmarsh prison in south-east London since last September.

As reported by Background Briefing, Assange’s defence team will attempt to persuade the court he is unfit to travel to the US to face trial, and that the attempt to send him there is essentially an abuse of process.

How did he get to this point?

WikiLeaks made international headlines in April 2010 when it published a classified US military video showing an Apache attack helicopter gunning down 11 civilians, including two Reuters journalists, on a street in Baghdad in 2007.

Later that year, WikiLeaks released hundreds of thousands of US military messages and cables, a leak that saw former US Army intelligence analyst Chelsea Manning jailed……..

Assange, 49, has always denied the allegations, saying they were part of a US plot to discredit him and eventually extradite him to the US, and the investigation was eventually dropped in 2017.

He remained holed up in the embassy for seven years until April 2019, when the Ecuadorian government withdrew his asylum and Metropolitan Police officers arrested him for failing to surrender to the court over an arrest warrant issued in 2012……..

In May 2019, Assange was sentenced to 50 weeks in jail for breaching bail conditions, and during that time the US Justice Department brought 18 charges against him.

What is Assange accused of?

Assange is facing 17 charges relating to obtaining and disclosing classified information, and one charge concerning an alleged conspiracy to crack passwords on government servers.

The US alleges he conspired with Chelsea Manning to hack into US military computers to acquire the classified information published by WikiLeaks.

…… Assange maintains the information exposed abuses by the US military and that he was acting as a journalist and is therefore entitled to protection by the US’s First Amendment.

What can we expect from this hearing?

The court must examine a series of factors before any extradition can be granted, such as if the alleged crimes have equivalent offences in the UK and could lead to trial.

“It’s what’s called double criminality, in other words, whether the offences for which Assange is being sought in under US law are broadly being recognised under UK law,” Professor Don Rothwell, from the Australian National University, told Background Briefing.

Prosecutors have argued there is no doubt his actions would amount to offences under the UK’s Official Secrets Act.

If the court agrees, it must then consider how extradition would affect Assange’s health.

Previous court appearances this year have been delayed due to health issues, and his lawyers say his efforts to protect himself from US extradition and being stuck inside the Ecuadorian embassy for seven years had taken its toll.

If the court accepted it would be detrimental to his health, it could open up the possibility of protecting Assange in the UK under European human rights law.

The magistrate may also take issue with how the prosecutors are seeking to impose American law on what Mr Assange is alleged to have done outside of US territory.

“In this matter, US law is seeking to extend all the way, not only from the United States, but into the United Kingdom and into parts of Europe and basically impact upon the activities that Assange has undertaken associated with WikiLeaks over 10 years ago,” Professor Rothwell said…….

Assange’s legal team contends the US is seeking to prosecute Assange for political offences and that he is thereby exempt from extradition under the terms of the UK-US extradition treaty…….

What happens next?

The hearing is expected to last between three and four weeks, with any decision made likely to be appealed and go to a higher court, meaning the legal battle would likely drag into next year and possibly beyond that.

If Assange is eventually extradited to the United States and found guilty, he faces a maximum 175 years imprisonment for the 18 offences listed in the indictment.  https://www.abc.net.au/news/2020-09-09/julian-assange-what-does-extradition-hearing-mean/12642972

September 10, 2020 Posted by | AUSTRALIA - NATIONAL, civil liberties, media, secrets and lies | Leave a comment

Journalists have been let down by ABC management

There has been a great deal of public debate recently about funding for the ABC — the cuts to its budget and the redundancies that have resulted from those. But what of the organisation’s willingness to push back not only against funding cuts, but against political interference?

The recent departure of journalist Emma Alberici from the ABC has typified the management weaknesses that have seen the organisation too beholden to government mood and not willing enough to back its journalists, writes Denis Muller. He says Australian governments have a long history of trying to influence the way the ABC does its work, particularly when the Coalition has been in power, beginning under John Howard and going right up until the unvarnished hostility of the Abbott-Turnbull-Morrison years.

In the meantime, he says journalists have been let down. Management has one task: to provide support for its journalists to do independent work, regardless of corporate, economic or political influence. But there is no sign the ABC journalists have had that protection, least of all from the board. Instead, writes Muller, “they are at the mercy of a vindictive government, urged on by its mates in News Corporation, which has a vested interest in weakening the ABC and shamelessly campaigns for exactly that”.

August 27, 2020 Posted by | AUSTRALIA - NATIONAL, media | Leave a comment

ABC sacking of journalist Emma Alberici – part of years of ABC management kowtowing to the Australian government

August 27, 2020 Posted by | AUSTRALIA - NATIONAL, media | Leave a comment

Australia’s nuclear lobby targets young people, using Facebook and Instagram

Mining lobby pushes young people to embrace nuclear power ,  Financial Review, Aaron Patrick, 7 Aug 20,The mining industry has been wrestling for years with how to change one of the most entrenched rules in energy policy: a moratorium on nuclear power.Now, based on insights from a market researcher known for its political insights, the Minerals Council of Australia has begun a campaign to win over a group that could lead Australia to a nuclear industry: young people.

On Sunday, a week ago, 17 different ads started appearing on Facebook and Instagram promoting nuclear as safe, reliable and good for the environment.

Produced by the Mineral Council’s own staff, the ads are based on polling by JWS Research, which estimates support for nuclear power is 40 per cent, some 29 per cent of people are neutral or unsure, and women and people aged 18 to 34 are the least informed about nuclear power. Some aren’t even sure there is a connection between nuclear power and uranium, of which Australia is one of the world’s bigger producers.

After conducting focus groups and an online survey last year, JWS Research told the Minerals Council that support could rise to 55 per cent, or even higher, by providing more information to cou nter the reputational damage of the Three Mile Island, Chernobyl and Fukushima accidents.

“There is an obvious opportunity to educate Australians about nuclear power’s credentials,” JWS said in a report for the lobby group. “Low-level concerns about the cost of nuclear could be countered and its reliability and zero-emissions credentials should be promoted.”

The ad campaign isn’t a slick, big-budget production. Six ads, each about 1½ minutes long, contain statistics and information in graphical form set to music. “What are we afraid of,” says nuclear energy is the safest source of baseload electricity based on output, and no one died of radiation poisoning in the Fukushima meltdown in Japan in 2011.

Eleven other ads feature interviews about one minute long with experts and advocates discussing nuclear waste, medicine and reactor design at a nuclear conference in Sydney…….

In December, a parliamentary committee urged the government to legalise modern nuclear reactors, and in May Energy Minister Angus Taylor included nuclear among energy sources the government will study for investment.  https://www.afr.com/companies/energy/mining-lobby-pushes-young-people-to-embrace-nuclear-power-20200729-p55gp

August 8, 2020 Posted by | AUSTRALIA - NATIONAL, media, spinbuster | Leave a comment

The Australian government continues its war on the national broadcaster, the ABC

The war on the ABC and its options for survival Independent Australia, Independent Australia

By Lee Duffield | 1 August 2020   Dr Lee Duffield continues his examination of the current state of the ABC and its future under a Liberal government.

OFFICIAL AUSTRALIAN state policy since 2014 on its public broadcaster, the ABC, has been to throttle it through withdrawing its budget by stages while abusing it with propaganda through Liberal-linked commercial media — News Corp newspapers, 2GB radio network and Sky News pay television. There is also a subplot that involves, while the ABC survives, pressing it to deliver positive messaging for the government of the day.

It is a changed scene since broadcasting regulations providing oversight or program guidelines were dropped from the 1980s, the same as with the former Federal Communications Commission standards in America. The present-day barrage of extravagant opinion-making on commercial media is one result — different to the ABC, which being publicly-owned has to retain standards of accountability and fairness.

ABC broadcasters know they have formidable public support. Audience research over the decades shows that high proportions of the population from all walks of life use the service, depend on it, like it and respect it. It is sometimes conditional support; they do not like everything, but it gives the ABC, despite the six years of official abuse, breathing space to fall back on prepared positions as it has done through crises past.

………. the continuing pattern of the ABC. It provides service on many fronts, often service the commercials will never give, provided by broadcasters consulting their professional values, like the journalists guided by received news values — new and interesting, important and informative with no snide agendas.

Hatred?

So why this hatred of it? The answer is that a political and financial ideology which preoccupies certain people is obstructing the rest of us just getting a good range of services from the ABC — value for money, Australian culture first.

On one hand, the government of the day believes in privatising economic life to the direct benefit of wealthier constituents so it foregoes revenue – as with the scheme to cut company taxes – and will sell off public assets where it can. Some might watch and listen to the ABC, but that clearly gets outweighed by loyalty to party, money and power, so selling off is on the books.

Secondly, government trades favours with corporate backers, in the case of media indulging the demands of commercial broadcast interests for market protection, by pushing down the ABC — “people’s choice” not coming into it.

The relationship is being demonstrated by the trend for conservative ministers to make declarations or announcements through 2GB or Sky, where they can get the easiest, most matey, often fawning form of interview. The ABC is much less favoured, as it is independent and still does critical interviews; they look for the new information, hold the speaker to account, don’t run it on-and-on.

It does itself have a small co-operative part in this game by giving away slavish credits. Where ministers will only talk with 2GB or Sky, the audio or vision has to be recorded for replay and credited to them by name; they get a free ad on ABC. That goes against the alternative, that often if you take an allowable short excerpt – and copyright laws give fair leeway on this – you say it was “on radio”, or “on commercial television”…….   https://independentaustralia.net/business/business-display/the-war-on-the-abc-and-its-options-for-survival,14161

August 1, 2020 Posted by | AUSTRALIA - NATIONAL, media | Leave a comment

Murdoch press enthusiastic about nuclear propagandist Michael Shellenger

Murdoch press supports ‘reformed climate activist’ Michael Shellenberger https://independentaustralia.net/business/business-display/murdoch-press-supports-reformed-climate-activist-michael-shellenberger,14065  By Steve Bishop | 3 July 2020The mainstream press published an attack on climate science by a supposed environmentalist who is, in fact, a nuclear lobbyist, writes Steve Bishop.

THE AUSTRALIAN misled its readers this week when it carried a major article purporting to be written by a climate activist who was, as it turned out, admitting climate science was bunkum.

Michael Shellenberger, headlined as an environmentalist in the article, is, in fact, a self-advertised nuclear power lobbyist and an advocate for nuclear weapons proliferation.

Other Murdoch newspapers and Australia’s Sky News have also carried Shellenberger’s claim that:

‘On behalf of environmentalists everywhere, I would like to formally apologise for the climate scare we created over the past 30 years.’

He may once have been an environmentalist, but the fact is he was exposed – not for the first time – for attacking climate science as long ago as 2010 by the Public Interest Research Centre which reported that along with a co-author he had restated:

‘…a plethora of half-truths, misrepresentations and outright fantasies that have lately become almost canonical in the public sphere.’

Shellenberger makes his agenda clear on various websites and elsewhere: the present approach to dealing with climate change is not working, renewable power sources won’t solve the problem and, therefore, the entire world needs to be nuclear powered.

He told the Sydney Morning Herald in 2017 that the widespread adoption of nuclear power across the world would solve the climate change problem:

“…because it basically reduces your carbon emissions to near zero in the power sector.”

The Herald described him not as an environmentalist but as a ‘nuclear power advocate’.

In 2003, he co-founded the Breakthrough Institute which says on its website:

Breakthrough’s energy work has focused heavily on the future of nuclear energy. Along with a growing cohort of scientists, journalists, philanthropists, and environmentalists, we have made the case that addressing climate change will require abundant, cheap, safe, and reliable nuclear energy.’

In 2016, he became the founder and president of an enterprise lobbying for the nuclear industry, giving it the misleading title of Environmental Progress.

He describes its aim:

‘The greatest threat to the climate today comes from the decline of clean energy as a share of electricity globally. EP is working with scientists, conservationists and citizens around the world to defend our largest source of clean energy, nuclear power.’

The website boasts:

‘He has helped save nuclear reactors around the world, from Illinois and New York to South Korea and Taiwan, thereby preventing an increase in air pollution equivalent to adding over 24 million cars to the road.’

In a major article for Forbes magazine in 2018, Shellenberger wrote:

‘Who are we to deny weak nations the nuclear weapons they need for self-defence?’

In another 2018 Forbes article under the cross-heading ‘Why nuclear energy prevents war’, Shellenberger wrote:

‘After over 60 years of national security driving nuclear power into the international system, we can now add “preventing war” to the list of nuclear energy’s superior characteristics.’

Renew Economy reported in 2017 he was:

‘…stridently pro-nuclear, hostile towards renewable energy and hostile towards the environment movement.’

At that time, Shellenberger was in Australia to speak at a major conference – not a climate change summit but the International Mining and Resources Conference – to advance the cause of nuclear power.

This is not the first time The Australian has used this nuclear lobbyist to attack renewable energy and climate science. It featured him three years ago under the headline‘Nuclear “must replace coal, gas”’.

He was in Australia to promote his message that wind and solar have failed, that they are doubling the cost of electricity and that:

“…all existing renewable technologies do is make the electricity system chaotic and provide greenwash for fossil fuels.”

In his article, Shellenberger gives 12 examples of scientific findings which he says are incorrect and which are climate alarmism.

Take just the first: ‘Humans are not causing a “sixth mass extinction”’.

His assertion contradicts the work of more than 1,000 scientists contributing to the Intergovernmental Science-Policy Platform on Biodiversity and Ecosystem Services (IPBES) which found ‘1,000,000 species threatened with extinction’ and warned:

“We are eroding the very foundations of our economies, livelihoods, food security, health and quality of life worldwide.”

What makes The Australian’s publishing of the article all the more risible is that in reality, it is a puff piece for Shellenberger’s new book, Apocalypse Never and is more or less identical with what he had published on his website on 29 June.

Forbes, which has carried Shellenberger’s articles in the past, withdrew the puff piece.

National Post asked Forbes why this had happened and was told:

‘Forbes requires its contributors to adhere to strict editorial guidelines. This story did not follow those guidelines and was removed.’

Don’t expect The Australian to follow suit.

(Readers who might want to read about a real climate scientist changing his mind about global warming should read Professor Richard Muller’s story.)

July 6, 2020 Posted by | AUSTRALIA - NATIONAL, media | Leave a comment

Julian Assange’s father in tireless fight to free his son, calls on Scott Morrison to help Australian citizen Julian

Assange’s father calls extradition process ‘disgrace’  https://telanganatoday.com/assanges-father-calls-extradition-process-disgrace?fbclid=IwAR1a7bQ0W_Xcgc9EIeGaAHVP7Zmm2cM6nNV65ZXtkhCwNUlarqIYTJVw6xo1 July 20, The 80-year-old is organizing public events in Australia despite the ongoing coronavirus pandemic and hopes to travel to London in August to support Assange during his extradition trial.  

Sydney: WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange’s father, John Shipton, is fighting tirelessly for the release and return of his son, who is facing an extradition trial in London for publishing classified information, a process he described as abuse.

“We maintain that the extradition request is a fraud in the English court… It’s a fraud in the English legal system, it’s a case of abuse of process, it is a disgrace,” Shipton, who travelled from Melbourne to Sydney to campaign for his son’s release, told Efe news in an interview.
The 80-year-old is organizing public events in Australia despite the ongoing coronavirus pandemic and hopes to travel to London in August to support Assange during his extradition trial which, he says, is being carried out under “dire” circumstances.

In May 2019, the UN Special Rapporteur on Torture, Nils Melzer, said, after visiting Assange in the Belmarsh prison along with two medical experts, that he showed “all symptoms typical for prolonged exposure to psychological torture, including extreme stress, chronic anxiety and intense psychological trauma”.

Assange has spent almost a decade in confinement, first under house arrest in a British town and then at the Ecuadorian embassy in London between 2012 until 2019, when Ecuador withdrew his political asylum status.

Shipton has urged the Australian government to mediate with the UK administration for the release of his son, who is wanted in the US on 18 charges of espionage and computer intrusion, for which he could be sentenced to prison for up to 175 years.

“I believe the government can, if it wishes to, assist us in bringing Julian home. I believe that (it) is very simple for the Prime Minister (Scott Morrison) to pick up the phone and ring (his UK counterpart) Boris Johnson and say Julian Assange is an Australian citizen in dire circumstances.

“This will resolve this immediately and that’s easily possible,” he told Efe news during the interview.

July 2, 2020 Posted by | AUSTRALIA - NATIONAL, civil liberties, legal, media, politics, politics international | Leave a comment