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Saturday, 23 December

06:30

Amnesia Blues Band "IndyWatch Feed Alllocal"

Friday 22nd Dec, 7.30pm 10.00pm, Sporting Legends
Sale

Wednesday, 20 December

23:42

Severe thunderstorm hits Victoria, leaving 100 000 homes without power "IndyWatch Feed Allstate"

A quick-moving severe thunderstorm accompanied by destructive, golf-sized hail and strong winds hit Victoria, Australia on Tuesday, December 19, 2017, leaving 100 000 homes without power. The Victoria office of Bureau of Meteorology said an extraordinary amount of...... Read more

23:22

Technology To Aid Your Financial Decisions "IndyWatch Feed Economics.au"

Everyone earns. Be it from a regular salaried job or from a business that has varied earnings. When they earn the money, apart from what they require to meet their regular expenses, the amount left out is saved.

Invest Wisely

When there is excess money, it has to be invested wisely, so that it can earn more rather than sit idle in the account. Though banks offer an interest on the amount deposited with them, when the money is invested outside, it earns better.

One can invest in their own business, in property or the financial market. The financial market has a lot of scope and a wide range of options to choose from. However for one to invest in such venues fruitfully, they need some basic knowledge. Without knowing about the various financial instruments and rules around it, one cannot make an informed decision.

Apart from this, one also needs to up to date with the various happening s in the financial world. This is important because any changes in the financial world or business world can influence the movement of stocks and investors.

Fintech

Now, when you have a business to take care of and other duties occupying your time, it is not easy to keep track of everything that is happening in the market. This is where Fintech LTD comes to your aid.

This is a financial software that not only provides all updates regarding the financial markets but also provides various financial services. These companies compete with the banks and other financial service providers.

The biggest advantage enjoyed by these companies that they are able to pass on to the customers is the innovative technology and speed of transferring information. Banks are not able to keep up with this speed due to the various rules and regulations controlling them.

Though the older generation prefers the paper printouts and letters sent home regarding the banking services, account statements, etc, the current generation that has its world in the palm of its hands, prefer such technology.

Hence these companies target the younger more tech savvy generation. Also these are the incoming customers for all the financial services and products. Thus by targeting them and providing something that is convenient for them only helps in the growth of the business.

When such technology exists, one need not worry about not knowing every event happening in the market. They need not read the papers or peruse through news articles and decode the impact of the events on the market. This software keeps its customers updated with news that matters and helps them have the financial market at their fin...

22:50

2017: Carbon Briefs end-of-year review "IndyWatch Feed Enviro.au"

As the year draws to a close, Carbon Brief takes a look at 2017s top climate and energy stories through the medium of numbers

49 countries

For CO2 emissions to fall, they first have to peak. And research published this year suggests that this is already happening.

The report, produced by the US-based World Resources Institute (WRI), suggests that 49 countries which include the UK, US, Australia, Brazil and Canada have seen their emissions peak, representing around 36% of current global emissions.

Carbon Brief created an interactive chart of WRIs data as part of our coverage.

But how much time does the world collectively have left to reduce its emissions in order to avoid dangerous climate change?

At the beginning of the year, Carbon Brief published our traditional carbon budget update, revealing that just four years of current CO2 emissions would blow whats left of the budget for a good chance of keeping global temperature rise to 1.5C.

However, in September, a new study published in Nature Geoscience proposed that there might be a little more breathing space to meet the 1.5C limit than previously thought.

As lead author Dr Richard Millar explained in a guest post, the study estimates the remaining 1.5C carbon budget from today onwards. This contrasts to previous methods which have been based on cumulative emissions to date. As a result, Millars study put the remaining 1.5C budget at around 20 years of current emissions.

The paper caused quite a stir, with parts of the media claiming that climate models the basis for carbon budget estimates are wrong and have overstated the observed warming of the planet.

Carbon Brief...

22:17

After some R & R American Registered LearJet 36A Bizjet N82GG Departs Rockhampton Airport "IndyWatch Feed Alllocal"

After arriving on the weekend and seemingly not moving at all, on Wednesday 20 December, the visiting American registered and privately operated LearJet 36A bizjet N82GG departed Rockhampton Airport for the Gold Coast.  It then headed further South, reportedly to Melbourne (Essendon).


As shown in the photo above (and in previous photos posted on the CQ Plane Spotting Blog during its visits in 2015 and 2016) the LearJet has a camera on the forward-starboard side of the fuselage and is again in Australia once again completing aerial survey flights.  I have been informed that N82GG may be operating aerial mapping sorties for Google.

Meanwhile, a couple of other bizjet movements in CQ occurred on Tuesday 19 December when Shortstop Jet Charter Dassault Falcon 900C VH-OAA made yet another visit to Hamilton Island Airport.  It arrived once again from its Melbourne (Essendon) base.  At the time of writing, VH-OAA is due to return to Essendon on Thursday 21 December.

Also on Tuesday 19 December, LifeFlight (Aeromed) LearJet 45 bizjet VH-VVI "Ambulance 451" arrived into Mackay Airport from Cairns.  It looked to be operating a medical retrieval flight and later departed to Brisbane.

Finally, a couple of corporate turboprop movements this week have included Pegasus Air / Agile Aviation (of South Australia) Pilatus PC-12/47E VH-TCP departing Hamilton Island Airport for Charleville and its Adelaide base on Wednesday 20 December.  It had arrived direct from its Adelaide base over the weekend.  And The Queensland Government Airwing (State of Queensland) Raytheon B300 Super King Air VH-SGQ visited Gladstone Airport from Brisbane on Tuesday 19 December.

Photo taken by Don Williams 

22:02

The last post...for a while "IndyWatch Feed National"

This blog was initiated by Pauline Wilson, an Adelaide based UFO researcher, in 2009. When Pauline's interests moved on to other things, I took over the blog. Since 2009 there have been 896 posts; some short, and some thousands of words in length.

Over my 51 years of interest in the subject, I have taken a number of breaks from my research. My shortest break was six months, and the longest was four years. I find these breaks from research to be very useful. One can get so involved in the topic that you can't sit back and make objective decisions about things.

Despite all the current excitement about the formerly secret US Department of Defence UFO program, it is time for me to take another break. At the moment I do not know how long the break will be.

I thank all my blog readers for sharing the journey so far.

So, this blog will see no new posts until I return from my 'holiday' from UFO research.

Signing off for now.

Regards,

Keith Basterfield.

21:35

Needed "IndyWatch Feed Alllocal"

Untitled-2

Hi folks - need to paint some rooms in a house - looking for someone to help preferably with some experience...

$25 an hour (or your going rate if youre experienced). 

Between 22nd of December and 2nd of January 

Ash. 

0435 370 350

21:35

For Sale "IndyWatch Feed Alllocal"

Untitled-2

For sale: Handsome Tux, $30.

Black and White, Muscovy/Khaki-Campbell cross. 

For sale to a good home. 

Answers to the name Tux. 

Very friendly and easy going. We are quite fond of Tux but have some new fledglings and need the room. 

If interested please ring Brendan on 0412 353 153.

...

19:46

The Trump Doctrine: American Interests Come First "IndyWatch Feed National"

US President Donald Trump speaks about his administrations National Security Strategy at the Ronald Reagan Building and International Trade Center in Washington, DC, Dec.18, 2017. (AFP)

By ARTHUR HERMAN December 19, 2017 2:55 PM

@ARTHURLHERMAN

The president recognizes important new realities in world affairs. Ever since Donald Trump took office, Americans have wondered if he has a coherent vision of Americas place in the world, or if he sees foreign affairs the way he sees Twitter: as a space where emotion and instinct roam free from the restraints of rational discourse. Now we have an answer.

The speech he gave Monday at the Reagan Center was the curtain-raiser for his new National Security Strategy, a 55-page document that gives us more insight into Trumps view of the world than has any text since his speech to the U.N. in July and a far more comprehensive insight than weve ever had before.

The Trump Doctrine can now be summed up as follows: America and American interests will always come first, globalist agendas second. But dont think you can cross us, or our allies, with impunity. Americas not looking for trouble, but if you come after us or them, we will hurt you like hell.

 

Many have further highlighted the presidents concept of principled realism in foreign affairs: realist because it acknowledges the central role of power in international po...

19:15

In rush to launch service on a new, faster Amtrak route; Amtrak didnt wait for system that couldve prevented wreck "IndyWatch Feed National"

The Associated Press

The rush to launch service on a new, faster Amtrak route near Seattle came at a deadly cost critical speed-control technology that could have prevented a derailment was not active before the train set off on its maiden voyage.

Work to install the sophisticated, GPS-based technology known as positive train control isnt expected to be completed until next spring on the newly opened 15-mile (24-kilometer) span where the train derailed, according to Sound Transit, the public agency that owns the tracks.

The train was going 80 mph (129 kph) in a 30 mph (48 kph) zone Monday when it raced off the rails as they curved toward a bridge, hurtling train cars onto a highway below, investigators said. Three people were killed, and dozens were injured. Federal investigators say they are looking into whether the engineer was distracted.

A positive train control system could have detected the speeding and automatically applied the brakes to stop the train, said Najmedin Meshkati, a University of Southern California professor who has studied the technology for three decades.

It is another layer of safety, he said.

The head of the railroad safety program at the University of Delaware describes how Positive Train Control, technology that can automatically slow or stop a speeding train, could have prevented the deadly Amtrak derailment in Seattle. (Dec. 19)

Amtrak and the Washington Department of Transportation started publicizing the switch to the new route in October. Amtrak CEO Richard Anderson said that no one wants PTC more than me but would not directly answer questions about why it is taking so long to get the speed-control technology up and running across the board.

Im a huge believer in positive train control, he said at a news conference Tuesday evening. It just makes so much scientific sense.

Image may contain: night and outdoor

Anderson said the companys safety culture can continue to improve and said the crash should be seen as a wake-up call.

Its not acceptable that were involved in these types of accidents, he said.

Railroads are un...

18:35

Erdogan rival vows to overturn executive presidency "IndyWatch Feed National"

 

Turkeys Iyi (Good) Party chairman Meral Aksener answers questions during an interview with AFP in Ankara, in this December 15, 2017 photo. (AFP)

ANKARA: A dissident Turkish nationalist who founded a new political party and is now viewed as a possible rival to President Recep Tayyip Erdogan has vowed to scrap her opponents vision of a super-presidency if elected.

.
Meral Aksener, 61, Turkeys first...

18:26

1) President distributes 2,568 land certificates in West Papua "IndyWatch Feed Alllocal"


2) 74 villages in papua and west papua to have access to electricity

3) Marking Trikora declaration, protests calling for Papuan self-determination held in 14 cities

4) 66 arrested and 4 beaten at solidarity rallies held in 14 Indonesian cities to reject Indonesias occupation of West Papua
-------------------------------------------------

https://en.antaranews.com/news/113953/president-distributes-2568-land-certificates-in-west-papua

1) President distributes 2,568 land certificates in West Papua
Reporter: ...

18:23

Michael Knox on why the RBA wont hike interest rates any time soon "IndyWatch Feed Alllocal"

In todays Financial Review, economics correspondent Jacob Greber observed:

The RBA has gone more than seven years now without raising interest rates, the longest span since the official cash rate was introduced in the early 1990s.

Indeed, on Melbourne Cup day in 2010, the RBA Board surprised the market and decided to lift the banks cash rate target to 4.75 percent, but since then it has had to progressively cut the cash rate target, which is now at 1.5 percent. You can see how the cash rate target has changed over time at the RBA website.

According to one prominent Brisbane-based market economist, we may not see the wage and CPI inflation that would prompt the RBA to raise rates until at least the second half of 2019, when he projects the Australian unemployment rate will finally fall below its long-run natural rate of around 5 percent. Morgans Chief Economist Michael Knox has written an excellent note on Why the RBA wont hike rates any time soon. He notes:

Why is it that the decline in Australian unemployment is so slow? One reason might be the high level of under-employment. The ABS tells us that when we include the number of people in part-time employment who want full-time jobs, then their estimate of underemployment in November 2017 rises to 8.3%. As employment grows, there is an additional source of supply of labour from this pool of under-employment. This acts to slow the decline in unemployment. It also acts to slow the increase in full time wages.

The national (seasonally adjusted) underemployment rate of 8.3 percent identified by Michael Knox adds to the unemployment rate of 5.4 percent to give a total labour underutilisation rate reported by the ABS of 13.7 percent. This underutilisation rate is significantly higher in Queensland at 14.5 percent (see charts below). Underutilisation of the labour force has been a persistent concern in Australia since the financial crisis, and it may indeed take some time yet for the economy to return to more normal rates of labour utilisation.

...

18:15

Parallel Lines - 06 December 2017 "IndyWatch Feed Alllocal"

Sara speaks with Dr Matt Palm, postdoctoral fellow at the University of Melbourne/Transforming Housing research network, on the Vic govt's Public Housing Renewal Program  Andrew Milward-Bason and Charlotte St Clair Wilson from the Nicholas Building Association chat with Sara about 'A Night at the Nicholas'. Lastly Sara talks to June Jones (Two Steps on the Water) about the Emotion Punk Records label launch

18:09

Watzal und Dershowitz "IndyWatch Feed National"

watzal dersh.png Share

By Gilad Atzmon

Two days ago, I revealed that Ludwig Watzal, a  supposedly  pro Palestinian German  writer, attempted to defame me and my work by doctoring my words and fabricating quotes.

Some of my supporters who follow Watzals work approached Watzal and asked him for clarification.

Watzals initial response was to dismiss their questions.

This is all trash written by a Zionist agent, Watzal answered.

Screen Shot 2017-12-18 at 16.54.40.png

 So again, I have been labeled a Zionist agent, just for pointing at the depth of duplicity in the midst of the Palestinian Solidarity Movement.

But then Watzal was shown screen shots from my book The Wandering Who? that proved that he had completely invented my words. The German disinformation merchant changed his tune.

Watzal had to admit that he had lifted the quotes from no other than ethnic cleanser advocate, Prof.  Alan Dershowitz. You may ask why a Palestinian solidarity activist would turn to Dershowitz as an authority. You would expect Watzal to know that Prof. Noam Chomsky described Dershowitz as a remarkable liar and slanderer.

But our story doesnt end there. Watzal, the hapless imbecile managed  to dig an even deeper hole. Watzal wrote to a respected solidarity activist who had q...

18:02

Port Campbell Group rejects DELWP's 'Smart Planning' "IndyWatch Feed Enviro.au"

"The proposed Smart Planning must not proceed in its current form. The Group does not support fast tracking development, weakening permit or planning triggers or referral requirements, or permit exemptions, or the removal of appeal rights." Inside find Port Campbell Community Group Inc's submission to the Victorian Planning Provisions Discussion Paper.

Port Campbell Community Group Inc. A0051688U
Submission to DELWPs Smart Planning November 2017

In the interests of balancing the present and future interests of all Victorians (g) that Smart Plannings so-called Key Benefits must better align with the P&E Acts Objectives which requires all development (f) to foremost meet (a), (b), (c) and (d):
(a) to provide for the fair, orderly, economic and sustainable use, and development of land;
(b) to provide for the protection of natural and man-made resources and the maintenance of ecological processes and genetic diversity;
(c) to secure a pleasant, efficient and safe working, living and recreational environment for all Victorians and visitors to Victoria;
(d) to conserve and enhance those buildings, areas or other places which are of scientific, aesthetic, architectural or historical interest, or otherwise of special cultural value;
(e) to protect public utilities and other assets and enable the orderly provision and coordination of public utilities and other facilities for the benefit of the community;
(f) to facilitate development in accordance with the objectives set out in paragraphs (a), (b), (c), (d) and (e);
(g) to balance the present and future interests of all Victorians.

Community Expertise

Community members and groups are crucial for their local knowledge and expertise which, if listened to, would save the State and public millions of dollars in wasted time and energy considering flawed planning proposals.
The Group has taken part in in many planning consultations see Appendix A.

Four instances of poor planning decisions are listed below, some current:

The Southern Ocean Beach House
A major motel, retail development and excavation within meters of major caverns on Port Campbells fragile limestone headland cliffs.
The University of New South Wales Law Journal published a special...

17:50

Severe thunderstorms hit Victoria, Australia "IndyWatch Feed Alllocal"

Victorians are cleaning up after severe thunderstorms swept across the state, bringing strong winds and rain that has damaged houses and uprooted trees. The State Emergency Service (SES) said they had received hundreds of calls for assistance after storms brewed on yesterday afternoon. A severe thunderstorm warning for damaging winds, heavy rain and large hailstones remains current for much of the state. More than 30,000 homes properties are still without power, down from about 100,000 around the state last night. Power was also out in parts of suburban Melbourne but the impact was far less significant. The weather bureau's Dean Stewart said Melbourne received 20 millimetres of rain within 15 minutes, causing flash flooding in many suburbs. "The highest wind gust in the state was up at Kilmore Gap to the north of Melbourne - 117 kilometre per hour - but a lot of towns reported gusts over 100kph, [followed by] Wangaratta with 113kph, Bendigo 111kph, Mangalore 107kph, Laverton 98kph," he said.

17:39

The Bard in the Badlands Hell is empty and the devils are here "IndyWatch Feed Alllocal"

What happens when the robots, androids, replicants, call them what you will, feel emotion and sentiment, establish relationships, and recall memories, like humans do? When the boss starts disrupting the storylines, the droids go off-script, think their own thoughts, and live their own lives. And lo! bad things happen! Before you know it, robots start quoting the Bard of Avon.

Westworld addresses some disturbing concepts. The mechanical and moral arcs of Artificial Intelligence. The ethical implications of an escapist theme park where well-heeled guests indulge in gamer-like fantasies, some of which that would see them jailed in their mainstream, material lives play poker in a saloon (and cheat), go with a whore (of either sex), ride out with a posse, witness or even participate in a gunfight and rape and pillage through a simulacrum Wild West, killing and fucking whomever they liked.

And then there are the hosts, the oh-so-realistic (are you one of them is a question often asked by a fascinated and impressed guest) robots, androids, cyborgs, replicants call them what you will depending on your favourite sci-if film who play out pre-written, sometimes derivative, mostly anodyne, but often perverse storylines, with added code for improvisations to move the guests adventures along, and for prohibitions on the use of knives, axes and firearms,  because management mandates that whist guest might get injured, by accident or for the thrill of it, none must get themselves killed.

....

17:38

Playgroups Santa surprises "IndyWatch Feed Alllocal"

FOSTER Playgroups annual Christmas Party on Wednesday December 13 could not have asked for better weather. There was a big turnout to see the Foster fire truck pull up with []

The post Playgroups Santa surprises appeared first on Foster Community Online.

17:34

Foster pool officially open! "IndyWatch Feed Alllocal"

BECAUSE of the extremely hot day on Wednesday December 13 it was decided the Foster Pool would open early this year. There is much to celebrate and many people to []

The post Foster pool officially open! appeared first on Foster Community Online.

17:22

Seeking feedback for Port Welshpool Marina "IndyWatch Feed Alllocal"

SOUTH Gippsland Shire Council is encouraging residents to share their thoughts on the Port Welshpool Marine Precinct Plan before consultation closes. Coastal Promontory Ward Councillors met with community members in []

The post Seeking feedback for Port Welshpool Marina appeared first on Foster Community Online.

17:21

Alpine Council suspends further work on Dinner Plain village green for time being "IndyWatch Feed Alllocal"

At the Council meeting on December 18, Alpine Shire Council voted to suspend further development of the current feasibility work for the village green. Council will leave open the option of a village oval for future development once they have done the required vegetation offsets for Lot 3 (see below). Lot 3 is the land to the south of the village which is currently undeveloped.

Separate to this project, a planning permit has recently been granted for the construction of 7.1 km of new mountain bike trails in Dinner Plain, and the estimated cost of delivering this project is $400,000. Trail construction work is planned to commence in early 2018.

The following motion was adopted in relation to the Dinner Plain Village Green project;

That Council:

  1. Does not proceed with the Dinner Plain Village Green project;
  2. Considers future open space proposals at Dinner Plain that are low cost and have low environmental, cultural heritage and visual impacts; and,
  3. Investigates the potential to establish Lot 3 as a Native Vegetation Credit Register Offset Site for future Dinner Plain projects.

There are further materials from Council about the project and the consultation process around the proposal available here. Check here for a recent Mountain Journal article on the proposal.

In documents prepared for the meeting, Council noted that the following significant issues would need to be addressed to achieve successful project delivery:

  • Native vegetation removal will trigger the requirement for a planning permit. The permit application will be subject to public exhibition and based on the results of the community engagement we expect objections to be raised to the proposal from members of the Dinner Plain community and from further afield.

Opposition to the project has the potential to escalate, particularly on environmental grounds.

  • The Department of Environment, Land, Water and Planning (DELWP) is a referral authority for the planning permit, and their support for the project is contingent on demonstrating an overwhelming benefit for the project to proceed, and that all reasonable steps have been taken to minimise impact on native vegetation.
  • Three specific vegetation offsets are yet to be identified.
  • Significant cultural heritage value may be found at the project site.......

17:20

Port Welshpool Maritime Museum is the towns Jewel in the Crown "IndyWatch Feed Alllocal"

By Janet Taylor THE Port Welshpool & District Maritime Museum recently celebrated another milestone in its history. For 40 long years it has been operating as a Museum to the []

The post Port Welshpool Maritime Museum is the towns Jewel in the Crown appeared first on Foster Community Online.

17:10

The latest scam from the European Commission the roadmap Part 2 "IndyWatch Feed Economics.au"

This is the second part of my two-part series analysing the latest offering from the European Commission on Eurozone reform. Today, I consider the two concrete proposals to emerge from last weeks Completing Europes Economic and Monetary Union policy package. The two concrete proposals are: Creation of a European Monetary Fund to absorb the intergovernmental European Stability Fund and the integration of the Fiscal Compact into the Treaty on the Functioning of the European Union. Neither are reforms worth considering. In general, they reflect a desire by the European Commission to further extend its control and to make it harder for Member States to act unilaterally. Given these are the only two actual action plans that the European Commission has proposed in its latest salvo to extend the monetary union, one has to conclude that there is little chance that anything progressive will come out of this process. And, that should inform the Europhile Left that they are on the wrong horse. They seem to have a blind faith that pressure will eventually force the European Commission to come up with policies and structures that would deliver progressive outcomes. That faith is delusional. It would be better for the Europhile Left to come to terms with that reality and get behind progressive movements that seek to restore national (currency) sovereignty, which will allow the current Member States to restore full employment and start rebuilding some prosperity.

The use of the Eurobarometer to support integrationist reform

In its fact sheets, the European Commission quotes research from the Eurobarometer, which is a series of surveys conducted twice yearly since 1973 across all the member countries of the EEC/EC/EU The Standard Eurobarometer is supplemented by ad hoc surveys on speci c topics (the so-called Special Eurobarometers and the Flash Eurobarometers) (Source).

The European Commission publication (December 6, 2017) Further Steps towards completing Europes Economic and Monetary Union provides two graphs from the December 2017 Eurobarometer, which they claim shows that:

1. 64% of citizens in the euro area say the euro is a good thing the highest level since the introduction of euro notes and coins in 2002.

2. The second graph shows that 85 per cent of Irish respondents through the euro was a good thing down to 36 per cent of Latvian respondents.

They claim that this demonstrates the democratic nature of the euro.

Well I wo...

17:00

The 'War on Christmas' and other myths: Returning to a tabloid near you "IndyWatch Feed Politics.au"

The 'War on Christmas' and other myths: Returning to a tabloid near youThe "war on Christmas" is a right-wing cultural tactic to suggest there's a conspiracy to change society as we know it. read now...

16:14

VIP Thursday @ Sporties "IndyWatch Feed Alllocal"

  Photos supplied by Dylan Hodgon.

The post VIP Thursday @ Sporties appeared first on QNEWS.

16:12

The ASX to Ride High in 2018 "IndyWatch Feed Economics.au"

Way back in January this year it feels so long ago now I made the case that Aussie stocks could attack all-time highs in 2017.

Were probably going to run out of time to get all the way. But hey, whos complaining?

The market hit its highest point since 2008 yesterday.

We can thank a buoyant US market and a cracking iron ore price for a lot of the nice momentum.

Iron ore was forecast to trade at US$55 a tonne in May. Its still over US$70. This is millions in unexpected revenue for the government and the miners.

Aussie Treasurer Scott Morrison might even be able to afford those middle class tax cuts being bandied about for next years budget.

The pitch for those will be that it will boost Australias flagging consumption. And it might. More likely, however, is that the extra income is used for extra borrowing power and ploughed into the housing market. The stock market too.

To me, 2018 looks bullish for asset markets. 7,000 points on the ASX is on the way

These two bogies dont look so scary anymore

And yet remember this year when fund manager Philip Parker quit his business, gave investors their money back, and said the systematic risk in the economy was simply too high? Maybe you dont. This was back in May.

At The Daily Reckoning Australia, we took our stand and said hold your nerve. You can go back and read that here if you like.

Parker cited Chinese debt and an overheated east coast property market as his major causes for concern. Perhaps it was all a ruse about something else. I dont know. It caused a bit of a stir at the time.

Both dont look so scary six months later.

In fact, the property market looks so appealing that US private equity groups are muscling in on the mortgage market.

All this illustrates why you need something other than the mainstream media to guide you. The headlines and the opinions will wrench you from one thing to another. It makes for volatile emotions the enemy of rational decisions.

Speaking of actual market volatility, theres been precious little of that this year. Its been the most notable thing about the markets.

Heres a handy graph showing just how low this has gone

Source: Financial Times

Betting against...

16:09

Swiss Market Index Third Time a Charm? "IndyWatch Feed Allstate"

QUESTION: Mr. Armstrong; I attended your 1992 Zurich Institutional Seminar when the Swiss Market Index was trading just below 200. You gave your projection for the high in 2007 would be 9500.0. We sold that high at the bank and the market peaked at 9548.1. The market rallied back to 9537.9 in 2015 and we sold it again. I left the bank as you know and have retired with your turn in 2015. You have always said that if a market knocks on the door 3 times, it is going to go through. My question is, do you think this will hold true in Switzerland?

Keep up the excellent work. The world really needs you.

ABR

ANSWER: Yes. The next resistance target will be 11000-11200 level if we break through the 2007 high. Enjoy your retirement. Of course we never really stop thinking about the markets and the world. I suppose it is a curse of the trade.

As far as The world really needs me; thats what I am afraid of. Getting drafted at my age.

Good fortune.

16:07

Racing bike stolen from Warragul address "IndyWatch Feed Alllocal"

Warragul police are investigating after a racing bicycle valued at $2,500 was stolen on the weekend.

16:03

December in fiction "IndyWatch Feed National"

Our heroine is Acker, who is tattooed, shaven-headed, a dissector of old books (literally she chops them up). At first we take her for an advocate for victims of domestic violence, but nothing in this text is that straightforward. How, Wright asks, could we ever resolve the debt we all owe to the unfairly dead?

16:00

Australian Dollar and Bitcoin "IndyWatch Feed National"

1.00 AUD = 0.00005 BTC
0.00010 BTC = 2.20 AUD
Converter

15:54

Who Cut the Cheese "IndyWatch Feed Politics.au"

In the late 1990s, Dr Spencer Johnson published a book called Who Moved My Cheese.  The book was a kind of self help book on dealing with change. In the book, there was (obviously) the cheese and there were 2 mice and 2 humans.

Yesterday, Australias beloved Prime Minister, the Hon. Malcolm Bligh Turnbull MP released his own treatise on change; a cabinet reshuffle.  In Prime Minister Turnbulls treatise, there is also the cheese (tax dollars), but unlike the Who Moved My Cheese book, there are humans and there are rats. In honour of this, perhaps future cabinet reshuffles should be called Who Cut the Cheese. Here is a brief video of the response to the reshuffle.

Be that as it may, writing in the AFR this morning, Laura Tingle sifted through the reshuffle and picked the winners and the losers. Given the zero sum nature of politics, this seems a reasonable task. But perhaps Ms Tingle is looking at this from the wrong perspective.

Looking from the perspective of the members of parliament, perhaps her allocations might be fair and reasonable. The winners get more responsibilities and the losers less. But what about looking from the perspective of the citizen? From that angle, there are a couple where their win has arguably come at the expense of the citizen.

Case in point, the Hon. Craig Laundy MP, the former Assistant Minister for Industry, Innovation and Science and now/very soon to be Minister for Small & Family Business, Workplaces and Deregulation.

Naming Mr Laundy as Minister of anything to do with Business and Deregulation would be like naming Wayne Swan as Minister for Economic Literacy and Balanced Budgets or like naming Kevin Rudd as Minister for Self Reflection and Modesty.  Might look great on a business card or on embossed letter head, but otherwise a tad unbelievable.

This is the same Minister Laundy who, as member of a so called Liberal Party and government, is amazingly so wet, he can cause rain to fall in a desert.  This is the same Minister Laundy who, recently lamented the noticeable decline in businesses being established in Australia and offered up the following:

...

15:38

VARIETYVILLE CIRCUS & COMEDY SPECTACULAR "IndyWatch Feed Alllocal"

Byron Theatre, January 6 2018 @ 7:30 pm 8:20 pm

Two must see artists of outrageously funny proportions combining their talents into one incredible show for your pleasure!

Varietyville is a thrilling fusion of the most unique, ridiculous and bizarre acts youll ever see.

Starring award winning, five star internationally renowned physical comedian Daniel Oldaker aka Dandyman (La Soire, Edinburgh Fringe Festival, Melb. Int Comedy Fest) and the inimitable circus variety star Rani Huszar, Ruby Rubberlegs as seen on ABCs Live at the Memo, The Sideshow and the world renowned variety show La Cliqu.

Both stars of the international Festival circuit have appeared in films, on television, in circus tents, on the street, in opera houses and now they come to a theatre near you!

Varietyville takes variety to a whole new level. Bite sized morsels of masterful magic, chaotic clowning, preposterous physical feats, musical mayhem, hilarious hi-jinks and much much more!

Oldaker & Huszar have captivated audiences for the last 15 years in over 30 countries around the world with their ridiculous sense of humour, endearing charm and unique and quirky physical theatre. You wont believe until you see and when you see it you still wont believe.

Acts of Absurdity is a wonderfully peculiar show that has a little bit of everything, put on by some world-class performers. If you cant decide what kind of show to see at Fringe this year, put your hard-earned cash towards this superb variety show and see it all. You wont regret it Rip It Up (Jeniffer Brown)

Acts of Absurdity And Uncontrolled Laughter I laughed harder and longer at one act this evening than I have anything else I have seen this fringe Clothesline (Charissa McCluskey-Garcia) Fringe World, Perth

Funny, unpredictable, engaging and pricelessacts of physical daring and laugh-out-loud humor as mime, juggling, illusion and movement flowed se...

15:07

MACKAY Violent Mackay crook pleads guilty to new charges "IndyWatch Feed Alllocal"

MACKAY December 20, 2017 at 06:03AM ,

Violent Mackay crook pleads guilty to new charges

December 20, 2017 at 06:03AM ,

A VIOLENT crook previously convicted of taking part in an armed home invasion, among other crimes, has admitted to a string of new offences. Clinton James Kissier, 31, of Slade Point, remains behind bars after the crime spree, between July 18 and September 21. Kissier faced Mackay Magistrates

https://www.google.com/url?rct=j&sa=t&url=https://www.dailymercury.com.au/news/violent-mackay-crook-pleads-guilty-to-new-charges/3294603/&ct=ga&cd=CAIyGjg1ZTRkOWE5ZWUwN2Q0NWQ6Y29tOmVuOlVT&usg=AFQjCNEjXGwVTTV-5v79rEDUNCyt1KbYkg

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15:07

MACKAY Police charge Eimeo woman over repeat noise complaints "IndyWatch Feed Alllocal"

MACKAY December 20, 2017 at 01:56AM ,

Police charge Eimeo woman over repeat noise complaints

December 20, 2017 at 01:56AM ,

it is important for police to remind residents that compliance with noise abatement directions linked to excessive noise complaints is expected always, he said. Call your local police station for inquiries about registering parties. The woman is due to appear in Mackay Magistrates Court on January 16. 0.

https://www.google.com/url?rct=j&sa=t&url=https://www.dailymercury.com.au/news/police-charge-eimeo-woman-over-repeat-noise-compla/3294606/&ct=ga&cd=CAIyGjg1ZTRkOWE5ZWUwN2Q0NWQ6Y29tOmVuOlVT&usg=AFQjCNHuZiPM19HauBe32nA3uFRADyZnbg

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15:07

MACKAY WATCH: Axe wielding man guilty of Mackay altercation "IndyWatch Feed Alllocal"

MACKAY December 20, 2017 at 11:27AM ,

WATCH: Axe wielding man guilty of Mackay altercation

December 20, 2017 at 11:27AM ,

officer-in-charge Detective Senior Sergeant David Tucker later described Santo as very aggressive and said officers feared injury, given it was a full-size axe. Santo, 25, faced Mackay Magistrates Court via videolink from jail on Tuesday, pleading guilty to going armed as to cause fear on October 21.

https://www.google.com/url?rct=j&sa=t&url=https://www.dailymercury.com.au/news/watch-axe-wielding-man-guilty-of-mackay-altercatio/3295019/&ct=ga&cd=CAIyGjg1ZTRkOWE5ZWUwN2Q0NWQ6Y29tOmVuOlVT&usg=AFQjCNGytcZILQKCf9TPLfvllasfA52wlw

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Filed under: Uncategorized ...

15:00

We will shortly see, Ms GILLARD, who will win. Clinton and her protectors, or justice. "IndyWatch Feed National"

FOX BUSINESS: Ex-FBI Assistant Director James Kallstrom warns 'patriots,' will soon expose why the Clinton Foundation investigation was 'shut down.' pic.twitter.com/ubypqqbhRs Josh Caplan (@joshdcaplan) December 20, 2017

14:56

14:29

Coming Into My Own "IndyWatch Feed National"

Ive always struggled with being close to someone. Well, not physically close I could trip over a pavement and fall into them, but that would be more gravitys choice and my misfortune. Close as in sexually.

Parties were where it became most challenging to hide facts about myself from those around me: not just from the strangers playing the drinking games, but my good friends as well. Somehow, at the ripe age of 23, I had managed to not tell a single soul. Not a best friend, not a therapist and certainly not my own mother.

My family and I were fortunate enough to travel often when I was child, and on one particular trip, I found myself in Istanbul, Turkey. When youre 12, travelling is exciting, but new cultures can be confusing, especially when youd rather not wear long-sleeved garments in 45-degree heat, and would instead prefer to be by the resort pool playing Marco Polo.

That was me a nave, always-happy kid with bundles of energy and a weird grin showing off my never-fully-fixed overbite, until an experience with the 40-something-year-old hotel owner made me grow up more quickly than I would have liked.

A Turkish bath is meant to cleanse and relax you. The first room is extremely hot, and you sit in there sweating out your toxins until youre ready to cool off, then you jump into a cold shower. After fully washing your body, you then can sit in a cool room and relax.  But my own experience was one without the relaxation the hotel manager promised.

We must have a power outage! he said, suddenly walking into the now-dark womens shower area. He didnt seem bothered at all by the usually stressful situation. I was in two towels, one hand scrunched tightly around the one covering my body, the other on my head holding together the poorly wrapped piece of cotton. I didnt respond much at all, focusing more on getting back to my hotel room where my parents were, and less on this much older man in front of me, who was now leaning in slightly.

Excuse me, I said feebly, trying to get by.

Next, I remember being pushed up against a wall and feeling a sloppy, wet mouth on mine. The mans hands pressed against my chest as I tried to squirm away. Is this what a kiss is meant to feel like? Was me being naked, my body bare besides a towel, enough to confuse him? Am I in the wrong?

Thoughts were running through my head and I struggled to comprehend what was happening. I had never been kissed before, let along bare in front of a stranger, and my efforts to get away became both stronger a...

14:21

Here are Google Plays 10 Artists to watch in 2018 "IndyWatch Feed Alllocal"

With 2018 just around the corner, you probably want to make sure your playlists are looking as fresh and lively as possible. With festival road trip season coming up, youd hate to be the friend that has nothing to offer than Mr Brightside for 6 hours straight, so, expand your horizons.

The good people over at Google Play Music Australia have compiled a list of Artists to Watch for 2018 factoring track performance on new-music playlists, popularity on Google Trends and YouTube to aggregate just wholl come out on top next year. 

Here they are:

  1. Mansionair (Liberation)
  2. Ruel (Sony)
  3. Wafia (Future Classic)
  4. Novo Amor (AllPoints)
  5. Polaris (Cooking Vinyl)
  6. Mallrat (Dew Process)
  7. Baker Boy (Baker Boy)
  8. Kllo (Caroline)
  9. Tapz (100s + 1000s)
  10. Dagny (Universal)

Sitti...

14:05

Leaked doc exposes police commissioner's lies on criminals in the force "IndyWatch Feed National"


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14:03

BHP Breaks with the World Coal Association over Climate Change "IndyWatch Feed Enviro.au"

Guest essay by Eric Worrall h/t JoNova BHP, which last year derived 19% of its revenue from coal (p161, BHP annual report), has demanded industry bodies in which it participates embrace climate messaging or face a withdrawal of BHP support. BHP Billiton breaks ties with World Coal Association over climate change, energy policy differences

13:57

Christmas Trees of Remembrance Project "IndyWatch Feed Alllocal"

Goulburn Valley Hospice Care is continuing its Christmas Trees of Remembrance Project with Christmas trees located in Shepparton and Mooroopna Libraries, the foyer at the Eastbank centre and the Goulburn Valley Hospice Care Opportunity Shop.   Goulburn Valley Hospice Care Christmas Trees of Remembrance Project The idea ofthe community Christmas Tree of Remembrance project ... Read more...

13:37

Criminal Lawyers Criticise New Guilty Plea Rules "IndyWatch Feed Alllocal"

The NSW government is introducing strict rules relating to guilty pleas which it says will increase the likelihood of defendants pleading guilty to criminal offences. The changes, which are expected to come into effect in April 2018, are aimed at reducing the backlog of cases in the District Court while freeing up police and DPP

The post Criminal Lawyers Criticise New Guilty Plea Rules appeared first on Sydney Criminal Lawyers.

13:36

Islam as philosophical dead end "IndyWatch Feed National"

Classical (622 to c.940) and early medieval Islam was a civilisation and period with a rich philosophical tradition. Yet Islam became a philosophical dead end, an example of how societies, indeed, an entire civilisation, can stop supporting philosophy as a significant autonomous realm of enquiry. Islam is a civilisation where religion swallowed philosophy, with consequences we are still living with.

That Islam as a civilisation developed a rich philosophical tradition is obvious and well-documented. Thinkers writing in Arabic were particularly important in reconciling Aristotelianism with monotheism. Ibn Rushd (Averroes) (1126-1198) in particular was very influential in Latin Christendom. So much so that St Thomas Aquinas (1225-1274), in his writings, would refer to Aristotle (384-322 BC) as The Philosopher and Ibn Rushd (Averroes) as The Commentator.

Yet that rich philosophical tradition dwindled away to vanishing point. It did so as the result of interaction between ideas and social change.


The social dwindling

The social change was the dwindling away of any basis for supporting scholarship and learning outside explicitly Islamic religious schools. The movement to a fief-based military administration reduced administrative bureaucracies, by far the most significant basis for non-religious intellectual life within Islamic societies, while dominance by Turkish-speaking warlords, from the time of the Seljuqs (1037-1153) onwards, led to a surge in ostentatious support for religion by rulers making up for their non-Arabness via ostentatious religious adherence and patronage.

The shock and devastation of the Mongol invasion (much larger and far more traumatic than Crusader seizure of narrow coastal strips), including the sack of Baghdad (1258), the only time the capital of a livin...

13:30

EXPLAINER: New Matildas Reporting Around #metoo "IndyWatch Feed Enviro.au"

As most readers would know, were devoting significant energy to the #metoo campaign and, in particular, to exposing men in powerful positions who use and abuse that power to assault and harass women.

Were a tiny, independent publication. Most of our writers do not get paid. We dont have the resources of a Fairfax or a News Corp or an ABC. We do, however, have extraordinary pro bono lawyers in Geoff Holland and the team at Marque Lawyers. Were able to report these stories and other major investigations in large part because of these people. I cant emphasize enough my gratitude to them, or their importance in this campaign.

Of the six males outed in the Australian media so far, New Matilda is responsible for two of those. Im proud of that fact, but I acknowledge its not even the tip of the iceberg. So theres more to come.

I also understand the concerns of some readers about trial by media. I share those concerns. In our defence, I would say that at New Matilda, we investigate and publish these stories slowly and carefully, and the burden proof in order to justify publication is substantial.

It is a grave responsibility when you publish a story that you know in all likelihood will destroy reputations and impact many lives.

Heres why we do it regardless.

Firstly, media has always exposed stories like this. The only difference at the moment is the pace at which it is happening. Thats a good thing because, undeniably, the pace at which it has happened previously shames us all. #metoo wouldnt be a thing if media had done its job in the first place.

HOUSE AD: WE NEED YOUR URGENT HELP TO RAISE ENOUGH MONEY TO KEEP A MAJOR NEW MATILDA INVESTIGATION ONGOING. PLEASE DONATE IF YOU CAN HERE.

Secondly, the job of the media its most important job is to step in where the system fails.

The systems designed protect womens rights and hold abusers to account if those systems even really existed in any meaningful way have clearly failed. That is also undeniable. If those systems were effective then, again, we wouldnt have seen such a visceral outpouring of grief and anger from women around the world.

Its worth remembering, those women are our wives, our partners, our mothers, our family members. One day theyll be our children. These are the people we love. More importantly though they are people in their own right. People who have been routinely failed by the systems around them. Routinely made to feel unsafe.

...

13:30

In Gujarat, BJP Has Consistently Delivered on One Front Instilling Fear Among Its People "IndyWatch Feed Allstate"

After 22 years of BJP rule in the state, two fears have become evident of going against it and of the other.

BJP supporters in Gujarat. Credit: PTI

BJP supporters in Gujarat. Credit: PTI

Not all elections are equal. But the difference between the Bihar assembly election and UP and on this day, between Gujarat and Himachal is this some elections are the nerve centre of our body politic. And sitting in the heart of that nerve centre in Gujarat. I ask myself, what is the job of a political reporter? If I look at the way in which people are increasingly disdainful of the media and exit polls, I would say the answer is this: it is a barren and hollow place to be if it meant sticking a mike in the face of a BJP or Congress party spokesperson to extract one homily after another. Weve won although weve lost, or We may have lost ground but weve won. Because in all the hype and hyperbole, the real story never gets asked. What does all of this mean for the people? That as I see it is the job of every political reporter to answer. Feet in mud, noses in vada pav stalls and the sweat and the blood of the people.

Here is what the report from the trenches looks like. The one you wont hear about on television or read in the more arithmetic of politics type of writing. The palpable fear in the eyes of a tribal farmer who works seasonally at a construction site a hundred kilometres away. One who sacrificed two days of daily wages plus spent on bus fare and food to get to his village and vote. This is a man who earns 250 rupees in a day and cann...

13:24

Heres What You Need To Do Before You Get To The I Dos "IndyWatch Feed Alllocal"

By Joshua Hart Are you wondering exactly what you need to do before you and your loved one finally get to your I dos? Youre not alone. Getting married is not as simple as phoning up a marriage celebrant and saying the two words. There are legal forms and timelines that have to be adhered ...

The post Heres What You Need To Do Before You Get To The I Dos appeared first on QNEWS.

13:00

1947: The Year that Changed Everything 70 Years On "IndyWatch Feed Allstate"

1947 was a year of infamy in terms of the New World Order agenda. 1947 was the time when profound events were taking place: the birth of the horrible US MIC (Military Intelligence Complex), the probable continuation of the Nazi regime and likely ET visitation.

As the year 2017 comes to an end, and we close out the 70 year anniversary of the year of 1947, it is worth briefly looking back on that momentous year at some of the events that transpired then which still have a profound effect on our world today.

1947: Operation Highjump

Just when you thought it was safe to go back into the water no, Im not referring to Jaws, but rather the US-UK-Australian military expedition led by Admiral Richard Byrd in January and February of 1947. He thought it would be safe to go down to Antarctica, but he was overpowered and beat a hasty retreat.


Read Entire Article

13:00

In which the pond signs off for Xmas with a serve of "Ned" ... "IndyWatch Feed Politics.au"


First, a merry or a happy Xmas, or if you will, happy holydays, in anticipation of a splendid Chinese new year. Perhaps a war with North Korea, perhaps the big crash? Whatever, something to look forward to ...

What's that you say? Using the 'X' means the pond is back to conducting its annual war on Xmas?

Only if you're one of those foolish Xians purporting to be a believer but completely unaware of your religion (you do realise you eat real flesh and drink real blood at communion in the Catholic church?).

Please, do a Greg Hunt here for the footnotes...

Xmas is a common abbreviation of the word Christmas. It is sometimes pronounced /ksms/, but Xmas, and variants such as Xtemass, originated as handwriting abbreviations for the typical pronunciation /krsms/. The "X" comes from the Greek letter Chi, which is the first letter of the Greek word , which in English is "Christ". The "-mas" part is from the Latin-derived Old English word for Mass.
There is a common misconception that the word Xmas stems from a secular attempt to remove the religious tradition from Christmas by taking the "Christ" out of "Christmas", but its use dates back to the 16th century.

Not that the pond minds a war on Xmas and pagan Santa Claus and superstitious pine trees and sugar-laden Coca-cola all the rest of it, but who can be bothered?



Oh to travel ... that will resonate a little later on ...

Second, the pond is doing something much more serious, taking a break from the reptiles for the holyday season.

This plunged the pond into an existential crisis. While the unthinking reptiles won't mind - all they care about is the next meal - how will the pond cope?

What if someone turned up over the break, and saw the last post? Would it have the necessary level of fruitiness and nuttiness usually associated with a reptile deep into the Xmas pud and the Xmas cake?

What a lack of faith the pond has in the lizards of Oz. Inspired by the long absent lord, they will...

12:59

Media Release: THE STATE GOVERNMENTS MURKY DEAL ON BENAMBRA MINE TAILINGS DAM THREATENS TAMBO RIVER "IndyWatch Feed Alllocal"

MEDIA RELEASE  20 December 2017

THE STATE GOVERNMENTS MURKY DEAL ON BENAMBRA MINE TAILINGS DAM THREATENS TAMBO RIVER

Gippsland Environment Group has condemned the Victorian Governments decision to lift the mining licence exemption over the Stockman mines toxic tailings dam constructed on the headwaters of the Tambo River near Benambra.

The Minister for Resources decision to amend the licence will permit the toxic tailings dam to be re-opened and expanded by CopperChem the company which has recently acquired Independence Groups Stockman Project

This is a murky deal that will jeopardise the health of the Tambo River and Gippsland Lakes for thousands of years, said Louise Crisp of Gippsland Environment Group. On what grounds was the exemption lifted and why werent the public and downstream farmers and communities consulted?

The Benambra copper and zinc mine was first operated by Denehurst Pty Ltd from 1992-96, until the company went bust and abandoned the mine site.  The company left behind a leaking tailings dam filled with 700,000 tonnes of toxic heavy metal tailings at risk of breaching and flooding the Tambo River and Gippsland Lakes.

In 2006 the State Government rehabilitated the tailings dam at a cost of $7million to the taxpayer. The dam was renamed Lake St Barbara and an exemption placed over the site to exclude it from any future mining licence.

The dam is still leaking polluted water at a rate of 86,000 litres per day into the headwaters of the Tambo River, the ore used to raise the dam wall to prevent it breaching contained potential acid forming material, and an acid seep from the old processing plant is also contaminating the Tambo River.

In 2014 Independence Group proposed to re-open the Stockman mine and massively expand the tailings dam to store up to another seven million tonnes of mine tailings. The company planned to raise the dam wall up to 45 metres above the valley floor and to increase the surface area of the dam from eight to 32 hectares.

In December this year CopperChem a US based company purchased Independence Groups Stockman Project. At the same time the Victorian Minister for Resources Tim Pallas announced that CopperChem had signed a deal with the State Government to fund the ongoing management of the tailings dam after mining has ended. The tailings must remain covered by two metres of water forever to prevent an acid chain reaction occurring.

When interviewed on ABC radio last week the Minister would not divulge the financial details of the Trust Fund which is intend...

12:51

Climate change: China gets an ETS "IndyWatch Feed Politics.au"

China has introduced an emissions trading scheme for its electricity sector:

The worlds biggest emitter of greenhouse gases, China, has launched the worlds biggest ever mechanism to reduce carbon, in the form of an emissions trading system.

Chinas top governmental bodies on Tuesday gave their approval to plans for a carbon trading system that will initially cover the countrys heavily polluting power generation plants, then expand to take in most of the economy.

[...]

Under the trading system, power plants will be issued with allowances to emit a certain amount of carbon dioxide. Plants that manage to undershoot their targets, by cleaning up and becoming more efficient, will be able to sell their excess permits to other generators, which will be expected to seek greater efficiency as an alternative to paying for their emissions.

Chinas power sector is responsible for about 3.3billion tonnes of carbon emissions annually, making this potentially one of the worlds most important mechanisms for reducing greenhouse gases.


So, at the minimum, this means that Chinese powerplant emissions will effectively be capped, and will no longer increase. The same will happen to other industrial sectors as the scheme expands. And hopefully, they will then gradually reduce the caps, driving emissions reductions and production efficiency. Unless of course its just cheaper to bribe officials to ignore emissions than it is to reduce them.

12:50

Merry Christmas "IndyWatch Feed Politics.au"

Merry Christmas

Merry Christmas! ..

Nollaig Shona Dhuit!

Feliz Natal/ Boas Festas!

Feliz Navidad!

Joyeux Nol!

Zalig Kerstfeest!

Frhliche Weihnachten!

Buon Natale!

Thank you

This is not a commercial for TV.

It was organized by the Banc Sabadell on the cities 130th anniversary, done for the enjoyment of all.

Its called Ode to Joy by Beethoven.

Enjoy!!

...

12:41

Good luck Catalonia "IndyWatch Feed Politics.au"

Catalonia goes to the polls tomorrow night (NZ time) in regional elections forced by the Spanish government. Madrid's plan was to force elections, then prevent pro-independence parties from running by jailing their leadership and banning displays of support (it is illegal to display the colour yellow or the word "democracy" because these are seen as advertisements for "seditious" parties). But despite this, pro-independence parties have a solid lead in the polls. While the exact structure of the government will depend on the coalition process, if the polls are accurate and the election results are allowed to reflect the popular will, the result will be another pro-independence government with a reinforced mandate.

Of course, this being Spain, a country where the government beats people in the streets to stop them from voting, those things are not guaranteed. Neither is Madrid respecting the election outcome and allowing a newly-elected pro-independence government to take office. But if it cheats or ignores the elections, it will show even more clearly that it is no longer a democracy in any meaningful sense. And if that happens, the European Union should act immediately to restore democratic norms.

12:33

King OMalley And Why Women Must Be Promoted On Merit But Men Need Quotas. "IndyWatch Feed Politics.au"

Theres a story about King OMalley spread by OMalley himself that he created the Waterlily Rockbound Churchthe Redskin Church of the Cayuse Nation and that he was the first and only bishop. Ok, I realise that many of you wont have heard of King OMalley because he wasnt an actual King; he was simply

The post King OMalley And Why Women Must Be Promoted On Merit But Men Need Quotas. appeared first on The AIM Network.

12:29

Christmas reading from Wolfgang Kasper and me. "IndyWatch Feed Politics.au"

Treasures on line at Amazon.

More from Wolfgang Kasper. No good deep should go unpunished. We recently spend some quality time at Tura Beach with Worlfgang and Regine.

A very helpful compilation of Wolfgang Kaspers work from Ben Marks.

At the Friedman Conference this year.

Sailing into a Storm Front. Western democracies are locked into an ossified trajectory that robust new political actors could disrupt for the better or worse.

Review of Jan Mokyr A Culture of Growth: The Origins of the Modern Economy.

12:15

How to Manage Your Anger Based on Your Zodiac Sign "IndyWatch Feed Allstate"

Were all extremely different from each other no doubt, but we also share common traits and characteristics. After all, we are all human! Sometimes the best way to understand your personality is your zodiac sign, and it might even help you control your anger too!

While lots of people are still skeptical of astrologys accuracy, but you cant deny that it can accurately describe real-life dilemmas and scenarios based on our individual personality type. Well probably never have the answers to the cosmos, but we are sure of one thing! The stars, the sky, and the universe have a very weird way of working things out and they have a much greater influence on us than we think. We might not understand it fully, but its there! We can use our zodiac sign to better understand lots of aspects regarding personality, behavior, and energetic influences! It can even correlate to aural readings!

Our zodiac sign might help us better understand our emotions and additionally help us react better to the unpleasant ones, like anger. Anger is a difficult and confusing emotion that experience and it always shows up somehow! Heres what astrology has to say about how to deal with it!

1. Aquarius

Aquarius is very level headed and despises arguing. They will participate in a good debate but when things get heated ad childish theyre automatically out. Aquarians deal with anger better when thought of from a logical point of view.

2. Pisces

Pisces is very deeply rooted in emotions. They feel things very vividly and get drastically upset about things. They get very fired up about people being inconsiderate and get heated quickly. However, they always calm themselves down and make things right afterward.

3. Aries

As a fire sign, Aries can get very furious from time to time. Because you te...

12:10

Ending state house sales "IndyWatch Feed Politics.au"

The government has officially ended National's selldown of state houses:

The new Government has put a full stop on state house sales today, halting a 2,500-house transfer in Christchurch.

Making the announcement at the famous first state home in Miramar, Wellington, Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern said housing was at the core of her Government's agenda.

"Our belief is that housing is at the heart of what makes our community strong, and everyone deserves to have a warm, dry and affordable home."

Families in 2500 state homes in Christchurch would no longer be switching landlords next year.


Good. National sold off over 5,000 state houses as part of their ideological programme to get the government out of helping those in need. That programme led to mass-homelessness, and conflicted with basic kiwi values, so I'm glad to see it end. Hopefully Labour will now be able to repair some of the damage National has caused, and get us back to a society where everyone has a proper roof over their heads.

12:08

Free Sydney Music Compilation: The Bridge Class of 2017 "IndyWatch Feed Alllocal"

Stuff your stocking with 100% Sydney music, curated by The Bridge.

Our Sydney music nerds have put together a little Christmas pressie, made up of their favourite home-grown tracks of the year. Presenters Ryan Saar, Lachlan Wyllie and Tia Newling have rounded up their top picks of the year from right across Sydney. The best part? Its free! (Or name-your-price, if youd like to contribute a donation to at FBi Radio.)

Get it for yourself via bandcamp and read through a track-by-track run down from each presenter below.

Artwork by the excellent Russell Fitzgibbon.

The Bridge Class of 2017 by FBi Radio

 

Ryan Saar

Georgia June Cool

Before Georgia June released her debut track Cool in September, shed already lived the life of a rock star. Under a mentorship with Billboard Magazine, June moved to New York and recorded her first tracks with Passion Pits Ayad Al Adhamy, the result being the nugget of pop-rock perfection that is Cool. Its a song that bursts with Junes infectious personality, wry wit and a foot-stomping chorus sure to put holes in your floor. Shoutouts to the time my housemate caught me singing Cool into a mirror with a hairbrush for a microphone.

 

Moody Beach Vanilla

Vanilla is impossibly chic, the audio equivalent of whatever French New Wave film is currently getting all the arts students in a frenzy. Vanilla cruises on guitar and synth lines with breezy confidence, Melissah Maries vocals hovering above her distinct brand futuristic pop with otherworldly magnetism. Every time I listen to Moody Beach, I cant help but feel Ive stumbled upon one of the best (and effortlessly cool) secrets in local music.

 

Buzz Kull Into the Voi...

12:07

Keating Speech the starting point for moving forward "IndyWatch Feed Alllocal"

Sunday 10th December marked 25 years since the landmark Keating Redfern Speech. It was a speech that told the truth.

Coming from a Prime Minister, it was a truth that could not be unsaid, a truth that formed the foundation for moving forward together on the journey towards a reconciled nation. He said:

"Because, in truth, we cannot confidently say that we have succeeded as we would like to have succeeded if we have not managed to extend opportunity and care, dignity and hope to the indigenous people of Australia - the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Island people. 

It has been ANTaRs firm belief since we came together 20 years ago, that without an acknowledgement of the truth of our shared history, we could not develop a stronger relationship based on trust, understanding and empathy.

This is a message we need to share as we head towards Survival Day 2018. You can help by signing our Sea of Hands pledge.

As Patrick Dodson said in the forward to last years State of Reconciliation Report:

Disturbingly, the Report reveals the schism between Indigenous and non-Indigenous Australias understanding and perspectives of how our nations history has shaped the contemporary circumstances of Indigenous communities, and their relationship with the Australian State. There is a discernible lack of appreciation by settler Australia about the grievances and sense of historical injustice that Indigenous people feel. This must be addressed for Australia to be reconciled.Pledge to think differently about January 26

An understanding of the truth of our history, will tell you that January 26 - the day the First Fleet invaded Gadigal land (in what is now known as Sydney Cove) - is not a day that includes Australias First Peoples in a national celebration.

It is asking First Peoples to celebrate the onset of invasion of the lands, and the history of dispossession that came with that invasion as so clearly ar...

12:00

Politics 2017 finale: The bin fire edition "IndyWatch Feed Politics.au"

Politics 2017 finale: The bin fire editionAn RC instigated by a Labor PM, John in Bennelong and strategic MYEFO leaks: Ingrid Matthews sums up the Government's year that was. read now...

11:58

On fetishising busyness and tiredness "IndyWatch Feed Allstate"

Busyness has become a competition, a Victorian Cross or Legion of Merit for running ourselves into the ground. It speaks to our self-worth and dedication to our crafts. An overloaded lifestyle, rather than a quieter one, has become an aspirational status symbol. We venerate industry, even when it culminates in something lesser than the sum of its effort.

11:55

The Five Rules of Buying Political Influence "IndyWatch Feed Alllocal"

There's five rules in the business of buying influence

All this stuff about Sam Dastyari but what about poor Huang Xiangmo?

Bloke turns up here, observes how business has been traditionally done, pulls out the cheque book and finds himself painted as a cross between Karla and Blofeld with a touch of KAOS and Yellow Peril thrown in.

Parliament gets heated over 'Sichuan Sam'

The Turnbull government has ramped up their attack on Labor senator Dastyari in question time calling for Sichuan Sam to resign.

Thats the problem of working in a foreign language certain subtleties can be lost in translation.

It is standard procedure for business types the world over to, er, influence politicians but it has to be done within accepted ways and means. And you must be considered the right sort of person to be doing the influencing.

Cue American citizen Rupert Murdoch with his extraordinary access to politicians and blatant involvement in attempting to determine the outcome of elections here and abroad.

There is some irony in Huang being particularly generous with his Liberal Party donations $210,000 according to the ABC   but politics hitting the fan over a relatively small amount invested in one young Labor senator.

...

11:46

FALLS BYRON ANNOUNCES LOCAL COMMUNITY FUND RECIPIENTS "IndyWatch Feed Alllocal"

Every year The Falls Music & Arts Festival in each location (Lorne, Marion Bay and Byron) puts $1 from each ticket sold into a Falls Festival Community Fund that is then distributed to a range of local organisations.

Falls Music & Arts Festival Byron is happy to announce the Mullumbimby Public School, Burringbar Community Association Inc., WIRES (Northern Rivers), Shaping Outcomes (Byron Bay) and Crabbes Creek Community Hall are recipients for this years Falls Festival Byron Community Fund.

Mullumbimby Public School
Mullumbimby will purchase musical instruments to continue to establish a school band that can foster student love of music and represent MPS with pride at community events.

Receiving a Community Grant from Falls will greatly assist us in supporting the emergence of the musical soul of Mullumbimby Public School, and is much appreciated by our school community and beyond said Principal David Lees.

Burringbar Community Association Inc.
Burringbar Community Association Inc. will use the grant to initiate the Burringbar Heritage Walk, consisting of historical identification plaques in significant locations throughout the village.

The Burringbar Heritage walk will foster community involvement, and corresponding pride, in addition to providing an opportunity to interact with people of varying backgrounds and experiences said Eva Heath of the Burringbar Community Association

Shaping Outcomes (Byron Bay)
Shaping Outcomes (Byron Bay) will use the grant to provide resources for the childrens groups they run including Ready for School and Social Thinking.

The Falls grant has enabled us to purchase resources that will be so valued for so many children accessing our services and will really help us to support children to thrive, connect and belong! said Shaping Outcomes Executive Director Zoe Cluff.

WIRES (Northern Rivers)
WIRES will use the grant to assist in responding to more calls to help injured, sick, displaced and orphaned wildlife.

WIRES is committed to continuously improving outcomes for animals and the Falls Community Grant is an investment in preserving our wildlife both now and for future generations. said WIRES spokesperson Paula Wallace

Crabbes Creek Community Hall
Crabbes Creek Community Hall will use the grant to contribute towards the New Years Eve fireworks display for the community.

Every New Years Eve, the Crabbes Creek Community Hall puts on a fabulous family-focused celebration. The funds from Falls Festival will be used towards one off the big...

11:12

Big Screen: The Last Jedi "IndyWatch Feed Alllocal"

 

Its bloody hard being a Star Wars director. The franchises fanbase is passionate but super-critical, demanding innovation while still expecting the same tropes and catch phrases weve been hearing for years.

After all, this is blockbuster film-making in the modern era a balancing act between producing the film your studio wants, and appealing to the fans who can sink a movie faster than you can say Batman Vs Superman. So Rian Johnson, the director of the The Last Jedi, had his work cut out for him.

Once again, we find the brave Resistance members fighting to restore peace to the galaxy while the evil First Order, who are basically the No voters of space, try to obliterate them. When the Resistance hideout is discovered it becomes a race against time as the Rebels rush to escape the First Orders nefarious clutches. Its simple stuff, but hey, thats Star Wars.

 

Photo: Jonathan Olley

That simplicity is something Johnson would have done well to remember, because the first half of The Last Jedi is a straight up garbage fire of a film. Its convoluted, contrived, and at times so unlike a Star Wars film that it feels like you could have been watching literally any other blockbuster this summer. Worst of all, the film weirdly insists on bookending its serious moments with jokes that feel as natural as your nan sending you memes.

Johnson forgets that one of the most important features of Star Wars, is not the Force or the Jedi, but the pathos. Star Wars endures because while its an escapist delight, it also contains a tremendous amount of tragedy. Anakin gets betrayed by Obi-Wan, Luke has to bury his father these are crucial parts of the Star Wars myth! Those sort of heartfelt moments are lost in The Last Jedi because they insist on inserting a punchline every time theres an emotional scene. It becomes imposs...

11:03

OIT: Tim Kelly Interviews Ryan Dawson- Michael Flynn/Israel Gate & War Profiteers "IndyWatch Feed Alllocal"

 This is a far reaching interview. I think it's worth the time.
With thanks to Tim Kelly from Our Interesting Times  (always linked in the side bar) for making this freely available

 "Ryan Dawson returns to Our Interesting Times to discuss the recent guilty plea by Michael Flynn and how the mainstream media has largely ignored the Israeli angle to the story. We also talk about his upcoming documentary "The 'Jewish State': How Terrorists Formed a Nation" and the lecture he delivered in Sydney, Australia in December, 2016."





Hoping to have some newsy type posts up soon. I'm busily baking :)

11:01

Dusk is the time "IndyWatch Feed Alllocal"

for Powerful Owls on the hunt.

This pair was just leaving their safe perch in the Black Wattles to commence another night of hunting by the river. There are rabbits galore at the moment so I reckon I know what my favourite owls will be enjoying for Xmas dinner!

Powerful Owls, Loddon River @ Newstead, 18th December 2017

10:33

The revolving door between the corporate world, government and fossil fuels "IndyWatch Feed Allstate"

Contributed from New South Wales

It is no secret that far too many of Australias politicians and key political advisors, build unhealthy relationships with powerful big businesses interests that have an incentive to influence the political process and government.

Australias disclosure laws are grossly inadequate to bring out more than a small portion of what is going on. Most Australian do not like it and they recognise that favours are handed out only because those handing them out expect something in return.

This is the definition of corruption and if this is occurring in Australia on a large scale, it means that the political system is corrupt. It also means that many of our leaders are sacrificing the interests of those they claim to represent for personal benefit. We deserve much better than this.

Corruption can take the form of cash payments to individuals and political parties. We are seeing quite a few exposures of this practice right now. And it is becoming clearer that what is declared is only a small part of the total. Payers have devised many ways, to create convoluted routes to get the money to where it is intended.

The offering of other incentives is just as corrupt. Leading politicians get to mix with and know powerful people, who may let it be known that an opportunity will come their way, if they do the right thing. The growth of the corporate lobbying industry has increased the opportunities for understandings to be struck.

Politicians and especially ministers, will influenced to consider their personal interest in the making of decisions. Pressure is on to recruit selected individuals into senior ministerial and senhior staff positions.

It is customary to follow a political career by sitting on one or more company boards. The reason why companies put former politicians and former advisors of politicians on their boards, is so that they can use the network established during their political career, to provide benefits for the company.

Greater transparency is needed. Measures should be in place to detect and outlaw conflicts of interest. It should be illegal to transfer form a political career to positions that can use former politicians and senior political staff to further corrupt political processes.

Of course, it is unlikely that a corrupt political system will willingly clean itself up. This mean that exposing what is going on is important.

NSW Greens MP Jeremy Buckingham has posted the following on social media and it should be spread as widely as possible. It is only a small part of the problem. At the same time, it warrants special attention, at a time when the problem of global w...

10:32

North Coast disability services under threat "IndyWatch Feed Alllocal"

L- R: Doug Hollingworth, Dawn Walker MP and Joanne Mclean outside DAISIs shopfront in Ballina that will soon be closed unless a state government funding cut is reversed. Photo supplied

Greens North Coast MP and disability spokesperson Dawn Walker has lashed out at the NSW Governments planned cuts to disability advocacy funding for the region.

Ms Walker said the move would see a dramatic loss in support for people with a disability on the North Coast.

She has called on the NSW premier and North Coast-based Nationals MP Ben Franklin to urgently intervene.

The looming cuts are due to take effect from June 2018 and Ms Walker says they threaten to wipe-out local disability information services, DAISI (Disability and Aged Information Service Inc), based in Ballina, and Ability Advocacy in Alstonville.

The cuts are occurring because the state government is set to roll its disability advocacy services funding, worth $13 million statewide, into the National Disability Insurance Scheme (NDIS). But the NDIS does not cover advocacy services, which Ms Walker says will leave a major funding gap.

Im appalled that NSW Liberal-Nationals think its acceptable to cut core funding from our disability advocacy services that assist some of the most vulnerable people in our community with a range of everyday issues, including housing needs, service complaints and developing their NDIS applications and plans, Ms Walker said.

These heartless cuts mean organisations like DAISI and Ability Advocacy, which have been assisting people with a disability right across the North Coast for almost 20 years, will be forced to massively decrease the number of people they support, lay off staff and possibly even close altogether, she added

Ability Advocacys Alstonville manager, Doug Hollingworth, says the group employs six staff and supports approximately 120 people with disabilities in the local area.

These cuts would mean we would mean the loss of two staff members and wed be forced to stop providing support to 40-50 people with disabilities who will have nowhere else to turn. We know how important our services are to local families and people with disabilities across the North Coast who will suffer as a direct result of these cuts, Mr Hollin...

10:23

Baked in the cake "IndyWatch Feed Economics.au"

Baked in


The retail bust is becoming a gift that keeps on giving to willing market shorters at the moment.

Another day, another massive downgrade. 

This time step forward Retail Food Group (ASX: RFG)...again.

RFG management decided to come clean to the market, issuing a trading update to confirm that revenues and profits will be lower than analyst expectations:


Thus another trading update makes reference to the struggles facing other industry retailers, especially those with shopping centre exposures, with RFG's statutory NPAT likely to be down by more than half (though this is "difficult to predict"). 

RFG also confessed that franchisees are leaving the network instead of renewing, following on from an investigation by Fairfax Media which further reported that hundreds of stores are for sale. 

The market unsurprisingly took an extremely dim view of this lack of transparency, this being the fifth market release in a dozen days, and the share price crashed by another 25.3 per cent during yesterday's trade. 

The share price is now down by 55 per cent in under a fortnight. 

10:07

Kingscliff beach access to be opened Thursday "IndyWatch Feed Alllocal"

Tweed Shire Councillors and Kingscliff Chamber of Commerce members are given a sneak peek at the new Kingscliff beach steps. (from right) Kingscliff Chamber President Mark Humphries, Tweed Shire Councillor Warren Polglase, Tweed Shire Council General Manager Troy Green, Tweed Shire Council Manager Recreation Services Stewart Brawley and Tweed Shire Councillor Pryce Allsop. (supplied)

New beach access that has been built as part of a $22 million foreshore development at Kingscliff will be opened to the public tomorrow.

Tweed  mayor Katie Milne said that while the redevelopment project was still being completed, residents would be able to access the beach and the new concrete beachfront steps through the new park, just to the North of the Cudgen Headland Surf Club.

Cr Milne said temporary lighting would be set up in the area for safety and the park would remain fenced off as the site shut down between December 22 and January 8.

The foreshore redevelopment, which includes the new central park and beach access along with a seawall and a complete redevelopment of the holiday park has been specifically designed to create a link between the beach, the park and the central business district of the Kingscliff community.

The protection of the foreshore from coastal erosion is expected to be a significant economic boost for the area and is expected to act as a catalyst for further public infrastructure and attract private sector development.

Kingscliff Chamber of Commerce president Mark Humphries said the early opening will be a great gift for cafe and restaurant owners along Marine Parade.

The new access is sensational and will make for a wonderful experience with views of the beach and the water, Mr Humphries said.

With the bridge being closed and then the park fenced off for the past year there has definitely been an impact and we have spent $20,000 of the chambers funds to run TV ads in the area telling day trippers we are still open for business.

We have been big supporters of the Councils plans from the beginning and the final design has more than exceeded our expectations.

I have no doubt Kingscliff is on the cusp of greatness and this will make a huge difference for locals and tourists alike.

The post Kingscliff beach access to be opened Thursday appea...

10:04

Perhaps we can begin with social parity. "IndyWatch Feed Politics.au"

Writing in the Guardian, Richard Angell, LGBT officer of the Labour Irish Society and director of Progress, has an interesting suggestion

Owen Smith is right to say that if the parties of Northern Ireland cannot get their act together and restore power-sharing government then direct rule, however undesirable, must be used to make progress on LGBT and reproductive rights.

But he is wrong to say that referendums are necessary to give a mandate for change. For one, thing they are not required. Unlike in the Republic of Ireland, where these were constitutional questions, a referendum is not needed to change the law for either marriage equality or abortion. They are the preserve of legislators. Some will look to Australia. But the reason for the consultative ballot in Australia was a total failure of leadership, and should neither be indulged nor repeated.

And

As it stands in Northern Ireland, women with the resources to travel to Britain to access an abortion can do so, while those who do not must carry on with an unwanted pregnancy or pursue an unsafe and unlawful procedure. Women in Northern Ireland should not have to cross the Irish Sea to access medical care that is their right.

The DUP have made clear their demands for a single UK regulatory framework: politically, economically and financially. Perhaps we can begin with social parity. That would ensure our citizens in Northern Ireland have the same reproductive rights and LGBT rights they deserve, the same as everyone else in Britain.

Despite his own argument, he doesnt call for the same direct changes in legislation on both issues.

Instead, we should work to build a majority in the assembly to legislate for the rights of women in Northern Ireland, impressing on the parties there that this is a human rights issue.

In fact, Richard Angells argument serves as a reminder that the correct place for all these discussions, and any subsequent legislation, is the Northern Ireland Assembly.  As Mick mentioned in his comments to the....

10:03

Sustainable small towns "IndyWatch Feed Alllocal"

Totally Renewable Yackandandah is a volunteer run community group, formed in 2014, with the goal of powering their town with 100% renewable energy and achieving energy sovereignty by 2022.

One of TRYs standout projects is the TRY Perpetual Energy Fund (PEF), which raises funds from donations that are reinvested in community projects around Yack to increase energy efficiency, generate renewable electricity and for storage. Loans are repaid from the savings made on electricity bills and the Fund is perpetuated for community sustainability projects. The first project was with Yackandandah Health Service (YHS). In 2015, TRY raised $5,000, which was loaned to YHS for the energy efficiency improvements. The connection of a 90kW solar-panel system at Yackandandah Health Service (YHS) replacement of 276 light fittings with low maintenance LED lights.

TRY is a great example of community controlled initiatives which are designed to transition to a more sustainable basis while also building a sense of community power.

There are more and more great initiatives like TRY across mountain areas and surrounding valleys. One that comes to mind is the bulk buy of solar PV systems at Mt Hotham and Dinner Plain a few years ago.

Another great example is Bright Brewery, which has been installing solar PV on its facilities with a view to making their beer production as close to carbon neutral as possible. While minimising the overall environmental footprint on Bright (see image above of their solar PV system).

The Sustainable Small Towns facebook page allows you to track whats happening in community sustainability initiatives across regional Victoria.

The EcoPortal website covers environmental, local food and sustainability events in north eastern VIC and Albury and has links to the many groups who are active locally.

 


09:52

MYEFO. More money, but nowhere near enough to fund tax cuts "IndyWatch Feed Alllocal"

Scott Morrison wants you believe the budget's strong enough to fund tax cuts.

It isn't, and the update makes that clear.

As it is required to do, it spells out the stated aim of the budget - what the Coalition has pledged to achieve since its election - on page 31.

The aim is to "deliver sustainable budget surpluses, building to at least 1 per cent of GDP, as soon as possible, consistent with the medium-term fiscal strategy".

That's a surplus of 1 per cent of gross domestic product, as soon as possible, consistent with quality spending and economic growth.

After a boost to the budget of about $10 billion over four years, what has it been left with?

A budget surplus of just one half of one per cent of GDP by the end of the four year projection period.

It's an improvement. The May budget pencilled in 0.4 per cent. But it's nothing like the 1 per cent of GDP the Coalition itself adopted as a target to be reached "as soon as possible". And beyond those four years the graph in the update shows the surplus staying put at half a per cent of GDP right out to 2027.

Weakening that budget position by giving some of it away, as the Prime Minister and Treasurer are hinting they will in next May's budget, would be a further abrogation of a pledge the Coalition hasn't come near fulfilling ever since it made it in 2014.

Improving the budget, certainly improving it by the billions that would be needed to fund reasonable tax cuts, is hard. Almost all of the $10 billion improvement this time came came from (generally mining-related) higher company profits and superannuation earnings, as well as lower than expected payments to Australians who are out of work. Government actions improved the outlook by about half a billion. It won't be enough.

In The Age and Sydney Morning Herald

 

Fresh push for company tax cuts as economy lifts budget $10 billion

Treasurer Scott Morrison has signalled a fresh push to get the government's $50 billion package of company tax cuts through the Senate, saying that US President Trump is forcing his hand and that the changing composition of the Senate gives him a chance.

Higher than expected company tax receipts helped improve the budget position by $10 billion in the update released on Monday, improving the outlook for 2017-18 by $5.8 billion.

"The Trum...

09:38

Semi-Automatic Weapons: Another Step in the Militarisation of NSW Police "IndyWatch Feed Alllocal"

By Paul Gregoire and Ugur Nedim As of last Monday, Sydneysiders will have to get used to seeing NSW police officers on city streets carrying military-style assault rifles. The move is just the latest counter terrorism and organised crime measure thats leading to the ever-increasing militarisation of the states police force. Forty seven officers from the

The post Semi-Automatic Weapons: Another Step in the Militarisation of NSW Police appeared first on Sydney Criminal Lawyers.

09:33

Surveys show support for greater koala protection "IndyWatch Feed Alllocal"

Lismore and Ballina residents want koalas protected. (supplied)

Surveys conducted for the North Coast Environment Council show overwhelming support for measures to protect koalas in the electorates of Lismore and Ballina.

NCEC spokesperson Susie Russell said the council commissioned two ReachTEL polls which showed that seventy per cent of people surveyed supported the creation of new national parks to protect koalas from logging and land-clearing.

People across the north coast are extremely concerned about the plight of the koala, Ms Russell said

Almost 90 per cent of participants in the polling had some awareness of the plight of the koala, with about 50 per cent being very aware.

Ms Russell said people understood that if the regions koala were to be saved there needed to be greater protection for the forests in which they live.

Its not hard to understand, we cant keep logging and clearing koala habitat and expect koalas to thrive, she said.

With the State Government poised to release its State-wide Koala Strategy, this is a timely reminder, that unless existing koala populations across all tenures including public State Forests are given protection, this animal will continue its trajectory towards extinction.

Ms Russell said analysis by the North East Forest Alliance earlier this year showed that in the last decade, 24,000 thousand hectares of high quality koala habitat has been cleared as the result of intensive logging, much of it carried out under the supervision of the State Governments own logging company the Forestry Corporation.

Any Koala Strategy which solely focuses on private land purchases and fails to address the massive habitat destruction on public land will be a failure before the ink is dry, she said.

The NSW Chief Scientists Report on Koalas made it clear that their should be clear benefit to key koala populations in NSW [and by] identifying and protecting koala habitat and managing key threats, this strategy will also benefit other native species and NSW landscapes more broadly.

As temperatures rise across the country and place our native wildlife and forests under even more stress, we need serious and drast...

09:24

Catalans are about to go to the polls in continuing battle over independence "IndyWatch Feed National"

Contributed by Jim Hayes

Catalans go to the polls on Thursday (21 December) their time, to vote in an election that will have a major impact on the regions efforts to break away from Spain.

This is an election that Spanish prime minister Mariano Rajoy imposed as a political strategy to manufacture a political scenario where the Catalans movement will be checked. To prepare the ground, the Catalan parliament was dissolved, leaders of the pro-independence parties were arrested and President Carles Piugdemont fled to Belgium, to escape his own capture.

The strategy was devised after the 1 October referendum vote and the subsequent declaration of independence by the regional parliament.

Piugdemont remains the leader of Together for Catalonia (JxCat) and has been campaigning from abroad, using digital media.

Oriol Junqueras, who was vice president of the ousted regional government and leader of the Republican Left of Catalonia (ERC), has been campaigning from his prison cell in Madrid. Despite a serious restriction on the right to have visitors, he was able to have a major recorded statement smuggled out at played to a large rally in Barcelona. There are three other leaders remaining in prison.

The polls are saying that the prime ministers Popular Party will be lucky to get 6 percent of the vote. Citizens (Caudatans), has stepped into the resultant vacuum, pulled in support from among those disaffected with the two major traditional parties. They may end up being the party with the second highest number of votes.  It is seeking to place itself as the party for all those who do not want to break away from Spain.

An opinion poll by the Center for Opinion Studies in Catalonia, found that more than half of Catalans between the ages of 18 and 34 would vote to break away from Spain given a simple choice of yes or no.

All polls are pointing to the likelihood that the pro-independence party the Republican Left of Catalonia (ERC) will get the largest share of the vote, followed by Caudatans and JxCat in third place.

The Socialist party which has been solidly backing the Popular Party position on independence and the key policies around Spain, has sought to distance itself a little from tis past and recast its image as being more independent and muted its anti-independence message during the election campaign. The polls have suggested that this has not brought about a major change to its fortunes sand the best it can hope for is to hold onto its position at the last election.

It is the anti-aus...

09:16

Norway Is Decriminalising Drug Possession "IndyWatch Feed Alllocal"

The global shift towards a health-based approach to the use of illicit substances continues, as Norway becomes the first Scandinavian country to decriminalise the use of illegal drugs. The move is yet another admission that the almost fifty-year-old war on drugs has failed. Known as the Storting, the Norwegian parliament voted last week to decriminalise illicit

The post Norway Is Decriminalising Drug Possession appeared first on Sydney Criminal Lawyers.

09:15

What a Handy Term Radicalized Muslim Flexible, Global, Machine-Washable "IndyWatch Feed Alllocal"

Top row: Flags of France, UK, Indonesia, Bottom: Germany, Australia, and US

by Mary W Maxwell, LLB

What do the countries whose flags are shown above have in common? They have all been violently attacked by Muslims.

Or so they say.

Here is a list in chronological order of six violent attacks. (This is a very select list; scores of other similar incidents have occurred):

In Bali, three Indonesian men bombed a club frequented by Australian holiday-makers (2002).

In London, a Jamaican and three Pakistani friends bombed Tube stations and a bus (2005).

In Boston, two Chechen brothers allegedly bombed the finish line of the Marathon race (2013).

In Sydney, the Iranian Man Haron Monis killed two of his 18 hostages during the siege of the Lindt Caf (2014).

In Paris, two Algerian Kouachi brothers allegedly killed several people in the office of the magazine known as Charlie Hebdo (2015).

In Berlin, a Tunisian man allegedly drove a truck into a Christ...

09:11

Ask your doctor about Sleep Drunkenness Disorder "IndyWatch Feed Allstate"

As many as one in seven people may be affected by 'sleep drunkenness disorder' soon after they've woken up or during the morning, a new study finds. Sleep drunkenness disorder involves severe confusion upon wakening - way more than just the usual morning grogginess - and/or inappropriate behaviour: things like answering the phone instead of turning off the alarm. Confused awakenings can happen to people when very short of sleep or jet-lagged, but are regular occurrences for those with the disorder. Following a forced awakening, the disorder may even lead to violent behaviour and then complete amnesia about the event.

09:05

Gareth Hugh Evans Top 25 Tracks of 2017 "IndyWatch Feed Alllocal"

The final of our traditional end of year lists sees Timber and Steel Editor-in-Chief Gareth Hugh Evans sifts through all of the amazing music that was produced this year and pick his top 25 tracks. As always hes tried to only pick one track per artist, although as youll see theres some exceptions with different []

08:50

NSW unprepared for major blackout "IndyWatch Feed Alllocal"

The states chief scientist has warned NSW could be plunged into chaos in the event of a large-scale black system power outage, similar to the one that debilitated South Australia last year.

While finding it was highly unlikely NSW would fall victim to a blackout of that scale, a report released by the Energy Security Taskforce has found NSW was nevertheless ill-prepared.

Taskforce chair and chief scientist Mary OKane says the state government needs to adopt a more proactive approach to managing short- and medium-term risks, including during prolonged periods of extreme heat.

The government must be alive to risks over coming years so that it can manage emerging risks proactively when needed, Prof OKane said in a statement.

For Sydneysiders, the report found up to 10,000 people on underground trains would need to be evacuated in the event the state fell victim to an outage.

Meanwhile, public hospitals only have six hours worth of fuel in their back-up diesel generators, the report released on Tuesday, found.

As we saw in the South Australian event, sometimes these can go on for a while and there is reason to think it would be quite some time in a black event like that for Sydney to come back up, Ms OKane told ABC Radio on Wednesday.

The report found the system was vulnerable in times of extreme weather events and made nine recommendations to shore it up.

The next decade will be a period of transition and disruption for the National Energy Market, and with that comes opportunities for innovation to increase the future reliability and security of the states electricity system, Prof OKane said.

The post NSW unprepared for major blackout appeared first on Echonetdaily.

08:43

Lost MH370 sparks global flight tracking "IndyWatch Feed National"

The UN has defined new technical standards to guarantee the seamless tracking of aircraft and to prevent flights from disappearing off the radar, the International Telecommunication Union says.

The UN agency has been working to integrate existing flight surveillance systems since the disappearance of Malaysia Airlines flight MH370 in 2014.

The Boeing 777 flight MH370 from Kuala Lumpur to Beijing went missing with 239 passengers, including six Australians, and crew on board on March 8, 2014.

With the new technical standards that are already being implemented by some countries, different systems will be connected to exchange flight data.

The increased use of satellite technology will improve tracking in areas where there are no land-based data receivers, such as oceans or remote regions.

The adoption of these technical principles for enhanced aircraft surveillance via satellite will make great strides in saving lives, ITU Secretary General Houlin Zhao said on Tuesday in Geneva.

A search covering hundreds of thousands of square kilometres in the Indian Ocean was called off in January with no result.

The Malaysian government entered into a no find, no fee arrangement in October with US company Ocean Infinity in a bid to recover the missing plane.

The post Lost MH370 sparks global flight tracking appeared first on Echonetdaily.

08:39

North Korea behind big ransomware attack: US "IndyWatch Feed National"

US President Donald Trumps administration has publicly blamed North Korea for a careless and reckless ransomware attack that infected hundreds of thousands of computers worldwide in May and crippled parts of Britains National Health Service.

Homeland Security adviser Tom Bossert told reporters at a White House briefing on Tuesday that North Korea was directly responsible for the WannaCry ransomware attack and that Pyongyang will be held accountable for it.

This was a careless and reckless attack. It affected individuals, industry, governments and the consequences were beyond economic. The computers affected badly in the UK in their healthcare system put lives at risk, not just money, Bossert said.

Bossert said the administrations finding of responsibility is based on evidence and confirmed by other private companies and foreign governments, including the UK, Australia, Canada, New Zealand and Japan.

He said Microsoft traced the attack to cyber affiliates of the North Korean government.The findings come as the US has sought to pressure Kim Jong Uns government to end the pariah nations nuclear and missile programs.

Bossert said the Trump administration would continue to push Pyongyang to curb its ability to mount attacks and seek to partner with the private sector to prevent future attacks.But he said Trump has used just about every lever you can use short of starving the North Korean people to death to change their behaviour.

So we dont have a lot of room left here to apply pressure to change their behaviour. Its nevertheless important to call them out, let them know its them and we know its them.

Bossert said attributing the attack to North Korea would let them know were going to move to stop their behaviour and work with tech partners such as Microsoft and Facebook.

The WannaCry attack struck more than 150 nations in May, locking up digital documents, databases and other files and demanding a ransom for their release.

The ransomware exploited a vulnerability in mostly older versions of Microsofts Windows operating system.

Affected computers had generally not been patched with security fixes that would have blocked the attack.

WannaCry came to a screeching halt thanks to enterprising work by a British hacker named Marcus Hutchins, who discovered that the malwares author had embedded a kill switch in the code.

Hutchins was able to trip that switch, and the attack soon ended.

In an unusual twist, Hutchins was arrested months later by the FBI during a visit to the US; he pleaded not guilty and now awaits trial on charges he created unrelated forms of malware.

The post...

08:36

Peace Almanac November "IndyWatch Feed National"

November

wbw-hoh

November 1. On this day in 1961 the Women Strike for Peace demonstration in the United States was the largest womens peace action to date.

Australia abolishes peace-time compulsory military training. (1929)

November 2. On this day in 1982 a nuclear freeze referendum in eight U.S. states won the support of 25 percent of U.S. voters.

November 3. On this day in 1950 the UN Uniting for Peace Resolution was passed by the UN General Assembly at Flushing Meadows, NY.

November 4. On this day in 1946 UNESCO was established. Also on this day in 1980, Ronald Reagan was elected U.S. president after secretly and treasonously using George H.W. Bush and William Casey to persuade Iran not to release U.S. hostages while Jimmy Carter was still president.

November 5. On this day in 1855 Eugene V. Debs was born. Also on this day in 1968 Richard Nixon was elected U.S. president after secretly and treasonously sending Anna Chennault to sabotage Vietnam peace talks, campaigning on a nonexistent secret plan for peace, and actually planning to continue the war, as he did once elected. This is a good day to think about who our real leaders are.

November 6. This is the International Day for Preventing the Exploitation of the Environment in War and Armed Conflict.

November 7. On this day in 1949 Costa Ricas Constitution prohibited a national army. Costa Rica, now using entirely renewable energy, is home to the Interamerican Human Rights Court and the UN University of Peace.

November 8. On this day in 1897 Dorothy Day was born.

November 9. On this day in 1989 the Berlin Wall began to be demolished, symbolizing the ending of the Cold War. This is a good day to remember how fast change can come and how available peace is.

November 10. On this day in 1936 the worlds first peace corps International Voluntary Service for Peace (IVSP) arrived in Bombay led by Pierre Crsole.

...

08:35

Aussie claims Bali drugs arrest ridiculous "IndyWatch Feed Alllocal"

An accountant and one-time federal election candidate facing drug charges in Indonesia has been rushed to hospital after being paraded before the media.

Isaac Emmanuel Roberts, 35, was arrested following his arrival in Bali from Bangkok on December 4.Hes accused of carrying 19 grams of amphetamine and ecstasy pills in his luggage.

On Tuesday, Bali police paraded Roberts, dressed in orange prison garb and a balaclava, to journalists.

He was later taken hospital, after being shocked by the media attention.

He got sick. He was shocked after the press conference today. Maybe he never thought that he will be in the press conference, his lawyer Deni Sedana told The Daily Telegraph.

Earlier, Roberts had angrily suggested hed been set up by Indonesian authorities.

I was invited to this country. I was working with a Customs officer and they knew I was going to bring something, he said.

Im just a f***ing addict, they want to waste their resources on addicts. They want to punish addicts, this is ridiculous. What about the f***ing importers? I wasnt going to sell it to anyone here, no one was going to use it here.

Indonesian customs officials claimed the drugs were hidden in a plastic bottle and another container in his luggage.

Based on the results of the inspection, our officers found five packages containing clear crystals weighing 19.97 grams and 14 tablets weighing a total of 6.22 grams, Bali Airport customs office chief Himawan Indrajono said in a statement.

An accountant formerly based in Brisbanes Fortitude Valley, Roberts business website hasnt been updated since 2015 when he faced the professional conduct tribunal of Chartered Accountants Australia and New Zealand.

The tribunal decided on November 15 of that year that Roberts had failed to reply to correspondence, issuing him with a reprimand and fining him $3100.

He also unsuccessfully ran for former Liberal treasurer Peter Costellos Victorian seat of Higgins in 2009 as a Liberal Democratic Party candidate.

The seat was won by current federal government minister Kelly ODwyer.

There are concerns Roberts could face execution in Bali if convicted of drug trafficking.

In 2015, convicted traffickers and Sydney men Andrew Chan, 31, and Myuran Sukumaran, 35 were executed by firing squad.

They had been arrested in 2005.

The executions strained relations between Jakarta and Canberra and prompted Australia to temporarily recall its ambassador in protest.

Indonesia is facing a drug crisis with an estimated 6.4 million drug users in a country of 250 million people.

.....

08:31

Horizon still 3 miles away "IndyWatch Feed Economics.au"

Budget deficit cut

Well, the bottom line certainly looks in a little better nick for the right-on Scott "Sco-Mo" Morrison and the Treasury than it did when the Budget was released seven months earlier. 

The Federal Government is now projecting a budget deficit of $26.3 billion for this financial year.

That's down from an expected $29.4 billion at the time of the May budget. 

Woop.

In fact, the bottom line is set to be $9 billion better off over the next four years, with the projections showing a return to a surplus of $10.2 billion or +0.5 per cent of GDP by 2020-21 (though, like the horizon etc...).

The chart data isn't available until December 22, but compared to the 2017 MYEFO the Government is evidently projecting a stronger few years ahead. 


This is, to be fair, positive news for the shoring up of Australia's hallowed AAA-rating.

An objective reading of the mid-year outlook, however, would conclude that the improvement has as much been down to stronger iron ore and coal prices - plus the improving labour market - than anything much that the government has achieved in terms of attacking budget repair.

Any port in a political storm, I guess...including Port Hedland.

Gross profits have soared by +27 per cent over the past year to a record high of $319 billion, following the fortunes of the mining sector,...

08:29

NSW Health misleads preschools over vaccination rules "IndyWatch Feed Alllocal"

From December 31, conscientious objectors to vaccination will no longer be able to enrol their children into preschools. Photo from International Business Times

Paul Bibby

The director of a Brunswick Heads preschool says she was misled by the NSW health department regarding the application of new vaccination rules and that other local directors have been utterly confused and frustrated by the changes.

Frances Dyett from Lilly Pilly Preschool is now inviting the parents of unvaccinated children in Brunswick Heads to enrol their kids at her centre before new rules abolishing the so-called conscientious objection option come into effect on January 1.

I have turned away many upset, angry parents believing I was doing the right thing and complying with the rules and regulations, Ms Dyett said.

I was initially given misleading information from the health department but was one of the lucky ones who received a call back to say they had given out wrong information.

On January 1, new rules will come into effect that prevent unvaccinated children from being enrolled in NSW preschools unless their parents can prove they have a specific allergy to the injections.

Prior to this, parents have been able to enrol their unvaccinated children if they were able to register as a conscientious objector to vaccination.

Inundated

Over the past three months, local preschools have been inundated with requests from parents trying to enrol their children for 2019 and beyond in a bid to get in before the January 1 deadline.

However, all but a handful have been rejected by the preschools.

It has now emerged that a number of the preschools were acting on incorrect information from health department officers who were apparently unaware of how the n...

08:29

George Brandis shift to UK not his idea "IndyWatch Feed Allstate"

Outgoing Attorney-General George Brandis has admitted that leaving politics to become Australias High Commissioner in London was not his idea.

Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull will formally propose Senator Brandis for the new role early next year after calling time on 17 years as a Queensland senator.

After conceding the appointment was Canberras worst-kept secret, Senator Brandis denied he was told his time was up due to poor ministerial performance.

I wouldnt say it was my idea, Senator Brandis said on the ABCs 7.30 report on Tuesday night.

It was something that developed in discussion and it was something that I was attracted to.

Senator Brandis said he did not believe colleagues were plotting to push him out of parliament when discussions about taking up the diplomatic position started earlier in the year.

It is a post that I have often thought would be a post for which I would have certain suitabilities, he said.

Mr Turnbull paid tribute to the former cabinet minister, who will replace one-time federal Liberal leader Alexander Downer in London, where he has spent three years as High Commissioner.

It is a very, very important time in the history of the United Kingdom and there is a lot at stake for Australia in our relations with the UK, Mr Turnbull said in announcing a cabinet reshuffle on Tuesday.

Senator Brandis, a key advocate within the coalition for legalising same-sex marriage, leaves parliament after seeing the law passed on his final day in the Senate.

Mr Turnbull said the historic change happened in no small measure to to his eloquent advocacy.

The prime minister also praised Senator Brandis over a national security review which resulted in foreign interference legislation which is before the parliament.

The most sweeping reforms ever made to keep us safe from hostile foreign interference are his handiwork and will be an important part of his legacy, Mr Turnbull said.

In 2014, Senator Brandis famously declared people had the right to be bigots during a debate on changing racial discrimination laws.

The Queens Counsel last year had a high-profile bust-up with former solicitor-general Justin Gleeson, who subsequently resigned over the pairs broken relationship.

The 60-year-old entered parliament in 2000 and was made arts and sport minister in 2007 under John Howard.

When the Tony Abbott-led coalition came to power in 2013, Senator Brandis became attorney-general and arts minister.

The post George Brandis shift to UK not his ide...

08:03

205-square-metre blocks proposed for West Byron "IndyWatch Feed Alllocal"

West Byron masterplan. Source PAA Consulting

A 387-lot proposal for West Byron, to be developed in stages, is now on public exhibition via Byron Shire Councils website from December 14 until February 7, 2018.

The 108-hectare site is located 2.5 kilometres west of Byron Bay on Ewingsdale Road and the controversial project will be undertaken by QLD construction company Villaworld.

At an estimated cost of $40m, the DA comes in 33 separate documents totalling 1,647 pages. The files combined are just over 1GB in size.

Plan of management documents include biodiversity conservation, traffic, engineering, acid sulfate soils, stormwater, cultural heritage, bushfire, flood, noise assessment, vegetation, flora and fauna and landscaping. 

Two business lots, two industrial lots and four residue lots are also proposed.

A skate area is suggested for the park, as well as community gardens and a cycleway. A neighbourhood centre area, along with two recreational areas, is also planned.

Under the hood

Within the Design Guidelines document, both two-storey, four-bedroom homes and high-density terrace-style dwellings are presented.

Blocks range from 205m2 up to duplex blocks of around  800900m2. (As a point of comparison the traditional Aussie quarter-acre block is approximately 1,000m2.)  

There are 25 duplex blocks indicated in the masterplan.

To complete the project, traffic consultants Veitch Lister say up to 300,000m3 of fill will be required to complete the site formation across the whole [West Byron area], in order to achieve the desired flood immunity.

The traffic consultants admit they are u...

08:00

CHANGING THE WORLD "IndyWatch Feed Alllocal"

Let's join Hugh Evans and his mum reach their Gofundme goal to offer a family in the Philippines education and hope.

The post CHANGING THE WORLD appeared first on The NORTHSIDER.

08:00

December 20 On This Day in Australian History "IndyWatch Feed Alllocal"



1811 - Gov Lachlan Macquarie began humming a Rod Stewart number when he sailed from Port Dalrymple in the Lady Nelson for Port Stephens.


1813 -A public meeting was held in Sydney to form a society to protect Pacific Island natives.

1825 - The new Legislative Council of New South Wales was sworn in.

1826 - Convicts sailing for the tropic climes of Norfolk Island threw a hissy fit, took control of the ship Wellington and set off for NZ....where they were nabbed by the whaling ship Sisters.

1836 - The Executive Council of NSW cleared Major Thomas Mitchell of responsibility after his expedition killed a large number of Aboriginal people on the Murray River.

1836 - Journal entry for Mary Thomas -
This day William, then a boy of fifteen, completed an oven which he made of iron hoops fixed in the ground in a half-circle and covered with a thick coating of clay, afterwards burned. It answered exceedingly well and we not only baked bread in it but pies and puddings, and occasionally fresh meat, when we could get it, but that was seldom. This oven was the first constructed in the colony, and remained in its primitive state, as I was told, long after we quitted Glenelg.

1842 - The brand spanking new Melbourne Council took over from the Market Commissioners who'd been running the shooting match till then....but strangely there was no demand that Swanston Street be turned over to penny-farthing bone-shaker dare-devil racers.

1848 - Constitutional Association formed in Sydney to effect electoral and land reforms.

1859 - Manhood suffrage and secret ballot granted in Qld.

1870 - Victoria became the first state to allow women to own personal property (wages and dividends etc.) independent of their husbands. It followed the passing of an Act of Parliament in Britain earlier in the year.

1879 - Flinders St. to Spencer St. was connected via a road level tramway in consequence of Victoria Railway's purchase of Melbourne & Hobsons Bay United Railway Co's lines radiating from Flinders St.

1889 - Despite the plan of the Queensland government to outlaw the importation of Pacific Island labour after 1890, a Royal Commission reported on this day the labour was essential. It stated that if all coloured labour be withdrawn from the plantations the extinction of the sugar industry must speedily follow.

18...

08:00

Austerity, deficits and the tax the Coalition won't collect "IndyWatch Feed Politics.au"

Austerity, deficits and the tax the Coalition won't collectAustralia's uncollected corporate tax revenue almost exactly equals Australia's annual budget deficit. Alan Austin reports. read now...

07:59

Diesel Generators at Morwell by Dan Caffrey "IndyWatch Feed Alllocal"

 

(photo: Brett Tippet)

Over a hundred diesel generators are in the process of being placed on the site of the old Briquette Factory at Morwell, (decommissioned in 2009), in order to provide back-up electricity supply on the really hot, high demand days of the coming summer. Despite our local Latrobe City Councillors trying to make a big deal of this when the Minister overrode their discretion to object, it really is not something to be too concerned about for the following reasons.

1. The probability of them not ever being turned on is 61%

2. The probability of them being run for a maximum of 8 hours in the three months they will be there is just 32% and the probability of them being run for longer than 20 hours is almost zero. These probabilities were calculated on an analysis of the likely weather conditions, the existing generating capacity and other measures to abate demand on extreme weather days

3. AEMO made the decision to install the generators here, based on the scientific imperative

4. It is only ever intended to run these generators as the very last resort and a lot of things would have to go wrong before this happens

5. The siting at Morwell as opposed to at Hazelwood is because it is right near the lower voltage 22 kV power lines that used to connect the briquette factory. The Hazelwood power lines carried loads of up to 660 kV, which would be unsuitable for the 102 MW output of the combined generation capacity for these diesel generators.

6. If the generators were activated, it would be when north winds were blowing and would take the noise, exhaust fumes and particulate matter away from the Morwell township and in any case the amount of pollution would be less than any of the coal fired power stations, notwithstanding that the pollution is exhausted from stacks at almost ground level compared with the 100 metre stacks of a power station

7. Extreme demand only ever lasts for spikes of at most 3 hours.

8. The hierarchy of events to respond to higher demand on extreme weather days is  a) Power up the coal fired plants to maximum capacity b) Increase the amount of hydro power c) Fire up the existing gas fired peaker units that exist around the state d) Import power from Tasmania via Basslink and the other states by one of the inter-connectors e) Demand D...

07:45

Rocks to go at Seven Mile Beach Road "IndyWatch Feed Alllocal"

Beachgoers parking along the sides of Seven Mile Beach Road. Photo Ian Cohen

The No Stopping signs and boulders at the southern end of Seven Mile Beach Road, Broken Head, will be removed after councillors last week voted to endorse the action plan for wider community consultation.

Cr Paul Spooners motion was supported by all councillors, and will also create a proper turning circle and car parking area at the location.

During debate, the unique biodiversity significance of Broken Head was discussed, as well as its increased popularity for visitors owing to social media and travel websites.

Recent parking restrictions had upset locals, said the mayor, and he said that recent bushfires from campfires and illegally parked cars along the narrow dirt road have been an access issue for emergency services. A budget of $20,000 for concept infrastructure planning investigations and other measures will also be considered.

A neighbourhood watch is part of the action plan, which invites locals to get involved with monitoring the area. 

A lack of responses from both the Police and NPWS requesting support in these matters has been noted, and councillors have asked staff to write to them again, requesting an urgent response.

The post Rocks to go at Seven Mile Beach Road appeared first on Echonetdaily.

07:42

In which the pond does its best to console Moorice, the world's greatest climate scientist and stout-hearted representative of the lumpenproletariat... "IndyWatch Feed Alllocal"


Oh dear, there was the wicked ABC cardigan wearers talking of extreme weather events again - it seems there was a little hail in Melbourne and now Sydney is about to burn ... and Fairfax were at it too ...


Yet over in reptile land, valiant Lloydie was briefly top of the page, ma ... top of the page ...


Actually a new study suggests that anyone wanting to create dissembling confusion should send their study to Lloydie, provided that the study allows good old studious Lloydie to expand his cloud of doubt, uncertainty and fear about climate science ...

But mention climate science, and there's always relief at hand ... because today by the sheerest good luck at the lizard Oz is Moorice day, long celebrated as one of the world's tippy top climate scientists ...

07:41

One of the reasons why local government, traditional owners and communities in the Clarence Valley should be very wary of home-grown and foreign lobbyists, investment consortiums and land developers "IndyWatch Feed Alllocal"


On 15 August 2015 four representatives of United Land Councils Ltd & United First Peoples Syndications Pty Ltd gave evidence before the NSW Legislative Council General Purpose Standing Committee No. 6 INQUIRY INTO CROWN LAND.

One of the projects put forward to the Inquiry by those representatives was the industrialisation of the Clarence River estuary by way of construction of a mega freight port.

The following tale involves a number of persons or firms associated with the aforementioned  companies and this mega port & rail project, including Nick Petroulias aka Michael Felson aka Nick Peterson.

The Newcastle Herald, 21 October 2017:

HE WAS brash and brilliant. A young lawyer from Melbourne who became a rising star of the public service, hand-picked to serve as assistant tax commissioner by the age of 30.

That was until a spectacular fall from grace left Nick Petroulias jailed for using his plum position to do the very thing he was tasked with stamping out: defrauding the tax office.

Since his release from prison in 2010, Mr Petroulia...

07:31

"The Sociopath Next Door" "IndyWatch Feed Allstate"

"The Sociopath Next Door"
by Martha Stout
"Imagine - if you can - not having a conscience, none at all, no feelings of guilt or remorse no matter what you do, no limiting sense of concern for the well-being of strangers, friends, or even family members. Imagine no struggles with shame, not a single one in your whole life, no matter what kind of selfish, lazy, harmful, or immoral action you had taken. And pretend that the concept of responsibility is unknown to you, except as a burden others seem to accept without question, like gullible fools.

Now add to this strange fantasy the ability to conceal from other people that your psychological makeup is radically different from theirs. Since everyone simply assumes that conscience is universal among human beings, hiding the fact that you are conscience-free is nearly effortless. You are not held back from any of your desires by guilt or shame, and you are never confronted by others for your cold-bloodedness. The ice water in your veins is so bizarre, so completely outside of their personal experience, that they seldom even guess at your condition. In other words, you are completely free of internal restraints, and your unhampered liberty to do just as you please, with no pangs of conscience, is conveniently invisible to the world.

You can do anything at all, and still your strange advantage over the majority of people, who are kept in line by their consciences will most likely remain undiscovered. How will you live your life? What will you do with your huge and secret advantage, and with the corresponding handicap of other people (conscience)? The answer will depend largely on just what your desires happen to be, because people are not all the same. Even the profoundly unscrupulous are not all the same. Some people - whether they have a conscience or not - favor the ease of inertia, while others are filled with dreams and wild ambitions. Some human beings ar...

07:29

"Psychopathic Predators, Human Prey" Part 1 "IndyWatch Feed Allstate"

"Psychopathic Predators, Human Prey" Part 1
by Maasanova

Note: The following is largely extracted from two articles: "Twilight of the Psychopaths," by Dr. Kevin Barrett and "The Trick of the Psychopath's Trade" by Silvia Cattori.

"I make the effort to share this information because it gives me, at last, a plausible answer to a long-unanswered question: Why, no matter how much intelligent goodwill exists in the world, is there so much war, suffering and injustice? It doesn't seem to matter what creative plan, ideology, religion, or philosophy great minds come up with, nothing seems to improve our lot. Since the dawn of civilization, this pattern repeats itself over and over again. The answer is that civilization, as we know it, is largely the creation of psychopaths. All civilizations, our own included, have been built on slavery and mass murder. Psychopaths have played a disproportionate role in the development of civilization, because they are hard-wired to lie, kill, cheat, steal, torture, manipulate, and generally inflict great suffering on other humans without feeling any remorse, in order to establish their own sense of security through domination. The inventor of civilization - the first tribal chieftain who succes...

07:04

Rematch on Good Friday "IndyWatch Feed Alllocal"

INAUGURAL senior football grand final combatants Inverloch-Kongwak and Cora Lynn are set to immediately renew hostilities when they clash on the opening day of the 2018 Alex Scott and Staff West Gippsland Football Netball Competition season.
The Sea Eagles will unfurl their premiership flag ahead of a round one match of last years season decider in front of their home fans at Inverloch Recreation Reserve.
The clash is one of two Good Friday matches to kick off the season in the league, with Phillip Island hosting Koo Wee Rup in the first half of the split opening round matches.
Kilcunda-Bass, Nar Nar Goon and Bunyip begin their campaigns at home to Dalyston, Korumburra-Bena and Garfield on Saturday, April 7.
The A Grade netball grand final rematch takes place in round six, when reigning premier Dalyston travels to Korumburra-Bena.
The fixture features two league-wide byes on May 19 and July 7, with finals set to kick off on August 25 leading to grand final day on September 15.
AFL Gippsland region general manager Travis Switzer said the completion was ready to build on the success of the first season.
We were extremely happy with how the new competition was received this year and were really confident it will be even bigger and better in 2018.
Its fantastic to kick things off with a marquee game and were expecting some great crowds at Inverloch and Phillip Island on that Easter weekend to launch the new season.
Meanwhile, West Gippsland has been drawn at home to play Maryborough Castlemaine District Football Netball League for the 2018 Worksafe Community Championships.
The championships take place on Saturday, May 19 with discussions between the participating competitions to take place soon.

The post Rematch on Good Friday appeared first on South Gippsland Sentinel-Times.

07:00

A closer peek at the Saddle Road residential proposal "IndyWatch Feed Alllocal"

Echonetdaily understands that the planning proposal study area of 315 hectares covers a much larger area than what is proposed for residential use, meaning that cane fields for example will not be rezoned residential. This is owing to a range of elements such as access options. 475 dwellings are proposed. Image from Saddle Road Planning Proposal.

An invitation by councillors for Saddle Road landowners to lodge a large planning proposal for affordable housing still has many neighbours offside; they claim it is not transparent and does not conform to the Community Charter for Good Planning.

As reported last week, Saddle Road landowners propose 475 dwellings on the ridgeline between Mullum and Brunswick Heads. The planning proposal and the staff recommendation were removed from the December 14 Council meeting by senior staff owing to allow more consultation between planning staff and the proponents and the objectors.

The staff recommendation is to refuse the application, in part owing to its falling outside planning strategies.

Yet the proposed development was favoured and singled out by Greens mayor Simon Richardson and supporting councillors at the June 22 meeting; they voted to invite an affordable housing planning proposal for Saddle Road land known as Area 17.

And then later in September, councillors invited all Shire landowners to submit an expression of interest (EOI) for affordable housing proposals in both existing and potential future urban areas, yet Council only requested conceptual proposals only at this stage, not a planning proposal.

The Bruns Eco Village (BEV) affordable housing/intentional community proposal falls under the rezoning request, along with four other large land titles that cover between 52 and 112 hectares.

According to two landowners of larger lots, 20 per cent of the total subsequently residentially z...

06:48

They grow them big in the Far North! Police discover five-metre long python blocking road in Queensland "IndyWatch Feed Alllocal"

Police in Australia joked they were "going to need a bigger ladder" after encountering a five-metre long python blocking the road. Queensland Police officers encountered the amethystine python, also known as a scrub python, near the small community of Wujul Wujul, located 345km north of Cairns. Officers on a night patrol had to wait for the slithering reptile to cross the road, giving them enough time to capture a photo which has racked up over 50,000 shares and likes on Facebook. "They breed them big in the Far North!" explained Senior Constable Heidi Marek.

06:36

Bitcoin Price Watch; Heres Whats On Tonight "IndyWatch Feed Allstate"

The bitcoin space is taking something of a hit at the moment and price is suffering as a result. Things arent moving as long-term holders might like them to and the implications of this longer term are pretty uncertain; can we hold above the recent broken levels and in turn can things recover above and beyond the 20,000 level that looked almost certain to be taken out just a week or two ago.

These are all questions that we dont know the answer to, of course, and that were going to have to wait to find out.

As we noted this morning, however, none of this matters for our intraday strategy. Weve got a standard approach to the markets and it doesnt matter whether price goes up or down. So long as things are moving and weve got our predefined levels in place, weve got a chance to profit from wherever things go.

So, with this all said, lets get said levels set up.

As ever, take a quick look at the chart below before we get started so as to get an idea whats on and where we are looking to jump in and out according to the rules of our intraday strategy.

The chart is a one-minute candlestick chart and its got our key range overlaid in green.

As the chart shows, then, the range we are looking at this evening is defined by support to the downside at 17901 and resistance to the upside at 18174. If we see a close above resistance, well get in long towards an upside target of 18225. Conversely, a close below support will have us in short towards a downside target of 17820.

A stop loss on both trades will ensure were taken out for just a small loss if things turn against us.

Lets see what happens.

Charts courtesy of Trading View

...

06:34

AWPA congratulations Ralph Regenvanu, appointed as the new Minister of Foreign Minister for Vanuatu. "IndyWatch Feed Alllocal"

Australia West Papua Association (Sydney) 

19 December 2017


AWPA congratulates  Ralph Regenvanu, appointed as the new Minister of Foreign Minister for Vanuatu


He was appointed in  a reshuffle of Vanuatu's cabinet ahead of a  motion of no-confidence against Prime Minister Charlot Salwai, 

Ralph Regenvanu leaves his post as minister for land. He has been a long term supporter of West Papua



06:23

Billinudgels big heart helps Tanya and family "IndyWatch Feed Alllocal"

El Chapo, Choppy Chop and Tanya together at the fundraiser. Photo supplied

Aslan Shand

Tanya McIntyre (nee West) is struggling with advanced cancer and she, her husband Scotty and daughter Shanise were overwhelmed by the love and support shown by their local Billinudgel community on Sunday December 10.

People realised that we were struggling and Kenny at the pub and other key members of the community came together to organise the fundraiser, said Scotty.

It was something else  the community and businesses are still recovering from the floods and this community just kept giving. 

There were young people here, families with mortgages, and they managed to raise $17,000 out of their own back pockets.

Having grown up in the Brunswick Heads area, Tanya has always lived around Billinudgel and is well known and loved in the community.

Tanya has been a longtime employee at the hotel and a close personal friend, said publican Ken Barnham.

Her daughter Shanise and Jodie, Tanyas sister, really did a lot of the leg work to bring it together.

The money raised will be used to pay for Tanyas radiation treatment and has taken a great weight off Scotty, Shanise and Tanyas shoulders.

The post Billinudgels big heart helps Tanya and family appeared first on Echonetdaily.

06:21

African sea turtles dinosaur age journey to Europe "IndyWatch Feed National"

This video says about itself:

The ancient turtle that migrated from Africa to Europe

New research has traced the incredible journey of an extinct traveler turtle that migrated to Europe from Africa 95 million years ago.

At the time, Earths continents were much different than they are today; Africa and South America joined to make up part of the ancient continent Gondwana, while Europe, Asia, and North America formed Laurasia.

A new study has found that these ancient river turtles crossed into Laurasia much earlier than previously thought, where they adapted from their freshwater lifestyle to survive in the coastal marine environment.

From the Scientific News Service (Sinc) in Spain:

The incredible journey of the first African tortoise that arrived in Europe

December 18, 2017

About 95 million years ago, a river turtle adapted to marine environments and made an extraordinary migration from the ancient continent of Gondwana, which grouped what is now Africa and South America, to Laurasia, the Northern continental mass of which Europe, Asia and North America were part. Its remains, found in the town of Algora in Guadalajara and in Portugal, are the evidence of the first known dispersal event of a turtle from Gondwana.

The researchers themselves call the turtle traveler, but the journey of Algorachelus peregrinus, as they have called it, did not start in Algora (Guadalajara-Spain), where it was recently discovered, but in Africa during the Upper Cretaceous.

It is not just any turtle, but, as the name suggests, it gives us the necessary clues to describe how a successful migration occurred about 95 million years ago; this journey would have drastic consequences, explains Adn Prez -Garca, researcher in the Evolutionary Biology Group of the UNED, the National University of Distance Education...

06:11

Free play at preschool leads to critical thinking in later life "IndyWatch Feed Alllocal"

Ms Gold says she is thankful for the support, courage and the trust that came from the community. Photo Jeff Dawson

Paul Bibby

The little moments of imagination in action have always been the most cherished for Ellon Gold throughout her 30-year teaching career.

Its when the children use the environment to create what they need like putting a cloth over a box and pretending its a computer thats what I really love, Ms Gold says.

When you see children in self-structured free play like that, you know that its going to metamorphose into critical thinking later in life.

Thats so important and I dont think we value it enough.

For three decades, Ms Gold has been a valued member of the Steiner teaching community, the last nine years of which were spent at the helm of the Periwinkle preschool in Byron Bay.

But the Ocean Shores resident has decided to retire from teaching and has just left her role as director at Periwinkle.

I wont say its always been easy but its also been a gift, she says.

I really found my lifes work when I went to Steiner. I really felt it was where I was meant to be. The support and the courage and the trust that have come from the community, not just at the start but year after year, has been amazing,

After completing her Steiner training in 1985 and then a teaching degree in Wollongong, Ms Gold worked at the Stanford Valley Steiner School in Brisbane before joining Periwinkle in 2009.  

She says she has seen many changes in her time as a teacher, particularly the experience of parenting.

In past times, parents were a bit more protected, she says.

There werent so many outside influences.

But Ms Golds teaching philosophy has remained the same.

...

06:07

Day to Day Politics: How will she be judged? "IndyWatch Feed Politics.au"

Wednesday 20 2017 Having a coffee with a friend (Ian) and I mentioned how badly we are being governed. What about Gillard? he retorted? Media beat up, I answered. Murdoch principally, and the ABC to some degree. He couldnt agree with that. Arguing that: I think that you over-estimate the extent to which the Murdoch

The post Day to Day Politics: How will she be judged? appeared first on The AIM Network.

06:03

Rail returns to the Bay "IndyWatch Feed Alllocal"

Solar train conductor Sheree Etteridge clips a ticket. Photo Jeff Dawson

Train and public transport enthusiasts celebrated the start of a train service from Belongil into Byrons CBD on Saturday.

The train can accommodate 100 people and covers three kilometres. A limited service will operate until the full schedule commences in January.

The train leaves on the hour (running from 10am till 5pm) from North Beach, near the Sun Bistro in Sunrise.

From Byron, it leaves 15 minutes past the hour, running from 10.15am till 5.15pm.

There will be no service Sunday December 24 till Tuesday December 26.

For more info visit byronbaytrain.com.au.

The post Rail returns to the Bay appeared first on Echonetdaily.

06:00

JUSTICE FOR SALE! The Real Costs of Going to Jail "IndyWatch Feed Allstate"

The Victorian Government has announced it will spend $345 million over three years on almost 500 new cells to deal with the states overcrowded jail system and increasing prison population. True Crime News Weekly correspondent Gary Johnston wonders whether throwing hundreds of millions of dollars into a failed system is a wise move. * *

Continue reading

05:23

Agnotology in Vaccine Problems Non-Placebo Placebos "IndyWatch Feed National"

By Pixie Seymour

Agnotology = Culturally induced ignorance by the publication of inaccurate or misleading scientific data

The biggest and most disgusting agnotology problem with so-called science that is relied on for safety in vaccines, is that in most of the human trials, the new vaccine is tested against what is nearly a whole other vaccine! New vaccines are not tested against the usual placebo of saline. By not using an inert substance for a placebo, that is violating the baseline of nothing in their research studies.

With the MMR for example, a major study was done in Finland (1986) with 581 sets of twins. This double blind placebo study tested the reactions from the combined MMR vaccine. This study is relied on by the Australian government as evidence that the MMR vaccine is safe. The results looked good, IF you skip over what the placebo actually was. The so-called placebo group received the same product including neomycin and phenol-red indicator but without the viral antigens, i.e.

The placebo group received a product with neomycin, sorbitol and hydrolysed gelatine, Medium 199 (vitamins, amino acids, foetal bovine serum, sucrose, glutamate), Minimum Essential Medium, phosphate, recombinant human albumin, chick embryo cell culture and WI-38 human diploid lung fibroblasts. Lets pull that statement apart to see what they meant and exactly what that placebo was. Firstly the same product We are talking about the MMR vaccine being used as the placebo, but without the viral antigens. Lets then look at the other ingredients in the MMR that were administered in the placebo.

  • Live attenuated rubella virus propagated in WI-38 human diplo...

05:15

Purslane? Yes, please! "IndyWatch Feed Allstate"



Common purslane turns out to be exceedingly tasty on a toasted sandwich

05:08

The Holy Spirit what the Holy Spirit means to me part 13 The Holy Spirit and the founder of Hillsong the pedophile Frank Houston "IndyWatch Feed Alllocal"

When I started attending Hillsong in 1981 in Sydney, Australia, I was perplexed by what was going on. I didnt travel to Australia from the country of my birth and upbringing, New Zealand, to be involved in Hillsong. I was in Sydney, and I went there to check it out because a friend of mine at the time from New Zealand, Paul Cain, was attending there.

Hillsong was called Christian Life Centre Darlinghurst or CLC Darlinghurst for short in those days. Or CLC Darlo, even shorter. Australians like to abrogate and shorten names, terms and sentences. For example, Im gonna check-out me mates this arvo, means Im going to visit my friends this afternoon. Every nation and people-group has their sayings and terms. Me mates is a bit bogan (think cockney or red-neck) and this is how many people talk in Western Sydney where Brian Houston has been so successful. I dont think Brian could have pulled the wool over the eyes of educated Sydney people, and robbed them of their cash, in the way he has done in Western Sydney.

Now Hillsong is more sophisticated, people have a lot more trouble figuring out what is going on at Hillsong. Many are deceived and join them.

...

05:06

Hillsong founder the child rapist Pastor Frank Houston. Part One. Frank Houstons pedophile activities. "IndyWatch Feed National"

 

Rev William Francis Frank Houston.  Founder of Hillsong Church. Over 400 boy sex abuse victims of Frank Houston. Self-confessed pedophile. Confessed to lifelong secret child sexual abuse of little boys, male preteens and male teenagers. But mainly little boys aged 7 to 11. Frank Houston The worst Pentecostal pastor since the day of Pentecost 2000 years ago. A Son of Lucifer. Frank Houstons eyes are black like Lucifers.

Note of 27 October 2017

Pastor Brian Houston, the current head pastor of Hillsong Global Church is to face pedophile protection charges some time in the future from the Australian Police and Authorities.

Ive edited the article below reflecting current up to date information.

 

This article and its updates

This article outlines the history of Pastor Frank Houston, the founder of Hillsong, and his secret sexual abuse of hundreds of little boys, male pre-teens and male teens over five or more decades possibly for 70 years if you include his grandchildren and rent boys (underage male prostitutes).

This site is the most authoritative and comprehensive site on Hillsong corruption, Houston corruption and Hillsong pedophilia.

This article was first published on this site on 9 September 2012 p...

05:03

The WWII baby-in-a-box mystery: Genetics testing and detective work find abandoned baby's family, over 70 years later "IndyWatch Feed Allstate"

Robin was 13 when he found out he was adopted. Later he was told he had been abandoned - left in a box on London's Oxford Street. Now 74, he has spent most of his life wondering who left him and why. But thanks to DNA, and the dogged detective work of one of his daughters, he finally has some answers. When Robin King discovered he was adopted he ran away from home. He had been snooping around his parents' bedroom when he came across his adoption papers in a holdall. He fled to a friend's house and the pair then cycled from London to Southend where they slept in a tent until they were picked up by the police a few days later. "My friend's mum had to pay for us to come back on the train," Robin recalls. At home, no-one ever mentioned the subject of his adoption. "I was afraid of raising it as I didn't want any confrontation. I think it affected me deep down," he says.

04:45

Philippine Navy chief relieved "IndyWatch Feed National"

 
Philippine Navy Vice Admiral Ronald Mercado is supposed to retire in March 2018. Facebook/Philippine Navy

MANILA, Philippines (Second update 3:47 p.m.)

Vice Admiral Ronald Mercado was relieved from his post as the Philippine Navy Flag Officer-in-Command on Tuesday. .

.
Rear Admiral Robert Empedrad was installed as acting Flag Officer-in-Command during the change of command ceremony held this morning.
Empedrad, the former Deputy Chief of Staff for Retirees and Reservists Affairs, replaced Mercado who is supposed to retire in March 2018.
Armed Forces of the Philippines spokesperson Edgar Arevalo said the reason for the change of command will be explained in due time.
Naval...

04:12

A Few Thoughts "IndyWatch Feed Allstate"

Range Training

Sometimes training doesn't take (VIDEO HERE), even at the Fort Worth, TX Police Dept.

Typical Muslim Activity

(Sweden) Muslim migrants gang-raped a 17-year-old girl, then poured lighter fluid in her vagina and set it on fire. The answer of the Swedish government is to caution women not to go out at night. It's Sweden, they can do what they want. In another place you might have people making head shots of military age Muslim males who are accosting women. Of course, I would NEVER encourage that. And in a land of law abiding people where firearms are illegal, it would never happen. They're rely on the police to protect honest, law abiding people from the savages that their government let into the country.

Chinese Patroling

On 18 December, the Japanese Ministry of Defense (MOD) Joint Staff issued a press release on the flights of six Chinese People's Liberation Army (PLA) aircraft near southern Japan. 

The map graphic was released by the Japanese Ministry of
Defense on 18 December. The flight paths
are as plotted by the Air Self-Defense Force.
.........

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