Australiar and the f*cking idiot dilemma

There are definitely times when you wonder if light-fingered alien doctors have been handing out mass lobotomies while we sleep. Or there really is something in the water. Or the Brits were right and there’s a dash of ovine DNA in the cocktail shake. Wondering whether we were always just this fucking dumb, or we’re somehow getting dumber.

Like times when a mass of Australians latch onto a head-pulsingly inane slogan and start riding it like the seductive sheep of yore. Little has exemplified our current slump into mouth-breathing idiocy better than the recent ‘Juliar’ gag. “Ho!” disgruntled letter-writers say to celebrate their annual flicker of brain activity. “We took a word, and then we… changed it a bit… and it means another thing! That’s commentary.” Political observation in this country is like watching a guy slumped on a couch trying to eat pre-chewed food out of his chest hair.

Don’t get me wrong – I’m not remotely a Gillard fan, nor a Labor one. I mean, I have no wish to see Gillard run over in a rainy street, but nor would I go out of my way to brake that hard. She leads a party that has largely ditched articulated values for populist flexibility, and most of that flex has been in one direction. Regardless of who wins elections from here, conservatives win on policy.

Before the carbon tax forced her to take on the public, Gillard’s key feature was the personality amputation presumably performed ceremonially by the Governor-General at the swearing-in. Her predecessor had had the same procedure; and watching a clearly rejuvenated K-Rudd regain his all-round smart-bastard sharpness since he got the boot has been both satisfying and intensely frustrating. If he’d been himself while in office we wouldn’t be in this mess.

But she must have some principles (and a minority government to maintain) because she is or has been at war with four big corporate lobbies, plus Abbott’s ‘Oppose Anything, Anytime’ government in exile.

“Morning, Mr Abbott, would you like a biscuit?”

“NO! No, goddamn it, no biscuits! That pink stuff in the Monte Carlos is SOCIALISM.”

These lobby campaigns are against the carbon tax, pokies regulations, mining taxes, and plain cigarette packaging. Carbon has taken centre stage, and the main attack against Gillard has been that of dishonesty .

Gillard said she wouldn’t bring in a carbon tax, then she did, we keep being reminded. Well, yeah, a temporary tax, on the way to an ETS that she did say she would bring in. Of course, hearing ex-Howard Libs complaining about pre-election tax dishonesty is like Al Jolson telling you your fake Irish accent is racially insensitive. But the really galling part is politicians and industry berks getting sanctimonious about the value of one’s word, when each of their oppositional campaigns is predicated on flat-out and cynical dishonesty.

They’re not just bullshit, they’re transparently bullshit. “We’ll all be rooned” is the core around which other particles cohere. Any one of these reforms is going to slash jobs, destroy communities, ruin the economy, and – you see this cute little puppy? Yeah? Probably going to cut off one of his legs while he’s still alive. IN FRONT OF YOUR KIDS.

The reaction is no surprise: we know that people always squeal long and loud when their vested interests are under threat. What’s astonishing is how other people are treating these objections like credible points of debate. Bullshit arguments are only a problem when people start to swallow them.

The weekend before last, rugby league thing-doer Phil Gould got into the Sydney Morning Herald’s Sunday paper to put on a swallowing display worthy of the World Bukkake Championships. Pokie restrictions, he said, “will undoubtedly lead to the closing of many clubs, the loss of thousands of jobs in the club industry… and the loss of funding for community programs and junior sports.”

We’ll all be roooooooned.

But there’s a fundamental falsity to these Clubs Australia sponsor announcements. Even if club earnings do drop, there is no net loss to the economy. The money is not trucked to Cape Canaveral and fired into space. It still exists, and it will still be spent. It’ll just be spent on something else: not lost but redistributed. Clubs have the chance to try and have that money spent with them, by offering products and services that don’t have negative side effects.

Of course those who find it redistributed away from their personal reach will shriek, but society as a whole will not be any worse off. To the contrary. Money which was previously embezzled might instead be spent as originally intended, strengthening local business and employment. Savings that were burned away might be spent on groceries, schoolbooks, mortgage repayments, contributing to a stronger and more stable community.

And the casual punters who might not drop 50 bucks in the pokies anymore might drop it on a round of good Scotch for their mates instead. They might drop it on some oysters. They might get themselves a lap dance, or a couple of Hoyts Gold Class tickets, or a hilarious novelty windscreen sticker. (“2 Low 4 Fat Hoes”, said a ripper I saw recently on a lowered station wagon in Geelong. That guy gets wicked gash.) They might end up with a few extra grand and buy themselves a jetski. Maybe the jetski dealership supports the local junior sports club instead. Money doesn’t vanish.

The mining industry last year took the same tack. You want to tax us more than before? No-one will want to mine. Business will run overseas. Jobs jobs something jobs. We’ll all be rooned!

If we look at the record, BHP made a yearly profit of US$13 billion to June 2010. They then almost matched that in the next six months alone, eventually expanding their June 2011 profit to nearly $22 billion. Think about it for a second. That’s profit, in one year. It was far and away a record for any Australian company.

Let’s just break down this phrase. ‘Record profit’ means: more money than you have ever made before. Previously, while not earning that much money, you were able to support a certain number of employees. But now, making more money than you were previously making, should you lose some of that extra money to tax, you will not be able to sustain the same levels of employment that you were already sustaining with less money.

You don’t need a very advanced level of maths to see that this is complete bunk.

Let’s say it was 2005, and BHP had just posted their 2004/05 profit of $6.4 billion. Imagine you said to them, “In 2011, I’ll give you $19 billion.” Do you think they would have taken it? They’d have needed a fresh pair of pants, and you could only have got them out of the country by prising their teeth from your belt buckle. In 2011, though, if you say “You can make $22 billion, but you’ll pay… say… $3 billion of that in tax,” they then say “Tax? We only keep $19 billion? We’ll all beeeee rooooooned….”

And Tony Abbott says that you are hounding business offshore because they just can’t turn a dime under this regime, you heartless bloody socialist. And no, I don’t want a fucking biscuit. Kingston? All those Jamaicans do is hang around and smoke drugs, Marjorie!

Net result: people will always sulk about what they’ve got if they think that maybe they could have had something better. But a billion dollars is still a billion dollars, regardless of what-ifs in either direction. A business that is even turning a profit, any profit, is doing well, and should be thankful in the scheme of things. A business turning profits in the billions of dollars should just shut the hell up and eat its ice-cream.

Like the pokie campaign, a lot of the mining tax resistance involved them carrying on about supporting local communities. That is an incidental result of making shit-tins of money near those communities, and needing their help to do it. Let’s make one thing very clear. BHP does not give a flying fuck about Australia. Nor does Rio Tinto, nor Hancock Prospecting, aside from naming bits of it after Gina’s relatives. The Chinese government’s mineral acquisitions people do not give one either. No-one does. They are only interested in Australia for as long as Australia has a potential use for them. You will not see any BHP community projects being announced once the ore dries up. You won’t see any gestures of Chinese friendship when we can’t fuel their industry. Once we’re out of shit, we’re going to get dumped like an Ex-Lax curry.

Like the pokies with Clubs Australia, the tobacco industry set up the Australian Retailer’s Association as a safe-sounding body to hide behind in their advertising against plain packaging. Their arguments follow a curious ellipsoid of illogicality: namely that if sales go down then poor small retailers will of course be rooned, but also that that plain packaging won’t in the slightest curb the rate of consumption, therefore it’s a waste of government time and money doing it.

While the sense of having a bet each way is clear, the approach raises several other questions. Since when was the tobacco industry so goddamn altruistic as to directly fund expensive TV campaigns to advise against general public policy errors? “This pink batt project has been poorly conceived and implemented…” is not an ARA one I recall. If the laws are a waste of time that won’t affect smoking, why bother campaigning against them? And, if tobacco companies are in fact campaigning against them, is that not a very good indicator that the laws are going to do exactly what their authors suggested they would?

The last thing to roooooon us is the carbon tax. Abbott has been flying that flag for weeks and months, on how Aussie battler family worker digger battler families will be nailed to highway signs and beaten with reeds to generate enough heat to power the Lodge for one day, while Julia and her wilfully husky dry uterus clutch twin glasses of champagne and laugh.

Ultimately the ten dollars a week and compensation figures rather took the gust out of Tabbott’s pennant, but he’s still going to wear out his jaw tendon grinding out the message of how hard-working Aussie self-made battlers on a quarter of a million a year will be screwed out of the cost of at least one Henry Buck’s shirt while Wayne Swan siphons their children’s tears to be given to the Greens as part of their True Power Behind the Throne deal so they can lubricate their Satanic Gay Marriage parties where they all wear garters and veils and do the sodomy all over each other. Fucking biscuit munchers.

Aside from the roooonation of the rising cost of liarving enforced by the Liarbor Party of Liars from Parliarment house, all these poor coal power plant workers and such will be rooned by the roonously expensive new cost of doing fossil fuel business, and by dirty power supplies shutting down. Jobs jobs jobs.

But just like money that no longer goes to the pokies, this sector of need in the economy does not evaporate. Shutting down fossil fuels must be offset by a huge expansion in clean energy. Expanding sectors are the best place to work and to have your skills well rewarded. And you would imagine that those already in the energy industry would be best placed to take advantage of that industry shift. As the USA found during WWII, when you need to build a whole lot of shit you don’t have in a very short time, it has a massive flow-on economic benefit.

Additionally, a lot of those opportunities will be in the reverently-mumbled ruralandregionalaustralia, whose wide open spaces lend themselves to things like wind towers, solar farms, tidal harvesting, and hydroengineering.

So why the disaster warnings? Changes may mean you have to stop doing things a certain way. It doesn’t mean you won’t find new and better alternatives. Because shifting is what industries do. To paraphrase a commenter who put it well: “Conductors, guards, milkmen, dustmen, stable-hands, sail-makers, blacksmiths, riveters, SEC linesmen, deckhands, all lost their jobs when technology rendered them redundant. If you are not educating your children for a world where a working boiler exists only in a museum then you are the fool.”

Regardless of the pollution issue, we’re still dealing with finite resources. Shit’s going to run out someday, and someone’s going to need to make the transition. There’s no reason why this generation shouldn’t be the ones to put their hands up.

The tax is a positive move. Australia can patently afford it, and patently needs to start making CO2 pollution less simple and desirable for industry. No, a tax alone is not going to save the world, but examples need to be set. Australia’s carbon lobby is already hiding behind the argument that we shouldn’t bother if everyone else isn’t doing it. Like, there’s no point me personally not driving home wasted tonight, because even if I do kill a couple of people, it’s hardly going to touch the road toll, man. I mean, overall. It’s a couple of percent at most. Look how many people China are going to kill this year! Let’s look at the bigger picture. No, I don’t want a biscuit. I’m driving.

And of course, ‘no-one else is doing it’ isn’t true. Germany is the world’s renewable energy leader, on track for 50 percent renewable by 2020, and 100 percent by 2050. Their sunlight, coastline, and land mass compared to ours should make that fact pretty damn embarrassing. In Britain, even the conservative government has set a reduction target of 50 percent by 2025. When enough modern, developed, respected countries set the trend, it becomes much easier to get others to follow, especially when trade and diplomatic relationships with those developed economies may start to come under threat.

It’s bewildering, then, that the arguments of all four of these lobbies – pokies, mining, tobacco, and polluters – have been accepted as reasonable by media outlets, and therefore by an awful lot of people. Clearly, they are the arguments of those with the greatest vested interest in nothing changing. Consider the structural elements of the argument: “You [voters] can’t let your representatives do this thing that will cost us [the company] lots of money, because it will somehow have dire and catastrophic effects for all of youuuuuu.”

Shouldn’t this make you suspicious? Shouldn’t you think, when was the last time a large company did something to help your future when it wasn’t in that company’s best interests? When did large companies give a shit about “the Australian people”, or any other people, except as a source of custom? Not that they’re all the plotting evil monoliths of Mike Moore’s imagination, but they have no reason to care about you, unless doing so somehow benefits them.

And when someone has a clear conflict of interest in a case, surely their arguments for one side or the other have to be viewed with a great deal of skepticism?

The government does not have a vested interest in making tobacco or gambling companies less profitable. The government makes sweet revenue off that profit. But the government does have a vested interested in lowering smoking rates, and illnesses, and health costs, because the government represents the people. It has a vested interest in reducing problem gambling and social harm, because it represents the people.

The government does not have a vested interest in ruining the mining sector, because that sector supports the economy that keeps the government out of trouble. The government does have a vested interest in trying to get a decent slice of the revenue made by selling assets belonging to the people the government represents.

The government, then, has some sort of agenda other than its own enrichment. The companies do not. Their entire existence is predicated upon profit. Their arguments to protect that profit are easily collapsible. You can’t Glad Wrap a dog shit and call it a crème brulee.

But in the PC gentility of the age in which we live, media sources in general have mistaken impartiality for timidity. Being impartial doesn’t mean sitting quietly while everyone has a say. It means interrogating any point that looks like it may need it, regardless of where it comes from. But interrogation is precisely what we’re not getting. We’re getting ‘balance’, defined as fifty-fifty airtime between the nine scientists who back climate change and the one mathematician who doesn’t.

I don’t like living in a country of the gullible and the dense. I don’t like watching cynics like the Clubs Australia fatheads playing public sentiment like a catgut violin. I don’t like tracing anxiously back through the family history for wool graziers, restlessly trying to sleep at night by counting myself. We can do better than this, and we deserve better than the dodgy lines being repeated by these interchangeable self-absolvers. So let’s get better. Let’s shoot down the flimsy self-justifications. Let’s ask the really tricky, squirmy questions as many times as it takes to get an answer. Because if we can start calling them out on this sort of shit, I will personally fetch everyone a fucking Monte Carlo.

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397 Responses to Australiar and the f*cking idiot dilemma

  1. Cyndi says:

    Fantastic – though most female readers won’t know what Bukkake is Geoff; Hell, a lot of male readers won’t for that matter – still, another great rant worthy of the “Could Not Have Said It Better Myself” (CNHSIBM) Trophy which I have so far awarded to the Shut Your Carbon Taxin’ Mouth blog of yester week. Stay angry. Complacent Australia needs you.

    • Reppin’ for the ladies who do know what bukkake is, yo.

    • Emma says:

      So I googled Bukkake … well you learn something new every day

      Thanks for the excellent article

    • lisa says:

      “Stay angry. Complacent Australia needs you.”
      If you printed this on a tshirt I would buy it for sure.

    • Seb Elkner says:

      if someone doesn’t know what bukkake is just tell them to google it ;D

    • A fine lady of distinction says:

      Sigh. I really wish you’d said “most readers”. Gender doesn’t stop the laideez from being able to read the interwebs, y’know. ‘m female and I’ve known what bukkake is since I was 14. Which was more than 10 years ago, now.

    • Kittan says:

      Don’t be so quick to judge us females! We know what’s going on just as much as males do. >_<

      • neutral says:

        Kitten, the original comment about bukkake and how most women AND men won’t know what it is was written by CYNDI. Pretty sure that’s a female monikker. She ain’t judging, she’s just making an assumption that may or may not have been too general to satisfy your sentimentality.

    • Verity says:

      Being young is lovely isn’t it? You have a long time to look back and think,’Did I really write that?’

      Never mind, maturity and experience a wonderful teachers. They help both raw passion and dumb ideas.

      On the other hand there are some amazingly wonderful and mature young people. When I hear and read what they have to say, I feel Ausralia’s future is safe. Sadly Geoff, you are not one of them.

      • geoff lemon says:

        Indeed, Verity, indeed. As true as your name suggests. I can only wait to settle in to the comfortable wisdom of age so shiningly displayed by our political captains. You clearly know well this joy: that even as your body gears down to its undoing, as your skin bunches like a wadded-up string bag, as your eyes grow dim and your stride grows short and your remaining years grow mercifully fewer, you can find solace as you whisper to yourself, “At least I’m still able to be a patronising cunt.”

      • Verity says:

        What a bitter and twisted little lemon you are Geoff. If trying to shoot the messenger works for you honey, by all means go for it. Whatever turns you on. And by the way, when I read your reply I thought, hmmmm, I really must have got to the little prick.

        Little, bitter and twisted Geoff, at the risk of really pissing you off, I have to tell you that I’m really quite gorgeous. So Suffer little fella and remember the future that you write about belongs to crap artists like you. So when you say, ‘……. as your body gears down to its undoing, as your skin bunches like a wadded-up string bag, as your eyes grow dim and your stride grows short and your remaining years grow mercifully fewer ….. ‘ etc etc etc ….. I say ….. enjoy baby enjoy! Suck it up Geoff, It looks like you’ll have nothing behind you and nothing in front of you.

        I may have a few years on you little Geoffrey, but not that many that I (and all my gorgeousness) can’t look back at you and laugh. What a joke you are. Lol.

        • wendy says:

          so i have to ask, what is your objection to geoff’s article? other than the fact that its apparently overtly passionate. granted his reply was somewhat vitrolic but given the unprovoked and unsupported attack it is somewhat valid.

          this is nothing in this article that isnt true so the only thing that it is guilty of is perhaps opening your eyes to something they were closed to a tad too ethusiastically. this is what main stream media should support more instead of the bullshit that rupert murdoch churns out and what the australian working class laps up.

        • Anfalicious says:

          Sorry if our generation is bitter and twisted because baby boomers have spent their whole lives living off their parents’ social and cultural inheritance whilst mortgaging their children’s future. Sorry some of us are getting a bit sick of the “Fuck you Jack, Got Mine” mentality that the Howardistas bought to Australia. You old pricks broke it and won’t buy it; now it’s up to us to clean up the mess. So how about fucking off with a cup of tea and an iced vovo and wither into the irrelevance that you must surely have started feeling by now.

        • Simon says:

          Sounds like Geoff really got to you, actually.

          “Little … little … little … little … little …”

          Are you sure you couldn’t have shoehorned the word ‘little’ in a couple more times? Good work demonstrating that Geoff’s summation of your character was on the money.

          • Reversed Concave Spoon says:

            Clearly Verity was offended by Geoff’s tone… and that he sounded bitter… and little.
            You’re not allowed to sound bitter about things, even if it’s valid or we all leave ourselves open to the Grandpa Simpsons of our world who take it upon themselves to point out how much more they’ve earned the right to sound bitter, particularly about things that are younger than themselves.

            So what if Geoff sounded bitter Verity. What does it add or subtract from what he was saying?

        • zen says:

          Don’t worry Geoff Verity is a Andrew Bolt fan as well …

        • James says:

          Verity: unless you’re actually prepared to argue with Geoff, explaining why you think his views are wrong and naive, you should prepare yourself for a few things. (1) You will fail to change anyone’s mind. (2) You will fail to impress upon us that you have any idea what you’re talking about. (3) You will be called out for your complete lack of argument. (4) If in the process of posting, you manage to be patronising, you will be called out on that too.

          I don’t know what kind of response you expected from Geoff. You didn’t actually make any arguments, you just treated him like a child. I’m sure that this is acceptable in some circles, but this is not how grown-ups discuss things. Fuck off.

    • Danyi says:

      works very well as a moisturiser for the skin LOL…..Ooops!

  2. Yep, I’m with you. Dense, and getting more dense with each breath of polluted air. I heard some woman at the gym this morning – “They’re trying to tax the very air we breathe!” WHAT???? Somebody shoot me, please. Or find me someone intelligent to have a coffee with.

  3. Mike says:

    Brilliant keep up the writing, hopefully the national stupidity will slowly erode in the face of facts, knowledge and sense on subjects such as this? People need to be shown the real stakeholders and the real reasoning behind all this legislation, not just the propaganda.

    • tq says:

      “Stay angry. Complacent Australia needs you.” Couldn’t agree more, Geoff and commenters. I’ve been silently raging against Australian complacency since the 1980s, and it’s only got worse in the meantime. Remember the old saying “I’m all right, Jack”? It’s still Australia’s motto.

  4. Crazy Elf says:

    Well with your new found audience of admirers and haters this should cause a shit-storm.

  5. Jason says:

    Thankyou, Again. It truly nice to know that someone else thinks the way I do. Pity I dont have the words to put it as elloquently as you do.

    • Ruchi says:

      I wholehearted agree with this commentator here. Great blog, good read, most importantly, written by a sane person. A dying breed these days.

  6. jacktiernan says:

    Great follow-up.
    The troubled second album, it was not.

  7. Don Ingram says:

    I’d like to be able to say something clever in response to this, maybe toss in a few well crafted expletives to spice it up but the reality is that it would be by comparison…tripe. This latest missive is simply brilliant, it rises far above the 24×7 nauseous crap that is passed off as mainstream media commentary. Please keep up the excellent work. I eagerly await the next installment.

    • Laura says:

      Don, your disclaimer was moot – well said!

      And Geoff, thanks again for a rollicking read and a reminder that all hope is not lost.

      May sanity prevail!

  8. pietro says:

    I enjoy your writing (rants?) and you make a lot of sense.

    But I think in Australia we have Laxettes, not Ex-Lax.

  9. Stephen says:

    Love your work🙂 .
    Keep it up….you are a voice of reason in a sea of bullshit.

  10. TerryP says:

    Right on man!
    I’ve been waiting to hear some journalist question the opposition about their direct action policy, and the cost of it, and how it conflicts with conservative ideology.
    Instead all they ever are asked is what do they think of government policy.

  11. les wood says:

    woop!

  12. David Lowery says:

    I’m sitting here watching ABC News 24. So far this morning we’ve had something about a swimmer being awarded compo (which in the scheme of things is obviously reaaalllllyyyy important), several replays of Gillard speaking and a live cross to Tony saying this “toxic tax” is going to hurt the (elderly) common man. Not one bit of critical commentary, not one bit of insight or one intelligent question.

    We used to have old school 7:30 report style interrogation, but somewhere along the way we’ve gone from “wait up a bit, you’re speaking utter crap and the figures I or someone else has just spent hours or days researching say your policy is a crock” to “oh that’s nice, the other person says you suck, what do you have to say to that, um ok, um…..I’m going to cross back to something I understand like, um,..hey football, they won innit!”

    Maybe journalism should be a postgrad degree and we should send people off to study public policy or economics or science or sociology before they are allowed to ask questions.

    • franbarlow says:

      Stephen Long on PM did a modestly good job tonight however:

      http://www.abc.net.au/pm/content/2011/s3272060.htm

      Worth a look …

      • David Lowery says:

        Cheers🙂 Short and succinct.

      • Julian Staltari says:

        Thanks for the link. Stephen Long’s piece is more than modestly good, it is as good as we could – and probably as good as we should – hope for. While it’s fun to read and no doubt write heathenscripture’s barbs, I grow a little weary of the self-congratulatory tone engendered by “everyone else’s” idiocy.

        • geoff lemon says:

          Julian, it’s more that we’re all being made idiots. It’s about the idiocy enforced on us by the poor reportage standards of the day. There are people who have the time and energy and critical faculty to pull apart what they’re told, but not everyone does. Better information would go a long way to addressing that.

          • Julian Staltari says:

            Thanks for the reply Jeff – your piece was killer, there is no doubt. I’m just not sure that all those who lack the critical apparatus wouldn’t just be offended by it. Perhaps they deserve to be, but it occurs to me that the sharp quip is just the other side of the dumbing down.

    • Wait a moment David!

      In the good old days when all Australian cities had at least a morning and an afternoon paper and many large towns had an independent weekly, or bi-weekly, real local paper, journalism was an apprenticeship and not a degree. Through my, 1/2 century old, rose coloured glasses, I’m sure that when many journalists saw excreta they called it as they saw it…shit.

      Now all we seem to get is 1 sides media release, against other sides media release…if we are lucky. We very rarely get any investigation at all. Many times they take sides and more often populist, but anti community, anti environment, pro conflict and definitely status quo.

  13. Jim Tait says:

    When I started reading I had some trepidation that your follow up would be a pale vestige of last weeks glory – but man you’ve taken the ball and run with it !! You’re the man !! Keep it up Geoff – Australia needs your commentary – I mean REALLY needs it, While we endured the decade of Howard I went from being a parochial Aussie to wanting to emigrate – If Abbott ever becomes PM – I’m moving north to become a Papua New Guinean !

  14. Tom says:

    I’m speechless. I cannot recall an article ever encapsulating my point of view so precisely. It is heartening to know that not everyone in this country is an utter moron.

    Bravo, good sir.

  15. natascah gleeson says:

    your words are music to my heart…thank you.

  16. Ingrid says:

    “a swallowing display worthy of the World Bukkake Championships”

    For this line alone your likeness should be cast in bronze Sir! Not every day a political article makes me snarf coffee out my nose. Well played Geoff.

  17. Sarah Cole says:

    .

  18. radiocat says:

    This had me GASPING with LOL’s…oh so adroit! Oh so funny…. UNTIL the wilfully husky dry uterus comment. Come the fuck on man, that was a bit medieval. Her WILFULLY HUSKY UTERUS?? Its punchy, but below the belt.

  19. sage says:

    claro que si, this is again excellente and, as always, hilarious.. i wouldn’t shy away from explaining the sheer urgency of the situation and what is actually at stake, or highlighting the absolute lunacy of opposing a small tax, that is but one little step towards the eventual massive changes that scientists and economists alike are telling us must happen to ensure survival (not profits, not prosperity).. of life on the planet.
    The whole crux of the argument missing in the national debate is that climate change is a big, big fuckin deal… ecosystem collapse on land and in the oceans, mass existinction, the loss of heirloom plants and food security, eternal drought, forced migration: we’re talkin mega-big deal. A carbon tax, my stoopid little darlings, is not.

    • Drew Ringsmuth says:

      Yes. In a few decades’ time, as shit splatters with growing intensity off every fan between Earth and sky, people will ask why the hell we didn’t do something drastic sooner. The public, somehow, needs to be made to realise the magnitude of what we are facing. It’s not a question of Land Cruiser or Range Rover, it’s a question of fuel or food.

      Hey, Geoff (Lemon), are you familiar with something called the World Scientists’ Warning to Humanity? http://www.ucsusa.org/about/1992-world-scientists.html
      In a nutshell, in 1992 the heaviest hitters in the global scientific community got together and said clearly to the world, ‘Hey everyone, all of us together are about to fuck everything up if we stay on our present course. No, really. We humbly recommend a change of plans.’ It’s the kind of thing you might expect to see in a movie just after astronomers realise a Mars turd-sized asteroid is on a collision course with Earth. The people who know better speak up because it’s a matter of life or death. And, of course, the world shuts up and fucking listens because it’d jolly well better. Yeah, that was in the movie. In Realityland, the fucktards who ran the major media outlets deemed it un-newsworthy and the Warning skimmed well below the public’s radar. Seriously, what is this fucking world we live in?

  20. Dan says:

    Another great piece of writing. The biggest problem is that you are generally preaching to the converted. The right wing apologists will just skim through for any percieved mistakes and denounce you for the lefty, pinko, communist hippie you undoubtably are and the average joe Australia won’t bother reading this at all as they would rather get things spoon fed to them by the compliant media. To quote Winston Churchill: “The best argument against democracy is
    a five-minute conversation with the average voter.”

    • wombat says:

      True of course, but at least it’s given us pinkos a much-needed belly-laugh – and possibly articulated some ideas that hadn’t occurred to us yet.

    • JThereseBass says:

      Churchill said that? Oh now I feel better. Found myself yesterday in despair over the seeming dimness of the majority of Aussies who can’t see how they’re being manipulated by TAbbott & Co and the big corporates, and the thought that came to mind was: “We obviously need a benevolent dictatorship because people don’t know what’s good for them and what’s not.” Then I had to go and have a quiet sit down because the thought was so shocking to someone whose personal motto is ‘freedom’.

      • Craig says:

        Consider your average Man on the Street. Not your mates, not the funky people you choose to hang out with, but the bang-on-the-50%-percentile Joe Everybody.

        Now consider that, by definition, half of the population are even dumber than that.

        Scary, ain’t it?

        OTOH, whenever I start thinking like that, I try to clap a lid on it because (1) those sorts of attitudes rapidly lead to a very nasty place, and (2) those sorts of attitudes are generally based on a shitload of unexamined privilege.

        Still, it doesn’t give you a lot of confidence when facing a world dealing with extremely urgent, extremely complex existentially-threatening dangers, does it?

      • Craig says:

        And, to balance it out, you need to remember that Churchill also said:

        “Many forms of Government have been tried and will be tried in this world of sin and woe. No one pretends that democracy is perfect or all-wise. Indeed, it has been said that democracy is the worst form of government except all those other forms that have been tried from time to time.”

        (http://hansard.millbanksystems.com/commons/1947/nov/11/parliament-bill#column_206)

        And, of course, that other eternal quote:

        “Just ‘cos someone famous said it, don’t mean it’s true.”

        (me)

    • jekandsuch says:

      Thats the problem with how they’ve tried to sell the carbon tax, they forget how stupid people actually are.

      To me, its meant to go: Carbon tax -> companies put up prices or move offshore -> you change the way you are living so as to offset the price increase, by turning of lights or not driving or whatever, in doing so you use less fossil fuels-> alternatively, you do a bit of research and don’t buy things from companies that are offshore, you buy Australian, you buy locally and buy whats in season, companies start to lose customers and shape up by procduing things that use less fossil fuels -> we all use less fossil fuels = halt climate change, move towards living more sustainably.

      Seems pretty basic, but I think they underestimated just how low the lowest common denominator is in this country. Too many steps for the average Joe to comprehend. And one of the steps is possibly change your life at all or possibly do some research! WAAAAAHHHHH Where will I find the time to watch The Block and Masterchef now????????? WHYYYYY MEEEEEEEE?

      • David Lowery says:

        The message does need simplifying and I think this is where writers like Geoff come in with no bullshit – no spin honest and heartfelt critical commentary.

        There is a line of thought that says people will always do what is in their own best interest, and “of course” that must be out of greed. Hence the 40,000W message about toxic tax, personal financial loss, hurt family, job loss, etc. It is a simple message that one part of politics has mastered and to which there is minimal defense if you truly believe people are evil greedy bastards who’d kill their mother if they thought it would get them a higher price when they sold the rest of the family.

      • Sue Cochius says:

        But that’s the beauty of the carbon tax or any way of pricing carbon: the hip-pocket nerve reacts autonomously – no cognitive engagement required.

        • Sue Cochius says:

          PS Though my skin’s starting to bunch up and my body gear down, I thought your article a searing breath of brilliance. At the going down…, we will remember it!

    • Q says:

      To be a little contrary Dan, the only way I can get my brother’s dipshit friends to read anything about politics is to direct them here. The Moran-esque dirty eloquence is the only thing that keeps them reading. They’re not right wing apologists, but they do vote (:/ )

  21. xavier says:

    Once again: spot on. It is so good to see a rational voice in the babble of incoherent fear-mongering.* It’s encouraging, yet at the same time sad that your blog posts on these issues are the views on the “fringe” of the public debate. It’s these kinds of rational view points that need to be put out in to the mainstream. People have been treated as though they are dumb for a long time and so they are acting like it. No one on either side of politics has the tenacity to put things simply – instead they aim lower than that.

    *I would have said “hear a rational voice” but I read it and I don’t know if your actual voice sounds rational – although it seems your words are.

  22. reckless says:

    “Abbott’s ‘Oppose Anything, Anytime’ government in exile”

    Spot on. That clown would oppose hospitals if the government came out explicitly in favour of them.

    • JThereseBass says:

      Paul Keating said it best on ABC Lateline last week: “Abbott’s position is that if HE can’t be Prime Minister he’s going to wreck the place”, THAT should have been a headline in at least one newspaper the next day. Don’t read newspapers (their lack of standards upsets me to the point of being hazardous to my health) but I’m willing to bet my rent money it wasn’t

    • Bert Norton says:

      “Anything, Anytime, Anywhere”, was the slogan of “The Goodies “.
      Abbott could make his slogan “Oppose Anything, Anytime, Anywhere”, or even better paraphrased as “Oppose Everything, Every Time, Everywhere”.

    • drstupid says:

      True. But the government isn’t game to commit to being in favour of hospitals unless they have focus grouped it in marginal electorates first. Then having found that 50.5% of people are in favour, they will let Garrett mismanage it until they’ve got support down to 20% and don’t have to support it any more. Gee, it’s hard work being in g’mint, innit?

  23. Brett says:

    I long to live in a world where this would be printed on the front page of a national newspaper.
    Spread it around, people.

    • maths says:

      Couldn’t agree more. Geoff, you speak for more people than you could possibly realise.

    • Anfalicious says:

      I long to live in a world where NEWS is printed on the front page of NEWS papers and opinion stays on the editorial pages. Seems that we’re past those days though…

  24. Graham says:

    Brilliant. Just Brilliant.

    “Regardless of the pollution issue, we’re still dealing with finite resources. Shit’s going to run out someday, and someone’s going to need to make the transition.”

    Exactly. Even if CO2 isn’t the villain… we still have a finite fund of fossil fuel. How hard is that to understand. I can just imagine the Y2K-like rush to convert away from fossil fuel as the price of fuel starts to *really* skyrocket.

    Keep up the great work.

    • JThereseBass says:

      The other thing that REALLY worries me about fossil fuels, apart from the obvious poisonous nature of them, is that I have a sneaking suspiscion that stuff that has taken millions of years to form in deep layers of our land and ocean floors is MEANT to be there, that it has a function (perhaps in stabilising tectonic plates?) that we’re not aware of. This fear becomes more prominent for me as easily accessible oil runs out and we’re drilling a few km below the sea’s surface. I’m no scientist or geologist. But I’m very big on commonsense, something that appears to all too often go missing in action…….

      • moz says:

        “meant to be there”, kinda. It got there by being sucked out of the atmosphere over a fairly longish period of time (by geological standards, so “several governments” in political terms). The long-term osicillation seems to be carbon gets sucked out of the atmosphere which cools the planet, resulting in an ice age which causes methane releases from rotting vegetaion which heats the place up. Add a bit of continental plate action and some volcanicism and you’re there. The volcanism is the rescue mechanism – it works even if the whole planet is covered in ice, which most of the other GHG releasers don’t.

        What we’re doing is searching out all the buried carbon and releasing it as fast as we can. If we’d started in an ice age that might kinda work for a while, but we didn’t. Hopefully we won’t get to see the other rescue mechanism (what happens if so much carbon is released that we get a major ecosystem reset (like the oxygen catastrophe).

  25. Hyperbole can be a useful tool when making an argument, but you massively overuse it. The constant absurd caricatures of your political opponents don’t actually strengthen your points.

    “I mean, I have no wish to see Gillard run over in a rainy street, but nor would I go out of my way to brake that hard” – not a great start for someone trying to take the high road.

    “I don’t like living in a country of the gullible and the dense.” – so basically this is another rant about the plebs being easily fooled. Yawn.

    “Let’s shoot down the flimsy self-justifications. Let’s ask the really tricky, squirmy questions as many times as it takes to get an answer.” – great, get on with it then. Skip the self pity about being surrounded by fools and cynics.

    • geoff lemon says:

      Who said anything about plebs, Lachlan? There’s no class distinction to people failing to ask questions. And point out exactly where my argument was wrong? Which of these lobbies doesn’t have a fabrication of a campaign, and which has been adequately critiqued for it?

      As for the rest, I’m not going to have the ‘explain satire’ conversation that has been rechurned a billion times in each of history’s minor struggles against the unimaginative.

      • My intention was not to say your points are wrong (although I think you are wrong on the CO₂ tax), rather that you’re not going to change any minds. And satire is supposed to be funny, but I think the only people laughing at yours will be those who already hate what you hate. But have fun ranting into your echo chamber.

        • uniquerhys says:

          “satire is supposed to be funny”

          No – satire is supposed to cut through the crap and expose the stupidity and illogical attitudes of the target. It can be either funny (Horatian) or biting (Juvenalian) – http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Satire

          • tq says:

            @ uniquerhys – Spot on!

            @ Lachlan O’Dea – clearly you haven’t read the numerous other posts on this page, praising Geoff for expressing their exact thoughts. Also clearly you lack a sense of humour – Geoff’s a bloody funny bastard!

  26. a_blind_goldfish says:

    if only the people who need to read this would read this.

  27. Crusader Rabid says:

    I’m a conservative but I don’t like the ‘Juliar’ thing either. Besides, I reckon Julia wil yet prove to be correct; there will be no Carbon Tax under any govt. she leads. But even if the ALP go ahead with it anyway, I’m not worried about a C-Tax cos Iron Man Abbott will have a mandate to scrap it. Seen the latest Neilson poll? Nyuk, nyuk.

    • thew says:

      Live Kevin07 had a mandate to introduce an ETS and the LNP will need the ALP to roll over in the senate and if not go to a double dissolution and we already had a nationwide opinion only a year ago and an election is more tan 2 years away… fucking yawn.. read the article, it’s directed at you

      • Crusader Rabid says:

        I did, and though the author abuses Australians and calls us idiots, I wouldn’t abuse the host and call him a Leftarded Looneytarian … but that doesn’t mean to say he’s NOT one.

        • Ribena says:

          Funny. I’m an Australian but I didn’t think the author was calling me an idiot. Then again… that’s probably because I’m not an idiot Australian.

    • Jeremy says:

      oh Mandate believers, you so silly😀

      And you seriously believe Tony will scrap any tax the government puts in? Hahaha. The Liberals only know how to cut services, not taxes😛 Also, what makes you assume that Tony’s going to get a majority? And a majority in both houses no less, which is what he’ll need to overcome Labor and the Greens. Speaking as a swing voter, I don’t really want Tony to have ultimate power, any more than I want Julia too.
      Honestly I kinda hope Labor (and the Greens) realise how freeing the opinion polls are. if things are as bad as the polls say, there’s no more reason to listen to them, they can do whatever they want. Their attempts at popularism haven’t worked, so the sensible thing would to be ignore them, and just do what’s right for the rest of their term. Over the past few weeks, it’s been nice to see Julia arguing for something she actually BELIEVES in, and it’s what Australian Politics needs more of.
      Also Journalists that actually consider where people are coming from when deciding how much airtime to give each point of view, but we can’t have everything.

      • Crusader Rabid says:

        wtr, Julia BELIEVES in something? ah, ya nearly had me!

        • Jeremy says:

          haha. Well, she’s seeming to at least follow through with it. Unlike Tony who gave the weakest rebuttal ever:

          After getting caught out saying: ‘our 5% target is crazy!’
          The best reply he can come up with is: ‘No, I didn’t mean that we won’t have any impact on climate and thus shouldn’t bother, I mean that um. The Labor party’s method of arriving at 5% is wrong, but ours is totally right.’ I can just see him at home the night the media noticed coming up with this and going “Yeah, that’s an awesome result. TAKE THAT PEDANTIC MEDIA”, not realising how weak a reply it really is. And he goes in to work the next day, runs it by some people. they can see the faint hints of bags under his eyes as he tells them (totally artistic licence), and they reply, “Yeah Tony, that’s great.” While cringing because they know it’s so bad but they can see he worked really hard on it and don’t want to hurt his feelings.

    • Anfalicious says:

      The Neislon poll lines up almost exactly with those who think they’ll be worse off. By the next election we’ll have a year of the tax cuts and hand outs and all the nongs who vote purely in self interest will be sold; especially when Abbott has to run on a platform of massive tax increases to repeal the carbon tax.

      Not to mention that by the time he’d be able to win the election, have a double dissolution and get the new senate in place it would be 2015, by which time the tax will be over and the ETS will be in place; this means he will be repealing permits, not ending a tax, this means he is going to have to pay businesses for their permits. A massive cost. This is all of course, assuming that the most likely result of a DD election *isn’t* to solidify a Liberal base whilst driving massive amounts of AGW proponents to the Greens.

      The tax is here to stay and by the time of the next election Australians will release it didn’t hurt them like Tony said it would, blowing the trust the electorate will have in him.

      • Jeremy says:

        That assumes that people who voted liberal in the first election will vote liberal again after Tony throws us straight into another election. Having an election promise being “If I am elected I will take Australia to the Polls again” doesn’t seem that compelling.

  28. Obese Andy says:

    I swear that if I had enough money, I would publish this as a full page ad, in every paper in Australia, every day, for a month! It’s brilliant. It is what I would write, if I could, you talented bastard!

  29. ‘Her wilfully husky uterus’ – forever more this is how I shall think of Ms Gillard.

  30. McBealie says:

    Seriously someone get this man a television show …. better yet put him on Andrew Bolt’s show (if that shit is still on air) it would make for some interesting viewing!!

  31. Yeah, another brilliant post, Geoff! This country will have a carbon tax and we’ll be the better for it. Tony Abbott knows he won’t change it if he gets in – mostly because it’ll be too difficult to change back and by then, people will have realised his noddy schemes mean we tax-payers will be paying a hell of a lot more because Abbott will be giving it all to the big polluters. We know that’s who really pulls the Liberal/National’s strings.

  32. Timo says:

    The problem, as always, is that you can’t argue with idiots. You just can’t; it never ever ever works.

    If they were capable of understanding, investigating and coming to a well thought out conclusion based on actual facts then they would have done so long before. You can’t educate them and you can’t reason with them. All you can do is silently ignore them in the hope they don’t impact you.

    Also, your writing is great.

    • JThereseBass says:

      I understand your despair, but I disagree. It’s very possible to change a person’s mind about pretty well anything. The trick is in HOW you approach it and you’re right when you say argument (in the vitriolic smart-arse way) isn’t it. When people are frightened (and make no mistake – that’s what the problem is here – fear of change) their emotions run high and any capability they have for rational thought goes right out the window. That’s exactly what TAbbott & co are playing on – very successfully. Once you have calmed their fears rational argument can come into play. Julia Gillard knows this and that’s exactly what she’s trying to do as we write. And that’s exactly what we should ALL be trying to do, one person at a time. Remember the last election? EVERY person counts and each person persuaded then convinces others – ripples on a pond – like
      EVERYTHING. It’s very important that NONE of us give up. Keep talking. Keep putting your case. Never surrender. One person at a time……….

  33. Nathaniel says:

    Australian’s with brains need you to represent! Would love to see you on Q&A!

  34. Skeet says:

    “Fucking biscuit munchers.”

    I managed to get as far as this, fending off several near misses along the way, before the coffee finally exited forcefully via the nostrils, all over my keyboard. Fortunately, after several past experiences with online wit and dead keyboards, I had learned to take precautions, in the form of a protective silicone keyboard cover.

    Ferkin hilarious. And deadly accurate.

    Keep saying this shit. Has to be said. Hopefully it will make a little difference for the better. Certainly seems to have rung a bell with more than a handful.

  35. Craig says:

    Some of the public support for some of those lobbies isn’t because we think they care about us, nor because we care inherently about them. It’s because we sympathise with victims of a regime which appears to have “controlling the people” as its main aim. Don’t forget that the ALP still has this idea floating around of censoring the internet, still doesn’t allow “adult” video games into the country, is trying to make hundreds of plants and chemicals illegal, etc, etc. The pokies regulations and plain smokes packs are just more examples of the “nanny state” gone mad. We all know pokies and cigarettes are bad. Anyone who uses them suffers the consequences. It’s called freedom of choice, but I reckon the ALP would have to look up that phrase to work out what it means. If they redirected even half the resources they devote to being fascist pricks towards worthwhile legislation, we’d all be better off.

    • Kiwi says:

      The issue is that ciggies, gambling, alcohol etc etc cause problems our society/culture has to clean up. Therefore the government is involved. I call bullshit on all the calls of “nanny state gone mad”. If a person gets lung cancer from smoking, it is often public health that pays for their care, so it makes sense that the government should attempt to lessen smoking related cancer. This is true for alcohol abuse, gambling addiction, helmet laws, seat belt laws etc etc

      OT: great article! Keep ’em coming

      • Cam says:

        Fair enough the health side of things, but the point stands for internet filters, video games, and other issues of subjective repute.

        • moz says:

          “freedom of choice” doesn’t mean that corporations get it. People get to choose, corporations get regulated. That way we have restrictions on the forms of coercion/persuasion that can be used to sell products. Or are you suggesting a free-for-all in advertising techniques? Or the US-style “corporations are people too” – immortal, amoral “people”.
          A lot of their censorship stuff I oppose too, but I don’t see a clear way to distinguish what I would like to see happen from the proposals put forward by people I disagree with. Too much of the “free speech” lobbying is from industries who have profound harmful effects and don’t want to be restricted in how they can lie about those and recruit more victims. When the choice is between letting industry create more addicts and not being able to buy porn over the counter… sorry local porn shop, you lose. If you think our government *can* censor the internet I disagree, so it’s not “can I buy video games or not”, it’s “can Murdoch use his media empire to overturn my vote, or not”.

    • JThereseBass says:

      Then again, there ARE the people who are just looking for something/someone to hate……

    • Anfalicious says:

      The Libs agree with all of those nanny state initiatives. It’s pretty clear that Geoff isn’t an ALP supporter.

      There’s more than two options.

    • redrabbit says:

      Addiction takes away freedom of choice. “we all know pokies and cigarettes are bad. Anyone who uses them suffers the consequences” – that statement is fairly heartless when you consider that a majority of people who use them would wish that they never started and that they could stop, and are generally from the more disadvantaged sectors of society. but according to you, they deserve what they get eh?

  36. Jeremy says:

    Who knew that Hanrahan would be such an accurate piece of political commentary – We’ll all be rooooooooned.

    I have nothing more to add besides: Well said.

  37. Michael T says:

    Spot on. Couldn’t agree more.

    The Aussie media really have been hit with a stupid stick lately, we need people like you in the media telling it like it is.

  38. Lisa says:

    You is funny!
    (and totally right about the Abbot/biscuit analogy) – oh to see an opposition politician saying… “yes I agree partially with your policy, but you could make it better by…..”. But clearly I am too idealistic!

    • Jeremy says:

      I dream of this every day. Imagine a world where Tony goes
      “Welp, the Greens and Labour are going to pass this Carbon Tax, how can I represent my constituents and give them a carbon tax that represents my voters interests.”
      And every day I’m disappointed – The only reason the Greens have the balance of power in the senate is because the Liberals won’t work with Labour. I am somewhat curious what Tony, and the Liberals en masse, have actually voted yes on.

      We saw collaboration in New York’s parliament recently, with conservative politicians debating on gay marriage – they realised they couldn’t block it, but they worked with the major parties to get better protection for churches etc to not be sued when they say “No” to marriage applicants. And you know what – it was awesome
      Or in Tassie where Mr Fergusson was arguing for the age on amendments to surrogacy laws to make it so you have to be 25 instead of 21 to form the agreement.
      If the FTTH NBN is as bad as Tony says, why didn’t he push harder for FTTN? It’d be a lot cheaper if it goes horribly wrong like he’s been predicting. Or, put simply, part (indeed most) of a politician’s job is to negotiate to come up with the best outcome for the greatest number of people. And Tony is absolutely RUBBISH at this. Which makes me sad😦

      • Anfalicious says:

        It constantly frustrates me when people say that a tiny percentage of the population (Greens) are holding the majority hostage; if the majors agreed on something then The Greens don’t matter. At all. One little bit. Saying The Greens are holding us hostage is using them as a scapegoat when one of the majors doesn’t want to make a hard choice.

        • Jeremy says:

          The Greens are only holding us hostage because the Liberals aren’t willing to negotiate. Between the Labor and Liberal parties they have to have at least 80% of the parliament (I haven’t checked) – if they agree on something, there;s nothing the other members of parliament can do to block it!

          • Anfalicious says:

            Yep, exactly. That you haven’t heard the MSM using this line shows just how committed all of our media is to the two party state.

    • moz says:

      “oh to see an opposition politician saying…”

      You do, the Greens say that sort of thing quite often. And dare I say it, the LNP too. The major parties are too smart for that, they know it’s better to loudly oppose it then quietly vote for it (and lie about the latter). Look at how many votes in federal parliament have been contested, and exactly what the liberals have voted for.

  39. Thank you, thank you, thank you. I feared I was virtually alone, but, miraculously, you seem to have somehow come to the same conclusions as I have. Oh, that’s right, it common fucking sense.

    Well said.

  40. Tallulah says:

    Amen. I read through the Herald Sun the other day for the first time in a while. It, in all seriousness, read like a parody paper. It would have been hilarious if it weren’t so tragic.

    • Craig says:

      I had the misfortune recently to be stuck in a barber shop with nothing but The Australian to read. That used to be the sort of paper that I could disagree with but still respect; essentially just a right-leaning version of the SMH. Now, it’s like a printed version of Fox News. Full-on nuttery (birthers, climate denial, etc.), claiming with a straight face that anything to the left of the most extreme of the US conservatives is revolutionary socialism.

      If I’d seen it on the internet, I’d have thought it was a Poe.

  41. 2000faces says:

    Absolutely brilliant. First article I’ve read of yours, looking forward to more in future.

    Insight and imagination are exceedingly rare in any media. Keep writing.

  42. montebella says:

    Hey there – thanks for the belly laughs, it’s a great way to inform and entertain. I certainly appreciate it.

  43. Colin Hogg says:

    Would that be Dick Smith bikkies ?

  44. Kezza says:

    So what do we do? Obviously there is a part of Australia that is horrified, embarrassed, frustrated by mainstream media, social values and pollies (amongst other things). The responses to this blog show that there are like-minded folk out there; so how do we make the social changes necessary where decisions are made based on facts and reason and not on some hysterical emotive threat that the (financial) world as we know it will end?

    • R says:

      Kezza,

      We need to work in community values into the current capitalist economic system so that listening to the community and presenting facts and conviction rather than hysteria is rewarded. The beauty and the curse of capitalism is that it rewards (to a higher point than other economic system we’ve ever had) individual achievement and gives incentive for hard work.

      This is very different from getting rid of capitalism which I am personally against. This is using capitalism to enact social change rather than social change having to work around capitalism.

      For example, in my scenario, countries could have their credit ratings, governmental-societal interaction, etc all pegged in a similar way that our carbon tax and ETS will work. Why? Because carbon trading is essentially quantifying an invincible and intangible yet life-altering substance and what we do with it.

      Think of it as a cross between a GDP, credit rating and an ETS. This “social rating” (remember this is an idea, and this is a working title) would take into effect all social factors based upon commonly-agreed criteria (much in the same way as carbon trading) in proportion to country size and budget. In this scenario, an imaginary country, call it Utopia, which has a low budget but a high social rating would then be able to trade that for other things such as more advanced technologies, loans with lower interest rates etc.

  45. Scott Hillard says:

    Britain’s “50% reduction” target is in the context of a dozen or more new nuclear plants being opened over the same timeframe.

    Germany’s reliance on imported French (nuclear) electricity will only grow – especially after they hit the anti-nuke panic button post-Fukushima (which still hasn’t managed to kill anyone from radiation exposure – whoops).

    CO2 is not pollution. Radon, sulfur, carbon MONoxide, etc are all pollutants. This tax will do NOTHING to address pollution. The “clean energy future” still has us getting the vast majority of our electricity from coal & gas – go check out how much filth (including radon – look that up on your periodic table) is pumped out when you burn coal. Oh dear….

    • Jeremy says:

      Still, besides the USA, all the major economies have or are implementing some sort of carbon reduction measures, so it’s hard to argue that this is somehow Australia ‘going it alone’. And given we have the highest per capita CO2 production, it’ll help our case if the rest of the world does start trying to enforce carbon cutting measures for us to be able to say “hang on, we have a system in place that’s running,” rather than being forced at tradepoint to use whatever system they’ve come up with.

      Presumably Fukishima hasn’t killed anyone from radiation exposure because most of the people are already dead or evacuated from the tsunami…Also radiation often works over months or years, so it’s a bit premature to declare Fukushima harmless just yet.

      CO2 is still a fairly large factor in global climate change – and presumably a reduction in CO2 output will have a similar impact on CO, SO2, Rn and the other fun stuff that burning fossil fuels gives us. Because the general idea of Carbon reduction is to wean us off fossil fuels without having to rebuild the economy from scratch. Heck, companies have had most of this year to start reducing their carbon usage, and they have another year before they have to actually start paying.

      Maybe it’s not an ultimate cure-all for atmospheric pollution, but it’s a start.

      • Anfalicious says:

        Heck, companies have had most of this year to start reducing their carbon usage, and they have another year before they have to actually start paying.

        Smart companies would have spent the last decade ramping up emissions so they have a higher baseline to start with when a price on carbon eventually came in. This is why this is so necessary; we’re going to get something eventually because Europe, Japan, China and the population centres of the US will (New England and the West Coast already have their own independent schemes). That’s the vast majority of global trade right there, and nearly all of Australia’s. How long do you think these countries will put a price on carbon before they start putting import tariffs on countries that don’t have one?

        As this issue has always been, it’s going to happen eventually no matter what, the question is whether we have a small, inconsequential cost now or whether we destroy our economy trying to catch up in 10 years time.

    • Lotharsson says:

      Don’t be silly.

      ANYTHING in sufficient amounts where it causes a detrimental impact is pollution. That includes CO2.

    • Amy says:

      CO2 is however increasing in concentration in the atmosphere. And being a greenhouse gas, with all that entails, there will be a point when excess CO2 in our atmosphere will be a particularly bad thing. Are we near that point? *shrug* I don’t know. But personally, I’d rather take the steps now and have it at worst be an expensive feel-good effort rather than get to the point where the planet has become a hot toasty greenhouse.

    • Anfalicious says:

      CO2 isn’t that much of an issue on its own, however, when it mixes with water vapour it becomes very good at trapping heat in the atmosphere.

      There’s a lot of water vapour in the atmosphere.

  46. JThereseBass says:

    Has everybody out there seen the doco ‘The Corporation’? Avail at your local video store. Even for someone like me who thought she had a pretty good handle on the vagaries of the capitalist system, it came as a shock to hear that if a corporation was a person it would be legally defined as a sociopath. A corporation is LEGALLY COMPELLED to make money as it’s number one priority REGARDLESS OF ANY HARM it may do to anything or anyone in the process. Highly recommended viewing. I actually bought it to lend out to all my friends

    • Scott Hillard says:

      Ah, no. Where can I find the “LEGAL DEFINITION” of a sociopath (and isn’t it called “antisocial personality disorder” in newspeak)?

      Corporations are “LEGALLY COMPELLED” (Caps lock stuck?) to make money in accordance with the laws of the jurisdictions in which they operate. So if a corporation is doing something in the course of making money that causes demonstrable harm to innocent people – and it’s not illegal – maybe the problem lies moreso with the law than with the corporation…..

      • Anfalicious says:

        This is the problem with corporations, they can never go “we *could* make an extra million by destroying the livelihood of these 400 villagers, but that would be morally wrong”; it’s always “is it legal?” and then they try to tell us they can regulate themselves.

  47. Dan says:

    The word “Bukkake” caused my work server to block this article.

  48. Greg Yates says:

    Another excellent article.
    You have made me look at this carbon tax in a different, more positive, way. The CT is good, well the idea of reducing CO2 is, the govenment, especially the PM, got the marketing wrong sadly.
    Have you thought of being in politics !!!! WTF !!
    “World Bukkake Championships” cracked up at that line and many more. ( How many googled that and threw up ?? )

  49. Mon says:

    Dumbageddon

  50. Richard Bee says:

    Geoff,
    Fortunately, I’m surrounded by people who agree with just about everything you say here, and believe me, we love reading this stuff. But the people we so dismiss as sloganeering sheeple who went and sacrificed their last remaining dignity to Mr Opposition were convinced to do so via arguments with astounding text-conviction efficiency. It is efficient and effective because the arguments they hear cobble together a variety of pre-configured beliefs that they, right or wrong, recognise as truths. It is all pretty much low-denominator stuff, but this is the mechanism anyone, regardless of intellectual ability, uses to make sense of things.

    These people want to put things in perspective as much as anyone, and are seeking answers. Unfortunately the answers they are being given in concepts they understand are full of lies, distorted truths, and hidden agendas. But to these people these arguments make sense; there is an internal logic to them. If we stand on our platform of self-congratulatory cleverness and dismiss, we only have ourselves to blame by the time the apparently uninformable masses exercise their democratic muscle.

    The current government doesn’t seem to have a clue how public conviction works – it is almost like they are living in a time bubble, back when people formed opinions slowly. They give the opposition just enough material to enable them to prime the conviction landscape with fear, and by the time they finally appear to explain things most of the audience are so focussed on hysterical side shows that it becomes near impossible to put things in perspective. They do this time and time again, not taking on board the very thing that Mr Abbott is really good at – getting there first. Mr Rudd managed to kill off a clever windfall like taxing a bunch of super profit making foreigners, and take himself with it, and Julia Gillard is busy undoing herself with a non-issue like a carbon price.

    So Geoff, what now? Is it at all possible to be agents for sense? Do we stand on our shrinking bit of ground until we trample each other, or can we somehow come up with the language we need to speak for people to take note, desloganise, and think things through. Julia seems to have faith in her depersonalised slow-talking, but it takes her forever to make a point.

    • This is a good point. I think we need to break it down, sloganise it and repeat it until it becomes ‘the truth’, making sure there is a strong us against them narrative with the promise of a win at the end of the good fight.

      So your article could be read as:

      The tobacco Industry is full of lying bastards
      The mining industry is full of theiving bastards
      The gambling industry is full of lying thieving bastards and
      The carbon tax will sort those bastards out so bring it on!

  51. Mon says:

    Adam Curtis was pretty spot on with the ‘Century of Self’ series…. thing is up till now, the everyday person didn’t realise they were being played. Now we do, and there is no excuse not too know… yet we still allow it to happen. *facepalm*

  52. Smurf Silva says:

    I am so glad I am not the only person out there with these type of opinions! Love your work and can’t wait to read more!

  53. who ARE you? besides being a genius, that is.
    it’s a much needed rant, and I thank you from the bottom of my heart for it.

  54. Marian Smnedley says:

    What a relief to hear someone talk about this issue. It seems to me as though the media (and unfortunately I have to include the once credible ABC in this) have decided to become talking parrots who just repeat everything that is said – without any challenge to its factual basis or credibility. Have journalists just become completely lazy and sloppy – or do they think this is what journalism now is. It wouldn’t be hard to punch huge holes in the arguments of these lobby groups and the Opposition – as you have done yourself – but for some reason this isn’t done. Abbott’s lies and distortions are just repeated – verbatim – as though fact. Opinion screams from the front pages of the newspapers dressed up as “news”. “Fox News” has arrived!

  55. J9 says:

    I will never look at biscuits the same way again..brilliant!

  56. M&J V says:

    Don’t waste these pearls. Get them out there into suburbs world and the people that will vote, Best not to insult the intended recipients, though, by treating them like drongos. Elitism will not work the magic nor share the love. Winning this argument will be hard work.
    Jack and Dad

  57. News from Oz says:

    Excellent, excellent, excellent!

  58. Murph says:

    Excellent. Imagine thinking that Twiggy Forrest or Gina Rinehart give a tinker’s cuss about us, or that Big Tobacco thinks chop-chop will take over, or that civilisation will cease if people have to prenominate how much they’ll lose in the pokies? Seriously, anyone thinking that should post a picture of the fairies at the bottom of their garden, post haste!

  59. Brilliant! This is what blogging is all about.

  60. Brendan Mitchell says:

    Good one

  61. Leigh says:

    Excellent work. I think that you need a radio station targeting Western Sydney.

  62. Vanessa Eileen says:

    Amen!

  63. Kevin Rennie says:

    Just when I was about to embrace despair, you have restored a little faith in the rational mind. Bonzer!

  64. Ham says:

    I fucking love Monte Carlo’s.

  65. How do I nominate this for a Walkley?

    PS Let’s get married.

  66. liam says:

    Nice one! You are my Julia Gillard! Ermm….Not in a bad way?!

  67. How do you get tickets to the World Bukkake championships??

  68. Shane says:

    You need to direct this article to mainstream media, and somehow get them to air it…

  69. Jilly Magee says:

    Finding your blog is like when I found 4ZZZ community radio when I was 12 realised I wasn’t alone. Thank you.

    • Peter deVoil says:

      Oh yeah. Finucan with the morning punk rock – what a way to grow up. Just a nitpick – catgut strings are soft & smooth; its those steel ones that screech like a banshee.

      • drstupid says:

        omg. Michael Finucan. I owe him my adult life. His breakfast show formed who i am today. Last i heard he was on RRR in Melbourne in the mid 80’s. A fucking legend!

  70. Kim says:

    I’m grateful that I didn’t have a drink in front of me while reading this wonderful, witty and oh so painfully accurate blog. This is the sort of article I want to read, not the current rubbish on offer from every section of the media who are showing a dedication to the religion of Abbott, they want him in power and I ask why is that? Someone get this man a nespaper because what he writes is far better than any of the current press.

  71. darren says:

    well said however I fear its another one of those preaching to the converted situations.
    basically your mistake is you’ve used more than 20 words to explain yourself
    and the brain dead only like catch phrases and slogan-ism

    • Me says:

      You mean something like this might cut through: Climate science predicting global warming due to human activity is not a “UN seeking world domination” conspiracy, you fuckwit.🙂

  72. Channelling The (ex-)Governator for a sec – “It’s not a taaaaxxxx”.

    Repeat a millionty-one times. It is not a tax.

    It is a price on pollution expelled into the air (“emitted”) by 500 of the top polluters in Australia.

    Apparently Julia Gillard actually used the term. What were her PR people THINKING? I assume they thought “if we call it a tax on pollution and on polluters, people will understand”. Maybe in a more sane age; not in this hostile one. They should have been calling it a price on emissions right from the start. Then Teh Stoopid wouldn’t have had the “SOMEONE’S TAKING MORE MONEY OUT OF MY RIGHTFUL INCOME” hook to hang their wilful stupidity on.

    The more the sane and thinking people stop using the word “tax”, the more the message might get through that the average, everyday person is barely going to be impacted by the flow-through effects of pricing the stuff that makes us hack up a lung.

  73. St says:

    Genius, sheer genius – feels like Spider Jerusalem is here

  74. micko says:

    Yes, people are getting dumber, or maybe just more lazy when they need to have an opinion. mmmm whats the headline of todays paper, yep that will do. But i do have to question why do we need plain packaging for ciggies. We have known for 20+ years that smoking is bad for you, and yet people still smoke. Why are people so upset the Julia lied…. that’s what they do, they’re politicians. Dumb-Asses, the lot of ’em.

  75. Jeremy says:

    Hear fucking hear!

  76. Thanks for the rant – a bit long for most people to get your lovely humour and the biting insight on some real social issues. And certainly too long for a pollie to read. You are correct of course in every way. Please maintain the rage.

  77. dave says:

    Fantastic

  78. Pam says:

    Quality…

  79. Des says:

    Great commentary !! Of course we need a carbon (polution ) tax to at least try to prevent the global warming crisis that DOES exist ! There were sceptics on the Titanic,too, who refused to accept the obvious … that it could sink !

  80. franbarlow says:

    Another worthy post Mr Lemon.

    Let me say though that I wish that those of us who support a carbon price would refrian from offering grist to the rightwing trope mill by calling it a carbon tax.

    We all know why the right is using this nomenclature. AIUI, tax is the only three-character swear word in rightwing English. Secondly, calling it a tax, obscures the externality involved, and thus covers up the fact that this is a case of business profiting at the expense of the commons, by dumping its ecosystem service destroying industrial effluent into the biosphere freee of charge. Thirdly of course, calling it a tax allows the Juliar troll to run, because she ruled out a carbon tax didn’t she?

    If it really were a tax, then these considerations wouldn’t suffice to refuse to use the term. It’s not.however, accurate.

    1. Taxes are compulsory impositions on the citizenry for which no specific service or good is obtained in return (see the law on this in Commonwealth v Air Caledonie, 1988). This disitnguishes them from other forms of state revenue (charges for goods and services, penalties for infractions of the law, dividends and interest etc) In the case of the carbon price the payers get a service — the right to dump the industrial effluent CO2 into the atmosphere. Anyone who doesn’t think the fixed or future floating price is not a good deal can opt out, by structuring their business so as not to emit to the biosphere. Good luck getting that done at any price likely to apply before 2020.

    2. The permits one gets a tradeable securities. Once purchased they are like any other security, though obviously they are also a factor in production. If someone finds a way to avoid surrendering them (by reducing emissions) they can sell the surplus permits and recover some of their cost of abatement.

    3. The fixed price permit phase of the scheme is simply an enabling instrument in the creation of an ETS. Unpicking the package to decalre one part “as carbon tax” and the other “an ETS” is absurd if the former is foundational to the latter. Rudd’s scheme had the same measure, though for a shorter time and that schem was at the time, clearly distinguished from proposals then called “a cabon tax” which did not involve permits but simply sought to impose a cost on emissions. Strictly speaking, I’d not call this a tax either for the reasons above, but the point is that mainstream folk saw a difference in those days.

    Pigovian or sumptuary taxation is quite possible. In ancient Rome a tax was imposed on people wearing the imperial colours, in order to keep the riff raff from putting on airs. No externality was involved. Behavioural economist Fred Hirsch would have called this an attempt to defend the value of a positional good — in this case clearly being a rich upper class twit. In cases of imposition on fuel, the value is bound up in pure revenue raising, and/or the protection of scarce resources. Here though, there is an externality — and the price seeks to restrain a perverse incentive (to pollute because it’s cheaper) and to raise the revenue to fund less polluting options. That makes carbon price/charge or fee the right term.

    • Jeremy says:

      Levy would also be a suitable term. For instance: The Medicare Levy that is incorporated into personal income tax.

  81. I’m guessing there’s going to be another string of marriage proposals after this one… I know I’m feeling the love.🙂
    (Can someone PLEASE get this man his own show .. I might even plug the tv in for that!)

  82. blackwatertown says:

    I’m not familiar with every detail of the background to your rant – I’m a faraway foreigner – but I DO like your style.

  83. j says:

    Brilliant! Am so excited to know you are out there, writing, ranting and speaking up!🙂

  84. freya says:

    Exactly! I was worried when no one (media?) thought it was odd that mining companies could believe they had a right to directly intervene in opposition to our elected representatives re the mining tax! No one said anything! Scary! Thank you Mr Lemon!

  85. Victoria Smith says:

    Nice piece Geoff, particularly with regard to plain packaging for cigarettes. Unfortunately it’s not just the standard pissweak comments I hear e.g “it’s gonna be harder for the dude at the milkbar to find me smokes” or “it won’t stop me smoking so why bother”. But I had a conversation with an acquaintance who is a highly educated non-smoker who was trying to convince me that plain packaging is an infringement on the tobacco companies intellectual property. But I guess it ultimately falls into that general pissweak argument that if something is legal that makes it ok. I get why people aren’t on board the carbon tax express, but plain packaging is an absolute no brainer and has resulted in much fist shaking at my radio.

    PS I do not wish to declare my interests but thanks for the Ex-Lax plug!

  86. Ted Russ says:

    FAN. BLOODY. TASTIC.

    I believe the old “keep the bastards honest” homily handed down to us by slightly smarter (it seems) politicians. And my addendum to that? “… and take PERSONAL RESPONSIBILITY when you facilitate their dishonesty.”

  87. Ben Hardy says:

    Well played, Sir.

  88. Non Plum says:

    Decentralise central banking. Put money creation in the hands of non-interest charging State treasuries
    Legislate to enforce both democratic process in the management of mass media, and the integrity of by-lines.
    Democratic process assures minority rights, as apposed to creeping dictatorship of the majority. It is good governance to use the process throughout the Administration both of Justice and the Treasury, not just in the executive.
    Decentralise Governance of Justice and Treasury to local democratic executives. Make law and wealth for the people.Take control of supply. After all, we all want the same thing, no?

    • tq says:

      @ Non Plum: Spot on!! “Democratic process ensures minority rights, as apposed to creeping dictatorship of the majority.” So many people think democracy IS the dictatorship of the majority! They don’t get it that the minority needs to be PROTECTED from the majority [think Rwanda, Nazi Germany….] and that our system is brilliant because it allows minorities to affect the political process ( not to dominate it).

  89. Brett says:

    Lol. Tony would say no to a blow job. It would make him more popular with his wife.

  90. mctell2 says:

    Great read, truly heads up writing with some heads up subject. I think you have arrived at the crossroads of indeed, it is all in how you tell it. Subject matter vital to all civilized and countries of ill-repute…I’ll not make the judgement. Nevertheless a most timely article written in a vernacular appealing to so many and attractive to many more. Thanks and keep up the Wisdom..your way.

  91. iwhisper says:

    Sending yesterday’s Scripture into a new day…it deserves a longer life. Asa new follower on twitter I look forward to reading your comments on twitter but most of all I enjoy reading Scripture. It is most insightful and very entertaining.

  92. iwhisper says:

    Thanks for putting a smile on my otherwise frowning dial. Scripture hits the mark for writing that is witty, inspired and politically spot on. Cheers

  93. Kurtis says:

    From the bottom of my heart, thank you for this article. That’s all, really.

  94. thomas says:

    ‘I don’t like living in a country of the gullible and the dense.’

    Please Geoff, don’t do us any favors and stay! Perhaps China is more your lifestyle dream. They’re smart and they love love love wealth redistribution.

    Those nasty miners , providing all those jobs and stuff. How dare they.

    You know what you should do? You should garner your ilk, shoot over to WA and build a mine. Then when you’ve made millions, sorry billions you can walk the streets throwing money in the air, feeding the poor, curing disease and being an all round nice guy.

    Sorry? You don’t want to invest your own money and the incredible effort necessary to obtain this? Oh jees Geoff, perhaps we should tax you on your inablilty to accept reality.

    There should absolutely be a two separate countries in Australia. Those that think like you (cause there seem to be a hell of a lot) and those that want to get on with the realities of life.

    I wonder how long it would take for your side to start scrambling over the wall in order to remove themselves from your little Geoff Lemon utopia?

    Hooold on, that’s not an orginal story is it?

    • Gravy says:

      “Those nasty miners , providing all those jobs and stuff. How dare they.”

      Are you referring to industry that employs only 2% of the working population? The same industry that props up our country by digging finite resources out of the ground and selling it overseas so successfully that it masks the rest of the economy which is fast backpeddling into recession?
      When China stops buying our dirt (and they will), it’s gonna be a Bukkake fest!

      • thomas says:

        Yes gravy that one.

        ‘Only 2%’ I love this. When you say it in that like that, the rest of your retards think that ain’t much is it? Shut dem filty places down!

        Its a whole lot. Its thousands. Not to mention the other professionals that get work off them – Lawyers, (probably not Jeremy, wasn’t able to get into top tier) Accountants, IT staff, project managers.

        ‘The same industry that props up our country by digging finite resources out of the ground and selling it overseas so successfully that it masks the rest of the economy which is fast backpeddling into recession?’

        So I have an idea! Lets tax them. Lets take more under the guise of forcing them into a clean energy economy. We shouldn’t think of incentive based scheme cause, then there would be no money for us would there? Who wants to give tax breaks or incentives to move to alternate energy source on an industry that ‘props up our country’?

        No money to spread around in that scheme is there.

        • Voxpop says:

          Hi Thomas
          I’d say that the carbon tax does incentivise the industry – to clean up their act, thereby emitting less and paying less CT so as to become more competitive in the new marketplace. And it’s really not that hard for them to do this – they can have far reaching impact by doing it they just need a reason to improve.

          Or you could go with Abbott’s incentive scheme to pay them heaps in the hope that they *might* improve.

          Don’t forget both sides are aiming for the 5% reduction but it’s Abbott who has a costing problem/blowout that will cost taxpayers directly. He’s the one promoting a socialist agenda contrary to party ideology and shunning a market based mechanism all for populist fear mongering to try for an early election.

          • thomas says:

            ‘ He’s the one promoting a socialist agenda’

            There’s been some doozies in this thread but that gets the trophy.

          • Voxpop says:

            Ah Thomas, is that all you can do? You have nothing to say about the rest of my post? I’d like to see you point to anything I’ve said that is wrong – because you can’t. You’re a lightweight looking for easy targets which is why you could only pick out a few words to criticise but didn’t go anywhere near addressing what I said to you.

            Here you go read it and weep
            “Garnaut insisted the Coalition’s Direct Action plan would be more expensive for households and less efficient in reducing emissions, a throw-back to Soviet-era central planning. He said this was in no way partisan because he (the professor) had been advocating free markets back when the Coalition had also believed in them and it was the Coalition that had changed its mind.”

            “The intellectual antecedents of his policy have not mattered a jot to the Opposition Leader, who every day raises the spectre of what the tax could cost an industry or a family if there was no compensation at all, even though he knows generous compensation will be coming.”

            Read more: http://www.smh.com.au/opinion/politics/a-potential-gamechanger-for-the-government-20110317-1bz2k.html#ixzz1SgFJ76M1

          • Voxpop says:

            http://www.abc.net.au/unleashed/2804206.html

            Thomas here is some info for you to read to help sort out your confusion. It quite plainly lays out how Abbotts direct action would work. I do hope you will read it as it seems to me you’d like an *effective* way of reducing emissions but just can’t bring yourself to undo the indoctrination you’ve unwittingly absorbed from the toxically self-interested.

        • kd says:

          thomas:

          mmm, isn’t that doorknob looking good … niiice.

        • Anfalicious says:

          The dirt belongs to the Commonwealth. The companies should be being paid a royalty to dig it out and the Commonwealth keeps the profits, that would be fair. They provide a service, not a resource.

    • Anfalicious says:

      They’re smart and they love love love wealth redistribution.

      Did you know China has a higher GINI coefficient (equality index, higher is less equal) than Australia? You know, facts and all. If you want to talk countries that do income redistribution then we should be speaking Norway, Denmark, Sweden… You know, those socialist hell holes. Perhaps worth keeping in mind for someone so sold on living in “reality”.

  95. les says:

    The article is perfectly right in saying that the population is dumb. This makes it vulnerable to propaganda no matter how obvious it is. There are a few more points:
    1. These corporations (mining, tobacco, clubs, etc) have piles of money to spend on propaganda. Trumpeting the propaganda makes their buddy, good ol’ Rupert even richer, who then loves them even more.
    2. Good ol’ Rupert then instructs his minions (formerly known as journalists) to be timid and supportive to the corporations.
    3. When the government tries to inform the populations in futile attempts to counterbalance the one sided bullshit, it has to do so by giving more of your money to Rupert. The government has no other way of reaching the TV watching population. This (rightfully) pisses off everyone.
    4. The effect of the propaganda (workers protesting together with their best friends Clive Palmer and Gina Rinehart) makes the politicians think that the population is becoming really conservative-rightwing and shift to the right (cut social programs, dole, etc).
    5. When the shit hits the fan, the stuff in the ground (or the woods in Tas) runs out, these corporations pack up and move out without giving a second worth of thought what their ex-workers will do, what they will live on.
    6. These ex-workers then go to the (by now, far right) government asking for help.

    Conclusion: stupidity kills.

    • thomas says:

      Yes Les, its a conspiracy.

      How dare those workers protest against anything that could hurt their livelihood. Shame on them. BTW – do you have a job?

      If all these big earners didn’t exist, where would you get your jobs and money? The famous old saying that ‘Socialism works until you run out of other peoples money’

      Your standard of living in BECAUSE of these industries. How can this not be absolutely clear? Like a DIAMOND BULLET IN THE FOREHEAD.

      But you can do your part, stop driving, stop using power – turn OFF that computer. That’s how you can really help stop the money grubbers. Cancel your electricity even, then you won’t have to pay these coluding propaganderists. Remember, just like the carbon tax it only takes one person (or country) no matter how miniscule the effects, to make a difference(Your Ilks words to be clear). If enough of you deadshits do it, you really could make a difference. Go on, have the courage of your convictions.

      Say what? You won’t do that? You won’t give up your iMac? Your hot showers? Your internet? Your car(s). Your big screen TVs? Your fresh food? Why?

      Oooooh I get it, you’re just talking out of your asshole.

      • Ike says:

        So to have ‘the courage of your convictions’ as you put it, all us socialists (I like what you did there) should reliquish ourselves of anything powered by natural resources? Yeah, I get it. Way to go Thomas. You’re a real thinker.

        I think a major point is that there’s no accountability when it comes to big industries. Companies such as BHP have a degree of social and environmental responsiblity, but instead tend to throw their political clout around, attempting to quash government policy through the advocation of bullshit information. I’m pretty sure they then do a hop skip and a jump all the way to the bank. Is that how it works? I don’t know Thomas, you really do seem smarter than all of us.

        If you don’t want to read this ‘drivel’, then don’t. People with a mindset such as yourself have an abundance of like minded journalistic material to gloat over and high five yourselves about.

        So, take a deep breath, have a cry if you like, and go clobber a hippy with a rolled up BRW.

        • Marian Wright says:

          Well played!!🙂

          • thomas says:

            Glad you liked it Ike. And absolutely I do.

            ‘I think a major point is that there’s no accountability when it comes to big industries.’

            And in the very next sentence they do..have a degree…and quash government..

            Google everyone, you’ll get a thousand hits on feasibility, environmental studies at the cost of millions.

            Again, you don’t like it – boycott. It seems the only sensible resolution.

            Yeah they make a lot of money; but I’ve never understood why you’re kind always says its them that has the ‘sense of entitlement’ as Its you who feels they are enititled to a piece of their pie – even though you never worked in a mine, or affiliated in any way. Its kind of remarkable how they put in the investment, time, energy, yet you demand as your right to have some. If they didn’t make billions, if they only broke even and there was no money to be passed around – would there be a carbon debate? No, because its about one thing and one thing only. You want the money. You can dress it any way you want.

            You are a Socialist Ike. If you believe in wealth distrubtion on this massive scale that is the carbon tax, then you are a Socialist. And we all know how that ends.

            I don’t think I’m smarter that everyone here, but I can spot a pseudo intellectual a mile away. (thats you)

          • Jeremy says:

            Better than capitalism, for sure. At the same time as companies want to be able to earn money unrestrained, they don’t want to have to pay for any of the upkeep entitled in operating in a country. Why exactly does a company deserve to be able to keep all the money it gets, but not have to pay for any of the consequences?
            As an individual, I can only realistically produce so much CO2. Some from my breathing, some from heating and electricity, and some from transport. But every person produces a similar amount – we have to to live. A company on the other hand can produce thousands of tons of the stuff – and it’s not to live, it’s for the express purpose of making money. A corporation doesn’t care about people except when caring affects its bottom line. Sure there are some exceptions, but they’re just that, exceptions.
            People who smoke have to pay tax on their cigarettes because of the healthcare costs associated with smoking, is it so unreasonable that companies pay something for producing CO2? I hardly think so.
            The theory behind the carbon price is that maybe companies getting to dump their CO2 etc waste for free into the air we breathe isn’t such a great idea. And the money isn’t vanishing into some black hole, it’s being spent elsewhere – some of it on wages for government employees, some of it invested in new energy production which. OH YEAH. Creates jobs. It’s not magically gone in any way. And a company which can reduce its carbon emissions better than its competitors gains a competitive advantage over the rest of the market – and it’s through gaining, and keeping, competitive advantages that the free market works.

            And sure, I’ll boycott BHP. I won’t buy any of their steel…oh wait, their customers are mainly manufacturers, a lot of whom are overseas. Is it really economical to demand that every consumer who would like not to live in an iceless smogworld to research the ENTIRE supply chain of a product they’re buying? And heaven forbid should someone not reveal their suppliers because of confidentiality agreements.

            And yeah, we do know where it leads. To the strongest and fastest growing economy in the world…(though I assume you were actually referring to Greece etc)

          • thomas says:

            I’d have to say I’m comfortable in this capitalist society Jeremy. I like living in Australia. Have you been to China? Spend a day or two on a train up to Hongmeizhen, come back let me know what you think about how a majority of the populous lives. Then tell me its better.

            ‘Why exactly does a company deserve to be able to keep all the money it gets, but not have to pay for any of the consequences?’

            We know that already mines pay duties, royalties and taxes on what they do.

            We’re talking about an ineffectual carbon tax. This carbon tax will not make any difference to global temperatures. This, the science has relayed over and over and over again. This statement is disingenuous in that mining companies are required by detailed legislation to ‘regulatory regime relating to environmental conservation, assessment, planing and land use’.

            From here: http://www.gadens.com.au/documents/20100802132939706.pdf

            You, being a Lawyer should know this.

          • Jeremy says:

            So instead what should we do? If carbon is a problem (and for the same of discussion, we’ll assume it is), what should we do about it? It’s true that mining companies have to do significant impact, and repair work to mitigate their environmental impact.
            But, that is primarily land based (ie repairing the landscape, forests and rivers). Is it wrong to say that every company should be discouraged from having a negative environmental impact through producing carbon? Even if this may have no impact on global temperatures. Bearing in mind if it has an effect on Australian carbon output that the system could be exported internationally?

          • thomas says:

            ‘Is it wrong to say that every company should be discouraged from having a negative environmental impact through producing carbon?’

            I suppose that is the biggest difference between your and I. (and pretty much everyone on this board) I’ve never said anywhere that nothing should be done. This is just an assumption made if you disagree with the carbon tax. But I think that comes hand in hand with the ingrained ‘they make billions, lets take it, you owe me!’ mentality.

            Why not say companies should be encouraged to have a positive impact?

            Tax breaks that are designed specifically to funnel money into research and development.

            Why is that a problem?

            Because that way, there is no wealth distribution.

      • Ingrid says:

        Want a biscuit, thomas?

        • thomas says:

          ‘Want a biscuit, thomas?’

          Oh Ingrid, you’re so witty!

          • Ike says:

            I don’t see myself as intellectual, nor do I try to be. Thomas.

            I think you should take the biscuit.

          • thomas says:

            Well then Ike, when you say patronisingly say ‘You’re a real thinker’ one would hope that it was because you in fact were one.

            Now that we’ve cleared that up how’d your googleing go? Thinking for yourself yet?

      • Anfalicious says:

        ‘Socialism works until you run out of other peoples money’

        So does being a banana republic until you run out of bananas. We need to be investing today’s wealth in the future, not letting rent seekers get rich. Yes, they contribute a lot to our overwhelming standard of living. Surely our standard of living is good enough to take a hit in order to give our grandkids a chance to enjoy living in the lucky country as well. The minerals are finite and will be worth more in the future than they are now. Where is the national interest in getting it out of the ground as fast as we can now? Just so you can have an iMac and a big screen TV? I’m sure our grandkids would rather food and hot showers.

        Oooooh I get it, you’re just an arsehole talking.

  96. marc says:

    I don’t agree with EVERYthing you say, but man, I did the way you say it😉

    (Taxes are MEANT to act as incentives/disincentives for behaviour… when will people realise this?)

    • jekandsuch says:

      But I want to do whatever I want at minimal cost to me without having to consider the consequences because I’m entitled to this standard of living coz I’m a lil Aussie battler, ok?

      • marc says:

        Ah yes, the battlers… irony is the real battlers don’t have the fund to go to Africa/Asia/Latin America and see how the real battlers do it…

      • thomas says:

        So jerkandsuch; what standard of living do you desire we have.

        How low should our standard of living be?

        Should we be lining up for food? Should we be allowed to have more than 3 bedrooms in our homes? Should we share a car with the neigbourhood? Should we have no car at all? Should we have the ability to work hard and earn more money that someone who decides not too – or should small business owners who work 70 hours a week be paid as much as a dishwasher? Should we have two families living under the one roof? What are the particulars of your standard of living that you desire Australians should have.

        The standard of living you detest so much is givin to you by the sacrifices of others and the money that the small business, the companies, the workers have graciously bestowed upon you.

        Tell us, tell us in comparison lets say to another country should the average Australians standard of living equate too. I for one am eternally interested you little drivel.

        • Cat says:

          Mate, i think he was being ironic…

          • thomas says:

            Cat, unfortunately I think he was being ‘sarcastic’ in the supercilious trademark of the spastic.

            I suggest you broaden your search skills at http://www.dictionary.com.

            Try typing ‘ironic’ in the little searchy thingy.

        • jekandsuch says:

          Wow, totally missed my point. I was being sarcastic for a start. I’m not saying I should have a great life handed to me without having to do anything and be paid for by someone else. As an individual, you should get what you’ve worked for, and if you’re just lazy, then guess what, you have a crap life. As a whole society though, we aren’t just instantly entitled to the standard we have at the price we are currently paying when you factor in the cost to the environment (and no, I’m not a big tree higging hippie, I just get that if we wreck it, we won’t be able to grow food in it and stuff. Duh.), and the cost to future generations. Its not like I WANT to live worse than I am, I work so that I can have a good life, its just that we have to reign ourselves in a bit if we want our great grandkids to have any options at all.

          You know, unless you’re like ‘Fuck my grandkids, what have they ever done for me?’

          • thomas says:

            I dig that you act suprised, and push it back on me like ‘I totally missed your point’🙂

            No, I got your point. I’m asking you, how do we riegn ourselves in? Do we stop going to the movies? Let the teenagers, the managers, the pop corn makers the choc top makers go out of business? Do we stop taking holidays? Let the travel agents, the bag carriers and the checkin staff get their redundancy payouts and gallop off into the sunset? Do we stop buying eletrical goods so all those prissy boys at Harvey Normal get laid off.

            We don’t need to ‘reign’ ourselves in, we need to work harder, so the poor bastards like the kid I saw sleeping under the nth quay bridge at brisbane this morning can have the chance at getting a job. We don’t need to push pressures on industries,with carbon taxing BS that does ZERO to change the earths temperatures. Thats what gives you the abilty to have that chance at having a good life, hard work and determination. Know those traits?

            I doubt you’ve ever been in a situation where you’ve been made redundant. When you’re paying off a house, a car and every other bill that goes with it, I’d like to see your self-righteous face when you have 3 weeks to find a job.

            Reality hits like a steam train freind.

            ‘As an individual, you should get what you’ve worked for, and if you’re just lazy, then guess what, you have a crap life.’

            This is absolutely correct, and you should have left it at that.

          • jekandsuch says:

            Ok so I can’t reply to your comment directly for some reason.

            By reign ourselves in, I mean we should stop indignantly acting like we can just use every natural resource we want with no consideration of consequences. Imagine if we keep going at this rate, coal runs out, oil runs out or whatever, all these jobs dry up anyway coz there are no resources left to create them, regardless of hard hard someone is willing to work at it.

            Redundancy sucks, yes. I think we should use this carbon tax money to try to create sustainable employement instead of letting it get to the point of “Sorry coalminer, no job left for you to do, theres no coal left to mine. What, you don’t know how to do anything else because you’re elders never bothered thinking about it? Oh well, can’t help, I’m going offshore to find somewhere else to dig.”

            Isn’t it better to think about it now even if it might be hard in the short term rather than wait til we don’t have as many options as we have now?

          • thomas says:

            Sorry, I feel awkward now, I realise your probably around 16 and completely brainwashed.

            But thats cool, it’s easy to fall for the writings of Geoff Lemon as so many have – I guess cause its ‘angry’ and ‘cool’ and goes against ‘the man’ when in reality you are all for it (the man being humungous government)

            ‘all these jobs dry up anyway coz there are no resources left to create them, regardless of hard hard someone is willing to work at it’

            You’re typing this into a machine that spits words down a pipe and posts it on a screen so I can read it 20 seconds later. You watch movies probably on a screen made of LIQUID GODDAM CRYSTALS. You send text messages through thin air to your girlfreind using a tiny hand held computer. You drive around being directed by a $100 friggen GLOBAL POSITIONING SYSTEM triangulated by SATELLITES in SPACE.

            Do you really truly think that for one single second that man kind will not have an alternative energy source when the market demands it? Do you honestly believe that the only way for this to come about is to TAX???

            They certainly do you have hook line and sinker. Hats off to them.

          • jekandsuch says:

            You’re assuming I think the tax is the only perfect solution. I DON’T. I’m not even making a comment about the tax itself. You’re wrong about that as well as every other assumption you made about me. You seem to think I just live my life in this privilieged little bubble where none of this stuff actually affects me and that I’m just parroting what the ‘cool’ kids are saying. I have a job, I have bills like everyone else, of course I’d rather be able to do what I want without having to worry, but I can’t. Am I the perfect example of how we should all live? No, of course not. Doesn’t mean i’m not willing to change anything.

            “Do you really truly think that for one single second that man kind will not have an alternative energy source when the market demands it?”

            At this point, with the amount of knee jerk emotional “OMG we’ll be a third world country by the weekend!’ reactions clouding people being willing to consider any aspect of it, no, no I don’t.

        • Anfalicious says:

          How about a sustainable standard of living? We haven’t worked out what that is yet, but the ETS is a start.

  97. marc says:

    *dig🙂

  98. Dave says:

    Geoff, as others have noted, you NEED to get your articles out into the mainstream press and in front of a wider audience. It’s clear from the comments here (and the multiple Facebook/Twitter shares I’m seeing) that you have struck a chord with a large chunk of the populace who feel completely unrepresented, nay INSULTED by the hysterical bleating of the mainstream media. But it’s also clear from the fact that the comments are exclusively positive and supportive toward you that you are preaching to the converted. Views like yours need to be read by those people who swallow the lobby group/Liberal Party bullshit, so that maybe, just maybe they’ll think a little and stop swallowing everything they’re fed. I realise that this something you probably can’t achieve by yourself, but keep writing and posting the articles, and everybody, PLEASE keep linking, sharing, liking and spreading them. LETS TAKE THIS SHIT VIRAL. For fuck’s sake, if Rebecca Black can do it….

    • geoff lemon says:

      Dave, if I have one dream in my life, it’s to emulate Rebecca Black in some way or another. Until now I thought it would be awkward dancing skills. But I very much like your alternative.

      Thanks for the support.

    • thomas says:

      I think Viral is the right word for this rot you so adore.

      The cure, ‘neuron replenishment’ is yet to be found I suspect.

      • stick mcgee says:

        Oh look “this shit”s attracting flies

      • marc says:

        It’s hardly rot, dude… you may not agree with it all, but you have to admit that his argument has some merit and is worth exploring… or are you so afraid that you need to censor ideas that challenge you?

  99. Cat says:

    Its Tony Abbott’s fault. If anybody made Australia STUPIDER its him. he’s a non-stop stupid-spouting machine gun. For so many months now. I can feel the Australian collective IQ dropping after every bit of rubbish he spits out on the tv news😦

    • geoff lemon says:

      The amazing thing is that he gets top billing in the news report each night to say nothing. “Today, Tony Abbott said the same thing as he has all month in a different place. This time he was wearing a hardhat.”

      • Kim says:

        It’s not so amazing when you think about who is giving him top billing all the time. Read each days newspapers, listen to the news, and it’s patently obvious that the media are so far up Abbotts rear end, it’s a shame it doesn’t stop his constant dribble. Then you ask why the media so far up his anal cavity and the answer is again patently obvious, there’s something in it for the media bigwigs, something that reeks beyond the vile stench of the Werribee treatment plant.

  100. Slim says:

    Great rant. One small correction. It’s more properly pronounced ‘regrooloshtraya’. It’s un-Australian to pronounce Australia properly. ‘Shtraya is the correct pronunciation.

  101. moonunit says:

    Will you marry me, Geoff Lemon?

  102. Argus Tuft says:

    Sorry Lad, I seem to have missed the “sent from my iphone” tag.

  103. I thought I was alone.
    I’m not.
    I fight alongside you my friend.

  104. Carlos says:

    Thoroughly enjoyed your comments. However, I suspect that the whole Carbon Tax issue will produce totally different results to those that ALL sides are predicting. Why? because we’ve never had anything like this and because our ability to predict with total accuracy is well… at best described by the word “probability”. If we were so damned good at figuring out outcomes, there would be people being able to figure out the direction of all markets and not even Warren Buffet is able to do this with total accuracy! My prediction is that things won’t be as bad as Tony Abbott says or as innocuous as Julia Gillard would want as to believe. How is that for sitting on the fence? At the end of the day as you say most of us need a little perspective. Unfortunately, this is a rare commodity.

  105. This reminds me of the Zenith – http://vodo.net/zenith ( movie from anonymous ) check it out its free!

    but yeah enjoyed this rant again man and i agree.

  106. Karen Hughes says:

    I am so lucky I didn’t have a cup of coffee in my hand when I read this. So funny, accurate and well-written!

    Keep it up!

  107. botanist says:

    How much is a 120-second slot on commercial television worth?
    A quick whip-around and we could probably get a selection of this on concurrent stations, or at least on Ten during Masterchef. Provided we could get Matt Preston to stand in the background with a roll of paper towel.

  108. kd says:

    Thomas doesn’t want a biscuit. He’s after the nearest fuckable looking doorknob.

    • thomas says:

      And there you have it folks.

      kd, you are indeed this threads largest knob.

      • kd says:

        Thomas,

        It’s clear from what you have written in this thread that you’re beyond being able to discuss this topic in a rational, factual way. So I figure it’s more effective to just aim some of the invective that Mr Lemon has provided at you. The simple fact of the matter is that you’ve let the uninformed, and those with a vested interest in the status quo manipulate your oppinon by making you afraid of change.

        Winners embrace necessary change.

        • Thomas says:

          Look Geoff, you’ve got your very own sycophant!

          This coming from a someone whos only response is ‘go fuck a doorknob’. Oh brother.

          ‘The simple fact of the matter is that you’ve let the uninformed, and those with a vested interest in the status quo manipulate your oppinon by making you afraid of change.’

          Read over my posts kd, google every statement I’ve made about the carbon tax and its effects and say it ain’t so.

          To make it simple, I’ll give you three:

          1. The carbon tax will not lower global temperatures (Its PRIMARY objective)
          2. Companies will pass their costs onto consumers
          3. There is no guarantee that the carbon tax will bring about an alternative energy force with a lower carbon footprint than coal.

          Please, blow them out of the water.

          • Lotharsson says:

            “The carbon tax will not lower global temperatures (Its PRIMARY objective)”.

            Wrong – and in a very important way. It’s primary objective is to keep global temperatures **lower than they would otherwise be**. Which it will do.

            No-one has proposed any feasible and relatively safe mechanism to stop the warming that’s already in the pipeline. But we’d like to apply the brakes (if you will) to reduce the total warming we end up with. And as a side topic, you seem blissfully unaware of just how fucked the world might become if we get warming much over 2 degrees C. Or that avoiding even that much warming is significantly cheaper than mitigation.

            “Companies will pass their costs onto consumers”

            Most of them will; some will be unable to – as the scheme itself acknowledges. Not sure what you think that proves, because in *either* case they will be motivated to reduce their emissions so they can increase their profit margins – you know, just like ANY well-run business aggressively manages its cost structure. This is economics 101.

          • kd says:

            Aah, the “problem is unsolvable, therefore we should not try to solve it argument”. Very good.

          • thomas says:

            ‘Aah, the “problem is unsolvable, therefore we should not try to solve it argument”. Very good.’

            Sorry kd, never said that. I truly believe an incentive based scheme would be better. You get green, you get money. You get tax breaks and bonuses. I’m sorry you’ve read objections to the carbon tax as something else.

            Well, not really.

            ‘Wrong – and in a very important way. It’s primary objective is to keep global temperatures **lower than they would otherwise be**. Which it will do.’

            OK, taxing an industry who then passes the costs down to consumers will somehow stop them from burning coal. Got it.

            ‘you seem blissfully unaware of just how fucked the world might become if we get warming much over 2 degrees C.’

            Really? Where have I written that? Just because people don’t agree with this tax, does not mean they do not care about the environment. This board is littered with that BS. It’s a TAX, a money grab, wealth distribution.

            ‘ Not sure what you think that proves, because in *either* case they will be motivated to reduce their emissions so they can increase their profit margins’

            You’ve obviously got a crystal ball. All your assumptions are based around the fact that there is a viable clean energy source. If there is no competition (no clean energy source) the demand for coal is inelastic, and any tax will have the smallest of effects.

            Economics 101 hey – the course outline must have been a little bit different at my UNI than yours.

          • rl says:

            @Thomas

            “Sorry kd, never said that. I truly believe an incentive based scheme would be better. You get green, you get money. You get tax breaks and bonuses. I’m sorry you’ve read objections to the carbon tax as something else.”

            So you want incentives?

            What about top 500 polluters get taxed according to emissions. Reduce emissions, pay less tax.

            Or how about, consumers get compensated for flow on effect of tax (yes I know, those poor people earning more than $150,000 – myself included – end up paying more). Reduce your consumption, or choose products from producers who don’t pollute so much, pay less and keep the compensation.

          • kd says:

            Well excuse me. Previously you’ve been sounding like a good old privileged whinger. Now you’re just in the “let’s throw some money at it” school of magic pudding economic irrationalism.

            Yes I’d like to see the compensation from the scheme as currently presented better targeted towards mitigation.

          • Lotharsson says:

            > All your assumptions are based around the fact that there is a viable clean energy source.

            Er, no!

            The prerequisite is that there are viable *emissions reductions strategies* – a set which includes “viable clean energy sources”, as well as “making existing energy sources cleaner”, as well as “reducing energy requirements”, as well as *still other strategies*.

            You focus on arguing about energy sources, and even there you appear to be arguing against reality by implying that there are no viable clean energy sources – which is odd since (say) we’ve had hydroelectric power in Australia for decades.

            Cue shift in discussion to viability of clean energy sources at scale and for baseload determinedly ignoring wider emissions strategies in 3…2…1…

          • thomas says:

            ‘The prerequisite is that there are viable *emissions reductions strategies* – a set which includes “viable clean energy sources”, as well as “making existing energy sources cleaner”, as well as “reducing energy requirements”, as well as *still other strategies*.’

            A counter argument, arguing assumptions with more assumptions. LOL.

            ‘Cue shift in discussion to viability of clean energy sources at scale and for baseload determinedly ignoring wider emissions strategies in 3…2…1…’

            Well at least you see the natural progression as to why this scheme is so rort with holes.

          • Lotharsson says:

            “A counter argument, arguing assumptions with more assumptions. LOL.”

            Laughter is indeed appropriate for your *non*-argument, including your strange assertion that my post was “arguing assumptions with more assumptions”. Do you actually think that refusing to acknowledge your earlier claim was false, let alone the implications thereof, and hoping this lame riposte will distract people will be effective for any reader with half a brain?

            “Well at least you see the natural progression as to why this scheme is so rort with holes.”

            No, at least I successfully predicted that you would (dis-)miss pretty much the entire point of my previous comment (perhaps because you were too busy LOLing to engage your brain)?

            Better trolls please.

        • kd says:

          Thomas only seems to like the doorknobs when they’re wearing the right lingerie. Mmh, a brass pscutcheon plate, and lace split crotch undies. And with more holes than Chris Monckton’s argument. Pwhooarh.

          • thomas says:

            ‘Now you’re just in the “let’s throw some money at it” school of magic pudding economic irrationalism.’

            Yep, tax breaks are ‘throwing money at it’. I suppose when you think mining money is your money that makes sense.

            Lotharsson; This is what you said: ‘The prerequisite is that there are viable *emissions reductions strategies*

            Now I read that as an assumption that the prerequisite for a carbon tax is that a viable alternative is available. You said there are viable alternatives already. Is that synonymous with comparative to coal?

            ‘Most of them will; some will be unable to – as the scheme itself acknowledges.’
            Can you explain how? What mechanisms are in place to stop prices being passed onto the consumer? Why will some be unable too?

            Relieve yourself of your thesaurus, write in a style that perhaps matches your intelligence (and not your attempt at above), and you might get your point across without sounding like a supercilious dolt?

          • Lotharsson says:

            > Now I read that as an assumption that the prerequisite for a carbon tax is that a viable alternative is available.

            “Is already available” – and/or can be developed. A price on carbon increases the financial incentive to develop lower carbon methods, as do R&D funds targeted to that aim.

            I’ll leave you the not particularly challenging task of determining whether alternatives to coal are currently available, and to what extent they might be leveraged by businesses seeking to reduce their emissions. Because asking *me* suggests that you haven’t done your homework.

            Never mind that you also give the impression of engaging in black-and-white thinking, for instance appearing to presume that the only way to reduce emissions from (say) coal-based power is to *completely* eliminate coal-based power. There are at least two plausible strategies that do not require this – feel free to let us know what they are.

            > Relieve yourself of your thesaurus, write in a style that perhaps matches your intelligence (and not your attempt at above), and you might get your point across without sounding like a supercilious dolt?

            ROFL! Mindreading fail🙂

            I write *without* a thesaurus, and I really don’t have any need or desire for you to validate my intelligence – or my point.

            In addition, methinks thou doth project too much. Especially when you overuse “supercilious”, even more so when you clumsily spout “supercilious trademark of the spastic”, and most especially when you put on airs of intellectual superiority and condescension – even as you have trouble making a coherent argument, let alone one consistent with the real world evidence.

            Still need better trolls, please.

  109. diamondjim says:

    Seems to me this debate is missing a pretty important point. By not paying a modest charge to clean up our act now, a much greater cost will be incurred by the economy in the next generation. Our current relaxed and comfortable lifestyles are being subsidised by not paying the cost for the damage we’re doing now, and which affects those who follow.
    In essence, we are stealing from our children.

    • Pamela S says:

      I agree diamondjim, really that is the significant point of the entire climate change debate. Why don’t we ask Thomas, the resident expert on everything to respond to your post? I’m sure given he is the brains of the operation he could tell you what that cost will be. Over to you Thomas, the rest of us cannot think for ourselves to even contemplate this reality…

  110. Blurter says:

    “There’s no reason why this generation shouldn’t be the ones to put their hands up”.

    Wow, thank goodness you’re here Geoff – the hope of the side, and the saviour of Australia – as an oldie in my late sixties I am thrilled to know your generation is putting your hands up to bear the brunt of effort and in doing so will stop the climate from changing, because frankly after several decades of milking cows and farming the ol’ arms are so arthritic I can’t get ’em up, which goes for a few other parts as well. [My wife, earthy woman that she is, who calls me a gullible, dense C U Next Tuesday every half hour, (as well as deaf and useless) reckons I should clarify this with you – am I’m reading this excellent article right? “this generation” means your generation and not mine, right?

    If that’s the case then I can go to my grave happy knowing that your generation will now save the dense gullible from their apathetic folly. My only regret is I can’t put my hand up with you. My wife and I live all alone, but we’ve got rid of the acreage, sold the car and the second fridge and moved into a smaller sustainable place in town to reduce our carbon footprint. Our lifestyle hasn’t changed much, we still don’t travel to far off lands, we don’t go to Thredbo or Perisher to ski in winter, we don’t go to Forster or the Gold Coast for summer, same ol’ same ol’ really, you know we basically still do what we’ve done for the last 40 years, grow the veggies, have a few hens for eggs and meat, a cow in the back paddock for the milk, the butter and various cheese products, I must confess though we were a little worried about the cow-farts etc.. but our calculations are that it is much more environmentally sustainable, (to say nothing of economically viable), to keep the cow and her farts, but have off-set that by giving up onions, baked beans, lentils and other high-fibre foods and that’s working out pretty well particularly for the wife.

    A tip for veggie growing, we use torn up politicians’ speeches as we find they make the best manure, the roses have never done better, we compost everything, in fact we might even set a up a little business but we’ll see about that, but you’re spot on, Geoff, the possibilities for innovation are endless aren’t they though?

    Luckily we’ve convinced the council to let us put a rainwater tank in, and the lovely-legged Kristina Keneally gave us a great deal for solar panels that heat the water for our bath (we have one every week whether we need it or not but we see that as our little indulgence)

    Geoff you’ll be pleased to know, we’ve reduced our footprint further by my finally making the decision to have my left leg off, an old war injury that played merry hell, the doc said it should’ve come off 20 years ago, only put it off until I’d raised the kids and finished with farming, selfish really I suppose but there you go, we’re a selfish ol’ lot we baby boomers — still it’s all grist for the sausage mill and this ol’ codger is happy to mend the errors of his ways if it helps the cause to stop climate change and of course young people such as yourself Geoff and all those who have written such insightful comments here.

    But what has really impressed me Geoff is the really tricky, squirmy questions that you have asked in this article, and I agree they should be asked as many times as it takes to get an answer, what’s more everyone agrees that the tricky squirmy, really hard questions you have posed in this article have to be pursued down every Rabbit and Carbon sink hole, down every black and brown coal mine, up every hill and down every dale, never ever give up.

    With young people like you and your articulate humorous followers Geoff Australia will be much better positioned for innovation competition and prosperity. My life is done now my last hope is for a carbon neutral death, it can’t come quickly enough. Best of luck with it all, eh?And again thanks for putting your hand up.

  111. sara says:

    Wow, thank you so much for writing this🙂 It made my day to hear somebody talking some reason.

    Just out of interest, that we are being made dumber by the media, may that have something to do with the fact that all newspapers in Australia are owned by TWO families?

  112. John Vardanega says:

    The People would like you to understand:

    The People largely care about a stable sense of identity and a clearly-defined purpose in their lives. Nothing so trivial as attempting to find a broader balance or considering the consequences of their actions or even of taking any measure of personal responsibility.

    So long as The People can pretend to know who they are and what they consider their place to be in the world, all is as it should be. And anybody daring to question or challenge that will be instantly met with resistance of the highest order.

    A view every bit as determined as it is short and narrow. One that makes life so much more manageable. The greyer areas just confuse things.

    The People would love to tell you how much they care about nature. But it’s usually an admiration largely based around the pleasure that nature provides them, that has little to do with any genuine respect for the environment itself.

    And none of this, none of it, is quintessentially Australian. It’s a First World psyche that permeates Western society almost universally. And one that’s doesn’t really discriminate based on collar colour.

    Unfortunately, it’s not simply a matter of intelligence, Geoff. You’re dealing with the much larger issue of The People’s fear-riddled consciousnesses and the cowardice of being confronted with cultural change.

    You may leave your rationalisations, however clearcut, at the door. They’ll do you no good here, heretic.

    • Thomas says:

      Ye who taps it out on yonder over a keyboard built on all the foundations he so detests, a glowing light behind his head as the poor stupid little people shout ‘Please John Vardanega, show us the way!’

      • Anfalicious says:

        You seem convinced that everyone who supports this necessary reform has been brainwashed into believing a conspiracy rather than having come to their own conclusion based on facts.

        Projection perhaps?

      • Justin says:

        Thomas, i’ve been reading many of your comments with interest as you seem intelligent enough to understand some of the complex issues but from a different point of view to many who are posting here (i also believe the carbon tax is the way to go and enjoyed reading this article)

        Through out my research on many of the pages related to Tony Abbott’s plan however there has been very strong resistance especially by economists. (to which Abbott replied “i don’t listen to economists, i listen to the public” One of the most infuriating comments i have heard in a long time) If there is such strong issues put forward by a large percentage of economists then how do you not oppose this as a way to tackle climate change? I don’t mean this in an antagonistic way at all, i am all for healthy debate here and most of the posts to and fro between you and many others are becoming sledging matches.

  113. DPK says:

    Sounds to me like another case of Australia following in the UK’s footsteps. Except in our case the ‘Bliar’ tag was a whole lot more justified!😛

  114. AndrewP says:

    I find it oddly sickening that the most flacid physical specimin can be our PM and have a cheap shot at the Oposition Leader because he keeps fit, and that’s ok, but when she’s called “deliberately barren” which is fact, she has made a choice to be without child, there was an uproar.

    To keep with the porn theme you seem to have in your post, Juliar would eb making hard men soft all over the world with her version of what good for them.

    The reality is that we don’t need a carbon Tax, we actually need action, simply re planting thousands of acres of forrests would have more impact on Co2 that the tax will ever (even Greg Combet has said so in Parliament, in fact he said not even in 50 years) so going straight to the ETS would be more beneficial for us than a tax will be.

    And yes i know it’s not actually a tax because it will revert to a ETS ,. . . . maybe,. . . . . if the government is re elected , and even then only perhaps because circumstances might change, but if it does revert then it won’t have been a tax because it reverted to an ETS even though if it doesn’t revert then it will have most definately have been a tax albeit an updated version of a “super profits tax”

    I have to say, if the opposition was fronted by Turnbull, and the government was fronted by Rudd, this discourse would be happening over champaigne baths in some very expensive foreign capital, Brisbane perhaps?

    • marc says:

      What relevance does our Prime Minister’s fertility have to the policy argument… why don’t you smoke up some of that red herring and have your pals?

    • Anfalicious says:

      How do you incentivise the planting of thousands of acres of trees without a market mechanism? Or do you want government to pay for that? How will they do that without a tax? Given it’s the Lib’s idea my guess is that it’s going to involve taking money out of schools and hospitals to redistribute money to corporations to do things they should be paying for themselves. At the moment they are allowed to pollute for free (see negative externalities), why should I pick up the tab so corporations can make more profits?

      If only this were a discussion between Turnbull and Rudd there might be a modicum of rationality behind it.

  115. Agatha Blimp says:

    Another excellent article – thanks for this Geoff! Apart from providing insightful political commentary you’ve seriously increased the amount of street cred I had in the bank. Posted the carbon tax piece and this one to my FB page and have since been inundated with requests for more links. Am off to purchase Going Down Swinging and will direct the hordes (hoards?) there until your next installment. Even if the content isn’t political, I just love the way you write. Best belly laugh I’ve had in ages.

  116. Obese Andy says:

    Everybody, I have just posted a suggestion on GetUp for an action called “The Heathen Scriptures article needs to be published in the manistream media. Please help! You can go to GetUp and vote for this action. If it gets enough votes, they will investigate, and it coud actually happen. Perhaps one day Geoff could be a paid writer for some non Murdoch paper, he could be a sort of “Anti-Piers-Ackerman”. Get yaselves to GetUp and vote hard.

  117. Sassamifrass says:

    I need to start keeping your post bookmarked on my phone so I can just force people to read them whenever I get into one of these WE WILL BE ROONED conversations with acquaintences.

  118. Todd Hawkes says:

    Good one buddy. I think aboutf this stuff when I take my morning crap. The way I see it, when you open your bowel, you open your mind. Maybe Mr Rabbit should take heed. He wastes so much of his shitting time on the public. He should take his morning crap and think about what he’s going to say that on the particular day. And only then, the shit might – and I say might – come out the right end.

  119. Loco says:

    I laughed so hard, I’m hurting…

  120. Gnstr says:

    thumps up! Know next to nothing of Aussie politics, but you actually write well. We should exchange notes some day.

  121. Greg_D says:

    haha “That pink stuff in the Monte Carlos is SOCIALISM”… that is gold! Oh, I hear what you are saying loud and clear… the mining tax will roon us, controlling pokies will roon us, peak oil will roon us, the hole in the ozone layer will roon us, global warming will roon us, the carbon tax will roon us. Every year we get at least a couple of new disasters. Well, if you think about it, digging up raw materials and sending them overseas to process then buying them back processed is a pretty stupid business model. But my problem with the so called “super profits” tax was that the base was not broad enough. Banks make some pretty hefty profits too so why weren’t they included?

    For the record, my beef with the so called “carbon tax” that is not a tax is not that it will roon me. In fact, I can afford to pay a little more. It is that too much of the money raised is going to coal and voters and not enough is going to the environment (via clean and renewable energy).

    Australia leads the world in research and development of fantastic technology like geothermal (we already have a pilot plant in QLD), solar thermal (there is an operating solar thermal array in NSW) and wave (demo plant being constructed in WA). Why don’t we have more clean/renewable energy generation? 1) too much govt. subsidies on coal and the high capital cost of initial construction. Which of these is the current carbon scheme going to address? More money is going to carbon and not nearly enough is going to assist start ups. So not much really.

    That leaves a conundrum at the next election… vote for a party who has failed at insulation, BER, mining tax, carbon scheme, asylum seekers and who has removed a whole slew of environmental programs. Or vote for a party that has no vision for Australia, no plan to transition the economy to clean and renewable energy or anything else worthwhile so far. Or that other bunch of loonies. WTF is the point? What has happened to politics in this country?

    • Jeremy says:

      I hear you on that one. It’s kind of a shame that there is the party system sometimes. Tony has no vision, which makes his whole party appear to have no vision. Julia seems to be really bad at putting vision into practice. Which one do I pick?! If only Labor could cherry pick a few Liberal administrative types to make their programs super-effective😦

  122. Mr Bungle says:

    Lachlan passes the thumbhead test…Stick your thumb in front of his pic for yourself if you don’t believe me…

  123. Lucy Jr says:

    Thanks for the bedtime story Geoff, I’ll sleep soundly tonight.
    You have refueled my comebacks tank to override the “we shouldn’t if everyone else isn’t doing it” etc drones of the day.

  124. Flag wrapped weather board socialist proud aussie mate battler bloke uni bludger BBQ conversationalist says:

    It took me three day to read it instead of the three stations I’m used to. And its not as pointy crinkly on my bum like the telegraph. I fink its good wot u said cause every body else did..I like bickkys.. PS i like the nice pictures in the words on them carbon blotty fings in my doctors office.

  125. Saintly Knight says:

    Hmmmm … how unusual … common sense commentary surrounded by funny adjectives … almost made me smile – but then I started to think … wake me up please … I want to go back to the time when the lake was clean, there was no-one else in the surf, camping was free and I could light a fire without a permit

  126. tric says:

    just want to say thank you
    very comforting to read exactly what i feel, put so eloquently
    it is also VERY comforting to read the number of praising comments
    we are not alone
    again
    THANK YOU

  127. Harley says:

    I have no words after reading that – so I’ll keep it brief… BRILLIANT! love it. So true. …and couldn’t agree more. Wish more fucktards would bother to read your article.

  128. Love your work. Now if we could only get this message onto commercial media…

  129. Paul Gioia says:

    Just wonderful to read Geoff. And so encouraging to read the comments. I thought I was alone. Stupid thought.

  130. Perthamy says:

    I thought I was alone too.
    Geoff, you have made my day, my week, my whole freakin’ year.
    I’m staying angry – and not only for Australia. The whole complacent, purposefully ignorant western world needs us to.

    Now, hand over that Monte Carlo.

  131. Tim Bateson says:

    What is this garbage? Bring back that wonderful Miranda Devine woman – she was a genuine conservative struck from the same swarthy mould as Ayn Rand.

    You sir, are a pretender and your pretending is so poor that I see right through your thin conservative veil to the left wing subterfuge beneath.

  132. Kelly says:

    Amen!!

  133. haven’t you heard? the Carbon Tax will cause earth to be thrown out of it’s orbit, then the sun will explode, and the entire universe will collapse on itself!!!

  134. blastcorp says:

    best ever. respect.

  135. Ken Wood says:

    I know it’s frustrating but what’s the point of blogging? Right wingers can’t read, or think for themselves.

  136. Les Claypool says:

    “Of course, hearing ex-Howard Libs complaining about pre-election tax dishonesty is like Al Jolson telling you your fake Irish accent is racially insensitive.”

    I am still laughing at this one. Comedy gold!

  137. norwegianwoody says:

    “Perhaps China is more your lifestyle dream. They’re smart and they love love love wealth redistribution.”
    You think?

  138. Kitschead says:

    Excellent rant Geoff! It’s rare that you read something which aligns with your own views so exactly.
    If there’s anything which will make anyone with half a brain realise the idiocy of Australian politics it’s your articles. You’ve gained yet another devoted fan in me, mate.
    Keep up the excellent work!

  139. quinnseaton says:

    Proper fucking Genius!

    I’ve been watching this drama unfold through Newsfeeds I’m getting here in Taiwan and it churns my stomach to think that my countrymen are actually buying into this garbage?
    It’s not even really well thought out, it’s just bullshit non-sense.
    Upon critically analyzing the public argument i’s pretty fucking obvious what is happening here.
    Whoever thought that the people of our country could be swayed by the smoke and mirrors of bone-headed PR consultancies needs to seriously re-evaluate their career choice.

    So, in closing: very well articulated… I’m going to have some fucking TimTams

  140. David says:

    This has some great commentary (and damn funny quips) in it! We also need some better journalism in this country on the subject of our stupidity when it comes to the rejection of nuclear power & the safety of Thorium based energy in our media. Great Blog!

  141. John Thomas says:

    Lots of great lines Geoff. Maintain the rage! One of my favorites: “We’re getting ‘balance’, defined as fifty-fifty airtime between the nine scientists who back climate change and the one mathematician who doesn’t.”

  142. wendyjean says:

    Great stuff again Geoff! I wonder if you could send the article the to The Daily Telegraph so the dimwits who write their ignorant, dumb-arsed letters opposing something they don’t even understand and gobble up what this one-eyed excuse for investigative journalism dishes out every day. reminds me of my dog who eats anything, anywhere without even determining if it’s food to start with!

  143. Nikko says:

    Thank you! Ever since I studied energy at uni a few years ago, I’ve been gobsmacked at the ignorance and the inexplicable swallowing of the lines of the greedy. i.e. Why should we compensate companies who’ve been subsidised to the tune of billions of dollars for hundreds of years because they’ve gobbled their profits instead of investing in the future? Sorry, this is your soapbox, not mine😉 Excellent piece. Thanks!

  144. JThereseBass says:

    Verity. I actually defended you to Geoff on twitter because I thought his reply to you was WAY too rough and that’s what I told him. Yes, I know it wasn’t the ‘right’ place to do it, but I was too tired at the time to trawl through the website and he tweeted something that reminded me of how bitchy he’d been to you. I now had notification in my email of your subsequent reply to him. I won’t say I’m sorry for the efforts I made to defend you, because that’s who I am and I always try to stand up for what I feel is right. But, how disappointed I am to see you being just as bitchy back to him. You are claiming a maturity in your original comment that you clearly don’t have either. A bunch of hypocrites all round. *sigh*. Can we ALL make some effort to grow the fuck up here? PLEASE.

    At first I thought that you had been so shocked and offended that you roped someone else in to reply in kind for you. I was certainly shocked on your behalf. However, having read both of your comments over and over again, I’m not so sure. I’ll say to you what I said to Geoff on twitter: this attitude of bitchiness for bitchiness, tit for tat and an eye for an eye is what starts wars and other nasties – always has, always will. As intelligent adults, who would ALL like to live in a peaceful world, it behooves us all to move beyond that.

    Geoff is a brilliant writer. Yes, those of us who are substantially older can tell that he’s relatively young and has some hard edges that will be knocked off in time. That doesn’t take away from his essential astuteness and genius in communicating his thoughts in not only an exacting but witty and entertaining way. Am wishing I had his way with words right now as I fumblingly try to say what I mean. And yes, he tends to shoot with his keyboard first and think later – something else that will no doubt change in future years. However, I wish I had his talent at ANY age.

    But you – who claim to be older and therefore more mature in your outlook – have apparently had
    plenty of time to compose your answer. And THAT’S what you came up with???

    And now, of course, Geoff is thinking: “Julia was entirely wrong in defending that bitch – look at her reply – I was right to shoot her down in flames all along”. (Which, BTW Geoff, you STILL weren’t).

    I’m really really disappointed, Verity. I actually thought you WEREN’T the sort of person who just wants to make smart arse hit and run comments on the internet

    • Chaos Crafter says:

      I agree Geoff’s reply was too strong, but I’d have to say Verity’s “I’m older and I know better” with no actual comment on what she disliked or was criticising did sound horrendously patronising. It’s precisely the sort of non-argument that gets thrown around all the time, and seems to be exactly what Geoff was ranting about in the first place. And as such, just as he might if a mining magnate showed up and called him an idiot, I think he paid out some of the vitriol he was feeling.
      Not saying I approve of the phrasing, but had he chosen to call Verity a patronising waste of pixels or some other (non-sexist, and preferable more apt) phrase, then I’d have no complaint with his response at all. (I feel his description of aging was fair use, as Verity had chosen to make that her weapon and provided nothing else at all)

  145. Geoffrey says:

    Smiled at your line..You can’t wrap a dog shit in glad wrap and call it a creme brulee.

    • Chaos Crafter says:

      Oh but you can call that gladwrapped dogshit whatever you like – the problem is when you’re being called an idiot for refusing to eat it, whilst the rest of the nation chows down on it with their morning Herald-Sun.

  146. Tim Bateson says:

    I was thinking more of a food fight but now you mention the molis I’m onside with that too.

  147. sanja says:

    “Democracy is a device that ensures we shall be governed no better than we deserve.” – George Bernard Shaw

    I guess we have been very bad!

  148. Great rant Geoff, bet that feel good to get off your chest. Noted get up cam-pain, im in. get to the bottom of the page and see ““Democracy is a device that ensures we shall be governed no better than we deserve.” – George Bernard Shaw””, Yep exactly. I wanna upgrade it, see this for a little brainfart… http://suggest.getup.org.au/forums/60819-getup-campaign-suggestions/suggestions/2046707-evolving-democracy-to-ver-2-01-shrekie-and-get-up- Power to the People.🙂

  149. Bob says:

    Mmmmmm Maybe Big business should just stop exploiting people by closing down and ceasing to
    pollute the environment that would solve all our problems.

  150. Pingback: date edited: BEAT THE ODDS | giftofthedrift

  151. Jamie says:

    ROFL. We’ll all be roooooooned. Hilarious, I love it. This is a must read for the majority of the population who have had the wool pulled over their eyes by the misleading propaganda flying around the media these days. Some of the language used may not be best suited for all ages but the truth sings through.

  152. Geoff Freeburn says:

    The one issue that stands out is there are so many vested interests all lobbying their adendas with total disregard for any morality that the mainstream voters are lost in the sea of swill. From the small family at the back of Blacktown to the wealthy in Mosman, and supposedly the government, WE ALL HAVE TO BUDGET. So many people vote for the person, it should irrevocably be the PARTY. Should it not be fundemental policy and principle you vote for ? Labour have always WASTED money and spent like drunken sailors as if there were no tomorrow with the Liberals coming back to fix the almighty mess and saving the day HISTORY FACT !!! Look at NSW for fucks sake, NEVER in history have we seen such inept and corrupt politiciaqns. We are $120 BILLION worse of than than we were 4 years ago, what the fuck have we got to show for it ? Gillard is a Communist with her platform years ago of having a “Super tax” to redistribute wealth. Carbon Tax is just that but an expedient vehicle to appease the mornonic imbecile deputy PM aka Bob Brown out. Global warming x x x x x x sorry climate change is the greatest SCAM is the history of this planet bar none. At least as to the implications esposed is HORSE SHIT. It needs a global approach and the simplest and best is STOP CUTTING DOWN THE LUNGS OF THE EARTH, OUT RAIN FORESTS. Give the people doing this a fraction of the BILLIONS of dollars going into vested interests pockets and its all solved. Nope, wont happen we have to be let buck extremeists like Bob Brown and heartless ruthless cunts like Juliar Gillard with their world domination agendas.

  153. Matt says:

    Tax breaks to plantation timber companies who have subsequently collapsed has resulted in the plantations being uneconomical to harvest. Too bad they’re mono crops and of no ecological value.

    Stop picking on Tony cos hes in great shape. Pick on him cos he’s an imbecile.

  154. Common Sense says:

    To all those whinging dickheads out there, if you don’t want to pay the extra $10 a week, this is what you do:
    1. Turn off your big fucking plasma, home theatre, computer, phone charger, ipod charger, lights, latte machines and dildos at the socket when not in use.
    2. Set your heating to roooooom temp. That is 20C, not 25C. If you are cold, put a fucking jumper on.
    3. Set your A/C to rooooom temp. Again, 20C, not 15C. If you are still hot, then crack open a cold beer and relax in the comfort of knowing how fucking lucky you are to be able to afford A/C in the first place.
    4. Get off your fat arses and walk the 100 metres to the shop, milkbar, supermarket to buy your daily fix of Herald Bum, nicotine, alcohol, etc..
    5. Walk your kids to school in the morning. Great way of spending time with your kids and it might help burn off all the shit food they are fed.
    6. Look for locally produced, in season fruit and veg. Less carbon miles.
    7. Consider “do I really need that V8 that goes 200kph?”. Max speed limit is still 110kph. That alone should save at least twice the $10 a week.
    8. If you can’t at least do one or more of the above, stop breathing and adding to the CO2 problem.

    You see what I’m getting at here? It’s not about revenue raising, sucking up to the treehuggers or the Greens. It’s about changing mindsets. Its about getting people to be more aware and less wasteful. Its about realising that there is a finite amount of fossil fuels and that one day, they will run out. Are we to wait until we have squeezed that last drop of oil out of the ground before making a change? We’ll all be going “oh, fuck, what now?” “why didn’t the government do something earlier?” “how am I going to be able to download Britney Spears Greatests Hit from iTunes?”

    It’s true that the tax is not going to directly make corporations cut their emissions. What will make them cut their emissions is if we, the consumer, demand cheaper, more energy efficient products.

    Everyone bitched and moaned about water restrictions. But as a society, we adjusted and got on with life. Be it a bucket in the shower so you could water your plants, using a broom instead of many, many gallons of fresh drinking water to clean our paths and driveways, etc… And, at least in the cities, no one suffered. It made most of us more aware of how much of this precious resource we were wasting.

    Even if you don’t believe 95%+ of the scientific community about climate change, you still have to accept that fossil fuel resourses are finite. When do we make a change, if not now?

    By the way Geoff, great piece of work. I think you hit a raw nerve with the people you refer to in the title. The best thing is, it has started a debate (however childish, abusive and sometimes fucking hilarious), and a debate is needed to expel the myths and bullshit.

    Keep being angry🙂

  155. Common Sense says:

    One more thing.
    9. Stop buying the Herald Bum. That’ll save you more than $10 a week and you will instantly become more intelligent. 😉

  156. JThereseBass says:

    I’ve been longing for a little commonsense to make an appearance in this ‘debate’ – and here you are – Common Sense. Well said!

  157. Johnny says:

    As always…brilliant,insightful and ridiculously funny article,but all so tragically true and horrible. Reading this guy I just want to cry and laugh at the same time…

  158. This is a little late in the piece, but one of my pet peeves in regard to the climate change debate is the false dichotomy of ‘alarmist’ vs ‘denier’. Both terms are purely emotive and have nothing to do with the debate, I personally believe in ACC (Anthropogenic Climate Change) but I believe that calling anti-ACC debaters ‘deniers’ does a disservice to the argument. ACC is a logical argument, descending to emotive terms only creates dissension and assists the anti-ACC arguments by reducing them to emotive instead of logical arguments.

  159. Gordon Rouse says:

    Nice rant! politically feel the same about it all.

    Regarding that one lonely mathematician who does not support AGW, were you thinking of me?

    I made a mathematical model to test AGW out and I found that yes, it is true, but not as scary as most climate scientists make it out to be.

    http://www.abetz-rouse.com.au/stonethrower/?project=9156698721

    I really tried my hardest, but the figures tell me that doubling the Greenhouse Gasses from current levels gives a surface temperature rise of 1 degree? A little better at height (350hPa) – 2.7 degrees.

    I hope that doesn’t make me an evil anti-science right-wing bastard?

    Perhaps someone smart can tell me what I did wrong or what I forgot?

  160. pea green says:

    You, sir, have a fine brain – I’m all kinds of impressed. Fuck yeah!

  161. Well written – and the biggest load of shit I’ve read for a long time.

    Since when has CO2 been “pollution”?

    • geoff lemon says:

      Stunning approach to chemical science there, bud. How about, since an over-concentration of any one element in a system can alter or deteriorate that system? Water is good for you, but if you drink enough of it, even that’ll kill you.

    • Common Sense says:

      Take a few lungfuls of the stuff and then tell me it not bad for you. If you’re still living. I think I’ll put my faith in the 90%+ peer-reviewed scientific papers written on the subject that say that your opinion is the biggest load of shit. Those papers have been written by learned people who read more than just the Herald Sun.

  162. JThereseBass says:

    Exactly. Balance is the key to everything. I’m completely mystified as to why people find that concept so difficult to understand

  163. S says:

    Lovely work, author. Good take-down of the clowns at http://www.Hadenough.com.au

    Seriously, what a bunch of bovine bozos.

  164. How did we get to this point were human contributed atmospheric CO2 denial is given the oxigen of publicity, when during her reign of ‘no society’ terror, that staunch left wing greenie, Margaret Thatcher said that we should do everything in our power to reduce our production of CO2?

  165. Ruth Lovett says:

    free speech at its best, thanks to all

  166. drow says:

    When the messenger is being attacked instead of the message being argued the thoughts presented are most likely true beyond confrontation. Best piece of aussie writing i’ve read in years, congrats! Looking forward to reading more in the future. Thatcherisms heresy, whats the next brilliant scientific solution, like cane toads, asbestos or plastic.. G. Carlin alluded to the quandary that “science had got us to where we are, why would we presume science can get us out?” if the world wanted solutions for problems in society they would hold public forums, until then government is only there to slow the engine down. We can’t even by golliwogs anymore….?? is the world turning to shit?? polish them turds i say..

  167. McJules says:

    There appears to be a goodly number of middle aged and grey-haired people at the “Juliar” rallies and what alarms me is that they may be arming themselves with banners and slogans thinking they are politically trendy, and occasionally they get a freeby bus trip. Then again my heart really sinks at the realisation that they are fans of that shock jock who has brain damage from too much cock.
    I do despair for our Nation.

  168. McJules says:

    Gillard has double the scrutiny and criticism that any man would have in her job just because of her sex. The same goes for any woman in a typical male oriented job. As soon as Gillard had been sworn in she was being pulled apart for “being barren”, not being a “real woman” etc etc.
    No one knows the true story surrounding Kev’s dismissal as PM. The big boys didn’t want him there and as Gillard was the deputy she was next to step up or push up as the case could well be. None of the men with aspirations to be PM would have stepped up as they knew the shit that they would have had to wear, as Gillard does, They are biding their time until Gillard has all the muck stuck onto her before they make any move.

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