Deadwood in Sydney stop pensioners gathering dead wood

Obviously those working in the NSW Environment Office live in the comparative warmth of Sydney (and sitting in an airconditioned building at the department paid by the grateful taxpayer) and do not experience winter life in much of NSW. From an article in today’s Australian

In an apparent bid to reduce the reliance of local residents on red gum firewood — three-quarters of homes rely on wood heating alone as the district has no natural gas supply — pensioners were advised wearing more clothes and opening the curtains would reduce power costs and “keep them cosy”. The offer of an “energy saving” kit was also made: two hot water bottles, a low-energy light bulb, some draught-preventing foam tape and two “snake” doorstoppers.

Well that’s not going to help much if it’s a frosty minus 5 outside.

Let’s face it. Government is and always has been the problem. We are restricted from free speech by government. We face expensive and unreliable power by government policies. We go to war because of government. We can’t access dead wood in a forest because of government (or more particularly, by the dead wood in government putting out edicts).

Here is the article

NSW pensioner Bob Starkey is angry, insulted — and cold.

After 44 years of hard work, Mr Starkey, 68 — who lives near the junction of the Murray and Edwards Rivers at Mathoura in southern NSW — was looking forward to a blissful retirement.

But now Mr Starkey worries how he and his wife will survive the cold Riverina winters ahead. Firewood lies at the heart of Mr Sharkey’s fears.

River red gums rise from the banks of the Gulpa Creek just in front of his home, but Mr Sharkey is no longer allowed to gather the plentiful dead wood littering the forest floor to fuel his wood heater, his only source of warmth.

The Millewa state forest around Mathoura and Moama with its colossal red gum forests was converted into the Murray Valley National Park seven years ago — in an unsuccessful NSW Labor government deal with the Greens to hang on to power — with ­Mathoura locals such as Mr Starkey requiring permits to ­collect firewood ever since.

A crackdown by the NSW ­National Parks and Wildlife Service has further restricted available wood to timber thinned from the forests for ecological benefit, piled in designated-only areas.

Once it runs out, firewood may no longer be available at all, the NSW Environment Office has warned permit holders.

“Here I am in 2017 with a red gum forest 200m from my place and I’m not allowed to get any of the dead wood that is rotting there on the floor in piles to keep my wife and grandkids warm,” Mr Sharkey said yesterday, as a heavy frost lay on his lawn and the temperature fell to -1C.

“Now they are saying that soon no wood will be available at all even if you have a permit; it’s a big worry — am I going to end up with a cold wood heater, no wood and having to sit by the window to try and catch a bit of winter sun; is that what Australia has become?”

The final offence for Mr Sharkey came with a letter sent by the NSW Environment Office to all locals who have previously applied for wood collection permits, advising them of the “Stay Warm, Stay Comfortable Program”.

In an apparent bid to reduce the reliance of local residents on red gum firewood — three-quarters of homes rely on wood heating alone as the district has no natural gas supply — pensioners were advised wearing more clothes and opening the curtains would reduce power costs and “keep them cosy”. The offer of an “energy saving” kit was also made: two hot water bottles, a low-energy light bulb, some draught-preventing foam tape and two “snake” doorstoppers. “It’s insulting … How do think we’ve kept warm up to now — and the Aborigines before us?” Mr Starkey said.

Local Mathoura sawmiller Chris Crump has enough timber too small to turn into valuable sawlogs to spare — and sells it for about $90 a tonne — but can make no sense of what has happened to his local district where state-owned “working” red gum forests used to add hundreds of jobs and $86 million a year to the economy. “It’s bureaucracy gone mad; the forests are not being properly managed and the advice of those who have lived and breathed the forests for generations is being ignored,” he said.


Posted in Uncategorized | 92 Comments

Entrepreneurship good and not so good

On the plane ride to Canada we watched The Founder which is about Ray Kroc turning the conception behind this minor fast food outlet that opened in Los Angeles in the 1950s into the international McDonald’s phenomenon it became and still is. I had read a few reviews of the film but had never run across it in Australia so was very happy to finally see it for myself. An extraordinary film on entrepreneurship, which shows the extent to which it is commercialisation that matters most, not innovation or invention. Highly recommended.

But I do have to say that whoever had the idea for the “McWrap” here in Canada might have come up with the worst name for a product in marketing history. Not a joke: it really does exist.

Posted in Market Economy | 17 Comments

The Magna Carta in Australia

Posted in Uncategorized | 30 Comments

Economic Armageddon – South Australian Style

The South Australian Labor Government should really write a book on how to destroy an economy.  The latest chapter is how to eliminate banking services for its citizens.

Reported in the Australian, as part of South Australia’s latest budget:

Major banks will be hit with a South-Australian based levy to boost the state’s bottom line, as Treasurer Tom Koutsantonis has today delivered a pre-election budget centred on job creation and record infrastructure spending for new hospitals, schools and roads.

The state will raise revenue through a major bank levy forecast to raise $370m over the next four years, and a foreign buyer stamp duty charge of 4 per cent to raise almost $49m.

Clueless.  Absolutely clueless.

Firstly, consider the administrative burdens of calculating tax liabilities.  Then consider how quickly banks will start reducing services to business and citizens of the state.  Then consider the economic impact on “jobs and growth” of this policy.

Let’s be honest.  Is this an attempt to completely destroy South Australia’s economy so as to get more GST dollars from NSW and Victoria?  If the Commonwealth Grants Commission rewards this behaviour then there should really be a discussion about the dissolution of the Commonwealth.

And then for the South Australian “Treasurer” to say:

“The decision for Holden to close was made in Canberra, not at Elizabeth, not at Detroit,”

Is he for fricken real?  General Motors must be thanking the gods that they announced their exit when they did given the government cost imposts of doing business in South Australia and the unreliable energy supplies – you know, that stuff necessary to assemble cars and otherwise run a business.

And then, having implemented a variety of policies with the purpose of  running business out of the state to announce a jobs package to attract business to the state is just amazing:

A jobs package included $80m to attract new businesses, major events and conventions to South Australia and funds to support automotive supply chain companies to diversify.

Where did people learn their economics?  From the University of Caracas under the tutelage of Professors Chavez and Maduro?

Productive citizens of South Australia – get out while you still can.  At this rate, Commissars Weatherill and Koutsantonis may start considering closing the borders and airports to keep you in.

Follow I Am Spartacus on Twitter at @Ey_am_Spartacus

Posted in Uncategorized | 111 Comments

Guest Post: Ooh Honey Honey Who will defend the west?

If you’re going to fight, better your enemy is weak than strong. Even better if you can weaken them before joining in battle.

Sheer numbers alone do not determine outcomes. Morale is far more important. If your army wants to fight, and wants to win, and believes they can win, and believes that winning is a perfectly just outcome, they will prevail against a force who do not want to fight, or believe themselves capable, and who do not see winning as anything to be proud of.

The demoralised force, even if it is much larger, is more likely to play up internal disagreements, much less likely to trust their leaders or obey orders, more likely to desert and even join the other side.

So how do demoralise a larger force? Well you start in on all those things. You take their paramount values, and dash them to the ground. That is what a “Your Mum” joke is and they are as old as time.

You criticise them and get people within their ranks to question the reasons and denigrate the urge to fight at all. You enlist and reward people within their ranks to sow discontent with those values, with the objectives, with the leadership. Constantly encourage the personally disgruntled to convert their malice into a chronic suspicion of their compatriots, encouraging surveillance and reporting and the application of strict standards of thought, speech and behaviour and punishments for breaches, mostly informal, social punishments. Such an organisation is easy to defeat.

You try to make them feel like the bad guys from the outset. Tear down everything in which they have pride and try to reinterpret it as something of which they should be ashamed. Make them all – or at least an influential number of them – think that in fact they are the inheritors of evil, that they stand for wickedness, that the society and culture they represent is actually a bad thing and not worth defending, and deserving of not just loss and punishment for all the evil things it has done in the past, but actually remiss for not paying compensation to everyone they have wronged.

You would leave them with no pride, only doubt and self-loathing. Such an adversary would be easily defeated by a much smaller force who believed in themselves and believed that they were destined to triumph for perfectly just and moral reasons.

That is what Cultural Marxism has been doing to the West for a good forty years. We are being gaslit. Everything in our past has been flipped to make it sound like we’ve done nothing good, only bad, and so the very idea that we should defend it becomes difficult because of all the individuals who have been so indoctrinated, who think “Why should I step up to defend something so repugnant? Maybe it is time for a change since we have been so bad at it.” It leaves us splayed, piecemeal and vulnerable to Marxists, Greens and Islam.

Who will defend the West? Who will rebuild that basic pride, and camaraderie and commitment to a common set of values? The mildest attempt to do so these days will quickly draw social punishment: being labelled as a “racist” or a “bigot” or as “far right” or “white supremacist”.

The enemy is scattered very widely within our own ranks, they are on every side all around us, they are in positions of power and influence and have secured government funding for their activities, so instantly ready to tear down any suggestion that Western civilisation is good and worth defending, weakening us the whole time.

Everyone has been tainted a little bit, hardly anyone I know is prepared to state without qualification, without any “Yes but what about slavery” etc., to state that we have a civilisation that is under attack and we need to rally and proclaim it as the best set of values and unite in defense of them. Who can do that without qualification or hedging?

If you spend a lot of time telling a little girl that she is pretty, everyone can control her later on by choking the flow of compliments. Similarly if you can persuade a whole society to invest in the sparkling café lifestyle enjoyed with a diverse group of friends, who can all “agree to disagree”, like the laughing affluent faces in the wine advertisements, you can also bring them to heel very effectively by threatening to take that away from them. By instilling the fear of barbecue-stopping, the unfriending on Facebook and being blanked in the street.

This leaves the only people able to engage with ugly political issues those with nothing to lose! People who are way down the totem pole, no famous friends, no enterprise dependent on the goodwill of the politically manipulated market, not beholden to the intelligentsia, not media figures. Absolute bogans with nothing to lose, who can’t be got at through shareholder activism or losing their well-paid position.

People who have a large group of faithful friends who are not diverse at all because they all agree 100% with everything they all think and aren’t afraid to say so. Aussie Pride type of people who have no stake in modern PC bullshit. The Tommy Robinsons, the Pauline Hansons, the neighbours and your tattooed mates from high school.

The more a person is subject to opinion regulation the less we should listen to them. They are talking absolute rubbish!  We don’t admit evidence in court if it has been extracted under duress, why on Earth should we pay any attention to what they say? We should instead regard such testimony with nothing but pity as we would the bleatings of a lamb caught up in a barbed wire fence.

Well the same applies to anyone famous. By definition, prominent, famous people with awards and accolades are the very LAST people we should heed, as we can know for certain that whatever they say is nothing more than self-preserving tribute to their masters. Their commentary on any topic is nothing more than the ads.

Anyone whose fortunes are dependent on the sentimental goodwill of large numbers of people, and invested in the politically correct apparatus of the state, are similarly flies caught in creeping sap. They are simply the charismatic bearers of propaganda, flooding us with the building blocks of an ideologically correct narrative, pushing aside any alternatives and crushing the shoots of dissent.

It may be that in times like this, the only people who we can trust to tell the truth, to take the risks associated with telling it like it is, to make the hard decisions, are those at the bottom of heap: the deplorables, bogans, and rednecks. The reviled, the rejected, the unlettered and illiterate can go to the heart of an issue fearlessly, and may save us because of it. I am starting to think we need to look after them.

Posted in Guest Post | 42 Comments

Holey Moley

Adam Creighton wrote another excellent piece in the Australian today – Paying consultants to do public servants’ jobs is waste of money.

According to Creighton:

The Palaszczuk government has added more than 15,000 public servants since it won government in 2015.

15,000!  Fifteen thousand.  Good Lord.  Hey Man!  That’s 15,000 over 26 months or an average of 535 every month or 60 every business day since they were elected.  OMG what is going on up there?

I hope this is not going to be another uninsured Queensland natural disaster from which there will need to be another Queensland levy imposed on all Australians to pay for (in addition to the usual GST transfer).

Posted in Uncategorized | 37 Comments

Ossoff and don’t come back again

The Democrats are zero for five in the special elections that have been held to replace Trump appointments and this was the most devastating of them all. Like this story particularly: AWESOME! GOP Crowd Starts Chanting, “TRUMP! TRUMP! TRUMP!!” at Karen Handel Victory Party!.

The Congressional race between Republican Karen Handel and Democrat Jon Ossoff took place on Tuesday.

The race in Georgia’s 6th district is the most expensive House race in US history.

More than $50 million was spent on the race to replace Rep. Tom Price in the US House.

With the ratio around 9:1 on Democrat spending v Republican. That they could not turn any of the five special elections into an anti-Trump meme has left their political cupboard bare, as it ought to be. For a more detailed outline, here is Roger Simon: Hollywood YUUUGE Loser in Georgia Sixth.

Posted in American politics | 42 Comments

Wednesday Forum: June 21, 2017

Posted in Open Forum | 1,468 Comments

Who really won the popular vote?

Interesting? h/t Bruce of Newcastle

As many as 5.7 million noncitizens may have voted in the 2008 election, which put Barack Obama in the White House.

Re the last election.

Mr. Agresti’s analysis of the same polling data settled on much higher numbers. He estimated that as many as 7.9 million noncitizens were illegally registered that year and 594,000 to 5.7 million voted.

These numbers are more in line with the unverified estimates given by President Trump, who said the number of ballots cast by noncitizens was the reason he lost the popular vote to Hillary Clinton.

Last month, the president signed an executive order setting up a commission to try to find on-the-ground truth in illegal voting. Headed by Vice President Mike Pence, the panel also will look at outdated voter lists across the nation with names of dead people and multiple registrants.

Posted in American politics, Rafe | 37 Comments

Arty bird prints

Following up the insect prints, a collection of birds.

Many of these if not all are from Audubon’s “The Birds of America” and there is a more information about the painting or print if you click on the title.

John James Audubon was born in Les Cayes, Haiti on 26 April 1785. From 1788 to 1803 he lived in France until he was sent to the United States to manage an estate that his father had bought in Pennsylvania. He returned to France in 1805, but his fascination with the United States had taken root and he returned again in May 1806. He married Lucy Bakewell in 1808 and together they embarked on a difficult period financially that was only to be resolved, through Audubon’s unshakable and justified belief in his own abilities, with the publication of his masterpiece in 1827-1838. “The Birds of America” is the single greatest ornithological work ever produced and is the realization of Audubon’s dream of traveling throughout the United States recording, natural size, every native bird then known. The 435 double-elephant folio sized plates, printed by the Havells of London, depict some 1,065 different species, the majority drawn from specimens that Audubon himself had captured. The Havell edition was expensive at the time of publication and this has not changed. Possibly the last complete copy which will ever appear on the market sold for a staggering $8,802,500 in a sale in New York in March 2000. Currently, the increasingly rare individual plates from this edition, when they do appear, generally sell for between $5,000 and $175,000 depending on the image.

Posted in Rafe | 4 Comments