Tuesday, November 27, 2012

The Next Big Thing

Under a spot light I do tend to look old and pudgy, actually under any kind of light these day. Here is my small installment on The Next Big Thing. I write slower than I think and I think way too fast for my meagre mouth to translate, so mummbling has become one of my better comnnuicative methods of late. Will this be the next big thing to come out in Australian literature -- I can't speak for others in the publishing game but I seem to think it is pretty damn good.

I am asked a series of questions and the answers will show what I am working on and how I feel about it. The title for this work in progress is The Stainless Steel Hammer of God, a long title that sums up the contents of the book nicely when you join a few dots. The actual idea for the book comes from my own life when I was a needle pushing drug addict living on the streets of Adelaide; much of the deeply troubling events for the character happened to me, so a sense of realism is captured. This book isn't autobiographical, but I do relate very closely to many things pictured and spoken about by the character. When I was writing the novel's draft I was confused as to what the genre would be, mainly because I am a Fantasy/SF/Horror writer but this story is none of these genres, in fact it is vastly removed from my normal mode of writing and the subject matter is very contemporary. If cliche were a genre I might think I am inside one with this book, but when you expect the same old same old to happen it doesn't and it is this part I am pleased with. If I had to think seriously about genre and find the editor to read this I would say contemporary literature with a touch of crime mystery and thriller.

I was asked some time ago what film stars would be best suited for my charaters and I think Keira Knightly would be fine for Star and a very grizzled Brad Pit for the other main character. Nick Nolte would also play a starring role and he would have to do very little more than be himself. The story in a simple manner is a girl, addicted to drugs and prostitution sets out to save her life and rediscover the love of her farther.

While my last book was self published in the end after many years of floundering on editor's desks, I will once more run the mill of agents and editors to see if this heady novel can float someones boat. It is tough writing these days, when anyone with a computer churns out dribble that hits some screw loose marketting wiz kid's desk and I do wonder why I take the time and care to write in the manner I do. But, it is a business I love and I will continue to send my work to publishers in the hope it is picked up by one of these wiz kids and given a life others will enjoy.

When it comes to first drafts of books I tend to write them very fast, this one took about 12 weeks from start to finnish, but I take a long time to rewrite and edit. This book started its life in 2010 and has sat gathering momentum for a couple of years. I am now rewriting and moulding what I had into something I believe it can be. If I must compare any book to this I might suggest  'Go Ask Alice' which was written in the late 70s I think. It is a harsh book that pulls no punches and I hope that is what I am doing here, but where 'Go Ask Alice' is a personal story on its own, The Stainless Steel Hammer of God in complex and dangerous and draw upon a part of Adelaide that is sometimes spoken about but quickly hidden so it doesn't affect tourism. I suppose this hidden secret inspired me to take parts of my life and fictionalise them into a vehicle for the exploration of the city through a character. Yes, Star is important, but of equal importance is the place she lives and I wanted this to show as well as the mystery around her.

When I complete the final draft and have it sent to editors I hope what they see inspires them to act. It is not a light story, in fact the first few pages are so dark it is if the pages had been coloured in with black ink and then shaken so little bits fall off to reveal the white paper beneath. There is love here, but strained and wearying. There is hope but with it comes the greater sense of loss and there is salvation but the cost of it comes close to the ruination of everybody associated with the charcaters.

Is there a selling point to the book? It is pretty damn harsh and probably not a light weight read for children and the world of sparkles. This is indeed a book for adults and sadly this may also be its weakness in the end.

Thank you for sparing the time to read this blog - may you share it with others and lets us hope the book finds a good home.

Robert N Stephenson

Thursday, January 5, 2012

The End of the World as We Know it

2012 is meant to be when it all ends, or to some anyway. Doomsday psychics are queuing up for those hapless souls ready to sell their homes and beg salvation, but none are sure which God to follow or which one to blame. While it can be true the religious types that border the not so intelligent, and this a broad statement, will decry everything as a sin to God, from the end of the world to someone sexual position – even a person’s political stance is now a sin unto God. But it must be made clear here that a goodly majority of Christians, Muslims, Buddhists and even Hindus do not see things in this somewhat narrow and harmful way – for every media driven outcry of the insane and inane you will find a hundred times the persons of reason and logic. For every estranged view reported as being at the pulse of society you will fund thousands who hole a saner view.

What will be coming to an end in 2012? Many things will find their natural demise and one such demise may befall aspects of the banking sector, which has for the last few years been found to not only be wanting is fiscal management but to be completely morally bankrupt. Though is could be argued what banker has morals in the first place, they are no different to Lawyers, Politicians and media reporters and editors. Being as everything done in the world is costed by economists who justify themselves through high fees and finger pointing, is it any wonder the end of the world is at hand. The wealthy have decided the Earth is in trouble and they will indeed increase the price on everything to make the most out of the planet before it dies. And if you think about this it doesn’t make sense, yet it is happening and despite the work of science, experts, visionaries and the person in the street who has taken the time to understand their world and their role in it, the minority – the few who own everything, have the last say in what can and should be done, and like in 1859 to cry from those governing few is still ‘Do Nothing’.

Perhaps one of the greatest things that could come to an end is the secrecy and political manipulation of the modern, so called FREE, media. Only a handful of men own ALL the media outlets and th world no longer receives news, but more events tainted by the views of the few. These few influence and even have governments over thrown with their empire controls and yet they are untouchable by the law. A policeman wanting to interview any one of them would have to wade through 6 months worth of lawyers just to ask a rehearsed question. Perhaps the Mians knew of the way of the world after all and their predictions were not just an oddity of their calendar system, Maybe they foresaw the fall of the wealthy and the rising up of the poor and disenfranchised to take back control over their world, its food and its energy. It is clear something will be at an end but the prediction beyond the speculative is best not entered into.

True, it is a new year, but it has started like any other with economics jumping in and claiming success as more people go into debt. In a few months time the same economist will be reporting issue with being in debt and then they will blame someone or some entity for it and we will once again start the standard spiral down into despair the controlling few want us to feel just before they announce their sales and feel good promises.

The mega wealthy of today even make profit from the poor and homeless, they invest in the unemployed potential for being unemployed and how much it will cost a government to care for them. This is one thing the Mians might have seen and it is with disgust they saw this to be the ultimate end of the human race. Whatever happens in 2012 the future will not be the same as the last few years. There is only so many times the mega corporations can rape and pillage before there is a true fight back. Yes the world will drop into a dark time when the poor will increase even more, but basic commodities will be in the hands of those with no grander aspiration than to feed, clothe and help.

Will the world come to an end in 2012? Not in a physical sense but it will indeed see the end of a number of things we have grown increasingly tired of. There will of course be another war as some try to express their new found greed, while others will simply fade away much to the happy gasps of the billions who have been enslaved by a handful of souls. The planet will not die this year, but some of it threats will.

May 2012 be the year for you.

Wednesday, September 14, 2011

Disrespect and the Carbon Pollution Price

In the year 2011 there will be a record of how disrespectful Australians, the media and the Opposition Party have been to the serving Prime MInister, Julia Gillard. While it can be argued she is unliked, it can be equally supported she is well liked by many Australians, only the respect they show does not sell papers, nor does it propel the desires of the media owners. To be clear on something - 70% of Australia's media is owned by one man, an American who has made two things very clear. He does not believe in man made climate change, and he does not like Australia's Prime MInister, may it also be added he is a key contributor to the Opposition Party. It comes as no real surprise then to see anything done to curb the affects of climate change is either not reported upon, or reported on in a very negative fashion - the media of Australia has been supporting Skeptic views for ther last 4 years and promoting it as the truth and in the process has dismissed every scientific paper, every scientist and every commentator who holds to the view of man made climate change. The stance here is not one of opinion, there is no such thing as opinion in science, science is based on fact, not opinion. It is straight forward, you either believe the scientists 95% of scientists and their half century of research, or you believe the questionable scientists paid by oil and mining companies to give conflicting results. Before there is argument against man made climate change this point needs to be made. One of the leading anti - climate change scientists, who is paid by Philip Morris (Big Tabacco) also claims smoking does not cause Cancer.

But this is about disrespect, so there is at this time so much disrespect for the experts in the field of science that in Australia climate scientists get death threats and have their families threatened if they stand up for any position in support of man made climate change. The skeptics, actually lacking what is expected of verifiable research and uncontaminated research, have resorted to ridiculing those who have dedicated decades to understanding just how bad or declining climate is and looking at ways to understand what is required to over come and survive the extremes heading our way. The skeptic on the whole follows the leading edge of the Big Polluters spin.

The abusers claim things like pollution is good for the world, oil pollution is a hoax and the mining companies do no wrong. The level of disrespect is also fueled by a media whose very owner, not a citizen of Australia, ensures his opinion is what we get to see in our country and that all otrher opinions and all news not within his opinion is to be under reported and discredited if at all possible.

So disrespectful of even the Australian people are the media networks that they have been on a 14 month dedicated character assination of the First Female Prime Minister in Australia's history, a woman the American media owner does not like. So, in Australia we have an American citizen and resident dictating how our Prime MInister should be treated. If I were to treat any person, let a lone a woman, in the same fashion as the media has treated our Prime Minister I would be in gaol for everything from stalking to threatening a life. The level of disrespect peddled by the media and enhanced by what can only be described as physically and verbally threatening Opposition Party has spread widely though the Australian public. It is true politicians often cop a fair share of jibes, but the filth Australians are saying is fair commentary is lower than low and not only disrespectful to the nations elected leader, but also quite disgraceful to the notion of humanity in the first place. From what has been said and promoted Australia does not even deserve the right to call itself a nation.

Much of the disrespect has been promoted by Mr Tony Abbott, the leader of the Opposition, who has a history (documented) of abuses against women, even to the point of having to face court preceeding for the sexual assault of a young woman in his university days. He won his case, but note this. She had a court appointed lawyer, Tony had two lawyers and a QC tear the young woman apart. This is the man who claims and promotes that being disrespectful is fair and reasonable, a man who says all Australias economists are wrong about Australia being a goiod nation, all scientists are wrong and all experts who do not follow his posotion that Australia is in ruins is wrong and should be disrespected. This is a man whose party recieves funds from the American Media owner. The Australian government has one of the best economies in the world, we have growth, low unemployment, low interest rates and even strong jobs growth across a variety of sectors, on paper Australia is a pretty good place to be in. But, and this is the shocking part of our nation ;-
The Opposition Party claim the country is in ruin and that the so called Carbon Tax (or the price of CO2 pollution by big polluters) will make an already failing country fail even more. Though this is clearly a misrepresentation of the well documented prosperity of the nation, the media also run day after day articles and views that paint Australia as heading into economic doom and that people will be starving in the streets. None of this is true, but remember that American media owner who doesn't like our PM and who does not believe in man made climate change, well it appears he will be affected by any price on pollution, so the papers and news are all out to bring down the government.

I pride all I say as being based on fair and reasonable positions taken across a wide range of issues, and I must say I pride myself on holding onto dignity and presenting respect to others at all times, even when I may be feeling otherwise disposed. I now find it a troubling position in Australia where the media are now dictating what the people of the nation should or should not know. The media are withholding the truth of the prosperity of our nation in order to force hatred into the people, to create disquite to the point of wanting to incite violence and all for the whims of one man. To make matters ever more dispicable, the owner of 70% of Australia's media networks also runs the disinformation news service Fox, which is spreading its own grubby fingers into all area of life. In the many signs of disrespect shown to our PM, one thing is always screamed loud, and that she is a communist, and yet on observation of the opposition party and its twin leaders, Rupert Murdoch and Tony Abbott, I feel there is more to be concerned about.

The only way Australians can be heard and even get a modicrum of the truth is via blogs and emails, because the media own everything else, and this one media owner is already seeing if he can take ownership of the bloggosphere as well, so maybe even that part of our voice will also be lost in time. The idea of a price on carbon being paid by big polluters is one of the best sollutions available to Australia and it would indeed set us up for a pretty bright future, the policy is there to look at and it shows clearly how it will work and benefit our future. So why all the disrespect when the majority of the top Australian scientists, the top economists and the top commentators and industry professionals say this plan and policy is very good, the best in the world some would say? Why? Because what it does is threaten the extreme wealth of the extremely wealthy - the people who use all our services and yet do not pay any tax at all; that's right, those people making the biggest squealing noises have never actually paid any tax and now their interests and profit raking will have to pay. Why is it good for the low paid worker to pay high tax yet taxation for the wealthy is not permitted. These same wealthy, and I am talking about the exctremely wealthy, are all backers of the Australia Liberal Party, even the Tabacco Industry is a backer of the Liberal Party and all policies ever presented by this party have supported the desires of these entities. The Liberal Party under Tony Abbott oppose anything to deal with environment adressment, yet they also present a plan of their own. Instead of making polluters pay for their pollution, he wants to give them money from the taxpayer instead. $1300 a year extra tax on every Autralian. While the disrespect goes to even never experienced lows, the media are not even looking at this rather ludicrous proposal by the Opposition, through its aquiesence it shows support for what is a direct tax on all Australians and a monetary windfall to the polluters.

Where does this leave you in the scheme of things, well it depends on whether you are one of the disrespectful or not, if disrespectful I will be given the usual serve expected from this so called 'civilized' society, or if you agree then perhaps you will share the blog and encourage others to share. In a way this is quite a silent protest that will only appeal to one person at a time. Will it make a difference to the Australia of today? There are days when I hope it will, but then there are times when I know it wont.

Robert N Stephenson

please fogive minor spelling errors and typos, I suffer from slight dyslexia and I just miss the mistakes.

Tuesday, May 31, 2011

How to Think, How to Follow

In life and in all things involving huamns, there come a moment when everything truthful and honest slips away and become consumed by the misleading. In the days of old a man would stop on his walk home from work and kick a ball with a local child - give this vision to an avid media representative the innocent event quickly become paedophile stalks children, lock your doors. From this one small even a media empire creates and develops fear and sells advertising to others for it decemination. Where once simple truth used to reside now lives the complexities of doubt,suspicion and fear. There is no honesty within this, no truth to be shared with other to make a better, safer world; there is only profit to be made through slight of hand and misleading information.

Maybe the work has become hypersensitive to small events and has been shown and led into the protection of the backyard to the detriment of the neighbour. No longer is it safe to believe in the good of humankind, as this, when shown is burned back by the hyperbol of the money lenders and the interests of the porfiteers and their way of creating a following. Why do the people of the world, or the world that is permitted some semblance of supposedly free information and communication, allow themselves to be mislead in such a way - why, when the truth and reality of something obvious stares at them in the face, do they allow and accept such a grossly contaminated view of the world?

Whether the issue is a Carbon Tax, or Emmissions Trading scheme in Australia or Health Care for All in the USA the influences of wealth will determine what is right for the people rather than the policies or projects themselves. If the mega wealthy, who would see negligable alteration in their standing through such schemes, oppose these initiatives then the media reports everybody opposes them and run campaings to convince the general population that they did oppose such things. In western democratic societies the idea of freedom has been erroded away, not by governments in general, but by the media and its control of information for the Corporate sector. Perhaps note how the oil companies are still doing very well despite distaters with spills - the token attacks on them by the media has now waned but the disasters still exist.

How do you, the individual fight against the entitites that have indee stolen your voice and corrupted the idea of free speach top mean, free speach to those who can afford it, or pay the price.

Next time you sit down and read a paper, google a news item or simply watch a news feed on the internet or TV question what is on sale, what version of the truth has been purchased and what is it you are trying to be made to believe?

This world is today a sadder place, not because of the general population, or because of their lots in life but because the media tells us it is so, and so sad in fact that the people should fear everything, stay indoors and order their advertisers products on line. Isaac Asimov wrote a novel something like this, or more a science fiction story dealing with the great fear of the outside and contact, in any direct fashion with others. Caves of Steel it was called and remembering back to this simple premise it is hard not to see how much his future vision of humanity is what is promoted as the way to be.

Don't believe everything you read or see, but at the same time it is only by reading and seeing you learn - be cautious, be aware and above all things in your life, shelve all those hard held prejudices, those hatred and dislikes because you can be certain, they have been built on lies in some part.

Who do you follow when the leaders are not what we are being sold? Follow the ones who threaten the money, follow those who stand against the wealthy and those who want to keep you afraid.

Sunday, March 27, 2011

Australian Carbon Tax

In Australia at the moment there has been some discussion on the introduction of a Carbon Tax, or the taxation on Carbon Polluters (C02 emitters). In these times where pollution is even more an issue than it was 40 years ago, when US scientists began the enormous research behind Global Warming, and later Climate Change. In any sensible society it is presumed that a tax on polluters would make sense. An incentive to the polluters is that you get credits for cleaning up your systems and investing in renewable clean technologies. Again, this does make some reasonable sense. You create the pollution, you clean it up - find ways of reducing the pollution and you get rewarded.

Australia is a strange place today, especially when it comes to Global Warming and the issue of Climate Change. The opposition party does not believe climate change is a reality, in fact the leader of the opposition, The Australian Liberal Party/Coalition has, several times, claimed that 'climate change is crap'. This may be the view of Mr Tony Abbott but it is a hard view to sell the younger generation who are seeing disaster after disaster on the climatic scale. And future predictions are not ones children today want to think about. The younger generations do have a sense of fear, but it isn't the one being sold by politics, it is the one where they wonder will they have food and shelter in the future because of their parents, or the adults wastefulness. This is quite hard to explain to a 12 year old, and I pity parents who have to try and explain why we won't do anything to help our planet to even younger children.

There are claim that climate change is not real, but no matter how many times any one says this they still cannot deny pollution is real and something needs to be done to bring the big polluters to task. Australia’s energy producers have been encouraged for many years to fix their end of the pollution cycle, and they have even taken government money to do so, but they have made no progress and in a way simply turn their backs on the whole issue; very much in the same way the tobacco industry forced people into litigation before it admitted its product caused cancer - that took 30 years. Australia is faced with it own cancer, the one that is degrading our air and environment; will Australia have to litigate polluters before anything is done?

What will this Carbon Tax do if introduced? At this stage this isn't known, as the policy is still being formulated and it is open for any and every one to share their opinions about how and when such a tax should be used and applied. There is much fear mongering exasperating itself through media networks and opposition politicians, who want to force the whole issue without proper discussion, and without any input from the Australian people and industry itself. The fear in Australia is driven by a few well known facts that will come into play with the Carbon Tax.

1) Energy supply will rise, because energy companies will try and offset their commitment as much as possible. This reaction is also a drive to block the Carbon Tax. Create a deep sense of financial fear in the population and stop anything being done at all; and the polluters will continue on as nothing had changed. This is not a good reason to not have a Carbon Tax. To view it another way; someone comes to you and says, if you buy my product I will not steal your car. In this instance, if you make us clean up the pollution we will make you pay. This is a clear threat that in many other circumstances may cause legal eyebrows to be raised. Food and services will also rise slightly, how slightly will be determined on the certificate costs for carbon, but early estimates based on sketchy evidence says something like a cost of living rise across the board of about $350 to $650 a year. This could equate to $15 a week on average. But that said; negotiations are underway in the creation of support structures to help with this price rise, so the rise maybe reduced to as little $5 a week. It has to be said that until a proper policy is released that all panic and speculation is wasted energy and time as you cannot argue against something that has not been through the formation process yet. Yes, indeed write down concerns and what you may like to see included or excluded and send to the Prime Minister's office. This is only a discussion phase, nothing more.

(sub note:)

Because of the effect the tax would have directly of big business and the corporate sector there has quite noticeably been a fear campaign launched by the Opposition Party and the media and Energy sector. This must be put into some kind of perspective and naturally it is wise to understand what is driving the fear. The media, though Rupert Murdoch are having some of their corporate interests threatened by the NBN and are reacting badly to this, they are also major contributors to the Australian Liberal Party, and Rupert Murdoch is also an anti-climate change sceptic. The energy sector and mining sector will be hit with taxes and naturally have the money to fight against this Carbon Tax, but these two sectors are also major contributors to The Australian Liberal Party - you only need find party contribution declarations from the last election. How much this information and how much influence it plays with the current position of the Liberals is unknown, but it does help to explain at least some part of the vehement attacks on the government over the NBN and the Carbon Tax.

2) This is not a tax on working Australians or those who are unemployed or on a pension; this is a tax on possibly 1000 of Australia's big polluters, who do receive government money now to stop their pollution. Yes, and the Prime Minister has stated this many times, over and over, there will be some price increases, and they have been shown above, but rebates will be designed to help people adjust to the new reform. The only ones who will really feel the tax will be the big polluters, and naturally they will do next to anything to ensure this reform does not go through - so expect to see mining company style advertising against the tax, and an increase in the Liberal Parties attacks on climate change. This will happen. When the wealthy are threatened, they will spend millions once again to tell us how poor they are. Anyone remember this year’s 10 Billion dollar snub to Australians by BHP. Because the opposition blocked the mining tax, the so called poor mining company only made 10 billion in profit on the first quarter. You will see the same claims, supported by the Liberals come at you once again. Already, editorials, radio programs, TV spots are on the war path, even the Insiders are claiming the failures of the government. Australia entire media network is owned by the same people this tax will effect – the more they start to shout the closer you need to question the motives. The mining tax was under the same attack from all sides - $ The poor got their 10 Billion and then thanked the Liberals for their hard work. This minority government is claimed to be woeful and inefficient, yet 80 pieces of legislation have been passed through parliament under the minority rule - this is the sign of a well-functioning government. So, when faced with the truth of how the minority government is doing you find it does not add up with what the media are saying - far from it. Big Money is unhappy, and it is making itself heard. It is making all the Carbon Tax discussion sound like you are going to be taxed, the big money is threatening Australians and it is using a political party to do its bidding. How do you confront this, how do you satisfy yourself that what is happening or could happen is right for the country and for the future? It is hard, and it will get even harder, but it is simply wise to sit back and let all the shouting carry on until the actual policy is released for public debate. You will be surprised it is not the evil twin sister of Golem but a well thought out policy that we need to adopt. You need to ask this major question. Why don’t the Liberals and Big polluters want the policy to even be formed for debate? Why are they attacking something they don’t even understand yet? What is it that is really being threatened here?

This is a link made by a 15 year old girl, my daughter, and she cannot vote, neither can her friends. This goes for all young teenagers in Australia; they are relying on us to do something, to stop the selfish arguing and stop the decay of our country.

The Carbon Tax isn't a new invention of the Australian government, and nor will it see Australia taking some kind of first or unique step in the world. Over 30 other countries, including China and India have incorporated a system like this into their industries - so the claims Australian jobs will be lost overseas or industry will be moved off shore are false and misleading. There will be no place for dirty Australian industry to move to; it will have to clean up here, because doing it here will be harder than say China where the regulations and taxes are even greater than what is going to come into Australia.

Do you believe in climate change and global warming? It doesn't matter and it hasn't mattered since about 1982 - the world and Australia has to do something about its local pollution output and it has to be done now, because even if we start now and continue to change every day into the future it could be 1000 years until some good comes from it. If we sit back and say ‘1000 years, who cares’, then you are condemning the world to 10 000 years of suffering, death and devastation. Does that sound dramatic? Wait until September and add up how dramatic things have been thus far; it isn't going to get better quickly.

Carbon Tax is coming, it will affect all Australians in some way, and it will affect us for many, many years to come, that is clear; if all settles down, then it is not a hard thing to remove a tax - it has been done many times in the past, but like the man who decided to wait to see the flood coming before believing in the flood, you will drown, and possible take the lot of us with you.

Monday, March 7, 2011

My Mother Said it's a Hoax

In the early days of global warming, in the days when media services were independent entities all competing for the best and latest news, I was told that problems with the world were all made up by the government just so they could tax us. Global Warming was just to scare us into only buying Australian cars and to pay for dumping rubbish at the dump, which has always been free. The local hand burger places all used Styrofoam packets and every house had a chimney which discharged black smoke in winter and which always played havoc with my asthma.

Nearly 40 years later some of those early pollution years have changed, but not by much. Hand burgers now come wrapped in paper, but the burgers come from cows raised on farms where once stood rain forests, cars have been improved to burn fuel cleaner and use less (well in Australia and Brazil at least), houses mainly use gas heating and access to land-fills is restricted and we are required to recycle. These changes have mostly come on the individual and the individual pays for their waste and their pollution.

But 40 years later nothing has changed when it comes to major global warming, and now climate change. Instead of only 70% of the world's forest being cut down, we now have 95% gone. Instead of clean energy production Australia still uses dirty coal power. In 40 years since knowing about the problems with our environment the conditions and situations have only been made worse, not better.

I have read reports about climate change being a natural process and that it isn't man made. Well, I am no scientist but in ecosystems I know the predominance of forest influences weather patterns over a region, the help keep the air clean and influence cloud formations for rain. 95% of our forest have been cut down. Forests influence weather patterns. Am I the only to notice this obvious, though not very scientific point?

40 years after learning about global warming big polluting industry has increased its production and use of natural resources, the increase so great that some resources will become too expensive to mine and use in less than 100 years - an no oil is not one of those resources, it will just become too expensive to use by anyone who is not part of the wealthy elite. Because of the lack of positive action against global weather and environmental issues several billion Africans will die by the end of the 21st century. They are now suffering extreme drought, many have few resources to exploit and even fewer people on the continent have a government to assist them. What has this to do with climate change? This is the indirect effect of allowing the world's polluters and resource users to continue with their environmentally pollutive ways. Because of climate change affecting more and more of the planet the concept of supplying aid to the African continent will have to be stopped. Flooding, drought and severe weather events across Europe, the Asia Pacific and the USA will keep donating nations too busy with their own problems to help anyone else.

All this will happen while the mega corporations continue to post 10 billion dollar profit quarters, and continue to pump gaseous waste into the air and metals into the water.

40 years after that shrug from my parents I find myself having to explain to my children just why little has been done to rectify or fix some of these pollution problems? My daughter made this video, with a little help from me simply giving one message based on the current situation in Australia.

While it is true climate change is actually a natural occurrence, what the hair splitting skeptics are not taking into account is that we have had most of the global changes happen in less than a century and several thousand years ahead of natural occurrences. Also, and this is what annoys me about the skeptics, a climate change is supposed to take roughly 500 to 1000 years and in the ice caps this change will take a slow 10 000 years. We are seeing it in less than 100.

We cannot stop the process, it was too late for this in 1967 and beyond our grasp in 1982; all times when we knew what was going on and still argued it wasn't real. So easily we believed in not doing anything, so easy was it to do nothing at all and just wait. The same do nothing and just wait attitude today.

What can we do if the climate change process is a runaway? We do what we should have done in the 1960s, we change out technologies, move to cleaner systems and a more environmentally and economically stable energy producing state. Why? The damage has been done. Because doing this NOW will be the difference between 500 years of planetary hardship and several thousand years of hardship, and this will be hardship. In another 100 years the big corporation would be running down, they would have polluted everyone, including governments and will be the only one who can afford anything above a cup of rice and some brown vegetables.

Perhaps that is extreme, but it needs for only two or three conditions to change rapidly and that is what will happen; so, just how do we claw back some of the environment for future generations. This isn't going to be easy, as the mining companies, the oil companies and the coal producing companies (along with their energy producing stations) are deeply entrenched in the economy of every country. Every time you threaten their wealth they threaten to raise prices and punish people. Every time you threaten the livelihood of people so rich they are beyond any known laws they will threaten governments with advertising campaigns to have them thrown out of government. So, to stand up against polluters of the world and even of Australia takes some pretty tough resolve and unlike the Australians of the 30s, 40s and 50s, there is very little resolve left - the general option across this once grand nation is indeed to sit back and watch.

After 40 years is it possible that Australia has lost in the great fight for the salvation of its own environment, has it simply given up and said, 'I don't care'? There has been a possibility put before the Australian people and that possibility is to apply a tax to the polluters themselves; make them pay for the clean-up, make them pay for the switch to cleaner energy production and make them pay to change their wasteful ways. It is put before the people, but even before it even gets into reasonable discussion such a plan against BIG business is being called a tax on Australians by the opposition party (Which must be reported - they received 22.8 million dollars from the polluting companies during the last election – while the government got 1,1 million from the unions – in itself an interesting point). The company Rio Tinto claims it is a tax on the poor and as such they will put up their prices. The first act of the wealthy when said wealth is threatened. You make us clean up our mess and we will punish you.

In 40 years I have seen a country that would not back down from a fight to one that accepts the threats of corporations rather than face them down and make them clean up our air and water. When did Australia become like this, or was it always there and the first signs were in fact in my parent’s poignant shrug and claim global warming was a hoax?

People has said the government has finally found a way to tax the air we breathe; well have you tasted the air you breathe lately; you are already paying the polluters for the air you breathe and what they are pumping out at the power stations and factories would kill you a thousand times over. So, what is the choice here, pay cheaply for poisonous air, or pay a little extra to get cleaner air? Pay a little extra so the fish in our rivers don't just end up with heavy metal poisoning as in some regions of the country.

The Carbon Tax proposed by the Australian government is a tax on the Australian polluters and a drive mechanism to make then reduce emissions and it a harder way encourage them to rethink their technologies. The government has to take a harder line now, because even with the many millions of dollars in incentives already paid to these polluters they have not changed anything, and some could argue they have only increased emissions. Who are you going to trust and who are you going to support - the companies holding the gun to your head with the threat of higher prices, or the government that wants them to pay their fair dues.

I will not shug to my daughter; I will not shrug away her future.

Thursday, March 3, 2011

Will Australians Be Stupid

In the 1950s and 1960s the idea of Global Warming was first brought to light, and the research of the day was published in a book 'A Moment in the Sun' in 1969/70, it makes for compelling and sometimes difficult reading when you consider the ramification it suggested over forty years ago.

In this modern age, given the tens of thousands of reports written on the state of the environment and the overwhelming evidence that pollution is causing global changes, be it in climate or is social and community living, it comes as quite a surprise that a minority believe the destruction of the planet is a conspiracy theory. It may be wise to view such stances in a cautious manner. The list of scientists backing such a stand is around 1500 across the globe, while the list of scientist siding with the need to deal with environmental issues is closer to 80 000. These figures are estimates as they alter quickly depending on which energy corporation is funding research into climate change.

A comparison to this issue of climate change and global warming will also take the reader back forty years, and this issue had to do with cigarette smoking. For every scientific paper pointing at smoking causing cancer a scientist would stand up and claim it did not. This needs to be noted with scientists in the climate change issue as well. In a quick look at some climate change skeptic experts you will also find the same scientists who went on record as saying smoking did not cause cancer. This seriously brings into question objectivity. One leading skeptic, whose research was sponsored by Philip Morris - Tabacco Company - says his evidence is not influenced by his sponsor. Considering the stance on smoking and cancer, this claim can be comfortably questioned.

The real question around climate change and global warming is not whether man created it or not, though this does seem to be the murkiness skeptics want to draw over the general public's eyes - a distraction method used by every advertising executive ever born - but how we need deal with the future of our slowly crumbling environment.

This small video made in 1992 shows how frusted thios were and how the modern generation of children feel exactly the same way - they have tired of the excuses and tired of the bickering made by wealthy scientists with personal agendas. Yet still we do nothing, still we ignore everything. This girl at 2:04 stops being a child.

Emissions Trading Schemes and Carbon Taxes have been used throughout Europe for the last ten years to great effect. The acid rains of Germany have all but vanished since the cleaning up of its energy production and the forcing of its energy producing power stations to improve and replace high pollution power sources. Opposition to this system have come from the USA, but this can be expected, as most of its energy sector is owned by the very people making public policy; with this knowledge in the open it is hoped the cloudy nature, or the polluted figures and counter positions as shown by the USA find some clarity. It is difficult to follow the lead of a nation like America when the polluters themselves are dictating environmental policy - many can see how such a position can never work.

Australia is now looking at the Carbon Tax system, a system where polluters, in order to save money, will have to change their existing generation technologies to cleaner and more efficient technologies. As expected there is resistance from the corporate sector to any challenge to their commanding market base, but what isn't understood is why the current opposition government is opposed to taxing dirty energy production. Even in an interview the leader of the opposition party said, he would impose no tax and enforce no reduction in greenhouse gases on power generation companies.
The conversation is very clear here.It must be noted here that this same leader did, in a meeting with country people claim quite adamantly 'Climate Change is a Load of Crap'. This in itself rang some alarm bells in people, but for some reason it was under played by media in the country, and on observation the whole opposition stance against cleaning up energy production is mostly ignored.

What will this tax on pollution producing industry mean to Australians? In the short term there will be some price increase in power as the big companies offset their new costs, but they will only be able to offset so much before they are forced to comply with clean energy standards. Already new, clean energy systems are being constructed and in time a shift in power supplies will happen. The current Australian government, seeing how polluters will shift their costs onto users of energy, will subsidize energy supply in their own way to lessen the impact of this shift on energy production. This allows Australians to benefit from this new direction while feeling less of the cost burden and impact.

It would seem, in view of the positive step in the right direction when it comes to reducing pollution that the Australian people would finally see some action on what has been something being called for the last decade.

According to the opposition party and the NEWS media, who it seems are not promoting clean energy - thus the question has to be raised, and there suddenly appears an answer to why media reporting is supporting the skeptics position when it comes to climate change and the need to act against pollution in general, and why the media also seem to be supporting the opposition scare campaign against taxing big business. Rupert Murdoch is a skeptic, he is also, through his papers, a supporter of the opposition Liberal/National party, the same party opposing action on climate change and a move to a cleaner energy producing future.

Though it is a frustrating turn of events, like the smoking lobbies forty year campaign, it might need an actual court ruling to get even the basics done in fighting pollution. In Australia the opposition party is rallying people to march on parliaments around the country to protest against taxing polluters of air and water. Quite an incredulous prospect and one that is akin to what has happened in the USA of late, where laws are under consideration to allow people to shoot abortion performing doctors. The position in Australia is equally nonsensical.

Australians are being angered up to stand against clean energy production; they will march to stand against clean air and clean water. This march being organized by the opposition party in Australia is, in a way, a march against parliament to prove the country is stupid and it will be reported this way around the world. Japan, Germany, France and Scandinavian countries will be quick to have headlines reading 'Stupid Australians Opt for Dirty Air'

In a way, it could be argued Australia will get what it deserves, and what it deserves is not very good at all. The opposition government when it comes to environmental issues has denied there are issues to face. The opposition leader even said there is compelling evidence that says, maybe there is something to look in to -- all the evidence available in the world looking at environmental issues and he manages a maybe. Maybe Australia needs to hit rock bottom, pollute itself to the brink and let people just die so it can come to some understanding of the people's and the corporate control over those people, foolishness.

There exists an opportunity for Australia to break away from its dirty air policies, to escape the control of the current energy providers and their threat to punish the people if they are made to clean up their act - Australians must face the small fact that what the energy sector is doing, with the help of the opposition party, is extorting a negative result on the Carbon Tax. View it this way. ‘If you make us clean up the air, if you make us stop polluting water and the land, we are going to punish you.’

Are Australians really going to accept that position as it is currently being presented? Are Australians really going to mark on parliament demanding their air remains polluted? Are Australians really that easily lead by the desires of corporate power?

If you must march, march for the final step against the big polluters of this country, march to say yes to a tax on pollution; the alternative will mean a poor and sad future for the children to come after who will ask this simple question over and over and over.

Why didn't you do something?