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Saturday, 17 November

15:00

Australia: Sharia manual preaching jihad warfare and hostage taking found in airport prayer room "IndyWatch Feed Allstate"

What could possibly go wrong? Its a religion of peace! It could certainly radicalise someone: Muslim imam discovers Sharia law book preaching jihad and hostage taking in Melbourne airport Islamic prayer room, by Stephen Johnson, Daily Mail Australia, November 15, 2018: A Muslim imam has discovered a Sharia law book advocating jihad and hostage taking []

11:20

summer travel in the slow lane "IndyWatch Feed Allstate"

This post was created in collaboration with NRMA Parks and Resorts

When we sold most of our belongings to travel in a caravan, we had no idea how our journey would unfold. Granted, we were (still are!) caravan novices but regardless of our inexperience we knew that taking time to travel with our kids and slow down for a while was of the upmost importance.

We took a big leap into the unknown and spent all our savings but I can safely say that its the best decision weve ever made. Were three months in and revelling in the opportunity that tiny-home-nomadic-living has given us. Of course there are days that are challenging and emotionally charged with tantrums a plenty and countless frustrated sighsbut they would exist regardless of where we live.

I think what has been most surprising about our journey so far is the way we travel. You see, a few hours in the car is enough for us so we plan our trips accordingly, slowly hopping up and down the coast and occasionally inland. We prefer to stay in each location for a good week so we can settle in, slow down and truly experience it.

When we started planning our road trip I had no idea how family-orientated holiday parks had become. Granted, my only memories of them were from my childhood; I spent every summer in a cabin by the bay with my family but apart from a single pinball machine and a tennis court there wasnt much for us to do.

Nowadays they are havens of fun; theres playgrounds and water parks, jumping pillows and pools colourful, fun-filled activities for kids who love being outdoors. A...

10:16

Today #ExtinctionRebellion! #London calling "IndyWatch Feed Allstate"

London, UK: Thousands of concerned citizens will today block Southwark, Blackfriars, Waterloo, Westminster and Lambeth bridges to raise the alarm on the climate and ecological crisis.

Originally published by Extinction Rebellion.

Note: Enough is Enough is not organizing any of these events, we are publishing this text for people across the US and Europe to be able to see what is going on and for documentation only.

  • Thousands of concerned citizens will today block Southwark, Blackfriars, Waterloo, Westminster and Lambeth bridges to raise the alarm on the climate and ecological crisis
  • An Extinction Assembly will feature six voices from six nations affected by climate breakdown including Raki Ap of Free West Papua Campaign, Rumana Hashem of Phulbari Solidarity Group (Bangladesh) as well as representatives from Ecuador, Kenya, Ghana and Mongolia
  • Speakers and musicians include the representative for Island States in the UN Farhana Yamin, Green Party politician Jenny Jones, academic and politician Rupert Read, Molly Scott Cato MEP, the One World Choir, female-fronted funk band Psychedelephant, Georgina Duncan, Greg Sanders Ensemble jazz band, reggae music from Pedro and the Simple Revolution, poet and singer Pete the Temp and musician Katherine Abbott, Hapi and the Lost Species, plus Tina Louise Rothery from the anti-fracking Lancashire Nanas
  • Protests planned around UK include from Cambridge and Glasgow to Sheffield and Totnes, plus large and small symbolic actions around the world in Washington DC and New York (US), Vancouver and Toronto (Canada), Cork, Galway and Dublin in Ireland, Stockholm and Gothenburg in Sweden plus Melbourne, Australia. 

Rebellion Day is here. We will take the London bridges, before we all fall down. 

Rebellion D...

09:11

Reporting on Extinction Rebellion in London 17th November "IndyWatch Feed Allstate"

I will be in London on Saturday Nov 17th to film the Extinction Rebellion direct actions. The plans is to shut down London's 5 major bridges to force Government action on the climate. I will be reporting from one of these bridges.
Lambeth
Blackfriars
Waterloo
Westminster
Southwark

  • Thousands of concerned citizens will today block Southwark, Blackfriars, Waterloo, Westminster and Lambeth bridges to raise the alarm on the climate and ecological crisis
  • An Extinction Assembly will feature six voices from six nations affected by climate breakdown including Raki Ap of Free West Papua Campaign, Rumana Hashem of Phulbari Solidarity Group (Bangladesh) as well as representatives from Ecuador, Kenya, Ghana and Mongolia
  • Speakers and musicians include the representative for Island States in the UN Farhana Yamin, Green Party politician Jenny Jones, academic and politician Rupert Read, Molly Scott Cato MEP, the One World Choir, female-fronted funk band Psychedelephant, Georgina Duncan, Greg Sanders Ensemble jazz band, reggae music from Pedro and the Simple Revolution, poet and singer Pete the Temp and musician Katherine Abbott, Hapi and the Lost Species, plus Tina Louise Rothery from the anti-fracking Lancashire Nanas
  • Protests planned around UK include from Cambridge and Glasgow to Sheffield and Totnes, plus large and small symbolic actions around the world in Washington DC and New York (US), Vancouver and Toronto (Canada), Cork, Galway and Dublin in Ireland, Stockholm and Gothenburg in Sweden plus Melbourne, Australia. 
...

07:00

The Weekend Quiz November 17-18, 2018 answers and discussion "IndyWatch Feed Allstate"

Here are the answers with discussion for this Weekends Quiz. The information provided should help you work out why you missed a question or three! If you havent already done the Quiz from yesterday then have a go at it before you read the answers. I hope this helps you develop an understanding of modern monetary theory (MMT) and its application to macroeconomic thinking. Comments as usual welcome, especially if I have made an error.

Question 1:

Imagine that macroeconomic policy is geared towards keeping real GDP growth on trend. Assume this rate of growth is 3 per cent per annum. If labour productivity is growing at 2 per cent per annum and the labour force is growing at 1.5 per cent per annum and the average working week is constant in hours, then this policy regime will result in:

The answer is a rising unemployment rate.

The facts were:

  • Real GDP growth to be maintained at its trend growth rate of 3 per cent annum.
  • Labour productivity growth (that is, growth in real output per person employed) growing at 2 per cent per annum. So as this grows less employment in required per unit of output.
  • The labour force is growing by 1.5 per cent per annum. Growth in the labour force adds to the employment that has to be generated for unemployment to stay constant (or fall).
  • The average working week is constant in hours. So firms are not making hours adjustments up or down with their existing workforce. Hours adjustments alter the relationship between real GDP growth and persons employed.

Of-course, the trend rate of real GDP growth doesnt relate to the labour market in any direct way. The late Arthur Okun is famous (among other things) for estimating the relationship that links the percentage deviation in real GDP growth from potential to the percentage change in the unemployment rate the so-called Okuns Law.

The algebra underlying this law can be manipulated to estimate the evolution of the unemployment rate based on real output forecasts.

From Okun, we can relate the major output and labour-force aggregates to form expectations about changes in the aggregate unemployment rate based on output growth rates. A series of accounting identities underpins Okuns Law and helps us, in part, to understand why unemployment rates have risen.

Take the following output accounting statement:

(1) Y = LP*(1-UR)LH

where Y is real GDP, LP is labour productivity in persons (that is, real output per unit of labour), H is the average number of hours worked per period, UR is the aggregate unemployment....

06:52

Sanderling at Noosa River mouth reported by Russ Lamb on 15-11-2018 "IndyWatch Feed Allstate"

Single bird loafing on sandbar close to river mouth, in company of Red-capped Plover.Seen by 4 observers during monthly NICA/QWSG wader/shorebirds survey. Site only accessible by watercraft.

Glossy Black-Cockatoo at Blackrock 28.127479 152.703514 reported by Errol stenzel on 15-11-2018 "IndyWatch Feed Allstate"

Three birds feeding in ROSE SHEOAKS. Seen over several days. As usual with this species birds were very tame and allowed very close approach and did not fly away.

05:22

Sydney's Cumberland Council - cuts to Australia Day to finance Ramadan "IndyWatch Feed Allstate"

Fair dinkum. Plenty of countries in the Middle East where you can go Peak-Ramadan to your heart's content. https://www.dailytelegraph.com.au/newslocal/parramatta/cumberland-council-juggle-budget-cuts-to-benefit-ramadan-celebrations-over-australia-day/news-story/ad3be63b89294b165724c5224b87966f

03:50

IAEA sees Areas for Enhancement in Australias Nuclear and Radiation Safety "IndyWatch Feed Allstate"

IAEA Mission Says Australia Committed to Strengthening Nuclear and Radiation Safety, Sees Areas for Enhancement, IAEA, 52/2018, Melbourne, Australia An International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) team of experts said Australia is committed to strengthening its regulatory framework for nuclear and radiation safety. The team also noted areas for further enhancements, including implementation of the framework in a more consistent manner across the country.

The Integrated Regulatory Review Service (IRRS) team on 16 November concluded a 12-day mission to Australia. The mission was conducted at the request of the Government of Australia and hosted by the Australian Radiation Protection and Nuclear Safety Agency (ARPANSA), the Commonwealth Government regulator. Under Australias federal system of government, ARPANSA regulates Commonwealth entities and other entities are regulated within the six states and two territories. The majority of licenced activities in Australia are carried out within states and territories. This was the third IRRS mission to Australia since 2007 and the first to include all nine jurisdictions.

..The IRRS team commended the hosts for inviting a comprehensive review involving all jurisdictions in Australia, adding that it was the first such IRRS mission. The team identified this as a good practice and a model that other federal countries may want to consider when planning for future IRRS missions. Regarding the national framework, the team noted ongoing activities to address consistency in the countrys radiation safety programmes, but said further efforts were warranted in several areas

The team provided recommendations and suggestions for further enhancements, including:

  • All relevant authorities should consider formalizing the existing elements of the framework for safety into a comprehensive national policy and strategy for safety.
  • The Commonwealth Government should make a firm commitment and take actions with specific milestones to address decommissioning of facilities and radioactive waste management.
  • The Governments of all jurisdictions should ensure that all parties responsible for the safety of facilities and regulatory activities have the necessary capabilities and human resources to carry out their responsibilities.
  • ARPANSA should establish criteria to evaluate the effectiveness of licensees emergency exercises and assign roles and responsibilities for its staff during emergency sit...

03:01

A Fukushima waiting to happen? Huge stockpile of nuclear waste on California fault line threatens US "IndyWatch Feed Allstate"

Ticking time bomb giant stockpile of nuclear waste endangers USA

The San Onofre nuclear plant, located just 108 feet from a popular beach, was shut down in 2015 after a leak was discovered. Now, the Southern California Edison energy company is burying the nuclear waste at the failed site a move which has been approved by federal regulator

Charles Langley, the executive director of Public Watchdogs, told RT that the situation at San Onofre is of grave concern because spent nuclear fuel and water dont mix.

Langley claimed that research carried out by experts which highlighted the extreme risks of storing the waste at the facility was suppressed by the very government agency responsible for protecting public health and safety.

There are actually fault lines that run underneath the facility. Weve documented this in geological reports that were suppressed by the Nuclear Regulatory Commission. Its in a Tsunami zone and its also extremely vulnerable to terrorist attacks.

So far, 29 of 73 canisters of waste are below the surface of the ground. Langley warns, however, that the canisters are unequipped to store the toxic nuclear waste. The warranty for the containment system is only for 10 years and the canisters themselves are only guaranteed to last 25 years, he said.

Nina Babiarz, a board member at Public Watchdogs, told RT that there should have been a requirement for an underground monitoring system before one can even went in the ground.

Babiarz believes the San Onofre plant is a ticking time bomb.

Its still very prevalent to me that this not only could happen, but it has happened at Three Mile Island, of course it has happened at Chernobyl, its happened at Fukushima and lest we forget, it could happen at San Onofre, she said.

Edison refused to answer any of RTs questions. On its website, however, the company says they are being proactive in seeking out...

02:52

Project Sunshine tested dead babies for radioactive fallout "IndyWatch Feed Allstate"

Only baby bones used in nuke tests https://www.news24.com/xArchive/Archive/Only-baby-bones-used-in-nuke-tests-20010607 2001-06-0 Sydney, Australia Bone samples from dead babies were shipped to the United States and Britain to be tested for radioactive fallout as part of an Australian government programme, officials said on Thursday.

The governments Australian Radiation Protection and Nuclear Safety Agency (ARPANSA) said from 1957 to 1978 Australia operated a programme to measure levels of strontium 90 radioactive fallout in humans by testing corpses. Nuclear weapons tests were conducted in Australia and there was concern about radioactive fallout building up in the atmosphere.

In the early years of the study, known as Project Sunshine, hundreds of human bone samples from corpses of babies, children and adults aged up to 40 years were reduced to ash and sent to the United States and Britain for tests on radioactivity levels. Facilities were later constructed for the tests to be carried out in Australia.

ARPANSA chief executive officer Dr. John Loy said on Thursday that it was unlikely scientists sought consent to do the tests from relatives of the deceased.

Loy said the studies were part of an overall programme to measure the impact on Australians of atmospheric nuclear testing throughout the world.

In the 1950s and 60s there were hundreds of nuclear explosions throughout the world and this led to contamination, Loy told The Associated Press. There were measurements of activity in water, air, food and bone tissue, he said.

Loy said human bone absorbs strontium 90 from the atmosphere. So it was important to get a handle on what sort of exposure was resulting from these tests, he added.

Project Sunshine was not kept secret by the government and reports on the study were published in scientific journals, Loy said.

Interest in the project was renewed this month by media reports that the bodies of stillborn babies from Britain and Australia were also used in the research.

The reports quoted documents from a meeting of the projects scientists in 1955, during which project leader Dr Willard Libby said the supply of stillborn babies had been cut off.

If anyone knows how to do a good job of body snatching, they will really be serving their country, said Libby, a Nobel Prize laureate, according to The Sydney Morning Herald newspaper.

State...

02:45

Victorian Labors policies on Aboriginal issues "IndyWatch Feed Allstate"

ABORIGINAL CULTURE AND COUNTRY
5.2.1.1 SELF DETERMINATION
Labor supports the development of a treaty with our first nations people. Labor will: * resource and support the Victorian Treaty Advancement Commission to develop a representative structure to negotiate the terms of a Treaty with Victoria; * support the representative structure to negotiate a treaty; * work with Aboriginal Victorians to determine a process that reports against a set of key indicators and monitors government efforts to improve outcomes across the Victorian Aboriginal Community:
 
5.2.1.2 LAND RIGHTS AND CULTURAL HERITAGE Labor acknowledges and supports traditional owners and their connection to land, culture and heritage. Labor will develop and lead a policy reform that provides self-determined land-based initiatives, aimed at providing economic development and employment opportunities and reaffirming the access and development rights of traditional...
.........

02:07

Sunshine after no rain "IndyWatch Feed Allstate"

Queensland turns the corner

To look at the latest employment and unemployment figures you might things haven't been so bright for Queensland.

But these are lagging indicators, and business investment growth is now at the highest level in years, albeit coming off a low base. 

The latest state accounts for financial year 2018 released today showed gross state product up by 3.4 per cent - behind only Victoria of all the states - for the strongest result since 2011-12, while final demand in the Sunshine State was also up by 3 per cent. 

New South Wales saw its agricultural production hit by drought, slowing the state result. 


Source: ABS

Better still, business investment in Queensland recorded double digit growth at 10.6 per cent after a lean five years. 

Provided China keeps importing Australian coal in 2019, the period ahead should be brighter for profits and wages.

Gross income per capita grew in Queensland by 2.3 per cent after an awfully sluggish few years (nothing compared to the Canberra bubble, mind you!).

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Friday, 16 November

21:00

Australia: Islamic center attended by several jihad murderers and plotters plans expansion "IndyWatch Feed Allstate"

Mohammed Omran and his cohorts know theyre untouchable. To investigate the mosque, even with its numerous unsavory ties, much less to stop its expansion, would be Islamophobic. Islamic centre connected to terror plots plans expansion, by Liam Mannix, Brisbane Times, November 15, 2018 (thanks to The Religion of Peace): An Islamic centre in Melbournes north []

17:29

PERTH Magistrates court wa "IndyWatch Feed Allstate"

snip .

Magistrates court wa .

November 16, 2018 at 11:15PM .

Speak with duty lawyer at perth magistrates court Answered by a verified Solicitor We use cookies to give you the best possible experience on our

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12:28

Little eagle at Brookwater reported by Pete Jones on 15-11-2018 "IndyWatch Feed Allstate"

Displaying over the golf driving range for about 5 mins then flew south

pale vented bush hen at Cornubia Forest Park, West Mt Cotton reported by Col and Chris Fitzell on 15-11-2018 "IndyWatch Feed Allstate"

We had heard strange calls late at night for several days in a creek reserve near our home. We recorded them and were advised that it was a bush hen. Then the calls started about 5pm 15/11 so we clambered through the under growth to the creek and finally got good sighting and video of the bush hen with a bright coloured bill shield. About 15 years ago we had seen two adults and two chicks in the same vicinity so it is pleasing to see that they are still around.

Radjah Shelduck at Tin Can Bay reported by Greg Roberts on 15-11-2018 "IndyWatch Feed Allstate"

4 birds present golf course & caravan park. Details: https://sunshinecoastbirds.blogspot.com/2018/11/camping-at-tin-can-bay-november-2018.html

Black Bittern at Tin Can Bay reported by Greg Roberts on 15-11-2018 "IndyWatch Feed Allstate"

1 in mangroves. Report: https://sunshinecoastbirds.blogspot.com/2018/11/camping-at-tin-can-bay-november-2018.html

Broad-billed Sandpiper at Cooloola Cove reported by Greg Roberts on 15-11-2018 "IndyWatch Feed Allstate"

1 bird . Report: https://sunshinecoastbirds.blogspot.com/2018/11/camping-at-tin-can-bay-november-2018.html

10:40

MACKAY Police find miniature cannon in raid at Blacks Beach home "IndyWatch Feed Allstate"

MACKAY November 16, 2018 at 06:03AM ,

Police find miniature cannon in raid at Blacks Beach home

November 16, 2018 at 06:03AM ,

Jason Stewart Furini found himself forced to appear before Mackay Magistrates Court on Wednesday. The 42-year-old man, on probation for unrelated

https://www.google.com/url?rct=j&sa=t&url=https://www.gladstoneobserver.com.au/news/police-find-miniature-cannon-in-raid-at-blacks-bea/3577004/&ct=ga&cd=CAIyGjg1ZTRkOWE5ZWUwN2Q0NWQ6Y29tOmVuOlVT&usg=AFQjCNFwLbKOzPizhwyy1gZvxbXiriCh5w

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08:57

Camping at Tin Can Bay November 2018 "IndyWatch Feed Allstate"


Black Bittern

An excellent haul of birds during a three-day camp-out to Tin Can Bay included Black Bittern, Radjah Shelduck, Broad-billed Sandpiper, Grey Plover, Sanderling, Eastern Ground-Parrot, Little Bronze Cuckoo and Shining Flycatcher. We camped at the Tin Can Bay Holiday Park in Trevally Street; when we were last here in 2013 we were impressed with the place. Out the back of the van we had Little Bronze Cuckoo after setting up a good start.

Little Bronze Cuckoo
In the afternoon I visited the little-known shorebird roost at high tide at Cooloola Cove, about 1km along the foreshore north of the end of Bayside Road; look for a track through fence posts inland a short distance to the tidal flats. The first bird I saw was a Broad-billed Sandpiper on the water edge. It was joined by a smattering of Red-necked Stint, Sharp-taile...

08:09

Election 2018: our scorecard "IndyWatch Feed Allstate"

2014-2018 has seen significant public transport investment under Labor, and they have delivered on their major promises. But as Melbourne continues to grow, and demand for regional travel increases, the challenge ahead is to build a public transport network not only copes with patronage growth, but also provides usable services into areas which currently dont have them.

So how do the parties rank?

1. Greens in some ways the Greens have the least ambitious transport plan. But its full of affordable, commonsense policies. They are the only party to commit to the Metro 2 tunnel, and to frequency upgrades across the train, tram and bus networks essential for making the public transport network vastly more usable in the short term. Accelerating the rollout of low-floor trams and implementing on-road priority, extending metro services to outer suburbs with high capacity signalling are also important initiatives. The Greens also oppose the major road projects proposed by the other parties, rightly recognising that they will simply generate more traffic.

2. Labor some ambitious plans in starting the huge Suburban Rail Loop project, alongside continuing the successful Level Crossing Removal Program, and extensive upgrades planned elsewhere around the metro and regional rail networks. They lose points for construction of three major tollways/freeways, a lack of progress on bus and tram upgrades, and for lagging on the rollout of more frequent all-day metro train services essential for a big city such as Melbourne.

3. Coalition theyve backed away from what is probably their best policy, of metro trains every 10 minutes all day, leaving commitments to build three major tollways plus other freeways, and the messy grade separation of road intersections. More positive is commitments to extend metro trains to Clyde and Baxter. Their regional high speed rail plan is ambitious, but would only speed up trains moderately, and there are doubts over whether it could really be delivered in the timeframes promised.

For more details, including a summary of minor parties, read the full report (PDF)

Keep watching www.ptua.org.au/election2018 for updates

06:56

Pastor Frank Houston Founder of Hillsong. Pedophile. Criminal mind. Part Four. Prophet of the Lord, Pastor Philip Powell, works hard to out the pedophile Frank Houston "IndyWatch Feed Allstate"

Philip Powell 1

The criminal pedophile Frank Houston, the founder of Hillsong Church in Sydney, Australia in 1977, found the escape haven he sought in Sydney, Australia.

His new nest was undisturbed for a while.

The peace lasted about four years from 1977 before the prophet of the Lord, Pastor Philip Powell, found out Frank Houstons new church address and his new church office fax number.

Once the criminal pedophile Frank Houston escaped the heat and the chasers in New Zealand he settled in to a different lifestyle in Darlinghurst Sydney.

The pedophile Frank Houston the rock-spider

Ive explained in the previous three articles how pedophiles are like spiders. In fact the term rock-spider is Australian jail slang for pedophile.

Pedophiles, like spiders, build nests, cobwebs and layers and layers of complex defences and ploys.

They are amongst the most evil and cunning people on the planet.

Frank Houston was a hardened pedophile by the time he was 20.

He chose Christian ministry as a foil, disguise and cover to maintain a pedophile lifestyle, have an outwardly good and godly reputation, and have ready access to heaps of unsuspecting Christian families and their little children.

Every family has its defences to predators. Acting as a Christian pastor, the evil criminal pedophile Frank Houston was able to breach these defences and gain total trust. Nobody would have suspected an evil pedophil...

06:30

What Branches of Government Could Help Martin Bryant or Jahar Tsarnaev? "IndyWatch Feed Allstate"

(L) Justice Michael Kirby,  (R) Trump. Photo: newsmax

by Mary W Maxwell, LLB

Jahar Tsarnaev, the Boston non-bomber, has been in prison for 5 years, and Martin Bryant, the Port Arthur non-shooter, has done over 22 years. Many people have tried to get them out of jail by using popular means.

Popular Means for Martin

For Martin, there was a change.org petition to the Premier of Tasmania, organized by Cherri Bonney who also composed a marvelous song for Martin entitled Wish I Kne...

06:13

Australian police offer reward for information about murder of ex-KGB colonel "IndyWatch Feed Allstate"

Police in the Australian state of Queensland have offered a $250,000 (US $182,000) reward for information that can help solve the murder of a former Soviet KGB colonel 18 years ago.

06:01

Real Estate Taxes Currency "IndyWatch Feed Allstate"

COMMENT: Dear Martin,

I bought The World Real Estate Report at the end of 2016. It stated that Australian real estate was going to fall after the first quarter (March) in 2016. The property prices in Melbourne (where I live) continued to rise in April 2016 so I sent an email to Socrates Support asking them when real estate should peak. I received the reply below, which stated that the peak was either in for global real estate or the latest by the end of the first quarter 2017.

Anyway, since I owned a tiny house in Melbourne, I was facing a difficult decision if I should sell or not since it would be impossible to buy back in if the prices continued to go up.

I have been reading your blog daily since 2012, and I have read all of your forecasts being correct (eg. the Dow continuing to go up, US Index going up, Brexit, Trump winning). I also bought your Gold report in 2014 and watched gold bottom (Dec 2015) correctly for the date and price on the first benchmark, truly an unbelievable forecast.

Based on your track record I decided to sell my property at the end of the first quarter (March 2017), for which I received a fantastic price.

Im happy to inform you that prices have been falling since the 3rd quarter of 2017.

I just wanted to congratulate you on another correct forecast.

REPLY: We all need a place to live. Governments are attacking real estate thinking it is too high and they need to make it more affordable for others to buy. They fail to understand that when they do that, the wipe out the savings dor retirement for others. Raising taxes to support government pensions is morally wrong and economically a disaster. There really should be some qualification to be a politician who them plays with peoples lives.

06:00

Australian police offer reward for information about murder of ex-KGB colonel "IndyWatch Feed Allstate"

Police in the Australian state of Queensland have offered a $250,000 (US $182,000) reward for information that can help solve the murder of a former Soviet KGB colonel 18 years ago. The victim, Gennadi Bernovski, worked in the domestic wing of the Soviet KGB, until his retirement, which coincided with the dissolution of the USSR. In 1996, he moved to Australia with his family and bought a house in Benowa Waters, a luxury suburb of Gold Coast, a city located south of Brisbane on the countrys east coast. But on the evening of July 24, 2000, Bernovski was shot to death outside his home by what witnesses said were two men in combat diver suits.

05:59

WWI and its centenary highlight leadership weakness "IndyWatch Feed Allstate"

When US President Woodrow Wilson tried to belittle Australian Prime Minister Billy Hughes at the 1919 Versailles peace conference by asking who he represented, Hughes replied: I speak for 60,000 Australian war dead.

Hughes may have been bellicose, belligerent and vengeful, but at least he was there, unlike the present Australian Prime Minister, Scott Morrison.

After four years of having to put up with the jingoism, glorification of war and exaggerated nationalism of the Anzac legend during the centenary of World War I, the one time the real horror and futility of war is marked with quiet dignity, our Prime Minister is missing in inaction. He is on a bus eating pies and drinking beer in Queensland.

Shameful. It was almost as shameful as US President Donald Trumps absence at the first ceremony near Paris because of rain.

It was not enough that the representative in Australia of the British monarchy (which got us into the World War I mess in the first place) attended.

Enough has been written about the centenary. This is about leadership and international co-operation the absence of which led to World War I and allowed it to continue for so long.

The leadership of Emmanuel Macron and Angela Merkel contrasts with that of Trump and Morrison.

Perhaps the three issues that highlight leadership or lack of it most are: foreign aid, climate change and people movement.

They share the trait of being easy to use to stir up xenophobic and nationalistic attitudes: foreign aid is a waste of money when we have so many problems at home; climate change is an international conspiracy to destroy our economy; movement of people presents a threat to our way of life.

Precisely because it is so easy to kindle those fears that it requires good leadership to make sure they are not kindled, and that the issues are dealt with sensibly.

It used to be that other nation states could be the source of easily whipped up xenophobia, which is what happened in 1914. These days, however, it is more fashionable to direct xenophobia at international forces, mainly because foreign invasions are too costly and unworkable, as Afghanistan and Iraq have proved.

So lets start with foreign aid. Generous well-targeted foreign aid would do much to alleviate the poverty and lack of education in developing countries that does so much to fuel hatred and violent attitudes towards developed countries.

But while France and Germany lead...

04:47

Fear And Loathing With Victorian Upper House Preference Flows "IndyWatch Feed Allstate"

Following the launch of Antony Green's Legislative Council calculator I've been playing around with some possible scenarios for the Victorian upper house group ticket flows.  Quite a few people are doing this and so there are a number of different estimates about what might happen out there.  What we know from the past is to expect the unexpected - we can say that it looks like preference harvesters will win several undeserved seats, but it's hard to say which ones they will be and who.  The whole exercise is incredibly sensitive to starting assumptions - one micro-party you've never heard of might get 1% instead of 0.5% and suddenly something completely different happens.

At the last Victorian election, five candidates won seats as a result of preference-harvesting:

* In Eastern Victoria, the Shooters, Fishers and Farmers (2.44%) beat ALP-2 (8.68% over quota) and Green (8.23%)
* In Northern Metro, the Sex Party (2.87%) beat Labor-3 (7.06% over quota)
* In Northern Victoria, the Shooters, Fishers and Farmers (3.5%) beat L-NP-3 (7.84% over quota) and Greens (7.68%)
* In Western Metro, Democratic Labour Party (2.57%) beat ALP-3 (10.65% over quota) and L-NP-2 (6.90% over quota)
* In Western Victoria, Vote 1 Local Jobs (1.28%) beat Greens (9.19%)

There weren't any cases of candidates winning from well below 1%, but based on our experience of the new Senate system since, none of the above would have won had voters made their own preferencing decisions.  These parties only won because the Group Ticket Voting system created completely fake near-100% preference flows.  Perhaps, had the Senate system been implemented in Victoria before that election, some of the minor parties would have merged into larger groups and polled higher primaries, but that doesn't seem all that likely.

With the release of the new round of Group Tickets it seems that almost all parties have been involved in backroom preference-trading.  There are again tight flows between the micro-parties, largely believed to be networked by Glenn Druery, that seem designed to elect a particular winner or choice of winners in each seat.  Labor has preferenced a range of, for progressives, dubious parties above the Greens in what looks like an attempt to replace the Greens with Druery parties:

* The Aussie Battler Party, an anti-immigration populist outfit that wants to place juries of randomly selected citizens in control of many aspects of the political system, and that promotes illiberal law and order policies including indefinite sentences. This party is the latest home for long-time conservat...

03:35

The Weekend Quiz November 17-18, 2018 "IndyWatch Feed Allstate"

Welcome to The Weekend Quiz. The quiz tests whether you have been paying attention or not to the blog posts that I post. See how you go with the following questions. Your results are only known to you and no records are retained.

1. Imagine that macroeconomic policy is geared towards keeping real GDP growth on trend. Assume this rate of growth is 3 per cent per annum. If labour productivity is growing at 2 per cent per annum and the labour force is growing at 1.5 per cent per annum and the average working week is constant in hours, then this policy regime will result in:




2. Students are taught that the macroeconomic income determination system can be thought of as a bath tub with the current GDP being the water level. The drain plug can be thought of as saving, imports and taxation payments (the so-called leakages from the expenditure system) while the taps can be thought of as investment, government spending and exports (the so-called exogenous injections into the spending system). This analogy is valid because GDP will be unchanged as long as the flows into the bath are equal to the flows out of it which is tantamount to saying the the spending gap left by the leakages is always filled by the injections.


...

03:11

The highs and lows of podcasting "IndyWatch Feed Allstate"

By this time next year the global number of podcasts may likely surpass the population of Queensland, and that's even taking into account the giant melon currently occupying the town of Chinchilla. There are podcasts about inanimate objects, Nicolas Cage, urban mythology, fountain pen addiction, and even podcasts about podcasts -- the latter being a kind of hellish inception far worse than one could ever begin to imagine.

02:48

Local environment provides the face of 2018 Black Gully Festival "IndyWatch Feed Allstate"

A stylised lizard is the face of this years Black Gully Festival an annual celebration that brings people together to enjoy music, art, the environment and our community. Designed by local artist Simon Mellor, this years logo makes a creative mark while representing many elements of what the Black Gully Festival is all about. Black [...] full article 

02:46

UNE Tamworth Practical Solutions for Reversing Climate Change "IndyWatch Feed Allstate"

[ Tuesday, 20 Nov; 5:30 pm; ] Based on the book "Drawdown The Most Comprehensive Plan Ever Proposed to Reverse Global Warming" This event aims to educate and inspire individuals and businesses in practical ways we can reverse climate change locally. The night will consist of guest speakers and a Q & A section + light refreshments On Tuesday 20 November 2018 at [...] full article 

02:42

Latham's 8-Point Plan to stop overpopulation in Sydney "IndyWatch Feed Allstate"

Ex Labor leader, Mark Latham, recently joined Pauline Hanson's One Nation Party and will be running for the NSW legislative council at the next state election. Here is his 8-Point Plan to "save Sydney suffocating from overpopulation and overdevelopment."

Latham's 8-Point Plan

1. Our immigration program must be framed in the interest of the people who live here now. This is especially true of policies impacting on an over-crowded, increasingly dysfunctional city like Sydney.

2. Permanent immigration numbers should be slashed, bringing them closer to their 20th Century average of 70,000 per annum (down from 190,000 currently). Temporary visas must also be cut back.

3. NSW should not take any more special refugee intakes, given the mismanagement of Syrian refugee settlement by the Baird Government.

4. Sydneys planning laws must be overhauled to make the city more efficient and sustainable. An urban containment strategy is needed. For existing suburbs, One Nation supports development and density restrictions in under-serviced, over-crowded LGAs. The Government should publish a comprehensive report identifying these suburbs (most likely, most of the city).

5. The release of greenfields residential land also needs to be limited to prevent further urban sprawl. Priority should be given to the development of employment land in Sydney to reduce commuter-travelling times, especially in the citys outer suburbs.

6. The Greater Sydney Commission should be disbanded (at an annual cost saving of $18 million) as it has become a mouthpiece for Big Australia immigration and unlimited population growth in Sydney. Political appointments and unrealistic planning strategies have dominated the Commissions work.

7. The Greater Sydney Commissions excessive housing and population growth targets should also be abandoned. NSW Planning should be given the task of containing the citys growth to reasonable lifestyle, infrastructure and environmental limits. Local Councils, as the level of government closest to the people, also have a critical role to play in limiting densities and development in line with local infrastructure/service capacity. One Nation respects this vital local government urban planning role.

8. The State Government should scale back the responsibilities of the so-called W...

02:30

Book Launch: Locked On! "IndyWatch Feed Allstate"

[ Friday, 7 Dec; 5:30 pm; ] Friday 7th December, 5.30 pm Readers Companion, 149 Beardy St Mall This event launches Marty Branagans illustrated novel Locked On! The Seventh and Most Illegal in the Hitchhikers Guide Trilogy. Its a fictionalised account of the Leard Forest blockade against coal mining on the Liverpool Plains, and the blockade against coal seam gas on farmland at Bentley, [...] full article 

02:30

Now is your last chance to go solar before RECs reduce again on 1 January 2019 "IndyWatch Feed Allstate"

The uptake of solar power across Australia continues to be one of the shining lights for sustainability, particularly against the backdrop of drought, deepening climate change and losses to biodiversity. The financial benefits of going solar are as significant for most people as these environmental reasons. St Vincent de Pauls recent annual electricity report (see Sydney Morning [...] full article 

02:27

John Pilger Film Festival Opens Soon "IndyWatch Feed Allstate"

A film festival celebrating the work of documentarians and curated by one of the most internationally renowned of them all, John Pilger will open in Sydney at the end of the month.

The Power of the Documentary is a collaboration between the Museum of Contemporary Art (MCA) and the Riverside Theatres, Parramatta.

The festival presents 26 landmark documentaries selected by Pilger, including a retrospective of his own work.

At a time of information onslaught, much of it repetitive, said Pilger, the documentary remains a powerful way of making sense of the world, of connecting the past with the present and breaking the silence that is so often truth.

The programme runs from November 28 to December 9 and includes the long banned War Game by Peter Watkins, Edward Murrows Harvest of Shame and Peter Daviss Hearts and Minds.

Tickets are available here.

The post John Pilger Film Festival Opens Soon appeared first on New Matilda.

02:20

350.org crowdfunding film: Accelerate "IndyWatch Feed Allstate"

This is what it would take to fund the transition to a new world. All of Australia could be converted to renewable energy for 7.7% of the money in the super funds in this country which is how we know 100% renewable energy is 100% doable. Thats one of the messages in the Accelerate film, the [...] full article 

02:11

Nature Conservation Council Top 20 NSW deforestation hotspots exposed "IndyWatch Feed Allstate"

A few hours ago, I was in NSW Parliament to launch a new report on deforestation in NSW. Weve exposed the top 20 deforestation hotspots in NSW. Shockingly, 17 of the 20 hotspots are home to koala habitat that is now at risk of land clearing under NSWs new deforestation laws. With fewer than 21,000 koalas [...] full article 

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Thursday, 15 November

23:18

Don't be dishonest - Left Testicle's sentence "stern but fair" "IndyWatch Feed Allstate"

Ex-Labor MP's sentence had to be 'stern' Margaret Scheikowski, Australian Associated Press November 15, 2018 1:53pm Former NSW minister Ian Macdonald's sentence for misconduct in public office was "stern" but not unreasonable nor plainly unjust, five Court of Criminal Appeal judges have been told. "This was a Minister of the...

23:14

Malcolm Turnbull to star at Australian Bar Association conference tonight "IndyWatch Feed Allstate"

The preeminent legal conference of 2018 rise2018 relevant/resilient/respected is a prestigious two-day conference to be held at the International Convention Centre Sydney. The conference boasts an impressive speaker line-up that will highlight and profile the excellence of the Australian legal profession with a focus on national and international legal...

22:41

Will robots bring us utopia? An end-of-year debate! "IndyWatch Feed Allstate"

6 pm Friday 7 December The Toff in Town, 252 Swanston Street, Melbourne Overland and the National Union of Workers are hosting a lively end-of-year debate on the topic of automation and what it will mean for workers and labour.

20:56

612 ABC Brisbane radio interview on Qld having nations highest unemployment rate "IndyWatch Feed Allstate"

Yesterday I had an enjoyable chat with Steve Austin on his 612 ABC Brisbane Drive program about the latest ABS Labour Force estimates, which, as I reported in yesterdays post, revealed Queensland is the only state with an unemployment rate of 6% or more.  You can hear our discussion, in which I comment on various regulatory and policy settings, as well as the loss in the 2000s of Queenslands previous status as the low tax state, from 2:02:55:

Drive Thursday 15 November 2018

While Queenslands unemployment rate is typically higher than the national rate (see chart below), the current 1.1 percentage point difference between the rates is currently above the 40-year average of 0.4 percentage points. If the current difference were due solely to a surge in workforce participation related to strong jobs growth I wouldnt be concerned. Alas, it isnt. Queenslands rate of jobs growth is less than half the national average. The Queensland economy continues to under-perform.

Rplot02

18:38

MACKAY Menacing phone calls, texts land South Mackay miner in hot water "IndyWatch Feed Allstate"

MACKAY November 14, 2018 at 02:42PM ,

Menacing phone calls, texts land South Mackay miner in hot water

November 14, 2018 at 02:42PM ,

Joshua James Mackenzie, 23, appeared before Mackay Magistrates Court, pleading guilty to using a carriage service to menace, harass or cause

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15:23

Australia: Muslim leader says Islam cannot be connected with any form of violent acts "IndyWatch Feed Allstate"

The religion of Islam cannot be connected with any form of violent acts. Unfortunately, Islamic jihadists around the world keep connecting them. ISIS may draw some of their justification from the religion of Islam. That does not make it a form of Islam. Odd statement. Who within Islam has the authority to determine what is []

12:27

Poll Roundup: Well That Wasn't Much Of A Honeymoon "IndyWatch Feed Allstate"

2PP Aggregate: 54.8 to Labor (+0.8 since last week) by 2016 preferences
54.2 to Labor with One Nation adjustment
Labor would win election "held now" with a very large majority 



It's been a while since my last federal poll roundup.  At that time the Coalition's polling was recovering from the shock caused by the messy and (to the public) inexplicable coup that deposed Malcolm Turnbull as Prime Minister, and it was too soon to read anything into what we were seeing.  Because the Coalition's polling was in recovery mode but the new Prime Minister was still in a polling honeymoon period it was a matter of waiting for things to settle down to get a feeling for how competitive the Coalition really was.

On my aggregate, the recovery from a post-coup low of 43.9% peaked at 46.7% after seven weeks, and since then things have been getting worse rather than better.  Furthermore, since the defeat in Wentworth, they have been getting worse faster, at least if this week's shocker Newspoll is anything to go by.  The Coalition's current position is worse than at any time with Malcolm Turnbull as Prime Minister, and also worse than all but the worst few weeks under Tony Abbott.



We haven't had much national polling data since the last roundup article.  The government's last three Newspolls had 2PP votes of 47, 46 and 45.  By last-election preferences after considering the primary votes I aggregated these as 46, 45.4 and 44.3 (Newspoll adjusts for a shift in the preferencing behaviour of One Nation voters since the 2016 election).  Essential has returned 47, 47 and 46, which I converted to 47.2, 47.1 and 45.6, and there was a lone Ipsos at 45, which I entered as 45.1.

Since the change at the top, the average Newspoll 2PP for the government has been 45.3 while the average from Essential has been 46.3.  This is even though Newspoll's preferencing method should on average make Newspoll about 0.9 points better for the Coalition than Essential is.  It is pretty common for dramatic events to produce shifts in how the house effects of different polls relate to each other (for instance, when Turnbull first became Prime Minister, Morgan polls shifted from being Labor-friendly to Coalition-friendly compa...

Wednesday, 14 November

07:58

Europes 3rd largest insurance company turns away from coal "IndyWatch Feed Allstate"

Generalis recent announcement about its improved coal exclusion policy puts an end to insuring new coal plants and mines while turning away new coal clients with more than 30% of their energy production or revenues coming from coal.

Generali follows Allianz, AXA and Zurich which all have announced restrictions on insuring coal. Now, Europes four biggest primary insurers have limited coverage for the coal industry, supporting the phase-out of the main driver of dangerous climate change and the cause of hundreds of thousands of premature deaths globally each year, including more than 22,900 in the EU. [1]

Greenpeace, Unfriend Coal and Re:Common have called on the remaining coal insurers around the world to also restrict and exclude coal investments and insurance.

Greenpeace Italy climate campaigner, Luca Iacoboni, noted that this new coal exclusion policy sends an an important signal today that coal is becoming uninsurable and the answer to this is an urgent energy transition to 100% renewable energy. This is not just a matter of securing the survival of our planet, but of the insurance industry as well. Moodys Investor Service has also warned that climate change has a net negative credit impact on the the re/insurance industry. Re/insurers like AIG, Chubb, Mapfre, Hannover Re-Talanx, Vienna Insurance Group and Uniqa, who are all still actively insuring coal must move away from this dirty fuel or face public scrutiny and economic losses.

Re:Common campaigner, Alessandro Runci, said that while Generalis new policy is another strong signal to the coal industry, Generali fails to mention when existing coal clients, like those in Central and Eastern Europe, will be dropped. In order to become real climate leaders and to address the air pollution problem exacerbated by their clients, they need to quit coal with no exceptions. That includes no life extension of plants in the form of retrofits beyond 2030 and no to retrofits that would even temporarily increase capacity of existing plants.

Lucie Pinson of the Unfriend Coal campaign observed that Generalis move shows that coal is increasingly becoming uninsurable. The majority of global insurance companies with the expertise to lead in assessing and underwriting new power plants have now committed to end or limit insurance for new coal projects. Recent climate disasters should remind industry laggards of the urgent need for action.

According to the European Environmental Agency, member countries incurred economic losses caused by weather and climate-related extremes up to approximately...

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