Young woman appears in court after allegedly obstructing police and breaching bail


What gives these people the right to disrupt other people's lives?  There is no such right but you would never know that from the decisions of the courts

The affinity between Leftists and environmentalists was well on display here. From Napoleon and the Socialist Hitler onwards, both groups cheerfully disregard the rights of others in pursuit of their own interests. Many completely innocent people were greatly put out by the traffic holdups but did the demonstrators care about that?  Not as far as one can see.  Obtaining their own goal -- personal publicity -- ruled supreme

That personal publicity was the aim  can be seen from the pointlessness of their "cause".  The people they were championing were NOT refugees.  They were people who claimed to be refugees but whom the authorities and the courts had ruled NOT to be refugees.  They had already had full attention to their fraudulent claims

A refugees rights activist charged after a protest in Brisbane has been bailed following a night in custody. Emma Jade Dorge, 24, appeared in Brisbane Magistrates Court charged with obstruct police and a breach of bail condition.

About a 100 protesters marched in the streets of Kangaroo Point yesterday blocking peak hour traffic as the Gabba Test finished.

The protest began about 5pm at the Kangaroo Point Central Hotel where scores of immigration detainees have been warehoused since last year. The protesters headed down Main St chanting “we won’t stop until we free the refugees”.

A Queensland Police spokeswoman said there was no permit issued for the demonstration and it was “an unauthorised protest”.

Dorge was the only person charged following the incident.

Representing herself in court this morning Dorge indicated during a bail application that she was likely to plead not guilty to the charges.

If refused bail today she would spend months in custody for offences that are likely to only attract a fine if found guilty, she told the court.

“All of my alleged offences and history are for peaceful protesting. I don’t pose a risk to the community in being let out on bail,” she said.

Magistrate Annette Hennessy granted bail stating she did not consider Dorge an “unacceptable risk”in the community.

Queensland judge allows mother to consent to autistic child’s transgender treatment


This case was obviously decided on the facts rather than on any principle so should not be regarded as any precedent.  The kid was mentally abnormal and distressed while the father had effectively renounced his parental rights so this was not in any way a paradigm case.

One wonders, however, whether the mother might have encouraged the inappropriate gender role.  From what we are told, it seems not.  If that were the case it would be a matter of considerable concern

It is reassuring that nothing irreversible will be done at this stage.

A 13-YEAR-OLD child, born as a boy but living as a girl, has been given urgent permission to have male puberty bocking drugs without the father’s consent in an extraordinary Queensland first.

The landmark legal case is the first of its kind to be heard in the Supreme Court, with decisions regarding consent for treatment for children with gender dysphoria having previously only been made in the Family Court.

The child, “A”, has been living as a girl for several years and is terrified of her voice deepening and her male genitalia getting bigger, the judge was told.

The mother applied for an urgent order for her to be able to consent to stage one male puberty blocking treatment for her child, without the father’s consent.

“From the age of four, A would declare that she was something other than her male gender and began to declare she was a girl and not a boy and had been born in the wrong body,’’ Justice Ann Lyons said.

“She is uncomfortable wearing boys’ clothes and prefers girls’ clothes, preferably in the colour pink.’’

The mother and child have not seen the father for more than three years, with the mother claiming he had a criminal history for drug and weapons offences and was violent.

She and the child moved to regional Queensland to escape the father, whom she claimed was emotionally, verbally and physically abusive towards both of them.

He did not support the child’s desire to be female, the court heard.

In a recent Family Court decision, a judge said doctors had to seek consent from both parents before a child could be given stage one, two or three treatment for gender dysphoria.

The Supreme Court heard the mother did not know the father’s whereabouts and there were concerns that if the application was made in the Family Court there could be long delays.

The girl is being home schooled, but while she attended a supportive State school she had worn a female uniform and chosen a female name on the school roll and on her bus pass.

A treating team recommended A receive reversible treatment that would block her puberty as a male.

The child, who has autism spectrum disorder, had a history of self-mutilation because of her distress about her genitalia and had previously had suicidal thoughts, a psychiatrist said.

The child recently became upset when experiencing erections.

The doctor said he was concerned if she did not get treatment the child would be at significant risk of depression, anxiety, social isolation, suicide or self-harming of her genitalia.

Justice Lyons heard the application on December 18, two days before the child turned 13.

The judge said the application was brought in the “parens patriae’’ jurisdiction, in which the court acted as a parent to protect children who are unable to look after their own interests.

It allowed the court to make orders contrary to the wishes of a child’s parent, if satisfied it was in the best interests of the child.

Justice Lyons said she was satisfied that A had gender dysphoria, that she and her mother consented to the puberty blocking treatment and the treating team considered it was in the child’s best interest that it not be delayed.

She said considerably delaying treatment to obtain the father’s consent was not in the child’s best interest.

Justice Lyons allowed the mother to consent to the puberty blocking drug treatment without the father’s consent, because of the time of year and concerns about delay.

However, the judge said any future applications for stage two treatment should go before the Family Court of Australia, given its expertise in such matters.

Australian Transgender Support Association of Queensland president Gina Mather applauded the decision of Supreme Court Justice Lyons, which she said was for the betterment of the child.

“We understand the heartache and desperation of trying to contact an absent parent regarding medical assistance for a child,” Ms Mather said.

“The Supreme Court judge should be commended for acting quickly to make this urgently-needed decision,.

“Family law is too slow regarding children under the age of 16 whose parents are of differing opinions with regards to gender dysphoria and puberty blockers.

“This medication is reversible and allows breathing space for everyone, the child, the parents and so on.’’


Conservative Commentator Says AIG Canceled His Insurance Over His Social Media Posts

The more this sort of thing goes on, the more conservatives will set up their own alternatives to restricted services. That is already happening with alternatives to mainstream social media. There are already several alternatives to Twitter and Facebook available.

The Left are not content to let that happen of course. They have already shut down Parler, a conservative-oriented alternative to Twitter but it seems unlikely that they will be able to shut down all the alternatives., in particular now seems to have its own servers.

And business generally will in time provide alternatives to other services. In the case at issue below, there will undoubtedly be other insurers willing to give cover to customers rejected by AIG

If the Left go full Fascist however and manage to shut down all alternatives to sites that they control, that will be a real red rag. It will invite retaliation that could be violent. Many Trump supporters are military or ex-military men. And as such they are usually trained marksmen. So if the Left are authoritarian enough, some of the oppressed may see that the gun is the only alternative left to them. Sniper attacks on major Leftist targets could be expected. Would anyone working at the NYT be safe?

At an extreme, a real-life dystopia could emerge, whereby all Democrat officials had to drive around in armoured cars for their own safety. And that is not as improbable as it sounds. One should not forget that, during the Obama years, it was guns that restrained the law enforcement response to Cliven Bundy's protest against loss of his traditional rights.

Conservative commentator and former baseball star Curt Schilling says that AIG canceled his insurance policy over his “social media profile,” a new level of deplatforming not yet seen.

“We will be just fine, but wanted to let Americans know that @AIGinsurance canceled our insurance due to my “Social Media profile,” tweeted Schilling.

“The agent told us it was a decision made by and with their PR department in conjunction with management,” he added.

While innumerable Trump supporters have lost their Twitter and Facebook accounts due to social media censorship and cancel culture, cases of individuals being cut off by banks and other financial services are now growing too.

The purge has gone beyond the realm of simply silencing people on major platforms for their opinions, but punishing them for expressing them by trying to make their lives unlivable.

Numerous respondents pointed out the obvious – that without insurance it’s impossible to mortgage a home or register a vehicle.

However, other leftists applauded the move and said that Schilling deserved it for his support of Trump. “You’ve definitely earned it,” remarked one.

“I mean…. capitalism right? They calculated the risk and decided your premiums weren’t worth the long term exposure?” added another.


Did Trump incite a violent demonstration at the Capitol?

He did not. Just one line of his January 6 speech scotches that claim:

"I know that everyone here will soon be marching over to the Capitol building to peacefully and patriotically make your voices heard. "

So he did incite a demonstration but he wanted it to be peaceful. And it mostly was. It was just a few hotheads and hangers-on who messed up.

Below is the best than the Left can do to make something different out of Trump's speech. I have inserted some comments in italics to counter the false accusations

New York Times best-selling author, journalist and lawyer Seth Abramson dissected the President’s speech on January 6 and found numerous examples of incitement — some subtle, and others far more direct.

Abramson says Trump almost immediately hints at what is to come.

“Seconds into his speech, Trump says, ‘These people are not going to take it any longer. They’re not going to take it any longer … They came from all over our country. I just really want to see what they do’. It’s an astonishing admission he thinks something is going to happen,” Abramson writes.

Yes. He wanted to see them demonstrate but he said it would be their decision about what they did. It was not under his direction

He says Trump is very deliberate with his use of verb tenses. He stresses the urgency that the election is being “stolen”, not in general terms but very specifically by those counting ballots for the Georgia run-off at the US Capitol.

“So when Trump speaks in the present tense of the election being ‘stolen’ by Democrats and the media — it’s ‘what they’re doing’ — he means it literally: he’s telling the Save America March that he and they are imminently facing a ‘stolen election’ due to events at the Capitol.”

They were

Abramson argues that Trump “clearly sees the crowd as an army”.

“He crows about the size of the crowd, claiming it is ‘hundreds of thousands’ strong. That’s important for his ‘mens rea’ (mental state) as a criminal actor: he believes he’s commanding the actions of a massive force near the Capitol.

“The action Trump is demanding isn’t a protest-type action. It’s not a let-your-voice-be-heard action. It is explicitly an intervention — the ‘steal’ will be ‘stopped’ by the assembled army marching on the Capitol as Trump will shortly direct them. There’s no fuzz on this.”

He simply wanted a really big demonstration

The Harvard Law School graduate and author of Proof of Collusion: How Trump Betrayed America says the “strangest line in (Trump’s) speech) involves a call for “military, Secret Service, police, law enforcement” to “come up please”.

Trump says: “If those tens of thousands of people would be allowed — the military, the Secret Service, the police, law enforcement, you’re doing a great job — but I’d love it if they could be allowed to come up here with us. Is that possible? Can you just let them come up please?”

Abramson says the line is “beyond a doubt the strangest line in the speech”.

“When he says ‘come up here with us’ he couldn’t be referring to the stage he’s standing on, as he says he’s referring to ‘tens of thousands’ of military people and cops. So where does he want them to ‘come up’ to?

“The obvious answer — indeed, the only answer — is that, as he’s about to reveal, he is well aware (and was pre-speech) that the Save America March he paid for is a march on the Capitol to ‘stop’ the certification, and that ‘we’/‘us’ will be making that march. And therefore he is asking ‘the military, the Secret Service, the police, [and] law enforcement’ (his words) to march with ‘us’ to the Capitol.”

Rubbish. If you read the speech carefully, you will see that Trump was referring to the big crowd in front of him, including many law-enforcement personnel. He was asking them to come up towards the front of the crowd

Abramson’s analysis ends with this: “America must know what this man did/said. He incited insurrection. Just as the article of impeachment says.”

Trump, of course, denies he did anything of the sort. He distanced himself from such accusations in a statement through his spokeswoman, White House Press Secretary Kayleigh McEnany.

“Donald Trump condemns in the strongest possible terms” the violence, she said Thursday.

“Let me be clear: The violence we saw yesterday at our nation’s Capitol was appalling, reprehensible and antithetical to the American way.

“We condemn it — the president and this administration — in the strongest possible terms.”

The Babylon Bee has a good satirical comment on the false accusations

The Western mind is different


Henrich is at his usual barrow below but his explanations are dubious.  His central claim that the Catholic church disrupted traditional family relationships with its sexual restrictions seems implausible.  It is true that the church restricted cousin marriage but restrictions on cousin marriage are ancient and and the church would seem to be about average in the degree of consanguinuity it allowed.

Cousin marriage is certainly endemic among Muslim populations but that is a consequence of the ease of divorce under Sharia law.  There is nothing comparable elsewhere

So is there another explanation for the unusual Western mind?  There is but it wades into politically dangerous waters these days.  But let me go wading.

The plain fact is that the breakout of modern civilization that was produced by Western minds was not exactly Western.  It would more accurately be described as a creation of German or Germanic minds.  The seminal innovations -- from the printing press to the steam train were the product of minds in two Germanic nations  -- Germany and Britain.  In about 500AD Roman Britannia was conquered and subdued by Germans mainly from the West Baltic area and their genes are predominant in Britain to this day.

And the influence of both countries on nearby countries was great.  To some extent German thinking was transmitted along with German technological innovations.

  So why was German thinking different? I have written at some length on that elsewhere

The database that dominates our understanding of human psychology derives primarily – approximately 95% of it in fact – from populations that are Western, Educated, Industrialised, Rich and Democratic (Weird), and these Weird populations turn out to be distinct in many ways.

Unlike much of the world today – and most people who have ever lived – Weird people are highly individualistic, self-obsessed, guilt-ridden and analytical in their thinking style. They focus on themselves – their attributes, accomplishments and aspirations – over relationships and roles. When reasoning, Weird people tend to look for abstract categories with which to organise the world. They simplify complex phenomena by breaking them down into discrete elements and assigning properties – whether by imagining types of particles, pathogens or personalities.

Despite their seeming self-obsession, Weird people tend to stick to impartial rules and can be quite trusting, fair and cooperative toward strangers. Emotionally, Weird people are relatively shameless, less constrained by the eyes of others, but often wracked by guilt as they fail to live up to their own self-imposed standards.

Where did these psychological differences come from and why are European populations, along with their cultural descendants in places like North America, at the extreme end of these global distributions?

A growing body of research traces these psychological differences to the structure of families – what anthropologists call kin-based institutions. This work suggests that our minds calibrate and adapt to the social worlds we encounter while growing up. Until recently, most societies have been undergirded by intensive kin-based institutions built around large extended families, clans, cousin marriage, polygamy and many other kinship norms that regulate and tighten social life. These institutions persist in many parts of the world today, especially in rural areas.

By contrast, many European populations have been dominated by monogamous nuclear families – a pattern labeled the “European Marriage Pattern” by historians – since at least the end of the Middle Ages.

Testing this idea, analyses reveal that people from societies rooted in more intensive kin-based institutions show greater conformity, less individualism, more holistic thinking, fewer guilty experiences and less willingness to trust strangers. These patterns emerge whether we compare countries, regions within countries or second-generation immigrants from different backgrounds living in the same place. As the first and often the most important institution we humans encounter upon entering the world, the structure of our family networks plays a central role in explaining global psychological diversity.

But why do families organise themselves in such different ways across societies, and why were European families already peculiar by the end of the Middle Ages?

While the diversity of kin-based institutions found around the world has been influenced by many factors, the European Marriage Pattern traces primarily to a religious mutation. Beginning in late antiquity, the branch of Christianity that evolved into the Roman Catholic Church began to gradually promulgate a set of prohibitions and prescriptions related to marriage and the family. The Church, for example, banned cousin marriage, arranged marriage and polygamous marriage. Unlike other Christian sects, the Church slowly expanded the circle of “incestuous” relationships out to sixth cousins by the 11th Century.

Despite often facing stout resistance, this enterprise slowly dissolved the complex kin-based institutions of tribal Europe, leaving independent nuclear households as a cultural ideal and common pattern.

To test the idea that the medieval Church has shaped contemporary psychological variation, it is possible to exploit the unevenness of this historical process by tracking the diffusion of bishoprics across Europe from AD 500 to 1500. Analyses show that Europeans from regions that spent more centuries under the influence of the Church are today less inclined to conform, more individualistic and show greater trust and fairness towards strangers.

Globally, national populations with longer historical exposures to the Church not only show weaker kin-based institutions, but are psychologically “Weirder” today.

Most of us might prefer to think of ourselves as independent, rational thinkers. But how we think, feel and reason – including our inclinations toward conformity and preferences for analytical explanations – has been shaped by historical events, cultural heritages and incest taboos that stretch back centuries or even millennia.

Understanding how history has shaped our minds is part of exploring and embracing our diversity.

Psychologist reveals why boys and girls SHOULD be raised differently


This lady sounds a bit mixed up to me.  She is rejecting the now rather old idea that males and females should be the same.  But what she is advocating seems little different from that. She "believes both sexes must be taught to embrace masculinity and femininity"

A more traditional view is that men should be men and women will be glad of it.  When one looks at media reports of romances between public figures such as sportsmen and movie stars it is very noticeable that attractive and very feminine women regularly team up with big, well-built and fit men -- often sportsmen -- who give no signs of anything feminine.  The partners concerned could be almost a parody of traditional sex roles.  Women with choices like real men, not wimps. A big fit body attracts and all the rest is incidental.

Some years back, I actually did some survey research into the androgyny hypothesis -- that it is healthiest for people to be big on both male and female traits.  I found the opposite.  The healthiest were those who rejected both male and female traits.  They rejected stereotyped ways of behaving in favour of what they individually were

So boys should NOT be told to embrace femininity.  They should be set free to become whatever is right for them.  They should be given freedom to become themselves

A psychologist has revealed why 'boys and girls should be raised differently' in an era where calls for the two to be treated equally steadily grow louder.

Mother-of-two Megan de Beyer believes both sexes must be taught to embrace masculinity and femininity beyond the socially constructed roles they are conditioned to identify with.

The South African author, who in February published 'How to Raise a Man: The modern mother's guide to parenting her teenage son', says a healthy balance of the two traits is essential for developing independence and emotional intelligence.

Parenting should change at the age of 11, Ms de Beyer reveals, right before adolescence when the bulk of emotional maturing and the 'unfolding of masculinity' occurs.

'We need to become more conscious with our parenting and recognise the subtle but complex difference between socially constructed identities of boys and girls,' Ms de Beyer told Daily Mail Australia from her farm on the outskirts of Cape Town.

Her argument contrasts with the iconic activist slogan 'raise boys and girls the same way', widely used in the '#metoo' movement to discourage cultures of toxic masculinity and the wrongful protection of powerful perpetrators of sexual abuse.

The phrase - which has become synonymous with gender equality campaigns and is often emblazoned on T-shirts, posters and bumper stickers - calls for children of all sexes and orientations to be treated equally.

But Ms de Beyer believes instilling values typically associated with the opposite sex is the key to creating a more compassionate society that supports men and women in achieving their goals, whatever they may be.

Parents subconsciously raise boys to be strong, independent and less expressive of their emotions, Ms de Beyer says, which can leave them feeling 'disconnected and isolated' and prone to mental health issues.

In 2017 roughly 75 percent of Australians who died by suicide were men, according to figures from the Black Dog Institute.

Meanwhile Ms de Beyer said girls are instinctively brought up to be accommodating, understanding and less assertive, which can lead to insecurity and a lack of confidence in adulthood.

How to raise boys to be more in touch with their emotions 

1. Self-awareness: Mothers must be clear in their own definition of masculinity.

They must understand the complex and multi-faceted nature of being a man, which involves softness and vulnerability as well as strength and leadership, if she wants to raise an emotionally mature son.

2. Let go of personal experience: Mothers must be aware of their personal experience with men and the situations they have faced during their lifetime. 

3. Focus on humanisation, not emasculation: Mothers must strike a balance between the two to promote emotional intelligence and traditional male traits. 

Ms de Beyer said parents - mothers in particular - must be clear in their own definitions of masculinity.

She believes mums must understand the complex and multi-faceted nature of being a man, which involves softness and vulnerability as well as strength and leadership, if they want to raise a son who is empathetic and emotionally mature.

'There are many ways to be a man, and we need to welcome all of them back,' the holistic parenting expert said. 

Ms de Beyer insists mothers must be aware of their personal experience with men and the situations they have faced during their lifetime.

They should reflect on these to work through difficult emotions they may have faced in relation to domination, broken relationships and poor communication so they can teach their sons to be well-rounded individuals.

'Mums must heal their own wounds around masculinity so they don't bring that into their relationship with their sons,' Ms de Beyer added.

She said mothers with 'masculine wounds' can often overreact to displays of masculinity - such as aggression, territoriality and arrogance common in adolescence - in a bid to protect themselves from 'toxic masculinity'.

But Ms de Beyer admitted there is a 'fine balance' between emasculating boys and humanising them that is not always easy to strike.

'We need to make room for their emotional lives to let their inner voices shine through so they can reach their full potential,' she said. 

Raising girls with healthy masculinity

Ms de Beyer believes parents must be clear with language and communication in order to encourage a healthy dose of masculinity in their daughters.

She recommends using phrases like 'do things that make you feel proud of yourself' and 'I love how independent you've become' to show young girls it is good for them to be strong and stand on their own two feet - traits historically applauded in boys.

Other statements that reinforce positive masculinity for girls include 'it's brave to do that' and 'you are behaving very honourably'.

Ms de Beyer believes use of this language will encourage girls to embrace their masculine side while they develop the classic - and equally important - feminine characteristics of collaboration, kindness, care and compassion.

She said it's vital to create a 'blend of the two'. 'Don't stop either, with boys or with girls,' she added.

Origin and Neoen plan $1bn batteries for NSW power plants


What use is a power source that lasts only for a few hours? What happens when the battery runs flat? Nights can last for 12 hours so when the wind is not blowing get ready for blackouts after 10pm or thereabouts.

And cloudy days could be a problem too. There are many days that are overcast all day, which greatly reduces solar panel output.

Clearly, gas-fired generators are essential. And if you have got them, why the battery?

Two of the world’s biggest batteries, worth a combined $1bn, will be built at the sites of NSW coal plants in a move to ease strains in the power grid and provide back-up for renewable energy generation.

Origin Energy plans to develop a giant 700 megawatt battery at Eraring, Australia’s largest coal-fired power station, while France’s Neoen is preparing a 500MW battery stack dubbed the Great Western Battery Project at Wallerawang, home to the former EnergyAustralia coal station, which has now been decommissioned.

The two batteries would rank as the largest storage devices in the world and over four times larger than the Tesla world-beating battery in South Australia, which is also operated by Neoen.

The rollout of the big batteries shows the willingness of investors to ensure enough supply is in place when coal plants retire over the next two decades. It also boosts the flexibility of running Eraring, which supplies a quarter of the state’s energy needs, during peak demand until its scheduled retirement in 2032.

Origin’s 700MW battery, which can send power into the grid for up to four hours, will be developed in three phases, with the initial capacity expected online by late 2022. An expression of interest for its supply and installation was issued to industry players on Monday. The battery is the largest under consideration in Australia and will require sign-off from Origin’s board.

“The deployment of this battery at Eraring will support Origin’s orderly transition away from coal-fired generation by 2032, while complementing the policy objectives of the NSW energy road map,” said Greg Jarvis, Origin’s executive general manager for energy supply and operations.

“We recognise we have an important role to play in positioning Origin’s electricity generation portfolio to support Australia’s rapid transition to renewables,” Mr Jarvis said. “A large-scale battery at Eraring will help us better support renewable energy and maintain reliable supply for customers, by having long-duration storage ready to dispatch into the grid at times when renewable sources are not available.”

Neoen, which in November teamed up again with Tesla for a “humungous” 300MW battery installation near Geelong in Victoria, will spend up to $400m on the NSW facility, with a generation capacity of 500MW and up to 1000 megawatt hours.

The battery installation will be close to the former Wallerawang plant and connect to a substation that was used for the coal development, documents lodged with the NSW Department of Planning show.

Neoen has so far committed $3bn of investment on 1600MW of renewable generation in Australia and plans to double spending to $6bn by 2022, representing 3000MW of power supply.

“The large-scale battery system would reduce the possibility of load-shedding and blackout events in the state, especially considering the multiple existing coal-fired power plants that are planned to retire in the next decade,” Neoen said in its planning documents.

A breakdown at AGL Energy’s Liddell coal plant in December has increased the potential for power blackouts during heatwaves this summer and forced the nation’s biggest aluminium smelter to cut production.

The batteries back up a key plank of the NSW government’s ambitious plan to attract $32bn in private investment over the next decade focused on 12 gigawatts of renewable generation and 2GW of long duration storage.

Big energy producers and users had previously raised fears over a plan by the NSW government to underwrite investment in renewable and storage generation.

It may also ease tensions between industry and the federal government after Scott Morrison gave companies until April to commit building 1000MW of new power capacity to ensure there was a like-for-like replacement for the Liddell coal plant which will close in the 2022-23 summer.

Coal, which currently provides 70 per cent of electricity, will contribute less than a third of supply by 2040 and could be forced out earlier than planned retirement dates as competition from renewables and carbon constraints render plants uneconomic, Australian Energy Market Operator forecasts show.

By 2035 nearly 90 per cent of power demand could be met by renewable generation during periods through the day. However, that will require up to 50GW of large-scale solar and wind to be added under the most aggressive plan to cut emissions, representing nearly all the current capacity of the market to be built in just two decades.

Up to 19GW of “firmed” dispatchable resources such as gas, pumped hydro and batteries will be required in the next two decades to back up renewables.

Big coal plants like Eraring have been forced to dial down capacity close to minimum levels more frequently due to low wholesale spot prices and the solar “duck curve” phenomenon, where renewables beat coal on price during the day.

Traditionally the country’s big coal generators run around the clock, reflecting both market demand for the fuel but also the difficulty in tweaking output from huge pieces of machinery that can take hours to properly synchronise with the grid.

But the relentless surge of cheap and plentiful renewables — solar, wind, hydro and battery storage — is sparking a shift among the big baseload coal producers that supply 70 per cent of the grid’s needs.

Whereas once Origin may have run the plant through the day and night, the ability of solar to cut wholesale prices in the day means Eraring may make a better return ramping its output up and down to meet peak demand.

Cops not charged over shooting of dysfunctional black in Wisconsin


I cannot see how shooting someone in the back is self-defence.  So the verdict is very stretched. But why was it stretched?

The cops clearly fired to prevent an escape by a known villain. But shooting to prevent an escape is against the law. Preventing escape is not an allowable reason for firing potentially fatal shots at anyone.

But the offender in this case was weilding a knife  so any attempt to lay hands on him would have risked the life of a cop.  They had already used a taser so firing was the only option left.  And bringing to book an obnoxious offender was clearly in the public interest.

So in recognition of that the cops were exonerated via a legal fiction.  What this all shows is that the law should be amended to allow shooting at a fleeing offender in at least some cases

US prosecutors have cleared a white police officer over last year's shooting of Black man Jacob Blake, in Kenosha, Wisconsin, during an incident that prompted street protests and inflamed racial tensions in the United States.

Kenosha County District Attorney Michael Graveley found police officer Rusten Sheskey acted in self defence, and said he would not issue any charges in connection with the incident.

The decision not to prosecute Mr Sheskey or the two other officers on the scene could incite more demonstrations, which have frequently broken out in the United States in recent years after police have been cleared of wrongdoing in shootings of African Americans.

During a police intervention in a domestic dispute that was captured on a phone video, Mr Sheskey shot at Mr Blake's back seven times from close range as Mr Blake opened the door of his car.

The bullets struck him four times and paralysed him from the waist down.

Officials said Mr Blake was armed with a knife and refused police commands to drop it, which Mr Graveley said gave Mr Sheskey the right to self defence.

"It is absolutely incontrovertible that Jacob Blake was armed with a knife during this encounter," Mr Graveley said, adding that Mr Blake admitted several times to investigators he had the knife.

The police who were called to the scene had been told there was a felony arrest warrant against Mr Blake for domestic abuse and sexual assault, Mr Graveley said.

The officers attempted to detain Mr Blake and stop him with a taser multiple times, but Mr Blake withstood the use of force to avoid arrest, he added.

The knife was not clearly visible in the video, which also began after the previous attempts to arrest Mr Blake, Mr Graveley said.

Man files human rights complaint against Scrabble over racist slurs in game dictionary


A Northern Territory man has filed a formal complaint against the owners of popular board game Scrabble for including racist slurs against Aboriginal people in the game’s dictionary of playable words.

Aboriginal activist Stephen Hagan – formerly of Queensland, who last year forced Coon cheese to change its name – lodged the complaint to the Australian Human Rights Commission against international toymaker Mattel for allowing the words “abo”, “coon” and “boong” to be played.

He said he was “absolutely flabbergasted” the company permitted the use of such offensive words.

Although the word coon can be misused, it has legitimate uses as well so does belong in the dictionary. "Coon" is short for "raccoon" 

"Abo" is simply an abbreviation.  Australians are great abbreviators

"Boong" is always derogatory these days but it was originally simply the name of an Aboriginal tribe, no more offensive than "Boori","Murri", "Koori" etc.  So it has legitimate historical uses.

China's plan to produce its own wine and agriculture instead of buying it from Australia and switching from coal to green energy could blow a $150billion hole in our economy


It could theoretically.  But the claim that China will shift to "green" electricity in replacement for coal is a bit of a laugh.  Only a Western Greenie would believe that of China.  They have been very enthusiastic builders of coal-fired generators.

And China's limits on Australian wine need to be seen in conjunction with the fact that China already produces quite a lot of its own wine.  But tastes in wine are very individual so it is clear that many Chinese prefer Australian wines.  So the non-availablity of Australian wines will be felt in China

And the block on Australian coal is already being felt. Chinese power stations are already running out, causing blackouts. Coal is a very common mineral worldwide so Australian coal could theoretically be replaced.  But that would incur a penalty in both quality and price

China's long-term plan to be more economically self-sufficient could harm Australia's major exporters, including those in the once unassailable resources sector.

The Communist power is Australia's biggest trading partner buying 35 per cent of exports worth $150billion during the last financial year.

Iron ore, the commodity used to make steel, is by far the most valuable good sent to China, but thermal coal, agricultural and service exports would be under threat if China aimed to be less reliant on imports and more focused on renewable energy. 

Associate Professor Jane Golley, the director of the Australian Centre on China in the World at Canberra's Australian National University, said local exporters would be vulnerable under President Xi Jinping's plan to be more self-sufficient and generate more economic growth to legitimise Communist Party rule.

'If the Chinese government succeeds in making the Chinese economy more reliant on domestic production and consumption, that doesn't sound like a great idea for the Australian export market broadly,' she told the ABC's 7.30 program.

China in 2019-20 bought $18billion worth of Australian coal.  That component included about $8billion worth of thermal coal, used for electricity generation.

China is aiming to produce net zero carbon emissions by 2060 which threatens Australia's lucrative coal exports. 'For example, they will continue to shift out of coal and towards renewable energies,' Dr Golley said.

'They're also going to open up for capital investors to come in from abroad to support that green growth and so there will be opportunities for Australians in certain markets but I don't think it will be quite as universal as it has been in the past.'

Judge says it makes Australia look bad internationally if we return criminal immigrants to their own country


Judge says he is a better judge of Australia's national interest than our elected representatives are

Under international human rights law, the principle of non-refoulement guarantees that no one should be re-turned to a country where they would face torture, cruel, inhuman or degrading treatment or punishment and other irreparable harm

But breaches of international law are common and this particular one would be unlikely to generate much angst anywhere

In any case the application of any law will be decided in conjunction with the particulars of the case so the outcome is never automatic

The Morrison government has been warned it must consider the impact on Australia’s national interest of sending refugees back to their country of persecution after losing its bid to deport a convicted child sex offender.

Last year the then-acting immigration minister, Alan Tudge, refused an Afghan man a safe haven enterprise visa on character grounds, despite acknowledging the risk he could be killed by the Taliban in Afghanistan.

But the federal court has set aside Tudge’s decision, ruling he failed to take into account the full ramifications of Australia breaching its international nonrefoulement obligations.

As immigration minister seeking expanded powers to deport visa holders who committed crimes, Scott Morrison told parliament in 2014 that Australia was not seeking to avoid international law and that refugees would “not be removed in breach of any nonrefoulement obligations”.

According to Justice John Griffiths’ decision, handed down on 23 December, Tudge was aware of Australia’s obligation but believed the issue was not relevant to the question of national interest.

“The acting minister undoubtedly recognised that, in this particular case, the exercise of his power under … would put Australia in breach of its international non-refoulement obligations,” the judge said.

“[Tudge] considered that this was outweighed by other considerations which favoured the decision to refuse to grant the applicant the visa.”

The visa applicant, who has spent more than five years in immigration detention, failed the character test after being convicted in 2014 of two counts of assault with acts of indecency and five counts of indecent assault of a person under 16.

Justice Griffiths noted the case was “not the first” in which a minister has cancelled or refused a visa with the consequence the person “would be removed from Australia to their country of origin” in breach of international law.

He warned it was “important to bear in mind that Australia’s nonrefoulement obligations are owed not to the visa holder or visa applicant, but to the international community”.

Tudge had argued that it was merely “speculation” that breaching international law would harm Australia’s national interest.

But Justice Griffiths said the “very serious consequence” of breaching Australia’s obligations “had to be confronted” more directly in circumstances where there was an “accepted risk” the man could be killed.

“The minister erroneously confined his assessment of the national interest by simply focusing upon the seriousness of the applicant’s criminal conduct, the sentence he received, the risk of him reoffending and the harm to the Australian community if such a risk eventuated.

“In my view, the acting minister fell into jurisdictional error by assessing the question of the national interest on an erroneously narrow basis.”

Despite the Australian government’s loss in the case, the judge acknowledged the court “cannot generally review the merits” of an assessment of the national interest, meaning immigration laws properly applied will still allow refugees to be sent back to their country of persecution.

A home affairs spokesperson said the department was considering the decision but as the appeal timeframe had not ended it was “inappropriate to comment further”.

Woman 'disgusts' Twitter after claiming that 'short women' are only attractive to men because they look like they are easier to 'physically dominate and CONTROL'


In my observation, there is an element of truth in this. Weak men do seem to go for short women and I think ease of control is what they hope for.  But there are many things that create attraction and height is surely only one thing.

I must confess that I am one who IS influenced by the height of women.  I like them tall.  My most recent marriage was to a 5'11" lady.  I was 5'10" at the time. But the lady I have been in love with for the last 15 years is only 5'4" tall, so I am more strongly influenced by other things

It bears noting that the short ladies themselves are often responsible for height mismatches.  Short women usually like tall men and they often get one

And the idea that a short woman is a pushover is a bit of a laugh.  I have come across some pretty feisty ones

An American writer has infuriated Twitter users after she proclaimed that one of the main reasons men are attracted to short women is because they seem to be easier to dominate and control.

Feminista Jones made the bold claims on Twitter this week, phrasing her tweets in a way that seemed to mock short women for 'not knowing' that this is why men liked them.

It wasn't long before other Twitter users began criticizing the thread — and while the backlash has led Feminista Jones to delete her account, the criticism is still coming.

'Do short women not know how much of their attractiveness to men is related to perceived controllability?' she wrote in the now-deleted thread. 'Is that thing y'all aren't aware of? Lol cute,' she mocked.

'Ask any woman over 5'10" how harshly men regularly speak to and treat or how rarely she is treated with softness and tender gestures outside of being in a relationship... and even then lol,' she went on.

'A smaller woman can more likely be physically dominated and controlled, like a child,' she added. 

'Shorter women don't feel like "mommy." Slimmer women don't feel threatening. The smaller a woman is the younger she appears and that's attractive to many men.'

Jones' thread has been met with swift and furious backlash from Twitter users who point out that it's not very feminist to body-shame or gang up on a group of women for their physical attributes.

'Wait now people are mad at short women on here?' wrote writer Rachel Syme. 

'Owning misogynists by exactly replicating their behavior and treating small women like children who need to be controlled and patronized since they’re too infantile and weak-minded to realize the more grim terms of their existence,' wrote another Twitter user.

'Love that she frames this as the fault of short women,' tweeted another. 

Yet another agreed: 'So being short makes me... easy to control by men, but I should feel bad about this cause tall women don’t like it? Please give some constructive advice as to how I’m supposed to fix this.' 

'I just don’t understand what short women are supposed to do about weirdos that are attracted to them, literally how is that my problem at all,' said one more. 

'Why do I feel like you’re lecturing short women rather than creepy men? The “lol cute” here is so condescending,' added another. 

Others have disagreed with her assessment of men's behavior.

'I have definitely heard men say c***py things about why they prefer shorter women, and I have also been asked to step on a bug by a guy I was not dating, because he had some kind of fetish related to tall women ... stepping on things,' wrote one.

'Short women do not look like children. They look like short women,' another tweeted. 'Stop trying to infer that being attracted to them is exploitative or some other infantalising c***, you absolute f***ing melts.' 

'It is entirely possible to have a discussion about your personal experience as a tall woman without outright saying short women are exclusively f***ed by pedophiles!' complained another.

While several more pointed out that her characterization of women as seemingly easy to dominate doesn't line up.

'“Short women are easy to dominate” have you ever met a short woman??? The rage is concentrated into a lil package??? Human espresso?' wrote one. 

'I've dominated every relationship I've ever been in and I'm only 5'3". My 6'4" boyfriend does think that I'm cute, but also tells others than I am the "mean one" and that if we were to get into a fight that "she would murder me". It's all about balance,' said another.


Democrat Ends Prayer With 'Amen. ... and A-Woman'

This is brainless. In the New Testament, Christ is recorded in the original Greek of the gospels as sayin ἀμήν on a number of occasions, which transliterates into English as "amen". But it has nothing to do with men (or women). The Greek word meaning "man" is ἄνθρωπος (anthropos).

So the word has entered Christian worship out of respect for Christ's use of it, not because of any English word it might sound like.

At the end of a prayer it means roughly "So be it" or "I agree"! But that is not the end of it. It has a broader meaning than that. When Jesus said: "Verily, verily, I say unto you ...." (e.g. in John 5:24), what word do you think he was using according to the original Greek text that was translated as "verily"? That's right. He was actually saying: "Amen, amen, I say unto you". So it's basically just a way of emphasizing the correctness of something

On Sunday, a Democratic representative — who also happens to have been a pastor for 37 years — gave an official prayer to open the 117th Congress. With great pomp and circumstance, he closed his prayer by invoking “the monotheistic god,” Brahma, and the god who supposedly goes by many names. He then concluded with the most asinine thing I have ever heard. He ended with “amen … and a-woman.”

Yes, in a moment worthy of The Babylon Bee, Rep. Emanuel Cleaver (D-Mo.), added the nonsense neologism “a-woman” to the classic prayer ending, “amen.”

“Amen” means “so be it,” “it is so,” or “verily.” Jews and Christians have used the term to conclude prayers for thousands of years. The word appears 30 times in the Hebrew Bible and 52 times in the New Testament. There is no connection — absolutely none — between “amen” and “men,” the far later English word for plural male individuals.

It honestly strains credulity that any educated Jew, Christian, or Muslim — much less a Methodist who served as a pastor for 37 years — would feel the need to make the term of assent “amen” inclusive by adding “a-woman.” Yet Emanuel Cleaver, who served as the pastor at St. James United Methodist Church in Kansas City, Mo., from March 1972 to June 2009, did exactly that — and it seems he is proud of it.

Yet this “a-woman” fiasco should show Americans just how stupid and shallow much of Democrats’ pandering in the name of “inclusivity” really is.

Greenies lose one in NSW


The Greenies really pushed this one.  They had wins in various courts before this final loss.  One argument that initially got some credit was that you had to consider emissions OVERSEAS.  Emissions in other countries had to be considered by Australian courts.  Apparently Australia must be held responsible for what other countries do if they burn coal sourced from Australia.

The conservative NSW government has been rather bold in giving this approval. Farmers are a traditional base of support for conservative parties and lots of farmers have joined the Greenie protests.  Farmers don't like coal mines messing up their nice green landscapes either.

Coal and gas projects that could release more than 1 billion tonnes of greenhouse gases have been given the green light by the NSW government in the two years since a Land and Environment Court ruling, which upheld the government's Rocky Hill coal mine refusal in part because of climate impacts.

The billion tonnes of greenhouse emissions would be generated by third parties like overseas power plants burning the coal and gas produced over the life of six projects approved since February 2019. The 1 billion tonne figure is nearly double Australia's entire annual greenhouse gas output.

Activist group Lock the Gate Alliance say NSW's project approval agency, the Independent Planning Commission, has been compromised by changes that were imposed by Planning Minister Rob Stokes after the Court rejected the Rocky Hill proposal.

Following that ruling, Mr Stokes issued a statement of expectations in May last year. It followed the commission imposing extra conditions on the Wambo coal mine, and rejecting a proposed coal mine in the Bylong Valley.

Mr Stokes' statement of expectations said the commission should make final determinations within 12 weeks of receiving a project for assessment, and that one of its guiding principles is to adhere to government policy when assessing proposals.

In the Rocky Hill case the Land and Environment Court found scope 3 emissions must be considered - that is greenhouse gases generated when third parties, such as power stations, burn gas or coal for energy.

Lock the Gate NSW spokesperson Georgina Woods said after the commission rejected the Bylong coal project Mr Stokes "kneecapped" the authority. Since then, the IPC had "failed in its obligation" under planning laws to consider scope 3 emissions in its approval of four coal projects and the Narrabri coal seam gas project, she said.

"Long-standing regulation stipulates that the consent authority, in this case the IPC, must consider whether a project should come with conditions that ensure greenhouse gas emissions - including downstream or scope 3 emissions - are minimised to the greatest extent practicable," Ms Woods said.

Mr Stokes said the IPC was reformed following an "extensive review" by the NSW Productivity Commission, and that it was required to consider scope 3 emissions impacts. He accused Lock the Gate of "only telling one side of the story".

"All environmental impacts of projects including greenhouse gas emissions both here and abroad must be considered by the IPC in making a decision," Mr Stokes said. "The IPC [recently] approved more than $1.5 billion in renewable energy projects."

Local farmers last week lodged a legal challenge to the commission's approval of the Narrabri gas project in north-west NSW. The Mullaley Gas and Pipeline Accord, represented by the Environmental Defenders Office, will argue in the NSW Land and Environment Court the IPC wrongly found that it could not address scope 3 emissions from the gasfield.

'Rural hardship': Farmers take Narrabri CSG approval to court
There are three coal projects under consideration by the IPC which would create an additional 450 million tonnes of carbon emissions over the course of their life.

Lock the Gate said communities impacted by resources projects must be permitted to lodge merits appeals in the the Land and Environment Court.

A merits review is when a third party can reconsider the evidence presented to, and final decision of, an authority like the IPC. Under current laws merits appeal rights are revoked when the Planning Minister directs the IPC to hold a public hearing.


Three cops violently restrain an Aborigine who hit them while resisting arrest

"Disturbing"? Hardly. What do you expect when a known crook hits a cop?

This is typical of the problems cops face when someone refuses to go quietly. They have to use force but what exactly they do depends of what the crook does. It all has to be done in seconds, leaving little room for making ideal judgments. The cops do what they perceive as needed in the moment even though armchair critics might think differently

And this guy was no innocent. He had clearly heard of the George Floyd case and thought he could bluff the cops with his knowledge of it. His claim "I can't breathe" appears to have had no substance as he came to no lasting harm -- unlike George Floyd who really could not breathe and promptly died of his situation.

A disturbing video has captured the moment police officers repeatedly punched and kicked an indigenous elder before pinning him to the ground and leaving him gasping for air during a violent arrest.

'I can't breathe' the man screams while lying on the narrow footpath in Campbelltown in south west Sydney.

The ugly footage shows the 47-year-old being restrained by three male officers from the Campbelltown City Police Area Command at about 2.40pm on Tuesday.

The man, identified by a witness as Uncle Bud of Campbelltown, resists arrest and begins trading blows with police who react with force.

The video clip the shows the arrest taking a frightening when officers begin laying into the victim.

One officer knees the victim while another throws a wild punch at his stomach.

The indigenous man lashes out with his fist sparking a vicious response from the officers.

One policeman punches the victim in the face before he is wrestled to the ground and kicked once more for good measure.

While pinned down the man repeatedly shouts 'I can't breathe' as witnesses berate the officers for their heavy-handedness.

The person who posted the clip to Facebook said the man received the 'royalty treatment' by New South Wales police.

But police have denied claims the officers involved did anything wrong.

NSW Police told Daily Mail Australia the man was seen riding a bike on Peppin Crescent in Airds when officers attempted to stop him.

He was wanted for breaching his bail conditions.

NSW Police said he allegedly failed to comply with the order to stop and tried to flee but officers caught up with him when he lost control and crashed the bike.

'It's alleged the man resisted the officers and punched a constable and senior constable multiple times to the head,' NSW Police said.

'The man was subdued and during a search of him police located and seized an amount of methamphetamine.'

The was later taken to Campbelltown Police Station and charged with the breach of bail, as well as three counts of assault police, resist arrest and possess prohibited drug.

His bail was refused bail when he appeared at Parramatta Local Court on Wednesday December, 30.


Cooling in 2020 Australia

CO2 levels have continued to rise so where is the global warming?

Below are the CO2 figures from Cape Grim in Tasmania. In the last 3 years, CO2 levels have risen from 403ppm to 410pm

2018 01 15  2018.0384   403.75     0.18     in situ
2018 02 15  2018.1233   403.81     0.15     in situ
2018 03 15  2018.2000   403.90     0.14     in situ
2018 04 15  2018.2849   404.16     0.17     in situ
2018 05 15  2018.3671   404.40     0.13     in situ
2018 06 15  2018.4521   404.67     0.16     in situ
2018 07 15  2018.5342   405.18     0.21     in situ
2018 08 15  2018.6192   405.65     0.13     in situ
2018 09 15  2018.7041   405.86     0.10     in situ
2018 10 15  2018.7863   405.91     0.16     in situ
2018 11 15  2018.8712   405.84     0.16     in situ
2018 12 15  2018.9534   405.75     0.13     in situ
2019 01 15  2019.0384   405.73     0.17     in situ
2019 02 15  2019.1233   405.66     0.14     in situ
2019 03 15  2019.2000   405.79     0.19     in situ
2019 04 15  2019.2849   406.20     0.17     in situ
2019 05 15  2019.3671   406.70     0.21     in situ
2019 06 15  2019.4521   407.23     0.21     in situ
2019 07 15  2019.5342   407.83     0.21     in situ
2019 08 15  2019.6192   408.33     0.16     in situ
2019 09 15  2019.7041   408.58     0.13     in situ
2019 10 15  2019.7863   408.73     0.11     in situ
2019 11 15  2019.8712   408.76     0.11     in situ
2019 12 15  2019.9534   408.52     0.17     in situ
2020 01 15  2020.0383   408.25     0.18     in situ
2020 02 15  2020.1229   408.32     0.16     in situ
2020 03 15  2020.2022   408.57     0.17     in situ
2020 04 15  2020.2869   408.80     0.13     in situ
2020 05 15  2020.3689   409.07     0.13     in situ
2020 06 15  2020.4536   409.49     0.18     in situ
2020 07 15  2020.5355   410.02     0.20     in situ
2020 08 15  2020.6202   410.47     0.16     in situ
2020 09 15  2020.7049   410.76     0.11     in situ
2020 10 15  2020.7869   410.85     0.13     in situ
2020 11 15  2020.8716   410.79     0.14     in situ


2020 saw a welcome shift to cooler and wetter conditions after the widespread drought of the past few years.

Last year's persistent drought-bringing climate, set up by a positive Indian Ocean Dipole, was replaced with neutral and eventually rain-encouraging La Niña conditions in September.

Despite a hiatus over spring, those conditions finally brought widespread rainfall to end 2020.

Many water stores have risen, but many have not filled to the extent we might have hoped for in a La Niña year … not yet.

There are still a few months of the summer wet season left.

Sydney's water stores are the big turnaround story of 2020. In January, the stores were at 44.9 per cent of capacity, their lowest point in the past five years.


Mean temperatures came in at 1.15 degree Celsius above the 1961-to-1990 average, well cooler than 2019, which was 1.52C above the average.

Overnight temperatures were also the fourth-highest on record using the Bureau of Meteorology's (BOM's) gridded dataset, which gives an average temperature for the country as a whole.

But maximum temperatures were less extreme than we have been accustomed to in recent years, coming in at the eighth-hottest on record, 1.24C above the 1961-to-1990 average.

The revolutionary green technology using old car tyres to make steel that could spell the end of Australia's coal exports


This is a big laugh. The cost problem is acknowledged but there are many other difficulties.

Biggest of all is that electric arc furnaces are big users of electricity and that current has to be delivered in a stable way.  So where will they get all that electricity?  From coal-fired power stations, almost certainly.  So they are still using coal to make steel but in a more complicated way!

Also amusing is that the newspaper's copy reader does not know the difference between an ark and an arc.  Noah's arc would be amusing

The heating up of old car tyres to make steel could one day spell the end of coal - threatening one of Australia's key exports to China.

University of New South Wales engineering and science professor Veena Sahajwalla has pioneered world-first 'green steel' technology where hydrogen and solid carbon are extracted from waste rubber to make metal.

The former judge on the ABC's New Inventors show told Daily Mail Australia her innovation, also known as Polymer Injection Technology, had the potential to one day make metallurgical coal redundant.

'Oh, absolutely. Absolutely,' she said. 'We are certainly looking at a future where the dependency on coal for steel making is completely eliminated.

What is green steel technology?

Green steel technology involves extracting hydrogen and carbon from waste tyres to make metal

This method, also known as Polymer Injection Technology, relies on an electric ark furnace instead of a traditional blast furnace powered by coking coal

'So the goal very much is to say that we want to get to zero coal and coke in the process of making steel.'

China, Australia's biggest trading partner, last year bought $10billion worth of Australia's metallurgical coal exports and it still relies on old-fashioned blast furnaces that are heavily dependent on this fossil fuel.

'It's basically asking the question: "Where will the tipping point be for many countries like China and others?",' Professor Sahajwalla said. 

Most of the world's existing steel production involves heating coking coal in a blast furnace at 1,000C, but green steel technology is about phasing this out and replacing it with a new method of making liquid steel.

'A traditional blast furnace will always have coke not just from a heat point of view but coke also provides a structure - it is a solid product that sits inside a furnace,' Professor Sahajwalla said.

'The traditional coke that is used as a source in a furnace, we're talking about replacing that coke with, of course, waste tyres.

'The science shows that it works.' 

A smaller proportion of steel production involves electric ark furnace which uses high-current electric arcs to melt scrap steel and convert it into liquid steel.

Green steel production relies on this method to turn rubber tyres into metal.

Newcastle mining materials supplier Molycop, a former division of Arrium, uses green steel technology to make replacement metal wheels for Waratah trains servicing Sydney, Newcastle, the Central Coast, the Blue Mountains, and Wollongong.

Michael Parker, the company's president, said its manufacturing, combining coking coal and oil with crumbed tyre rubber and the use of renewable solar energy - to power an electric ark furnace - produced 80 per cent less carbon emissions than traditional steel making. 

The green steel method, for now, has significantly reduced the need for coal in steel production but is has not completely eliminated it.

'This polymer injection technology allows us to substitute probably about half of that with crumbed rubber,' Mr Parker told Daily Mail Australia.

'Use the carbon and hydrogen out of waste tyres to replace virgin, raw materials.' 

As part of the green steel production, tyres are put into a high-temperature electric ark furnace to extract hydrogen so iron oxide can be turned into iron as part of a chemical transformation. 'It's the rubber that contains all these other elements,' Professor Sahajwalla said. 

'It's the tyres that give you these other molecules like hydrogen which then participates in the reaction and that's what allows us to convert the iron oxide into iron which is what becomes steel.' 

The finished product sold to customers depends on added alloys and additives. 

Though rubber tyres can replace the need for coking coal, a lot of the success of green steel will also rely on recycling existing scrap metal.

Mr Parker said waste metal was unexpectedly in short supply.  'There's not enough scrap steel in the world to replace the demand for new steel,' he said. 

British billionaire Sanjeev Gupta hopes to use renewable energy and scrap metal recycling to turn the old Whyalla steelworks in South Australia into a major supplier of new green steel.

He has a long-term plan to phase out old-fashioned blast furnaces and replace them with electric ark furnaces. 

His GFG Alliance bought Arrium, which previously owned Molycop, before American private equity group American Industrial Partners rescued it in 2017. 

Professor Sahajwalla said green steel was slowly replacing coking coal. 'Ultimately, the goal is full replacement,' she said. 'Are we already on that journey? The short answer's yes.' 

Unlike coking coal, tyres can also produce hydrogen, which can be turned into gas or a liquid. 

Nonetheless, Mr Parker conceded green steel production, involving an electric ark furnace instead of a traditional blast furnace, was still a costlier method of making steel than coal or iron ore-derived methods.

'The issue is the cost of producing hydrogen through electrolysis is very high so there's got to be some breakthrough technically to get it down to a cost where you can afford to use hydrogen to make or produce iron ore to go into something like an electric ark furnace,' he said.

Making steel out of old tyres at least solves the problem of landfill. 'It's about being clever, let's use it in a way that maximises value from this waste,' Professor Sahajwalla said.

Academic website The Conversation bans climate change sceptics, locks dissenter accounts


Global warming has become conventional wisdom among Leftists.  If you tell a big enough lie often enough, Leftists will be eager to believe it.  Conservatives worldwide rarely believe in global warming but are under a lot of pressure to keep quiet about it.  This is the latest example of that

Amusing that the "conversationalists" now want to have a conversation only with themselves.  Not much of a conversation.

They started out with some pretensions of scholarliness but now they are just another Leftist propaganda rag.  But they never were much more than that. Conservative comment of any sort was always rare there

Academic website, The Conversation, has banned publication of comments that dispute man-made climate change and will lock the accounts of readers who attempt to post dissenting views.

As part of a global collaboration of more than 250 news outlets called Covering Climate Now, The Conversation said constructive positive discussions did not include having contact with “climate change deniers”.

The Conversation Australia said banning comments from contrarians was part of improving its climate change coverage. “Once upon a time, we might have viewed climate sceptics as merely frustrating”, Editor and Executive Director, Misha Ketchell said.

“But it’s 2019, and now we know better,” he said. “Climate change deniers and those shamelessly peddling pseudoscience and misinformation, are perpetuating ideas that will ultimately destroy the planet. “As a publisher, giving them a voice on our site contributes to a stalled public discourse.”

The Conversation’s editorial team has been told to take a zero tolerance approach to moderating climate change deniers, and sceptics. “Not only will we be removing their comments, we’ll be locking their accounts,” Mr Ketchell said.

“We believe conversations are integral to sharing knowledge, but those who are fixated on dodgy ideas in the face of decades of peer-reviewed science are nothing but dangerous,” he said.

“It is counter-productive to present the evidence and then immediately undermine it by giving space to trolls.”

The Covering Climate Now initiative includes more than 250 outlets world wide with a combined audience of more than one billion. From September 15-23, participants have committed to emphasising climate stories.

Other participants include The Guardian, AFP, Bloomberg, The Christian Science Monitor, New Zealand Herald, Newsweek magazine and Al Jazeera.

The Conversation ban is in line with a push within the climate science community to de-platform those with unorthodox views.

A non-Aborigine?


The media are quick to call admirable people Aborigines even when they are to all appearances white. So how come the guy below was not identified as an Aborigine? He is in fact a fairly typical urban Aborigine. Urban Aborigines do typically have some white ancestry.

The Left-led media try their best to create a picture that it the opposite of reality. One wonders if that does any of the good that is presunmably intended. Can any good come from a blatant lie?

A man has been charged with murder after allegedly stabbing his girlfriend's father to death in front of his family on Christmas Eve.

Garth Michael Reid is accused of killing Warren Toby, 53, just before midnight on Friday in the front garden of a home in North Ipswich, south-west of Brisbane.

The 33-year-old allegedly used a 'sharp implement' to stab the man multiple times as horrified family members watched on.

Police said the group were drinking before an argument broke out and spilled onto the street.

Paramedics desperately tried to resuscitate Mr Toby but he could not be revived.

Reid, who was in a relationship with the alleged victim's 30-year-old daughter, was arrested at 5pm the following day at his home in Woodgate.

He was charged with murder, assault occasioning actual bodily harm and wilful damage.

Reid did not apply for bail and will appear in Ipswich Magistrates Court on February 3.

The Pressing Need for Everyone to Quiet Their Egos


Scott Kaufman offers some sound psychology below but seems unaware that it is mainly Leftism that he is criticizing.

It is clear that Leftist advocacy serves ego needs. It is submitted here that the major psychological reason why Leftists so zealously criticize the existing order and advocate change is in order to feed a pressing need for self-inflation and ego-boosting -- and ultimately for power, the greatest ego boost of all.

They need public attention; they need to demonstrate outrage; they need to feel wiser and kinder and more righteous than most of their fellow man. They fancy for themselves the heroic role of David versus Goliath. They need to show that they are in the small club of the virtuous and the wise so that they can nobly instruct and order about their less wise and less virtuous fellow-citizens. Their need is a pressing need for attention, for self-advertisement and self-promotion -- generally in the absence of any real claims in that direction. They are people who need to feel important and who are aggrieved at their lack of recognition and power. One is tempted to hypothesize that, when they were children, their mothers didn't look when they said, "Mummy, look at me".

We live in some times. On the one hand, things are better than they've ever been. Overall rates of violence, poverty, and disease are down. There have been substantial increases in education, longevity, leisure time, and safety. On the other hand... We are more divided than ever as a species. Tribalism and identity politics are rampant on all sides of everything.

Steven Pinker and other intellectuals think that the answer is a return to Enlightenment values—things like reason, individualism, and the free expression of as many ideas as possible and an effective method for evaluating the truth of them. I agree that this is part of the solution, but I think an often underdiscussed part of the problem is much more fundamental: all of our egos are just too damn loud.*

Watching debates in the media (and especially on YouTube) lately has been making my head explode. There seems to be this growing belief that the goal is always to win. Not have a dialectical, well-intentioned, mutual search for overarching principles and productive ways forward that will improve humanity—but to just win and destroy.

Now, don't get me wrong—I find a good intellectual domination just as thrilling as the next person. But cheap thrills aside, I also care deeply about there actually being a positive outcome. Arriving at the truth and improving society may not be explicit goals of a WWE match, but surely these are worthy goals of public discourse?

There is also an interesting paradox at play here in that the more the ego is quieted, the higher the likelihood of actually reaching one's goals. I think we tend to grossly underestimate the extent to which the drive for self-enhancement actually gets in the way of reaching one's goals—even if one's goals are primarily agentic.

Since psychologists use of the term ego is very different ways, let me be clear how I am defining it here. I define the ego as that aspect of the self that has the incessant need to see itself in a positive light. Make no doubt: the self can be our greatest resource, but it can also be our darkest enemy. On the one hand, the fundamentally human capacities for self-awareness, self-reflection, and self-control are essential for reaching our goals.

On the other hand, the self will do anything to disavow itself of responsibility for any negative outcome it may have played a role. As one researcher put it, the self engenders “a self-zoo of self-defense mechanisms.” I believe we can refer to these defensive strategies to see the self in a positive light as the “ego”. A noisy ego spends so much time defending the self as if it were a real thing, and then doing whatever it takes to assert itself, that it often inhibits the very goals it is most striving for.

In recent years, Heidi Wayment and her colleagues have been developing a “quiet ego” research program grounded in Buddhist philosophy and humanistic psychology ideals, and backed by empirical research in the field of positive psychology. Paradoxically, it turns out that quieting the ego is so much more effective in cultivating well-being, growth, health, productivity, and a healthy, productive self-esteem, than focusing so loudly on self-enhancement.

To be clear, a quiet ego is not the same thing as a silent ego. Squashing the ego so much that it loses its identity entirely does not do yourself or the world any favors. Instead, the quiet ego perspective emphasizes balance and integration. As Wayment and colleagues put it, “The volume of the ego is turned down so that it might listen to others as well as the self in an effort to approach life more humanely and compassionately.” The quiet ego approach focuses on balancing the interests of the self and others, and cultivating growth of the self and others over time based on self-awareness, interdependent identity, and compassionate experience.

The goal of the quiet ego approach is to arrive at a less defensive, and more integrative stance toward the self and others, not lose your sense of self or deny your need for the esteem from others. You can very much cultivate an authentic identity that incorporates others without losing the self, or feeling the need for narcissistic displays of winning. A quiet ego is an indication of a healthy self-esteem, one that acknowledges one’s own limitations, doesn’t need to constantly resort to defensiveness whenever the ego is threatened, and yet has a firm sense of self-worth and competence.

According to Bauer and Wayment, the quiet ego consists of four deeply interconnected facets that can be cultivated: detached awareness, inclusive identity, perspective-taking, and growth-mindedness. These four qualities of the quiet ego contribute to having a general stance of balance and growth toward the self and others:

Detached Awareness. Those with a quiet ego have an engaged, nondefensive form of attention to the present moment. They are aware of both the positive and negatives of a situation, and their attention is detached from more ego-driven evaluations of the present moment. Rather, they attempt to see reality as clearly as possible. This requires openness and acceptance to whatever one might discover about the self or others in the present moment, and letting the moment unfold as naturally as possibly. It also involves the ability to revisit thoughts and feelings that have already occurred, examine them more objectively than perhaps one was able to in the moment, and make the appropriate adjustments that will lead to further growth.

Inclusive Identity. People whose egos are turned down in volume have a balanced or more integrative interpretation of the self and others. They understand other perspectives in a way that allows them to identify with the experience of others, break down barriers, and come to a deeper understanding of common humanity. An ability to be mindful, and the detached awareness that comes with it, can help facilitate an inclusive identity, especially under moments of conflict, such as having one’s identity or core values challenged. If your identity is inclusive, you’re likely to be cooperative and compassionate toward others rather than only working to help yourself.

Perspective-Taking. By reflecting on other viewpoints, the quiet ego brings attention outside the self, increasing empathy and compassion. Perspective taking and inclusive identity are intimately intertwined, as either one can trigger the other. For instance, the realization of one’s interdependence with others can lead to a greater understanding of the perspective of others.

Growth-Mindedness. A concern for prosocial development and change for self and others over time causes those with a quiet ego to question the long-term impact of their actions in the moment, and to view the present moment as part of an ongoing life journey instead of a threat to one’s self and existence. Growth-mindedness and perspective taking complement each other nicely, as a growth stance toward the moment clears a space for understanding multiple perspectives. Growth-mindedness is also complementary to detached awareness, as both are focused on dynamic processes rather than evaluation of the final product.

These qualities should not be viewed in isolation from each other, but as part of a whole system of ego functioning.