Goebbels Warming

“Think of the press as a great keyboard on which the government can play.”

Thus spoke Joseph Goebbels, progenitor of Nazi propoganda, and an early adopter of the concept of media 'spin'. To place emphasis on a particular part of a message such that the remainder of the issue is buried behind one or two key points. The following data is drawn from the background information for the Australia 2020 Summit. This information relates to the section on Australia's Future in the World. In line with the oft told lie, "climate change" is posited as the greatest threat facing mankind at this present point in history. To bolster this claim, the background information contains this disclaimer within the preamble.

These background materials aim to tell an evidence-based story about how Australia is faring. They are not intended to be definitive or comprehensive, but were put together to stimulate discussion on the main challenges and opportunities facing the country and the choices to be made in addressing them. They do not represent government policy.

The point of stimulated discussion is to advance the subject further than before, based on facts and evidence, not supposition or conjecture. Background materials which contain errors, lies and untruths end up placing emphasis on elements of a subject that mask other factors which may be worthy of equal consideration. For example, within this paper there is not a single mention of the threat that Islamic terrorism places on Australia's regional security, it's infrastructure protection, and educational and political sanctity, amongst other things. There is a graph on page 10 that outlines an alleged life-loss due to rising sea levels predicated on massive rises to ocean levels. Ranging from 60-100 cm, the graph provides no time frame for reference, and does not go back to the alleged 'key reference', the IPCC Inter-governmental Report from last year.

In other words, placing emphasis on 'Resource scarcity' and 'Cimate change' as the key security issues to be addressed instead of booming regional powers with an eye for land and resources here. The questions posed to be addressed at the security Summit don't address any of the strategic issues, and will more than likely not be conjoined with the Defence White Paper, currently due for release at end 2008.

This government has made noise about issues that are of little import in the short term, and failed to present a cohesive and multi-faceted approach to Australia's role as an 'active middle' power within international affairs.

In line with the opening quote, this is the focus of the Australia 2020 Summit. It's one point, and one point alone that is made abundantly clear.

  • Health - "Climate change is expected to have adverse health effects", page 14.

  • Economy - "The Australian economy will need to adapt to meet coming challenges while grasping future opportunities" One of three challenges mentioned is 'Climate Change', page 2.

  • Education, skills and productivity - "The Australian economy will need to adapt to meet coming challenges while grasping future opportunities" Same graph and issue as the Economy discussion paper, page 2.

  • Climate Change - No guesses on what this topic is flogging. Every page.

  • Productivity - "Australia is more vulnerable to climate change than most other OECD nations…", page 2. Then Garnaut's Climate Change Interim Report 2009 gets a mention in references. An inordinate amount of time is spent on developing the concept of Early Education as maximising productivity.

  • Rural Australia - "Climate change presents challenges, but also some opportunities for rural and regional Australia", page 10.

  • Communities - "Many working households have low incomes, and there is an older group of Australians who lack sufficient retirement savings", page 12. Using the term 'working households' is not the same as 'working families'. Which is ALP policy.

  • Indigenous Australia - No options for dealing with climate change in Aboriginal communities are proposed in this paper. The ALP are still hell-bent on pursuing a policy of social exclusion though. "What can be done to best promote and preserve Indigenous culture, languages and traditions?", page 11.

  • Creative Australia - "While our film industry appears to be growing, domestic successes have recently eluded us", page 4. That's because Australian films are usually dross, and require significant levels of government support in the form ofproduction finance, taxation incentives, grants and subsidies to exist. Real 'creative'.

  • Australian Governance - "How should individuals and the state share responsibility for community problems like climate change, lifestyle-related diseases etc?", page 14.

  • Australia's Future - "Climate change, if not effectively addressed, will have enormous economic and human security costs, especially for coastal and agriculture-based economies", page 10.
Crossposted at Bastards Inc.

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