As recent events confirm, these are desperate times and desperate times call for desperate measures! If BUMS* and our fossil fuel billionaire chums lose control over power generation, then billions in rightful coal profits are at stake and the world as we know it may...
BREAKING: On behalf of BUMS*, Coral Bleach and Lignite Pitt QC are seeking legal advice to challenge the Victorian state government's massive rooftop solar power scheme on the grounds that it undermines their legacy control over power. "It's a reckless and selfish...
Today Coral Bleach and her high flying BUMS* entourage—including Our Gina, Our Mitch (Minister for Billionaires Communications), Our Rupie (Emperor of Our Media Empire), Our Vanessa (Chief of the Minerals Council of Australia and already on ABC’s Board thanks to Our...
Do you think it's reasonable for people with long histories of influencing public policies in order to prop up the profits of highly destructive industries to hold prestigious positions on boards and special committees of our nation’s proudest cultural institutions?...
IPCC cities conference tackles gaps between science and climate action on the ground https://theconversation.com/ipcc-cities-conference-tackles-gaps-between-science-and-climate-action-on-the-ground-93287 Eastern Mediterranean summer will be two months longer by end of...
I am sitting in a café at the top of a department store in the middle of Bonn, Germany. I’m here for the coffee, free Wi-Fi and easy access to a toilet. The simple needs of a traveller. It’s early in the day and people, mostly older people, are gathered in small...
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5ZLo8YUPHN4 Given the converging crisis we face—as evidenced by extreme weather conditions everywhere and horrifying rates of species loss—all polluting industries must now take full responsibility for halting their greenhouse gas...
As the US was reeling from unprecedented hurricanes, Climate Guardians hand delivered scrolls with universal messages to Silicon Valley. In our travels we had many conversations with curious passersby. We discussed the insidious and predatory ways in which profit...
Oh that Sweetie Alan Finkel, what a Sorcerer he is! While our people in high places combust over particulates in the Finkel Review’s Clean Energy Target, we Coal Diggers are secretly delighted! For, in line with our expertant submission, there’s to be no more...
How could we just stand by while poor Gina is being picked on for suing Victorians for $2.7bn for not letting her local pet company, Lakes Oil, frack where it wants, and Guatam fields such unreasonable attacks from all the little people having tanties and trying to...
Our Auntie is Not a Murdoch
The tried and tested means of transferring invaluable public assets—assets that were established by generations of citizens—into private hands goes like this:
- Proclaim that the nation’s budget is out of control and cut taxes for corporations and the wealthiest people in the community under the pretext of it creating “jobs and growth”, despite election promises to crack down on tax avoidance.
- Increase public subsidies (aka corporate welfare) for projects led by the largest companies operating in Australia, such as fossil fuel and mining companies, to ensure there are budget shortfalls.
- Use the excuse of budget shortfalls to cut public spending to the poorest people in our community as well as to areas that benefit most members of the community, such as health, education and information services that enable the community to hold their decision makers to account.
Australians trust the ABC because it employs journalists who understand that their job is to accurately and impartially convey information. For this reason it is a national treasure.
Meanwhile, the current ABC Board and executive team seem to be having problems understanding the traditional role that the ABC plays in informing and educating Australians with independent information. Sadly, these administrators don’t seem to recognise the difference between talented, dedicated journalists and industry spokespeople who are mouthpieces for vested interests.
At 5.45am last Wednesday 14 December, armed with the red line of fabric that led more than 10,000 climate protestors through the streets of Paris* at the conclusion of COP21 this time last year, the Climate Guardians descended on the ABC Southbank studios to lock out industry stooges who are hijacking Australia’s public broadcaster and national information provider. We signified the ABC’s iconic Lissajous curve logo with our red fabric and carried signs reading:
- OUR AUNTIE IS NOT A MURDOCH
- INDUSTRY LOBBYISTS ARE NOT QUALIFIED SCIENTISTS
- SCIENTIFIC FACTS ARE NOT INDUSTRY-AGENDA OPINIONS
- INDEPENDENT ABC NOT MOUTHPIECE FOR POLLUTERS
- INVOICE TO: GUATAM ADANI FOR: LAST WEEK’S CARMICHAEL COAL MINE ‘ADVERTORIAL’ AMOUNT: Incalculable (ABC NOT ‘open for business’)
- ALL LIVES DEPEND ON A SAFE CLIMATE
- KEEP COAL, OIL AND GAS IN THE GROUND
We intend to continue holding the ABC Board to account for allowing Australia’s national public broadcaster to be used as a mouthpiece for anthropogenic climate change deniers with close ties to industry front groups, including the Institute of Pubic Affairs (IPA) and Centre for Independent Studies (CIS).
It’s thanks to countless talented, trained journalists at the ABC that generations of Australians have been highly independently informed and educated about our world and our nation’s position and responsibilities within it. But now, driven by business and industry and their political supporters, there has been an increasing and illogical expectation that the ABC ought to dumb down its content in line with commercial stations that are beholden to the vested interests of advertisers and corporate partners. Peer reviewed science is not the same as ‘opinion’ no matter how many times right wing commentators assert that it is, as a strategy to mislead and confuse the public.
Given that a) the Australian public has built the ABC to be independent and reliable, and b) 97 per cent of scientists are in agreement re: anthropogenic climate change, we believe that Australian taxpayers have a right to know why in recent times:
- The ABC’s Board has an obvious bias towards neoliberal leaning directors lacking experience in the provision of independent information and educational services;
- A disproportionate number of spokespeople from climate denier industry front groups are now being given airtime on the ABC;
- Transparency is being severely compromised at the ABC—for instance, spokespeople from special interest groups who are now regularly appearing on ABC programs are not currently obliged to disclose the funding behind their positions;
- Multiple award-winning and highly popular ABC science programs that have been a major source of public education relating to climate science, including startling rapid changes happening in Australia’s environment right now, as well as information re: how to respond during climate-induced extreme weather events such as firestorms, are now being reformulated in ways that appear to be setting them up to fail;
- Expressing basic concerns over food and water security, and preserving Australia’s unique environment, is deemed ‘political’? (which also begs the question about why taking an interest in politics is allegedly something that should be shied away from?);
- ABC news coverage of the latest developments re: the proposed Adani Carmichael Coal project (including a billion dollars of taxpayers’ money being promised for infrastructure to help cart coal for shipment through the extremely vulnerable Great Barrier Reef) reads more like an ‘advertorial,’ making little or no mention of the catastrophic impacts the project would have on the local environment and the global climate, not to mention the 69,000 jobs that currently depend on a healthy reef; and
- Australians are losing trust in the ABC’s Board and executive team for allowing the ABC’s independence to be severely compromised.
We cannot address climate change and deliver on Australia’s promises to the world community under the Paris Climate Agreement while industry lobbyists are allowed to use our national public broadcaster and information provider as a mouthpiece. Having come from the Murdoch Empire, Michelle Guthrie knows full well that there are more than enough opportunities for industry driven opinions to be expressed via the commercial Newscorp empire.
It is precisely because the ABC is our trusted public broadcaster and national information provider that climate deniers have an obvious agenda to exploit it. Providing substantial coverage for the agenda of industry groups with vested interests—whose lobbyists are on the record referring to themselves as the Greenhouse Mafia and bragging about turning Australia into a ‘polluters’ paradise’—under the guise of providing ‘balance’ is wrong.