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(WHAT) ARE THEY THINKING? This Labor government has done some good but “Living Green” is killing them

LivinggreenerA loyal Labor correspondent vented to VEXNEWS today:

What the f*ck is this sh*t? Living “greener”? “Sustainable living”?

He supplied a link, to an official website of the Commonwealth Government Department of Climate Change, wait for it, Living Green(er).


Enraged, she continued:

This sort of thing is why we’re on 31%. People don’t want to live “greener”. They want to live cheaper, or easier, or better. They hate the carbon tax because it’s a cost impost for green reasons. They think we sold out to the Greens Party to get into government. And here we are telling them to “live greener”, as one of our major websites? For f*ck’s sake… in the suburbs and the land of the swinging voter – unlike the world of the E-grade political staffer, overpaid and underworked, living in Canberra or the inner city – green does NOT equal good.

Encouraging less waste, more energy efficiency, all of that is, of course, good. But why does a Labor government use the branding of its enemies, sworn enemies, dedicated to “replacing the bastards” on a taxpayer funded website as propaganda?

It’s sad, stupid and bizarre.

We hadn’t previously drawn attention to it, but equally open to ridicule was the announcement by Minister Simon Crean who has mostly surprised us by being one of the government’s better presenters in a field of genuine interest to him, regional development.

In one release on June 12th, the government announced it was willing to pay taxpayer cash for cow manure. Yes, you read correctly.

Dairy producers could soon earn carbon credits through the Federal Government’s Carbon Farming Initiative by capturing and destroying harmful greenhouse gases released by cow manure under a new carbon farming methodology released today for public comment.

Fortunately for the government, the politics of giving money to farmers, or studying new and exciting methods for how to give them more, for any dubious purpose, is reasonably safe ground in Australia so they haven’t being pinged for it.

Just cut the cockies another cheque.

It all comes on top of the most extraordinary story today, splashed in the unlikely venue of the Sunday Age, which reported the monumental scandal:

THE Australian-funded $300 million Global Carbon Capture and Storage Institute set up by former prime minister Kevin Rudd has squandered taxpayers’ money for negligible results, ex-staff say.

And according to a survey of the institute’s 190 members, which include businesses, governments and institutions from around the world, many were ”fed up with the lack of focus … and fast losing patience” with its work.

Fairfax’s feisty Lenore Taylor reported:

The institute’s new chief executive, Brad Page, said it was now refocusing its approach, but conceded the original $100 million a year ”seed funding” given to the organisation – launched with great enthusiasm by Mr Rudd in 2009 to ”lead the world” in the greenhouse gas reduction technology – was too much for the fledgling body to manage efficiently.
”It’s actually impossible to spend that amount of money responsibly,” Mr Page told The Sunday Age.

It’s breathtaking stuff, even the HSU’s chief crook Kathy Jackson would be ashamed:

Documents released under freedom-of-information laws show a staggering $54.25 million was spent on ”operational expenses” in the institute’s first two years.
Among those expenses were numerous first-class air fares for board members and lavish overseas trips for more than 15 of the institute’s Australia-based staff to attend meetings in France and Japan, where they stayed in five-star hotels and were catered for by top chefs.
But for all its high-powered meetings, former staff and industry observers say the Canberra-based institute has never had a clear focus, and this has led to millions of dollars being invested in overseas projects that have been of negligible benefit to Australia.

And the outrage continues:

Since 2009, the institute has received more than $235 million – $122 million of which it has already spent and another $113 million of which remains in a bank account, beyond the reach of Treasury’s cost-cutting razor, according to information provided at a recent Senate estimates hearing.

The not-for-profit organisation has 78 staff, including nine permanent staff working overseas.

It was all down for announcement value, for Rudd boasting purposes at UN gigs, with little thought for how it would work and what it would do. “A Hollowman special,” one crestfallen Labor insider told VEXNEWS today, reflecting on how many more atrocities like this lie in Rudd’s Little Cabinet of Horrors, ready to burst open, should he put his hand up for leadership once more, as some have fantasising about recently.


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  1. I have no doubt that the introduction of all these fanciful *green* initiatives is leading up to Nuclear Power Supplies. Heaven forbid the misadventures Labor will inflict upon Australians when this occurs.Have decided that when that day comes,I will move to an island somewhere.

    Posted by Janet Newton | June 17, 2012, 20:32
  2. Why don’t they be honest and call it ‘Living Poorer’. They can have info on how to keep warm outside at night by using wet newspapers and how to scrounge for food at the tip and the bins of the pollies.

    Posted by chris | June 17, 2012, 21:27
  3. Ah yes far better the ALP get back to its roots of encouraging consumerism for the common good – buy more stuff you don’t need to impress people you don’t know, who couldn’t give a toss about you. Yep we’ve got this modern living thing sussed. More government handouts because one overseas holiday aint enough given I need a big SUV to go with my McMansion because my family deserves it.

    Hang on we tried that didn’t we and now we’re hurtling off the environmental cliff without a parachute. Ask your kids what they’d like you to do, but tell them what living in a world in 20-30 years will be like with an average 4 degrees Celsius increase in temperature.

    Now back to buying more stuff!

    Posted by Chris | June 18, 2012, 7:13
  4. Andy,

    Whilst I agree with you and your source that this Greenie website is a bit nauseatingly Nimbin, the focus of the Government’s PR has been on the compensation (Remember the #cashforyou kerfuffle?).

    So much so, that the Government gets criticised if it focusses on the compensation and not on the environmental aspect of the carbon price/tax/levy/whatever.

    This Government cops (some self inflicted) flak no matter what it does.

    Posted by Brian | June 18, 2012, 10:30
  5. You must be shittin’ yourselves about Melbourne.

    Posted by The Veggie Gardner | June 18, 2012, 14:07
  6. A minority Government does deals with whoever it can to stay in power . Sucking up ? no , political business as usual . Being on subsidy free stand alone Solar Power for 25 years due to exorbitant quote from State Electricity Co. equals Greenie ? no . Not having car because of unemployment in 60’s and riding bike , Greenie ? no . Don’t worry , food shortages !0 years , ” Days Of Long Pig ” 20 to 25 years . Eat Up Big sophisticated smarties . SUV drivers will be remembered as Canned Food by their grand children , mine hopefully see I had a go .

    Posted by casteironstool | June 18, 2012, 15:01
  7. The Carbon Tax is not only responsible for Fairfax’s problems but also my wife’s migrane last night and my dog’s worms. Repeal it NOW Gillard.

    Posted by G Brandis | June 18, 2012, 20:15
  8. They are the mill stone around her neck , but she cant see it.

    Posted by Mother | June 19, 2012, 9:52
  9. Why don’t you just drink the Jim Jones’ cordial and get it over with?

    So someone drives a car you don’t like and lives in a house you don’t like.

    I don’t like your bike. And I certainly don’t like your religion!

    Posted by H the B | June 19, 2012, 10:22
  10. F..k living greener just live in the Pilbra!

    Posted by Sarah Lockhart Myles | June 20, 2012, 10:12
  11. Great to see you’ve bought into the Liberal Party myth (universally rejected elsewhere on the planet) that being “green” is some kind of heinous act of depravity guaranteed to destroy the economy.

    Sadly, one day fairly soon you will wake up and realise what we’ve done to the environment. I hope you at least have the decency to weep.

    Posted by Senor Spielbergo | June 20, 2012, 15:34
  12. Hey, expert, I mean Senor Spielbergo, peope around my neighbourhood are turning off their reverse cycle air conditioners and their ducted gas heating…wait for it…and installing slow combustion wood heaters. Great, now the morning air is thick with asthma inducing wood smoke. People are living green alright, just like people did 400 years ago. On yer green slime..substitute gas and electrical heating for smog. Geez you guys are smart.

    Posted by Futureproof | June 20, 2012, 21:15
  13. Along with the Greens this Union-Labor Government is finished, both may eventually go the way of the Democrates, and hopefully we can see the start of another political party that is not full of lies and corruption.

    Posted by Rosco | June 22, 2012, 15:55
  14. Survival Aint no pencil like religion , I’ll stick with 15 kilos of metal to get around . You need 2000 kilos ? keep watching the gauge , keep paying up big and to hell with the kids . Eat Up Big

    Posted by casteironstool | June 22, 2012, 21:15
  15. No, the ALP are on 31% because they dont have enough quality staffers with a good grasp of policy knowlegde/vision and the nouse to be able to sell it properly when they do have good policies. How can they possibly respond well to an opposition with a great dirt machine and great media spinners, despite having patently crapper and more short-sighted policies. Just look at Victoria. Ted’s a great guy, but….
    What do you mean by greener? And this idea that we all just want things to be cheaper and easier, is why anyone with a mind like that making policy post the next election is bound to fail. Heterogeniety is a sophisticated idea I realise, but it does define the Australian community better than homogeneity. Sorry if that stresses the imagination anyone’s policy brain.
    I am frankly fed up listening to both sides going on about the carbon tax etc. I’m not letting it distract me from looking at the policies of the Libs outside of environmental policy, and I dont like what I hear at all.

    Posted by Recyled old formulas fatigue | June 25, 2012, 2:26
  16. Tools who think we can go on growing our economic activity infinity on a finite planet have reality issues. We must embrace living greener or embrace the industrial wasteland that we will leave otherwise. Certainly it will cost more to act sustainably but just think about it. Think about a lesson that us older folk were taught that waste is sinful. We all know in our hearts that the wasteful society in which we live is coming at a massive cost to our kids. Don’t you love them? Don’t you want them to live in a beautiful green world? Why not?

    Posted by Jonesy | June 27, 2012, 10:49
  17. Why is Bob Stensholt running for council?

    Posted by Richard Surrey Hills | June 27, 2012, 18:38
  18. Bob is running as running for local government marginally beats the dole at Centrelink.

    Posted by anon | June 27, 2012, 21:25