Chinese counterfeits are killing PNG’s embryonic fashion industry

Climate change - & the deafness of those unwilling to face reality

B&w Overland
Chris Overland


ADELAIDE - What passes as the climate debate seems to me to typify what is happening in our world today.

Those who occupy what might broadly be described as a conservative political position seem unwilling or unable to grasp the scale of the problem or its probable consequences.

As a result, they are quite unwilling to contemplate the economic and lifestyle trade-offs required, especially in the so-called developed world, to ameliorate the worst effects of the change process that is clearly and unequivocally occurring now.

Those who have what is called a progressive political outlook see the oncoming disaster but are apparently incapable of galvanising sufficient public support to induce governments to do anything meaningful.

Partly at least, this is because the progressive forces often are also the proponents of the sort of identity politics around sexual preferences, ethnicity, and so forth that have so material assisted the resurgence of ‘white nationalism’ that they despise.

Bernard Corden is right: the only occupants of the middle ground are indeed merely road kill of one sort or another.

This is all part of a bigger picture, which is the world's descent into a sort of collective madness.

We now live in an increasingly dystopian world in which a swirling maelstrom of hot button political, economic and social issues, leavened with a generous serve of rat-baggery as well as truly sinister ideas, has destabilised the world order.

This helps explain why authoritarians claiming to know the answers to the world's problems are once again being elected to office by a disillusioned, ignorant and frightened populace.

Of course, they are merely the usual suspects: pretenders and charlatans whose simplistic nostrums actually make no sense at all and often contribute to the growing madness.

The unhappy role of Papua New Guinea and other Pacific nations is to be the helpless victims of all this, just like they were during the 20th century wars that ended European and Japanese imperialism, replacing it with other, more subtle forms of tyranny.

So, the Pacific Islands Forum members may talk to their hearts' content but their words are just wind really.

The great and the good are no longer listening: they are too busy jostling for power, prestige and money to take any notice of a few tiny islands, far, far away.


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Bernard Corden

The gas masks were obviously made by Cape PLC at its Barking factory in East London and chrysotile or white asbestos was used for its filters, which was imported from the EGNEP mine in the Cape Province of South Africa.

The term Barking Cough is still in common usage throughout the east end and its often said that Cape PLC did more harm than the Luftwaffe. The exhaust fans at its manufacturing plant discharged adjacent to the local primary school.

The mesothelioma rate in East London is one of the highest in the UK along with Armley in Leeds, which was the site of the Turner and Newall asbestos factory.

Cape PLC is still operating and was recently rewarded with several major contracts during construction of the coal seam gas projects in Queensland, the Inpex project in Darwin and the Gorgon and Wheatstone projects in the Carnarvon Basin in WA.

"No amount of cajolery, and no attempts at ethical or social seduction, can eradicate from my heart a deep burning hatred for the Tory Party. So far as I am concerned they are lower than vermin." - Aneurin Bevan

Paul Oates

Hey KJ. Are you back in the country yet? I was referring to the media and their accomodation with our leaders who don't see the need to whip up any enthusiasm about our so called Pacific family.

Behind the scenes, those of us who do care are doing our best.

Paul Oates

Here's one for you Bernard:

Speech (by Chamberlain) in Kettering (2 July 1938), quoted in The Times (4 July 1938), p. 21

'How horrible, fantastic, incredible it is that we should be digging trenches and trying on gas-masks here because of a quarrel in a far away country between people of whom we know nothing. It seems still more impossible that a quarrel which has already been settled in principle should be the subject of war.'

In line with what Chris has written, the real problem is that anyone not directly involved is not encouraged to take an active interest in the practicalities of the situation.

Our leaders make the decisions on climate change and all important matters affecting our country. We citizens re-elect our leaders periodically and between times retain substantial ability to influence them. That's our job, that's our role, that's what we can do. So what's this haplessness about "not being encouraged". Just get on with it - KJ

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