Saturday, August 31, 2013

The pond sees sunny days it thought would never end, sweet dreams and flying Murdochains in pieces on the ground, reluctant to talk about things to come ... ...

(Above: this is the first Moir for the pond we can remember, and you can get more Moir here)

The pond would like to announce the first mosquito and cocky (that's cockroaches to southerners free of the tribe) of the season, but actually the mossies and the cockies have been on duty all through one of the warmest winters on record ... the grape vine has gone mad, the plants are confused, the penny lizards bask in the sun, pregnant with hope and new lizards, and so it goes ...

But sssh, remember it's only weather, and whatever you do, don't mention climate change, you know how it agitates and upsets the Bolter and the reptiles at the lizard Oz.

Indeed it takes exceptional skill to report the weather and not make a passing reference to the climate, but the hacks at the Daily Terror have an astonishing, exceptional skill ...

Well done, and well played, Daniela Ongaro and Nathan Klein, for The winter of our content: Sydney enjoys its warmest cold season in 150 years. (allegedly behind the Daily Terror paywall, but thanks to the paywall busters at the Courier-Mail, with a click its yours for free. And yes, it's worth even less than you've paid for it).

It turns out that the warm weather is just spiffing news, with everyone having a jolly good time, what with the balmy conditions and the winter blues banished, and the weekend a time for smiling, and along with that comes a bonus, stout-hearted ability not to reach any conclusions:

BOM records show the top four warmest winters recorded have all occurred in the past 12 years. "There's certainly been a real clustering of warm winters in the past decade," Mr Trewin said. 
"If you look at the warmest winters in record before this year - the top four and six of the top seven - have happened in the 12 years since 2001."

Phew, for a moment there, the pond was really anxious that climate change might be mentioned, but Daniela and Nathan are made of sterner stuff.

Climate change? Climate science? In your dreams, they know how to scribble the right things, and serve their master's voice.

Oh the snow season might be over but all that means is it's time to get out the togs instead, and head off to the sunny beaches of Newcastle and have a chat with the seagulls and pelicans (especially if you live in the relentless Canberra winter).

Knuckle-ground-grazing, jaw-dropping stuff?

You betcha. But someone at didn't tell the hacks the party line, or someone forget the lines in the song sheet as you can read in Brisbane winter 2013 the warmest on record:

Sky News meteorologist Tom Saunders said Sydney, Melbourne and Canberra also recorded their warmest cold seasons on record. 
"Temperatures soared well above average for most days this winter from Cape York and the Top End, through the interior all the way to Tasmania,''' he said.
Brisbane's record was significant, given data was available back to 1887. "Sydney's overall average temperature of 14.9C was well above the old record of 14.6C from 1988 with data back to the 1850s,'' he said. 
Warm conditions were due to the dominance of high pressure over Australia and the associated reduced number of cold fronts which prevented cold polar air pushing north. Abnormally warm ocean temperatures, lingering from the hottest summer on record, also contributed. 
"The shift to higher pressure, warmer seas and higher atmospheric temperatures are all trends related to climate change,'' Mr Saunders said. 

The story even quotes Alex Sen Gupta from UNSW, and the deviant even dares to mention climate change and science again:

Experiments showed that the recent slowdown was a consequence of natural oscillation. 
"When the natural oscillation swings the other way, as it must eventually do, we are going to see a period of much faster global warming. When that might occur is the next big scientific question."

Oh just get out your togs and go for a swim on a Newcastle beach Mr Alex Sen Gupta ... embrace the warmth, in best Terror, mossie, cockie and lizard style.

Meanwhile, on another planet very far away, you can read Coalition's climate policy would cost vastly more than budgeted, study finds:

The modelling found that as the cheapest forms of carbon abatement were used, the Coalition's scheme would have to pay about $58 a tonne to achieve Australia's full target. The Coalition has said it doesn't think it will have to pay more than about $15 a tonne. 
 The Coalition has not done its own modelling of Direct Action, but dismissed the Sinclair Knight Merz/MMA, with Coalition leader Tony Abbott saying: "I simply don't accept the report."

Yes and King Canute simply didn't accept the tides ...

Oh pardon the pond, but can we just do a little detour, and contemplate what little we know of Cnut, or Canute if you will?

First he married his daughter to a Roman emperor with unutterable splendour (Tony has two), and second in going to Rome, he arranged for a reduction in tolls by half for roads through Gaul to Rome (Tony is big on roads), and ...

... third, that with the greatest vigor he commanded that his chair should be set on the shore, when the tide began to rise. And then he spoke to the rising sea saying “You are part of my dominion, and the ground that I am seated upon is mine, nor has anyone disobeyed my orders with impunity. Therefore, I order you not to rise onto my land, nor to wet the clothes or body of your Lord”. But the sea carried on rising as usual without any reverence for his person, and soaked his feet and legs. Then he moving away said: “All the inhabitants of the world should know that the power of kings is vain and trivial, and that none is worthy the name of king but He whose command the heaven, earth and sea obey by eternal laws”. Therefore King Cnut never afterwards placed the crown on his head, but above a picture of the Lord nailed to the cross, turning it forever into a means to praise God, the great king. By whose mercy may the soul of King Cnut enjoy peace. (here, with the original Latin Chronicle)

Indeed. And Tony doesn't accept reports.

What the pond found most astonishing was the line The Coalition has not done its own modelling of Direct Action ...

Remember all that idle chatter about the need for a business plan for the NBN? The acres and reams of digital ink wasted by sundry Murdochians?

Well now we've had a number of reports, featuring fairly detailed modelling, and the conclusions in relation to the 'direct action', 'pie in the sky' routine are universally problematic and negative.

Please allow the pond to borrow from Lenore Taylor's piece in the way we borrowed the Canute story:

Modelling by Reputex climate analytics, commissioned by the environment group WWF-Australia, found that the money set aside by the Coalition to buy abatement was likely to fall short by $5.9bn a year between 2015 and 2020, or between $20bn and $35bn in total. 
The Coalition insists it will provide no more than the money it has allocated to its emissions reduction fund – $2.5bn over the next four years – and, according to figures in the original 2009 policy document, almost $5bn by 2020. 
According to Reputex, if it sticks with this funding allocation Australia's emissions will rise by 16% by 2020 compared with 2000 levels, missing by a long way Australia's international commitment to reduce emissions by 5% over that timeframe ... 
Reputex found that a 25% cut could not be delivered by Direct Action under any realistic pricing scenario. The fact that a direct action scheme cannot be "scaled up" was pointed out by former Liberal leader Malcolm Turnbull when he explained in 2011 that continuing to use a big government taxpayer-funded scheme to reduce emissions in the long term would "become a very expensive charge on the budget in the years ahead". 
 The Reputex analysis is more damning of the Coalition's plan that recent modelling by Sinclair Knight Merz/MMA and Monash University's Centre of Policy Studies, commissioned by the Climate Institute. That modelling, which used assumptions more generous to the Coalition, found the Coalition would have to find at least another $4bn for its climate policy or else break its pledge to cut emissions by 5% by 2020 and instead allow them to increase by 9%.

Either way, Abbott and Hunt are peddling a dud, and within a week, it's likely they will begin to roll out that expensive, untested dud, and the Daily Terror will be cheerfully telling all and sundry its time to break out the togs and talk to the seagulls and the pelicans ...

Will any of them have the gumption to admit their folly and change course?

Oh look:

By golly that's a nostalgia fest for aged Mac users, but moving right along, the hapless Fairfaxians today asked:

But if you read Tom Allard's piece, The affluenza effect (the header for his piece answering Why are we whingeing?), it turns into a doom-laden whinge, with bouquet garni of Garnaut:

Australia's long period of prosperity has produced ''a new political culture that elevates private over public interests and the immediate over the longer term'', Garnaut says. 
''If we continue within the political culture … we will live in greater comfort for a short while. But sooner rather than later we will experience deep economic recession with high unemployment. We can expect bitter conflict within our society, and unhappiness about our institutions."

Yes, it's an epic whinge, but sheesh Tom you really need to learn how to do a proper full blown six track widescreen whinge, of the kind you can find in today's rotating digital splash of doom featuring the reptiles of the lizard Oz:

It's pretty amazing when you see it laid out in linear fashion, the whole tribe either whingeing, or mocking, though perhaps David Burchell's pitch is the richest, seeing as how he's scribbling as a lickspittle lackey for our very own contemporary Charles Foster Kane, though no-one is quite sure they've found the Rosebud on his lips ...

On the other hand, others might admire Chris Kenny, spruiking for an outlet which is beyond boosterism, into the shameless valley of lickspittle lackey fellow travelling and cheerleading, simply on the basis that a billionaire Charles Foster Kane is entitled to tell his lackeys and everyone else how to vote because he happens to be privately funded ... except of course when he's been given exceptional aid by caring politicians ... (sssh, don't mention Maggie).

Meanwhile, as its gesture towards covering the weather (sssh, don't mention the climate), the reptiles at the lizard Oz offered up a report from Adam Hegarty in the 'Tiser, and what a bright, sunny report it was, as you can read in Warm, sunny weather tipped across South Australia for the first week of spring.

Blyth farmer Kev Pratt is no exception. As his daughter Greta, 5, enjoys the picturesque spring addition of canola crops to the state's rural landscape, Mr Pratt is hopeful of a bumper crop. 
Despite a wet winter, South Australia could also record its warmest 12-month period since records began in 1990. 
Mr Ray said the figures would be finalised next week, but it was likely the period from September 2012 to August 2013 would be the warmest of any 12 months on record.

Records began in 1990?

Oh you pitiful, pathetic croweaters. So that's why when the pond lived in Adelaide there were absolutely no weather forecasts ...

Yes, it's an exemplary report, and well done and well played Adam Hegarty. You didn't mention climate change.

The pond would have been shocked and appalled if you did.

Now a stray reader might be depressed about this, so let the pond and the reptiles working for our modern Charles Foster Kane make amends.

Sun, surf, sand and flowers, and a climate change policy that hasn't been modelled by its proponents, and the whingers safe in their castle ignoring everything except their master's voice.

What could be more perfect?

Take it away, Mr Taylor:

Now I’m walking my mind to an easy time 
My back turned towards the sun 
Lord knows when the hot wind blows 
It’ll turn your head around 
There’s hours of time on the internet
To talk about things to come 
Sweet dreams and Murdochians ...
And climate science in pieces on the ground


  1. A James Taylor quote! I'm impressed. But it does date us somewhat DP. I also have fond memories of Alice's Restaurant.

    (And be careful how you type Cnut)

    1. It's so good it's worth a dozen listenings. Here's the original.

  2. Dorothy, I am a lurker here, and every morning I check the Pond for you latest missive. Thanks for keeping us informed about the absurdities that "Dame Slap" and her colleagues are saying. You are "taking one for the team" by reading their awful stuff and presenting it in such an entertaining way.

    I have been thinking for some time that the Bureau is likely to announce the hottest 12 month period in Australia at about the same time that Abbott becomes PM. One might suspect that nature has a sense of humour - remember that the beginning of Howard's stint as PM coincided with the beginning of the worst drought in Australia's history. The point is that such "coincidences" are likely to occur to people who are disconnected to reality.

  3. Dorothy, how can you not be impressed? A warmer-than-usual Spring, followed by a warmer Summer (not to mention wetter as well). A bumper canola crop! I am expecting any day now Jolly Joe will presage a tax cut courtesy of all the money we will save by not having to develop the North - it's coming to us. Unalloyed good news, I tell you!

  4. That Murdoch/Conservatives Conga Line is slowly morphing into Conga Nation me fears!

  5. ssshpeak of the devil...

  6. Snow-White
    (by The Brothers Grimm, adapted)

    “She has a magic mirror which tells her only the truth. She looks into it every day and asks it:

    «Tell me, mirror, tell me true!
    Who is the most beautiful of all?»

    And the mirror always answers:
    «You, my Queen, are the finest and the most beautiful lady in the world.»”

    News Corp looks in the mirror and asks “who is the least bias major publisher”

  7. Amazing scenes, higgs boson. It's hard to work out who's more stupid.

    Nic Hodges for devising a stupid and meaningless monitoring tool:

    Or News Corp so desperate to imagine it's not biased that it actually published the results of his factoid gibberish in a way that seemed to reflect favourably on them.

    Even dodo Hodges says his gimmick wasn't a scientific assessment of bias - d'oh - but an anecdotal assessment of how readers consume and assess online content. And even on that rudimentary level, it's an epic fail.


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