No Not In MY Backyard

fracking kill wildlife

A new environmental poem…. (slightly modified from when first published).

by Des Pensable (c) 2016

My  neighbor has a flash car and boat and is an important commercial banker,

He likes to flaunt his wealth, his pedigreed dog and is a bit of a loud mouthed wanker,

He’s only concerned about the stock exchange and how it’s continually changing,

He said the market is down and Aussie debt was up and it really needs rearranging,

He said the yanks are making fortunes from fracking, a type of unconventional gas mining,

We could do it all over Australia if the farmers and greenies would just stop whining,

He said … but I don’t want it my backyard mate, no not in my backyard

 

The mining company director was really happy, he’d secured another good deal.

The foreign shareholders would all agree to the payment of his bonuses with great zeal.

He wanted to build hundreds of coal seam gas mines in the middle of prime agricultural land.

He was going to flood the world with gas if the prices stayed as high as planned.

He wasn’t worried about the water needed, there was plenty deep underground.

He’d paid all the pollies quite well, but he was worried about greenies hanging around.

He thought … I don’t want them in my backyard mate, no not in my backyard.

 

The Pilliga farmer was unhappy, he’s just found out what the local council had planned,

They had agreed to a coal seam gas mining lease on the block adjacent to his land.

In panic he went to see his local MP, a fine country bred National party man.

His MP said there’s money to be made, we need to build CSG mines as fast as we can.

With Global Warming coming, there’ll be drought and your farm’s as good as dead.

I can’t help you at all, I’ve quit farming and welcomed the miners to my land instead

The farmer replied..but I don’t want them in my backyard mate, no not in my backyard.

 

The farmer studied up on coal seam gas mining and it soon became crystal clear,

It would pollute the underground water and poison the air for animals and people living near,

It would ruin the farming land for generations and speed up Global Warming as well,

It was invented by foreign investors for profit but makes the environment as toxic as Hell.

The farmer cried for help, the farm unions were deaf but the greenies heard of his plight

They rallied the city slickers and tree huggers; thousands came to help him fight

This is our farming land … we don’t want gas mining in our backyard mate, no not in our backyard.

 

The moral of this story is quite clear, when you see a greenie give him or her a hug and smile

Say thanks for your help in caring for our great land; I couldn’t understand you for a while

Now I realize your intentions were pure, I listened to the pollies and got the message wrong,

Those political bastards have sold us all out, there will be nothing left before long

Aussies all over this great land are all in the same boat, we must unite while we can,

We need to vote out all the corrupt pollies and create a national gas mining ban.

Australia is our backyard and we don’t want it in our back yard mate, no not in our back yard.

 

I think I’ll come out and join you protesting. I hope your pub hasn’t run out of beer.   I might even vote Greens next election. What about you?

You might also like Dodgy Dick the Fracking Engineer

For other poems check out Des Pensable Poetry

If you like this poem tell a friend about it

How to Sell a Poisonous TPP Trade Agreement to an Unsuspecting Australian Public

tpp meme3

A Report on the First JSCOT Public Meeting on the TPP

Des Pensable copyright 2016

The TransPacific Partnership Agreement (TPP or TPPA) was signed in NZ  to much protest by people in the 12 countries involved on 4th February, 2016 but does not come into effect unless ratified by the parliaments of countries that represent 85% of their sum total GDPs.

The USA MUST ratify it for it to come into effect. However, the leading Democrat contender (Bernie Sanders) in the current US Presidential race has stated openly that he will NOT ratify the TPP.

Both the LNP and Labor are in favour of ratifying it ASAP but the Greens and some Independents are against ratifying it unless it had been thoroughly examined by the Australian Productivity Commission and found beneficial to the Australian people.

The Joint Standing Committee on Treaties (JSCOT) has the task of examining the TPP treaty and advising the Australian government whether it should be accepted and ratified. The JSCOT are open for submissions from the public until 11th March, 2016. This is your chance to have a say.

The Public Meeting

Yesterday Lance Priestly and I who are members of Stop TPP Australia attended the Public Forum on the TPP in Parliament House Canberra at 11-10am, 22nd January 2016. I took extensive minutes of the meeting. There were about 50 people present.

The public meeting opened with a lengthy 25 minute statement by a DFAT spokesperson who gave a prepared statement of how wonderful it would be for the future of Australia to be a part of the TPP.

She did point out that two modelling studies by the World bank and the Petersen Institute in the USA stated that we get almost zero discernible economic benefit from the TPP but pointed out that models were not always accurate and DFAT believed (without any evidence) we would do better than the models suggested.

Curiously, later when asked why DFAT doesn’t get the Australian Productivity Commission to look at the biggest and most significant Trade Agreement in Australia’s history she stated that it would be a waste of time and resources.

She pointed out that they had agonised over the ISDS clause and the Environmental Section but felt they gave Australia adequate protection.

Interestingly she stated that the DFAT had wide consultations with the unions and public groups about the TPP. Later this was queried by Melissa Parke (Labor) as no one seemed to know who DFAT consulted and she wasn’t about to give names of groups or unions.

The questions section opened with a pre-prepared question by the chair to give DFAT a further chance to tell the meeting how Australia was going to benefit from the trade side of the Agreement.

We were going to sell another 65,000 tons more sugar to the highly protected US market. Nothing much for the beef industry but reduced tariffs on cheese for the dairy industry which NZ is likely to take advantage of in a big way.

We had negotiated to sell more car parts to Japan and Malaysia. This was ironic since the government has killed off the Australian auto industry.

Interestingly she pointed out that we already had strong trade agreements with half the TPP countries and that meant the TPP wouldn’t change much at all in those countries.

She seemed very proud that they had negotiated to sell more mining equipment to some of the countries that actually don’t do much mining. In fact our mining exports were $27 million a couple of years ago and were expected to increase.

In short the new trade agreement basically delivers VERY little to the Australian agriculture industry and DFAT struggled to convince anybody present of anything otherwise.

The DFAT spokesperson was asked who had to ratify the TPP to make the deal work. It turns out that unless the USA and Japan ratify it – it will automatically FAIL. This strongly suggests that Australia and all the other 9 members should wait until the USA and Japan ratify it before we bother to ratify it.

Melissa Parke asked the DFAT spokesperson to expand on why the big US pharmaceutical companies wanted an 8 year period before generics companies could have access to the original data on the efficacy of the patented drugs.

An assistant reeled off a pre-prepared statement which sounded very much like it came directly from the US pharmaceutical industry and completely ignored that fact that the TPP gives big pharma a defacto 8 year extension of their drug patents.

Not only Australia but the whole of the third world poor LOSE BIG on this exclusive right to extend their patents. This is NOT FREE TRADE – but a serious impediment to Free trade and world health.

The discussion moved to the effects of the TPP on the Australian labour market tests. Here it seemed that the spokespeople for the DFAT were at odds with each other. One thought it would affect whether unskilled foreign workers such as those on 457 visas could do skilled jobs in Australia another thought not. It was all in how the TPP clauses were interpreted. The question was left unresolved.

Nothing was said about the TPP pushing privatisation of health or education in Australia. Presumably they didn’t want to discuss this.

The discussion moved onto the ISDS clause. The DFAT stated that they had gone to considerable trouble to make sure that the ISDS clause could be used by Australia against others but was unlikely to be used against us.

Melissa Parkes of Labor pointed out that Canada had been attacked with many ISDS cases through their NAFTA agreement and since they were mineral exporters very much like us, why wouldn’t the ISDS be used against us. The DFAT stated that somehow magically (with no evidence)  they didn’t think we would have the same problems as Canada.

They stated that they had studied all the ISDS cases thoroughly but when asked about a specific Canadian well publicized ISDS case involving environmental matters they didn’t know anything about it.

In the middle of the public hearing there was a division in Parliament which meant that the members of the JSCOT committee had to leave for about 30 minutes to resolve the issue however the public meeting wasn’t extended.

Considering that no members of the audience were able to ask questions; more than half an hour was public relations statements; a half an hour was lost by the parliamentary division and only very rudimentary questions were asked which were poorly answered by the DFAT spokespeople my personal opinion is that the meeting was just a public relations exercise rather than a genuine effort to involve the public.

I commend Labor for trying to get the DFAT to give some real answers to TPP problems. The Liberal members on the Committee were dead wood. The Greens spokesman on the committee was strangely silent. No one discussed whether the TPP would benefit the PEOPLE of Australia.

I would suggest that it is really in the nation’s ABSOLUTE interest to have the Productivity Commission thoroughly examine the benefits of the TPP for the PEOPLE of Australia NOT just the transnational corporations before we ratify it.

In fact, the TPP will usher in such a momentous changes within Australia, our culture and our way of life, that it should be put to a referendum.

Further Reading:

TTIP/TPP/TISA Trade Agreements Mandate Corporatism and Sound the Death Knell of Social Democracy

Twenty Two Reasons Why the TPP will Adversely Affect All Australians and Should be Stopped

Geopolitics of the TPP / TTIP/ TISA: How Will Australia Be Affected 

The Dangerous Relationship between TPP/TTIP/TISA, US Dollar and Global Warming

The Dangerous Relationship between TPP/TTIP/TISA, US Dollar and Global Warming

new world1

Des Pensable copyright 2016

Time is money. The world runs on money. International trade is good for us. The TPP and TTIP will be good for us. We hear this from our government all the time but we also hear comments from its critics. We need to reduce inequality as poverty is increasing and Climate Change is the biggest economic threat in the world in 2O16.  So what does the TPP/TTIP/TISA have to do with the US dollar (USD) and Global Warming?

The world today was largely shaped by an important event way back at the end of WW2. In 1947, the industrial base in many countries was largely destroyed. The exception was the USA. The leaders of most of the western countries had a meeting and decided a new world currency would help reconstruction and trade.

The US dollar (USD) was selected on the understanding that the dollar was convertible at any time to gold. This is widely known as the Bretton -Wood accord. One ounce of gold was pegged at $US35 to stop currency speculation.

It worked well for two decades but in the late 1960’s some European countries were worried the inflationary economic policies and the expensive militarism of the USA.  Germany and Japan were challenging USA in industrial power. The Europeans were worried about the USA ability to convert the USD to gold so they started to redeem their paper US dollars for gold.

At first the USA complied but this depleted US gold stocks so much that the US President Nixon suddenly shocked the financial world by declaring in 1971 that its currency was a fiat currency which basically means the strength of its currency was solely based upon USA economic / military might rather than gold.

This had consequences. To maintain the value of its USD it had to be and remain to be the world’s most powerful country. It had to be the world hegemon. (Russia wasn’t happy about this of course and the Cold War eventuated.)

To help it remain the world hegemon the USA realised that all modern economies relied on the use of fossil fuels so it decided to tie the value of the USD to trade in oil.

The USA politicians knew the middle east had the world’s biggest reserves of oil at that time. They knew a modern military moved on oil and they knew the post Ottoman empire borders in the middle east were a huge mess randomly dividing ethnic, religious and sectarian groups. They knew some countries were blessed with bountiful oil and others had little or none.

They knew that other nearby oil-poor countries within the chaotic border system would covet that oil so they made a deal with the Saudis. They would supply arms and protect the Saudis against all others if the Saudis agreed that they would only sell oil in USD.  The Saudi government agreed and later all the OPEC countries agreed as well. They created a monopoly that set the prices that world had to pay.

That meant that all countries in the world (including China and Russia) needing to grow their economies would need USD to buy oil so the USD would have to be held by all countries to pay for that oil. The Petrodollar was invented. The strength of the US dollar was no longer based upon gold but upon trade in fossil fuels and would continue to be the world’s main currency.

A very smart part of the deal was that any country trading in oil that had surplus USD would invest any surplus USD in US treasury bonds. This was supposed to stop the oil supplying nations from upsetting world finances by speculating with their spare currency.

However, this effectively gave the USA an enormous foreign loan to do with as it pleased. The US Treasury loaned this money to banks who loaned it to the finance industry who began to speculate with it. The result was that the USA was awash with money that it hadn’t actually earned.

It was ideal for spending on spy networks and military interventions all around the world to maintain its hegemony. It was also ideal for sanctioning countries that didn’t do what the USA wanted them to do. The US government could declare economic war on a country by withholding or refusing its trade in USD, by sanctions and by speculating on its currency and it did.

Even better, since the world needed to keep USD in their treasuries to pay for oil it could print paper money and exchange it for goods. In fact for decades now, unlike a barter system, or a monetary system based on something real like gold, where something of value is swapped for something else of value, the US has been trading and consuming the world’s goods with printed paper.

It can only continue to do that while people believe that its paper has some value. Several times throughout history where countries have tried fiat currencies like the USD it had failed dismally. All the paper currency ended up worthless.

If people of the world stop believing that the US paper dollar is worth something then they will stop trading their produce for worthless USD paper currency and the US will plunge into a massive recession bankrupting the rich and causing massive unemployment and undoubtedly a revolution.

To protect its currency and its ability to trade paper for produce the USA must be seen as the most powerful nation of Earth. To do that means that it had to stop anyone else becoming a serious competitor. It had to stop anyone trading oil in currencies other than USD and it did.

Iraq broke with the oil for USD rule and started trading oil for Euros. Iraq was invaded by the USA and its new puppet government resumed trading in USD. Libya suggested that Africa move to a currency based on the Libyan gold dinar a currency backed by hundreds of tons of gold and silver for all commodity trading. Libya was overthrown by US/ French / NATO forces and its gold and silver vanished. It’s now a ruined state.

Recently, the Brazil, Russia, India, China and South Africa (BRICS) set up an alternate world trade and banking system backed by thousands of tons of gold and silver in an attempt to re-establish and stabilize the values of world currencies based upon real goods they produce rather than US military power backed paper dollars. This directly challenges the USA and USD hegemony and we are yet to see what happens.

The US is the most debt ridden country in the world through fighting countless wars to maintain its hegemonic world empire but it now faces a serious enemy greater than any county and that is Nature itself.

The power of its dollar was built on trading fossil fuels which are causing Global Warming which in turn are destroying our world.  At the Paris Climate Change conference in December last year 200 countries around the world agreed to phase out using fossil fuels and switch to other renewable fuels such as solar, wind, wave and geothermal power. That means the death of the fossil fuel industry, no more petrodollars and no more cheap loans of foreign currency for the USA finance industry.

So while monster fossil fuel corporations like Exxon have delayed Global Warming action using corporate funded misinformation and denialist campaigns and others will probably continue this for some time yet, inevitably the USD will have to be based upon something other than fossil fuels trading if the world is to survive a Global Warming catastrophe.

With the death of the petrodollar at hand, the US political and corporate elite believe that USA/  USD hegemony can be re-established with a new world trading system devised in secret by a consortium of transnational tax dodging companies and USA/European corporate bankers. The same bankers that brought on the Global Financial Crisis in 2008 and were never jailed because they were too big to fail.

The dozens of chapters and thousands of pages of this new trading system are embedded within the TPP/TTIP/TISA agreements which might well be labelled the 3T agreement as it is about Trade, Transnationals and Tyranny. It’s primarily about US world trade hegemony.

These new highly restrictive and punitive trading agreements herald in the changes needed by the USA led consortium to create the new international order which of course will continue to use the USD and MANDATES an authoritarian antisocial neoliberal economic continual growth philosophy. Corporate rule rather than democracy.

Thus the value of the USD will soon be based on US led corporate controlled world trade in goods and services produced by the TPP/TTIP countries which effectively become vassal states within a US corporate hegemonic sphere of influence.

There are many dangerous things about the TTP/TTIP/TISA agreements however from the point of view of this article the four most dangerous changes that the TPP/TTIP/TISA agreements will do is

  1. allow free unrestricted movement of currency within the TPP/TTIP/TISA countries
  2. set up a new legal system (ISDS) that settles disputes between governments and the transnational banks and corporations beyond control of all governments and not answerable to the people of the world.
  3. mandate that all the governments must privatise ALL government run services such as power, water, education and health etc.
  4. Totally ignores Global Warming and mandates trade is more important than the environment.

These changes will allow the transnational corporations and bankers currently holding  massive amounts of USD paper money held in tax havens estimated at up to 32 trillion USD to be used to buy real estate, farms, businesses and privatise ALL government run services and pollute the environment at will. This has already started as they are buying up the world’s fresh water. Take a minute to think about what this means.

They will use printed USD paper to buy the world and then rent it back to the people living in those countries. Everything will be owned and everyone owned through their debt to the banks. This includes ALL the citizens of all the countries poised to sign the TPP/TTIP/TISA. Your lives are soon to be traded for paper USD. If you don’t know what being sold as a slave means your children and theirs will know.

In return the US military will protect its TPP/TTIP vassal states from others such as the BRICS states thus creating a new Cold War. The USA is already the biggest supplier of armaments so business in that area is assured. Your kids will be able to get a good job as cannon fodder.

Does this remind you of the Roman Empire as there are plenty of analogies? The only truly free people will be outside the US corporate TPP/TTIP/TISA controlled hegemony. So where do you live? It might be a good time to move.

Halleluiah! The USD can be saved. All the US corporate controlled world will continue to need USD and the USA can continue to get goods for printed paper as long as it manages to keeps this artificial system from collapsing. The question is can it?

There are four major problems.

  1. TPP/TTIP/TISA agreements will hinder Global Warming mitigation.
  2. The growing world population will increase Global Warming.
  3. The BRICS consortium threatens the USA corporate banking domination.
  4. Action to Fix the Global Warming problem considered the world’s most important problem that threatens its very existence will be hindered by 1-3 above.

All of these issues are interrelated and will DOMINATE the next few decades and the outcome will determine whether our civilisation survives or not.

These issues will be further examined in future blogs.

NOTE : The countries of the world have not yet signed up to the TPP/TTIP/TISA agreements. Now would be a good time to reconsider whether this really is in our best interest.

see also

The Hidden Agenda of the TPP- to Block Global Warming Mitigation

Geopolitics of the TPP / TTIP/ TISA: How Will Australia Be Affected ?

Will Malcolm Turnbull Use the ISDS in the TPP to Sell Our Souls to the DEVIL?

TTIP/TPP/TISA Trade Agreements Mandate Corporatism and Sound the Death Knell of Social Democracy

Twenty Two Reasons Why the TPP will Adversely Affect All Australians and Should be Stopped

Post publication updates from world media

The Geopolitics of the Trans-Pacific Partnership Agreement (TPPA), A US Imperial Strategy

Should You Become a Climate Change Activist This Year?

 

people vs oil

Des Pensable copyright 2016

Note : This story has been slightly updated to make it more relevant to 2017.

In December 2015 about 200 countries from around the world had a meeting in Paris and agreed that Climate Change was becoming a serious problem that needed to be fixed. They agreed that the burning of fossil fuels such as oil, gas and coal was the cause. They agreed to phase out the use of fossil fuels over the next few decades replacing them with renewable sources of energy such as solar and wind power.

That sounds wonderful, our politicians are finally doing what we pay them to do you might say. Well you would be wrong. The politicians have been brought together several times before and would not or could not agree to do anything about the problem. This time they made a few difficult decisions but left many issues undecided such as how much to spend and how quickly the problem should be fixed.

So what was different this time?

The difference was activists. These are people like you and me, religious and non religious that care about the world and their own families. There are millions of them who are in all the world’s counties, all the religions and all the cultures. They want their children and grandchildren to see and live in the wonderful world that we have inherited from our ancestors. They believe that if not stopped, Climate Change has the potential to change the world to be different and much more hostile world than we or any of our ancestors have ever known.

Over the last several years these people from all around the world have noticed the changes in our world. They’ve noticed trees and flowers blooming earlier. The bush and wild fire seasons starting earlier and finishing later each year. They’ve noticed the storms, hurricanes and cyclones getting bigger and more damaging. They’re seeing droughts where before there were none. They’ve seen mass deaths of wildlife. They are witnessing these changes with their own eyes.

They’ve also heard about and seen videos of the melting glaciers and arctic sea ice. They’ve heard about sea level rises and the predictions based on real evidence of much worse to come if the people of the world don’t act to fix it. They see Climate Change as being like a cancer diagnosis. It’s a shock at first, they deny it, but eventually they accept it. Then they get busy trying to fight it. That’s what is happening right now all around the world.

There are lots of reasons and excuses why people were not fighting Climate Change. The worst excuse was that it’s somebody else’s problem. That’s where you’re wrong. We all breathe the same air. The air is a world community commons. It belongs to us all. Governments and corporations don’t own it but governments are allowing fossil fuel companies to pollute it by dumping massive quantities of greenhouse gases into it causing Climate Change. This is affecting people’s health and livelihoods all over the world.

The big excuse it that it’s really too difficult for an individual and should be left to the government. While this may be true it’s not that simple as governments listen to the rich and powerful first. The people who have lots of money invested in fossil fuels that care more about money than people. If you’re not rich and powerful like most of us you won’t get heard at all.

Aussies do know about the problem and want action to fix it. Before Christmas in 2015, in Sydney 45,000 people like you marched with their kids for Climate Change action. 60, 000 marched in Melbourne. Thousands more in towns all around Australia. Millions marched all around the world. You are NOT alone.

The way to be heard is to join in with others as a group and make so much noise that you are heard. This is what democracy is all about. This is how all the people of the world managed to get politicians to Paris and get them to make the decisions that the wealthy fossil fuel investors and banks didn’t want them to make.

The next thing is you need to keep doing it. Persistence works. We need  to keep making a noise so that politicians hear us and will actually do what they committed to do in Paris. They have a bad habit of promising to act on a problem and then forgetting their promises later. We must keep them honest. We really can make a difference by being activists.

When dodgy gas companies wanted to mine for Coal Seam Gas (CSG) in our Sydney water catchment area using dangerous methods and poisonous chemicals hundreds of people objected then joined together to protest. Dozens of small groups protested all over Sydney. They made CSG mining a state election issue and won.

Two years later the incoming government killed the idea by cancelling the gas mining licences. The activists not only protected Sydney’s water supplies from pollution but also helped reduce Global Warming by keeping the gas in the ground where it can’t be burnt to pollute our air. People uniting in the fight against fossil fuel pollution works !

Government decisions should put people first and profit second. This doesn’t always happen. That’s what being an activist is about, reminding the politicians that the people are their boss not the rich fossil fuel corporations or investors. When are you going to become an activist and help your friends and neighbors stop Climate Change?

Watch this – The world’s Astronauts plea to the Paris Climate Conference …   (8 mins)

Here’s  a few ideas to get started.

  • Join an activist group such as Lock the Gate, the Australian Conservation Foundation, Greenpeace, 350.org (Australia), Friends of the Earth or one of hundreds of local organisations.
  • Divest in fossil fuel assets by moving your savings to a bank that doesn’t invest in Fossil fuels.
  • Become independent yourself on power by going Solar.
  • Resist new coal mine development in Australia
  • Resist Coal Seam Gas mining in Australia
  • Lobby hard for the removal of ALL government subsidies to fossil fuel companies.
  • Vote for politicians that will take serious positive action to mitigate Climate Change – get them to put it in writing.
  • Fight against the corruption of our politicians by the fossil fuel energy mining companies as revealed by ICAC.
  • Join the Greens who have the strong anti corruption and environmental protection policies.

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Read more by this author at the Des Pensable Graphiti web site.

Des is a Climate Reality Project Leader who can give a talk about Climate Change to groups in your locality.

Post publication additions and updates.

Fossil fuel zombies and the fight against undead Big Oil

A new wave of climate insurgents defines itself as law-enforcers

The world’s Biggest Gamble

Has Green Pope Francis Made a Difference on Attitudes to Global Warming?

 

 

Pope-Francis-Encyclical

by Des Pensable copyright 2015

Catholic Pope Francis, the leader of 1.2 billion Catholics around the world has taken up the mantle as a world champion of Global Warming action. He has written an extensive 246 point guide (encyclical) to the members of his faith called “Laudato Si” outlining the problem of Global Warming, its causes and the need for urgent action. However, the document is not just targeted at the Catholic faithful but all mankind as the problem and need for urgent action affects us all.

Internationally, the Pope’s encyclical stimulated a very positive backing from the Islamic community and the Dali Lama.

Following the publication of his encyclical he travelled to the USA and spoke to the US Congress in an appeal for logic and sanity to Global Warming denier Republican congressmen who currently control the congress and are blocking serious US Global Warming mitigation action. His visit was well publicized, timely and his pro Global Warming action message widely distributed around the country.

The question of interest to everyone is whether Pope Francis has had any significant effect at convincing the people of the USA that the problem is both real and needs urgent attention.  A second question is whether his personal appeal to the Global Warming denier politicians especially the Catholic deniers in US congress will yield a change of heart leading to policies that favour action rather than hindrance and inaction.

With 246 points, the encyclical is rather large and strong on the world’s moral obligation to care for God’s creation, our home; to fix wealth inequality and reduce poverty. It has been reduced to 10 main points but can be neatly summarized into three main areas.

  1. it is based unequivocally on the scientific consensus that global warming is taking place and that climate change is man-made; it rejects the denial of anthropogenic warming;
  2. it unmasks the political and economic structures of power behind the climate change debate and stresses the importance of non-state actors in achieving change; and
  3. it defines the atmosphere and the environment as a common good rather than a “no man’s land”, available for anyone to pollute. This underlines that climate change is strongly related to the issues of justice and property rights.

To many conservative US citizens and perhaps conservatives around the world the Pope’s message is likely to be a shocking awakening. It leaves no doubt that the scientists are 100% correct. Global warming is real and if we ignore it then our civilization is likely to perish through our own negligence.

He places the blame for Global Warming squarely on the materialism caused and promoted by the poorly regulated free market Capitalism championed world-wide by the USA.  He is aware that the current continual growth economic philosophy in our world of finite resources is both technically and logically impossible.

He states that the current western neoliberal economic policy is causing an increasing wealth gap between the rich and the poor, increased poverty and damaging nature, the water we drink and the air we breathe. It is destroying the Earth’s life support system.

He argues both a moral and practical case for an urgent world-wide transition from fossil fuel use to renewables. More controversially, he calls for a revolutionary transition over the next few decades from the materialistic free market growth economics to a more socially benevolent and sustainable democratic economic system favoring people over profit.

This will need to be a social economic revolution carried out by the people as the politicians and wealthy elite are unlikely to either be in favor or help.

In short, this effectively means moving the USA and world away from a failing Capitalism which is dooming the planet to a more communal oriented Socialist style world. It favors communal ownership over privatization and a political system responsive to people rather than corporations.

The Pope is a realist in that he understands that asking US politicians, industry and commerce to change its ways is likely to fall on deaf ears. So he has pleaded directly to the courageous responsible clear thinking people of the USA and the world.

He is asking you and me for a peaceful revolution where we transform the world dragging the ignorant, the deniers, the greedy, the blind politicians and arrogant selfish wealthy self-styled elite along with us.

It is a mighty challenge that many would say is impossible but to others it’s inconceivable that we idly sit by waiting to perish without trying. So what is the reaction to the Pope’s call for world-wide action? Well two US opinion polls taken before (spring) and after (fall) the Pope’s pilgrimage to the USA are giving the first response of the US people (see here and here).

In short, it’s very positive. There was a definite Pope Francis effect. Indeed a 10-20 point swing. Significantly more people agree that Global Warming is real, caused by humans and requires urgent action. They are very much in favor of moving quickly towards a carbon emissions-free world using renewables.

opinion poll 0n pope visit

Click on graph for clearer view.

The Francis effect in the USA, has not only changed Global Warming opinion among the US people but reinvigorated the whole US Catholic Church.  Catholic leaders from many countries have signed and submitted a 10 point plan to the organizers of the Paris Climate conference calling for firm international action at the conference in December.

What the polls didn’t ask was whether the people in the USA are willing to move away from the current free market vulture capitalism that profits from fear and war towards a more socially inclusive, sharing and sustainable peaceful economy.

Judging by the popular responses to Bernie Sanders’s Presidential campaign advocating strong Global warming action and an economic move towards a sustainable economy there are millions of enlightened US citizens who would be prepared to move in that direction.

By the same token there are likely to be millions of ignorant authoritarian mass media controlled sheeple who are extremely fearful of any change.

The real unanswered question is whether the US congress has listened to the Pope and is mature enough to place the well-being of the world’s future before their own petty personal agendas and dreams of a US empire. Few have faith in the US congress so it’s likely that the US people will need to do as the Pope suggests and show true leadership at the community level.

You might also like “The World’s Christians Are Global Warming Believers But Does It Matter?

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For more stories on Global Warming by Des Pensable

Is Cutting Politician’s Pay and Conditions Inevitable ?

grandma rioting

by DesPensable  copyright 2015

based on an idea by Fools Troop.

Australia has always been proud of its politicians in the past. We used to boast that we paid them well to ensure we get the best quality candidates for what was a serious responsibility in setting public policy that balanced the needs of the poor with those of the more well off.

They were also remunerated well to ensure their integrity so that they didn’t succumb to the temptation of corruption by those malevolent villains that have always lurked in the shadows of politics looking for quick profit regardless of who suffered.

That was the story that I was told when I went to school a few decades ago. However, a lot has changed in the world over the last couple of decades and now we need to rethink this whole political pay situation. Are we getting value for money?

The Australian politicians are paid amongst the highest in the world with high salaries, bucket loads of allowances and a pension scheme on leaving parliament that pays a lavish salary for life. One might argue that since we are paying them well enough then we deserve to get the quality, responsibility and integrity that we are paying for.

From the point of view of quality each of the major parties gets to choose from a small pool of political hacks that have hung around for years. The top candidates are selected by internal power groups that fight incessantly over petty issues. They develop fine skills in back room deals, backstabbing and deceit. This is not a good start.

The result is we have had 5 Prime Ministers in 5 years and countless juggling of other Ministers to find a few that are really competent to fill their positions. Only 31% of Australians have confidence in their political parties. Only 46% believe it makes a difference which party is in power. Is this quality?

Let’s look at responsibility. The current government  took the majority of their policy from a far right wing think tank called the IPA, a secretive organisation of predominantly businessmen from large companies. Was there any representation from public or advisory groups? No.

The current government  commenced their term by abolishing 20 advisory groups and continued by trying to cull 138 other advisory bodies. Presumably they don’t think government ministers need advice. Was that responsible?  Hardly.

They have just agreed to a secret international agreement called the Transpacific Partnership fashioned by the worlds transnational corporations that will rewrite all the commercial and employment guidelines , rules and laws for our whole country. Once we implement all the TPP laws and new TISA laws they are still keeping secret then they will literally have no more decision making to do as all the TPP and TISA laws can only be changed by the transnational corporations in the USA.

These agreements lay down in law that only neoliberal political policy is allowable. There is no flexibility for social democracy to look after the poor, aged and disadvantaged. The parliament must privatize all government run services including Medicare, schools, TAFES, universities, transport, prisons, postal service, telecommunications, water , power and presumably eventually, National Parks, parks roads and anything that can be sold.

The politicians won’t have any responsibilities any more other than appealing to the private foreign owners of our nation to please let the people keep living in their own country of birth. Indeed there will be no need for Labor and the Greens as social policies, if any, will be set by the transnational corporations for our good as decided by them.

Now let’s review the issue of integrity. The whole Australian satire industry is based upon laughing and making crude jokes about the integrity of the politicians in the two major parties. Is this satire justified?

Recently in NSW the ICAC found the state government to be the most corrupt in Australian history. There are countless rumors about corruption in the Federal politics but the federal politicians refuse to set up a Federal version of ICAC to verify what every Australian already believes. Corruption runs rampant.

Perhaps the Senate in drafting a response the the Royal Commission into the trade unions offers a chance for change. Until then only the most optimistic, the ignorant, the uninformed and  rusted-on conservative LNP sheeple voters could think we that we are getting value for money at the moment.

The question is what happened? Well a majority of Australians are conservative,  selfish and ignorant about world affairs. They don’t give a rat’s arse about politics or really anything other than what happens in the fake reality of TV sports and the mind numbing entertainment offered by the commercial media channels. Ignorance is bliss.

They are well enough off and expect their well-paid but corrupt politicians to do their job babysitting them and protecting their wealth. They want to be left alone to enjoy their wealth in comfort and not have to be concerned about the horrible world outside Australia. The politicians of course know this and exploit it in a variety of get rich quick schemes generally involving the foreign mining companies.

Unfortunately Global Warming affects everyone in the world. Nobody anywhere can hide from it. If the rest of the world has a financial crash, climate apocalypse or a WW3 so will Australia.

Our particularly poor gang of current politicians are not leaders but puppets that dance to the sound of donations from vested interests in the finance and the mining industry.

They want us to believe that a civil war in Syria is a greater threat to the Australia, the driest continent on Earth than Global warming. They want us to believe that mining and selling more coal, which will make Global warming worse, is good for Australia and the world. The world view is that we must keep our coal in the ground.

This leaves us in a very poor position to handle the challenges of a very uncertain future. The world’s scientists have made it ABSOLUTELY CLEAR if we don’t do enough to halt Global Warming and change our economic philosophy from vulture capitalist to a sustainable social democracy then our civilisation WILL PERISH. That means Aussies as well!

We can forget the older people in Australia. They let this happen and won’t lift a finger to help but will most likely hinder any change fearing for their precious savings.  Ask them. They will reply I don’t care about Global Warming because I will be dead before it affects me. So it’s up to the young people that will be drastically affected!

The prime question is will the young people of our stolen country eventually wake up and protest about our politicians’ excessively lavish salaries? Will they demand electoral change that will lead to more honest politicians that will stop selling the county and favor people over corporate profit.? Will they fight to bring back some semblance of social democracy and environmental sanity?

It’s not inevitable that politicians will get a pay cut but it is inevitable that they will be worth even less than the money that we currently pay them in the future unless the young demand and fight for real political change in Australia.

Only they can answer this question but if they are going to do anything they better get a move on. If they are gutless and selfish like their parents then we can all kiss our arses good bye and we all deserve to perish.

Please post your thoughts on this article- feed back helps me get it right.

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Updates on political corruption

Transparency International warns Australia is ‘complacent’ about corruption  Jan 2016

The case for a Federal ICAC  Feb 2016

Larissa Waters: Ban donations from mining companies and stop ministers working for them March 2016

The Public Deserves To Know Who Is Bankrolling Their Candidates

The fossil-fuelled political economy of Australian elections

It seems like a good time to ask: what are governments for?

Report highlights cosy relationship between mining industry and political parties

The TPP will Increase Global Warming and Hinder Paris Global Warming Talks

bunker-fuels-cargo-ships-exhaust-emissions-air-pollution

Des Pensable copyright 2015

It was announced this morning that the Atlanta conference to finalise the TPP agreement between the 12 countries had reached agreement. NZ could sell a little more dairy to Canada, USA and elsewhere. Australia was feted as brave by our local media by forcing the USA to back down a small amount on rules designed to disadvantage the third world and make more profits for drug companies.  But nobody at Atlanta discussed how the TPP might affect mitigation of Global Warming- the world’s most pressing problem.

Most world trade is carried by ships who just so happen to use the world’s dirtiest fuel for their engines. They use bunker oil which is the leftover gunk after everything else is extracted from crude oil. Fifteen of the world’s biggest container ships contribute as much pollution as the ALL the world’s cars.

New research showing that in one year, a single large container ship can emit cancer and asthma-causing pollutants equivalent to that of 50 million cars. The low grade bunker fuel used by the worlds 90,000 cargo ships contains up to 2,000 times the amount of sulfur compared to diesel fuel used in automobiles. The recent boom in the global trade of manufactured goods has also resulted in a new breed of super sized container ship which consume fuel not by the gallons, but by tons per hour, and shipping now accounts for 90% of global trade by volume.

The environmental impact of shipping includes greenhouse gas emissions, acoustic, and oil pollution. The International Maritime Organization (IMO) estimates that Carbon dioxide emissions from shipping were equal to 2.7% of the global human-made emissions in 2007 and expects them to rise by as much as 2 to 3 times by 2050 if no action is taken.

The TPP will substantially  increase Global Warming as the TPP proposes NO carbon emissions offsets to account for the increased global trade. The secret environmental chapter of the TPP was leaked by Wikileaks who stated.

”the Environment Chapter does not include enforcement mechanisms serving the defence of the environment; it is vague and weak, and adheres to the lowest common denominator of environmental interests.” and

“The Environment Chapter clearly shows the intention to first and foremost protect trade, not the environment. The principle is spelled out in this draft that local environmental laws are not to obstruct trade or investment between the countries.”

Their assessment of the section was that it has no binding clauses that will allow any country to create any laws that will protect their environment and there is NO MENTION of Global Warming or Climate Change.

Environmental groups in the USA and Canada have warned their governments that the TPP could have disastrous effects on Global warming but the governments don’t seem to want to know. The corporate concept of profit before people rules.

The Friends of the Earth have pointed out that the TPP will hinder or counter efforts of the UN Sustainable Development Goals, a new plan to address the global challenges of climate change, environmental degradation, poor health, and poverty.

At the moment the primary concern by the worlds scientists at the December Paris Climate Change conference is that Global warming is affecting the oceans adversely from absorption of heat and CO2 causing the oceans to become more acidic  but they haven’t yet realised the danger from the world shipping industry which is one of the world’s biggest polluters and generally unregulated.

Perhaps the most dangerous part of the TPP is the ISDS clause in the TPP. This allows transnational corporates to sue governments in secret courts outside the country if they perceive that any law brought in by the country’s parliament will affect their profits. If Australia does not address this problem then future governments both federal and state will be threatened by transnational corporations for hundreds of billions in damages.

Canada a country already heavily sued by transnational corporations using the ISDS clause in the NAFTA agreement has recognised that the ISDS clause in the TPP will hinder progress at the Paris conference.

The TPP will also affect Australians in many other ways. The solution is clear we must use every effort to block implementation of the TPP in upper house of the Australian government. The Greens, Labor and independents have a duty to all Australians not to allow the TPP agreement to become law.

Australian politicians need to think of not only Australians but the world’s people for once rather than favouring a declining fossil fuel industry. We need to bravely enter the new world of renewable energy and environmentally sustainable government. It’s a big ask as we haven’t had any real leaders in Australia for some time but we can always hope.

You can read my earlier blogs on the TPP here

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Twenty Two Reasons Why the TPP will Adversely Affect All Australians and Should be Stopped

tpp meme3

Des Pensable  copyright 2015

The TPP regulations cover not just trade but almost every aspect of our lives. Only 3 chapters of 29 are about trade, the rest cover everything from the use of the Internet, to labour and working conditions, food and agriculture, medicine and drugs, environment and pollution to flow of money in and out of countries and it’s been completely done in secret. Hundreds of advisers from the multinationals are involved but no consumer organisations and very few of our own parliamentarians in Australia are privy to its contents.

If both the TPP and the TTIP are signed and ratified, without the people being a part of the process then the multinational companies will have a template to rule the world. It’s been called a “corporate coup in disguise” in the USA and strongly criticised in the UK and other countries. The multinationals have much to gain, and similarly you and I in Australia have much to lose.

These so called “Free Trade“ agreements will cause a dramatic reduction in democracy around the world as no one will be able to instruct their own governments to make laws to protect them from corruption, pollution, environmental destruction and the often antisocial and malevolent actions of some of the multinational corporations.

Since we only know what’s in 3 chapters we can only list how the contents of these chapter will adversely affect the people of Australia. These reasons are a compilation from my previous articles.

The Ramifications for Australia 
(for intellectual property links  see here)

  1. Unfair restrictive laws with regard to the Internet, books, software, games, videos  and movies that will NOT benefit any Australian.
  2. Regulations and penalties to FORCE Internet service providers to police their Internet users connections and take down / block any sites that appear might be in breach of the US based copyright laws. It means Internet CENSORSHIP. It means that the Australian government will lose the rights to make laws regarding IP on the Internet. A similar rule to this was blocked by International protest last year.
  3. Treat temporary reproductions of copyrighted works without copyright holders’ authorization as copyright infringement.  You won’t be able to save ANYTHING shown on commercial radio, TV or the Internet to show other people or even comment about without being in breach of the law. This will drastically affect social media and Youtube content.
  4. The TPP wants copyright terms to go well beyond the internationally agreed period in the 1994 Agreement on Trade-Related Aspects of Intellectual Property Rights (TRIPS). This is NOT about fair compensation for the authors. It’s about big multimedia companies controlling art and literature and making profit out of it forever.
  5. Restrictions on Fair use of IP for example in reviews and research. This will affect libraries, schools, universities, social media and anyone wishing to do research or study.
  6. Digital Locks. The TPP calls for more extensive use of digital locks on media content. This will override Australia’s  2007 TPM regime exclusions for region-coding on movies on DVDs, videogames, and players, and for embedded software in devices that restrict access to goods and services for the device. In the US, business competitors have used digital locks to try to block printer cartridge refill services, competing garage door openers, and to lock mobile phones to particular network providers.
  7. Ban parallel importation of genuine goods acquired from other countries without the authorization of copyright owners. This will allow local branches of overseas companies to fix prices to limit competition and it will stop people from buying cheaper versions of the same software or media from overseas suppliers. Definitely NOT free trade.
  8. Adopt criminal sanctionsfor copyright infringement that is done without a commercial motivation. In short it means MASSIVE PENALTIES perhaps thousands of dollars and gaol sentences for any person caught copying a single song, video, movie or anything under copyright even for use within the same household. We will all be criminals.
  9. No more local content on the TV or at the movies.. Gone will be all the Aussie sitcoms, and Playschool as the government bodies won’t be able to subsidize local content or specify Aussie actors.
  10. Increased Cost of Medicine and Drugs in all TPP countries. Oxfam says that the “US [TPP] proposals will have dire health consequences across Asia and Latin America. Medicine Sans Frontiers(MSF), says this about the TPP effect on public health in Australia.
  11. “US proposals would require the further patenting of modifications of old medicines, even in the absence of therapeutic benefits. They would also require patenting of surgical, therapeutic and diagnostic methods which could increase medical liability and the cost of medical practice and thus reduce access to medical procedures.”
  12. “It would prohibit pre-grant opposition to patents. This would make it much more difficult and costly for local organisations to challenge patents and drugs protected by patents even if the patents were invalid.”
  13. “It would also extend patents past the current 20-year norm and prohibit national drug regulatory authorities from approving generic medicine until patents have expired.”
  14. “It would prevent drug safety regulators from using existing clinical data to give market approval to generic or biosimilar drugs. These are all great wins for big pharmaceutical companies. But they come at the cost of public health.”
  15. The ISDS clause in the agreement sets up a court outside Australia which allows transnational corporations to sue the Australian government if they think any federal, state or local law affect their ability to make maximum profit. Trade is considered above all other matter including pollution of the environment or Global Warming. This will inhibit or stop action on pollution, health issues and Global Warming and inhibit action in Paris this year in all countries who sign the TPP/TTIP/TISA agreements. In short it will stop you from protesting about foreign companies polluting your backyard.
  16. If we sign the TPP every transnational will be able to sue us if we take firm action in the future. This could cost Australia $1 trillion to keep our 85% of our coal and CSG in the ground as required by the IPCC.
  17. Based upon previous trade agreements, the TTP will have little or no trade benefits. In previous agreements Australia has LOST trade. In the USA – Australia Trade agreement Australia has been estimated to have lost $53 billion.
  18. The TTIP will have a very strong adverse effect on our economy. It’s estimated that we will lose about 7.5% of our GNP. This is rarely discussed as most people believe that an agreement between the USA and Europe won’t cost us trade. The opposite is true It will cost us $105 Billion per year.
  19. The TPP and TISA agreements set up the mechanism to force all countries to privatize all government services. That means no ABC , SBS, no state owned banks, no state owned power grids, no public transport, no public schools, TAFEs or universities, no Medicare, no public libraries, no meals- on wheels, no needle exchange programs, no National Parks. Imagine Australia without all of these. I bet you can’t.
  20. The TPP is an attempt to force the population of Australia to accept the failing doctrine of neoliberalism and block any social society activities that the people of Australia might like our Federal and or state governments to offer.
  21. The TPP/TTIP/TISA are a template to create two trading/ political blocks within the world. One block controlled and administered by the USA corporates and a second block all those countries out the USA sphere of influence. It sets up the mechanism for a new cold war with Russia and China but China is our biggest trading partner.
  22. Loss of thousands of jobs all over Australia. Will it be your job?

WE are not alone, many Australians have spoken out and activist groups all around the world are fighting against the TPP/TTIP/TISA agreements.

Here’s some suggestions… verify this story by reading more articles. Watch the videos linked below. When satisfied there is a problem become active. Fight to block these agreements and help save your family, our country and its future from corporate tyranny.

short video on TPP by Getup (3 min)

short video on loss of democracy and ISDS. (6 min)

short video on TTIP (Us/Europe) agreement (8 min)

Australia anti-TPP activist groups AFTINETStop the TPP- Australia, Stand Up Australia

If you liked this story check out others here.

What Does Your Cruising Holiday Have to Do with Global Warming ?

cruise ship

by Des Pensable copyright 2015

I recently went on a cruise ship holiday in the Pacific from Sydney to Vanuatu, Lifou and Marie Islands returning to Sydney after 9 days of travelling. It seemed an innocent way to have a relaxing holiday and see some lovely tropical islands. I did have an ulterior motive which was to see how well the Vanuatu islanders have coped after being hit by the massive force 5 cyclone Pam just 6 months ago.

However, there’s a dirty secret about the Cruise industry that few talk about. It’s a globalized  rogue industry that has a massive dirty carbon footprint and generally sweatshop working conditions for its employees. It pays little or no tax to any country while making massive profits that go primarily to a couple of very rich billionaire owners.

The cruise ship is the holiday around the world  that has grown faster than any other in the last 20 years carrying about 20 million passengers each year. It is also the most polluting holiday you can take.

From the environmental point of view here’s some statistics from this source.

  • These giant floating cities, with thousands of cabins, swimming pools, casinos, clubs and restaurants pollute as 14,000 cars, according to recent data of the Prosecutor of Venice.”
  • “Overall, the cruise ships oceanic produce at least 17% of the total emissions of nitrogen oxides, contributing to more than a quarter of total emissions of nitrogen oxides in port cities and coastal areas.”
  • “If you ever choose to embark on one of these marine giants, you must know that your CO2 emissions can be up to 1000 times more than a train journey.”
  • The U.S. EPA estimates that a 3,000-person cruise ship generates 210,000 gallons of sewage weekly — enough to fill 10 backyard swimming pools, and 1 million gallons of graywater — another 40 swimming pools full of waste. One cruise ship equals 50 swimming pools full of highly polluted waste which can be dumped into our oceans each week!”
  • “Cruise ships are also responsible for significant air pollution from the dirty fuel they burn, which can lead to serious human health problems, especially in port communities. Even while at dock, cruise ships often run dirty diesel engines to provide electrical power to passengers and crew.”

Cruise ships are not the only problem on the high seas. Shipping is the major method of transporting goods around the world between countries and it is generally out of sight hence out of mind. Shipping regulations are international and many were set in the 19th century and have changed little. Consequently, the environmental impact of shipping is much greater than anyone might suspect and in light of growing concerns over Global Warming urgently needs review.

According the article above in Wiki “The International Maritime Organization (IMO) estimates that Carbon dioxide emissions from shipping were equal to 2.7% of the global human-made emissions in 2007 and expects them to rise by as much as 2 to 3 times by 2050 if no action is taken.” One can only wonder how much of this comes from all the world’s naval ships.

So how was my holiday on board the cruise ship you might ask? Well I didn’t know the dirty secrets about the cruise ships before went so we had a lovely time as passengers (ignorant bliss). My partner and I met lots of interesting Aussies, had lots of good food, wine and entertainment.

cruise shipuxury

I was concerned about the staff who seemed to be working 12 hours shifts or more. I was concerned that none of the staff were employed from Australia and that they paid no taxes in Australia yet they were operating from Australia and supplying services to the more than 90% of the passengers who were from Australia.

I am concerned that the cruise liner companies pay little or no tax on the $1.2 billion tourist industry in Australia mainly because of a loop hole in our taxation legislation and archaic conventions between countries about transport by sea.

I am concerned that the cruise ship company that I travelled on has the worse environmental record of all the cruise companies operating around the world according to the latest Friends of the Earth report. They don’t tell you these things when you book a cruise.

In a future blog I’ll discuss what I found out about how global Warming is affecting the people of Vanuatu and nearby Islands.

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TTIP/TPP/TISA Trade Agreements Mandate Corporatism and Sound the Death Knell of Social Democracy

corporate USA

Des Pensable (c) 2015

The TTIP, TPP (TPPA) and TISA are three international trade agreements that have been drafted in secret mainly by corporate America and are being pushed extremely hard by the USA Obama government at the moment. They might well have gone unnoticed by most of the world’s people had it not been for Wikileaks who released three chapters of the 29 chapter TPP agreement, a good portion of TISA and are now offering $100,000 for someone to leak more important chapters of the TPP and TTIP.

The three chapters of the TPP and the TISA information have raised alarm bells all around the world and Australia among the left wing of politics, religion, the unions, social welfare, the environmental movement and social economists. The ramifications of these three trade agreements are world changing but not in a socially benevolent way.

They have attracted considerable attention by the lawyers, independent media, social media, the Australian Productivity Commission and in Australian politics by the Greens and Labor. There have been mass rallies against the TPP in many countries including Australia and New Zealand. There has been very limited attention in the right wing corporate controlled mass media in any of the western alliance countries. This is curious as these trade agreements have the ability to change almost everything we take for granted in our world democracies.

Perhaps the scariest aspect of the three new agreements is that they will irretrievably bind most of the world’s western leaning countries into both an economic and military block that will most likely bully the rest of the world.

All world political, economic and military policy will be set by the USA which is already considered to be no longer a democracy but a corporate autocratic oligarchy. It means a US corporate empire spanning the globe asserting itself as a geopolitical hegemon over the rest of the world. It will change everything.

These agreements will lead to a loss of sovereignty which will lead to the demise of our democracies. We, the people will be powerless in puppet vassal states of the US corporate hegemony and likely cannon fodder in a new cold war with Russia and China. Meanwhile, the US mining and energy multinationals will loot the resources of the Middle East, Africa, South America and Australia leaving only pollution and a toxic environment in their wake.

Even more important is that the world will be stopped from tackling Global Warming in a meaningful way as the three trade agreements make it quite clear that corporate “free trade” is more important than ANY other matter including the environment and Global Warming. Even US Senators are worried about this. These trade agreements will force countries like Canada and Australia to pay massive sums in compensation for fossil fuels not mined if they decide to genuinely tackle Global Warming.

This is likely as the fossil fuel industry controls vast wealth already, it has been intimately involved in drafting the agreements and is extremely reluctant to keep 90% of all fossil fuels valued at about 30 trillion dollars in the ground as stated is necessary by the world’s climate scientists. Greed rules economic decisions.

Let’s look at some of the evidence for these dire predictions. Firstly and very important is that all three agreements were drafted primarily by the US multinational corporate sector and pushed by the US government which is controlled largely by the corporate sector with NO input from consumers.

Consumers groups and citizens of all the countries involved are not allowed to see the text of any of the agreements until after their governments pass it into legislation. Most politicians in the countries involved have not seen the text of the agreements but are expected to approve it sight unseen. Some parts of the TISA agreement won’t even be available for viewing for five years after it is approved.

“Last year, Obama’s top trade rep, Ron Kirk, declared that locking out the people is necessary, because the deal’s details would outrage Americans and spook Congress from rubber stamping it. In short, to win public approval of TPP, the Obamacans say they must keep it hidden from the public.” states one political observer.

Would you sign an agreement that will change the world and consequently your life and future without having any input or even seeing the text? Even worse once approved it can’t be changed. Let that sink in for a moment. It can’t be changed by any country’s parliament. This is NOT democracy it is a demand, a decree, to sign it. The multinationals are saying WE KNOW BEST ! You don’t count!

These trade agreements have a provision called the ISDS that sets up a secret international court that is above every court in every country even the USA. Multinational Corporations can sue counties that change or make ANY laws that might affect the corporation’s future incomes adversely.

In the case of Canada which has experience with an ISDS through the NAFTA agreement they are being sued by 35 different corporations for billions of dollars for doing things the companies didn’t like such as trying to protect the health of the people or the environment.

The governments or people of the countries have NO appeal and must pay any penalties demanded by the secret court. The governments or people have no rights to sue the multinational corporation even if they have grievances against those corporations.

This is not democracy – it’s handing the people’s sovereignty to the multinational corporations. It’s been called a corporate coup, an attack on democracy.  It’s giving private unelected, unaccountable people power over every country and its people. Giving them immense power and we know too well that power corrupts.

These trade agreements have provisions that mandate that all countries must privatize all government owned and operated enterprises. This is capitalism and neoliberalism on steroids. The government must divest control of education, medicine, drugs, transport, prisons, power, water and working conditions and not be allowed to reverse its decision. The government will have to allow free flow and movement of foreign capital and have virtually no control of its banks.

These provisions in the trade agreements will effectively end all welfare state activities. Socialism will be banned. All benevolent social state activities banned. All activist opposition to any antisocial, sociopathic, immoral right wing conservative activity banned. The Australian Labor Party and Greens will effectively be left with nothing to do. The corporations will tell our parliament how to run the country, even more than they do now.

The free flow of foreign investment funds will mean that everything in the country will be for sale regardless of whether the people of Australia want that to happen or not. We will not be asked for our opinions. Land, farms, buildings, parks, national parks, companies, schools, colleges, hospitals, unis the ABC, the SBS, the NBN – everything can be and will be sold.

Since the free trade agenda also forbids local content rules. Locally made TV shows and movies will become a thing of the past. Buy local campaigns will be banned. All produce will have no indication of where they came from or whether it is of GMO origin. Food labelling will go. Plain packaging of cigarettes, warnings on alcohol products, all public health advertising is likely to go.

Jobs will go to third world countries. Education and medicine will become too expensive for the average person. Human rights abuses will become common. The police and military will be expanded to make the corporations more secure and to stop us rebelling. The Internet, social media and the main stream news will all be censored. You’ll be offered a job in the corporate’s military or police wings to fight the bad guys who will be your neighbours and relatives.

The TPP will severely affect access to all intellectual property. Julian Assange of WikiLeaks said. “If instituted, the TPP’s IP regime would trample over individual rights and free expression, as well as ride roughshod over the intellectual and creative commons.” And “If you read, write, publish, think, listen, dance, sing or invent; if you farm or consume food; if you’re ill now or might one day be ill, the TPP has you in its crosshairs.”

There will be severe penalties including gaol and huge fines for pirating or even using anything that might be considered commercial without corporate permission and since everything will be privatised we will own very little and be paying the corporations for everything. The moment we stop working or are injured and uninsured we will be valueless to the empire, we will be left to starve, suffer and die.

If we break any rules we are likely to be sent to a private gaol and made to work as slave labour for some corporation hiring from the prison for long sentences for trivial offences as already happens in the US prisons. Welcome to world of George Orwell, the brave new world of totalitarian corporate control. Are you scared yet? You should be.

So what do we gain from joining the TPP and TISA. The government has been unusually quiet about this. You would expect massive charts showing the benefits in dollars. There are virtually none and where they are their figures are very rubbery and often over inflated. In one study Australia was found to gain an increase in GDP of about 0.2% by 2020. The National Farmer’s Federation stated that the TPP could increase farm exports to TPP countries by a couple of billion dollars.

In a study on the Australia-USA FTA, 10 years after it was signed, it has been estimated that Australia is $53 billion worse off than if it had not signed the agreement. This could well happen with the TTP. The TTIP has been estimated in a German study to cost us as much as 7.4% of our GDP in LOST earnings.

The people of Australia are likely lose out big time. Our way of life will be dramatically affected and it is likely cost us a good chunk of our economy as well. Should we really be a part of this corporate takeover madness? You will have to decide quickly.

Of course, if we fight together and stop the government signing the TPP and TISA agreements we might just survive this attempted coup to take over the world. So what are you going to do now?

Here’s some suggestions… verify this story by reading more articles. Watch the videos linked below. When satisfied there is a problem become active. Fight to block these agreements. Help save your family, our country and its future from corporate tyranny.

short video on TPP by Getup (3 min)

short video on loss of democracy and ISDS. (6 min)

short video on TTIP (Us/Europe) agreement (8 min)

Australia anti-TPP activist groups AFTINET, Stop the TPP- Australia, Stand Up Australia

Selling Off the Family jewels– about privatisation in Australia

If you liked this story check out others here.