Turnbull marks 1st anniversary with act of clean energy vandalism | RenewEconomy

Turnbull marks 1st anniversary with act of clean energy vandalism

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Tony would be proud. To mark the anniversary of his coronation, Malcolm Turnbull has knee-capped the agency that eluded Abbott’s toe-cutters. The story behind the deal to strip ARENA of $500m highlights the nasty nature of Australian climate and clean energy politics.

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Today is the anniversary of Malcolm Turnbull’s overthrow of Tony Abbott as leader of the Liberal Party, and his ascension as prime minister of Australia. To punctuate 12 months of false expectations, the occasion has been marked with another act of vandalism against Australia’s climate and clean energy policies.

It had been hoped that Turnbull would represent a turnaround in the debate about Australia’s role in the global efforts to control global warming, and whether Australia would be moved to seize its huge opportunity to become a renewable energy powerhouse and a leader in the inevitable clean energy transition.

But rather than taking us to the promised land – “I will not lead a party that does not take climate change as seriously as I do” – things have only got worse. Turnbull has persisted with Abbott’s deluded and deceitful Direct Action policy, and has sought to neuter two important institutions – the Climate Change Authority and the Australian Renewable Energy Agency – that had managed to escape the wrath of Abbott’s “climate change is crap” demagoguery.

The CCA – which survived Abbott courtesy of a bizarre deal with Clive Palmer and Al Gore that led to the death of the carbon price – has, since Turnbull’s coronation, been stacked with ex-Coalition MPs and sympathisers and the original architects of Direct Action, who now praise a policy that was ridiculed by the once fiercely independent authority, and described as a “con” and a “fig leaf” by Turnbull himself.

ARENA, which also managed to dodge Abbott’s toe-cutters, has instead been knee-capped by the Turnbull administration, stripped of $500 million of funding to slow down its ability to provide new competitors to the incumbent fossil fuel industry.

Screen Shot 2016-09-13 at 9.40.53 PM
Coalition at work: Announcing cuts to the Australian Renewable Energy Agency (above – tweeted by Mathias Cormann) and celebrating the repeal of the carbon price (below).

carbon repeal

Turnbull’s facade was removed from the day he admitted he had agreed, at the behest of the party’s Far Right, to extend Abbott’s climate policies, and then told the world in Paris that coal is good for humanity. Labor’s veneer as self-appointed climate champions has also been severely dented by the cynicism of its factional leaders.

The story around ARENA – and Labor’s attempts to blame the content of a few NGO press releases – highlights that point and the toxic nature of climate change and clean policies in this country.

Let’s go back to March 23 and Turnbull’s announcement of his “innovation agenda” and his announcement of a Clean Energy Innovation Fund, which would appropriate $1 billion of funding already allocated to the Clean Energy Finance Corp, and drip it out over 10 years.

As RenewEconomy pointed out at the time, this was nothing more than a sleight of hand, rebadging funding to conform with Turnbull’s new innovation sloganeering, while proposing to strip ARENA of all its remaining $1.3 billion in funds, a result that would have sent hundreds of research projects, thousands of jobs and billion dollars of projects overseas, and slowed down Australia’s uptake of critical new technologies and energy business models. It would have effectively stopped innovation in it tracks.

Most NGOs didn’t seem to notice and were effusive in their support of Turnbull’s rhetoric. “Finally,” they swooned. RenewEconomy asked if they had actually read the whole press release. Some clearly hadn’t, or had not absorbed its implications, and hurried out amendments. But the damage was done.

The way Labor climate change spokesman Mark Butler puts it, the NGOs’ embrace of the Turnbull package put him in a difficult decision just as Labor was setting out is budget numbers to take to the election. How, he told RenewEconomy, could he defend the ARENA budget when all the environmental NGOs supported the move.

By urging Labor to stand up for its principals and defend the remnants of its fine Clean Energy Future package would be one suggestion.

But whether it was the cause or a pretext, Labor’s numbers people wouldn’t have a bar of it, and the party committed to stripping ARENA of $1 billion, an election policy the Coalition was only too happy to seize upon when it was returned to power.

As the Greens and everyone else point out, Labor could have saved ARENA’s entire budget. But it chose not to.

Meanwhile, Australia faces another two years of a Turnbull government dominated by its hard-right faction. How deeply the conservatives anti-renewables, do-little-or-nothing-on-climate change philosophy seeps through the Coalition ranks is made clear by Coalition positions in state elections, and the enthusiasm of Cormann and Hunt to flag cuts to the CEIF to make up for the compromise it made with Labor on ARENA. They had to row back on those comments, but the threat is clear.

And that is the problem with the toxic nature of Australia’s climate and clean energy policies. Many talk of a spirit of bi-partisanship, but so far all this has achieved is a weakening of an already inadequate policy suite – the renewable energy target has been slashed, the ARENA budget has been sliced, and the same compromise is likely to happen with emission reduction targets and mechanisms.

Bipartisanship needs to be more than reaching for the lowest common dominator, with Labor filling in cracks as the Coalition takes a wrecking ball to climate policies.

Turnbull is not the messiah. He’s just a naughty boy beholden to a conservative rump he dare not cross. And as long as that is the case, the best Australia can hope for is compromise and complacency, when leadership and vision is what is so desperately needed.

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83 Comments
  1. Kenshō 4 years ago

    I’ve been offering a vision for a few years. It’s called community based initiates and discerning specific approaches for households, commercial and industrial premises to move ahead. The chief problem is this website focused on convincing politicians and the larger collective of Australian citizenry to move ahead with macro policy changes. As the problem is developmental in nature, with few of you trained in that continuum, you keep beating your heads against the wall. Really, local action with those with the interest and empathy to act, is the swiftest path. Many of your staff simply cannot accept this and wish for your intellects to continually rove across the political landscape rather primarily helping that minority of the community who is already (developmentally) ready to move forward.

    • Mark Roest 4 years ago

      How about thesis, antithesis, synthesis, in the sense that what Kenshō is suggesting is actually a complement, rather than an alternative, to what RenewEconomy has been doing all along. What if RenewEconomy teamed up with key academics and people from ARENA who get squeezed out and built a social platform for community and business planning and action on energy efficiency, renewable energy, batteries, Battery Electric Vehicles, and battery chargers?
      The tool for “discerning specific approaches for households, commercial and industrial premises to move ahead” is called a configurator; it was developed for sales people selling complex products, but in recent years has also been used for self-service sales. If the configurator was done as a community tool, with lots of different stakeholders pitching in to make it simple to use, yet multi-faceted, and groups who provide financing also pitched in, and other parts of the platform were devoted to building social identity and political and economic will, it could galvanize action.
      Add local and state legislation authorizing Property Assessed Clean Energy (PACE) financing and Community Choice Energy (a better name for California’s Community Choice Aggregation law), and you can have a wave of green development that swamps the conservatives’ boats. Giles can be head cheerleader, keeping score for the home team and writing piercing and pithy analyses that add to the momentum.

      • Giles 4 years ago

        That’s kind of what our sister site One Step Off The Grid is about.

  2. Kenshō 4 years ago

    It is a glamour on your part. The glamour of big picture understanding. The issue is primarily moving your site from “tracking the next industrial revolution” to strategy. In a particular way, the other side appear smarter, as they know how to move from analysis to action. Your team on the other hand, most of your colleagues and associates, appear powerless and in crisis, confused and largely disillusioned. It’s all a thorough non-acceptance of the larger collective, including the politicians elected. Really you are powerless to effect anything. It is only those who are inspired to act, who can be encouraged and given information, connected, nurtured, given tools to move forward. All the rest of your efforts, are largely futile enviro speak into the ethers.

  3. Kenshō 4 years ago

    The other factor posing a limit in your teams awareness, is the don’t blame the journalist plea. “Journalist” is an identity. An intellectual construct. If you remove it, your website will be in a more powerful position to move forward in a greater diversity of strategies and approaches.

    • Peter Grant 4 years ago

      Thanks (again) for the veritas of your wisdom mate, I see it is you responding to Giles work not the other way around…

      • Kenshō 4 years ago

        Ive got my property sorted with PV/storage thanks. No generous FIT. And you?

      • Kenshō 4 years ago

        You are one of these people who have a government sponsored grid-connect solar system aren’t you? The rest of us pay for your power.

      • Kenshō 4 years ago

        You are exactly that large slice of the readership this website fosters. I can always tell when I’m speaking to the vast majority of you. Solar implementation is always a distant theory with storage one day coming down the pipeline. It is people with your orientation, depowering the community.

      • Kenshō 4 years ago

        I can’t wait until you lose your FIT and then the community is once again re-unified.

  4. Kenshō 4 years ago

    Judging by the current political will, I suspect there will come a time when environmental degradation has increased. As this happens, I predict your team will keep telling everyone, imagining the worsening consequences will make the learning for politicians easier. No it won’t. All that will happen, is those currently shuffling capital around, will try all the harder. Your problem is a lack of understanding of human character. You simply don’t understand that many of these politicians will eventually fall to pieces and few will get up. It’s necessary. Though on your team goes, trying to extract justice from them. Unfortunately this approach is misdirected.

    • David 4 years ago

      Essays worth of comments on every single article from this “Kensho”

      One wonders if he has nothing better to do with his time. Strangely, there is actually some semblance of understanding of the electrical system, technology, the concept of climate change and the risk it poses. This is not typical for the kind of person with enough spare time to comment and argue religiously on every article on this website. It causes one to wonder if the motivation is purely personal interest.

      I’m thinking either a retired employee (baby boomer age) out of the incumbent electricity industry or a paid troll.

      • Kenshō 4 years ago

        Being a chronicle of community based projects and installs throughout ever facet of the community is the best use of this publication, not analysing political dialogue. When that analysis is turned around, it appears there’s discontent. I suggest you play the ball not the person. In other words, stay on topic. The topic is I’ve made alternate suggestions for the primary use of this publication.

        • Peter Grant 4 years ago

          Perhaps it would be ‘best’ to start your own publication, you certainly seem to have the energy!

          • Kenshō 4 years ago

            The first step is clarifying the purposes of the people behind this publication.

        • Jo 4 years ago

          your runts suck

          • Kenshō 4 years ago

            Nothing specific about this comment.

          • Kenshō 4 years ago

            You appear not to like my style. I’m a retired soldier. Practice self discipline with what I say and physical fitness. I don’t have any physical addictions. Looks like your in the greens. I did some polling for the greens recently. Thinking of joining. I might meet you down the track. Perhaps you can be a mentor in all you say and do.

          • Kenshō 4 years ago

            I’ve looked back over your posts and you appear politically motivated and happy to sling shit about what you perceive to be the opposing camp. Best you focus on personal responsibility for your own household, practice evaluating your own camp more often and discerning useful approaches forward. I don’t care if you don’t like my suggestions for the website. Don’t hassle me again.

          • Kenshō 4 years ago

            Your in resonance with allot of this website. Allot of focus on what the other side is doing.

        • David 4 years ago

          There are plenty of publications that do that, EcoGeneration, EnergyMatters etc. Plus, this publication already does it too. I’m just having a quick squint at the news and commentary section and I see titles like “community solar with a view”, WA farm taps vanadium flow battery, etc.
          It was on here that I first read about organisations like Energy for the People.
          The topic here, Kensho, is what the Turnbull governments policy is doing to renewable energy in Australia and what the outcomes are likely to be. Perhaps you should stick to it instead of offering your “advice” to the reneweconomy team on the best use of their time and effort. They do an excellent job.

          • Kenshō 4 years ago

            It’s an increasing restriction on renewables and hence a need to discern avenues for action within the next few years or see article after article of restriction after restriction.

          • David 4 years ago

            The publication deals with all avenues for action on renewables, all the time. As the title suggests, its what their core business is, are you suggesting they should become project developers or technology engineers and that’s the only way they can contribute value? There are already people out there in that space, they are the ones being screwed by the policy that is the topic of the article and no one would even know about if it weren’t for publications like this one?
            What exactly is your objection to them analysing and documenting the political landscape in regards to energy policy? Bringing to the attention of the community the policy shortcomings and the absolute lack of integrity in establishing its settings is an avenue for action in itself. Perhaps the most important one in a society/culture that is very quickly sinking into laziness of thought and acceptance of the slogans that are put in front of it.
            Its because they are a loud voice for change away from fossil fuels, that’s your beef with them isn’t it? I’ve seen the work of the lobby before mate, and you reek of it.

          • Kenshō 4 years ago

            My objection is analysers like yourself doing little other than analysis. Hows your property going? Where are you up to with it? The absolute entirety of your posts have been analysing others. Never have you suggested anything a person such as yourself could do. Your approach is a pitiful example of personal responsibility.

          • David 4 years ago

            ah, you were talking way out of school and you got found out and now you’ve tried to manipulate the conversation with presumptuous speculation followed by a personal attack. That’s poor debate on your part.
            What happened to the discussion of Turnbull government policy and what Reneweconomy should be covering in their publication? Didn’t someone say stay on topic?

          • Kenshō 4 years ago

            So you have a government funded solar system, receiving a taxpayer funded FIT and think you have a right to critique the PM? Once your FIT runs out, it’s an opportunity to move forward primarily with your own money rather than others.

          • David 4 years ago

            More presumption, I can see your style, you make a presumptuous comment about someone or something in an attempt to frame the discussion as it goes forward. Your commentary, although voluminous, is only self qualified, semi informed opinion yet you snipe at everyone else for supposedly doing the same thing.
            I don’t have a solar system, I cant have one, and yet I would be more than happy to ‘subsidise’ those who have got one. Strange right? welcome to the future, you should just relax and enjoy your retirement old bud.
            The reality is that while some of the network costs associated with having lots of rooftop PV in the grid are spread across all consumers the real financial pain is being felt more in the revenue streams of incumbent generators than the hip pockets of consumers, its not this dog eat dog situation that you like to paint it up as.

          • Kenshō 4 years ago

            Presumption. I’m 46 old bud with a couple trades and three degrees. So if I’m semi-informed opinion how bout you describe your quals? Like I said your approach is analysis.

          • David 4 years ago

            Oh yeah, and I’m the Queen of England.
            So my approach is analysis. I’m not sure what that’s supposed to mean or why its such a bad thing, what if I was an energy markets analyst? or more to the point, an energy/economics journalist, shouldn’t analysis be my approach? Again with the self qualification, its the same thing you have tried to do to Giles and his team – you say that commentary and analysis isn’t useful and doesn’t help the situation and then stand behind that as truth simply because you have said it.
            By the way I wasn’t presuming anything, you said you were a retired soldier. That in fact explains a bit about your disposition. Here’s some analysis for you, I have found that barking orders and telling people what they should be doing isn’t the way the world works outside of the army.

          • Kenshō 4 years ago

            You reacted in the beginning. I simply suggested a different focus of the site. You attacked like a pack of dogs. I gave it back. With analysis, I use it for getting traction in the world not gears spinning idle. Anyway if your thing is informing the community about green economics go for it. Tho is it? Do you just criticise the mainstream? Seems your attack on me is a projection. I suggested a balance of analysis as “strategy” for approaches which can be implemented. All you heard is an attack about this publication. Actually it was a different orientation, including analysis, not analysis as the goal.

          • Kenshō 4 years ago

            No I do have those qualifications you dick.

          • Kenshō 4 years ago

            What’s letting you down, is the other side are actually manoeuvring resources. They have traction. The issue is the most skilful way to bring about a paradigm shift. I suggest focus on those parts of the community getting traction. People would get heartened by that kind of journalism.

      • Peter Grant 4 years ago

        The thought had crossed my mind too David. For me the volume of material certainly oppresses other more pithy contributions.

      • lin 4 years ago

        I am thinking spruiker for a motivational speaker or AI comment-bot.

        • Kenshō 4 years ago

          I’m thinking your a political commenter who has done little with your own property. Anything you would have done would have been funded by the government and taxpayers paying for your electricity. Another extremely selfish approach.

          • lin 4 years ago

            Wow. Judgmental and ignorant. Installed my own system with my own money, generates more power than I use over the year, and I get a pittance for FIT.
            “I’m thinking your (sic) a political commenter”. Wrong again. The closest I get to the sell-out bastards infesting our political parties is to vote against them whenever we have an election.

          • Kenshō 4 years ago

            In future don’t hassle me simply because I gave the website a suggestion for a different focus. Your attacked first bitch.

    • Cooma Doug 4 years ago

      Ok champ, what would you do?

      • Coley 4 years ago

        Replying in understandable English would be a start-:)

        • Kenshō 4 years ago

          There’s a website in front of you. Pull some fucking weight and use it.

          • Coley 4 years ago

            Bugger off, your in love with your own verbosity .

          • Kenshō 4 years ago

            Language has a purpose. Not everything can be broken down into everyday street language and I do so wherever possible. You hassled me first punk.

          • Coley 4 years ago

            Hassle? Punk??….err, mebbes your on the wrong forum? but, whatever.

          • Kenshō 4 years ago

            Try asking for clarification instead of complaining about my english.

          • Kenshō 4 years ago

            What I really reckon, is if you don’t have anything you don’t understand about anything in my language, you just acted like a dog, jumping in with others, who wanted to attack because I put forward a different type of focus for this site.

          • Coley 4 years ago

            Your English is fine, it’s the convoluted and unnecessarily complicated delivery I was joking about.
            Note, my comment was a ‘joke’ no problem with the ‘content ‘ ( though I don’t necessarily agree)
            Now bugger off and find someone who gives a stuff about your hurt feelings.
            PS, there is an avenue of complaint through the Mods on here if you feel I have impugned your views or feelings, feel free to complain.

          • Kenshō 4 years ago

            I don’t have hurt feelings. I’m giving back what I got so you don’t hassle me in the future.

          • Coley 4 years ago

            Hassle? Oh aye, you did mention you were a ‘social worker’ explains a lot.

          • Kenshō 4 years ago

            There never has been a topic to your posts other than your attacks on my style.

          • Coley 4 years ago

            And the reason for that is……….?
            Anyway, bedtime here in the UK, nowt personal intended, just think on the other comments other than mine, perhaps you are trying to make a good valid point, but doing it in a cack handed manner?

          • Coley 4 years ago

            Oops, someone got there before me, not my doing.

      • Kenshō 4 years ago

        What I’d do is use the website as an RE think tank and focus on real projects like whether a solar tower with molten salt storage is really viable for Port Augusta and so on. Pilot projects that could form the backbone of a future grid.
        To qualify my above statement, what happens is immediately prior to crisis and reorientation, most people try harder with their current strategy which is failing. Ive seen this as a social worker and on the phones for lifeline. It’s a kind of crisis that some never pick themselves up from. Can involve every facet of an individuals life. Imagine a person with their livelihood and credibility resting on a certain kind of economic paradigm and means to producing income. It’s not merely making the decision that RE is good for the environment.

  5. Geoff 4 years ago

    I think the jury is out on this turnbull government guys. it really is just tony abbott wearing a mask. Back to the public and single individuals to make real change…

    • Jimbo 4 years ago

      Geoff.
      How soon will it be before people see the need to “Dump this Mob”? The sooner the better.

      • Chris Fraser 4 years ago

        patience, grasshopper. The electorate majorities reduce to nothing, mandates get lost. Public virtues reach their peak before politicians hit ‘sell’.

        • Jimbo 4 years ago

          Thank you, Chris.
          A calm voice and a cool head are definately what is needed while a catastrophe is unfolding.

          • Chris Fraser 4 years ago

            … and moderate politicians in safe seats retire on fantastic super because they realise they’ve become what they hated.

      • Geoff 4 years ago

        either a double dissolution or given the boot by the governor general. I’m betting on the double, however look at the alternative… wtf!

  6. Terry J Wall 4 years ago

    Civil disobedience is about the only thing left that will wipe the smile off the faces of Aussie NeoCons.
    They could so easy transfer the subsidies given to the fossil fuel industry, to the job creating clean energy companies; but oh no, that would piss off Washington and London big time.

    • Coley 4 years ago

      Can’t answer for Washington but why would it “piss off” those of us in the UK?
      We have just got rid of “green crap Cameron” and hopefully his replacement will be more supportive of RE, time will tell, but she’s got to be better than Abbot or Turnbull and definitely better than thon loose cannon currently wrecking US politics?

  7. ScrewBot 4 years ago

    Wake up to yourself. The catastrophic anthropogenic climate change scenario is just hysteria; it’s a massive con, a delusion. I know it’s hard to admit it to yourself because you have invested so much into it, but the sooner you get over it, the better your life will be. Fear not!

    • lin 4 years ago

      your intelligence amazes me

      • Kenshō 4 years ago

        Your mocking the person. Do you feel good about that? Mocking them won’t make them come around to your way of thinking. For whatever reason they are invested in a different worldview with their own personal motivations. What if you focus your energies with the people attempting to edge the discussion forward?

      • Kenshō 4 years ago

        What’s actually going on, is there are people who are capable of processing through their shit and discerning their motivations. It really is best to leave the others alone. It’s more compassionate. Frees you to engage with others who want to look at approaches the community could use to care for the environment. So its up to you. What you really want to do.

    • john 4 years ago

      On what evidence do you base that judgement?
      Just which part of the overwhelming evidence to show that the facts are that the earth is warming up and it is not caused by the sun do you not understand?
      Delusional statements about some conspiracy just are so not in any way a sensible or rational understanding of the ongoing situation.

    • Brian Tehan 4 years ago

      The most basic fact is that, if you add significantly more co2 to the atmosphere, as we have, it will heat up. That was discovered in the 1850s.

  8. Cooma Doug 4 years ago

    Allow me to drift off into a parrallel universe of denial.
    If I was Bill Shorten, this is a question I would ask the PM in question time.
    Prime Minister, it is highly likely to a point of certainty, that a public vote on same sex marriage will cause suicides. People will die if you choose to have this unnecessary vote. Given that it is not necassary and the law can be changed tomorrow if you choose, how many deaths would it take for you to appologise to the nation?

    I now ask for suggestions that could be made by this group, for questions concerning deliberate harm that will evolve from their rediculous climate change policies in the federal government. Can we leave the P M with certainty that we will hold him responsible for condoning deliberate harm to our future generations. The buck stops with him.

    • Farmer Dave 4 years ago

      Hi Cooma, in my parallel universe Labor and the Greens would jointly announce that when they next have the opportunity, they would set up a Royal Commission into the development of climate change policy in Australia. The RC would explore all the fossil fuel and media links to uncover the corruption of policy making, and to search for evidence that those who held up progress either profited individually, or understood the future risks they were working to make worse. The RC would have a team of crack lawyers involved whose job would be that as many of the people involved as possible ended up in court for criminal negligence, corruption, or crimes against humanity.

      The announcement would include a “truth and reconciliation” process so that those who fessed up, named names and supplied documents would be protected from prosecution. There would also be processes established so that people who slowed progress for their own gain would be publicly humiliated – perhaps by being put on a public climate criminal register.

      Oh well, I did say it was a parallel universe.

    • Kenshō 4 years ago

      One of the hardest things to do and yet so simple, is to move to a position of love and self acceptance despite what the external world is saying about any of us. All that’s needed to do this, is release the search for others’ love. It’s a core issue in human development facing all of us. When resolved, produces bullet proof self esteem. It’s a grief and loss to give up others opinions of us being favourable and the point is what they think is merely their own baggage and perceptions. Really what they think of us, is none of our business or need be a concern. It’s a double standard not loving them because they don’t love us. Forward march!

    • Dispassionate 4 years ago

      Glad I am not in your parallel universe, to try and lay the blame for suicides on the PM is just ridiculous. Venturing into trying to force decisions based on this sort of rubbish can only lead to irrational knee jerk decision making.
      As for Bill Shorten even considering asking this question maybe you missed this quote in the article above…
      “As the Greens and everyone else point out, Labor could have saved ARENA’s entire budget. But it chose not to.”

      • Cooma Doug 4 years ago

        Ok so what you are saying is not a good look.
        It is ok for the PM to push for a public debate on order to secure his own position and appease extreme right wing colleagues.
        But its not ok to ask him about the deaths it will trigger. Its in his hands and the question should be put to every member in the house.

        • Dispassionate 4 years ago

          To try and lay the deaths at his feet is not fair and or reasonable. The reasoning behind why he wants a public debate doesn’t matter, the government ran with this as an election promise and was elected (so maybe you should trying to blame the voting public instead!). To now try and blame the PM for any deaths that may occur is folly and simply an attempt to dramatise things in an effort to secure the outcome you/Labor want.

          • Cooma Doug 4 years ago

            You are assuming I am a labor voter. I am neither green nor labor.
            But in my working life I watched high level business executives condone policy that caused suicide. It is still going on.
            The people the vote is for dont want it because of the inevitable stress. We have been advised by then and also medicsl professionals that this unnecessary process will cause dearh.
            You suggest that it is proper to knowingly allow our PM to proceed without this duscussion.
            Well no it isnt ok.

          • Dispassionate 4 years ago

            Actually I wasn’t assuming you were a Labor voter, your original post said if you were Bill Shorten you would ask … so I was coming from that pov, I happily accept you are neither green nor labor.

            To say policies cause suicides is not only very simplistic, I also think it is very wrong. Could it be a factor in some cases, I would assume so, but if we were to address every policy in this way then the public vote on same sex marriage would probably rate well below a lot of other policies.
            Let’s not make suicide another political football.
            So yes it is ok to continue without this discussion.

          • Kenshō 4 years ago

            Your position is lacking any kind of social justice. Your argument is the same as asking men if women should have the right to vote or anglo people if aboriginal people should be able to vote or if prison staff should treat prisoners better. Your position is full of injustice and hegemony of a majority. In other words, the development of your awareness is “intellectual” and lacks “empathy”. In a few years time, humanity will move past people with your current level of development ever having leadership in politics. Furthermore, the groundswell of aware folk will actively eliminate those with your orientation.

          • Dispassionate 4 years ago

            Nice thoughts but it won’t happen.

          • Kenshō 4 years ago

            Dispassionate all of us feel a motivator to evolve ourselves and there are consequences if we do not. The quality of our awareness effects our immediate quality of life, as well as largely determining our future health and wellbeing.

          • Dispassionate 4 years ago

            Again nice thoughts but people look after themselves first and money talks. Provide a tangible benefit or direct adverse impact and you have a chance of changing someone’s behaviour, empathy for others is a very sad second for the vast majority and I cannot see that changing.

          • Kenshō 4 years ago

            In a way Dispassionate, your right. This is why I discourage the smart gridders because I know their goals are unlikely to happen anytime soon. What happens is people do feel a “calling” to evolve themselves, though that little inner impulse is so small at first and buried under a range of competing concerns and addictions. This is why the human being evolves rather slowly at first though the process does speed up enormously as individuals make effort. As to society itself making effort (many individuals), judging by the amount of addiction in the community, change will happen slowly.

      • Kenshō 4 years ago

        Your phrase here Dispassionate: “knee jerk decision making”.
        This would come from not being “dispassionate” and wikipedia defines this as “free from or unaffected by passion; devoid of personal feeling or bias; impartial; calm”.
        It’s necessary to discern the difference between pre-rational or personal feelings, which are emotions, and post-rational feelings, like compassion and love. The higher feelings won’t be felt until:
        1) physical addictions are eliminated,
        2) emotions are genuinely transformed,
        3) the driven aspect of the mind is identified and transformed.
        Once this is done, a human being is no longer a beast magnified by the power of intellect, and instead has a genuine felt care for others and nature. That’s how to transform a “dispassionate” orientation into a “compassionate” orientation.

      • Kenshō 4 years ago

        There is a particular character orientation which dislikes feelings. The problem is Dispassionate, it is necessary to genuinely feel the emotions to fully cognise how they are occurring. This is called introspection and insight. The difficulty is, the capacity to observe the emotion and generate insight, won’t happen until sufficient addictions are surrendered. So its a bit of a catch-22. People have to be dissatisfied enough with their addictions (physical, emotional, psychological) until they have the capacity to understand how they are creating them. The practice is sitting still and feeling and observing what’s happening until the insight occurs.

  9. john 4 years ago

    This a post one day later so not on message i know.
    If a pretty insignificant back bencher from Qld can be a prime mover in the position of federal politics we really have a problem.
    Is the Australian Government going to be guided by lowest common denominator politics or realization on the direction we are headed?

    If the former then lamentably we will leave a mark on history of what a self centered no caring nation we are.

    I for one do not wish to be marked with this awful tag on my character.

  10. Kenshō 4 years ago

    There’s a large slice of the readership on this website, with effectively a taxpayer funded solar system and FIT. In other words, society has paid for their solar systems and many of them have made a profit. Some of them have even purpose built their solar systems to make a profit. Now for the first time, they will soon have their opportunity to decide if solar is worthwhile enough to fund for themselves. Soon we’ll all be re-unified as a community. We will no longer be subject to the musings of those who were like the shopper who got the best deal before stocks ran out. This superficial RE human being will thankfully disappear and then there’ll only be those of us left standing.

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