Archive for the ‘Politics’ Category

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Image US Air Force

Under heading I didn’t know that there is a curious lack of sanctions so far on the stockpile of cold war era high thrust RD-180 and NK-33 rocket engines

Actually this is funny, Obama, Camaroon and the band pile onto Putin, in my view all damn silly, stop making trouble yet there we are US spy satellites, Mars stuff and goodness knows what else using Russian main engines.

“The Curiosity Rover, for example, departed for Mars atop an Atlas V for its …” madeinalabama site

And guess what there are long faces, talk of ‘we can design a new engine in 4 years given enough money’. Yeah right given only Soviet era perfected for that particular fuel combination.

Russian news site

Russia to Continue Space Rocket Engines Deliveries to US Despite Sanctions

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Whoa, what is going on?

GWPF have an amusing new story based on a Fox News article dated 20th July

In the run-up to the U.N. climate conference (COP20) in Lima in December, Peru’s government just rolled back environmental regulations in an effort to boost mining.

http://www.thegwpf.org/ahead-of-u-n-climate-talks-peru-slashes-environmental-regulations/

Reuters have a new story dated 23rd July

Peru’s Humala replaces prime minister amid political scandal

(Reuters) – Peru’s President Ollanta Humala said on Tuesday he is replacing his prime minister following an embarrassing political scandal that marks the start of his sixth cabinet and his third year in office.

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imageOwen Patterson was, until last week, the Secretary of State for the Department of Environment Food and Rural Affairs (UK). He lost his job in the reshuffle, apparently for a number of reasons, which will not be gone into here and now.

He has now written an article for the Telegraph newspaper. The GWPF to which Mr Paterson is to deliver the Annual Lecture, has produced a slightly abbreviated version Read Here. His article is directed, not at the Prime Minister and those within the Government that lobbied for his removal. The target is what he calls “The Green Blob”.

It is not very often that a Policy Maker expresses an opinion of their own, as they are bound by the rules of the Cabinet “Tent”. To express such strong opinion so soon is rarer still. It seems unlikely that Mr Paterson go quietly and even (pure speculation on my part) opens the possibility that he may eventually replace Nigel Lawson.

“You can judge a man by the quality of his enemies” said Oscar Wilde. They cannot resist gloating at his downfall. Friends of the Earth & George Monbiot, amongst many others were quick to react. While Greenpeace did not openly celebrate, a Press release earlier this year, shows how much they wanted to have him removed.

 

Australia repeals carbon tax

Posted: July 19, 2014 by Andrew in climate, Energy, Politics

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Note from the co-moderator. We welcome Andrew as a new Talkshop contributor.

The biggest story in energy and climate politics, by a mile this week, is the news that at 11:15 EST Thursday the Australian Senate voted 39-32 to repeal the Climate Tax.

Following the vote, Prime Minister Tony Abbott declared it a “Useless destructive tax, which damaged jobs, which hurt families’ cost of living & which didn’t actually help the environment”. Tony Abbott made removing the bill the key promise of his election campaign.

Not everything has run smoothly for supporters of the repeal. In the days before the Senate vote Clive Palmer, leader of the PUP with 3 key senators, stood next to Al Gore while apparently discussing an emissions trading scheme. He then prevented the first attempt to repeal the bill. After the vote Opposition leader Bill Shorten described Abbott as an “environmental vandal”. This comes on the eve of Australia hosting the G20.

The reaction has been global. The Guardian is not amused, Graham Readfern writes “Science denial, so-called “free market” ideology and the interests of the fossil energy industry are the termites chewing away at the base all efforts to cut greenhouse gas emissions”.

Slate ” In Australia, as the Simpsons joke goes, the water goes down the toilet counterclockwise . Now with its government voting to repeal the country’s tax on Carbon – in the process killing it’s most significant means of reducing greenhouse gas emissions – it seems that Australia’s new Prime Minister Tony Abbott, is determined to take the country in the same direction”. While some on Twitter hope for other countries to punish Australia.

On the other hand The Wall Street Journal headline simply  reads ” Tony Abbot shows that climate absolutists have a problem : democracy”. There is an Emission Reduction Fund White Paper as consolation for the supporters of the bill, but the Abbott Government seems intent on further cuts to the Green gravy train.

Science minister replaced in UK cabinet reshuffle

Greg Clark, MP for Royal Tunbridge Wells, has been appointed minister for science and universities in the UK government’s latest cabinet reshuffle, following his predecessor David Willetts’ resignation.

Born in Middlesbrough, Clark studied economics at the University of Cambridge and the London School of Economics and spent time working for a consultancy firm before entering politics. He was director of policy for the Conservatives for three successive party leaders: William Hague, Iain Duncan Smith and Michael Howard, before being elected as an MP in 2005. In opposition he spent two years as the shadow secretary for energy and climate change.

Chemistry World, Royal Society of Chemistry

My bold.

Giggle at RSC bothering with Royal in Tunbridge Wells.

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Drax powerstation, generating 7% of Britains needs, is being forced to convert to imported woodchips.

Drax powerstation, generating 7% of Britains needs.

(Reuters) – British power producer Drax won a legal case against the government on Monday as the High Court overruled a decision to drop one of the company’s coal-to-biomass conversion projects from a new renewable energy subsidy scheme.

The court decided the utility had fulfilled all of the key criteria set out by the government at the time of making its application to seek early investment contracts under the new scheme for two of its projects to convert coal units to biomass.

http://uk.reuters.com/article/2014/07/14/uk-draxgroup-brief-idUKKBN0FJ1NM20140714

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The Spectator has a good analysis on the BBC climate reporting bias debacle which coins a new phrase – ‘Climate Correctness’. A few excerpts:

gagging-ordersIt is only a matter of time before Nigel Lawson — if he is allowed on the BBC at all — has to have his words spoken by an actor in the manner of Gerry Adams at the height of the IRA’s bombing campaign during the 1980s. In the case of Mr Adams, whose voice was banned from the airwaves by the government, the BBC stood up for free speech. But it is quite a different story with Lord Lawson. The BBC has effectively banned the former chancellor (and former editor of this magazine) from appearing on its programmes to debate climate change, unless he is introduced with a statement discrediting his views.

When people try to close down debate rather than engage with it, there is a pretty clear conclusion to be drawn: they lack confidence in their own case. The suppression of debate was shown again this week when Vladimir Semonov, a climate scientist at the Geomar Institute in Kiel, Germany, revealed that a paper he wrote in 2009 questioning the accuracy of climate models used by the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change was effectively censored by the scientist to whom it was sent for review.

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From Benny Peiser by email:

Europe’s Energy Security At Risk From Green & Russian Lobbies

Russian-bear-cartoonHow far will Russian President Vladimir Putin go to stop fracking in Europe? Tint his thinning hair an eco-friendly color? According to NATO Secretary General Anders Rasmussen, Russia’s myriad intelligence agencies are working directly with European environmental groups to fund anti-fracking campaigns. Putin is doing this to slow the spread of the U.S. shale revolution across the Atlantic so Russia can hold on to its monopoly of the European natural gas market. Europe’s energy insecurity – its dependence on Russian gas – has proven to be Putin’s favorite tool of geopolitical blackmail. Putin can continue to funnel rubles to Europe’s environmental activist groups and hope to slow the spread of the shale revolution. But Russian dominance of the European gas market is on borrowed time. –William F. Shughart II, Forbes, 4 July 2014

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I had a brief chat with a journalist friend yesterday whose sister is a QC. He’s going to sound her out for me about the possibility of a class action against the BBC for breaking its charter. This from the Telegraph:

BBC staff told to stop inviting cranks onto science programmes
By Sarah Knapton, Science Correspondent –  04 Jul 2014

bbc-greenpeace-medBBC journalists are being sent on courses to stop them inviting so many cranks onto programmes to air ‘marginal views’

The BBC Trust on Thursday published a progress report into the corporation’s science coverage which was criticised in 2012 for giving too much air-time to critics who oppose non-contentious issues.

The report found that there was still an ‘over-rigid application of editorial guidelines on impartiality’ which sought to give the ‘other side’ of the argument, even if that viewpoint was widely dismissed.

Some 200 staff have already attended seminars and workshops and more will be invited on courses in the coming months to stop them giving ‘undue attention to marginal opinion.’

“The Trust wishes to emphasise the importance of attempting to establish where the weight of scientific agreement may be found and make that clear to audiences,” wrote the report authors.

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Friends of Poland in UKIP chairman  Przemek Skwirczynski writes an excellent piece at the commentator:

Przemek Skwirczynski: UKIP gets Tories to go Polish on gas, to all our benefit

Blackpools-Shale-Gas-Dril-007As a Pole, loyal to the UK, and therefore to the cause of freedom and original thinking, before joining UKIP over a year ago I perceived it to be the real Conservative grassroots, if not a kind of think tank for open minded people of whatever origin. By now it is obvious that UKIP serves as both grassroots and a think tank in one for both the Tories and Labour.

Whatever policies it comes up with get snapped up by either of the less imaginative mainstream parties.

One of such policies was outlined during UKIP’s September 2013 conference, where the party’s energy spokesman Roger Helmer MEP set out the clean energy case for shale gas (compared to other fossil fuels) but also pointed to what should be done with the gas revenues.

Using Norway as an example, Roger Helmer suggested that the UK should create a sovereign wealth fund through which it could reinvest the profits from fracking, as opposed to spending them on current consumption as was done with the North Sea oil revenues.

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Updated by co-mod, see end

H/T to Marc Facer for this from Australia:
clive-palmer

The Federal Government says it “is happy” to lock in a legal requirement that power companies pass on savings arising from the abolition of the carbon tax.
The move, which would satisfy the only condition laid down by the Palmer United Party for its crucial support to the repeal bill, follows talks between PUP leader Clive Palmer and Prime Minister Tony Abbott this morning.

Environment Minister Greg Hunt has told Parliament it will add to the Government’s efforts to monitor power pricing through the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission.

“The ACCC will be on the job but we are happy to take the considerations of members of this House and to go even further and to enshrine in legislation guarantees over and above what we already have, so prices will be lower than they would otherwise have been,” he said.

Late yesterday Mr Palmer revealed his party’s position that it would vote with the Coalition in the Senate to repeal the carbon pricing scheme, but only if lower power prices were locked in.
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From Spiked Online:

According to the Financial Times, NATO secretary-general Anders Fogh Rasmussen told an audience at Chatham House in London that the Russian government has been working with NGOs to ‘maintain European dependence on imported Russian gas’ by ‘funding anti-fracking groups’ to mislead the public and lobby governments. Maybe, maybe not. But such Gazprom conspiracy theories are irrelevant. Large green NGOs were born out of the excesses of British and European politics; they were created by politicians in Westminster and Brussels, not by Vladimir Putin.

Forget alleged Russian meddling – just consider how close and incestuous the relationship between European politicians and green NGOs, including ones that oppose fracking, has become in recent years.

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This is a followup to a post about the issue of sovereignty and Britain’s membership of the EU I put up a while back. These are weighty issues the public needs to consider. Needless to say, the BBC won’t be promoting in depth debate about the matter, so it’s up to bloggers and journalists to do the job. Actually, not many journo’s seem to want to raise their heads above the parapet either. I know it’s dull stuff, but please read and think about this. It’s up to us to let the political class know we don’t take kindly to having our liberties, fought for since Magna Carta, signed away to an unelected foreign commissariat which subjects us to summary extradition through European arrest warrants, dictates how we (dis)organise flood defences, and forces us to put the ‘human rights’ of criminals before those of their victims.

edward-heath-treason

Was Ted Heath committing treason when he signed Britain into the EU?

Was Britain Taken Into The EU Illegally?
by Vernon Coleman – 2011

Many constitutional experts believe that Britain isn’t actually a member of the European Union since our apparent entry was in violation of British law and was, therefore invalid.

In enacting the European Communities Bill through an ordinary vote in the House of Commons, Ted Heath’s Government breached the constitutional convention which requires a prior consultation of the people (either by a general election or a referendum) on any measure involving constitutional change. The general election or referendum must take place before any related parliamentary debate. (Britain has no straightforward written constitution. But, the signing of the Common Market entrance documents was, without a doubt, a breach of the spirit of our constitution.)

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[image credit: grist.org]

[image credit: grist.org]


James Delingpole highlights the absurdity of US ‘climate policy’ – $4 trillion for what?

In a week when confidence in sea surface temperatures as a measure of ‘climate change’ seems to have gone out of the window, the eye-watering cost of trying to influence the planet’s weather systems beggars belief.

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Andrew Orlowski has a hard hitting piece in todays El Reg:

UK govt preps World War 2 energy rationing to keep the lights on
By Andrew Orlowski,

josh-Ed_Lemmings_scr

Visit cartoonsbyjosh.com and buy something!

The UK government will today set out Second World War-style measures to keep the lights on and avert power cuts as a “last resort”. The price to Britons will be high.

Factories will be asked to “voluntarily” shut down to save energy at peak times for homes, while others will be paid to provide their own backup power should they have a spare generator or two lying around. And as part of the government’s wider energy market reforms, electricity producers will be able to name their price for bringing mothballed fossil-fuel-powered plants back on line.

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Climate-sceptical German political party AfD has been trying to get a seat at the ECR EU-reform grouping table in order to gain domestic influence. But much as it would benefit David Cameron in numerical terms to welcome them in, Frau Merkel says ‘Nein!’, and Cameron needs Merkel onside to get a less federalist leaning EU president elected. Doubling his discomfort, if AfD is excluded, they will probably align with UKIP, increasing the likelihood of Nigel Farage’s grouping gaining enough support for a front-row seat in the European Parliament. This from The Irish Times:

ecr-euWith David Cameron in Sweden to haggle with other European Union leaders over Jean-Claude Juncker’s fate, his Tory MEPs face another difficult choice in Brussels.

After final talks today, they decide tomorrow whether or not to accept Germany’s Alternative für Deutschland (AfD) as Euro-critical allies in the new European parliament.

Welcoming the seven German MEPs would be a shot in the arm to the Tory’s European Conservatives and Reformists (ECR) grouping, making it the third largest in the new parliament and giving a strong voice to the Tory Eurocritical reform agenda.

But they also know that opening the door to the AfD, which polled 7 per cent on May 25th in Germany, would unleash the wrath of Angela Merkel.

Cold shoulder

For two weeks, the German leader has been urging Tory leader Cameron to show the AfD the cold shoulder. She worries that having the AfD in an established political grouping would give them greater credibility and visibility as rivals to her Christian Democratic Union (CDU) ahead of state elections later in the summer.

 

With the AfD rising in the polls, the German leader is facing growing pressure from inside her party to present a clear political strategy to challenge – rather than ignore – the AfD threat.

Read the rest here

D-Day in Newark

Posted: June 4, 2014 by Rog Tallbloke in Politics, UKIP

Originally posted on Roger Helmer MEP:

Canvassing in Newark

Canvassing in Newark

June 5th is polling day in Newark.  This is my fifth election since 1999. My second in a fortnight.  And my first Westminster election.  I’m the UKIP candidate.

Opinion polls are still putting the Conservatives in the lead.  I just can’t relate those numbers to our experience.  We’ve done a huge amount of canvassing, and on that basis we’re at least level pegging! Maybe better. In fifteen years I’ve never seen the kind of enthusiasm we’re getting here — on the doorstep, in the street, in the shops and the pubs.  It’s heartwarming.

Yesterday a colleague was walking in from the station (we’ve had hundreds of activists in town).  He was confronted with an Agence France video reporter.  “Can you help me?” said the journo.  “I need to interview someone who’s not voting UKIP, but I can’t find anyone”.  “Sorry” said my colleague, “but I’m afraid I’m…

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lagardeReaders of this blog will be familiar with the antics of Christine Lagarde, the IMF chief who told us we’d all be “roasted toasted, fried and grilled” by global warming. She’s been in a bit of hot water herself in the recent past, being hauled before the beak in connection with a 270 million euro taxpayer swindle which favoured Bernard Tapie, a wheeler-dealer pal of ex-French president Nicolas Sarkozy. A letter from Lagarde to Sarkozy indicates how cozy the european elite are.

Anyhow, it seems Angela Merkel doesn’t worry about such things, as she has been making some background moves to sound out the possibility of elevating the teflon coated Lagarde to the EU presidency. Perhaps she sees the idea of taking Ms Lagarde off the IMF cashier’s desk and installing her in Rumpy’s big leather chair in Brussels as a neat way of gaining more control over European finance and simultaneously obtaining a channel through which she can influence France’s revolting right wing.

Whatever the motivations, it is becoming ever clearer that the EU elite is circling the wagons and entrenching for a last stand against the vast horde of European citizens who clearly want an end to the federalist aspect of the misbegotten project.

From Euractiv:

German Chancellor Angela Merkel has asked France whether it would be willing to put forward International Monetary Fund chief Christine Lagarde as president of the European Commission, two French sources briefed on the exchanges said.

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An article in today’s Telegraph links to a letter from over 30 scientists deploring the way peer review stifles ‘unfashionable’ innovative research. Small wonder we cannot get any funding to develop our planetary theory. It would need a tiny fraction of the kind of money poured into carbono-centric studies, but since UN-IPCC authors find it UN-PC, it is off limits.  I notice only a couple of the signatories are from leading ‘climate change’ pushing univerities. Beatrice Pelloni; University of Reading, and James Ladyman from Bristol university, who has this to say on another matter:

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From EUrActiv:

facts

A big challenge for the next European Commission will be to disconnect its evidence gathering processes from the “political imperative” that’s driving policy proposals, according to Anne Glover, the EU’s chief scientific advisor.

Speaking before the EU elections last week, Glover reflected upon her role, which was introduced by the outgoing President of the European Commission, José Manuel Barroso.

Glover was appointed in December 2011 to provide the President of the EU Executive with first-class independent scientific advice. A trained biologist who holds a chair in Molecular and Cell Biology at the University of Aberdeen, she previously served a as chief scientific advisor for Scotland (2006-2011).

More than two years into her job, she seems to have learned a great deal about the internal working of the EU’s flagship institution.

And her assessment of what goes on inside the Commission’s walls is not rosy.
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