Monday, June 07, 2010

Polls say Coalition would defeat Labor in next election over mining tax

Mining is Australia's No. 1 export industry so the traditional Leftist hatred of it is disastrous

THE results of two new polls show the Federal Government will lose the next election, with voter dissatisfaction over the proposed $12 billion mining super profits tax a key issue.

A Newspoll survey, commissioned by the mining industry, shows 48 per cent of those polled are against the new tax and 28 per cent support it, but marginal seats in Western Australia and Queensland would swing the vote to the Opposition, The Australian reports.

The poll of 1800 voters was taken between Monday and Thursday last week in the Labor marginal seats of Dawson, Flynn and Longman in Queensland, Wakefield, Hindmarsh and Kingston in South Australia, and Perth, Brand and Hasluck in WA.

The Australian says if even half of those voters shift to the Coalition at the election, which is expected by October, Labor will lose the 10 seats it needs to hold government -- at least eight marginal seats in Queensland and three in Western Australia.

Voter are showing discontent against the mining tax, with only 13 per cent believing the tax should go through unchanged.

Many believe the tax will make them worse off financially, with 78 per cent of those polled wanting the Federal Government to either negotiate a tax "more acceptable to the mining industry" or to drop the tax.

One in three people who said they voted Labor at the last election - 33 per cent - said they were against the tax while 42 per cent supported it.

Meanwhile, The Sydney Morning Herald say the Coalition has achieved a clear election-winning lead in the latest Nielsen poll.

The Coalition's 53-47 lead in the poll was down from an even 50-50 split a month ago. The two-party preferred result translates to a six per cent swing if an election had been held over the weekend, and would result in the ALP losing 29 seats, handing the majority to Opposition Leader Tony Abbott.

Prime Minister Kevin Rudd has hit back at the polls, saying better explaining his plans for Australia will be the key to stopping Tony Abbott from snatching his job. "The truth is, if these polls were reflected on election day, Mr Abbott would become the prime minister," he said. "The challenge for me, and for the government, is to work harder into the future. "We've got a huge amount of work to do, to explain my plans, as opposed to Mr Abbott's plans."


Leftist educators still trying to dodge phonics

There is something in their addled brains which makes them hate the fact that it is the best way to teach literacy. They seem to see it as "too teacher-centred", or some such bulldust

THE place in the national curriculum for teaching letter-sound relationships to students learning to read is "submerged in a sea of competing strategies" that confuses teachers and students, say leading researchers.

In a submission on the national English curriculum, some of the nation's most respected scientists in reading research are concerned that while the requirement to teach phonics is included in the curriculum, it fails to clearly state the best way to teach it as shown by research.

The submission says the curriculum "makes reference" to sound-letter correspondences but it lacks a statement clearly specifying that all sound-letter correspondences be taught intensively and systematically. It also fails to specify the teaching of the skills of blending sounds for reading and of segmenting sounds for spelling, and that decoding skills be taught "to the level of fluency".

The signatories to the submission include Macquarie University professors Max Coltheart and Kevin Wheldall, who developed MULTILIT (Making Up for Lost Time In Literacy), a phonics-based remedial reading program that is being trialled in NSW schools this year. It is the first direct comparison in Australia between phonics-based and other teaching strategies for reading.

The submission argues that the curriculum continues to give emphasis to a discredited system for teaching reading, known as the three cues, which includes phonics as one part, but not the first step, in reading, alongside the syntax of the sentence and the shape of the word.

"The three-cueing system is a seriously flawed conception of the processes involved in skilled reading, and the practices flowing from its misconception may have contributed to the problems experienced by an unacceptably large number of students," the submission says.

"The Australian curriculum is unclear about which skills are crucial in learning to read. This leads to confusion between the processes involved in learning to read (decoding text) and the processes involved in understanding what has been read."

The dominant strategy for teaching reading in Australia since the late 1970s has been the "whole language" approach, which assumed children learned to read in the same way they learned to speak through exposure to books and reading.

Its proponents contend that children were taught to look at the picture on the page, the shape of the word, the initial letter and guess the word given its place in the sentence.

The submission quotes British studies of eye movement and brain research that have shown that, when reading takes place, decoding or sounding out always takes place before the understanding of words or sentences.


Most Australians prefer tougher approach to illegal immigration, poll finds

ALMOST two-thirds of voters support the Coalition's decision to reintroduce the Howard government's "Pacific solution" for dealing with asylum seekers who arrive by boat.

The latest Herald/Nielsen poll also finds the Coalition the preferred party overall to deal with asylum seekers which is looming as a central issue in this year's federal election.

The poll of 1400 voters, taken between Thursday and Saturday, came after the announcement by Tony Abbott that a Coalition government would once more detain asylum seekers indefinitely in locations such as Nauru. The Coalition would also reintroduce the controversial temporary protection visas which Labor abolished on humanitarian grounds.

The poll found 62 per cent of voters supported "the Howard government's policy of processing asylum seekers in countries outside Australia". A minority of 33 per cent opposed the policy.

Asked which party had the best asylum-seeker policy, 35 per cent nominated the Coalition while support for Labor and the Greens was 19 per cent and 18 per cent respectively. "A majority of Australians are likely to support policies presented as tough and uncompromising and are less likely to support policies perceived as soft," said a Nielsen pollster, John Stirton.

So far this year 133 boats have arrived in Australian waters and Labor MPs reported to caucus last week the arrivals were becoming a dominant concern among voters.

The Prime Minister, Kevin Rudd, said he would not engage in a policy race to the bottom with Mr Abbott but promised to explain the facts more often to offset some of the myths and fears being perpetrated. For example, Australia took about 13,000 refugees a year, whether they arrived by boat or air. If boat arrivals increased, the net intake would not, he said.

The Opposition claims the government has lost control of the borders. It said the arrival of four boats in two days over the weekend showed the three-month and six-month processing freeze the Rudd government placed on Sri Lankans and Afghans respectively had failed to deter asylum seekers.

Asylum seekers found on the most recent boats were intercepted north of Ashmore Island and Scott Reef. They are en route to Christmas Island where 2436 people are detained in facilities with space for 2500.

The government has budgeted for the arrival of 2000 asylum seekers by boat in the year to June 30 next year. This is a drop on the year before but costs will double as more people fight their deportation and spend longer in detention to do so. The rates of rejection are increasing, with almost half of the 480 who arrived last year rejected as refugees by the Immigration Department in the past two months.

As the government postponed the transfer of about 30 families to the remote mining town of Leonora yesterday, it prepared the detention centre in Curtin to receive hundreds of asylum seekers affected by the April 9 suspension.

"The policy has been as ineffective as it is discriminatory," the opposition immigration spokesman, Scott Morrison, said. The first transfer of 90 people to Leonora, scheduled for yesterday, was cancelled.


Climate fraud in the Australian scientific establishment

A very fresh example is a document published in March 2010 as a joint effort between the CSIRO and the Bureau of Meteorology called “State of the Climate”. In the preamble to the document, this statement is made: 

The Bureau of Meteorology has been observing and reporting on weather in Australia for over 100 years, and CSIRO has been conducting atmospheric and marine research for over 60 years

Now the CSIRO might be forgiven for not having a corporate memory more than 60 years long, but why did they and the Bureau of Meteorology only use 50 years of data to produce the following graph when they had more than 100 years of data they could have used? 

Figure 71: Dubious graph from CSIRO and Bureau of Meteorology document

Well the reason they did not use a longer time period is that it would not have shown the warming trend that they needed to portray. They started their graph in the 1970s cooling period despite having a data record more than twice as long. 

Evidence of how low these institutions have fallen is on the back page of the State of the Climate document, on which it is stated: 
Australia will be hotter in coming decades

"Australian average temperatures are projected to rise by 0.6 to 1.5 ºC by 2030. If global greenhouse gas emissions continue at current levels, warming is projected to be in the range of 2.2 to 5.0 ºC by 2070. Warming is projected to be lower near the coast and in Tasmania and higher in central and north-western Australia. These changes will be felt through an increase in the number of hot days."

It is very likely that human activities have caused most of the global warming observed since 1950  

"There is greater than 90% certainty that increases in greenhouse gas emissions have caused most of the global warming since the mid-20th century. International research shows that it is extremely unlikely that the observed warming could be explained by natural causes alone. Evidence of human influence has been detected in ocean warming, sea-level rise, continental-average temperatures, temperature extremes and wind patterns. CSIRO research has shown that higher greenhouse gas levels are likely to have caused about half of the winter rainfall reduction in south-west Western Australia."

"Our observations clearly demonstrate that climate change is real. CSIRO and the Bureau of Meteorology will continue to provide observations and research so that Australia’s responses are underpinned by science of the highest quality."

Consider the claim above that, "CSIRO research has shown that higher greenhouse gas levels are likely to have caused about half of the winter rainfall reduction in south-west Western Australia.” in the light of Figure 8 in this book showing that all the warming in the Perth temperature record in the last 100 years occurred in one year, 1976. These once-worthy institutions are relying upon a credulous public to swallow their absurd claims without question. 

The CSIRO and Bureau of Meteorology management and research staff will eventually claim that they were relying upon IPCC research. But as one of the Climategate conspirators, Tom Wigley, said in an email dated 25th November, 1997: 

"No scientist who wishes to maintain respect in the community should ever endorse any statement unless they have examined the issue fully themselves."

On the subject of scientists not making statements unless they have examined the issue fully themselves, consider this one quoting Australia’s Chief Scientist, Professor Penny Sackett on 4th December, 2009: 

The planet has just five years to avoid disastrous global warming, says the Federal Government’s chief scientist. Professor Penny Sackett yesterday urged all Australians to reduce their carbon footprint.

The Chief Scientist’s statement is idiotic and patently false, more worthy of a Chief Shaman. There is no physical evidence anywhere on the planet that “disastrous global warming” will start by 2014, or any time at all. The position of Chief Scientist should be the last line of defence of the Australian public from the depredations of any rent-seekers and carpetbaggers. Instead she has joined the chorus that wants to condemn the Australian nation to penury. The Bureau of Meteorology and the CSIRO have failed the Australian public dismally. That is putting it mildly. In truth, they have conspired against the Australian nation. 

Professor Sackett’s most credible defence for making that idiotic statement might be that she has never associated with any climate scientists. Someone who did, Professor James Lovelock, is quoted by the Guardian newspaper on 29th March, 2010 as saying: 

"The great climate science centres around the world are more than well aware how weak their science is. If you talk to them privately they’re scared stiff of the fact that they don’t really know what the clouds and the aerosols are doing. They could be absolutely running the show. We haven’t got the physics worked out yet.

I have seen this happen before, of course. We should have been warned by the CFC/ozone affair because the corruption of science in that was so bad that something like 80% of the measurements being made during that time were either faked, or incompetently done."

Figure 72: Global Historical Climate Network raw and adjusted temperatures, Darwin Airport

Back on the subject of alarmist scientists fraudulently concocting data, Figure 72 above shows the manipulation applied to Darwin’s temperature record in order to manufacture a warming trend. The blue line is the original raw data which shows a significant cooling trend of 0.7°C per century. The red line is the adjusted data used to promote global warming alarmism. The black line shows the adjustment applied – a total of 2.2°C in sixty years! We can see that professionals did this job, because they added a little bit of cooling in the 1920s to make the uptrend seem more significant.

Figure 73: Data manipulation applied to the Prague, Czech Republic temperature record

Similar to Darwin, the warming scientists added over 2.2°C to the beginning of the Prague record to change an inconvenient cooling trend into a supportive warming one. 

The corruption of the world’s temperature data sets by this sort of manipulation prompted the UK Met Office to announce on 25th February, 2010 that it is going to re-examine more than 150 years of global temperature records. The Met Office expects to take three years to complete the task, giving an indication of how corrupted the data set has become. 


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