Friday, February 28, 2020

Bob Katter launches into a rant slamming 'un-Australian' vegetarian pies while calling for people to eat more meat and boycott the new snack

Politician Bob Katter has slammed a new vegetarian pie as 'un-Australian' while calling on people to boycott the product.

The Queensland MP blasted Four'N Twenty's new offering - which the brand claims will be indistinguishable from the meaty original - saying eating a meat pie was 'the most Australian of all activities'.

The company will launch the pie in March, saying it is 'very excited' about the trendy vegetarian snack.

But Katter called for a boycott of the pie, saying people should 'eat our Aussie beef'.

'The most Australian of all activities is to be at the football and eat a meat pie and (have) a beer or a Coke,' he said in a Facebook video, clutching a pie in his hand. 'That is the essence of our Australian-ism.'

Katter wasn't the only Australian left unimpressed by Four'N Twenty's new pie, with some saying it 'must be an early April fool's joke'.

The beloved brand will begin selling the new vegetarian option in March in supermarkets, service stations and stadiums around the country.

The pie took eight months to perfect, with the filling made from soy protein.

General manager of marketing and innovation at Patties Food Group Anand Surujpal said customers won't be able to tell it was a vegetarian pie. 'If I hadn't told you it wasn't a meat pie, you wouldn't know,' he said.

The pie is meant to taste and smell just like their regular meat pies and contains no animal products as ingredients, but isn't vegan.

'It's got the same colours, textures, the taste profile, the mouth feel, you've got all those elements,' Mr Surujpal said.

It generated a polarising response on social media, with some commentators backing Four'N Twenty for opening up their menu to vegetarians.

'This is great news! I'd love to see them in party pie size too,' one comment reads.

 'Yay! No need to harm animals,' another post says.

'Fantastic news! Hope they are available at all AFL games this season and that a Sausage Roll is in development!' yet another reads.

Others weren't so supportive.

'Plants! Name one good thing a bloody plant has ever done for us!' one post reads.

'Why don't they invent pastry made out of meat instead so we can have meat wrapped in meat and avoid bloody plants altogether? Furious.'

'Four'N Twenty why don't you just call it for what it is.... a quiche. That's it. It's not a pie, it's a quiche,' another comment reads.

'Is this an April Fool's joke?,' another asked.


One third say ABC is out of touch with ‘ordinary’ Aussies

A new poll suggests the ABC is out of touch with the views of “ordinary Aussies” – and a surprising age group is turning against the broadcaster.

Sky News host Chris Kenny says the issues plaguing the BBC, such as it being ‘out of touch with mainstream concerns’, mirror similar issues facing Australia’s ABC.

Less than one third of the country believes the ABC “represents the views of ordinary Australians”, a survey by the Institute of Public Affairs suggests.

The Liberal-aligned think tank says the result shows “public broadcasting has passed its use-by date”. The IPA is renewing calls for the $1.1 billion-a-year national broadcaster to be privatised.

In the poll of 1016 people conducted by marketing research firm Dynata in early December – largely before the bushfire crisis – respondents were asked to agree or disagree with the statement: “The ABC does not represent the views of ordinary Australians.”

Overall, more people sided with the ABC than not, with 32 per cent either somewhat or strongly disagreeing with the statement, compared with 30 per cent who either somewhat or strongly agreed.

Thirty-eight per cent were neither here nor there.

“Over two thirds of Australians either don’t believe the ABC reflects their views or they are on the fence,” Liberal Senator James McGrath told

“The ABC is becoming the pianola of media — it does a job but is increasingly irrelevant. In a pluralistic media market, Aussies are tuning out. The ABC is running a 1980s media model for a 21st century media market.”

When broken down by age group, the results tell an interesting story — and suggest the “zoomer” generation may be getting more conservative.

Predictably, people aged over 65 — the first half of the Baby Boomer generation — had the most negative view on the ABC, with 47 per cent agreeing the broadcaster is out of touch.

But surprisingly, they were closely followed in that view by their grandkids.

Thirty-three per cent of those aged 18 to 24 were in the anti-ABC camp, the second largest cohort. Only 21 per cent of Gen Z took the other side, the smallest proportion of any age group.

The strongest age group in favour of the ABC were those aged 55 to 64 — the second Baby Boomer wave — followed by Gen Xers aged 45 to 54.

In general, people aged under 44 were the most “meh”.

Just under half of those aged 35 to 44 were on the fence. That was closely followed down the age brackets, with 48 per cent of those aged 25 to 34 and 46 per cent those aged 18 to 24.

Only 19 per cent of over-65s said they neither agreed nor disagreed.

“These polling results suggest that young people are optimistic, ambitious and patriotic,” said IPA policy director Gideon Rozner.

“They are not interested in programming awash with negativity, black armband history and climate hysteria. These results prove there is no future in public ownership of the ABC.”

It comes after ABC chair Ita Buttrose sat down with Scott Morrison earlier this month, reportedly to ask the PM for more cash using goodwill the broadcaster earned from its highly praised bushfire coverage.

The government froze the ABC’s base funding last year at $1 billion. The Australian reported Ms Buttrose intended to ask the PM for “adequate” funds, as the ABC had been forced to dig into its reserves to fulfil its role as the country’s emergency broadcaster.

“The Morrison Government must rule out giving more taxpayer dollars to a state-owned broadcaster that already receives $1.1 billion a year,” Mr Rozner said.

“If the ABC is unable to fulfil its existing duties as the emergency broadcaster within its existing $1.1 billion budget then the Morrison Government should reduce its funding even more and run a competitive tender between the commercial broadcasters for the emergency broadcaster function.”

In the UK, Prime Minister Boris Johnson recently confirmed he was “looking at” scrapping the TV licence fee and turning the BBC into a subscription service.

The IPA is calling for something similar in Australia. “If only one third of Australians think the ABC speaks for them, maybe public broadcasting has passed its use-by date,” Mr Rozner said.

“The ABC seems to be playing to its loyal base in an era of audience fragmentation. It’s understandable, but let’s not maintain the fiction of a ‘national broadcaster’. Even if that were possible once, it’s not anymore.”

Mr Rozner said the ABC was “not the only media outlet that has some sort of bias, far from it, but it is the only media outlet that every taxpayer is forced to pay for”. “Rethinking state ownership is not an ‘attack’ on the ABC, any more than privatisation was an attack on Qantas or Telstra,” he said.

Speaking to Sky News earlier this month, Senator McGrath accused Ms Buttrose of “having a laugh” in her request for more funding, saying while the ABC “does a good job in parts of Australia” it was becoming “a left-wing blob of boring, woke views” and needed to “get in tune with the quiet Australians”.

“I’ve got a three-point plan — sell off their inner-city headquarters, make sure we have a review of the ABC Charter and Act, and stop this self-selection process where like-minded ABC people keep recruiting like-minded ABC people,” he said.


Audiences have had a gutful of incessant pontificating and virtue signalling by Hollywood and actors generally

While normally not one to believe conspiracy theories, I sometimes muse there is a secret and sinister political movement that over many years has infiltrated our creative and performing arts industry and now controls it. Its members are actors, writers and singers, and they range from the highest paid celebrities to those struggling to make a name for themselves.

If there is such a movement, its methodology is to subject audiences and the wider community to incessant pontificating and displays of virtue, the aim being to elect and defend centre-right governments worldwide. You read that correctly. Conservatives are massively indebted to celebrities for sabotaging so-called progressive causes.

You probably thought Hollywood is a hive of leftist activism, that writers’ festivals are an imbibing of wokeism, and that concerts take the form of endless social justice homilies, interrupted only by the occasional song. If so, you failed to look beyond the superficial. While ostensibly supporting movements that the left holds dear, these artists use self-ridicule not only to discredit themselves, but everyone associated with the cause in question.

When Sir Elton John paused his concert in Verona, Italy, last year to rage against the evils of Brexit, he personified the petulance of Remainers. “I’m ashamed of my country for what it has done,” he wailed. “It’s torn people apart … I am a European. I am not a stupid, colonial, imperialist English idiot.”

Not so ashamed, apparently, that he would surrender his knighthood, together with its connotations of a colonialist and imperialist country of old. Only months later Britain’s conservative government, led by prime minister Boris Johnson, won a landslide victory under a Brexit banner.

As for US president Donald Trump, the celebrities who so loudly opposed his election in 2016 are doing their best to ensure he is given a second term. To acknowledge all of them would be too massive a task. Two warrant special mention: first: actor Robert De Niro, who announced in a choreographed scene just before the 2016 election that he wanted to “punch” Trump in the face.

It reeked of De Niro trying to trade on his onscreen tough guy persona, and merely highlighted the Democrats’ bluster and impotence.

The other is singer and actor Bette Midler. When she’s not tweeting foul-mouthed insults to Republican supporters, she composes what can only be described as erotic Vogon poetry as she speculates about Trump’s sex life.

There once was a girl from Slovenia
Who now lives right on Pennsylvinia
To the East Room she’ll flee
From her husband’s wee wee
While he plays with his own schizophrenia

— Bette Midler (@BetteMidler) June 18, 2019

It is behaviour that is imbecilic, pathetic and counterproductive. Given Midler’s abysmal record in trying to unseat Trump, prime minister Scott Morrison is unlikely to be fazed to learn that last month she questioned his leadership, as well as labelling him an “idiot” and a “f**kwit”.

Pity the poor #Australians, their country ablaze, and their rotten @ScottMorrisonMP saying, “This is not the time to talk about Climate Change. We have to grow our economy.” What an idiot. What good is an economy in an uninhabitable country? Lead, you fuckwit!!

— Bette Midler (@BetteMidler) January 3, 2020

As for Australia, we too have a tradition of celebrities lending their support to causes, only to botch them completely. When the minority Gillard Government rolled out a publicity campaign for its carbon tax in 2011, remember who fronted the camera to serenely inform financially strapped Australians this was all in the name of addressing “carbon pollution”?

That’s right, it was actor and multimillionaire Cate Blanchett, accompanied by fellow actor Michael Caton, whose idea of establishing his common man cred was to wear a flannelette shirt. One of the few who thought the choice of Blanchett was a good idea was then Treasurer Wayne Swan, which only showed he knew as much about connecting with ordinary Australians as he did delivering budget surpluses.

In 2015 — just prior to the executions of Australian drug traffickers Andrew Chan and Myuran Sukumaran — actors Bryan Brown, Geoffrey Rush, Guy Pearce and Joel Edgerton and others featured in a video titled “Save our boys”. It was based on the false and slanderous insinuation the Abbott Government was doing nothing to ask the Indonesian Government to grant clemency.

While the celebrities were largely restricted to reciting “I stand for mercy”, the video also featured lesser known types indulging in rank opportunism. Some examples: “Show some ticker,” “Come on Abbott, be a leader,” “Imagine if it was your child”, and “The time for diplomacy has now passed”. The corollary being an invasion of Indonesia I take it?

If you thought that was abject stupidity, wait for this: “Tony Abbott you need to give diplomatic immunity and protection to Andrew and Myuran before it’s too late,” an anonymous blonde woman tartly states. But the daddy of them all was from actor Brendan Cowell.

“Tony, if you had any courage and compassion, you’d get over to Indonesia and bring these two boys home,” sneered Cowell as he was filmed reclining on a bed. “Show some balls,” he added contemptuously.

As to who was lacking a pair, that was made very clear when Cowell hurriedly deleted his Twitter account in response to a social media backlash. He also conceded to radio station 2UE that he had no idea how Abbott could prevent the executions.

Brown surfaced again in 2018, along with New Zealand actors Sam Neill and Rebecca Gibney and singer Jimmy Barnes, this time in a video decrying the policy of detaining asylum-seekers in Manus and Nauru. Urging politicians to “stop playing politics with people’s lives” (oh the irony), Neill described these measures as a “barbarity”. For good measure Gibney’s voice quavered as she urged Australians to lobby politicians. As expected, none of the celebrities concerned suggested a viable alternative to mandatory detention.

All these cases and countless others serve as an example to celebrities that the best thing they could do for their pet causes is not to be a part of them, at least not overtly. Or if they must appear publicly in these movements, they should not condescend or patronise.

Clearly this was lost on actor Simon Baker, star of the television series The Mentalist. This week Greenpeace launched a climate change and renewable energy campaign video titled “Dear Scotty” featuring the actor, which targeted the prime minister. “Mate, sorry to do this to you,” he says in the opening scene, dripping with faux melancholy as he and others lambast Morrison in sequence for his supposed failings. “How will history remember you?” he asks pensively.

Should not a renowned actor be expected to — how does one put this — act? Likewise, they should be able to recognise a lousy script. “The audience should be treated with a certain level of intelligence, and I get very upset when we talk down to them,” Baker told the Glasgow Times in 2015. “It annoys me,” he added. Yes, Mr Baker. It annoys us too.

In 2018, Baker campaigned against Adani’s Carmichael Mine, telling viewers it was “just inland” from the Great Barrier Reef. In fact, the distance between the two is around 350km. “It’ll unleash one of the biggest reservoirs of carbon pollution we’ve ever known,” he said. “It’s a death sentence for the reef.” This is fearmongering. It is also elitist, given the unemployment rate in regional Queensland is higher than 14 per cent in some areas. Then again, it is all too easy to forget the plight of the unemployed when your lifestyle reflects that of the highest-paid actor in US television.

Predictably he also voices his opposition to “fossil fuels”, yet when Baker resided in Los Angeles he and his family frequently travelled between the US and Australia. “Mate, sorry to do this to you,” you might ask him, “but can we assume none of these multiple international trips involved a zero-carbon yacht?” Or “When you were filming in Western Australia in 2018 and someone stepped on your glasses, is it true you flew to New York just to get a replacement pair from your favourite store?”

Again, sorry for the impertinent questions. We are just compiling a record about you and all other activist celebrities. Its title is “How will history remember you?”


Zero net emissions: Look no further than New Zealand for economic impacts

In some respects, the Labor Party is as Australian as the Magic Pudding, both revel in fantasy. According to past Labor leaders, high public spending won’t raise taxes and, in any case, high taxes won’t damage economic growth. Now we have Labor’s greatest magic pudding yet, we can cut our carbon emissions to zero and no coal miner will lose their job.

The Labor Party refuses to produce numbers to explain this remarkable outcome, but fortunately others have. Last year, New Zealand passed into law a net zero emissions target and in doing so they commissioned actual economic modelling on its impact.

The analysis, by the New Zealand Institute of Economic Research, evaluates a number of different assumed scenarios. All of these incorporate optimistic assumptions on future technologies, including for example a methane vaccine (which stops sheep from “emitting”). And, in another leap of faith, 50 per cent of trucks go electric by 2050.

Even with these assumptions, the negative impact of net zero emissions on the New Zealand economy is massive. The policy would reduce the size of the New Zealand economy by 10 to 20 per cent. In Australian terms that would amount to a $200 billion to $400 billion annual impact. Employment would fall by 2 to 4 per cent. If that happened in Australia 200,000 to 400,000 people would lose their jobs.

New Zealand’s main industry of agriculture would be smashed. Its dairy industry would reduce by more than half and that leads to a much poorer nation. Depending on technological assumptions, wages reduce by 8 to 28 per cent. In Australian terms, that would mean a $7000 to $24,000 annual hit to an average worker.

Of course, the economic impact on Australia would be bigger given that we have large coal and gas industries, as well as agriculture.

As it turned out, the New Zealand Government ended up exempting agriculture from its net zero emissions target. Agriculture makes up half of the country’s carbon dioxide emissions. New Zealand’s “brave” target that was welcomed by environmental activist groups is literally an example of doing things by half.

Here in Australia, however, the Labor party has not ruled out imposing a net zero target on our farmers. A net zero target is a double hit to the agricultural industry. They pay the direct cost of having to pay more for fuel, for feed and for vehicles. They also pay the cost of having productive farmland turned to trees (so we can sequester more carbon) and the loss of future growth opportunities because more land can not be developed.

This is where the “net” part of net zero kicks in. Under “net zero”, rich people can still fly to Davos to lecture others about carbon dioxide emissions. To do so, some pay an “indulgence” to have farming land locked up. Productive farm areas, in effect, would be turned into National Parks to house more weeds and fuel for bushfires.

Net zero emissions means net zero development, net zero jobs but far from net zero hypocrisy.

Labor has been keen to quote the CSIRO’s latest National Outlook report to conclude that net zero emissions is achievable but the CSIRO report does not do what Labor is saying it does. The CSIRO concludes that agricultural production levels “experience a substantial decline once the rising carbon price improves the relative profitability of other land uses such as forestry”. Up to 24 per cent of our agricultural land would be converted plantings on the CSIRO’s analysis.

Nor does the CSIRO measure the net impact of net zero emissions. It measures the economic outcomes of two scenarios, one dominated by a protectionist world with high barriers to trade and the other a world of free trade, global cooperation on climate and magically high productivity. Surprise, surprise, free trade and high productivity lead to higher economic growth. The unique and separate impact of net zero emissions remains unmeasured by the CSIRO’s analysis.

Also, to get to net zero, the CSIRO estimates that a global carbon price of $273 a tonne is required. Once again Labor shows their addiction to a carbon tax.

In The Magic Pudding, the possum and the wombat create a fire to distract Bunyip Bluegum while they steal the pudding. A similar distraction seems to have afflicted the modern Labor Party, where this summer’s fires have distracted them away from their founding mission of defending and protecting workers. Labor once again has not seemed to learn the lesson that you can’t have your cake and eat it too.


Some Australian Private schools may see government funding boost

Billions in extra funding could flow to private schools favoured by less well-off parents under changes by the federal government.

Private schools chosen by less well-off parents could receive a multi-billion dollar funding boost under changes proposed by the federal government.

New legislation introduced to parliament on Wednesday would change the way the government calculates the income of parents to measure of how much taxpayer money a school is entitled to.

"(This) will ensure more funding flows to the schools that need it most," Education Minister Dan Tehan told parliament.

The government estimates the change will open up an extra $3.4 billion for non-government school funding over the next decade.

"The new methodology will use the best available data to estimate the capacity of parents and guardians to contribute to the cost of schooling," Mr Tehan said.

It follows recommendations by the National School Resourcing Board to change the way the government calculated the incomes of student's parents and guardians.


 Posted by John J. Ray (M.A.; Ph.D.).    For a daily critique of Leftist activities,  see DISSECTING LEFTISM.  To keep up with attacks on free speech see Tongue Tied. Also, don't forget your daily roundup  of pro-environment but anti-Greenie  news and commentary at GREENIE WATCH .  Email me  here

1 comment:

Paul said...

"I sometimes muse there is a secret and sinister political movement that over many years has infiltrated our creative and performing arts industry and now controls it."

Gee. (((Ya think??)))