Friday, April 29, 2022

Rent control in Australia? Plan to ban landlords from raising rental prices - because 'it's worked in New York for years'

It takes a brain-dead Greenie to argue for something that will WORSEN the shortage of rental accomodation. Particularly in a time of inflation, rent control will just frighten off most investors in housing. It has been tried many times in Australia in the past and has always been abandoned eventually -- because of the way it makes renting almost impossible at any price

The Greens have called on the South Australian government to introduce rent controls amid revelations most properties on the market are too expensive for people living on the minimum wage.

Anglicare looked at 45,992 rental listings across the country and found just 712, or two per cent, could be afforded by people on the minimum wage.

In SA only two of 1125 properties listed were considered appropriate and affordable for a single person.

'Rental prices are skyrocketing out of control,' SA Greens housing spokesman Robert Simms said.

'While many South Australians are being locked out of the rental market, some landlords are making record profits.

'It's time for the state government to follow the lead of other jurisdictions overseas and implement rent controls to protect struggling renters. 'This has worked in New York for years - why not Adelaide?'

Mr Simms said he would raise the issue when parliament resumed next week.

The Greens also renewed calls for the government to boost investment in public housing to reduce prices.
At a federal level, the party said it would push for 70,000 affordable homes to be built across Adelaide and regional South Australia.

It said the plan would ensure low-income earners were not priced out of the housing market, with options for low-cost and long-term secure rentals and purchase options at around $300,000.

SA Senate candidate Barbara Pocock said the housing market was particularly brutal for low-income earners.
'For a person working full time on minimum wage in Adelaide, almost no rentals are affordable,' she said.

'The same goes for those on income support, whether that be Youth Allowance, JobSeeker or the disability and age pensions.'

Sitting SA Senator Sarah Hanson-Young said it was a disgrace that so many Australians could not afford basic housing.

'Housing is a basic human right. When everyday South Australians cannot afford to put food on the table and keep a roof over their heads, there is a serious problem with the system,' she said.


Targin pain relief drug shortages leave cancer patients, chronic pain sufferers without options

This is a bit overhyped. I am myself on Targin to control the pain from a cracked rib. And it does seem to help. I am able to take it because I have a supply left over from last year

But is not irreplaceable. It is just an opiate plus something to combat the constipation that opioids cause. And it is not so good at that. I have to take an apieriant as well

Thousands of cancer patients are being forced to spend their final days sitting in medical waiting rooms trying to source alternative pain relief because of a critical nationwide shortage of a major drug.

Targin is a slow-release oxycodone and naloxone combination often prescribed to cancer patients in the palliative stages and chronic pain sufferers to reduce severe pain.

But stocks have dwindled due to issues with shipping lines and flight availability.

"These patients don't want to spend what limited time they have left at the hospital on the phone to doctors, in waiting rooms, trying to get prescriptions," north Queensland pharmacist Cate Whalen said.

"They want to be spending those last days with their families and those that love them."

Finding alternatives

Dr Abhishek Joshi is a medical oncologist at Townsville ICON Cancer Care and Townsville University Hospital.

He said his clinic saw about 1,000 new patients each year and the shortage would affect about half of them.

"Switching a pain drug which a patient has been using for a long time to a newer alternative and finding a drug of an equivalent dose is not an easy task. That process can take time," he said.

"Patients might now have to undergo a period ranging from days to weeks in which their pain levels might actually fluctuate and start affecting their lifestyle."

Dr Joshi said it was the first time he had seen a shortage of Targin.

"I know regional towns are not the preference sites where these stocks are channelled, mostly bigger cities and metros are much more advantaged," he said.

"So, we have to really fight hard to make sure our patients are getting the stock. There is no sort of specific timeline as to when these shortages will go away."

Unlike many other drugs on the market, Targin does not have a suitable substitute.


A shameful Presumption of guilt

When the Left is out to get you, you will be lucky to escape, regardless of justice. It was plain to me from the behginning that this was another Dreyfus case. It pained me to hear what this good and holy man was put through -- JR

Tony Abbott

What’s not both to enthral and repel in this story of Australian Catholicism’s greatest churchman, brought low by an allegation of child sex abuse, humiliated and imprisoned, only to be vindicated, triumphantly, by a seven-nil High Court verdict to the effect that he should never have been investigated, never have been charged, never have been convicted and never have been gaoled. What was really on trial here was the Australian system of justice: how susceptible it was to public hysteria, media stereotyping and lynch-mob justice so at odds with the traditional presumption of innocence. The verdict, albeit only at the last gasp, thanks to the High Court, is that it’s still capable of delivering justice according to law; but not before a fine man had had his reputation officially trashed, several years of his life stolen, and massive legal bills incurred that he has yet to re-pay. Yes, the cardinal had a win – but this was not a fight he should ever have been in.

Only because the Catholic Church had been judged collectively guilty of institutionalised sexual abuse and, therefore, needed to be punished; and only because Pell had become the personification of that church was a process put in place that, until its very end, but for his faith in divine providence and in his own innocence, would have put the cardinal into a very dark place. Of course, in the sloppily disciplined post-Vatican II church of the Sixties and Seventies there does seem to have been an unusually large number of pedophiles exploiting the cover and the opportunities of clerical life. And because abuse at the hands of God’s servants is such a monstrous betrayal, it’s to the church’s particular shame that this wasn’t realised and acted upon sooner. Paradoxically, Pell was actually one of the very first senior churchmen anywhere in the world to confront it directly: sacking deviant priests and reporting them to the police rather than simply forgiving their sins while moving them on. Perhaps this is why Windschuttle (who’s not a Catholic), Henderson (now a ‘cultural’ Catholic) and Brennan (a Jesuit intellectual, to be sure, but often Pell’s antagonist on theology and ecclesiology) have come so staunchly to his defence.

As expected of a trained lawyer, Brennan focuses on the extreme implausibility of the prosecution’s case. The idea that a fifty-something archbishop, of exemplary life and reputation, would or could slip out of the procession concluding High Mass; and, without anyone noticing, sneak back into the sacristy to commit enormities on two unknown 13-year-old choirboys, all while fully robed and in the space of six minutes, was never credible. Especially when a succession of witnesses testified to Pell’s invariable practice of going to the front of the cathedral to greet parishioners. What’s extraordinary is the lengths to which Victoria Police went on operation ‘Get Pell’: launching an investigation without a complaint; advertising for victims; disregarding and ignoring contrary evidence; and leaking to the media.

The fact that this vendetta was led by two police officers who went on to become successive chief commissioners says everything about the sorry state of Victorian officialdom. In any system that valued integrity, the current commissioner would have resigned in shame for sponsoring such an obviously flawed and prejudiced prosecution; as would the appeal judges who were so blind to such palpable faults.

But as always in the people’s republic of Victoria, no one takes any responsibility or accepts any blame; the public seems to accept that there’s ‘nothing to see here’; and the plethora of entities from the parliamentary opposition down that should hold officialdom to account are incapable of anything other than futile hand-wringing. Brennan’s conclusion: that ‘but for the incompetence and animus of the Victoria Police, the DPP, and the two most senior judges of the state, Pell would have been cleared of those charges much sooner, or more likely, not charged at all’ makes his further observation that ‘the Victorian criminal justice system cries out for reform’ a masterly piece of understatement!

Henderson’s J’Accuse…! extends beyond the police and the judiciary to the media and the Gillard government’s royal commission into institutional child sexual abuse which, as he makes clear, could be shoddy and biased. Here’s Henderson on the to-ing and fro-ing between Vic Pol, desperate to charge Pell, and the DPP, initially deeply hesitant: The case was sent by Victoria Police to the Victorian Director of Public Prosecutions which sent the matter back to Victoria Police which sent the matter back to the DPP which sent the matter back to Victoria Police which sent the matter back to the DPP which sent the matter back to Victoria Police stating that it could lay charges against Pell if it wished. Which, eventually, it did.

As befits our most dogged and shrewd critic of sloppy journalism, Henderson is forensic in his exposure of the barrage of anti-Pell smear. Here he is on the media pile-on, particularly from the ABC: ‘The campaign against Pell was unrelenting across its main television (7.30, Four Corners, Lateline, News Breakfast) and radio (AM, The World Today, PM, Radio National Breakfast) outlets. The ABC also commissioned special programs which contained attacks on Pell –…Unholy Silence…Guilty…plus…Goliath.’ The conferral of a Walkley Award on one of the anti-Pell diatribes, Fallen – even after the High Court’s dismissal of the case against him – exemplified the intractable media hostility to the man who once joked, when asked about the church position on the Gay Mardi Gras, ‘Well, we’re not going to sponsor a float, if that’s what you mean’.

Both authors deserve our gratitude for their defence of the presumption of innocence and their insistence that justice according to law must prevail over guilt by association and accusation.

Still, not in Victoria, where the response of the Premier to Pell’s release was: ‘I make no comment about today’s High Court decision. But I have a message for every single victim and survivor of child sex abuse: I see you, I hear you, I believe you


Troubled islands

The revelation that the Solomon Islands has signed a security pact with China has sent shock waves across the Pacific reaching Washington. It’s a stark reminder that while the US has been drawn by Europe’s weakness into countering Russia’s blundering and bloody war in Ukraine, China is expanding the strategic threat it poses by stealth.

The deal between the Solomon’s Prime Minister Manasseh Sogavare was leaked by his domestic critics because of the threat it poses to their democracy. Using Chinese money as a slush fund, Sogavare apparently plans to buy enough votes to postpone the next election scheduled for 2023, supposedly for a year, but perhaps forever. That would suit China since the opposition has said it would tear up the agreement. Sogavare no doubt wants Chinese armed forces to quell dissent as he imposes unpopular policies, particularly in the island of Malaita, whose provincial government remains loyal to Taiwan.

The pact with China is also alarming South Pacific nations. The president of the Federated States of Micronesia said Sogavare had an obligation to recognise that the agreement had profound consequences for the security of the people of the South Pacific and the world.

China has exploited Sogavare’s political vulnerability to secure the right to build a military base less than 1800 kms from Townsville. That’s the distance from Townsville to Sydney and a direct threat to Australia.

For Labor’s foreign affairs spokeswoman Senator Penny Wong to blame the Morrison government is a paternalistic trope that denies Sogavare agency. To claim it wouldn’t have happened on Labor’s watch is absurd. Wong did nothing to dissuade Victorian premier Dan Andrews from signing up to China’s Belt and Road Initiative in October 2018. It was the federal government that cancelled the agreement a year ago while Labor’s deputy leader, Richard Marles, welcomed China’s increasing presence in the South Pacific in a book he published last August and said Australia could not and should not try to outspend China, even though Australia spends far more than China in the Solomon Islands and the South Pacific.

What Australia doesn’t do is provide slush funds to South Pacific politicians. It’s a practice of which the NSW Labor party has first-hand knowledge. It accepted $100,000 in cash in an Aldi bag from a Chinese billionaire property developer who presumably made the donation on behalf of the Chinese Communist Party’s United Front Work Department.

Former Labor senator Sam Dastyari, friend and factional ally of Marles, had to resign from parliament after accepting Chinese money. Both Marles and Dastyari said Australia should be neutral about sovereignty disputes in the South China Sea even though 60 per cent of Australia’s trade travels through it and any limit to our freedom of navigation would have a significant impact on the Australian economy.

It is true that the Country Liberal government in the Northern Territory was unacceptably naive when it signed, in 2015, a 99-year lease to manage the port of Darwin with a company with links to the CCP and the People’s Liberation Army. At the time, Australia’s department of Defence and even its Navy approved the lease even though control of the port would give the Chinese the opportunity to surveil or attack the US and Australian navies that regularly access the port.

It is also true that former Liberal foreign minister Alexander Downer, who was for a time on the board of Huawei, was wrong when he argued that the company should be allowed to participate in the construction of Australia’s national broadband network. All that can be said, is that it has taken both sides of politics a long time to recognise the threat that China poses.

Former foreign minister Julie Bishop is a case in point. She is now so conscious of that threat that she joined Labor in criticising the government for sending its foreign minister rather than its Pacific minister to attempt to dissuade Sogavare. Yet in 2018, Ms Bishop wanted to sign an extradition treaty with China, something almost all Western nations have eschewed because of China’s travesty of a legal system in which the only guarantee is that the accused will be found guilty. Worse, it is legal in China to harvest the organs of executed prisoners and a report released this month by a researcher at ANU found that in it least 71 cases, a prisoner’s heart was removed for transplant while they were still alive, causing their death.

Herein lies the real answer to the threat posed by China’s pact with the Solomons. Pacific Islanders are profoundly Christian, in the mould of Israel Folau. They need to understand that China’s godless communists are guilty of crimes of which no Christian could approve. Australia must work with all the nations of the South Pacific to bring Sogavare, a devout Seventh Day Adventist, back into the fold and develop a common policy to prevent China’s incursions in the region until it ceases its barbarous abuse of its own people and the threat it poses to the civilised world.




Thursday, April 28, 2022

Housing: The election issue no one wants to talk about ahead of Federal election

There is a good reason why the parties do little about this. Governments are the cause of the problem, not the solution. Get government out of housing and the problem would largely vanish.

Both to buy and to rent housing is costly because the supply is legislatively restricted. Landlord and tenant laws keep investors out of rental housing provision and land use restrictions -- "zoning" -- limit how many houses can be built.

A shocking number of the most vulnerable Australians are being left out in the cold by both major parties this election, new figures reveal.

While wages have remained close to stagnant for more than a decade, rental prices in every corner of the country have climbed at an increasingly rapid rate.

The annual housing affordability survey by Anglicare found that for most low-income earners and those on welfare finding suitable housing was almost impossible.

By taking a snapshot of 45,992 rental listings from one weekend in March this year, the study found just 720 – or roughly 2 per cent – were considered affordable for someone earning a full-time minimum wage of $772.60 per week.

Those on the age pension could afford just 1 per cent of listed dwellings and for someone on a disability support pension, youth allowance or JobSeeker, the figure dropped down to zero per cent.

Affordability was measured by a person paying less than 30 per cent of their salary on rent, a long-established metric beyond which financial stress can be expected.

Some of those on higher payments could consider share housing as an affordable option; however, this may be unsuitable, particularly for older Australians.

For those on youth allowance, even a share house was above their affordability threshold.

One JobSeeker recipient from Wollongong in NSW told Anglicare that they received $580 per fortnight in payments but were paying $520 each fortnight in rent – leaving just $60 for all other expenses.

“I can‘t buy phone credit, I can’t pay my internet bill, I can’t buy money to put on my travel card. There’s just no way to stretch it to cover everything,” they said.

The report found there was not a single affordable rental or share house option for a person on JobSeeker in the Illawarra region.

With 950,000 people on JobSeeker and other unemployment payments, advocates say the issue should be front and centre of this year’s election.

“We keep hearing that this election is about living costs, but housing is the biggest cost facing Australians,” Anglicare Australia executive director Kasy Chambers said.

“Voters are desperate for action. Instead, parties are promising more of the same. At best they are offering grants that overheat the market. At worst they ignore the problem,” Ms Chambers added.

Both major parties have largely shied away from even mentioning housing affordability in the early weeks of the campaign.

Scott Morrison received a swift backlash for suggesting in one interview the best way to help renters was for them to buy a house through the Coalition’s expanded first-home buyers’ support scheme.

The government's plan to relieve housing stress also includes an additional $2bn in low-cost financing aimed at delivering 29,000 more homes through the National Housing Finance and Investment Corporation (NHFIC).

Since 2018, the scheme that the Prime Minister devised during his time as treasurer has helped create around 15,000 social and affordable homes through loans to community housing providers.

Labor says it will establish a $10bn Housing Australia Future Fund to deliver 30,000 new social and affordable homes over the next five years, also through the NHFIC.

The Greens revealed that as well as committing $21bn towards building new dwellings they would remove tax breaks for those with two or more investment properties.

Ms Chambers said the situation called for 500,000 new social and affordable rentals across Australia, saying investing in housing is the “most powerful” way to make the market more affordable.

Australian Council of Social Service chief executive Dr Cassandra Goldie said she would also like to see JobSeeker payments increased on top of “a substantial boost to social and affordable housing stock and reforms to tax settings like negative gearing and the capital gains discount to address its structural causes”.

“People on low incomes are caught in crushing pincer movement of rising rents and stagnant incomes. They have long been priced out of major cities and, increasingly, from many regional areas,” she said.

“Without major housing policy changes, this situation is likely to continue to deteriorate.”


New generation of '10-pound Poms' as Australia lures British and Irish backpackers with bargain basement $17 FLIGHTS

An Australian state is so desperate for workers that it's offering bargain basement $17.60 (£10) fares to entice British backpackers to come Down Under.

The South Australian scheme is a modern twist on the post-war '10-pound Pom' scheme and will see Irish travellers get even cheaper trips to Australia costing just €10, or $14.90.

The move comes as the battle for backpackers heats up due to worker shortages across the country.

The scheme is an updated version of the program that brought migrants from the United Kingdom - including future pop stars and prime ministers - to Australia in the decades after World War II until 1982.

That plan saw 1.5 million British and Irish people travel Down Under for just £10, but there are some major differences today in price, transport and availability.

The £10 of 1945 is the equivalent of £460 ($810) in 2022, so today's £10 is vastly cheaper.

It's also more comfortable now, with backpackers taking a 24-hour flight rather than a six-week boat journey.

But the availability is a lot tighter. Just 200 lucky travellers will be chosen for the £10 flights.

In a bid to 'populate or perish', Australia initiated the Assisted Passage Migration Scheme in 1945.

These people became known as '10-pound Poms' after the price of the transport by ship to Australia.

The scheme lasted until 1982 and saw 1.5million British and Irish people move to Australia.

Two of the most famous people to arrive Down Under that way were former prime ministers Julia Gillard and Tony Abbott, who both migrated with their families in the 1960s.

South Australia has always played second fiddle to the eastern states of Victoria, New South Wales and Queensland when it comes to attracting migrants.

Backpackers, in particular, are far more likely to fly into cosmopolitan Sydney, Melbourne or Brisbane than South Australia's capital Adelaide - which has the well earned but not very exciting nickname 'the city of churches'.

Starting in May, young British and Irish people will be able to buy flights out of Heathrow, Manchester, Edinburgh or Dublin to Adelaide from Qatar Airways.

Those interested must be eligible to get a working holiday visa for Australia and be able to travel before September 30.

'South Australia is welcoming the return of working holiday makers – it's a real win-win for young people eager to travel and work abroad, and for our local tourism industry,' said South Australian Minister for Tourism Zoe Bettison.

She said tourism operators have missed having international visitors due to Covid restrictions over the past two years, while the state has also missed out on the backpacker workforce and 'the vibrancy they bring'.

'These backpackers foster a love for our state and our country which often inspires them to return later in life.

'Whether it's in our bars, restaurants, wineries and hotels, or on our outback stations and farms, there are so many ways that British and Irish citizens can work in Adelaide and in regional South Australia,' said Ms Bettison.

'We look forward to welcoming back young people from the UK and Ireland, and encourage them to make the most of these £10 fares.'


Young Queenslanders take Clive’s coal company to court, arguing ‘devastating’ consequences of mine

Clive Palmer’s Galilee Coal Project could be the biggest thermal coal mine in Australia and produce almost four times that of the Adani mine, the Queensland Land Court has heard as a landmark climate and human rights challenge kicked off on Tuesday.

Youth Verdict, a coalition of young Queenslanders, and environmental conservation group The BimbleBox Alliance is challenging Waratah Coal in court over the project proposed on the Galilee Basin west of Emerald.

The groups will argue that burning coal from the mine will impact the cultural rights of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people by further contributing to adverse climate change.

It’s the first time a coal mine has been challenged on the grounds of human rights violations in Australia.

Barrister Peter Ambrose, for Waratah Coal, in his opening statement said Waratah’s coal was high-energy producing, meaning less high rate coal needed to be burned to produce the same amount of energy as other coal.

He said coal experts agreed that Waratah Coal had the potential to displace coal that already existed on the market.

“Coal market experts also agree that if the applicant’s coal is not brought to market, coal from other sources will continue to supply the market as long as that market exists,” Mr Ambrose said.

“And it’s that last position that the experts are apart on- how long that market will exist.

“That is in our case, there will be no reduction in greenhouse gas emissions if Waratah Coal is not brought to market.”

Mr Ambrose acknowledged that climate change was real and said the world would face the impacts unless action was taken to reduce greenhouse gas emissions.

He said Waratah Coal would take more reasonable measure to reduce its Scope 1 and 2 emissions, and look to “preferably” sell its coal to generators who “look to become” carbon neutral.

Barrister Saul Holt, for Youth Verdict and The BimbleBox Alliance, told the court he understood the proposed mine would contribute more than 2.159 billion tonnes of carbon dioxide into the atmosphere.

“ … easily the largest thermal coal mine operating in Australia from when it starts, and almost four times bigger than Adani is currently proposed to produce,” Mr Holt said.

“The burning of that coal will accrue with other carbon dioxide in the atmosphere and so will cause, necessarily as a matter of physical process, environmental harm …”

Mr Holt argued underground mining through the Bimblebox Nature Refuge would have “devastating” impacts, including the loss of control by current custodians.

He said President Fleur Kingham of the Land Court of Queensland was being asked to unlock carbon dioxide in the earth into the atmosphere, by way of approving the coal mine.

He said the subsequent limitations on rights would include the right to life, cultural rights, and children and young people.

Mr Ambrose argued Waratah Coal’s evidence would show there would be no increase in adverse climate change effects if the coal entered the market.

“It follows, at least in Waratahs case, that there will be no infringement on any Queenslanders' human rights,” he said.

Mr Ambrose argued that changed plans for the mine, to be underground rather than open cut, meant there would be fewer adverse environmental impacts around the Bimblebox Nature Refuge.

The court also heard brief openings from the Department of Environment and Science, and active objector John Brinnand, before Mr Holt began questioning Waratah Coal managing director Nui Harris.

Mr Holt asked Mr Harris if he was familiar with the International Energy Agency’s position regarding whether new coal mines could be approved if they were to reach net zero emissions by 2050.

Mr Harris conceded he didn’t know any details around the agency’s position.

He was also asked if Waratah Coal’s parent company Mineralogy, controlled by Clive Palmer, would create delays by shifting resources from the Galilee project to another, as Mr Harris accepted had previously occurred.

“That’s a business decision isn’t it? That’s his decision,” Mr Harris said.

He said it was beyond his scope why Mr Palmer would have a parent company to Waratah Coal based in Singapore.

Judge Kingham said Mr Harris would continue answering questions on Wednesday and advised him to have a close look at documents his team had tendered to the court.

Outside court, co-director of Youth Verdict and First Nations campaign lead Murrawah Johnson said she was glad to finally have their day in court.

“We trust in our legal team but also our First Nations’ witnesses’ evidence is just amazing and we really hope that the court can see the importance of the cultural aspects that our witnesses put forward in their evidence,” Ms Johnson said.

The hearing is expected to span several weeks and include a range of experts.


Net Zero is dead

As this magazine argued early last year, the simplest way for the Coalition to win the 2022 election would have been to replicate John Howard’s and Peter Costello’s ‘tough decision’ GST strategy and in the interest of national prosperity and cleaner energy go to the polls with a commitment to revoke the Australian ban on nuclear energy in order to give us the cheap, reliable energy we will require for decades to come and with which we are abundantly blessed via natural resources. Such a policy would not only have given the Coalition something to fight for, it would have been the ultimate ‘wedge policy’ to skewer Labor on and – not that this seems to matter anymore – would actually have been the right thing to do.

Instead, Scott Morrison and his team of quislings, sorry advisers, asked the wrong questions in a motley grab-bag of inner-city focus groups and came up with the worthless and pointless policy of pledging to get Australia to Net Zero without nuclear power. Or indeed without any credible clean base-load energy source. (And please, spare us the Twiggy Forrest/ Mike Cannon-Brookes drivel about green hydrogen. Only the most cynical, corrupt or foolish politician would gamble an entire nation’s future on such an unproven and illogical technology spruiked by billionaire investors.)

All of which is now fairly academic because, as is always the way, events (dear boy) have overtaken political hypotheticals.

Vladimir Putin’s vile invasion of Ukraine has not only killed a tragic number of Ukrainians as well as Russian soldiers, it has also stabbed a bayonet through the heart of Net Zero with all the murderous efficiency of a Zaporozhian Cossack.

European governments like Germany’s, which for the last few decades have pursued the climate cult’s insane goal of obliterating carbon emissions, are now frantically re-opening coal mines and seeking reliable base load energy sources wherever they can find them, whether from fossil fuels or nuclear power. Countries in Scandinavia are suddenly desperate to start exploration and drilling in the North Sea again.

According to Benny Peiser, head of the Global Warming Policy Foundation who is currently visiting Australia and who along with Professor Ian Plimer (another regular and popular contributor to these pages) spoke at length to the Roseville branch of the Liberal party, average household electricity prices in the UK have jumped from a thousand pounds a year to two thousand and are headed for three thousand pounds per annum by this coming British winter. Mr Peiser forecasts many individuals and families will simply not be able to heat their homes.

Among British conservative backbenchers there is now a serious push to abandon Net Zero altogether. In the coming months, as war in Ukraine drags on and the energy crisis worsens, the delusional Greens-fuelled commitment to Net Zero may well cost not only Boris Johnson his job, but risks bringing down governments of all hues across Europe.

The task for a re-elected Morrison government, or a minority Coalition government relying on the support of any One Nation, Liberal Democrat or UAP representatives who scrape into the lower house, will be to abandon Net Zero and to rapidly set about promoting a nuclear energy industry in Australia.

The alternative, a Labor/Greens government, does not bear thinking about, but think about it we must. The simple reality is that, much like Joe Biden’s hopeless administration, an Albanese-Marles-Wong-Keneally government (just putting it down in black and white is risible enough) will quickly collapse in popularity as cold hard reality smashes to smithereens their utopian climate fantasies.




Wednesday, April 27, 2022

Is Albo another Biden?

With an elite father, an Indonesian mother and being homosexual, you would think that Flinty would be a solid Leftist. And he was in his early life. Around the turn of the century, however, he switched his allegiance from the ALP to the Liberal party. And that drift has continued to the point where he is now very conservative.

We see that in the article below. He makes an energetic case about the importance of the upoming Australian Federal election, when others might see two very centrist candidates, with little depending on who gets in.

He may be right. An ALP government might create havoc. Politicians saying one thing and doing another are a familiar phenomenon. If Albo does turn out to be a disaster, Flinty can at least say that he told us so

image from

David Flint

The 2022 election, closely monitored by criminals, domestic and international, could be one of the most important in Australian history.

As with other countries, a poor government could result in Australia becoming an unidentifiable shadow of itself.

The first criminal group is the fraudsters, strengthened by ‘reforms’ camouflaged as ‘making voting easier’. With the weakest protections against fraud among comparable democracies, the advent of pro-Labor ‘independents’ in Liberal electorates has given fraudsters an incentive to move beyond the marginals (this column, 2 April).

Opposition to European-style voter ID legislation, based on the insulting ground that it would disadvantage the indigenous, has been led by the man the pollsters suggest will be the next PM, Anthony Albanese. But pollsters can be very wrong, as this column demonstrated in detail before the last federal election.

The second criminal group is the same people smugglers who, under the Rudd government with Albanese as a minister, delivered with impunity over 50,000 illegal immigrants on 800 boats with over 1,200 drowning.

But when Tony Abbott promised to turn them back, Labor, LINOs (Liberals In Name Only) and the commentariat scorned him, claiming this was impossible and would lead to war with Indonesia.

Albanese claimed in the campaign that he supports Abbott’s Sovereign Borders policy, but draws the line at offshore processing which crucially denies illegal immigrants years of taxpayer-funded access to tribunals and courts. He said he agreed with Abbott’s temporary protection visas. But within hours he reversed himself on both, demonstrating that, as with the economy, he has no idea.

The third criminal group is the ruthless drug lords from the mainly Mexican and Colombian drug cartels. Since Joe Biden, whom some Border Control officers say should be named the ‘Drug Lords’ and Chinese Communists’ Employee of the Year’, stopped building Trump’s nearly finished wall and threw open the southern border, there is little difficulty in delivering dangerous drugs into the US. With Biden recently announcing the relaxation of Trump’s Title 42 legislation authorising Border Control’s immediate expulsion of especially single male illegals, both people smugglers and drug lords are ready to step up the drug trade to epidemic proportions.

So is the fourth group of criminal gangsters, the ruthless multi-billionaire thugs who control the Chinese Communist party, the source, directly and indirectly, of fentanyl. This is a powerful synthetic opioid used not only by addicts but also to lace other products taken unwittingly. As a result, opioids are now the major cause of death among the American young, with over 100,000 deaths per year.

At the 2018 Buenos Aires G20, Senator Bill Hagerty says Trump told Xi to stop sending fentanyl to the US. While Xi obeyed, he crucially made no promises about Mexico.

While both drug lords and Beijing are enriched by this evil trade, the communists have a more sinister objective. This is to undermine and punish their enemies, above all the USA.

But since the Morrison government rightly refused to behave like a cowardly tributary country, Australia is now being punished by the most flagrant breaches conceivable of Beijing’s obligations under international trade law.

That this has not had the deleterious effect hoped for will only encourage Beijing to work with the drug lords to push drugs into Australia should the borders be thrown open by an Albanese government.

As they probably will be for the reason that Marxism, which Churchill likened to a bacillus plague, has infected many if not most of the West’s institutions through a variant which could be identified as ME2, Marxism with Elite characteristics. (ME1 would precede Marcuse’s invention of critical theory). Realising both Marx’s proletarians and Mao’s peasants are stubbornly conservative, ME2 thinkers substituted race and their invention, ‘gender’, as the new oppressed through whom the West and its institutions can be destroyed.

ME2 critical race theory has delivered an anti-white, anti-European agenda which has led some Western governments into deceitfully making sudden, secretive and irreversible changes to a country’s population and its sense of order.

This has been done not only without the consent of the electorate, but without even consulting them, probably in the belief that they will be neutered by the new votes the politicians believe they have bought.

Blair did this to Britain, Merkel to Germany and much of the European Union and now Biden is doing this to the US. It was only Abbott, with Morrison and Jim Molan, and at an earlier time, Howard, who saved Australia from a similar fate.

(Pity then that the politicians have so mishandled legitimate immigration. But that is another question.)

One truly informative feature of the current campaign is the debate over the Liberal candidate Katherine Deves. She is dedicated to saving women’s sport through the self-evident truth that sex is not a matter of choice and a born male can never become a woman. In this debate, Albanese has emerged as a card-carrying adherent of critical gender theory. This is a clear indication that he, like most politicians, is infected to the gills with the ME2 variant. He will inevitably follow this on the borders and everything else. He will be a local mirror of the Biden administration, hopefully not as bad.

Meanwhile, Morrison clearly rejects critical gender theory, has refused to bend the knee to Beijing and has appointed our first real Minister of Defence in many a year, Peter Dutton.

Dutton is the likely architect of Aukus, the one truly global response to the emerging Moscow-Beijing-Tehran Axis. Pending a return to the White House of Donald Trump or someone as effective, we, even more, need a government in Canberra that will stand up to China and resist the pressure to open the borders.

Conservatives would be advised to vote carefully, preferring proven candidates including those from sound smaller parties but ensuring their ultimate choice is a return of the Morrison government.

The future of this country is at stake as it rarely is in an election.


Students shun maths as enrolments fall to all-time low

High school maths enrolments have collapsed to unprecedented low levels, sabotaging Australia’s shift to a “clever country” of tech-savvy workers.

The proportion of year 12 students studying the highest level of mathematics has fallen below 10 per cent for the first time, a new analysis by the Australian Mathematical Sciences Institute reveals in a “wake-up call” for educators and industry.

AMSI director Tim Marchant warns that maths enrolments have dropped to an “alarming new low”.

“Action must be taken now – these students are our future workforce,” he said.

“Mathematics skills are essential across so many industry sectors and the severity of this situation will impact Australia’s innovation capabilities.

“This data should be taken as a wake-up call and chance to reform.”

Professor Marchant called for better quality teaching, noting that up to 40 per cent of maths teachers were not qualified to teach the subject.

“Particularly in junior high school, years seven to 10, many (maths) classes are being taught by teachers that aren’t trained in mathematics,” he said.

“Students need their teachers to be trained in the discipline.

“We need to be working with these teachers, increasing their training and professional development.”

Only 9.2 per cent of year 12 students enrolled in specialist maths in 2020, compared with 11.6 per cent in 2008, the AMSI report shows.

Just 17.6 per cent studied intermediate mathematics in 2020 – down significantly from 23.3 per cent of students in 2008.

Together, the proportion of year 12 students who studied intermediate or advanced mathematics has crashed from 34.9 per cent in 2008 to 26.8 per cent in 2020.

Boys were nearly twice as likely to enrol in the highest level of maths, with 6.7 per cent of girls and 11.9 per cent of boys studying the subject in 2020.

Higher maths subjects are essential for university study in medicine, science, engineering and technology courses.

Professor Marchant said the schoolteacher shortage was exacerbated by competition for maths graduates to work in other industries.

“Demand is increasing for maths grads and the supply isn‘t there,” he said.

“For masters grads in maths sciences the starting salaries jumped about 20 per cent in the last five years to over $100,000, which is much more than other disciplines.”

Professor Marchant said Australia must produce more maths graduates to build a modern economy.

“The Australian economy is really evolving to a much more services-based and hi-tech type economy, and a lot of the new jobs involve data science and analytics, AI (artificial intelligence), cyber security, logistics, financial services,” he said.

“They all need maths, stats and data science.”

Professor Marchant called for more girls to study advanced maths in high school.

He said only 38 per cent of advanced maths students were female, although girls made up 49 per cent of intermediate maths students.

“I think it’s really important that the states and territories and the federal government work on increasing that to 50:50,” Professor Marchant said.

“We want gender equity in the various kinds of STEM (science, technology, engineering and maths) occupations.”

The AMSI report states that the national decline “can be traced back to one state, which changed its examination system in 2020, and where year 12 maths enrolments collapsed”.

AMSI refused to name the state, but in 2020 Queensland joined the rest of the nation in using the Australian Tertiary Admission Rank system.

As a result, students had to sit external exams for half their marks in maths, compared with in-school assessments used previously.

Fresh data from the Queensland Curriculum and Assessment Authority shows the proportion of year 12 students studying specialist maths in Queensland has plunged from 10 per cent in 2019 to 5.9 per cent last year.

Enrolments in “mathematical methods”, the intermediate maths subject, collapsed from 37 per cent of year 12 students in 2019 to just 19 per cent last year.

In Victoria, 7.8 per cent of year 12 students completed specialist mathematics last year – down from 8.3 per cent in 2019 – while 31 per cent completed mathematical methods, similar to the rate in 2019.

In NSW, maths enrolments have remained stable, with 25 per cent of year 12s graduating with an advanced maths subject and about 17 per cent studying a maths extension subject last year.


Federal election 2022: Warning over Labor’s ‘stealth carbon tax’

Labor has been accused of planning a carbon tax by stealth with its policy to cut emissions from major industrial polluters as the climate wars ignited new political brawls despite a bipartisan commitment to achieve net-zero emissions by 2050.

After Anthony Albanese pledged there would be no carbon tax “ever” if he became prime minister, Whitehaven Coal chief executive Paul Flynn warned that Labor’s plan to drive down emissions in the industrial sector was a “carbon levy by stealth”.

As Labor’s climate plans faced the blowtorch, splits widened in Coalition ranks, with Nationals senator Matt Canavan describing the ambition of net-zero emissions by 2050 as “dead’’, backing fellow Nationals MPs and candidates who had claimed it was “flexible’’.

“The net-zero thing is all sort of dead anyway,” Senator Canavan told the ABC. “Boris Johnson said he is pausing it. Germany is building coal and gas infrastructure. Italy’s reopening coal-fired power plants. It’s all over.”

The Prime Minister was forced to clarify that the government stood behind its commitment to net-zero emissions by 2050 as Liberal MPs facing challenges from Climate 200-backed independents including Dave Sharma in Wentworth and Trent Zimmerman in North Sydney repudiated the Nationals’ comments.

“Our commitment to net zero by 2050 is a commitment of the Australian government that I made in Glasgow. It is the government’s absolute policy,” Mr Morrison said while campaigning in central Queensland.

With Labor facing growing questions about the impact of its policy after mixed messages from frontbenchers, Mr Flynn took aim at a centrepiece of its emissions-reduction plans — the safeguard mechanism — which will impose tighter limits on industrial polluters to force greater carbon cuts over the rest of the decade.

“It certainly looks as if some in the ALP want to turn an ­emissions-reporting mechanism into a carbon levy by stealth, all while claiming the policy position is pretty much the same as the ­existing government scheme,” Mr Flynn said.

“Those two things can’t be true at the same time. The fact the ALP sees such an enlarged role for the Clean Energy Regulator in negotiating with impacted facilities suggests some in Labor are only just beginning to turn their minds to what this policy might look like in practice and what the impacts could be across the economy.”

Opposition energy spokesman Chris Bowen said on Sunday coalmines would be forced to comply with Labor’s more stringent safeguard mechanism, after assistant climate change spokesman Pat Conroy last week said no coalmine would be affected by the policy.

The safeguard mechanism was created by the Abbott government and captures facilities that emit more than 100,000 tonnes of carbon a year, including 60 coalmines. It has been criticised by climate groups for doing little to enforce a lower carbon footprint from major emitters.

Sky News host Peta Credlin says Prime Minister Scott Morrison is “failing” to give his own voters something to… vote for, and he isn’t giving swing voters “enough to vote against”, as Labor maintains its lead in the latest Newspoll results. “Scott Morrison won his ‘miracle’ victory last More
Labor will move to bring steeper emissions-reduction requirements for major industrial emitters, with its modelling saying it will deliver 213 million tonnes of emissions reductions by 2030.

“Emissions covered by the safeguard mechanism have grown 7 per cent since its commencement in July 2016, rising to 140 million tonnes in 2020-21,” Labor’s ­modelling says. “Under current policy, covered emissions are projected to grow to 151 million tonnes by 2030 to be 27 per cent above 2005 levels.”

Under Labor’s version of the safeguard mechanism, the cap for the 215 biggest industrial emitters will be progressively lowered to put the nation in line with Mr Albanese’s target to lower emissions by 43 per cent on 2005 levels by 2030. Companies that exceed “baseline limits” will need to offset emissions through carbon credit purchases, predicted to be about $24 per tonne of carbon.

Mr Albanese on Tuesday echoed former prime minister Julia Gillard’s infamous pledge in the 2010 election campaign in declaring there would be no carbon tax under his government. “There will be no carbon tax ever,” Mr Albanese told 2GB radio. Ms Gillard broke her promise after the 2010 election when she did a deal with the Greens to implement what she described as a “tax”.

Mr Morrison said Labor’s plan to reform the safeguard mechanism would lead to fossil fuel companies being penalised and taxed.

“The carbon credits scheme that Labor has put in place, just to be clear, it not only affects the coal industry, it affects mining and oil and gas production,” Mr Morrison said. “It affects rail freight. It affects cement production. It affects fuel refining. And many other sectors are caught up in those arrangements which would see them penalised and taxed.”

On Tuesday, Mr Conroy said he did not regret saying coalmines would not be impacted by Labor’s policy “because it’s true”.

“The policy very clearly stated that when the Clean EnergyRegulator looked at the trajectories for each of the facility, they would take into account two factors: one, the available technology, and emerging technology to allow that facility to reduce its emissions; and, very importantly, the comparative constraint that their international competitors face,” Mr Conroy said.

“The coalmining industry will not suffer a disadvantage or a negative impact compared to their international competitors.

“And that’s further confirmed by our independent and comprehensive economic modelling that made it very clear. That found that not a single coalmine would close early because of our policy, and not a single coalmining job will be lost because of our policy.”

While Labor has confirmed coalmines will be part of its safeguard mechanism, it has promised trade exposed sectors will be at no disadvantage to international competitors. Labor will decide in government how each facility will drive down emissions based on the advice of the Clean Energy Regulator.

Whitehaven Coal, which last month sold 70,000 tonnes of coal to the federal government as part of a donation to energy-starved Ukraine, is committed to net-zero emissions by 2050 and is a member of the Minerals Council of Australia. The chairman of Whitehaven Coal is Mark Vaile, a former Nationals MP and deputy prime minister.


Greenies as prohibitionists

Matt Canavan

As I was driving home on Saturday after a busy day, I realised that everything I had done that day, the Greens want to ban. I had not had this much fun campaigning since Bob Brown came to town.

I had started the day at RockyNats. A worthy successor to SummerNats, the annual car festival of burnouts, drag races and drifting that comes to Canberra once a year. The SummerNats organisers have squeezed in a second event in Rockhampton to be held over Easter. They’re perhaps getting in more festivals before the Greens want to ban the sale of petrol cars by 2030.

I then headed over to Paradise Lagoons just west of Rockhampton, where a massive horse ring and grandstand emerges from the Fitzroy river floodplain. Built by the visionary cattle king Graham Acton, the Paradise Lagoons campdraft this year celebrated its 20th anniversary and people come from all over the country to compete.

I am not sure whether the Greens know what campdrafting is but when they find out I am pretty sure they will want to ban it, too.

I finished the day at the Professional Bull Riders rodeo at the Great Western Hotel, the only pub in Australia with a rodeo ring inside the pub. After sadly shutting due to Covid, the Great Western is back and it was pumping on Saturday night. It takes a special kind of guts, or perhaps insanity, to jump on the back of a 800 kg raging bull for eight seconds.

The Greens have introduced legislation to ban rodeos.

The Greens wrap their self-appointed roles as the fun police in concern over the environment and animal welfare. The truth is more prosaic, however; the Greens just want to have power to tell people what to do.

The Greens are a modern form of the Temperance movement that succeeded in disastrously outlawing alcohol in early 20th-century United States. Their aims were well intentioned. Our society remains afflicted by too much consumption of liquor and drugs but you cannot remove human sin through the law book.

All prohibition did was create a thriving underground industry run by criminal organisations that led to more violence than ever committed by drunks.

Notwithstanding this sobering tale, the modern day Temperance movement in the Greens wants to outlaw much more. The Greens want to ban or restrict cars, red meat, coal, gas, oil, zoos, factory farming, horse and greyhound racing, dams, forestry, fishing, plastics, live exports, bawdy jokes, smoking and guns. And that is just a selection from five minutes or so on their website.

It would probably be simpler to write a list of the things that you will be allowed to do under a Green dictatorship. Whatever is permitted, there will not be much fun.

In the Greens world you will be able to watch all sorts of violence online but you had better not go hunting to provide food and clothing. In the Greens world you will be able to consume all sorts of exotic illicit drugs but dare not have a smoke at the end of a hard day’s work. In the Greens world you can invest whatever money you like in carbon credits but putting a bit on the dogs at the pub is the work of the devil.

When you make this comparison you realise that the Greens are afraid of the real world. Their obsession with drugs, virtual experiences and the latest climate fad all allow them to escape from the harsh realities of the need to provide food and energy.

That is how their policies are so often disconnected from reality. They do not know how things actually work because they rarely do any hard yakka – aka ‘work’ – in the real world. They are not – or do not know any – people who drill for oil and gas. They are not – or do not know any – people who raise and slaughter cattle for food.

The Labor party used to have people who grew food, made things with their hands or mined coal. That always helped to keep the more crazy parts of their left wing in check. However, the modern Labor party is full of people who have gone straight from university to union activist to parliamentarian. They have lost touch with the real world.

As a politician in a country area, I visit mines, factories and farms regularly. I hear from people on the frontline how hard it is to deal with uncaring bureaucrats, unethical banks and unprincipled unions.

The same people that want to take away our fun want to take away our work. The Greens and their friends in the Labor party are on the ultimate power trip thinking that can control everything, including the temperature of the globe.

Carbon traders are the successors of the Temperance activists. Just look at how the authoritarian left are salivating at the prospect of Central Bank Digital Currencies, which could be weaponised to give us all carbon budgets of 14 grams of red meat a day, as recommended by the United Nations.

In the meantime, Labor has consoled itself by promising a new carbon trading scheme for over 200 businesses Australia-wide. These include almost all our iron ore mines, coal mines, gas facilities, major factories and our last two oil refineries.

Just like Prohibition, if we tax these industries to oblivion they will just move to other countries. It is like the old Hale & Pace joke, ‘no, I don’t think we should ban mining because it would just go underground then, wouldn’t it?’ By sending our mining industries offshore, more Australian jobs would be lost to overseas.

And we would be poorer for it and would not be able to afford to buy cars to do burnouts, buy bulls to use in rodeos or have the money to travel to a campdraft. Maybe this is the Greens plan then. The Greens will never get popular support to ban fun, but if they scare us so much about the climate, they just may make us too poor to have any.




Tuesday, April 26, 2022

Pictures of parents camped out to enrol their children in Brisbane’s tops schools have triggered questions as to why some schools are in such high demand

This article Ignores the Elephant In The Room. It is schools in upper class localities that parents want for their children. Such schools are more orderly so provide a better learning environment

Pictures of parents camped out to enrol their children in Brisbane’s top schools have sparked debate about the desperation for out-of-catchment-enrolments and quality classrooms.

But data from the Department of Educations shows Sherwood and Graceville state schools, where families pitched camping chairs last Tuesday, are among hundreds of Queensland schools on the brink of capacity and forced to restrict out-of-catchment enrolments.

News of parents queuing for 24 hours attracted criticism from some readers, with one commenting that hype was often based on hearsay from other parents who had little idea when it came to academic benchmarks.

Others speculated that the hysteria came about from the discrepancy between the facilities and education provided at different public schools.

But the chief executive of P&Cs Queensland Scott Wiseman believes the demand for out-of-catchment enrolments is largely driven by specialist programs offered by certain schools rather than the general quality of the education.

“There is a growing focus on some schools offering specialist programs in sports, academics, arts and other areas,” Mr Wiseman said.

“Out of catchment enrolments can allow students with particular passion in these areas to flourish.”

Parents on Tuesday told The Courier-Mail they were happy to pitch camp chairs to join a schools waitlist based on recommendations from friends, academic achievements and friend groups.

Mr Wiseman said it was important that parents considered the full offerings of a school rather than focusing on specific programs at the school.

“Additional considerations are their students needs and well being, existing friend networks, travel, overall school performance and feedback from existing parents of the school via social media or contacting the schools P&C,” he said.

Mr Wiseman said an active school community was also a positive indicator for a school’s success given the support that P&Cs provided.

The Department of Education lists almost 600 schools with an School Enrolment Management Plan which have exceeded 80 per cent of their enrolment capacity or those which are new and likely to attract a large cohort from outside the catchment.

Principals of these schools are required to restrict the enrolment of students from outside the area in order to ensure sufficient facilities are available for students who live nearby.

Out-of-catchment students applying for enrolment at a state school are placed on a waiting list and assessed in order of receipt.

Data released by the Department of Education in 2021 revealed Corinda State High School had the highest number of out-catchment-enrolments in Queensland at 1624 students, or 78 per cent.

Brisbane State High School and Kelvin Grove State College were close behind.

Tent Hill Lower State School near Gatton and Woongarra State School near Bundaberg also had a high percentage of out-of-catchment enrolments, with Mr Wiseman saying there weren’t obvious localities with an increased demand.

A spokesman from the Department of Education said the latest data for out-of-catchment enrolments in 2022 was expected to be released within the next few weeks.


Dozens of countries including Britain and France are now turning to Australia to lock in a long-term clean energy source that can help the world dramatically cut its carbon emissions

After nearly a decade in the deep freeze, nuclear power has been getting a fresh look as a way for the world to rapidly end its dependence on heavily-polluting coal and oil.

An energy crisis brought about by Russia’s invasion of Ukraine has turbocharged this, prompting much of western Europe to look for ways to slash their reliance on Moscow.

Shunned by politicians here as being too hot to handle, uranium has been a workhorse for decades, fuelling nuclear reactors in more than 30 countries.

Although off-limits locally, uranium generates baseload electricity essential to underpin an energy grid but with barely any carbon emissions.

Just this month British Prime Minister Boris Johnson promised up to eight new nuclear plants within this decade. This followed France’s Emmanuel Macron, who is fighting a presidential election, outlining plans to build as many as 14 new reactors to bolster his country’s energy needs.

This uranium renaissance is creating a shift in Australian investment markets, which saw one player – mining hopeful Boss Energy – quietly cross the key $1bn mark over the past week.

While Boss hasn’t yet shipped an ounce of uranium, the valuation makes the Perth-based company hard to ignore.

Production could still be 18 months away as it does the numbers on the mothballed Honeymoon mine it is sitting on, 80km northwest of Broken Hill and just inside the South Australian ­border.

But chief executive Duncan Craib is confident that as the world revisits uranium’s role in the energy mix, his mine can become a low-cost, long-term supplier.

Craib says nuclear energy can “absolutely” play a role, alongside solar, wind and hydro, to deliver clean baseload power in Australia.

“When we talk to politicians on both sides of politics, there’s definitely a growing awareness,” Craib says.

“For nuclear power in Australia to be considered and for it to be successful, you really do need bipartisan support from both the major political parties – and we’re not there yet,” he says.

Craib is very close to bringing Honeymoon back to life. The mine had previously been owned by a Russian-backed entity Uranium One but closed the operation in 2013 amid weak prices.

Boss later took control and took a fresh look at the economics of the mine. A trial in 2016 used different processes to extract uranium, creating a much better prospect for a financial return even at the then subdued prices.

“Ultimately, what we wanted to do was increase the production throughput, so you’re producing more and lower your costs and get the right tenor of uranium out of the ground, which we’ve achieved over years of testing and trialling,” Craib says. The type of mining proposed – in situ recovery, which involves a form of leaching rather than digging ore – sharply reduces the energy intensity needed to extract uranium.

The price of uranium collapsed after Japan’s Fukushima disaster just over a decade ago, where the nuclear power plant was hit with an earthquake and tsunami, and radiation was released into the atmosphere. Despite the extreme nature of the event, later investigations concluded that better safety oversight and planning could have prevented the accident. However, investors turned off uranium, sending it to around $US20 per pound for years.

Recent unrest in Kazakhstan, which supplies nearly 40 per cent of the world’s uranium market, pushed prices above $US42 per pound late last year. Russia’s invasion has sent uranium to more than $US63 per pound and Craib expects it to move higher.

“There’s been a significant shortfall in supply versus demand. This past year, there’s a deficit of 48 million pounds. With that deficit, fuel buyers have been relying on their own inventory. But there’s been no question in the industry that new supplies are needed, the mines need to be built, new resources need to be discovered.”

He points to the hard realities of the numbers that are underpinning a restart of Honeymoon.

“Currently there’s about 440 reactors operating in 31 countries. You’ve got 56 units under construction and 96 are in the planning stage. There’s another 325 proposed and the leading driver of that really is China,” he says.

‘Pole Position’

Honeymoon already has mining infrastructure in place, and critically, it has one of four uranium export licences, which can accelerate the ramp-up of the operation.

Other existing uranium mines in South Australia include BHP-owned Olympic Dam and Four Mile, which is backed by US-owned Heathgate Resources. Mining at Rio Tinto’s majority-owned Ranger Mine in the Northern Territory finished early last year and the site is in the process of being rehabilitated


Election 2022: Experts pull plug on vow to cut energy bills

Three leading energy experts have cast doubt on Labor’s pledge to cut energy bills by $275 a year and create 604,000 jobs by promoting renewable generation, with one of them describing a key assumption that underpins the pledge as “just plain wrong’’.

Labor’s centrepiece Powering Australia Plan is backed by ­modelling that shows an 18 per cent fall in wholesale electricity prices and an 18 per cent fall in prices for households and businesses by 2025.

Wholesale prices account for only 25-35 per cent of retail energy prices, with charges to fund poles and wires comprising up to 50 per cent, retail margins 15-20 per cent and green subsidies about 10 per cent.

“It is hard to say how they get the same percentage reduction except by assumption” said economist Warwick McKibbin.

“There is nothing I can see on the modelling that shows the links between prices across users so I cannot judge if this is correct.

“I would have expected other inputs to change so some difference in percentage would be likely,” he said.

When other input costs to the residential price such as poles and wires, retail and green costs are taken into account, up to $150 of the predicted $275 in annual savings could be swallowed up.

Half of Labor’s 604,000 new jobs are also dependent on assumptions of lower power prices from the entry of renewable generation sources to the system.

“It is either an arithmetic error or alternatively they are assuming all the other costs are plummeting, including network costs, and that is impossible. It is just a mistake. It’s just plain wrong,’’ said Frontier Economics managing director Danny Price.

“If it is an arithmetic error, they have just taken the wholesale cost reduction as the retail price reduction. They just fundamentally misunderstood that wholesale only represents the minority of the consumers’ bill.’’

On Tuesday, Energy Minister Angus Taylor claimed that energy consumers would pay an increased $560 a year by 2032-33 as a result of a surge in network charges under Labor’s plan.

Labor on Tuesday doubled down on its defence of its modelling by consultancy RepuTex.

“RepuTex are the country’s leading energy economists, with the Coalition themselves commissioning them for their own 2030 target” said Labor’s climate change and energy spokesman Chris Bowen.

“This is another desperate scare campaign by the same ­rabble that haven’t been able to land a national energy policy in a decade.”

RepuTex did not respond to questions from the Australian.

The RepuTex report released in December predicted that under Labor’s policy, wholesale prices paid to electricity generators would fall by 18 per cent or $11/MWh. It predicted residential electricity prices would also fall by 18 per cent, delivering a drop of $50/MWh and saving a family $275 over a year.

Sky News host Jenna Clark says “alarm bells” should be going off at “opposition HQ” as energy experts warn… Labor's $78bn transformation of the electricity grid will force up prices. Government modelling estimates Labor's electrical grid plan will add as much as $560 to the average annual power More
Based on figures in the RepuTex table published in the report, the wholesale price contributes only 22 per cent of the retail price.

However, in a one-page statement also published in December, RepuTex estimated the wholesale component of an average electricity bill to be 35.5 per cent and that it was the largest component of a retail bill.

RepuTex also stated that the wholesale component was forecast to contribute 83 per cent of the total bill savings in 2025.

These figures are inconsistent with the RepuTex forecast of an 18 per cent fall in both wholesale and residential retail prices leading to a $275 saving by 2025.

Tony Wood from the Grattan Institute said: “I cannot make sense of the two things: 83 per cent of $275 is $228. At $11/MWh, that would mean consumption of more than 20MWh per annum – clearly not right. There must be something missing.”

Since the RepuTex report was made public in December, the futures price for wholesale electricity in 2025 has risen from ­$53/MWh to $105/MWh, according to ASX Energy Data services.

Energy Users Association chief executive Andrew Richards said wholesale prices had already risen dramatically, and he expected substantial volatility in energy prices going forward. “There are many scenarios we can see where the total bill will go up. That is where the narrative around this transition being easy and cheap is just false” he said.

Labor has promised to spend $20bn under its plan to connect 25,600MW of new renewable energy, including wind and solar farms, to the existing grid. It expects the policy will unlock $58bn of private co-­financing.

“You are spending another $50-$60bn of private money. How can prices be plummeting that much? It just makes no sense at all,’’ Mr Price said.


‘We won’t shut down debate’: Perrottet stares down crossbench threat

NSW Premier Dominic Perrottet has stared down threats by a key independent MP to withdraw support for his government amid an intensifying debate over transgender people in sport.

Independent member for Sydney Alex Greenwich warned he would no longer guarantee supply and confidence for the Coalition government after Perrottet was drawn into the debate over excluding transgender people from women’s sports.

Perrottet on Friday evening called for a more tolerant and respectful conversation around the issue, but insisted he would not allow government supply and confidence to be threatened by Greenwich.

“My government will not be threatened on the issue of allowing people to voice their opinions,” he said. “If you are a politician and you don’t have a view, then you are in the wrong profession.”

Despite the threats from Greenwich, Opposition Leader Chris Minns has ruled out supporting a motion of no confidence in or denying supply to the NSW government.

Transgender comments threaten Perrottet’s minority government
“The choice of government should be left to the voters in March 2023,” Minns said.

The debate over transgender people in sport has dominated the federal election campaign in the Sydney seat of Warringah after inflammatory comments from Liberal candidate Katherine Deves were widely circulated.

Olympic champions Emma McKeon and Dawn Fraser voiced their opinion on the matter this week as the issue also filtered into state politics after NSW Treasurer Matt Kean called for Deves to be disendorsed by the party.

Perrottet said twice this week he believed “young girls should compete against young girls,” and rejected calls for Deves’ disendorsement.

Greenwich on Friday said he had organised a meeting with Perrottet, sporting representatives and transgender advocates for next week, as he wanted the premier to be provided with more information about the community.

Perrottet’s office said they had already agreed to the meeting with the advocates on Thursday, before Greenwich threatened to withdraw support for the government.

However, Greenwich said he advised the premier at 2.30pm on Thursday that he could not support a government “developing an anti-trans narrative,” before his office agreed to the meeting at 6pm.

“It’s my hope and intention that we can get to a position where he understands the importance of trans people being able to participate equally and fairly in sport,” Greenwich told the Herald on Friday.

Greenwich said he was concerned an “anti-trans narrative” was forming within the federal Liberal Party, and he did not want it to leach into NSW state politics.

“I want to make sure that that narrative does not follow through to the NSW government, because then my position of supporting them would be impossible,” he said.

“I have built a relationship of respect with the premier and his government where we are very open. He and I have had differing views, but I expect to know where those come from, and I expect that they are based on evidence and consultation, not just ideological opinion.”

Sports Minister Stuart Ayres said sporting bodies were best-placed to determine the issue of transgender athletes, not politicians.

“Sports administrators are responsible for creating safe, inclusive participation environments and that varies from sports,” he said.

“We should let sports regulate themselves in this regard, and they will determine the right outcome for their sports to ensure that sports are open to all, and it’s done in a safe and inclusive environment.”




Monday, April 25, 2022


Today was ANZAC day.  I have attended Dawn services and watched the marches on various occasions in the past in both Brisbane and Sydney.  It is both a solemn and a happy time.  I am quite disabled at the moment so I could not participate this year.  I did however do something both special and mundane:  Joe and I went to Macdonald's for brunch.  We in fact went to a local Macdonald's that Joe has been visiting since he was 4.

It was special because I am so disabled at the moment.  Joe had to help me quite a lot to get there. I had to lean on his strong arm while walking. But it was a pleasant occasion and made a very welcome outing for me.  Since I cracked a rib, outings have been few and far between.  I am not bedbound but I am decidedly housebound.  Just the day before, Joe and I had had our usual Sunday breakfast at home to cope with my limitations

ANZAC day is a people's day.  It marks the loss of thousands of ordinary men and women in the battles of WWI.  I myself did lose relatives in both WWI and WWII.  So it is a day on which we honour members of our own families:  Men and women who fought and died for "King and country" but who were really motivated by a wish to protect their own families.  It is Australia's greatest national occasion.  

The "Courier Mail" has a splendid photo gallery of this year's occasion in Brisbane. I particularly liked the photo below. It was presumably a re-enactment group who had gone to the trouble of donning the army uniforms of WWI:

Note the Lewis gun. It was used a fair bit in WWI.

And if you look at the gallery as a whole you will note the large number of Australian flags being displayed.  It is a day on which we are openly proud of our Australian identity.  The Left have always hated it but they have never been able to ding it.  A novel mocking ANZAC day was even prescribed for High School reading during my teens.  I remember it well: Alan Seymour's "One day of the year".  

The day could have been one for old men to celebrate their past but it is not.  Old Diggers do of course lead the celebrations but young people also turn out in droves for the occasion.  The Left have forced much upon us but the people at large have thwarted that attack.  As an ex-digger myself, I am glad of that.

Friday, April 22, 2022

The ABC is a Left-wing mouthpiece

For nine years Coalition governments have tolerated the national broadcaster’s defiant indifference to its charter and editorial policies. For nine whole years they have turned blind eyes to its partisan and divisive agenda, grudging apologies and defamation payouts.

Nothing the ABC collective does seems to spur the people’s representatives into action which makes them equally complicit in the contempt the ABC holds for those who pay its bills.

Indeed, rather than censure, the government has just restored full funding, even putting to an end a temporary, minor, ‘highly contentious, freeze on indexation’.

When the ‘freeze’ was announced we were told it would ‘rip the heart out of the ABC, and our democracy’. Neither was true. First the broadcaster is not known for its defence of democracy and second, the corporation was forced to reveal that it had 120 more employees in the 2020-21 financial year than it had in 2019-20.

Yet when chief executive David Anderson was asked at a Senate hearing last year about staff numbers, instead of admitting there were no cuts, he said he didn’t believe the organisation’s headcount had increased over the past year. Dissembling runs deep within the ABC.

When announcing the latest triennial funding, Communications Minister Paul Fletcher meekly reminded the broadcaster to ‘avoid either the reality or, the perception of political bias’, adding defensively, ‘that is not attacking the ABC’.

Australian content was his focus, ‘be it news or drama or documentary’. Each year the broadcaster will be asked to provide a report detailing staff numbers in regional and remote Australia, as well as hours of programming tailored to those audiences.

Clearly the minister would rather use the ABC as a make-work scheme for outback Australia than hold it accountable for editorial integrity. While that remains unattended, it matters little where programmes are made or, whether the head office is in Ultimo or Parramatta.

Indeed, how many apologies and defamation payouts must there be, how many biased stories like the reports on live cattle exports, NSW Racing, greyhound racing, climate change and the Dondale Detention Centre, to name a few, must there be, before someone in government grasps there is a deep cultural disdain for the ABC’s mission?

The corporation employs more than 26 in-house lawyers and has outlaid $26.5 million in legal expenses over four years. Perhaps when only around six per cent of all investigated complaints are fully or, partially upheld, explains why?

Some dissatisfied complainants like Chinese-Australian businessman Chau Chak Wing go to court.

He received $590,000 in damages when a Four Corners episode wrongly portrayed him as a Communist party member. Costs, believed to have been another $1 million, were also awarded.

Taxpayers also picked up the $200,000 tab for the damages and costs awarded to former Coalition MP, Andrew Laming, after ABC journalist Louise Milligan wrongly accused him, on her private Twitter account, of ‘up skirting’ a woman. This is the same Louise Milligan who relentlessly pursued Cardinal George Pell, leaving no doubt in viewers’ minds that he was a pedophile. Even when the High Court’s full bench unanimously found ‘the evidence did not establish guilt to the requisite standard of proof’, Ms Milligan and the broadcaster were unrepentant.

But the ABC cares little for evidentiary proof or for damaged reputations. Former Coalition senator Cory Bernardi and former attorney-general, Christian Porter, will attest to that. They were both effective rightwing politicians ABC journalists thought should be targetted.

Even the dead, like former NSW Labor premier Neville Wran, aren’t spared. In 1983 Wran sued the ABC for defamation for linking him to crime boss Abe Saffron. If he were alive today he would sue them again. Seeking vindication forty years on, a new documentary linked him to the ghost train fire at Sydney’s Luna Park, with claims Saffron was behind the fire and only escaped prosecution because of Wran. An independent review of Exposed: The Ghost Train Fire, found it was misleading and wrongly implied a relationship.

It’s this lack of professionalism that produced the bungled documentary series which looked into the disappearance of journalist Juanita Nielsen. The ABC conceded there was a ‘serious editorial lapse’ and that they had failed to go through a stringent due diligence process.

It seems ABC journalists work in a ‘believe what you want to believe’ culture. It’s how, on the flimsy word of an unnamed US marine who heard ‘a pop on the radio’ and assumed it was a gunshot, they framed soldiers from the 2nd Commando Regiment’s November platoon of executing an Afghan prisoner.

This story conveniently fitted the narrative of ABC journalist Marc Willacy’s latest book which seeks to tarnish the reputation of Australia’s serving men and women; a common practice within the ABC. A qualified apology over sloppy journalism and breach of standards was issued but not reported. Pity about the members of November platoon who had lived with unproven allegations they were war criminals.

Yet these are the standards successive communications ministers, and the chairs, boards and management of the ABC have walked past. There are no consequences and there is no accountability. When $1.1 billion a year rolls in regardless, why change?

It is a national scandal. Former host of the broadcaster’s Media Watch programme, now chair of the ABC Alumni, Jonathon Holmes, in a ‘first ever’ election campaign, (really?) informs us, it is still ‘official Liberal party policy’ to privatise the ABC (it isn’t) and that the staff must vote Left. No bias there.

It is time to accept that while the ABC comprehensively fails to meet even its statutory obligations, multiple private media organisations regularly attain higher standards and provide better quality programmes in areas once considered the national broadcaster’s preserve, including services to regional and remote Australia.

In such a media market and, given the ABC’s institutionalised contempt for its mission, it is reasonable to conclude it has surrendered all claims for taxpayer support.


Protecting women not a priority for Leftists

Steggall is an "independent" Leftist.

It was a mistake for Zali Steggall to refer to the protection of women, girls, and children as a ‘dead cat strategy’.

In one breath, she dismissed the rights of women to make way for the desires of biological men. Steggall may as well have lashed the history of feminism to the stake. This is not progressive thought – it is a regression back to a Medieval era where women were forced to shut up and put up with the dominance of men.

‘We were basically told to, “suck it up”,’ said one of transgender swimmer Lia Thomas’ teammates. The woman, who was too frightened to be identified, said that they felt uncomfortable and upset being exposed to a naked man in their locker room.

The Member for Warringah uttered her ‘dead cat’ line during a recent interview with Laura Jayes on Sky News Australia. It was not a poorly worded error. When pushed on the subject, Steggall doubled-down, accusing parents that raised concerns about the safety of young girls competing against boys in contact sport of being ‘transphobic’.

Steggall’s callous attitude toward the genuine fears of women confirms speculation that when it comes to the Culture Wars, the Left are prepared to sacrifice women, their rights, and their safety in order to appease biological men. So-called ‘moderate’ Liberal MP and New South Wales Treasurer Matt Kean said that this wasn’t the 1950s – no. Quite right. In the 1950s no self-respecting man would take a medal from a woman and describe it as an ‘act of bravery’.

Matt Kean went on to immediately tweet that, ‘Gender balance on treasury boards will rise from an impressive 40 per cent to a balanced 50 per cent! Chris Minns attacked the policy this morning. He really does stand for nothing. He won’t stand for a fair go for women.’

Kean didn’t clarify if his 50 per cent female quota target was made up of women or men.

The message is not getting through to men in positions of power like Kean. Women do not want men in their bathrooms, change rooms, sports, or other female-specific spaces. Individual groups of women make exceptions on a case-by-case basis – such as a desperate dad taking his female toddler to a public women’s bathroom – but the idea of legal power being used by the State to force the issue is unacceptable.

Shove a woman in front of a camera on national TV surrounded by a thrall of press and she might begrudgingly go along with the ‘tolerance’ line, but that answer is usually coerced out of fear that she may lose her job if she does not comply with the activist line. Shame on society for threatening women into accepting an unsafe situation. The Left are keen to point out the existence of ‘toxic masculinity’, paint every young boy as a potential abuser, and talk at length about women as victims of male violence, but they outright refuse to accept that this biological imbalance remains regardless of modern ‘gender-fluid’ theory.

When a woman says that she feels unsafe with a naked man occupying a change room, is it the woman who is banned from the gym or told to stop complaining. When a woman says that it is unfair for a man to set unattainable records in competitive sport, they are told that sport is meant to be about ‘inclusion’, not winning. When a woman loses her career to man, she is forgotten and left to watch a man take her scholarship, money, and future.

This paradox of political correctness ensures that women who stand up and bravely demand equality are labelled as bigots.

Virtue signalling is a currency best measured in ‘clicks’ and Australia’s media core attack conservative women like seagulls on a chip. These are the sorts of journalists who like to remind us that Warringah is ‘an electorate that voted 70 per cent in favour of same-sex marriage’ as if there is a genuine comparison between two consenting adults entering a marriage and the side-lining of women or surgical mutilation of a child’s body. There is not.

When Deves said that the behaviour of militant activists reminded her of the Nazi regime’s habit of ruthlessly silencing those who opposed it, she was describing the intolerant, hate-fuelled landscape of social media that women are subjected to if they dare to defend their biological rights.

Besides, no one throws the ‘Nazi’ accusation around more liberally than the radical left, who use it as a daily slur against anyone and everyone who stands slightly to the right of Stalin. Trump is a Nazi. Scott Morrison is a Nazi. The Liberal Party are Nazis. Anti-vaxxers are Nazis. J.K. Rowling is a Nazi. Murdoch is a Nazi. Jewish people who support Israel are Nazis. Free speech supporters are Nazis. Anyone who has refused to actively ‘affirm’ the LGBTQ movement has been accused of being a Nazi by someone with pronouns in their bio. Last year in Melbourne, Union members were called Nazis by none other than ex-Labor Leader Bill Shorten. Everyone is a Nazi to the rabid mob.

What we are witnessing is an ideological movement that has become so corrupted by the cheap thrill of outrage that they cannot stand to look at themselves in a mirror. The level of festering violence sitting beneath anonymous social media accounts is astonishing and speaks to a deeper psychological problem rampant in the last few generations who manage their emotions by abusing strangers on the internet. Is social media desensitising people or are these kids being radicalised to hate by a State-sanctioned education program that demonises conservatives and traditional family values?

Matt Kean correctly stated that, ‘This is not an intolerant society.’ Unfortunately, Kean can’t tell the difference between tolerance and cheating, something he has experience with when it comes to women’s issues. No, he wasn’t cancelled. Male privilege, perhaps? Australia has a reputation for fairness, and that is what Katherine Deves campaigns on. The Sex Discrimination Commissioner Kate Jenkins stated that the ‘practical guidance [of the re-interpreted Sex Discrimination Act in 2013] on how sporting organisations, their staff, and volunteers can promote the inclusion of transgender and gender diverse people in line with human rights-based principles.’

And therein lies the problem. Sport is not about ‘inclusion’ and it is not a human right. Sport is a competition divided by gender to promote fairness where contestants are selected based upon merit. It is about finding the limits and peak performance of that gender. If, as of 2013, sport is about ‘inclusion’ then fine – let’s forget the whole gender division thing and throw everyone into the unisex category. We’ll see how long it takes for professional female athletes to tear apart the sporting world when they find themselves losing to teenage boys and excluded from multi-million dollar prizes.

Katherine Deves isn’t being set upon by activist wolves because she’s wrong. Deves is hounded by every able-bodied member of the left because she’s right. The majority of men and women know that there is a fundamental difference between the sexes that cannot be erased by wishful thinking and medical intervention. Deves stated reality and the electorate pulled toward her.

Steggall felt it. Albanese felt it. The activists draining millions out of the taxpayer purse felt it.

At some point, society has to sit down and choose.

Do we honour the biological rights and safety of women – or do we bow to the demands of Labor, the Greens, the ‘moderate’ Liberals, and the so-called Independents who want us to cast women back to the Dark Ages?



Anthony Albanese’s lies get bigger and more dangerous


What renders him more unfit to be prime minister and the party he purportedly leads more broadly unfit to be the government of Australia?

Anthony Albanese’s sheer incompetence and ineptitude, shown on day one with the ‘gaffes’ which were absolutely not gaffes but revelations that he hadn’t a clue about was happening in the economy, before you even get to the ‘tough stuff’ – how to actually manage the economy?

Or the fact that he lies straight through, seamlessly, shamelessly and repeatedly, those clenched teeth?

He delivers small lies: I was an economic Adviser to the Hawke Government.

Yeah, sure; like I – and a thousand, maybe a million others – were also ‘economic advisers’ to the Hawke Government.

For as The Australian and Sky News’s Sharri Markson revealed, Albanese was just another “research officer” for a very minor minister in that government, with both the minister and his ‘Adviser’ opposing everything that Bob Hawke and Paul Keating did. He tells spineless lies: like “I didn’t hear half the question” after his answer had shown he didn’t even understand the most basic aspects of Labor’s own policy on boat people and offshore processing.

He delivers big lies: that the Morrison government would extend the ‘Debit Card’ to pensioners – over an express statement in writing from minister Anne Ruston in July last year categorically ruling out doing so and that “we will never have such a plan”. Indeed, the government actually supported an amendment in the legislation that “no recipient of the Age, Veterans or Services Pension will be placed on the Debit Cashless Card”.

Further, that was an amendment that Albanese actually led Labor to vote against! Who wants to put pensioners on the Debit Card? Look in the mirror Anthony.

But most potently and dangerously – as he goes out of his way to confirm the ‘Each-way Albo’ nailing of him by Sky New’s Paul Murray – his biggest lie of all is about supporting new coal mines. That’s supporting them, provided they got environment approvals.

That’s both a statement of the obvious: of course coal mines – like everything else – have to get environmental approval. It’s also a statement, to the left, that we will make damn sure there won’t be another coal mine as we throttle any proposed one in red, green and black tape; just like Annastacia Palaszczuk came so close to doing with the Adani mine and would have succeeded but for its private family ownership. This is the biggest lie of all; it is quite literally a threat - yes, of course also an unknowing threat because Albanese is just so utterly clueless - to destroy Australia’s future.

Without coal mines – and iron ore mines and LNG export projects – Australia would be an Argentina if we were lucky and more likely an Albania.

In the month of February we got $44bn in export income. Nearly $30bn came from those three things, including $9bn from coal.

Another $6bn came from the bush and after that you are talking petty change in economic terms. Right now we are getting record or near-record prices for anything to do with energy – that’s to say, real energy, the sort that actually works like coal and LNG.

We are also getting very high prices on a billion-tonnes-a year of iron ore thanks to China.

The really big issues for our future are what happens to these exports; try surviving – both the country and families and individuals – on what we get from the other exports.

Our future prosperity, indeed survival, will rely on two things: the world continuing to want and use real energy and China, our biggest and most dangerous enemy, continuing to ‘work’ and shower us with money.

Could we survive even just three years of a PM Albo?


‘Cold comfort’: Nearly 7000 Brisbane, Ipswich flood victims’ to receive compensation payouts

A $440m payout will at last be divvied up to the 2011 flood victims who say it comes as “cold comfort” more than a decade after the event inundated 23,000 homes and businesses.

Almost 7000 Queenslanders have won a class action over the state's devastating 2011 floods, with a judge finding they were victims of negligence. (AAP Video)
QLD News

A $440m payout will at last be divvied up to the 2011 flood victims who say it comes as “cold comfort” more than a decade after the event inundated 23,000 homes and businesses.

Nearly 7000 Brisbane and Ipswich victims last week lost an appeal bid in the High Court to overturn a court decision that found Seqwater was not liable for half of the damages caused by the flood.

Only half of the original $880m class action payout will now be divided up to the 6800 victims, some who are still reeling from the 2022 floods in February.

Maurice Blackburn Lawyers principal Rebecca Gilsenan confirmed the first interim payments would start to flow towards the end of the month or in May.

Ms Gilsenan said it was a “deeply disappointing” ruling for the victims after the application was rejected following a 20-minute hearing.

She said it was the “end of the road” for the victims following an 11-year legal battle.

“The settlement with Sunwater and the State of Queensland stands and we will continue working hard to distribute the settlement proceeds as quickly as possible,” Ms Gilsenan said.

“We know that this is a deeply disappointing outcome after an extraordinarily long journey for everyone affected by the floods.”

In 2019, the NSW supreme court found Seqwater to be one of three parties, including Sunwater and the State Government, to have failed nearly 7000 residents during the floods.

The court found that engineers in control of the Wivenhoe and Somerset dams failed resulting in more than 23,000 homes and businesses being inundated.

Seqwater successfully appealed the decision while Sunwater and the State Government agreed to pay out $440m in compensation.

Ms Gilsenan said the payout process was complex given the volume of claims and how they varied from vehicle, property or industrial losses.

“These claims can vary from thousands to millions of dollars, so it’s a huge job to assess and have all the claimants accept,” Ms Gilsenan said.

“We do expect it to be completed within 12 months.”

Ipswich Councillor and flood victim Paul Tully said he and thousands of fellow victims were crushed after the judgement was handed down.

He said there had been an “air of expectation” of a successful outcome. “It come as a bolt out of the blue. It really hit me when the news came through,” Cr Tully said.

Cr Tully said the judgement was “cold comfort” for many residents who were still assessing the damages from the floods in February. “It was 3.5m lower than 2011 and not quite as bad, but when you still haven’t been paid from floods a decade ago it hits hard,” he said.

“It’s been heartbreaking. We lost everything (in 2011), so many priceless things and we really lived and breathed what the community felt.

“The floods ended marriages, people left the area, some renters just never came back.

“The fact we are still waiting raises the issue whether there should be a better system, people needed it (their payout) straight away.”