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If you talk to the people in-the-know at the United Nations and other related agencies, they will tell you that our system of governance is not working well enough to solve the crises the world is facing. I guess this explains why the final lead document “The Future We Want” from the United Nations Conference on Sustainable Development held in Rio de Janeiro in Brazil from June 13-22, was described by Yolanda Kakabadse, International Director of WWF, as “a weak text without bones and without soul.”
The United States Supreme Court has upheld the core provision of Arizona’s vicious anti-immigrant law. The part of the law upheld requires police to determine the immigration status of anyone they stop, for whatever reason, if they “suspect” they are undocumented. Arizona Governor Jan Brewster claims the law would not result in racial profiling. But she is lying through her teeth. Everyone knows that in Arizona, the only grounds for “suspicion” is having brown skin. No white person will be “suspected” of not having papers.
So now we have a carbon price in Australia. The sky hasn’t fallen in but neither are we getting anywhere near doing what needs to be done to respond to the climate change crisis. Australia currently gets its energy in this mix: • Fossil fuels: 95%, comprising coal: 39%, gas: 22%, petroleum: 35% • Renewables: a miserable 5%. According to the Labor government's own projections, with the carbon price, by 2035 Australia's energy mix will be: • Fossil fuels: 91%, comprising less coal at 21%, more gas at 35%, petroleum: 36% • Renewables: rising slightly to 9%.
Despite escalating rhetoric and sectarian violence, it seems for the time being NATO is not planning a direct military assault against Syria along the lines of its attack on Libya last year. If NATO had been looking for a pretext for such an assault, the June 22 shooting down by Syrian forces of a air force F4 phantom jet belonging to NATO member Turkey provided one ― notwithstanding evidence the plane was shot down in Syrian airspace.
Having taken her share in Fairfax Media to nearly 20%, Gina Rinehart has demanded a greater say in the workings of Fairfax, including editorial matters at its major papers The Age and The Sydney Morning Herald. Fairfax’s board has so far rejected Rinehart’s manoeuvres, saying she must first commit to signing the “Fairfax Media Charter of Editorial Independence”, which is based on the “fundamental and longstanding principle of editorial independence”.
The Transform Drug Policy Foundation recently informed me of Count the Costs: 50 years of the war on drugs, a new online research tool developed to educate people on the need for drug law reform.
The world today is plagued by many crises. Economies are in recession. The world is wracked by war. And poverty is still rampant for the world's majority. Alongside all of this, our environment, and our climate, is increasingly under pressure, threatening all life on the planet. The climate crisis strikes at the very heart of our societies. We need to question the way we operate, the way we allocate and use our resources, and the way we develop infrastructure, so that we can create a more sustainable world.
A June 27 speakout in the Bourke Street Mall called for the freeing of political prisoners in Pakistan and condemned the Pakistani state’s use of the Western-sponsored “war on terror” as a pretext for cracking down on community activists and trade unionists. The speakout was use to collect signatures names on an international open letter.
June 29 was dubbed "Black Friday" for Queensland public servants as up to 3000 temporary and contract workers faced the sack from the Liberal-National Party government. Contracts for many staff in "non-frontline" jobs expired and will not be renewed under a job freeze ordered by Premier Campbell Newman, the June 29 Courier-Mail said. Newman has also appointed a razor gang, following the interim report of the Costello Commission of Audit into state debt, to find more cuts, including jobs of permanent staff.
Black Sheep of The American Dream Death By Stereo Released April 24, 2012 Viking Funeral Records http://deathbystereo.com/ Californian hardcore punk band Death By Stereo have long been known for their politically charged lyrics, energising the scene with their debut If Looks Could Kill, I'd Watch You Die 13 years ago.
A community protest of up to 30 people was held outside a global shale industry conference in Perth on June 28. Campaign group No Fracking WAy organised the protest. The two-day conference on global shale gas development put on by the Electric Utility Consultants, Inc (EUCI) at the Seasons of Perth Hotel, 37 Pier St, Perth. The protesters held up banners, sang anti-fracking songs and heard from several speakers about the problems with the shale gas industry, which is expanding rapidly in Western Australia.
Not long after Melbourne’s recent earthquake a few wags leapt on Twitter to blame Australia’s carbon price for causing it. Greens Senator Richard Di Natale made the same joke in parliament a few days later.