In practical terms, the Koch agenda is to remove all constraints on what individuals and businesses can do, which is what Charles Koch calls “libertarianism” (not to be confused with the anti-elite libertarianism promoted in the sixties by Sydney intellectuals such as Germaine Greer and John Anderson). They are shoveling billions into the US political system to build their dream society, the sole principle of which is unmitigated selfishness.
Let’s acknowledge everyone who went to war, as well as people who had the courage to not go on principle, and those who fought from the 1950s through to today against joining the many American wars on poor nations seeking independence from, well, rich Americans.
“Quietly, the Liberals’ expectation now is that Turnbull will not be leading them to the next election.” Peter Dutton will be backed by those in the Coalition who, openly or secretly, prefer a leader whose only job outside of politics was being a Brisbane cop. Dutton goes after journalists with the same mouth-frothing energy he uses for immigrants, environmentalists, Dustin Martin’s dad, and Jonny Depp’s dogs.
Facebook “mines” our personal information and sells it to advertisers who use it to target ads at us. You keep “liking” pink kittens and you’ll get ads selling baby cat food and pink hair dye. That simple business model brings in most of the company’s $42 billion annual income.
It is theoretically possible that the Australian Broadcasting Commission board might be persuaded to rein in its marauding Managing Director Michelle Guthrie, but in the USA, there in is no board, no way to rein Trump in.
After Trump’s first year on the job, actually most of it on the golf course, a fair percentage of the world’s 7.6 billion people now see that neither knowledge, understanding, compassion, nor concern for the planet press his buttons. We can only hope that he doesn’t press the button, and kill untold millions of us, which he’s odds on to do.
This crooked real estate moocher entered the White House with no plan other than to undo every socially useful thing President Obama did, and be his bullying self. He gave top jobs in his administration to people who’d given him campaign money, also to people who promised to demolish the agencies he hired them to manage (eg climate change denier Scott Pruitt to run the EPA, into the ground), and to fellow business alpha-males like ex-boss of Exxon-Mobil Rex Tillerson who knew jack shit about affairs of state, to be Secretary of State.
EDITOR'S NOTE: As we have rather piously explained on previous occasions, it is not The Digger's policy to run anonymous articles without exceptional reasons. This article is not part of the Diseases We Share series, although it elucidates a social disease and poses a remarkably simple and joyous solution. The reasons for the authoress's anonymity shall become obvious....
One afternoon last week my form one kids and I were about to launch ourselves dutifully on an assignment about Ancient Greece. Using the only class set that wasn't too blatantly patronising or out of date, I'd managed to base on the text a little number on sex roles in ancient times compared with those of today. (I've explained this to account for having actually handed round eighteen copies of a book like Looking at Ancient History).
When I left for the States in 1976, Australia had 15 million citizens who enjoyed the ninth highest per capita income in the world. The nation’s wool, meat, and wheat provided the largest share of export earnings followed by mineral ores and coal, both of which were firmly controlled by multinational corporations.
Today the population is 25 million and Australia is fifth in the world rankings of Gross National Income per person (the US is eighth). Minerals and carbon-based fuels dominate export earnings, just ahead of tourism and educating foreign students, while agricultural production has shrunk due to competition from low-wage regions of the globalized economy. Global finance, meanwhile, has moved in, led by Goldman Sachs and American Express, and so have the internet behemoths Google, Facebook, and eBay. All these mega corporations are expert tax avoiders, though none surpass News Corp, the propaganda empire run by Rupert Murdoch, who has dudded his fellow Australians out of untold millions in taxes.
In April this year I wrote an article headlined “On the brink, and at the mercy of a pair of mass-murderous buffoons”. I was of course referring to Trump and Kim, and some said my language was over the top. But I believe that anyone who advocates or even seriously contemplates exploding nuclear weapons anywhere anytime, is a threat to humanity. And anyone who is self-evidently a buffoon, and who advocates exploding nuclear warheads in the open air, on cities for example, is an aspiring mass-murderer.
Sand has always been an irritant, specially when it gets inside engines or bodily crevices. Right now in Byron Bay it’s irritating because it’s one of several factors delaying the rebuild of Byron’s Palace Cinemas complex -- nearly two years late with no reopening in sight. What’s sand got to do with it?