Australia

56 posts / 0 new
Last post
NorthReport
Australia

The Aussies being way ahead of us timewise have already started voting in their national elections on Saturday. About 25% of voters have already pre-voted

 

Climate and taxes dominate as Australia votes

https://www.bbc.com/news/live/world-australia-48304993

robbie_dee

Results look good for Coalition and bad for Labor.

https://www.theguardian.com/australia-news/live/2019/may/18/australian-f...

NorthReport
NorthReport
Aristotleded24

That's not what the polls going into that campaign were suggesting.

Any follow up or analysis of what happened?

mmphosis

Preferential ballots.  The ranked voting system that Justin Trudeau wanted.

“the correct way to vote is to put a number 1 next to the Liberals and number every other box”, and appear to be written like an official AEC instruction to voters.  https://thenewdaily.com.au/news/election-2019/2019/05/18/chinese-liberal...

Australian Election Betting: Liberal Party Now $5.75

voice of the damned

mmphosis wrote:

Preferential ballots.  The ranked voting system that Justin Trudeau wanted.

Well, more accurately, false instructions about how to use a ranked ballot. Which isn't really the fault of the ranked-ballot system itself.

 

NorthReport

They should redo the election but of course the election thieves will have none of that and they are the ones with the power. So Australia will be ruled by a fraudulent government. Ugh!

swallow swallow's picture

Why would they re-do the election? The governing coalition won 41% of the vote, while the "Labor" party took 34%. Ranked ballots mean the Greens (10%) have little chance to win more than the one seat they hold. But though the result is horrifying, I've seen no accusations of fraud. 

Ken Burch Ken Burch's picture

The result is a comprehensive failure for the Australian Labor Party-a "social democratic" party which no longer has any social or democratic values to it and which drove many if not most activists away decades ago when a right-wing cabal took over the party after the "constitutional coup" of 1975, blaming the Left for the defeat of the Whitlam ALP government, even though that defeat was caused solely by the intervention of the CIA in Australian politics.

That same cabal has had an iron grip on the ALP ever since, even though the party has spent more of the post-1975 era in opposition than in government.

This defeat is solely on that cabal.  The Australian Labor Party now needs a total shakeup and a removal of that lot if it is ever to regain relevance in Australian politics again.

JKR

Currently with almost 77% of the votes counted, the two party preferred count is: Coalition 50.8%, Labor 49.2%. The first preference count is Coalition 41.4%, Labor 33.9%, Green 10.1%.

Aristotleded24

Ken Burch wrote:
The result is a comprehensive failure for the Australian Labor Party-a "social democratic" party which no longer has any social or democratic values to it and which drove many if not most activists away decades ago when a right-wing cabal took over the party after the "constitutional coup" of 1975, blaming the Left for the defeat of the Whitlam ALP government, even though that defeat was caused solely by the intervention of the CIA in Australian politics.

That same cabal has had an iron grip on the ALP ever since, even though the party has spent more of the post-1975 era in opposition than in government.

This defeat is solely on that cabal.  The Australian Labor Party now needs a total shakeup and a removal of that lot if it is ever to regain relevance in Australian politics again.

There seems to be some honest truth to that

WWWTT

Australia is a colonial country.  And I can’t see it breaking away from the vicious circle that Australians are caught in. 

Racism needs to be addressed for starters

https://www.sbs.com.au/nitv/article/2017/08/09/australia-racist-not-way-you-think

NorthReport

Labor and the Greens have to join forces – for the climate's sake

For some it’s the option of last resort. But how much action on climate change has either party driven alone?​

https://www.theguardian.com/business/grogonomics/2019/jun/02/labor-and-the-greens-have-to-join-forces-for-the-climates-sake

JKR

Australia has instant runoff voting so I don’t see why Labor and the Greens should merge there.

NorthReport

The reason is simple It is not working for them

Aristotleded24

JKR wrote:
Australia has instant runoff voting so I don’t see why Labor and the Greens should merge there.

Because Labor is in the back pockets of the same corporations as the Coalition?

Ken Burch Ken Burch's picture

Aristotleded24 wrote:

JKR wrote:
Australia has instant runoff voting so I don’t see why Labor and the Greens should merge there.

Because Labor is in the back pockets of the same corporations as the Coalition?

There is that.  In many respects, the ALP has never recovered from all the years it was run by Bob Hawke-one of Reagan's favorite "allied" government leaders, famous for echoing Reagan's arrogant demands that New Zealand drop its no port calls for ships with nuclear weapons policy.  Hawke was a nasty piece of work and cared more about making sure nothing remotely socialist happened under an ALP government than he ever did about fighting against the agenda of the corporate neoliberal right or presenting any real alternative to that agenda.  

Hawke combined the most thoroughly ugly aspects of the "anti-communist 'social democrat'" type.

JKR

Aristotleded24 wrote:

JKR wrote:
Australia has instant runoff voting so I don’t see why Labor and the Greens should merge there.

Because Labor is in the back pockets of the same corporations as the Coalition?

Becase vote-splitting is not a problem with instant runoff voting as it is with FPTP plurality voting.

NDPP

More Police Raids As War on Journalism Escalates Worldwide

https://twitter.com/caitoz/status/1136265980793856000

"The Assange effect is now taking hold throughout the US-centralised empire. You can choose to ignore it or dismiss it with a pleasant story, or you can acknowledge that we appear to be in the midst of a rapidly escalating shutdown of the free press in the western world..."

NDPP

More Police Raids As War on Journalism Escalates Worldwide

https://twitter.com/caitoz/status/1136265980793856000

"The Assange effect is now taking hold throughout the US-centralised empire. You can choose to ignore it or dismiss it with a pleasant story, or you can acknowledge that we appear to be in the midst of a rapidly escalating shutdown of the free press in the western world..."

WWWTT

Not crazy about Australia. From my perspective, it appears to be too white conservative imperialist. 

NDPP

Backwards, badly informed and barbaric like Canada. And genocidal...

Paladin1

Ban white conservatives from Australia.

kropotkin1951

Paladin1 wrote:

Ban white conservatives from Australia.

I think  that strategy is at least 400 years to late.

josh

Australian Prime Minister Scott Morrison railed against environmental protesters in a lunchtime speech on Friday, warning of a “new breed of radical activism” that was “apocalyptic in tone” and pledging to outlaw boycott campaigns that he argued could hurt the country’s mining industry.

https://www.washingtonpost.com/world/2019/11/01/australias-prime-minister-pledges-outlaw-climate-boycotts-arguing-they-threaten-economy/?wpisrc=nl_most&wpmm=1

Aristotleded24

Can someone please explain why the Coalition still enjoys a comfortable lead in public opinion polls even while climate change is ravaging Australia?

kropotkin1951

Aristotleded24 wrote:

Can someone please explain why the Coalition still enjoys a comfortable lead in public opinion polls even while climate change is ravaging Australia?

Ask someone from Ft. Mac. Maybe they understand.

Aristotleded24

kropotkin1951 wrote:

Aristotleded24 wrote:

Can someone please explain why the Coalition still enjoys a comfortable lead in public opinion polls even while climate change is ravaging Australia?

Ask someone from Ft. Mac. Maybe they understand.

Are those even identical situations? As I understand, Fort Mac had one particularly bad wildfire season with things going back to normal after that, whereas in Australia the wildfire seaons have been consistently getting worse.

kropotkin1951
Aristotleded24

There was the big wildfire near Fort Mac in 2016, which is when and where I presumed that the picture you posted was taken. The fires taking place after that were listed as taking place in "Alberta, which could have taken place over a much larger area than Fort Mac, or even nowhere near. Did the fires go through Fort Mac once and then return to a relative calm? Was there fire after fire in the area since 2016? Those 2 things would impact people's perceptions quite differently. I can't tell from that list.

Aristotleded24

In any case, Morrison's come under fire for vacationing while his country burns.

kropotkin1951

Parts of our boreal forest burn every year. What does one town have to do with it? The irony was the fire engulfing the town that is one of the drivers of problem that is causing the fires everywhere.

Our Premiers don't worry about forest fires enough to change vacation plans. At best they do a fly by and send thoughts and prayers.

Aristotleded24

In the mean time, Prime Minister Morrison received a hostile reception after visiting a forgotten fire stricken area. This after he was critiziced for vactioning in Hawaii during the fire season, and not cancelling the Sydney New Years fireworks. Meanwhile conservationists are worried about half a billion animals killed, and possible extinctions resulting from this wildfire season alone. And the fire season is not over yet.

Aristotleded24

No polls yet have come out since the impact of the wildfire season has been felt. Looking at the reception that Morrison had in that moment, I wonder if he's had his "Brownie, you're doing a heck of a job" moment.

The real fear is that Morrison will be made to walk the plank for this, and his government manages to choose someone else and that gives the government a new lease on life. Anybody more familiar with Australian politics who can weigh in?

Sean in Ottawa

Aristotleded24 wrote:

No polls yet have come out since the impact of the wildfire season has been felt. Looking at the reception that Morrison had in that moment, I wonder if he's had his "Brownie, you're doing a heck of a job" moment.

The real fear is that Morrison will be made to walk the plank for this, and his government manages to choose someone else and that gives the government a new lease on life. Anybody more familiar with Australian politics who can weigh in?

The fear is certainly legitimate. Unpopular leaders get booted from parties and they run with new leaders often there.

Sean in Ottawa

Aristotleded24 wrote:

No polls yet have come out since the impact of the wildfire season has been felt. Looking at the reception that Morrison had in that moment, I wonder if he's had his "Brownie, you're doing a heck of a job" moment.

The real fear is that Morrison will be made to walk the plank for this, and his government manages to choose someone else and that gives the government a new lease on life. Anybody more familiar with Australian politics who can weigh in?

The fear is certainly legitimate. Unpopular leaders get booted from parties and they run with new leaders often there.

Sean in Ottawa

double post no idea why - pressed return the once

 

Sean in Ottawa

double post no idea why - pressed return the once

 

Sean in Ottawa

I give up something wrong here

Aristotleded24

This really shocked me (emphasis mine):

Quote:

The ad shows Scott Morrison in the field, taking charge (angry locals refusing to shake his hand are nowhere to be seen). Firefighters battle the flames with abundant support from Defence Force personnel and aerial assets. The Federal Government's contributions are proudly listed in on-screen text. Uplifting background music instils confidence that this is a man with a plan.

There will no doubt be debate as to whether this is indeed a party political advertisement capitalising on the disaster, or simply an effort to disseminate information.

But when it walks like a duck and quacks like a duck …

When a written version of the ad was posted on Morrison's Facebook page, it initially carried a big DONATE button at the top.

Donate to the Liberal Party, that is, not any of the worthy bushfire relief efforts. A grab for cash as well as political capital. Classy stuff. At least this appeal for donations was quickly taken down.

Sean in Ottawa

Aristotleded24 wrote:

This really shocked me (emphasis mine):

Quote:

The ad shows Scott Morrison in the field, taking charge (angry locals refusing to shake his hand are nowhere to be seen). Firefighters battle the flames with abundant support from Defence Force personnel and aerial assets. The Federal Government's contributions are proudly listed in on-screen text. Uplifting background music instils confidence that this is a man with a plan.

There will no doubt be debate as to whether this is indeed a party political advertisement capitalising on the disaster, or simply an effort to disseminate information.

But when it walks like a duck and quacks like a duck …

When a written version of the ad was posted on Morrison's Facebook page, it initially carried a big DONATE button at the top.

Donate to the Liberal Party, that is, not any of the worthy bushfire relief efforts. A grab for cash as well as political capital. Classy stuff. At least this appeal for donations was quickly taken down.

It speaks only of the response and not about the cause or the ongoing risk. It is absurd and out of touch. I do not know how Australians will recieve it. You would think that they would recognize what is wrong with the video. But they voted for this guy knowing pretty much what he was and what he stood for now they just have more proof. I do not expect him to change but will this experience change the people of Australia? I am not sure. Will similar things change people in the US or here or anywhere? I do not know becuase people protect themselves from information that makes them question their beliefs.

MegB

Sean in Ottawa wrote:

I give up something wrong here

I've noticed that double posts are up a bit since the last upgrade. I you like I can contact tech support and see if there is an explanation/solution.

Sean in Ottawa

MegB wrote:

Sean in Ottawa wrote:

I give up something wrong here

I've noticed that double posts are up a bit since the last upgrade. I you like I can contact tech support and see if there is an explanation/solution.

I think  the problem is for the community and the board rather than an irritant for the person whose post is doubled. I tried to fix it but it only got worse.

This happens rarely I think.

Aristotleded24

Meanwhile, is there dissension in the ranks of the ruling party on the climate change issue?

Quote:

The New South Wales division of the Young Liberals’ push for a change in the government’s climate policy was spurred on by a membership which understands the risk it faces if no action is taken, its president has said.

The NSW branch passed a motion at the Young Liberal council in early December calling for a “practical, market-based means” for Australia to cut emissions by 30% of Kyoto levels by 2030, and provide energy market certainty.

The motion puts them at odds with the Morrison government, which has stubbornly insisted no change is needed to Australia’s emissions reduction strategy, even as the nation struggles through an unprecedented and deadly bushfire crisis, but is in line with the views of the NSW environment minister, Matt Kean, who has demanded more action.

The NSW Young Liberal president, Chaneg Torres, said his branch was just doing its job.

“The Young Liberals exist within the party to reflect the views of young people, to our MPs, to our wider party, and I think from our point of view, climate change is a particularly important issue for our generation because it concerns the actions of today affecting the lives and quality of life of my generation, but also generations to come,” he said.

“And we certainly understand that it is a risk that we will particularly face, my generation, if nothing is done in the present.”

Torres did not go so far as to criticise the Morrison government, which he said had its “heart in the right place”.

Aristotleded24

Rising up Down Under:

Quote:

Tens of thousands of people took to the streets in cities across Australia Friday to protests their government's inaction on the global climate emergency as the country continues to battle catastrophic bushfires that have devoured millions of acres of land, destroyed hundreds of homes, and left over a billion animals and 27 people dead.

Australia is only halfway through its historically hot, dry summer, but the country is already in the midst of an "unprecedented national crisis" featuring "virtually unstoppable" blazes, particularly in the continent's southeastern states. As the fires have ramped up, so has public pressure on Prime Minister Scott Morrison and his coalition government.

Morrison was a primary target of the protests Friday. Uni Students for Climate Justice and Extinction Rebellion organized events in several major cities using the slogan "Sack ScoMo." The groups explained on Facebook that "these fires, heatwaves, and droughts are not just unprecedented—they're the direct result of decades of climate destruction at the hands of fossil fuel loving politicians."

I hope that Morrison is not made a scapegoat, and that they remember that he is part of a government that was responsible.

Aristotleded24
jerrym

Aristotleded24 wrote:

No polls yet have come out since the impact of the wildfire season has been felt. Looking at the reception that Morrison had in that moment, I wonder if he's had his "Brownie, you're doing a heck of a job" moment.

The real fear is that Morrison will be made to walk the plank for this, and his government manages to choose someone else and that gives the government a new lease on life. Anybody more familiar with Australian politics who can weigh in?

In a poll released today, Scott Morrison has "suffered a massive hit to his personal approval rating and been overtaken as preferred prime minister by Anthony Albanese in the first published opinion poll of 2020." However, the margin between Labour and the Liberals is very close suggesting the the Liberals may be tempted to change leaders before an election. 

The Newspoll, published on Monday, confirms that a horror summer in which Morrison chose to holiday in Hawaii during the extended bushfire crisis that has claimed 28 lives and more than 2,000 homes, and fumbled meetings with victims, has significantly impacted his popularity.

On Monday Labor stepped up its attack on Morrison, with deputy leader Richard Marles suggesting the prime minister’s performance through the crisis had shown he was “loose with the truth” and “disinterested in the national interest”.

The poll of 1,505 voters, conducted between Wednesday and Saturday, found more voters (59%) are dissatisfied with Morrison’s performance than satisfied (37%).

Satisfaction in Morrison fell eight points and dissatisfaction increased by 11 points, both movements outside the poll’s margin of error of 2.5%. Just 4% of voters were “uncommitted” when asked how Morrison is performing.

Albanese is in positive territory after a six-point increase in satisfaction from 40% to 46% and dissatisfaction falling from 41% to 37%.

He leads Morrison as preferred prime minister, 43% to 39%, the first time he has done so since taking the Labor leadership after Bill Shorten’s shock loss at the May 2019 election.

Morrison dropped nine points as preferred prime minister while Albanese increased by nine points, reversing Morrison’s lead of 14 points in the last poll, taken in the first week of December, to trail by four points.

The Coalition suffered a two-point drop in primary vote to 40% while Labor recovered by three points to 36%. In two-party-preferred terms Labor lead the Coalition 51% to 49%.

The pollster Kevin Bonham said Morrison’s plunge from 14 points ahead as preferred prime minister to four behind is “the equal second highest such loss in Newspoll history”, after Paul Keating’s 23% drop against John Hewson after the horror 1993 budget.

He also said it was “highly unusual” for the current prime minister to trail the opposition leader on preferred prime minister when the two-party-preferred margin was narrow. ...

But Morrison’s horror summer – in which he was heckled by survivors in Cobargo, New South Wales – continued with the revelation that the NSW Rural Fire Service commissioner had not been informed of the compulsory callout and an embarrassing gaffe in which Morrison claimed nobody had died on Kangaroo Island where, in fact, two people were killed.

On Sunday Morrison acknowledged that he “could have handled on the ground much better” in the “strained” emotional environment of firegrounds. ...

(Deputy Labor Leader) Richard Marles took issue with Morrison’s suggestion that “moments of national crisis are a state issue and previously there hasn’t been an expectation of commonwealth involvement”. He told reporters in Melbourne it was “patently wrong”, citing the Rudd Labor government’s involvement in the Black Saturday bushfires. ...

Doubts have been raised about the Australian government’s ability to meet its Paris targets of 26% to 28% emissions reduction by 2030, with the use of carryover credits criticised as an “accounting trick” that may add up to as much as 80% of Australia’s emission reduction achievement.

The former head of Morrison’s department, Martin Parkinson, has blamed “civil war” within the Coalition for the government not developing a more ambitious climate policy, warning that global efforts were insufficient to halt warming at 2C.

Marles accused Morrison of “running away from the country without telling anyone”, “literally forcing people to shake his hand” rather than showing empathy, and being “incredibly slow” to involve the Australian Defence Force. Marles also blasted Morrison for filming an ad to promote the government’s disaster recovery efforts, suggesting it showed “panic” – not on behalf of the nation, but for his own image.

https://www.theguardian.com/australia-news/2020/jan/13/scott-morrison-su...

Sean in Ottawa

jerrym wrote:

Aristotleded24 wrote:

No polls yet have come out since the impact of the wildfire season has been felt. Looking at the reception that Morrison had in that moment, I wonder if he's had his "Brownie, you're doing a heck of a job" moment.

The real fear is that Morrison will be made to walk the plank for this, and his government manages to choose someone else and that gives the government a new lease on life. Anybody more familiar with Australian politics who can weigh in?

In a poll released today, Scott Morrison has "suffered a massive hit to his personal approval rating and been overtaken as preferred prime minister by Anthony Albanese in the first published opinion poll of 2020." However, the margin between Labour and the Liberals is very close suggesting the the Liberals may be tempted to change leaders before an election. 

The Newspoll, published on Monday, confirms that a horror summer in which Morrison chose to holiday in Hawaii during the extended bushfire crisis that has claimed 28 lives and more than 2,000 homes, and fumbled meetings with victims, has significantly impacted his popularity.

On Monday Labor stepped up its attack on Morrison, with deputy leader Richard Marles suggesting the prime minister’s performance through the crisis had shown he was “loose with the truth” and “disinterested in the national interest”.

The poll of 1,505 voters, conducted between Wednesday and Saturday, found more voters (59%) are dissatisfied with Morrison’s performance than satisfied (37%).

Satisfaction in Morrison fell eight points and dissatisfaction increased by 11 points, both movements outside the poll’s margin of error of 2.5%. Just 4% of voters were “uncommitted” when asked how Morrison is performing.

Albanese is in positive territory after a six-point increase in satisfaction from 40% to 46% and dissatisfaction falling from 41% to 37%.

He leads Morrison as preferred prime minister, 43% to 39%, the first time he has done so since taking the Labor leadership after Bill Shorten’s shock loss at the May 2019 election.

Morrison dropped nine points as preferred prime minister while Albanese increased by nine points, reversing Morrison’s lead of 14 points in the last poll, taken in the first week of December, to trail by four points.

The Coalition suffered a two-point drop in primary vote to 40% while Labor recovered by three points to 36%. In two-party-preferred terms Labor lead the Coalition 51% to 49%.

The pollster Kevin Bonham said Morrison’s plunge from 14 points ahead as preferred prime minister to four behind is “the equal second highest such loss in Newspoll history”, after Paul Keating’s 23% drop against John Hewson after the horror 1993 budget.

He also said it was “highly unusual” for the current prime minister to trail the opposition leader on preferred prime minister when the two-party-preferred margin was narrow. ...

But Morrison’s horror summer – in which he was heckled by survivors in Cobargo, New South Wales – continued with the revelation that the NSW Rural Fire Service commissioner had not been informed of the compulsory callout and an embarrassing gaffe in which Morrison claimed nobody had died on Kangaroo Island where, in fact, two people were killed.

On Sunday Morrison acknowledged that he “could have handled on the ground much better” in the “strained” emotional environment of firegrounds. ...

(Deputy Labor Leader) Richard Marles took issue with Morrison’s suggestion that “moments of national crisis are a state issue and previously there hasn’t been an expectation of commonwealth involvement”. He told reporters in Melbourne it was “patently wrong”, citing the Rudd Labor government’s involvement in the Black Saturday bushfires. ...

Doubts have been raised about the Australian government’s ability to meet its Paris targets of 26% to 28% emissions reduction by 2030, with the use of carryover credits criticised as an “accounting trick” that may add up to as much as 80% of Australia’s emission reduction achievement.

The former head of Morrison’s department, Martin Parkinson, has blamed “civil war” within the Coalition for the government not developing a more ambitious climate policy, warning that global efforts were insufficient to halt warming at 2C.

Marles accused Morrison of “running away from the country without telling anyone”, “literally forcing people to shake his hand” rather than showing empathy, and being “incredibly slow” to involve the Australian Defence Force. Marles also blasted Morrison for filming an ad to promote the government’s disaster recovery efforts, suggesting it showed “panic” – not on behalf of the nation, but for his own image.

https://www.theguardian.com/australia-news/2020/jan/13/scott-morrison-su...

The more shocking thing is that they are close even with all that is going on. The Liberal party ought to be in single digits and they are not. This is a sad reflection that even as the consequences of climate change become painfully clear the politics of denial is still extremly strong.

jerrym

Sean in Ottawa wrote:

jerrym wrote:

In a poll released today, Scott Morrison has "suffered a massive hit to his personal approval rating and been overtaken as preferred prime minister by Anthony Albanese in the first published opinion poll of 2020." However, the margin between Labour and the Liberals is very close suggesting the the Liberals may be tempted to change leaders before an election. 

https://www.theguardian.com/australia-news/2020/jan/13/scott-morrison-su...

The more shocking thing is that they are close even with all that is going on. The Liberal party ought to be in single digits and they are not. This is a sad reflection that even as the consequences of climate change become painfully clear the politics of denial is still extremly strong.

The following article provides an explanation of why, despite the catastrophic damange done by climate-change induced wildfires and drought many Australians remain in denial. 

Even as Australia burns, its voters may not take the plunge into meaningful collective action to fight climate change. And here’s why: out there be dragons. Thirty-six of them, by the count of Robert Gifford, a psychology professor at the University of Victoria in British Columbia. These are the psychological hangups that haunt humans and stymie efforts to deal with the global climate crisis. “Dragons of inaction,” Gifford calls them, and they are formidable. ...

“The dragons of inaction are the reasons or justifications or excuses that people use between either having a good intention to do something and then not doing it or simply using that as an excuse to not be concerned or not take action,” he explained.

The most fearsome of these dragons include a perceived lack of control, the influence of social norms and the difficulty of habit-breaking, conflict with seemingly more pressing needs and wants as well as attachment to a conservative political ideology. Others include putting inordinate faith in technological salvation, growing numb to dire warnings, the perceived inequity of taking action when others might not and mistrust of government and other authority figures. Humans are also prone to discount risks that seem far off into the future or far away from one’s immediate surroundings, Gifford said, and seek to justify the way things are if they expect change to involve personal sacrifice. 

“We call that system justification,” Gifford said. (The full list of his dragons can be found here.) ...

But Australians have long battled dry conditions and seasonal fires, making it more difficult for the human brain to draw the complicated connection to global warming that is making such events more frequent and more intense.

“The challenge we have is it is an exaggeration of weather patterns for which people are already socially adapted,” said George Marshall, co-founder of Climate Outreach, which advises governments across the world on how to communicate their climate change strategies and also the author of the book Don’t Even Think About It: Why Our Brains Are Wired to Ignore Climate Change.

Australia’s prime minister, Scott Morrison, has played up this argument and downplayed the connection to the policies of his Liberal government (the main conservative party in Australian politics). His actions include cheering the expansion of the country’s coal industry and scrapping the previous Labor government’s short-lived carbon tax. Both of these measures encourage more pollution and increase global warming, in turn making Australia’s fires worse.

But people tend to gravitate toward simple explanations, Marshall said, which helps explain the spread of a discredited notion that hundreds of arsonists are to blame. (In fact, police in New South Wales said just 24 people had been charged with deliberately lighting fires since November, while there are more than 150 blazes currently raging in that state.) “The most compelling narratives for us are the ones that have clearly defined enemies and victims,” said Marshall, who is also the author of the book Carbon Detox.

He said the fires, which are most explicitly threatening rural, conservative parts of the country, could send the country down one of two paths. On the one hand, they could spark serious conversations within those communities about the need to deal with climate change, which would in turn force the Liberals to react and adapt. But they could also exacerbate social tensions in a country where voters have entrenched and polarized views.

“You might find a situation where left-wing people in Melbourne become very, very agitated, but someone like a sugar-cane grower in Queensland doesn’t shift at all,” he said. “If you're somebody whose house has burned down or whose farm has lost all its livestock, and you felt that you were really in the middle of it and traumatized by the experience, you're not going to welcome a bunch of cappuccino drinkers in Melbourne going on a march.”

Humans are adept at using motivated reasoning and other mind tricks to seek out information that confirms our own opinions while ignoring or downplaying those that challenge them, political scientists say. So even as some Australians had to plunge into the ocean to avoid the flames and smoke, human psychology offers those predisposed to ignoring climate change plenty of encouragement to look away.

“Many people would like to think that stronger climate signals are going to change people's perceptions and further engage them in climate change,” Erick Lachapelle said. The political scientist at Université de Montréal has polled Canadians extensively on the topic. “But the reality is that people interpret climate signals through their pre-existing beliefs and worldviews.”

That is, instead of extreme weather shaping opinions, opinions shape how extreme weather is interpreted. “If you're more individualist, materialist, conservative, then acknowledging climate change challenges your worldview because it requires you to rethink your assumptions about the role of the free market and government intervention,” he said.

https://www.nationalobserver.com/2020/01/08/analysis/humans-wrestle-drag...

Aristotleded24

jerrym wrote:

Sean in Ottawa wrote:

jerrym wrote:

In a poll released today, Scott Morrison has "suffered a massive hit to his personal approval rating and been overtaken as preferred prime minister by Anthony Albanese in the first published opinion poll of 2020." However, the margin between Labour and the Liberals is very close suggesting the the Liberals may be tempted to change leaders before an election. 

https://www.theguardian.com/australia-news/2020/jan/13/scott-morrison-su...

The more shocking thing is that they are close even with all that is going on. The Liberal party ought to be in single digits and they are not. This is a sad reflection that even as the consequences of climate change become painfully clear the politics of denial is still extremly strong.

The following article provides an explanation of why, despite the catastrophic damange done by climate-change induced wildfires and drought many Australians remain in denial. 

Even as Australia burns, its voters may not take the plunge into meaningful collective action to fight climate change. And here’s why: out there be dragons. Thirty-six of them, by the count of Robert Gifford, a psychology professor at the University of Victoria in British Columbia. These are the psychological hangups that haunt humans and stymie efforts to deal with the global climate crisis. “Dragons of inaction,” Gifford calls them, and they are formidable. ...

“The dragons of inaction are the reasons or justifications or excuses that people use between either having a good intention to do something and then not doing it or simply using that as an excuse to not be concerned or not take action,” he explained.

The most fearsome of these dragons include a perceived lack of control, the influence of social norms and the difficulty of habit-breaking, conflict with seemingly more pressing needs and wants as well as attachment to a conservative political ideology. Others include putting inordinate faith in technological salvation, growing numb to dire warnings, the perceived inequity of taking action when others might not and mistrust of government and other authority figures. Humans are also prone to discount risks that seem far off into the future or far away from one’s immediate surroundings, Gifford said, and seek to justify the way things are if they expect change to involve personal sacrifice. 

“We call that system justification,” Gifford said. (The full list of his dragons can be found here.) ...

But Australians have long battled dry conditions and seasonal fires, making it more difficult for the human brain to draw the complicated connection to global warming that is making such events more frequent and more intense.

“The challenge we have is it is an exaggeration of weather patterns for which people are already socially adapted,” said George Marshall, co-founder of Climate Outreach, which advises governments across the world on how to communicate their climate change strategies and also the author of the book Don’t Even Think About It: Why Our Brains Are Wired to Ignore Climate Change.

Australia’s prime minister, Scott Morrison, has played up this argument and downplayed the connection to the policies of his Liberal government (the main conservative party in Australian politics). His actions include cheering the expansion of the country’s coal industry and scrapping the previous Labor government’s short-lived carbon tax. Both of these measures encourage more pollution and increase global warming, in turn making Australia’s fires worse.

But people tend to gravitate toward simple explanations, Marshall said, which helps explain the spread of a discredited notion that hundreds of arsonists are to blame. (In fact, police in New South Wales said just 24 people had been charged with deliberately lighting fires since November, while there are more than 150 blazes currently raging in that state.) “The most compelling narratives for us are the ones that have clearly defined enemies and victims,” said Marshall, who is also the author of the book Carbon Detox.

He said the fires, which are most explicitly threatening rural, conservative parts of the country, could send the country down one of two paths. On the one hand, they could spark serious conversations within those communities about the need to deal with climate change, which would in turn force the Liberals to react and adapt. But they could also exacerbate social tensions in a country where voters have entrenched and polarized views.

“You might find a situation where left-wing people in Melbourne become very, very agitated, but someone like a sugar-cane grower in Queensland doesn’t shift at all,” he said. “If you're somebody whose house has burned down or whose farm has lost all its livestock, and you felt that you were really in the middle of it and traumatized by the experience, you're not going to welcome a bunch of cappuccino drinkers in Melbourne going on a march.”

Humans are adept at using motivated reasoning and other mind tricks to seek out information that confirms our own opinions while ignoring or downplaying those that challenge them, political scientists say. So even as some Australians had to plunge into the ocean to avoid the flames and smoke, human psychology offers those predisposed to ignoring climate change plenty of encouragement to look away.

“Many people would like to think that stronger climate signals are going to change people's perceptions and further engage them in climate change,” Erick Lachapelle said. The political scientist at Université de Montréal has polled Canadians extensively on the topic. “But the reality is that people interpret climate signals through their pre-existing beliefs and worldviews.”

That is, instead of extreme weather shaping opinions, opinions shape how extreme weather is interpreted. “If you're more individualist, materialist, conservative, then acknowledging climate change challenges your worldview because it requires you to rethink your assumptions about the role of the free market and government intervention,” he said.

https://www.nationalobserver.com/2020/01/08/analysis/humans-wrestle-drag...

It's great do know the challenges in raising awareness and acting on climate change. Has anybody figured out how we actually get past that and convince people to act? Without that part of it, it all seems pretty pointless if we can't convinve anybody what needs to be done.

Pages