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John Passant

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July 2010



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My interview Razor Sharp 18 February
Me interviewed by Sharon Firebrace on Razor Sharp on Tuesday 18 February. (0)

My interview Razor Sharp 11 February 2014
Me interviewed by Sharon Firebrace on Razor Sharp this morning. The Royal Commission, car industry and age of entitlement get a lot of the coverage. (0)

Razor Sharp 4 February 2014
Me on 4 February 2014 on Razor Sharp with Sharon Firebrace. (0)

Time for a House Un-Australian Activities Committee?
Tony Abbott thinks the Australian Broadcasting Corporation is Un-Australian. I am looking forward to his government setting up the House Un-Australian Activities Committee. (1)

Make Gina Rinehart work for her dole

Sick kids and paying upfront


Save Medicare

Demonstrate in defence of Medicare at Sydney Town Hall 1 pm Saturday 4 January (0)

Me on Razor Sharp this morning
Me interviewed by Sharon Firebrace this morning for Razor Sharp. It happens every Tuesday. (0)

I am not surprised
I think we are being unfair to this Abbott ‘no surprises’ Government. I am not surprised. (0)

Send Barnaby to Indonesia
It is a pity that Barnaby Joyce, a man of tact, diplomacy, nuance and subtlety, isn’t going to Indonesia to fix things up. I know I am disappointed that Barnaby is missing out on this great opportunity, and I am sure the Indonesians feel the same way. [Sarcasm alert.] (0)



A citizens’ dissembly?

Labor will create a citizens’ assembly to examine the evidence on climate change, the case for action and a market-based approach to reducing pollution.

Prime Minister Julia Gillard yesterday, announcing the ALP will do nothing on climate change.

A citizens’  assembly to look at climate change over 12 months? And then to deliver a report that says we have moved towards a consensus on… you guessed it, the government’s preferred climate trading scheme, the Carbon Pollution Reduction Scheme.

This is the scheme that rewards the polluters with billions and is actually worse than doing nothing.

This will be not be an assembly – its role is to dissemble – and it certainly won’t be of the citizenry. It will be hand picked and full of ruling class sycophants and other earnest free marketeers. 

What ruling class politician actually wants to hear what ordinary working class people think, let alone allow them any say in policy or law development?

The citizens’ assembly is a Rudd like trick to give the impression of doing something when not actually doing anything at all on climate change. Remember the 2020 summit?

We don’t need consensus through talk fests, through dissembling. We need leadership now on climate change.  That won’t come from Gillard or Abbott. It can only come from us – mobilising in the streets and workplaces.

After all the scientific evidence is clear, and until Rudd and Gillard caved in to the big polluters there was a consensus on addressing climate change.

It was important sections of the bourgeoisie, like the power companies and the miners, who opposed the science in the name of their profits, and won support from the party of sectional ruling class interests, the Liberals, after removing Turnbull from his leadership position and installing Abbott.

What an irony. The mining companies knifed Rudd and installed Gillard, just as they knifed Turnbull and installed Abbott. The contest for the Prime Ministership is between two party leaders the mining magnates have put into power.

That is one of the reasons the election debates are non-debates, the policies the same.

When Gillard announced the citizens’ assembly the revolutionary French national anthem came to mind.

Aux armes, citoyens, Formez vos bataillons, Marchons, marchons!

To arms, citizens, Form your battalions, Let us march! Let us march!

As if that isn’t enough, there’s a later verse which seems so apposite.

Tremblez, tyrans et vous perfides Tremble, tyrants and you traitors
L’opprobre de tous les partis, The shame of all parties,
Tremblez ! vos projets parricides Tremble! Your parricidal schemes
Vont enfin recevoir leurs prix ! (bis) Will finally receive their prizes! (repeat)
Tout est soldat pour vous combattre, Everyone is a soldier to combat you
S’ils tombent, nos jeunes héros, If they fall, our young heroes,
La terre en produit de nouveaux, The earth produces new ones,
Contre vous tout prêts à se battre ! Against you, all ready to fight!


Ah, but Gillard’s proposed citizens’ assembly is not about moving the masses forward to struggle and victory; it’s about further demobilising them and replacing doing anything with doing nothing.

Labor is one of the parties of the tyrants of capital, a traitor to our class. I dream of the day a mass movement recognises this and echoes the words of La Marseillaise – tremble tyrants and you traitors…

Voting Green isn’t going to fundamentally change anything. They are the party of market solutions to climate change. The market isn’t the solution – it is the problem.

 The time is nigh for a socialist organisation which aims to build the struggles outside the talkfest of Parliament and charades like a citizens’ assembly, and mobilise tens and then hundreds of thousands to campaign for real, progressive reform.

So let us not talk falsely now
The hour’s getting late.

And as the hour gets later and later, Gillard and Abbott fiddle while the earth burns.

All power to real citizens’ assemblies. Working people can take power into their own hands through their own democratic institutions. Only then will the talk fests of inaction dissolve and the grave threats facing humanity – climate change, mass starvation, war, disease  – begin to be addressed.



Comment from Arjay
Time July 24, 2010 at 10:08 pm

John,don’t fall for all this global warming BS caused by CO2.The science is not settled.This is why they are hedging their bets calling it climate change.The Global elites want carbon to be taxed and have their derivative market since this will give them absolute power.Global cooling is just alikely as global warming.

The Great Depession was orchestrated by the same Global Reserve Banksters who are manipulating this present crisis.It has only just begun.

We must at all costs reject this tax on carbon which is a tax on life itself and our present sources of energy.

Remember the expression daylight robbery.Well when glass was invented,they used to tax the number of windows you had in your house.

A carbon tax will mean life robbery ;ie absolute poverty.

Comment from John
Time July 24, 2010 at 11:30 pm

I don’t argue for a tax on carbon Arjay. But I do believe the science is settled. What material interest do the ten of thousands of scientists who have studied this have for arguing that global warming is real and is man made? None, other than altruism and a commitment to objective scientific research and the future of humanity. What material interests do the denialists – the polluters and the fruitcake faction of the bourgeoisie (centred around the Australian newspaper here in Australia) and those scientists they fund have for arguing it is all BS? Lots.

Comment from dl
Time July 25, 2010 at 2:09 pm

This put me more in mind of the exposed Windsor Hotel redevelopment plan, in which a fake consultation process is conducted, Labour feigns that they have listened to “community interests” on this issue, but plows on ahead with their same old scheme anyways.

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