Wednesday, April 29, 2009

Free Forum Report

Free Forum Report.
I have to advise that the attempt at a free forum failed miserably on the 22nd. No one came, despite the significant interest shown in the concept beforehand. Never mind, we'll try again soon—a bit harder. On with the job of democratic reform!

To refresh; in seeking a meeting of ordinary people to discuss the issues in local forum, it was sort to initiate an important move forward in democratic reform.
The two things missing in our democracy which have permitted the slide into the dictatorial government of the party system are:
1. The open system of voting in our parliaments, which denies our representatives the freedom to function truly and fully as our representatives,
2. The absence of local forums, which must be convened by all representatives, to give a significant, effective community involvement in the decision-making process.

We thus have a stalemate. MPs think the people are not interested enough to attend. And they are right, because the people think that MPs are not interested in listening, and they are right, so what's the point—there is none.

So people are troubled and unhappy, with no power to influence important, far-reaching decisions, when the future is clearly going down the gurgler. We face the looming chaos of climate change, resource exhaustion, and world population explosion, with a monumental incompetence in the world’s democracies generally, to govern adequately, with institutionalised conflict throughout the community.

But now, massive problems of starvation and disease threaten the world’s future, with little or no prospect of competent world government to secure world order. These pressures are likely to lead to an exponential growth in world migration and a growing danger of nations seeking military solutions.

Dr Lindy Edwards, political scientist, speaking of the need to reinvent our social democracy, says: The Battle of ideas has never been more important, because where the future leads is up to us’.

So, back to the main problem—without the direct involvement of the people, we have government and people at enmity with each other. The people are encouraged by power-hungry-party-governments to be self-centred and demanding, whereas effective democratic government, in the future, will need the willing cooperation of the people to cope with decisions substantially more difficult than has been required to date.

There is thus a critical need to take the initiative in developing local forums, firstly where concerned citizens can have their ‘say’, and where ultimately, the people and their representatives can meet in friendly cooperation, to resolve the best approach to each and every problem.

We can't change a governing party's viewpoint in local forum, but the people will be able to have a very significant influence on government decisions when all the representatives become independent by a permanent move to fully balloting parliaments.

Monday, April 27, 2009

Clean Coal – An Oxymoron?

A truly apt summation! And Mr. Charlie Spears, inaugural head of Clean Coal Victoria admits as much (The Age Mon. 27/4 Business Day p3).

It is truly extraordinary how far the dream of the impossible, can persist beyond hope, when vested interests are involved, even when there are hard facts which simply deny all hope.
Paddy Manning’s G—BIZ article (p8), quotes some of those facts from Graham Brown, long time NSW coal miner, e.g.:
1. ‘Every tonne of coal burnt (creates) 2.5 to 2.7 tonnes of carbon ‘(CO2) - burying oxygen!
2. It would need to be compressed 500 times to be trucked to Cooper Basin in South Australia
3. ‘Buried one kilometre, temperature could be 65 C’ (with much increased pressure) and risk (or certainty) of leakage,
4. With regard to jobs, Brown says ‘statistics in Europe and a study by Greenpeace on the central coast of NSW show that there’s six times more jobs in the transition away from coal than there is in it.’