Nine days in, and the 2010 election campaign is as dismal as any I've witnessed in the past four decades. Tony Abbott defies serious appraisal, while Julia Gillard's entire first month as Prime Minister has been a massive disappointment.
Chris Monckton is to environmental science what Andre Rieu is to classical music. Both play to packed houses of elderly fans around Australia, both give the genre a bad name. Actually, the comparison is a little unkind to Monsieur Rieu. While Belford Parrott is besotted with both, Viscount Monckton goes well beyond bad into the realm of crackpot.
It's been a mixed week for Australian science. On one hand, Professor Ian Plimer attempted to out-debate George Monbiot on the topic of climate change on live television.
For twelve days, December 7 to 18, Copenhagen is the Naivete Capital of the Universe. Some of the street activities during COP15 are either naive, puerile, or just plain counter-productive. When Tuvalu's brave stand for its own survival is reduced to a series of dumbed-down chants I wonder if many of the protestors have merely ventured to Denmark for a party. There's serious discussions being held inside the conference halls which needs to be held to account and kept on track.
There are times when it is really frustrating to be an Australian. We're in a great position to be a world leader in renewable energy production. Our politicians think so too... but only after they change the definition of "renewables".
In 1987 Midnight Oil released one of the greatest songs about Australia ever recorded. A song forever associated, through its chorus, with the campaign for indigenous land rights, the official music video a work of art in itself which is, frame by frame, etched into my brain and that of many other Australians of grandchild-bearing age.
An amazing dust storm over Sydney this morning, the result of a number of remarkable climatic events. A big cold front, the result of unseasonably warm September weather, whipping up huge amounts of dust from the central Australian drought, bringing strong winds to the eastern seaboard of New South Wales and dumping its load all over Sydney and Newcastle.
Here's my Flickr slideshow of pics that I took this morning, and the ABC's extensive reportage.