Rohan Wenn, senior policy and media adviser to Nick Xenophon, writes
: Re. "In naming a priest accused, Xenophon has gone too far
" (yesterday, item 11).Two clarifications relating to your recent coverage of the Hepworth matter.
It has been misreported by a couple of outlets that John Hepworth asked Nick not to name his alleged attacker. This is not the case. John did tell the media during the day on Tuesday that his preferred option was for the priest to be stood down pending a proper inquiry and not named. This was also Nick’s preferred option.
But Nick subsequently spoke with John an hour or so before the Senate speech and indicated that the Church’s lawyers had made it clear they would not stand down the priest in question. With this in mind John said he understood Nick’s decision to name the priest and he understood it was Nick’s decision to make.
The second point of clarification relates to John’s age at the time of the initial alleged assault. The Catholic Church in South Australia has repeatedly stated that John was in his 20s at the time of that alleged assault.
However, John has told Nick that the initial alleged assault occurred "on or about the age of 18".
Peter Lloyd writes
: Nick Cater (yesterday, comments
) and Bob Brown are right: Australia would
be worse off without The Australian.
The point is not what it was, but what it is fast becoming: a broadsheet version of the Murdoch tabloids whose utility for the good of the nation is far, far harder to see. Beyond that, there's just Fox News,
which positively detracts from American democracy.
editorial team has shown a willingness to flirt with fantasy in a world intellectually polluted by climate change denial, creationism, and broad-scale voodoo economics. It appears The Australian
in particular and the Murdoch media in general are keen for Australia to be led by a Sarah Palin or Michele Bachmann. And that is simply too ugly to contemplate.
Tamas Calderwood writes
: Re. "Fight against pipeline the new 'normal' in climate change politics
" (yesterday, item 13). David Ritter wistfully concedes that the international climate change movement is kaput when he points out that Copenhagen failed and there is no prospect for meaningful action at the next UN climate meeting in Durban.
And while David argues that unilateral action will help (like Australia’s proposed planet-frosting tax), his main point is that "specific political battles over industrial pinch-points" -- like stopping airport and power station expansions -- are key. Such battles include celebrities like Darryl Hannah and "intellectuals" like Naomi Klein protesting outside the White House to stop oil pipelines being built. These "critical engagements", we are told, will "avoid runaway global warming". However, David does lament that such "acts of civil disobedience [are] the only means left to try to obtain commonsense climate policy".
But surely he is too pessimistic. Think of what has been achieved by all those climate activists in Martin Place gathering signatures; by the multiple climate/sustainability institutes; by the complex financial trading systems for "carbon"; by our heavily subsidised solar and wind farms; by the “awareness campaigns” of countless environmental organisations; by the vast media campaign that has promoted the "settled science".
Somehow, incredibly, we have limited global warming to just 7/100ths of a degree Celsius since 1998 and just 0.7C in the past 150 years.
I’m not saying we are saved from our obviously wicked path, but given the temperature data we are surely holding our own in this titanic battle against global warming.