#catefaehrmann

Open letter to the Hon. Cate Faehrmann MLC

The Hon. Cate Faehrmann MLC,

The public wishes at all times for politicians to represent them. However, a member of parliament should refrain from full-blown activism. No one questions reasoned conviction. There is a difference.

However, is it right for you to openly support rallying protestors to potentially disrupt law enforcement in the neighbouring state of Queensland over Adani? To then claim Premier Anastasia Palaszczuk’s government was out of line to “silence climate and anti-Adani activists” who were disrupting a public that overwhelmingly voted in favour of Adani going ahead. Perhaps you might reflect on what some may view as a double standard of silencing those that criticize you for failing to prosecute arguments on your own social media pages?

Do you represent the people of NSW or Queensland? Because if it is the latter you should be running for office there. We have no business meddling in their politics as much as they have no say in how ours is run. That’s how democracy should behave.

In what should have been an important speech you made about women’s rights on abortion, you had to drag it into irrelevant mudslinging surrounding the gender pay gap (illegal), identity politics (feminism) and treating domestic violence as a one-way street.

According to a UK study on domestic violence,

“Male victims  (39%) are over three times as likely than women (12%) not to tell anyone about the partner abuse they are suffering from. Only 10% of male victims will tell the police (26% women), only 23% will tell a person in an official position (43% women) and only 11% (23% women) will tell a health professional.

The number of women convicted of perpetrating domestic abuse has increased sevenfold since 2004/05. From 806 in 2004/05 to 5,641 in 2015/16…In 2015, 119,000 men reported to English and Welsh police forces stating they were a victim of domestic abuse. 22% of all victims who report to the police are male. In 2012, 73,524 men did…

Men don’t leave abusive relationships for various reasons – the top reasons being: concern about the children (89%), marriage for life (81%), love (71%), the fear of never seeing their children again (68%), a belief she will change (56%), not enough money(53%), nowhere to go (52%), embarrassment (52%), not wanting to take kids away from their mother (46%), threats that she will kill herself (28%) and fears she will kill him (24%). 

Of those that suffered from partner abuse in 2012/13, 29% of men and 23% of women suffered a physical injury, a higher proportion of men suffering severe bruising or bleeding (6%) and internal injuries or broken bones/teeth (2%) than women (4% and 1% respectively). 30% of men who suffer from partner abuse have emotional and mental problems (47% women). Only 27% of men sought medical advice whilst 73% of women did.

Let’s be clear – domestic violence is abhorrent on every level, but it is disingenuous to suggest it is a one-way street because it is simply not. Thank God for those toxic males who took out a knife-wielding perpetrator in Sydney’s CBD recently. You may note that Gillette has now flipped its ‘woke’ advertising campaign to champion what it recently censured to the cost of US$8bn in destroyed market value.

You even took the liberty in your speech to have another swipe at Alan Jones AO in what one can only deduce in the hope he loses his job. You went as far as highlighting ‘male’ and ‘female’ in bold font when referring to him. To what aim?

Unfortunately for you, his career is a matter for his employers, not for a NSW MLC with an axe to grind. He broke no laws. If this speech was truly about abortion, why the need to attack a radio presenter for holding different beliefs to you? He admitted he crossed a line and apologized for it sincerely and publicly, including a letter to PM Ardern who gracefully taunted him back with a sledge over the likely outcome in the Bledisloe Cup. Touché. Two adults who made peace between the only parties concerned.

Since when is it your business, or anyone else’s, to barrack for his dismissal? If you support free speech then you should support it even when those views clash with your own, including Alan Jones. People can make their own minds up about him. He has been put on notice by his employer. It has been sickening to witness those utterly spineless advertisers hiding behind self-censorship post the Ardern event.

If we looked at the ratio of men Jones has pilloried on his radio program over the years it would far outweigh any misogynistic narratives you secretly must wish to be true. It would be safe to assume you are not a regular 2GB listener in the mornings. Perhaps you might ask Peta Credlin if she believes he is the misogynist you charge him to be to cohost a Sky news program with her? For your speech on abortion could be equally interpreted as misandry, given the one-sided stance it took.

Yet on the subject of abortion, it might help to delve into all of the facts.

It is an absolute necessity to ensure safe hospital/clinic-based abortions are made available where it is warranted and necessary. It should never be seen as a way to sacrifice those on the altar of convenience, especially where some cultures choose to do so on the basis of gender, usually at the expense of females. So much for feminism.

Do you think this is only a traumatic thing for women? Is it possible that some fathers of the fetus can suffer considerable anguish with regards to termination? Should they wish to raise by themselves, should they be denied that right, no matter how small the probability of such a scenario?

1,000 women may die from unsafe abortions in The Philippines. It is terrible. Your speech made reference to the WHO and the five million women hospitalised from abortion-related complications. 47,000 die. Another awful statistic.

Perhaps you might look at the even more ghastly stats on abortion.

c.700,000 fetuses are terminated in America each year. Down from 1.4 million in 1990. Hardly stats to cheer about. Of course, the arguments for a woman’s right to choose will always be thrown at pro-lifers. Yet allowing termination until birth in places like New York, a city that lit up monuments in celebration of being able to terminate right up to the point of delivery rightly raises concerns about infanticide.

Eurostat statistics on abortion reveal that Germany, France, UK, Spain and Italy alone terminate a combined 760,000 fetuses per annum. Across the EU-28 there are 1.25mn terminations. Without getting into a debate on abortion rights, the pure statistical number points to 20.4% of fetuses never make it out of the womb alive.

According to the Guttmacher Institute, some 56 million abortions occur annually. Every. Single. Year. To think that WWII saw 50 million deaths in 6 years of conflict with the widespread use of lethal weapons. So abortions kill at a far higher rate than global conflict. What a sobering thought.

Now even the religious “far-right”, as you call them, can distinguish between medical need and the irresponsibility of couples to engage in sexual activity. RU-486 was supposed to be the miracle cure that ended abortion for good but the numbers remain so high. It is tragic. We should all reflect on how to improve the choice set made available.

You claim that a mother might not be positioned to give the best start in life to a child. Is that the only out? What might the fetus say? Unfortunately, the fetus doesn’t get any rights and this is what some “far-right” people question. You might argue it is just a clump of pre-formed cells. What if that tissue turned into the next Einstein or Mother Teresa? You would actually find more pro-life advocates support alternatives to abortion, including far more robust adoption facilities to give the unborn the right to life. At the moment the current rushed debate in NSW Parliament is purely binary.

With respect to Planned Parenthood (PP), only 3% of its patients are abortion-related in number. Most of it is related to pap smears, health checks, birth control and other consultations. Yet in its latest annual filing, every single division saw a decline in business activity except abortion and guess what? Total revenues rose appreciably. Which essentially means that abortion is the highest margin service offered by PP.

Which begs the question, why is there a pressing need to rush abortion legislation in NSW? People are free to travel to Queensland or Victoria to have it conducted as much as someone in Alabama can travel to New York to have a procedure.

That is not a valid reason to prevent an update to abortion legislation in NSW but it has been so ill-considered and done under unnecessary pressure without balanced and reasonable debate or due process. It deserves nothing less, even if it includes dragging those from the stone-age kicking and screaming. No wonder the Premier has had to back down. It was poorly executed from the start.

You’ll find the “far-right” less of a menace by allowing reasoned legislation based on common sense and civil discourse.

As far as forcing doctors to conduct abortions against their conscience, that is something that has no place in any legislation. There will undoubtedly be enough medical practitioners who do not carry guilt in conducting abortions yet the state has no place forcing the will on those who don’t. Surely the marketplace in our digital world can quickly separate those who will and won’t terminate fetuses purely based on gender selection.

If you truly wish to advance the cause of women’s rights, engage all sides of the debate. Your opinions are as valid as those on the other side of the coin. They should be weighed by the market of free speech.

The power of listening to all perspectives is what is needed more than ever in politics. Instead of defending your own, defend those of others. If your arguments are compelling then they will stand on their own merit.

Yours sincerely,

M. Newman

NSW to lose State of Origin 4 (Adani)

Who’d a thunk? The Queensland Labor Government is fighting for its life. If it means trading principle for expediency, they have chosen the latter path. Even throwing on last-minute ‘infrastructure taxes’ couldn’t halt progress. Adani has been approved.

Labor has spent 8 years obstructing Adani Carmichael from going ahead. After the unlosable election result handed to its federal colleagues, Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk saw the light. Political suicide was at stake. It won’t stop the inevitable, especially post QLD Treasurer Jackie Trad’s deeper deficits announced this week.

What Greens Senator DiNatale fails to understand (despite saying every election hereon will be a #ClimateElection) is that Queenslanders couldn’t give a hoot for Victorians complaining about their wish to have jobs. The reality is that Adani Carmichael will likely be open for decades to come. It will employ those working at the mines and the local economies that support them.

What evidence has DiNatale got for thousands of jobs being destroyed? It is that level of economic comprehension that means they will remain such a joke as a credible party. Not least helped by the eloquence of NSW MLC Cate Faehrmann who thinks encouraging a blockade in a neighbouring state seems fair game.

There are only supposed to be three games in the State of Origin.  Faehrmann is guaranteed to lose her suggested matchup, much like former Senator Bob Brown’s convoy pre-election warm-up game concluded. Queensland will run rings around the NSW attack, as always!

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Cate Faehrmann plays investor for a day

Investment managers have difficult jobs. They have to forecast a whole plethora of variables from global economic growth, currencies, commodity prices and micro level corporate industries. If governments can provide ironclad policy certainty, investment choices become relatively easier. Unfortunately, perfect information detracts from performance because things get priced almost instantaneously.

It might be nice that 415 funds all call for a ratification of Paris Climate Accord (which means nothing in practice as the US isn’t a signatory and its emissions have fallen while China is a signatory and emissions continue to rise) but truth be told,  it sounds what is commonly termed in financial circles as “talking one’s book.” NSW Greens MLC Cate Faehrmann pretends to understand finance in her latest piece.

While these 415 firms might represent $32 trillion in assets under management (AUM), the truth is not all of those funds are spoken for in terms of climate-related investments. Investment advisors by their very nature have very diverse client bases. They cover basic low-risk pension (i.e. stable income) funds all the way to riskier return profiles for clients that want more exposure to certain themes or countries. If clients aren’t interested in buying climate funds, the asset managers don’t gather fees. Pretty simple.

Much of the fund industry has focused on ESG (environment, social responsibility & governance) since its inception in 2005. ESG represents around $20 trillion of global AUM, or 25% of total professionally managed funds. Therefore the other 75% of monies are deployed without this in mind. In reality, this is done because investment managers must hunt for the best returns, not those which sacrifice profitability for virtue. If NAB offered you a 10% 1-yr deposit and no solar panels on the HQ roof and Westpac offered a 1% 1-yr deposit because it did, would you invest in the latter based on its ecomentalism?

Let’s take the world’s largest public pension fund (2 million members), California Public Employees’ Retirement System (CalPERS) which is a cosignatory to this demand for climate action. Apart from the fact that this $380bn fund has been so poorly managed (marked to market unfunded liabilities are c.US$1 trillion), its portfolio consists of widespread ownership of met coal, petroleum and other mining assets. It owns bonds in fossil-fuel producing nations such as Abu Dhabi, Qatar and Saudi Arabia as well as highly environmentally unfriendly aluminium smelters in the world’s biggest polluter, China. So there goes the rhetoric of “demanding” Paris is ratified, that we shift to a low carbon economy and we force companies to report their carbon commitments.

It is frightening that some members of our political class believe that investment managers which collaborate in groupthink are worthy of listening to. On the contrary, the performance of many must be sub par. It is a sad reality that 80% of large-cap fund managers fail to outperform the index on a regular basis. So praying for governments to backstop investments they deployed capital into shows more desperation than innovation.

Maybe we should think of Adani as a classic example of investment at work. While Annastacia Palaszczuk’s government is backflipping on the Adani Carmichael coal mine after the electoral drubbing handed out to federal colleagues, the voluntary infrastructure tax is a cynical way to try to make the project less financially viable. After 8 years of ridiculous and onerous environmental approvals, Adani probably think it only needs to wait til October 2020 when an election will wipe out Queensland Labor from government and the infrastructure tax will be repealed soon after.

CM has long held that the non-ESG names are the place to invest. Most of the auto-pilot, brain dead, virtue signalling group think money has been poured into ESG. All non-ESG companies care about is profitability, not focusing on all the soft cuddly things they do displayed on the corporate lobby TV screens on a loop. Sadly when markets inevitably implode, investors always seek safe havens to limit the damage. As so much money is collectively invested together, so the bigger the stampede to the relatively attractive values provided by the stocks that have been cast aside by “woke” investors.

Climate change to percolate coffee prices?

Climate change is such a force of nature. CM’s local newspaper said it affected household pets, a university study said it created toxic masculinity and now the Daily Mail reports that coffee prices could soar due to climate change! The thought our ritual cup of Joe in Australia could cost as much as $7! Torn asunder.

Never mind that coffee bean commodities trade at 1/3rd peak prices of 8 years ago. Bit of a buffer, wouldn’t you say? Ironically coffee retail prices have only crept higher in Sydney meaning that rent and wages have been a larger factor on our morning kick starter than the beans themselves.

The Mail reports,

Mark Dundon, 57, co-owns Seven Seeds cafe in Carlton, an inner-north suburb of Melbourne, and has been a part of the cafe scene for 18 years. 

He says climate change is making it harder for farmers in South America and South-East Asia to grow coffee and once they sell their product to major companies, the price they receive is often below the production costs.  

He believes prices could explode because producers are abandoning the industry for better work.”

He needn’t worry. The 16yo pig-tailed high priestess of the global climate emergency movement can lead worldwide protests to make sure her band of teenagers don’t acquire such a filtered caffeine habit. That way we poor adults won’t have excess demand pressures to keep us struggling through the day.

What will likely happen is a lot of consolidation driven by the majors like Nestle who will keep a lid on prices so we won’t need to sacrifice several cups a day habits.

Perhaps until Mr Dundon joins the “die-in” climate emergency protests in central Melbourne we can remain safely assured his business is doing ok, especially now that he has probably overheard his customers thinking of booking their ski trip to Falls Creek a month early due to the massive snow dumps!!

If worst comes to worst Baldrick can always find us substitutes.

Thanks to Simon F. for the flag on this story.

Cate Faehrmann angry only 5 support her climate emergency

6 out of 42 NSW Legislative Councilors voted in favour of a “climate emergency” and Greens MLC Cate Faehrmann is upset. Only goes to show that two election drubbings on said subject should leave an “as expected” result like this. She should be embarrassed to publish such a post. “This is how poorly we prosecute our case” is all it suggests.

Faehrmann must understand that the NSW LC is not The Guardian. An editor can compel the speech of journalists to declare “climate emergencies”. Best not pick the motion on such a bitterly cold day. Good to see the majority of parties didn’t fold like the British parliamentarians did after being visited by a pig-tailed 16yo.

Does apathy come before extinction?

NSW Greens politician Cate Faehrmann wrote of her disappointment at the low numbers attending the school climate strike today. CM wonders whether apathy is the penultimate stage to extinction?

CM finds it hard to reconcile how Faehrmann has only just started to realize there is a need to “develop new strategies.

She wrote,

Not a massive crowd at today’s Strike 4 Climate in Sydney and I’m sure our opponents will use that against us. However, it’s not surprising so close to a demoralising election result for us climate activists. It doesn’t mean we stop protesting. We have to keep going.

For now though, we take stock, recover and then get back to work on building support for urgent action to address the climate emergency upon us. That means absolutely continuing to campaign like we know how, because the hundreds of thousands of you who have been working for climate action have been bloody effective in raising the issue to the top of the national agenda. However, we also have to develop new strategies to reach new audiences to win. We need to build new alliances and develop a greater understanding of people’s motivations and values. We need to be prepared to work with everyone over the next few years because as long as we continue to frame this as a ‘fight’ on climate change against the conservatives, winning for the ‘right’ is stopping genuine action.

It’s going to be the toughest thing we’ve ever done but we have to broaden support beyond those who voted for climate action last weekend. Do you think it’s possible? How? I’d really love your thoughts on this.

Here’s a suggestion – try debating in open forums with facts not feelings. No hysteria. It will really help. Belittling skeptics by screaming through megaphones and brainwashing children aren’t activities that win over the majority of the public you wish to sway.

Will Bill Shorten declare a climate emergency?

Why is Greenpeace demanding PM Scott Morrison declare a ‘climate emergency’? Why not badger Bill Shorten? Labor has an uncosted climate change policy but gone one step short of declaring a full blown “climate emergency” despite the cost of doing nothing being so huge. Probably because climate change isn’t as big an election issue as made out and declaring catastrophe might wreck his chances to move into The Lodge.

Ironically Greenpeace just wrote about the success of Extinction Rebellion with respect to climate emergency. In the process revealing how useless it is at public advocacy to praise a rival playing in the same donation pool. Will these two leftist groups eat each other in months to come when they realize they’re fighting over the same funds?

Are the Greens expecting the Libs to hold onto power? Even if Morrison declared an emergency, not one Greens voter would put Liberal as their second preference.

What we do know is the Greens love law breakers. It is a $3,000 + GST per person fine to climb onto unauthorized parts of the Sydney Harbour Bridge. 15 of them. $45,000 for Premier Gladys Beijiklian. It doesn’t matter if they were experienced abseilers. They should be prosecuted.

Instead of condemning illegal activity the Greens, true to form, were applauding! NSW Greens politician, Cate Faehrmann, was quick to say,

BREAKING: Protesters have scaled the Sydney Harbour Bridge calling on Australia to declare a climate emergency! I applaud their actions 100%. Governments aren’t listening so more and more people are taking desperate action to be heard.”

Imagine if pro-Adani groups handed out leaflets on the benefits to jobs and the economy. The Greens would censure the activity as unconstitutional and demand they be arrested and jailed for heresy.

Why the Greens will never be taken seriously

NSW Greens MLC Cate Faehrmann proves why her party can never be taken seriously to post this sort of potty humour surrounding the school climate strike.

Clearly she would be prime for the education portfolio with wit like that were the Greens ever to take office. Presumably profanity passes as creative writing in Cate’s world. Hopefully the kids used recycled cardboard and non-acrylic marker pens.

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Dill Testing

Pill testing. Yes, it is difficult to stop the youth of today popping drugs at rave concerts. If certain drugs like MDMA are illegal, why is it OK to turn a blind eye at the concert gate? If there is medical evidence to say taking MDMA is harmless then change the law. Sadly the tragic deaths of a handful of kids has shown this not to be the case. Overdoses and bad batches dispensed by nefarious actors.

Is the desire to resort to hallucinating narcotics so great that the government should back legislation to allow young kids to have their risky tablets tested?  Imagine if those asking for their pills to be tested were required to put their name down against the test? None would test! There would be outrage over a violation of privacy. Yet we the tax payer invariably foot the bill of the reckless behaviour should things go wrong. Perhaps attendees should be required to file their Medicare number alongside the pill test and pay higher premiums for willingly taking higher risks? Again, none would line up.

The arguments for pill testing surround removing the potentially deadly drugs off the market by creating a virtuous circle of warnings within the drug taking community. The idea is that they could make informed choices were pill testing made available and inform each other what to avoid. Research from Austria showed that 50% of those that got pill testing changed their consumption behaviours.  Sadly the other 50% did not. Other examples of positive outcomes from pill testing revolve around wider knowledge about what drug compounds are popular which helps medical and emergency services better prepare. There is a company in America which sells NARCAN which revives those that overdose from the dead. You can read more about that here.

The arguments for pill testing seem so strong that it is any wonder the government doesn’t go the whole hog and set up its own narcotic stall at these concerts to sell controlled substances directly to the public. Two MDMA tablets and a foil of heroin please. Are those bongs on special?

The stupidity with pill testing is in the word – “ILLEGAL”. If CM gets caught speeding, why shouldn’t I be as justified in saying I was acceleration testing my potentially lethal BMW to make sure the speedometer was accurate? No NSW Highway Patrol officer will grant clemency. I will be fined for breaking the law. Quite right too.

Then we get Greens MP Cate Faehrmann admitting she’s taken MDMA since her 20s. In her doing so we can now have an honest and open debate. Fantastic to have an elected official out herself as an illegal drug user. Is this the type of lived experience we should be basing policy off? How ironic she lambasts the zero tolerance policies of the NSW Government? It may well be costing lives but the measures to combat are proving ineffective.  That is the issue. Time to think outside the box.

Why not just have police controlled mandatory swab tests at exit, fully funded by the event organizer, who can impute that in the cost of the ticket? Those that show a positive sign to ‘illegal drugs’ are arrested and criminally charged. Simple. Make it clear well in advance that those caught for breaking the law go on a national register. Why shouldn’t employers be able to better screen their employees’ behaviours or and health insurers be able to more accurately assess their customers? If you are clean there is zero to worry about.

If we want to create a culture of stopping drugs, we won’t do it by applying soft measures. Rave concerts are a captive audience where drugs are smuggled in often unsavory ways to escape detection. Make it clear that the swabs are mandatory and one of two things will happen; the attendance will only be enjoyed by those prepared to be clean or the rave concerts will end.

Some will argue there will be a risk that rave concerts will go underground but in the day and age of cyber technology, it won’t be hard to track such events going forward. Make the penalties for organizers failing to register and apply for such concerts punishable by jail terms and multi million dollar fines.

If we truly don’t like the law, then let’s change it. Let’s not have two tier judicial systems that openly favour dangerous behaviour because it infringes on someone’s subjective right to listen to a rave concert completely off their rocker. Maybe that is the test – make these kids recall 50% of the music that were played. One can be rest assured most of them didn’t hear a thing.