#hypocrites

Bernie Sanders should be a Republican if he studied the facts

Bernie Sanders posted the following to his social media platform today:

Today, the 3 wealthiest Americans own more wealth than the bottom half of our people, and income and wealth inequality is worse now than at any time since the 1920s. This is a moral outrage and bad economics. Unacceptable.

Despite Bernie Sanders’ net worth of $2.5mn, there is an irony for him to act like hr speaks for the poor and oppressed.

The funny thing is that many Americans aspire to be as successful as Jeff Bezos, Bill Gates or Warren Buffett. Undoubtedly the Bottom 50% use/have used Windows, have ordered something on Amazon or used products that sit in the portfolio of Berkshire Hathaway. Bezos, Gates and Buffett all came from relatively humble beginnings. So it isn’t a system that has gifted their success.

What Sanders is forgetting is that the net worth of the Bottom 50% has improved substantially since Trump took office. What is often overlooked by politicians is the simple fact of “lived experience.” Sanders can cry about the”gap” all he wants but if a growing number of people feel less under a rock, they’ll gladly overlook the bluster of Trump and his loose Twitter fingers if he keeps delivering for them. It works the other way too. Telling voters how great they have it when they don’t has the opposite effect.

Since the series began, the St Louis Fed shows the Bottom 50%’s aggregate wealth peaked in 2Q 1991 at $4.3 trillion. In Q1 2009, that net wealth plummetted 61% to $1.7 trillion. It sunk to a rock bottom of $300 billion in 2Q 2011, 93% down.

Under Obama, net worth for the Bottom 50% declined from $1.7 trillion in 1Q 2009 to $1.1 trillion, down 35% over his two terms. This might do some explaining as to why the “forgotten” wanted large scale change.

Under Trump, the latest net worth is back to $1.6 trillion. Still well off the highs of 3-decades ago, but one imagines if things keep improving out to November, then these people won’t want to risk their fortunes reversing again.

Of course, many will ponder the unfair wealth gap of the Top 1% at $34.5 trillion in the latest figures.

Sanders should be outraged that the ultra-wealthy have done much better under Obama with a 100% gain in net worth under his term vs the paltry 15.3% so far under Trump.

Best he become a Republican instead!

Now I know my ABC

FNF Media has finally got around to updating the state of our ABC as compiled in the 2018/19 annual report.

The national broadcaster still believes we should fork over even more taxpayer dollars to keep this icon producing more of what the citizens supposedly demand, even though more of the audience believes that “efficiency/management quality” is headed south (p.158) and overall ratings continue to slide.

Despite over $1bn per annum, why do ratings in the metro and regional areas keep falling? We wrote about this last year:

Comparing 2016/17 and 2015/16 the TV audience reach for metro fell from 55.2% to 52.5% and regional slumped from 60.3% to 57.3%. If we go back to 2007/8 the figures were 60.1% and 62.4% respectively. For the 2017/18 period, the ABC targets a 50% reach. Hardly a stretch.

In 2018/19 it fell into the mid-40s. So inside of 13 years, ABC audiences have shrunk by 10-15%. That is appalling.

We have argued for a long time that the ABC needs a complete overhaul.

In the 2018 annual report, the ABC staff survey revealed engagement was at 46%, 6% below the previous survey. This put the broadcaster in the bottom quartile of all ANZ businesses. Reform was and still is desperately needed.

ABC staff complained that management didn’t do enough to get rid of underperformers. Another clear signal that state-sponsored mediocrity was tolerated and staff didn’t like it.

In the 2018/19 annual report, Chair Ita Buttrose AC made the following comments,

Staff morale was badly shaken, and my priority has been to reinvigorate it by restoring order and enhancing good governance with the help of Managing Director, David Anderson, and his management team. Our employees, in content areas and vital support functions, need a strong sense of direction and a feeling that management has their backs. I feel we are now providing it.

Tucked away in the back pages (p.216) is an interesting subsection on the Code of Practice. There is some eye-opening content with respect to the way it conducts its business.

Take this gem to start with on complaints as to whether it constitutes a potential breach of the charter:

A complainant is entitled under section 150 of the Broadcasting Services Act 1992 (Cth) (“the BSA”) to take their complaint to the ACMA if, after 60 days, the ABC fails to respond to the complainant or the complainant considers the ABC’s response is inadequate.

The ACMA has a discretionary power to investigate a complaint alleging the ABC has,
in providing a national broadcasting service, breached its Code of Practice. Section 151 of the BSA provides that the ACMA may investigate the complaint if it thinks that it is desirable to do so.

The ACMA’s jurisdiction under sections 150-151 does not encompass the ABC’s print content or content disseminated by the ABC over the internet or through mobile devices.

Print and internet-based content fall out of the remit for complaints. So technically ABC can say what it pleases. ACMA is hardly wielding a big stick when it comes to the ABC.

Accuracy is a fun area which would seemingly fall foul of rarely being presented in context:

2.1 Make reasonable efforts to ensure that material facts are accurate and presented in context.
2.2 Do not present factual content in a way that will materially mislead the audience. In some cases, this may require appropriate labels or other explanatory information.

Why did the ABC report that less than 1% of burnt area in the recent bushfires had been started by arsonists? Given that most fires couldn’t be attributed to anything at the time, the ABC forgot to mention the “unknown” category so it could slice the data so it could list the smallest possible percentage. 12,000 fires had been reported since August 2019. 1,700 had been investigated with 42% reported by the NSW Police as deliberately lit.

Impartiality

…The ABC’s obligation to apply its impartiality standard as objectively as possible. In doing so, the ABC is guided by these hallmarks of impartiality:
• a balance that follows the weight of evidence;
• fair treatment;
• open-mindedness; and
• opportunities over time for principal relevant perspectives on matters of contention to be expressed.

Why did it allow a bunch of radical feminists to openly call for the murder of men, providing a platform to a convicted terrorist or happily release a tweet that said former PM Abbott liked anal sex? Or calling conservative politicians “c@nts“? Guess we’re just not open minded enough.

4.1 Gather and present news and information with due impartiality.
4.2 Present a diversity of perspectives so that, over time, no significant strand of thought or belief within the community is knowingly excluded or disproportionately represented.
4.3 Do not state or imply that any perspective is the editorial opinion of the ABC. The ABC takes no editorial stance other than its commitment to fundamental democratic
principles including the rule of law, freedom of speech and religion, parliamentary democracy and equality of opportunity.
4.4 Do not misrepresent any perspective.
4.5 Do not unduly favour one perspective over another.

Why does the ABC constantly run a climate alarmist narrative? Why does Q&A attack conservatives on the panel almost every episode?

Secret recording and other types of deception

“5.8 Secret recording, misrepresentation or other types of deception must not be used by the ABC or its co-production partners to obtain or seek information, audio, pictures or an
agreement to participate except where:

(a) justified in the public interest and the material cannot reasonably be obtained
by any other means; or
(b) consent is obtained from the subject or identities are effectively obscured; or
(c) the deception is integral to an artistic work.

In cases, the potential for harm must be taken into consideration.”

Why did the ABC insert ­itself into the election campaign with a program timed to derail the election prospects of the Left’s hate ­figure, Pauline Hanson and One Nation? An Al ­Jazeera expose, How to Sell a Massacre, was a sting three years in the making, employing hidden cam­eras to ­record One Nation’s ­unsuccessful attempts to solicit foreign funding with the aid of the National Rifle Association. Why was the ABC consorting with the national broadcaster of a foreign power which has highly exceptional human rights standards which flies in the face of all the woke agenda pushed by the ABC? Double standards much?

Privacy

Privacy is necessary to human dignity and every person reasonably expects that their privacy will be respected. But privacy is not absolute. The ABC seeks to balance the public interest in respect for privacy with the public interest in disclosure of information and freedom of expression.

That is a whole can of worms. Can we trust the ABC to execute fairly in this regard?

Harm & Offence

“7.1 Content that is likely to cause harm or offence must be justified by the editorial context.
7.2 Where content is likely to cause harm or offence, having regard to the context, make
reasonable efforts to provide information about the nature of the content through the use of classification labels or other warnings or advice.”
7.6 Where there is editorial justification for content which may lead to dangerous imitation or exacerbate serious threats to individual or public health, safety or welfare, take appropriate steps to mitigate those risks, particularly by taking care with how content is expressed or presented.
7.7 Avoid the unjustified use of stereotypes or discriminatory content that could reasonably be interpreted as condoning or encouraging prejudice.”

Again, what purpose was there to get a panel of radical feminists outright calling for the murder of men? Or just use taxpayer funds on an article on how to give blow jobs?

Kids Programs

Take due care over the dignity and physical and emotional welfare of children and young people who are involved in making, participating in and presenting content produced or commissioned by the ABC…Take particular care to minimise risks
of exposure to unsuitable content…

Why did the ABC run a kids program attacking white privilege?

We have long supported a shift to the TVNZ model, where the kiwi national broadcaster is forced to raise most of its own revenue by appealing to the demands of the market.

TVNZ gets $310m of its $318m purse from advertising. It’s staff costs excluding capitalizing into programs is $72m which converts to 23% staff cost/revenues. They do with 642 FT employees. Revenue/employee is $495,000 vs half that at the ABC. It paid a dividend back to the government of $3.7m. i.e. it is a revenue generating asset.

In 2007, TVNZ had $339m in revenue. It employed 1,023 people. Therefore revenue per employee was $331,380. So in a decade, TVNZ efficiency improved almost 50%. A 6% cut to revenue on 63% reduction in staff. TVNZ ratings are up too.

So instead of Ita Buttrose impersonating Oliver Twist she should be channeling Jerry Maguire and asking advertisers to “show her the money!”

The ABC needs to live in the real world of media because it provides no distinct differentiation from what is already available in the marketplace. You see our ABC should be confident that it has a sustainable audience for its type of journalism. It shouldn’t be one to fear but one to embrace.

For the ABC, it’s best not risk it. Easier to suck on the teat of the taxpayer and ask for even more money so it can try to arrest the decline in so much content that is totally unsalvageable.

Whose state of mind should be shredded? Fact checking Trump’s SOTU claims

Really? Nancy Pelosi defended her actions at the SOTU by saying she “shredded his state of mind!

We fact check Trump’s claims below beyond the unemployment figures we put forward yesterday.

—–

CLAIM: “In 8 years under the last administration, over 300,000 working-age people DROPPED OUT of the workforce. In just three years of my administration, 3.5 MILLION working-age people have JOINED the workforce.”

TRUE

During Obama’s two terms in office, the participation rate dropped from a high of 65.7% to 62.7% by the end. Since President Trump took office, the rate has grown from 62.8% to 63.2% which sums to c.3.7 million more people joining the workforce.

Source: BLS

——

CLAIM: “The median household income is now at the highest rate ever.”

TRUE

The U.S. Census has been tracking median household income since 1984. In 2018, the last year recorded by the U.S. Census Bureau, household median income was at $63,179, the highest number recorded.

Source: Census Bureau

——

CLAIM: In the Democratic response, Michigan Governor Gretchen Whitmer said that more than 275 bipartisan bills sit on Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell’s desk.

TRUE

Source: Congress roll calls

——

CLAIM: “Under my administration, seven million Americans have come off food stamps and 10 million people have been lifted off of welfare.”

TRUE

“Food stamps” aka U.S Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) data shows seven million less people than there were before President Trump took office. Medicaid and Children’s Health Insurance saw a roughly 4.7 million person decrease.

Source: SNAP

——

CLAIM: President Trump claimed that America has gained 12,000 new factories under his administration after losing 60,000 factories under the previous two administrations.

TRUE

The Bureau of Labor tracks manufacturing establishments every quarter. US had 398,837 factories at the start of Bush’s presidency in 2001 and 343,972 manufacturing establishments at the end of Obama’s presidency in 2017. That’s a drop of 54,865. The preliminary data for 2Q 2019, reveals 356,046 factories. +12,074 since 2017.

Source: BLS

——

CLAIM: “Thanks to our bold regulatory reduction campaign, the United States has become the number one producer of oil and natural gas in the world, by far.”

SLIGHTLY MISLEADING

According to the U.S. Energy Information Administration, the U.S. has been the #1 producer of oil and natural gas in the world since 2013 before Trump took office.

Source: USEIA

——

CLAIM: “Since my election, the net worth of the bottom half of wage earners has increased by 47 percent, three times faster than the increase for the top one percent.” 

TRUE

Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis (FRED), the reports the net worth of the bottom half of the population was $1,070,183mn at the start of 2017. As of the third quarter of 2019, it was 1,668,034mn. That’s an increase of 55.86%, more than Trump quoted. The Top 1%, had $29,955,829mn. In 3Q 2019, it was $34,533,370mn, or 15.3%

Source: FRED Top 1% and Bottom 50%

——

CLAIM: “I have raised contributions from the other NATO members by more than $400 billion, and the number of allies meeting their minimum obligations has more than doubled.” 

TRUE

NATO Europe and Canada are expected to raise defense spending by a cumulative $400 billion US dollars by 2024 to meet the 2 percent of GDP obligations – though those obligations were agreed to in 2014.

Source: NATO

——

CLAIM: “Last year, our brave ICE officers arrested more than 120,000 criminal aliens charged with nearly 10,000 burglaries, 5,000 sexual assaults, 45,000 violent assaults and 2,000 murders.” 

TRUE

Source: ICE

——-

CLAIM: “As a result of our unprecedented efforts, illegal crossings are down 75 percent since May — dropping eight straight months in a row.”

TRUE

May, 2019 saw 144,116 apprehensions. Arrests have dropped every single month since that rime, reaching 40,620 in December, 2019. January data not released but apprehensions down 72%.

Source: CBP

——

CLAIM: “In the last three years, ICE has arrested over 5,000 wicked human traffickers.” 

TRUE

ICE has made 5,387 human trafficking arrests.

Source: ICE

——

CLAIM: “We have now completed over 100 miles and will have over 500 miles fully completed by early next year.”

MOSTLY TRUE

Acting Homeland Security Secretary Chad Wolf announced the completion of the border wall’s 100th mile. 400-450 miles of wall would either be completed OR under construction by the end of 2020 — not 500.

Source: DHS

——

CLAIM: “Since 2016, the violent crime rate in America has fallen nearly 5 percent after rising each of the two years before President Trump took office.”

TRUE

Violent crime fell 4.5% between 2016 to 2018. Preliminary 2019 numbers show a further decrease.

Source: FBI

——

CLAIM: Trump claimed drug overdose deaths declined for the first time in nearly 30 years.

TRUE

2018 was the first time in nearly 20 years that the number of drug overdose deaths declined and only the second time in nearly the last 30 years.

Source: CDC

—–

CLAIM: “Three years ago, the barbarians of ISIS held over 20,000 square miles of territory in Iraq and Syria. Today, the ISIS territorial caliphate has been 100 percent destroyed.”

TRUE

In March 2019, U.S.-backed forces in Syria captured the Islamic State’s last physical territory. In 2016, the ISIS held about 37,530 sq miles in Iraq and Syria.

Source: The Wilson Center

—–

Judging by her actions, should we believe “there is no such thing as eternal animosity.”

She sure has a strange way of showing it.

The only truth Pelosi spoke was that she “didn’t need lessons in dignity from the president.” She has that base well and truly covered.

The only truth in Pelosi was her denial.

It must be a disaster for The Guardian to have this opinion

No need for words – it speaks volumes if The Guardian admits Trump is the winner in Iowa.

XR now want to bankrupt Royal Dutch Shell

These pictures are of a Shell gasoline stand in Nijmegen, Holland.

Extinction Rebellion (XR) are now running a #ShellMustFall hashtag and campaign to trash Shell businesses with graffiti and bicycle locks on bowsers.

The sign reads, “Royal Dutch Shell, we will tax you, regulate you, split you up, socialize you, nationalize you, expropriate you, prosecute you and bankrupt you”

Has XR considered the livelihoods of the 82,000 employees at Shell?

No wonder the UK counter terrorism police wants to add these lunatics to the list.

XR claims to conduct non-violent civil disobedience but it’s actions are negatively impacting legitimate businesses from operating. Defacing private property is not peaceful. XR should be fined with the cost of policing and any lost revenues as a result of such selfish actions.

XR intends to disrupt the Shell shareholder meeting on May 19th.

This is not an expression of free speech but an intentional plan to intimidate. The longer governments let climate activists behave like this with little repercussions, the more emboldened they will become.

Perfect Pelosi troll by Trump

President Trump wasted no time in mimicking Nancy Pelosi (who handed out pens embossed with her name to celebrate the solemn occasion of signing the Articles or Impeachment) when he signed the USMCA into law.

Well played.

Extinction Rebellion trashes Auto Show

These climate activists are unhinged lunatics. This is the justification that Extinction Rebellion (XR) used for trashing the Brussels Autosalon was as follows,

The truth is, no car is green…The private car is no longer compatible with the Climate and Ecological Crisis….Governments must stop pouring billions into roads and instead make mass public transport affordable, accessible, reliable and convenient.

The Brussels Times reported that 187 were arrested and charged €2,000 each. Febiac, the auto show organizer, said XR’s display at the event caused a whopping €367,829 in damages.

There is a difference between protesting and breaking the law by trashing private property.

Febiac, to its credit, gave XR approval to protest under certain guidelines. The organizer’s Joost Kaesemans said, “We sat together with people from Extinction Rebellion for the salon, we told them they could hold a demo, sing songs and hand out brochures...But we also told them that if they bothered visitors and wreaked havoc, we would take measures. They did not stick to that, so there are consequences.”

So even when the organizers play ball, the fools of XR think they have carte blanche to act as they please. Hopefully XR protestors are forced to pay up, serve time and get handed a bill for wasting the time of the police.

If only XR protests were about saving the planet and not seek to control the way others live their lives.

One final question – does XR have a strategy to re-employ the 15mn that work in auto related industries? Of course not.