News and events, Politics and activism

Enough delay. Time for climate action

Fires have ravaged south eastern Australia this summer. As I write this, cooler weather and even a little rain provided a few days of relief, but warmer weather is on the way. There's much of the fire season still to come. 26 people are dead. 8.4 million hectares are believed to have burnt - figures in Wikipedia indicate this is the biggest recorded for Australia's east coast. So far.

Politics and activism, transport

Illogical obsession

Saturday's Federal Election result might have been unexpected by many, but it underscores the Coalition's illogical obsession with East West Link. Well, illogical from a transport planning perspective that is. Remember, it's got a business case that says it will lose money - unless you include Wider Economic Benefits with which the Victorian Auditor General had, and I quote: significant issues

Politics and activism

Climate, money and politics

I don't often write about climate change, but here are a few thoughts as we go into the Federal election on Saturday. But first I need to get these points out of the way: Climate change is real.If you think climate change is a hoax because you think you know more than the 97% of climate scientists who say it's real, that's up to you - but I'm not interested in your theories. Don't bother le

Politics and activism, Toxic Custard newsletter, transport

Election wrapup

Many people have written about the state election result. I thought I'd add my two-cents worth... noting that as of Wednesday night, some seats are still in doubt. The Coalition crime fear campaign didn't resonate. The stats don't match the rhetoric, and while the accounts from actual victims could be harrowing, Melbourne is not a crime-infested cesspit. That's no comfort to those who have been

Politics and activism

State election 2018

It's state election day this Saturday, though many people have already voted: We’re up to 970,454 votes on Day 9 of early voting – 585,869 was the Day 9 early voting total in 2014. The number of postal votes received has risen to 177,572. Want to see how your District’s early voting tally compares to others? Check out #VicVotes— VEC (@electionsvic) November 21, 201

Politics and activism, Toxic Custard newsletter

What’s the number one priority for politicians, more than anything else? Getting elected.

Just a quickie... A senior politician (I won't say who, or which side) once told me something which, at the time was somewhat surprising to hear, but in retrospect it's obvious - and puts a lot of things into perspective: For politicians, the number one priority is to get elected / to get re-elected / to get their side into power. And this person specifically said that sometimes, the moti

Politics and activism, Toxic Custard newsletter

I’m voting yes.

Here's what I think about the Same Sex Marriage postal survey: I'm voting yes. The reality is that not everyone is attracted to the opposite sex. Who are we to deny them getting married if they want to? Despite how some others paint it, it doesn't harm anybody else, and certainly doesn't harm heterosexual marriages. It's not like marriage is ever purely for having children. My mother and ste

Politics and activism, transport

Whinging with credibility

Following a little jaunt out to Caroline Springs on Tuesday (more on this in the next post), with some tweets along the way, I had an interesting Twitter conversation with a disgruntled Geelong line user. One of my tweets noted that a huge crowd waiting at the platform for a Geelong train had in fact fitted into the train when it eventually arrived. (The exchange is reproduced below.) My corres

Politics and activism, Toxic Custard newsletter

Save the trees, or save the world?

While I work on a bigger post (or at least one requiring a bit more research), here's a quickie on an interesting parallel observed last week. Part one In the same week that Minister for Energy and the Environment Josh Frydenberg joined in a parliamentary stunt playing with a lump of coal, he also launched a self-admitted flawed bid to save trees on St Kilda Road. Deputy PM Barnaby Joyce

Politics and activism, Toxic Custard newsletter

Some random thoughts on the Trump ascendancy

Well, this is fascinating to watch. I knew it could happen, but didn't honestly think it would. Breaking news! We have nothing to say!— Daniel Bowen (@danielbowen) November 9, 2016 Nothing will change overnight. The inauguration isn't until January, but even then... we'll see how fast he moves after that. I hope his tone will be more moderate now he's no