Thursday, April 03, 2014

Coal mines, police and twitter

This art/music blog seems to have been captured by politics, but how can I resist when politics here has become high art (or high farce)? This week NSW Police are claiming intimidation by Twitter!

In Australia coal mining companies are using the tactics that oil companies have used for years in Africa. You can always find a corrupt politician to bribe and here in NSW they come from both sides of politics. Farmers are being left with no one left to defend their interests, so they are starting to take direct action themselves.

Whitehaven Coal, already involved in a high profile political corruption investigation, is forging ahead with their disputed Mauls Creek mine regardless of hundreds of submissions against this mine (I read that there were 300 submissions and only one wanted the mine to proceed).

Protesters in NSW were inspired to action this week by the most recent IPCC climate change report and decided to have a picnic in the forest where the disputed Whitehaven Maul's Creek mine site is to be built. They were on their way when they were stopped by a police car blockade. (When did police start becoming the private army for coal mining companies?)

Police were photographed by activist journalist Margo Kingston blockading the road and she posted her photos on twitter. The next day NSW police claimed intimidation by twitter!

Later in the day eighty two protesters were arrested for trespass including Bill Ryan, 92 year old veteran of the kokoda trail. He said he was proud to be there among the cream of Australian society. 

Here is a video made by the farmer organising actions against mining in the Leard State Forest in northern NSW.

And below is a video featuring Bill Ryan.

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