Saturday, May 03, 2014

85 - the new 69

Eighty five, it sounds so innocuous and reminds me of ladders for some reason. Perhaps there were 85 steps on the snakes and ladders we used to play as kids. I had not known 85's urban dictionary meaning 'Distortion of the truth way beyond belief and or An Absolute Avalanche of Bullshit' but in NSW this week it is a definition that is on everybody's lips because 'eighty five' is the name of the firm that was set up by State Liberal Party to funnel illegal funds into their party coffers. The ICAC inquiry is showing that illegal funds came from property developers amongst others and it appears that they were donating in return for favours. The choice of name for the slush fund shows just how cynical the players were (and are).
Doctor locked on to protest
The folk who set the company up and arranged for donations were no small fry. The NSW Premier has had to resign and now his ministers are falling, one after the other. The Minister for Police resigned today.  There are so many links between the corrupt players of both political parties that it is difficult to keep track, but the  ABC has created an amazing interactive web graphic to help interested observers.

These corrupted politicians were responsible for issuing the coal mining and fracking licenses that have so incensed the citizenry. NSW farmers and their supporters are saying all the licenses should now be withdrawn.

This morning a group of doctors and medical students have locked themselves onto rigs at the Leard State Forest development to protest development of the coal mine there.

GetUp campaign poster
The Federal Treasurer said on the radio the other day that he found the sight of wind farms that you can see from a distance from the road to Canberra ' deeply offensive'.   Suddenly the whole quagmire of corporate control of government becomes blindingly obvious.

The Green Party has long called for a Federal ICAC but they have been thwarted by both major parties in their attempts to get one established. Our democracy depends on unencumbered politicians and it is now clear that a federal corruption watchdog is needed as well as a discussion of how to fund elections.

One of the people who has helped keep us informed about developments in the bush is the citizen journalist Margo Kingston. She and ICAC might together be pivotal in turning Australia away from it's path of climate destruction to one of climate rescue. Go Margo! Go ICAC!

Addendum: the medics have been arrested...  arrested for trying to protect people' health.

No comments: