Tuesday, 27 September 2022

Workers’ Mail: Proud to Protest.


In Australia we’ve grown used to be endlessly lectured on how lucky we are for living in a liberal democracy. It’s “government of the people, by the people, for the people” this; “rule of law” that. Aussie pollies go around the world in a crusade against foreign autocrats.

It sounds good, right?

Thursday, 22 September 2022

Quotable Quotes: BOOM!

This is the context of that particular fragment of Vladimir Putin’s announcement:
They [Washington, London and Brussels] have even resorted to the [sic] nuclear blackmail. I am referring not only to the Western-encouraged shelling of the Zaporozhye Nuclear Power Plant, which poses a threat of a nuclear disaster, but also to the statements made by some high-ranking representatives of the leading NATO countries on the possibility and admissibility of using weapons of mass destruction – nuclear weapons – against Russia.

I would like to remind those who make such statements regarding Russia that our country has different types of weapons as well, and some of them are more modern than the weapons NATO countries have. In the event of a threat to the territorial integrity of our country and to defend Russia and our people, we will certainly make use of all weapon systems available to us. This is not a bluff.

I think that reminder is needed because, watching the news this public holiday, I noticed nobody seem to have it in mind (I’m looking at you, Jeremy Fernandes and your guests at The Drum).

Sunday, 18 September 2022

What’s Degrowth?


Let me begin by saying something degrowth is not. Degrowth is not the most frequent subject in the media.

A Google search returned no hits whatsoever for the string “degrowth de-growth abc” on the ABC written media (it did return one discussion on Radio National … back in 2014). With 26,800 hits, a similar search fared better at The Guardian (as a rule of thumb, I’d say that The Guardian, and certainly its Aussie franchise, seems to assign climate and the environment a higher editorial priority). That, however, is not much compared to the Green New Deal: the search ““green new deal” guardian” returned 16 times as many results.

Correspondingly, the overwhelming majority of those pushing for climate change action take for granted that some variant of green growth/GND is the only possible prescription for climate change.

That assumption is seldom disputed, in part because GNDers and Degrowthers debates are unusual (two exceptions: the brief Branko Milanovic versus Jason Hickel …. back in 2017 or Robert Pollin and Noam Chomsky, on the GND corner, against Hickel on the Degrowth in 2020).

So, what’s Degrowth, exactly?