Petition Update: the Health Minister’s Response | FiftyUpClub News

More than 13,000 of you signed our petition calling for greater transparency in private health insurance. You overwhelmed us with 10,000 signatures in the first 3 days.At the FiftyUp Club we heard your voice and felt your passion. And as promised, we took your loud and powerful voice to the Health Minister, Peter Dutton.The Ministers’ office responded to the FiftyUp Club petition:

via Petition Update: the Health Minister’s Response | FiftyUpClub News.

What a lying snotball govt we have here in Australia. These guys can’t lie straight in bed!!

Maya Angelou’s ‘When Great Trees Fall’

May Maya rest in peace.

Peony Moon

When Great Trees Fall
Maya Angelou
When great trees fall,
rocks on distant hills shudder,
lions hunker down
in tall grasses,
and even elephants
lumber after safety.

When great trees fall
in forests,
small things recoil into silence,
their senses
eroded beyond fear.

When great souls die,
the air around us becomes
light, rare, sterile.
We breathe, briefly.
Our eyes, briefly,
see with
a hurtful clarity.
Our memory, suddenly sharpened,
gnaws on kind words
promised walks
never taken.

Great souls die and
our reality, bound to
them, takes leave of us.
Our souls,
dependent upon their
now shrink, wizened.
Our minds, formed
and informed by their
fall away.
We are not so much maddened
as reduced to the unutterable ignorance
of dark, cold

And when great souls die,
after a period peace blooms,
slowly and always
irregularly.  Spaces fill
with a kind of

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Study: Fox ‘News’ viewers have an IQ that’s 20 points lower than the U.S. National average

Am laughing. Such a great story.

Under the Mountain Bunker


Birmingham, Alabama (PRWEB) December 04, 2012 — The results of a 4 year study show that Americans who obtain their news from Fox News channel have an average IQ of 80, which represents a 20 point deficit when compared to the U.S. national average of 100. IQ, or intelligence quotient, is the international standard of assessing intelligence. Researchers at The Intelligence Institute, a conservative non-profit group, tested 5,000 people using a series of tests that measure everything from cognitive aptitude to common sense and found that people who identified themselves as Fox News viewers and ‘conservative’ had, on average, significantly lower intelligent quotients. Fox Viewers represented 2,650 members of the test group.

The example used to explain similarities between less intelligent animals and less intelligent humans is pretty hilarious:

Lead researcher, P. Nichols, explains, “Less intelligent animals rely on instinct when confronted by something which they do not understand. This is…

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This list is stunning.

Frances Jones

The Liberal Party does not want a Federal ICAC and this is why. The connections are so complex between lobbyists and the Liberal Party. Many of these men in powerful positions send their children to private schools and invest and/or work in ethically dubious companies. The environment is not a concern to them. The NSW ICAC is absolutely wonderful, it’s the only thing keeping the “Mediterranean men” and their Catholic mates in check. They seem to believe that they have a God-given right to destroy our precious natural resources to make themselves and their mates rich. Their Catholic belief system could not care less for the environment. It’s all about making their Liberal mates and the Church richer.


The Australian Government Lobbyists Register includes lobbyists and the companies that they lobby:

This is the list of lobbyists:

This is the list of their clients:


Lobbyist Barton…

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Animal Consciousness by Jeff Warren – Psychology Tomorrow MagazinePsychology Tomorrow Magazine

Thirty years ago, if you mentioned animal consciousness at a psychology conference, you’d risk getting jabbed with a Skinnerian cattle prod by some beady-eyed behaviorist. Animals were largely regarded as stimulus-response machines, devoid of inner life. Dissenters were few and far between.

Fortunately, times have changed. Animal cognition is all the rage, and, following closely behind it is the study of comparative neurobiology. Last July, a consortium of well-known neuroscientists issued “The Cambridge Declaration on Consciousness in Non-Human Animals,” as public an acknowledgment as you are likely to find on behalf of science that, yes, it seems that animals do in fact possess consciousness, or at least they possess the “neurobiological substrates” necessary to “generate” consciousness.

via Animal Consciousness by Jeff Warren – Psychology Tomorrow MagazinePsychology Tomorrow Magazine.

Northern koalas can resist disease better › News in Science (ABC Science)

Koalas in the north of eastern Australia have more genes for disease resistance than those in the south, a new study has found.

The findings highlight the genetic value of remnant populations of koalas in such areas, says veterinary pathologist, Dr Damien Higgins from the University of Sydney.

“The genetic pattern that we’re seeing is very much related to the way that koalas have been managed up and down the coast,” says Higgins.

via Northern koalas can resist disease better › News in Science (ABC Science).

Warm May makes plants think it’s spring

Record late-autumn warmth is sending plant growth into spring-like behaviour, affecting fruit growers and city gardeners alike.

Rather than shutting down as winter approaches, many plants are flowering out of season or extending growth much later than usual, said Brett Summerell, deputy executive director of Sydney’s Royal Botanic Gardens.

At the gardens, vegetables such as tomatoes, crops such as corn, and even the humble glass blade continue to flourish, diverting staff to mowing and other duties.

via Warm May makes plants think it’s spring.

Disabled need a louder voice than ever

Dear Adam Creighton,

I have seen you on the ABC’s The Drum. I know you are economics correspondent for The Australian, have worked for the Reserve Bank and the Australian Prudential Regulation Authority.

I am writing to you about your comments on Thursday, after we learnt the government no longer intends to renew the position of Disability Discrimination Commissioner with the Human Rights Commission. You said: “Lots of people are discriminated against. Why don’t we have a gay rights commissioner, or a left-handed commissioner, or a short persons commissioner, or a commissioner for people who aren’t good-looking.”

via Disabled need a louder voice than ever. SMH

Tasmanian forests: Coalition rebuffed over proposal to cut world heritage area | World news |

The International Union for Conservation of Nature has recommended against removing vast swathes of Tasmanian forest from world heritage protection, in an embarrassing setback for the Australian government.

The IUCN, the world’s largest conservation organisation, said overnight in Paris there was no ecological justification for the removal of 74,000 hectares of Tasmanian forest from the world heritage zone.

The IUCN’s report said the proposed removal was “clearly inappropriate for consideration as a minor boundary modification”. It would “impact negatively on the outstanding universal value of the property” and “reduce integrity of key natural attributes”.

via Tasmanian forests: Coalition rebuffed over proposal to cut world heritage area | World news |