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Archive for May 26th, 2011

NYT compares Oz No-Carbon-Tax movement to Tea Party

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On May 23, the New York Times carried an article In Australia, a Tempest With Echoes of a Tea Party, reprinted in the International Herald Tribune. It compared the “people’s revolt” with the Tea Party, saying:

A call in February by the opposition leader, Tony Abbott, for a “people’s revolt” against the plan has incited one of the most raucous protest movements the country has seen in decades. Thousands have rallied and counter-rallied across the country, with the battle hardening along familiar lines: small versus big government; free markets versus environmental protection; climate change believers versus skeptics.

“Australian politics is becoming increasingly vitriolic, as I think maybe American politics is too, and especially since Tony Abbott became opposition leader,” Rod Tiffen, a media expert and emeritus professor of political science at the University of Sydney, said in an interview. “The charge and counter-charge has just really escalated and become more personal and, well, simple-minded.”

The leaders of the two main parties increasingly view politics as a zero-sum game, he added.

All this is true, but what the journalist, Matt Siegel, didn’t mention was that the counter rallies far outweighed the  rallies. This wasn’t all that well reported in Australia, either. The Melbourne rallies were reported by our ABC as several hundred anti C-tax (400 official) versus several thousand pro C-tax (8,000 official).

What the article did show was that the resemblance is more than skin deep. He mentioned an organiser of the anti-tax coalition as one Tim Andrews, co-founder of conservative Internet portal Menzies House. Andrews’ CV includes his last two jobs, which were with the anti-tax Americans for Tax Reform and as a fellow at the Charles G. Koch Foundation. The latter is a think-tank for culture warriors financed by the Koch Brothers, offensive science denialists and bank-rollers of the tea party.

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Written by Roger Jones

May 26, 2011 at 5:16 pm

Posted in Uncategorized