Plimer and Howard ape creationists

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The mining lobby, with a helping hand from long-time chief climate change action roadblock, former Prime Minister John Howard, has taken a leaf out of the creationists playbook and is now trying to inculcate children with their unscientific nonsense. Environment editor Sandi Keane reports.

Geologist, mining executive and climate sceptic author Ian Plimer (right) with supporters John Howard and Tony Abbott

Oh my goodness, what next? The mining lobby, desperate to stop any regulation on Co2 and having failed to convert the grownups to climate skepticism, are now taking aim at our children!

Hardcore skeptic, Ian Plimer, has really lost it this time. His new book is called “How to Get Expelled from School”, and it targets school children and teachers.

According to Plimer:
“…these children are being fed environmental propaganda and these children are too young to be fed ideology.”
Does the book’s name ring a bell?  The anti-scientific film entitled “Expelled: No Intelligence Allowed” was trotted by those crazies, the creationists, in the U.S. to try to stop the teaching of Darwin’s theory of evolution in American schools. In the days when Plimer used to have some credibility and a moral compass, he campaigned against the creationists. Now he’s aping (sorry) their tactics!  Had the creationists known better at the time, they could have converted foe to friend for a little cash, just as the miners have.

Plimer does very nicely from the mining industry which has set him up for a very comfortable retirement.  He is a director of mining companies Ivanhoe Australia, Silver City Minerals and the UK-listed Kefi Minerals, and is chairman of TNT Mines.  He is reputed to earn more than $350,000 in director’s fees and shares — a lot more than he receives from the University of Adelaide where his fellow academics have written him off as a joke. He is also closely in cahoots with Australia's richest miner, and individual, Gina Rinehart.

The launch of the book is funded by the notorious “cash for comment” right-wing skeptic group, the Institute of Public Affairs.  The IPA is run by ultra-right Liberals and funded by organisations which include BHP Billiton, Western Mining, Caltex, Esso Australia (subsidiary of Exxon), Shell, Woodside Petroleum, News Ltd, Philip Morris, British American Tobacco, to name a few. Rio Tinto was a sponsor. We know that because it announced it was withdrawing its sponsorship of the IPA following the aggressive character of IPA's attacks on Aboriginal self-determination.

Why is former Prime Minister John Howard – a former reluctant promoter of the need for an emissions trading scheme – now a skeptic convert promoting Plimer’s book at the Sydney launch last night at the Sydney Mining Club?

Because of the largesse enjoyed by the Liberal Party courtesy of the big miners. Not that it shows on the Australian Electoral Register as monies are cleverly concealed in a rather complicated money trail through various trusts. It’s the reason why Tony Abbott’s climate policy ensures that the big polluters can go on polluting.

In a recent very revealing interview about the raging debate about coal seam gas, independent MP, Tony Windsor, told ABC’s Fran Kelly about a previous attempt to put up an amendment to the water bill warning his current bill would put the cosy relationship between the mining lobby and the Coalition to the test.

Back in 2008, Windsor put up a similar amendment to the water bill - subsequently carried by the Senate. According to Windsor, the Coalition, supported the deal and praised themselves at the time for saving the Liverpool Plains and Darling Downs. It’s all there in Hansard. But, according to Windsor:
 “...that night, Mitch Hook from the Mineral Council invaded the premises and, next morning, I think for the first time in political history, the Nationals and the Liberals recanted on their vote of the night before and the bill was defeated”. 
Climate scientists are now lining up in droves to send this latest effort by Plimer to the trashcan as was done with his last anti-scientific effort, Heaven and Earth  riddled with contradictions and untruths.  I recommend you read Michael Ashley’s review of that book in The Australian “No Science in Plimer’s Primer”.  Professor Ashley is professor of astrophysics at the University of NSW. Ashley, as an astronomer, was particularly interested in Plimer’s claims that “global warming” occurring on Mars, Triton, Jupiter and Pluto proves human emissions of CO2 don’t affect Earth’s climate.

Stay tuned for updates on “How to Get Expelled from School” on Skeptical Science, which does such a sterling job debunking the “cash for comment” pseudo-climate-scientists like Plimer, who, by the way, is a professor of mining geology. If you care about your kids being corrupted by the anti-global-warming, fossil fuel funded fanatics, subscribe to the site!

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