Mining, Nats condemn “disgraceful” kids for saving planet

How the narrative has turned, via the ABC:

Climate change protesters have clashed with police in violent scenes outside an international mining conference in Melbourne.

Police arrested 47 people outside the Melbourne Exhibition and Convention Centre, where the International Mining and Resources Conference (IMARC) is being held this week.

About 250 demonstrators were met by more than 300 police at the venue on the Yarra River.

Police used pepper spray on some protesters, and used horses to force the demonstrators away from the entrances to the building.

Two police officers on horses charge a crowd of protesters outside the Melbourne Exhibition Centre on a sunny day.

Victoria Police Acting Commander Tim Tully said the majority of arrests were for offences relating to failing to obey police directions or intentionally obstructing emergency workers and the footpath.

Two people were arrested for assaulting a police horse.

Acting Commander Tully said four officers were injured while making arrests, and two of them were taken to hospital for a dislocated finger and minor head injuries.

A female demonstrator was also taken to hospital. Acting Commander Tully said officers were investigating if she was injured by a police horse.

A protester, Paul, said the woman, a 23-year-old from Chile, was injured when a police horse backed onto her.

“I was standing beside her, one of the police officers had sprayed me, then threw her back away from me, and then the horse reared up and stepped on both of her legs,” he said.

“Both legs have been broken, definitely — she’s got no feeling in her legs, she can’t move her toes.”

Authorities have not confirmed her injuries.

Another man was treated at the scene for a cut to his head.

Acting Commander Tully defended the actions of officers and said any action taken today was “appropriate” and “in line with training”.

“We’ve shown a hell of a lot of discretion, a hell of lot of tolerance,” he said.

Video taken by protesters and published on Twitter showed an officer using a baton on protesters but Acting Commander Tully said he was not aware of any officer using the weapon.

Protests are expected to continue throughout the week and police warned people to avoid the area until the mining conference ends on Thursday.

Dozens of police officers, protesters, and media on the steps of the convention centre surrounded by pepper spray.

Emma Black, a spokeswoman for the Blockade IMARC alliance, said police had employed “some incredibly aggressive and intimidating tactics” in response to the protesters.

“We’re the non-violent ones. The police have been incredibly violent this morning,” Ms Black said.

“Some of my friends have been thrown to the ground, people that were just standing around doing nothing.”

She said the protesters belonged to more than 20 organisations and included unionists, environmentalists and animal rights activists.

“Our aim is to shut down the conference, to stop mining executives and investors getting into the building, and so far I think we’re doing a good job of that.

“We’re making noise, we’re getting the voice out there.”

Conference organisers said the event brought people together to “share knowledge and exchange ideas related to innovation, sustainability, safety and job creation”.

“IMARC is aware of protestors at the conference,” it said in a statement issued yesterday.

“We work in an inclusive industry and we welcome a diverse spectrum of views at the forum.

“Just as those outside have the right to protest peacefully, the 7000 experts from across the globe have the right to meet to discuss meaningful, achievable ways to make mining safer, more sustainable and beneficial to communities around the world.”

Deputy Prime Minister Michael McCormack described the protesters’ behaviour as “disgraceful”, saying they were merely craving media attention.

“They absolutely want to have their Facebook and social media statuses updated by this sort of thing,” he told ABC News Breakfast.

“Mining and resources provide a lot of money, particularly for the welfare payments a lot of those people are no doubt on.”

One of the conference attendees, Alex Arbuthnot, a dairy farmer from Sale, said the protesters should not block access to the venue.

“Everybody’s entitled to their protest,” he said.

“When I was a student I protested too. All I want to know is how do I get into the conference. They have their right to protest but they should not blockade.

“I come from a town where our top farmers and miners have worked side by side for 50 years, and my sons and daughters work in the mining companies.”

Conference attendees were later able to enter the venue.

Earlier, protesters blocked traffic outside the venue on Clarendon Street.

Victorian Opposition Leader Michael O’Brien called for the reintroduction of police move-on powers to stop what he described as “protesters taking over Melbourne”.

Mr O’Brien said protests were becoming a daily occurrence in the city and he felt sorry for people who were just trying to get to work.

“They [move-on powers] were important powers that gave police the flexibility to let people protest of course, but also keep Melbourne moving,” Mr O’Brien said.

I would be very careful using excessive force and language. Smashing kids is a great way to arouse a sleepy population.

Expect this to get worse and worse in the years ahead as the climate changes and authorities remains in thrall to interests.

David Llewellyn-Smith

David Llewellyn-Smith is Chief Strategist at the MB Fund and MB Super. David is the founding publisher and editor of MacroBusiness and was the founding publisher and global economy editor of The Diplomat, the Asia Pacific’s leading geo-politics and economics portal.

He is also a former gold trader and economic commentator at The Sydney Morning Herald, The Age, the ABC and Business Spectator. He is the co-author of The Great Crash of 2008 with Ross Garnaut and was the editor of the second Garnaut Climate Change Review.

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Comments

  1. I don’t know why this was held in Melbourne of all places considering how little mining (aside from gravel quarries) is undertaken in Victoria, surely Perth, Brisbane or Sydney would have been more appropriate. When you look at the exhibitors list there was not a big coal presence.
    https://imarcmelbourne.com/exhibitors/
    AIMEX was held in Sydney this year and I did not see one protestor – coal is very BIG at this exhibition as it is NSW’s biggest export earner. Possibly Sydney Olympic Park is too far west of Newtown, Annandale, Stanmore and Balmain for the protestors to travel.
    https://www.aimex.com.au/home/
    Mind you, many of the protesters would consist of the SAME Melbourne bolshie fake left rent a crowd who are pro-mass immigration open borders, NEVER protest against the the war on youth, the war on the education system, the war driving down wages, declining living standards, money laundering at Crown by Chinese HWI’s and crime gangs, the pumping of the housing market etc etc.

    • BHP Billiton’s head office is on Collins Street. That’s enough pull to bring everyone else to the city.

      • Brown coal? That’s basically dirt with grass still attached. I hardly think the Victorian brown coal people would attend that event.

        • Exhibitors include AGL (Loy Yang) and Energy Australia (Yallourn). Whether or not the AGL and EA exhibits are related to their lignite mining is another matter. Regardless, through the Latrobe Valley mines Victoria has large-scale mining, not just a few gravel quarries.

  2. About 250 demonstrators were met by more than 300 police at the venue on the Yarra River.

    excessive force in it’s purest
    using 300 strong police force on 250 mostly female and young people
    crushing skulls of our children with horses to protect elderly executives from embarrassment not from physical attack

    we are clearly on a slippery slope to tyranny and just conforms my yesterday statement about police brutality in Australia – no dictatorship in this world would react with this much force to something so benign, but yes here just to intimidate any future protesters

      • how we even got into a position of comparing ourselves to one of the most brutal regimes in the world?
        we used to be a country comparable in freedom and democracy to Sweden, not China or North Korea

        BTW. Tienanmen protests were crushed by 250k strong force (on over a million protesters on the streets), and protests there were not benign at all, trying to overthrown the government while the protests in Melbourne yesterday were just annoying without even trying to achieve anything but make rich executives embarrassed a bit
        I stil think no dictatorship in this world would react with this much force to something so benign

        • You are the one saying we react worse than a dictatorship.
          I would say restricting peoples freedom of meovement is not a benign act.
          “used horses to force the demonstrators away from the entrances to the building.”
          Restricting entry to a building is a very different thing to protesting peacefully.

          And it took a democracy to blow up a boat over a little embarrasment.

          • yeah “restricting peoples freedom of movement is not a benign act” is exactly what dictatorships say about right to freedom of assembly and right of peaceful protests. It’s the exactly the same argument communist dictatorships in late 80s used to not approve protests on streets.
            Find me any protest of this kind (not targeting and wanting to take down a government) where the ratio of force to protesters was such high – anywhere, including China, Zimbabwe, you name it

            it’s not about blocking the entrance of the building, none of the main attendants come via main entrance anyway but by limos via garage. It was about voice that some people don’t want to hear. Protesters didn’t even block the street, just footpath … ridiculous
            this is spiral and soon you or your kids will be fighting for basic rights and you are going to be legally imprisoned for blocking a footpath – you have no idea what dictatorship is how a country becomes one

          • What it is actually about is getting media attention.
            Violence gets media attention.
            Who wants the media attention? The protesters or the police?
            Who is most likely to cause violence to get media attention?

          • “yeah “restricting peoples freedom of movement is not a benign act” is exactly what dictatorships say about right to freedom of assembly and right of peaceful protests”

            It’s what sane people too.

            A bunch of chaste, BMI 32 women with dyed hair is not virtuous. If they’re man enough to disrupt a valid gathering, they’re man enough to cop mace.

        • bolstroodMEMBER

          DoctorX I grew up in Joh Bjelke-Pieterson’s QLD in the 1960’s where there was no right to demonstrate.
          3 or more people grouped together constituted an illeagal assembly.
          My comrades and I wanted to protest the Australian governemnts involvement in the Vietnam war and the Conscription but were constantly denied the permission to do so by the Police.
          So we did it anyway and wore the lumps and bruises and police violence, we also started demonstrating for or Civil Rights,
          more lumps and bruises and police violence.
          It started with 1 individual, 6 years later over 100, 000 thousand marched down Queen street, and no copper tried to stop them.
          So will it be with the Climate Catastrophe , Rebellion movement.
          Good on them.

      • Mining companies are huge donors to the government – of course the security arm of the state will protect them.

        I wonder if the mining conference has to pay for a police presence like music festivals have to, or if they get their police for free.?

    • How would they know in advance what the ratio would look like? I spent 30 seconds checking for a related Facebook event, it shows 500+ interested or going & I don’t even know if that’s the primary social media platform for organising it.

      • 300 armed people with dozen on horses is enough to take over parliament building in Canberra

        even if 10k came 300 strong police with dozen on horses would be more than enough

        BTW. preventive use of force is characteristic of dictatorship. In democracy police comes only after protesters become violent

        • 3 armed people is probably enough to take over parliament house.
          3 armed people are enough to control a crowd as well, but only by killing people.
          To control a crowd with non lethal force requires similar numbers to the crowd.
          But that doesn’t suit your narrative does it?

          • you clearly don’t know much about this topic
            even the most violent crowd can be controlled with smaller enforcement (e.g. drunk violent football hooligans usually require less than 1/2 ratio)
            these people were not violent at all, they never even pushed anyone but police when tried to remove them … having such a high ratio is only sometimes required during violent brawls in high security prisons

            crowd like this doesn’t even have to be controlled because prior to police intervention they did nothing beside standing on a foot path and yelling

    • Yeah but they’ll be an hour away whilst you’re in the middle of an aggravated home invasion. VicPol loves a soft target. This protest mob has it all wrong. Pay a few dozen Sudanese from Werribee to join them and they won’t be touched.

      • If they are more than a minute away then you are on your own either way, assuming you can call the police during “an aggravated home invasion”.
        The reality is police are there to punish people after a crime is committed, not to prevent one. You alone will be responsible for defending yourself.

        • Well you’re wrong. One thing about these gangs is they have a habit of telegraphing their intentions well before they commit. A car full of them will spend time in a street casing the place before they pick targets. This happened to a mate in Werribee. Woken by noise at 2am to find about six of them in his court. He called 000/VicPol and got the standard ‘no car available locally, one has to come from Newport, it’ll be an hour before we can get someone there’. The group committed two that night in that court. A local presence would have stopped it. The resources were probably on day shift pummelling these groups, after smashing a few jaywalkers.

          Part of the problem is they’ve gutted nightshift staffing. Too many petals who sign up then don’t want to work nights. I know a number of coppers and after a year or two you can dodge your way around the system and not work them. We digress.

          • Part of the problem is you are finally realising the fairy stories you were told as a kid may not be completely true.
            “The police are there to help you” is one of them.
            Not being able to get a car out to you in the middle of the night because some people are not actually doing anything illegal yet is and always has been unlikely to get an urgent police response.
            I repeat my earlier statement, the police are there to punish people after a crime has been committed, not to prevent one from happening, no matter what you believe or have been told.

          • police s there to protect the state and ruling elite and their property
            later in history as people started to exercise their power on streets state started pretending they are there to protect them

          • Watch how fast they turn up when you say you have shot one of the home invaders they will turn up in minutes, if they question as to why you lied ask them how when they were a hour away they managed to turn up so quick !

    • To be clear, after more than 20 weeks of mayhem, there’s been nothing like a protester’s legs being broken by a police horse in HKG. Which one is the incipient police state?

      • hmmmmmm,
        person accidentally trodden on by horse
        -VS-
        Hong Kong police were accused of using excessive and disproportionate force, such as using rubber bullets dangerously by aiming horizontally, targeting the heads and torsos of protesters.[264] Its use of bean bag rounds allegedly ruptured the eye of a female protester,[265] and the police’s use of pepper ball rounds in Tai Koo station was described as “execution-styled shooting”.
        Its use of tear gas was criticised for violating the international safety guidelines, as the police were found using it as an offensive weapon,[267] firing it indoors in Kwai Fong station,[268] and using expired tear gas, which may release toxic gases such as phosgene and cyanide upon combustion according to academics
        e police was accused of using disproportionate force[273] after an officer had shot a young protester who struck him with a pipe with live ammunition on 1 October.

        https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/2019_Hong_Kong_protests#Allegations_of_police_misconduct

        • I’m not an apologist for HKG police action. But consider what they are facing in HKG. Why was there a horse and truncheon wielding brigade even deployed?

          • I’m going to go with “because the environmental protesters have a track record of resorting to violence to attract media attention to promote their cause.”

  3. reusachtigeMEMBER

    Good on them. I hate that little smart arse Euro commie chick who’s been getting her mug on TV. She just wants to destroy profits and destroy our way of life. Definitely a conspiracy. And how do I know this? Well it’s past the middle of Spring and I’ve got the bluddy heating system on this morning. It’s fresh not hot.

  4. Ask those protesters if they think we should cut immigration in order to protect the Australian environment.

    • MountainGuinMEMBER

      Ask the towns that have run out of water if they think coal use needs some consideration.

      • Mining BoganMEMBER

        Do those dry towns know that trucking in water to keep mines running is more important than trucking in water for them to drink?

        I think someone should tell them.

  5. I don’t know why the police thought it was safe and appropriate to ride a horse into the protest. Would they like it if the protesters had brought along a few crocodiles and snakes to join the protest?
    “One policeman had his head bitten off. Protesters are investigating if he was injured by a crocodile”.

    • I don’t know why the protesters thought it was safe and appropriate to ignore a lawful direction to clear the entrance from a police officer riding a horse?
      Exchanges like this remind me of the footage of greenpeace deliberately trying to ram whaling boats that are actively avoiding them and then releasing press statements about how the whalers are trying to sink them. It defies all credibility.

      • If a bunch of people standing in a doorway remind you of one boat trying to ram another, you might just be a moron.

        • No, statements like
          “Some of my friends have been thrown to the ground, people that were just standing around doing nothing.”
          remind me of the case of ramming ships and claiming they are being rammed.
          Protesters telling complete lies to further their own agendas.
          Anyone standing around doinf nothing would have long since left the area if horses and pepper spray were deployed.

          • Never suggested they were standing around doing nothing.

            A non-violent protestor “blockading” a doorway in no way, shape, or form, resembles one boat ramming another.

          • @smithy
            ” releasing press statements about how the whalers are trying to sink them. It defies all credibility.”

            Try some reading comrehension rather than just reading what you want to believe.

          • Like i said, if you think people standing around doing nothing being attacked by police is the same thing, you might just be a moron.

          • If I thought that I might.
            If I thought evnironmental protesters were dishonest lying scum who would do or say anything for publicity, including causing injury or potential injury to themselves that would be a different thought though, wouldn’t it?
            And may apply to more than just a boat.

          • If the best argument they have against whaling is lying about the fact that “whalers try to ram us when we want to stop them” then it really isn’t something worth fighting for is it.
            Similarly if the best argument you have for protecting the environment is “the police are beating us to suppress our opinion” then you really don’t have much worth fighting for either.
            If your argument really is the ends justify the means, don’t get upset when the police pull out the tear gas and rubber bullets at the next protest march, or even the live ammunition.

          • Similarly if the best argument you have for protecting the environment is “the police are beating us to suppress our opinion” then you really don’t have much worth fighting for either.

            I’ll take “what is false dilemma” for $50 thanks Alex.

            If your argument really is the ends justify the means, don’t get upset when the police pull out the tear gas and rubber bullets at the next protest march, or even the live ammunition.

            You might be eager to live in an authoritarian State because you think you’ll be on the right side of it. Many of us don’t, or aren’t that naive.

      • because that police officer has no greater authority to say who should be standing where
        police officers are not voice of law or justice but someone who has monopoly over power and as such should be fully restrained and used only where violent protests take place.

  6. If you give these young “Rebellion” protesters a quiz about environmental indicators, their answers would represent the most exaggerated, unsupported, remote from reality viewpoint, They are a classic case of brainwashed youth. Even Merkel and Macron have expressed the need for less hysteria, and sticking to rational policy making informed by actual facts and science. In other words, leave it to the grown-ups, please. The grown-ups are not “betraying” the youth; they just have a lot better idea of what is really going on.

    At some stage we really should confront the great lie-making, brainwashing, child-abusing machine; it is all very well to tolerate it because the issue deserves attention, but there is such a thing as creating destructive, ignorance-based revolutions that do more harm than good.

    • Mark HeydonMEMBER

      The self-described grown-ups don’t have a better idea of what is really going on. They just have a much larger vested interest in perpetuating the status quo.

    • and even if this is right and they are all clueless brainwashed youth would that be enough to take right to protest from them and crush their skulls?

      if that the case they should be declared mentally Incompetent and provided with all the welfare

      this kind of thinking (that some opinions deserve to be heard while some don’t) is exactly why we are sliding into a dictatorship

      and both fake left and right are working hard on this, left prohibiting any political incorrect speech, right prohibiting speech about powerful religions and both prohibiting any protests against the rich and powerful

      • I’ve always been of the opinion that the problem is the big rent-seeking interests who “game” artificial, regulatory-induced scarcity to enrich themselves. True believers in the Ecopalypse don’t seem to be able to think through why they are on the side of the trillionare rent-seekers against the billionare entrepreneurs that at least risk their wealth in tangible visible capital to provide something that humanity wants. If it is a matter of big money buying policy, the problem is actually worse on the “Ecopalypse believers” side. Most of the people with tangible visible capital are wimps politically, they start fighting only once the Watermelons are going to bankrupt them anyway.

        By the way, I have actually perused leaked copies of IPCC Draft Reports. I stand by what I am saying, and support Merkel and Macron in their comments. We are idiots to let extreme, OTT exaggerated alarmism create a movement among immature youth and then expect policy making to be guided by that.

        Christian fundamentalist parents could produce a prophetess Greta Thunberg too, but she wouldn’t be getting to address the UN; her parents would be getting charged with child abuse.

        • I agree that majority of protesters are clueless of what they want but that should not deny them right to protest

          it’s a mater of principle of democracy and freedom – not who is right or not – everyone should be allowed to speak
          right wing speakers must be allowed to talk at universities as the left wing eco-fundamentalist should to protest in front of coal mining headquarters

          • protesting =/= preventing people from conducting lawful activities.
            No one said they couldn’t protest. They said they don’t have the right to prevent others from entering a building they are entitled to.
            If they have the right to stop people from entering the building in protest, then both myself and the police have the right to stop them from stopping people in protest, or double standard?

    • The grown-ups are not “betraying” the youth; they just have a lot better idea of what is really going on.

      The grown-ups who actually know what’s going on – ie: climate scientists – have been telling everyone that we’re not doing even close to enough for decades.

      Your “kids should be listening to the politicians” would carry a tad more weight if you didn’t spent most of your time telling people they shouldn’t listen to politicians.

  7. “Mining and resources provide a lot of money, particularly for the welfare payments a lot of those people are no doubt on.”

    Hmmm have we recently become Norway then? Or is this a recommendation to adopt Norwegian wealth fund policy? I think it’s a good discussion to have at this conference for sure. Mining companies paying royalties 101. 😁

    • I think McCormack meant to say was: “Mining and resources provide a lot of money to the National Party, particularly for the welfare payments via donations that a lot of our people like Barnaby Joyce and Matt Canavan are no doubt on.”

    • FFS For a country that runs a chronic CADS and is so deep in foreign debt and foreign ownership issues, what do you think our economy would now look like without receipts from mining? How much do you think all your precious toys, phones etc would be costing? What would be the price of any consumer good or food in the tradeable goods sector?

    • Which receipts are those? Considering they are the most subsidized industry around and if going by tax returns of those involved the least profitable investment it is surprising anyone would invest in mining….

  8. How about a few pies in faces or hurl rotten tomatoes at these kuntz? Let them through and pelt them.

    • why? they have no legal or moral authority over foreign government
      they should have been protecting in front of parliament buildings in Melbourne and Canberra

  9. The poor saps thought they could expect the Aussie constabulary defending mining interests to show at least the same level of restraint as the HKG coppers defending the interests of the CCP.

    • Hong Kong police were accused of using excessive and disproportionate force, such as using rubber bullets dangerously by aiming horizontally, targeting the heads and torsos of protesters.[264] Its use of bean bag rounds allegedly ruptured the eye of a female protester,[265] and the police’s use of pepper ball rounds in Tai Koo station was described as “execution-styled shooting”.
      Its use of tear gas was criticised for violating the international safety guidelines, as the police were found using it as an offensive weapon,[267] firing it indoors in Kwai Fong station,[268] and using expired tear gas, which may release toxic gases such as phosgene and cyanide upon combustion according to academics
      police was accused of using disproportionate force[273] after an officer had shot a young protester who struck him with a pipe with live ammunition on 1 October.

  10. Planets don’t need people to save them. After all, they existed long before people came along and will continue to exist after people are gone.