Cannon-Brookes attacks Fuhrer Morrison

Every modern nation needs good billionaires to fight evil ones. I have my issues with Mike Cannon-Brookes and the Atlassian cheap labour arbitrage model but on climate change he’s excellent, via David Crowe:

“The people protesting over climate change are not quiet Australians. They are being loud because the government is quiet on the climate,” he said.

“The government can’t legislate to stop the decline of coal and the rise of solar and wind. Shutting down debate is a strike against our democracy,” he said.

“Instead of attacking people who just want good policy, we should look at the upside – Australia can be a winner in a carbon-constrained world.”

As opposed to evil:

Business Council of Australia chief Jennifer Westacott backed Mr Morrison’s aim including tougher laws.

“I think we’ve got to look at examining it and what we can do to minimise this,” Ms Westacott told Sky News.

It would be interesting to transport the BCA back in time to the Nazi regime to see who it backed. It ain’t clear to me.

Cannon-Brookes is absolutely right that Australia can be a renewable energy leader that can benefit economically from climate change. Indeed it can be a post-carbon super power, via Professor Ross Garnaut:

There is a chasm between a world that quickly breaks the link between modern economic growth and carbon emissions, and a world that fails to do so. The side of the chasm that we are now on is a dangerous place. It would be reckless beyond the normal human irrationality for us to stay where we are.

Australian prosperity and security, as well as our natural and human heritage, will be challenged in fundamental and perhaps unanswerable ways if humanity does not succeed in holding temperature increases below 2C and as close as possible to 1.5C. With only half the warming we can expect from 1.5C, we have already had to deal with dreadful impacts of more severe, earlier and more frequent bushfires; reduced flows into the Murray–Darling river system; degradation of the Great Barrier Reef; a shift to desalination to supply water for Perth; reduced moisture in our southern farming soils; and high tides lapping at the steps of the beach huts at Brighton in Victoria.

We need to build the bridge on which Australians can walk over that chasm, from policy incoherence to hope and opportunity. Hope that we might avoid the worst outcomes of climate change. Opportunity for Australia to be the world’s main trading source of metals, other energy-intensive goods and carbon chemical manufactures in tomorrow’s zero-net-emissions world; and a major contributor to the world’s efforts to absorb excessive carbon into land and plants.

But Fuhrer Morrison is more interested in taking a political route similar to that of Donald Trump, shoring up his support base amonst the “subhumans”:

The Environmental Protection Agency has proposed relaxing two Obama-era regulations on waste products from coal-fired power plants, a move environmental groups say would prolong the risk of toxic spills or drinking water contamination.

The agency wants to ease restrictions on coal ash — the solid residue left over from burning coal — and wastewater from coal plants. In the rule changes announced Monday, plants could have up to three more years to close unlined coal ash ponds, which can leak contaminants into surrounding groundwater.

It’s the latest in a series of moves the Trump administration has taken to try and help the country’s ailing coal industry.

Of coure it will achieve nothing but it’s the signalling that matters.  Just as it is for Fuhrer Morrison and his QLD power base, via the AFR, the Fuhrer:

…referred to the practice as a “secondary boycott”, a term most commonly used to describe industrial action directed at one firm to exert pressure on another, and said the government would look to “outlaw these indulgent and selfish practices”.

The Competition and Consumer Act (CCA) bans secondary boycotts, which it broadly defines as conduct that hinders or prohibits one business from acquiring or supplying goods and services to another at substantial loss or damage to that business.

But a comprehensive review of competition policy in 2015, the first of its kind in two decades, drew a sharp distinction between a secondary boycott and a “public advocacy campaign” that sought to “influence the behaviour and consumers”.

It is my hope that Fuhrer Morrison pushes this agenda hard becasue it is the kind of lightening rod that could finally rally apathetic Australians to a cause.

David Llewellyn-Smith
Latest posts by David Llewellyn-Smith (see all)


  1. >It would be interesting to transport the BCA back in time to the Nazi regime to see who it backed. It ain’t clear to me.

    I’d put my money on just about any business interest supporting the Nazis, including modern business. It gave them the stability and government subsidies they’re always kowtowing for, and removed that ‘problematic’ obstacle of calls for social change and reform. So what if it results in a war where tens of millions die? The interests of the shareholders are more important than stopping genocide!

  2. Using bigoted language – ‘Fuhrer’, ‘evil’, ‘subhuman’ – isn’t helpful. At least you found common ground with Cannon-Brookes.

      • A rather generous self-critique. Perhaps you mean it. But in the world beyond Australia, the terms are in common use to deplatform speakers, to promote the cancel culture and underpin Antifa mob violence.
        I don’t doubt you are above all that. Even so, why buy into it?

        • Duke_WellingtonMEMBER

          It is satire. Your kind of response chills satire and frank discussion just as much as cancel culture does. Grow up.

          • If it’s satire it is way overdone in these pages. It doesn’t look like satire! It doesn’t sound like satire! So it’s not ?

          • Yes @Duke_Wellington plus friends… course its an attempt at satire. One that isn’t helpful or particularly clever. If you want to mix comedy and serious political messaging – don’t be ‘Strayan’ lazy. Apathetic, as many here claim everyone else is. Take a look at how wedded you are to your own self-belief.
            I am suggesting more reason, less hyperbole. There is good stuff here. You don’t have to screw it up trying to be funny.

      • HadronCollision

        +1 Polemic, not bigotted.

        Fair play given what’s happening.

        Need to up the shock value. People are so myopic they cannot see what is happening

        • Ummmm You mean like I can’t see,
          – despite being very aware of the purposes and limits of models of complex systems, I can’t see that the Models predict the future with pinpoint accuracy?
          – despite the world’s leading mathematical model scholars openly and vehemently critcising the claims made by current models
          – despite current models showing absolutely no common picture of what is actually happening
          – despite knowing that water vapour and cloud formation are the major determinant of temperature on the surfacer at any given sun intensity, I can’t see that CO2 is the ONLY determinant of temperature on the earth’s surface
          – despite models that COULD model world water vapour and cloud formation requiring the world’s largest computer x 10^12
          – despite objective studies that show islands in the Pacific are generally not sinking that they are.
          – despite that, demonstrably, Methane produced by animals plays a negligent to no role in global warming, I can’t see how we should shut down most of the farming and grazing industries in Australia and force farm families out of their homes
          – despite that mountains of research actually indicate CO2 playing almost no role in Global Warming we MUST shut down the whole Australian economy.
          – despite the tens of thousands of scientists who are critical of the whole climate change extremist gambit we must submit to the extremist dogma and all critics of anything must be silenced.
          – despite the thousands of factual objections to the dogma they must ALL be silenced
          – despite etc etc etc etc etc ad infinitum.

          Just call any Doubting Thomases ‘Nazis’ – that’s the REAL winning argument. After that nothing needs to be said.

          “Cannon-Brookes is absolutely right that Australia can be a renewable energy leader that can benefit economically from climate change. Indeed it can be a post-carbon super power”
          Bwahahaaaaaaaaa!!! Evidence other than Garnaut’s obvious BS? What a statement of monumental stupidity that runs contra to any objective economic analysis – leaving aside the whole scientific argument.

          • Don’t forget that any laws passed will affect ANY protest on ANY subject, not just the one you don’t agree with.

          • Don’t forget that any laws passed will affect ANY protest on ANY subject, not just the one you don’t agree with.

            It took the people agitating for their religious privilege laws a surprisingly long time to figure this out.

      • Maybe its just me but it more came off as comical or a critique than just baseless/targeted labeling.

          • This is an economics blog which likes to report different while being read hopefully by those that can disseminate something as serious as those who use similar cases to platform and cases where critique is being applied lightly. Also until people start getting their comments removed for having a different opinion or supporting scomos decisions i will hold the view that this is not a straight up deplatforming attack.

        • BS! MB is full of this stuff. Nothing comic about calling someone a Nazi. If you think there is please read Michael Birmingham’s ‘The Third Reich’ then get back to us.

    • The current govt does have authoritarian tendencies, and is rallying corportate interests to their vision, and conflating their vision with the national interest, and suppressing contrary views in the media, bureaucrats, and in the general population….that’s all quite Fascistic…

      I’m not against a little poetic exaggeration to make a point, even if if is a caricature, such as HnH is doing.

      The population is apathetic and “Idiocratic” – it needs a shake up before it’s too late, IMO…

      • It’s not a caricature! There is NOTHING…repeat…. NOTHING caricature about calling someone a Nazi. Claiming so is just excusing extremism.

    • Using bigoted language – ‘Fuhrer’, ‘evil’, ‘subhuman’ – isn’t helpful.

      Unless, of course, you’re talking about lefties ! Then, of course, you can go wild about their treasonous and authoritarian brainwashing of the woke youth with elitist marxist open borders propaganda to perpetuate the cultural genocide of white Australia.

      Did I miss any ?

  3. unlined coal ash ponds, which can leak contaminants into surrounding groundwater.

    I did not know this. Absolutely disgusting that the fake left demonises gas reservation and therefore keeps coal ash ponds going.

  4. “It would be interesting to transport the BCA back in time to the Nazi regime to see who it backed.”
    along with not a few of the RWNJ’s who inhabit this site

    • It seems these days plenty of LWNJ’s would back them too you know. Perhaps more so, RWNJ’s don’t usually like big government, where as LWNJ’s do.

      I don’t know though, perhaps defining certain people as right wing and left wing is just fvcking stupid, as it doesn’t describe in any detail what a person actually believes is the right path for a range of issues. What do you think?

      • I think you’re right.

        The one dimensional left-right dichotomy is far too simple a model to describe the complexity of people’s beliefs. There are many dimensions…social, cultural, racial, political, economic etc.

        I occupy the left of the spectrum in many ways, supporting social security, public education, nationalised health care, public ownership of certain assets and general communal support for the common good. I voted ALP for most of life. LoL.

        I also support capitalism, free enterprise, a strong military and minimal gummint interference in people’s lives. Whoops…not so leftie there.

        And then I have some views such as opposing mass immigration and supporting (actively encouraging) private ownership of firearms that would cause many people to classify me as a knuckle dragging, racist, Islamophobic, transphobic gun nut etc etc RWNJ. You get the picture.

        That Labor politician the other day nailed it when she said that The Left expects people to buy the entire box of leftie ideals and excommunicates those who have even one unsound belief.

      • Narapoia451MEMBER

        RWNJ love big government. So long as it is stepping on the necks of the people they don’t like and not interfering with their ‘rights’ to own guns / make money without responsibility for externalities / buy influence / rent seek and the further back you go discriminate against / lynch / own people they regard as subhuman.

        RWNJs only want small government for themselves.

  5. “Cannon-Brookes is absolutely right that Australia can be a renewable energy leader”

    Surely this is satire?

  6. “but it’s the signalling that matters”

    And signalling is what MCB does best, apart from employing cheap migrant labor and avoiding tax and buying Australia’s most expensive harbourside mansion (clearly uninhibited by his own mantra of rising waters). Happy to hold global destination Atlassian events, fly to NYC to kiss the feet of the Great Thunberg, who at least appears to hold true to her message re flyng (her dad rather proud Swarzenggar has loaned the Tesla to tour the States) now in a flap as to how to get to Madrid in time for COP25.

    Sadly MCB appears to be getting most of his info from interests with interests in variable renewables. Well intended, but insufficient. I have it on good authority that Victoria will experience energy insufficiencies within a couple of years. Next election it may be the battle of the billionaires, Palmer v MCB, WA and Queensland, the mining states, v the rest, especially if Palmer is still working to get Gallilee up and running.

    Finally, the reality of the enormity of energy transition required see below. Unlikely to happen.

  7. Jevons ghostMEMBER

    “…..and high tides lapping at the steps of the beach huts at Brighton in Victoria.”

    Quelle horreur!