Filled Under: politics

Supersonic subs look to cross the Pacific in under two hours, research

Supersonic subs look to cross the Pacific in under two hours

 

 

TAIWAN-CHINA-MILITARY-DEMO

The distance between Shanghai and San Francisco is around 6,135 miles (9,873 km), and a team of scientists aims to make that trip possible in 100 minutes. Researchers at Harbin Institute of Technology’s Complex Flow and Heat Transfer Lab have developed new tech that allows submarines to traveling a crazy-high speeds beneath the water. The solution? Create an air “bubble” of sorts that leverages supercavitation, a technology applied to torpedoes, to reduce drag caused by water while in route. Theoretically, this means that the vehicles could reach the speed of sound underwater (around 5,800km/h or 3,694 MPH while submerged), reducing the travel time between the aforementioned cities to under two hours.

As you might expect, several issues face the implementation of the tech — like the fact that the sub would have to be launched at a high rate of speed to maintain the requisite air bubble. Traditional steering methods (read: rudders) wouldn’t work inside the air pocket either, as they wouldn’t have water to push back on. However, to combat the two conundrums, researchers say allowing a vessel to constantly “shower” a liquid membrane on its surface would reduce drag until it gets up to speed. From there, the same membrane creates the supercavitation and controlling the friction on it would aid navigation. Even with those issues under control, a rocket engine with a range that would enable such long trips still needs to be developed. So for now, you’ll have to stick to spending several hours flying the friendly skies.

Update: The headline of this story has been updated to reflect that the research into the supersonic tech is on-going and theoretical. It wasn’t intended to be misleading, but I can certainly see how it was.

[Image credit: Sam Yeh/AFP/Getty Images]

http://www.engadget.com/2014/08/26/supersonic-sub-tech/

 

The Liar In Chief

List of Lies

Obama Lies so Far

Below is a list of Obama’s documented lies so far with the most recent lies first. If you see we are missing a documented lie Submit the lie here.

Lies During the Sixth Year

“We’ve got close to 7 million Americans who have access to health care for the first time because of Medicaid expansion.”
Poltifact.com

(IRS) “Not a even smidgen of corruption”
Foxnews.com

“Keystone pipeline would mean maybe 2,000 jobs”
Poltifact.com

Lies During the Fifth Year

“We have doubled the distance our cars will go on a gallon of gas.”
Politifact.com

“If you like your health insurance plan, you can keep it”
Washingtonpost.com

“The NSA is not abusing its power”
Washingtonpost.com

“I said benghazi was a terrorist attack from the beginning.”
Lubbockonline.com

“the foreign intelligence Surveillance court is transparent.”
Politifact.com

“First of all, I didn’t set a red line,” said Obama. “The world set a red line.”
Weeklystandard.com
nbcnews

 

Lies During Fourth Year

“The sequester is not something that I’ve proposed. It is something that Congress has proposed.”
Politifact.com

“Mitt Romney raised nursing home fees eight times.”
Politifact.com

“Mitt Romney called the Arizona law a model for the nation.”
Politifact.com

“Planned Parenthood provides mammograms”
Spero News

“We got back every dime we used to rescue the financial system”
cbsnews.com

Benghazi violence was caused by an internet video & demonstrations
State Department

“Mitt Romney Plans to fire Big Bird”
Politifact.com

“Under Gov. Romney’s definition … Donald Trump is a small business.”
politifact.com

Because of Obamacare, “over the last two years, health care premiums have gone up — it’s true — but they’ve gone up slower than any time in the last 50 years.”
politifact.com

“I think it’s important for us to understand that the Fast and Furious program was a field-initiated program begun under the previous administration”
abcnews.com

Romney and Ryan will gut pell grants for low-income college students.
Factcheck.org

My budget will cut the deficit by $4 Trillion over 10 years.
Factcheck.org

 “I am told that Governor Romney’s new running mate, Paul Ryan, might be around Iowa the next few days,” he said while in Council Bluffs, Iowa. “He is one of the leaders of Congress standing in the way. So if you happen to see Congressman Ryan, tell him how important this farm bill is to Iowa and our rural communities.”
House passed bill on August 2, 2012 (Paul Ryan voted yes)

The American automobile industry has come roaring back…So now I want to say what we did with the auto industry, we can do it in manufacturing across America. Let’s make sure advanced, high-tech manufacturing jobs take root here, not in China. And that means supporting investment here. Governor Romney … invested in companies that were called ‘pioneers’ of outsourcing. I don’t want to outsource. I want to insource.
Forbes- Outsourcer-In-Chief: Obama Of General Motors

“You Didn’t Build that”
A few examples

Lies During Third Year

I will walk on that picket line with you, if workers are denied the right to bargain.
Youtube

In his 2012 State of the Union Address, President Obama said that American oil production is the highest that it’s been in eight years.
www.breitbart.com

I’ve done more for Israel’s security than any President ever
Obama aided Islamic Extremists take over of Egypt/ Libya
Weapons pour into Gaza

Virtually every Senate Republican voted against the tax cut last week
Examiner

“Every idea that we’ve put forward are ones that traditionally have been supported by Democrats and Republicans alike.”
Like Raising taxes?

Obama met highly qualified out of work teacher Robert Baroz
He wasn’t out of work and Obama never met him.

GOP Responsible for Obama Jobs Bill Not Passing
Dems Rejected Jobs Bill

You have 80 percent of the American people who support a balanced approach. Eighty percent of the American people support an approach that includes revenues and includes cuts. So the notion that somehow the American people aren’t sold is not the problem
Gallup Poll: Only 69%

These are obligations that the United States has taken on in the past. Congress has run up the credit card, and we now have an obligation to pay our bills.
Looks like it’s been incurred mostly in the years of Obama

Jobs Bill Paid for
Seems not so much Paid for

Then you’ve got their(GOP)which is dirtier air, dirtier water, less people with health insurance
Barack Obama, campaiging in Asheville, NC, 10/17/11

I cannot guarantee that those checks go out on August 3rd if we haven’t resolved this issue. Because there may simply not be the money in the coffers to do it.
American.com

USA producing more oil than ever before
Petroleum Insights

Fence between US and Mexico is “Practically Complete”
Department of Homeland Security says 5%

Rich doesn’t pay their fair share.
National Taxpayers Union

Mitt Romney would deny gay people the right to adopt children.
Cnn Interview

Lies During Second Year

Obama claimed the SCOTUS decision in Citizens United v. FEC, “open[ed] the floodgates for special interests — including foreign corporations — to spend without limit in our elections.
nationalreview.com

No signing statements to nullify or undermine congressional instructions as enacted into law
Obama Lies to Keep Czars

No “boots” on the ground Libya
Anyone that has worked with the AC-130 gunship can tell you, you need spotters to let aircraft know where the targets are.  Usually it is Special Forces, Rangers etc trained for this mission. It’s CIA Agents in Libya on the ground

Reform will also rein in the abuse and excess that nearly brought down our financial system. It will finally bring transparency to the kinds of complex, risky transactions that helped trigger the financial crisis.
Obama Lies About Financial Reform Bill

All Americans WILL BE were, “surprised, disappointed and angry” about lockerbie bomber
Obama Memo

I will not rest until the BP Oil Spill stops
Obama’s Schedule

The health care bill will not increase the deficit by one dime.
Campaign and Presidency

If you like the health care plan you have you can keep it
TownHall

“Under our plan, no federal dollars will be used to fund abortions, and federal conscience laws will remain in place.”
U.S. Capitol, Washington, D.C., September 9, 2009.

ObamaCare Fee is not a new tax
Obama denies healthcare is a new tax on all Americans

We have run out of places in the US to drill for oil.
Obama’s oval office speech in June 2010

Now suddenly if you don’t have your papers and you took your kid out to get ice cream, you can be harassed, that’s something that could potentially happen.
Arizona Immigration Law

Doctors choose amputation because they get better compensation. Greedy Doctors taking out tonsils for more money.
Claims never documented

The Health Care Package will pay for itself
Time

Republicans don’t have a single idea that’s different from George Bush’s ideas — not one.
Hmm Immigration?

We shouldn’t Mandate the purchase of health care
Democratic Debate Lies

Obama says he’ll save average family $8,000 in gas
Video Proof

I am immediately instituting PayGo “Pay as you go”
Said during a speech immediately after the Trillion Dollar “Shovel Ready” bill.

I got the Message from Massachusetts
Daily Bail

Lies During First Year

We began by passing a Recovery Act that has already saved or created over 150,000 jobs.” – caught cooking the books and now changed to ‘jobs supported’ versus ‘created/saved’
AP fact Checker

Number one, we inherited a $1.3 trillion deficit. … That wasn’t me.” – Congress, under Democratic control in 2007 and 2008, controlled the purse strings that led to the deficit Obama inherited.Obama supported the emergency bailout package in Bush’s final months — a package Democratic leaders wanted to make bigger.
AP fact Checker

Collective salvation
Obama calls himself a Christian

I do solemnly swear (or affirm) that I will faithfully execute the Office of President of the United States, and will to the best of my ability, preserve, protect and defend the Constitution of the United States.
Obama Inauguration. 20 Jan 2009

Cut Deficit in Half by end of first term
Associated Press Video

Health Care deals will be covered on C-span
Obama Lies

As President I will recognize the Armenian Genocide
ABC

Recovery Act will save or create jobs
ABC News

Unemployment rate will be 8.5% without stimulus.
Obama Lies

No Earmarks in the $787 Billion Stimulus
CNN

I happen to be a proponent of a single payer universal health care plan
Specator.Org

We have launched a housing plan that will help responsible families facing the threat of foreclosure lower their monthly payments and refinance their mortgages.
Obama Lies

I am not somebody who promotes same-sex marriage.
NPR

Guantanamo bay to be closed within a year
Council on Foreign Relations.

Won’t Raise taxes on those making less than 250,000 per year.
Businessweek: Obama Agnostic on taxes

List of Tax Promise Violations

2008 Campaign Lies

Bypassing congress unconstitutional; I intend to reverse when I am president
Vimeo

I will walk the picket line with you, if workers are denied the right to bargain
Youtube

No more wiretapping of citizens
Youtube

Mr. Ayers as “a guy who lives in my neighborhood,” but “not somebody who I exchange ideas from on a regular basis.
News Busters

I had a uncle who was one of the, who was part of the first American troops to go into Auschwitz and liberate the concentration camps
United States Holocaust Memorial Museum

Obama campaign would accept public funding
ABC

Minimum Wage will increase to $9.50/hr
A Socialist

Ann Dunham spent the months before her death in 1995 fighting with insurance companies that sought to deny her the coverage she needed to pay for treatment.
Mounting Heath Care Lies

Didn’t know Jeremiah Wright was Radical
Dreams of My Father – A radical Socialist.

Would have the most transparent administration in History
Cato Institute

We will go through our federal budget – page by page, line by line – eliminating those programs we don’t need, and insisting that those we do operate in a sensible cost-effective way.
Boston Globe

I have visited all 57 states.
Snopes

I’ll get rid of earmarks
Source: Any bill passed during presidency

When a bill lands on my Desk, The American people will have 5 days to review it before I sign it.
Campaign Speech

My father served in World War II.
The Videos and the Facts

Have troops out of Iraq by March 31, 2009
News Video

Seniors Making less than 50,000 will not have to pay taxes
YouTube

Would not vote for any bill supporting troop funding without a firm withdrawal commitment from the Bush Administration.
He has done nothing but continue the Bush admins strategy and to explain how the “surges total failure” has now become his greatest achievement.

Present Votes Are Common In Illinois
NPR

I Won Michigan
Huffington Post

I won Nevada
The Nation

I don’t Have Lobbyists
US News

My Campaign Had Nothing To Do With The 1984 Ad
Crooks and Liars

I Have Always Been Against Iraq
Washington Post

My Wife Didn’t Mean What She Said About Pride In Country
CNN

Barack was never an ACORN trainer and never worked for ACORN in any other capacity.
Obama Campaign Video

I Barely Know Rezko
Sun Times

My Church Is Like Any Other Christian Church
ABC News

Submit A lie

 

http://obamalies.net/list-of-lies

 

Global warming of the Earth’s surface has decelerated

Global warming of the Earth’s surface has decelerated (Viewpoint)

The recently-released National Climate Assessment (NCA) from the U.S. government offers considerable cause for concern for climate calamity, but downplays the decelerating trend in global surface temperature in the 2000s, which I document here.

Many climate scientists are currently working to figure out what is causing the slowdown, because if it continues, it would call into question the legitimacy of many climate model projections (and inversely offer some good news for our planet).

An article in Nature earlier this year discusses some of the possible causes for what some have to referred to as the global warming “pause” or “hiatus”.  Explanations include the quietest solar cycle in over a hundred years, increases in Asian pollution, more effective oceanic heat absorption, and even volcanic activity. Indeed, a peer-reviewed paper published in February estimates that about 15 percent of the pause can be attributed to increased volcanism. But some have questioned whether the pause or deceleration is even occurring at all.

 Verifying the pause

You can see the pause (or deceleration in warming) yourself by simply grabbing the freely available data from NASA and NOAA. For the chart below, I took the annual global temperature difference from average (or anomaly) and calculated the change from the prior year. So the very first data point is the change from 2000 to 2001 and so on. One sign of data validation is that the trends are the same on both datasets.  Both of these government sources show a slight downward slope since 2000:

(Matt Rogers)

You can see some of the spikes associated with El Niño events (when heat was released into the atmosphere from warmer than normal ocean temperatures in the tropical Pacific) that occurred in 2004-05 and 2009-10. But the warm changes have generally been decreasing while cool changes have grown.

To be sure, both sets of data points show an mean annual change of +0.01C during the 2000s. But, if current trends continue for just a few more years, then the mean change for the 2000s will shift to negative; in other words, the warming would really stop. The current +.01C mean increase in temperatures is insufficient to verify the climate change projections for major warming (even the low end +1-2C) by mid-to-late century. A peer reviewed study in Nature Climate Change published in 2013 drew the same conclusion: “Recent observed global warming is significantly less than that simulated by climate models,” it says.

Addressing objections

Whenever this surprising result (that warming has slowed) is pointed out, it raises some objections. Here are a few (feel free to add your own in the comments section!):

“You are cherry-picking your start and end times.”

This is a common argument when any data are shown. The recently released National Climate Assessment used 1901 to 1960 as its definition for “normal” weather in a number of its benchmark analyses. Other reports use the entire century-wide mean, while yet others use the National Weather Service conventional 1981-2010 climatology. All of this is cherry-picking one way or another. The key here is to see if the data are behaving as they should.

For the chart I show above, I could have easily chosen the very warm 1998 as my starting point to amplify my trend line, but instead I cleanly chose the 2000s. However, another point to make that everyone will agree with is that I’m plotting temperature coinciding with the highest global atmospheric CO2 concentration. Therefore, no matter what you believe the sensitivity is, the impact should be strongest in these recent years vs. any others.

Space Elevator

“The last decade was still the warmest of all time.”

This is true per the data sets that I am using (NASA and NOAA), so no dispute there. However, in order for climate change projections to verify, we need to continue breaking records more often than not. In the NASA data set, 2013 only broke one monthly record (2012 only tied one), meaning that most of the time, we are not moving upward. Without breaking new warm records, we continue to flat line and each year, fall further and further behind projections.

“Your sample size is too small.”

My thirteen data points from the 2000s are deemed by critics as not enough data to make any case at all. I could have expanded to 1998 to raise the size to 15, but I readily admit that the more data the better in these situations. The question then becomes what sample size would you need to see to start getting concerned that the climate models might be too warm? The trend line for either data set suggests the mean change could shift negative in just the next few years. Would that be sufficient?

Every person- every scientist- may have a different definition here. I will say that the global annual temperature is not just one figure, but a culmination of thousands of data points- a very large sample size in itself! The deceleration in warming is inconsistent with climate model projections if it were to continue. You can choose to agree with that prior statement, but also caveat with the usual “but we need more data”. I’m fine with that.

“The data are not accurate.”

This has become my new favorite, because for years and years, key figures in the climate change research community have used these data points to support the view warming is occurring at an alarming pace. Now, we hear from some scientists that this data is “masking” reality, such that the real global warming is buried in the deep oceans in areas that are difficult to measure.

For example, climate scientist Kevin Trenberth notes the slow down in warming may just mean that it is “manifested in different ways” now. Trenberth accurately describes the Pacific Decadal Oscillation, which has slowed down warming trends during prior negative states (like its current condition). But climate change modeling fails to show this, which suggests it’s  not capturing important oceanic processes and could well be overdoing climate sensitivity to CO2 increases.

Another “data are inaccurate” argument is that about 15 percent of the planet is not being counted, including large sections of the Arctic which have warmed markedly in recent years. One recent study (Cowtan and Way, 2013) suggests that if those areas were measured (and are estimated in this study using satellite data), the warming would be much stronger and no pause would be seen. Assuming this study is correct, it would not undo the pause in the warming outside the Arctic where most people live. Furthermore, the rate of warming it estimates globally (factoring in the steeper Arctic warming) is still at at the very low end of climate model projections.  The study appears to be a valuable contribution but further work is needed to confirm its results.

“Your assessment is accurate, but it doesn’t matter.”

The main point here is that yes, we are indeed seeing this slowdown, it is real, but it is only temporary. The recently-released NCA acknowledges the slowdown in Appendix 3 and even shows a chart of it (see below).

(National Climate Assessment)

However, it notes that these periods are temporary, driven by natural variability-induced modifications to the climate system (factors such as the El Niño-La Niña cycles). All of this may indeed be true, but note that the current pause is longer than prior ones indicated on the chart, so again, the question becomes (and they don’t answer this) how long is too long? You can even see their red line outlining the latest pause on the right side of the chart, but not extending to include the last three years which looks even longer than its predecessors.

(Editor’s note: For alternative perspectives, see: Faux Pause: Ocean Warming, Sea Level Rise And Polar Ice Melt Speed Up, Surface Warming To Follow and Global Warming Since 1997 Underestimated by Half)

Update (6/21/2014):   NASA GISS revises their historical data monthly, so there have indeed been some changes since I produced the top graph earlier this spring.  The chart below shows these changes, which do not change the fundamental argument of deceleration, but do adjust the mean of change from +0.01C to +0.02C.

You can see the changes here by year:

newvsoldnasa

 

Why Americans Don’t Want to Start New Businesses

Why Americans Don’t Want to Start New Businesses
May 7, 2014
URL: http://www.entrepreneur.com/article/233689

What’s worse than a country that doesn’t support job growth?

One that discourages the creation of new businesses.

For the first time in recent memory, the number of businesses failing is outpacing the number of businesses being created, according to data from the Brookings Institution. The trend started in the first year of the Obama Administration and has continued ever since.

A deeper dive into the data shows even more frightening news for the American entrepreneurial economy. It isn’t that businesses are failing at a higher rate. After all, companies come and go all the time, so a higher number of failures could be seen as a good sign: Optimism to give entrepreneurship a try no doubt leads to some companies that simply don’t take off.

Rather, the trend is driven by a slowdown in the number of businesses created in the country since 2008. In short, people don’t want to take the chance and start a company.

Related: What Will Get Americans Working Again?

That is scary because we already know that there are signs that American worker is too discouraged to get a job, with the labor force participation rate at the lowest level since the Carter Administration. But there was always a feeling that the business owner had a bit more optimism than the average worker.

Not so, according to the data. Brookings doesn’t cite reasons for the decline in business creation — in fact, the group notes such reasons are “unknown.” But it shouldn’t be hard to figure out.

Regulation. The unprecedented rise in regulation over the past six years has made it more burdensome to start a business. Many have focused on Obamacare and Dodd-Frank as some of the most onerous, but it is actually the nickel-and-diming of small-scale regulations that have had the most onerous effect on companies. Every day, we see a struggle between innovation and the regulatory framework in this country. Car-sharing services like Uber and Lyft have had to fight against laws protecting cab drivers. Google Glass has run afoul of motor-vehicle laws. Autonomous cars have been held back by state insurance requirements. The list goes on.

A new regulation is promulgated in America roughly every two-and-a-half hours. In fact, the cost of regulation in the U.S. is bigger than the economies of all but nine countries in the world. As a result, businesses of all sizes have had to face higher compliance costs.

Taxation. Death and taxes have always been inevitable, but the tax policies of recent years have taken a direct aim at American entrepreneurs. Take the “tax the rich” approach. Since so many small businesses are set up in a way where company profits are taxed as individual income, many hard-working people fell into tax hikes meant to target the country’s wealthy “elite.”

Even now, there is so much chatter about how the wealthy are not paying their fair share, even when just a cursory look at the data shows that small-business owners are hurt worse than anyone when tax hikes only target the richest.

Related: Why Are Business Owners Blamed for the Gender Pay Gap?

Large companies aren’t immune. A failure to address the double taxation that comes from repatriating income earned overseas means that $206 billion in profits can’t be brought back into the U.S. Think what kind of stimulus the country would enjoy — and what kind of business creation could occur — if companies were allowed to bring that money back to our borders.

The Blame Game. Time was, part of the American dream was trying to create a business. Entrepreneurs were heroes in our American story. Now they are villains. We hear socialist economists attacking the entrepreneurial economy. Business owners are blamed for keeping down workers by putting profits over people.

Worst of all, the sentiment against business owners comes from the top. Immediately after his State of the Union speech, President Obama embarked on a shame tour, giving speeches about how American workers are paid too little. Put aside that these companies employ people at a time of disturbingly high joblessness. Rather, the president and his union allies targeted businesses by promoting policies like higher minimum wages, even though there is no correlation that higher wages lead to job growth. One can make an easy argument that the opposite is true.

But business owners have become the easy target. They must be wealthy, and therefore must be hurting our fellow citizens.

Hogwash. Look at the misguided protests over higher wages for fast-food restaurant workers. Many of the owners of these franchises struggle themselves to make ends meet. In some cases, they could make more as a general manager at a restaurant somewhere than as a franchisee on their own. But union-backed protests have targeted them. Why would anyone take the risk of opening a business in that kind of hostile environment?

Here is why all of this is important: If you truly believe in more jobs, in better wages and broader prosperity, you need Americans to innovate, to take risks, and put their capital at work to create new businesses. You should be rooting for their success, since the more money they make, the more profits they have to reinvest in their businesses. That reinvestment invariably creates jobs, which creates wealth for others.

It shouldn’t be a hard concept to understand. Yet, our policy response continues to go in the wrong direction. Rather than allowing for reinvestment, the government continues to increase the take it demands from taxes and regulations. It is fashionable to punish success and badmouth the business owner, to boot. That attitude doesn’t create jobs. That doesn’t create wealth. That only creates resentment, and it erodes the very entrepreneurial spirit on which this nation was founded. Unless it is reversed, our economic problems will persist, and, worse, what it means to be an American entrepreneur will no longer resonate.

Related: How the New Obama Overtime Rules Will Squelch Opportunity

Community broadcasting? Where’s the value in that?

Community broadcasting? Where's the value in that?

By Juliet Fox, University of Melbourne

The National Commission of Audit - released on May 1 – recommends slashing all community broadcasting funding in Australia. For some, this is a logical response to the nation’s need to collectively “shoulder the burden” of our apparent economic woes. For others it appears both unexplained and unjustified.

Certainly it raises questions with regard to both the role of media in our society, and the “value” of community broadcasting.

There are more than 360 community radio stations around Australia, each of them, in theory, with an inclusive governance structure producing local media content by and for their local communities. The stations – ethnic, religious, youth, GLBTI, radio for the print handicapped, music, Indigenous, along with more than 80 TV stations – make up Australia’s third media sector, and are powered by more than 20,000 volunteers.

The sector often flies under the radar of the Australia psyche, yet internationally it is consistently held up as one of the world’s most expansive and successful examples of community broadcasting.

In the last budget the sector received A$17.7 million in Federal Government funds – with just over $5 million of that dedicated to the transition to digital radio technology. Yet in three short sentences – in Volume 2 of the Appendix – the Commission of Audit has deemed community broadcasting unworthy of Federal Government funds:

The Commonwealth Government already provides over $1 billion per annum to the operation of the public broadcasters. There is a limited rationale for the Commonwealth to also subsidise community radio services. Continued government funding of this area does not meet the Report’s principles of good governance.

Since 1984 the Community Broadcasting Foundation (originally called the Public Broadcasting Foundation) has transparently distributed public funds to community broadcasters. As an independent non-profit funding body, it allocates grants through competitive rounds assessed by volunteer committees.


David Jackmanson

The grants are small financial contributions that in many instances make the difference between a station covering its basic running and transmission costs, or not. Isn’t this public money well spent?

Community broadcasting began in Australia in the mid 1970s and is different to public broadcasting. It arose out of an identified need to provide an accessible space for ordinary Australians to have a voice. That need has not disappeared.

Despite more than four decades of radical change within media technology and content production, there remains a critical need to actively facilitate the voices, issues and opinions that are underrepresented in the mainstream media.

The Commission of Audit noted that:

Media convergence, especially the availability and access of text, audio and video media via the internet, is increasingly eliminating the traditional arguments for public broadcasting. The need for government intervention or support has now been largely superseded by technology and commercial imperatives.

Where is the evidence to support such a claim? While the internet provides many opportunities, it does not have a democratic intent, or a big picture focus on the role of the media in striving for the betterment of society.

Online media platforms do not seek to address issues of inequality and injustice. Information and access online is not free, and in many parts of the country even getting online remains a challenge.


Yannis

Neither online technologies, nor public broadcasters, actively facilitate marginalised people having a voice in the media. Community broadcasting does all of these things – which is why its democratic function remains essential.

The recommendation by the Commission of Audit to stop funding community broadcasting goes to the heart of what we value – and what “value” indeed means in our present-day society. It makes us contemplate what is deserving of our public funds. Among the many questions raised are the following:

  • Do we consider independent, local community news and information, along with community language radio shows, and a significant space for local music and culture, to be of value?

  • Do we want to have community owned and operated media outlets?

  • Do we need a third media sector – separate from public and commercial – that prioritises the access and participation of everyday Australians?

  • Are we going to accept that public funding of community broadcasting activities doesn’t equate with “good governance”?


Martin Djablik

The issue of value is deeply ingrained in an ideology that is ubiquitous throughout the Commission of Audit and the Abbott Government. It is a value system that clearly prioritises the economy above community.

There is absolutely no evidence to suggest this model presents increased opportunities for the poor and marginalised to participate in the media. Similarly, there is no evidence that a “free” market economy equates with an egalitarian distribution of freedom of speech.

Consistently the public’s active participation in society is considered vital to a functioning democracy. And the media plays a central role in the flow of information, along with the sharing of views and ideas.

Community broadcasting is in a unique position to contribute to communicative democracy. If there was ever a need to step up and voice your support for a non-commercial, independent community broadcasting sector in Australia it is now. Before the first nail is placed in the community broadcasting coffin.

The Conversation

Juliet Fox is 3CR's Project Coordinator. From 2004-2010 she was a volunteer, elected representative on the grants committee of the Community Broadcasting Foundation and served as Board member and Treasurer (2008-2010).

This article was originally published on The Conversation.
Read the original article.