Energy Minister, Josh Frydenberg Cops a Well-Earned Serve from Alan Jones & Victoria’s Wind Farm Victims

hunt macfarlane

Macfarlane & Hunt: the wind industry’s dynamic duo, as they then were.

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In late 2015, any one of our political betters caught paying lip-service to the wind industry can be fairly branded “pig ignorant”; or, if not just willfully blind to the greatest economic and environmental fraud of all time, then a “piggy with his trotters firmly planted in the subsidy trough”.

The wind industry is always, and everywhere, the product of massive and endless subsidies: in Australia, the wind power fraud has siphoned more than $9 billion in subsidies – filched from unwitting power consumers, so far; and as the Large-Scale Renewable Energy Target hits its straps in the next couple of years, will add more than $3 billion a year to retail power bills, until at least 2031:

Out to Save their Wind Industry Mates, Macfarlane & Hunt Lock-in $46 billion LRET Retail Power Tax

In the story linked above, the guilty parties were identified as one, Ian “Macca” Macfarlane and his youthful ward, Gregory Hunt.

The links between the wind industry and that pair of economic policy lightweights are both notorious and unseemly. Macca is practically in bed with Australia’s most notorious wind power outfit, Infigen.

And Hunt is ‘guided’ by Patrick Gibbons who, along with his best mate, Vesta’s front man, Ken McAlpine, cooked-up Australia’s wind industry disaster when they were working as staffers for Victorian Labor MP, Theo Theophanous – whose brother Andrew, also a Victorian Labor MP, got 6 years imprisonment for conspiracy, bribery and defrauding the Commonwealth. Ah, now what’s that they say about the company you keep?

Since then, Gibbons and McAlpine – the ‘charmer’ who was forced to apologise for spreading deliberate falsehoods about STT Champion, Dr Sarah Laurie (see our post here) – have worked around the clock to influence, threaten, bully and intimidate anyone with a capacity to interfere with their plans to carpet rural Australian communities in another 10 or 20,000 of these things; merrily lining their pockets  – and those of their benefactors – along the way. Hence, McAlpine’s false and malicious attack on Sarah Laurie’s status as a medical practitioner.

After the night of the long knives, when Malcolm “in the middle” Turnbull pulled his coup against then sitting PM, Tony Abbott, Macca got the chop as Energy Minister and was replaced with Josh Frydenberg. Josh is a poster boy of Melbourne’s Jewish establishment; and, quite rightly, wears his Jewish ancestry with open pride (see this article).

josh frydenberg

Josh Frydenberg: measures up his chances of brushing
off Australia’s hundreds of wind farm victims.

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Seen, more generally, as one of the Liberal Party’s ‘up-and-comings’, Josh has almost nothing to beat, when it comes to improving upon Australia’s disastrous energy ‘policy’ disaster. Although to tag it a ‘policy’ is to flatter it as involving some kind of deliberate and purposeful design.

But, it seems that Josh appears to be running with the wind industry wolves, as he finds his feet in his new portfolio.

A couple of weeks back, Josh was being interviewed by 2GB’s Alan Jones, about Australia’s (woefully absent) nuclear energy policy. Towards the end of the interview, Jones quite rightly ripped into young Frydenberg, about the plight of Victoria’s wind farm victims; and the pathetic response to their endless suffering from his colleague, “Disappointing” Dan Tehan (see our post here).

The Alan Jones Breakfast Show – 2GB
13 November 2015

JONES: Can I just ask you one other thing though before we go? I mean, you’re a Victorian. Now, Cape Bridgewater and Macarthur wind farms are non-compliant. It has been predicted this Cape Bridgewater Wind Farm without operating 13 of the 29 turbines it wouldn’t actually be able to meet noise restrictions.

They’re ignoring that. Before the thing was built developers knew the wind farm would operate in breach of its permit unless adjustments were made. They haven’t made any adjustments.

The pre-construction and post-construction reports came to different conclusions. Pacific Hydro got what they wanted: they paid the acoustic consultants, so he who pays the piper calls the tune.

You’re a Victorian. Are you going to allow people to be refugees in their own homes or do you think these people are telling lies when they say that the Macarthur wind farm and the Cape Bridgewater wind farm are making life unbearable and unliveable for us? Are they liars or is there something wrong with government and the gutlessness of governments to act on behalf of them?

Your Local Member down there, Tehan, is in bed with the wind farm industry, doesn’t want to see these people. They’re his constituents, but he’ll see the wind farm industry.

FRYDENBERG: I wouldn’t say that about Dan Tehan. I think he’s a fantastic Local Member; he is in touch with his community.

JONES: No, he’s not.

FRYDENBERG: He is, and I’ll talk to him, but at the end of the day if there are restrictions on the operation of these wind farms then they need to abide by them.

JONES: Well they’re not abiding by them and there was evidence given to the Senate.

Melissa Ware said she was ‘driven beyond despair and wretchedness’, Sonia Trist said to the Senate wind turbines inquiry that ‘officers from the Victorian Planning Department admitted noise limits are exceeded in her home’. She’s a refugee. Now come on, you’re a smart young man. When are you going to go out there and say, ‘Listen, the law’s the law, live by it or close the wind farm down’?

FRYDENBERG: Well I’m happy to say that the law is the law, absolutely.

JONES: Ok, I’ll get a note to you.

FRYDENBERG: Thank you very much.

JONES: Ok. Good to talk. We’ll talk again.

FRYDENBERG: Bye bye.
2GB

art-alan-20jones-620x349

Alan Jones: defender of the wind industry’s downtrodden victims.

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While political ignorance (displayed publicly, at least) is a stinky cologne, STT is prepared to give Josh Frydenberg the benefit of the doubt. For now….

The fact that he was blissfully unaware of Dan Tehan’s contempt for his own constituents, might be explained by a busy workload; and no previous involvement in the energy portfolio. But, Josh’s moment of grace has now expired.

Not only has he been made aware of how incompetent and callous Tehan is – during his exchange with Alan Jones – Frydenberg’s ignorance of the suffering meted out on his fellow Victorians by Pacific Hydro at Cape Bridgewater, Acciona at Waubra and AGL at Macarthur has surely been disabused by the likes of long-suffering Macarthur victim, Jan Hetherington.

Jan is one of the earth’s most gracious and beautiful souls; and, thanks to AGL’s non-compliant Macarthur public health disaster, has had her life destroyed by 140 Vestas 3MW monsters and the sleep-destroying, incessant turbine generated low-frequency noise and infrasound they generate, night after merciless night.

Jan sent one of her heart-wrenching complaints direct to Frydenberg, with an appeal to her Federal representative, and fellow Victorian, for a little compassion, mercy and relief from her daily suffering.

Frydenberg responded with a line (probably worded up by Patrick Gibbons) that would have gained the tick of approval from the Clean Energy Council, AGL, Infigen, Pacific Hydro & Co before it went out: glib and condescending, his response cited waffle from the long discredited NHMRC (see our post here); asserting that there is no evidence of any adverse health consequences caused by turbine noise emissions.

Apparently, despite advice given by the World Health Organisation for over 60 years, Josh considers that noise induced sleep deprivation is now no longer an adverse health effect. He also refers to “work” done by the NHMRC, which is interesting, given that the NHMRC has never ventured any further than the library; and when it eventually did so, deliberately determined to ignore a decade’s worth of research from NASA (you might have heard of them?) that proved beyond all reasonable doubt that low-frequency noise generated by industrial wind turbines causes adverse health effects, including sleep deprivation:

Dr Malcolm Swinbanks tells Senate: ‘NASA’s 1980s Research on Health Effects from Wind Farm Noise More Relevant Than Ever’

Josh’s wind industry approved response is available here.

However, Jan Hetherington – who hasn’t slept properly in her own home for more than 3 years – wasn’t going to let Frydenberg get away with that wind industry style propaganda ‘brush-off’.

In a ‘more power to her’ moment, Jan ripped into Frydenberg (with notice to his colleagues) with a riposte from the very heart of a woman, which signals both visceral daily torment; and a bewildered sense of abandonment by those paid by her (and us) to serve and protect her from utterly pointless and unnecessary harm.

Jan h Hetherington

Jan Hetherington and her tormentors: a woman who wants
nothing more than her lawful rights to sleep in her own home.

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From: Jan Hetherington
Sent: Monday, 23 November 2015 7:39 PM

To: ‘Frydenberg, Josh (MP)’ <Josh.Frydenberg.MP@aph.gov.au>

Cc: ‘Malcolm.Turnbull.MP@aph.gov.au’ <Malcolm.Turnbull.MP@aph.gov.au>; ‘dan.tehan.mp@aph.gov.au’ <dan.tehan.mp@aph.gov.au>; ‘Alan Jones’ <alanjones@2gb.com>; ‘lloydmedia@hotmail.com’ <lloydmedia@hotmail.com>; ‘Greg.Hunt.MP@aph.gov.au’ <Greg.Hunt.MP@aph.gov.au>

Subject: FW: Letter from the Office of Minister Frydenberg [SEC=UNCLASSIFIED]

November 23rd, 2015
Hon Josh Frydenberg, MP
Minister for Resources, Energy & Northern Australia
PO Box 6022
House of Representatives
Parliament House
Canberra ACT 2600

Dear Josh,

It saddens me to have received a letter of response from you, WHICH READS AS AN ABSOLUTE “COP OUT”, regarding my complaints of excessive pulsing infrasound, low frequency noise and vibration emitted by the Macarthur wind facility, making the residents who live in close proximity to this MONSTER, very ill.

To quote the NHMRC shows to me that you do not understand the gravity of the situation here, as you would and should be fully aware of the apparent conflict of interest with some members of the NHMRC, involved in the Rapid Review. They can NEVER be independent as long as there is a conflict of interest.

You should be taking it upon yourself to investigate and resolve this problem and not just quote flawed reports by the NHMRC.

You say that the newly appointed” Wind Farm Commissioner, Mr Dyer, will work to resolve complaints and that he will be able to refer complaints to relevant state authorities and help ensure that complaints are resolved”.

How will he resolve these problems?

Will he place a moratorium on the new proposed wind farms until there are new guidelines written to STOP THE EXCESSIVE PULSING INFRASOUND, LOW FREQUENCY NOISE AND VIBRATION that harm people’s health?

Will he STOP, ie shut down, the operation of wind farms, until they can BECOME COMPLIANT and stop harming people’s health?

Will he STOP the fraudulent noise reports done, “in house” by the wind industry, to say they are compliant?

Will he put a STOP to any wind farm from receiving the REC’s until they can show, without a doubt, and with independent noise testing, they are compliant and stop harming people’s health?

Will he STOP the horrendous head-pressure and headaches that the residents are suffering from the infrasound emitted from these turbines?

Will he take to Canberra, our request to have National Guidelines rewritten to include INFRASOUND?

Will he return our lives back to normality, like it was, before the Macarthur wind facility started operating?

Will he have the power to make changes or will he be a “paper tiger”?

It’s all very well to promise us that the new Wind Farm Commissioner can help resolve problems, BUT CAN HE MAKE THE WIND INDUSTRY COMPLY with his suggestions?

So, Josh, what are you going to do for us, besides sending out “cop out” letters thinking that, “that is the end of that” and being condescending and that we will go away?

I appreciate you getting back to me, but you have SAID NOTHING ABOUT ANYTHING.

This is a Federal Government problem and you have ALL been told about the health problems that residents are suffering, living near wind facilities.

You are ALL responsible because you have ALL been made aware of this dreadful problem of excessive pulsing infrasound, low frequency noise and vibration harming people’s health, and not to TAKE ACTION and rectify this dreadful problem is WILLFUL BLINDNESS.

Yours sincerely

Jan Hetherington
597 Gerrigerrup road
Penshurst, Vic. 3289

As we noted above, Josh Frydenberg is fittingly celebrated by his Jewish community for his considerable achievements.

As a member of that community Josh is, no doubt, acutely aware of how a tyrannical mob can readily (self)-justify meting out harm to a passive minority. Not so very long ago, a passionate and deranged few hijacked the political will of a whole nation; and turned their historical hatred of an entire people, into an organised, mass slaughter. Plenty among the good and the great, who had the power to intervene, simply ran silent and went along with the mob. The rest, as they say is history: Josh’s ancestral history, in fact.

Then, as now, there were plenty of excuses as to why people – of otherwise good character – were ‘blind’ to events; and why those who had the ability to see, chose to look the other way. In retrospect, the class that allowed it to happen, often proclaim that their silence and acquiescence was a ‘mistake’; and that they regret not having done more (or anything) to stop the carnage. For several millions, that recognition came all too late.

In politics, as in life, admitting failure and one’s own mistakes has all the appeal of chewing on groundglass. A recent review in The Economist, of a book by Matthew Syed, ‘Black Box Thinking: The Surprising Truth About Success’, articulates the point:

EMBRACING failure is a cliché of the business world. The Harvard Business Review devoted an entire issue to it in 2011. People should be open about their mistakes and tolerant of others’; this is the route to improvement, goes the thinking. But as Matthew Syed, a journalist at the Times, shows in a new book, “Black Box Thinking”, in practice a “stigmatising attitude towards error” pervades everyday life. This has big implications.

Success brings its own rewards, but the world comes down hard on those who are deemed failures. The desire to avoid such opprobrium prompts people to cover up mistakes, argues Mr Syed. Doctors tell patients of “complications”. Police fail to drop cases against people accused of committing a crime, even after clear evidence emerges of their innocence. Politicians plough on with policies even when it is obvious they are not working. All are psychological strategies to avoid admitting fault.

Fear of failure can have devastating consequences, as Mr Syed shows in a story about United Airlines. In 1978, as a plane approached its destination, the pilot worried that the landing gear had not come down. Desperate, he tried to establish what was wrong, becoming blinded to the plane’s dwindling fuel reserves. Eventually the tank was empty and the plane crashed. The worry of making a mistake – subjecting the passengers to a bumpy landing – blinded him to bigger problems.

The story is a metaphor. Investors hold on to losing stocks longer than they should. Unable to face the shame of a bad return, they end up with a much bigger loss. Fred Goodwin of RBS, a bank, fretted about the colour of the carpets at head office while his firm collapsed under the weight of the financial crisis. The medical profession is especially intolerant of mishaps, says Mr Syed. This means that mistakes are not scrutinised and people do not learn from them. Small wonder that blunders are pervasive. According to one study of acute care in hospitals, one in ten patients “is killed or injured as a consequence of medical error or institutional shortcomings”.

The observations made by Matthew Syed apply with equal force to the NHMRC (upon which Josh relies in his effort to ignore Jan Hetherington’s suffering), as well as to Josh; and his political compatriots.

Wind power is not, and will never be, a meaningful power source.

June 2015 National

South Australia, Australia’s ‘wind power capital’, which is said to ‘get’ 40% of its power from the wind, is left to lament the fact that its ‘wind rush’ has delivered not only the highest power prices in the nation (if not in the world, on a purchasing power parity basis), but has left it with a grid so unstable that routine, total (and totally unpredictable) drops in wind power output have plunged vast tracks of the State into 18th century darkness. When its Port Augusta power plants close next year, the occurrence of such mass blackouts is guaranteed to increase in regularity:

Wind Industry’s Armageddon: Wind Farm Output Collapse Leaves 110,000 South Australian Homes & Businesses Powerless

Rocketing Prices AND Blackouts: South Australians Lament Their Dark & Dismal Wind ‘Powered’ Future

That an utterly pointless power generation source is permitted to destroy the ability of people to live in, use, sleep in and otherwise enjoy their very own homes is criminal, pure and simple.

That, in late 2015, people like Josh Frydenberg can run discredited guff from the NHMRC (see our post here) as ‘justification’ for the state-sanctioned misery of Australian citizens, like Jan Hetherington, Sonia Trist and Annie Gardner is nothing short of a disgrace. These people have well and truly suffered enough:

Three Magnificent Women Take On Australia’s Monstrous Wind Power Outfits & their Pathetic Political Backers

Josh Frydenberg has a choice: either he stands with the callous and indifferent mob (either watching idly or cheering it on); or he walks with Jan Hetherington, Sonia Trist and Annie Gardner (and the hundreds of others like them).

Sonia Trist near wind turbines behind her property at Cape Bridgewater in Victoria’s southwest. Picture: David Geraghty Source: News Corp Australia

Sonia Trist: suffers without respite at the hands of
Pac Hydro & its non-compliant Cape Bridgewater wind farm.

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Running with the mob is easy – no thought’s required; and your ‘justifications’ are written for you, often in advance. Here, the ‘exculpatory’ text was drawn by Infigen, the Clean Energy Council, and the likes of Patrick Gibbons and Ken McAlpine, with rubber-stamp endorsement from a wind industry stacked NHMRC.

However, avoiding moral opprobrium for the harm the mob causes – when you’re part of it – is not so easy. Particularly when the victims of the malign few – and the acquiescent mob that happily runs with them – will not be silenced; when they will not give up; and when their stories of institutionally endorsed suffering will never be erased from history.

Hindsight often elevates mere heroes to exalted sainthood; but glossy varnish is rarely added to the villains and those that knowingly helped them to cause unnecessary harm and suffering to their fellow human beings. For the true hero, history never forgets; for the real villain, history never forgives.

Of all the people in Australia’s current political sphere, Josh Frydenberg must – through his heritage – possess the insight to recognise and avoid the kind of villainous stain that emerges (and often darkens) with hindsight. Josh, the choice is all yours.

Annie Gardner

History tends to anoint heroines, like Annie Gardner.

About stopthesethings

We are a group of citizens concerned about the rapid spread of industrial wind power generation installations across Australia.

Comments

  1. Grant Winberg says:

    And it’s not all about Victoria and SA. The reprehensible actions of the NSW State government of both persuasions and the Dept of Planning in its various forms over the life of Gullen Range Wind ‘Farm’ debacle, the Land and Environment Court, and not to forget those at Goldwind, the promoters of the Gullen Range Wind ‘Farm’. But, above all, this entire mess has been caused by the Federal Government in handing out subsidies to wind farm operators without any testing of compliance – ‘you build it, the tax payer and electricity consumer will fund it and we will look very impressive indeed with thousands of white giants evidencing our climate control credentials’.
    ‘Bugger the road-kill’.

  2. Lets not forget about the South Austalia Waterloo wind Turbine disaster. Nothing has changed there from the time we started to complain over 4 years ago to now, and it looks like stage 2 is also going ahead, even against the people’s wishes, it is as if we don’t count.

    That is why I keep on saying!!! “It’s always about the almighty Dollar $$$$$$$$$$$$. The fact is, that there is no safe distance for wind Turbines, NOT GREEN, NOT CHEAP, NOT RELIABLE, and come with a very BAD side EFFECT on people and the ENVIRONMENT. There is Nothing GREEN about WIND TURBINES. SAY NO TO WIND TURBINES.
    This is a world wide SCAM.

  3. Crispin Trist says:

    My message to Josh Frydenberg.

    There ARE abandoned homes here at Cape Bridgewater as we speak. This is not fiction. This is real! I know the families personally. It is happening here and it is happening now. Or to use the words of the classic Fatboy Slim track…”RIGHT HERE, RIGHT NOW!”

    You cannot continue to simply ignore this issue.

    The wind developer Pacific Hydro has built right over the top of our heads. (And our rights!) Most of the community is now within 1-2 kilometres of this development and we now live within a Hazardous Industrial Zone. Cape Bridgewater has been destroyed.

    To take but one example.

    Could you sleep peacefully in your bed with this noise going all night?

    This is the sound of a 7-8 tonne faulty blade spinning on a 110m high 2 megawatt wind turbine only several hundred metres from the back door of our home in the middle of the night. The site was unattended at the time. It was just us and this “thing”. One of 29 things, out there in the darkness. This heavy, loud, spinning and faulty machinery under huge stress loads. We were also downwind of the structure and we had good reason to be concerned because this very turbine had only recently been struck by lightning splitting a blade! This faulty blade had been replaced, meaning one newer blade…and 2 older ones!

    Both the Government and Pacific Hydro cannot continue to ignore this serious community problem. YOU have a major problem on your hands. A problem of YOUR making! And there IS a problem. Otherwise, why would the likes of wind developer Acciona be buying up people’s homes at Waubra and then getting them to sign gag clauses? See link below for the proof!

    One final point.

    As for The Age article today trying to stir up a fuss about the expense of a new wind farm commissioner. Get real!

    When wind developers are getting around $500,000 a year in subsidies for EACH wind turbine! I think $200,000 a year could be a price worth paying if the commissioner can be shown to genuinely solve our complaints.

    However, it remains to be seen if a person with a background in the telecommunications industry can solve our concerns. This is an industry that has spent many years avoiding the health concerns associated with mobile phones and mobile phone masts! A health issue on which the jury is still well and truly out!

  4. Jackie Rovenksy says:

    The failure is not just his the failure is the Parliament, the Parliaments of Australia and those of its States and Territories are letting citizens of this nation down.
    Their attention is drawn to what is happening around the world and they are forgetting to keep an eye on what is happening in their own backyards.
    When their own people are suffering they find it too challenging, so leave it to their minions to deal with – hence the response letter Jan received. Hence the constant need for people such as Jan, Sonia, Anne, Mel and many others to continue to suffer.
    Yes jobs are needed and yes investment is needed – but should this be to the detrimental of peoples health and wellbeing, should the Parliaments sit back and say they don’t matter because what matters is how we look on the world stage.
    How will we look as a Nation when the research so desperately needed has been done and shows the truth was staring them in the face and screeching into the lives of those suffering.
    There are those Politicians who work hard conducting themselves as they should looking after those of this nation who need their advocacy, but how will those others be remembered when the environment has been devastated and everything we have been told needed protecting has been lost.
    When is a fresh wind going blow through Parliaments around this nation clearing the layers of dirt and oily industry spruikers – exposing the damage already done, when will all politicians live up to their duty to protect and look after the interests of the people they represent.
    When that day comes this country will once again be a country that can truly called ‘The Lucky Country’.

  5. Michael Crawford says:

    Ministers who acquiesce in injustice done to ordinary Australians, whether by wind farms or other means, identify themselves as political thugs. By his response and inaction Frydenberg has elected to join that unsalubrious group, perhaps not wanting through honesty to cast any shadows on Malcolm’s marvelous Parisian adventure.

    It is unfortunate for the people being harmed that they are not Muslims. Were they of that group they could expect much more immediate and ardent attention to their concerns by the federal and state governments, and the government purse rapidly opened to alleviate the distress they are suffering.

    However, being individuals of a more traditional Australian background they don’t warrant that attention and Frydenberg’s view of them clearly assigns them to the category of inconvenient and discardable, and not to be allowed to interfere with his political interests.

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