heraldsun.com.au 19 Dec 2012
Monday, December 31, 2012
Queensland is pretty much considered a sunshine state, i.e. where there are little clouds, and the sun shines all year around, making it favourable to generate electricity via photovoltaic cells.
Not so favourable according to the Queensland government, which has cut funding to a solar electricity generation project, on the grounds that it is too expensive.
The masses are peddled by governments that solar is the saviour to the ‘global warming’ catch phrase coined by authorities, which now has the slightly less dramatic label of ‘climate change’. Climate change incidentally can occur as a natural cyclic phenomenon not necessarily effected by man.
Photovoltaic cell specifications are somewhat a bit of mystery, which is hidden by retailers and not spelled out to the technically unaware general population.
There are many factors which contribute to the efficiency of the production of electricity from photovoltaic cells.
Manufacturers specifications rate the electricity production at the equator, during midday, in summer, at a specific temperature.
As the ambient temperature increases, so does the temperature of the cells, which lowers the efficiency of the production of electricity. Other factors that also contribute to lower efficiency include dirt and dust on the glass panels as well as lower (higher numerically) latitudes. Currently photovoltaic cell efficiency for the domestic market for electricity production is at a low 14-16%.
Reputable electronics companies now state that PV cell electricity generation for latitudes comparable to Melbourne should use the figure of 4 hours of sunlight per day as an average.
A recent visit to Melbourne indicated that the solar companies are peddling their wares at various shopping centres (malls). The picture illustrates that one can install solar power for ‘just’ $4.20 per day.
The residents in Australia’s two most populous cities Sydney and Melbourne are considered to use an average of 25kWh of electricity. Domestic electricity prices vary from off peak 17.5c/kWh to 23.5c/kWh. In an example of an average price of electricity of 20c/kWh is used the cost of using 25kWh of electricity per day is $5.00. It is also not uncommon to find households that use $3.00 of electricity per day.
Remembering that current standard priced solar solutions do not include electricity storage, therefore only the electricity generated during daylight hours can be used. For working families with children at school, electricity during daylight hours can be less that during the ‘peak’ times.
The figure of $4.20 used by solar companies does not seem to be that cheap after all, and in addition to one’s grid supplied electricity, does not seem like a cheap alternative, but rather a nice niche money making scheme.
Another win for the corporates at the expense of the uneducated masses.
Sunday, December 30, 2012
The telco has been writing to customers for the past month informing them that their data charges while they were travelling overseas had been "incorrectly calculated" and they would be given refunds.
Despite the over-charging going back to 2006 and involving tens of millions of dollars, Telstra only became aware of the issue when it conducted an audit earlier this year. It is understood the issue only affected Telstra but a spokesman for the telco blamed international carriers.
"Telstra became aware of an issue whereby some customers were charged multiple data session fees due to the way international carriers generate their data usage records," the Telstra spokesman said.
"Once we identified the issue, we put immediate steps in place to prevent further multiple charging."
Regulators including the Australian Communications and Media Authority (ACMA) and the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission (ACCC) were involved in securing refunds for affected customers.
Elise Davidson of the Australian Communciations Consumer Action Network (ACCAN) said the challenge for Telstra would be getting in touch with ex-customers who are entitled to a refund but who are no longer with the provider.
"It is surprising that the inaccurate charging was undetected for six years and staggering to think of the number of bills Telstra will have had to review in order to provide refunds to consumer and business customers." she said.
"All telecommunications customers need to be able to trust that their provider is billing them correctly."
International carriers send data files to Telstra via a data clearing house for billing, and sometimes the carriers cut long data sessions into segments. The data files passed from the carriers have an indicator for when a data file relates to a part data session or a full data session.
It is understood that some carriers left the indicator for a part data session blank and that was interpreted by Telstra as a full data session, resulting in the data session fee being applied multiple times for a single data session.
Global roaming costs for Australians are some of the highest in the world and the Telecommunications Industry Ombudsman reported this month that complaints about disputed roaming charges increased by almost 70 per cent in 2011-12 to more than 4100.
The same day the complaint figures were released, ACMA issued a new draft international mobile roaming standard that would force telcos to warn consumers of exact charges while they are roaming and provide tools to monitor and manage their usage.
"We want the carriers to significantly lift their game on the whole transparency piece to give the consumers clear messages at the right time and the right warnings about costs, and then also to give them the tools they need to actually manage those costs," ACMA member Chris Cheah told Fairfax at the time.
"We don't think it's that hard and they should be able to do it."
Communications Minister Stephen Conroy said Australian consumers were being "gouged" by telcos and slugged with "unacceptable", "outrageous" charges.
The complaints to the Telecommunications Industry Ombudsman included a consumer who bought a $129 monthly plan so she could make calls during a nine-week holiday in Europe, only to return to a bill of $75,000 bill, which subsequently increased to $147,908.
Another consumer, while on holiday in South Africa, thought his mobile phone was connected to the hotel's Wi-Fi, so he used it to connect a laptop to the internet, but ended up with a $38,000 bill.
Mobile roaming complaints to the Ombudsman, Simon Cohen, represented about $8 million in disputed charges over the past 15 months and Mr Cohen said consumers were not being fully informed about the potential for extremely high charges and how they could protect themselves.
The Australian Communications and Media Authority said an investigation was underway into whether Telstra had breached the billing provisions of the Telecommunications Consumer Protection Codes.
"The ACMA is working with the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission and Telstra to ensure an appropriate outcome for all affected customers, including possible refunds," it said in a statement.
"As this is a current investigation the ACMA will not be making further comment."
smh.com.au 21 Dec 2012
Only when caught out, companies like Telstra are forced into a corner to reassess their actions.
Under Australian consumer law, providing an incorrect bill is fraudulent, and punishable by law. No media outlet has entertained this fact.
The truth is that the 'authorities' are above the law, and will keep on committing bill fraud.
Telstra is a product of the previously government owned telecommunications utility Telecom. The Masonic brotherhood prevails and in the legal system, matters are weighted towards the members of the brotherhood.
Corporate fraud and corruption is costing the general populous billions of dollars through falsified tenders, over budget and time projects, and exorbitant wages for the corporate cronies.
This is just one minor example of politics at play.
Instagram, which is owned by Facebook, released its new conditions overnight which states it has the right to use people's photos in advertisements without the photographer's consent and without payment.
Even people who do not use Instagram could find themselves in an ad for the popular social media tool, if a friend snaps a picture of them and shares it.
''Some or all of the service may be supported by advertising revenue,'' the new conditions say.
''You agree that a business or other entity may pay us to display your username, likeness, photos (along with any associated metadata), and/or actions you take, in connection with paid or sponsored content or promotions, without any compensation to you.''
Instagram's right to use images of its users in advertisers extends to teenagers, with the new terms saying a guardian or parent has agreed to the condition in letting a teenager sign up for the account.
Privacy groups have already protested the terms, particular that there is no way to opt out without deleting your Instagram account.
In its blog, Instagram says the aim of the new conditions is to make it easier for Instagram to work with Facebook.
''This means we can do things like fight spam more effectively, detect system and reliability problems more quickly, and build better features for everyone by understanding how Instagram is used,'' it says.
heraldsun.com.au 18 Dec 2012
Although this post is being posted quite some time after the initial notification, and since then Instagram apparently back tracked its policy, it is rather a global trend to misuse and abuse user information.
It is a global policy to have information accessible to government authorities without any boundaries. This is achieved on many fronts.
Companies are set up with the support or even by government involvement to obtain user information and pass it on to wherever the information is supposed to flow to.
If individuals carry out such breaches of privacy as some companies do, then incarceration would be carried out, as in the example of Wikileaks founder Julian Assange.
The Administrative Decisions Tribunal has ordered Jones to apologise on his 2GB radio show between 8am and 8.30am any day next week over the comments he made on-air in April 2005.
It comes two months after Jones lost a lengthy legal bid to overturn the 2009 decision, which found he incited hatred, serious contempt and severe ridicule of Lebanese Muslims.
The case was taken against him by Sydney-based Lebanese-born Muslim leader, Keysar Trad.
The religious ruling, which followed a similar lecture during Friday prayers at Australia's biggest mosque, was posted on its Facebook site on Saturday morning.
The head imam at Lakemba, Sheikh Yahya Safi, had told the congregation during prayers that they should not take part in anything to do with Christmas.
Samir Dandan, the president of the Lebanese Muslim Association, which oversees the mosque, could not be reached for comment on Saturday.
theage.com.au 23 Dec 2012
There is a concerning (for Catholics) global trend of Anti-Catholicism that is not only perpetuated by other religions, but also supported by law and governments.
Allegedly in this order of the new world, it is no longer acceptable to degrade religious beliefs. This is not so when it comes to the Catholic belief system.
The authorities are not of the catholic belief system, so their actions speak louder in that they support any Anti-Catholic movements.
If the reverse was done against the Islam, there would be a (justified) war raged in Australia.
Thursday, December 27, 2012
MELBURNIANS have been urged to embrace flexible working hours by VicRoads in a bid to fix the congestion crippling our roads.As motorists battle the worst week of the year for traffic, VicRoads said it was doing all it could to reduce snarls, including providing information about travel conditions and giving priority to certain transport types.
heraldsun.com.au 19 Dec 2012
Melbourne has long been regarded as Australia's worst city for traffic jams, and long touted as one of the world's worst.
Despite this on any given day the authorities or various 'independent' sources claim that Melbourne is the world's most livable city. Another lie perpetuated by the authorities.
Traffic jams now can span 30 kilometres (18.5 miles) during peak hour on major arterials, with queues up to 5 km long in the suburbs.
Authorities have (deliberately) failed to provide an infrastructure that grows with population growth.
The populous are now blamed and punished for creating traffic jams, whereas the fault clearly lies with the authoritie's lack of infrastructure planning and expansion due to population growth.
It has been estimated that standstill traffic consumes an approximate $5 billion in fuel, a welcome bonus for the petrochemical giants but a deep cut into the wallet of the average citizen.
There is no policy to alleviate traffic congestion, even though town planning engineers were brought out from Germany to assess the traffic problems in Melbourne. Once their suggestion were given, they were shipped back to Germany on the first flight home, as the answers were not what the authorities wanted to hear.
Information obtained by corpau from within the industry indicates that the policy is to work in the rears and not for future development and catering for the growing population.
Australia is truly a backwards country when it comes to infrastructure projects.
The population is now told to adjust their lifestyle as a result of government failure.
The population is now told to adjust their lifestyle as a result of government failure.
One in 13 drivers commit an offence in St Kilda during Operation Chauffeur
A POLICE operation in St Kilda this weekend found one in 13 drivers committing an offence.Port Phillip Highway Patrol targeted Greeves St and Grey St in St Kilda on Friday and Saturday night where they detected 75 traffic offences from 1003 motorists pulled over.
Operation Chauffeur also captured 34 drink drivers, with police expressing their disappointment at the high number of offences.
A 35-year-old Bacchus Marsh man was charged with offences including drink driving, stating a false name and address, being a suspended driver, soliciting for prostitution and failing to have headlights on;
A 32-year-old Elwood man drink driving returned a reading of .189; and
A 34-year-old St Kilda man returned a reading of .165.
Epping Highway Patrol also ran Operation Face the Music at the same time.
It caught a teenage girl, who has been licensed for only three weeks, drink driving after she was pulled over in her mum’s car on High Street, Northcote, about 5.54am.
The 18-year-old Preston teen blew .087, resulting in an immediate licence suspension.
She was one of 11 drivers caught behind the wheel over the alcohol limit or with drugs in their system.
A man’s driving licence was suspended immediately after he returned a alcohol reading of .126.
He is expected to be charged on summons for drink driving and failing to have an alcohol interlock device fitted to his vehicle.
“The two operations, jointly funded by the TAC, are targeting alcohol and drug driving, speed, fatigue and driver distraction offences during the high-risk Christmas period,” Victoria Police's Acting Sergeant Jessica Rosewarne said.
Victoria Police’s Summer Stay campaign will run across Victoria through to January 9.
“Police are urging motorists to stay safe or stay off the road this summer,” Acting Sgt Rosewarne said.
heraldsun.com.au 16 Dec 2012
It Australia, the politics is to give out licenses.
Anyone with the least bit of driving skills or coordination is able to obtain a license, paying special attention to overseas migrants with little vehicular control history.
License instructors are easily bribed, and newly appointed migrant instructors give away licenses to the applicants of their country's origin.
Quite simply put trash drivers on the road turn an entire industry, from insurance companies to the automotive repair trade, which as a result turns over many millions of dollars annually at the expence of the general populous.
Honda has aired on Australian television an advertising campaign that is misleading the general populous.
In the television commercial, a green Honda Civic hatch is portrayed in city driving conditions next to other cars (and people) with parachutes, signifying wind resistance is what is slowing down all objects excluding Honda’s Civic (drag coefficient, Cd 0.30).
Pictured also is the 2012 model Toyota Camry, which according to the manufacturer has a drag coefficient (Cd) of 0.27, or or 10% better than the Honda. Incidentally Toyota’s Prius is rated at 0.25.
The claim is made that city driving in other vehicles uses more fuel compared to the Honda’s Civic, which is misleading.
In city driving it is rare to see speeds in excess of 40km/h (25 mph), where the norm is walking pace or even slower during peak periods.
It can be argued that wind resistance come into play over a certain speed, but the reality of the situation is that any alleged fuel savings made on a city trip can easily be negated by a lengthy delay at traffic lights, or by even the use of the car’s air conditioner.
This is just one example of many that corporations are misleading the masses in order to obtain sales of their products, which under Australian law is illegal.
The so called watchdogs are not in any hurry or have any vested interest to kerb false or misleading advertising by the corporate giants.
Saturday, December 22, 2012
Allan Kessing, who in 2007 was convicted of leaking reports about security at Sydney Airport to the Australian newspaper, told reporters on Friday that it was widely known the airport had problems with security.
"It is not possible, it is simply not credible to say that nobody knew there was this extent of corruption," he said.
"Anybody who has the slightest experience of this area knew there were problems.
"The fact that they haven't been acted on until now begs the question, why?"
Mr Kessing - a former Australian Customs officer - wrote two damning reports on Sydney airport security in 2003.
He was convicted four years later of having leaked the reports to media. He had faced a maximum two years jail but was instead handed a nine-month suspended sentence.
"It's important that Justice James Woods is given access to those reports."
Mr Kessing said the reports advocated a range of measures to boost security, including stricter background checks for airport staff and more scrutiny of customs officers by their superiors.
It emerged on Thursday that two customs officers and five members of the public have been charged following a joint investigation by law enforcement agencies into corruption and drug smuggling at Sydney airport.
The investigation on Thursday prompted the establishment of a reform board, headed by Justice James Wood, to ensure customs is clean.
heraldsun.com.au 21 Dec 2012
The reporting of crime is allegedly supported by the authorities (including the law enforcers - the police) which is promoted through the corporate media via advertisements encouraging the masses to report crime to 'Crimestoppers', a police hotline.
When people report crime from the corporate political or legal arenas, or other positions of authority or governance, the story is very different.
The person or persons are then accused, and they are the ones persecuted by authority and summoned by the courts, and not the people the allegations are made against.
Schapelle Corby is a classic case of a victim of crime in the corrupt drug smuggling campaign.
Corby had the be the sacrificial lamb, as there would be too many high ranking officials implicated.
The corrupt legal system is testimony to this.
Yesterday, the 27-year-old, who previously lived in Port Lincoln in South Australia, found herself in the dock of a Sydney court, accused of being a drug mule. She is charged with conspiring to import a commercial quantity of pseudoephedrine from Thailand.
Ms Hill, who spends six months of the year working in Cannes, was arrested at her grandmother’s house in Adelaide on Monday night.
She is now the centre of a case in which eight people, including Customs officers and quarantine inspectors, were arrested over the alleged importation of narcotics into Australia.
Ms Hill’s Facebook page said she graduated from Port Lincoln High School.
The court heard Hill was working as a waitress in a Five Dock hotel when she and another woman were recruited by two men - Joseph Harb and a Customs officer who cannot be named for legal reasons - and offered $10,000 to go to Thailand and bring the drug back in their luggage.
The Customs officer allegedly told the two women "everything would be ok" and assured them their suitcases would not be searched, as he would be working on the planned day of their return.
He also advised them not to get "too dressed up" as they would draw too much attention to themselves, facts tendered to the court alleged.
The court was told Harb left for Thailand on June 10, 2009 and bought 10kg of pseudoephedrine from a chemist in Phuket.
Hill and her accomplice allegedly arrived three days later and - after a six-day stay - arrived home with the drugs hidden in their suitcases.
Another Customs officer, Paul Katralias, who was charged last August with drug offences, was allegedly also recruited and paid $5000 cash and human growth hormone worth about $1800 to turn a blind eye and not search the women at the airport.
But Katralias was allegedly diverted to other duties on the day the women returned and did not facilitate their passage through the customs area.
The court heard the Customs officer, who was later to become Hill's boyfriend, was arrested on Monday and charged over his role in the drug importation. Hill, who spends six months of the year working in Cannes, was arrested at her grandmother's Adelaide home on Monday night.
She was extradited to Sydney to face the charges yesterday. Defence barrister Wayne Baffsky told the court there was no proof the pseudoephedrine was intended to be used in the manufacture of drugs.
"It's a weak case at one end, and hopeless at the other," Mr Baffsky said.
He said the drugs had not been seized by police and had allegedly been onsold by Harb, due to be sentenced on January 16 for his role in the alleged importation.
Wearing a leather jacket and looking pale faced, Hill sobbed in the dock as magistrate Beverley Schurr agreed the prosecution did not have a strong case, and granted her conditional bail.
Byrnes, an acquaintance of Hill, sat in the back of the court during the bail application. He attempted to pay Hill's bail with $20,000 cash but was told by court staff he needed a cheque.
"I think everyone is entitled to the presumption of innocence until proven guilty," Byrnes said after being asked why he had posted Hill's bail.
"She is one of those very holistic, natural, very honest people. A kind and gentle person. To suggest she has anything to do with this is completely out of character for the person I have come to know."
In the end, Byrnes could not post bail for Hill after the prosecution objected to his involvement, saying his criminal history did not make him an acceptable person.
Hill's friend Shani Moffatt, who heads a PR firm, was able to post the surety and bail was granted.
Hill emerged from the holding cells and said she was grateful to the good friends who were supporting her.
"I'll definitely be fighting the charges," she said. Hill will reappear in court on February 27.
The group of up to 20 officials are suspected to be involved in either serious misconduct or corrupt dealings, Fairfax media reported on Thursday.
The activity ranges from criminal association and leaking information to drug trafficking and bribery.
According to the report, airport baggage handlers are also involved, with the group operating since at least 2009.
The are suspected to have imported pseudoephedrine, cocaine, steroids and possibly even weapons.
When media reports surfaced on Wednesday of allegations that up to 30 custom officials were involved in drug importations, a spokesman for the Australian Federal Police (AFP) refused to comment.
He told AAP that a press conference was set to be held in Sydney on Thursday.
According to Fairfax, customs documents from dating back to 2007 outlined numerous warnings that the body lacked the resources to detect corruption and that its anti-corruption framework was "outdated".
Acting customs CEO Mike Pezzullo told Fairfax that "more needs to be done".
news.com.au 20 Dec 2012
It is not only Sydney Airport where the organised crime syndicate operates from.
Australia's major airports are monitored by the drug syndicate, which has been operational for decades.
The corporate media give the impression that is is only just been happening recently.
Corrupt personnel inform their interstate counterparts of incoming goods which are then distributed via the appropriate channels.
The drug airport smuggling network, which also includes police as well as high ranking officials, numbers staff in the hundreds and not tens.
Another blind eye turned by the corrupt authorities.
Thursday, December 20, 2012
Australia’s telecommunications industry is technically a monopoly held to ransom by Telstra.
Even though other companies are allowed to enter the market, e.g. SingTel (Optus), Vodafone, etc their operations are ultimately stifled by (the previously government owned Telecom), Telstra, which still functions on the old government mentality.
As Telstra’s profits soar over $6 billion dollars annually, telecommunications service decreases across the board by blame put on the public for using, for example wireless broadband services.
Companies are rather reluctant to reinvest into the infrastructure, as this takes away the dollars from profits, but rather are on the road to oversubscribing customers, resulting in severe degradation of services.
Vodafone is no stranger to this kind of business model. Rather than investing in tower structure upgrades and expansion Vodafone neglected much essential upgrades which resulted in customers in the hundreds leaving every day.
In disaster recovery mode, Vodafone then embarked on an aggressive marketing campaign to inform the masses that there is a huge upgrade in place, in order to win back customers.
The road to recovery is a slow process, as Australia’s two largest telecommunications companies Telstra and Optus are significantly ahead of tower placement and population coverage.
Companies are just about willing to do anything in order to obtain sales, which includes breaking the law.
Misleading customers or false advertising or incorrect product placement or specification claims are against Australian laws, which can result in (steep?) fines.
Prior to the expiry of a contract, a sales team is given the heads up to call the customer in order to obtain another locked in contract, usually for two years. The sales team then offers the customer a deal that will entice them to continue with the service provider. These deals may not be available to the ‘off the street’ customer.
Vodafone have been caught out providing false information in order to obtain a sale.
The manner in which it is done is as follows.
In order to keep the customer locked into another contract (for 2 years), the hot ticket item currently is the iPhone 5, Vodafone stated that they will be able to provide the handset to customers for $7 per month. This was confirmed by Vodafone staff on two separate occasions. Once the customer decided to take the offer, which was still valid and proceeded to realise the agreement, Vodafone then falsely stated that no such offer was given, and no such record was ever taken. Vodafone records all conversations with customers (for quality and assurance purposes only).
The authorities whether it be the Telecoms Industry Ombudsman (TIO) or the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission) are biased (some say spineless) government institutions that generally favour corporate enterprise. There may be a win for Mr. Joe Average in terms of annulling a service contract to the telco, for poor service, which incidentally is a miniscule financial transaction, but when it comes the large scale transactions the corruption can be seen from towers away.
Optus was only fined $2 million for providing false information in order to obtain many more dollars in sales. A penalty well worth it.
An example of the Masonic brethren looking after their ‘kind’.