Pisa Poor & Paris Pettifogging

Be patient, this may look like another pathetic postulate, and peculiar plethora of alliteration, but the latter is an important KPI here in the over-heated KC newsroom, and an essential element of our brand schtick.  

Moreover there may indeed be a connection between the latest, poor PISA results for Australia, and our recalcitrance in the Madrid climate talks (thanks to SMH 10 Dec Editorial for that part of our alliterative caption). 

Please explain, as Pauline famously demanded!

Recent PISA (Programme for International Student Assessment) results for Australian kids showed  significant declines in reading, maths and science, with the worst drop in maths. Numeracy and literacy have gone backwards!

Now, in the tricky history of negotiating global emission reductions, you may have noticed that Australia, along with Russia, was the trickiest of all back in Kyoto. Instead of reducing emissions we agreed to increase them, and guess what, we managed to exceed that target!

Later on Australia decided to claim ‘carry over credits’ of that excess to meet its new (unambitious) Paris targets, and now we’re trying it on again in Madrid. Mate, it’s a rort and a dodgy accounting fiddle. Hopefully Madrid will knock it on the head in the new rules.

Have low literacy and numeracy skills handicapped our current political leaders? Does it explain their lapse into predatory practices and pettifogging? Or are they just con-artists and scammers, in that uninterrupted Australian tradition from convict days to today?

Opera House


  1. Have low literacy and numeracy handicapped some pollies? Like in Madrid? Or are they sometimes just inconvenient impediments to doing whatever yous$ want$……

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