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Aussie Leaders to mark Science Week with respectful Silence

Having ceased campaigning for a day as mark of respect for a soldier killed in Afghanistan, Australia's political leaders plan to extend this tradition by marking national science week, (14-22 August) with respectful silence on issues relating to science.

The government announced that the timing of the election gave a unique opportunity to show this respect for science at a time of great media attention. Suggestions that the election timing really reflected a need to avoid football finals, summer holidays, christmas parties and election campaigns for unpopular state Labor governments were dismissed as oppostion propaganda.

While the silence will mainly
focus on be ignoring climate change, it is expected to be extended to other science-related issues such as habitat loss and drought.

Calling the election at the end of science week also made it easier for government climate scientists to participate in respectful silence about their own work. Government scientists have long been prevented from comment during an election campaign. Sceptics noted that it would be hard to tell the difference, since under the Labor government restrictions on scientists had
increased from the Culture of Fear under the Howard government restrictions.

While some carping critics have suggested that the silence indicates a
lack of leadership, a spokesman for Prime Minister Gillard explained that in any case, further campaigning was not needed. There is a clear moral choice between party that will do nothing about climate change through fear of the mining industry and party that will do nothing because they are in the pocket of mining industry.

Comment on the Australian federal election is authorised by Phylis Jones, Friends of Gin and Tonic, Calgary.

Policies (of both sides) for the Australian federal election are authorised by the Australian Minerals Council, Canberra.