An unintimidated academic

John Buchanan may live in fear of a Joe Hockey put-down. But not all academics are so shy of taking on politicians. Take Roger Short, a (gasp) Professorial Fellow at the University of Melbourne. According to The Australian, this week he told undergraduate students that:

Australia’s population will increase (and global warming worsen), if Peter Costello gets in,” he said on Tuesday.

“The man’s a bloody idiot.” …

“We’re going to see massive growth in the world’s two most affluent and effluent nations (the US and Australia) on a per capita basis.”

China was unfairly singled out in the debate; its one-child law was the “most exciting policy” to confront climate change.

“Point the fingers of blame at the USA and – as a silly little me-too copycat – Australia.” ..

“It makes me want to tear up my Australian passport. We are a disgraceful country.”

In any case, climate change would redraw the map as rising sea levels flooded many of Indonesia’s islands, he said. “With thousands of islands there are thousands of boats and by the end of this century I think Australia will be part of Indonesia.”

Students might have hoped for some scientific explanation when Professor Short came to give a lecture. After all, they can hear climate change rants at much lower cost from their local Green candidates.