Sink or swim?   28/2/2006

At last, Howard has come out and repeated unequivocally what rationalists have been tossing up to hysterics for years:
JOHN Howard says the refugees he falsely accused of throwing their children in the sea deserve no personal apology because they did the next worst thing – “they irresponsibly sank the damn boat, which put their children in the water”.

I’ve put this point several times to newspaper letters columns in clear, dispassionate terms for nil response. That it was so baldly ignored led me to doubt whether I indeed had all the facts.
The rejection of an alternative view surprised given that a day hardly passes without a broadsheet letters page carrying seething Howard-hating rhetoric on “kids overboard”.
In contrast today’s letters column in The Australian contains two replies to Howard’s claim, reported yesterday, both endorsing his claims. The conspiciously compassionate are for once absent. One letter says refugee ship sinking occurred a number of times and is referred to in Paul Sheehan’s The Electronic Whorehouse (Another must-get).
The other letter sets out to dispel the myth that the Government’s “kids overboard” since-discredited announcement was a stunt pulled on the eve of the election. As the writer says, it blew up a month earlier and is used only now by the left as an excuse for losing yet another election.
The compassionate elites miss the major point about why the misinformation that was the the “kids thrown overboard” scandal didn’t resonate with the average voter. Those average joes and josephines who care about such things also knew about the ships getting sunk beneath the kids and like anyone with a grain of common sense, couldn’t see a lot of difference between either action.

However, a news column in The Australian today tries to fog Howard’s entirely plausible assertion. Itreports a response from “sources” who said it was impossible to be certain about the cause of the sinking of the vessel. So there’s doubt now, uncertainty.
What is known from testimony to a senate investigation is that the ship was in poor condition, taking water and some on board had damaged the vessel.
Australian Navy personnel had noted that the steering and engine had been damaged and planking had been removed from the forward part of the hull. The vessel sunk within hours.
So, come on Howard-haters — what’s the moral difference between throwing kids overboard or sinking the ship from under them?
In fact with my limited knowledge of such matters, I’d think the kids would be safer to be thrown clear of the vessel, rather than be at risk of getting sucked down as it sinks.


Illegals’ kids were in this position


because adults on board had successfully attempted to sink the boat they were on.
I repeat, what is the moral difference between this and throwing them overboard from the sinking boat?

From a socialist’s web site:

Under control of the Adelaide’s crew, SIEV 4 was steered back into international waters and warned not to re-enter Australia’s contiguous zone. After the boarding party left, the boat’s engine was apparently disabled by passengers in a final, desperate attempt to pressure the Adelaide into picking them up. In line with its obligations under the International Law of the Sea, the Adelaide responded to SIEV 4’s distress signal and took the boat in tow. When SIEV 4 sank the next day, October 8, the Adelaide’s crew jumped into the water and rescued all the passengers.

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Nanny date   27/2/2006

Story of the day in The Australian. Oddly, they didn’t list it on their weird news web page. Could someone be wary of how the yarn goes down in certain quarters?

A Sudanese man has been forced to take a goat as his “wife”, after he was caught having sex with the animal.
The goat’s owner, Mr Alifi, said he surprised the man with his goat and took him to a council of elders.
They ordered the man, Mr Tombe, to pay a dowry of 15,000 Sudanese dinars ($50) to Mr Alifi.

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Tassie travels   

Our week in Tasmania was pretty much uneventful, therefore most enjoyable. It’s been a hectic few months with the old man enduring some health and care crises, constant changes on the workplace front and the young fella celebrating his 21st birthday.
So a few days of just relaxation and sightseeing in mainly balmy summer weather was just what we needed.
We stayed in an apartment just up from the beach in Sandy Bay, a 20-minute walk from central Hobart. This stroll takes you through the hilly, narrow, winding streets of Battery Point, the city’s oldest settled area. The suburb is chock-full of steep-roofed stone and timber cottages and stately residences from the early 1800s with stunning views down to the Derwent estuary. We spent the best part of a day wandering through the historic streets, also taking in the restored docklands service areas of Salamanca Place and Elizabeth Street Pier.
Day trips took us through the D’Entrecasteaux Channel region to Huonville, south of Hobart; to the historic town of Richmond and on to the midlands; and up the east coast to the Freycinet Peninsula and the exquisite Wineglass Bay.

Wineglass Bay.

The rest of the time we just kicked back and let a few pounds attach to carcasses. Dining in Tassie, particularly the seafood, is fantastic. Freshness and variety seem the hallmark of the island’s food experience.
But not all is wondrous in the Apple State, as you’d expect in a place where Greens have their strongest political hold nationally.
One afternoon, the beloved and I chose to spend a couple of hours apart and I headed off in search of a hostelry to test the local brews and maybe have a punt on the neddies.
Strange, the first two bars I visited had CLOSED signs on their doors. Their bottle shops were functioning but the taprooms were tomb-like. This, in a well-to-do area that attracted much of the tourist trade, seemed decidedly odd.
I eventually discoved the splendidly branded Dr Syntax Hotel (more to add to my must-read list), which boasted a lively clientele, a wide range of lagers and the facilities for a wager on the gallops.
Resisting the smart-arsed urge to order a split of infinitives or “apotsa’free” beer, I settled down with the Mercury’s form guide, a sparkling jar of Jimmy Boag’s best and lit up the first Stuyvo in two days.
I hadn’t got to the third starter in the next race when the barkeep bellowed: “Mate, what the hell do you think you’re doing?!!!”
Barely keeping the noggin from spinning into orbit, I faced his angry inquiry.
“Smoking’s not allowed in Tasmanian pubs, don’t you know. Take it outside.”
So out I went, smouldering 10 times more intensely than the butt.
It was no good, the mood was wrecked, so I downed the pot and explained to the barman I was a Victorian and such bans had not yet arrived in my home state. Although, I remarked, I can see the outcome when they do: one bar operating where once were three and disgruntled customers hitting the pavement after one beer instead of half a dozen.
Yet the dunnies will still house containers for the disposal of heroin-shooting syringes.
Below is a pic from the Tassie trip. Click on image for enlargement. More pix, including Australia’s oldest bridge (1823) at Richmond, a mint condition Holden FX and the beach at Wineglass Bay are here.

Streetscape, Battery Point:

tastrip 004.jpg

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Lie back and think of England   19/2/2006

Given that Britons are governed by the most inept, cowardly, politically correct administration in their once-proud nation’s history, this situation will only worsen.
Four out of 10 British Muslims want sharia law introduced into parts of the country, a survey reveals today.
The ICM opinion poll also indicates that a fifth have sympathy with the “feelings and motives” of the suicide bombers who attacked London last July 7, killing 52 people, although 99 per cent thought the bombers were wrong to carry out the atrocity.
Overall, the findings depict a Muslim community becoming more radical and feeling more alienated from mainstream society, even though 91 per cent still say they feel loyal to Britain.

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For those who fancy a little conspiracy with their theories, here’s another account of what happened to those weapons of mass destruction.

Shaw was initially tapped to make an inventory of Saddam’s conventional weapons stockpiles, based on intelligence estimates of arms deals he had concluded with the former Soviet Union, China and France.
He estimated that Saddam had amassed 100 million tons of munitions –- roughly 60 percent of the entire U.S. arsenal. “The origins of these weapons were Russian, Chinese and French in declining order of magnitude, with the Russians holding the lion’s share and the Chinese just edging out the French for second place.”

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Aaah, that’s better   

Cafe culture irks me greatly. All these 30-something latte wankers with their short-blacks, double caffs, city roasts, blah, blah, carrying on as if bean juice is something exclusively X-generational. They’re the same with child-bearing and raising; they think they friggin’ invented it.
I mean, I had my espresso, cappucino and short black thrills in the 60s and 70s when the new wave of southern European migrants made espresso bars a landmark in city, inner suburban and regional city main streets.
S’nice enough, but my preferred non-alco beverage has always been tea. Hot, strong and black. So while my erstwhile teenage pals impersonated Maynard B. Crebs with bitter black java, I reverted to the old cuppa cha. Of course, old Guisep of the 60s made a point of brewing a fine pot of tea, seeing that more than half his Australian-born customers — the older half — didn’t quite fancy the brew from that noisy steam-blasting machine in the corner. Their idea of coffee was one teaspoon with a coupla sugars.
These days, you’d search wide for such a choice between the major non-alcoholic beverages. Ordering tea at one of these ubiquitous coffee bars is like barracking for Richmond: an act destined for humiliation and disappointment. The black-aproned spikey-haired git will disdainfully heave a teabag into either a tiny cup or an oversized mug and give it a soaking with tepid water. He’ll wave at some plastic stirrers, some packaged sugar and charge you $5. Oh, and cop the disdain if you want milk with that.
So, during our travels last week, utter delight greeted our discovery of a cafe that actually served tea in a style that would have pleased Lipton. That it was a vast distance from inner-urbia added to the pleasure.
First, we were given a choice of various blends to enjoy with exquisite home-made cakes and snacks.
Then, when the food was at the table, along came the tea. It deserved a fanfare. We each had our own teapot capable of filling two average-sized cups. Each pot had two teabags of our choice and the water was straight from a boiling kettle.
But the cups were every brew-sipster’s fantasy: virtually bowls with handles, they contained about half a pint of steaming, delicious tea.
The company was great too, without being intrusive. Friendly staff, chatty travellers, farmers and wives in town for the shops and bookworms burrowing into a vast array of secondhand novels.
Without doubt, it was the finest pause in a journey I’ve experienced in memory.
So travellers west on the Hamilton Highway, do not fail to stop at the Swaggie’s Rest Cafe at Lismore. You will not regret it. Oh, and if you’re one of those, they serve coffee too. From a machine.

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Cast irony   

I defy anyone reading this report aloud not to drop into an Indglish “Oh my goodness gracious” accent.
It’s Saumya Balsari’s hilarious take on director T Rajeevnath’s reported intention of casting Paris Hilton as Mother Teresa in his forthcoming film.

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Strait away   

The beloved and I are off to Tassie tomorrow for a few days relaxation overlooking the beach at Sandy Bay. Anyone got any recommendations on sights and experiences around Hobart and the south-east?

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Boo-hoo, why wasn’t I told?   17/2/2006

Media reaction to Dick Cheney accidentally shooting his pal exposes the pathetic state of news reporting today. The mainstream press idiots’ ineptitude is only compounded by the racket they’re making.
Washington — The White House was bombarded with questions on Monday about why it failed to go public with news that Vice- President Dick Cheney shot a fellow quail hunter until a day after the incident.
The victim, Mr Harry Whittington, 78, took pellets in his cheek, neck and chest when Mr Cheney fired his shotgun while aiming for a bird during a hunt in southern Texas on Saturday. He is in a stable condition at a Corpus Christi hospital.
The incident was not reported publicly by the Vice- President’s office until Sunday afternoon and then only after an account provided by the ranch’s owner appeared on a local newspaper website.
In a testy exchange with reporters on Monday, White House spokesman Scott McClellan faced dozens of questions about the propriety of a private citizen making public a shooting incident involving the Vice-President.

Hullo! He is a heartbeat away from the most powerful position in the world and you, the world’s most powerful media, aren’t keeping an around-the-clock watch?
Oh, you’re waiting for some important diss-Bush documents to come down the wire? You’ve got some vital quotes on international affairs by some dumb mummer who’s up for an Oscar?
I mean, how self-obsessed are these media bums? They miss the real, non-spin, news story of the year and it’s the White House’s fault? What sheer gall!
Well, things are gonna be different round our office, I tell you:
“No chief, I didn’t get the story on graft in the mayor’s office. Why? Well the bastards didn’t put out a press release announcing it, that’s why!”
There’s comfort in knowing Cheney will be pissing himself laughing at these jumped-up, self-important, what’d he call ‘em, assholes.

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Late arrival   

We’ve been down the coast at Port Fairy for a few days where we were joined by a Weight-Watchers dropout.


A DEAD whale washed up on rocks west of Port Fairy yesterday afternoon after being spotted by surfers at a popular surfing beach earlier in the day.
The Department of Sustainability and Environment confirmed the eight to nine-metre sperm whale was located floating 500m off Port Fairy’s south coast and was drifting in a westerly direction before becoming snagged on basalt rocks.

The Department of Sustainability — which obviously failed its initial mission with this Moby Dick — was reported on radio yesterday as ready to mount an inquiry into its death.
Fewgawdazkes, it’s an animal. They die. I better tell the Dept of Sus about the rigid kangaroo beside the road outside Inverleigh.
We went looking for the whale yesterday and saw it from about 200 metres washed up on the ocean side of a surf-lashed reef.
Teachers from the nearby Port Fairy Primary School had taken their morality-fascinated little charges out to gawk at the defunct leviathan. The little ghouls joyfully described how sharks were nibbling at it and speculated that the noahs would get an appetite for bodies close to shore and how detested big brothers were henceforth to be encouraged to surf in that area. Kids are marvellous in their own natural environment. And this is one spectacular environment of sweeping beaches, treacherous black reefs, thunderous surf and ominous denizens. Thus, the kids’ pleasure under the sun in this wondrous landscape, instead of sweating in the schoolroom, was palpable. And as kids have always done, they joke about what they hold in awe. The teachers were terrific, too. Seemed the only time they reined in their pupils was when they left the beach to return along the road to school.

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Your taxes at work for you   13/2/2006

Here’s a way to provide balance to publicly-funded broadcasting. And make some money on the side.
SBS Insight wants to know what you think
A Cast Of Thousands is contracted to SBS INSIGHT to provide studio audience members for the weekly TV forums, hosted by Jenny Brockie. INSIGHT will commence recording the forums from Tuesday February 7. They record usually in the evenings, with audience members required to arrive at the studio by 6.45pm. They are generally recorded in Sydney and Melbourne, but other locations are possible.
If you would like to join the panel for possible selection, please click here to complete a short form. This will allow us to choose the most appropriate potential participants for each program. There will be 26 programs during the year, and you could be chosen for any of them. We do provide $50 cash for each member of the audience, to help you get to the studio and home.
Kirsty de Vallance
Managing Director
A Cast of Thousands
P.S. If you have any friends who might be interested, please pass this message and the link to the questionnaire on to them.

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Everywhere man   10/2/2006

Stephen Mayne in Crikey’s free section makes a few pertinent points about Eddie Everywhere.

Amid the flood of interviews that Eddie McGuire has done over the past 24 hours, one line in the Herald Sun jumped out: “I don’t have to worry about conflict of interest any more, do I?”
The lad still doesn’t get it. The conflict of being Collingwood President while calling Collingwood games on Channel Nine and hosting The Footy Show was always inappropriate – but at least it was totally open for public scrutiny. By only giving up his on-air roles to become Nine’s CEO, if anything his conflicts get bigger.
By staying on as Collingwood president and as a director of Melbourne Major Events, Eddie will have huge conflicts as the all-powerful CEO of Channel Nine. AFL presidents are privy to confidential information and once the rights go to Ten and Seven next year, Eddie will be furnished with information that the CEO of a rival network should not see.
Similarly, Eddie now finds himself right inside the Foxtel camp ahead of what will be a very tough negotiation with Seven and Ten. AFL presidents often comment about the timing and appropriateness of the AFL draw and television broadcast arrangements on free-to-air and pay-TV. Will Eddie complain if Foxtel secures loads of Collingwood games ahead of Seven or Ten?
The brutal truth is that Eddie’s new role will be to stymie the growth of AFL in Brisbane and Sydney, given Nine’s rock solid commitment to rugby league. There is an inherent conflict in his roles of promoting AFL at Collingwood and promoting rugby league at Nine. He should resign as Collingwood president at the end of this season.
Similarly, Melbourne Major Events is all about securing big events for Melbourne, events which are often televised. As CEO of Nine, Eddie will have an unfair advantage over his rivals in knowing what’s on the shopping list. Speaking of which, new MME chairman and News Corp director Rod Eddington has been deluding himself in this week’s Herald Sun exclusives, claiming he’s chasing the soccer World Cup.
I was good mates with Eddie’s little sister Bridget for a decade until 1998 and even stayed with the McGuire family in Scotland for a few days in 1996. Bridget explained to her delightful but poor cousins, aunts and uncles that television was a brutal industry and Eddie’s approach was to “make hay while the sun shines”.
Eddie’s brother Frank has certainly cashed in on his brother’s fame and connections through some of the production work he’s done for Channel Nine and Bridget has been successful in Channel Nine’s advertising department for a decade, after Eddie first helped her get in the door.
All of sudden, Eddie could start sending much more work to Frank and give his sister Bridget a big promotion or annual bonus. With all this new power, it’s these sorts of under-the-surface conflicts that he’ll have to watch and past behaviour suggests the warning lights should already be flashing.
The same applies to his huge network of mates, many of whom would love to get in the door at Channel Nine. Will Eddie get on the phone and start interfering with A Current Affair and Sunday if a mate is in the news. Steve Vizard and Brad Cooper are two very close mates who spring to mind.

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Dack hand   

Tadhg Kennelly’s an Irish wag so I’m confident tongue was firmly lodged in cheek when he expressed ‘regrets’ for playing the fool in front of Catholic girls.

SWANS star Tadhg Kennelly was the first to admit that dacking a teammate in front of nearly 400 Catholic high school girls in Wollongong yesterday was the dumbest thing he’d ever done.
Kennelly will attend St Mary’s Star of the Sea College today to apologise again to the school and the students for his inappropriate prank.
Kennelly dacked teammate Lewis Roberts-Thomson in front of the school girls from Years 7 to 12 during a question and answer session yesterday.
“It’s probably the dumbest thing I’ve ever done,” Kennelly said. “We’d been swimming earlier so I knew LRT (Roberts-Thomson) had his speedos on, but there’s no excuse for it.

Yes, there is an excuse Tadhg: the best of the girls would have cracked right up and probably think you’re a likeable eejit; especially seeing LRT is a proddy son of the land who used to play rugby for the old school tie.
This is light years from the gang sex and dirty phone talk associated with other sports shamesters. Hopefully, the club’s apologies are just advance positioning in case commentators and opportunists with the sense of humour of islamo-nutzis visit the incident.

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From the Labor cesspool   9/2/2006

Andrew Landeryou has made astonishing claims in his perpetual war against the ALP Left and Fairfax.
Landers says an accusation published by The Age from a Labor lefty that shifty Premier Bracks and his buddies bribed the lefty to shift camps is bunkum. Landeryou, who kicks with the right foot, has demanded the head of The Age reporter who broke the yarn.
Whatever, there’s ferocious faction feuding going on in Victorian Labor and the blood’s flowing freely from the comrades here in Geelong as well as in Melbourne’s northern suburbs and former Leader Simon Crean’s seat of Hotham.
Local Government Minister Candy Broad has mounted an inquiry into donations by developers to Geelong councillors. The councillors include David Saunderson, who is the local Labor gofer for son of privilege, rightwing powerbroker and federal parliamentry aspirant Richard Marles.

From today’s Geelong Advertiser under the heading, TRUTH OR JAIL:
Local Government Minister Candy Broad appointed the municipal inspector on Tuesday. Mr Whelan will hand his findings to Ms Broad, who will decide how the report will be dealt with.
The move follows revelations that Geelong businessmen Frank Costa, Glynn Harvey, Robert Riordan and Sean Blood and company Lascorp donated money for election campaigns of several councillors.
Mr Whelan has the power not only to call councillors and officers before him, but also business people who funded the campaigns.
Mr Whelan’s investigation includes whether councillors made proper disclosures of campaign gifts in accordance with the Act and any other apparent breaches.

Landeryou’s a player and an unapologetic Marles’ supporter but his oil is usually sound if you can stand the truth about the grubs on all sides in Victorian Labor.
Kim Beasley senior was never so correct as when he declared that the Australian Labor Party had once been run by the cream of the working class, but had since been hijacked by the dregs of the middle class.

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Smart boss, good sign   8/2/2006

An old saying in business has it that a successful boss must know more than his best worker. My ultimate boss is 74, employs tens of thousands and appears to clearly personify that adage.
Never thought much about such a remote figure, but whatever feelings I have now, admiration’s in the leading bunch. I know 20-something-year-old geeks with off-the-scale IQs who couldn’t blow wind up him for techno-smarts.

From The Bulletin:

ROBERTS: The age of video downloads seems to have arrived with surprising abruptness. Were you and fellow media moguls caught flat-footed?
MURDOCH: Most newspaper companies still have their heads in the sand, but other media companies are aggressive. And there are completely new start-up companies. There is a great pace of development, which is very exciting. At News Corp., we have been developing online extensions of traditional media for the last few years. What’s happened now? We’re seeing the spread of broadband. In the whole world today, only 190 million homes can receive broadband. That’s going to go up in the next 10 to 20 years to at least 3 billion homes. We’re just now at the very beginning of the shift to digital media.
ROBERTS: Millions of videos, some from GE’s NBC and Disney’s ABC, are being downloaded onto iPods. Why aren’t your Fox shows on it?
MURDOCH: We’re not knocked out by iPod so far. We’ve talked to them, to Google and others. But how many people really want to get video on a tiny screen when they already have TiVo or a similar service from their cable company or DirecTV? How many will want to pay $1.99 on Monday morning if they missed “Desperate Housewives” the night before? What’s been announced so far with iPod and Disney and NBC is very small-time at the moment.
ROBERTS: So you’re missing out on downloads?
MURDOCH: There are so many things you can do, particularly in other parts of the world, where mobile-telephone service is a lot more developed. We’re downloading minute segments – original “mobisodes” – of the Fox hit “24.” Soon we’ll be downloading the funniest joke of the week in “Family Guy.” People will be sitting in bars and holding up their phones and laughing. It’ll be a pretty serious piece of revenue for us someday, probably. We’ll be into all these things, some quite original and some of what others are doing.

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That must hurt   

Here’s some movie news you’re unlikely to receive from the Australian media, fixated as it is with Hollywood losers.

Tony Curtis Blasts ‘Brokeback Mountain’

The current batch of Oscar nominations underscores the notion that now more than ever Hollywood is out of touch with America.
The simple fact that twice as many people have seen the documentary “March of the Penguins” than have seen any of the five nominations for Best Picture (“Brokeback Mountain,” “Crash,” “Capote,” “Munich” and “Good Night, and Good Luck”) drives the point home.
The combined audience total for all of the Best Picture nominations is less than the number of moviegoers who flocked to see “The Chronicles of Narnia: The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe.”
Another indication of the growing chasm between Hollywood and the rest of the universe is the scarcity of bona fide movie stars; those who enjoy that special combination of box office success and larger-than-life personas.
Long associated with the term “movie star” is the name of Jamie Lee Curtis’s dad, Tony Curtis.
Tony recently told Fox News’s Bill McCuddy that he hadn’t yet seen “Brokeback Mountain” and had no intention of doing so. He claims that other Academy members feel similarly.
“This picture is not as important as we make it. It’s nothing unique. The only thing unique about it is they put it on the screen. And they make ‘em [gay] cowboys.”
Curtis reminded folks that his contemporaries wouldn’t have cared for the highly acclaimed Best Picture nominee. “Howard Hughes and John Wayne wouldn’t like it,” Curtis said.
Curtis’s favorite flick of 2005 is one that, judging by the box office take, a lot of Americans would place on their list as well: “Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire.”
The Left Coast Report points out that while Tony Curtis and Jack Lemmon may have donned women’s clothing for their film roles, at least they shaved their legs for the part.

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Scientific sacrifice? Er, no   

The dread of the howler; every headline writer picks up the paper next day with this demon lurking. What seemed pithy, attention-grabbing and most importantly, fitting the allocated space, can take on a whole new unintended meaning in print.
That’s what has greeted some poor sod at The Australian today. Seems the online editor has spared further shame by not placing the Page 3 lead on the internet national news page.
Nevertheless, posterity must be served.
Here is the headline that appears above a story on acclaimed scientist Ian Frazer’s trials on a cure for genital warts:

Frazer to
take on

No, Professor Frazer is not about to imitate those Nobel laureates who infected themselves with stomach ulcer-causing bacteria.

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Blind Freddy could see this   5/2/2006

Fairfax lefty scribblers think their readers share their stupidity.
Gabriella Coslovich does a little puff piece for a mob of unfunny Melbourne comedians — is there any other type? — staging a hate-Howard knees-up this afternoon. No talk of solidarity with their jihad-threatened fellow-comics in Denmark.
But then some speech is freer than others.
Anyway, the question for today: Is Coslovich just a moron with a monitor, or is she lying by omission?

The history of sedition laws teaches us that it doesn’t take much to prompt a prosecution if the times are conducive to such measures. Zifcak cites the example of William Burns, editor of Sydney newspaper The Tribune in the early 1950s, when Australia was involved in the Korean War. Burns wrote: “Not one man, not one plane, not one ship, not one gun for the imperialist war in Korea.” He was sentenced to nine months’ jail for his troubles.

What Coslovich omits to tell her readers is that The Tribune was the official newspaper of the Communist Party of Australia and when Burns wrote his inflammatory words, Australia was about to go to war with the communist North Koreans and Chinese. On the day Burns was charged, Britain made a commitment to send in troops.
I mean, we all omit the occasional minor details from our scrawlings. But this is hardly a trifle and I’m sure will cause her editor much grief in the mail as well as the dropping of more subscriptions.

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Anti-humourists   4/2/2006

A supposedly learned westerner would have to reach right up to the weird-reasoning hat box to defend those islamo-nutzis who are throwing wobblies over the Allah cartoons.
Stewart Lee, Jerry Springer’s writer, who created an episode, The Opera, that upset many Christian viewers, dons a homburg with a ‘kick the living shit out of me” sign on its brim.
In Jerry Springer – The Opera, we were looking for a story that could be commonly understood in a Christian context. In the West, Christianity relinquished the right to be protective of its icons the day Virgin Mary snow globes were put up for sale at the Vatican. According to Lee’s reasoning, we must protect the icon of those who would cut infidels’ throats on TV and who would encourage their children to undergo suicide attacks against innocents.

Stewart Lee is a goose.

And so’s this blogger. I confused Springer with Seinfeld and made a stupid comment about nothing in particular. Thanks to George Bissett for politely pointing out my stupid blunder.

Islamic commentator Munira Mirza makes Lee look even stupider, if that’s possible:

British newspapers should publish the images. Muslims should be able to see them and judge them for themselves, that’s why we have freedom of speech.
Many Muslims want the same freedoms as everyone else to debate, criticise and challenge their religion.
They want to be able to say: “Hey we’re not children, we can handle criticism, we don’t need special protection – we’re equal.”
Many don’t want to be treated as a special group, seen as worthy of more protection from criticism than other groups because of their apparent victim status.

“Understand our ignorance,” prays Dr Lam Akol, the Sudanese foreign minister

In the Third World they hardly separate between what is a journalist and what is the Danish government’s point of view.
Once a Danish paper has published something then it is concluded that this is the opinion of everybody in Denmark. So that is the kind of feeling that should have been understood from the beginning.

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Once wore wahine-wear   3/2/2006

New Zealand filmmaker Lee Tamahori, who directed the James Bond movie “Die Another Day,” as well as the Kiwi blood and guts classic “Once Were Warriors” has been arrested in a Hollywood prostitution sting while dressed in drag.

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