Fine company   30/3/2007

A brisk, gusty wind huffed across the bay yesterday, producing probably the coldest day in these parts this year. Nevertheless, I enjoyed the warm company of Sydney visitor Adrian Neylan and his brother Julien over a few beers at The Wharf Shed. Any Mexicans visiting Sydney and needing a guide should contact taxi driver Adrian at his highly readable blog, Man of Lettuce.

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Special guest   29/3/2007

I’m off for a bite and beer with famous Sydney cabbie Adrian Neylan, aka Man of Lettuce, who blogs here.
Adrian is visiting relatives in the Geelong area.

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Selective indignation   

OK, OK, Cuban dissident Osvaldo Paya has convinced me that the prison at Guantanamo is a hellhole.
Paya writes that inmates at Guantanamo must endure “concentration camp food and the lack of water, the poor hygiene and the overcrowding, and the inhumane conditions and treatment . . .”.
He says the health of inmates has deteriorated, and many will suffer the consequences for life. Some have been in jail for more than 10 years. “The world should know that they were jailed for peacefully defending and promoting human rights. Many were unofficial, independent journalists who broadcast their opinions and criticisms in a transparent manner. Others participated in projects to promote and defend human rights and labor union rights. Still others participated in civic organisations that pursued peaceful changes toward democracy.”
The inmates don’t sound much like widdle Davy “Fatty” Hicks, do they?
No, Paya is referring to the other prison in Guantanamo, the one in which Castro and his thugs lock up their political opponents.
Such brutality to progressives should get all the bleeding hearts, doctors’ wives, lefty lawyers and red flag ratbags out in the street protesting, shouldn’t it? Yeah, and here’s your boarding pass for Porcine Airlines.
The left are outraged by man’s inhumanity to man only when they convince themselves that blame can be sheeted home to the US or its western liberal democratic allies.
Dumb hypocrites. It must be embarrassing to be them.

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Yuk-yuk   28/3/2007

OK, time for a little levity. Wallace Craig passes on this report from the grease monkeys’ pit:

A few days ago I was having some work done at my local garage. A blonde came
in and asked for a seven-hundred-ten. We all looked at each other and
another customer asked, “What is a seven-hundred-ten?”
She replied, “You know, the little piece in the middle of the engine, I have
lost it and need a new one..” She replied that she did not know exactly what
it was, but this piece had always been there.
The mechanic gave her a piece of paper and a pen and asked her to draw what
the piece looked like. She drew a circle and in the middle of it wrote 710.
He then took her over to another car which had its hood up and asked “is there a 710 on this car?”
She pointed and said, “Of course, its right there.”

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Murphy’s lore   

My former colleague at the Geelong Advertiser, Noel Murphy, has stuck his neck out and mounted a strong attack on the manmade Goebbels Warning theory. Letter writers to the editor have so far supported him.
I intended posting this earlier, but missed the link when it was online.
Thanks to Murph’s fellow Werribeeite, Tim Blair, I was able to pick up the archive link from his site.
Murph doesn’t pull punches:
And all the scientists, environmentalists, politicians, even businesses, arguing CO2 is to blame are only doing so to protect vested financial or idealistic interests. They lack scientific data to back up their claims, readily berate and demonise any arguments to the contrary and merrily extend Oscar awards to the lobbyist propaganda movie of their own hypocritical champions.
What’s more, rather than helping save the Earth, their misguided claptrap and zealotry is working against the interests of the planet and the humanity it sustains.
Global warming as a result of CO2 emissions is all the result of bad science, an incorrect moral stance and blinkered vision.
It’s not that global warming isn’t happening. It’s just . . . well, it’s just not all caused by CO2. It’s also caused by solar activity and cosmic radiation _ just like droughts. And if Earth’s green warriors don’t wake up to this reality they’ll be consigning resource-rich, developing Third World countries to further subjugation by imperialist Western economies.

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Sez who?   27/3/2007

A practice at The Australian of introducing news stories with unattributed opinion has been criticised here in the past. It’s not what you expect from what is otherwise one of the world’s great newspapers.
A news report in today’s edition tells — surely unintentionally — the reader that almost every resident of a large regional city is racist. Read this and weep:

THE manslaughter trial of Palm Island policeman Chris Hurley should be moved to Brisbane because of the difficulty of finding an unbiased jury among Townville’s racist residents.

I once worked with the editor-in-chief of The Australian. Where? Er, Townsville. And he certainly wasn’t racist.

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Whole story needed   

Once, the news consumer could expect to get the full monty on this development along with reaction and intended strategies from all interested parties.

The Opposition Leader’s proposals, obtained by The Australian, would denounce passive welfare, embrace the casualisation of the workforce, boost business grants and formally bury Mark Latham’s disastrous Tasmanian forests policy with support for logging.
The draft platform, which also embraces public-private partnerships to fund roads and other infrastructure, ensures a showdown between Mr Rudd and powerful Left unions at next month’s ALP national conference.
Seeking to win over swinging voters, Labor dumps previous positions on welfare and indigenous affairs in the new policy platform as Mr Rudd shifts to the middle ground.

Rudd needs to explain how he’s going to realise these policies and the media must grill the Left to establish where they draw the line.

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Hicks guilty   

The prisoner of war has had his day in court.
And surprise, he’s guilty.
So now he’s officially a traitor. Who’s sorry for poor widdle Davy now?

AUSTRALIAN David Hicks entered a guilty plea today before a US military tribunal. Hicks’s military attorney entered the plea on behalf of his client, who stood alongside with a somber expression.
Hicks has been held more than five years at the US-run prison in Guantanamo Bay, Cuba.
Earlier he had reserved his rights to enter a plea, raising speculation that perhaps a plea deal was afoot.
There was no indication of what deal has been reached, Judge Colonel Ralph Kohlmann reconvening the court at 830pm local time to say he had been approached by counsel after court had recessed earlier advising that Hicks “desired to enter a plea”.

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Addled Eagles   24/3/2007

It would not surprise in the least if one of the Sunday blats leads with a Sydney Swans official or player querying whether the Eagles’ 2006 premiership should stand in view of drug taking by its players. Eagles coach John Worsfold admitted on Thursday night he knew as far back as last July that Ben Cousins was on the Persian rugs. Remember, another Ben — Johnson — had to give back his gold medals after getting pinched retrospectively.
Isn’t it ironic that this controversy which, if nothing else, shows the AFL completely out if its depth in dealing with a blight on modern sport, comes in the week that my big fat CEO, Andrew Demetriou, gets a $100,000 pay rise?

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Unfortunate handle   

Intriguing — some would say apt — name carried by a plaintiff lawyer for the Paris Grand Mosque which joined the Union of Islamic Organisations of France in suing French editor Philippe Val for reprinting those cartoons that sparked worldwide protests by Muslims.
A French court yesterday threw out the case against the editor of Charlie Hebdo, a satirical weekly, in a case seen as a test of freedom of expression.
Applause broke out in the courtroom at the announcement of the not-guilty verdict, which ruled that three cartoons published by in February 2006 were not insulting to Muslims.

The lawyer? One Christopher Bigot.

On the subject of legal action, the boot’s certainly on the other foot when a gossip columnist sues politicians.

Now Stern has fired back in a lawsuit filed Thursday against Burkle, the Post’s archrival Daily News – even former President Bill Clinton and Sen. Hillary Rodham Clinton, whom Stern accuses of attacking him in an effort to suppress negative stories about themselves.

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Talentless hag backs Gore   23/3/2007

That’s it. When one of the great minds of the western world comes out in support, it’s clear that Al Gore’s got the White House in the bag:

Pop superstar Madonna would throw her support behind Al Gore if he decided to run for US president in 2008.
Madonna told German weekly newspaper Die Zeit she had “deep respect for Hillary Clinton as a woman,” but thought Gore was a “great guy.”

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There’s a monster out there and I’m glad it’s thousands of kilometres away. Houdini the 4.5 metre crocodile is ferocious enough to rip the throat out of a horse. Now they’ve found scars around Houdini’s neck, suggesting a bigger croc has belted him up.
The Townsville Bully has the story.

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Nutters come and go dept.
Mad magazine had some fun with these dingbats back then. Wonder if they’ve satirised their contemporaries? Amusing quotes from Diogenes Lamp.

The cooling has already killed hundreds of thousands of people in poor nations…if it continues, and no strong measures are taken to deal with it, the cooling will cause world famine, world chaos, and probably world war, and this will all come by the year 2000.
– Lowell Ponte, The Cooling (1976)
The continued rapid cooling of the earth since World War 11 is also in accord with the increased global air pollution associated with industrialization, mechanization, urbanization, and an exploding population.
– Reid Bryson, Global Ecology (1971)

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Get your monikers out   

We of the curmudgeon brotherhood don’t usually warm to the type of gesture politics that embraces protests and petitions.
But then, this is like a Jewish momma’s chicken broth — it mightn’t do much good, but it can’t do any harm.
So, what are you waiting for? Sign it!

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Thou shalt not doubt   

Pixie Rudd was on radio before defending his hare-brained scheme to spend taxpayers’ funds on improved broadband. Oh yeah, government spending $4 billion to make something perform faster!! That is so stupid on so many fronts that only a retard would advance such a proposition.
Let’s have a heads of department meeting just to throw that one around. I know, why don’t we have one of those summits Bob Hawke used to hold back in the 80s — you know those spectacularly successful gabfests that eradicated poverty, drugs and AIDS. Then we’ll formulate and release some discussion papers and conduct some regional consultancies. We’ll then hold state conferences for stakeholders and perhaps by 2020 we might have some policy to act on. Oh, almost forgot, there’s the unions to reach agreement with. Hmmm, make that 2025.
Pixie then canned Howard for being a global warming sceptic and Costello for his scepticism about the notion of government providing quicker broadband.
Er, pardon me runt, you might run with the fairies at the bottom of the garden who’ll believe any witchdoctor’s mumbo jumbo, but I prefer, nay demand, my politicians take a healthy dose of scepticism to every situation.

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Gorey truth   20/3/2007

Granny used to say lies was the wrong word for untruths, because they won’t lie if you use them. Eventually they will stand up and smack you in the moosh.
Al Gore’s learning that now.
Last Tuesday, the Times reported that several eminent scientists “argue that some of Mr. Gore’s central points [on global warming] are exaggerated and erroneous.” The Tenessean reported yesterday that Mr. Gore received $570,000 in royalties from the owners of zinc mines who held mineral leases on his farm. The mines, which closed in 2003 but are scheduled to reopen under a new operator later this year, “emitted thousands of pounds of toxic substances and several times, the water discharged from the mines into nearby rivers had levels of toxins above what was legal.”
Tip from esteemed colleague Bolta.

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Criminals have time for them   19/3/2007

No comment needed; just think Slater and Gordon, feral protester compensation, health and safety food law fascism, and most importantly, how frequently the initials LLB (lying, larcenous bastards) appear behind the names of parliamentarians. Who have no shame.

One afternoon a lawyer was riding in his limousine when he saw two men
along the roadside eating grass. Disturbed, he ordered his driver to
stop and he got out to investigate.
He asked one man, “Why are you eating grass?”
“We don’t have any money for food,” the poor man replied.. “We have to
eat grass.”
Well, then, you can come with me to my house and I’ll feed you” the
lawyer said.
“But sir, I have a wife and two children with me. They are over there,
under that tree.”
“Bring them along” the lawyer replied. Turning to the other poor man
he stated, “You come with us also.”
The second man, in a pitiful voice then said, “But sir, I also have a
wife and SIX children with me!”
“Bring them all, as well,” the lawyer answered.
They all entered the car, which was no easy task, even for a car large
as the limousine was.
Once underway, one of the poor fellows turned to the lawyer and said,
“Sir, you are too kind. Thank you for taking all of us with you.”
The lawyer replied, “Glad to do it. You’ll really love my place. The
grass is almost a foot high”.–

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Survivor   18/3/2007

Terrible news greets Howard-haters when they wake this morning. That thump-thump up in the Hunter Valley? Phillip Adams banging his head on the floor.

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Magnetic personality   17/3/2007

He lives in a place close to paradise, has gone off the beaten track all over the world, has made a quid in remote Australian outposts and it would not surprise to learn he has played the piano in a bordello. Could this be Australia’s most contented man?


Many Islanders know Magoo – whose short sightedness and amusing mumbling, chuckling, voice make him a dead ringer for the cartoon character – as a pianist, house painter, artist-cum-signwriter, nudist and sailor. Well, at least one of the above! But who is this fellow who could be a walk-on hermit for Monty Python, or the character who is stranded in all those desert island cartoons?

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Bet it does   

As mentioned here before, the Coober Pedy News has bucked the media trend by evolving from an online-only publication to having a print edition. Now, unless you have a subscription, you’ll get only teaser headlines from the homepage.
And crikey, what a couple of intriguing headlines in this week’s listing:
Peculiar Knob excites
International Women’s Day Celebrations

Editor Gary of the Coober Pedy News hastens to explain that Peculiar Knob is a Western Plains Resources Iron Ore field north of CP and the latest drilling results from there are most encouraging.

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