Lazy, hazy days of . . .   30/11/2007

Here’s an image for those nostalgic for gentle days beside the sea when sunburn was the worst thing that could happen to a school leaver.
It’s a shot of Mountjoy Parade, Lorne, in the 1940s. That’s the Cumberland Hotel on the left.

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Still on the attack   

They can’t get out of the habit at the Anarchists and Bolsheviks Collective.
After getting their preferred government in power you’d think they would prominently feature the story of the day yesterday — the new Rudd cabinet.
No, their web site led last night with “Nelson dogged by Labor party past”, as if that’s some sort of gotcha.
Plenty of rationalists dabbled with socialism in their stupid youth and I daresay Nelson’s not the only former ALP fancier in the Liberal Party. Costello and Turnbull spring to mind.
Dumb young lefties and shell-backed old Marxists at the collective clearly don’t embrace the wise adage that a man who’s not a socialist at 20 has no heart; if he’s still one at 40 he has no brain.

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And who’s the new federal MP who’s no good to anyone after elevenses, twelveses and lunch?

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Pants on fire   27/11/2007

In power two days and Kevin Rudd is already exposed as a bald-faced liar.
Rudd on November 3:

Visiting Darwin today, Mr Rudd said a Labor Government would continue to support the intervention.
“We don’t intend to roll it back at all,” he said.
“Therefore when I say that we will be implementing and backing the intervention, it is as I have described before, and that is without qualification.

Rudd on November 26:

KEVIN Rudd has signalled his willingness to change parts of the Howard government’s takeover of Northern Territory indigenous communities, after the new territory Chief Minister yesterday demanded he water down the plan, including its tough restrictions on alcohol sales.
On the same day Mr Rudd foreshadowed a formal apology to members of the Stolen Generation, the incoming prime minister said through a spokesman he was open to altering John Howard’s unprecedented intervention.

Should we hold our breaths waiting for all those “liar, liar” Howard accusers to launch renewed attacks on prime ministerial untruthfulness?

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Deal, or no deal   26/11/2007

The recently-elected Prime Minister is talking tough and rationally about the Kyoto agreement. He says the key error of Kyoto was slapping binding targets on three-dozen countries but not the rest, including some of the world’s biggest polluters like the United States, China and India.
He plans to approach key negotiations on a post-Kyoto deal next month with a relatively simple position: all major polluters must be included, or there’s no deal.
So Kevin Rudd has suddenly grown a spine?
Er no, it’s that other recently elected Commonwealth leader.

On Sunday, he suggested Kyoto was flawed all along.
“We already saw Kyoto,” he said.
“If we get a third of the world to sign on first and wait for the other two-thirds, it’s never going to happen.”

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Disastrous run   

Somehow, I don’t think we’ll be hearing too much in the short term from the new Rudd government about it being an antipodean version of Blair-Brown’s Third Way administration:

Just look at what has happened in the last week. The Chancellor’s reassurances on Northern Rock have turned into fears that the taxpayer could lose billions of pounds. Five former heads of the armed forces have attacked the Government’s record on defence and one has said that Gordon Brown treats the armed forces with contempt. Then we discover that the taxman has lost the personal details of every child in the country and bank account details of every family.


The poms could show Victoria’s inept, politically correct police leadership and courts just how far you can travel down the road to utter uselessness. Warning: this report will prompt white-hot anger in rational minds.

The very next day, fittingly enough, the government released figures revealing how probation endangers the public. Over the previous year, serious offenders who had been released from prison early and placed on probation committed at least 83 murders and rapes, a significant portion of the national total. Given the extremely low arrest rate for reported crimes of violence in Britain—and bearing in mind that one-half of all crimes are not even reported—the real figures for violence committed by serious offenders placed on probation after early release from prison must be significantly higher.

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Al come lately   24/11/2007

Looks like even Hollywood’s limousine left is waking up to Goebels Warning phony Al Gore. Here’s Robert Redford:
He is notably cynical, however, about Al Gore’s recent award of a Nobel Peace Prize. “He’s making a lot of money, he’s having a belle époque, a heroic moment,” he says. “It must have been really hard for Gore to suffer all that [losing the presidential election], so he found another thing to come back with: the environment. He had a lot of money behind him, because in Clinton’s administration there was a lot of money. With that he was able to build himself a new campaign and pick an issue. And he picked an issue that just happened to arrive at its moment in time.” The less-than-subtle subtext is that Gore is an arriviste, while Redford has been out there, a grizzled loner, bearing the jibes and right-wing clobbering before the environmental cause was fashionable. Asked why he thinks Gore is not going back into politics, he says: “What’s most important – to be a hero to your country and go save it . . . or do you want to be happy and rich and be a hero and not get into the political scene?”

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Give ‘em enough ropeworks   

There’s a huge, almost empty block in our neighbourhood that once housed a ropeworks. About a decade ago, Woolworths aired plans for a supermarket on the block, a development that was welcomed by most long-time residents and those of us who don’t get the vapours at the thought of a publicly-listed company making a profit.
However, a whinge of NIMBYs has managed to stall the project for years, citing all sorts of objections from dangerous traffic flows to threats to existing businesses, despite the suburb having only one small IGA supermarket to service its residents. Active in opposition have been some members of the local Labor Party branch.
In the meantime, the block has sprouted metre-high weeds to give ambience to rusting sheds and machinery that protesters insisted be saved so that a ropeworks museum could be developed on the site.
Thus it seemed a little ironic this morning for the fence surrounding the eyesore block to be festooned with Labor Party posters urging a vote for the earwax-munching twerp.
Voters at our polling booth appeared to be giving strong support to long-serving Labor MP Gavan O’Connor, who was backstabbed by the dregs of the middle class who run Labor these days.

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Rising ray   

From the Ain’t Nature Delightful Department: A Mobula Ray soars from the water in the Sea of Cortez at the southern end of the Gulf of Mexico.

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El Supremo   

Hugo Chavez wants to be Venezuela president for life and only “traitors” will stop him.

“He who says he supports Chavez but votes ‘no’ is a traitor, a true traitor,” the president told an arena packed with red-clad supporters. “He’s against me, against the revolution and against the people.”
His speech followed the recent high-profile defection of his former Defense Minister Gen. Raul Baduel, a longtime ally who called the president’s proposed reforms a “coup.” Others have also broken with the Chavista movement in recent months, including politicians of the small left-leaning party Podemos.

No defections reported yet from his fan club in the Australian Left.

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Endangered species   

Green fanatics giving you the irrits? Not to worry, they’re heading for extinction.

“Because when Toni terminated her pregnancy, she did so in the firm belief she was helping to save the planet. Toni Vernelli was sterilized at age 27 to reduce her carbon footprint.”
Says Ms Vernelli: “Having children is selfish. It’s all about maintaining your genetic line at the expense of the planet.”

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Barracking journalists   

Change the national references from US to Australia, and this report could be about media here.
These studies and surveys reveal a troubling trend. A reasonable conclusion is that media unfairness exists, it is pervasive, and it can influence elections at the expense of qualified candidates.
In fact, Evan Thomas, assistant managing editor of Newsweek, estimated that the media’s influence on the 2004 presidential election was “worth maybe 15 points” to Sen. Kerry’s campaign. That is a huge impact.

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Finding balance   19/11/2007

Gee, has Ray Martin been moonlighting as an impartial panel selector for CNN?
CNN hits bottom and digs: All six debate questioners appear to be Democratic Party operatives. So much for “ordinary people, undecided voters”.

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Toiling tribe   10/11/2007

Blogs are great for spreading important information. And nosh news is always important.
Yesterday, I met the bride and offspring for lunch in Melbourne where the kids live, work and study.
Get-togethers are regrettably infrequent so I was delighted my daughter chose a most pleasant lunch venue that didn’t break the bank. We dined al fresco at Transport Cafe in Federation Square, soaking up the warm spring sunshine while surrounded by cheery tourists and city workers on lunch breaks.
Usually, if I buy lunch during work days I grab a snack at the Southgate food court, which is often a disappointment. A basic sandwich and a coke leaves you with not much change from $10 and then you have to protect your lunch from the wildlife. And I don’t just mean your fellow diners.
The concourse outside the food court swarms with squawking seagulls and overfed pigeons. Inside, you’re likely to have the crumbs pecked off your table — or shoes — by cheeky sparrows that have the run of the place. While I’m no fan of zealous regulators, I would support action against any restaurateur that permitted mice to scurry around diners’ feet. So why do authorities permit these feathered rodents to congregate in huge numbers in public eating areas?
Anyway, there was a pleasant absence of feral birdlife in Federation Square as I settled on Transport’s much-endorsed beef burger and chips for lunch. The missus went for the vegie burger, the daughter chose a squid and salad dish and the lad opted for a Ceasar salad.
It was without a doubt the best burger I’ve had since scoffing down a legendary Kermond’s with the lot in Warrnambool a couple of years back. The others expressed absolute satisfaction with their snacky lunches and I was pleasantly surprised to pay the bill and get change of $50. The kids paid for drinks and that in itself made Slattery dining history.
Anyway, over lunch we chatted about our various jobs and I concluded we were indeed one of those working families that have been getting many mentions of late.
Yes, we all work hard, we don’t whinge for handouts, we enjoy the fruits of our labour and the last thing we want is busybody socialists interfering further with our existence.
So this is one working family that will never be represented by this earwax munching twerp.

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Hit your kicks   5/11/2007

Tea leaves have been raked, crystal balls polished and form guides perused as we aim to join those counting folding matter after tomorrow’s Melbourne Cup.
In the big races these days it’s best to pick your top four and box them for the trifecta and First Four. If you get lucky, the payout’s generous, even for highly fancied chances. I then pick an outstander and have $20 each way. The whole exercise costs $64, which seems a most apt sum.
My standout in what appears to be a wide open contest is import Purple Moon which has ability, can cover the distance and is generously weighted at 53.5kg.
I’ll group it in the multiples with Caulfield Cup winner Master O’Reilly, Gallic which won the Sydney Cup (scratched this morning, so we’re going for Cups specialist Bart Cummings and his Mackinnon Stakes winner Sirmione) and Zipping which ran fourth last year and produced an eye-catching third in the Mackinnon after being blocked for a run.
And because I’m a soppy sentimentalist, I’ll have $5 each way on this battlers’ chaffburner.

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They’re racing!   3/11/2007

It’s that time of year when the loose change tin gets ratted and the beloved charges to iron shirts: Yep, Spring Racing season.
Due to work and travel commitments I was unable to post last weekend, but had I, you would have been urged to whack the rent on El Segundo in the Cox Plate. I did and thanks to a couple of other hefty collects was well and truly in the spondoola. Couldn’t keep it to myself of course, hence the bride asking $50 a shirt.
Today, I’m going for Haradasun and Miss Finland in the Mackinnon Stakes; I’ve boxed Marching, Kibbutz and Stockade in the Derby; Divine Madonna is my standout in the Myer Classic; and Tesbury Jack and Here De Angels will be thereabouts in the Salinger Stakes.
Happy wagering customers.

Haradasun has pulled up lame in the Mackinnon to give bookies a clear win. Miss Finland has run on well for fourth or fifth and has done nothing to dent my confidence in her for the Melbourne Cup on Tuesday. Perfect preparation. Bets-wise, not too much damage so far.
Whoo-hoo, $20 on the nose on Kibbutz in the Derby has put petrol in the tank.
Same bet on Divine Madonna in the next, although she’s very short in the betting — even money I suspect. I’ll couple her in running doubles with 2 and 5 in the Salinger.

What the heck would I know. Miss Finland’s connections reckon she’s not up to Tuesday’s trip and she’s been scratched.
The Cup’s a wide open event now and deep study is required to nut out possibles, let alone probables. Opinion here Monday night.

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