Never Give Up
Things are looking pretty bleak, but nature and love prevail
Pair of crows on a street light, Brisbane Road.
We counted at least five pairs perched on light poles
along the M1 [29/6/10]
Egg Corp Should Abandon Push For Free-Range Egg Con:
Greens Media Release [28/6/10]
The Greens are calling on the Egg Corporation to abandon their push to introduce standards that would allow chickens kept in cramped and enclosed spaces to have their eggs labelled as 'free range' (Feathers fly over plans to ease free-range egg rules' Sydney Morning Herald 28 June 2010, http://bit.ly/d7dOJ1).
Dr Kaye said:
"The Egg Corporation is pushing to increase the number of hens per hectare from 1500 to 20,000, and still have their eggs labelled as free-range.
"This is a shameless attempt by the big egg producers to re-brand factory farmed eggs as free-range. "Free-range isn't just a marketing tool. It is an ethical approach to food production that is receiving increasing support from consumers.
"For the label 'free-range' to have any meaning at all the eggs must be produced in an ethical manner.
"There is currently no legal definition of what constitutes a free range egg.
"The Greens are introducing legislation that would define free range at between six to ten chickens per square metre. The Greens would only allow for eggs to be labelled 'cage' or 'free-range', blocking moves by egg producers to fudge the truth by using euphemisms such as 'barn laid' for what are factory produced eggs.
"Consumers are increasingly turning to ethical suppliers for poultry and the industry will have to adapt to this new demand to survive.
"The Egg Corporation is underestimating the intelligence
of consumers and trying to set a standard so low that many effectively caged
birds are able to be marketed as free-range," Dr Kaye said.
Murdoch To Take Out Fijian Citizenship
"I decree that Bula means hello": Murdoch
In breaking news, the military dictatorshp of Fiji has banned foreign ownership of Fiji's media.
American citizen and owner of most of Australia's media, Rupert Murdoch, is reportedly seeking Fijian citizenship in response to the ruling.
Australia's New & Improved Foreign Affairs and Spooky Robot Minister has condemned the pacific nation's decision to determine its own media ownership laws.
"Look at Australia. A nation has much more press freedom and democracy when its media is mostly owned by Rupert Murdoch," he said.
"I 'heart' Rupert."
The Minister went on to explain that the Australian Government would do "whatever it takes" to amend any foreign media ownership laws so that Fijian citizens called Rupert could continue their conquest of Australia's national broadcaster and parliamentary democracy.
The coalition said they have agreed to rush the exception through in a special sitting of Parliament.
Kari Goodnough Devastating Beauty June 2010
"Oil off the coast of Alabama"
Gala At The Old Museum
A dazzling night of Classical and Contemporary Ballet by the dancers of Queensland National Ballet and a Spectacular Showcase from Choreographer Martyn Fleming.
Featuring Guest Artists Talia Fowler - Fame & Winner of So You Think You Can Dance, Chrislyn Hamilton - Aust Idol finalist 2008 & Bang Bang Boss Kelly
Dates: Sunday, 11th July 2010 at 7:30 pm & Monday, 12th July 2010 at 1:00 pm
Tickets: Adult: $35 Conc: $25 http://www.webticketing.com.au/DisplayEvent.aspx?eventid=72
Venue: The Old Museum Building - Cnr Gregory Tce & Bowen Bridge Rd, Bowen Hills
Talia Fowler - studied with the Queensland Ballet Company for two years before being invited to join the Company as their youngest dancer in history. She completed a year with the company prior to auditioning for hit reality television show Channel Ten's So You Think You Can Dance. With her technical ability and versatility she became an audience favourite and after a gruelling schedule over several months, working with Australia's leading choreographers, she was announced as the winner of the 2009 Series.
Bang Bang Boss Kelly - " .We write songs that people are thinking, but didn't know how to say .." Take five ex-hardcore musicians, give them some traditional country music instruments, some potent lyrics, wicked harmonies and you have Bang Bang Boss Kelly. They sing songs rooted in old stories and new emails.
QLD National Ballet - The QLD National Ballet captivated and thrilled the judges and audiences at the recent 2010 Brisbane, Sunshine Coast & Wynnum Eisteddfods with their award winning performances in solos, duos and open age group ballet and contemporary. These outstanding dancers pirouetted home to The Old Museum in Bowen Hills with the Talia Fowler Trophy for Classical Ballet, a staggering 17 '1st Places', 8 '2nd Places', 11 '3rd Places' and 10 'Highly Commended'. Congratulations also to Jake Robinson - Winner of SCDE Senior Bursary (for the highest scoring solo competitor in this prestigious competition.
Artistic Director Martyn Fleming has had a long and distinguished career as a professional dancer nationally and internationally for over 20 years. Martyn was a Soloist and Guest Artist with Australian Ballet Company, a Principal Artist with Bejart Ballet Lausanne and Principal Artist with English National Ballet, London Festival Ballet and Opera Australia.
Test Promises End To World People Shortage
Put your pollen tube to work
Make my stamen go to work
'Reproduction' from the musical 'Grease 2' 
We don't want to let any of those precious bodily fluids go to waste - do we?
An imaginary blood test that that tells young men whether or not they are shooting blanks is a major breakthrough that could solve the world people shortage crisis - according to fertility experts.
The test, which is being launched today at the Ponds Institute's Rosaries & Ovaries Unit in Rome, measures the ability of an individual to withstand propaganda telling them to breed, and indicates precisely when they will give in.
Fertility experts in one-paper towns all over Australia have welcomed the test as a way of manufacturing anxiety about reproduction for commercial purposes.
"It'z all about portraying vimmmen as breeding vesselz and commodifying relationshipz az functional cogz in ze corporate, consumerizt machine," said Professor Panic from Professor Panic's Fertility Clinic by the Sea.
Last night an anonymous 33-year-old Benowa man, who asked not to be named, said he would take the test immediately if it actually existed.
"For some reason I keep thinking tick tock biological clock, and barren Prime Ministers," he said, leafing through a copy of the local Murdoch Press.
Main Beach [27/6/10]
The "Who Does Julia Gillard Think Australia Should Be A 'Sanctuary' For?" Product Of The Week
The kind of person who would buy Ozi Cosies for their family and doesn't give a flying fuck about refugees fleeing wars and persecution because they believe the lies and hysteria disseminated by the Murdoch Press?:
... Sorry you forgot we're all refugees, who've become part of this great land, like meat pie and peas ...
'Sorry Johnny It's Time To Go' - by 'Suffering County
Remember how this song was played over and over on 4ZzZ (102.1 fm) in the leadup to the 2007 election?
Greens Announce Federal Candidate For Richmond, NSW:
Greens Media Release [27/6/10]
Greens MP and lead Senate candidate Lee Rhiannon will join local Greens members today (Sunday) at 11am in the Mullumbimby Civic Hall to announce local publisher Joe Ebono as the Greens candidate for the federal seat of Richmond.
"The Greens have a large support base in north east NSW, including onTweed and Byron Councils, and Joe is an excellent candidate torepresent them," Ms Rhiannon said.
"Aged care, overdevelopment, employment and a sustainable future are key issues concerning people living in northeast NSW.
"Joe provides a strong voice on the issues that most concern residents in the area," Ms Rhiannon said.
"Joe Ebono is a publisher, broadcaster and performer who previously stood as the Greens candidate in Richmond in 2007. Founder of the Ebono Institute, he is the publisher and editor of a number of books about sustainable living and The Generator, a news service and radio show.
"It is a great privilege to be the Greens candidate for Richmond," Mr Ebono said.
"I plan to improve on the Greens' strong showing in 2007, and provide local residents a real alternative to Justine Elliot and her Labor government.
"Unlike the old parties, the Greens understand that aged care is about more than bed numbers. Aged care is about maintaining links with the community.
"Community consultation is at the core of Greens policies and initiatives to build a sustainable future for an energy challenged world.
"Greens policies and values get a lot of traction in North east NSW where issues such as unemployment, rampant development and protecting the environment are very important to people.
"I will be campaigning hard for a sustainable future for the northeast NSW," Mr Ebono said.
Partial Lunar Eclipse From The Gold Coast [26/6/10]
Queensland citizens draws to the attention of the House the impending demolition of what remains of the Regent Showcase Theatre.
Your petitioners, therefore, request the House to amend the 1992 Heritage Act to return the power to the Minister to declare an "object" a heritage place, and use that power to save the Regent Showcase Theatre.
The Magic Yellow Brick Wall
From 'The Automatic Earth' [24/6/10]:
Ilargi: It makes no difference whether the stock markets go up or down or sideways anymore, except for those actively playing them. The demise of the American economy continues unabated regardless. Here's the real economy for you:
Democratic leaders in the Senate have apparently failed to win enough support to overcome a Republican filibuster of a bill to help the poor, the old and the jobless, despite making a series of cuts to the measure over the past several weeks to appease deficit hawks [..]
The legislation, known as the "tax extenders" bill, would reauthorize extended unemployment benefits for people out of work for six months or longer, would protect doctors from a 21% pay cut for seeing Medicare patients, and would provide billions in aid to state Medicaid programs. Come Friday, 1.2 million people will lose access to the extended unemployment benefits, a number that will grow by several hundred thousand every week after that. Fifty million Medicare claims from June are currently in process at the reduced rate, which the AARP says has already caused some of its members to have trouble finding a doctor.[..]
That is the most accurate portrait of the real America you will find. The country is deliberately creating un underclass below its underclass. And that will have severe consequences. ...
From 'The Architecture of Happiness' by Alain D Botton 
... Ironically, what Le Corbusier's dreams helped to generate were the dystopian housing estates that now ring historic Paris, the waste lands from which tourists avert their eyes in confused horror and disbelief on their way into the city. To take an overland train to the most violent and degraded of these places is to realise all that Le Corbusier forgot about architecture and, in a wider sense, about human nature.
For example, he forgot how tricky it is when just a few of one's 2,699 neighbours decide to throw a party or buy a handgun. He forgot how drab reinforced concrete can seem under a grey sky. He forgot how awkward it is when someone lights a fire in the lift and home is on the forty-fourth floor. He forgot, too, that while there is much to hate about slums, one thing we don't mind about them is their street plan. We appreciate buildings which form continuous lines around us and make us feel as safe in the open air as we do in a room. There is something enervating about a landscape neither predominatly free of buildings nor tightly compacted, but littered with towers distributed without respect for edges or lines, a landscape which denies us the true pleasure of both nature and urbanisation. And because such an environment is uncomfortable, there is always a greater risk that people will respond abusively to it, that they will come to the ragged patches of earth between their towers and urinate on tyres, burn cars, inject drugs - and express all the darkest sides of their nature against which the scenery can mount no protest.
In his haste to distinguish cars from pedestrians, Le Corbusier also lost sight of the curious codependence of these two apparently antithetical forces. He forgot that without pedestrians to slow them down, cars are apt to go too fast and kill their drivers, and that without the eyes on them, pedestrians can feel vulnerable and isolated. We admire New York precisely because the traffic and crowds have been coerced into a difficult but fruitful alliance.
A city laid out on apparently rational grounds, where different specialised facilities (the houses, the shopping centre, the library) are separated from one another across a vast terrain connected by motorways, deprives its inhabitants of the pleasures of incidental discoveries and presupposes that we march from place to place with a sense of unflagging purpose. But whereas we may leave the house with the ostensible object of consulting a book in a library, we may nevertheless be delighted on the way by the sight of the fishmonger laying out his startled, bug-eyed catch on sheets of ice, by workmen hoisting patterned sofas into apartment blocks, by leaves opening their tender green palms to the spring sunshine, or by a girl with chestnut hair and glasses reading a book at the bus stop.
The addition of shops and offices adds a degree of excitement to otherwise inert, dormitory areas. Contact, even of the most causal kind, with commercial enterprises gives us a transfusion of an energy we are not always capable of producing ourselves. Waking up isolated and confused at three in the morning, we can look out of the window and draw solace from the blinking neon signs in a storefront across the road, advertising bottled beer or twenty-four-hour pizza and, in their peculiar way, evoking a comforting human presence through the paranoid early hours.
All of this, Le Corbusier forgot - as architects often will. ...
Let's Rewrite Recent Political History Shall We?: Psephologist
... Days of wine and roses, days of wine and roses
All the artists flew in and all the arseholes flew out in '72 ...
'Gough', The Whitlams 
What's a psephologist? Well, psephologist is a term that has emerged over the past few years to make political commentary in Australia sound robust and exhilirating - which it isn't.
Psephologist describes frat boys, paid shills, the same, tired old academics and corporate media cronies and hangers on who spend their time spinning neoliberal talking points, ignoring the views of the electorate and pontificating whether or not Rupert Murdoch likes a particular politician.
Anyway, 'Spring Hill Voice's' resident psephologist has listed Australia's Prime Ministers in no particular order.
1. Robert Menzies. War.
2. John Curtin. War.
3. Alfred Deakin. Had a university named after him.
4. Andrew Fisher. Hey Richo - he was a Queensland PM
5. Bob Hawke. Australia's first, true neoliberal
6. Joe Lyons. Hang on, perhaps he was Australia's first, true neoliberal?
7. Ben Chifley. War.
8. Stanley Bruce. See Mark Colvin
9. Billy Hughes. War and conscription
10. John Howard. War/Truth
11. Paul Keating. Potty mouth
12. Malcolm Fraser. Trousers
13. Kevin Rudd. Kept bad company
14. Gough Whitlam. Everybody hates him, even though the only reason they have a university degree is because of him.
15. Edmund Barton. Tosspot Toby.
16. Harold Holt. Conspiracy theorist.
17. John Gorton. Quite popular actually.
18. John Christian Watson. Who?
19. Joseph Cook. Never heard of him either
20. George Reid. Who are these blokes?
21. John McEwan. See Harold Holt.
22. James Scullin. Red head.
23. Earle Page. Had intriguing middle names, see Stanley Bruce.
24. Arthur Fadden. He was a Queenslander too!
25. William McMahon. Father of Julian, but not Father-in-law to Danni.
26. Frank Forde. Another Queenslander!
Poll: Which Prime Minister was most successful at screwing the Australian people and serving foreign interests?
News From Environmental Working Group
According to a new report from the President's Cancer Panel, environmental toxins play a significant and under-recognized role in cancer, causing "grievous harm" to untold numbers of people. EWG's own research has found that children are born "pre-polluted" with nearly 300 industrial chemicals, pesticides and contaminants that have been found to cause cancer in lab studies or in people.
Four of every 10 Americans will be diagnosed with cancer in their lifetimes, and two of every 10 will die from it. Beyond talking to your doctor about lifestyle changes that are known to make a difference -- stopping smoking, reducing drinking, losing weight, exercising and eating right -- there are things you can do to reduce your risk.
Here are some simple ways you can reduce your exposure to potentially cancer-causing chemicals.
1. Filter your tap water. Common carcinogens in tap water include arsenic, chromium, and chemical byproducts that form when water is disinfected. A simple carbon tap-mounted filter or pitcher can help reduce the levels of some of these contaminants. If your water is polluted with arsenic or chromium, a reverse osmosis filter will help.
2. Seal outdoor wooden decks and play sets. Those built before 2005 are likely coated with an arsenic pesticide that can stick to hands and clothing.
3. Cut down on stain- and grease-proofing chemicals. "Fluorochemicals" related to Teflon and Scotchgard are used in stain repellants on carpets and couches and in greaseproof coatings for packaged and fast foods. To avoid them, avoid greasy packaged foods and say no to optional stain treatments in the home.
4. Stay safe in the sun. More than one million cases of skin cancer are diagnosed in the United States each year. To protect your skin from the sun's cancer-causing ultraviolet (UV) radiation, seek shade, wear protective clothing and use a safe and effective sunscreen from EWG's sunscreen database.
5. Cut down on fatty meat and high-fat dairy products. Long-lasting cancer-causing pollutants like dioxins and PCBs accumulate in the food chain and concentrate in animal fat.
6. Eat EWG's Clean 15. Many pesticides have been linked to cancer. Eating from EWG's Clean 15 list of the least contaminated fruits and vegetables will help cut your pesticide exposures. (And for EWG's Dirty Dozen, buy organic.)
7. Cut your exposures to BPA. Bisphenol A (BPA) is a synthetic estrogen found in some hard plastic water bottles, canned infant formula, and canned foods. Some of these chemicals cause cancer in lab studies. To avoid them, eat fewer canned foods, breast feed your baby or use powdered formula, and choose water bottles free of BPA.
8. Avoid carcinogens in cosmetics. Use EWG's Skin Deep cosmetic database to find products free of chemicals known or suspected to cause cancer. When you're shopping, don't buy products that list ingredients with "PEG" or "-eth" in their name.
9. Read the warnings. Some products list warnings of cancer risks -- read the label before you buy. Californians will see a "Proposition 65" warning label on products that contain chemicals the state has identified as cancer-causing.
Why Is Australia Importing Apples From China?
What happened to the Apple Isle??? or Stanthorpe??
Senate Hansard [24/6/10]:
Senator NASH (2.45 pm)-My question is to the Minister representing the Minister for Agriculture, Fisheries and Forestry, Senator Sherry. Is the minister aware of the discovery in the United States of the Chinese fruit fly, Drosophila suzukii, or spotted-wing drosophila? Is he also aware that the Chinese fruit fly is not being considered under the Chinese-
Honourable senators interjecting-
The PRESIDENT-Order! Senator Nash is entitled to be heard in silence. On my right!
Senator Forshaw interjecting-
The PRESIDENT-Senator Forshaw, I am waiting to give Senator Nash the call so she can be heard in silence.
Senator NASH-Thank you, Mr President. Is the minister aware of the discovery in the United States of the Chinese fruit fly, D. suzukii, or spotted-wing drosophila? Is he also aware that the Chinese fruit fly is not being considered under the import risk analysis for Chinese apples?
Senator SHERRY-Thank you for your question. Despite the events of the last day, I have been focused on the activities of the Chinese fruit fly. I assume-
Opposition senators interjecting-
The PRESIDENT-Obviously some senators are getting a little bit overexcited about the fact that this is the last question time before we break. It would help if people would save their exuberance until after question time.
Senator SHERRY-I am trying to focus on Drosophila suzukii. This of course relates to the issue of the proposed importation of apples from China. Biosecurity Australia is currently in the process of finalising the import risk analysis for apples from China.
The independent risk analysis appeals panel has received appeals and has advised the Director of Animal and Plant Quarantine of its decision to disallow the claims raised.
Opposition senators interjecting-
Senator SHERRY-Mr President, I wish they would take Australia's biosecurity more seriously. I am well aware of the deeply held concerns of members of the National Party in particular. Members of the Liberal Party opposite me should not be laughing at the seriousness of this threat to Australia's biosecurity. There is a science based process underway. I am informed that Drosophila suzukii was not considered in the IRA for apples from China. The reason it was not was that the current information indicates that this pest does not attack fresh apples. That is the latest information. So apples are safe. (Time expired)
Senator NASH-Mr President, I ask a supplementary question. Is the minister aware that the import risk analysis that he has just referred to, conducted by Biosecurity Australia into the importation of the apples from China, has failed to adequately examine the risks posed to the Australian apple industry by the Chinese fruit fly and has failed to conduct a comprehensive scientific analysis of the impact of the pest?
Senator SHERRY-I do not believe that Senator Nash was listening to my answer. I did report to the Senate that it was not considered in the IRA for apples from China, and I indicated that, on current information, this pest does not attack fresh apple fruit. That is why it was not considered, apparently.
Senator NASH-Mr President, I ask a further supplementary question. Given that the view of the apple industry that Biosecurity Australia's assertion that it does not attack fresh apple fruit is wrong, and given that any increase in major quarantine incursions could devastate the apple industry's biosecurity and future financial viability, why is the minister ignoring the apple industry and why has he not ensured that Biosecurity Australia stop the clock and do the further scientific investigation required to properly evaluate the risk posed by the Chinese fruit fly?
Senator SHERRY-Australia has an independent import risk analysis. We have long had that both under this government, under Minister Burke, and under the former government-a government of which you were a part. I am sure that the apple and pear growers and any other organisations that are concerned about the activities of the D. suzukii-the fruit fly that we are talking about here-have and will put their concerns and arguments about the need to consider and take into account the activities of this particular fly. These interest groups claim there is a risk and that will be assessed under a process that has long existed. (Time expired) ...
Australia. How Far To The Right Can We Go?
Such is life.
First time we've seen Rudd looking almost convincingly Prime Ministerial
In a shock-horror revelation late last night, Australia is moving to the right. Insiders have been publishing stories about the grass roots dissatisfaction with how 'left' Australia has become under the last three Prime Ministers (PMs).
The 'Right-Right, Right-Left-Right' faction of the Lyndon La'Rouche inspired 'Citizen's Electoral Council' has long complained that Australia is sliding to the slight 'Left' of the 'ExtremeRight'. However, the powerful 'Extreme Right' has levelled similar accusations against the 'Slightly Left Extreme Right' faction of the 'Extremely Right Are You Looking At Me, Let's Go Outside' faction of the powerful 'Ultra Lite Right' off-shoot of Kevin Rudd's 'I'm All Right' sub-faction.
In a factional move thought to have confused just about every thinking Australian, and no Canberra journalists, the powerful 'Powerful Extreme Right You Are' faction of the ALP has launched a coup attempt on PM Rudd. Deputy PM, and PM-By-This-Time-Tomorrow, Julius Gillard has announced that she has every confidence that nothing like this could ever happen to her.
"Under me, if I happen to find myself in the big chair at lunch tomorrow, this government will immmediately cease its dangerous experiment with a mixed economy, equity, human rights, rule of law and environmental protection, and so on," she said.
PM elect, Julius went on to explain where she felt the last PM had gone so wrong:
"I'll suck up to, and be sucked up to, by all the important extreme centrist factions of the extreme 'Right Wing'. I'll appear on Alan Jones. I'll ring Barrie and Rupert and Friends each Sunday and ask what kind of Coffee and Snacks they'd like me to bring in," she added, "They like that in a PM."
An uninformed inside source who couldn't remember his name was quoted by every Murdoch paper, and immediately afterwards by your ABC and all Fairfax outlets, as saying:
"Frucka cluckin' duck! What the Frarc was that all about! All we said to the Christian Lobby was 'maybe we should think about how we spin our support for murdering Arabs and Muslims and maybe tone it down a bit', and "Kazaaaaam!", we get hit with this shit - meltdown!"
He tucked his singlet into his underpants as he staggered off like a punch-drunk place-getter in a mis-matched fixed fight, mumbling "we lurched too far to the crazy communist socialist left."
The endangered Southern Cassowary (Casuarius casuarius johnsonii) is found only in the tropical rainforests of Far North Queensland. The Cassowary is known as a "keystone" species, crucial for the preservation of rainforest diversity because of the role it plays as a major seed disperser. Cassowaries disperse seeds for up to 150 rainforest plant species, some too large, the rest too poisonous to be dispersed by other animals. Therefore the preservation of this species is vital for maintaining the diversity of Queensland's Far North, World Heritage Valued rainforests. (Latch 2007)
It is unknown how many cassowaries remain in the wild, however estimates suggest that it could be as few as 1000.
The cassowary has a slow reproduction cycle where the chicks are dependent on their father for up to 18 months after hatching, making the remaining populations very vulnerable to disturbances. If an adult male with chicks is struck by a car or dies from other causes, his dependant chicks will also perish.
The number one threat to the cassowary is habitat fragmentation for residential development in the Daintree Lowland Rainforest and at Mission Beach. This continues despite their dwindling numbers, pushing them closer to extinction day by day.
Fake Erections For Sale In Australia
Sex is alright, but it's not as good as the real thing
For years women haved faked it, but now counterfeit erections are flooding the Australian market.
Fizzer Pharmaceuticals is a fake organisation pretending to be a Pharmaceutical business when it's actually a perverted neo-con monolith ploughing and thrusting its way into your mind and sexual organs with the co-ordination of the big-mega-media monoliths that run the new world fascist order.
No, this isn't a snappy ad campaign from the Gruen Transfer! It's a fact. They are thrusting their horrid organs into your face and your wallet and your mind. You are accepting this because you are stupid, forlorn, mindless or complicit or all of these. Your choice.
Fake toothpaste has never been a problem. Fake Aspirin or Paracetemol hasn't been big in the headlines either. But fuck with the biggest fuckers of all - big-fucker Pharma and it's an international emergency.
Although they are not believed to be harmful, anyone exposed to fake erections should seek medical advice immediately.
Researchers Unravel Short Arse Riddle
... They got little hands
And little eyes
And they walk around
Tellin' great big lies
They got little noses
And tiny little teeth
They wear platform shoes
On their nasty little feet ...
People', Randy Newman 
Remember when you visited Cooks'
Cottage and the tour guide explained that the doorways and ceilings
were tiny, because in the olden days people were shorter than today because
of environmental factors such as diet? Well, wipe it from your memory.
Some people are tall and some people are short, scientists have announced.
But dominionism is the narrative, and researchers from the Pond Institute's Man's Superiority Over The Universe Unit are publishing the results of a study online for everyone to see.
Professor Panic said he studied 4,000 people and worked out some of them were short arses and some of them were long, thin streaks of misery.
"Some of zem were ugly, some of zem vere bootiful, some of zem vere hairy, zum vere not so hairy, zum ar boombahs, zum are skinny minniez and qvuite a vew vere complete assholes," he said.
"Ov course, all zese genetic variants ar ov course, genetic."
'Shuffling back to the dark ages'
The unraveling of the short arse riddle is apparently some kind of breakthrough, but you wouldn't know that by reading this story.
In fact, I'm no luddite, but it comes across as downright spooky.
Related Story: Study finds short arses have ducks disease
Australia. Both Labor And The Coalition Have Sold You Out And They Think It's Hilarious
House of Representatives Question Time [21/6/10]:
Mr KATTER (3.00 pm)-My question is to the Deputy Prime Minister. In light of the Deputy Prime Minister's statement that foreign corporations are paying only 13 per cent tax, is the minister aware that a good example of the counterproductive nature of foreign takeovers and the appallingly failed 'marketism' policies of this place is that the one million people living in North Queensland are now to get their milk from southern Queensland, 2,000 kilometres away, while North Queensland's Malanda Milk, locked out of Woolworths and Coles, must travel 2,000 kilometres south? Is the minister further aware that Woolworths and Coles, with 83 per cent of the food market, are paying dutch auction prices to the dairy corporations? This oppressive pricing from the chains has seen North Queensland farmers tortured down to just 60. Five dairy companies, all once Australian owned, are now, bar one, foreign owned. Finally, our six giant mining companies were all Australian owned premarketism but now all are foreign owned. Why should the super-destructive Henry mining tax be applied when a small increase in tax on all foreign corporations would ease the very real threat to the only vibrant industry Australia has left-mining?
[The House then erupts in howls of raucous, derisive laughter from both sides of the chamber]
The SPEAKER-I just want to clarify: was the member for Kennedy addressing this question to the Deputy Prime Minister?
Mr Katter-To the Deputy Prime Minister, yes. I am quite happy to go on-
The SPEAKER-Order! I call the Deputy Prime Minister.
Ms GILLARD-I thank the member for Kennedy for his question. I assume it is to me because in the broad it raises matters associated with employment. I think that was the connection that the member for Kennedy was thinking of. I can understand that the member for Kennedy is concerned about a reaction in the community of Malanda relating to local milk supplies no longer being available for sale, with one of the big supermarket chains coming into town and consequently creating a circumstance where local milk will be transported thousands of kilometres and processed and transported back. I can understand his concern about that. I can also understand his concern about the implications of the resources super profits tax for employment. Whilst I understand the member for Kennedy's concerns are genuinely and personally deeply felt, and we have had the opportunity to discuss his concerns directly, the modelling for the resources super profits tax, and the modelling particularly of the impact on employment, shows that it will expand the resources sectorand its output by 5.5 per cent and expand jobs in mining by seven per cent. So, whilst I do appreciate that the member is representing some concerns about marketing changes in his electorate that could be causing community concern, and I do understand he is raising some matters that are on his mind about the resources super profits tax, the modelling does show a growth in employment.
Why The Gold Coast Needs A Newspaper
Deputy Mayor, Committee Chair positions reaffirmed: GCCC Media Release [21/6/10]:
Cr Daphne McDonald has been unanimously reaffirmed as Deputy Mayor of Gold Coast City Council.
The full Council today confirmed the position of Deputy Mayor, as well as current Committee Chair positions, for the remainder of the Councils current term (October, 2012).
Gold Coast Mayor, Ron Clarke, said speculation about Cr McDonalds position had been just that speculation.
Cr McDonald has done a tremendous job as Deputy, Cr Clarke said.
She has always provided me, as Mayor, with excellent support whenever Ive had to call on her.
Cr Clarke today (21/6) moved a general business item reinstating Cr McDonald as Deputy Mayor.
The motion was seconded by Cr Ted Shepherd, who added that all current committee chairs also be reaffirmed for the duration of the Council.
Both were passed unanimously.
With the pending transfer of water assets from Council
on 1 July, the future of the current Water Management Committee will be
decided on 19 July, after Councils mid-year recess.
ACF Media Release [21/6/10]
Rising community and environmental concern about a lack of action to provide safeguards against the risk of large scale oil spills in Australia will be a high profile issue leading up to the federal election, Australias leading conservation groups said today in a joint statement.
An unprecedented alliance of 32 environment groups including the Australian Conservation Foundation, WWF Australia and Pew Environment Group are calling on all political parties to commit to a network of large marine sanctuaries this coming election to provide safeguards for Australias unique marine life.
In the face of one of the worlds worst environmental disasters, the BP oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico, the United States has clamped down on the oil and gas industry with a range of measures including a moratorium on new oil approvals in sensitive areas.
Late last year, Australia suffered the major 10 week Montara oil spill off the Kimberley coast.
In stark contrast to the United States, Australias Resources Minister subsequently gave new approvals to the proponent of the Montara oil spill and released 31 new oil and gas leases over environmentally sensitive areas of Australias oceans, which had been identified for protection.
Everyone knows prevention is better than cure, said Australian Conservation Foundation CEO Don Henry. That means protecting Australias important and iconic marine areas including Australias South West marine region, the Coral Sea and the Kimberley with marine sanctuaries.
Since the Montara oil spill less than a year ago, 31 new oil and gas approvals have been made in Australian waters but no action has been taken to safeguard our marine life and coastal communities from the high risks associated with industrial development, said Greg Bourne of WWF-Australia.
A network of large marine sanctuaries is backed by science as being the best way to protect our unique marine life, allow fish stocks to recover and provide safeguards against the impacts of threats such as oil spills, said Michelle Grady of the Pew Environment Group-Australia.
In light of Australias failure to act on the very clear risk posed by deepwater drilling, the alliance of environment organisations is calling on the Rudd Government to release the Montara Inquiry findings without delay, and for all political parties to commit in the lead up to this federal election to:-
1. Place a moratorium on new oil and gas approvals in Australian waters until the safety issues associated with deepwater drilling have been addressed.
2. Declare a national network of marine sanctuaries in Australian waters including Australias South West marine region, the Coral Sea and the Kimberley, to safeguard Australias unique and threatened marine life.
Australia lays claim to the third largest marine jurisdiction
of any nation on Earth, and a marine area almost twice the size of our continent.
Australias marine life is considered to be the most biologically diverse
on the planet. Yet, less than 5% of Australias Exclusive Economic
Zone is protected from oil and gas, and most of this area sits in the Great
Barrier Reef Marine Park and around the subantarctic Macquarie, Heard and
Historians Ponder Leichhardt's Inability To Complete His Arts Degree
Did Ludwig Leichhardt's mispent youth lead to his untimely demise?
A study is underway in outback Queensland to solve a century old mystery which has confounded the nation since the olden days.
Why did the explorer Ludwig Leichhardt never complete his arts degree, and could this be the reason why he disappeared?
Leichhardt and his party vanished when they were crossing Australia from east to west, and it is understood he may have carved the letter "L"into some trees.
"Ja votever. Nobody really cared about the crazy old kraut back then, and nobody cares now," said Professor Panic from the Ponds Institute's Dredging Up Whitefella Imperialistic Endeavour For Propaganda Purposes Unit.
"Ve sink he may have carved ze letter 'L' for loser, because he velt like a big fat loser because he never did finish zat arts degree," he said.
It is understood Leichhardt got in with the wrong crowd while studying the Universities of Göttingen and Berlin back in the olden days.
Professor Panic said his study would dispel the prevailing myth that Leichhardt was just a cranky old Prussian.
Meanwhile, Ned Kelly's skull.
"End Of Empire" Product Of The Week: The Weee
CELEBRATE THE WORLD CUP! The Weee brings a fun twist to any bar, restaurant, hotel or office restroom. Keep your establishment clean and wow your patrons with this exciting new version of a "Urinal Cake"!
A crowd pleaser for this year's World Cup!
Fresh cherry smell
Each pack includes: 2 deodorizing mats, 2 bases and 2 soccer net sets
$14.95 inc GST
News From The True Food Network
US lobbying to block GE labelling in Australia [17/6/10]:
US biotech companies are currently lobbying the Australian Government not to label GE products, asserting this would be an undue restriction on trade with the US.
Australia is currently in negotiations over a free trade agreement with America that could block efforts to have GE products in food labelled in Australia.
The agreement under consideration is the Trans Pacific Free Trade Agreement (TPPFTA) involving America, Australia, New Zealand, Singapore, Chile, Brunei Darussalam, Peru and Vietnam. The US biotech industry group's submission on TPPFTA calls for no GE labelling that could restrict trade of biotech products with the US. The group also calls for countries to do-away with any local safety testing on GE products, as according to the biotech lobby group, they have already been proven safe in the US and local testing requirements create an undue regulatory burden on business.
Australian Trade Minister Simon Crean has said that everything is on the table for these negotiations, even as the Federal Government continues it's review of food labelling laws. You can take action now to protect Australia's health and environment against the profit-seeking motives of US biotech firms. Greenpeace is supporting a campaign by the Australian Fair Trade and Investment Network which calls on the Australian Government to put the interests of its citizens before the profits of the multnational companies. You can take action to stop US companies from blocking GE labelling by emailing Australia's Trade Minister, Simon Crean.
EU approves antiobiotic-resistant GE potato for farming [17/6/10]:
The Amflora potato is the first GE crop approved for farming in the EU in 12 years. The EU Medicines Authority warns the crop threatens to increase resistance to drugs relied on to fight illnesses like tuberculosis.
The EU has approved it's first GE crop for farming in 12 years. Approval of the Amflora potato has taken seven years due to it's controversial use of an antiobiotic resistant marker gene that could resist antibiotics currently used to fight illnesses like tuberculosis. The potato has been approved for industrial uses and as animal feed. ...
Monsanto seeds 'donated' to Haiti [17/6/10]:
Monsanto has donated 400 tonnes of seed to Haiti. But farmers will pay to use the seed and can't save it, which means peasants in the poorest country in the Western hemisphere will pay for seeds again next season.
Ten-thousand Haitian peasants have marched to protest Monsanto's gift of seed to the Haitian Government. ...
Phar Lap To Be Reunited With Final Turd
Revered champion race horse Phar Lap is so revered his revered remains will soon be reunited with his final turd, under an historic deal to mark the 150th anniversary of the Melbourne Cup.
Phar Lap's owner, David J. David, was so grief stricken at his demise in back in 1932, he reportedly kept bags of Phar Lap manure, some of which he used on his tomato plants with extraordinary results.
Dennis J. Oliver Jnr. III, the owner of a collection of famous murdered racehorse turds, said he stumbled upon the bag of Phar Lap's manure in an old stable ten years ago.
"The manure was well preserved, it was as if Phar Lap had only just pooed it out - and so we believe it was his final turd," he said.
"Also, nothing would grow in it. No bugs would go near it, and those that tried would die horrid and instant deaths. It was almost as if the final turd was cursed. Or maybe full of a toxic cocktail of potassium-meta-bi-sulphate, perhaps. It was a lot like that."
Phar Lap's final turd will be reunited with his other bits and pieces in Melbourne later this year.
In a weird and freaky display of oddness, the skeleton will be experiencing an 'out of body experience' on one prominent stand and it will be flanked on another prominent stand by the body. The brain, thought to be the largest equestrian brain ever preserved, will answer questions from a formaldehyde-filled interactive perspex box at the entry to the exhibit.
The champion horse's penis will be available for media questions at a specially orchestrated media event prior to the public opening of the exhibition, where it is expected that they will not notice any difference from the usual way these things are done.
The turd will sit neatly between the tastefully remodeled skeleton and the tastefully stuffed corpse in a perspex display case.
Turds from similar sized horses will be placed in an innovative, interpretative "interactive" area where visitors can step in them and walk them through the museum, just like they would have done in the olden days.
Phar Lap's heart will be auctioned off at an exclusive, celebrities only, black tie charity event on the opening night and all proceeds will go to the "Pond's Institute Awareness Campaign" to help raise awareness.
Mr Oliver Jr. III said that he threw his full support behind the campaign.
"If there is only one thing we can do as a society, surely it is to raise awareness. Without awareness we have nothing, going forward, don't we?" he rhetoricised.
The exhibition will be open to the fee-paying public due to popular demand.
The Empire Is Dying
It Is Taking A Lot Of Innocent People With It
Nero fiddled while Rome burned!
This was seen as arrogant, indulgent and stupid.
Now, if Nero had been truly smart, he would have organised a fiddling contest while Rome burned
A FIDDLING DUEL
Nobody would have noticed or cared if Rome was burning. NO WAY! Not with a match in progress.
MORAL: When any sort of contest is in progress, turn away from it, go to the window and look out carefully at the world.
Have a careful look at this:
The incident was investigated and the U.S. military concluded that the actions of the soldiers were in accordance with the law of armed conflict and its own "Rules of Engagement".
NOW FEEL FREE TO RETURN TO THE WORLD CUP (or other drug of choice)
Bonhoeffer Four Trial - Not Guilty!
Jacob Bolton, Jessica Morrison, Simon Moyle, and Simon Reeves and supporters Outside Geelong Court
"The followers of Christ have been called to peace. And they must not only have peace but also make it. His disciples keep the peace by choosing to endure suffering themselves rather than inflict it on others. In so doing they overcome evil with good, and establish the peace of God in the midst of a world of war and hate."- Dietrich Bonhoeffer
Reflections From Trial And Action [16/6/10] - Jessica Morrison
The sun was rising over the city as I set out from home. The walk through Exhibition gardens provided a space for centering and reflection on the day to come - facing court for a previous action, and helping facilitate another one. Cat Stevens may not have been pleased with my rendition of Morning Has Broken, but the possums didn't seem to mind!
I shared a car to Geelong with friends who have all been a part of my exploring nonviolent activism.
People began to converge in the park opposite the Geelong courthouse and when we started our morning circle we had 30 people gathered. We acknowledged that we were on the land of the Watharong people, and honored the elders and the struggle for justice for Indigenous people. After some silence, Simon Moyle read a quote from Thomas Merton (part of which is at http://www.goodreads.com/quotes/show/38593) encouraging us to be faithful, and not focus too much on results. Simon Reeves read the Lyrics of the John Butler Trio song (mmmm bugger, which was it!?). I shared the Bible story that had inspired our action - Jesus entering Jerusalem, weeping for them that they would know what would bring peace - then entering the tables and blocking people moving in and out. Jacob then led us in the Lord's prayer.
More people joined as we walked silently to the courtroom, swelling the numbers to over 50. Some vigiled and leafleted outside, while others joined us inside. It was a wonderful feeling to be surrounded by such support. There were family, church friends and leaders, local Geelong activists as well as people who'd traveled interstate. Some (like the bevy of fathers present) might not have even agreed with our actions, but chose to come along in support. The rest of the seats in the courtroom were filled by a school group, and some others who were also facing court that day.
We were surprisingly called up as the first case (later finding out the Court Coordinator scheduled us there to clear the court area - they wanted all these extras out of the way!), in front of Geelong's Chief Magistrate Mr Saines. We indicated that we were pleading guilty, not because we were feeling a sense of emotional guilt - but that we wanted to take full responsibility for our actions. The prosecution read the brief of evidence, which included the statement that the base has been closed for the day. My favorite bit however is when they talk about Simon M and I 'disappearing into the darkness'! The Magistrate found the charges proved, and we moved on to our sentencing statements. We all shared about our own lives, giving a context of people who give a shit about the world enough to do many things - including resisting war. We talked about Swan Island, the Afghan war, the history of Civil Disobedience and our faith.
The Magistrate then gave his verdict. He indicated that the debates about Afghanistan continue to go on, and that this is important. He warned us about using our faith as a justification for breaking the law, noting many awful things have been done in the name of 'a higher power' - and I thought his caution was well founded. He then referred to Section 19B of the Commonwealth Crimes Act, which gives a Magistrate the freedom to dismiss charges. He then stated that given the nature of the offending (the lowest sort of offending behaviour) and the character of those of us charged - he would dismiss the charges. We were flabbergasted! WOW - dismissed the charges....not even a slap on the wrist but an acknowledgment that, even though the facts are proven, that he wouldn't find us 'guilty'.
Our supporters spontaneously clapped the Magistrate.
The group made their way to Geelong Trades Hall where the locals generously hosted us (including putting the heaters on hours before - boy we were grateful!) and we shared our (mostly freegan) lunch.
Then we were off to Part 2 of the day - another action at the gates of Swan Island.
On arriving at Swan Island I got a sense of the breadth of our law enforcement bodies. There were uniformed Victorian Police, water police decked out in full gear, Local Laws officers, Special Interest Group members, and a swag of un-uniformed members.
The group, about 40 in number walked together for about 500 metres, where a roadblock had been established, to the gates of Swan Island. There we listened to words of Malalai Joya and Simon M shared the story of our first Swan Island action. People then chalked their messages on the road, and signed the 'I pushed the emergency stop button on the Afghan war' commemorative banner. Chip Henriss then talked from the perspective of an ex-soldier. My sister phoned from Afghanistan, where she shared her experiences of being an Aid worker. We then held a die in where we remembered the names of those who have died in this war - civilians and military. At the end of this time the police asked us all to move. 9 people stayed, and were arrested for hindering a police officer. They have been released at this stage with an indication they may receive a summons in due course.
I meant to write so much more detail....but tiredness overcomes me! Perhaps I'll fill out the detail a little later...maybe those who were there could share some thoughts....
If anyone wants to set us up a basic website, that would be great.
Thanks so, so, much to the many people who went into making today a great day. I couldn't name you all (I'm sure I haven't even tagged u all!!).
More info and pics at http://www.facebook.com/group.php?gid=95652832956
US/Australian Military Nukes Exercise Over Sydney Risks Public Safety:
Greens Media Release [18/6/10]
Following revelations on tonight's Channel 7 News of a secret US/Australia military training operation in April and May which used nuclear material to track weapons of mass destruction around North Head, Middle Head and near Cataract Dam South of Sydney, Greens MP and Federal Senate Candidate Lee Rhiannon has called on the Federal and State governments to place more detail on the public record.
The joint US exercise involved Australian and US defence forces and Federal and NSW Police from 27 April to 29 May 2010. Day and night flying of US military helicopters occurred and a 'radioactive training source' was reportedly used.
At the time, the Defence Force reported the activity as 'routine' and did not admit it was to practice tracking weapons of mass destruction.
"Tonight's revelations leaves many unanswered questions. The government needs to justify why these exercises had to use radioactive material," Ms Rhiannon said.
"The safety of residents and defence staff should be the highest priority. The Federal and State governments must now fully disclose what occurred.
"Military exercises are needed but why should the public be exposed to radioactive material.
"The Australian Defence Force have attempted to play down the use of the radioactive material, but they have admitted that the exercise was 'based on tracking weapons of mass destruction'.
"The Federal and State governments must come clean on exactly what kind and how much radioactive material was used in these exercises.
"Was this operation so secret that even emergency services were kept in the dark? Did any accidents occur, either during transportation or as part of the exercise? Are there alternatives to conducting this exercise with radioactive material?
"For the Defence Force to claim that, 'at no time during this exercise was any danger posed to the general public' is both patronising and misleading.
"History is littered with examples of nuclear accidents during similar exercises, involving Russian, US and Japanese military.
"The way to deal with the potential of a terrorist nuclear threat is to shut down the industry.
"The most likely target in Sydney is not a suitcase of nuclear material but the ANSTO facility at Lucas Heights.
"In June my Federal colleague Senator Scott Ludlam helped reveal serious accidents at Lucas Heights, including in August 2008 where a worker at Lucas Heights dropped a vial of highly radioactive material in a containment cell.
"One Lucas Height worker received a substantial dose
of radiation,showing accidents that happen can be swept under the carpet
unless tenacious whisteblowers reveal all," Ms Rhiannon said.
Unruly School Children On Bus: Shock!
This bus driver was so traumatised by badly behaved school children on his bus that he turned into a plastic mannequin
School children are playing up on the bus, according to Queensland's only public transport advocacy group.
The shocking revelations of bad behaviour on the bus are supported by a cranky, old bus driver from Ipswich, and have sent shock waves rippling throughout South East Queensland.
This week long beatup is not news and doesn't serve any beneficial purpose for the community.
It is all about reinforcing stereotypes and disseminating paternalistic and disciplinarian messages and talking points, which uptight, hypocrite squares really like.
In related bullshit, you should get a Go Card immediately, even though no-one is buying them because they are a rip off and public transport should be free.
Get Your Religious Beliefs Off My End Of Life Choices Senator Polley
Here's what Senator Polley said in The Senate yesterday [16/6/10]:
... I draw attention to recent announcements in the media with regard to palliative care in this country. The first of these was the major release from the Minister for Health and Ageing, Nicola Roxon, at the commencement of National Palliative Care Week 2010 which outlined increased funding for and a clear strategy to further improve services to the 520,000 Australians who are affected by this traumatic experience each year. When we talk about 520,000 Australians we also have to remember the impact on their families and their communities. In total, $14.3 million has been allocated by the federal government to fund care, training and research programs designed to assist staff, families and patients to cope at such a trying and emotional time. Indeed, this is a most challenging time for all involved-the families and those who care for the patients and, of course, the patients themselves. The importance of this commitment by the federal government should not be underestimated. Other governments around the world are choosing to investigate alternative options for dealing with palliative patients which attack the very fabric of civilised and Christian societies. Canada is a prime example of a country entertaining such radical solutions. On 16 March this year, the Canadian parliament debated bill C-384 which aims to legalise euthanasia and assisted suicide. ...
Let's hope some of that piddling $14.3 million finds its way to not for profit centres such as Karuna - who receive 50% of their funding from Queensland Health and have to undertake fundraising for the remaining 50%.
I am so sick and tired of hearing god bothering policitians, who have no experience whatsoever with the pain and suffering of terminal illness, acting in the interests of private health companies seeking to profit from the prolonged suffering of self-funded retirees rather than the citizens of Australia.
What a barbaric society we live in, where the mortally sick have to pay to go to court to be allowed to starve themselves to death.
Save The Kimberley Blog [16/6/10]
OIL SPILLS: Cable Beach. The Timor Sea. The Gulf of Mexico. As we digest the daily updates on BPs oil disaster in the Gulf of Mexico, those of us considering the impacts of the potential industrial development on the Kimberley coastline see more and more reason for great caution.
Even the President of the United States is now heralding a new era equal to the impact of September 11 in which the environment is not put at such risk because the world will no longer tolerate it.
This would seem to spell significant delays if not abandonment of the Woodside proposal to bring gas onshore in the Kimberley because it conflicts with basic good sense in the light of these recent events.
Why? Well, the last twelve months saw the WA and Federal government pushing so hard for greenfield industrial development on the Kimberley coastline that indigenous permissions, critical to its go-ahead, were plagued by their indecent haste.
Now, it appears there was never any valid agreement from Aborigines to sign off on the deal.
And the Federal Court is hearing an action against the KLC that Premier Barnett has said will prevent an ILUA being signed (for use of the land) by his previously confident June 30, 2010 deadline.
Throughout, Woodside and the WA government has appeared to stubbornly resist consideration of viable alternatives.
Then came disturbing hints that all is not safe and sound in the world of offshore mining.
In the same 12 months, oil spills have affected the Kimberley, the Great Barrier Reef and now the worlds greatest economy, with the worst-ever oil spill offshore southern USA.
These accidents have caused concern due to an apparent lack of accountability and the absence of fix-it-up engineering to battle what industry previously boasted about as state of the art technology their wizardry now gone horribly wrong.
Woodside has constantly trumpeted latest technology for its Kimberley projects. But what good is cutting edge technology to enable such exploration and exploitation of the worlds resources if an error results in a devastating disaster of international proportions?
As President Obama has said overnight, the World will now change and demand more from our governments and resource giants in terms of environmental safety.
Those in political and economic power in this country would be wise to note some of Obamas stern words to American oil companies: For a decade or more, the cozy relationship between the oil companies and the federal agency was allowed to go unchecked, President Obama said in a statement released late Tuesday afternoon. That allowed drilling permits to be issued in exchange not for safety plans, but assurances of safety from oil companies. That cannot and will not happen anymore.
We have reached a moment in history when there will be more confident arguments against the proliferation of industrial development in the invaluable and pristine Kimberley region.
Greater scrutiny will precede projects before irreparable damage can be done.
Lets hope this will stop the incessant reporting
of yet more environmental devastation here and around the world as the Kimberleys
future gets decided by those who have clearly underrated the risks. ...
Shock, Outrage, Fury Over Comments Made By Religious Fundamentalist
Sad spectacle: The so called secular nation of Australia begins all sittings of Parliament with a christian prayer
The nation has erupted in uproar at offensive remarks made by a religious fundamentalist.
You really can't satirise this, the hypocrisy of the outrage, fury, shock, horror is just too bogus.
Thanks ALP, for getting this bloke into The Senate.
When Is The Death Knell For Fossil Fuels Going To Sound?
In Due Season?
Around Australia, a frenzy of taxpayer funded roadworks - such as these on the Gold Coast Highway, Labrador - don't look like stopping any time soon
From President Barack Obama's Address to the Nation [15/6/10]:
... For decades, we have known the days of cheap and easily accessible oil were numbered. For decades, weve talked and talked about the need to end Americas century-long addiction to fossil fuels. And for decades, we have failed to act with the sense of urgency that this challenge requires. Time and again, the path forward has been blocked -- not only by oil industry lobbyists, but also by a lack of political courage and candor.
The consequences of our inaction are now in plain sight. Countries like China are investing in clean energy jobs and industries that should be right here in America. Each day, we send nearly $1 billion of our wealth to foreign countries for their oil. And today, as we look to the Gulf, we see an entire way of life being threatened by a menacing cloud of black crude.
We cannot consign our children to this future. The tragedy unfolding on our coast is the most painful and powerful reminder yet that the time to embrace a clean energy future is now. Now is the moment for this generation to embark on a national mission to unleash Americas innovation and seize control of our own destiny.
This is not some distant vision for America. The transition away from fossil fuels is going to take some time, but over the last year and a half, weve already taken unprecedented action to jumpstart the clean energy industry. As we speak, old factories are reopening to produce wind turbines, people are going back to work installing energy-efficient windows, and small businesses are making solar panels. Consumers are buying more efficient cars and trucks, and families are making their homes more energy-efficient. Scientists and researchers are discovering clean energy technologies that someday will lead to entire new industries.
Each of us has a part to play in a new future that will benefit all of us. As we recover from this recession, the transition to clean energy has the potential to grow our economy and create millions of jobs - but only if we accelerate that transition. Only if we seize the moment. And only if we rally together and act as one nation - workers and entrepreneurs; scientists and citizens; the public and private sectors. ...
Queensland Unveils New Tourism Strategy
Australia's oldest public urinal. Russell Street, Toowoomba
The Queensland Government wants tourists to come and enjoy our new and improved zero tolerance lifestyle.
That's the new tourism campaign currently being rolled out as part of the Sunshine State's "Who Needs Proper Governance When You Can Announce Pointless Laws Which Have Nothing To Do With Civil Order, Everything to do with Distraction, and Only Serve To Curtail Freedom And Reinforce Authoritarian Messages?" strategy.
The Government said its 12 month trial of the new tourism campaign in South Brisbane and Townsville was not racially motivated at all.
"It's not about fucking revenue raising either," yelled a Government spokesman, who was urinating behind tree while responding to a journalist's suggestion that there are already sufficient laws to cover public nuisance offences.
Meanwhile, the real public nuisances who dob on their neighbours, use leaf blowers to blow leaves and dust into their neighbours' gardens, tip oil and paint down the drain, bother citizens on a Sunday morning with their religious paraphenalia, speed through pedestrian crossings and down the back streets of Spring Hill after collecting Penelope and Alysious from private school and let their Pouffeneys bark all day long will be rewarded with vox pops in the only daily paper.
Our Best Opportunity To Protect Australia's Native Forests
An email from the Australian
There has never been a better opportunity to protect Australia's remaining native forests.
The growth of overseas and Australian timber plantations and a dwindling market for its product means the logging industry is in crisis.
Some companies are even asking conservationists for help to get out. There is also unprecedented public support for ending logging in native forests.
A national Galaxy Research poll I commissioned and released this week shows;
o 90% of Australians are in favour of protecting remaining high conservation value forests in Tasmania, Victoria and New South Wales in national parks.
o 77% agree that the Rudd Government should stop the logging of native forests, which contain large amounts of carbon that would be stored by ending forest clearance
o 72% are in favour of the Federal Government assisting logging contractors to take redundancies, retrain or move permanently to a plantation based industry.
This is a unique opportunity with the industry itself crying out for help and looking for a way to stop the logging of high conservation value forests.
Having turned its back on putting a price on greenhouse pollution, protecting Australia's native forests is the easiest, simplest way for the Rudd Government to be able to say it has reduced Australia's greenhouse emissions.
It's time for state and federal Governments and all political parties to seize the opportunity. Today I launched a new 1 minute television ad that will begin screening this week. But you can be first to see it - click here.
Please pass it on to your friends so they can spread the word that it is time to seize the day and protect what is left of this precious resource for all Australians to enjoy in the future.
P.S. if you are in or near Canberra on June 23 please come to an important public meeting where I, Prue Acton and ACT Greens Senate candidate Lin Hatfield- Dodds will outline the campaign to save the forests. 7pm - Visions Theatre, National Museum, Lawson Crescent, Acton Peninsula, Canberra.
Brisbane In Top 8 Capital Cities: Report
Brisbane's Burnett Lane. A smelly, noisy, dirty, wind tunnel - always has been, always will be
In a report exclusively leaked to 'Spring Hill Voice', Brisbane has been ranked second behind Adelaide in a list of Australian capital cities. For the second year in a row Brisbane has held onto its ranking as second, despite strong competition from Canberra, which was third on the list.
The Premier and Lord Mayor were said to be pleased with the ranking but other Premiers have complained that the list unfairly discriminates against their capitals and have criticised the ranking criteria for being too rigidly narrow.
The list, compiled by the Pond's Institutes National Geography and Pointless Rankings Unit, studied the names of the Capital cities of each Australian State and Territory. The cities were then ranked according to alphabetical order.
The rankings were not determined by the shittyness of a city's public transport, how many decades it has been a one paper town, prevalance of ugly, shoddy architecture, or whether or not it has an environmental vandal of a Lord Mayor who has shut down City Hall to the citizens, or even the number of musicians whose songs are used in car commercials.
The full rankings are as follows:
1. Adelaide; 2. Brisbane; 3. Canberra; 4. Darwin; 5. Hobart; 6. Melbourne; 7. Perth and 8. Sydney.
A Strong Economy Needs A Healthy Environment
Do you want Australia to shift to a clean economy? Do you support serious action to turn around the decline of our rivers, wetlands, forests and oceans? Do you want to live in healthier, more energy and water efficient cities and towns?
A federal election year is a big opportunity to make your hopes and views known.
ACF has a plan of action with 23 practical achievable steps to turn our hopes into reality. The plan is summarised in our 2010 National Agenda for a Sustainable Australia.
It spells out a series of specific and measurable actions a federal government would take if it was serious about reducing pollution and leading the transition from energy wasting cities to cleaner, more liveable cities. It outlines the steps needed to turn around the degradation of ecosystems that are vital to our wellbeing and the health of our country.
ACF has mailed the plan to all Federal Members of Parliament.
However, to lift our hopes and plans into mainstream political debate we need your help. We need the combined voices, letters, emails and other local actions, small and large, of thousands of ACF supporters.
What can you do?
1. Talk about the plan of action with your family, friends and work colleagues. Share the hope you have for a sustainable future by talking about the practical steps toward achieving it. Invite people to local events where climate and environmental action solutions are being discussed. If you run into some headwinds help dispel myths using ACFs resources.
2. Help lift the ACF plan of action into your local community conversation. Send an email or letter to your local paper using information from our National Agenda and fact sheets to help draw attention to issues that are relevant to your community. Keep writing (enlisting a few local friends to join you if need be) until you see your letters or stories appear.
3. Help broaden community and business support for the plan of action. Phone, email or mail relevant parts of the plan of action to local businesses, chambers of commerce and community organisations asking them to publicly support the plan of action.
By working together we can influence government and help create a better Australia.
Trickles, Floods and the Escalating Consequences
From 'The Automatic Earth' [14/6/10]:
Ilargi: Stoneleigh today, in between speaking engagements, tackles the slowly but surely creeping closer threat of being in debt. We may no longer -or maybe should we say not yet- have debtors' prisons, but that doesnt mean that everyone is safe from debt collectors, including state officials who often -illegally- work as such. The Star Tribune recently ran a striking article on the topic, which Stoneleigh addresses. For those who dont see this as a serious threat, here's two of todays headlines: Obama Warns Of 'Massive Layoffs Of Teachers, Police, And Firefighters' and Investors are betting on a Black Monday-style collapse, Bank of England warns. The stock markets may suggest recovery, but they are deceptive. to say the least. ...
Coffee In A Can: Latest Military Industrial Complex Spinoff Product For Dumb Western Consumers
As a dumb western consumer, I can report that this product, which has recently appeared in service stations, is a rip off (it costs around 6 bucks) and utterly vile - unless you are a fan of Cafe Bar coffee. Consider investing in a thermos.
Best Custard Apple Of The Season
Roadside stall Mt Mee, where the views over the Glasshouse Mountains are breathtaking
What's Wrong With Kevin?: A 'Spring Hill Voice' Exclusive
... So remember those who win the game,
Lose the love they sought to gain
In debentures of quality, and dubious integrity
Their small town eyes will gape at you
In dull surprise when payment due
Exceeds accounts received at seventeen ...
'At Seventeen', Janis Ian 
He's a narcissistic, cold, calculating, rabid, free-market ideologue and Rupert Murdoch arse kisser.
So are Gillard, Swan and Tanner. Of course, so is Tony Abbott.
Always has been, always will be. So there you have it.
He's also a right-wing religious fundamentalist and never had any intention of doing anything for Australia other than continue pursuing the Howard Government's racist, sexist, anti-environment, screw the working class agenda.
Anyone with a vague interest in Queensland politics over the last couple of decades can see this is why he was elevated to the office of Prime Minister in the first place.
And although the Rudd Government are on the nose with the electorate, expect nothing more than lying and gutter politics from both sides in the lead up to the election.
They're also probably waiting for a false flag terrorism opportunity, or the impending economic catastrophe to really hit our shores before they finally announce the election.
What a bunch of deadshits.
So why does everybody hate the Prime Minister?
Because they have been betrayed.
The electorate are not buying the relentless, controlled, faux debate concocted by a bunch of rectangular-framed, eyeglass wearing, chardonnay sipping media luvvies about the Prime Minister's personal style, vocabulary, potty mouth, sleeping or eating habits.
They also don't care which mining magnate or former political colleague he has recently pissed off.
If the Rudd Government want to remain in power, they need to enact policies in line with what the electorate want, instead of being led by the nose by neoliberals.
Download contents of your mind, even when there aren't any
From '100 Bullshit Jobs ... And How to Get Them' by Stanley Bing :
$$: Relatively small, but prospects for high-paying bullshit job in the future are virtually assured.
Bullshit Quotient: Sometimes you piss off the wrong people.
Skills Required: Ability to upload thoughts, vapors, resentments, insights, lack of insights, rumours, stuff you've heard, stuff you haven't heard, truth, lies, fiction, semifact, appropriated wisdom, logrolling, political and sociological venom, self-promotion, and other cultural effluvia on a blank screen day in and day out; must possess the impression that one's quotidian brain activity is of interest to others. Helps to be funny but when that is impossible, being hateful often suffices.
Duties: Write all day. Write all night. Doo-dah.
Famous Examples: Wonkette. All the blogs owned by Murdochian online minimogul Nick Denton - Defamer in LA, Gawker in New York - tend to be the crème dè la crème of the genre, with vast knowledge of who is attractive and vulnerable to abuse. Others, like Matt Drudge and Jim Romenesko, are not bloggers per se but packagers of other people's digital farts and, at times, actual journalism.
How to Get It: Set up a Web log by establishing a site. That is your blank slate. Don't leave it blank for long. Start writing, and by writing, I mean filling up the screen with words. Try to do this all the time. Let no notion or twinge go unexplored. After a while, your natural human tendency to be appropriate or kind or thoughtful or to edit yourself in any way will decay, falling away from you like a dead husk. This is good. When it's gone altogether, you'll find your output will be staggering. It's not that hard to write when the activity itself is the only job requirement.
The Upside: This is one of the bullshit jobs you can do immediately, with no training and no prior experience. You can also become very famous, since the established media, increasingly devoid of excitement and ideas of its own, has taken to siphoning off daily blogging activity as much better and more interesting alternative to actual news.
The Downside: You need a full, daily dose of imagination, guile, bile, and people pouring nonsense into your head that you can repeat.
The Dark Side: Your skin glows an ethereal white, you eyes become rheumy and bloodshot. Hair erupts in horrendous places. You don't care. You are now nothing but a conduit through which pass all the rare gases of the universe. You are, in short, a blog.
Where You Go from Here: McSweeney's.
Netball The Big Winner From Council: GCCC Media Release [11/6/10]
The Northern Gold Coast Netball Association and the Burleigh Fire Dragons Rowing Club can now look forward to a bigger and brighter future.
Chair of Councils Community and Cultural Development Committee, Cr Bob La Castra, said both clubs requests for leases had been endorsed at todays full council meeting.
Now that full council has adopted the committees recommendations the clubs will be able to plan for the future activities with certainty, he said.
Cr La Castra said the Northern Gold Coast Netball Association had requested a ten year lease over a two storey building located at the Runaway Bay Sports Complex to house the associations administration services.
I think its important that netball clubs on the Gold Coast are able to plan their training schedules and weekend fixtures in advance, he said. Use of this building will allow them to do that.
As a father, I also understand that there are more than 4 900 registered netball members in the city and there will be a lot of parents who will appreciate knowing in advance where and when they have to drop off the kids.
Cr La Castra said the Burleigh Fire Dragons Club had also requested a lease to secure tenancy at their current location on Galeen Drive, Burleigh Waters.
The clubs membership has steadily increased over recent years and the club now needs somewhere secure to store their equipment and hold informal gatherings.
The club has competed internationally at the World Club Crew Championships in Penang, Prague and Macau so Im not surprised theyre running out of room to store things.
Cr La Castra sad both of the clubs promoted a culture of participation in active and healthy outdoor activities.
Its fantastic to see people getting involved in these clubs and I think anything that gets people out and about is worthwhile supporting.
Can You Own A Sound?
On June 11, 4ZzZ plays host to the Australian premiere screening of Copyright Criminals.
For more than thirty years innovative hip hop performers have been re-using or sampling portions of previously recorded music. What was once known as a 'borrowed melody' is now labelled a "copyright infringement".
Copyright Criminals is a new film which examines the creative and commercial value of musical sampling and the related debates over artistic expression, copyright law, and (of course) money.
Tracing the rise of hip hop from the urban streets of New York to the multibillion-dollar industry it is today Copyright Criminals features legendary hip hop figures such as Public Enemy, Da La Soul and DJ Spooky.
Friday June 11 will see the 4ZzZ Carpark transformed into an outdoor theatre for not just the screening of Copyright Criminals but also the launch of DJ Monkey Marc's solo album 'As the Market Crashed'.
Renowned for his work with Combat Wombat, Monkey Marc will be treating Brisbane to his unique blend of instrumental hip hop, dub and world flavoured beats complete with a VJ set.
The all ages evening will kick off at 6pm with veggie food provided by Espresso Train Catering, part of the Nundah Community Enterprise Co-operative a not-for-profit organisation.
Elanora "Outrage" Corrected
Portraits on the M1 sound barriers at Elanora, which were given moustaches back in February, are now baby faced once again [10/6/10]!
Whales In King George Square!
No, not representatives from Greenpeace or the Sea Shepherd (this is Brisbane after all!), just PR for whalewatching cruises in Moreton Bay
Choox And Pee Wees, Kangaroo Point [10/6/10]
"Choox And The City" - intersection of Leopard and Vulture Streets, and a menacing Pee Wee on the look out for News Ltd. scribes, at the foot of the Kangaroo Point Cliffs
Queensland Urban Utilities Board Announced: Media Release [10/6/10]
The eight member strong Board of Queensland Urban Utilities was announced today, with outgoing Brisbane City Council CEO Jude Munro confirmed as Board Chair.
Ms Munro will be joined by seven other Directors as Queensland Urban Utilities prepares to begin servicing residents and businesses in Ipswich, Lockyer Valley, Scenic Rim and Somerset regional council areas from 1 July.
Queensland Urban Utilities has been providing water and wastewater services to the Brisbane City Council area since November.
Owned by the five councils, Queensland Urban Utilities will be one of the largest water retailer-distributors in the country.
Ms Munro said:
"This will be one of Australia's biggest and best water businesses.
"We recognise the significant challenges ahead in building water and sewerage infrastructure to support the growth corridors to the west and south of Brisbane.
"We worked in partnership with the community to conserve water during the drought and we look forward to continuing that partnership."
The combined experience of the Queensland Urban Utilities Board includes public and private sector leadership across water policy and governance, local government leadership, finance and economics, strategy and corporate development, commercial and financial law and infrastructure delivery.
Ms Munro said:
"The experience of the incoming Queensland Urban Utilities Board will provide guidance and leadership to the organisation when it becomes a statutory authority and merges the water operations of five local governments from 1 July.
"I look forward to working with the Board and the executive management team at Queensland Urban Utilities."
ACF Media Release [10/6/10]
The Wuthathi Land Trust, the Australian Conservation Foundation and the US-based philanthropic organisation, The Christensen Fund, have joined forces on a project to foster Indigenous traditional knowledge and help protect one of Australias most spectacular areas.
The Wuthathi people are the Traditional Owners of Shelburne
Bay on Cape York Peninsula with members in Injinoo, Lockhart River and Cairns.
This cultural regeneration project is another step towards our aspirations to preserve and pass on Wuthathi culture and tradition, said Wuthathi Land Trust representative Ray Wallis.
It means we are a step closer to developing plans,
underpinned by Wuthathi traditional knowledge, to help us sustainably use
and manage our estate.
ACF is honoured to be a partner with the Wuthathi land Trust in this project, said ACF Cape York officer Leah Talbot.
We fully support the incorporation of Indigenous
land management techniques and knowledge that better protects biodiversity
and culture, with contemporary approaches to conservation. It is about linking
Indigenous culture and values with conservation and this project will be
a great way to achieve this goal.
The Christensen Fund has put $US50, 000 towards the project.
The Christensen Fund believes the worlds cultural and biological diversity is priceless, said Christensen Fund Northern Australia Program Officer Henrietta Marrie.
And in Cape York Peninsula they are interlinked and
must be maintained. The Christensen Fund objective is to strengthen local
groups on the ground. So, we are pleased to support such a worthwhile project
with fantastic partners.
The funding will support two on country trips for Wuthathi Traditional Owners. Information gathered will be used to develop a Wuthathi Cultural Regeneration Strategy to complement a Culture and Conservation Framework produced in 2004 also with the support of ACF.
Brisbane's Regent Theatre Can Be Saved
The Queensland Government say they will not save Brisbane's Regent Theatre, except for the foyer and staircase.
This means that all of the other valuable heritage features, such as the Showcase Theatre and Regent Bar will be destroyed.
The truth is, up until a couple of years ago, under the Heritage Act 1992, the Minister was able to declare significant things as a heritage place and protect them.
This government deliberately changed the Heritage Act 1992 and removed that power.
Having already lost so much of our heritage, especially in Brisbane's inner city, it is important to protect what remains.
The purpose of the petition is to encourage the government to bring back the power of the Minister to declare heritage places, and to use that power to save ALL of the Regent Theatre:
Queensland citizens draws to the attention of the House the impending demolition of what remains of the Regent Showcase Theatre.
Your petitioners, therefore, request the House to amend the 1992 Heritage Act to return the power to the Minister to declare an "object" a heritage place, and use that power to save the Regent Showcase Theatre.
... While Australia continues to throw money at nineteenth-century technologies, Spain, China, the USA and others are charging ahead with zero-emissions power generation, and creating export markets as they go.
Spain has a level of electricity consumption equivalent to Australia's, though their population is about twice ours. Like Australia, Spain is blessed with strong, consistent sunshine, and they use this asset to ensure energy security. They have already built 24-hour baseload solar plants, using molten salt to store heat, which is then used to create steam and turn turbines.
Starting with Andasol 1, a 50 MW (megawatt) plant, they have now completed two more similar projects. Over 1800 MW of projects are currently under construction and the government just approved another 2440 MW for their feed-in tariff scheme for construction over the next three years.
The Gemasolar project is the shining light of the Spanish baseload solar boom. This solar thermal plant has created 1500 jobs, and will operate at 60 to 100 per cent of maximum turbine output for up to 90 per cent of the hours each year. Very low maintenance shutdown requirements allow this efficiency, which is far greater than coal-fired power generators in NSW. When the turbine is idle, heat is bled off the "cold" 290°C salt storage tank to keep the turbine seals warm, allowing fast starting as seen in the best hydro dams and gas plants. This capacity for both baseload and fast-start "dispatchable" power generation places the Gemasolar plant among the highest value electricity plants, a fact not lost on investors.
This solar generation capacity is in addition to the Spanish wind power program. Wind turbines currently provide 11 per cent of Spain's electricity demand, and this will more than double to 25 per cent by 2020. Another 6000 MW of wind is approved for installation in just the next three years. That's just shy of three Bayswater-sized power plants, with all the jobs but zero emissions. Spain is phasing out both coal and nuclear, and the companies that built the nuclear plants have now re-tooled to build solar thermal plants with heat storage. These companies didn't want to own the nuclear plants they built, but have set up investment vehicles to own solar thermal plants. Compared to the ten years it takes to get a nuclear plant up and running, solar thermal plants with 24-hour baseload generating capacity now have construction times as short as nine months. This means such projects are not exposed to the same political, industrial and financial risks as nuclear plants. Envisaging a lucrative future market for their solar infrastructure, expertise and experience, the Spanish anticipate a healthy return on any subsidies for these technologies.
In China, solar hot water and photovoltaic (PV) panels have had massive commercial success. Maintenance-free evacuated tube solar hot water systems were developed here in Australia. These are cheap - each tube wholesales for less than five dollars, and a system for a family costs less than $A500. Over 50 million Chinese households today enjoy unlimited, free hot water from such systems. China produces solar PV panels on a massive scale, and is the leading manufacturer of this technology for domestic rooftops. This triumph also owes much to Australian innovation, and to Australian governments' failure to support the industry on home soil. The University of NSW solar PV team is the world leader in its field, and holds the global efficiency record for ordinary silicon cells. Much of the technology in China, particularly from leading company Suntech, leverages this Australian innovation. ...
Workers Stitching Soccer Balls In Pakistan, India, China and Thailand Continue To Experience Alarming Labour Rights Violations:
Clean Clothes Campaign Media Release [8/6/10]
New research reveals that workers stitching soccer balls in Pakistan, India, China and Thailand continue to experience alarming labour rights violations.
Problems highlighted in the report are:
* child labour still exists in the Pakistani industry especially within home-based work.
* gender discrimination of female home-based workers, being paid the least and facing the constant thread of losing their jobs due to pregnancy;
* overtime working hours as in one Chinese factory, where workers were found to work up to 21 hours a day every day for an entire month;
* the lack of proper drinking water or medical care facilities, and even toilets, as found in Indian stitching centres.
About 75% of the over 200 workers interviewed in Pakistan were not permanent workers and therefore didn't have access to benefits and social security.
Over the past decade, regular reports of violations of human rights in soccer ball production have been presented to key players in the industry including global brands and FIFA.
The CCC is shocked that after all of these years, low wages
and other labour rights violations are still the norm and not the exception
in the industry.
Why Is Caboolture So Angry?
Actually, Caboolture folk are remarkably pleasant - especially given they have such a stingy, mean spirited Council
There are nine public computers (with internet access) at the Caboolture library.
Only one of the nine computers is available at no charge and use is limited to fifteen minutes a session. The remaining eight computers may be used by the public as long as they pay a fee.
Today [8/6/10], a lady and her daughter waited nearly one hour to use the free computer - they were job searching. While they were waiting, half of the pay per use computers remained unoccupied.
The queueing procedure was obviously causing unnecessary stress to library staff and patrons.
This cannot be justified.
People need a decent amount of computer terminals for free access to the internet.
Speaking of Caboolture library, here's a very placid pee wee we snapped in the carpark.
See the pee wee? Does he look like he's grumpy or wants to dive bomb a small child?
Co-incidentally, the 'Sunshine Coast Daily' reported today [8/6/10]:
A two-year-old girl is believed to be the latest of 15 children attacked by a territorial bird at a Sunshine Coast park ...
The little girl got a shocking surprise when she went to give her usual farewell cuddle to the fig tree on the south side of the park on Saturday morning.
Mother Amber Searle said Lara had rushed to the tree but saw a pee wee on the ground in front of her.
"The bird has flown up above her head and as she's looked up at at, it has swooped down and it has struck her in the eye." ...
The Murdoch Press are currently campaigning against pee wees, but APN?? What's going on? Sure your reporting of this dubious yarn is vaguely journalistic, but is there nothing more newsworthy on the Sunshine Coast than some children being dive bombed by a bird?
Jockers Street, Strathpine
Back in March the 'Pine Rivers Press' shrieked that "an aggressive peewee bird described as 'evil' is terrorising a Strathpine street, leaving bloodied victims in its wake. ... "
Today there was nary a pee wee to be seen
in Jockers Street. In fact, Jockers Street appears to be devoid of any bird
Shepherd Armstrong Knacker
Merrill Lynch Account Number 934-23F917
December 01, 2004 - December 31, 2004
Net Portfolio Value: $731,778.56
From 'So Much For That' by Lionel Shriver :
... "I guess we're lucky, though. We live in the States. Hey, we get the best medical care in the world."
"Think again, pal. In comparison to all the other rich countries like England, Australia ... Canada ... I don't remember the rest. Look at all the statistics that matter - infant mortality, cancer survival, you name it? We come in last. And we pay twice as much."
"Yeah, well. At least we don't have socialized medicine."
Jackson guffawed. Shep wasn't stupid, but he could be painfully cooperative. That "socialized medicine" bogyman went all the way back to the 1940s, when Harry Truman had wanted to bring in a national health service, just like the Brits. Nervous that doctors wouldn't keep raking it in, the American Medical Association concocted this inspired cold war buzz phrase, which had struck terror in the hearts of their countrymen ever since. A genius stroke of labeling. Like when supermarkets came out with that"no frills" line, packaging a perfectly standard, decent product in stark, ugly-ass black-and-white, thus ensuring that no one with any class would buy it, at half the brand-name price. It worked. Even Jackson's cash-strapped mother hadn't wanted to be caught dead with no-frills tissues in her cart.
"You realize fortysomething percent of this country is either on Medicaid or Medicare? said Jackson; history lessons always put Shep to sleep. "All this ooh-ooh about how we don't want 'socialized medicine.' Well, we got socialized medicine, for nearly half the population. So the other half is paying twice. Your Mugs are paying for your Mooches' CAT scans with confiscatory taxes" - confiscatory was a wonderful word Jackson had learned only about a year ago, and he used it at every opportunity - "and a second time for their own damn scans."
"You sound so down on Medicare and Medicaid. But you're not saying that you wish old and poor people didn't have access to health care."
Jackson sighed. that line was so predictable. Shep was a class-A mug. For the ranks of complacent dupes to which, alas, Jackson also belonged, Shep Knacker could be the mascot. "No, I'm not saying that. My point is, guys with health benefits don't think they're paying their own medical bills. They cling to their precious employee health insurance as if it's this great freebie. It's not free! They don't understand they'd be getting, like, fifteen grand more in salary if it weren't for the damned health benefit! It's fucking sad, man."
"Money's gotta come from somwhere, Jacks. Some big national thing would send taxes through the roof. There goes your fifteen grand. Worse, if you earn a decent living."
"It seems like it's all the same dough, but it's not. Think about it. Every piece of paper that just landed in your mailbox cost money. Some officious twit was paid to fill in all those codes, and tick the boxes, and fire off copies to five other places. Thirty percent of the money spent on medical care in this country goes to so-called 'administration.' Fact is, there's a wholly fatty layer of for-profit insurance companies larded between Glynis and her doctors, a bunch of bloodsucking greedy fucks making money off her being sick. And not one of them knows how to set a broken arm. Kick those assholes out of the picture, and for the same cost the whole country would be covered, without fifty different bills a week arriving in your mailbox."
"You of all people want the government to take over health care?" said Shep, shaking his head with a lopsided smile. "Jacks, you hate government. You're an anarchist."
"These companies are so in bed with government that they might as well be the government." Jackson charged back, irked by Shep's superior bemusement; yeah, maybe he wasn't totally consistent, but at least he read stuff, he thought about things, unlike some people, who took everything they were told as gospel." "Why else do you figure that no halfway credible presidential candidate, Democrats included, dares suggest eliminating the bloodsuckers altogether? Besides, if the feds wouldn't do it much better, they couldn't do it worse. And the whole concept of insurance is to spread the risk, right? To pool the healthy people and the likes of Flicka together so it all evens out in the end. Well, what could be a fairer 'risk pool' than the whole damned country? Health care is about the only thing the fucking government should be good for. And maybe, just maybe, if you could at least go to a doctor without having to take out a second mortgage, people would figure that, okay, they pay taxes but at least they get something back. Right now, you get dick. Oh, sorry" - Jackson kicked a rim of raised concrete - "you get sidewalks. I always forget." ...
June 8: World Weasel Word Awareness Day
It's that time of year again - World Weasel Word Awareness Day!
This year's focus will be on the chronic misuse and overuse of:
"in terms of",
"going forward" and
World Weasel Word Awareness Foundation spokesperson Amelia Wordyrighty said that in order to raise awareness of weasel words, victims should respond proactively.
"If you hear anyone utter "in terms of", "going forward" or "oh! ab-so-lute-ly" on World Weasel Word Awareness Day, you should punch them in the nose," she said.
"That should sort them out."
Ms Wordyrighty said that the World Weasel Word Awareness Foundation receives no government or corporate funding.
"Our organisation believes that by raising awareness in such a pro-active manner, we can really make a difference ... going forward .... woops!" she said, as a passerby punched her in the nose and took a World Weasel Word Awareness Day badge.
How Is This Appropriate Australian Air Express, QANTAS And Australia Post ?
It's bad enough Unit can get away with plastering their exploitative logos and images masquerading as marketing on bus shelters. But on the back of an Australian Air Express/QANTAS/Australia Post van? And we're supposed to accept this because of their "good guy" donation to Legacy Australia?
Australia Should Lose No Time
From 'Whaling Around Australia' by Max Colwell :
"The Master, Captain Seizo Kobayashi, stated: 'We had a crew of 163 aboard the mother ship but did not have nearly enough to handle our catch. On our next trip we will be using another eighty men. All will be Japanese. We have learnt enough from the Norwegians to make a voyage with only our own countrymen'."
The above quote, which appeared in a letter to the Sydney Morning Herald on 22 March 1935, was used by a writer to strengthen his argument for an Australian whaling industry. He could not understand why Australians, "who could work the same areas with only a fraction of the overhead costs, have not sufficient business acumen to exploit such a source of wealth."
He was speaking of the Japanese success in Antarctic waters, aided by Norwegian gunners who sold their services and experience for a considerable salary to nations in competition with their own country's fleets.
Others were also pressing the Australian Government to establish an Australian whaling industry in the immediate pre-war years. On 17 October 1936, the famous Antarctic explorer Sir Douglas Mawson was reported by the Adelaide Advertiser as saying: "Australia should lose no time in establishing its own whaling industry." Even the Prime Minister, Mr Lyons, had said that "the Federal Ministry was convinced that if Australian companies were floated to exploit wealth whaling grounds in Australian waters they would be an attractive medium for the investment of capital."
These statements came after the period in which whaling in Australian waters had gone into another steep decline, after the Norwegians had left in 1929. They had returned during 1936, for a brief burst of activity in which two fleets, operating under the American flag, killed over 3,000 humpbacks near Shark Bay, and again in 1937, when the Western Australian Government allowed operations in its waters with observers aboard. But compared with what was happening in Antarctic waters these operations were of no great significance, and certainly of no credit to Australians. ...
Admittedly there would have been difficulties in entering the industry between the two wars, and it certainly would have tested the courage of private investors or alternatively the government, but after some attempt had been made for international conservation the future outlook seemed brighter.
The most prudent method would have been a government subsidy to allow the purchase of one or two chasers to operate from Australian shore stations (which had been established by the Norwegians and were awaiting renovation), and then, when the industry had been placed on a profitable basis, a factory ship could have been added to sail south.
Japan found it well within her capabilities, and no doubt the Norwegians would have been willing to teach the Australians the lost art of whaling.
But in 1939 the war clouds again blew up over Europe, and whales received another respite while men attended to more urgent matters.
Immediately after the war, however, whales quickly returned to their former important position, because of a world shortage of edible fats. In November 1945, Mr A. R. Harrison, representing the British Ministry of Food, was reported as saying: "It is an interesting fact that in the surveys that we take of what the housewife most wants back of pre-war supplies, fats is the first thing." Later, speaking of the virtues of whale-oil, he said: "During the last ten years its virtues have been fully recognized and its few technical limitations determined, enabling whale-oil to regain a key position which it once held for centuries after having fallen almost into oblivion."
Similar compliments were being paid to whale-oil all over the world, and the stage was set for the greatest exploitation of whale stocks in the history of the industry ... and for a hitherto undreamed of assemblage of men, machines, and scientific equipment to deliver a massive onslaught on the whale population. For six years of war, the whales had been left in peace while factory ships were used to carry fuel oil and gasoline to supply the Allied war machine, and whale chasers were used as convoy escorts. Now, a world which had been too busy fighting to feed itself looked greedily towards the replenished herds of the southern oceans.
In the first whaling era it was man against whale; in the second, the harpoon gun and factory ship against the whale; but in the third, men had equipment which revived the worst fears of the conservationists. ...
ACF Media Release [6/6/10]
As a sovereign state Australia can stop ships that have not met certain safety standards from entering ports in the vicinity of the Great Barrier Reef, according to legal advice obtained by the Australian Conservation Foundation.
Australia has a capacity to deny access to an Australian port on a non-discriminatory basis to foreign shipping in support of marine navigational safety standards within the Great Barrier Reef region, the legal opinion from leading international law of the sea expert, Professor Don Rothwell says.
While Australia is not to hamper foreign vessels engaged in innocent passage, there is no bar to the coastal State (Australia) applying its laws and regulations to ships engaged in innocent passage through the territorial sea.
The legal advice says by amending the Navigation Act 1912 (Cth) Australia could extend the compulsory pilotage area to cover more of the Reef than it does now.
ACF executive director Don Henry welcomed the legal opinion and urged state and federal governments to act now to prevent further ship groundings.
Lets not pretend we are powerless to stop incidents like the grounding of the Shen Neng 1, Mr Henry said.
We mustnt let dangerous drivers loose in these pristine marine environments. If governments dont act now we are likely to see more disasters on the Reef and they could be a lot worse than the grounding of the Shen Neng 1.
I urge the Federal and Queensland governments to re-examine the issue of pilotage for all ships that that travel through the Great Barrier Reef.
There is a strong case for compulsory pilotage for all ships that go through the World Heritage area and a requirement that ships use routes outside the Great Barrier Reef wherever possible.
The time for hand-wringing is over; its time for action to protect the Reef.
Don Henry has been executive director of ACF since 1998. His first major conservation role was president of the Moreton Island Protection Committee.
ACF Media Release [5/6/10]
Rising Tide, the Newcastle-based climate group, has won this years Peter Rawlinson Award for tirelessly and fearlessly drawing attention to the looming climate crisis.
In 2009 Rising Tide generated national media coverage when its activists abseiled down the front of Parliament House on Federal Budget day with a banner that read Carbon Budget Blowout, co-convened a huge summit for community climate action groups, stopped work at a notorious aluminium smelter for several hours with a non-violent protest, jointly organised a peaceful sit-in at Parliament House a week before the Copenhagen climate talks and staged a day-long blockade of the rail line into the worlds biggest coal port at Newcastle.
Australian Conservation Foundation executive director Don Henry said Rising Tide was a loud and vital voice in Australias broad environment movement.
As a small and agile group Rising Tide does things that bigger national groups like ACF simply cant do, Mr Henry said.
Since its birth in 2004 Rising Tide Newcastle has made a lot of people sit up and take notice of the climate crisis and what we as Australians need to do to be part of the solution.
Rising Tide prove that a small, committed group of volunteers can make a big impact.
A new report by ACF and the ACTU, Creating Jobs - Cutting Pollution: the roadmap for a cleaner, stronger economy, shows if governments act now to shift Australia from a pollution dependent economy to a cleaner economy it would create more than 60,000 new jobs in Newcastle and the Hunter Valley by 2030.
ACFs annual Peter Rawlinson Award acknowledges the
outstanding voluntary contribution of an individual or group to conservation.
Dr Peter Rawlinson was ACFs Treasurer and Vice President and one of
Australias leading biologists and conservationists. He died while
doing field work in Indonesia in 1991.
Putting Faces To Names
A brief introduction to the nine people shot dead on 31 May 2010, by Israeli soldiers who attacked the Turkish vessel M.V. Mavi Marmara, as it attempted to transport humanitarian aid to the Gaza Strip. ...
Furkan Dogan, 19, in his senior year at Kayseri High School where he was awaiting the results of his university entrance exams; hoped to become a doctor. Loved chess. Son of Dr. Ahmet Dogan, Assoc Prof at Erciyes University. A Turkish-American dual national, with two siblings.
There's a bar in the National Hotel, Brisbane, where the idle drinker can cast a lewd glance at the mirrors on the ceiling and be rewarded with a splendid view right down the barmaid's ample cleavage. A truly brilliant idea, but it is not the main attraction at the National.
The great attraction is Warren. Warren dispenses drinks and advice from a cloud of pink lighting. His fingernails are painted black, his dress is superb, his eyebrows are plucked, and his makeup is immaculate. Warren is charming. He never, but never, loses his cool. He is, perhaps, Brisbane's busiest amateur psychologist, everyone's gentle confidant. His own little bar is on the ground floor, just off the street. Creep in, lonely people, and unburden yourself to Warren. He understands, he'll listen.
Warren knows everything. "Oh, Warren, what should I do about it, then?"
"Perhaps a little less mascara, dear."
She is fortyish but she unleashes a schoolgirl's smile of gratitude, "Do you think so, oh, do you?' Everyone believes Warren.
For thirteen years he reigned supreme at the Rainbow cocktail bar at Lennon's. The National seduced him away, gave him his own splendid pink bar, Warren's Bar, and insured him for a rumoured $50,000. It is said that he is the highest-paid barman in Queensland, probably in the whole of Australia, but Warren would consider such talk positively vulgar.
His clientele are an unlikely mixture. He freely admits to having stolen them away from Lennons when he shifted.
"I don't know what my success secret is," he said. "if I have one at all. I'm a talker, a friend. When the wool buyers come from Sydney and Melbourne they always visit me. I have so many friends from the station properties" And here, you can sense that Warren just might be a snob - in the nicest sort of way, of course.
"The lonely people come to talk to me. A man came, he was a visitor from another city, and after a few days he said, 'Gee, this is a dead town,' and I said, 'Oh, cut it out, Lance, just give me two days.' So I introduced him to people. I'm always doing that. He said later. 'I've had the best time of my life.'"
There's a story around that Warren's a great fighter. "Never tangle with him," they mutter. But Warren throws up his hands in horror. "Oh, no! Not at all. But I was quite sporting as a boy I played rugby and Australian rules."
But the rumour of his punching prowess persists, and for that reason Warren does not have to tolerate as many sly remarks as one might expect to be delivered to a barman who wears makeup and painted fingernails. "You do hear some dirty things, of course, but you ignore them." He presses his fingertips together and purses his lips. the subject is closed.
Warren mixes his Southerly Buster for a male customer and a special concoction for his female companion - bitters, lime, gin, and a dash of white Curacao. He passes it across: "That's called a 'Young Lady,' " he smiles, "for a young lady."
She is overcome. What style the man has.
Every evening, an hour and a half before his own bar opens, Warren takes up position on a stool in one of the National's seventeen other bars. "That is my social time. I receive people. They come to weep on my shoulder. I rarely go to a party after work so people who wish to see me know they can find me before I start work. "
There are, as you might imagine, newcomers who come and stare at me and say, 'Is it real?' and such things, but after we've had a drink and a talk they understand that, well, put it this way, although I dress up camp, I don't act camp. My old friends come and say, 'Oh, Warren, I haven't seen you for ten years, and you haven't a line in your face. How do you do it?'"
Is the camp bit a gimmick?
"Well, in a way it is. But the reason I started wearing makeup , you know, is that I've got a very heavy beard. Half an hour after I've had a shave, I need another one. Anyway, one day some chaps from J.C. Williamsons's said, 'Why don't you try stage makeup?' so I did and I've been wearing it ever since 1948. Oh, I go to the shops with it on. I'm forty-six, but say I look younger, go on. A lot of people don't believe that I was in the army in New Guinea in 1943. I typed at 110 words a minute, a they needed clerks so I got a sort of secretarial job. I had my own desk and two native boys to clean my boots and look after my two jeeps. It was marvellous. Do you realise that I've been wearing makeup a lot longer than many of the women who come in? I'm always happy to give them advice, but only if they ask for it, of course. Eyebrow shaving, things like that.
"If I know them personally, I'll go to their place after work and do their eyebrows and teach them how to apply makeup. My life is this hotel and the people who come here. It is my complete existence. I have my own house, a war-service home in Camp Hill, but I only go there to watch television, cook my little meals, and do my washing. You asked me how much I thought I meant to this hotel. I can only tell you that I can mean no more to it than it means to me."
Warren Bardsley Dennis, named after the Test cricketer, is a thoroughly nice person who'll welcome you at any time.
Oh, and if you're shouting, he'll have a small beer with sarsaparilla.
Merchants Of Doubt
... The issues in which the men, jointly or severally, played a part cover a wide range. A surprising range at first sight. What have tobacco smoking, the strategic defence initiative, acid rain, ozone depletion, second-hand smoking and climate change got in common? They were not areas of professional expertise for the four scientists. Oreskes and Conway point to the fact that they all involved the possibility of government regulation of market activities in the interests of the environment. Regulation was the road to socialism. All four men were stout defenders of free market capitalism and strident anti-communists. Nierenberg and Seitz hated environmentalists, viewing them as Luddites. ...
Press Release By Minister of Foreign Affairs, Malaysia
From the Free Gaza Movement:
Malaysia strongly demands Israel to ensure the safety of all the humanitarian activists onboard the cargo vessel MV Rachel Corrie that was seized by the Israeli Defence Force early morning of 5 June 2010.
Malaysia also demands for Israel not to take any drastic and violent military action on the unarmed passengers of the Rachel Corrie. All the humanitarian activists on board the Rachel Corrie should be given the necessary assistance to ensure their safety. Malaysia also calls on Israel to ensure a safe passage for the vessel to Gaza to deliver the humanitarian cargo. In this regard, Malaysia urges the International Community to persuade Israel to allow the humanitarian vessel to reach Gaza safely.
The Ministry of Foreign Affairs is closely monitoring the developments as there are six Malaysians on board the Rachel Corrie.
Dato' Sri Anifah Aman
Minister of Foreign Affairs, Malaysia
5 June 2010
Save The Horni!
Parliamentary Petition to save the heritage listed Hornibrook Bridge:
... We urge you to reconsider the decision to destroy this marvellous public icon and to use the funding set aside for the demolition to restore it so that it will be preserved for future generations of Queenslanders.
If The Government Were Serious About Preserving The "Western Arm" Of The Spit (Marine Stadium Is An Important Fish Breeding Habitat), They Would Put A Stop To The Littering And Four Wheel Drives Chewing Up The Dunes
And the first rule of development is ...... ? In April, the "NDA" (Sea World Drive, Main Beach) was cleared of trees
Minister for Infrastructure and Planning Media Release [4/6/10]
The development of two key areas on The Spit at Broadwater has been put on hold after proposals submitted for evaluation failed to meet State Government timeframes and objectives.
Minister for Infrastructure and Planning Stirling Hinchliffe said he was disappointed the two Gold Coast Marine Development (GCMD) bids submitted for State Government evaluation hadnt hit the mark.
It is disappointing, but we won't settle for second best. We want value for money and we want to see the very best possible use for the site, Mr Hinchliffe said.
I want to be clear that this is not the end of a marine development at The Spit. We will persevere until we get the best outcome for the people of the Gold Coast."
Mr Hinchliffe said the bids failed to address the delivery schedule and community, cultural and environmental evaluation criteria outlined in tender documents.
In 2008 the State Government commenced a competitive process seeking proposals from the private sector for development of two parcels of land located at The Spit and known as the Northern Development Area (NDA) and Southern Development Area (SDA), he said.
Initially six consortia expressed interest in bidding for the developments, however due to the global financial crisis, by close of offers only one offer was received for the Northern and Southern Development Areas.
These two proposals did not meet the States requirements and the proponents were invited to submit revised proposals.
After careful evaluation, the resubmitted proposals were rejected because they did not adequately address the States specified criteria and created unacceptable commercial and delivery risks.
Mr Hinchliffe said the State Governments key GCMD outcomes included:
·The relocation of the Marine Operations Base and the navy cadets from their current locations to a boating facilities area that also features a Surf Lifesaving Queensland operations centre
·Proposals for an Indigenous cultural experience within parkland to the north of the boating facilities area
·Improved public recreational facilities in the vicinity of the Doug Jennings Park and the Western Arm of the Spit
·A protection and enhancement program for the 93 ha Federation Walk and Nature Reserve areas east of Sea World Drive.
Mr Hinchliffe said the Government would not settle for second best. He said the two consortiums - Deep Blue for the Northern Development Area and Broadwater International for Southern Development Area lodged submissions in August last State year.
The initial submissions failed to meet the set scope and both bidders were asked to resubmit compliant proposals. The bidders resubmitted proposals in March and April of this year, he said.
Despite being disappointed that the proposals were non-compliant, the State Government will address arrangements for the relocation of the Royal Australian Naval Cadets and Surf Lifesaving Queensland facilities separately to the development of the two sites.
Existing stakeholders, the Royal Australian Naval Cadets, Surf Lifesaving Queensland and the Gold Coast Fishermans Cooperative, will continue with their leases.
The State Government will enter discussions with them to consider different approaches for their needs.
Mr Hinchliffe said the vision for thedevelopment remained a marina for super yachts and recreational and commercial fishing vessels as well as tourism, residential and commercial development.
The NDA is 8.2ha of land between Sea World, the Versace Hotel and the adjacent water. The SDA includes 2.3ha of land between Mariners Cove, the Southport Yacht Club and the adjacent water.
Rock Stars And Musicians Step In To Solve Planetary Catastrophes
I read the news today oh boy ...
'A Day In The Life', The Beatles 
World leaders and officials are hoping rock stars and musicians can help them solve all manner of planetary catastrophes now that movie directors have failed.
Speaking at a recent Rupert Murdoch conference organised by a Rupert Murdoch publication, acclaimed director of Rupert Murdoch movies James Cameron said responsibility for saving the world rested on the shoulders of the world's rock stars and musicians, given that world leaders have rejected his ingenious plans to stop the oil slick in the Gulf of Mexico.
"One week was hardly enough time for my colleagues and I to fix the world's problems," he said.
Cameron's extensive experience directing robots was turned down by world leaders and officials, who have now pinned their hopes on restoring some semblance of earthly stability with the more melodius members of the entertainment industry.
'Spring Hill Voice' can exclusively reveal that The Clash have been asked to handle middle-east foreign policy, Marvin Gaye will return from heaven to tackle race relations and Pink Floyd are set to handle education.
DEVO will confront the existential crisis currently facing the western way of life, while ABBA will stage a comeback in order to tackle the GFC.
Edwin Starr is also about to be recalled from heaven to direct the wars in Afghanistan and Iraq, but if he's unavailable Bruce Springsteen is on standby. John Lennon is putting the final touches on an international arms control treaty which he will communicate through Yoko Ono.
It is understood that Neil Young and Sandie Shaw will collaborate on a challenge to the puppets and robots currently running the world's so-called parliamentary democracies.
Helen Reddy will cover women's issues and Kiki Dee has offered to do health care, pending the availability of Sir Elton John.
Nobody has been appointed to compose a response to climate change, or to replace James Cameron in his efforts to stop the Gulf of Mexico oil slick because corporate media opinion columnists have these issues under control.
In related news, as our federal parliamentarians continue
representing the interests of quarriers and international financiers, how
many more bogus awareness raising publicity stunts such as nude snorkelling
off Magnetic Island must we endure?
Thai Labour Advocate Arrested
'Clean Clothes Campaign' reports:
The Clean Clothes Campaign is shocked and angered by the the arrest of Somyot Pruksakasemsuk. Somyot is founder of the Center for Labour and International Solidarity Thailand (CLIST) and worked with the CCC on numerous campaigns and Urgent Appeals, including the landmark Eden case in the mid-nineties and more recently the MSP case in 2006.
Somyot is a former project coordinator for ICEM (International Federation of Chemical, Energy, Mine and General Workers' Unions) in Thailand. The CCC joins ICEM in calling upon partners and supporters around the world to write to the Thai prime minister and to Thai embassies in your countries to call for his immediate release.
Somyot was arrested together with Associate Professor Suthachai Yimprasert, after they presented themselves to the police when they heard of their arrest warrants. Suthachai was released yesterday following petitions by students and the faculty.
Although they had been following events closely in their capacity as journalists and academics, neither of them are members of the Red Shirt core group.
According to the latest information we received Somyot is being held at Adisorn Army Base in Saraburi, 115km North of the capital Bangkok, and will be detained until at least 6 June. We understand that the Criminal Court agreed with the Centre for Resolution of the Emergency Situation (CRES) on Friday the 28th to extend the detention of Somyot for another seven days, and that in violation of international human rights standards and national judicial law, no charges were pressed against them, and no proper inquiry session has been arranged during his detention.
We understand that Somyot is held in solitary detention and made to wear military clothing. We are seriously concerned for his health and safety.
Budget Leak Exclusive!
The New Speaker's Corner
'Spring Hill Voice' can reveal that free speech is an exclusive privilege in next week's budget.
Secret new documents, obtained by typing them up, prove that the Blighty government has allocated over $1.4 million to a Private-Public-Partnership (or "HaHaHa") to deliver on its promise of greater democracy and freedom of speech in the budget.
The $1.4 million will be spent on raising awareness and marketing the new "Speaker's Corner" as well as consultant's fees and other costs.
The Chief Blighty had a top media consultant liase with a popular tabloid journalist and a prominent ABC radio morning announcer and her prominent tabloid editor husband as well as a team of media and marketing experts, and top media advisors and consultants, to co-ordinate and announce the new celebration of a properly functioning and diverse discourse in a unicameral and mono-media modern world citystate democracy.
The media/marketing/awareness campaign has the working title of "Speaker's Corner - Just Like The Old Days", and has already met with great media exposure.
It is believed that the budget allocation for the project will be increased substantially next year. A source close to the initiative said:
"Wow, we've done all this on a shoestring. I'm so proud to be a small part of a great democracy, imagine what we can do next year when we can get even more allocation to help us with design and market research? I bet we'll even have a design contest or tendering for construction competition in the pipeline eventually. This is so exciting!"
In related news on the functioning state of our democracy, the daylight saving survey results will be audited and collated into league tables.
Renowned Movie Directors Called In To Solve All The World's Problems
You feel like Steve McQueen
when you're driving in your car
and you think you look like James Bond
when you're smoking your cigar
it's so bizarre, you think you are
a new kind of, James Dean
but the only thing I've ever seen of you
was a commercial spot on the screen ...
'Moviestar', Harpo 
World leaders and officials are hoping movie directors can help them solve all manner of planetary catastrophes.
Revelations that James Cameron is brainstorming with scientists and other experts to come up with ideas to stop the massive oil leak in the Gulf of Mexico, have prompted calls for other movie directors to step in and help solve all the world's problems.
David Lynch has been asked to handle middle-east foreign policy, Spike Lee will tackle race relations and Richard L Gravenese is set to handle education.
Sam Mendes will confront the existential crisis currently facing the western way of life, while Oliver Stone is tackling the GFC.
Cecil B. De Mille is about to be recalled from heaven to direct the wars in Afghanistan and Iraq, as is Stanley Kubrick who is putting the final touches on an international arms control treaty.
Ridley Scott will cover women's issues, Michael Moore offered to do health care but he's a communist, and nobody has been appointed to direct climate change.
It is understood that Jim Henson will also return from heaven to collaborate with James Cameron on a challenge to the puppets and robots currently running the world's so-called parliamentary democracies.
Only American movie directors are involved in this planetary project because we're all Americans now, or hadn't you noticed the large number of yankee commentators, academics and experts around the place?
How "Smart Living Easy Thinking" Brisbane Treats Its Heritage
Keating House, May 2010
Is supposed to be an improvement on this?:
Keating House February, 2008
Indooroopilly's heritage listed Keating House was painted, given a new roof and had its windows and doors boarded up in September 2008 after an EPA "crackdown" on derelict heritage properties.
Sometimes I Wish We Were All Blue Or Colourblind
Signal Box by Elysium Greene, across the road from Biggera Waters State School
Equality Bad For Society: Study
Over the last few decades Australia has witnessed a rise of feminism
The quest for gender equality is not only responsible for an array of societal ills such as the destruction of the family unit, decline in morality and taking jobs from men, but may also be to blame for the statistically unverifiable rise in violence among women, according to a recent study.
Professor Panic, from the Ponds Institute's Barefoot 'n Preggers Unit says his research establishes that women ought to remain disempowered for the greater good.
"Ov courze I have no evidence or proov zat feminizm makes vimmen and girlz violent, but it iz an excellent distraction to ze real issues, az vell az a useful talking point and ideological thought bomb," he said.
"Excuse me, I must qvickly go now. I am having lunch vith my fellow irrelevant, old has beens vith cashew dickz at ze Gentlemanz Club down ze road."
In related news, if you're a baby boomer, you should work until you drop dead or you might get a horrible disease and then drop dead.