Tuesday, May 31, 2005


Big News Ltd Climb Down

Crikey highlights an interesting phenomenon. A big, stinking, rubber-burning U-turn on the part of the News Limited tabloids.

One day they're whipping the Corby frenzy to insane levels, and the next day chief loon Ackerman is lambasting the Rednecks.

The level of sexism, racism and ignorance reflects very poorly upon Corby's supporters, no atter whether she is innocent as they believe, or guilty as she has been found by the Indonesian court.

The rednecks need to be reined in. They can express their frustration as enthusiastically as they ish but they seriously devalue their cause by resorting to gutter invective.

Crikey explains that someone in News has intervened - Given instructions to the mighty mouths to shut up and back off.

Whether it was the result of government, proprietorial or senior management
intervention, calling the News Limited tabloid dogs off just as their Corby
coverage was hotting up was an intervention. Stopping a tabloid newspaper
mid-stream in a populist campaign is like, well, stopping you-know-what just
when it's getting steamy.
The next question is, will the sleaze buckets over at Channel Nine pull their heads in?

Keep an eye out for tell tale indicators of Packer embarrassment over at Tim's propaganda factory.

Update: Right on queue - Packer climbdown in process. Also Tim quotes directly this little black duck in comments here - complete with spelling mistake (Unattributed natch apart from the appellation -online leftist). At $1 per word, the City is wondering if we should be expecting a cheque soon in the mail, and whether its Inc GST or Ex.

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Its a Topsy Turvy World

Extreme Right Wing celebrity blogger and rumoured journalist Mr. Tim "Fusspot" Blair, whose well known antipathy to the ABC, and more particularly that taxpayers money is used to support it, has led him to innumerable stoushes, has decided to cast his nitpicky gaze farther afield.

Mr. Blair, who has in the past been known to champion Fox News' right to make stuff up because it's their money, now seems to be concerned that Black Inc. publishers of The Monthly are paying people to write things for them.

Firth has just earned $105 for reprinting a menu. The piece continues for another two grand or so.

Is Mr. Blair proposing an alternative economic arrangement we ask? Perhaps a collective where the work and the income is equally shared?

Is this what happens at the extreme far edge of the political universe : Space and Time becomes so warped that extreme Right melds into extreme Left?

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The Feel Chair

The City, as you know, is a champion of progress, but we also appreciate the good things that have gone before, like when Wild Strawberry Ice-creams cost 15 cents, and indeed when there was such a thing as a Wild Strawberry Ice-creams. That, in case you had the misfortune to miss it, was back in the 70s. The era that gave us Glam Rock, Hairy Chests and Hot Pants. When high-heels for blokes were de-rigour, and when every home in Australia was required, in order to avoid ostracism, to acquire a bean bag.

A 70s Bean Bag Posted by Hello

Only two types of people really wanted these things: Swinging, hip fellas looking to kit out their bachelor pad in the most seductive suggestive style, and Kids, who imagined these things to be a bit like a trampoline, which they were until the seams split and the polystyrene beads spilled everywhere.

Such a disaster generally required both repairs to the seam and the purchase of a second, fuller, bean bag and some rewriting of the house rules.

Beanbags had their day in the sun and then disappeared. Mostly this was because the cat pissed in them, and individually fumigating each and every bead was a chore too overwhelming for even the most fervent admirer of the 70s style.

Today though, the 21st century is able to bring you the inheritor of the bean bag tradition. Promising all the flexibility of the original bean bag, the mouldable shape that fits your body, supporting your own natural curves -but with added 21st century impracticality - Insisting on imparting every last vestige of comfort to your form even as you struggle to get out.

The Feel Chair Posted by Hello

The Feel Chair from Anima Causa will keep you entertained for days as you try to figure out how to use it, and then days more after that as you ponder why you bought it at all, and for only $5100 that’s cheap entertainment.

The Feel Chair – Coming to a museum near you.

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Monday, May 30, 2005


Dinnertime - Somewhere in Melbourne

Meg: Oh, did you see the News about Schappelle Corby. Twenny years she’s got. Twenny years can ya believe that?

Dave: Unbe-f..kin-believable!

Barry: Yeah. I seen that show on Michelle Corby on Channel Nine the other night. Everyone voted , and they all reckon she’s innocent.

Meg: Its Schapelle, Barry.. and yes, we saw it too. They say you can tell she’s innocent by looking into her eyes.

Barry: Those Indonesians. They are such corrupt bastards. There’s gonna be a boycott y’know. Everyone’s gonna stop going to Bali, and buying Indonesian stuff. That’ll teach that bastards.

Dave: Yeah. Me and Meg we’re gonna go to Bali this year but now we’re gonna go to Vietnam.

Barry: And what about little Johnny Howard hey. Mr. Tough on Terror. Where is he now?. He’s cavin’ in to the bloody Indos. They’re all terrorists the Indos and little Johnny’s stickin’ up for the bastards, and I voted for the prick and all.

Dave: They should bloody send in the SAS.

Barry: Too right! They should invade the joint. Install our own judges instead of that corrupt bunch of scum.

Dave: They should’ve sent some F-111s on a strike run to Jakarta last night. They’re just pansies our government.

Barry: They should just Nuke the place and be done with it. Turn it into a glass carpark.

Meg: We don’t have nuclear weapons Barry.

Barry: Bullshit Meg. Of course we do. How do you think we beat the Russians? Stopped them invading us and all.

Dave: That’s the Americans Barry. The Americans do have nukes, but we don’t

Barry: Well the Americans then. Why don’t we just ask the Americans to nuke ‘em for us. Don’t they owe us one anyhow?

Meg: Why don’t you do something about it Barry. You’re a good talker and all. Why don’t you call up the government and give ‘em hell.

Dave: Yeah Barry. Even better, why don’t you ring into 3AW and tell Neil Mitchell – then he can tell little Johnny personally to invade the joint.

Barry: I would but they’d have to pay me for it. I’m not just gonna give the Government all my ideas for free y’know. We’re paying them good money to run this bloody country the way we want and if they don’t invade another country when the people want them to then they don’t get my vote next time.

Dave: But Beasley’s caved in already himself – He’s chickened out as well.

Barry: Yeah I heard. The fat bastard’s caved as well. What can you do?

Dave: Yeah what can you do?

Meg: Yeah shockin’……..…… Are you watchin’ the new Big Brother Barry?

Barry: Yeah, Gawd it’s a hoot. I wouldn’t mind been on that show. I reckon I know how to play that game.

Meg: My sister’s applied to be on it.

Barry: Yeah, which one, the sexy blonde one? Is she gonna shower in the nuddy?

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Sunday, May 29, 2005


The People Strike Back.

The campaign against the stinking corruption in the ALP stepped up another notch today with the news in todays Herald Sun that charges are being laid against a member of the Powerful ALP Right faction Telmo Languiller and sidekick Karen Sherlock.

This is just the start of the vital campaign to clean out the corruption led by non-aligned member Eric Derricott, and is the first in a series of charges that are expected to be made by the ALP’s Disputes Tribunal.

The entrenched ALP Right, led by Senator Stephen Conroy, declared all out war at the big Labor Confab last weekend, have a point of course. They say that it’s just a power game. It’s just the Left and the non-aligned groups upset about their loss of power. There’s some merit in this argument, but the Right have never been willing to confront the accusations laid against them, they don’t even deny them. They just hit back saying the left are playing a dirty game, and are just as guilty.

Many proponents of the Right would have you believe that these complaints are contrived. A new thing dreamed up by the Left ever since they list power. However these accusations have been around for a long time. Even when the Left held the power. Witness this 2002 article in Crikey penned by the mysterious Delia Delegate which says:

Theo Theophanous Member for Jika Jika (an amusing title remembering that Jika
Jika was once the name of a prison) and fellow branchstackers Keilor backbencher
George Seitz, Sunshine MP Telmo Languiller, and failed candidate Carlos
Baldovino to the faction may have increased the numbers, Network insiders
believe, but they haven't added to the integrity or stability of the Victorian
right. Many within the Network group believe that an attack on these former LRA
members is vital to remove the cancer of branchstacking from the Victorian
branch. Representations are to made to Simon Crean and several Party forums
detailing the operations of the LRA, including the payment of memberships by its
leadership in breach of Party rules and many other improprieties relating to

There we see the same accusations of brabckstacking (and the same names) back in 2002. We also see the same attempts to involve the ALP leadership (Crean), but to no avail. Today the man in the hotseat is Beazley. He has been warned that this all could spiral out of control.

The move came as senior Labor sources revealed that Opposition Leader Kim
Beazley had been warned by senior colleagues to deal with the branch-stacking
crisis in Victoria.

Party heavyweight Bob McMullan, the member for Fraser, and frontbencher
Gavan O'Connor, the member for Corio, visited Mr Beazley in March. They stressed
that the Victorian situation could spiral out of control unless he took action.

If the Right won’t admit their failings and come clean, then how can the people of Victoria trust them. It’s a crooked corrupt organisation and everyone now knows this. We say bring it on Eric. If this tears the ALP apart in the process then it deserves to die.

(Note: Another interesting connection pops in the same Crikey article – Stephen Conroy gets an invite to Andrew Bolt’s 40th Birthday – We’re curious how deep the ties between the Andrew Bolt and ALP-Right identities go)

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Friday, May 27, 2005



The Schapelle Corby drama reached its logical conclusion today with a 20 year sentence handed down to the Gold Coast girl.

What did we expect - some sort of caving in by these hard nosed Indonesian judges to the force of Australian public opinion? That they could be shamed into letting her go by accusing their country of corruption and nepotism? Yeah right.

Shapelle got exactly what we all should have expected her to get. We'd all hate to be in that position, and I'm certainly sympathetic to her plight, but I have no way of judging her guilt or innocence, and neither does anyone else in this country. If she really was guilty then she was stupid. If she was innocent then its terrible, but only a very few handful of people in the world know the actual truth, and for various reasons they're not talking.

So its up to the Indonesian courts, which it has to be - we can't expect otherwise, and they've made their call.

The PM says we must accept the verdict, and he's bloody well right on that point. But you just watch how this gets mangled into some stupid left verses right debate, how Corby becomes the object of another round of pointless pointscoring in the 'sphere.

Update: Andrew Landeryou - Ex-ALP right winger, champion of the underdog, and now apparently frenzied whipper of the horse team pulling the Corby bandwagon is saying we should invade Indonesia.

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Big Battler Bunfight Bodes

Ausssie Battler in Chief John Howard today launched his Industrial Relations Battler package to make it a whole lot easier for employer battlers to give the boot to employee battlers.

Greg Combet head of the ACTU, described this as a “kick in the guts to the battler”, and that he would be battling these changes until the bitter end.

The ACTU is preparing a 6 Million dollar advertising campaign designed to convince the battlers to join the battle, against the Battler in Chief.

The City is proud to announce that, in this fight, we’re on the side of the battlers.

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Thursday, May 26, 2005


Pollies Probe Porno

Today the Herald Sun, Australia’s most popular newspaper focuses its attention North of the Murray to the raunchy antics of the sex crazed parliamentarians of New South Wales.

Apparently some MP’s are having the rare treat of copping an eyeful of horny porno at taxpayers expense. Normally this is a quiet indulgence, carried out using the parliamentary computer during a break in sitting, but now its all out in the open, and there are no accusations of abusing their privilege being made, because the skin-flick gawk-fest is sponsored by none-other than the powerful Australian Christian Lobby, and Mr. Fred Nile.

Apparently Mr. Nile knows his porno, and fast forwarded to the really hot stuff straight up, but Upper House Member Peter Green wanted everyone to sit through all the bad acting at the start so that the viewers would "understand the context". We're with Mr. Nile on this one. Why did God invent the fast forward button if he didn't intend it to be used?

Strangley though, Mr. Nile didn't wish to view the X-Rated vid that that Mr. Breen had bought along to the party also. Perhaps there wasn't enough beer left in the fridge.

Herald Sun reporter Katherine Dank said, “We wish the Victorian politicians would get up to a bit of naughtyness like they do up there in Sin City, all we get to report on is Budget and Speeding Fines and Murders. We want a bit of smut. In fact we want a lot of smut, and Mr. Bracks is just not delivering. We’ve got a newspaper to sell and Mr. Bracks has a responsibility to provide us with the filth that we need to get the Victorian public drooling over the front page headline”

We at the City will keep our ears to the ground, and will certainly pass any skanky, musky whiffs of innuendo Ms Dank’s way if the lads and lasses in Spring St. get up to any mischief.

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The Saddam Underpants Song

We know you've been hangin' out for it ever since Mr. Hussain showed the world what stylish dictators wear under their kilt.

Put your headphones on and enjoy the melifluous tones of Dave Ross doing the Saddam Underpants Song

Via Dvorak

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Freedom Fries Finest Falls Foul of Feckless Left

The poor humble defenceless Republicans who bravely keep the United States Congress and Senate safe from the malignant forces of the hugely powerful left dominated media, were saddened today to find that one of their very own brave warriors, has fallen in the battle against the nagging thought, that just maybe, Iraq wasn’t such a good idea.

Walter “Freedom Fries” Jones, the man who led the campaign to re-name the hot chips served up in the congress canteen from French Fries to Freedom Fries, and who once voted for the War has now become a steadfast opponent.

"If we were given misinformation intentionally by people in this administration, to commit the authority to send boys, and in some instances girls, to go into Iraq, that is wrong," Jones said. "Congress must be told the truth."

How could Congressmen Jones come to such a conclusion if not for the malignant force of the left-dominated media?

Then again Mr. Jones also speaks to God often, and that can only mean one thing - God is also is being way too influenced by the left dominated media.

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Wednesday, May 25, 2005


Credit where credit's due

Australia’s Foreign Minister Alexander Downer made a statement on the 2nd May to the New York Forum on the Non-Proliferation of Nuclear Weapons which demonstrates independent thinking, and a willingness to take on the United States.

Mr. Downer said:

We acknowledge progress in reducing nuclear arsenals, but expect further
steps by the nuclear weapon states. But we do not accept that movement on
nuclear disarmament should be a precondition for improvements to the
non-proliferation regime. Such an approach puts at risk the security benefit
all NPT parties derive from assurances that nuclear programs in non-nuclear
weapon states are peaceful.

Entry into force of the Comprehensive Nuclear-Test-Ban Treaty would serve the interests of all NPT parties. As coordinator of the next Article XIV conference, Australia will be striving for such an outcome.

Sure it is arcane, polite diplomat speak designed to send the average reader to sleep, but in the rarefied atmosphere of world politics it was excitement city, because Australia was taking the United States (and others), and the US’s Republican controlled Congress and Senate to task for wanting to have its cake and eat it to.

The Republicans position has always been to shilly-shally around ratification of the Comprehensive Test Ban Treaty. George Bush way back when he was Texas governor was agin it. Colin Powell said “We will not be asking for the Congress to ratify the Comprehensive Test Ban Treaty”, and John Bolton endorsed this.

The Republic position is essentially that they’ll just stonewall on this matter until it goes away. They want to maintain the flexibility of being able to test when they choose. As Australia points out (subtly though), the US’s desire to reduce the proliferation of Nuclear Weapons requires that they also play the game. The US can’t view itself as being above the rules or no-one else will feel inclined to play by them either.

There is an excellent treatment of this complex subject on Background Briefing and Tim Dunlop demonstrates how revisionist and manipulative this Republican government is when it views its self interest under attack.

The City surprises itself today as it gives a hearty pat on the back to Mr. Downer.

Independence of thought hey? Who’d of thought it?

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Tuesday, May 24, 2005


Is Nine Guilty?

The unbiased facts

Fact 1: The oily sleazebuckets at slimey Nine who have long milked ordinary Australian’s personal tragedies for their own shoddy ratings grab, and who have cultivated the art of glib sincerity to pad out their glossy infotainment package, have slipped from their number one position, and are desperate enough to do anything to bring a little tear to the eye of the Australian viewing public.

Fact 2: Dope was found in Corby’s bag

You be the judge! Guilty or Innocent - Vote now

Is Channel Nine guilty of planting the dope on Corby?

Free polls from Pollhost.com

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The curious logic of the Malaysian Intellectual

It is educational at times to read the views of our near neighbors. To understand what they think about important matters of the day.

In todays The Star, Malaysian Islamic Intellectual Nor Azaruddin Hushi Hj Nuruddin, expounds on the AIDs problem in his country.

What is striking about the article is not what he says, but what he doesn't say. This piece, to Australian eyes, is a curcuitous and tortured piece of going nowhere nothing. You would never read it in an Australian newspaper. It is about as indirect an obtuse as you can possibly get.

Presumably an Islamic Malaysian would be able to grasp what he's alluding to. After struggling with it for a while I've decoded his argument into this simple sentence : People with AIDs should be treated like lepers.

I guess this fellow is Malaysia's answer to Andrew Bolt.

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German News Shock

Germany awoke this morning to the astonishing news that Merkel feiert, Stoiber schweigt.

As they read in Der Spiegel:

Die CDU feiert ihren Sieg in Nordrhein-Westfalen und die Parteivorsitzende Angela Merkel gleich mit. Ausgerechnet ihr schärfster Widersacher Roland Koch kürt sie schon vorab zur Kanzlerkandidatin. Edmund Stoiber lässt seine künftige Rolle noch offen.

You can be sure we'll bring you more on this amazing development when more news comes to hand.

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Monday, May 23, 2005


Ready Steady Gloat

Melbournians were speechless yesterday when their favorite right wing extremists Andrew Bolt and Tim Blair were left flapping on the sand like so many beached cetaceans as the Pro-Greenhouse Gas tide receded leaving them stranded.

“I was left swinging in the breeze, like a 1920’s nigger” said Mr. Bolt. A sentment endorsed by Mr. Blair who proclaimed “I feel like a right plastic turkey”.

The reason for this shocking and startling development? The announcement by Prime Minister John Howard, and reported by Australia’s favorite newspaper The Herald Sun, that global warming is not a myth and is backed up by scientific evidence.

Mr. Howard said on Saturday:

"I don't believe it (global warming) is all a myth -- no I don't."

"I have seen enough scientific evidence -- I think some of the descriptions of it, some of the extreme manifestations of it, are mythical -- but I do think there is a very strong case for controlling greenhouse gas emissions."

This leaves Mr. Bolt who has previously lampooned the scientists and greenies and said that the “evidence is so paper thin”, and Mr. Blair who has mocked concerns of global warming in the past, without Prime Minsterial support.

Initially we wondered whether they might be considering a back-flip, and retreat from their hard-nosed line. “No way”, said Mr. Blair. “I’m not going to start saying now that I was only against the doomsday scenario. To start arguing that at this stage would be simply too nuanced for me and my readers”

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Saturday, May 21, 2005


Where's the waste go?

A post on Mr. Tim "Fusspot" Blair's website seems in its dilligence to insert the word Nuke, to have forgotten to insert the accompanying slightly important question. Let's redress it shall we?

An item in the Sydney Morning Herald seems to lack a key word. Let’s redress this:

It will be almost impossible to offset the increase in greenhouse gas emissions from new power stations planned by the State Government, green groups say.

nukenukenuke - But where does the waste go?

The Government appears to have paved the way for building more coal-fired power stations, according to a draft of its white paper, obtained by the Herald.

nuke - But where does the waste go?

However, measures under its Greenhouse Gas Abatement Scheme will not compensate for the extra carbon dioxide emissions that will be created if forecasts for growth in energy demand are met by polluting technologies such as coal, said Jane Castle, resource conservation campaigner with the Total Environment Centre.

nukeynukenukeness! - But where does the waste go?

"There’s no hiding the fact they are promoting a gigantic increase in emissions. It’s time for Bob Carr to put down his green crusader label and admit he has been done over by the dirty, greedy power industry."

nukenuke ... NUKENUKENUKE! - But where does the waste go?

The white paper draft reveals how the Government plans to tackle NSW’s growing demand for electricity.

nuke? - But where does the waste go?

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Friday, May 20, 2005


The Landeryou Juggernaught Continues

Andrew Landeryou continues to thrill and entertain the people of Melbourne with his new blog. His media profile just keeps rising, with The Herald Sun, repeating his claims about the Adminstrator Dean McVeigh.

Also some great exchanges on the Branch Stacking furure happens in the comments box on this post. An interlocuter calling himself 'Scalper' brings a whole lot more information to the surface. Lovely stuff.

We can't help thinking though that Mr. Landeryou is still being too coy about the behind the scenes manipulation done by the Right in the ALP. All those names that we've being reading about in The Age in the last months, Conroy, Shorten, Marles etc are blameless and innocent according to Mr. Landeryou. According to him its all about The Age doing the factional bidding of one side of the party. Seems to be stretching credulity that a newspaper that values its reputation would be actively involved in such seedy underhand manouvering. Surely the potential damage would not be worth the risk even if it was inclined to do it.

Mr. Landeryou also reveals that he was once the Branch Secretary for the Caulfield Branch, in the electorate of Melbourne Ports. Enquiries conducted by The City reveal that this single branch has over 200 members. More than twice as many members as the next biggest branch in the area - St. Kilda, and that something like 180 of those members are paying membership in the lowest two tiers (claiming to earn less that $37,000 p.a.) , which as we described a few days back is seen by many as an indicator of stacking.

We wonder if Mr. Landeryou can explain why one branch is so much more successful at recruiting members than other branches in the same area, and why, in such a wealthy suburb as Caulfield, this branch has such a high number of Pensioners and and down-at-heel members. Given Mr. Landeryou's history in the branch we think he could give some valuable insights.

We also wonder, given his precarious legal position, and his many enemies, if Mr. Landeryou has decided that he'd be wise not to reveal what his old mates in the Right have got up to in the past, just in case he needs to call in a few favours down the track.

Having said that though, full marks to Mr. Landeryou for giving us one of the most entertaining blogs currently going.

Update: Before signing off for the evening and getting stuck into the nice plate of Kentucky Fried before me. I thought that Mr. Landeryou should be made aware of developments that took place while we was flitting around overseas. In March ABC 774's Jon Faine interviewed a woman known as Heather Wellington. A Medical Doctor who wanted to run for preselection in Corio. The story is here, if you need the detail. Anyway Ms Wellington specifically names, both Richard Marles, and Stephen Conroy among others as undermining her efforts in a quite manipulative and unfair way.

To suggest, as Mr. Landeryou does, that he is unware of some shady doings conducted by these people, and that they have no need to do this (which he does if you go though his comments box carefully) , and are above it all, does incline one to the view that Mr. Landeryou is not being as open and honest about everything as he's making out.

Naturally we hope this isn't the case, and we look forward to Mr. Landeryou being more candid about these aspects of his past.

So here's what we'd like a little more of - just to maintain the fairness and balance:

1. A little less coyness regarding his friends in the Right of the ALP
2. An explanation about the anomalies in Caulfield Branch

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Thursday, May 19, 2005



Finished? Posted by Hello

We hope there's life in the old bugger yet.

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An Experiment

Here’s an experiment I’d like you to try, but only if you’re a member of the inner city latte lefty, chattering, compassion industry.

Put your copy of The Age, to one side, and repeat after me: Left Wing Media Bias. Left Wing Media Bias, Left Wing Media Bias. Say this a hundred times. Bang your head against the wall to make sure it is sinking in.

Not sure? Trust me on this. I know what’s right for you.

Grab today’s copy of The Herald Sun. Read the front page. No need to read any more, the front page is enough. All the information you need for today is there.

Tonight when you get home, switch on Channel Nine, The News. Fix your eyes on the presenter, and let the blue background give you the reassurance that you are indeed loved.

Hang in there and let A Current Affair, tell you about real compassion, about a cat stuck up a tree, being rescued by brave firefighters.

Tomorrow, go shopping. Take the credit card and MAX THE BASTARD OUT. Don’t even think about stopping until it is groaning under the load of the debt.

Bring all of the things you’ve purchased home, and start renovating. Toss out all those books. You won’t be needing them anymore. Set up the Plasma TV in the middle of the Living Room and gather the family in your arms, unless the kids want to play Video games of course, and they’ve got a TV in their own room for that.

Now here’s the difficult bit. I know it’ll be really difficult to break a lifetime habit, and sure it sounds a bit kooky at first, but I want you to close your eyes, and say these words to yourself (Yeah sure, you can wait for an Ad break), Say. I Love Australia. I Love Australia, I Love Australia and They Don’t.

Are you with me now?

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Lefty Media Terror Shock Horror

As expected the rhetoric over the Newsweek error, about the claim that the Koran was flushed down the toilet has reached hysterical accusation stage.

Tim Blair, lefty media fact checker par excellence, brings us the extraordinary scoop, that The Koran, although fitting in the bowl, and getting wet, doesn’t actually go down the S-bend. Lefty journalistic incompetence: Case Proven.

Andrew Bolt, tries and convicts Newsweek of the murder of 16 people, and implicates the entire Lefty-Media Cartel as co-conspirators.

Janet Albrectson twists (without lifting this time) the story into an attack on the Fairfax papers, and repeats, just in case you hadn’t heard it a million times before, the mantra of Left Wing media bias.

The Washington Post gives a comprehensive roundup of the coverage in the US from Liberal Media Bias, to cynical Right Wing exploitation of the mistake, through Bush Administration conspiracy theories, to academic anal retentiveness and symbolic logic.

The money quote:

Every media blunder these days, it seems, comes down to this: Not just a dispute over whether journalists made mistakes, as they often do, but whether their motives are malevolent.

This all begs the question. Are those accusing the Media of having malevolent motives free of malevolence themselves?

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Change afoot in Stack City?

The streets of Melbourne are buzzing this morning with the news that Premier Bracks has finally stepped down from his dais, to intercede in the branch stacking maelstrom that is threatening to engulf his party and himself.

It has been been self-preservation that has distanced Mr. Bracks from the storm brewing, but now it is self-preservation that is forcing Mr. Bracks' hand and requiring that he step in to fix the problem.

The ALP's entire inner workings need to be laid out on the bench, and the old worn out redundant machinery replaced by a brand spanking new Aussie built engine.

Lets hope Mr. Bracks has the courage to take the fight up to BOTH the right and the left, for it will be an ugly time indeed in Stack City as they fight to maintain the lid on their most embarrassing secret. Rampant corruption.

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Wednesday, May 18, 2005


A Class Act

If you were lucky enough to catch British MP George Galloway on SBS news tonight you saw a treat.

As the Guardian reports Mr Galloway, accused of being a Saddam supporter, accused of embezzelment in the Iraq food for oil case, was fronting a US Senate comittee hearing.

Instead of recieving a grilling like everyone else who faces this intimidating comittee. Mr Galloway, in a slow, measured way, tore the Senators apart.

As the Guardian said. It was more than political theatre. It was political bloodsports.

Take this line to one Senator:

I know that standards have slipped in Washington in recent years, but for a lawyer, you're remarkably cavalier with any idea of justice.

And this:

I met Saddam Hussein exactly the same number of times as Donald Rumsfeld met him. The difference is that Donald Rumsfeld met him to sell him guns, and to give him maps the better to target those guns.

To the Republican Senator

Everything I said about Iraq, I turned out to be right and you turned out to be wrong.

I can't see Mr. Galloway being invited back to Washington any time soon.

Update: Barista posts the whole speech. Read it. Read it all.

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Corruption comes cheap in the ALP

From all accounts the big ALP stoush this weekend is hotting up. Leader of the Left, Senator Kim Carr who’s nose is out of joint because his faction has lost control in the Victorian ALP has issued a call to arms to his tribe to crash the big stack party being held this weekend.

Mr. Carr asserts that of the parties 14,400 members “71 per cent of the Victorian members… claim to earn less than $32,000 per annum”, and in some electrorates “95 per cent earn less than $32,000 per annum”

Why us that significant you may ask?

It’s all about the cost of keeping fraudulent members on the books. You can see from the ALP’s on-line renewal form that the bottom two tiers of membership are $30 per year and $45 dollars per year. The filthy stack merchants, who corruptly load up branches with illegitimate members want to do it as cheap as possible naturally, and so they bung these fake members into the lowest two tiers.

If you consider that possibly half of the membership is stacked in this way, and this is confirmed by statements a few months back by Eric Dearricott, who said that about 8000 of the party's members were stacked, we can make a few calculations.

Average cost of stacking a single member = (30 + 45) / 2 = $37.5

Alleged number of stacked members = 8000

Cost of stacking, and controlling total party = 8000 * $37.5 = $300,000

That’s all! $300,000 per year and you can own a political party!

Fantastic, where do I sign?

Update: Andrew Landeryou, who's blog we summarised and critiqued just yesterday, lets rip with 'The Ugly Truth" about the ALP and Branch stacking.

Update2: It seems from a reading of Mr. Landeryou's posts, that the stories being told by The Age is only half right. That there's a second side to the story here relating to control of the Union voting block. In the ALP, the Unions are given 50% of the vote, and the regular Members 50%. So we conclude if Mr. Landeryou is right, that there's just as much manipulation going on with the Union block of votes, which it seems are controlled by THE LEFT as The Age tells us there is in the Membership block, which we can only assume is controlled by THE RIGHT. It gets murkier and more filthy by the minute.

We hope Mr. Landeryou reveals more on this startling new development.

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Tuesday, May 17, 2005


ALP or Greens?

Mr. Lefty contemplates whether he should join the corruptly factionalised ALP or the out of touch stargazers in the Greens.

He seems to lean toward the Greens in the second post which is fine and dandy, but he might consider that within the ALP in Victoria, a crisis point is being reached, with another huge bunfight predicted for this weekend.

My guess is that, assuming that the filth and corruption is cleaned out, that the ALP will be desperate for smart youngsters like Mr. Lefty, and factional allegences will be a thing of the past.

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Boo Hoo Landeryou 2

We though it was about time to take another look at the Blog of Andrew Landeryou. Scion of the ALP family who the Age reported on yesterday, and who you will recall, famously disappeared to America leaving his wife ALP councilor Kimberly Kitching in the lurch, and serious questions being asked about his handling of companies and monies relating to various failed Melbourne University ventures.

Mr. Landeryou, you may recall, promised dirt, and lots of it, so we’ve been over to Mr. Landeryou’s place in an attempt to separate the dirt from the bitchy backbiting, the scuttlebutt from the polemic, the piss from the wind, so as to get a sense of what Mr. Landeryou has achieved so far.

Mr Landeryou Posted by Hello

So let’s start at the start: What does Mr. Landeryou promise to reveal?

Day 1: Tuesday May 3rd 2005 – A big day

Promises: a “warts and all account”, a “no-holds barred extravaganza of truth, justice and [his] way”.

Promises: to “[expose] yet untold tales about the King Solomon Lew and his court jester highly secretive ..Michael McLeod”, to reveal all about “[manipulation of] Coles Myer AGM’s to financing branch stacking”.

Promises: that “Evan Thornley a former business partner of [his] ..will also find a great deal of old memories to ponder as he enjoys his retirement”

Asserts: That the Age gets its facts wrong, and that a company called IQ Corporation (one of Landeryou’s companies) and other Landeryou vehicles gave lots of money to the ALP over the years.

Brings a new, and seemingly unrelated player into the tale: A Dean McVeigh. The liquidator of the failed Melbourne University Student Union, with the implication that Mr. Veigh’s fees are possibly excessive and a request that they be revealed. It doesn’t seem that Mr. McVeigh has much connection with Mr. Landeryou’s past, but Mr. Landeryou is now interested in Mr. McVeigh

Day 2

Paints The Age and journalist Leonie Wood as inner city latte lefties, who get their facts wrong and don’t understand business.

Clarifies that Evan Thornley is not a target actually, but just didn’t run his company Looksmart well. The same company that turned Mr. Thornley into a multi-millionaire.

Unearths a connection between Mr McVeigh, the Liquidator and Solomon Lew.

Introduces for the first time The Wardlow Transaction, and rails at a comment in an ABC report by Michael McLeod (Sol Lew’s jester see above). Mr. Landeryou asserts that he, his wife and his father were effectively “blackmailed” into buying $3 Million worth of shares in IQ Corporation by Sol Lew. According to Mr. Landeryou, it was a “shakedown”, “a transaction as notorious and as corrupt as possibly any other in [Sol Lew’s] career”. (more on this later)

Day 3

Discusses money laundering by Unions, and Alleges that Brian Daley – A Union boss, The President of the ALP in Victoria and a key member of THE LEFT, effectively taxes his union members to create a slush fund which is then drawn on to finance election campaign activities

Has several more goes at The Age and reporter Leonie Wood

Reveals where he was all that time when people were looking for him: Namely Costa Rica, Honduras and the US – But doesn’t reveal what he did, just gives a little pitch for a future role on ‘Getaway’.

Day 4

More about the Liquidator McVeigh, which Mr Landeryou seems to be quite obsessed with now. He commits to probe Mr. McVeigh further. His request that McVeigh’s fees are investigated is not unreasonable.

Allegations in court that Mr. Landeryou forged signatures and enquiries over missing millions.

Digresses with stories about his dog and The Age. Seems to hate The Age.

Day 5

More of the same on McVeigh and his Fees.

Day 6

Nothing important

Day 7

Details The Wardlow Transaction . Explains that IQ corporation was an Internet startup. The company’s purpose was to ride the internet bubble, and that Sol Lew’s investment was an attempt to profit from that. The bubble burst before the profits could be made, and Landeryou alleges that Sol Lew’s minders forced him and his wife to sign over her house (called Wardlow) under threat of a barrage of negative publicity which would ruin his and her political careers. The house worth $3 Million was exchange for Sol Lew’s shares in the already failed IQ Corporation. Commenters on his blog quite rightly ask why he signed. He reaffirms it was all about wanting to avoid Sol Lew’s bad publicity threat.

Claims that Solomon Lew is spying on him. Has photos to prove it, and provides additional details. Implies that Somolon Lew’s law firm is involved in the surveillance also.

Day 8

Makes a spurious and irrelevant connection between Sol Lew and Evan Thornley.

In one massive post, takes issue with another Fairfax paper the Financial Review for being biased. Promises to tell more about Evan Thornley if he runs for office. And accuses the Fin Review Journalist of having an ALP factional barrow to push.

Counts Ronald Reagan as a great man.

Day 9

Introduces a new story about Solomon Lew and a meat-pie company. He claims the pies were dodgy.

Plans to create a catalogue of complaints from people who hold a grudge against Sol Lew.

Day 10 – May 12th A busy day.

Accuses the ABC of getting it wrong.

Has a dig at various people on THE LEFT. Pretty much seems to despise THE LEFT from what I can see.

Suggests that the campaign being run by The Age against ALP branch stacking is a result of THE LEFT calling in favours. Once again mentions Brian Daley, and his alleged slush funds used to achieve political aims.

Again mentions McVeigh and an apparent reluctance to reveal his liquidators fees, and has a dig at liquidators in general.

Further digs at the professionalism of The Age’s Leonie Wood

Gushes about Liberal MP Sophie Panopolous, who is one of the Victorian Liberals putting pressure on Mr. Howard to cut taxes back to 30%, and is backing Voluntary Student Unionism legislation.

Give political advice to Kim Beazley.

Day 11

Repeats himself on McVeigh, The Age, and Leonie Wood

Discusses Coles-Myer profit results and suggests that Sol Lew is not happy that they are doing so well without him.

Alleges branch stacking by THE LEFT

Touches on some incident relating to child porn and ALP people. Difficult to follow.

Day 12

Decides to get stuck into Leonie Wood again, and the way she writes her articles.

Takes a swipe at another Fairfax journalist Alan Ramsay for poor journalism

Comments on Sol Lew’s general business philosophy as cited in the Fin.

More on the child porn incident and some resultant sackings, and the ALP connection.

Day 13

More of the same on The Age and lefty bias.

Photos of McVeigh and his Rolls Royce

Day 14 Monday 16th

More reports on McVeigh and his car collection.

An ABC interview with Jon Faine. Faine gets high marks for niceness, but is marked down for lack of research.

Complains about pervasive Left Wing bias at the ABC.

Reports that McVeigh’s neighbors are not happy wth McVeighs neigbourliness.

A Promise that the next day an exiting story about Sol Lew will be given

Day 15

Applauds the Herald Sun for fair and balanced journalism in reporting the child porn incident, and the ALP factional connection.

Once again gushes over Liberal Party MP Sophie Panolopous, and her backing of Voluntary Student Unionism (VSU) legislation.

Alleges that Sol Lew used his position in Coles Myer and access to its resources to secure a lucrative personal deal with American fashion brand Nine West, effectively dudding Coles Myer shareholders.


What does it all mean? Does Mr Landeryou deliver on his promises? Here’s our take:


- Tells his stories in that breathless Herald Sun reporting style that we so love.
- Delivers some interesting stories about his nemesis Sol. Lew. There’s no doubt more to come on this.
- Gives a reasonably convincing explanation of the Wardlow transaction, apart from his motive for signing
- Alleges some rorts occurring in the ALP left. Slush funds and the like.
- Seems to be asking important questions of the Administrator Mr McVeigh which surely he should answer


- Fails (so far) to mentions anything about the manipulation of the Coles Myer AGM
- Fails to identify any rorts in the ALP Right, (only the Left) despite promising to reveal all about financial branch stacking – It looks like there some things he’s not willing to divulge.
- Lets Evan Thornley off the hook quite early after initially promising much
- Hasn’t adequately explained his movements overseas, and what all the bank transactions were about.
- Harps on far too much about the Age, Fairfax,the ABC and left bias

Mr. Landeryou is doing a pretty fair job, and in an engaging and in a sensationalist style reminiscent of Hush-Hush magazine in LA Confidential, which we just love. He’d probably be revealing much more if we wasn’t trying to tread carefully through the legal minefield.

He is without doubt delivering on his promise to reveal all about Sol Lew, and his pursuing of McVeigh, who has no connection with Mr. Landeryou’s past it seems, but who should be answering questions about administration fees, is admirable.

Where he disappoints is that he lets his blind hatred of THE LEFT direct his revelations. In the ALP both THE RIGHT and THE LEFT factions have been engaging in appallingly shady deals, and corrupt practices such as branch stacking for years and years and years. It is ingrained in their culture. They don’t know how to operate without it. They are both as guilty as hell, but Mr. Landeryou only seems to be prepared to talk about THE LEFT.

We think he would do the people of Victoria a great service if he exposed ALL of the pus infecting the ALP. One of Australia’s most important institutions We hope he does.

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Monday, May 16, 2005


Koran Story Wrong

Lefty Newspaper the Guardian reports, that lefty magazine Newsweek, admits that it got its story wrong about the Koran being desecrated in Guantanamo Bay resulting in riots in the Muslim World.

Prepare yourselves for the 'liberal bias' hurricane.

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Sunday, May 15, 2005


The Smartest State

I was gobsmacked today, when doing my regular review of the State of the Nation to find that Queensland’s Premier Peter Beattie, has stolen a march on the rest of the country, reinforcing his claim for Smart State Status by putting forward a ten year plan, to place Queensland on the top of the nation’s cleverness totem pole, in this the Clever Country.

Mr. Beattie’s vision is summed up in the tag-line.

Smart Queensland: Smart State Strategy is about building tomorrow’s Queensland today.

Now don’t get me wrong I have no problem with Queensland’s pluck, good luck to them I say, but we Victorians can’t simply let this overtaking manoeuvre occur without some form of challenge. A bit of a sudden swerve into their lane might be required, just to send the message that we’re onto their game, and to dent their cocky confidence a bit. Here they are, sitting in our blind-spot all this time, and it’s only just now come to our attention.

It does beg the question also, who else do we need to keep an eye on? A quick visit around the traps reveals that South Australia needs to be goaded into action - So no problem there. Western Australia has the pedestrian ambition of making itself a better place to live. New South Wales didn’t seem to be offering much more than a Featured Service, which changes regularly but when I visited, was generously offering for its citizens to pay their fines online. This may be exciting North of the Murray, but isn’t going to work down here. The Northern Territory is just confusing us with too much information, and Tasmania at least, is making the most out of its greatest asset - Its Map.

No, its clear. Queensland is the one to watch out for.

We Victorians need a strategy, and more importantly, a phrase of our own with which to take on this mighty challenge from Queensland. But first we need to take a look at ourselves. Are we just coasting? We used to have a slogan. “Victoria on the Move”. It spoke of dynamism, of action. It spelt standing around a roulette table, with gorgeous women dripping off your arm. But now? We’re static. Our slogan is “The Place to be”. More like the place to park your arse! We’re not just resting on our laurels, we’re virtually comatose!

This is a call to action my friends. What slogan can possibly meet this presumption head on? A simple adjustment of Queensland’s own call to arms produces this:

Smarter Victoria: Building next week’s Victoria now!

Which is certainly more ambitious than Queensland’s catchcry, but is it enough? Indeed, is it possible for one single catchcry to represent all the unique diversity that Victoria can offer to the world?

Like all things in this globalised marketplace, if you want to be successful you have to tailor you offering to each customer. People these days demand and expect personalised service. It’s about the individual, and we’ve got to recognise these trends if we want to stay at the forefront.

After conducting extensive market research, we’ve been able to segment the market into various influential interest groups.

For the business community we offer:

Victoria : Nothing but Upside

For the visionaries and futurists:

Victoria : Stand by for Warp Speed

For the traditionalists:

Victoria: Not just a Queen, but a State of being.

And to drive the message home to each and every Victorian, we want to see all the correspondence that is sent to us OHMS, personalised to the extent that our very own name appears within the letter head on all correspondence. To wit:

Victoria: Keeping up with you, Rex Ringschott!

There’ll be no more whinging from a disgruntled, and self-centred populace, once the government picks up on this idea.

Any suggesstions that you may have will be most appreciated, and we' ll be sure to pass them on to the Premier.

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Saturday, May 14, 2005


Google Content Blocker

Those brilliant folk at Google have finally come up with a way of making the Web pay.

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Friday, May 13, 2005


Molehills or Mountains?

Since we at The City just love a good old stoush we couldn’t help but be delighted by the huge storm being built up around the Amanda Vanstone – Tony Eastley edited AM transcript affair.

I’m not going to summarise the detail because you can read about it here and here and here, but I did notice that pretty much everyone was having to regurgitate from memory the interchange between the two, because the ABC had decided to edit the transcript. Edit out the bad bits.

So everyone was going by memory, everyone that is except Tim Blair, who seemed to have access to the actual transcript somehow. Indeed he confirms his source as the Department of Immigration. At the bottom of his post it says "(transcript via the Dept. of Immigration)"

So I duly went to the Department of Immigration’s website, and the Minister's website looking to see if they kept all of the media material featuring Senator Amanda Vanstone online, but be blowed if I could find it up there.

So I thought I’d give them a call, and see if they’d email me a copy. I was put though to the Public Relations and Media unit, and asked if they’d mind just emailing a copy of the transcript to me as well.

Y’know what? They asked who I was. “A concerned member of the public” was my natural and honest response.

After some confab behind the scenes, where I could hear them conferring as to whether a member of the public was allowed to have this material, they came back to the phone, and to my disappointment, told me that I was not allowed to have it.

I asked if should I speak to the Minister’s office. They said that I would get the same response, because you see, its all copyrighted. Its all owned by Media Monitors. Media Monitors record all the radio programs, turn them into transcripts and sell them to whoever needs them. Including the Department of Immigration.

So how, I ask myself, does Tim Blair manage to get hold of a transcript, not available to members of the public, but paid for by that public’s taxes, how does he manage to do this? Was his source actually Media Monitors, and he paid the necessary fee, or did someone deep within the bowels of the Department email him the transcript, which would be breaching government rules, or maybe Mr Blair's good friends with people in high places, with access to stuff not available to you and me, and who don’t mind the information being made public when it suits them?

Maybe its nothing. Maybe this is the way things work with experienced journalists like Mr. Blair. Or maybe there’s not a level playing field out there.

It does beg these questions though:

- Should the Department of Immigration be passing on material that it does not own the copyright to?
- Why is this material available so some select people but not the public at large?
- Should the Department of Immigration be providing material, paid for by the public purse, to a person known to have an idealogical hatred of the ABC, so that it can be used to embarrass the ABC, when it is clear that the ABC regrets what happened (because it edited the transcript, and Mr Eastley apologised)?
- What is the relationship between Mr. Blair and the Department of Immigration?

You be the judge!

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Beazley Budget Buzz Bafflement

I didn’t get to see Mr. Beasley’s Budget Reply speech last night, but according to those whose views I respect it was good.

That’s not the message I got though from reading the leading article this morning in Australia’s favorite newspaper The Heralds Sun.

Understand that I’m a busy man, and that I have to snatch my news grabs in the car on the way to work, balancing the paper on my knee while negotiating traffic madness, and shaving in the rear vision mirror. That’s why I read the Herald Sun – It gives me the news intravenously.

First the Headline:

Beazley plan to hit high-income earners
Jeez, I thought. A roundhouse from Bomber. Poor bastards!

Then the next line

KIM Beazley last night pledged a $12-a-week tax cut to middle Australia that he knows he will never have to deliver.

That’s cheating. I thought. That’s almost like making an election promise and then breaking your word. What a bastard! But then:
The handout would be funded by slashing Budget tax breaks for high-income earners and keeping the unpopular superannuation surcharge.

Where’s the ALP compassion I thought? This is terrible. And then we see the true motive. The desperation of a big man in trouble.

In a desperate bid to deal himself back into the tax reduction battle, the Opposition leader proposed doubling Treasurer Peter Costello's $6-a-week cut for workers earning between $35,000 and $60,000.

It wasn’t until I spoke with those that actually saw it, that the old cognitive dissonance kicked in and I started to do a bit of sniffing around.

It turns out that the well meaning folk running The Herald Sun have been receiving an ear-bashing from their own financial wiz-kid Terry McCrann. Terry who earns $300,000 pa, embarrassed himself by gushing like a schoolgirl over the Costello budget without listening to the Beasley alternative first. He forgot his responsibility to get both sides of the story poor fella, and no doubt the considerate folk at the Herald Sun decided that they must support their man, which is of course a laudable thing.

We’ll give the Herald Sun the benefit of the doubt in this case and let them off with a light slap on the wrist. We know ourselves how difficult it can be to tread that fine line between fairness and balance.

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Thursday, May 12, 2005


Good news story

We all love a good news story, even in its not from Iraq, and WBB has got a cracker!

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What I'm Reading

At the moment I’m reading a book about power, revenge and lust. Its title escapes me but it’s a novel set in Arabia in the sixteenth century. So far I’ve got in about five or six pages. The characters all have names like Al Mahalawawi bin Ibrahim Ibn Maahwa, and Al Mubin bin Saaad Ibn Faal, and Ibn bin Halawai bin Sultan.

I generally get to about page 2 or 3 where I find that these characters tend to merge into one, which makes the plot particularly hard to follow. By the time I get to page 5 or 6, I find my mind has sauntered off elsewhere and the last three pages have been a blur requiring me to go back to page 1 or 2 and pick up where I left off.

It’s either that, or I nod off to sleep and am awoken by the thud of the book hitting the floor. This causes me to lose my place and requires that I start again.

I’m toying with the idea of abandoning it altogether, but I’ve hung in there for so long now it seems a shame to just give up.

To be honest, unless you’ve plenty of time on your hands, I don’t really recommend this book.

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Wednesday, May 11, 2005


Opinion and Balance Shock Horror

Melbourne was shocked today to discover that not just their's, but Australia's favorite newspaper The Herald Sun, has modified its online presence so that its cavalcade of stars, well its binary star, consisting of Terry McCrann and Andrew Bolt, has been given its own little halo of minor stars. All now twinking happily alongside the great and mighty ones under the OPINION banner on the left hand side.

And just so we don't miss them, this constellation is given the appelation "new". Perhaps they've been newly created out of cosmic dust, or from the remnants of a super nova, but the only giant star explosions that we were aware of were happening over at Nine.

Anyway, we're delighted to see these new folk on board, it'll keep the the big boys on their toes, knowing that there is now so many pretenders to the throne.

How the hapless burghers of Melbourne will cope with this gigantic upheaval in the firmament is anybody's guess though. They were just getting used to digesting Mr. Bolts and Mr. McCrann's astringent medicine when suddenly they're being asked to find room for other powerful purgatives.

Nothing concentrates the mind like having no choice, and now I fear that my poor Melbourne brethren are being given too much to ponder all at once. It'll be confusing times for us folks down here in Melbourne, and we'll just have to ask for the forebearance of our interstate friends while we muddle on through.

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Budget Bombs in Battlerville.

So I rang my mate Phil in Montmorency last night. I hadn’t spoken to Phil in ages, and I thought budget night was as good a night as any to give him a call. I could do a bit of research at the same time. Get a sense of what it means from the man on the street. See whether Phil caught Mr. Costello’s performance and whether he pushed the worm control up or down.

REX: So Phil how are you?

PHIL: Fine mate. Yerself?

REX: Yeah good. How’s the kids?

PHIL: Er, I don’t have kids mate.

REX: Oh Right. The wife then?

PHIL: Nope. No wife either. Are you sure you’ve got the right Phil?

REX: Yeah. Phil in Montmorency right?

PHIL Yeah that’s me.

REX Yeah that’s what I thought. Look Phil, I was just calling to say hi to an old mate, and to get your take on Mr. Costello’s budget last night. The one that’s been throwing money around, like he’s going out of fashion.

PHIL: Didn’t watch it mate.

REX: You didn’t watch it?

PHIL: Nope, I switched around the channels pretty much avoiding it. What happened?

REX: Well like I say. Heaps and Heaps of tax cuts for everyone. What do you think about that?

PHIL: I dunno. Not much. What about interest rates?

REX: Nothing about interest rates mate. The government doesn’t control them. It just has to do what its told by the Reserve Bank on interest rates.

PHIL: But didn’t Howard promise lower…..

REX: Yeah I know what your going to say Phil, but he needed to say that at the time so that you’d vote for him. You did right?

PHIL: Well, yeah

REX: Phil I need to know what you thought about the Tax cuts. I’m doing research for a piece I’m writing. There’s too many latte lefties around my neck of the woods. I’m calling you to get a sense of what real Australia is thinking.

PHIL: Well I don’t really care much.

REX: Why not?

PHIL: I don’t pay tax.

REX: No?


REX: How’s that work Phil? You’ve got a job right?

PHIL: I work black mate!

REX: Black?

PHIL: Do I have to spell it out for you?

REX: What cash jobs?

PHIL: Yep. Everything’s cash around these parts mate. You can’t survive otherwise. So nope, I don’t pay a cent in tax. None of the blokes I work with do either. It all started with the GST. Just too hard to figure out. All that bloody accounting. The BAS statements. Having to pay the taxman at the end of every three months with money that you’ve already gone and spent on stuff. You’re always behind. Everyone’s just thrown up their hands and given up. It’s impossible. We’re all just milking the system for all its worth out here now until the whole bloody merry-go-round comes crashing down. Then the bastards might fix the system up so we all get a fair suck of the sav.

REX: Strewth! Is everyone out there doing that?

PHIL: Well either that, or they’re up to their eyeballs in debt. Just teetering on the edge with massive mortgages, or juggling 20 credit cards. They’re screwed. I might not own a house but at least I can manage my debt. I’m not worried about my debt.

REX: So you’ve got debt too?

PHIL: Oh yeah mate. Bloody oath. The Tax department. I owe them Forty grand.

REX: Strewth! I wouldn’t want those bastards on my tail.

PHIL: Ahh I’m not worried. I’ve spoken to my accountant. She’s advised me to go bankrupt. Then I don’t have to pay anything. It just wipes the slate clean, and I can carry on working black exactly as I do, and everything’ll be apples.

REX: So. Mr. Costello’s tax cuts are of no concern to you, or your mates out there, and it’d be interest rates that would worry most people is that right?

PHIL: Yep. Pretty much I guess.

REX: Great. Look Phil. I’ve got to go, and thanks for your help. We must catch up for a beer sometime.

PHIL: No worries mate. See ya later.

REX: Yeah, You too. Oh and say hi to your wife for me will you.

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Tuesday, May 10, 2005


Come Home Soon

I must say I think that how both the Wood family and the Australian government are handling the terrible situation of Mr. Woods captivity in Iraq in the best possible way.

The fact that Mr. Downer is not interfering in attempts by the Wood family to free their brother, despite the possibility that money may be exchanging hands is commendible. I applaud the involvement of the Sheik, despite his ill-diciplined language, I hope his involvement works.

I pray that Mr. Wood makes it out of there, and I wish our troops home.

It is interesting that Mr. Downer and Mr Hill are intimating that Australia may pull its troops out by the end of the year.
Meanwhile, Defence Minister Robert Hill and Foreign Minister Alexander Downer
appear to have softened their stance on Australia's involvement in the coalition
of the willing, saying Australia might pull out of Iraq by the end of the year
It does conveniently coincide with the mooted Japanese withdrawal at the same time, and it does suggest that the Government would like to finish up there as soon as it can.

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The good news from Iraq

I love media watch. I wring my hands with glee as the opening title sequence unfolds and bounce up and down on the sofa, giggling in anticipation of the little gems they will present us.

Oh and wasn’t it a beauty last night? Janet “Ban it” Albrechtson has elevated snotty nosed right wing yoof league trainee, Arthur Crenkoff to a Pulitzer level of authority by crowning him with the mantle of Wall Street Journal Iraqi Expert, and giving his GOOD NEWS FROM IRAQ propaganda site a mighty plug, which you’ll notice that Arthur is milking for all its worth if you pop over there now.

Tim Dunlop points out that “Janet–Ban it” and Snotty Arthur haven’t got their story straight though, and you’d think, Janet being a lawyer and all, that she’d at least have the smarts to concoct a decent alibi beforehand.

Anyway we do understand where Snotty Arthur is coming from with his Good News From Iraq concept, after all, they and we, need all the good news we can get right now, so we though we’d offer Mr. Crenkoff some good news. And we're more than happy for him to pop on over here and collect it and tack onto the bottom of his blog for all to share.

Good News from Iraq.

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Monday, May 09, 2005


The Korean Problem

There is an interesting rundown of Korean traffic behavior at Peemil’s. He is quite right. The Koreans have got to be the most idiotic and inconsiderate people you can end up in a public space with.

If you’re ever queuing in Korea, say at the airline counter, never leave even the slightest gap between you and the person standing in front of you. Otherwise the Koreans will view it as an opportunity to insert an entire family and 4 suitcases into your personal space, leaving you feeling humiliated and slightly murderous. Politeness in Korea is viewed as a sign of weakness.

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Drug Shock Horror at Logies

Australia’s most popular newspaper The Herald Sun reports today that Australia’s own star studded event, the Logies is a shocking cesspit of immorality, rife with the consumption of illicit drugs such as cocaine and speed.

The Herald Sun it seems have sent their own morality police sniffing around the dunnies at Crown Casino and taken swabs from goodness knows where and sent them off to the lab to be analysed, and the results are worse that could be expected. 14 out of 20 returned evidence of good shit.

It turns out this isn’t the first time that the Herald Sun have sent their morality police out into the pulsing Melbourne nightlife either. They’ve put the footy players under the microscope as well after taking samples from the dunnies at the Brownlow night. The results however have been kept secret until now, where the Herald Sun can reveal that the footy players are just a bunch of loudmouth pissheads, and quite harmless.

I’m looking forward to the day when the Herald Sun’s morality police are patched into the 000 emergency number and Melbournians can feel free to dob their neighbor in if they suspect that things are not above board at the 18th birthday party next door. Herald Sun journalists will leap out of their tactical response vehicle and burst through the doors. Notepad in one hand, evidence collection kit in the other. Snapping photos of underage persons knocking back the punch, or sneaking a sly ciggie in the shed.

Naming and shaming. That’s the only way to keep control in this lawless province.

It’s comforting to know that The Herald Sun is on the case.

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Sunday, May 08, 2005


What me Slack?

I've had correspondence to the effect that I've been slack. That the publication rate from The City is not satisfactory. That there's an awful lot out there needing commenting upon, and that my irate rate is not cutting the mustard.

You've got to understand that I have excuses, and I'll use them. For example the old Remington is close to seizing up after all these years, and the presses have seen better days. The shop steward, who's a mighty fine bloke by the way, only lets the presses run for a few hours each day and hardly ever on weekends, because he's concerned that they'll overheat. We're a union shop here also, and like you may have fire drills in your building, we have strike drills. The strike alarm goes off at least three times a day around here, and its one out all out. We're preparing ourselves for the big IR showdown with Mr. Howard once he gets control of the Senate.

But now that the Remington is warm I do find myself inclined to comment on the state of the telly. In particular, the dearth of material that speaks to, and celebrates our culture. Recently we’ve been flogging the great Aussie experience to the Yanks, and they’ve been lapping it up apparently. But what are they going to find when they fly on out here and ensconce themselves in the Sheraton? That the telly’s the same as back home, that’s what! Same news; OK sure different accent, but same scrolling ticker style news broadcasts with that same tiresome mid-blue backdrop that Channel Nine thinks gives its giggle hour, gravitas.

Same Pop-culture as well. As they’re sitting back in the bath, watching the telly through the glass wall separating the bathroom from the rest of the suite, they’ll be watching Survivor, or Big Brother or American Idol. “Hey Honey, they sure do have a lot of black people here in Orstralia”.

The problem is that we’re not concentrating enough on giving these visitors the taste of Australia that they’ve paid good greenbacks to come and see. It’s our marketeers. Those smarmy ad-agency types, with their Blackberrys and their iPods plugged into their brain, and their pre-fab casualness, and with those dicky little beard things just under their lip. They sit back with their demographic slide rules calculating just what will appeal to which sub-cultural sub-segment, and give us exactly what they say, we think, we want.

There is one ray of hope though. I’ve seen it a few times now on SBS on Saturday nights. Its called Rockwiz, and its produced by Raymond J. Bartholemuez who you may remember as the stumbling beatnik poet on Hey Hey it’s Saturday before we all realised that having a pink fluffy Ostrich on a show for adults was a touch embarrassing.

Recorded in the Esplanade Hotel, for added authenticity, Rockwiz features some fun banter, with a pretty hostess with amazingly cute dimples (Julia Zemiro), and nostalgia in the form of an endless parade of memorable guitar and keyboard riffs played with fluid grace by James Black (I think).

This show, which clearly slipped under the radar screens of those demographers and marketeers, speaks to me. It speaks to the 14 year old youth who knew that Ballroom Blitz was a great song even if The Sweet were a bit uncool, and it was unwise to mention it around a bunch of Kiss fans. It speaks to the 25 year old at the Deep Purple concert, happily air-guitaring to “My Woman From Tokyo”, and trying to reproduce an authentic Ian Gillan scream. It speaks volumes this show. It doesn’t say “dude” or “chill” or “sick” or “badass”. It says “shit hot”, “top”, “you beauty”, “F’n Oath”, and just occasionally “It’s a gas” ('cause Mick said it).

This is the type of thing that we need more of. Inventive, amateurish, and completely Australian. It’s time that our marketeers and demographers opened their eyes to the possibilities right here in their own back yard, and started also to think of our foreign guests, and offered them the telly that they’ve come out here to see.

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Saturday, May 07, 2005


Australian Cultural Imperialism

I was rather taken aback today when I noticed that Atrios, who I assume is American had a post up titled Wanker of the Day. It wasn’t the language that surprised me. It was the fact that the word ‘wanker’ was being used, exactly the way we use it, but by an American. Indeed it seems that Atrios has been making habit of it, because I counted its use at least 10 times.

I was under the impression that this superbly dismissive and pungent word was a secret only known to Australians, Poms and New Zealanders. Certainly a 1996 American definition confirms that it was not in common use at that time.

Maybe some nine years later the word is catching on in the US, its distinctive derisory note, simply too good to ignore.

Someone though, should speak to the proprietors of Wankers Corner, a saloon bar in Oregon who seem to be treating the word with disdain, and risk spoiling its effect, thus ruining the fun for everyone.

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Troops home by Christmas?

News today that the Japanese troops will be leaving Iraq by December 14th mean that Mr. Howard will be able to trump Latham, and have the troops home by Christmas.

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Friday, May 06, 2005


Where's Bunyip?

No posts from Bunyip for ages now. I'm starting to get worried about the crotchety old coot.
I hope he's OK.

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Thursday, May 05, 2005


Queensland:Too Good to be True.

Today whilst driving along the Citilink Autobahn, over the new Bolte Bridge with its close up view of the glistening glazed super city on the right and of the underwear festooned windows of the 1960s housing commission high rise on the left, I was struck by the sight of a huge azure billboard featuring this sentence.

Life… is too short to get bored


I was captivated by this little piece of philosophy in the morning, and was intrigued by the caption underneath: “Where else but Queensland?”

Further up the road there was another. A different philosophical observation but the same source. Clearly Queensland was trying to tell me something, but what could it be?

I pondered this for a while. Quite a while actually, for I stay well under the speed limit when driving in this State, especially now, knowing that the authorities must make up their revenue shortfall after caving in to the demands of Herald Sun readers on land taxes.

Travelling at 15kmh everywhere is really the only certain way of avoiding triggering those hand held speed detection devices. Indeed many a time I have crested a hill and seen a motorcycle copper standing feet apart, Starsky and Hutch style, Ray-Gun in hand pointed directly at me. Finger itchy on the trigger, waiting to take me out. It’s a battle of wits as I inch down the hill. The copper still braced, then realises that I am barely getting closer and that not only won’t he nab me, he’s not going to nab the 30 or so cars lined up behind me either. With this, he generally stands at ease and takes a short breather from his otherwise punishing routine.

Eventually when I reach his location, I like to wind down the passenger side window, and yell out a cheery “Morning Officer. Fine day for a bit of peackeeping”. I find that people are generally proud of their work, and it far too often goes unremarked and underappreciated.

Anyway by the time I reached the exit ramp, where I noticed that my arm was starting to get tired from waving back at all the passing traffic who were waving to me, I had resolved the perplexing matter of the Billboards.

Queensland, In a generous act of public service is giving we Melbournians a bit of a “chin up lad, it’ll get better soon” as we plunge into the depressing grey depths of our football drenched winter. Queensland is offering us a little philosophy with our tea and toast in the morning.

I was unaware that, apart from the Bahnisch family, Queensland was such a centre of philosophical wisdom. And not only that, they are prepared to forgive us for infecting their otherwise virgin, native sporting landscape with that tenacious pest Australian Rules Football.

I’m looking forward to more of Queensland’s billboards to get me through this Winter.

I find these inspiring:

Go confidently in the direction of your dreams. Live the life you have imagined.

The fool doth think he is wise, but the wise man knows himself to be a fool.

I never think of the future - it comes soon enough.

I thank you Queensland for your utterly generous act and I call on my Victorian brethren to consider what we might do in return. I know I’ll be getting into the car more often and keeping an eye out for more of Queensland’s thought provoking billboards this Winter.

I’m certain that all Victorians will be behind me on this.

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Wednesday, May 04, 2005


Are you Guilty...

of using any of these phrases in the workplace?

"At the end of the day"
"Thinking outside the box"
"Take it offline"
"Redeployed people"
"On the runway"
"Get on the same page"
"Customer centric"
"Generation X"
"Accountability management"
"Core competency"

Then you are an annoying git according to business consultancy Accountemps who should know better than to lecture us, since they are part of the problem.

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Boo Hoo Landeryou

The scion of a traditional ALP family Andrew Landeryou, whose recent exploits have been front page news of late, and who variously:

Has started a blog.

The Herald Sun reports that he’ll be slagging off those who’ve slagged him off.

He's going to tell THE WHOLE STORY

No doubt this will make as interesting reading as the Latham diaries.

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Tuesday, May 03, 2005



Is this the most tiresome stuff you'll ever read or what?

Update: I think some of the characteristics seen above are captured in The Godfather, Nitpick , Ethnix, Idealogue, Rebel Leader, Tireless Rebutter and Troglodyte.

(Via J-Walk)

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