Thursday, September 30, 2010


I suppose with all the money we have spent on war mongering defence over the last decade and a half - that we could have built a high speed rail network and rolled out super fast broadband and secured our long term water supply and maintained our road network and a thousand other small and insignificant things.

But why do all that when we can help start two wars in and around the Middle East and export *freedom and democracy* to Iraq and Afghanistan?

Oh and sorry but we didn't mean to do this or this.

And then to rub it in we award the perpetrators this.

Numbnut Reality

What is it with Liberal voters?

I understand why the monk and his bunch of ferals are playing silly buggers - they smell an opportunity for power and for them power is everything. Most would sell their children for a chance at pulling the levers. And I can even understand why Murdoch's minions are attempting to create chaos - their business is quickly evaporating and they need to do something to retain some relevance and attention.

But I don't understand why many of the actual Liberal "rusted-ons" are so rabid. This group of vocal numbnuts seem to be completely oblivious to reality.

Every commentator in the nation has promoted their various theories about why the Coalition vote in the recent election was as high as it was. And they range from a dysfunctional media to a two speed economy and even to a "rock star" leader. These theories are a dime a dozen - and most of them are wrong.

The real reason why the Coalition vote was so high is because Australian's are just not properly informed - full stop.

We aren't properly informed because we don't dig deep to find the facts and we don't question the convention and the orthodoxy. And we don't do any of that because by and large we aren't properly educated. We accept most of the rubbish that is dished up by the vested interests and by the spin doctors and puppeteers. And we accept it because we have been conditioned to and because most of us don't know how to question it - or what to question. We are just not in "the loop" anymore.

Believe it or not Virginia, there was a time when I was a Liberal voter. When I was young and stupid and naive and ignorant - I actually believed the ideological crap that was dished up by the Liberals. Free markets and free enterprise and low tax and other blah, blah, blah. And I believed it with a passion.

But then I moved away from the backwater where I lived and got to experience quite a bit more of the real world and saw how things work out there. And in particular I saw first hand the Liberal ideology in action under a variety of Liberal Governments - State and Federal. And that caused me much pain and heartache as I realised that I had been conned.

In fact the single biggest experience that I have had that caused me to totally reject the Liberal ideology was to closely observe the behaviour of the Howard Government. I suspect that little Johnny has done more for the Labor cause than all the Labor leaders put together.

Because the simple truth is that since Howard, the Liberals are no longer Liberals - they are a bunch of right wing conservatives who have taken over the Liberal party and who intend to implement a far right agenda - when and if they ever regain power.

But their "rusted-ons" appear not to have noticed.

Tuesday, September 28, 2010


And while I am on about it - why do we still keep seeing all this "Fox News in Print" content popping up on my ABC?

If you spend a bit of time each day looking at the ABC news feeds - then you will find quite a few stories that have been created by News Limited staffers appearing in the ABC feed. Why is it so?

Either the ABC has done a deal with News Corporation to take their stories and re-broadcast them under an ABC banner OR ABC journalists are pinching content from News Corp feeds. So which is it?

Actually I favour the first theory because that would go some way toward explaining why News Corp people are bobbing up all over the ABC.

You can imagine a scenario where Murdoch has made selected content available to the ABC on the basis that the ABC also gets to "interview" his staffers for national television programs like QandA, Insiders and Lateline.

Now if this is the case then I wonder who it was at the ABC who thought it would add value to their brand by providing a platform for the likes of Andrew Bolt?

Is this news?

I mean really - why is this news?

It could only be considered news by someone who was hoping to discredit a former PM and/or his political party. Or by a junior reporter who has been set-up.

Is that the ABC? Jamelle Wells whoever you are - please find a real job.

High Speed Rail

Peter Martin asks a few questions here. Actually these questions and their assumptions might need to be re-thought.

Instead of a "high speed" passenger rail service we might be better off with a "medium speed" service that delivers maximum connectivity and reliability and which provides economic, environmental and social benefit when compared with the airline and other services.

For example, I can imagine a Eurostar type service that delivers comfort, personal space for working and relaxing, internet services, food and beverage services - all to a good quality and standard while transporting us relatively quickly and inexpensively between our cities.

I would be all over it like a rash - especially if I could overnight between our cities in comfort and arrive relaxed and ready for work early the next day.

Lets start at the beginning and get some real experts to come up with ideas about what a 21st century rail transport infrastructure and service offering might look like and what it might deliver - to enhance and support our city centric lifestyles while taking account of geography, distances, population, and so on.

I think we have already done around 10 high speed rail studies in this country over the past 20 or so years - all of which show that it isn't a viable proposition. Keep doing them if you want but the result is likely to be the same. Let’s open up our minds a little and stop being pushed down a path that suits the vested interests.

And when we have identified all the options and modelled a mix of scenarios then lets have a real debate about whether the final version becomes a "Nation Building Project" or if it needs a "Benefit Cost Analysis".

The real tragedy is that we have wasted decades on a faux debate - when we could have been building and using it.

But that's the "Australian Way" - and it's also why we let dumb telecommunications policy and Telstra muck us about for decades over "fast broadband".

Monday, September 27, 2010

ABC Mark Scott

Now I have never met Mark Scott - and it's not very often that I am in violent agreement with him. I see him as a wishy washy bureaucrat who has perfected the art of accommodating the vested interests. And that is why he is at the ABC. And that is the problem. Where is the passion?

And my perception is confirmed by the reading of the first 90% of this missive.

But the final few paragraphs made me rethink. This is what he said.

"The ABC hosted Jay Rosen for a day while he was recently in Australia. He is always good value on the role of social media and the nature of political journalism - in some ways quite a contrarian – and full of encouragement about things we could do better.

He had two suggestions for the ABC, which we are exploring and will likely pursue.

The first is to provide more background, detail and context for members of our audience who are coming fresh to complex stories: like an ETS, or the NBN, or the operations of a hung parliament. The ABC has a role as a patient explainer of these complexities, to help people catch up with the conversation, understand what is being said and to make a contribution if they wish. It plays nicely to our Charter role to provide an educational service to the community. It makes policy more accessible and can bring important issues into the mainstream.

And Rosen said we should plan more thoroughly and consult more widely around what national issues are at play in an election campaign. Long before the campaign starts, talk with the community, engage with experts, undertake polling, think about national challenges: the immediate and the far-reaching.

And then articulate that agenda – let the political leaders know that we will be doing stories on these things, asking questions, seeking policy responses and political insights to them. And if the politicians will not engage, devote space to these issues anyway, using experts, finding divergent voices, doing real investigations.

It would not be the ABC’s agenda, it would be an agenda framed by the audiences we engage with – and the voters who fund us – from all around the nation.

Perhaps it would at least be a way of countering tightly scripted politicians, who want policy discussions only on the day and terms they – not the public or the journalists – have set".

Absolutely - we ARE in violent agreement.

Lets see how it translates into actual content - please don't disappoint me Mr Scott.

Friday, September 24, 2010

It's Time

I don't know about you Virginia but the last thing I want is a dishonest little right wing bully masquerading as Prime Minister.

Australian's got rid of the last one back in 2007 and we don't need a repeat of that anytime soon.

And if the Monk and his mentor at News Corporation manage to slime him into the main gig then I reckon we can look forward to revolution and perhaps even civil war - because "no-one" - repeat "no-one" is going to tolerate their sort of shit.

Are they ready for that?

Malcolm "It's Time" - time to step up and depose the *numbnuts*.

Thursday, September 23, 2010

It's So Simple

Folks - it's so simple - he's just an aggressive little B-Grade bully with no concern for the nation and its people.

His little game is simply the acquisition of power for him and his puppeteers - that's it.

How on earth did we get here? And how on earth do the Liberals tolerate it?

When all this washes through the system - as it will - the Monk and his ugly little political party will be toast.

Then what?

Can't Work It Out

The really sad thing about our nation is that many of the regions have missed out on needed infrastructure investments for well over 30 years.

I have spent some time recently in a remote regional city - and the infrastructure is just atrocious.

Nothing much works anymore - the most visible problem is with the roads which seem to be in permanent disrepair. But most other services are also crap. The water supply is precarious at best, the internet is slow and unreliable, mobile phone services are poor or nonexistent, television and media services are rubbish, the health services are failing and the education system is seriously bad. I haven't yet found a problem with the electricity supply though ;-)

Actually the education system stinks. In this regional city there is no tertiary education facility at all. That is unless you call TAFE tertiary - and that seems to have been corrupted by vested interests and wide ranging nepotism. This lack of quality education does go some way toward explaining the other problems.

Now all of these issues reflect a failure of various State and Federal Governments to invest and support this region - over an extended timeframe. No wonder many regional Australians are pissed off - and revolting.

But in truth they have brought much of it on themselves.

The people in this city - and the surrounding district - vote conservative. They always have done and they probably always will. Because analysis and thinking rate way behind fishing and football ;-)

The State and Federal members are both currently Liberal - and have either been Liberal or National since Federation. The "Mighty Coalition" rules out here.

Which is rather unfortunate given that the State and Federal Governments are currently Labor?

But the amazing thing is that even when the State or Federal Governments were *Blue* in colour this region was still ignored and neglected and taken for granted.

I wonder if the locals will work it out one day?

Sunday, September 19, 2010

Worth a Read

This is really worth a read - a great summary of the state of the Opposition.

Friday, September 17, 2010

Memo to Kevin

Just a quick dot point memo to Kevin Foley - I know he is busy today ;-)

* Believe it or not Kev - State Governments exist to *spend* money - not to save it.

* They do this to *stimulate* their economy - and to create jobs and infrastructure.

* It's also why money is made round - to go round.

* Taking a "billion dollars" or so out of your local economy might make the thickwits happy.

* And sacking around 4000 public servants might satisfy those with job envy.

* But it will really piss off "small business" in SA.

* As people stop buying houses, cars, meals, coffee and the other things that "small business" provide.

* And then what is your plan?

* Because an AAA Credit Rating never employed anyone.

Just as I thought - NFI.

Benefits and Costs

Now lets hear all those *geniuses* in the "Opposition" and the "MSM" rant and rave a bit more about the NBN and it's need for a Benefit Cost analysis - because well they said so.

And if you find one doing it - then perhaps you could point him or her here.

And after that just for some re-enforcement - point them here.

As I said here - "Large visionary projects always have to deal with the wowsers, the conservatives and the risk averse, that’s how life is - just get on with it".

Wednesday, September 15, 2010


I would imagine that many of the staff at "The Australian" are shitting themselves about now.

They know that Chris Mitchell has finally lost his marbles and is desperately running around looking for them in the Monk's back pocket. And they know that the newspaper business is dying a little bit more each day as real content moves elsewhere and news distribution is overtaken by the internet.

Not that Rupert actually cares about his Australian assets. They are there merely to provide him with pocket money and to "round out" his global empire. His USA and UK assets are the real money spinners.

Does he actually care much about a couple of feeble little right wing rags down under? I doubt it.

But the people who do care are the workers who have jobs there. They are the ones who bear the brunt of any criticism and who will suffer when it all goes pear shaped. And pear shaped it will go - because the nutters in charge are running a little experiment in "anti-democracy".

Or it could be called an experiment - I am not sure what you would call it - but it is a high risk adventure - designed to impose a far right wing Government on Australia.

Which I suppose is OK if you are one of those slow thinking Liberals or their fellow travellers but for the other 80% of the Australian population that would be very offensive.

Anyway, I doubt that our Government will do much about it - because they are also shitting themselves - but I do know a *lot* of folks who are doing something.

And some of the evidence is here - responding to a different rag - but same owner. Enjoy.

Friday, September 10, 2010

Fair and Balanced

Fox News in Print - calls itself "Fair and Balanced" and "A Centre Right" newspaper - just hilarious.

Mitchell seems to have taken lessons from the "Bullshitter in Chief" - numbnut Tony and has now verballed Julia. The sooner we get rid of these rabid ultra right wing ratbags - the better.

I hope Mitchell and Murdoch have plenty of ammo left because I know of dozens of people who are so offended by their behaviour that they will dedicate lots of personal time and dollars to helping move them and their rag offshore.

Get ready for the fun and games people - or just roll over and let Rupert run the country.

Tuesday, September 7, 2010

He Pork Pies

The main problem that Tony Abbott has is that he tells lots of pork pies - all the time.

He did it all the way through this election campaign and he has just done it again now in his press conference - following the decision by two of the three Musketeers to support Labor and hand Julia Government.

He is now telling pork pies to save his job - because the Liberals know that if they had Malcolm in the role that they would have won. And so do both Abbott and Bishop.

Abbott and Bishop - the last dinosaurs in a party that definitely needs to grow up, mature and modernise. They are desperate to keep their jobs - so they can tell more pork pies - because they think that this is what appeals to their rusted on's and what will deliver them Government - eventually.

Not policy, not investment, not leadership, not quality, not commitment. No sir - their whole approach is based on a larder full of pork pies. And a little help from Rupert.

Get ready folks for a non-stop, negative, bullshit, pork pie dominated campaign by the Liberals for as long as Abbott and Bishop and Rupert can keep consuming oxygen and for as long as this new Government can last.

Because as I have said before - the Monk is just a frustrated B-grade bully. He can only *do* pork pies, aggression and negativity - he has no other skills.

And pretty soon even the rusted on's will get sick of that.

PS - Possum Comitatus says it much clearer than I ever could - here.

Monday, September 6, 2010

A Good Start

The Parliamentary reforms that have been the focus of the *3 Musketeers* over the past couple of weeks are a *good* idea. Not yet great because the major parties will likely attempt to gain political advantage once all this hoo-haa has died down. But a good start.

If we can encourage the *3 Musketeers* to keep up the good work once a Government is formed - and to work with other "independently minded" MP's to expand and improve on these reforms then that could become a *great* thing.

But it will take a while for key reforms to be prototyped and tested and agreed in order to find the best possible form. It might even become too hard to make it work for the benefit of the parliament and the people. We probably won't know that for another 3 years or more.

But there is something that could be done right now that would improve our national governance - enormously.

And that would be for our media to treat all 150 Members of the House of Representatives and 76 Senators - as though they were equal - which they actually are. By that I mean lets not have our media playing favourites with the usual suspects being asked over and over again for their opinion and for commentary.

Shows like The 7:30 Report, Lateline and Q&A would benefit enormously by having some diversity and by showing the talents of our elected representatived to the people. The ABC could lead the way in this and set an example for the rest of our media.

I don't expect it to happen anytime soon - but it would be a *great* thing and might even lead to a more politically engaged community - and we would all benefit from that.

Thursday, September 2, 2010


This is one of those moments when it is obvious to everybody that they have lost all credibility.

I am talking about the Monk and the Liberals and their *costings* - being shown up for what they are - here and here.

Some people dismiss this as "just politics" when in reality they have been caught out lying to the Australian people.

Of course anyone who is a student of "body language" would have worked that out during the campaign. All you had to do was take a good look at Abbott, Hockey and Robb - when they were talking about their *costings* to see how uncomfortable they were. Robb in particular was very uncomfortable which probably means that he was not happy with having to stand up and tell lies. Of course Abbott and Hockey have had more practice ;-)

It is unusual for the lies to be so blatant and for the truth to emerge so early - that is one of the benefits of this hung parliament.

Oh well I suppose Uncle Rupert will just have to work a bit harder to get his team back in the game.