Added features on The Political Sword

I have added two features to Blog Watch Government Watch and Opposition Watch.  They are located in the right margin under 'site pages'.  Despite the ridicule to which the suffix ‘Watch’ has been subjected by the media (it’s almost as gross as adding ‘Gate’ to every scandal), I’ve chosen that term as the most descriptive. 

For Blog Watch, The Political Sword is literally ‘watching’ the commonly visited political blogs and updating Blog Watch regularly with the latest additions to those sites, each item of which (with the exception of Mumble), is linked to the original piece.  I hope visitors find this a time-saving device.

During 2008, the Government was lampooned by the media and the Opposition as being ‘all spin, no substance’, ‘all talk, no action’, and so on it went, thankfully diminishing somewhat as the year progressed as Government actions rolled out.  Anyone looking regularly at the ALP website would have wondered what all this was about, as it poured out hundreds of statements about its actions from the beginning of the year.  So this year The Political Sword, by watching the ALP website, is providing a running update of items appearing on it.  The item titles, linked to the full item, the date of publication, and the person making the statement are listed, together with the nature of the statement.  Almost all are media statements.  To see any item of interest, click the link.  As much of what is reported in the media emanates from these statements, Government Watch gives visitors the opportunity to read the original before the media have had a go at it.  I use the website's RSS feed service to see the latest items posted.

I’ve done the same for the Opposition in Opposition Watch.  The Items there are derived from the Liberal Party of Australia website.  They are in similar form: a linked item title, the date of publication, the author, and a brief description of the substance of the item.  The statements, rather than being mainly media statements, are often doorstops or media interviews.  Again, the idea is to provide information ‘from the horse’s mouth’, and the website's RSS feed provides the latest.

As both Government Watch and Opposition Watch items have turned out to be numerous, I will start a new batch at the beginning of each month.  So far this month Government Watch has added over 80 items; Opposition Watch over 50.

I hope both of these features will prove a useful source of unadulterated information from Government and Opposition sources.  They will be updated each time the websites are updated, with the date and time of the update indicated.

Normal transmission of The Political Sword will recommence on 2 February.

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janice

29/01/2009Great stuff, Ad astra. Good to see you back and I hope you enjoyed a relaxing break but must admit I'd been hoping you would get bored and come out of hibernation earlier LOL. Looking forward to Feb 2.

Ad astra reply

29/01/2009Good to hear from you Janice. Had the temperature been more modest this week, I might have weakened and started earlier than 2 February. Right now, at 5 pm, it's 45.7 degrees C in the shade, 31 degrees inside even with the air con flat out, and goodness knows how hot it is here in my study. And we live near Wilson's Promontory right on the Southern Ocean, only 1 minute's walk from the shore, where one expects cooler conditions. It's even cooler in Melbourne! Hopefully some cooler weather will come at the weekend and make serious work possible.

janice

29/01/2009Ad astra, I feel for you melting in your heatwave. We're doing a swelter here as well but thankfully the 40 plus temps haven't come in the long strings like the previous three summers. I'm watching the 7.30 report at present and seeing all the angry people waiting for the trains that can't run on buckled tracks. They are blaming everyone and everything except the extreme weather conditions. A sorry story all around.

Grog

30/01/2009Great additions Ad astra - the Govt and Opposition Watches are excellent for those who think journalists come up with their own words!
How many oranges do I have if I have 3 oranges and take ONE away?