Focus on crap detecting: Postman and Weingartner

This is the third in the end-of-year series that have focussed on aspects of politics. This one uses Neil Postman and Charles Weingartner’s brilliant 1969 paperback Teaching as a Subversive Activity as the framework for this piece. I found this book facilitated more insights into the purposes of education that most of the formal texts on education. I was disappointed when I lost my copy some years ago, but delighted recently when I found a PDF version published online by Oregon State University.

The title of the first chapter was ‘Crap Detecting’, which although written in the context of the educational process, has significant implications for the political process. This piece gathers together parts of this chapter, in italics, which I annotate with comments, in bold, that relate Postman and Weingartner’s words to contemporary politics. Any bolding of the original text is mine.

The ‘Crap Detecting’ chapter begins:

“'In 1492, Columbus discovered America....' Starting from this disputed fact, each one of us will describe the history of this country in a somewhat different way. Nonetheless, it is reasonable to assume that most of us would include something about what is called the 'democratic process', and how Americans have valued it, or at least have said they valued it. Therein lies a problem: one of the tenets of a democratic society is that men be allowed to think and express themselves freely on any subject, even to the point of speaking out against the idea of a democratic society. To the extent that our schools are instruments of such a society, they must develop in the young not only an awareness of this freedom but a will to exercise it, and the intellectual power and perspective to do so effectively. This is necessary so that the society may continue to change and modify itself to meet unforeseen threats, problems and opportunities. Thus, we can achieve what John Gardner calls an, 'ever-renewing society'.

"So goes the theory." 


While facts are important, the most important role of schools must be to inculcate the ability to reason, to challenge ‘conventional wisdom’, to exercise freedom of thought and action. The strong emphasis the Government is giving to education as the foundation for a strong economy, a just society, and a vibrant democracy, is not just laudable, it is essential.

"In practice, we mostly get a different story. In our society as in others, we find that there are influential men at the head of important institutions who cannot afford to be found wrong, who find change inconvenient, perhaps intolerable, and who have financial or political interests they must conserve at any cost. Such men are, therefore, threatened in many respects by the theory of the democratic process and the concept of an ever-renewing society. Moreover, we find that their are obscure men who do not head important institutions who are similarly threatened because they have identified themselves with certain ideas and institutions which they wish to keep free from either criticism or change."

This is what Stiglitz says in his 2012 book The Price of Inequality. Postman and Weingartner were saying it over four decades ago, in 1969. Moreover, we see contemporaneously how some have become so wedded to certain ideas, such as global warming being a hoax, that they are threatened by anything that contradicts their beliefs. Just last week we saw them cherry-pick parts of the latest IPCC report to support their beliefs.

"Such men as these would much prefer that the schools do little or nothing to encourage youth to question, doubt, or challenge any part of the society in which they live, especially those parts which are most vulnerable. 'After all,' say the practical men, 'they are our schools, and they ought to promote our interests, and that is part of the democratic process, too’. True enough; and then we have a serious point of conflict. Whose schools are they, anyway, and whose interests should they be designed to serve? We realize that these are questions about which any self-respecting professor of education could write several books each one beginning with a reminder that the problem is not black or white, either/or, yes or no. But you will not expect us to be either professorial or prudent. We are, after all, trying to suggest strategies for survival as they may be developed in our schools, and the situation requires emphatic responses. We believe that the schools must serve as the principal medium for developing in youth the attitudes and skills of social, political and cultural criticism. No. That is not emphatic enough. Try this: in the early 1960s, an interviewer was trying to get Ernest Hemingway to identify the characteristics required for a person to be a 'great writer'. As the interviewer offered a list of various possibilities, Hemingway disparaged each in sequence. Finally, frustrated, the interviewer asked, 'Isn't there any one essential ingredient that you can identify?' Hemingway replied, ‘Yes, there is. In order to be a great writer a person must have a built-in, shockproof crap detector.'

"It seems to us that, in his response, Hemingway identified an essential survival strategy and the essential function of the schools in today's world. One way of looking at the history of the human group is that it has been a continuing struggle against the veneration of 'crap'. Our intellectual history is a chronicle of the anguish and suffering of men who tried to help their contemporaries see that some part of their fondest beliefs were misconceptions, faulty assumptions, superstitions and even outright lies. The mileposts along the road of our intellectual development signal those points at which some person developed a new perspective, a new meaning, or a new metaphor. We have in mind a new education that would set out to cultivate just such people - experts at 'crap detecting'."

Here is the nub of the problem we as a nation need to resolve now. Although it has always been so in Australian politics, how many would disagree that these last two years have been beset with an unprecedented avalanche of political crap, whether it is about global warming and the effect of a price on carbon, about the economy, about the Government’s stewardship of it especially through the GFC, about the HIP and the BER, about the best way forward in health and education? And almost all of it has come from the Coalition and its leadership, and faithfully echoed by the much of mainstream media. If ever we needed ‘a built-in, shockproof crap detector’, we have needed it since 2010. All but the rusted-on have installed a crap detector, and as a sad result, many are turning away from political discourse. It is in our schools that crap detecting needs to be taught and learned.

Back to Postman and Weingartner: "There are many ways of describing this function of the schools, and many men who have. David Riesman, for example, calls this the 'counter-cyclical' approach to education, meaning that schools should stress values that are not stressed by other major institutions in the culture. Norbert Wiener insisted that the schools now must function as 'anti-entropic feedback systems', 'entropy' being the word used to denote a general and unmistakable tendency of all systems - natural and man-made - in the universe to 'run down', to reduce to chaos and uselessness. This is a process that cannot be reversed but that can be slowed down and partly controlled. One way to control it is through 'maintenance'. This is Eric Hoffer's dream, and he believes that the quality of maintenance is one of the best indices of the quality of life in a culture. But Wiener uses a different metaphor to get at the same idea. He says that in order for them to be an anti-entropic force, we must have adequate feedback. In other words, we must have instruments to tell us when we are running down, when maintenance is required. For Wiener, such instruments would be people who have been educated to recognize change, to be sensitive to problems caused by change, and who have the motivation and courage to sound alarms when entropy accelerates to a dangerous degree. This is what we mean by 'crap detecting'. It is also what John Gardner means by the 'ever-renewing society', and what Kenneth Boulding means by 'social self-consciousness'. We are talking about the schools cultivating in the young that most 'subversive' intellectual instrument - the anthropological perspective. This perspective allows one to be part of his own culture and, at the same time, to be out of it. One views the activities of his own group as would an anthropologist, observing its tribal rivals its fears, its conceits, its ethnocentrism. In this way, one is able to recognize when reality begins to drift too far away from the grasp of the tribe.

"We need hardly say that achieving such a perspective is extremely difficult, requiring, among other things, considerable courage. We are, after all, talking about achieving a high degree of freedom from the intellectual and social constraints of one's tribe. For example, it is generally assumed that people of other tribes have been victimized by indoctrination from which our tribe has remained free. Our own outlook seems 'natural' to us, and we wonder that other men can perversely persist in believing nonsense. Yet, it is undoubtedly true that, for most people, the acceptance of a particular doctrine is largely attributable to the accident of birth. They might be said to be 'ideologically inter-changeable', which means that they would have accepted any set of doctrines that happened to be valued by the tribe to which they were born. Each of us whether from the American tribe, Russian tribe, or Hopi tribe, is born into a symbolic environment as well as a physical one. We become accustomed very early to a 'natural' way of talking, and being talked to, about 'truth'. Quite arbitrarily, one's perception of what is 'true' or real is shaped by the symbols and symbol-manipulating institutions of his tribe. Most men, in time, learn to respond with favour and obedience to a set of verbal abstractions which they feel provides them with an ideological identity. One word for this, of course, is 'prejudice'. None of us is free of it, but it is the sign of a competent 'crap detector' that he is not completely captivated by the arbitrary abstractions of the community in which he happened to grow up. In our own society, if one grows up in a language environment which includes and approve such a concept as 'white supremacy', one can quite 'morally' engage in the process of murdering civil-rights workers. Similarly, if one is living in a language environment where the term 'black power' crystallizes an ideological identity, one can engage, again quite 'morally', in acts of violence against any non-black persons or their property. An insensitivity to the unconscious effects of our 'natural' metaphors condemns us to highly constricted perceptions of how things are and, therefore, to highly limited alternative modes of behaviour.

"Those who are sensitive to the verbally built-in biases of their 'natural' environment seem 'subversive' to those who are not. There is probably nothing more dangerous to the prejudices of the latter than a man in the process of discovering that the language of his group is limited, misleading, or one-sided. Such a man is dangerous because he is not easily enlisted on the side of one ideology or another, because he sees beyond the words to the processes which give an ideology its reality. In his ‘May Man Prevail?’ Erich Fromm gives us an example of a man (himself) in the process of doing just that:

"The Russians believe that they represent socialism because they talk in terms of Marxist ideology, and they do not recognize how similar their system is to the most developed form of capitalism. We in the West believe that we represent the system of individualism, private initiative, and humanistic ethics, because we hold on to our ideology, and we do not see that our institutions have, in fact, in many ways become more and more similar to the hated system of communism.

"Religious indoctrination is still another example of this point. As Alan Watts has noted: 'irrevocable commitment to any religion is not only intellectual suicide; it is positive unfaith because it closes the mind to any new vision of the world. Faith is, above all, openness - an act of trust in the unknown' And so 'crap detecting' require a perspective on what Watts calls 'the standard-brand religions'. That perspective can also be applied to knowledge. If you substitute the phrase 'set of facts' for the word 'religion' in the quotation above, the statement is equally important and accurate.

"The need for this kind of perspective has always been urgent but never so urgent as now. We will not take you again through that painful catalogue of twentieth-century problems we cited in our introduction There are, however, three particular problems
[summarized below] which force us to conclude that the schools must consciously remake themselves into training centers for 'subversion'. In one sense, they are all one problem but for purposes of focus may be distinguished from each other.

"The first goes under the name of the 'communications revolution’ or media change…Very few of us have contemplated more rigorously what is happening through media change than Jacques Ellul who has sounded some chilling alarms. Without mass media, Ellul insists, there can be no effective propaganda. With them, there is almost nothing but. 'Only through concentration of a large number of media in a few hands can one attain a true orchestration, a continuity, and an application of scientific methods of influencing individuals.' That such concentration is occurring daily, Ellul says, is an established fact, and its results may well be an almost total homogenization of thought among those the media reach…

"Still another way of saying this is that, while there has been a tremendous increase in media there has been, at the same time, a decrease in available and viable 'democratic' channels of communication because the mass media are entirely one-way communication…No one can reach many people unless he has access to the mass media." 


Remember, these words were written over forty years ago. Today we know how prescient they were. And we now know that the only way we can counter the mass media, the Fourth Estate, is via the burgeoning Fifth Estate.

"We come then to a second problem which makes necessary a 'subversive' role for the schools. This one may appropriately be called the 'change revolution'. In order to illustrate what this means, we will use the media again and the metaphor of a clock face. [Remember, Postman and Weingartner wrote their book over forty years ago.] Imagine a clock face with sixty minutes on it. Let the clock stand for the time men have had access to writing systems. Our clock would thus represent something like three thousand years, and each minute on our clock fifty years. On this scale, there were no significant media changes until about nine minutes ago. At that time, the printing press came into use in Western culture. About three minutes ago, the telegraph, photograph, and locomotive arrived. Two minutes ago: the telephone, rotary press, motion pictures, automobile, aeroplane and radio. One minute ago, the talking picture. Television has appeared in the last ten seconds, the computer in the last five, and communications satellites in the last second. The laser beam - perhaps the most potent medium of communication of all - appeared only a fraction of a second ago…" [And social media just a few microseconds ago.]

"All of which brings us to the third problem: the 'burgeoning bureaucracy'. We are brought there because bureaucracies, in spite of their seeming indispensability, are by their nature highly resistant to change. The motto of most bureaucracies is, ‘Carry on, regardless'. There is an essential mindlessness about them which causes them, in most circumstances, to accelerate entropy rather than to impede it. Bureaucracies rarely ask themselves Why?, but only How?... "

Postman and Weingartner conclude their chapter on ‘Crap Detecting’ thus:

"What is the necessary business of the schools? To create eager consumers? To transmit the dead ideas, values, metaphors, and information of three minutes ago? To create smoothly functioning bureaucrats? These aims are truly subversive since they undermine our chances of surviving as a viable, democratic society. And they do their work in the name of convention and standard practice. We would like to see the schools go into the anti-entropy business. Now, that is subversive, too. But the purpose is to subvert attitude, beliefs and assumptions that foster chaos and uselessness."

During these last two years of unremitting political crap, we all have needed Hemingway’s built-in, shockproof, industrial-strength crap detector.

PM Gillard admonished journalists with: ‘Don’t write crap’, but they carried on doing so nevertheless. We have had crap dealt out about climate change, the economy, the competence of the Government, the integrity of our PM, and as recently as last week we had Justice Rares deliver a harsh judgement about the attempt of James Ashby and his co-conspirators to bring a sexual harassment case against the Speaker of the House with the intent of bringing him down and the Government with him. Although he didn’t use the word, Rares could have aptly described the Ashby case as ‘crap’. So, he threw it out, presumably onto the growing political ‘crap heap’. Then last week we had Tony Abbott heap more crap on the crap heap as he used weasel words to camouflage his involvement, and that of Mal Brough. He’s still at it, walking away from questions about Brough as recently as yesterday at the presser he called to gloat over the now-doubtful budget surplus.

The lesson for schools is that as the crap mushrooms, we need urgently to help our young to learn how to analyze, integrate, and synthesize information, concepts, and understandings into a meaningful whole, all the time looking for and detecting crap with their inbuilt crap detector, and consigning it to a place where it can do no harm. The health of our democracy depends on it.


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Ad astra reply

21/12/2012Folks At the end of a year when we have been assailed with an unprecedented volume of political crap in equal measure from Coalition sources, principally Tony Abbott, Joe Hockey, Julie Bishop and Christopher Pyne, and from mainstream media sources, principally journalists from the Canberra Press Gallery, it is appropriate to end the year with a piece on ‘crap detecting’. Inhabitants of the Fifth Estate have long since had their crap detectors at the ready, and have called the crap as it has been emitted, in no uncertain terms. Mainstream media journalists too have recognized the crap but have been ever so timid in calling it out. For example, the crap that emanated from Tony Abbott over the Rares judgement, one he had not had time to read because he was overseas ‘doing important things for the people of Australia’, instead of evoking outrage from the Canberra Press Gallery because of such dilatory and hypocritical behaviour from the would-be PM, evoked only the limpest of language from Michelle Grattan and Lenore Taylor: ‘careless’ and ‘silly’. Here is a man who spent months condemning Peter Slipper, verbally trying him, finding him guilty, and prescribing the punishment he ought to suffer; here we have a man leading a Party where its members had clearly colluded with Ashby and others to bring down Slipper and the Government with him, something recognized by Justice Rares, and despite not having read the judgement, is not asked whether he was briefed, is allowed to walk away after heaping crap on the assembled journalists, and those back here let him gently off the hook. We in the Fifth Estate can see the crap in an instant, journalists have more difficulty seeing it, or reticence reporting it, while the general public probably accepts it as ‘gospel’. That is where an inbuilt shockproof, industrial-strength crap detector is needed. This piece might serve as a reminder of how all-pervasive political crap has become in this country, and how all citizens need to have their crap detector at the ready, because there’s plenty of it around to detect.

Ken

21/12/2012Ad, thank you for reminding me of "Teaching as a Subversive Activity". I bought it in 1972 when I was doing a Dip.Ed. (which I dropped out of)and still have my copy. As an anthropologist, I believe I do have an approach similar to that described - I can see many of our institutions and behaviours in terms of other societies and the role they play in a social and cultural sense. In terms of understanding, my step-daughter used to come home from school with the latest theory about something or other and I would tell her not to place too much credence on it, that in 10 or 20 years time, it would be considered rubbish. She had to be open to new ideas, not cling to this one she had just been taught. My explanation was: "What is, is! The only thing that changes is our understanding or perception of it." Just as we went from believing in a flat earth with the firmament above, to our view now that there is a vast cosmos out there, although the universe itself has not changed its behaviour in that time. But our view may change in years to come - who's to say. We think, with science, we have it right, but we can never be certain!! And good scientists will admit the uncertainty of some of their theories. Political crap has always been around but I agree that Abbott has developed it into a "fine art" and knows no other approach, supported by the MSM and the shock jocks. Abbott is actually playing that game with all the mud he throws, implying everybody else is talking crap!! As I said in previous comments, I think the electorate is cynical of politics and politicians and Abbott is playing on that but currently being allowed to get away with his own crap. I think, while there would be a percentage of people who accept what he is saying, I think there are are many others who are cynical (seeing the crap) of all politicians and trying to decide whose crap is more believable. [I say that only as a view probably held by a signifcant number of the electorate.] Personally, I don't believe that is necessarily a bad thing, as it will lead them towards seeing Abbott for what he is. The crap sensors may not be as finely tuned as one would hope, nor as developed as Postman and Weingartner would like, but I think Australians generally have a reasonable sense of crap - we know who to avoid in the pub because we know they talk crap!!! I do believe that Abbott's game will come unstuck because people will recognise the bullshit for what it is. I may be in a minority, but I do have faith in the majority of Aussies eventually seeing it for what it is.

Ad astra reply

21/12/2012LadyinRed From the last thread – thank you for the link to Tim Dunlop’s brilliant exposé of the childish immature men who write columns in MSM redolent with sexism directed at our PM. Everyone should read it. BTW, if anyone still doesn't understand CRAP, and sexist crap at that, read Henry Ergas' piece and Piers Akerman's comment on it. Have a bucket ready! Dunlop: http://www.abc.net.au/unleashed/4436552.html Ergas paywalled: http://www.theaustralian.com.au/opinion/columnists/desparate-pms-war-has-failed-her-own-gender/story-fn7078da-1226537935706 I can't find Akerman's comment, but Tim Dunlop mentions it.

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21/12/2012Ken Thank you for your comment. I’m delighted that I have a kindred soul who also enjoyed [i]Teaching as a Subversive Activity[/i], a book that I’m sure is a treasured item in your archives. I am in accord with your words: [i]” Political crap has always been around but I agree that Abbott has developed it into a "fine art" and knows no other approach, supported by the MSM and the shock jocks. Abbott is actually playing that game with all the mud he throws, implying everybody else is talking crap!! As I said in previous comments, I think the electorate is cynical of politics and politicians and Abbott is playing on that but currently being allowed to get away with his own crap… I do believe that Abbott's game will come unstuck because people will recognise the bullshit for what it is. I may be in a minority, but I do have faith in the majority of Aussies eventually seeing it for what it is."[/i]

TalkTurkey

21/12/2012 Ad, Reposting, as you have so graciously requested, one of the most rambling raves I've ever written on TPS. Sorry all. December 21. 2012 03:47 PM A Very Serious Tone prevails on TPS today! No pun intended on Tone. Let's just imagine for a moment that Labor strategists are well ahead of the game - not bumbling wastrels of political capital, but very shrewd operators with the ability to feint and dodge and tempt and bait an opponent whose instinct to attack is as close to the surface, as predictable, as a Labrador's insatiable preoccupation with food. (which btw is why Labs are so trainable, unlike less greedy breeds). OK here's Labor months ago, surely knowing they were on a promise they were unlikely to be able to keep. When to back off? No really good time, but when the last figures came out showing huge revenue desiccation, and there really wasn't any choice, Swan did it - (in the end) - immediately. Right when Abbortt might have been the story otherwise. It's very interesting. This is Big Chess. The moves are critical. Was Swan's timing deplorable, brilliant, or ordinary? Deplorable? He really took the attention away from Abbortt. That in itself has positive and negative aspects - he deflected the Ashbygate heat off Abbortt, but also undercut his glorious return. So maybe not too bad, when it couldn't be good. (When Abbortt did front the cameras, it was with Snotty Joe in support, and Abbortt apparently fled at the first Ashbygate question - But I haven't seen the footage, bloody Dialup won't get me there. I saw some of their rants, but not the flees.) Ordinary? Well not really possible, the times almost preclude ordinariness. Swan must have thought very carefully as to whether to drop the Surplus before Crispmess, between Crispmesss and New Year, or into 2013 itself. He chose to do it immediately the figures clarified the situation. Now let's suppose it was deliberate and brilliant timing - even turning what could have been a media disaster to Government's advantage. (As I write Alan Kohler is saying he thinks Swan's done the Right Thing - and that says a lot, to a lot of people. To me it says that there are important elements in the MSM who are starting to break with the Groupthink - or maybe, that the Groupthink itself has turned, as I "announced" yesterday. ... And Kohler was followed by an announceress who said, apparently gratuitously, that a leg of lamb is cheaper this Crispmess than last!- Which of course is exactly in the face of Abborttian predictions about how legalamb was going to cost $100.) (It seemed an accidental-on-purpose jibe at Abborttian predictions, did anyone else notice?) The thing had to be done, so if t'were done, it were best it were done quickly. Crispmess has already eaten a lot of the damage, as have the Economists. The Media seem less interested in the Broken Promise aspect than I thought they would be, and rather more interested than I would have dared hope in the economics. And Labor is getting as much support from the MSM as it is getting kicks, which is better than it might have been. Joe and Josie Lunchbox seem either not to care, or to think the Government is being sensible. Whyalla's still there, legalamb is affordable, and anyway it's Crispmess . . . But the subplot, the big story, is Ashbygate. Getting over the Surplus problem now has cleared the decks for an investigation into the parts played by Brough and many others, and most particularly, er, Abborrt! So it may not have been a brilliant move to announce the desurplusisation on the same day as Abbortt got back, but I think it was the best option. It gets it over with. It will be a tiny concern by New Year, with most experts and even some choosing to downplay its importance, and thus defusing it as an issue for Them. On Twitter Peter van Onselen opined it was terrible because they were breaking a promise they should never have made, I challenged him, wtte OK so why aren't you praising Swan for doing the right thing now? Oh that's right you have to find a negative angle eh! and several people retweeted me on that, ha ha PvO. At this time of year I think few people are very interested. That's good, because in the whole scheme of macroeconomics it's a miniscule matter, minor surplus or minor deficit, so that's about right iyswim. You can see ABBORTT would have almost always been the first in any alphabetical list, you can almost see him in his own mind, white uniform, gold braid, crimson Cross of Jeezuz emblazoned on his personal escutcheon . . . Naturally at the head of every honourable queue, Born to Command, able to despatch with manifest ease a whole gang of ruffians without so much as rumpling the snowy lace at his throat . . . Defender of Ladies . . . Beloved of all the Saints... Well Tony I have to tell you that the world of your fantasies is forever beyond your grasp. By the beginning of the new political year, the smoking cauldron of your lies and plots and excesses will have come to the boil, bubbling with doubly-doubled trouble for you, and with the bad news for Labor in the past - and, most dreadfully for you, with your acolytes in your rabble of a Party, and your sycophants in the Media, progressively losing faith in you and deserting you. That is your future Tony Abbortt. My Eye of Time sees you clear. You might just as well hope to grow your hair back (as Leaky Burk suggests) as hope to lead to victory that mob of no-hopers of yours - who btw let me remind you, are nowhere near as unpopular as you are! Swordsfolks the time is come to mess with the Abborttians' minds. We have earnt this delish schadenfreudische by dint of long angst, and now with our electoral popularity at parity - at worst - we can have fun by teasing the Abborttians into making telling mistake after mistake. Ridicule is the best thrust of all, and Labor is 'way better at it than the others. The Political New Year will start with the ball in Labor's court, and *J*U*L*I*A* to serve. Then, Game On indeed! ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ Some of this post seems a bit disjointed. To coin a phrase. The whole point I haven't made, but what I meant to, is that the Government is letting the Abbortt gangrene fester, he will be putrid by early New Year with bit of flesh falling off. ...Falling into Labor's Witches' Cauldron, which is just starting to smoke, putrid bits of Abbortt, the final ingredient in the brew of horrid stuff they have hurled at the Government. A brew so potent that when we spit it back at them, as they deserve, (and as we shall), after holding back for so long, it will confound and demolish the Abborttians with their own venom. I think the Government must hold some sort of enquiry, a quick one focused tightly on media records and testimony of the main players Brough Ashby Abbortt et al. I think the People have a right to know, since the conspirators' efforts have had significant effect on Australian politics - and to know well before the next election. We will not let the matter rest. It was TREASON! Concise Oxford: Attempt to depose sovereign or levy war in order to compel changes of measures, intimidate Parliament, or stir up foreign invasion. TalkTurkey December 21. 2012 03:58 PM

Ad astra reply

21/12/2012TT Thanks for reposting - not rambling; rather smart insights into what might really be behind Wayne Swan's announcement yesterday. Labor has a clever new media adviser.

KHTAGH

21/12/2012 Solar panel made with ion cannon is cheap enough to challenge fossil fuels [i] Twin Creeks, a solar power startup that emerged from hiding today, has developed a way of creating photovoltaic cells that are half the price of today’s cheapest cells, and thus within reach of challenging the fossil fuel hegemony. The best bit: Twin Creeks’ photovoltaic cells are created using a hydrogen ion particle accelerator.[/i] http://www.extremetech.com/extreme/122231-solar-panels-made-with-ion-cannon-are-cheap-enough-to-challenge-fossil-fuels

Ken

21/12/2012TT thanks Agree with Ad's comments. You have brightened my pessimistic outlook on some of the advice it seemed the Government was getting.

LadyInRed

21/12/2012Ad astra I am glad you reposted Tim Dunlop's article. I read Ergas' article, in fact I posted it on the last thead. I was stunned, horified and sickened. So I was very happy to see Tim call it out. Here is Ackerman's response. The heading is totally offensive, the contents pathetic and written by a mysogynist. If I see Ackerman on Insiders again I will be writing to the ABC and attaching this article and Ergas' article to the email. http://blogs.news.com.au/dailytelegraph/piersakerman/index.php/dailytelegraph/comments/dumb_women_support_gillard/ You article Ad was fabulous. It is neccessary to encourage our children to always question everything. And as Ken says we as parents adn grand parents should remind our children that truths they hold today may be different to the ones they hold next year, next week, tomorrow. With additional information, new information, different information we may come to a different conclusion. So it is with mental health, hanging on to old crap ultimately does us harm. Take it out, look at it, re-examine it, deal with it where and if you can (therapy), and let it go....if you can do that it is the kindest thing that you can do for yourself.

DoodlePoodle

21/12/2012Enjoyed reading the article. The problem is take out the CRAP and there would be very little left in the newspaper!! No wonder we all look for sustance in the Fifth Estate. Seasons Greeting all!!

Tom of Melbourne

21/12/2012[i] “why aren't you praising Swan for doing the right thing now?” 

”[/i] What an odd notion. A politician makes a specific and unequivocal promise several years ago, and continues to repeat it on hundreds of occasions, despite warnings from economists that he should stop it… and political reporters are supposed to congratulate him!!??? 

 Swan made a stupid commitment, one that he should not have made, he (and Gillard) repeated it. Most knew months ago that there would be no surplus, but Swan and Gillard continued with their deceptive commitment, right up until the slow season. 

 This is a dishonest, incompetent government that is hooked on spin

LadyInRed

21/12/2012No matter how much people try to throw the 'you lied about the surplus' mud - it wont stick. Swan has said he is willing to take the political hit. Its a bit like hitting someone who says - hit me do your sorse. But keep chucking it because that is the only thing the opposition supporters know how to do. A smart opposition would have advised to let go of the surplus, and then they would have had something to crow about. But dumb and dumber would have had to think outside the square. Ad astra here is that paywalled article from Ergas for all those who can't get to it, you can get it via google. Just type in the article headline and you can read it for free. Its sickening, petulent and reads like it was written by a dodo, dinosaur or take your pick of extinctions. [i]LITTLE Miss Bossy tells everyone what to do. Little Miss Naughty is badly behaved. And Little Miss Fickle breaks her promises. But no one is as scary as Little Miss Ogyny, especially when she goes on the attack. Not that she understands the difference between ad hominem and ad nauseam. Nor is she shy of veering into a Little Miss Statement. For despite all the noise Julia Gillard makes about gender women achieved far greater progress under the Howard government than they have under Labor. Since Labor came to power, the female unemployment rate has risen from 4.4 to 5.2 per cent. And surveys show women feel more at risk of losing their job now than at any point in the Howard years. At the same time, the female labour force participation rate has stagnated. Between April 1996 and November 2007, it increased from 53.8 per cent to 58.5 per cent. But Labor's election basically stopped that rise, and five years on it still sits at 58.7 per cent. ...As for the gap between annual female and male full-time earnings, it has increased by $3848. And while that has happened the cost of living for families has taken off, with utilities bills rising at an unprecedented 12.5 per cent a year, childcare charges increasing at over 8 per cent a year and health and education fees rising to a rate of 5.5 per cent. But the real risks for women go beyond those immediate concerns. For few changes have made a greater contribution to women's wellbeing than the labour market deregulation Gillard and her union backers are determined to reverse. Until the 1990s, employment conditions for more than 80 per cent of workers were determined by awards. At unions' insistence, those awards routinely set limits on part-time jobs, including by prohibiting the recruitment of part-timers if any unemployed union members were seeking full-time jobs. With few flexible opportunities, women faced a stark choice: work full-time or not at all, entrenching low participation. Freeing up the labour market helped dramatically change that picture. In 1966, 8 per cent of working age women worked part-time; by 2007 it had increased to 25 per cent. And the increase was even greater for younger generations: of the women born in 1936, fewer than 10 per cent were in part-time work at age 34; in contrast, more than 40 per cent of women born in 1976 worked part-time at that age. As the share of women in full-time employment has increased only 3 percentage points since the 1960s, that growth of part-time work accounts for rising female labour force participation. Far from disliking part-time work, only 5 per cent of the overall workforce would prefer to move from part-time to full-time jobs: that is less than half the number who would like to move the other way. Moreover, measures of job satisfaction, subjective wellbeing and work-life balance are all significantly above average for women in part-time work, and especially for those with partners who work full-time. It is unsurprising part-time work scores so highly, for its increased availability opened new scope to earn an income while having a family. After all, study after study finds today's young women don't simply decide to have children: they choose to be a mother, because of the satisfactions that brings. A flexible labour market allows women both their own income and continuity of work experience. Mothers have chosen that option in droves. Of women aged 25 to 44 who work part-time, 60 per cent do so to care for children; and 70 per cent of working mothers with children under the age of five work part-time. All that contrasts sharply with Europe's highly regulated labour markets. There, restrictions on working conditions prevent the private sector from creating the jobs women want. Public spending and public employment have therefore accounted for almost all the gains women have made, at an unsustainable cost in terms of tax burdens and stunted productivity. No wonder, then, that in a recent survey of women's labour market performance two left-leaning American academics, Harvard professor Torben Iversen and Yale professor Frances Rosenbluth, conclude "female participation rates tend to be lower in countries with strong unions, while in economies with fluid labour markets women are better able to compete on an equal footing with men". The Gillard agenda, captive as it is to the unions, is consequently hardly favourable to women. Yet Gillard's gender war has nothing to do with sound economics. Its immediate aim appears to be to shut off tough questioning about the AWU affair; but there is a wider political message as well. At the 2010 election, Labor's vote from women was 8 per cent higher than would be expected, given voting patterns overall. That partly reflected women's favourable response to a female prime minister; naturally, Labor wants to preserve that edge. But it is smaller and more precarious than it seems. In 2010, women didn't especially like Gillard: her overall approval was no higher than women's approval of Howard in 2007, and some 17 per cent lower than women's 2007 support for Kevin Rudd. Moreover, while women did prefer Gillard to Abbott, the gap was far smaller than the difference between their 2007 approval of Howard and Rudd. And women expressed greater disapproval than men of Rudd's removal. Labor would therefore be foolhardy to count on women's votes; and no matter how strongly it resonates with "the sisterhood", railing against male chauvinism is unlikely to drown out the realities of rising bills and mounting job insecurity. Nor will it erase the memory of a government that, from "computers in schools" on, created expectations it could never deliver or overcome the discomfort episodes such as the AWU affair create. And it risks further alienating male voters, where Labor's position is dire. But Gillard is down to the last throws of the dice. Commanding power but not authority, her response is to transform every issue into a clash of absolutes. Few tactics seem less likely to succeed, while the political hypertrophy it causes invites economic and social atrophy as it freezes all credible reform. Ever shriller in tone, our Little Miss Ogyny ends the year as she began: howling at the moon. And not even Little Miss Magic can wave her crisis away. [/i]

2353

21/12/2012A CEO of a large organisation once told me that getting real change into the organisation was like being the Captain of the cruise ship QE2. The ship is so large and has so much inertia that it literally takes many kilometres to pull the ship up, let alone turn it around. In an organisation, it is time rather than kilometres that count. For a while on this forum, various commentators have been suggesting that thee are signs of the media starting to report somewhat more equally. I suspect the reason there is a deficit of equal reporting is that the "Insiders" of the media were completely blindsided by the suddenness of the Rudd/Gillard handover and had no reference to write their articles (which is effectively what they get paid on). So when someone comes along and gives them a ready made story, they took the offer with gratitude - forgetting (or not thinking about the consequences). The consequences have been apparent for a while and some in the media are suffering buyers regret - and the mood is catching. This morning on ABC Breakfast I observed Michael Rowland imply to Joe Hockey that he was effectively speaking in contradictions - using "the history of 15 years of Labor" in NSW for the current State Government missing it's "surplus promise" and then dismissing the world economy as a factor in the reason the Federal Government will miss its surplus. I would suggest that 12 to 18 months ago, that would not have occurred. Hockey didn't appear to be happy about the pressure either. The times they are a changing . . .

Ad astra reply

21/12/2012LadyinRed Thank you for your kind remarks and for the link to the sexist diatribe of the chauvinist Akerman. How any paper can bear to print the tripe he writes beats me. Thank you too for the full Ergas article. He is just as nasty in it as he usually is. Akerman is the classic sexist; even a misogynist (mummy bloggers, luvvies) who spews his crap day after day without challenge in his columns and whenever he gets on TV. It doesn’t take much of a crap detector to pick him up, a kid’s version would do. You make a good point about mental health: [i]”So it is with mental health, hanging on to old crap ultimately does us harm. Take it out, look at it, re-examine it, deal with it where and if you can (therapy), and let it go....if you can do that it is the kindest thing that you can do for yourself.”[/i]

Ad astra reply

21/12/2012Doodle Poodle Thank you for your comment. You are right, much of the MSM [i]sans[/i] crap would be pretty bare.

Ad astra reply

21/12/20122353 That is good news. I didn't see that interview. Maybe some journalists are starting to use their crap detectors. Your argument makes sense.

LadyInRed

21/12/20122353 - nice analogy. Hockey didn't like it did he, and I note that he tried the bully tactic....now hang on let me finish. And just heard he is saying the PM should come back from holidays with her mum to address the surplus issue, very insenstivie, especially given her dad's death is just so recent.

Pappinbarra Fox

21/12/2012I don't recall whether I have ever read teaching as a subversive activity - I have certainly heard of it and my ideas come from somewhere so maybe I have. I have espoused for many years the concept that teaching only has one subject - to teach students to think. This can be seen as two elements - to teach analytic thinking and to teach creative thinking. I met Ed DeBono in 1975 in Tamworth and was impressed with his teaching thinking program - Cort Thinking. It is quite possible to teach both types of thinking. All the various subjects - Reading, writing, maths, science etc. are just tools to use to think better about whatever problem is at hand. A very good piece to see out the old year Ad. Highly commended!

Ad astra reply

21/12/2012Pappinbarra Fox Thank you for your kind comment. I see that you are another kindred soul, an admirer of Edward de Bono. You are right - if children can learn analytic and creative thinking, they can apply it to any subject matter, and use it to detect the crap which abounds in every field of endeavour,

Pappinbarra Fox

21/12/2012I am sitting on my verandah laptop on my lap. Pappinbarra Mountain is shrouded in myst, a slow drizzle cascades. The morning's brown grass is greening before my eyes and all seems right with the world - should be heading in the right direction in 2013. MerryDogmas to you all.

42 long

21/12/2012 Being a chalkie from wayback you never get it fully out of your system. You facilitate the acquisition of knowledge and try to maintain the interest factor. Indoctrination happens in lieu a lot of times. The purpose is usually control. I thought brainwashing was a thing done in Korea if you got captured. It happens in many other places.

Ken

21/12/2012Ad, I meant to post this earlier in response to your comment: "I’m delighted that I have a kindred soul who also enjoyed Teaching as a Subversive Activity, a book that I’m sure is a treasured item in your archives." But I had to stop to bring in the washing and make dinner. "Teaching as a Subversive Activity" sits on the "political" shelf in my library alongside such old tomes as: Franz Fanon's "The Wretched of the Earth" and "Toward the African Revolution"; Regis Debray's "Revolution in the Revolution?"; "Guerilla Warfare" by Che Guevara; "History Will Absolve Me", Fidel's Castro's speech from the dock in his trial for his first attempted revolution in Cuba; Bobby Seale's "Seize the Time"; "Black Power" by Stokely Carmichael and Charles V Hamilton; John Reed's "Ten Days That Shook the World"; a 1969 book by Robert Millon "Zapata: the Ideology of a Peasant Revolutionary"; "The Rebel Countess" by Anne Marreco (a biography of Constance Gore-Booth, aka Countess Markievicz, the leading woman in the 1916 Uprising); and Dee Brown's "Bury My Heart at Wounded Knee". There are a couple of more recent biographies of Curtin, Chifley, and one of my greatest heroes, Michael Collins. That's not a complete list but no doubt is an expose of the background to my political views. I imagine you would also have read, or have, some of these. I would also recommend these to anyone who hasn't read them but whether or not one can now get hold of them may be an issue. A PS: as I'm new to this and am basically computer illiterate, can someone explain how I can format text in the comments box, add a link, or include a picture (gravitar?? is that the word - told you I was computer illiterate!!)

Ad astra reply

21/12/2012Ken You do have a sophisticated library. Mine is festooned with medical books, and in the second half of my career with books on education. Both disciplines are so demanding, so all consuming. I regret that many of the classics remain to be read. My recent acquisitions are in the area of politics and economics – fodder for my political blogging. I had the notion that ‘retirement’ would loosen up time for reading the classics, but [i]The Political Sword[/i] put paid to that. I live in the hope that one day I shall have the time to read books of the calibre that abide on your shelves. Hope springs eternal! It is possible to add bolding, italics, or underlining to your comment. You can do this in one of two ways: The first way is to highlight the text you want emphasized and then click 'b', 'i', or 'u' above the Comments box to add the emphasis. The second way is to add the emphasis manually. This blog engine uses square brackets for tags, with no spaces between the brackets and the codes, b,i,or u For bold, place square bracket b square bracket before the text you want bolded, and square bracket /b square bracket after the text. For italics, place square bracket i square bracket before the text you want in italics and square bracket /i square bracket after the text. For underlining, place square bracket u square bracket before the text you want underlined and square bracket /u square bracket after the text. To add a link, copy it from the address line on your Internet browser and paste it into the comments box. You can't post photos or pictures, but you can post the link to them or YouTube in the Comments box. No tags are necessary It is possible to preview what you have typed in the comments box before posting it. Place the cursor over 'Preview' and click to see what your comment will look like when you post it. If you want to edit what you have typed, click 'Comment' to go back. When you are satisfied with what you have typed, click the 'Save comment' button. I find it easier to prepare comments in MS Word and then copy and paste them into the Comments box. If anything goes wrong you still have your original. I hope all that makes sense.

Ken

21/12/2012Ad Thanks for the lesson. Will see how I go next time.

Ad astra reply

21/12/201242 long You must have been an exceptional chalkie with your approach to learning.

42 long

22/12/2012Not in my own self assessment Ad As. I never meet my own standards. In the PS I am meeting truly significant contributors, that humble me totally. I am glad I have found this place. I will just soak it up and hope I can say something that adds to a good outcome. I have no illusions,but the thing that welds me to Gillard is her determination to make education available to all. Not only is it a basic right it is utilising the resources of the people. When women entered the workforce they doubled the resources of the society. Also we acknowledged the equality of the sexes. I am so glad that we have a gutsy woman who is not married and is an atheist, running Australia Inc I also acknowledge the risk that the labor party took in backing her. In america the fact the Barack Obama is a 2 point loss because he is dark. The democrats are gutsy too for going down this path and not taking the easy way out. A great advance for both countries. Obama is such an unassuming normal person that I can't believe that he is the president of the USA. What a great moment in history really. I would love it if he was living right next to me as neighbour, just as the person he is. Something I cannot feel for anybody from the LNP

Michael

22/12/2012In the light of the Labor government's recent decision to announce that a May 2013 Budget surplus is "unlikely", a decision reached after consultation with Treasury and continuing recommendations from independent economists and business leaders, a decision that opens the government to wide political attack from the Opposition, I thought you might like to read this. "...effective decision-making involves the assimilation of expert advice. It’s not simply doing what one set of experts advises. It’s not simply picking the most authoritative of competing sets of advice either. It’s neither contracted out nor conducted in isolation. It involves engaging with the relevant experts and assimilating their arguments but the person who will take responsibility for the decision actually has to make it." Sounds all very sensible and measured, reads like something out of Wayne Swan's Press conference announcing that spending cuts likely to drag down the national economy would have been required to deliver a surplus. A surplus at any cost would only come at great cost. Indeed, those words, and those that follow ARE measured and sensible. "The next Coalition government won’t shirk hard decisions but will talk to the experts before decisions are made rather than just argue with them afterwards." Strange how Tony Abbott can tell an audience in Oxford that this is how he would deal with situations confronting him as PM in a Coalition government, and yet, when a situation that requires expert advice and consultation confronts the current government, and the current government moves to act on the expert advice supplied, he characterises it as nothing but failure and the inability of the government to actually govern. Labor made a decision, the people "who will take responsibility for the decision actually..." made it. In the earlier Stiglitz post I put my reasoning of just how effectively Labor has made a decision that loosens up not only the national economy, but also the political constraints that delivering a surplus had tightened around the government. I also observed [December 21. 2012 09:37 AM , http://www.thepoliticalsword.com/post/2012/12/13/Focus-on-political-ideology-Joseph-E-Stiglitz.aspx#comment ] that Abbott and Hockey were already boxing themselves into the same corner a 'promised surplus' had proven for Labor. And Bobbsy Twins doing it with signature hyperventilation and hyperbole. Still are, still will, and will never realise that the bus has left town until they check the date on it and calculate that "back to ten minutes before 2007" will not put them in government in 2013. They should ask the experts.

Michael

22/12/2012Here: http://www.theaustralian.com.au/opinion/columnists/tony-abbott-throws-a-right-hook-and-leads-with-his-chin-on-values/story-e6frg74x-1226542052564 Paul Kelly writes a long and cloying 'love letter' to Tony Abbott. But even, 'love ya Tony, PK', is forced to conclude with the words "missing element". "This combination, tradition and aggression, has served Abbott well, but Labor has refined its attack on his personality and is making inroads. Abbott's challenge is to offer the public a more positive view on how he relates to people. That is the missing element." It isn't missing, Paul. People already know how he relates to people. That's what's "missing", that's what the Coalition is refusing to accept. Abbott is dead in the water. People won't elect a figure of fun to lead Australia. PS The Kelly article is behind the paywall, but the 'paste an address into Google' method slides you behind.

Pikiranku

22/12/2012Lady in Red: "A smart opposition would have advised to let go of the surplus, and then they would have had something to crow about. But dumb and dumber would have had to think outside the square" Yes, what a stroke of imaginative genius that would have been! I'm glad you don't work for the Liberal Party! Instead we have the same old, same old - Tony-Joe advocating something the business community opposes, at loggerheads yet again with their support base. Morons.

2353

22/12/2012And Hockey being deliberately obtuse and evasive on what he would do /have done differently is a masterclass in producing lots of verbiage and saying nothing.

Paul of Berwick

22/12/2012What we can do folks is have conversations with the fourth estate. I'm on twitter, and before 7:00am yesterday Latika Bourke tweeted that they were interviewing Joe Hockey. So I tweeted "@latikambourke can we focus on the substance rather than what was said (Budget surplus). Will be a good measure of political debate level", and she responded to me! At the same time, remembering that timeliness is of the essence (they were interviewing Joe Hockey in 20 minutes) I tweeted "@mjrowland68 Joe Hockey interview will be a good test of level of political debate. Will it be on substance of matter or "he said she said". So, have polite conversations with our journalists. Seed thoughts, not long theses. Get to know them & let them get to know you. Be aware of their time pressures & when they prepare for interviews. It pays to be involved. The fifth estate can, and does, influence the fourth estate. As I quoted here before a while ago, "all it takes for bad to flourish is for good men to say nothing". But, don't say it in an echo chamber - influence using the right channels.

KHTAGH

22/12/2012AA I find it very worrying that this book written 40yrs ago is so indicative for what we are seeing going on now. Unfortunately is the reason that I don't think the human species can or will do anything about climate change until it is so obvious that it will be too late [as I think it is already too late]. It is almost like he is writing about the rise of the Murdochracy the world wide media propaganda Barron.

Ad astra reply

22/12/2012Michael What you write makes good sense. This morning Arthur Sinodinos said that Governments should not make promises that they might not be able to keep, especially as global circumstances change. I suspect he was talking to the Coalition more than having a crack at Labor. I’ll read St Paul’s epistle when I pick up [i]The Oz[/i] this morning. Paul of Berwick That is sound advice. Pikiranku, 2353 Are we seeing Abbott and Hockey teetering on the brink of making their own ‘surplus’ promise? I suspect wise heads like Arthur Sinodinos will caution them and insist their ‘promise’ is heavily qualified with ‘get-out-of-jail’ clauses. Perhaps the media strategists want the message: “the Coalition will always bring in surplus budgets” to stick in people’s minds, but will wrap this Christmas gift in a flimsy tissue of qualifications that they can quote afterwards, but which does not detract from the ‘gift’ inside.

Ad astra reply

22/12/2012KHTAGH Yes, it does make one wonder whether the human race is capable of learning from experience or whether self interest will propel it towards preventable disaster until it is too late. The self interest of the powerful is the root of most poor decisions at a political level, with torpor in the rest of the population allowing them to occur.

KHTAGH

22/12/2012TT A good read mate. I'll ask others here if they noticed in the tag team LNP whingefest yesterday. Abortt kept looking out of the corner of his eyes to see who was going to ask any questions the type of sly act when you are scared of being put on the spot. I get the feeling it was staged so that Mad Monk could get his face on the box before Xmess so it didn't look like he was hiding from the press. Then to see their reaction on the first question about Ashbygate causing another bolt out of the room was not a good look at all & confirms my suspicions. Through the entire press conference he looked like a scared Rabbort (the face of a guilty man) worried about just what he was going to be asked. If he thinks this will vanish he will be sadly disappointed in the new yr.

TalkTurkey

22/12/2012Ad astra Sorry to have provided no journos bound and ready for roasting for Crispmess but this I posted on Twitter might help, who knows: TalkTurkey‏@TalkyTurkey Comrades! Help Ad astra Blogmaster of TPS compile comprehensive list of journos! Read his post Dec 19th at 5.45PM http://www.thepoliticalsword.com/post/2012/12/13/Focus-on-political-ideology-Joseph-E-Stiglitz.aspx … Everyone else, Here's Ad's request for names of journalists for his journal lists (from the last thread, at 5.45PM on the 19th.) See if you can think of any, probably Ad would like a bit of detail too I guess, like who they work for, how long, maybe your opinion (but I'm only second-guessing Ad here.) [b]Folks I'm compiling a list of journalists in Australia's MSM who comment on politics in Australia, to incorporate into the TPS Mail service that Web Monkey and I are building.[/b] I've done a Google Search with limited success and have come up with a small list so far (see below). I suppose one could guess some email addresses at The Australian as they seem to follow a formula. For example, I imagine Paul Kelly's address is kellyp@theaustralian.com.au But Fairfax does not seem to follow a formula. Here is the list so far, in no particular order: Mike Carlton mhcarlton@gmail.com 
Laura Tingle ltingle@afr.com.au 
 Lenore Taylor 
 lenore.taylor@fairfaxmedia.com.au 
Phillip Coorey pcoorey@smh.com.au 
 Ross Gittins ross.gittins@fairfaxmedia.com.au Thomas Hedley
 thomash@theaustralian.com.au Patricia Karvelas karvelasp@theaustralian.com.au Imre Salusinszky 
salusinszkyi@theaustralian.com.au Paul Maley 
maleyp@theaustralian.com.au Brad Norington noringtonb@theaustralian.com.au Rowan Callick 
callickr@theaustralian.com.au Stefanie Balogh 
baloghs@theaustralian.com.au Sean Parnell
 parnells@theaustralian.com.au I need your help. If you have a list, or know where I could find it, please let me know. If you have even one or more email addresses for political journalists that is not on the list, please post it/them as a comment, so I can add it/them to the list. Together we can build a comprehensive list that will enable us to email journalists from the TPS Mail inbuilt database. Ad astra reply

TalkTurkey

22/12/2012Antony Loewenstein‏@antloewenstein How marijuana has become mainstream and largely accepted in #California http://www.nytimes.com/2012/12/21/us/politics/stigma-fading-marijuana-common-in-california.html?nl=todaysheadlines&emc=edit_th_20121221&_r=0&pagewanted=print … via @nytimes@mikeotterman

Ken

22/12/2012A bit rich Sinodinos saying governments should not make promises they can't keep. This coming from the side that brought us "core and non-core" promises and the man who told us we should only believe his scripted words, not his unscripted ones. The level of hypocrisy from the LNP is beyond belief.

TalkTurkey

22/12/2012A conversation from Twitter: Carbon PRICE! fan‏@CarbonTaxFan Loving how #ALP are ahead in the polls. In every way, Abbott is such a loser: Loser ideas, loser principles, loser behaviour.... #auspol 6hPhilip Dowling‏@kazza_d @CarbonTaxFan I've a great idea. Mortgage your house and back the #ALP to win at the next election with Sportsbet. #Auspol Great chance 14mTalkTurkey‏@TalkyTurkey @kazza_d @CarbonTaxFan WOO~HOO I put a WAD on Labor on Sportsbet in August at SEVENS! Now in to $3.50 but still great value! 12mles victor‏@otiose94 @TalkyTurkey @kazza_d @carbontaxfan follow the money! 😱#auspol TalkTurkey‏@TalkyTurkey @otiose94 @kazza_d @CarbonTaxFan I NEVER bet, this is the ONLY serious bet I've ever made, I took it to put money where mouth but at SEVENS! :) 26sTalkTurkey‏@TalkyTurkey @otiose94 @kazza_d @CarbonTaxFan I TOLD people and TOLD people to put money on Labor at SEVENS, but DID THEY LISTEN? [Actually ONE other bloke DID!]

Ad astra reply

22/12/2012TT Thank you. I collected an armful of papers this morning hoping to glean some more email addresses of political journalists. The [i]Herald Sun[/i] was the most forthcoming; the rest yielded almost none. The list to date is: Mike Carlton mhcarlton@gmail.com Laura Tingle ltingle@afr.com.au 
 Lenore Taylor 
 lenore.taylor@fairfaxmedia.com.au Phillip Coorey pcoorey@smh.com.au 
 Ross Gittins ross.gittins@fairfaxmedia.com.au Thomas Hedley
 thomash@theaustralian.com.au Patricia Karvelas karvelasp@theaustralian.com.au Imre Salusinszky
salusinszkyi@theaustralian.com.au Paul Maley 
maleyp@theaustralian.com.au Brad Norington noringtonb@theaustralian.com.au Rowan Callick
callickr@theaustralian.com.au Stefanie Balogh
baloghs@theaustralian.com.au Sean Parnell
parnells@theaustralian.com.au Andrew Probyn andrew.probyn@wanews.com.au Stephen Drill stephen.drill@news.com.au Phillip Hudson phillip.hudson@news.com.au Fiona Hudson fiona.hudson@news.com.au Michelle Ainsworth michelle.ainsworth@news.com.au Paul Anderson paul.anderson@news.com.au Joshua Dowling joshua.dowling@news.com.au Keith Moor keith.moor@news.com.au Wendt Tuchy wendy.tuchy@news.com.au Michael Smith michael.smith@afr.com.au Nick McKenzie nmckenzie@fairfaxmedia.com.au We Swordsters will just have to collect them tediously over time. Any additional ones will be welcome. Please post them here.

nasking

22/12/2012 [quote]On Twitter Peter van Onselen opined it was terrible because they were breaking a promise they should never have made, I challenged him, wtte OK so why aren't you praising Swan for doing the right thing now? Oh that's right you have to find a negative angle eh! and several people retweeted me on that, ha ha PvO. [/quote] TT, [i]Peter Van Onselen[/i] hosting [i]Contrarians[/i] yesterday cracked me up. He was like our ToM on steroids...and you know how much respect ToM has for [i]Wayne Swan[/i]. It really was a [b]petty and undignified outburst [/b]or twelve by the presenter of a major [i]Sky News[/i] show...something you'd expect more from one those blowhard shock jocks or ranting, mocking [i]Fox News[/i]' jackasses. Tells me a great deal about the future direction of Sky News...devolving into yet another conflict and hyperbolic critical analysis-driven [b]rant-fest[/b] where the presenters rule like [b]child-kings and sycophantic panelists [/b]join in on the [b]playground humour and taunts[/b] lest they become the dough pummelled by the child-king host's rolling pin. It's ego-maniac opinion over facts...verbal wrestling over thoughtful comments...[b]media mogul puppetry[/b] over independent views...infotainment over rational commentary...[b]tabloid-style buffoonery[/b] over mature discussion...character assassination over cautious and in-depth assessment of character, policy and issue... everything we've come to expect from news and current affairs-related shows, organs and outlets that explode forth from the stench-ridden bowels of the Murdoch media beast. Suffice to say, I DELETED the recording after fifteen minutes of the NONSENSE...surprised that the child-king van Onselen had not by that time commanded his staff/servants to put up a pic of his target Treasurer Swan on his monitor so he could SPIT on it a few times whilst yelling: BLVDES ARSCHLOCH DU BIST EIN VOLLTROTTEL DUMMBATZ WICHSER ICH HASSE DICH DUMMKOPF You get the idea. One got the feeling Mr. Van Onselen was also more than a bit frustrated by the ALP's latest budget shift...and as a loyal Liberal his displays of frustration and desperate obnoxious behaviour gave away that this latest Labor move has got the Coalition more than a wee bit worried. :D N'

nasking

22/12/2012 [b]I’ll read St Paul’s epistle when I pick up The Oz this morning.[/b] ROFL Luv it! N'

bob macalba

22/12/2012nasking. had fun looking it up and might i add,.. he is also a 'VERLOGENE DICK LAKAI, And a full time ' WICHSER cheers

Pikiranku

22/12/2012I see the NRA is opposing tighter gun controls in the USA, campaigning instead for armed guards at all American schools. Speaking of people never learning from experience.

uriah

22/12/2012Hi Swordsters, I have been busy and have just caught up on all your brilliant postings. Abbott is looking decidedly queasy at the moment in light of his accumulation of failed smear campaigns.Surveys indicate that over 70% of the electorate,including 41% of coalition voters,believe the AWU thingy was clearly an Abbott smear,the scathing judgement handed down by Justice Rares and the Thomson civil action which continues to produce no evidence of wrongdoing all make Abbott look like the little boy who cried wolf.He can continue with the smear tactic but no one will listen to the boy who cried wolf.He has destroyed his credibility not that he ever had any. I also notice that Abbott has outed Uhlmann(now known as our Liberal guy at the ABC)I bet Uhlmann is over the moon about this!! LiR-loved your posting on Murdoch scaaaary!! Happy Xmas to all.

nasking

22/12/2012 BTW, enjoyed the main post. A useful read...and reminder that we need to take those who REPORT, INTERPRET AND DEFINE THE NEWS with more than a pinch of salt...and research issues beyond the PAP and PROPAGANDA we are served up...whilst continually asking ourselves: DO THOSE WHO REPORT, COMMENT ON AND INTERPRET THE NEWS HAVE AN AGENDA? WHAT ARE THEIR BIASES? WHAT DOES THEIR BACKGROUND AND PAST BODY OF WORK INFORM US ABOUT THEM AND THEIR POSSIBLE BIASES? DO THEY HAVE CREDIBILITY? WHO OR WHAT INSTITUTION/CORPORATION HAS INFLUENCE OVER THAT NEWS' INTERPRETER'S WORK? AND HOW DOES THAT UNDERMINE OBJECTIVITY? IS IT POSSIBLE TO BE OBJECTIVE WHEN DEFINING, INTERPRETING AN ISSUE? WHO DO THE NEWS' GATHERERS AND PRESENTERS USE TO DEFINE THE NEWS? I dig this: In this journal [b]Stuart Hall, et al.[/b] explain the social forces that take part in production of the news. They state that, "[b]The Media do not simply and transparently report events which are 'naturally' newsworthy in themselves. 'News' is the end-product of a complex process which begins with a systematic sorting and selecting of events and topics acccording to a socially constructed set of categories" [/b](645). They recognize the news as items that are hand selected from a list, based on the cultural they will be consumed by... Since the 'central value system' has been integrated into the news they state that, "[b]The media define for the majority of the population what significant events are taking place, but, also, they offer powerful interpretations of how to understand these events" [/b](648). Not only is the news station manufacturing the news based on professional standards, the 'maps,' and the "central value system' they are also telling us how to understand the news events which are based on things we are supposed to understand... [b]Primary and Secondary Definers[/b] "[b]The media do not themselves autonomously create news items; rather they are 'cued in' to specific news topics by regular and reliable institutional sources" (648). The media has a database on sources and contacts that they deem to be viable, and therefore use them to also derive stories, information, and facts from. [/b] [b]However, Hall, et al. ask who are these sources. "This is what Becker has called the 'hierarchy of credibility' - the likelihood that those in power of high-status positions in society who offer opinions about controversial topics will have their definitions accepted, because such spokemen are understood to have access to more accurate or more specialised information on particular topics than the majority of the population"[/b] (649). [b]Although the media gathers information from other sources they deem viable, they still use individuals who are associated with power and control. They say these are the primary definers. They let us have our first experience and interpretation with the story.[/b] The secondary definers of news they state are, " [b]Indeed, we have suggested that, in a critical sense, the media are frequently not the 'primary definers' of news events at all; but their structured relationship to power has the effect of making them play a crucial but secondary role in reproducing the definitions of those who have privileged access, as of right, to the media as accredited sources"[/b] (650). Since the primary exposure to the news story the audience has gained experience and interpretation. In the secondary definer of news, it takes these 'accredited sources' into consideration and furthers their experience and interpretation. Hall, et al. compared these powerful accredited sources to the Marxist theory. "[b]Marx's contention is that this dominance of 'ruling ideas' operates primarily because, in addition to its ownership and control of the means of material production, this class also owns and controls the means of mental production. Because of their control over material and mental resources, and their domination of the major institutions of society, this class's definitions of the social world provide the basic rationale for those institutions which protect and reproduce their 'way of life'" [/b](651). [b]News is manufacturing, and the powerful individuals in society fit into our central value system and our 'maps.' It has sculpted our lifestyle. "Hierarchical structures of command and review, informal socialization into institutional roles, the sedimenting of dominant ideas into the 'professional ideology' - all help to ensure, within the media, their continued reproduction in the dominant form"[/b] (651). [b]The structures that have been formed by the media and its accomplices, is how we understand and experience the news. Since the media is based on a 'professional ideology' which the majority accepts, it helps ensure its "continued reproduction in the dominant form." [/b] http://media.litmuse.net/vocabulary/bias/-the-social-production-of-news Indeed. N'

nasking

22/12/2012 bob macalba, two thumbs up! :D N'

TalkTurkey

22/12/2012[Reposted from Poll Bludger] Bushfire Bill Posted Saturday, December 22, 2012 at 1:44 pm | Permalink Why on earth was a surplus ever a promised in the first place? It was a vote of confidence in the national economy that, in the face of constant negative carping and trash-talking by the Opposition and their bizoid mates, couldn’t be sustained. A worthwhile aim which, until the very recent past, looked like it might be achievable, and still would be but for the costs associated with the inevitable downturn that would result. Well worth a punt. Why do politicians promise anything? Some of them are goaded into it, and there was a big element of that in the government’s promise. They were goaded by a cynical opposition that won’t release big ticket promises of its own – except to repeal any Labor legislation that’s not nailed down – and which has done its very best to obstruct any cost-cutting measure the government tried to implement in parliament. The trash-talking by Abbott and Hockey has been a national disgrace of catastrophic proportions. Yet, even so, half the country doesn’t accept it, continuing to remain confident. But the other half does. That’s enough to slow any economy. If half the people aren’t prepared to be confident and spend a little on goods and services – or even half of that half, perhaps just a quarter – because they’ve swallowed the patently absurd claim that our economy is among the worst in the world (when it is in fact near to the best) then this eventually filters through to employment, business profitability and confidence, and national economic performance. Abbott and Hockey don’t really believe the economy is ruined. Whenever they go overseas, when they don’t think anyone at home is paying attention, they gloat to their Pommy Conservative fellow travellers just how well we’re doing. But when they come back, Australia turns into their very own fatal shore. They moan and whinge, decrying every tiny bit of progress as yet another disaster. Their pals at 2GB and in the Murdoch and Fairfax press pick it up, and the negativism becomes not only endemic, but infectious. Just recently we had the disgraceful spectacle of Joe Hockey actually condemning lower interest rates, mocking the employment figures as some kind of fluke and, at every opportunity, barking on about how rotten things are. It dooes have an effect eventually, Bemused. Just as bad, the media have joined in the goading. While superficially claiming that the economy needs stimulus (a far cry from their commentary on the BER and the HIP in years passed), the so-called Fourth Estate would rather generate a cheap “gotcha” headline than involve itself in anything that looks like balanced, upbeat commentary. The irony is that they have wrecked their own industry, because their collaborative heckling of anything this government does leads to their own customers losing faith, not only in them, but in the businesses that advertise in their newspapers and on their TV screens. That, and the undeniable fact that readers don’t like to be constantly told they are idiots for preferring to remain confident, or that the side of politics they support is existentially wounded and incapable of ever governing competently, while the other side of politics gets a free pass or has excuses made for its aimlessness, have combined to make the newspaper and even the free-to-air and cable television models extinct. That we are seeing the concentration of poison pens at the bottom of the media pit that happens when any corporate well dries up, still operating on their fat salaries and generous redundancy prospects, dishing out more and more apocalyptic bile for the major newspapers gives me little comfort. Sure, they will be gone soon, but the damage they have done is unforgivable. I don’t care about their own businesses. They sooner they are eaten by corporate jackals, the better. But I do care about my business, and others like mine that are suffering from the lack of energy – or should that be the vacuuming away of energy – they have carried out, all in the cause of attempting to maintain their shrinking, malevolent, but fading influence. If Swan hadn’t promised a Surplus these same players would have been redoubling their pronouncements about an “aimless government”, ruling from day-to-day, goalless, drifting and in government only to retain power. The same writers, commentators and politicians who called for “direction” in government, who practically demanded promises like the Surplus promise, now feel free to mock it. They ignore the government’s other achievements and concentrate only on the one they can run a campaign on: another “broken promise”. Everyone knows our economy is close to the best in the world, but that is impolitely ignored, dusted under the carpet whenever an opportunity to rent garments and gnash teeth is presented. It is automatically assumed that the Liberals will do better, but it is never explained how. However, I think Swan’s announcement was perfectly timed, and modestly proclaimed, with suitable humility concerning the political aspects of it. He waited until there was a clamor for the abandonment of further cuts in a quest for a Surplus, before he confirmed that abandonment. It’s left the opposition politicians and the anti-Labor commentators (including you, Bemused) like fish out of water, gasping for breath, repeating their old mantra about “lies”, sounding boringly repetitive and somewhat wasteful of oxygen as their life fades away. So what? The Surplus campaign is over. If we get one, we get one. If we don’t, we don’t. What’s your next problem? At last there is some sense coming back to the economic debate. Swan has lured his enemies onto his side, even if temporarily, spruiking for what he is spruiking for: common sense and a rational debate. The opposition tried for about 12 hours to maintain the “Constant Surpluses” mantra but even they gave it up when the only response they heard was muted laughter, followed by yawns from the people they assumed would be cheering. They have no policies and no vision, except the dismantling of Labor’s achievements at the behest of their lazy corporate mates who want to stop the world because they hope this might stop them from being unceremoniously flung off it. The time is coming, unfortunately, when just yelling “we’re not Labor” won’t be enough. The Surplus promise will be forgotten. Discarding it showed common sense and ran with majority opinion, including professional opinion. The “He lied!” and “She lied!” cacophonies are already losing their sting. Swan only needs to keep his head down for a few days and then pop it up asking the opposition, “What’s your plan, if you’re so smart?” The public will want to know what the opposition is thinking of doing, not what it is not doing. The opposition going to an election campaign with a whole bunch of half-arsed “promises” contingent upon “looking at the books” the day after they come into power won’t cut it. That’s what Campbell Newman did and it didn’t turn out to well. The public will soon demand action, not just weasel words. They will grow less interested in punishing Labor than they are in seeing whether the opposition will suggest anything worth rewarding. It won’t be easy or straightforward for the government, but in announcing that all bets are off concerning the Surplus, they are not only renouncing “fairy tales” for “reality”, but they will force the opposition to do it too. At last we might have serious debate, mercifully relieved of the mindless media barracking and political posturing that have characterized it for the past two, awful, destructive, negative years of self-abuse that this nation has put itself through. And that can only be a good thing. It was all in the timing, and the timing was perfect. Good one Swanny. ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ I have now a wriggly-with-delight feeling that BB is right. It's sort of what I was trying to say yesterday, though I didn't go into the good reasons for making the Surplus Promise in the first place: nobody could doubt Labor's sincerity in trying to reach that target, and it has fired optimism throughout - without which our economy would have been much more sombre than the [i]meh[/i] deficit we might face now. Abbortt has lied and overegged and hyperbowled and hyperventilated and huffed and puffed and still *J*U*L*I*A*s house refuses to blow down, and now the People don't believe him any more. He is an object of derision now, which is as it should be. We are exactly at the stage the Government had to reach right now, - level at "The Polls", our Leader ever so much more popular than the Thug, House in order with the legislative agenda achieved, and loaded for bear. I said almost a year ago that most of 2012 would be spent in slowly grinding down the Abbortians, while having to do the hard yards legislatively. Well that's happened, they are ground down to level pegging. This coming year will be different. Labor will be on the attack all the time from New Year on. Whack, whack, whack at every opportunity. Ridiculing, challenging, goading and confounding the brain-dead bigots on the other side. It's going to be fun. WE WILL GET THEM! [b]Don't You Worry About That![/b] :)

nasking

22/12/2012 I reckon every teacher and others who work in schools, parents and guardians of students should COME TOGETHER and SUE the NRA (National Rifle Association) for not only significantly helping to create the dangerous conditions that staff and students now have to exist in... but also for PLANTING SICK IDEAS into the heads of potential mass murderers and the mentally ill: [quote][b]people so deranged, so evil, so possessed by voices and driven by demons that no sane person can possibly ever comprehend them. They walk among us every day. And does anybody really believe that the next Adam Lanza isn’t planning his attack on a school he’s already identified at this very moment?[/b][/quote] These are the words of the irresponsible nutjob who is CEO of the NRA of America, Wayne LaPierre, broadcast around the world. America has spread a helluva lot of sick, crazy, toxic ideas and products in its time...but ENUFF IS ENUFF. If we see an increase in school shootings over the next couple of years I will personally fly to America and put a big boot right up that devious, irresponsible jackass' butt. That's coming from an ex-teacher with a wife still working in a school that we would prefer to see remain a place of peace and learning and without weapons on the grounds....rather than becoming a fortress that serves the interests of profiteering gun and security providers. IT'S TIME TO PUSHBACK AGAINST THESE GUN PROVIDING PROFITEERS AND PARANOID LIBERTARIANS AND THEIR DANGEROUS PROPAGANDA. http://blogs.crikey.com.au/northern/2012/12/22/wayne-lapierre-and-the-nra-pissing-on-the-graves-of-the-sandy-hook-dead/ N'

nasking

22/12/2012 More from that NRA dickhead: [b]The only way to answer that question is to face up to the truth. Politicians pass laws for Gun-Free School Zones. They issue press releases bragging about them. They post signs advertising them. And in so doing, they tell every insane killer in America that schools are their safest place to inflict maximum mayhem with minimum risk... The truth is that our society is populated by an unknown number of genuine monsters — people so deranged, so evil, so possessed by voices and driven by demons that no sane person can possibly ever comprehend them. They walk among us every day. And does anybody really believe that the next Adam Lanza isn't planning his attack on a school he's already identified at this very moment? How many more copycats are waiting in the wings for their moment of fame — from a national media machine that rewards them with the wall-to-wall attention and sense of identity that they crave — while provoking others to try to make their mark? A dozen more killers? A hundred? More? How can we possibly even guess how many, given our nation's refusal to create an active national database of the mentally ill?[/b] Why does this remind me of the typical morally outraged right-wing patriarch and misogynist who rages at young women for wearing "short, revealing skirts" and "skimpy clothes"...and seems to imply that "they deserve what they get" if raped..."have brought it on themselves"...? N'

Tom of Melbourne

22/12/2012Here are some of the excuses ALP barrackers think are good excuses for breaking commitments… commitments made on 200 occasions by Our Prime Minister and her Deputy- [i] • They were goaded by a cynical opposition • The level of hypocrisy from the LNP is beyond belief. • LNP whingefest yesterday[/i] No one bothers to mention that this government won office because Howard was seen as expedient and mendacious, putting his political interests ahead of public responsibilities. NO one made Swan provide the commitment 3 years ago, no one forced him to repeat it on numerous occasions. No one made Gillard provide the commitment as recently as 8 days ago. This government is dishonest, that’s a fact. It took Howard 11 years to get his rock bottom reputation for honesty, this government has done it 6 years earlier.

nasking

22/12/2012 This will come back to bite Premier Barry O'Farrell and his team: [b]Shooters’ deal secures power sell-off[/b] PUBLISHED: 30 MAY 2012 12:30:00 | UPDATED: 31 MAY FINANCIAL REVIEW [quote]A deal giving recreational shooters in NSW [b]access to national parks to cull feral animals including pigs, rabbits and deer has allowed the passage of laws to sell the state’s electricity generators to raise up to $3 billion to spend on infrastructure.[/b] [b]Two crossbench MPs from the Shooters and Fishers Party supported a bill in the NSW upper house to sell the state-owned power stations Eraring Energy, Delta Electricity and Macquarie Generation after ­protracted negotiations with the O’Farrell government.[/b] The bill will pass Parliament this week. [b]Treasurer Mike Baird said the sale would give the government “significant firepower” to tackle the state’s infrastructure backlog.[/b] Advisers to the transaction are expected to be appointed by July 1 but the assets are unlikely to be put on the market until next year. [b]Labor and the Greens expressed outrage at the Coalition’s political manoeuvring to win support for the bill, which stalled in the upper house earlier this year. As part of the deal with the crossbench, NSW Premier Barry O’Farrell has agreed to allow licensed amateur shooters to cull feral animals in 79 of the state’s 779 national parks.[/b] Shooting will not be allowed near metropolitan areas or in wilderness or world heritage areas. “[b]We have to live with the Parliament that the people of NSW have given us,” Mr O’Farrell said[/b].[/quote] BLOODY IRRESPONSIBLE FOOLS ANYTHING TO GET THEIR WAY EH? THAT'S THE LIBERALS THESE DAYS SCREW PUBLIC SAFETY...AND PRINCIPLES AS LONG AS WE GET THE DEAL DONE N'

Patriciawa

22/12/2012Talk Turkey, when I saw that final sentence in BB's post [quote]It was all in the timing, and the timing was perfect. Good one Swanny. [/quote] I had to agree with him and give voice to this thought that "Retrospectively I think the wedging of Tony Abbott and Co over this was very well rehearsed. Even Joel Fitzgibbon seems to have been in on making Swannie and the PM appear almost foolishly wedded to their surplus in very recent days. So much so that Abbott and Hockey rushed in to comment and decry where they might otherwise have trod more carefully. Even basic Economics students could appreciate the common sense of the general pleading by specialist commentators for a shift in government policy. I was surprised at how adamant the PM and the Treasurer were in their response. I think PMJG knew that however she played it Abbott would find a negative angle, so why not give him the joy of accusing her of yet another broken promise while rushing himself and Joe up into shit creek at the same time. Aside from that initial very sharp contradiction by the PM Fitzgibbon doesn’t seem to have suffered undue penalty for speaking out of turn. Is my idea too fanciful?"

Ken

22/12/2012Patriciawa As I recall, when the PM was asked about it recently she continually referred to the Mid Year Economic Review as showing a surplus was still possible. As an ex Public Servant, that is a sign she already knew, that she had seen the more recent Treasury updates. But economic announcements are also about the "markets". Governments cannot say that may do this, they may do that, without "[i]spooking[/i]" the markets. So they will generally stick by the last pronouncement right up to the time they make the new announcement. In that regard, I have always been amazed that there are not more leaks about the Budget. So many people across so may government departments are involved and yet everyone does their job and the leaks do not occur (not from the PS at any rate). I saw plenty of Budget papers in my time and prepared some in the lead up to the Budget.

nasking

22/12/2012 I liked [b]President Obama[/b]'s speech today...just watched recording of [i]The Situation Room[/i] on [b]CNN[/b]. Obama talked about "[b]shared" responsibility and governance[/b]. He kept his tone low-key...not using words and phrases and voice modulation, tone nor gestures to incite anger...give an impression of confrontation...nothing to excite the highly testosteroned. A reasonable leader looking for a [b]reasonable response[/b] from both his own party...and the opposition. [b]Compromise[/b]. Like a determined yet diplomatic, compassionate leader searching for [b]the end of hostilities[/b]...wishing both sides a [b]peaceful, relaxing time with their families[/b] over the holidays... [b]time for contemplation, reflection...time to put away partisanship[/b]...and come back to Washington with a sense of [b]optimism and passion[/b] to work [b]together[/b]...to [b]do the right thing[/b] ...not just for the American people... also [b]the world.[/b] --- For America was once [b]a light, a beacon on the hill.[/b]..like France...and the UK...[b]establishing vigorous, participatory, proud democracy[/b]... [b]moving forward with torch blazing...projecting light so ALL can join it in the journey beyond the darkness... [/b] to a [b]better, safer, more respectful, tolerant, enjoyable place...where children can lay their heads and sleep in peace[/b]...smiling in anticipation of [b]each new day[/b]...and about [b]the joy of existence[/b] N'

nasking

22/12/2012 TT, I agree wholeheartedly with Bushfire Bill on this: [b]Why on earth was a surplus ever a promised in the first place? It was a vote of confidence in the national economy that, in the face of constant negative carping and trash-talking by the Opposition and their bizoid mates, couldn’t be sustained. A worthwhile aim which, until the very recent past, looked like it might be achievable, and still would be but for the costs associated with the inevitable downturn that would result. Well worth a punt... The trash-talking by Abbott and Hockey has been a national disgrace of catastrophic proportions. Yet, even so, half the country doesn’t accept it, continuing to remain confident. But the other half does. That’s enough to slow any economy. If half the people aren’t prepared to be confident and spend a little on goods and services – or even half of that half, perhaps just a quarter – because they’ve swallowed the patently absurd claim that our economy is among the worst in the world (when it is in fact near to the best) then this eventually filters through to employment, business profitability and confidence, and national economic performance. Abbott and Hockey don’t really believe the economy is ruined. Whenever they go overseas, when they don’t think anyone at home is paying attention, they gloat to their Pommy Conservative fellow travellers just how well we’re doing. But when they come back, Australia turns into their very own fatal shore. They moan and whinge, decrying every tiny bit of progress as yet another disaster. Their pals at 2GB and in the Murdoch and Fairfax press pick it up, and the negativism becomes not only endemic, but infectious. [/b] --- The Coalition from federal opposition to State govts to their media and corporate allies have done everything possible to SABOTAGE this economy and the confidence of the many in order to prevent the Gillard/Swan govt from achieving a surplus and creating jobs. They may have got what they wanted with the former goal...but not the latter. And history will reveal them for the political bastards they truly are...the deceitful political opportunists and negabores who put the naked ambitions of Tony Abbott and his grotesque, greed-driven puppet masters ahead of the public good. Fortunately, the public are waking up to Abbott and co's destructive behaviour...and soon there will be A RECKONING. N'

bob macalba

22/12/2012Several editorials in a series by the New York Times.. ...'The Gun Challenge'.. http://www.nytimes.com/2012/12/22/opinion/the-nra-crawls-from-its-hidey-hole.html?hpw i hope something gets done, its a f#*#ing madness

nasking

22/12/2012 Bob, from that SPOT ON editorial in the NY Times: [quote]In the 62 mass-murder cases over 30 years examined recently by the magazine Mother Jones, not one was stopped by an armed civilian. We have known for many years that a sheriff’s deputy was at Columbine High School in 1999 and fired at one of the two killers while 11 of their 13 victims were still alive. He missed four times. People like Mr. LaPierre want us to believe that civilians can be trained to use lethal force with cold precision in moments of fear and crisis. That requires a willful ignorance about the facts. Police officers know that firing a weapon is a huge risk; that’s why they avoid doing it. In August, New York City police officers opened fire on a gunman outside the Empire State Building. They killed him and wounded nine bystanders. Mr. LaPierre said the news media call the semiautomatic weapon used in Newtown a machine gun, claim that it’s a military weapon and that it fires the most powerful ammunition available. That’s not true. What is true is that there is a growing call in America for stricter gun control.[/quote] --- Thnx for the link. Peace be with you. Peace out. Within you without you N'

nasking

22/12/2012 http://m.youtube.com/#/watch?v=ljnv3KGtcyI&desktop_uri=%2Fwatch%3Fv%3Dljnv3KGtcyI N'

nasking

23/12/2012 Anyway, recently I made some strange accusations...about some friends here, at Cafe Whispers...and on Facebook. I realise now that I was having a psychological breakdown. I do have times of delusional paranoia. And see things where they do not exist. They are in fact all good and decent people...contributors and posters who deserve our respect. Who have fought a long and hard battle to make this country a better place. They bring HOPE and TRUTH-TELLING to cyber-space...and have MOTIVATED many. It was wrong of me to cause them...and YOU such confusion...and concern during this most important time. With that...I farewell YOU. And hope YOU CAN ALL accept my apology. And eventually look past the damage I caused...the advantage I gave in my selfish responses...to the opposition. I have attempted to right some of those wrongs in these last days. Look to HOPE...and there you will find CHANGE N'

TalkTurkey

23/12/2012Patricia, Nasking, cheers. Yes the "timing" mentioned by BB is a bit deja vuish of what I was getting at, [i]not that I'm putting myself nor BB for that matter first in this perception, we are only the Government's admiring,(if worried), observers.[/i] Because BB & I both think, and hope, that the Government is actually playing its aces and eights pretty shrewdly. I have the feeling that this has been wargamed very carefully. It will be old news by New Year, and it is being brushed aside as of no consequence compared to the main game, responsible economic management. Abbortt and Hockey and Robb are at sixes and eleventies about whether they could would or should achieve surpluses every year, and Labor, [i]having tempted them over bridges too far[/i], is certain to target their financial contradictions mercilessly. . . . And in the meantime, the Ashbygate cauldron is coming closer to the boil. WE WANT THE WHOLE TRUTH. And nobody is talking about Craig Thomson, who I believe to be innocent of ANY important wrongdoing . . . May he be exonerated utterly, and further, may he be able to recover some of his lost reputation, at the expense of those who have so pilloried him. The Abborttians have NOTHING to look forward to now. The Government has them covered. In 2013, I feel, *J*U*L*I*A* is going to show them just what a fighter she really is, in a knock-down-drag-out bare-fisted Chess game the like of which we have never seen. That's what I'm anticipating anyway. I have a picture in my head of Abbortt as Charlie Brown, and *J*U*L*I*A* as Lucy, holding the football for CB for a place-kick, and whipping it away at the last instant so he falls flat on his back instead. He ought to know by now, he's a Rhodes Scholar! But he'll fall for any feint of hers every time. He's out of his league, and there's nothing he can do about it. I so look forward to the Government's long end game. [b]VENCEREMOS![/b]

TalkTurkey

23/12/2012WOO~HOO! Back on 4G after 10 days' dialup speed! Like being on bread and water and locked in a cupboard. Roll on proper NBN! Aussies will demand the best, Turdball is impossibly pre-compromised if ever he does get the leadership again.

TalkTurkey

23/12/2012BREAKING NEWS ! Mal Brough being investigated by Federal Police on the complaint of Mr Perrett MHR (Labor) So I thought everyone would enjoy this so much, I've posted it whole. Here's the link tho'. http://t.co/6ixjWhxc Mal Brough and the art of losing gracefully by Malcolm Farr 17Dec 05:55am Back in 2001 Mal Brough demonstrated he does not always feel bound by accepted modes of conduct. He showed he considered his personal interests much more important than agreed process. Not what you'd call a great loser The occasion was a social cricket match Brough ruined for many by disputing an umpire’s decision in a manner which would have seen him suspended if not expelled from any decent sporting club. I was the abused umpire and witnesses to Brough’s inelegant behavior—it went on for hours. I have been reminded of it by last week’s Federal Court decision to dismiss James Ashby’s action against Peter Slipper as an abuse of legal process. Brough was deeply involved in that case. It’s possible the splendid people of Fisher, a federal seat on a beautiful stretch of the Queensland coast, will have an ugly choice to make next election. It could be between Peter Slipper, should he stand again, and Brough—the disgraced former Speaker against the backroom organiser of a disgraced legal action. Mr Slipper’s circumstances are notorious but Brough is a relative unknown, despite having been a minister in the Howard government. The cricket incident told much about his personality, as did the Ashby action. The match was Pollies V The Press Gallery, and as Gallery president at the time I agreed to help umpire on what was a beautiful Canberra afternoon. Brough came in to bat full of energy and confident he would swipe the best journalists they could send down. And he certainly started well. However, a quickish ball from Mark Ludlow beat Brough’s bat and hit his pads right in front of the stumps. Phil Coorey, keeping wicket, immediately joined others in an appeal. I gave Brough out. It should be remembered this was a social game where the objective was to have a a good time in the field and then a quiet drink and a barbie. It was a most civilised agenda. It should also be remembered that Brough’s role in the Ashby case was not, judge Steven Rares has noted, entirely about helping a young man who believed he had been sexually harassed. Brough aided a savage attack on Mr Slipper’s reputation. Brough hoped that the umpire would come down against Slipper and that this would force him out of Parliament, allowing him, Brough, to take his seat of Fisher . Brough would not have liked the umpire’s ruling in the Ashby case and the highlighting of his involvement in bringing the action, but he has said little since Mr Rares judgement. Given the nature of that involvement, his silence is understandable. But back in 2001 Brough couldn’t stay silent about the cricket umpire’s decision. He stormed off the ground in a loud fury, suggesting there was a plot to get him off the pitch. He threw his bat and pads to the ground and demanded his wife follow him to their car. He took off in that car at great speed, leaving behind stunned team mates and opponents. Some 30 minutes later he and his wife returned. Brough made an announcement to the spectators which was so extraordinary it can’t be repeated here. He then set about heckling the umpire, me. He did in such an unacceptable fashion that Ian Causley, an old-school gentleman and National Party MP, apologised to my wife who had to listen to it all. It was a remarkable display of self indulgence, bad temper and contempt for the social occasion. Brough’s eruption wasn’t that of an immature 15 year old, much as it resembled it. He was 40 at the time. And it wasn’t a flash of anger which was quickly abandoned. Brough was still talking about his dismissal two weeks after the incident, just as people were still talking about his reaction to it. So it is interesting to see how he handles his failed dismissal of Peter Slipper. He will not take the Rares judgement with any grace, but nor will he explain his participation in a case which a judge has thrown out with detailed reasoning, a case which involved the Commonwealth, a major law firm, the future of the Speaker, and possibly the fate of the Government. Brough wants the people of Fisher to make the choice—him or Slipper. He will probably win the seat, but if life is a game of cricket, there is some doubt over whether Mal Brough should even be allowed to carry the drinks. ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ Oowah. tee hee.

Janet (Jan @j4gypsy)

23/12/2012 Quick good morning on the breaking story. Here is Perrett's letter to the FPA: http://resources.news.com.au/files/2012/12/22/1226542/306440-hs-file-perretts-letter-to-afp.pdf: Here's the story as reported in the Daily Telegraph: http://www.adelaidenow.com.au/alp-calls-police-on-mal-brough-scandal/story-e6frea6u-1226542407719?sv=118faed49946f72fbc1540332306a726#.UNYKhQcjcZk.twitter And here is an #msm reporter no longer willing to call the 2013 election. I wonder why :-) http://www.nationaltimes.com.au/opinion/politics/apocalypse-over-now-pm-abbott-20121222-2bsg0.html

Ken

23/12/201242 long A belated response to your post in the early hours of Saturday. I agree that Gillard in Oz and Obama in America were brave decisions by the progressive side of politics in both countries. After the George W years, and particularly the way he was originally elected with the help of his brother, Jeb, in Florida, Obama’s election helped restore my faith in American democracy. Their next big step is to elect their first female president. You mentioned women in the workforce which raises an issue that has concerned me for years. I have no problem with women in the workforce but it has contributed to some social problems. When I was a kid and women were at home, they maintained the neighbourhood networks on a daily basis. I knew that if I was getting into trouble, even two or three blocks from home, mum would know about it even before I got home. Women going into the workforce has helped break down those neighbourhood networks and the problem is not that women are in the workforce but that, as a society, we have not really developed an alternative to the networks women did maintain when they were at home. To the extent they have been replaced, we have replaced informal structures with institutional structures like child-care centres, and that has implications for the future of society. Also when I was a kid, there was probably a level of domestic violence that was “accepted” but there was a limit. Again, the network of women at home meant that everyone knew what was going on. If it was decided that one man was going “too far”, he would end up having a visit from the other neighbourhood males and be warned he would get the same treatment he was dishing out unless he toned it down. Some years later, however, that had changed. When one of my cousins was being bashed by her husband, the women in the family knew about it but did not tell the men because they knew they would visit my cousin’s husband and apply the informal sanctions – except by then, it meant they would be the ones being arrested for assault. I’m not saying that the values of those times were right but society has become more like Big Brother ,where instead of having local, informal control, we hand control to formal institutions. We demand freedom but as Justice Kirby pointed out, that means we hand more control to government as they have to legislate the limits of our freedoms because those limits are no longer defined by local informal sanctions. The one bright spot in this scenario is the rise of social media and the fifth estate. Perhaps this is the new informal structure. It will be interesting to see how it develops, whether it is institutionalised or allowed to develop informally.

Ad astra reply

23/12/2012TT, Janet We live in interesting times. I wonder will Mal Brough, desperate to become an MP again, and his would-be leader, the Honourable Tony Abbott MP, have a relaxing Christmas?

Janet (Jan @j4gypsy)

23/12/2012 Ken, Have been meaning to do this for several days. This is NormanK's tutorial on on how to set up a gravatar image. Follow him to the letter, and Bob (and all of us) are your uncles! :-) [b]Gravatar Tutorial[/b] Bear with me if I state the obvious but we'll try to do this in one hit. If you don't already have an image in mind, do something like a Google Image search and pick one out. Copy and store this image somewhere that you feel you can navigate to easily later on e.g My Documents. Go to Gravatar Home Page. http://en.gravatar.com/ Click on "Sign Up" at the top of the page. The new page will ask for your e-mail address. Fill in your address and click "Signup". Wait for an e-mail from Gravatar. This is their way of confirming that you actually exist at this e-mail address. As part of this e-mail there will be a link which begins with "http://en.gravatar.com/accounts/activate/"; and more. Click on this link and it should take you to a registration page at Gravatar.com. I can't replicate this next step because an account already exists for my e-mail address but from memory this is where you need to create a Username and a Password. Here is the most likely hurdle. Because Gravatar is world-wide, there is a high likelihood that someone else has already used your Username. You need to devise a different one and see if the system will accept it. If you get a message along the lines of "username already in use" you will need to fiddle some more with your username. (Now is a good time to point out that the only time you will need this username is at the Gravatar site. Once your image has been accepted and attached to your e-mail address it will follow your e-mail address wherever you go.) Keep trying until you get a name which is acceptable to the system. WRITE THIS DOWN. My suggestion would be to rename your proposed image so that the two things are visually connected for possible later use. You will need to create a Password. Do so and WRITE IT DOWN. Click Register or Next or whatever the button is to go forward. You will be invited to attach an image to your e-mail address. Click "My computer's hard-drive". A new page should appear. Click "Choose File". A new window will drop down. Navigate to where your image is stored and click on it. Click "Choose". Drop down window will disappear. Click "Next". This will upload your image to the Gravatar database and your browser should refresh with your image centre-screen. You can crop your image by moving the dotted lines individually or from a corner. Gravatar images are square so if your original is rectangular you will need to crop it. Making the dotted "crop box" smaller zooms in on the image so play with it until you are happy with the Preview. Click "Crop and Finish!". Select a rating for your image - hopefully not "X". This will upload your edited image to the database. Note : your original image in My Documents is not altered by this process. You should see a blue box with your cropped image beside your e-mail address. Below this will be : "Select image (below) to use for the selected email (above)" Click on your image. This last step is probably not necessary but do it anyway. A confirm message comes up. Click "Confirm". You will return to Manage Gravatars page. This is the end of the process. Because you are a good cyber-citizen, click on My Account and Log Out so that you are not taking up server space. Wait at least 10 minutes. Return to your favourite blog, refresh and look at one of your previous posts to see if you have been successful. If it is not there at first wait another ten minutes and refresh. It's important to know that you can continue to use your current name because your Gravatar follows your e-mail address not any username. The Gravatar is applied retrospectively so that all of your previous posts on other Gravatar-enabled sites will be accompanied by this image. This is good and bad. Your nom de plume gives you a certain degree of anonymity but your Gravatar makes you recognisable to an extent. If you use another e-mail address your image will not appear. I hope this helps. If you fail the first time, try again but take note of the steps you have taken and where outcomes differ from those above and in this way we can find the shortcoming in my tutorial or the error in your application. Good luck. P.S. TPS has been known to have a long response time to implementing Gravatar images - sometimes up to two weeks. If you don't see your image here perhaps try another site like PB or polliepomes. NormanK

Ken

23/12/2012thanks Janet will have a go at that some time in the next few days. Also, to TT. Ad and Janet, yes, Brough's position is becoming more interesting by the day. "Her Majesty's Loyal Opposition" have lots to ponder during the summer recess. Santa has come early!!!!

42 long

23/12/2012Ken on women in the workforce... Up till after the war very few women, certainly once they married, worked. If a man couldn't support his wife he was considered a failure and most men could support a family, then. The general standard of living was probably lower, and there definately was not as many labour saving devices to ease the effort of "domestic duties". Todays costs and aspirations have a situation where it takes two incomes to keep most households viable. As you point ou, this has negative aspects for interaction with parent children relationships and throws a great cost of childcare/control on the society, in relation to offspring. Marital Relationships suffer when interests are not shared and long hours may be required at the workplace. What one does defines to a large extent what one is, in our society. Partners may retain or develop a large amount of independence and just grow apart. We are a very different society from the mid 30's. I wasn't around then but heard enough spoken of it, particularly the effects of the depression.

Ken

23/12/201242 long I'm not that old!! My experience is from the '50s and early '60s. I do agree with your points but it is the social structure we are replacing (or not replacing) the old informal structures with that is my concern. The standard of living was certainly lower. I recall a futuristic show on television in the early '60s which suggested that by the turn of the century we would only need to work 10 hours a week. And that is probably true IF we had maintained the same standard of living. Now the indications are that people are working longer all in the name of having a bigger house, multiple televisions, etc. I appreciate and use these things (and we do have three televisions including one on the verandah so I can watch the cricket) but I'm not sure that it adds to quality of life - it helps but how far should we go??? I don't have a definite answer but like pondering the inponderable!

42 long

23/12/2012Me too Ken. I think we are on the same wavelength . Most sociologists? seem to agree that incomes above about 50K don't give any great results with "happines/satisfaction. To the extremely rich it is often a game. Any system needs capital to do things and it is the purpose to which the money is put that gives a quality result. Conspicuous over consumption seems to be addictive and taken as a sign of success. if that's all there is I'd like to try another game, cause that is not worth the effort, and things that are obtained easily are not cherished and often not needed in the big scheme of things.

Ad astra reply

23/12/2012Folks We are getting on the road now for Melbourne to enjoy Christmas with the family. I'll drop in tomorrow some time.

KHTAGH

23/12/201242 Long Your post pretty well sums up one of the biggest speed humps in the road to fixing climate change, its going to cost lots of money. It's becoming the main aim in most peoples lives to be as selfish as possible the thought of doing something for the globe & future generations just doesn't register. It is over driven by the "whats in it for me" mentality. Basically selfishness will be the end on the human race, all we are debating now is how long will it take. When the start of the permafrost melting began, we have took our first step into the positive feedback cycle where it becomes a self sustaining cycle out of our hands even if we were to stop the anthropogenic production of CO2 tomorrow we will not avoid the worst climate disruption for millions of yrs, way before we evolved from tree swing. I get the feeling that even with the obstruction from the right wing news/media system, people are starting to wake up to just how much shit we as a species are about to step in & how fast time is running out to do so. I hope that realization will increase at an increasing pace now too. It is a one way step once a person wakes up they don't go back to the side that ignores the reality. With what we are seeing with the move on the new media women's front, the young that can now have their say on their future living conditions (not counted in the polls), the shit storm that awaits the LNP in the new yr, I get the feeling that were are going to see the perfect political shit storm hit the LNP at the next election. I'm even getting the uplifting feeling that even with Turdbull that they could lose, he is tared with the same brush, utegate, his $10 million donation at the 2007 election (basically to himself), his investing in the French NBN FTTH but will deny Australia the same system he wants the French have as long as he makes money on it. He will struggle too, as long as Labor plays its card right. We have been delt 3 aces on the first deal , all we need is a pair & we will be sitting on a full house. A hand TT has a fist full on, well done TT. Merry Xmess to all & many thanks for the best wishes for my sister too.

Jason

23/12/2012Graham Perret's letter to the Federal Police! http://resources.news.com.au/files/2012/12/22/1226542/306440-hs-file-perretts-letter-to-afp.pdf

DMW

23/12/2012Stephen Koukoulas ‏@TheKouk This will be my theme for 2013: "Without data, you are just another person with an opinion" - OECD's A. Schleicher Hmmm ... no further comment or finger pointing needed :P

KHTAGH

23/12/2012Sorry about the grammatical errors in my last post, I was proof reading it in preview & hit the wrong comment button.

Ken

23/12/2012KHTAGH You're right about most people being more concerned with their own possessions than what is happening to the planet. Unfortunately, I'm not yet convinced that those in power will do enough about it. One only has to look at the rush to explore the Arctic for mining and oil. Global warming is opening up the area but instead of worrying about it too much, the USA, Canada, Russia, Norway and other countries have their survey ships out trying to chart the contintental shelf and decide how much they can claim for economic exploitation. Rather than face issues, we have been taught that technology will resolve everything. I expect that in 100 years time as Earth's resources are depleted, we will be mining the Moon. Back in the 1970s when the first "oil crisis" hit, I appraoched a publisher with an idea for a book tentatively titled "The Non-profit Society". The point being that we needed to move away from the capitalist concept of "continual" growth. [The publisher liked the idea but I didn't have the qualifications to provide substance to the argument!!] Now I note that Dick Smith, and just a handful of others, are also questioning the preoccupation with "growth": that if Earth's resources are finite, as they are, there will come a point where we do not have enough resources. We should move from an economy based on growth to one based on "maintenance" of the society. And a final note - my biggest bugbear - politicians need to be reminded that we are a SOCIETY, NOT AN ECONOMY.

DMW

23/12/2012Some challenging reading for your thoughtlines: Craig Emerson MP ‏@CraigEmersonMP My thoughts on modern mainstream media. Comments welcome. https://docs.google.com/open?id=0B0ctB3LVda7ha3JmZW1Nek5ZQzg … #auspol

jane

23/12/2012[quote].....Abbott has developed it into a "fine art"...[/quote] I think it's more a case that he has been allowed to develop crap into a fine art by a timid, indulgent and complicit msm. Even Howard was called on crap, but atm it is the msm, imo that has developed an extremely high tolerance, to the point of being unable, or more likely unwilling, to bring the offenders to book. We see the wizened foreigner trying to sabotage critical thought and political discussion. If he and others of his ilk are not checked, will we see the day when a dissenting opinion is no longer met with rational arguments, but a jail sentence or worse. I am sure that the wizened foreigner and his cohorts are feverishly working toward that end. It's time the msm finally grew a pair and stopped swallowing Liars Party propaganda. The sun does not revolve around a flat earth which is much older than 5,000 years. If you keep sailing west, you won't fall off the earth. It's not so wonderfully long ago that this was the perceived wisdom and the penalty for disagreeing was death. Do we want to return to that? I hope everyone has a very merry Christmas, full of good cheer, good conversation and excellent grub and the very best of new years. I must return to prepping for the feast to come-potted prawns are on the menu this year, even though I loathe shell fish, along with an abundance of crayfish (screws up nose), and scallops (yum). A nice big glazed ham and a very generous serve of Coorong mullet and flounder will compensate for the horrors of that other stuff. I have also harvested my first juicy carrots and loads of beetroot. My first apple cucumber has unfortunately succumbed to fang and salt, so will not make an appearance at the dinner table, but strawberries will feature on the pav.

DMW

23/12/2012Love him or hate young Rupert Murdoch knows how to call a spade a shovel https://twitter.com/jamesadonis/status/282795553920790528/photo/1

MWS

23/12/2012I haven't had the opportunity to read the last four days of posts, so apologies if anybody has already done linked to this: The Australian's war on science #80: http://scienceblogs.com/deltoid/2012/12/21/the-australians-war-on-science-80-the-australian-says-its-ok-to-lie-about-the-science/

TalkTurkey

24/12/2012Dr Craig Emerson, Labor MHR beloved of the Fighting 5th Estate, on the skewing of media reports. Well worth reading. https://docs.google.com/file/d/0B0ctB3LVda7ha3JmZW1Nek5ZQzg/edit?pli=1

TalkTurkey

24/12/2012From Twitter: have_they_no_brains?‏@laurieload The Australian thinks the main issue for #ashbygate is who wrote Perretts letter, not #LNP involvement! #WTF http://www.theaustralian.com.au/national-affairs/in-depth/brough-claims-all-my-work-perrett/story-fndckad0-1226542729581?sv=b469bea2fe3ee10e76315df4160f2835#.UNcGTWyae4M.twitter … @aus_media Retweeted by Steve Thompson

DMW

24/12/2012That awesome New York Daily News front page linked to @ December 23. 2012 10:07 PM. Turns out young Rupert doesn't own that paper (must be one of the very few he doesn't) Whoever does own it and whoever the editor is that had the cajones to print it deserves heaps of praise. https://twitter.com/jamesadonis/status/282795553920790528/photo/1

Ad astra

24/12/2012TT, Jason, DMW, jane MWS Thank you for your comments and links – all interesting reading. I have lots to do today, so I won’t be around much.

Ad astra

24/12/2012[b]Folks It’s Christmas eve, so this is a good time for me to thank all of you who have visited [i]The Political Sword[/i] this year, and for your thoughtful contributions and links. You have made this an informative site that many thousands visit to read the pieces and your comments, and to read Lyn’s Links that gather together so much important information and opinion from the Fifth and Fourth Estates. I wish you all a Happy, Peaceful, Healthy, Enjoyable, and Safe Christmas period. I look forward to welcoming you into what will be an exciting and turbulent year of politics in 2013.[/b]

2353

24/12/2012In the spirit of the Christmas messages being shown on TV today (why must everything the LNP does be done for political advantage such as the Abbott message with he & his wife framed by two "loving family" photos?) may you all have a wonderful Christmas full of family, friends and good times. AA will never know how much this site is appreciated by me (and my wife is probably happy I don't yell at the TV anymore!). Thanks for a wonderful 2012 AA, for putting up with my rants and ravings - it is deeply welcomed. Your work is the development and maintenance of this site is true dedication to the cause. For those with a Christian bent - Recaptcha bingo "onalmoru [b]apostle[/b]

bob macalba

24/12/2012Its Xmas eve, a Xmas song.. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=NDU4Z_BBkTA cheers

bob macalba

24/12/2012to help maintain the 'rage' 'who knows?' Tony http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=bNUJ_lQiqAA

LadyInRed

24/12/2012Why the Left Love Twitter: [i]If you’ve got an open mind, you’re not opposed to change and you feel most satisfied when armed with as much information as you can find – Twitter is the place for you. If your mind is closed, change is your enemy and facts don’t help your argument, keep that talkback radio blaring all day. It’s not surprising that the Liberal Party recently moved to limit their candidates’ usage of Twitter, but they would never stop their candidates appearing on talkback radio – how else are they meant to reach their supporters? [/i] http://ht.ly/gkkQI This article by Vanstone is wrong on so many levels. It is a pathetic attempt at trying to take the sleaze and smear away from TAbbott and put it in of all people the PM? Am yes it is all TAbbott's fault everyone is talking about it, and lets not forget Bishop....they spent a whole week of parliaments time 'talking about it'? Delirium. [i] Anyway, she was the one in the relationship doing work on a fund about which the union movement was concerned - but apparently it is all Abbott's fault everyone is talking about it. Apparently, he is the sleaze. Read more: http://www.theage.com.au/opinion/politics/its-gillard-whos-slinging-mud-in-this-parliament-of-filth-20121223-2btpp.html#ixzz2FvMLMqF1[/i] Katherine Murphy, not sure on what she bases her optimisim that Tones has actually got more to offer than what we have seen but there yah go read for yourself: [i] Abbott has already begun his positive pivot, promising a policy story in the new year. The Opposition Leader's gear change has been greeted with almost surround-sound cynicism, but I'm inclined to take him at his word. Read more: http://www.theage.com.au/opinion/politics/dont-blink-but-from-a-toxic-mire-the-idea-is-on-the-march-20121223-2btp4.html#ixzz2FvN6GLIp[/i]

Pikiranku

24/12/2012Thanks for the links, DMW and TT. First we read Craig Emerson's very reasoned and reasonable discussion on the current lack of subtlety, then as a perfect illustration of his point, in The Australian we have this: "Judge Steven Rares said the case was an abuse of process as the matter was not urgent and there were other steps that could have been taken before going to court." So THAT'S why he threw it out so unceremoniously! And all the time we thought he said that Ashby was colluding with Brough et al to benefit themselves and the Liberal Party, that the abuse of process related to using the judicial system to promote a political agenda. How did we all get it so wrong?

NormanK

24/12/2012Ad astra Season's greetings and a sincere wish that you and your family have an enjoyable and relaxing time. Thank-you for your forbearance and wisdom over the last twelve months. Next year promises to be an exciting time and I wish all strength to your arm for the battle ahead.

NormanK

24/12/2012Fellow Swordsters Have a great festive season and see you in the new year.

Patriciawa

24/12/2012people seem to very careful on the roads so far this holiday. i was seen almost immediately-in out patients at murdoch hospital last night after minor fall. broken left wrist is worst outcome. so one finger typing is all i can do for next six weeks. happy holidays to everyone.

Michael

24/12/2012The backgrounds for Cardinal Pell's and the Smiling Abbott's Christmas addresses to the nation were almost exactly the same, right down to a representation of the 'holy family' over their shoulders. Sent shivers down my spine, folks, I don't mind telling you. The synchronicity, the shared faith, the striking imagery, the inch-thick BS. Does anyone else think Shouldabeen looks like a beaten-to-adoration puppy when he's gazing at Margie? Didn't we live through enough of this crap with 'John and Janette'?

42 long

24/12/2012Vanstone has shown who she cheers for. I actually thought she might be capable of some reasoned objectivety. A write -off. Is everyone else at the christmas party? I don't mind fair commment but just a grab bag of out of context quotes. hark back to the 17 years ago stuff that been raked over till everyone's tired of it long ago. A reference to what she said about Nauru 9 years ago.!!! What a dredge.. This saying they are both as bad as each other is a hell of a cop-out. What is inherent in this view is an acceptance that the "real" Tony is horrible!!! but she is as bad Ha Ha. I Tell you what. IF she was as bad as the LOTO, I wouldn't be bothered posting here. The two creepiest people in the parliament are Abbott and Krudd. They both think they are next to god, and born to lead.

Ad astra

24/12/2012Patriciawa I'm sorry to read that you have broken your wrist. I wish you a speedy recovery, which will be aided by using your fingers at the keyboard. It keeps the circulation flowing. Have a relaxing and comfortable Christmas/New Year.

NormanK

24/12/2012Patriciawa Sorry to hear about your fall. Here's hoping for a speedy recovery.

Ken

24/12/2012Lady in Red Liked the links. The idea that 2013 will be a policy year for the LNP is intertesting given past performance on policy. 1. An alternate climate change policy that the experts said will cost Government, as opposed to the current Carbon tax which actually raises revenue. Has he yet explained where he will find this money? Of course, not!! 2. Curtail the NBN and roll out only to the node, not to the home. Recent reports from the contractors have suggested that this will cost more than completing the current roll-out. Has he explained where he will find this money?? No, he said the contractors were wrong!!! Obviously just because they are doing the work, they wouldn't know what they are talking about! 3. A paid parental leave scheme that will be funded by increased business taxes. Already derided by his "allies" in big business!! Looking forward to a Tony Abbott policy year. More policies like these and the Government will be laughing all the way to the election. Hope everyone has a good Christmas and is looking forward to the new year.

TalkTurkey

24/12/2012I suppose you think this is FUNNY! http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=E_Rabq4muu0

Truth Seeker

24/12/2012Patricia, sorry to hear about your wrist, hope you enjoy a swift recovery and have a great Christmas. For those that don't know, Miglo is currently in hospital due to his lupus. I wrote this for CW and TPS, the two best political blogs IMHO. :-) My wish, To Ad and Lyn and all those here Who post and write throughout the year To make TPS a place most dear In political blogs, almost without peer An on-line family, that is clear A most safe and happy Christmas cheer To all, be safe and well and happy and return To re-join the fight in 2013. Christmas cheers to all :-) Cheers

Acerbic Conehead

24/12/2012AA, The Season's Greetings and Happy New Year to you and your family, and to all your readers. Another great year for independent blogging on [i]The Political Sword.[/i] Keep it up - there is a big battle coming up in 2013 which has to be won!

TalkTurkey

24/12/2012URRRRGGGGGGGHHHHHHHH Arsebigot PELL! ThankDog that we have few if any religiomanes on TPS. Not that I would object to people following their own beliefs but where it impinges on others, [i]including indoctrinating children[/i] - as it invariably does - then DIE, Religion!

Pikiranku

24/12/2012So sorry to hear about your accident, Patricia. I hope you recover quickly ... and I hope it means you'll get out of washing the dishes tomorrow! Best wishes to all Swordsters and look after yourselves. You'll all be needed next year, it'll be all hands on deck.

Ad astra

24/12/2012Folks Thank you to you all for your greetings and good wishes. Good to see you back NormanK and AC, and thank you TS for you kind verse.

DMW

24/12/2012Some fodder for this apparently auspicious evening before some pagan festival that was hijacked by some fanatics or other :P [b]When Prophecy Fails[/b] Paul Krugman @NYTimes [i]Back in the 1950s three social psychologists joined a cult that was predicting the imminent end of the world. Their purpose was to observe the cultists’ response when the world did not, in fact, end on schedule. What they discovered, and described in their classic book, “When Prophecy Fails,” is that the irrefutable failure of a prophecy does not cause true believers — people who have committed themselves to a belief both emotionally and by their life choices — to reconsider. On the contrary, they become even more fervent, and proselytize even harder. This insight seems highly relevant as 2012 draws to a close. After all, a lot of people came to believe that we were on the brink of catastrophe — and these views were given extraordinary reach by the mass media ...[/i] http://www.nytimes.com/2012/12/24/opinion/krugman-when-prophecy-fails.html Read on from those first paragraphs and see what similarities to Aus you can find.

DMW

24/12/2012btw despite my bah humbuggery the family will have those famous carols on the teev - there are some traditions that are, well, umm, traditions :) (and I will beavering away attempting to finish the paperwork for the year)

DMW

24/12/2012TT a pic for you http://twitrpix.com/84ju

Truth Seeker

24/12/2012For any Swordsters still lurking, here is my final Christmas Hoorah, the last in my Christmas series. First was "Tony Abbotts Christmas do" Second was "Tony Abbotts letter to Santa" And last but not least Julia Gillards Letter to Santa. Dearest Santa, it’s Julia here We’ve passed lots of policy, that is clear While Abbott’s spent his entire year On lies and spin and personal smear But his arrogance has turned to fear As he took the things that he held dear Like his lead In the polls and his misplaced cheer And he blew them all… up Ashby’s rear To win, the man will gladly cheat With his motley crew joining his deceit As they open their mouths, to just change feet While the MSM apply the heat With opinion sold as facts, complete With lies and spin, a right wing treat Our democracy, their aim to beat But instead turning victory to defeat So the things I ask are not for me But for the lying bastards in the LNP A conscience would set the Abbot free From his inherent lack of honesty Cos he talks like he is off his tree With veiled abuse, based on misogyny Combined with no integrity He’s as mad as a dog.. with a giant flea And Julie Bishop, needs your help for sure As a legal whelp, and a multi nationals hoar She proved she’s rotten to the core With her morals discarded, on the floor By putting profits over compo, for the poor Known best for her meow and her pussy claw And her shonky knowledge of the law From parliament she should be shown the door Then there’s sloppy Joe, who hasn’t got a clue About what’s good, or right or true And he’s flushed his credibility down the loo By talking, economic cattle poo Making out his maths are real true blue Even though the man can’t count past two But the right wing spin he’ll gladly spew So for Joe.. an original thought.. is my request of you And the mincing poodle, Chrissy Pyne Makes out, as if he’s doing fine When all he does is cross the line With his mealy mouthed, mincing poodle whine And the lies and spin, on which he likes to dine Means the little man will never shine Even if he’s wearing Calvin Kline Cos what he needs from you... is a real mans spine And Malcolm Turnbull, is no gent Cos Godwin Grech, proved the man’s quite bent Leaving his reputation with a hell of a dent And his credibility, all but spent With his only option, his spleen to vent Over a portfolio that’s less than Heaven sent And an NBN plan that’s quite low rent He needs your help… to voice his real.. intent Eric Abetz, is a legal knob Who dribbles liable from his gob Because he thinks that that’s his job With reputations, his to rob By the slander grenades, he likes to lob On behalf of his lying Liberal mob While responsibility, he’ll simply fob So could you do him slowly.. on a nice warm hob And Sophie Mirrabella, the queen of sleaze Should leave the ranks of the parliament, please With her tail between her knobbly knees For her lack of morals.. and complete.. brain freeze And Bronwyn Bishop, the libs old cheese Is another one they should dump with ease Cos her use by date was in the 1970’s And her brain has atrophied… in large degrees The media need your help as well To move away from the corruption smell Cos with Jones and Bolt, they’ve gone to hell In Murdoch’s isolated shell Where if they don’t change soon, they’ll forever dwell So stop them ringing his right wing bell Cos they find the truth so hard to tell A bit like Abbotts mate… George Pell So dear Santa, what I’ve asked is hard But we know they’ve all been fatally tarred With the rabid right’s polluted lard And our democracy is badly scarred By these spoilt brats, from the private school yard Whose lies and spin should just be barred When they play the joker, as their only card Yours sincerely… Julia Gillard PS, while Abbot’s acting like a goof With his long, forked tongue and his cloven hoof And his policy vacuum showing proof That his cred took a nose dive off the roof The one thing I’d ask for me for sooth Is can this coming year… be defined… by the truth? Cheers :-)

debbiep

24/12/2012Merry Christmas to All the Political Sword folks. May it be a happy time.Thankyou for the great read and comment. From A Very Silent Lurker Of Late, debbiep

Patriciawa

24/12/2012thanks for that advice, ad astra, but how do i manage to use the keyboard with the plaster and splint.......i thought they were intended to help me keep arm inert it hurts even with painkillers if i forget and try to use the hand. am currently trying to work out how i keep the fingers clean. all suggestions welcome. hello normank - i've missed you.

MWS

24/12/2012Patricia, baby wipes etc are good to keep the hand clean. You can also get plastic sleeves which fit over the plaster so you can shower as usual (or as usual as one-handed showering can be). My sympathies - I broke my wrist about two years ago while collecting roadside rubbish. So much for karma! As Ad said, try to keep the fingers free of the cast moving, even if it's only a little bit. Tendons etc become immobile if they aren't used, even after a couple of weeks. You will need to practice stretching the joints after the cast comes off.

Pikiranku

24/12/2012Truth Seeker! That's a fantastic poem! You just get better and better! Thank you - you've made my Xmas a happy one already!

jane

24/12/2012Patricia, what a rotten bit of luck. You and your bones have been unlucky this year. I hope your wrist heals very quickly and that you have a very happy Christmas in spite of it. Merry Christmas to all Swordsters and a happy, healthy and prosperous New Year. May all the Liars and their dingbat barrackers get the lumps of coal they deserve and may they have a miserable 2013.

Truth Seeker

24/12/2012Pikiranku, thank you for your generous comment and kind words, it is great to know that there are people like your good self, out there, that are a part of the TPS family. stay safe and well and have a great one. Cheers :-)

2353

24/12/2012PatriciaWA - Ouch! Hope the recovery is not too difficult. You need to take better care of yourself in 2013 - look after yourself. Truth Seeker - Marvellous way to end up on Christmas Eve - thanks.

DMW

24/12/2012Paul Bongiorno ‏@PaulBongiorno I'm Hoping Santa brings civility in political discourse to us all. Pity I don't believe in him

Jason

24/12/2012May I wish a Merry Christmas to all who contribute on the TPS and an even better 2013! To the trolls in the season of good will,can you in 2013 come up with something new? rather than the same old lines? Aa,Lyn thank you for all you do you provide a great site, TT,2353 Normank DMW patricawa Truth Seeker jane Pikiranku Michael Ken KHTAGH MWS 42 long Janet (Jan @j4gypsy) and last but not least nasking! You enrich our lives greatly and all the best! Election year next year lets take the fight up to them!

Truth Seeker

24/12/20122353, Thank you for your support, and rest up those keyboard fingers, cos come 2013 I think we are all going to be flat out. :-) Interesting times! Have a great one and stay safe and well cheers :-) :-)

Truth Seeker

24/12/2012Jason, rest well over the break, cos us foot-soldiers of the fifth have a big year ahead, and we all need to be on our "A" game. Hope you have a great one mate :-) Cheers :-) :-)

TalkTurkey

25/12/2012Swordsfolks, So many good Lefty friends on this site, it gives us all courage. What a wonderful situation you have created Ad astra, never forgetting our unseen magic mechanic of the blogosphere, Web Monkey. Thanks and praise. Jason actually you are the last but not least on your post mentioning some of us. You are Mr Staunch, so glad you're on our side! And the links you post here are always first-class. Patricia had a "minor" fall: she only broke her wrist. I'm sure she's got another one: that broke one won't be missed! Which is my way of saying Gee that's tough Patricia, hope it doesn't take long to heal. Having long ago done the same myself and with a cast almost up to my armpit and weighing approximately 3cwt, I know how disabling it is. Let us give thanks to Dog that we were not Thalidomide babies. Always someone worse off, but that is cold comfort when you're hurting. Just get better soon. DebbieP, NormanK, Acercic Conehead, good to see you all, we don't see enough of you but it's joy to see you when we do. DMW Good on the brave soul who stuck that challenge on the bigoted church sign. I bet s/he did in the dark. Can you imagine the hate that would have come (his) way if his identity became widely known! Such is the love of fundamentalist "Christians". Truth Seeker, far out, you Mr Octorhyme! I think it's the first time I've seen it. Just shows what a wonderful toolbox English is! And you nailed the horrid Abborttian front bench, as we will do at the ballot box next year. I do believe *J*U*L*I*A* ballot boxing day will deliver her the Xmess pressies you have wished her. To all Swordsfolks, wellwishers, lurkers, Lefties everywhere and those uncommitted whom by our own sincerity and goodwill we may convince that Labor is indeed your best friend - may I wish you a happy and safe festive season, and an upbeat start to 2013.

TalkTurkey

25/12/2012I posted this last year on Crispmess Day. I think we've made a tiny dent in the reputation of religion, Pell at least made a choking-on-it apology yesterday. The Spirit of Crispmess And so this is Crispmess, and all round the Earth The “Christians” are fighting for all they are worth, And so are the Moslems, and so are Hindus, And so are the Buddhists, and so are the Jews. The works of the holy are everywhere seen: In Ireland there’s hatred ’twixt Orange and Green; While “Christians” bomb Afghans (with help from above), And Jews shower Arabs with napalm and love. Each other religion is always at odds With anyone worshipping different gods; They all reckon their god’s the one god that’s right, So for permanent peace, they eternally fight! Some folks say of Evil that Money’s the root But Religion’s its seed, and Blind Hatred’s its fruit And as for that Evil, it’s religion’s own word! And the “Christians” claim Love’s what they spread! How absurd! [Please observe that I only use “parentheseses” Around those who claim to be followers of Jesus, For as he observed truly, as plain as can be, The worst of transgressions is Hypocrisy.] You can’t blame folks for ignorance, if they’ve had no teaching Of the brotherly love that was Jesus’ main preaching; But find me true Christians so gentle and meek That genuinely do turn their own other cheek . . ? . . O sure, Jesus’ teachings would be very good If anyone practised them – if anyone could! But here in the real world, where saints don’t exist, A slap on the cheek’s mostly met with a fist. The parable of the good neighbour was Jesus’s, (’Course, he wasn’t “Christian” in parentheseseses!) You don’t need religion to be a good neighbour: Good Samaritanism's just [i]Labor behaviour! Stay safe Folks. And remember the true spirit of Crispmess, (Schnappes, Santa's favourite tipple.) TalkTurkey

Bacchus

25/12/2012On behalf of thousands of lurkers out here on the intertubes, Merry Christmas to regular TPS contributors, and especially to Ad Astra & Lyn for providing us with thought provoking posts and links to challenge and entertain :)

Michael

25/12/2012When a child is born, there is God And all that has come before, And who, in the child, to continue… For God, In the Christ child, in every one, Is there and is. However small the smallest particle, Beyond small to an unknowable, God is And the new life, continuing, Unbroken, un-begun, there. Is. God. Every child.

Gravel

25/12/2012My hope is for all The Political Sworders to have a great day today and hope that Santa was good to you all, as you deserve. Knee High My thoughts are with you, being so far from family at a time like this can be very stressful, take care and yell and scream on here if you feel the need. Best wishes from me to your sister. Patricia You have certainly ended the year with a nasty break. Take care of yourself, and you never know you might get to have another meeting with Julia, just like last time. Truth Seeker Another stunning lot of verse to end the year with, and a lovely pressy for all us swordians. As many have said, it will be a big year next year and I hope in some way we can all make a difference for Labor at the election next year. I can't believe I am organised and just waiting for family to arrive this afternoon. Will catch you all back here soon. Take care of yourselves over this festive season.

KHTAGH

25/12/2012Patriciawa So sorry to hear of your accident, I hope it doesn't put to much of a damper in your Xmas.

42 long

25/12/2012lefties keep writing or they will make it illegal. Thanx Jason

KHTAGH

25/12/2012 Is News Limited a Political Party? [i]In the USA News Limited aggressively promoted the creation and rise of the Tea Party, and in Australia the dumping of Malcolm Turnbull for Tony Abbott by the Liberal party. I take seriously the questions asked by Kerry O’Brien about if ‘Astro-turfing’ tactics where used in both events. [/i] http://yosefalbric.wordpress.com/2012/12/24/is-news-limited-a-political-party/

Truth Seeker

25/12/2012TT, the octorhyme was a bit of a challenge, but as you know, you go with what you're given, and Julia deserved all I could give, she's had a tough year. I don't think I have ever seen an octorhyme either, but I'm sure there would be others somewhere! Christmas cheers :-) :-) Gravel, thanks for your kind words and support, I always appreciate your feedback. Hope you both have a safe and happy Christmas and new year. Christmas cheers :-) :-)

Patriciawa

25/12/2012many thanks for kind thoughts from so many. talk turkey is right, though, isn't he. there is always someone worse off. i've enjoyed a wonderful trouble free life healthwise. even these two recent closely spaced events are comparatively minor. pride suffers though as one has to let people help. and i've had lots of that. i am truly grateful for it too. i'm asking around for advice now. any tips on just how mobile one can be using the splinted arm would be appreciated. MWS i'm now equipped with baby wipes, plastic sleeve etc. i'm wondering do i have to keep the arm in a sling all the time, or can i hold on to my right shoulder with those fingers i am now trying to flex as much as possible. didn't get around to a crispmess pome this year, but talk turkey has done us proud as always. had lots more giggles reading your latest again, truth seeker. i'll scroll through my last years' stuff and see if i can even begin to compete......

KHTAGH

25/12/2012TS That was the best Xmas present I got, in actual fact it was the only 1, very good.

Truth Seeker

25/12/2012KHTAGH, well if it was the only one that you got, I am really glad that you enjoyed it. :-) I hope you get some belated pressies, but regardless of pressies, I hope you and yours have a great Christmas and a happy and safe new year. Your comments are always well thought out, and good reading, so keep up the good work in 2013. Christmas cheers :-) :-)

bob macalba

25/12/2012To all the good folk who comment here and to Ad 'LANG MAY YER LUMS REEK' Safe Xmas to all

KHTAGH

25/12/2012TS These days I prefer to be a giver, I find no greater lift to ones own spirit to give to others. Being the last left in the family line tends to make for quiet Xmas's too, with my only sibling in the US. Thanks you for your kind thought all the same.

Truth Seeker

25/12/2012KHTAGH, I am sorry to hear of your circumstances, but doubly glad to be able provide some small joy to you through my musings. You are right, there is much joy and personal satisfaction in giving to others, and you must know that you are a valued member of the TPS family. The thing that I have learnt from posting my poems, and this is true for you as well, is that there are many who read and appreciate ones efforts, without necessarily commenting on them, and the extended TPS and on-line family extends much further than we realise. So again I wish you a merry Christmas and a great new year, and reinforce the fact that you are greatly appreciated, and have many friends here at TPS. Cheers mate :-) :-) :-)

TalkTurkey

25/12/2012From Tara Nipe‏@TaraNipe on Twitter: Inspired by @gappo12 I've written about what #AusUnions have done for us and why they're still relevant http://bit.ly/U7Kgpt #proudtobeunion

bob macalba

26/12/2012Morning all Queens message for anybody thats missed it http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zBUJztI884M

bob macalba

26/12/2012Its a funny weird world sometimes, Yesterday on the telly i saw a member of the Hitler youth give a speech from a balcony in St Peters square to a crowd of adoring worshipers , forgive and forget i guess, you must forget, dont look to deeply, forget you must forget, it never happened, you must forget, no tanks were ever blessed, it didnt happen, so you must forget, poor people, send money to Rome, pomp and ceremoney dont come cheap you know

KHTAGH

26/12/2012AA I'm not sure if this can be done on Blog sites but is it possible to embed a sound on opening the site? or posting a comment? A good sound effect for TPS on opening the site, to hear a long blade sword being with drawn from it's scabbard, for the fighting 5th. Just a thought to give TPS the edge!

Janet (Jan @j4gypsy)

26/12/2012 It’s the day of the boxing (of boxed-up generosity to those less well off than you or so I was taught long ago, and not the abborttian kind). I do hope your yesterday was sweet and steady, however you may have spent it, and thank you so much to all for festive waves and wishes. Michael: Thank you for that exquisitely written poem on the meaning of the child at this time. TS & TT: I read out loud to pick up your rhythms and rhymes, and so am wandering about laughing out loud accordingly. Thank you. Patricia: you are indeed having the baddest of luck with breaks (I broke a finger last year and that was hard enough.). Like the others here I hope you mend as quickly as you can and that pollie pomes are not delayed. My boxing day 'box' :-) today is a bit of reading that might interest (with usual apols if doubling up). [b]Prizes for politics: the best of 2012[/b] Greg Jericho [i]The Hope They Are Seriously Overworked In 2013 Award: The Parliamentary Budget Office[/i] For those who hope against hope that the 2013 election becomes a battle of policies can look to the PBO and pray it creates a great deal of debate. The PBO finally got up and running this year, and thus far the only policy it has examined is the costs of dropping the Resources Super Profits Tax. Next year they should be releasing multiple policy costings from the opposition parties as well as a few of the Government's policies on which the Liberals or Greens want a second opinion. They also should get a website so the public can see their findings! http://www.abc.net.au/unleashed/4436028.html [b]2012: year of the Aussie[/b] woman Nick Bryant In politics, Christine Milne became the leader of the Greens. Anna Burke became only the second female speaker in parliamentary history. She replaced Peter Slipper, who was forced to resign for saying derogatory things about women. Nicola Roxon, the country’s first female Attorney General, took on Big Tobacco and won. Never before have Australian women been so strongly represented in the upper tiers of public life. The cabinet includes five females, a record (in 2000, there was only one). The country has a female head of state, a female Governor General and, of course, a female Prime Minister. http://thehoopla.com.au/2012-year-aussie-woman/ [b]Tony Abbott’s bag of mixed nuts[/b] Kieran Cummings For now, I will have to say that there is a lot of suspicious activity regarding IT in Abbott’s office. There is no smoking gun – as I did claim in my last post – but more of a whiff of bullshit. The fact Abbott’s office blamed servers – which was incorrect – rather than Microsoft Word, claimed it was ongoing through April, then claimed they were unaware of the problem does make me believe there is some furious track covering happening. http://www.independentaustralia.net/2012/politics/tony-abbotts-bag-of-mixed-nuts/ [b]Australians for Honest politics: Citizen Journalism[/b] [Margo Kingston et al.] [i]All subtlety lost[/i] Craig Emerson None of this has the subtlety of the early 1970s. If editors consider a news story doesn’t accord with their editorial position they simply don’t run it. And if journalists want to protect favoured politicians from answering questions about their untruthfulness, they simply don’t ask them. In making these observations, I am not asserting there is a general bias in the media. Some editors and a few journalists are blatantly biased. That has always been the case. But the real problem is the abandonment of professional standards to give effect to that bias. All subtlety is lost. http://australiansforhonestpolitics.wordpress.com/2012/12/24/the-media-now-operates-with-all-the-subtlety-of-a-pugilist/ [b]Rupert Murdoch’s reign of terror[/b] Rodney E. Lever Indeed, there was a time in 1972, when Rupert believed he could handle Gough Whitlam, after he gave Whitlam the keys to The Lodge. Alas, Rupert failed; Gough was too wily. In power, he refused to take Rupert’s calls. So Rupert spent the next two years driving one of Australia’s best prime ministers from office in another totally contrived dirty tricks epic. And so it goes on. (See the rest of Rodney E. Lever’s eye-opening accounts about Australian journalistic history and working under Rupert Murdoch at http://www.independentaustralia.net/tag/rodney-e-lever/ ) http://www.independentaustralia.net/2012/business/media-2/rupert-murdochs-reign-of-terror/ [b]How the internet rewires the circuits of our public space — and you[/b] Bernard Keane But the net result has been an accelerating deterioration in the quality of public debate in Australia. In political journalism, there was an extended focus on personal scandals through the year, if necessary by inventing them, as appeared to be the case with the Peter Slipper and AWU matters, and remorseless campaigning on designated issues calculated to appeal most to the prejudices of readers, such as IR reform and “productivity” at the Fin, or asylum seekers at the Telegraph, in the face of facts. http://www.crikey.com.au/2012/12/24/how-the-internet-rewires-the-circuits-of-our-public-space-and-you/ [b]Swan says budget surplus now unlikely: experts respond[/b] Charis Palmer The surplus admission from Wayne Swan is not surprising. But what is remarkable is the way in which he got himself cornered in trying to achieve a surplus, when international conditions didn’t favour a budget going to surplus. It wouldn’t have been good policy to try and persevere when the conditions didn’t warrant it. http://theconversation.edu.au/swan-says-budget-surplus-now-unlikely-experts-respond-11448 [b]Is Labor's surplus backdown really so dire?[/b] Mungo MacCallum Some government tacticians (one can hardly call them strategists) have argued that the move was in fact a good one, because Australians are sick of governments sending money overseas and would rather see it spent at home, even if it ends up with the boat people. But consider another story from last week: according to the independent World Charities Aid Foundation, Australians are the most generous donors to good causes in the world, ahead of the Irish, Canadians, Kiwis and Americans, in that order. So once again the Government's apparatchiks have got it wrong. We are better than they think we are, indeed, perhaps better than the Government itself. Perhaps it's time for Gillard to consider an appeal, not just to our hip pockets, but to our better angels as well. After all, it just might work. Certainly nothing else seems to. http://www.abc.net.au/unleashed/4442368.html [b]Opposition backs down from surplus pledge[/b] … Mr Hockey told Sky News...“We’re not going to make promises that we cannot keep. “If we don’t know what the books look like, and the books haven’t closed, then how could we possibly make those sorts of commitments?” Mr Swan dismissed Mr Hockey’s comments as “rubbish”. “For all his huffing and puffing over the past 24 hours, now he’s quietly changing the opposition’s position, hoping nobody would notice,” the treasurer said in a statement. Independent MP Rob Oakeshott called on Labor to start a third round of stimulus now that it has all but abandoned its promised surplus. http://financemasters.info/finance-news/opposition-backs-down-from-surplus-pledge-wa-business-news [b]Ham & Turkey – Hockey and Abbott[/b] Otiose94 Looking round the financial state of the rest of the developed world it is almost impossible to find a country doing better than Australia. But according to the ceaseless doom and gloom from the Opposition, our country’s going to ‘hell in a hand-basket’. Cacotopia. This mind-numbing marinade is totally refuted by reference to our almost unique AAA credit rating and by many other economic indicators, the Beautiful Set of Numbers (see the BISONS). http://otiose94.wordpress.com/2012/12/24/hockey-abbott-ham-turkey/ [b]Australia will be a casualty of the currency wars[/b] Alan Kohler The currency war will be on in earnest in 2013 as the United States, Europe, Japan and China all step up efforts to get their exchange rates down. This will have dramatic consequences for Australia and for the Reserve Bank. Specifically, ANZ's chief economist Warren Hogan is right: official interest rates are heading lower, probably to 2 per cent by this time next year. The main beneficiary of this will be the housing market, which has already bottomed thanks to this year's cuts, and will continue to recover in 2013. http://www.abc.net.au/news/2012-12-19/kohler-currency-wars/4435690 [b]The productivity conundrum: current thinking and future trends[/b] Christopher Vas Amid the emerging decline in Australia’s terms of trade and drop in commodity prices, there is general consensus among most commentators that improving Australia’s productivity is critical. Looking back over the analysis and opinion offered by academics for The Conversation this year, this is probably the one area of shared agreement. Various themes emerge that plot a trajectory from the macro to the micro which will be instructive for the debate which is only likely to intensify next year. http://theconversation.edu.au/the-productivity-conundrum-current-thinking-and-future-trends-11089 [b]Australians for Honest Politicians Trust[/b] Margo Kingston [Summary of Kingston’s emails to the EAC with FOI request on Abbott’s slush fund.] http://www.righttoknow.org.au/request/australians_for_honest_politics [b]Timeline for #AshbyConspiracy & Questions for #AshbyInquiry[/b] @geeksrulz A Federal Court Judge has found a conspiracy by James Ashby, Karen Doane, Mal Brough to advance their own interest and that of the LNP. Mr Abbott maintains that he had no specific knowledge. Here is a timeline & questions. http://storify.com/geeksrulz/specific-ashbyquestions-for-msm-and-an-ashbyinquir?utm_source=t.co&utm_content=storify-pingback&awesm=sfy.co_nCmu&utm_medium=sfy.co-twitter&utm_campaign=

bob macalba

26/12/2012'To give TPS the edge' nice one KHTAGH, a clever thought and a nice play on words

Ken

26/12/2012 Some may like this. Although it is US oriented, it is a good review of the increasing disparity in society that was discussed in the previous thread after the Stiglitz article posted by Ad. “The 12 Days of a Capitalist Christmas”, Paul Buchheit, on Common Dreams site. http://www.commondreams.org/view/2012/12/24-1

Truth Seeker

26/12/2012Janet, so glad you had a laugh. Merry Christmas indeed :-) :-) Cheers :-) :-)

Ad astra

26/12/2012Folks Thank you all for your comments and links over Christmas: for the Krugman link, DMW, and for your splendid verse Truth Seeker, which I see Pikiranku and KHTAGH especially enjoyed. It’s good to see you back deppiep. Patriciawa, the cast will hold your fracture in correct alignment, but wiggling your fingers will keep the circulation flowing in your hand. You may not be able to use your fingers for typing, but if you can, it would help your circulation. Soap and water on a damp cloth will keep your fingers clean, or alternatively, as MSW says, those baby wipes that mothers now use. Jason, thank you for your good wishes. We are coming to the most important year in Australian politics. 2013 will see the return of the Gillard Government, because the electorate will perceive what a disaster to this nation an Abbott government would be. I know you will be with us all the way. TT, you are a constant encouragement. Your optimism and strength sweeps us along. Thank you for your never-wavering support. Your verse about ‘Crispness’ is so apt, so cleverly written, so true. Here’s to a successful 2013 for [i]TPS[/i] and most of all the Gillard Government. Michael, your verse is touching. Gravel, thank you for your greetings; you must be among the few who were well organized for Christmas dinner. HKTAGH – a special greeting to you so far from your family. I hope 2013 proves to be a good year for your sister. I’ll ask Web Monkey if what you suggest is possible. 42 long, bob macalba, Bacchus, 2353, jane, thank you for your greetings. Yes 42 long 2013 will be the year of leftie writing; the electorate must understand the danger of an Abbott government and reject that disaster Ken, I look forward to reading “The 12 Days of a Capitalist Christmas”, Janet, you have been busy. I’ll read your links later as we are heading back to the south coast this morning. They look interesting and informative. Folks I’ll be back tomorrow.

MWS

26/12/2012Patricia, I have a neck injury and as a consequence [b]never[/b] used a sling. My doctors didn't even suggest one. However, I did have to be very careful not to let my arm hit anything, and that is where a sling is very useful. Certainly, remove your arm from a sling when you are sitting in an armchair, or when you can rest your arm on a table. Just remember that your arm with the cast is much heavier than usual, which can place an extra load on your elbow, shoulder and neck. Of course, follow your medical advice if it contradicts with mine. You can also do isometric exercises with your fingers, as that doesn't need any movement. Try to curl a finger from the damaged hand while trying to uncurl that finger with the finger or thumb from your good hand. Neither finger should move, but over time you can increase the resistance that the "good" finger applies. Make sure you work each finger in turn. You can also try to open your hand while trying to close it with your good hand (and vice versa). All of these exercises will help keep the blood flowing, which is needed to regrow the bone. Also make sure you clean your fingers all the way down to the webbing (use cotton buds). This is especially important considering the hot weather we are going to have. Your hand is still going to sweat, even if it is in a cast. Good luck, and remember the cast will come off, eventually!

Wake Up

26/12/2012A free and honest press........ Murdoch style !!! http://www.guardian.co.uk/commentisfree/2012/dec/20/bernstein-murdoch-ailes-petreaus-presidency?CMP=twt_gu Looking forward to 'The Gaurdian' coming down under in 2013 to give Uncle Rupey a kick up the proverbial.

Wake Up

26/12/2012Looks like nothing has changed.......... http://www.dailytelegraph.com.au/news/national/press-gallery-gives-treasurer-wayne-swan-the-thumbs-down-in-survey/story-fncvk70o-1226543255482 Notice how Steve Lewis and Limited News run with the headline: 'Swan on the nose with Press Gallery' and 'Press Gallery gives Treasurer Wayne Swan the thumbs down' Referring to the exact same article they could have easily run with something like: 'PM's Misogyny Speech voted Moment of The Year' or 'Carbon Tax voted Best Achievement of 2012' or even 'Gillard voted Best Parliamentary Performer of The Year' Looks like we have plenty of work to do in 2013 folks !!!

Barry Tucker

26/12/2012The MSM is beginning to modify its bias, as The Lady in Red (I think) said. It happened soon after the PM's "misogyny speech". Social media chatter caused the MSM to look in the mirror. I've written about it here: http://wp.me/p2QkUI-2n I don't know for certain why parts of the MSM are so biased. Until an editor makes a statement, it's all speculation. The Left is certain Mr Murdoch's News Limited (and Ch10) is anti-government, although he has supported Labor in the past. I know ABC MD Mark Scott is a former COS and adviser to two Liberal State Education Ministers, a conservative Fairfax managing editor and a John Howard appointee. I also know that in the past few days Mr Abbott was quoted as saying he hoped Mark Scott will "continue to address the Left-wing ethos in the ABC". For months I've been wondering why Mr Abbott is so vindictive and relentless in his attack on federal Labor and the PM in particular. When the answer hit me, I wrote about it here: http://bit.ly/UBgzNm I operate the Action Front for Truth in News Media Resource Centre http://bit.ly/Z1XUC0 Throughout 2013 I will be using the contact information in the Resource Centre to hammer the MSM directly and via the Australian Press Council and ACMA (radio & TV) whenever I see or hear biased news reporting, denigrating "comedy" on TV or radio or in the form of cartoons. I invite you to join me in this quest.

bob macalba

26/12/2012Wake Up 'The survey~ which was done on the condition of ANONYMITY and included representatives from newspapers, radio, television and online' we know who these 'anonymous' muppets are, its just that they are too CHICKENSHIT to put their names to such nonsense, As for 2013... the vibe im picking up from all you folk who do the hard yards and the commenting is nothing but positive, all we can do is keep with the positive and point out the lies and crap the bastards throw at us, long live the FIFTH ESTATE

KHTAGH

26/12/2012A bit of light entertainment http://www.abbottisms.com/quote/2

KHTAGH

26/12/2012 Ashby lawyer ordered to pay tax office $750,000 says deductions had been legitimate [i]The Deputy Commissioner of Taxation took Mr Harmer to the NSW Supreme Court to try to recover $1.25 million in unpaid income tax and interest.[/i] http://www.smh.com.au/opinion/political-news/ashby-lawyer-ordered-to-pay-tax-office-750000-says-deductions-had-been-legitimate-20120628-215a1.html#ixzz2E2FyFW81

BSA Bob

26/12/2012Wake Up at 12.45 Geez, that one's gone straight to the pool room. It's scary. Belated Christmas wishes to all.

DMW

26/12/2012Good Evening Swordsters, I trust that the celebrations of the hijacked pagan festival of seeing the first light after the winter solstice treated you all well and the day of boxes was also peaceful. Something to ponder: GhostWhoVotes ‏@GhostWhoVotes #Newspoll How valuable is the #ABC: Very 45 (-2) Quite 41 (+1) Not very 5 (0) Not at all 3 (0) Retweeted by Leigh Sales GhostWhoVotes ‏@GhostWhoVotes #Newspoll Quality of #ABC TV: Good 78 (-1) Poor 9 (0) Retweeted by Leigh Sales GhostWhoVotes ‏@GhostWhoVotes #Newspoll #ABC Keeping Content Balanced & Even-handed: Good job 80 (-1) Poor job 7 (-3) Retweeted by Leigh Sales Leroy ‏@Leroy_Lynch #Newspoll ABC Appreciation Survey - Summary Report - June 2012 http://bit.ly/UszQEx via @GhostWhoVotes #ausmedia #auspol ABCnewsIntern ‏@ABCnewsIntern Tony Abbott: "But I do think there is the ongoing issue of bias in the ABC news and current affairs section." (Mr. Abbott speaks to his 7%.) Retweeted by Greg Jericho ... and from the ever perceptive reCaptcha: [i]opinions Perhoos[/i]

Wake Up

26/12/2012Barry Tucker, Good on you, I've been doing the same thing and will continue to do so until they get the message that we won't put up with the BS continually offered up as news from the MSM. I currently have 5 complaints in with the APC and have lodged many others in the past with little or no success....... which is no surprise as most of the APC's funding comes from News Ltd and there is always the threat that News Ltd could pull out at any time. Despite the level of protection afforded to the print media by the APC it is still worth lodging complaints as they have to respond and that usually requires a response from the offending publisher. This all takes time and is no doubt a real pain in the arse for them so one would think that if enough people consistently complained it would have to change their behaviour in some way. Here's the link should anyone find the need to make their voice heard, God knows there is plenty to complain about, you only have to look at any News Ltd publications any day of the week. http://www.presscouncil.org.au/complaint-form/ It only takes a few minutes.

42 long

26/12/2012I would have to buy and read one of their rubbish papers to do that. How much am I supposed to suffer? I get the links and save cutting down the trees. If most did as I do they would have gone broke years ago. One of the reasons I look after myself is that I want to outlive the B******d Murdoch. He has hurt so many decent people, I would go to his funeral but only to make sure he was indeed dead.

TalkTurkey

27/12/2012I blame international Zionism for most of the world's strife. Even where Israel and/or Yank Jews are not evident in conflicts a little digging will usually reveal Jewish-owned weaponry used by all the combatants, Jewish fomentation of conflict, Jewish media making Jews the world's victims. Meanwhile they victimise anyone who criticises them. I feel ill-at-ease on my own account just saying this. Jewish provocation will start a nuclear war in the ME rather than relinquish stolen land in Gaza. Do I hate Jews? Only the warmongers and hate-fomenters. And those I do, till the day I die. From Joe Catron‏@jncatron on Twitter The article's standard, but the headline's fantastic: "Israel fears EU may push for peace in 2013" http://bit.ly/W1MCWF via @gulf_news

Ken

27/12/201242 long Agree. I haven't bought an "Australian" for about 20 years. I gave up at the time, not for any political reason, just the fact that I refused to support a rich bastard like that (and the Packers). I have always taken the view that most of the super-rich don't get there without bending (if not breaking) a few rules and/or "knifing" a few people along the way.

KHTAGH

27/12/2012 Totally agree with you TT, one of my biggest complaints with the US so called "free speech", you can say anything as long as it is not holding the Israelis to account for THEIR!! criminal actions. Look out they pull out all stops to destroy any criticism & the person that criticised them by any means, especially with the Murdocracy's help & compliance.

Ad astra reply

27/12/2012Folks We are back at the south coast after a hectic but most enjoyable Christmas, now preparing for the visit of children and grandchildren. I have caught up with your comments and links. Thanks Janet for the links you continue to provide, and DMW for the tweets. There seems still to be plenty of valuable political reading, even over the break. I won’t be around much over the next few days.

Wake Up

27/12/201242 long and Ken, I wasn't suggesting buying any of Uncle Rupey's papers and totally agree with your reasons why. I do the same thing and also refuse point blank to pay online, however there are plenty of News Ltd publications that are still free online and they are target rich environments.

LadyInRed

27/12/2012Hi Barry well done with ths piece [i]Lies, damned Lies and sour grapes[/i] the first comment is right on the money, concise and eloquent. TAbbott is having the longest dummy spit ever.

TalkTurkey

27/12/2012Ad astra said [i]There seems still to be plenty of valuable political reading, even over the break.[/i] Ad, the Fighting 5th Estate is like unto warhorses pawing the ground waiting for battle to be joined. Twitter is [i]fizzing[/i] with impatient energy of angry Aussies, WE WILL be fighting as never before, the very moment the trumpets sound. And The Political Sword will at last show its true great worth in leading and directing the attack. [b]VENCEREMOS![/b]

bob macalba

27/12/2012TT HEAR ,HEAR feel like a junkie needing a fix, bring it on, beat the bastards bloody

Ad astra reply

27/12/2012TT [b]VENCEREMOS! indeed.[/b]

Gravel

27/12/2012Janet I would love to call you gypsy, thanks for those links, will have some good reading ahead. Sounds like most had a busy and enjoyable Xmas. Had an enjoyable Boxing Day meeting new baby cousins, Santa for the little one's, it was great. Like most here, we are itching to get into the political year, but let's try and take a reasonable break, as I can see it being full on, and we need to save our eyes and typing fingers (hi Patricia) for the fight of Australia's good versus evil.

Patriciawa

27/12/2012Hi Gravel! I actually need to type using my left hand fingers if I am to follow the advice of AA and MWS. This is the first time I have really managed it, so things are slowly looking up! [i]"Itching to get into the political year"[/i]is literally true in my case. My plastered arm itches like hell! But I'm in much less pain and have lots to be glad about. MWS what do you mean by [i]'the webbing'[/i]? Will thorough cleaning help stop the itch? As TT says we have plenty to read. New sites to visit too - hello and thanks to Barry Tucker who is putting in the hard yards with the ABC I've so often felt I should myself.

42 long

27/12/2012Barry's site seems to be a good resource. I have tried to post there ( unsuccessfully) Not the fault of his site I am sure. All the extra resources ensure more action and effectiveness.

Ken

27/12/2012A typcal American view of guns!!! “Officials Say the Darndest Things” A ProPublica Tumblog [i]I’ve heard of people being killed playing ping-pong — ping-pongs are more dangerous than guns.[/i] Incoming Texas state Rep. Kyle Kacal on the deadly threat of — PING PONG. # posted December 21, 2012

Patriciawa

27/12/2012MWS, Silly me! My daughter just showed me the webbing between my fingers! 42 long, don't censor yourself when writing about that shithead Murdoch. I'm a restrained whitehaired old lady but if I knew some really bad language I would apply it to him. For many years a great pleasure of mine has been the Sunday Times crossword. But for a very long time now I have managed not to buy the Weekend Oz and have devised many devious ways to cheat Rupert of even those few cents. Though cheating is hardly the word for it. Poetic justice has surely been wreaked on that slimy old sod as his newspaper empire disintegrates.

Gravel

27/12/2012Patriciawa Sorry to hear the itching has started, don't suppose you can insert a knitting needle to give it a bit of a scratch. On second thoughts maybe not, you could do some damage. Hope you had a great Xmas, and it sounds like your in good hands. Just ran into Janice over at a temporary blog while Poll Bludger is down. I don't usually comment anywhere else but this one seems like a bit of fun. I was impressed with a satirical poll comment, and just had to put my 2s' worth. https://pbxmastragics.wordpress.com/2012/12/26/polldaddy-83alp-9-coalition/#comments This is the link for anyone interested. Bushfire Bill is there, so guaranteed some good writing.

KHTAGH

27/12/2012Patriciawa I found the best thing to scratch with the only time I was in plaster was an 18" plastic ruler no sharp edges being somewhat hairy & also being in a full body cast for 3 months it was a must.

KHTAGH

27/12/2012Look out Abbortt Turnbull attacks 'one-line sound bites' at Woodford http://www.abc.net.au/news/2012-12-27/turnbull-discusses-republican-virtues-at-woodford/4445208

Patriciawa

27/12/2012Thanks, KHTAGH, and thanks too for the Woodford link. Doesn't Turnbull come across well and look good right now? Dammit!

Bacchus

27/12/2012You have my sympathies Patricia. As a teenager, I had a full arm cast (broken elbow) with stitches in the wound where they operated to re-attach the broken piece of bone. I agree with KHTAGH - a plastic ruler was about the best for the itching - those stiches nearly drove me around the twist!

MWS

27/12/2012Patricia, can't help you re the itching. I've had formication in my lower right arm for 19 years (due to nerve damage), and have learnt to ignore it. I've had plenty of practice! Mindfulness meditation is a good way to practise ignoring itching (and pain) if you want to give that a try. [ Definition of formication: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Formication ] Yes, you do need to speak very clearly when you tell people you have a problem with formication! PS I hope multiple comments aren't coming through, I just tried to post a comment and there wasn't a captcha screen available.

KHTAGH

27/12/2012MWS If that happens, just refresh the page & it appears, has done it to me once or twice in the past, best to copy your post before you do it if you have typed it though.

Patriciawa

27/12/2012Thanks guys. All your stories about full body casts, broken elbows and formication! make my limited left wrist movement and the itching very small beer indeed. It's been great having all this advice though, since I now learn I can't see anyone in orthopedics until January 2nd. So I'll just be grateful for having the plaster on and try to use my fingers, which is becoming much easier than I could have anticipated. Any danger signs I should watch out for?

Ken

27/12/2012KHTAGH Thanks for the Turnbull link - I hadn't picked it up previously. A few interesting points. The audience at folk festivals tends to be left-leaning (can also tell by the points where the audience reacts) so I assume he has carefully crafted his words, but it is interesting how easily he slides into that guise. Also he was very careful not to pick on Abbott, but who else has been pushing the negative approach and using the "glib one-liners". Also very careful to use Swan as an example rather than any one from his own side. Is he preparing the way for a come-back? If he is, it could be dangerous for the Government. Although he carries some baggage (as discussed on TPS previously), speeches like that emphasising the "big issues" and promising policy discussion, will go down well with a cycnical electorate, and attract some centre voters who are put off by Abbott's extreme right position. Hopefully, the mad right-extreme in the Libs still don't like him enough to re-instal him as leader!!!

MWS

27/12/2012KHTAGH, that's exactly what I did. Patricia, distraction works really well to avoid thinking about the itching - so surf the web more, read a good book or watch a movie - anything that stops you thinking about how bad the itch is - although I've just made you think about itching while telling you how to ignore it...

Cuppa

27/12/2012It's been a big year for Abbott. OK, he didn't make it to the Lodge by last Christmas. But he's had a humdinger 12 months anyway. An unprecedented number of lies. So much Spin you couldn't pole vault over it. More dirt than seen by the Hoover company. And more fear campaigning than a Dentists' convention. The rAbbott Award for Best Support Act of 2012 goes to the so-called "mainstream" media. Groupthinking grubs and servile line-toers par excellence. Driving their own industry into irrelevance one paragraph at a time. Drive it faster, you wastes of space!

TalkTurkey

27/12/2012Not just the article, read the comments! 'On ya Migs! Café Whispers‏@MigloCW The Good, the Bad and the Ugly of 2012 http://fb.me/1qdIs1EhB

DMW

27/12/2012Good Evening Swordsters, It's that time of year where the scribes get all [i]Deep and Meaningless [/i]* and prognosticate on the year just ending and read the tealeaves to tell us of the year that is about to begin. It is such a delight and one year sometime I will remember to keep a record of the forecasts to study towards the end of the year. Maybe I could make that one of my New Years' Resolutions ... nah. bu@@er that; too hard :P I found this article at The Conversation interesting and reminder of a few things: [b]2012, the year that was: Politics + Society[/b] Rory Cahill, Editor @ The Conversation [i]The world didn’t end after all. From the Mayan end of times prophecy beloved of New Agers and conspiratorially minded types, which signally failed to materialise, to Tony Abbott’s more parochial but equally apocalyptic claims about the effect that the carbon tax would have on all aspects of Australian life, 2012 was meant to be the year that would see the end of life as we know it. Certainly Julia Gillard was widely expected to have had her political life, at least as the occupier of The Lodge, ended this year.[/i] http://theconversation.edu.au/2012-the-year-that-was-politics-society-11360 One of the 'things' the article reminded me of was this article: [b]No, you're not entitled to your opinion[/b] Patrick Stokes, Lecturer in Philosophy at Deakin University [i]Every year, I try to do at least two things with my students at least once. First, I make a point of addressing them as “philosophers” – a bit cheesy, but hopefully it encourages active learning. Secondly, I say something like this: “I’m sure you’ve heard the expression ‘everyone is entitled to their opinion.’ Perhaps you’ve even said it yourself, maybe to head off an argument or bring one to a close. Well, as soon as you walk into this room, it’s no longer true. You are not entitled to your opinion. You are only entitled to what you can argue for.”[/i] https://theconversation.edu.au/no-youre-not-entitled-to-your-opinion-9978 It was a great read when first published and a refreshing reminder for how we might well wish the discussion to be in the forthcoming year. Another New Years' Resolution in the making? * [i]Deep and Meaningless [/i] by John Otway & Wild Willy Barrett http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Deep_%26_Meaningless is one of my favouritest albums of all time. Often classified in the Indie Folk genre I reckon it is more Folk Punk and it presaged punk music and set the tone for some of the better punk rock.

Cuppa

27/12/2012Barry Tucker wrote: [i]ABC MD Mark Scott is a former COS and adviser to two Liberal State Education Ministers, a conservative Fairfax managing editor and a John Howard appointee. [/i] All correct, except the part about being appointed by Howard. Governments or PMs do not appoint the ABC Managing Director. The ABC Boad appoints the MD. Governments appoint the Board. Governments appoint the Board Chairman. (Howard appointed Maurice Newmann, for example). But not the Managing Director. Mr Scott has been appointed, and five years later, reappointed (contract renewed). At both appointment times the Board that did the appointing (in its then-configurations) was heavy with Howard conservative activists. Only to be expected, I suppose, that they would select someone like themselves, a conservative spear-carrier, for this position of great influence. Quite Machiavellean of them, IMO.

TalkTurkey

27/12/2012Folks get your heads around this! Margo Kingston ROCKS! Follow the dialogue between her and AEC.

TalkTurkey

27/12/2012Sorry, I forgot to paste the link! margo kingston‏@margokingston1 All I want for Christmas is a good lawyer... The AEC has me in a spin over my FOI request on Abbott's slush fund. http://www.righttoknow.org.au/request/australians_for_honest_politics … Help!

bob macalba

27/12/2012DMW One of my favorites from about the same time, slightly different genre but awesome and still relevant today,http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Pink_Floyd_Animals cheers

DMW

27/12/2012bob macalba, thumbs (both) up

Michael

28/12/2012Malcolm mouths it. http://www.smh.com.au/opinion/political-news/lying-is-easy-turnbull-calls-for-less-spin-20121228-2bybw.html It would be ironic except the word means something else. It's certainly meretricious* of Malcolm Turnbull to pontificate upon taking the "spin" and "lies" out of contemporary politics by telling a porky about Wayne Swan and not finding even the hint of truth-shading in any comments from the Coalition. * apparently attractive but having in reality no value or integrity Malcolm Turnbull sounds good. He talks it, talks it, talks it. But walk it? Not Talcum Malcolm. He's bogus**. ** not genuine or true; fake And he's gullible. Ask Godwin*** *** The man smart enough to lead the 'smartest man in Australian politics' by the nose.

TalkTurkey

28/12/2012We tend to focus on the horror that is Abbortt. Well in this article *J*U*L*I*A* is the focus. Wow. So THAT's why I always put her name up in *S*T*A*R*S*! [i]I knew there had to be a reason![/i] http://www.smh.com.au/opinion/politics/happy-ending-or-not-gillard-a-heroine-in-political-sphere-20120918-264i9.html

TalkTurkey

28/12/2012Michael, Well said Comrade, meretricious nails Turdball perfectly. A polished turd is still a turd, just as a lipsticked pig is still a pig. (Definitive example: Vampirella!) EVERYBODY should call him Turdball. It fits SO well. If I say so myself. :) He blocks those on Twitter who criticise him. As does Leaky Burk, and some other ABC presenters. We never see *J*U*L*I*A* hiding from anything.

2353

28/12/2012Nice story about the PM, TT. As I've actually got the time to post a few links this morning - here they are. Alan Jones is told to apologise again - and do it right this time. http://www.smh.com.au/entertainment/tv-and-radio/not-good-enough-alan-jones-ordered-to-apologise-again-20121213-2bbq3.html Will the Karme Bus hit Newman at the next State Election? http://www.brisbanetimes.com.au/queensland/premier-takes-a-hit-in-polls-20121227-2bwv5.html The US looks likely to fall off the "fiscal cliff" - will they ever learn? http://www.abc.net.au/news/2012-12-28/fading-hopes-of-deal-on-fiscal-cliff/4445634 George Bush (Snr) is apparently quite ill. http://www.abc.net.au/news/2012-12-28/fading-hopes-of-deal-on-fiscal-cliff/4445634

bob macalba

28/12/2012DMW ,.. thanks for putting me on to John Otway./Wild Willy B 'folk punk' yeah, Michael... as my mum used to say 'he's trying to be what his arse will never let him' Talk Turkey....'Turdball' ...'Leakey Burk' ... always gives me a smile when your on song, cheers 2353...Newman a small gift for LABOR during 2013, all the tory premiers will be cheers

TalkTurkey

28/12/2012bob . . . A fine stable of starters or should I say pigsty of farters: Turdball Vampirella Leaky Burk OOman Abbortt Anal Jones Wormtongue Jones Medusa aka Mesma Snotty Joe POO-POO Crassidy Mal Farcom (he's OK sometimes) Ummmmm.... :)

MWS

28/12/2012Another oddball news story - except this appears to be true (it's in the SMH!): [quote]A Catholic priest has sparked outrage in Italy by claiming women bring domestic violence on themselves by dressing provocatively and neglecting housework, Italian media report.[/quote] http://www.smh.com.au/world/women-bring-violence-on-themselves-priest-20121228-2bybu.html Perhaps if men did the housework...

MWS

28/12/2012Apparently a new political party is to be formed: [quote]I think what annoys me the most about Nalliah (apart from the preying on vulnerable people at Catch The Fire) is the sheer dishonesty of this new effort. Like “Family First”, “Rise Up Australia” does its best to deny that it’s a christian fundamentalist party, pretending that they stand for religious freedom whilst their founders campaign to block other religions from even having buildings.[/quote] http://anonymouslefty.wordpress.com/2012/12/28/rise-up-australian-stomachs/

DMW

28/12/2012MWS re Catholic priest comment, as someone commented somewhere [i]... imagine the outrage and screaming headlines if a Muslim Cleric had said something similar[/i] Double standards?

MWS

28/12/2012The Australian Press Council has found News Ltd columnists misrepresent climate science: [quote]Presumably to the shock of the UK-based columnist on The Daily Telegraph, it turns out that it’s not OK to write that the wind farm business is “bloody well near a pedophile ring. They’re f . . king our families and knowingly doing so,” as Delingpole did when quoting an anonymous sheep farmer.[/quote] http://thinkprogress.org/climate/2012/12/27/1375021/australian-press-council-criticizes-climate-denier-columnists-for-highly-offensive-comments/

bob macalba

28/12/2012MWS The last paragraph.......The mayor of San Terenzio said the message had left the town's residents "dumbfounded and indignant", while an elderly female resident told Sky Italia television that Corsi "should keep a low profile as he has lots of secrets he would not wish to come out". sounds like some juicy gossip that should come out

bob macalba

28/12/2012Interesting info on Canadian media laws and studies http://www.crtc.gc.ca/eng/publications/reports/mcewen07.htm much more if you Google canadian media laws

DMW

28/12/2012... and now for some [i]Deep and Meaningless [/i] from a favoured oracle [b]Believing what we want to believe[/b] Seth Godin @Seth's Blog [i]Human beings, thanks to culture and genetics, are inclined to be pessimistic, fearful, skeptical and believers in conspiracy theories. We also don't like change. The marketer (products, government, religion, whatever) that decides to trade in any of these glitches has a tremendous advantage. It's far easier to create fear than to soothe it, far easier to argue for a conspiracy than to prove that one doesn't exist. When we find ourselves rewarding our instincts instead of reality, we often make poor choices. Of course, sometimes there's a good reason to be afraid or to imagine that a secret conspiracy is at work. Not often, though. When confronted by a mass of facts and nothing but instinct or tribal confirmation on the other side, it might be worth revisiting why we choose to believe what we believe.[/i] http://sethgodin.typepad.com/seths_blog/2012/12/believe-what-we-want-to-believe.html

DMW

28/12/2012Hey NK, hope all is well with you and life is not bogging you down in too much [i]Deep and Meaningless [/i] :) Keep well, we (I) are (am) missing your wise and wonderous words and guidance.

bob macalba

28/12/2012This is why i detest tories, this is their mindset, its in their DNA, its their ultimate goal the start of the rot, and the tory bastards here in oz are no different http://www.guardian.co.uk/politics/2012/dec/28/margaret-thatcher-role-plan-to-dismantle-welfare-state-revealed

KHTAGH

28/12/2012 For those that use Firefox & are on a monthly limit you should install this little progie, it is an add blocker for firefox, its the little adds that pop up in your browser that uses a lot of your quota. https://addons.mozilla.org/en-us/firefox/addon/adblock-plus/

Big Smoke

28/12/2012Hi. Glad to meet thepolitical sword

KHTAGH

28/12/2012Pope at his best http://www.canberratimes.com.au/photogallery/opinion/cartoons/david-pope-20120214-1t3j0.html Welcome Big Smoke

Ad astra reply

28/12/2012Big Smoke Welcome to [i]The Political Sword[/i] family. Do come again.

Ad astra reply

28/12/2012Folks We have the family with us over the New Year, so I won’t be around much. I heard the Turnbull item on AM and read the write up. Who could disagree with: [i]“It is our job above all in politics to tackle the big issues and to explain them, and have the honesty to say to people 'there are no easy solutions here'.” He called on any web entrepreneurs in the audience to establish a “rigorous” fact-checking website, saying all public figures should be held to account. “It is a disgrace how much misinformation has been got away with.”[/i] But I disagree with: [i]”Mr Turnbull said federal Treasurer Wayne Swan continued to accuse the Coalition of voting against measures to protect Australia from the global financial crisis in late 2008, when in fact it voted for them. Mr Turnbull was Liberal leader at the time. “That never gets reported, because the media has got to the point where they are so cynical about politics that they do not expect politicians to tell the truth,” he said.”[/i] The Coalition supported the first and smaller tranche of the stimulus package, but not the larger second one. So he is guilty of revealing only part of the truth. Omission is just as serious a deception as commission. After his plea for accurate reporting, he fails the test himself. Read more: http://www.smh.com.au/opinion/political-news/lying-is-easy-turnbull-calls-for-less-spin-20121228-2bybw.html#ixzz2GJqjxIlg

Ad astra reply

28/12/2012DMW Thanks for the links. I particularly liked the one to [i]The Conversation[/i] and the quote: [b][i]”I’m sure you’ve heard the expression ‘everyone is entitled to their opinion.’ Perhaps you’ve even said it yourself, maybe to head off an argument or bring one to a close. Well, as soon as you walk into this room, it’s no longer true. You are not entitled to your opinion. You are only entitled to what you can argue for.”[/b][/i] If only politicians and particularly journalists would follow that dictum!

DMW

28/12/2012Hi Ad, [i]If only politicians and particularly journalists would follow that dictum![/i] Indeed, if poliies led by example maybe we mere mortals would stand a chance of doing similar :)

Ken

28/12/2012Ad Agree that Turnbull is guilty of lieing by omission but we can't dismiss him as a threat. If Abbott becomes untenable for the Libs and they go back to Turnbull, two things will happen. As I suggested earlier, the approach he espoused in his Woodford speech will go down well with some cynical centre voters who are put off by Abbott's rabid right views. On the other hand, he will lose some of the extreme right who support Abbott - they may end up voting for Katter's mob, which could prove beneficial in splitting the "right's" vote in some electorates. Thirdly (Yes, I originally said only two), the Government would need to find a new approach to counter Turnbull. They now have Abbott on the run and it would be of huge benefit if he is still leader of "Her Majesty's Loyal Opposition" when the election comes around. But with Turnbull they have to be a little more careful. While there is baggage to put to the electorate (e.g the Gretch affair, tarring Turnbull with the same brush as Abbott and Brough), Turnbull is trying to avoid that with the approach in his Woodford speech. What he is saying, is that if the Government slings "mud" at him, it is devaluing the elecorate. He would also have to be careful, to play by the new rules he is setting. Pointing out his factual slip-ups would be okay, but revisiting the Gretch affair and other issues, may not. this is the issue the Government may have to consider if he does return. While the speech was part of the regular format of Woodford (and Hawkey also spoke today), it does seem likely that Turnbull may be testing the water for a return. It could pose some interesting questions for both sides.gibutedt

MWS

28/12/2012I missed this column from Thomas Friedman the first time around, so apologies if somebody else has already linked to it: [quote]But if Republicans continue to be led around by, and live in fear of, a base that denies global warming after Hurricane Sandy and refuses to ban assault weapons after Sandy Hook — a base that would rather see every American’s taxes rise rather than increase taxes on millionaires — the party has no future. It can’t win with a base that is at war with math, physics, human biology, economics and common-sense gun laws all at the same time.[/quote] http://www.nytimes.com/2012/12/23/opinion/sunday/friedman-send-in-the-clowns.html?partner=rssnyt&emc=rss&_r=0

MWS

28/12/2012A comment from "P Czisny" (23/12, 10.25pm) on the Friedman article: [quote]The problem with the GOP base? It's being spoon-fed a diet of lies by corporate elitists who will do anything to increase their share of the economic pie, including shrinking the pie itself. Are we to believe that Rupert Murdock, Roger Ailes, Charles and David Koch and the rest of that lot truly care about abortion, guns or for that matter, the lives of ordinary Americans? No, they care about rigging the game so that they and their fellow members of the top one-tenth of 1% can continue to accumulate even more wealth and power at the expense of everyone else. They depend on ignorance and mendacity to expand their fortunes. When will the GOP base finally recognize that every policy proposal from the Koch Brothers' "Americans for Prosperity" happens to be in the economic interest of...the Koch Brothers. When will they realize that every proposal from the NRA leadership serves to expand the market of the gun manufacturers? They seek a tax system that forces responsibility for financing the government onto working people, while gutting education to create a dumbed-down electorate that can be more easily bamboozled. Most of the GOP base love their families and their country. But they are constantly lied to by wealthy interests who utilize the tried-and-true method of blaming straw men (immigrants, minorities, liberals, etc.) for their troubles while diverting attention from those who are truly making their lives more difficult--those very same wealthy interests.[/quote] http://www.nytimes.com/2012/12/23/opinion/sunday/friedman-send-in-the-clowns.html?comments#permid=29

Michael

28/12/2012Malcolm Turnbull will only become Coalition leader after Abbott is defeated at the next election, and his approach, having failed, takes everyone in the party who's backed him to the rotten hilt goes with him. Malcolm (who'll be "I told you so, but would you listen?") Turnbull will then be where I believe he is happiest being. The hectorer. He's not a leader, certainly not a national leader, but he loves saying "I told you so". All opinion and no responsibility. Have a listen to him some time. He can tell you how to do just about anything (and will - his way), but when it comes to the creative flexibility of inspirational leadership, something outside the framing, established structure of legal practice, or the requirement of fiduciary responsibility (and he's sailed close to the wind on that one), he's incapable of delivering. He's hollow at heart. Like a nicely tuned drum, resounding, penetrating, rousing... dissipative. But the desperate, defeated Coalition will have nowhere else to go. The bully boys thrown down, conservatives will opt for 'sonorous', and Malcolm will be happy, talking without ever having to do any walking.

Ken

28/12/2012Michael I certainly hope Turnbull stays where he is until after the election, because, like it or not, his "talk" does go down reasonably well with a significant part of the electorate. His best option would be to become leader only a short time before an election - perhaps a couple of months - so the electorate does not have time to pick up on his failings (as you point out). The point is not about Turnbull, but what the Government can do to counter him. I have little doubt that some of the backroom strategists will have, or be preparing, contingency plans for such a possibility. But it does mean a different strategy and timing will be crucial.

TalkTurkey

28/12/2012Big Smoke Glad to meet you too! We look forward to hearing more from you. I'm sure you will be a valuable comrade here. One thing: Ad astra we call [i]AA[/i] TalkTurkey we call [i]TT[/i] Truth Seeker we call [i]TS[/i] so Big Smoke . . . :) (Other Swordsfolks, don't think I'm having a go at our new correspondent. [i]BS[/i] is a good old friend of mine!)

Tom of Melbourne

28/12/2012Such bizarre and ignorant commentary here, for example – [i]I He's not a leader, certainly not a national leader[/i]” Let’s deal with some FACTS for a change and compare Turnbull’s credentials with Gillard’s- [b]Turnbull[/b] • Partner in Whitlam, Wran, Turnbull • Directly took on Margaret Thatcher in the freedom of speech Spycatcher Case • Noted progressive journalist at the Nation Review • Chairman of the Republican Movement • Put his financial weight behind the cause • Remains popular because he doesn’t toe the party line [b]Gillard[/b] • Student activist long after being a student • Denied her rich heritage of involvement in related extremist causes • Failed partner in law firm • Booted out of the last non political job she held • Political hack • Knifed her leader

TalkTurkey

29/12/2012Keep your eye on the money! http://www.sportsbet.com.au/betting/politics/australian-federal-politics/Australian-Federal-Election-2013/14-3668.html Notice the relative odds given re: Likely Leader to Election Likely Winner Likely Date Remember in August I got SEVENS on Labor on the only real money bet I have ever taken. And it will be a [i]very[/i] sweet cherry on the top when we win (Said he, with literal shivers of pleasurable anticipation! ~ Because it's much more than the money. Every dollar will feel like a hundred!) Sevens in August, but it went down to $6, then $4.50, to $2.80 in November! But it's out again to $3.50 now. In August Abbortt was at $1.10 !!! - now at $1.28. This all takes a bit of explanation, and some guessing on my part. It's got some very interesting aspects. When you throw dice, every single face has exactly one chance in six of being on top. This is mathematical certainty. Two-up likewise is a game of certainty re the chances. Now, a horse race is really different. A horse might break a leg, get a bad start, any number of possible unforeseeables. So it's just a matter of [i]guessing[/i], on form and barrier position and fancy. Pure guessing, though with various levels of shrewdness. And the "odds" are based on the money that is landing on each horse, using algorithms of which I have no understanding, and always creaming off some money for the bookies, whatever combination of nags come in whatever placings. So it is with an election - any number of possible unforeseeables, though of course it's a two-horse race. But there is a funny difference when it comes to the betting. [i]Most punters want their winnings today,[/i] [i]now[/i], they are not into delayed gratification at all. So there is very little money being put on the election at all - even now. And there won't be much, it seems, until the election is called! So even a few grand on one or other side can really change the "odds". [i]But notice, the real odds don't change![/i] It's only the little algorithms all going rithmical, do you see? That the Abborttians were at $1.10, and the Government at $7, was a function of the [i]hubris[/i] of our opponents (who tend to put big bets on, they are moneyed people in many cases.) Nearly ALL the dough was on the Coalition - what little there was. [i]And one really sizeable bet by a richie could skew the whole "odds". [/i] So some other money was placed on the Government - didn't have to be much - and the "odds" plummetted over a very few months. Though, you see, the actual relative likelihood of outcome isn't changed at all by the betting. But at $3.50, let me tell you, those are still great "odds"! Because of course, as the unforeseeables have started at last to fall in our favour, - as I have always had [i]not-[/i]blind faith they would - the likelihood of our win really has changed for the better, so to that extent the change in betting prices are [i]roughly[/i] in synch with the real likelihoods. - But notice, it is not at all a [i]sensitive[/i] relationship, because too few people are putting too little money on the election at all. If there were lots of people placing modest bets, the "odds" would change frequently and in small gradations. On the other hand a few big bettors would have a marked effect right now. Later, their influence will not be so marked, as the trickle of punters' money becomes a flood. (Actually I have no idea how much betting interest there will be in the election, but there'll sure be more than now.) Why, you might ask, am I so interested in it all? It's not the money, it's the fact I'm going to love watching these hubristic pigs have their snouts rubbed in their own foul muck. And it is an insight into their thinking. The urge for instant gratification means that small punters aren't very interested yet; what money there is so far, [i]was[/i] nearly all on the Coalition until recently, and that was probably from a wealthy few who are not really punting in the ordinary sense, just for the money: these people are [i]barrackers[/i] for the Coalition as well. So I despise them of course. Which is why it is so exquisitely delicious to see the price on the Abborttians going up (i.e. that their perceived chances of winning are diminishing), and the [i]other[/i] kicker is, that their dollar would have returned them better, (in the event of a Coalition win), if they had held off betting until now - or later still, when I predict the "odds" on the Abborttians will head north in a big way. Oh and here's a funny, yes, it was that trolly CatsCrap that put me onto Sportsbet, he was braying about the "odds", thinking the money showed we didn't have a snowball's chance, I didn't believe him about the $7 being offered on the Government, when it turned out to be true, I thought Whacko! I'm having some of this! I'm sure CatsCrap will be delighted to know I'm so happy he told me..!.. :) Anyway Comrades, I'll be gloating further about this as our "odds" improve, if you want to punt on anything I reckon $3.50 on the Government is a snap, look at the recent polls! Another percentile of popularity by Labor and the "odds" will plunge towards even money, the fact they are not there already is due to that [i]hubris[/i], and the Coalition barrackers' unwillingness to face the fact that their rabble is on the slippery slope with an unconscionable thug as their leader, and his only possible credible successor in Turdball is anathema to many of them anyway! Har Bloody Har Bloody Har! So Folks keep your eye on Sportsbet, just for fun, even if you don't take my tip and have a flutter on the Election result.

Michael

29/12/2012To-om, ma-a-ate, I was wondering where you were! Your comparison lists between Turnbull and Gillard confirm in the latter your hatchet job hyperbolic take on her 'history'. Your list of Turnbull's achievements merely confirms my thesis that he's talk not walk (although you observe he can also reach into his wallet). "National leader", Tom, "national leader". To give him more than he's due, Turnbull is Machiavelli, maybe, but most definitely, not The Prince.

Gravel

29/12/2012Talk Turkey I am so pleased that you got a good bargain on the betting. I don't and won't be putting anything on the election, but will look forward to your updates as they happen. Last election there were quite a few, do you call them agencies?, places you could have a bet. Will you do comparisons? It could give us all something to think about anyway, besides the usual rubbish. I know people have short memories, I know we can't bank on people remembering much about Turnbull. I also know that the media will build him up very quickly if he takes over. We just have to trust the Australian people to get it right.

KHTAGH

29/12/2012This is a good insight into what would happen should the Lieberals win.(dog forbid) [i] LET’S JUST PUT our thinking caps on for a minute and imagine what Australia would be like if Rupert Murdoch gets his wish and in 2013 installs a coalition government led by Tony Abbott, Joe Hockey, Julie Bishop and Mal Brough.[/i] http://www.independentaustralia.net/2012/politics/if-rupert-murdoch-wins-in-2013/

TalkTurkey

29/12/2012Our Tweety Bird keeps Tweeting Check this she linked to on Twitter. http://ashbygate.com/ The Fifth Estate must SCREECH at the media when the political year gets back under way. Brough et al committed TREASON! By any dictionary's definition and in fact. Conspiracy [i]illegitimately[/i] to overthrow legitimate Government is TREASONOUS BEHAVIOUR, and treasonous behaviour, that's TREASON! We must GET the plotters. We need an agreed strategy to force a swift focused investigation. Agreed? And we can enjoy it all the way.

Ken

29/12/2012KGTAGH Good article at IA. To which we could add, Rinehart and Singleton will take over Fairfax and every part of the MSM will support big business (even more so than now, if that's possible!) Any promises the LNP made to be elected (allowed to cough and spit at this point!!!) would be abandoned, as the article suggests, because they will be non-core promises or Abbott's unscripted promises which he has previously said he should not be held to. And the new Treasurer Hockey will "find" a "black hole" in the Budget figures justifying abandoning everything, slashing services and jobs, and selling the rest of Australia. Private health insurance will be supported at the expense of public hospitals. Medicare will become another private health fund (I don't believe the electorate would really allow this to happen but the Libs would certainly like to do it). The disparity in wealth discussed in the previous Stiglitz thread, would become a reality for Australia. "Flexibility" would be re-introduced into the workforce - equals individual bargaining in which employers hold the upper hand, in which penalty rates would disappear and workers would have to work at any time for ordinary hours wages. Deaths on construction sites would increase as occupational health and safety becomes optional. I could go on and on. A million reasons we need to keep up the fight.

DMW

29/12/2012Some Saturday Morning fodder for causing some finkin [b]A year of political mud-slinging and hyperbole[/b] Ken Parish @ClubTroppo [i]Australia is one of the most prosperous and best-governed nations on earth. Our politicians, at least at national level, are mostly competent, honest and hard-working. And yet our mainstream media conveys an almost opposite impression, and the blogosphere and twitterverse project an even more extreme vision of universal incompetent, corrupt political venality and double-dealing.[/i] http://clubtroppo.com.au/2012/12/28/a-year-of-political-mud-slinging-and-hyperbole/ [b]Rage fuels power to the people[/b] Waleed Aly @SMAge/NationalTimes [i]Triggered by horrendous events, formerly disempowered people around the world have found a loud collective voice.[/i] http://www.smh.com.au/opinion/politics/rage-fuels-power-to-the-people-20121227-2bxtd.html [b]'Articulate morons': MPs call for better public debate[/b] Dan Harrison & David Wroe @SMAge/NationalTimes [i]BOB KATTER has clocked up nearly 40 years as a parliamentarian but he can't remember the standard of political debate being as low as it was in 2012.[/i] http://www.theage.com.au/opinion/political-news/articulate-morons-mps-call-for-better-public-debate-20121228-2bz9r.html [b]Humbled by the Muslim response to Christians at Christmas time[/b] Joseph Wakim @SMAge/NationalTimes [i]Each Christmas, my family receives more greetings and gifts from Muslim friends than from fellow Christians. We treasure handmade cards by Muslim children who do not celebrate Christmas. We cannot dismiss these efforts as tokenistic as they are annual and original. They are not five-second, to-from cards but well-worded peace messages in English and Arabic.[/i] http://www.theage.com.au/opinion/politics/humbled-by-the-muslim-response-to-christians-at-christmas-time-20121228-2bz5w.html

KHTAGH

29/12/2012I trust & hope that no swords folk meet any idiots like this bloke on their holidays, this is so scary. http://www.opposingviews.com/i/society/transportation/cars/video-ken-olsen-victim-bizarre-road-rage-attack

MWS

29/12/2012Stephan Lewendowsky on the death of [i]The Australian:[/i] http://www.independentaustralia.net/2012/business/media-2/day-the-australian-died/

MWS

29/12/2012A summary of the year in Australian politics: [quote]This was the year in which character assassination became the modus operandi of Australian politics, and when all-out attack became the default setting of parliamentary life. ...In a stinging ruling, Justice Steven Rares said the case had been brought primarily to cause Mr Slipper "significant public, reputational and political damage", a phrase that rather neatly summed up the year.[/quote] http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-asia-20765420

MWS

29/12/2012In an amazing coincidence, the latest cyclone off the coast of WA has been named "Mitchell." Yesterday another cyclone Mitchell was at the MCG. The current cyclone names list was created in 2008. Spooky! http://www.bom.gov.au/cyclone/about/names.shtml

KHTAGH

29/12/2012 If you want a good read to take up some time till the sword gets swung by AA again, take a read of BushfireBill at his best (I hope you don't mind AA) http://pbxmastragics.wordpress.com/2012/12/29/the-waters-are-lapping-at-the-feet-of-fairfax/

KHTAGH

29/12/2012The day The Australian died. [i]Let’s turn to another apparent analogy that was splattered across The Australian’s front page a few days ago under the headline: “It’s OK to link climate denial to pedophilia, ABC tells ex-chairman”. Did the ABC really draw an analogy between climate denial and paedophilia?[/i] http://www.independentaustralia.net/2012/business/media-2/day-the-australian-died/

KHTAGH

29/12/2012 Something for rhymsters here. thehttp://cafewhispers.wordpress.com/2012/12/29/the-boil/

KHTAGH

29/12/2012More bad news for Abbort [i]"It is asserted that this offer was made by the Leader of the Federal Liberal Party, Mr Tony Abbott, and Leader of the Northern Territory Country Liberal Party, Mr Terry Mills," the letter said.[/i] http://www.heraldsun.com.au/news/breaking-news/nt-seeks-probe-into-abbott-bribery-claim/story-e6frf7jx-1225961071651?sv=b7ec1ccf1a5be09735fb3759c0e0a696#.UN5fjkAkhBA.twitter

KHTAGH

29/12/2012Sorry but its a slow Saturday here, waiting for a swarm to move. More from Emmo. TRADE MINISTER CRAIG EMERSON OPINION PIECE - RETAIL CASSANDRAS - THE AUSTRALIAN https://docs.google.com/file/d/0B_Eqbb5ANlYkSlNaeWd0U2UtTTg/edit?pli=1

DMW

29/12/2012[b]It's back - with not one but many un-Australians of the Year[/b] Ian Warden @CanberraTimes [i]Tremble, ye blackguards, hypocrites, toadies and sycophants. As the days of the year dwindle down to a precious few I have decided to renew, on a whim, this column's award to the un-Australian of the Year. Readers (throwing their hats in the air and breaking into spontaneous dancing): ''Terrific news, Warden! We've really missed it. We feel sure it used to help improve the tone of the nation because people were so afraid of winning the award. It put the nation on its toes. National standards have certainly declined in the years you've not been doing it.[/i] http://www.canberratimes.com.au/opinion/its-back--with-not-one-but-many-unaustralians-of-the-year-20121228-2bz09.html ... and a more worthy bunch of recipients would be hard to find.

Cuppa

29/12/2012"Articulate morons," said Bob Katter. He can't have been talking about Abbortt. Abbortt isn't articulate.

Pikiranku

29/12/2012Janet Just want to say thank you. I hunted around and found a photo of one of my all-time heroes - Mary Lee, the Irish-South Australian suffragette and trade unionist whose determination and conviction began the process which eventually brought us Julia. Then went back to the Gravatar instructions you posted last week and followed them through. I think it worked okay so hopefully feisty little Mary will appear for me soon. I'm very excited about all this, so many, many thanks.

KHTAGH

29/12/2012MSW Sorry forgot you had posted the death of The Australian, just grabbed it off twitter.

TalkTurkey

29/12/2012KHTAGH You sure have been busy having a slow day! I'm sure you don't eed to apologise or even think of it in posting top links like those! That's surely what the Fightin' 5th's about. Spreading the thoughts. As Lyn has made us all aware.

MWS

29/12/2012KHTAGH, the more links the better! And I got it from Twitter too, so we are both recyclers. I haven't composed a tweet yet, but I'm reading a [b]lot[/b].

TalkTurkey

29/12/2012"[b][i]eed[/i][/b]"? :) (Typo from my last post.) During the 70's the Cannabis Reasearch Foundation, a sincere and decent early group of would-be marijuana legalisers, published a newspaper called Weed. It was declared illegal and the publishers threatened with prosecution. Instead of Weed the next paper was called Need. Same result. There followed a whole line of publications, Deed, Seed, Greed, I forget the complete range, but it ended up just being called [i][b]eed[/b][/i] in the end! :)

MWS

29/12/2012Bob Ellis on the predictions of Gerard Henderson: [i]It’s hard to see why I shouldn’t sue Gerard. I need the money, and he is a c**t [/i][edited by me in case there is a profanity filter on TPS], [i]and I would vastly enlarge the national happiness by doing so. And it’s hard too to find a historical instance when he predicted, rightly, anything. He said the Iraq war would be won easily and the WMD soon found. He predicted McCain in 2008, Palin in 2012 (approvingly), then Romney, approvingly, and joined Abbott in the false blackguarding of Slipper, Thomson, Gillard.[/i] http://www.ellistabletalk.com/2012/12/28/the-henderson-wars-31-no-more-mr-nice-guy/

jaycee

29/12/2012I see our "pet" troll left out one minor achievement in Ms. Gillard's career......: Julia Gillard..First female and current Prime Minister of Australia. That's...: Julia GILLARD..First female and current Prime Minister of Australia. Let's hear that title again!..: JULIA Gillard..First female and current Prime Minister of Australia. A minor oversight..I'm sure.....He suffers, you know!

Tom of Melbourne

29/12/2012I love this type of hyperbole*- [i]” joined Abbott in the false blackguarding of Slipper, Thomson, Gillard”[/i] • Slipper resigned as speaker rather than have the HoR vote him out, Windsor & Oakshott told him to go. Even Gillard doesn’t want him back. He’s out because he’s a sleazy character who (at best) used a taxpayer funded phone to send vile messages. He’s not fit to be the most senior member of the HOR, and never was. • Thomson has provided no explanation as to how thousands of dollars members cash came to be spent on prostitutes, cash advances and travel for his (then) wife occurred. Apparently barrackers take comfort from a brothel not keeping too many receipts for 7 years. Thanks for the “look over there” efforts of a few his remaining supporters, we do know that the rorting Thomson is accused of, is particularly common in the union his was in charge of. • As for Gillard, there is just so much evidence of her political dishonesty, that it seems pointless to list the various examples. (or “hoip-a-bowl” as Gillard pronounces it – she is inventive with the English language, if nothing else)

bob macalba

29/12/2012ignore , ignore , ignore,.. ya feed them, they dribble shit

2353

29/12/2012Ignore what Bob? Oh, that post from the illegitimate clown above yours. Consider it done.

bob macalba

29/12/2012TT The ultimate weed magazine, ..remember it being around 30 plus years ago, could only get second hand copies at the time, usually at the markets as i dont think many newsagents sold copies..i dont think they were allowed to, which is f#@king hilarious as such esteemed publications as Bawdy, Ribald, and other literary works of art were available on request,.. and the only form of judgement would be a nod and a wink, but the moral outrage towards shown towards weed does my head in, http://hightimes.com/magazine

DMW

29/12/2012bob m, my favourite bookshop at the time refused to stock Abbie Hoffman's [/i]Steal This Book[/i] It was a weird world then (and now) :P

bob macalba

29/12/2012TT And another song from the late Peter Tosh http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=XcBnaA3LpZ4 DMW its a lot weirder now i think, you should see the crap 'legal' highs they sell at tobacco shops now, WTF its melting peoples brains in a really bad way..but alas no ban, weird world indeed

Tom of Melbourne

29/12/2012It is particularly entertaining when ALP barrackers are so flummoxed that they exhort one another to decline to even attempt a reply.

KHTAGH

29/12/2012bob You were able to get high times as long as you subscribed to it directly from the US, would come in a plain brown wrapper you are right to was not permitted for sale in Aust. I got it for many yrs, just let the cat out of the bag huh, was being a lurker on the subject with a rye smile on my face, but what the hell. TT I was most impressed with you knowledge about J Hoover & Dupont, not many know the true reason behind its illegality. Old passionate hobby horse, still a very useful herb all the same. I was reading a good article only about a month ago saying there is growing evidence as those generations of heavy use get older that it has positive properties in stopping old timers actually, I'll find the link post it if you are interested. TT, As I emailed it to a mate.

NormanK

29/12/2012Hi DMW Thanks for the shout out. I'm not in a very good place emotionally at the moment - let's hope it's just a by-product of the season. Although I'm staying in touch with politics, none of it stirs any sort of emotion in me beyond continued disdain for our erstwhile gatekeepers who wouldn't recognise a real story if it asked for their hand in marriage. Sorry our last exchange was terse from my end. The new year might provide an artificial marker around which I can build a better state of mind. Take care.

Cuppa

29/12/2012I see there's a Lib troll doing their predictable. [b]ToM[/b] = Turn Off Morons.

Michael

30/12/2012Funny how people pick up on Julia Gillard mispronouncing, but knowing the meaning of "hyperbole". Tony Abbott had no idea what he was saying about himself when he perfectly pronounced "shit happens".

DMW

30/12/2012Hi NK, not sure what I can do or say that might assist in lifting your spirits except amongst my current reading I am learning that there are times when 'stressors' are beneficial in helping us become a little more resilient towards pain and/or un or dis -ease. That and many hours watching the garden grow. As to our last 'exchange'. I doubt I took any offence as I don't recall you offering it for me to to take and I am far less into 'stealing' offence these days :P Oh, and even a forced smile can assist in blowin' the blues away.

KHTAGH

30/12/2012Bad news for those WA people that like abalone. [i] "Abalone in the north part of the west coast, up near Kalbarri, we had over a 90 per cent mortality which happened immediately."[/i] http://www.abc.net.au/rural/news/content/201212/s3661604.htm

KHTAGH

30/12/2012Lieberals already trying to bury Ashbygate, don't read if you are worried about your blood pressure. This mindless pursuit of scandal belongs to the past Date December 30, 2012 Category Opinion Chris Berg In a democracy, politics should be about policy, not secret histories. Read more: http://www.theage.com.au/opinion/politics/this-mindless-pursuit-of-scandal-belongs-to-the-past-20121229-2c0i4.html#ixzz2GU77yjPD

Ken

30/12/2012KHTAGH The Age article is interesting for another reason. It echoes Turnbull’s Woodford speech. Just a coincidence???? And just for interest: A Christmas message from the Israeli embassy in Dublin which had to be pulled after public protests. Reported in the Sinn Fein newspaper :an Phoblacht”. http://www.anphoblacht.com/contents/22580

Gravel

30/12/2012NormanK It was great seeing you rose again. Sorry to hear things aren't going well, I for one miss you great comments. Hopefully you will be back here soon with your words of wisdom. :-) Knee High Don't ever apologise for putting links up, especially at this time of year when not a lot is happening. Thank you for putting the last lot hope, and hope you didn't have to wait too long for the swarm. :-) Talk Turkey What's this about you re-tweeting too much. I haven't noticed hardly any RT's from you, mostly only see your input, which is just as cheeky on Twitter as it is here. :-)

DMW

30/12/2012Hey NK, please excuse me being a bit of a bore but shortly after typing my last comment I picked up the current book and read of the concept of [i]Post Traumatic Growth [/i] which I had not heard of before. Found this in Wikipedia http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Post-traumatic_growth ... and this Radio National Podcast which I will listen to later: [b]Stephen Joseph: Post-Traumatic Growth[/b] [i]Trauma can shape our lives forever and for some of us trauma can be a burden we just can't shake. But Stephen Joseph believes adversity and trauma can be powerful opportunities for growth.[/i] http://www.abc.net.au/radionational/programs/lifematters/stephen-joseph/3970112

Michael

30/12/2012Chris Berg's central thesis that governing a country, and offering an alternative to governing that country, should be based on policies and the championing of them to the electorate, is sensible, more so than much else of his I've read this past couple of years. Were all politicians, in and out of government currently, to accept the thesis, and then act on it from leadership to last in the queue backbencher, by championing their policies to the electorate while treating doing so as professionally enacting their function and role as politicians, then we would truly have government of the people, by the people, for the people. Now, and after any given election. Instead, we have some people refusing to accept, since the last election, the 'legitimacy' of a Federal government that meets every required criterion to BE the government as our Federal political system is set up. This refusal is enacted bilefully. Shame.

DMW

30/12/2012re the PM from Woodford (and take note no technical 'glitches') Dear PM, you are so much better when you speak off the cuff and from the heart. When the scripted words come out you are a downright fizzer. Drop the scripted stuff and just be yourself.

KHTAGH

30/12/2012 Gravel [i]TT What's this about you re-tweeting too much. [/i] I agree, I have never seen a retweet from TT, I retweet lots when they are good. I enjoy seeing TT's tweets when I'm there, I still have not got the full workings either. I think someone should do a youtube clip on it, how about it Lyn?. Speaking of twitter I have noticed a lot of bogus direct msg's from people who have had their accounts hacked. Maybe some trolls have found a better way to try to create mayhem in peoples lives & attack the left. Have any of you had the same problem receiving this type of msg? An example "someone is saying nasty things about you" things like that. [i]hope you didn't have to wait too long for the swarm.[/i] Still waiting, I'm coaxing them out from under my next door neighbors study floor, rather slow process when you don't want to rip up the floor. Involves taking up the carpet, banging on the floor after finding the hive with a flexible inspection camera, drill hole insert camera type of thing. Banging breaks the comb from the floor & makes the Queen think of moving. Takes a lot of banging with a block buster on the floor too. Second day banging every few hrs, although I'm sure she moved this morning. For the last few weeks I have set up a hive outside where they are coming & going so they have to transit through the hive I want them in, to where they are now. Once she get the shits & moves, she takes up residence it the new hive in preference to swarming & going to finding another home. Once she is in the new hive she will not leave so I'll leave it there for a week so they can clean up their old comb, they recycle most of it & will collect any honey they have produced down to the molecule. They are amazing cleaners when it comes to honey (can smell it for 3 miles)they will rebuild their comb within a week. Then I'll take them back home where they came from.

KHTAGH

30/12/2012DMW PM JG was great wasn't she, very relaxed. MWS Gee Bob Ellis gives Gerard Henderson a right royal serving doesn't he.

KHTAGH

30/12/2012TT you are being mentioned over at BB's site, Check this tweet from PVO!!! [@GBoroughGrowler @Thefinnigans @TalkyTurkey Serious question: would you guys come on #Contrarians next year as a panel of 3 with me?] Gunna do it TT?

MWS

30/12/2012Latest post from Victoria Rollison: [i]When someone is in complete denial of facts, and is living on Bullshit Mountain, there’s no point trying to have a respectful discussion with them. When the leader of the opposition is constantly calling asylum seekers ‘illegals’, when the Shadow Treasurer paints the best performing economy in the developed world as a debt catastrophe and climate change deniers are given mainstream media credibility, it’s no wonder Liberal supporters feel justified in living in a deluded fact-free world.[/i] http://victoriarollison.com/2012/12/30/living-on-bullshit-mountain/

TalkTurkey

30/12/2012KHTAGH You are a TONIC! You remind me of HONEYBROM (Which I bet Ad astra remembers) A delicious bromide-flavoured honey syrup me muvver used to give to me as a baby when I put on a turn (As I did - I used to hold my breath until I turned blue)- And it really used to cool me out, It wasn't until years later I understood why. Anyway I hope Queenie B has had the sense to move into her new quarters, sounds like a job in this case. (But I have done that job myself, it's very satisfying eh!) Yes I saw Peter van Onselen's offer . . . It comes about as a result of a few of us, Finnigans and me mainly, needling him out of his comfy chair as those clever crows use cactus spines to winkle bardie grubs from their logs. Specifically I gave him curry about our relative accuracy in predictions - I don't know if I have ever mentioned this :) but I have been so-o-o-o-o spot-on all along, so when PvO was preening himself on his very [i]not-spot-on[/i] predictions - claiming his record was wondrous - I weighed in alongside of Finny, and then a lot of other people told him what they thought of him and the MSM's record generally, so we got him nettled. Heh heh heh. Will I take up his offer? [i]What do you think?[/i]

KHTAGH

30/12/2012TT So you should yes, good to hear, give him hell if he hold to his word, which I doubt.

KHTAGH

30/12/2012Pretty well sums up the LOTO as the arrogant prick he is, should be Labor's election ad. http://www.youtube.com/watch?feature=player_embedded&v=DB7cVFY_LCg

42 long

30/12/2012He would be a great joke if it wasn't so serious. People who don't access the type of information we have about the REAL Abbott, only know what they read in the papers. The evidence is out there now for one and all to see. This guy is really an embarrassment, and a liability. Surely the LIBs know this now. What a gamble to stick with him, and to keep doing it when the man is so obviously flawed. Isn't it strange when HE has done so much to villify others and assassinate their character, HE is so lacking in truth and integrity himself. "He who is without sin, cast the first stone, and judge NOT, lest YE be judged". Isn't that in the good book Tony?

Gravel

30/12/2012Knee High Yes I got the same DM thingy, but only noticed it today when I wanted to ask our Lyn how to get my gravatar to work on Twitter. Mind you, I hadn't bothered before but then I saw a tweet from you, which spurred me on. Our Lyn is just a wonder, she sent me the directions and now my gravatar is there. Anyway I just ignored it, the DM message thing, I mean. Gosh you have to go to a lot of trouble removing those bees. How do you know where they came from? :-) Talk Turkey I'm with Knee High, go for it. I haven't got pay tv but hopefully someone can get it and put it on youtube, would love to see the three of you have a good go against PVO. It was great watching Julia and Bob, they were really enjoying themselves. I'm waiting for ABC24 to put it up, I would love to watch it all again.

Ken

30/12/2012KHTAGH, 42 long I hope the Libs do stick with him and more and more of this appears on Youtube and other sites. Despite the MSM, this sort of message will filter out there into the electorate. As long as it's a slow filtering so that the Libs don't dump him too early. As Maher pointed out about Abbott, political pragmatism ver-rides his religious beliefs - at least while he is in opposition. It would be scary to see his religious beliefs unfurled if (God forbid! - that's one for Tony) he ever became PM.

KHTAGH

30/12/2012Gravel [i] How do you know where they came from?[/i] Educated guess, I had a small beard of bee hanging off one of my hives a few weeks ago, then they vanished. Seeing I work a few hrs each week for Judy (in her 70's) I would have noticed them before now. Also it was only a small swarm most normal wild swarms are around 4000-5000. There would be lucky if there were a 1000 in this one. Plus the age of the comb was very young too. I suppose it is just an assumption.

Wake Up

30/12/2012TT, yes please go on 'Contrarians' with PVO, that show is screaming for some balance.

2353

30/12/2012TT - go for it. I've never watched the show as I don't have Foxtel, but I'd make sure I saw that one. And didn't the Prime Minister do well at Woodford.

LadyInRed

30/12/2012Julia at Woodford 42mins: http://australianpolitics.com/2012/12/30/gillard-hawke-woodford-folk-festival.html

Jason

30/12/20122353, Despite the Pm's good showing at "Woodford" today, that miserable fool Hockey tweeted this! Joe Hockey‏@JoeHockey I see PM has broken her holidays to go to a folk festival. Shame the PM didn't front up to apologise for breaking 400 promises for a surplus DICKHEAD!!!!

Ad astra reply

30/12/2012Folks I’ve had great difficulty getting onto the Internet all day. Come holiday time in this coastal village, the local network can’t handle the 3G traffic when so many are using their mobile phones. I’ve now caught up with your comments. Thank you for them. Fortunately, TT alerted me to Julia Gillard’s appearance at the Woodford Festival. Wasn’t she brilliant! It’s a sign of the meanness and nastiness of the Coalition that Joe Hockey tweeted as he did – there’s no seasonal goodwill from that side. We can anticipate nothing better in 2013. Tomorrow I’ll post the names of those who have commented on [i]TPS[/i], and will thank them for their contributions.

TalkTurkey

30/12/2012FROM: Geoff Pearson‏@GCobber99 on Twitter Love this Margo keep up the good work http://tweetedtimes.com/#!/margokingston1 … ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ Yes indeed! Go Margo Kingston GO! You are like a star that has been there all along, but which has suddenly gone SUPERNOVA! ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ This won't be the last time I will talk about you here. You are a great champion of the Fighting 5th Estate.

TalkTurkey

30/12/2012Sorry Folks, That link is not the one I thought it was, try http://tweetedtimes.com/#!/margokingston1

KHTAGH

31/12/2012 Rob Oakeshott Responds To Gerard Henderson On Minority Government http://australianpolitics.com/2012/12/19/oakeshott-henderson-on-minority-government.html

jane

31/12/2012I notice ToM unsurprisingly fails to mention Turnbull's political judgement in his list of Turnbull's achievements and leadership qualities. Like the Australian Rain Corporation debacle. http://www.inthemix.com.au/forum/archive/index.php/t-211309.html And let's not forget the Grech and utegate debacles where he clearly demonstrates his lack of political nous and judgement. And the joke of his refusal to toe the party line, we have his pathetic attempts to undermine NBN, even though he has invested in the technology overseas. Hypocrisy, perhaps. It certainly demonstrates his lack of belief in the line he's been spruiking. He is not leadership material, demonstrated by his stint as LOTO. Then of course there are the usual furphys wrt Julia Gillard, that she was booted out of her job at S&G, completely unsubstantiated by the firm itself; but what would they know in the face of ToM's superior knowledge? And the old favourite, that she singlehandedly deposed Kevin Rudd, apparently without the knowledge or consent of the Caucus, when the facts do not support that fairytale. And God forbid Liealot's suitability for the top job be discussed. Apparently, setting up a slush fund while a senior member of government in order to prosecute a fellow MP is not a problem, although it is a crime. http://newmatilda.com/2012/12/11/abbott-slush-fund http://www.theage.com.au/opinion/politics/abbott-has-his-own-slushy-history-20121201-2anjy.html And it seems he probably lied to Parliament about it, all breezily ignored by ToM who must think that lying to the AEC and very likely to the Parliament are unimportant irrelevancies and no bar to becoming PM.

Ad astra reply

31/12/2012Folks I have just now posted [i]Thank you to all who comment here[/i], which features a list of contributors since the inception of [i]TPS[/i] in 2008. http://www.thepoliticalsword.com/post/2012/12/31/Thank-you-to-all-who-comment-here.aspx

42 long

31/12/2012There is no way of voting for a "hung" parliament or a minority government. The voters cast their votes, they are counted and in certain circumstances the outcome is like the last one here in australia. Negotiations are engaged in and the LOTO was unsuccessful in gaining the confidence of the "independents" even though the prices he offered in money terms were higher than Gillard offered. LOTO's obvious intention to get the leadership and have an election early and lack of TRUST denied him the chance to form government at that time. This is exactly the outcome that the LAW supports. The gobernment formed was totally LEGAL.. Attack dog Tony though cannot accept the law. He supports uprisings, witch hunts, lies and spin. Character assassination and kangaroo courts, trial by media and scare politics where real facts are non-existant. He has driven the status of the parliament in australia down down down. ( he always says things 3 times, It's one of his rules of spin. doesn't make a lot of sense like Dead, buried and cremated. The last 2 are options not a sequence. He hides the fact that he is a full card carrying climate science denier. Actually he is also a "SCIENCE" attacker. Never misses an opportunity to discredit "science" and those who practice and believe in it. Abbott has no idea how it operates. Facts are an essential element of it and discipline and analysis. The first is something Tony doesn't use . "The longest dummy spit in history" is Anthony Albanese's description of the LOTO's reign. I can't better that. How sad for this country that we have experienced this so negative and IGNORANT man in the position he has held ( by ONE vote). at such a critical time in history.

Bacchus

31/12/2012[quote]he always says things 3 times, It's one of his rules of spin.[/quote] I hadn't thought of it in those terms before 42 long. That's indicative of Obsessive Compulsive Disorder. A very close relative suffers from this affliction and always checks that the car door is locked three times, or that each element on the stove is turned off three times. Perhaps this provides a little more insight into the damaged character that is LOTO.

42 long

31/12/2012If both leaders subjected themselves to an extensive Psychological profile/analysis, I feel sure LOTO would have much more to fear. I'll bet he wouldn't ever do it. Gillard has shown resilience and stability under stress. Abbott is failing badly when stressing situations arise. He walks away or goes AWOL or never answers. His body movements betray his lies. He is very easy to read and isn't sincere. The response is tailored to the situation and the particular audience. He is spoiled goods. NO integrity.

mobile app jobs Mississauga

4/01/2013it is very easy to read and sincer.the response is tailoredto the sitations and the particular audience.
How many umbrellas are there if I start with two and take 2 away?