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2012 in review

January 10, 2013 Leave a comment

The WordPress.com stats helper monkeys prepared a 2012 annual report for this blog.

Here’s an excerpt:

4,329 films were submitted to the 2012 Cannes Film Festival. This blog had 15,000 views in 2012. If each view were a film, this blog would power 3 Film Festivals

Click here to see the complete report.

Categories: Uncategorized

Policy comparison – the facts

April 30, 2012 7 comments

We hear a lot these days about how the Government can’t get its message out. Of course if the media were actually prepared to cover Government policy with any degree of factual coverage instead of screeching slogans and cherry picking for anything slightly controversial this might be different, but that’s never going to happen in Australia right now. Our current media treats politics as a blood sport and as such covers it like sport, with faux tension, scorelines and winners and losers plus a very healthy serving of bias towards the LNP.

As such we need to take extra steps to get the facts of the policy differences between the two parties out there as the media won’t touch it with a ten foot pole. Now as Abbott and his bunch of incompetents haven’t got very many policies at all, we can only compare what they have currently announced. Below is a comparison table with what details I have been able to glean. If you think it will help please send it on to whoever you can.

 

POLICY  

Carbon Tax

GOVERNMENT

  • Will take money of top 500 polluters and use it for compensation for price rises
  • Will use money to increase tax free threshold for everyone from $6000 to $18000, an effective tax cut.
  • Will gradually increase super from 9% to 12%.
  • Will meet a 5% reduction in emissions.

OPPOSITION

  • Will take $1300 off every taxpayer and give it to polluters as incentive to stop them polluting.
  • Will also meet 5% reduction in emissions, but by planting trees.
  •  Amount of trees required will cover more ground than the current available fertile area.
  •  Will not keep tax cut.
  • Will keep super increase but won’t say how to pay for it.

POLICY  

NBN

GOVERNMENT

  • Is implementing a fibre to the home network reaching 93% of households .
  • No more Telstra monopoly for services, they become another retailer .
  • Fibre provides consistent fast speeds regardless of distance.
  • Fibre is future proof and will not require further replacement.  As technology improves only the transmission/reception equipment at the ends needs updating.

OPPOSITION

  • Wants to implement fibre to the node, relying on Telstra copper for the last mile.
  • Wants more reliance on wireless, despite it being an inferior solution
  • Copper cannot provide same speeds as fibre and wireless is not a scalable solution
  • Copper is not a future proof solution and cannot provide further speed/capacity increases.

POLICY  

Parental leave

GOVERNMENT

  • Will provide minimum wage for anyone who meets the means tested criteria for 6 months, meaning everyone gets the
  • same assistance

OPPOSITION

  • Will provide half salary for anyone meeting criteria for 6 months, meaning those who can most afford it will receive more money.
  • Will tax companies to pay for plan.
Categories: Uncategorized

Vote for me!

April 16, 2012 9 comments

I’ve just found out I made it into the Best Australian Blogs 2012 People’s Choice Awards!  Woo hoo!

Please vote for me if you enjoy my work…it would be much appreciated.

People

www.surveymonkey.com/s/BAB2012

Categories: Uncategorized

2010 in review

February 14, 2011 1 comment

The stats helper monkeys at WordPress.com mulled over how this blog did in 2010, and here’s a high level summary of its overall blog health:

Healthy blog!

The Blog-Health-o-Meter™ reads Wow.

Crunchy numbers

Featured image

A helper monkey made this abstract painting, inspired by your stats.

A Boeing 747-400 passenger jet can hold 416 passengers. This blog was viewed about 5,900 times in 2010. That’s about 14 full 747s.

 

In 2010, there were 71 new posts, not bad for the first year! There were 16 pictures uploaded, taking up a total of 410kb. That’s about a picture per month.

The busiest day of the year was June 24th with 114 views. The most popular post that day was Link dump – leadership spill edition.

Where did they come from?

The top referring sites in 2010 were thepoliticalsword.com, guttertrash.wordpress.com, cafewhispers.wordpress.com, australianblogsites.com, and andrewelder.blogspot.com.

Some visitors came searching, mostly for rspt explained, spray of the day, rspt explanation, explanation of rspt, and tony abbott.

Attractions in 2010

These are the posts and pages that got the most views in 2010.

1

Link dump – leadership spill edition June 2010

2

New media and the right whingers October 2010
20 comments and 1 Like on WordPress.com,

3

RSPT explanation…idiot proof May 2010

4

Link dump July 2010

5

Dead horse being flogged mercilessly November 2010
15 comments

Categories: Uncategorized

Flagsturbation nation

January 25, 2011 Leave a comment

Tomorrow is the time of year where all Australians take stock of the world around them and ponder our nation’s place in the world and our current good fortune  (flood crises notwithstanding)…or at least it should be.

Instead we are presented with this jingoistic orgy of Australian flag branded merchandising and nationalistic triumphalism that is so far from the perceived Aussie nature it’s completely unrecognisable.

The final straw for me was, believe it or not, an ad for Woolworths.  As well as the gormless front man spruiking the regular rip-offs we could expect to find, he then rattled off a massive list of flag brand items covering the full gamut of useless objects.  Seriously, I fully expected to find flag branded condoms and maxi-pads.

Couple this with the now common sight of Aussie flags stuck to car windows, usually in pairs and usually accompanied by a “Fuck off we’re full” bumper sticker, and you really start to wonder.

Why do we suddenly have this heavily Americanised version of flag-based patriotism foisted off on us, accompanied by its handmaiden the triumphal exceptionalism i.e. we’re the best in the world?

Why can’t we go back to the good old days, where Australia Day was just viewed as the first of many public holidays in the year and we treated it with the good natured, apathetic acknowledgement it deserved?

To mind the only good thing about Australia Day at the moment is Sam Kekovich…you know it makes sense.

 

Categories: Uncategorized Tags: ,

Queensland floods – a perspective

January 17, 2011 1 comment

Living in Brisbane, you get to all sorts of wild weather this time of year…I just have to cast my mind back to November 2008 to remember the horrific storm that blew over then and caused untold damage.

The recent flood crisis has raised that to a whole other level, but this time it sort of crept up on us.

I remember being on leave over the Christmas break and being pissed off the weather was so crap…2 or 3 clear days in the whole 2 weeks and pissing down rain for the rest of it.  I didn’t think much of it and simply dreaded the end of my break and the start of work once more.  I do remember driving past the small creek that runs past the bottom of my street and was amazed that it was about 1.5 metres from overflowing…I’d never seen it that high before.  Then the penny dropped – with the constant rain over the past several months the ground was completely saturated and it was all running off straight into the watercourses.  Again, I didn’t think much off it because I thought that a couple of days without rain would sort it out and we’d be back to the rest of the shitty summer.

Then the footage of the Toowoomba flash flood was shown and it all became a bit more real. Like most people, it never occurred to me that all this rain would ever cause flooding, particularly when we were on water restrictions not 18 months ago.  So we were back at work discussing the Toowoomba flood and how terrible it was, when it became a concern that the river itself might flood.  At 10:00 on the Tuesday the management of my office building advised everyone to evacuate the cars from the basement car park (we’re on Eagle St right on the river).  Then at 11:30 the evacuation sirens went off throughout the building and we were advised to go home.

There was a mad rush for the lifts…not exactly a speedy process when you’re on the 34th floor…but a few of us adventurous types elected to take the stairs.  At that point public transport was still functioning so I was able to get home with a minimum of fuss and then switched on the box to see what was happening.

From that point onwards it all became a bit surreal and didn’t quite sink in.  My suburb in the north west was untouched, despite the creek at the end of the street so we stayed glued to the box and watched the tragedy unfold over the next several days.  We ran through the gamut of emotions and here are some of my thoughts of how things unfolded.

  1. Government response.  The government response on all levels has been nothing short of spectacular.  Campbell  Newman has been efficiency himself with his warnings of what was forthcoming and organisation of the recovery.  Shows what he can do when there’s no tunnels involved huh?  Anna Bligh has been a revelation.  In a complete contrast to her usual spin-centric utterances, she has been forthright and up front with the public, telling them what they can expect nad how to prepare for it.  Her dedication and emotion in those 2 hourly press conferences showed how leadership should be.  It was also notable that the PM came up to show her support but was happy to take a back seat to Anna and let her steer the proceedings…a sign of class.  The only blight from the political arena came from…you guessed it Tony fucking Abbott.  His media bite when the floods first hit started out OK, but he soon couldn’t help himself.  After explicitly stating that he wasn’t going to bring politics into it, he then said he would be going up and keeping an eye on the government to make sure they spent the recovery money wisely!!  The guy is completely clueless and an emotional vacuum.  If he lacks the common decency to keep politics out of a disaster of this scale he shouldn’t be allowed within bulls roar of the PMship.
  2. Media coverage.  By and large the coverage from the media has been excellent…but then we all know they love a disaster.  They don’t have to think about what to run and they can tug on all the heartstrings they like.  They put out all the relevant information in a timely manner and really did keep us informed as to what was happening.  The only blight was the ridiculously insular Canberra press gallery.  When the PM gave her first press conference about the flood, what was the first question asked by the mouth breathers?  That’s right…will this affect the return to surplus.  Are they fucking kidding me?  There’s people dead and missing, with the third largest city in the country basically offline, and this dickhead wants to know about the budget?  I hope to god they out this bloke and he gets his arse kicked from her to eternity.
  3. Volunteers.  The willingness of the people of Brisbane and other areas to volunteer to help has been nothing short of spectacular.  The images of the massive queues to register has been mind boggling, so much that it was a shock to hear that people had actually been turned away.
  4. Survivor guilt.  Well not so much survivor as people unaffected guilt.  Even though it is completely illogical, you can’t help but feel guilty when your home has been untouched and you see all the images of the people who have lost everything.  Of course you donate money and goods, but it adds even more to the guilt when you don’t join the volunteering effort.  I have a very bad back and as such would not be capable of 4 hours of manual labour, so we didn’t volunteer.  Of course this doesn’t help rationalise it any and you still feel bad, but you can’t help feeling that you’ve let people down.

 

Well those are my thoughts on the recent disaster.  Anyone have anything else to add?

Boganism – its part in our downfall

December 13, 2010 2 comments

This is something that has been weighing on my mind a bit recently, after I noticed an increasing trend towards rampant boganism, and frankly it disturbs me quite a bit.

It seems that everywhere you go these days you surrounded by bogans, and what’s worse they are totally self-aware bogans and revel in their boganism like it’s a badge of honour.

It really struck me when I was on holidays in Bali and was walking up the main street of Kuta and was literally surrounded by them, showing off their bogan stamps and mullets in the traditional Bintang singlet, asking all passersby where the nearest Pizza Hut is.

I thought to myself; “it never used to be like this did it?  It never used to be this full on?”.

After a bit of thought I reckon I’ve worked out where it all went wrong and when the slide to the lowest common denominator really began…the Sydney Olympics in 2000.

Prior to this we were generally an affable, tolerant nation, content in our place in the world with a realistic view of our impact on it.  We were satisfied that the majority of our self-worth came in sports, and in particular traditional standards like cricket, netball, and rugby and we were happy that we excelled in those areas.

Then we won the Olympics and little Johnny wasted no time in telling us how bloody good we are and that we would do well.  Of course we did with the home town and seasonal advantages, and when Samaranch declared them the “best games ever” , well that was it…we collectively went nuts.

From this point it was on for young and old.  Our successes in this one event lead us to believe we were natural world beaters at ALL sports and we proceeded to get ugly about telling absolutely everyone about it.  This gave rise to the increasing appearance of the ugly Aussie spectator, once usually reserved for his spot behind the Collingwood goalposts, he now appeared at all events with the same passion and fervour armed with the most brain dead chant of all time “Aussie Aussie Aussie, oi oi oi”.

It has only gotten worse, with the expectation of us being world beaters at EVERYTHING now treated as a forgone conclusion in most minds, leading to the appearance of the “patriotic” Aussie (more like jingoistic) spouting the Cronulla riot slogan of “fuck off we’re full” with great delight.  Couple this with the conspicuous display of “bogan stamp” tattoos (Southern Cross) on all and sundry and you have a delightful display to impress the world.

And there you have it…the great tradition of Aussie openness and tolerance being drowned in a sea of jingoistic fervour and hatred, with lashings of drunkeness and generally sub-human behaviour on display to the rest of the world.  If any other countries actually cared what happens it’d be serious, but thankfully (despite the mass bogan delusion) the world cares very little about what happens here (except for bloody Oprah).

Makes you proud to be an Australian hey?

Categories: Uncategorized Tags: ,
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