Monthly Archives: September 2009

It’s not their race that worries the regulator, it’s the nasty, oppressive, overly-powerful government to which they’re attached

A Liberal party donor who was apparently hoping for some sweet Chinese cash that may not now be coming, comes out swinging:

Billionaire mining magnate Clive Palmer has launched a scathing attack on the Foreign Investment Review Board (FIRB), labelling it racist.

Australia’s foreign investment regulator has expressed a desire to cap the level of Chinese investment in local projects.

Is any action directed at limiting efforts by a particular aggressive foreign government to control national resources “racist”? Or is considering these issues entirely reasonable, and just what every government – including the Chinese government – does? Does the Liberal Party actually advocate something different, or do they agree with the Government – in which case, does Mr Palmer think they’re “racist”, too, and will he be withdrawing his support?

PS You can see how Mr Palmer made his billions: with shining wit like this, who could resist his business overtures?

“I must say to the Treasurer Wayne Goose, Wayne Swan – I knew he was a water fowl of some description – I object to that as an Australian citizen too,” he said.

It’s funny because the name “Swan” has another meaning.

But what if they stopped speeding?

It’s good to hear that the state has moved to a velocity-based taxation system, but I’m concerned that this might not be sustainable in the long term. Just as when taxation was based on income, tax-avoiders made a point of keeping their “taxable income” as low as possible, present velocity-based taxpayers may well start cheating the system by keeping to the posted speed limits.

That would destroy this fantastic development, quick-smart. The only solution is for the government to rapidly expand its Stupidly Low Posted Speed Limits program, its brilliant method of ensuring an infinite source of infringement tickets. This policy, which involves constantly reducing the rate at which drivers may travel ever further below what is necessary merely to keep the roads reasonably safe, has made some spectacular strides forward in the past decade.

But it can, and must, go further. If drivers actually start abiding by 50kph limits on long, straight, open suburban streets with good visibility – drop it to 40. If they obey 40 – drop it to 30. Hell, if we reduce it all the way to below walking speed, people will get rid of their cars and walk. Meaning that, in addition to reducing deaths on our roads to nothing, we’ll have made a huge blow in the fight against air pollution, climate change and oil dependency.

Of course, the economy would collapse because no-one would be able to get anywhere – but surely that’s a small price to pay for an incredible end to all road trauma. I’m certainly willing to give up the convenience of modern transport in exchange for absolute safety on the roads I wouldn’t use any more. Aren’t you?

How ludicrously unfair is this?

I’ve written about this before, but I hadn’t realised just how much of a difference it really was.

Two jobseekers on NewStart sharing a house. (Because you can hardly afford to rent a whole place on your own on that payment.) Total payment per fortnight between the two of them: $912 ($228 each per week).

They have sex. They call each other partner. Centrelink assumes that, miraculously, living has suddenly become magically much, much cheaper! Their payments are immediately cut by $99 in that fortnight – more than 10 percent – to $813 ($205.75 each per week).

Tell me how that makes even the remotest amount of sense. Good thing they’re sharing a bed (possibly) – now they’ve had to disconnect the heater to make ends meet, they’ll need to huddle together to stay warm.

Being hated by lying crooks is rather a compliment, actually

I see those lying scumbags at “GreensWatch” have returned, spreading outrageously defamatory lies and hiding behind a US ISP and the fatuous line that they don’t break electoral law by refusing to disclose who they are because, they bizarrely claim, no-one’s “paid”. (Yes, apparently they’re pitching their site at the moronically credulous who would believe that the commercial US ISP doesn’t require payment to host them.)

Obviously, you can tell the credibility of their allegations by how willing they are to stand behind them. We’re no-one! We’re above the law! We’re beyond the law! We can make up any revoltingly false garbage we like and disappear mysteriously into the night!

Whatever you may think of the Greens, you’d have to concede that the fact that such loathsome, cowardly crooks as the people behind “GreensWatch” hate them so much, and devote so much time and effort to trying to hurt them, and that they’re forced to dissemble and outright lie to do it, is a fairly ringing endorsement. Vote for the Greens – it’s what Australian politics’ dirtiest players fear the most!

The Greens must be doing something right.

UPDATE: Well, downdate really. Looks like I wrote something very similar last time they came up, and looked at the s328 issue then. In fact, that post is what prompted their lame disclaimer.

Turns out you can entirely block something unpleasant from your memory, after all!

Pride comes before utter, utter shame

The saddest part of the “iSnack 2.0″ debacle? The unbelievably misplaced and tragically unaware pride apparently held by the guy who came up with the name:

The winner of the contest, West Australian web designer Dean Robbins, 27, told The Sun Herald: ”It’s been difficult to contain my excitement; I actually leapt out of my chair when I heard the news. To think that I could go down in Australia’s history is overwhelming.”

Poor iDean 2.0. He’s in for a very disappointing time.

UPDATE: Do you think he gets it yet?

Lily Allen demands internet accounts be suspended; internet is mean to her in return

Lily Allen correctly notes that musicians today are not “rich”. She bizarrely, madly blames this on piracy, rather than the publishers which leave artists with a pathetic 8% or so of revenue from sales. Apparently unable to cope with the new model – where musicians earn their royalties from their songs being played on the radio, which serve as an advertisement for their live concerts – she turns around and argues that the British government should implement the constitutionally-flawed due-process-abandoning internet disconnection on industry complaint scheme.

She is rightly lambasted for this, particularly once it becomes apparent that she herself “pirated” songs in her youth (thereby demonstrating that her own musical output was partly influenced by open access to other people’s music) and, until recently, hosted them on her own site.

Then she cracks a sook and claims she’s going to “quit music for acting”. While people are prepared to pay a hundred quid or so each to see her perform, we’ll see how long that resolve lasts. She quickly deletes her blog advocating disconnecting people from the internet, because internet-users are “abusive”.

Lily, there is something horribly wrong with music today – but it’s not the “pirates”. It’s the bastards who are blaming your pitiful cut on the pirates whilst pocketing many, many times more per song of yours than you’ll ever see. They’re selling you a con.

It’s pretty embarrassing for you – and the other “artists” who’ve signed on – that you bought it. And it’s tragic that you burnt your reputations to promote it.

If you weren’t trying to do something so stupid and vindictive to people you’ve never met, I’d feel very sorry for you.

PS Good thing Andrew Bolt’s away. He’d be torn between approving of Allen being a sop for the big corporate music industry, and his pre-existing contempt for her for writing sweary songs about GWB.

UPDATE: Via LGWS, a musician’s retort to Lily:

UPDATE #2: Well, that lasted a long time, didn’t it?

Prediction

The AFL Grand Final will be won by a group of footballers with whom I have nothing whatsoever in common but who wear a specifically-coloured outfit, who will defeat a different group of footballers with whom I have nothing whatsoever in common but who wear a differently-coloured outfit.

Once again, I can’t wait to see what happens.

UPDATE: I was right! If only St Kilda had thought to kick more goals. They must be kicking themselves.