Tuesday, June 30, 2009

Headlines Tuesday 30th June 2009

Mick Hawi cops spray from victim's mum
Three months after a fatal brawl at Sydney Airport that horrified scores of innocent bystanders, police have charged a bikie gang leader with murder.

Serial video rapist jailed for 28 years
A VICTIM wept in the courtroom as John Xydias was sent to jail for filming himself raping 11 unconscious women.

CBD Metro extended... but no idea when
The controversial CBD metro is being extended through Sydney's west, but when that will happen is anyone's guess.

Fed Govt still eyeing public hospitals
A federal takeover of the public hospital system is still on the cards if benchmarks are not met,......

Make a mint off dateless coins
An mistake at the Royal Mint in Britain has let at least 100,000 coins with no date slip into......

Car on fire in M5 East blocks traffic
A car on fire in the M5 East tunnel west bound has blocked traffic in peak hour.

'You'll be on a cloud': alleged murderer
A NSW man accused of poisoning five people - two fatally - allegedly told a woman she would feel like she was floating on a cloud, but instead she clinically died twice while in a coma, a court heard.
=== Journalists Corner ===
Trouble for the Plan?
As Dems push their healthcare plan, Congress cuts out for recess. So, what awaits the bill after the break? Get answers on 'Your World'!
All the action, all the politics and all the latest stories. If it's happening in Washington, it's happening here! Only on 'Special Report'!
A 'Factor' Investigation!
Geraldo with a shocking update on the child rapist getting released after only months in jail!
=== Comments ===
Our pork pie PM revels in butchering the truth
Piers Akerman
THE Federal Police are investigating a fake email _ why not also investigate Kevin Rudd’s fake 2007 election policies?
There were the big promises and there were the little promises and all of them were dodgy. Remember that pledge to bring Iran’s rulers before the International Criminal Court at the Hague? That was a biggie. Out of left field but phoney. - I think Rudd has been hit fatally by Turnbull, which is why the spinners are working overtime to turn the damage around. I saw footage of Rudd in parliament, prior to Swan releasing his correspondence on the issue and showing he had spoken to grant and involved treasury. Rudd said words to the effect “Neither I, nor Swan nor anyone in my government would do what the leader of the opposition suggests.” Thing is, the email of Swan apparently did just that. And the press haven’t asked Rudd about that. I would dearly love the footage to be posted on youtube .. I would also love it in quicktime format .. I could do a lot with it.
On the Insiders we saw a collage of Rudd statements, with cuts to Turnbull talking, making out that Turnbull had said some misleading things about Rudd and then contradicted himself. That was highly misleading. The footage of Rudd’s earlier statement would show the montage for the propaganda it is. Turnbull has got Rudd where it hurts .. in the PM’s ego. We now know that Swan was indiscrete and Rudd helped to cover it up .. and Gillard, Tanner and Albanese have weighed in with furphys of their own. If the conservative party had behaved that way, the press would be all over it.
I don’t wish to take away from the great list you have compiled too, Piers .. - ed.
- Simon replied
Absolutely spot on DD. Thank God, I was beginning to wonder if I was the only person seeing all this being covered up. In reality, Rudd is in damage control big time. He has even got all his cronies hitting this blog harder than normal. When the truth gets out about this, I reackon we’ll get a new PM and Treasurer hence the remarkable effort to turn the tables.
Turnbull has in reality done a good job. The media have mostly been utterly complicit in this.
Tim Blair
Tim Flannery – who believes that “Australia’s climate dinosaurs are a lot bigger and uglier than the climate dinosaurs elsewhere” – ponders the fate of those who care:
TONY JONES: New laws are now being used to penalise protesters who stop or impede production at coal-fired power plants and smelters and so on. Do you think those protesters should be protected in some way?

TIM FLANNERY: Absolutely. I find this completely outrageous to see state governments who are doing next to nothing to secure the future of younger people in Australia, penalising those who care with absolutely punitive measures now, making them pay for their protests. It is just extraordinary and I find it just utterly immoral and despicable.

TONY JONES: We’ve just seen NASA scientist Jim Hanson, I think you know him pretty well, arrested along with an actress outside a coal-fired power station in Virginia, something he describes as a “death factory”. Have you considered yourself that kind of direction action?

TIM FLANNERY: Look, I have. I think we’ve all got a job to do, and my job has over the last couple of years has been working with business and the more progressive end of the business spectrum. I have considered those sort of actions, but there’s probably a lot of young people who’ve got a lot more at stake than I have who are gonna get angrier over time and who are gonna demand action, and they’re probably the ones who are gonna carry the day in that area.
Maybe he doesn’t care enough.
Tim Blair
White House press secretary Robert Gibbs explains, as best he can, Obama’s broken promise:

Note the laughter. Vice-joke Joe Biden keeps the comedy coming, lately referring to Tim Kaine as the “great governor of New Jersey”. One small problem with that:
Tim Kaine’s not governor of New Jersey. Jon Corzine is governor of New Jersey … Tim Kaine is governor of another state, called Virginia. He’s also chairman of the Democratic National Committee.
Another Biden speech, another Biden blunder:
At a town hall meeting this week in Perrysburg, Ohio, on the middle class and manufacturing, the vice president told the crowd that “the Buick LeSabre is made in Ontario, Canada,” and that “the UAW worker in Canada makes the same wage as the UAW worker in the U.S.” …

Had Biden’s staff better briefed him, he might have known that the LeSabre was discontinued in 2005, that model was made in the United States, not Canada, and workers in Ontario are members of the Canadian Auto Workers which broke off from the UAW in 1985 and became an independent union.
Tim Blair
Presley and Jackson weren’t so far apart.

UPDATE. “When your Elvis dies, so does the private lie that someday you will be young once again, and feel at capricious intervals the weightlessness of a joy that is unchecked by the injuries of experience and failure.” - I despair of ever finding another hairless pincushion to replace Michael. - ed.
Tim Blair
Andrew Bolt – returned to Australia and again shackled to his desk – lists several broken Rudd election promises. By comparison, the GetUp! kids can find only one.
Tim Blair
It doesn’t take much to kick off a racism debate in Australia. A few Indians and Lebanese go at it in Harris Park, some cartoonists draw sombreros, or a girl says “wogs” and suddenly everyone is talking about how racist the place is.

“Debate” is probably the wrong word. Participants usually just try to place Australian racism somewhere between “widespread” to “universal”, slot in mentions of the White Australia policy and the Cronulla riots then go back to worrying about solar panel rebates.

It’s less a debate than a ritual. Previous outbreaks featured occasional use of the phrase “international embarrassment”, as though brutish Australian racists could be shamed into better behaviour by the idea that, say, Germans disapproved. Almost by definition, racists are unlikely to care much for the opinions of foreigners.
Tim Blair
Holy warmenist Paul Krugman in the NY Times:
As I watched the deniers make their arguments, I couldn’t help thinking that I was watching a form of treason — treason against the planet.
Too many sevens
Andrew Bolt
Another sign that Iran’s theocrats stole the election: like most humans, they are hopeless at making up numbers.
Only Flannery is blown away
Andrew Bolt

Poor Tim Flannery. Is there a single prediction made by this Alarmist of the Year that’s come true? I’ve noted below that Brisbane, Perth and Adelaide have not run out of water, despite Flannery’s claims, and now we have yet another contradiction of one of his favorite scares.

Flannery’s claim:
Hurricanes are becoming more frequent in North America.

In fact, that’s not true. And now there’s this latest forecast from Britain’s Met Office:

Forecast for July to November 2009
Issued 18 June 2009

Six tropical storms are predicted as the most likely number to occur in the North Atlantic during the July to November period, with a 70% chance that the number will be in the range three to nine. This represents below-normal activity relative to the 1990–2005 long-term average of 12.4.

Recall how Al Gore cynically exploited the frenzy over Hurricane Katrina to promote his global warming scare, even putting a picture of a hurricane on the poster of An Inconvenient Truth? Then wonder why he and Flannery are not called to account everywhere they go for so loudly predicting disasters which have not come to pass.
Uncle Napoleon now runs Iran
Andrew Bolt

Christopher Hitchens on a novel you may care to buy - but which the paranoid fascists of Iran have banned:

But you have no idea how deep is the primitive belief that it is the Anglo-Saxons - more than the CIA, more even than the Jews - who are the puppetmasters of everything that happens in Iran.

The best-known and bestselling satirical novel in the Persian language is My Uncle Napoleon, by Iraj Pezeshkzad, which describes the ridiculous and eventually hateful existence of a family member who subscribes to the “Brit plot” theory of Iranian history. The novel was published in 1973 and later made into a fabulously popular Iranian TV series.

Both the printed and televised versions were promptly banned by the ayatollahs after 1979 but survive in samizdat form. Since then, one of the leading clerics of the so-called Guardian Council, Ahmad Jannati, has announced in a nationwide broadcast that the bombings in London on July 7, 2005, were the creation of the British government itself.

I strongly recommend that you get hold of the Modern Library paperback of Pezeshkzad’s novel, produced in 2006, and read it from start to finish while paying special attention to ...the afterword by the author himself, who says: “In his fantasies, the novel’s central character sees the hidden hand of British imperialism behind every event that has happened in Iran until the recent past. For the first time, the people of Iran have clearly seen the absurdity of this belief, although they tend to ascribe it to others and not to themselves, and have been able to laugh at it.
How the ABC tickled Tim
Andrew Bolt
Tim Flannery, undaunted by the failure of his predictions that global warming would cause Sydney, Brisbane and Adelaide to now be out of water, went on Lateline last night to bang once more that doomsday drum that’s made him so rich.

And why wouldn’t he, when Lateline host Tony Jones is a fellow warming alarmist who is guaranteed not to ask him any awkward questions?

So last night Jones did not do to Flannery as he did to sceptic Professor Ian Plimer, for instance, and precede his interview with a report on three critics calling his guest an idiot. Nor did he ask a single aggressive question. Nor did he ask Flannery to defend his hypocrisy in demanding cuts to our gases while endorsing (for cash) Sir Richard Brazen’s joy-rides to space, or travelling to Copenhagen, blowing yet again more of the gases out the back of his jet that he claims are heating the world to hell.

Instead there was this exchange, in which Flannery demanded green extremists be allowed to illegally shut down out power supplies without being charged either with crimes or with the bill for the damage:

TONY JONES: Let me ask you on another issue altogether. New laws are now being used to penalise protesters who stop or impede production at coal-fired power plants and smelters and so on. Do you think those protesters should be protected in some way?

TIM FLANNERY: Absolutely. I find this completely outrageous to see state governments who are doing next to nothing to secure the future of younger people in Australia, penalising those who care with absolutely punitive measures now, making them pay for their protests. It is just extraordinary and I find it just utterly immoral and despicable.

TONY JONES: We’ve just seen NASA scientist Jim Hanson, I think you know him pretty well, arrested along with an actress outside a coal-fired power station in Virginia, something he describes as a “death factory”. Have you considered yourself that kind of direction action?

TIM FLANNERY: Look, I have. I think we’ve all got a job to do, and my job has over the last couple of years has been working with business and the more progressive end of the business spectrum. I have considered those sort of actions, but there’s probably a lot of young people who’ve got a lot more at stake than I have who are gonna get angrier over time and who are gonna demand action, and they’re probably the ones who are gonna carry the day in that area.

Oh, and note once more a typical trait of Flannery’s - to demand from others the sacrifices he won’t make himself. After all, Flannery has all those corporate deals to protect, right? And when it’s a choice between earning fat fees or saving the planet…
Some may die and all will cost
Andrew Bolt
We may soon be back to where we were before John Howard got tough:

INDONESIAN authorities are bracing for a huge influx of boat people, anticipating as many as 10,000 asylum-seekers are waiting in Malaysia to transit through the archipelago and on to Australia.

This estimate was backed by a Malaysian group that deals with unauthorised immigrants. An Australian Government source warned of the potential for a similar influx to the thousands who began arriving in Australia from the late 1990s.
Even waste is patriotic
Andrew Bolt
Kevin Rudd could dump the cash in a gutter and still say it’s for our own good:

KEVIN Rudd’s $14.7 billion spending spree on the nation’s schools is to be examined by the Auditor-General amid opposition claims of chronic waste and skimming by state governments.

But the Prime Minister insisted yesterday that any unusual costs involved in the program were acceptable because it was going to protect jobs.

With that excuse, any spendthrift would make a great Prime Minister.


My main worry is that the Government’s huge stimulus spending has been wasteful - much of it going on cash handouts and unproductive and even unwanted infrastructure. But now there’s a warning that the size of it may well matter, too:

THE Rudd government’s fiscal stimulus packages may provide no more than a temporary boost to growth, and be followed by an extended period of economic stagnation.

The only international body to correctly predict the financial crisis - the Bank for International Settlements (BIS) - has warned the biggest risk is that governments might be forced by world bond investors to abandon their stimulus packages, and instead slash spending while lifting taxes and interest rates.

“An extended period of stagnating economic activity could undermine the credibility of the policies in place. Governments may find it hard to place debt if market participants expect the underlying (budget) balance to remain negative for years to come,” the bank said last night… The BIS analysis shows that Australia is running the third-largest fiscal stimulus package in the advanced world, behind the US and Korea.
Wise Latina told she isn’t
Andrew Bolt
”Wise Latina” Sonia Sotomayor, President Barack Obama’s nominee for the Supreme Court, is judged by her peers to be a racist - in the nicest possible way, of course:

The Supreme Court ruled Monday that white firefighters in New Haven, Conn., were unfairly denied promotions because of their race, reversing a decision that high court nominee Sonia Sotomayor endorsed as an appeals court judge.

New Haven was wrong to scrap a promotion exam because no African-Americans and only two Hispanic firefighters were likely to be made lieutenants or captains based on the results, the court said Monday in a 5-4 decision. The city said that it had acted to avoid a lawsuit from minorities.
The O'Reilly Factor - Burgers & Bikinis
Carl's Jr. strikes again with racy commercial
Are Polar Bears Really in Trouble Due to Global Warming?
By Bret Baier
Now some fresh pickings from the Political Grapevine:

Difference of Opinion

One of the world's leading polar bear experts has been told to stay away from an international conference on the animals because his views are "extremely unhelpful," according to an e-mail by the chairman of the Polar Bear Specialist Group, Dr. Andy Derocher.

The London Telegraph reports Canadian biologist Mitchell Taylor has more than 30 years of experience with polar bears. But his belief that global warming is caused by nature, not man, led officials to bar him from this week's polar bear specialist group meeting in Denmark.

Taylor says the polar bear population has actually increased over the last 30 years. He says the threat to them by melting Arctic ice — illustrated by a famous photo taken by photographer Amanda Byrd — has become the most iconic cause for global warming theorists. The photo is often used by former Vice President Al Gore and others as an example of the dangers faced by the bears. But it was debunked last year by the photographer, who says the picture had nothing to do with global warming, and that the bears were not in danger. The photographer said she just happened to catch the bears on a small windswept iceberg.

Baby Talk

A former aide to John Edwards says the former Democratic vice presidential nominee is the father of his mistress' baby. The New York Daily News reports Andrew Young recently signed a book deal. His book proposal says that, contrary to public statements young made last year, he did not father Rielle Hunter's baby, but that Edwards did.

Young also claims to have discovered a videotape that shows Edwards and Hunter having sex. He says the pair also discussed what music they would play at their wedding should Edwards' wife die of the cancer she is fighting. It's all in the book pitch according to the report.

And Young says that before the affair became public, Edwards told him that then-candidate Obama promised to make him attorney general, if he didn't pick him as a running mate.

Left Turn

Finally, some left-leaning journalists are taking shots at each other for being too soft on the president in a debate on CNN’s “Reliable Sources” Sunday afternoon. Nico Pitney of the Huffington Post Sunday responded to a column by Dana Milbank of the Washington Post, in which Milbank criticized what he called "stagecraft," between Pitney and White House officials.

Pitney was called upon last week by the president during his news conference. Reports suggest the White House coordinated with Pitney on his question from an Iranian blogger, about Iran's post-election uprising.

But Pitney says that when Milbank, "had a chance to ask Obama a question, he approached him in the hall during the campaign and asked him not one, but multiple questions about how he looked in a bathing suit."

Milbank shot back saying: "I have never worked in collusion with an administration."

Monday, June 29, 2009


A tribute to the great artist, Sarah. Before you ask, I'm not musically trained. I don't know what a key is.

Headlines Monday 29th June 2009

Plot to dump Turnbull 'within days'
MALCOLM Turnbull's credibility has been smashed in polling and senior Liberals believe he may be replaced within days or weeks. - one hopes the press call, ALP wish isn't how other Liberals feel. History suggests that Rudd has more cause to look over his own shoulder .. but one would not expect the press to report it. - ed.

Labor expects poll hit
PRIME Minister Kevin Rudd expects Labor will take a hit in the opinion polls because of the OzCar affair. - the headline is disingenuous. It fails to analyze how Rudd is responsible for the hit and suggests it might be unfair, excusing Rudd for his behavior. - ed.

Former MP in court, a close colleague of Rudd
FORMER Queensland minister Gordon Nuttall's corruption trial begins in Brisbane's District Court today.

Boat intercepted, almost 200 aboard
A boat containing almost 200 people has been intercepted near Christmas Island.

Michael Jackson's former nanny makes explosive claim
In shock new revelations, the woman closest to him has said the first call she received from Jackson’s family in the hours after he died was a demand for “hidden cash” that the relative was searching for. - Michael was a star of the New Age, and as such collected none of the care, devotion and love that someone with virtue would experience. - ed.

Autopsy reports: Jackson bald, emaciated
Details are emerging of Michael Jackson’s autopsy, with London paper The Sunreporting that his body was emaciated, his head almost devoid of hair, and his skin riddled with needle marks.

Jackson's father provokes outrage
Michael Jackson's father, who had an uneasy relationship with the superstar, has angered fans by making a commercial plug at his first appearance since his son's death.

States move to re-open Brimble inquest
NATHAN Rees and Anna Bligh are seeking to have the inquest into the 2002 cruise ship death of Dianne Brimble re-opened. - very late in the day. -ed

Aussie 'Trojan horse' to kill cancer
Two Sydney scientists have developed a cancer treatment that uses "Trojan horse" cells to infiltrate tumours.

North Korea recycles old Kim Jong-Il picture, speculation about death increases
North Korean state media this month apparently recycled an old photo of leader Kim Jong-Il, raising speculation that his health may have worsened, a report said on Monday.

Coles offloads 45 stores to FoodWorks
There could be more competition on the horizon for grocery shoppers with Coles selling 45 of its supermarkets to independent chain Foodworks

Date with Bruno sends PM into panic
KEVIN Rudd says he was a bundle of nerves after finding out he would be sharing the spotlight with Austrian fashionista Bruno. - Why, did Bruno offer him a free ute? - ed.

'I slept with Kevin Rudd': Bruno
Bruno might have a crush on Prime Minister Kevin Rudd, but Australian men in general don't impress him.

Court bans dad from weighing son
A MAN has been ordered to stop weighing his nine-year-old boy after he developed an obsession with the child's eating habits.
=== Comments ===
Tim Blair
The Sydney Opera House once featured boxing. Once.

Tim Blair
Kofi Annan in 2006. Barack Obama in 2009.
Tim Blair
The UK Telegraph reports:
Michael Jackson was working on a song about climate change in the days before his death, his friend Deepak Chopra has disclosed.
Was it called Chiller? Heat It? Don’t Stop Till You Get Enough Carbon Credits? Guess we’ll never know. As if in tribute, Nancy Pelosi’s ridiculous (but catchy!) climate change bill has made it through through the House of Representatives, although without the support of Republican John Boehner:
When asked why he read portions of the cap-and-trade bill on the floor Friday night, Boehner told The Hill, “Hey, people deserve to know what’s in this pile of s--t.”
More than a few Democrats were just as dismissive:
Mississippi Rep. Gene Taylor (D) voted against the measure that he says will die in the Senate.

“A lot of people walked the plank on a bill that will never become law,” Taylor told The Hill after the gavel came down.
UPDATE. Not in our name! Obama’s climate change bill passed in the House: 219-212. Bush’s Iraq War Resolution passed in the House: 296-133.

UPDATE II. Here’s a shock:
The mother of two of Michael Jackson’s children has claimed Jackson is not actually their father …

[Debbie Rowe] has told the News of the World that she was artifically inseminated with sperm for both births from an anonymous donor.
Tim Blair
Creative art adorns an appropriate Melbourne sign:

Tim Blair
“The evidence of global warming keeps piling up,” writes the Australian‘s Mike Steketee, “but that seems only to embolden the climate contrarians and sceptics to press their case harder.”

Mike, the only stuff that’s piling up around here is called “snow”. One of Steketee’s commenters writes:
What really p***es me off about opposition to taking action to mitigate climate change (climate turbulence would be better description for now) is that they are stopping the stitch in time that saves nine, and mine AND their children and grandchildren are the ones who will be denied opportunities because of it.
Presumably that descendant-fixated correspondent is opposed to abortion. By the way, “climate turbulence”? Can’t we achieve a consensus on what this thing is called?
Tim Blair
NineMSN asks:
Is it time for Brendan Nelson to step down as leader?
Considering he was ousted last year, the answer is probably “yes”. - Which is good by Nine MSN standards. The question was probably kept in the aftermath of the leadership spill so as to embarrass Turnbull if it was adverse to him. Then they probably forgot how clever they were being. Of course no one has asked who will replace Rudd now Gillard, Swan and Tanner are too compromised over Utegate. - ed.

UPDATE. In other poll news, the Cairns Post asks:
Do you think the name of a menu item called The Chocolate Slut is offensive?
Dear UN: is this the evidence you seek?
Andrew Bolt
The world is crazy. Latest proof? The UN enters a territory controlled by a rocket-firing terrorist group to investigate war crimes allegedly committed by ... Israel:

A UN Fact-finding Committee has arrived in the Gaza strip to investigate violations committed during Israel’s offensive on the territory earlier this year…

Israel has been accused internationally of committing war crimes. The war crimes include the use of deadly white phosphorus shells in densely populated civilian areas and the use of civilians as human shields.

If the use of human shields in Gaza is what the UN seeks to investigate, here’s the most flagrant example yet caught on film:

But how odd. The perpetrator doesn’t actually look very Jewish. So I guess that’s the last we’ll hear of this.
How children are taught to loathe us
Andrew Bolt
How should students celebrate Queensland’s 150th birthday? Well, how about we get them to write something creative, and then reward those who imagine the state as its most violent, racist worst?

So here’s the competition launched by the Department of Education and Training. And here’s excerpts from the winning essay for years 11 and 12:
Maria saw a few of the other mothers around the mission begging at the foot of a very well dressed white man. She didn’t understand at first, but then realised he had taken their children. She ran to the school and took Luke home and cradled him in her arms until dark…

Two days later Maria was dragged out of her hut as she was making breakfast for Luke and questioned by a white government official about her son’s strange absence from school and lack of interaction with other children… The official declared that Luke was to be taken out of her care and placed in a white family… The official seized her by the neck of her mandatory frilly European dress and spat in her face…

The next day, as Maria made Luke breakfast, there was a loud thud and the door to their hut came crashing to the ground. The culprit was the official from yesterday; he had two more officials with him. As he came towards Maria and Luke and put the gun to Maria’s temple, as she trembled with fear, he blew a puff of his cigarette straight into her mouth. She instinctively reached toward Luke but the officials were faster; one seized Maria and the other grabbed Luke, and led him out the door and to a car parked only a few meters away. One official let go of Maria but the fierce official from the day before continued to hold the gun to her face; he dismissed the other official and told Maria they had unfinished business; He forced Maria to the ground and hit her over the head with his gun, knocking her unconscious. He found it easier to deal with the black scum when they were barely alive. He ripped her dress to shreds and forced himself on top of her, he then proceeded to repeatedly hit her and burn her with his cigarette. When he was tired of this, he raped her and stuffed her naked body in the boot of the car outside, with the son inside. As the boy screamed out for his mother the officer turned around and slapped the boy across the face, sending his head into the side of the car door.
Happy birthday, Queensland! You’ve taught your children to be so grateful for ... for…
Suffered for us all
Andrew Bolt

Boris Johnson tries to explain the tears for Michael Jackson:

He spoke to the billions of people the world over who feel that they do not conform in some way to the Hollywood stereotype of good looks - either because they are too fat or thin or the wrong colour or have the wrong sort of eyes or nose. In a world dominated by a demoralising canon of physical perfection, he was the patron saint of dysmorphia.

Never was someone so obviously and so literally unhappy in his own skin, and by his obsessional suffering he earned the potential sympathy of everyone who feels doubtful about their appearance, which is a fair chunk of the human race.

And by his musical triumphs, he proved the essential point, that you can look weird, feel weird, be weird - and still be a genius.
How the truth on warming is kept from you
Andrew Bolt
Remember the Left screaming that global warming believers were being wickedly censored? Well, where’s that Left now that the censorship of warming facts is real?
The Environmental Protection Agency may have suppressed an internal report that was skeptical of claims about global warming, including whether carbon dioxide must be strictly regulated by the federal government, according to a series of newly disclosed e-mail messages.

Less than two weeks before the agency formally submitted its pro-regulation recommendation to the White House, an EPA center director quashed a 98-page report that warned against making hasty “decisions based on a scientific hypothesis that does not appear to explain most of the available data.”

The EPA official, Al McGartland, said in an e-mail message to a staff researcher on March 17: “The administrator and the administration has decided to move forward… and your comments do not help the legal or policy case for this decision.”

Add to that:
TOP of the agenda at a meeting of the Polar Bear Specialist Group will be the need to produce a suitably scary report on how polar bears are being threatened with extinction by man-made global warming. But one of the world’s leading experts on polar bears has been told to stay away from this week’s meeting. Mitchell Taylor has been researching polar bears in Canada and around the Arctic Circle for 30 years, as an academic and a government employee. The (PBSG) chairman, Andy Derocher explained in an email that (Mitchell’s) rejection had nothing to do with his expertise on polar bears: “It was the position you’ve taken on global warming that brought opposition.” Taylor was told that his views running “counter to human-induced climate change are extremely unhelpful”.
The Jackson children - unwanted and unmoored
Andrew Bolt

In my opinion, the doctors should be sued for malpractice in creating the ultimate example of the modern bred-to-order family:

THE mother of two of Michael Jackson’s children has claimed Jackson is not actually their father.

Debbie Rowe made headlines 13 years ago when Jackson announced she would be the mother of his first child, Prince, now 12.

Rowe was a receptionist at the dermatology clinic where Jackson received his skin treatments and a year later, bore him a second child, Paris.

Now she has told the News of the World that she was artifically inseminated with sperm for both births from an anonymous donor…

She said it was at that stage the Jackson ended their relationship and paid her $9 million over nine years in exchange for custody of the children… Rowe admitted she was never a good mother and said she never wanted to see her children again.

Which means the two children have no father and knew no father, and have no mother who wants to know them, either. I hope they one day sue the people who so frivolousy brought them into this world at the request of a freak.
Bolt throws his hat in the ring in ignoring Rudd's transgressions in favor of opposing Turnbull
Andrew Bolt
Just a couple of weeks after Peter Costello says he’ll quit, Malcolm Turnbull is finished, too.
Rudd the ruthless
Andrew Bolt
Glenn Milne says Kevin Rudd’s decision to send the Federal Police to investigate Malcolm Turnbull over the Beaut Ute is sinister:

Rudd wants to be careful about his penchant for persecution, flushed as he is with the fruits of his total war against the Opposition Leader. He too is capable of overreach…

Last week the focus was on special treatment for the Prime Minister’s friends. The other half of that equation is yet to be fully explored; the punishment meted out to those who dare to publicly criticise Rudd.

Stories are beginning to filter through. For example, a commentator who publicly questioned the government’s economic policy was told that a senior member of the government had made a direct representation to the chairperson of a private company asking that the company no longer use the commentator’s services. A senior minister followed up with the chief executive of the same company to see whether the government’s wishes had been complied with.

Ugly stuff.

No doubt we’ll soon have David Marr update his famous denunciation:

(The Prime Minister) has cowed his critics, muffled the press, intimidated the ABC, gagged scientists, silenced non-government organisations, neutered Canberra’s mandarins, curtailed parliamentary scrutiny, censored the arts, banned books, criminalised protest and prosecuted whistleblowers.

Of course, Marr was then damning a Liberal Prime Minister. Will he dare say the same of a Labor one who deserves the criticism far more? - Bolt is being too kind to Rudd here. This is not about strength or character. Rudd is an opportunist with a fragile grasp on his own emotions with an overpowering ego. Rudd has committed acts that may well be worthy of jail time. - ed.
Another $7.5 million boat
Andrew Bolt
Here we go again:

A BOAT carrying 194 people, the largest number in eight years, has been intercepted by border protection 23 nautical miles north-west of Christmas Island…

On board were mostly men, understood to be of Afghan or Iraqi descent, who are now being processed on Christmas Island in immigration detention…

It is the 16th boat to arrive in Australian waters this year — during which 867 people have been intercepted by border protection. Arrivals this year are up from the 161 asylum seekers who came by boat last year, but well down on the 5516 people who arrived in 2001.

Do the sums:

(N)ew figures reveal the cost of processing the latest influx of boatpeople is about $38,000 an asylum seeker.
The nine lives of the great warming scare
Andrew Bolt
Global warming is creating too many cats:

The RSPCA claims climate change is producing a boom in the number of feral felines prowling streets in Melbourne’s leafy east.

Global warming is killing too many cats:

Climate change could kill pets, according to the Royal Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (RSPCA), as warmer temperatures cause an increase in exotic diseases among cats and dogs.
Rove badly wants to like Rudd
Andrew Bolt
In how many ways was Kevin Rudd’s appearance on Rove’s show last night excruciating?

(Apologies for the technical qualitiy of the video.)

Perhaps most excruciating of all - and most telling - was how much Rove, his cast and his crew were desperate to like and find amusing a man who so clearly struggled to say anything witty or warm, and so clearly tried to spin.

It’s that wanting that’s so telling.
Fewer stunts, more statesmanship, please
Andrew Bolt
Kevin Rudd is now almost certain to win the next election. With his growing security, can he now drop the stunts that have been his greatest weakness and source of his greatest embarrassments? After all, the dumping last week of Grocery Choice - the preposterous scheme to monitor grocery prices - is only the latest populist ploy to bite the dust:

Consumer Affairs Minister Craig Emerson announced on Friday Grocery Choice would not proceed, after major retailers protested that the program was unfeasible.

Before that was FuelWatch:

THE Rudd Government has given up on FuelWatch after the Senate killed off legislation for the national petrol price monitoring scheme.

And the ideas summit:

A year after 1002 of the nation’s “best and brightest” brought a heady mix of energy, enthusiasm and “big ideas” to the 2020 Summit in Canberra, the Federal Government has announced an underwhelming response. Of the delegates’ rich mix of 962 ideas, it has formally adopted only nine modest proposals.

And the plan to take Japan to court over its whaling:

Mr Rudd later insisted that Labor’s policy had not changed from last year, when he demanded that the Howard government take Japan to the International Court and pledged that Labor would do so. But he made it clear yesterday that Labor now had no plans to take Japan to court...

And to take Iran’s president to court, too:

The Rudd Labor Government has abandoned a pre-election promise to bring Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad before the International Court of Justice to face charges of inciting genocide against Israel.

And to create a new Asian forum no one actually wants:

KEVIN Rudd’s proposal for an Australian-led Asia-Pacific community similar to the European Union has been slapped down by the top envoy chosen by Barack Obama to represent US interests in the region. Kurt Campbell yesterday raised serious difficulties with the Prime Minister’s plan, declaring that Asians hated to be compared with Europe. - Bolt still fails to recognize that Rudd is fatally injured from Utegate. -ed.
Iranians defy the beatings and shootings
Andrew Bolt

Iran’s fascist leaders still struggle to impose control over voters furious at the stealing of an election:

Iranian security forces have used tear gas and batons to disperse about 3,000 protesters after they gathered in northern Tehran, witnesses say.

The demonstration outside the Ghoba mosque on Sunday saw the first unrest in four days. Authorities had allowed the gathering to go ahead as it had officially been called to mark a bombing in 1981 that killed 70 people.

But police broke up the crowds after they began chanting “Where is my vote?” and “Ya Hussein, Mir Hossein”, linking Mir Hossein Mousavi, the reformist candidate, to the grandson of the Prophet Muhammad.


The headline that best sums up how fast the region has changed over this past year:

Iraqi Foreign Minister Concerned over Instability in Iran


Upping the ante:

Iran has arrested eight local British embassy staff, triggering London’s fury on Sunday and further exacerbating tensions with the West over the post-election turmoil in the Islamic republic.

Sunday, June 28, 2009

Hell Inside

A Video for the brilliant debut album, Bad Reception for the great band Retrolust
at icompositions

Headlines Sunday 28th June 2009

Hockey dismisses leadership rumours - no news on possible Rudd replacement
Opposition Treasury spokesman, Joe Hockey, has dismissed claims he is angling for the leadership position following the fallout from the Utegate affair.

Fears for missing North Coast teen
There are fears for the safety of 15-year-old Samiya Raya who has been missing for two days.

China quarantines Aussie students
Fifteen Victorian students have been quarantined in Shanghai because of a swine flu alert.

Swine flu toll reaches five, none of whom have died from it, but with it
A Perth woman has become Australia's fifth swine flu victim.

Jackson family anger mounts
MICHAEL Jackson's family may seek an independent autopsy amid anger over his final hours.

King of Pop's ex-wife to fight for kids
MICHAEL Jackson's ex-wife is likely to gain custody of his two older children, despite not having seen them for ten years.

Bullying bosses return as downturn bites
THE domineering bosses of the 1950s have reappeared in Australian workplaces because of recession pressures.

Telstra loans girl couple's phone porn
TELSTRA has been forced to apologise after a sexually explicit photo of a couple ended up on a 13-year-old girl's rental phone.

Lebanon's new PM named
SAAD Hariri, who heads the Sunni Future movement and is the son of a slain billionaire, has been named Lebanon's new PM.

Paralysed Iemma fights to walk again, in NSW Hospital Care
FORMER New South Wales premier Morris Iemma is undergoing intensive physiotherapy to regain movement in his legs after being struck down by a potentially fatal brain virus.
=== Comments ===
Turnbull will survive utegate
Piers Akerman
THOSE who claim utegate or mategate has cut off Opposition leader Malcolm Turnbull at the knees are indulging their fantasies. - Turnbull has been damaged in perceptual terms thanks to the tireless work of media ALP supporters. It was clear from the beginning that Rudd was compromised, not least because the behavior matches that which we know Rudd operates. The ALP seem protected by an opaque shell refusing to allow transparency of operation .. so that when Swan is asked to account for what is known to be his work, he diverts with ‘but one email is questionable’ and the press run with it. Similarly, Rudd got a free run last election .. perception can beat the best government.
On the ABC we were treated to headlines which relentlessly put forward the furphy that the government had no case to answer, that Turnbull was weakened and might expect to be challenged by someone. If this is the beginning of politics without Costello then Rudd is doomed. Red Kerry similarly appallingly assaulted Mr Turnbull and laid a red carpet for Rudd and Swan. On Seven, Sunrise Rudd acolytes spoke at length about Turnbull’s alleged shortcomings using time, rather than information, to put forward the image that Rudd is desperate to project. Channel 9 interviewer Oakes just becomes unwatchable as his questions and direction seem to read from an ALP dirty tricks playbook. It has been more than a decade since Oakes got away with asking Keating what he meant by saying he wished he had spent more in office, rather than leave anything for the Libs .. Oakes never followed up the revelation that may have damaged his precious ALP brand.
But the truth is the ALP are damaged by this, even if the perception of the casual news follower (fewer as news gets worse, spruiking for the ALP and not reporting the news) does not match the reality. Rudd. Swan, Tanner and Gillard are damaged by the event .. and there is more to follow. The event would have holed any conservative party ship. The ALP manage to float in their own corruption. - ed.


Tim Blair
I’m on The Insiders tomorrow morning. Subjects for discussion may include Godwin Grech; just guessing. - I noticed on Insiders that a lot of the conversation was on Turnbull. Yet Turnbull has many times demonstrated that there is a case for the government to answer regarding Swan .. and that simply was not addressed as airtime was taken up by those jerks repeating their thoughts about Turnbull.
Rudd was shown as if he were accurately accusing Turnbull of making mistakes, but the references were out of context. Turnbull is correct in saying that Rudd has lied over the issue of his government's patronage of wealthy creditors. Meanwhile Rudd is making out that Turnbull has claimed Turnbull was wrong to say such .. claiming that a faked email exhonerates Rudd from the rest. If that is the case then where s the evidence that Rudd didn't fake it?
In short, the coverage of the issue by the insiders was appallingly biased and misleading. That cartoonist missed all the action of the weak, but still prosecuted a boring ALP line. - ed.

Commercial Mentality

Retrolust's brilliant debut album included this song.

The final scenes are suggested adult only.

I'm Starbuck from BSG...dorkiest vlog ever (supanova)

June 27, 2009
I went to Supanova yesterday and had a lot of fun and wanted to share that with you. Only one other bsg outfit :( but I bumped in to a lot of people there and it was so lovely to meet you all!
Hope you're all well and enjoy a lovely weekend.
I totally believed you were Starbuck .. when you pointed it out. Good comeback with that Hemione tart .. she ain't no Emma Watson .. but I'd Cho Chang her. As for your house, I'm totally fine with what goes down there .. accept I wish your mum wouldn't prod so hard with her fingers.

Saturday, June 27, 2009

Headlines Saturday 27th June 2009

China quarantines Aussie students
Fifteen Victorian students have been quarantined in Shanghai because of a swine flu alert.

Swine flu toll reaches five
A Perth woman has become Australia's fifth swine flu victim. - apparently none of the deaths are from swine flu, but the patients had it. - ed.

10 arrested in Kings Cross drug bust
10 people have been arrested following a two day crackdown on drugs by Kings Cross police.

Innocent grandfather killed in gunfight
He safely driven millions of kilometres in his long career as a truckie, but Canberra grandfather Bob Knight had no chance against the stray bullet that killed him as he drove past a Sydney gunfight.

"Criminal doctors killed Michael"
A close friend of Michael Jackson has said "criminal" doctors who took advantage of the star's hypochondria are responsible for his death.

Jackson's death not foul play
Initial autopsy reports have ruled out foul play in the sudden death of pop icon Michael Jackson.

$100,000 reward for murder information
Police looking into the murder of a drug dealer with links to two notorious bikie gangs are offering $100,000 in exchange for information.

Soldier killed in armoured car crash
A soldier has died after an armoured personnel carrier in which he was travelling rolled during training exercises at the Puckapunyal army base north of Melbourne.

Armed robber holds up CBA in Syd west
A man has escaped with cash, after threatening a bank teller during an armed robbery in Sydney’s......
=== Journalists Corner ===
The legendary "King of Pop" dies. As new details emerge & information breaks, we're LIVE on the scene!

Plus, Saturday -- At 6a et, FOX & Friends goes live at a special time! Then at 9p et, Greta Van Susteren is live from L.A. with the latest.

Then, Sunday at 9p et -- Don't miss a special 2-hour Geraldo at Large!
=== Comments ===
Tim Blair
Not wanting to overdo it here on all the celebrity deaths, but it would be wrong to miss the passing of Harry the Wonder Dog. Also, here are two excellent Michael Jackson obits – written from opposing points of view – by Ray Smuckles and Mark Steyn.
Tim Blair
Climate change is stomping West Timor, according to a review of all available data:
Oxfam’s West Timor program manager Aloysius Suratin said there was evidence the problem was growing worse, as farmers were at the mercy of more unpredictable weather patterns.
About that evidence; how many years were reviewed, exactly?
Mr Suratin said a review of the area’s rainfall records for the past 13 years – the limits of available data – showed only 46 per cent fell in the expected rainy season.
Tim Blair
“Walked past the fantastic Abbey’s Bookstore in York Street yesterday, where they were holding a big annual sale, clearing out old stock,” emails James Morrow. “And what do you think they had the most remaindered, can’t-give-them-away copies of? James Lovelock’s The Revenge of Gaia!”

Sarah Palin to John Kerry: "Why the Long Face, John?"

Sarah Palin talks to Camp Bondsteel soldiers 26JUN09. Palin responds to crank John Kerry's insulting comment this week, "Why the long face, John?"

Friday, June 26, 2009

Headlines Friday 26th June 2009

Marysville residents 'died in bathrooms' following CFA guidlines
At least half the 34 Marysville residents killed in the Black Saturday bushfires died while sheltering in the bathrooms of their homes, a report says.

Michael Jackson dies, aged 50
Michael Jackson has died after a suspected heart attack, according to reports out of the US.

Michael's death "not unexpected"
Michael Jackson was taking prescription drugs as he battled to get into shape for his gruelling concert comeback due to get underway in London next month, a lawyer for the family said.

Actress Farrah Fawcett dies after battle with cancer
Actress Farrah Fawcett has died after a long battle with cancer, her long-time companion Ryan O'Neal says.

One dead two injured in shootout at Sydney KFC
A man is dead and two others injured following a shooting at Sydney's southwest. Jessica Pelliccione is in Milperra

Stray bullet: Killed truckie named
The innocent victim of a shootout in Milperra has been named as 66-year-old truck driver Bob Knight - a charity worker and passionate dog breeder.

Soldier killed after truck rolls in Vic
A soldier has died after a truck in which he was travelling rolled at the Puckapunyal army base north of Melbourne.

Hewitt, Stosur progress to Wimbledon third round
Lleyton Hewitt and Samantha Stosur have edged into the third round at Wimbledon after securing three-set victories at the grasscourt grand slam.

Bellamy put too much pressure on Wallace: Hunt
Queensland back Karmichael Hunt has blamed NSW coach Craig Bellamy for creating the "unfair" pressure Blues halfback Peter Wallace's wilted under at ANZ Stadium.

Billy Bob Thornton's daughter charged with murder
Billy Bob Thornton's daughter has been charged with first degree murder.
=== Journalists Corner ===
Help Me Understand Your View ... ABC NEWS
For reasons I just can't understand, very few agree with me about ABC news and the health forum at the White House. If ABC News were the ONLY news outlet, or if it were state owned, I would have a different opinion. But ABC News is one of many news organizations and I do think there will be much debate about what the President said and also about how ABC News handled it.
The media and Mark Sanford!
Is the liberal press celebrating the Governor's scandal? Bernie Goldberg & Karl Rove have reaction and analysis!
Guest: Gov. Rick Perry
From balancing his states budget to his take on Gov. Sanford's scandal, Texas Gov. Rick Perry weighs in!
The Latest on ACORN!
You won't believe what Acorn's founder is up to now! We track him down, only on 'Glenn Beck'!
=== Comments ===
Tim Blair
Charlie’s Angels star Farrah Fawcett has died at 62.

A fine obit from Ken Tucker:
Farrah deserves to be remembered in her glowing prime, as the warm, smiling woman who combined girl-next-door sexiness with an implied can-do feminism, radiating positive energy and resourcefulness. Ultimately, Farrah Fawcett defied easy categorizing, which made her all the more interesting as a personality, and as a brave, vibrant person.
UPDATE. Michael Jackson dead at 50.

UPDATE II. Hoax reports claim that Harrison Ford and Jeff Goldblum have also died. Not so.
Tim Blair
Wayne Swan won’t answer the ABC, and Kevin Rudd won’t answer the Age:
Kevin Rudd is facing allegations he lobbied for a whitegoods company formerly owned by his car dealer friend John Grant and a controversial Queensland property developer who recently faced drugs and weapons charges …

On Monday, Mr Rudd’s office was asked by The Age if the Prime Minister had made representations on behalf of Aussie Rent and its importation of whitegoods while on any of his trips to China as Labor’s foreign affairs spokesman.

Mr Rudd’s office took two days to respond and did not answer the question. A spokesman said only: “All of Mr Rudd’s interactions with Mr Grant have been entirely appropriate.”

UPDATE. Tony Abbott: “The government is still hyperventilating against the fake email because the real emails are so damaging.”
Tim Blair
“When it comes to global warming,” declares the Beaver County Times, “every little bit helps.” So paint your roof white and drive a hybrid. Meanwhile, this is happening:

Might be one or two carbons in there.
Tim Blair
CNN reports:
During the 2008 election, 38 percent of blacks surveyed thought racial discrimination was a serious problem. In the new survey, 55 percent of blacks surveyed believed it was a serious problem …
That’s quite a shift. Yet here’s CNN’s opening paragraph:
African-Americans really like President Obama, but more and more feel that race relations have not gotten better since he took office, a new national poll found.
Tim Blair
Robert Tracinski and Tom Minchin ask: Could Australia blow apart the great global warming scare?
Vivid War Footage From Afghanistan
By Bill O'Reilly
FOX News correspondent Steve Harrigan came up with exclusive video of a firefight between Taliban terrorists and American forces. For almost an hour, things were very intense.


UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Be advised we are gonna get set up on a good inbound run to completely eliminate any collateral damage.





UNIDENTIFIED MALE: One, two, three, four, five, six, seven guys.


When the shooting stopped, at least 14 Taliban fighters were dead. There were no American casualties. But this is a stark reminder that every day the U.S. is fighting two wars, and we're not getting a lot of cooperation.

The Iranian protests put the spotlight on President Obama in the foreign policy arena. The president was cautious, as he should have been, but did define Iran as the oppressor. Whether he did it firmly enough, well, you make the call.

On Iran and other threats, the president is faced with a largely apathetic world, with some countries actually helping the terrorists. The Russian tyrant Putin tried to pressure Kyrgyzstan to close a U.S. airbase which was supplying American troops in Afghanistan. Putin obviously wants to assist the Taliban terrorists. German Chancellor Angela Merkel, a very weak terror warrior, is reluctantly sending a few thousand troops to Afghanistan to fight. French President Sarkozy is also not stepping up as much as he could.

At this point, it does not seem like many world leaders fear President Obama, and that might hurt him.

President Bush was feared, but that fear sometimes turned into loathing. And although countries were cautious around Mr. Bush, most did not step up to help him. And the worldwide press, of course, condemned the president.

So it's another "Barack and a hard place" situation. If you're tough, the world doesn't like you. If you're not tough, the scoundrels do what they want. Hello, North Korea.

Is there a middle ground? I don't see it.

History says when fighting a war, the strong prevail.

Michael Jackson Passes

Michael may have been monstrously treated by the public, but I suspect not. His life will be a tragedy for the poor choices he made. Brilliant and flawed. Good bye, Michael, and may you find peace.
As a child, my friends would fight over who was the more talented, who they would most like to be: Donny Osmond, David Cassidy or Michael Jackson. We all agreed Michael was the most talented. It was a pity he made so many bad choices in his life.

Yoh's Beach Party

Intimate Rendezvous is the awesome track, made to the music by stoekaas guitars by lafayette vocals by grathy and yohmar on icompositions dot com

Thursday, June 25, 2009

Headlines Thursday 25th June 2009

NSW's liquor freeze dimissed as a joke
The NSW Government's tougher liquor laws have been slammed as a "joke", because well known Kings Cross clubs have been allowed to continue trading without restrictions.

Rudd, Swan refuse to answer questions
There is yet another twist in the OzCar saga, with reports Malcolm Turnbull was allowed to take notes on the fake email at the centre of the scandal. This changes nothing. Rudd and Swan will not account for their activity.

Walkout stops MPs voting on Bill
A NEW South Wales Government decision to shut down Parliament's Upper House rather than risk a vote on selling off NSW Lotteries has angered opposition parties. - Rees is a disgrace, and he has halted Democracy in NSW. - ed.
--- --- --- ---
PM's six month travel bill: $733,725
PRIME Minister Kevin Rudd spent more than $730,000 on overseas travel in just six months.

A parliamentary report shows the Prime Minister, who has previously been dubbed Kevin 747, spent $733,725 on overseas travel in the last six months of 2008.

The report also shows it cost $216,283 to run Mr Rudd's official car in the same period.

Mr Rudd's most expensive trip was the six day, $197,312 trip to Japan and Indonesia in June last year.

His cheapest trip was just $152 for a day trip to East Timor in February 2008.

Less public than Mr Rudd's overseas travel is the jaunts for many backbenchers called "parliamentary delegations''.
--- --- --- ---
Two-year-old 'world's youngest smoker'
A TODDLER who was taught by his dad to smoke is throwing tantrums if he's refused one.

Last rites for ailing Farrah Fawcett
FARRAH Fawcett is reportedly close to death after being read the last rites over her cancer fight.
=== Journalists Corner ===
Don't Miss This! Friday 10 pm!
On Friday night, on ON THE RECORD at 10 pm, there is special interview: My FNC colleague Jennifer Griffin interviews Admiral Mike Mullen, Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff. Jennifer is, as you all know, our Pentagon Correspondent [...]
It's Barney Frank & Bill O'Reilly -- Round 2!
Don't miss this hard-hitting heavyweight debate, only on 'The O'Reilly Factor'!
Neil Gets Answers!
Tensions in Tehran put Obama's foreign policy to the test! What's next? Rudy talks strategy! Plus, Rep. Boehner on healthcare reform!
The Immigration Debate
We take a look at the politics associated with the debate and how the issue has dropped on the president's priority list!
Summer Concert Series: Creed
Get ready to rock -- Creed takes to the FOX & Friends stage to kick off their national tour! Don't miss the summer concerts ... every Friday!
=== Comments ===

Shut the gate and get the truth before the ute bolts
Piers Akerman
IF PRIME Minister Kevin Rudd is seriously concerned about the dignity of the political process, he should endorse Opposition Leader Malcolm Turnbull’s call for a judicial inquiry into Utegate.

Conducting the nation’s business through leaks and door-stop interviews is unacceptable. It’s as ridiculous as having Labor ministers such as Anthony Albanese talk about proper parliamentary behaviour.

Much of the media has already decided Turnbull has the most to lose from this affair but no one will really know unless all the gossip that has flooded the blogosphere over the past week is chased down.

Australia should be given the opportunity to determine what has occurred in this matter. A lot of questions need answering.

The most obvious is whether Treasurer Wayne Swan misled Parliament about his relationship with car dealer John Grant. From that flow all the other questions. What is the exact relationship between Rudd and Grant?

Why did the wealthiest prime minister in Australian history need a free ute? Why did Swan brief only one car dealer in the country, John Grant, about his request for assistance?

Why did the Treasurer’s staff bring Grant’s plight to the notice of officials dealing with the OzCar scheme when (a) it had not even been approved and (b) it did not cover individual dealers such as Grant?

Why did Treasury officials bring Grant’s situation to the attention of Ford Credit executives seeking $500 million? Why did Treasury officials give those executives Grant’s mobile number?

Let’s have IT experts tell us how Rudd knew that that one email was a fake and explain why that particular email could not be found by the Government’s experts last week, though AFP experts this week found that it had been generated within Treasury.

The behaviour of the AFP also needs some explanation. Why has the AFP offered a running commentary on its investigation into the faked email when it normally maintains a communication blackout during inquiries? Was it placed under any political pressure?

Trust depends on openness and transparency. Was the muzzling of a public servant last week contempt of Parliament?

What safeguards can be installed to ensure that witnesses appearing before parliamentary committees are never again harassed and bullied into silence?

The fake email deserves special attention. Who composed it? Was it an in-house prank ginned up by bored Treasury officers to embarrass colleague Godwin Grech?

Rudd has implied the Opposition was complicit in its creation. What does he know about its genesis? Someone knows whether it was designed to smear the PM or undercut the Opposition’s attack. Expose them.

Any inquiry into this affair will need the power to compel evidence but that is a small price to pay for the restoration of confidence and dignity in the political process.

In the world beyond the ACT this fiasco underscores the detachment of the political and media classes from the electorate.

An absurd amount of time has been given to this matter, the Government has the opportunity to put an end to the speculation. It may be impossible to inoculate MPs against mid-winter madness but it should not be beyond the capacity of the Government to address this lapse in parliamentary practices. - This is yet another glaring example of how Rudd has let parliamentary standards slip after promising the electorate he would be cleaner than Mr Howard. I think the matter of great concern. However, I am also appalled at the news services of Channel 9, 7 and the ABC (I don’t watch 10 news) who have consistently taken a government line that seems grossly corrupt. From the very beginning there has been the assertion that Mr Turnbull is a fool for the timing of his corruption inquiry .. as if the reporting of such could be timed. The truth is the various news services have actively spruiked for the ALP and feel they will lose much were they to accurately report what many already seem to know. The fact that news is generally in decline seems much to do with the collapse of journalist standards among those who cannot report faithfully on Conservative politics. - ed.
Tim Blair
A straightforward inquiry from the ABC’s Emma Griffiths:
EMMA GRIFFITHS: How many other dealers did you speak to directly on the phone? Even if it is just for two minutes, how many other dealers?

WAYNE SWAN: Well it’s a matter of public record that I spoke to Mr Grant.

EMMA GRIFFITHS: How many other dealers?

WAYNE SWAN: Well it’s a matter of public record that I spoke to Mr Grant and I spoke to many other people and many other ...

EMMA GRIFFITHS: Put it on the public record who else you spoke to. What other car dealers?

WAYNE SWAN: Well I have put it on the public record that I spoke to Mr Grant, Emma, but that is simply irrelevant ...

EMMA GRIFFITHS: But you’re not answering the question Mr Swan.

WAYNE SWAN: Well it’s not exactly the right question.
Tim Blair
“At what stage,” asks Imre Salusinszky, “did the school writing assignments of nine-year-olds become columns in The Age?”
Tim Blair
Labor is currently furious about allegedly leaked information. Oddly, it wasn’t so upset about leaked information in 2004:
The Federal Opposition says it has leaked documents which reveal that the Howard Government is planning to spend $16 million in an advertising campaign to “sell” its new plan to Australians.
Nor was the ALP upset in 2007:
It was a speech the public was never supposed to hear. Made by the senior and respected head of treasury Ken Henry, to staff in Canberra last month, and no doubt to his dismay, leaked to The Financial Review newspaper.
Those were good leaks. Recent leaks, however, are bad:
The Rudd government had long suspected that one or more people in Treasury were leaking to Mr Turnbull and to his predecessor, Brendan Nelson.
Federal police are now investigating these leaks. The bad leaks.
Tim Blair
This is a term some naturists use to describe clothes-wearers, according to the New York Times.
President Obama's Press Conference
By Bill O'Reilly
There were no questions about North Korea, which surprised me. That is a very dangerous situation. Instead, Iran and health care dominated the floor, with FOX News White House correspondent Major Garrett having the most spirited exchange with the president:


MAJOR GARRETT, FOX NEWS: In your opening remarks, sir, you said about Iran that you were appalled and outraged. What took you so long?

BARACK OBAMA, PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES: As soon as violence broke out, in fact, in anticipation of potential violence, we were very clear in saying that violence was unacceptable, that that was not how governments operate with respect to their people.

GARRETT: Are Iranian diplomats still welcome at the embassy on the Fourth of July, sir?

OBAMA: Well, I think, as you're aware, Major, we don't have formal diplomatic relations with Iran. I think that we have said that if Iran chooses a path that abides by international norms and principles, then we are interested in healing some of the wounds of 30 years in terms of U.S.-Iranian relations. But that is a choice that the Iranians are going to have to make.

GARRETT: But the offer still stands?

OBAMA: That's a choice the Iranians are going to have to make.


It's obvious the president wouldn't answer Major's question about are the Fourth of July festivities still on, and I don't know why he wouldn't answer the question. As for his initial reaction to Iran, as we've stated, Mr. Obama was wise to be cautious, as Iran can ramp up the violence in Iraq and Afghanistan any time it wants.

And then there is the chaotic health care situation, which could crash because of the high cost.


OBAMA: While we are in the process of dealing with the cost issue, I think it's also wise policy and the right thing to do to start providing coverage for people who don't have health insurance or are underinsured, are paying a lot of money for high deductibles.


Well, that sounds charitable, but who's going to pay for the entitlements? The government's deeply in debt, as everybody knows. More debt could be disastrous. President Obama still, still cannot articulate how he'll pay for the trillions with a T needed for government-subsidized health care. And what about the unintended consequences?


UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Wouldn't it drive private insurance out of business?

OBAMA: Why would it drive private insurance out of business? If private insurers say that the marketplace provides the best quality health care, if they tell us that they're offering a good deal, then why is it that the government, which they say can't run anything, suddenly is going to drive them out of business? That's not logical.


Well, there's very little logical in the health care debate. It seems to me the president should be driving tort reform, bringing down insurance costs for doctors who are now terrified of being sued and they've got to pay this astronomical bill to the insurance companies.

It also seems to me that government-issued health insurance could be effective, but only if the folks pay something for it. Looking at the numbers, free health care could very well drive the USA into bankruptcy, much like what's happening in California.

So, Mr. Obama's health care vision is cloudy, to say the least. Of course, I could be wrong.

Ultimate Guide - Getting Bruce

"Can't touch this! "

What Would Bruce Do?
Featuring Jak

Wednesday, June 24, 2009


From Invisible Dyad 9, competition

Many many thanks to Frozen Entropy for his production, guitar and all round brilliance.
Now dedicated to the cause "Stop Aids Now." This piece was conceived in memory of Pamela Frances Ball who did not die from aids, but who died at the young age of 13 after a life of struggle with kidney disease and related conditions. "Don't go to bed angry."

If Chase Scenes Were Real

June 23, 2009
Hey hey
hope you guys are all well and had a good start to the week.

Headlines Wednesday 24th June 2009

Rudd's culpability ignored after claims Grech is a mole
There are calls for Opposition Leader Malcolm Turnbull to come clean on the nature of his relationship with a suspected government mole.

Turnbull unbowed: 'Bring it on'
Malcolm Turnbull is holding steadfast in the face of continuing questions about his relationship with Godwin Grech, challenging the Rudd government to "bring it on".

Utegate opens up questions about Heiner affair
In the light of the carry-on in Canberra in what has become known as Ute-gate, it is clear, as David Crowe in the Financial Review wrote yesterday, that other car dealers did not receive the attention extended to Mr Grant by the Rudd Government.

Ferries boss' $237K spending spree
Former Sydney Ferries boss Geoff Smith continued his $237,000 personal spending spree on a corporate credit card, despite being warned to stop, the ICAC has been told.

Swine flu man waited 'hours' for ICU bed
A man diagnosed with swine flu after he died had waited up to three hours for an intensive care hospital bed the day of his death, his parents say. - died from ALP broken promises so that they might further a scare campaign on Swine flu. - ed.

Third Australian dies with swine flu
A 50-year-old woman with life-threatening cancer has become the second person to die in Victoria with swine flu.

Left continue extraordinary assault on Berlusconi
Embattled Italian Prime Minister Silvio Berlusconi says he has never paid a woman for sex, the subject of an embarrassing investigation underway in southern Italy.

Iran tense as Obama questions election
Iran remains tense as US President Barack Obama expresses outrage over a crackdown on protests and......

Hewitt into Wimbledon second round
Lleyton Hewitt eased into the second round at Wimbledon with a straight-sets victory over Robby Ginepri of the United States on Tuesday.

World could face 10 per cent unemployment: OECD
The OECD has warned that unemployment in the industrialised world could approach 10 per cent next year, a level not seen since the 1970s, and would remain high "for a long time to come."

Ed McMahon dies at 86
Ed McMahon, the loyal Tonight Show sidekick who bolstered boss Johnny Carson with guffaws and a resounding "H-e-e-e-e-e-ere's Johnny!" for 30 years, has died.
=== Journalists Corner ===
Cracking the fed's books wide open!
Sen. Jim DeMint gives Glenn the latest on the new legislation fighting to keep the government accountable!
'The Factor' Investigates!
Illegals win a multi-million dollar settlement after getting injured on the job. Glenn Beck responds!
Guest: Newt Gingrich
The president tested! Has he said and done enough on the Iranian crisis? Newt gives his grade!
Turmoil in Iran!
What should Obama should do next? Greta has insight on the president's next move!
UPDATE ON MAX (and I hope she calls!)
Just a quick update on Max (the 24 year-old who has been severely disabled since age 8 months when he had a seizure.) We are still calling the Governor of North Carolina daily and hoping to get a call back by the end of the day from her press secretary. We just want to make sure the Governor looks closely at the bill that is making its way to her desk that would - in its present form - cut the benefits of Max and other severely disabled in North Carolina.
=== Comments ===
Tim Blair
David Thompson reviews 1970s British feminism, featuring remarkable Guardian stereotype Julie Bindel:
What I could never understand – and I did resent – was [heterosexual feminists] going home to men at night. It just seemed such a contradiction. And often I would get very angry when I would challenge them about this, and they would say, “Well, that’s just the way I am. I just don’t fancy women.” Having no understanding at all of the fact that sexuality is a social construct and that we all make choices depending on the way we want to live and the world we want to see.
As David replies: “This, presumably, is how she still sees the world. Sexuality simply is a social construct - it’s a fact - and all human beings can reconfigure their desires in accord with ideology.” England must’ve been hell in the 70s; in between listening to leftist bulldozers trying to force attractive women into Soviet lesbianism, you got to drive one of these, dance to this, and be killed by a floor. They were ahead of the curve when it came to Earth Hour, though.
Tim Blair
The LA Times reports:
Coal-fired power plants are the largest source of heat-trapping gases that cause global warming, but President Obama’s plan to fight climate change would result in the nation burning more coal a decade from now than it does today …

The Environmental Protection Agency projects that even if the emissions limits go into effect, the U.S. would use more carbon-dioxide-heavy coal in 2020 than it did in 2005.
Our Government Is Acting Like Alcoholic, Abusive Parents
By Glenn Beck
Despite our economy's so-called "green shoots" — a phrase that's been used in a staggering 1,017 articles since the inauguration — some economists are calling for a third stimulus.

But here's the one thing that nobody seems to understand: If America is our family, the government is acting like alcoholic, abusive parents. And I have news for you, kids: They're lying to us. "Green shoots," my foot!

And if I hear someone say we've made it through worse times, I'll hang myself. Has America ever had it this bad? Sure, but the events were clearly defined.

Economically, we had the Great Depression, which was worse than we have now.

War? Way worse: We barely survived a Civil War that cost 700,000 American lives; two World Wars in which about 90 million people worldwide died combined.

And a lack of trust from our politicians? We've also dealt with dysfunctional relatives and their huge breaches of trust — like Watergate, Monica-gate and Gate-gate — but we still bear the scars.

But on this struggle, we just haven't had any defining event, because our parents are abusive alcoholics destroying everything that made us strong.

We sit in fear of their arbitrary punishments, where the law is applied unequally. For example, Senate Finance Committee Chair Max Baucus proposed paying for the estimated $1.6 trillion health care bill by taxing health care benefits — unless you're in a union, of course.

Or the Chrysler-Fiat deal that saw junior creditors in the UAW paid before senior creditors in a teachers fund — violating the trust of bondholders.

The list goes on and on: Us kids are afraid to do anything.

The bad parenting also includes ruining our children's education. When 17 of the country's 50 biggest cities graduate less than half its students; lawmakers let the D.C. voucher program die, even though kids were a grade-level ahead of their peers; and two out of three students can't even locate Iraq on a map; are you really surprised that home schooling rate has doubled in the past 10 years?

How can family survive when the parents destroy their kid's education?

On top of all that, America's parents are gamblers, betting the future on "quick fixes" that are neither "quick" nor "fixes." Here's what the president said about the idea of another stimulus today:


REPORTER QUESTION: Do you think you need a second stimulus package?

PRESIDENT BARACK OBAMA: Well, not yet because I think it's important to see how the economy evolves and how effective the first stimulus is....

I'm not suggesting that I have a crystal ball. Since you just threw back at us our last prognosis let's not engage in another one.


Hey, I have a crystal ball! Also, did you notice he didn't say "no" — he said, "not yet"?

How could we possibly be talking about a third stimulus when the nonpartisan CBO estimates that only 5 percent of the 2nd stimulus has been spent? Even if you go by the White House's numbers, it's only 14 percent, for the quick fix that they rushed through.

Is it any wonder that 52 percent of Americans say stimulus is working — down 7 percent in just two months.

Confidence in the Midwest is dropping faster than anywhere else. Look at Elkhart, Indiana, the "RV Capital of the World," where Obama launched the stimulus program: the unemployment rate is 19.2 percent. And that's not the worst in America.

And yet at least a dozen of the same economists who as an industry missed the $8 trillion housing bubble, including our best bud, 2008 Nobel Prize winner Paul Krugman, are calling for a third stimulus. Although most didn't get into specifics, former Clinton treasury official Brad Delong suggested guaranteeing all states' debt in addition to another $500 billion in aid.

Wow. How does the family survive?

So, do I think America's family will survive? Yes, you'll be living under a bridge, fending off bums with broken bottles. Know this: Americans will always survive, because the American spirit never gives up. But, before that, the parents need to admit they have a problem.

Your parents are lying and need to be checked into rehab. But first we need to usher them out of the bar.