Monday, January 22, 2007

Of Flags and T-shirts.........

Andrew Robb may well be feeling the effects of wedgie burn as he gallantly unfurled the flag for the govenments next election bid. Faced with the decision by the organisers of The Big Day Out to limit the carrying of the Australian flag because "in recent times, there has been an increased incidence of flags brandished aggressively and this has led to increased tension. Our only intention in discouraging this activity at the Big Day Out is to ensure that our patrons are not subjected to this aggressive behaviour"* and his belief that the ban should be halted or the event cancelled , he was forced to inadvertently defend the right of an expatriate Australians' wish to wear a t-shirt carrying the pictured message.

On todays Jon Faine show he was caught with no room to wriggle as Allen Jasson had just drawn attention to his bid to return to England with garb, considered so offensive by Qantas and Virgin security, that they had previously refused to let him on board their aeroplanes. The right to wear or carry the flag can hardly be restricted but so also the individuals wish to carry whatever message they like on their t-shirt. God damn it, if you are in the slightest bit logical you just can't have it both ways. Unless of course you are John Howard.

Saturday, January 20, 2007

A Pox on Air Conditioners.

This is the comment I left on the esteemed John Quiggin blog concerning one of my great summer dreads.

"Air Conditioners……Another great curse of our time. Not only are they the great spoiler of the suburban quiet they are risking the fair distribution of electicity to us all.No probs with their use for the old and infirm but cannot see for the life of me why these big guzzlers are given greater priority than my right to have a few lights and a critical fridge running.I was without power for 4 hours recently and I am not so stupid to believe it was the bushfires but the overwhelming demand of these unnecessary status symbols.

I would love to see air conditioner become both quieter and with enough complimentary and compulsory solar panels to cover their use. So the rest of us, who still know how to open a window, do not have to pay for more coal burning generators or peak load, rip offs."

I have added a picture of a house designed by architect Beni Burnett in Darwin from 1939. A little more can be found out about him here. Makes you wonder how much we have learned about designing for the weather conditions we live with, doesn't it?

Wednesday, January 10, 2007

Johnny Want a Cracker?

The Australian Prime Parrot has had a primer from George W. about what to say on release of the brave new plan, cooked up over several weeks, to save the day in Iraq.

Things that make you go hmmm..

Two matters over the the last few days have brought me to, yet again, wonder about the so called 'upcoming talent' in the Liberal Government. Sen Ian Campbell , Federal Environment Minister/birdy saver, made a guest visit to Auntys A.M. to be quoted thus .........

"There are huge benefits to WA and the Australian economy from mining uranium, the world is hungry for it. The Princeton University have developed a study that shows that nuclear power will contribute or can contribute around about a billion tonnes of greenhouse gas abatement per year towards the seven billion tonnes of greenhouse gas abatement we need to stabilise greenhouse gas emissions and save the planet. And so it is really quite obscene for a government to be sitting on a resource that can make a substantial contribution to that climate change challenge".

Oh just fine and dandy Sir, but wasn't it the policy of the government that global warming was not necessarily happening and if it was, it would be very questionable that greenhouse gas emissions had anything to do with it. You know, it's all just Al Gores' personal opinion.

Upcoming talent and ministerial sidekick Greg Hunt has also used the silly season to jump up and enlighten A.M.s listeners. It has sunk in to him - and boy what a surprise - that if you provide important and most necessary employment opportunities for people, their health and society improves. Wow, this guy is a fast learner.

"We weren't expecting a social impact, but what we're finding is, where people are doing meaningful work in remote Indigenous communities, there's been a decrease in domestic violence, a decrease in drug and alcohol and other substance abuse and an increase in social cohesion".

Job creation for work that needs to be done and not 'work for the dole' is about giving back an individuals dignity.

Tuesday, January 02, 2007

That Holiday in Glorious Sidney!

Your spelling can cost you a lot of money if you are not careful as told by The Register. When English is not your native language it is a little bit more understandable that you might mistake Sidney, U.S.A. with Sydney, Australia. The views of Montana like this statue of one Governor Nutter in Central Park are impressive but nothing quite manages to match the scenic Bondi beach or Sydney harbour bridge.

Twenty one year old German tourist Tobi Gutt made the slight mistake of placing an 'i' instead of a 'y' on the form when booking his online holiday. Assuming, quite reasonably, that his trip to Australia was via America he only began to realize he had taken a wrong turn when things slowed down a lot with his boarding of a local commuter plane.

Whoops and thanks to family and friends who bailed him out by sending the cash he needed to get on a service that was a lot closer to his holidaying needs.

Monday, January 01, 2007