Endangered Species, Climate Science, and FACTS

At last something positive to talk about on the climate science front. The globe, (that’s the planet in case you didn’t know) has just uniformly passed the 400 ppm carbon dioxide level. That means that even far flung little outposts like the northern tip of Tassie are giving us a uniform reading. And better news still, is that just about every where else on the globe the carbon dioxide levels are all comfortably above the 400 ppm mark. And that’s what we at PCbyCP like to see. All the indices are UP! That’s GROWTH! And, thankfully on this, the boldest experiment ever in human civilisation, (the term is qualified) we can hold our breath and stand together with all other species as we plummet into uncharted territory.

This artist’s impression shows a view of the surface of the planet Proxima b orbiting the red dwarf star Proxima Centauri, the closest star to the Solar System. The double star Alpha Centauri AB also appears in the image to the upper-right of Proxima itself. Proxima b is a little more massive than the Earth and orbits in the habitable zone around Proxima Centauri, where the temperature is suitable for liquid water to exist on its surface.

intelligent design

The scientists tell us, and they’ve been banging on for years, that we’ve got something really really serious to worry about. But scientists are notorious at worrying, and it never does any good. If we listened to scientists we’d be still in the stone age. Most recently a scientist remarked upon the likelihood of life on other planets. He said wryly, that “this is the only world we’ve got”. Any child could’ve told him that. And then to top it off, another scientist, an Astrophysicist, no less, told us on the ‘Science Show’ that our closest celestial neighbour Alpha Centaurii, had an earth like planet circling it. He the told us that the earth like planet was in the ‘Goldilocks zone’. Can you believe it? We pay these people good money which could be spent on sport, french submarines and the NBN and they indulge in fairy tales. And then, when asked; “Would that planet have intelligent life, capable of being similar to us?, he wryly remarked, “ Well….. if it did, and they were on a similar trajectory to us, they’d probably be extinct”. And why? ‘Because they probably would have depleted all their resources, and died out, as we are destined to do’.

What a cheek!! To think that we humans as species could wipe ourselves out. I agree with Mr Bernardii, Abetz, Christiansen, Roberts and Mr Murdoch. Science is rubbish!! Further evidence that the ABC should be privatised, stripped of assets, and silly programs like the ‘Science Show’ closed down.


Cleverer than any scientist. And way richer.

Then, dear reader, it gets worse. I heard that SCIENTISTS reckon we’ve depleted over fifty percent of wildlife since 1970. How’s that?. They also reckon we’ve depleted over forty percent of our forests and biosphere generally in the same period. They say it’s a further instance of our diminishing foothold on the planet. They reckon, that this is the beginning of the end. And we shouldn’t go on, clearing, killing, and populating. What bullshit. At the supermarket, they had five 150 gram tins of tuna on special for the incredibly low price of $ 4.99. And at the Factory outlet superstore they were boasting a ten kilo bag of Rice for the ridiculously low price of $ 7.99. At that rate you could virtually give the stuff away. And, this’ll top the lot, wheat, flour and Nutri-Grain were all on special. Buy two, get one FREE! If that’s evidence of depleted resources I’ll be buggerred. We’ve got resources coming out our arses. The sooner we get rid of this ‘green tape’, we’ll slide into a whole new era of prosperity.

And besides the word aint four billion years old, it’s just on seven thousand. The bible tells us so. And if you can’t read the bible, talk to Barnaby, Corey, Eric and George, and (you might have guessed it, ) Rupert. They’ve been telling us for years, and Donald knows it to be true. The world is in great shape, and climate science is a commie plot, to take over the world and turn us into SLAVES! Lucky then, we have the aforementioned to give the world strong leadership. It’s what it needs. The Prime Minister is doing a great job. Giving us certainty, certainty that will provide long term security for working mums and dads. And Jobs and growth. And, that’s a FACT!

Poetry Sunday 30 October 2016

Our poem today pays homage to contributors Frank Baarda, our Dispatcher from the Front, and to Lionel G. Fogarty, the extraordinary Australian First Nation poet, as people who know that language matters.  The poem, written by Michèle Lalonde, is ‘Speak White!’.  It is posted here first in its original form, mainly French, and secondly as an English translation.  We urge you to read it in it’s French form first, to take time, to let the words play and perhaps stimulate the memory of that first and second form french we all ‘endured’.  (Note that I got 17/100 for Intermediate French in 1962, and still manage to find meaning in this poem.)

Canadian Robert Lepage presented his autobiographical play ‘887’ at this year’s Melbourne festival.  I have not seen a more flawless performance in theatre.  The fulcrum of this piece was the poem ‘Speak White!’.  Wikipedia (that site deserving the support of all democrats – note the lower case ‘d’) has this to say:

Speak White is a racist insult used by English-speaking Canadians against those who speak other languages in public.[1] The slur inspired a French language poem composed by Québécois writer Michèle Lalonde in 1968. It was first recited in 1970 and was published in 1974 by Editions de l’Hexagone, Montreal. It denounced the poor situation of French-speakers in Quebec and takes the tone of a collective complaint against English-speaking Quebecers.[2][3] Her poem is directed primarily at English Canada, although often citing British and American references such as ShakespeareKeats, the Thames, the Potomac and Wall Street as its symbols of linguistic oppression.

In 1980, Speak White was made into a short motion picture by filmmakers Pierre Falardeau and Julien Poulin, the six-minute film featured actress Marie Eykel reading Lalonde’s poem. It was released by the National Film Board of Canada.

Italian-Quebecer journalist playwright Marco Micone also wrote a poem in response called Speak What?, depicting allophone immigrants as the same oppressed class as the Québécois in Quebec, and calling for a more inclusive society.[4] The poem Speak White was spoken in full by Robert Lepage in his one-man play “887” which premiered in Vancouver in 2015, and was also performed in August 2015 at the Edinburgh International Arts Festival in Scotland.

Speak white!
Il est si beau de vous entendre
Parler de Paradise Lost
Ou du profil gracieux et anonyme qui tremble dans les sonnets de Shakespeare

Nous sommes un peuple inculte et bègue
Mais ne sommes pas sourds au génie d’une langue
Parlez avec l’accent de Milton et Byron et Shelley et Keats
Speak white!
Et pardonnez-nous de n’avoir pour réponse
Que les chants rauques de nos ancêtres
Et le chagrin de Nelligan

Speak white!
Parlez de choses et d’autres
Parlez-nous de la Grande Charte
Ou du monument à Lincoln
Du charme gris de la Tamise
De l’eau rose du Potomac
Parlez-nous de vos traditions
Nous sommes un peuple peu brillant
Mais fort capable d’apprécier
Toute l’importance des crumpets
Ou du Boston Tea Party

Mais quand vous really speak white
Quand vous get down to brass tacks

Pour parler du gracious living
Et parler du standard de vie
Et de la Grande Société
Un peu plus fort alors speak white
Haussez vos voix de contremaîtres
Nous sommes un peu durs d’oreille
Nous vivons trop près des machines
Et n’entendons que notre souffle au-dessus des outils

Speak white and loud!
Qu’on vous entende
De Saint-Henri à Saint-Domingue
Oui quelle admirable langue
Pour embaucher
Donner des ordres
Fixer l’heure de la mort à l’ouvrage
Et de la pause qui rafraîchit
Et ravigote le dollar

Speak white!
Tell us that God is a great big shot
And that we’re paid to trust him
Speak white!
Parlez-nous production, profits et pourcentages
Speak white!
C’est une langue riche
Pour acheter
Mais pour se vendre
Mais pour se vendre à perte d’âme
Mais pour se vendre

Ah! Speak white!
Big deal
Mais pour vous dire
L’éternité d’un jour de grève
Pour raconter
Une vie de peuple-concierge
Mais pour rentrer chez nous le soir
A l’heure où le soleil s’en vient crever au-dessus des ruelles
Mais pour vous dire oui que le soleil se couche oui
Chaque jour de nos vies à l’est de vos empires
Rien ne vaut une langue à jurons
Notre parlure pas très propre
Tachée de cambouis et d’huile

Speak white!
Soyez à l’aise dans vos mots
Nous sommes un peuple rancunier

Mais ne reprochons à personne
D’avoir le monopole
De la correction de langage

Dans la langue douce de Shakespeare
Avec l’accent de Longfellow
Parlez un français pur et atrocement blanc
Comme au Viêt-Nam au Congo
Parlez un allemand impeccable
Une étoile jaune entre les dents
Parlez russe, parlez rappel à l’ordre, parlez répression
Speak white!
C’est une langue universelle
Nous sommes nés pour la comprendre
Avec ses mots lacrymogènes
Avec ses mots matraques

Speak white!
Tell us again about Freedom and Democracy
Nous savons que liberté est un mot noir
Comme la misère est nègre
Et comme le sang se mêle à la poussière des rues d’Alger ou de Little Rock

Speak white!
De Westminster à Washington, relayez-vous!
Speak white comme à Wall Street
White comme à Watts
Be civilized
Et comprenez notre parler de circonstance
Quand vous nous demandez poliment
How do you do?
Et nous entendez vous répondre
We’re doing all right
We’re doing fine
We are not alone

Nous savons que nous ne sommes pas seuls

Speak White


Michèle Lalonde, 1970, 

and now the translation:

Speak white
It sounds so good when you
Speak of Paradise Lost
And of the gracious and anonymous profile that trembles
In Shakespeare’s sonnets

We’re an uncultured stammering race
But we are not deaf to the genius of a language
Speak with the accent of Milton and Byron and Shelley and Keats
Speak white
And forgive us our only answer
Being the raucous songs of our ancestors
And the sorrows of Nelligan

Speak white

Talk about this and that
Tell us about Magna Carta
Or the Lincoln Memorial
The grey charm of the Thames
The pink waters of the Potomac
Tell us about your traditions
As a people we don’t really shine
But we’re quite capable of appreciating
All the significance of crumpets
Or the Boston Tea Party

But when you really speak white
When you get down to brass tacks

To talk about gracious living
And speak of standing in life
And the Great Society
A bit stronger then, speak white
Raise your foremen’s voices
We’re a bit hard of hearing
We live too close to the machines
And we only hear the sound of our breathing over the tools.
What an admirable tongue
For hiring

Giving orders
Setting the time for working yourself to death
And for the pause that refreshes
And invigorates the dollar

Speak white
Tell us that God is a great big shot
And that we’re paid to trust him
Speak white
Talk to us about production profits and percentages
Speak white
It’s a rich langauge
For buying
But for selling
But for selling your soul
But for selling out

Speak white
Big deal
But to tell you about
The eternity of a day on strike
To tell the story of
How a race of servants live
But for us to come home at night
At the time that the sun snuffs itself out over the backstreets
But to tell you yes that the sun is setting yes
Every day of our lives to the east of your empires
There’s nothing to match a language of swearwords
Our none-too-clean parlure
Greasy and oil-stained.

Speak white
Be easy in your words
We’re a race that holds grudges
But let’s not criticize anyone
For having a monopoly
On correcting language

In Shakespeare’s soft tongue
With the accent of Longfellow
Speak a pure and atrociously white French
Like in Vietnam, like in the Congo
Speak impeccable German
A yellow star between your teeth
Speak Russian speak call to order speak repression
Speak white
It is a universal language
We were born to understand it
With its teargas words
With its nightstick words

Speak white
Tell us again about Freedom and Democracy
We know that liberty is a black word
Just as poverty is black
And just as blood mixes with dust in the steets of Algiers
And Little Rock

Speak white
From Westminster to Washington take it in turn
Speak white like they do on Wall Street
White like they do in Watts
Be civilized
And understand us when we speak of circumstances
When you ask us politely
How do you do
And we hear you say
We’re doing all right
We’re doing fine
Are not alone

We know
That we are not alone

Michèle Lalonde, 1970, translated Albert Herring, 2001

MDFF 29 October 2016

Today’s dispatch is  Fifty Shades of Green.  Originally dispatched on 11 July  2015


I have a vague memory of going on a Boy Scouts outing. As I recall, my younger brother shot an arrow through the scout master’s cake as he was eating it, a sort of William Tell moment.

That was to be our first and only Boy Scouts outing in Argentina. Some years later I went to the Boy Scouts in Australia, twice. On discovering that there was a trade in scout badges of merit, I decided that scouting wasn’t my cup of tea.

That first outing was in a forest, and I remember that up in the trees there were “claveles del aire” which made a lasting impression on me. I had always assumed that these were parasitic.

untitled-52A friend alerted me to the existence of epiphytes. Wikipedia tells me an epiphyte is a plant that grows harmlessly upon another plant (such as a tree) and derives its moisture and nutrients from the air, rain, and sometimes from debris accumulating around it. Clavel del Aire is an epiphyte. Clavel is Spanish for carnation- ‘Aerial Carnation’. Ah!, the joys of Googling!.

Epiphytes are not parasites.

The most common tree around Yuendumu is manja (Mulga- Acacia aneura). Several species of mistletoe grow on mulga. Mistletoe is parasitic. Yungkurrmu is one such and has delicious sticky red and yellow berries. Another mistletoe that grows on mulga is ngardanykinyi. The ngardanykinyi-ngarnu bird has a symbiotic relationship with the parasite: it eats the berries and excretes the seeds onto other trees. On occasions, mistletoe will kill the host tree. Mulga trees have a symbiotic relationship withants. untitled-52The tree releases drops of fluid that contains sugar for the ants to eat, and in return the ants protect the trees against other predators by attacking them whenever the predators try to target the trees. One such ant species is the Yurrampi (Honey ant). They are even more delicious than the aforementioned berries, and don’t damage the tree.

An incredible variety of plants grow under incredibly varied conditions. When young plants are transplanted to a new location, often their roots are damaged and the plants suffer and have to throw new roots to survive, which they don’t always do. Sometimes plants thrive in a new environment. The Monterrey pine (Pinus radiata) reaches a height of 30 meters in its native Mexico; in Australia it grows to 60 meters. I remember our family picking wild blackberries off small shrubs on the dunes near Zandvoort (Noord Holland), yet in Australia blackberries grow into impenetrable thickets that are often sprayed with poison in desperate attempts at controlling and eradicating them. They are a weed.

I’ve also been alerted to a body of research into what have been labeled Third Culture Kids (TCK). The Wikipedia entry for TCK finishes with a poem that explains the concept:

I grew up in a Yellow country
But my parents are Blue.
I’m Blue.
Or at least, that is what they told me.
But I play with the Yellows.
I went to school with the Yellows.
I spoke the Yellow language.
I even dressed and appeared to be Yellow.
Then I moved to the Blue land.
Now I go to school with the Blues.
I speak the Blue language.
I even dress and look Blue.
But deep down, inside me, something’s Yellow.
I love the Blue country.
But my ways are tinted with Yellow.
When I am in the Blue land,
I want to be Yellow.
When I am in the Yellow land,
I want to be Blue.
Why can’t I be both?
A place where I can be me.
A place where I can be green.
I just want to be green


TCKs come in many combinations and permutations. Fifty shades of green if you like.

Most Australian Aborigines are TCKs, not least the stolen children.

Like plants they are incredibly varied and grow up under incredibly varied conditions. Often they are uprooted and placed in unsuitable environments in which they rarely thrive.

Research has shown that the most undisturbed and remote Aborigines are the healthiest (in body and mind).

untitled-52The so called ‘Aboriginal Industry’ is like a blackberry thicket. In places like Yuendumu there are an ever increasing number of introduced non-TCKs (FIFOs). Yuendumu is getting to be like a field of buffel grass.

Many of these FIFOs fancy themselves experts in Aboriginal Affairs.

Many are parasitic. They are slowly killing the very culture that sustains their host plant- the Aboriginal Industry.

My friend the TCK likes to think of himself as an epiphyte.

I’m also a TCK. I aspire to be symbiotic.

Just colour my world-



Ministers and Dogs. Explaining the RRR effect


Great men. Standing on principle.

Dear reader, a problem for governments these days is communicating their splendid vision to the general public. Sometimes with the best of intentions and the most thoroughly supportive media launch the government’s message is lost to the ether. When this occurs and the system fails the objective of persuading the public that it’s a damn good idea, it’s called ‘representative reflux response’. Or the acronym RRR.

We saw an outstanding example of RRR most recently when the sensible and hard working Abbott Government sought to take away the concept of universal education, healthcare and fairness. The Abbott government didn’t tell anyone before the 2014 budget that they were going to repudiate any promise made during the 2013 election. They thought that with good priming to the Murdoch press, the reforms would sail though parliament. Well they didn’t, and the coalition has been stymied ever since. Got to the stage that in the recent election the opposition inferred that the coalition would get rid of the public health-care system altogether. Both parties have a pretty good record of flogging off public assets. Though they decried the suggestion as a Furphy, there was enough in it to persuade the electorate that the opposition was not far off the mark.

Ever since, the P.M for ”innovation and thought bubbles’ has been hard at it trying to convince the electorate he stands for compassion and fairness. When it’s clear, by supporting great members like Bob Day that they don’t. It’s all a case of RRR. The public refuse to be convinced in spite of all the flim-flam and hyperbole that the government is being genuine. We could elaborate on all the RRR instances over the past year, the subs, the closing down of the car industry, free trade deals and the backpacker tax, but that would be boring. The public have made up their mind. Both houses don’t care about the public. Politicians serve the people who pay them, (Big Business). And on singular issues like concentration camps for refugees they’re all in lock step. And why? Because, they reflect the shallow self interested myopia of people like us. Bit like aboriginal incarceration. Rates going through the roof and why? It’s good for business and good for us, because we don’t care. Cos if we did, enough of us, there may be change, But we doubt it. The business model is gold for private prison shareholders and as evidenced by the U.S it’s a gold standard.

But occasionally some little non sequitur crops up and the public, and the lobbyists all like to have a go. Then it’s a free for all. It almost makes the public think they’re relevant. It‘s usually something peripheral. Might be a backpacker tax, that no one thought through, a lost dog, or just an average act of random stupidity. Like knocking down an old pub in Carlton. Never mind that Melbourne University has trashed the fabric of Carlton with their egregious overblown stalinist campus growth model. Smashing human-scale working historic fabric to the winds. Instead we’ll make an example of a developer who jumps the gun on a planning process that denies the public much of a say on anything. And then developers, the press, politicians and anyone, is given free reign to express their outrage, and the developers are given a thoroughly good shaming. Whilst everywhere else, wily nilly, it’s a free for all.

The Victorian State Minister for Corrections no less, used his chauffeur driven car to take his dogs to his country estate. Fair enough we say. He’s entitled to it, and a good use of taxpayers money. It’s bloody hard getting the dog on the train, and dogs, (perhaps they were greyhounds) are entitled to respect. Some might say it’s fraud, and the ex member for Frankston lost his seat over similar behaviour. And the former federal speaker got in to hot water for visiting wineries in his Comm-Car. And let’s not talk of helicopters.

It’s in the act: Victoria’s ministerial code of conduct states ministers must “ensure they act with integrity” by “appropriate use of the resources available to their office for public purposes”. Well done, then. That’s code for do anything you like, but don’t get caught, and if you do hope that your mates will stick by you.

You can weather the ‘RRR effect‘ and progress to the ‘SSS effect‘. What”s that you may ask? That’s the gold standard for ministerial conduct. The Safe, Snug, Sinecure. You can bank on that!

Reds under the bed…detecting the red menace.


1950’s ASIO Communist detection computer (Discharge) at work


Goat cleared of leftist tendencies

Dear reader, at last some tangible evidence that Australian politics has turned in the right direction. For years we’ve been decrying the loss of a left wing in Australian discourse. Last time we spoke of it we were tying to get an interview with Greens senator Lee Rhiannon who allegedly kept it in a cupboard, in a shed at her holiday house. We asked Kim Carr if he’d seen it and he told us it was last seen boarding a plane for Cuba. Then in some desperation we went all the way to Hong Kong and asked Sam Dastyari if he’d seen it and he told us it had left the building and last he knew it was on its way back to Australia. Perplexed and a little disillusioned we contacted Asio because we knew they had a good reputation for tracking down real lefties, but our search proved fruitless. They told us to bugger off and not waste their time, declaiming, “the lefty commie stuff is so nineteen fifties”. We then asked them; ‘What could be more important than finding lefties still working undercover in the Australian politics’? And they told us that the refugee threat was way way more de-stablising and keeping the concentration camps going was the central plank of our forward defense policy blah blah blah..

We decoded the blah blah blah, and realised that the message could only mean one thing, that in spite of their proclamation, the lefty threat still lurked in sleeper cells, and unless flushed out, would wreak havoc. Setting to work with what was left of CSIRO, we reactivated the Asio mainframe spy computer, (Discharge) at the abandoned intelligence facility at Watsonia. We were shocked and surprised to find out, (the message came in teletype after being translated from morse) that the lefty threat, far from being dead, was stirring and unbeknownst to us, had us gripped, the entire society in its thrall. We had the intelligence, but there was no one who would believe us. To tell you the truth, it was more than exasperating. Here was the potential to undo an insidious lefty plot, within our midst. But without names and addresses there was no way of identifying the cell. Consequently, we couldn’t isolate and then destroy it.


Bush telegraph operator at work detecting Communists in the field.

Just when we were about to give up, and consign our mission to the scrapheap the Deputy Prime Minister, announced the identification of the lefty menace. Boldly he has saved this country. Identified, not through the latest in spy detection technology, satellite intercepts, or as we tried haplessly with the Discharge main frame computer, but with the most primitive communication device ever. The trusty and reliable ‘Bush Telegraph’. Barnaby has outed them. They’ve nowhere to hide, Labor and the Greens are Communists! Real ol style lefties!. And he’s right, they’re anti competitive, Anti business, and more concerned about endangered species, web-footed Poteroos, trees and stuff they call “indigine” than clean living mums and dads. Thankyou Barnaby. Thankyou Australia. There is a left wing, and it was right under our noses. Far from endangered, it’s thriving.

Operator Please!!

And now, just as we learnt that out P.M for innovation and thought bubbles is now less popular than Tony ‘Flintlock’ Abbott, we hear things are not so good on the NBN superhighway. A telling fragment, tastefully edited to elucidate why copper to the node aint all it’s cracked out to be… From Cecil, the correspondence begins. The transcript has been edited to protect the dumb, innocent, and trusting…

Dear Ira
“Good God!  He lives! Ira is still with us”  was my first thought on receipt of your missive.

Deputy P.M Barnaby Joyce, " acting the goat". demonstrates prowess as bush vet, also adept at doctoring Hansard.

Deputy P.M Barnaby Joyce, ” acting the goat”. demonstrates prowess as bush vet, also adept at doctoring Hansard.

This should be read into Hansard, no less.
A sadder man, as I now am, would find little but pathos therein.   As was the undoubted point.
If we cared at all for your situation we would consider it for publication.
I think maybe I’ll send it off to our local member. Still, Ira, I am impressed at your patience and language skills.  I would have become apoplectic, whereas you’ve obviously maintained a high degree of inner calm.


Ira at work with his ever reliable, Messenger Dogs, Barnaby, Corey, and Tony.

On 25/10/2016, at 10:35 PM, Ira wrote: My dear Bertie, (after the style of Edward the Seventh) My boys gave me a Samsung Tablet last Christmas. However, an electronic maelstrom has, for two whole months, rendered me incapable of of even the slightest form of avant garde  communication. ‘… like flies to wanton boys are we to the Gods, they kill us for their sport…’ Attempting to remove myself from Mansfield and repair to Tolmie, IPrimus (my provider) demanded I give myself exclusively to NBN.

Abandon (they said) your allegiance to ADSL and embrace the latest technological whizzo. In the hands of experts, what could I do? The expertly NBN man, when he arrived, unblinkingly informed me that, despite the aforementioned IPrimus blandishments, NBN was not a viable option at Sog Bot (His home, Ed).  His plethora of impressive equipment could find nothing to suggest I might benefit from NBN.


Telstra technicians in the field.

Back to IPrimus. IPrimus promptly informed me that ADSL no longer exists in the Tolmie area.  So… no NBN. No ADSL, equals no phone, no email, no internet, etc, etc. etc. In the hands of madmen,  where  neither sanity or ADSL exist,  I am, with absolutely no reservations, at  my wit’s end.

I live in a Fire prone area,  a remote area, I live alone,  in an area where mobile phones refuse, absolutely, to function, and there’s no phone?

Time passed, whilst I gave myself over to contemplation. A retired Telstra engineer, sympathetic to my cause, suggested I give Telstra a call.

In the face of all the flim-flam,, following weeks of endless, shamefully, nay disgracefully fruitless telephone calls to enormously helpful ladies from foreign parts, during which I had, for weeks and weeks, neither phone nor internet, I spoke to an enormously helpful lady from foreign parts (ofTelstra) who promptly informed me that an ADSL phone would take 24 hours, and I could have the internet in about a week. It took a little longer than promised but eventually sanity was restored.


Sympathetic Call centre operator

But for Gawd’s sake, WHY?  Why on earth did I have to go through this endlessly frustrating procedure? Who, which particular lunatic must I seek out and strangle? This shouldn’t happen, not now, not when this blasted technology is as clever as they tell us. This maniacal, endless, ludicrous result must, in the end, be laid at the feet of the demented,  Parliamentary buffoon who at first decided this ‘outsourcing’ had some merit.

Let me tell you something, Jack, whoever you are. The blasted system simply doesn’t  work.

I have been without phone or internet in a non mobile phone area for almost two months and  that’s not the way the game is played, not by a long shot. We pay good money for this service and, for the most part, keep our mouth’s shut about it’s inadequacies.  One day, and mark my words, this will all change.


‘This maniacal, endless, ludicrous result must, in the end, be laid at the feet of the demented, Parliamentary buffoon who at first decided this ‘ outsourcing’ had some merit’.

One day, a disgruntled group of us, will demand action. We will demand more than action. We will demand, not to put too fine a point on it, your balls on a plate. Watch out for secateurs and Royal Doulton.
Ira Main.

Editor. A good thing the P.M for Ideas, thought bubbles and angry senate is onto industrial relations ,,, telecommunications is a flamin disaster.

A New-Start for Gillian Triggs


Newstart Allowance recipients. Clearly fed up with Centrelink waiting times apply in person. Note; these individuals are not smartly and fashionably dressed as regular readers of the Saturday Paper. Thats why they’re poor.

We implore our readership not to be confused with the Newstart allowance. The newstart allowance is pegged at about $525.00 per fortnight.

That’s not a lot to survive on. But way way way too generous for lazy, slothful, dole-bludgers. The fact they get anything is a shame. That money could be further re-directed to very nice French submarines. The first two Le medre and Le toilet to be floated out of a South Australian dockyard in 2035.


HMAS Australia. our very own dreadnought. Comissioned in 1913. Scrapped in 1924. Let’s hope that le medre and le toilet will have longer service careers.

By then they’ll be the equivalent of the first dreadnought ‘HMS Dreadnought’, (1906) doing battle with the ‘Bismarck’(1940). Actually that’s a poor analogy because to all intents and purposes by 1940 all battleships were obsolete. Perhaps a better analogy would be to invoke the spirit of Bleriot’s biplane with a Supermarine Spitfire, (and my god they were super!!). Or go one step further, a Spitfire with an F.35. But we know that’ll never work as the F.35 will never ever be operational. But that’s not the point, big battleships and big submarines are great fun to play with. A truly big submarine can go way way down into the shadowy depths of the deep ocean. And Australia needs that capability, because after the recent Hague ruling, it will be beholden to “Us” to check the line of paint that has been installed along the East Timor Gap to determine where out claim stands. Without that, the East Timorese, (uppity little tin-pot potentates) my get more gas, fuel and oil and shit than we would like. And that would not be fair. WE like things to be fair in Australia.


Gillian Triggs. Worst ever Human Rights Commissioner.


Worst ever Solicitor General.

That’s why Gillian Triggs should go for the new job. She did a rotten job as Human Rights Commissioner. Kept saying things. Wouldn’t bloody keep her mouth shut. Our government doesn’t like talkative minions who don’t know their place. Worse still, they’re meant to be independent. Triggs as Human Rights Commissioner became a bloody nuisance. Got to the stage you couldn’t pick up a copy of the Monthly or Saturday Paper without her banging on about minorities kept in detention for their own good. Got to the stage we couldn’t go near the Saturday Paper and not see her in amongst the adds for Rolex watches, dull shows at national galleries and spectacularly well prepared ads advising the more well heeled baby boomers where to maximise their returns on capital. Thats why we’re confused abut the Saturday Paper. It espouses a sort of liberalism of the intellectual type, yet the ads speak of an entrenched plutocratic conservative determinism, and almost (excuse us if we’re wide of the mark) an exclusivist intellectual prissiness akin to some smug sinecured enclave of secular puritans. Who in spite of their social credentials are not really interested in being seen with Centrelink recipients and bringing Guy Fawkes and crackers back into community circulation as an act of universal happiness and celebration. Yep a sinecured wowser elite. Almost makes us yearn for the Herald Scum.

But excuse, this distraction, the truth of the matter is that Triggs has what it takes to get the vacancy left by the out-going Solicitor General. She’s articulate, clever, takes herself seriously and not very funny. We urge her to give it go.


I will be obeyed!!! George Brandis. Like Kim Jong un, he understands power, and ‘another ambitious Queenslander’.

But one piece of advice, learn to keep her mouth shut. She should’ve learnt by now. The outgoing Solicitor General clearly didn’t. And, she should’ve learnt by now that the Australian public don’t care about Concentration camps for refugees. They don’t care about the Attorney General acting like King John, or Kim Jong il. They don’t care about flogging off public assets to developers. And they don’t care that the Property Council runs the country….and George Christiansen. In short they don’t give a stuff. So jump to it. And keep your mouth shut. And that’s how you get on in the world, and if you don’t believe us, ask the other George. You might have to book the call, because he’s in charge of ‘God’s Telephone’. And that’s in Rome. The Vatican in case you didn’t know. And he wont let you reverse the charges. So stick it!!

Guy Fawkes Night v Halloween

Dear reader, this has been an interesting week in parliament. Sadly all matter of things to do with gunpowder hasn’t coincided with Guy Fawkes. Which is a pity. You see the ancient and noble tradition of Guy Fawkes night has been replaced with Halloween. It’s bloody tragic. Proof once again that the Wowsers have won the culture wars. Instead of all that wholesome fun, the bonfire and terrorising grannies we’re left with more hollowness, cheap consumerist rubbish and the sort of fun only Amway could contrive. We deserve it.


Plans are afoot to find a diplomatic posting for Tony Abbott. To Washington. London. Paris (favourite of Dfat bureaucrats), or anywhere.

Tony Abbott’s gunpowder plot didn’t come off and now he’s bitter and mad mad mad. Perhaps Joe Hockey can move over and Tony can get the Washington post. We’ll need a man like Tony in Washington. Cos a Trump presidency will be madder still. Good though for arms manufacturers. Bad for satirists. Soon we’ll all be yearning for the good ol days. A perfect chance then to segway once more to an era when life was simple and laughter was the preserve of comedic professionals. Another excerpt from ‘Toys that almost made it’.

Jake the Peg Toy 400×300 1966 Bonza Toysrolfey

Such was the success of Rolf Harris, and anything Australian in that brief period of swinging sixties London that a local manufacturer, Bonza Toys, who then had only supplied rubber goods to the personal hygiene market released the ‘Jake the Peg Doll’. Jake the Peg was an instant success. When the string was pulled it could hum, “diddle dee diddle dum’, ‘Tie me kangaroo down sport’, ‘six white boomers’ and ‘two little boys’. Unable to keep up production the company requisitioned a new latex extrusion machine to manufacture the famous third leg, and developed an intriguing mechanical apparatus to make the doll truly lifelike. Unfortunately, via repeated agitation by over enthusiastic children (intrigued by the leg function) the toy when inappropriately handled would become unstable. Without warning the arms, (supposedly stationary) would “ go bezerk”, and cause injuries to users unaware of the explosive tendency for arms and hands to “go just about anywhere”. In response to complaints the toy was removed from sale and melted down into plastic Beatle Wigs, Which to this day remain curiosities of a former era.

Dictation Test 500×300 1960 Comtoysdictation-1

Dictation Test was the first ever venture by the Commonwealth government to capitalise upon their more forward thinking policy agendas. It was a game that almost never saw the light of day after strong lobbying by the then Leader of the Opposition, Mr Arthur Caldwell who was busy promoting his own game ‘Two Wong’s’, and the members of the Country Party who were promoting ‘White-out’, as their preferred policy derived board game. However in the interests of Australia’s, image to the rest of the world it was determined in a spirit of bipartisanship that ‘Dictation Test’ best reflected the will of the people. The aim of the game was simple. Each player had to pick a card. On the board, the game counters, (a few white) and hundreds of coloured, would stand in a long queue before an entry portal. Each player would pick up a card, move the counter forward as the other players would have to guess the origin of the language used in order to allow the game counter though the gate. White game counters were picked from the ‘ Lucky pile’ and let in. After lengthy discussion, a determination would be made on the status of the coloured counters. Ultimately the game failed. No one in Australia at the time knew any foreign languages, cept a smattering of French, a little German and some Latin learnt at school. As a consequence no coloured counters ever got through, and the game proved ultimately unrewarding. No copies survive. But there are rumours that a new virtual reality version is being trialled at Nauru.

Poetry Sunday 23 October 2016

This poem was found amongst the detritus of the early operatives – the young Turks if you will – of the Australia Council in the 1970’s.  It talks of committees and activism in the past and has little relevance today.

To Sit on Committees

They were bright metal once.  Souls aflame.
Smelling something rotten in the State.
Ardent to set it right.  They began bravely.
with banners, songs;  They sought the dreadful summit. 

But were led into committees, where dead words 
Hang in the conditioned air like ash
And settle slowly on the carpet.  The causes
They came to serve are never on the papers,
And drifts of information glaze their brains.

Soon, however, they learn the real agenda.
They become adept:The pointed phrase precisely
Placed; The inside knowledge to parry an
Opponent’s thrust; The twist, the swift diversion.

They savour the cerebral excitement
Of a hit.  So the play becomes the thing.
And later, when they hand the drinks around,
They cannot remember why it was they joined.
Or what they meant to do about the King.

Margery Hourihan

MDFF 22 October 2016

Today’s dispatch is  History Repeats Itself- June 2006.  Originally dispatched on 27 June 2015


The ‘Freedom’ Dispatch prompted a response from one of our sons who grew up in Yuendumu.

Over a decade ago, a friend of ours (a Warlpiri Yuendumu man) told our son that he’d broken out of a low security gaol in Darwin with his cellmate. A friend on the outside had bought tickets to a Stevie Wonder concert, so they all went. Pourquoi pas?

The Australian Parliament’s predilection for retroactive legislation prevents me from disclosing who this friend is.

After the concert they snuck back into the gaol, and no one was any the wiser.

Our friend told our son that it was a brilliant concert! Type text or a website address or translate a document.

Sans aucun doute it was.

Our friend’s crime? He’d taken the ESO (Essential Services Officer)’s ute for a joy ride.

I don’t hold it against our friend. The ute as I recall had one of those rotating orange safety beacons on its roof, and the ESO had left the key in the ignition in front of the store. That’s what I call entrapment.

When you believe in things

You don’t understand

Then you suffer…..


What the hell, pourquoi pas, another version, another Stevie: