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For a second there I thought 'ecocide' meant economic suicide, and wondered if that should be the crime.
Toggle Commented Dec 30, 2011 on Ecocide a crime against peace? at Menzies House
This cartoon would make perfect sense even without all the captions. All that's missing is Shorten and Arbib embracing each other on the bow and yelling "King of the Woooorrrrllld!" Merry Christmas & Happy New Year to all you guys here. See you again in 2012...
Toggle Commented Dec 23, 2011 on Rearranging the ALP Deck Chairs at Menzies House
The irony is, despite all the wild claims DPRK has made about Kim Jong-il, even their brainwashed masses know he's not the founder of their nation.
I honestly never thought I'd hear myself say this, but thank god I live in Japan where men are still allowed to act like men.
Toggle Commented Dec 1, 2011 on Bowled over by nanny at Menzies House
Of all the rights under-18s routinely have taken away from them, this is probably not a biggie. After all, maths and English have been mandatory for decades and (even though it's beside the point here) I do agree that some degree of Asian language proficiency among the next generation would benefit Australia. Liberty & Justice Studies might make a good compulsory high school subject itself! More worrisome are conservative politicians who advocate law-n-order restrictions on youth behavior such as curfews, bans on gathering in groups of more than four, etc. That, frankly, only teaches them to be more accepting of a police state when they're old enough to vote and hopefully do something to prevent it happening.
Toggle Commented Nov 27, 2011 on Only Liberty Should be Mandatory at Menzies House
I can't believe that, after all the promises broken, projects screwed up and money wasted by this government, there are still people who think this tax will actually produce a thriving, profitable, clean energy industry in which Australia will become a world leader. Actually, I take that back -- nothing the progressive voting public believes really surprises me much anymore.
Toggle Commented Nov 8, 2011 on A Personal Appeal From Ian Plimer at Menzies House
Even if you take out the excesses of Stalin, Mao and Pol Pot, the greatest advertisements for communism's failures were the Berlin Wall and East Germany. BMWs on one side, Trabants on the other, and this was communism's most advanced economy. Pity there are so many around now who don't even remember those days.
Yes, yes, even we libertarians and laissez-faire advocates can see there are huge differences between the nature of the UK and HK in geography, demography, size, politics and culture. But it's still quite difficult to argue HK's small government, free economy and low taxes have played no part in its prosperity. To prove that, just compare HK to neighbouring mainland Chinese cities: squalid backwaters until they too realized the gains of extra freedom and reduced intervention.
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That's a pretty good run-down of the circumstances surrounding Christie. Personally I'm not so sure it would work out -- speaking style and policies aside, the man is unfortunately well overweight and a few inches shorter than Obama, both serious detriments in the slick world of choreographed TV appearances and micromanaged images. Of course these factors shouldn't preclude him from running if he had the energy, but I'm also not convinced his heart is in it enough. I'm thinking back to the semi-reluctant candidacies of people like Bill Bradley, Fred Thompson, etc that fizzled despite initial enthusiasm.
Like all of Bob Brown's ideas, they probably seem like a wonderful idea to him and his core of ideologues but are completely unworkable in the real world. I'd like to see them try to introduce a licensing system for journalists. Part of me hopes they actually do try, just to see what a legal and operational mess it would be. The left wing 'love' media have all bent over & spread their cheeks in the aftermath of the Bolt saga, but I doubt they'd be so submissive if the government starting issuing them licences. Especially if they realized that government will be one led by Abbott & co in a few years or less.
What rot I'm hearing from people about the 'right to not be offended' and 'freedom from racial vilification'. These are the views of narrow minds who can't see past a single event to the chilling effects this will have on Australia's supposedly open politics and free society. I have every confidence this will be appealed and go to the High Court, where the law will be struck down once and for all. As for Bolt's original articles, they'll live forever for anyone to read in the world's only remaining truly free space, the internet.
Don't know about the rest of you, but I'd likely eat more junk food if it came in plain packaging. That way I could eat KFC for lunch every day of the week without the inevitable "you're eating that crap again?" comments from co-workers when I walk in carrying red & white bags.
Given Rudd's past ham-fisted attempts at PR and communications, I can't say I'd be surprised if he got caught (badly) attempting to manipulate Twitter. I seriously doubt a million people would be interested in what he was tweeting, unless it's an army of cheap workers plugging away in a Guangdong Special Economic Zone somewhere. Most senior politicians tweet fluff written by staffers about visiting community groups or sports teams they supposedly follow; Rudd is no exception. Almost nothing about the issues or their personal feelings. Then usually there's a flurry of activity leading up to an election & the feed goes dead right after polls close. A few of the younger go-getters on both sides seem to understand what it's all about, but the handlers are monitoring them to make sure they don't go too far off message.
That's true -- much as conservatives like to think their side stands for less regulation and government, the fact remains that government activity has tended (since the 1930s) to increase with any administration and small-government revolutionaries like Thatcher & co are definitely not the mainstream. I wonder, though, if this is due to compulsory voting or a symptom of voting itself. When governments are judged on whether or not they are "doing something", and use their amount of new legislation passed as a bragging point, we have a culture where bigger government equals votes, compulsory or otherwise. It seems to me these trends towards greater government authority can happen anywhere, even in countries with voluntary voting. Just look at the US and UK in the past two decades.
Toggle Commented Sep 9, 2011 on I’m Out of Here at Menzies House
Tony Abbott could probably score himself some serious gentleman points by saying Thomson could have a pair, in theory. After all, it's fairly unlikely he'll even require one and by refusing to guarantee it he comes across as mean-spirited, even though it's probably the more correct option. If blocking the CO2 tax is the main goal, the priority should be lobbying an ALP member or two to cross the floor & vote against it. Difficult, but could be possible to sway one of the marginal-seat MPs guaranteed to get wiped out on a voter backlash against the tax anyway.
Interesting points. I too support voluntary voting on principle, though I'm not sure I agree about compulsory voting favoring the Left -- if that were the case, surely there would've been longer periods of left-leaning governments in Australian history, and that certainly hasn't happened. Politics in general seems to attract people who prefer big government and control. I think this might be more to blame for increasing levels of regulation than the voting system. Actually, where I live (Japan) there have been claims the voluntary voting system tends to skew results in other ways -- a large elderly population and rural gerrymandering left most younger urban people so apathetic that very few bother to vote, and the country became a virtual, conservative and protectionist single-party state for decades. Seems no matter what the system, there will be unintended consequences.
I believe she won't run and probably shouldn't, for all the reasons listed in this article and the comment above. I often wonder whether Palin would have entertained the notion of running for national office had McCain's team not tapped her shoulder in '08. Sure she's ambitious, maybe she could've run for the Senate. But I doubt even she considered herself presidential candidate material before this began (despite possibly being more qualified than either of the past two actual presidents). All speculation at this point, since the genie has been out of the bottle for three years now. And even if she doesn't run in 2012, it'll be interesting to see the other candidates lobbying for her endorsement. After that, who knows? Will she fade back into obscurity or will she keep her influence for years to come?
Good, positive rundown of a reality most of us will never know, and even if it were half as satisfying I'd still prefer it to a dinner party full of inner city ABC announcers. And doing the country good to boot. Interesting blog too, I'm slotting it into my RSS subscriptions now.
Toggle Commented Sep 3, 2011 on ABC ignorance of mining diversity at Menzies House
I remember from my years in Canada that running for party leadership outside the Parliament was a fairly common thing there, especially for popular premiers looking to get into federal politics. Usually someone would step aside for them to get in via by-election though, and I somehow doubt the ALP would risk that. Also I don't remember the Canucks ever using the tactic in government though, only opposition. Having a placeholder leader in power reminds me slightly of Putin/Medvedev.
Anyone got a number for those Indonesian people smugglers? Two more years of Labor and they'll probably be taking traffic in the other direction!
Even if I give them the benefit of the doubt & say they're coming to Australia for the economic opportunity (ie: to find work), why isn't the TPV system still being used? Sounds perfectly reasonable to me.
I knew something else must've gone wrong for Labor today when I saw them hauling the leathery old Workchoices corpse out of the chest again. Maybe Gillard will need to visit every household in the country to personally scream at every voter until they agree to support her.
Yes, anyone can threaten legal action. The implication is that she threatened much more: ownership inquiries, forced sell-offs, perhaps. Intimidation tactics similar to those in the kind of developing countries Labor is busy turning Australia into.
Hate to say it, but it sounds like this might've been a genuine stuff-up on the part of the right-wing commentariat, even if they honestly thought they had their hands on something juicy. I'm interested to see what could stop Bolt commenting on politics.