Monthly Archives: June 2010

The Herd Mentality and the fall of Rudd

The thing that has been fascinating me about the last week in politics is the evidence of the herd mentality (psychologically speaking). The herd doesn’t move direction until one person breaks ranks, and then suddenly everyone is following the new direction. I’m talking, of course, of the sudden political demise and dethroning of KRudd. A […]

The Lady in the Lodge

Julia Gillard has been sworn in as Australia’s first female prime minister after a surprise leadership vote in the ruling Labor Party ousted Kevin Rudd. Mr Rudd chose not to take part in the ballot knowing he would suffer an embarrassing defeat to his deputy. Ms Gillard said she believed “a good government was losing […]

Call to new PM on net censorship

Heath Gibson reminded me in a post this morning that we have a renewed opportunity to persuade the Labor party to drop its ridiculous bid to impose net censorship. As he notes, because of the change in leadership, the party can now back away from previous policies without losing so much face (as it has […]

It’s Gillard

I am watching all this unfold from afar, with a special kind of awe. My understanding — even though Kevin Rudd had tanked personally in the polls — was that he’d still win against the (equally unpopular) Tony Abbott on Green preferences. Clearly I was wrong. I can’t imagine Labor’s Sussex St Minions (insert BWAHAHAHA […]

We regret to inform you that the disabled will be mugged by their government (twice)

This is going to be a longer and much sharper post than I had originally intended. What first came to mind was an open letter to the new Work and Pensions Secretary Iain Duncan Smith, pointing out a simple £50 million cost saving to the welfare bill, but then yesterday the new coalition government handed […]

Why didn’t I think of that?

According to the Herald Sun yesterday: An artist has been paid $10,000 to float 10,000 paper planes in Victoria’s State Library. Ross Coulter wants to track “thought patterns” in the La Trobe (Domed) Reading Room by releasing the planes from balcony “stacks”, and will use a Georges Mora Foundation Fellowship to pay for the project. […]

Border Protection

Did you ever play “chasey” as a child? If you ran around in the wild blue yonder, you were fair game for any roving pursuer, but usually, there was an area which was “safe” (in my school yard it was called “barlee“). If you were touching the “safe” tree, you couldn’t be caught. If someone […]

Blue Balls Epidemic in Italy

A batch of about 70,000 mozzarella balls which turned blue upon opening has been confiscated by food authorities in Italy, officials say. The health ministry said it had activated the European “rapid alert” system to warn of possible contamination, and announced emergency control measures on the cheese. The cheese – made in Germany for an […]

The weight of the law

I read yesterday that Japanese law stipulates that the waistline must be below a certain diameter: In Japan, being thin isn’t just the price you pay for fashion or social acceptance. It’s the law. So before the fat police could throw her in pudgy purgatory, Miki Yabe, 39, a manager at a major transportation corporation, […]

Jus ad bellum

Many people don’t realise that going to war (or other, ancillary military activities) in Australia doesn’t require legislative approval; the executive — that is, the Prime Minister and Cabinet — can make the decision without involving all our elected representatives. This is relatively common around the world, although it is also common to find countries […]