Saturday, March 17, 2012

Suddenly the Flood Inquiry finding makes this a good election to lose for Labor … and a poisoned chalice for the Brisbane Bantam (or whoever is second best in the LNP).

Yacht builders and helipad installers are rubbing their hands in glee.

Because class action flood claims will have legal bods ordering up new spinnakers, even new yachts or maybe even a modest chopper or two with the juicy prospect of the government (read taxpayers)  forking out squillions for the Blight Government's incompetence.

In other matters of the week, choosing the right word isn’t always easy – The Moaning Mullet chose a four letter one, Seven 'Local' News was a block away from the right one, but The Bulletin and Jeff Jimmieson beat them all, getting their word 100% wrong on the front page yesterday.

And a confused Cuddlepie makes a mysterious pronouncement on the subject of entertainment centers. It’s all here, in the latest nest at
Cuddlepie continues his mesmerizing campaign of what The Magpie suspects is a series of deliberate ploys to lose this election. Such an outcome would allow him to be feted as a gracious and honored loser before he wafts off into the political sunset, puffing on a self-satisfied cigar, lit with a burning $100 note pulled from his bulging superannuation swag.

In a letterbox flyer and in television ads this week, Cuddlepie made much of LNP opponent Sam Cox living outside the Thuringowa electorate, hypocritically failing to mention he lived outside the electorate himself, not only before his election, but for his first two terms. It was three or so years before he made  the move into the seat he represented. 

Last week, our boy said he’d fix Blakey’s Crossing  (yet again flooded for the past 24 hours at the time of writing) but only by getting Treasurer Wayne Swan’s $47 million commonwealth grant for the proposed entertainment/convention/stadium complex re-allocated to a local roads program.

Then a couple of days later, he inspected the current tired old entertainment center, and suggested it was embarrassing , a bit of a swamp, and on the verge of collapse. In other words, our boy agreed that the city needs a new venue. But Cuddlepie continued his mantra that this was the council’s fault through neglect over the past 20 years. Err, mate, wouldn’t that be the council you worked for – for many influential and profitable years - as Mayor Tony Mooney’s closest adviser and money man?

Bentley is bemused by the situation

Media matters now.

Rob Brough on Seven News read a story about the anniversary of His Radiance losing the mayoral election four years ago ‘thus ending 33 years of Labor control of Sturt Street’. Listen, we all know that Seven’s ‘local’ news  is read out of Rocky, or The Sunshine Coast or Thargomindah or Dandedong or somewhere distant,  but it doesn’t do Seven News’s credibility much good when all the Townsville viewers know that the council has always been based in Walker Street. (By the way, how’s the puppy in the pet scanner, Rob? Sorry, mate, know all this isn’t your fault, perhaps a gentle Brough boot up the bum might do the trick.)

But there is a little pearler of a language cock-up gone into posterity on the front page of the Bully yesterday – although The ‘Pie  reckons those down in the Ogden Street bunker  won’t even know it until they read this – and even then, won’t give continental anyway (’cranky old washed-up c…, got nothing to do but whinge’ and so forth).

Here’s the front page.

You won't spot the problem until you've read the (boofheaded) yarn itself. 

Here’s the thing: Jimmieson was trying on a goofy old populist idea of banning young turds gathering at known gathering spots like Riverway, shopping centers and skateboard parks, where they currently spend their malodorous, vacuous hours well into the night. 

He said he wouldn’t seek to have security or police force them to go home, just move them away from their current gathering places. Err, mate … wouldn’t this surely mean that the little snots will find new gathering points  pronto … and with social media, do it within minutes of being turfed out of wherever they are? Nice of you to want to spread the joy,  Jeff, but how come on radio the next day, you yourself were completely baffled about how this would be paid for, or even work?
The man who would be mayor ready for kiddy night patrol - good hunting, Mr Jimmieson.
Even the dog smells something's wrong.

Apart from uncritically running with this populist unworkable pap, the Bulletin’s English is just as wrong.  Jimmison has made it clear that he doesn’t propose to send the little kiddiewinks home,  just away from their gathering spots.

So  let’s look at the emotive word ‘CURFEW’ so beloved of newspaper editors and the bulk of the Bulletin diminishing readership?

Here’s what curfew actually means, from the Collins Dictionary:

a regulation requiring people to remain indoors between specified hours, typically at night :

This is its only meaning. 

Magistrates well know this when imposing bail restrictions,, and certainly don’t expect their orders to be interpreted as ‘ go have a wander somewhere else in the wee smalls’.

Jimmieson’s silly suggestion is exactly the opposite of curfew – that of keeping people out – out of skate parks, shopping centers, Riverway et al  - not in. The 'Pie doesn't suggest he has an answer to the problem (vastly overstated by The Bulletin to sell papers - they think)  especially a real curfew. But it sounds good, doesn’t folks, lock the little buggers out at night, eh, that’ll larn ‘em.

And where pray tell did anyone suggest a real curfew with 'Off To Bed'?

Now, despite the call coming from the Astonisher’s current favorite lad for the mayoralty (whose past financial and business competency will be the subject of an upcoming blog), journalists are supposed to understand language, and help those less fortunate like Mr Jimmieson (he is a drummer after all) not to get it wrong.

Jimmieson and the Bulletin deserve each other.

But choosing the right word – especially under pressure – offers its own challenges to other than The Astonisher,  as Jenny The Moaning Mullet Hill learnt last Sunday. She was among all the mayoral hopefuls attending a car rally at Reid Park. The lead-foot brigade were calling for the establishment of their own motor sports complex, a long promised and excellent idea.

The Mullet took it upon herself to insist that the complex be built at The Bohle, the original site suggested for the extremely noisy project. But that location has been completely nixed by encroaching residential development. But so what, Jenny insisted, it should still go ahead there, making the kinda interesting suggestion that local residential developers could (expensively) soundproof the houses they build within earshot.

This was too much for one beefy silver tongue in the crowd, who loudly bellowed ‘Jenny, you’re full of shit!’ Forgetting she had a microphone in her hand,  Jenny, never one to shirk an exchange of Labor-style pleasantries,  boomed out across the crowd that  ‘I am not full of shit’ and to the bemused delight of the throng, this diplomatic exchange of matters fecal on in this vein for some little time.

If Jenny ever gets to be mayor (gulp!) at least she’ll have her well-reasoned argument ready should any councilor suggest she is a walking receptacle of anything other than the milk of human kindness.

On the state front, like Beattie before her, Anna Blight  has handed a poisoned chalice to her successor as premier.  

Only this time, she will have the exquisite foot-stamping glee that it is likely to be her nemisis, Campbell Newman, who wins the cup. Or, if he fails to win Ashgrove, whoever is second best in the LNP will get it.

The floods inquiry will an expensive little exercise over the next few years, and Anna Blight could hardly conceal her glee in promising all would be paid for ‘if I am re-elected’, knowing full well she won’t be – not as premier at least. And it was a promise that, quite rightly, Campbell Newman had to immediately match.  So yet another departing premier gives the electorate the finger – remember Beattie’s ruinously expensive and rushed forced council amalgamations, milliseconds before he resigned?

It certainly would seem Anna is dead in the political water, especially after having to admit she didn’t have the goods on The Brisbane Bantam’s suss-looking dealings on the Brisbane council, and then the CMC  giving him an unconditional all clear on those matters.

But she was a goner anyway.

In this state campaign, The Blight on the Landscape, our soon to be former premier, is presenting the electorate with a paradoxical view of politics a la Anna. 

Whether you like her or not, whether you know she is a liar who can’t be trusted (well, she IS a politician), whether you’re going to vote for her or nay, it doesn’t matter, just about everyone has a teeny soft spot for this attractively ageing woman of honeyed words. No one will forget her hour of glory during the floods and cyclones of 2011. She became of our comforting and inspiring mother for a few moments when politics became momentarily irrelevant.

An accomplished extempore (that’s the $10 word for off-the-cuff) speaker, she has right now all her considerable political wares on show - and needs them. She knows she is, in one of Mongrel the Barrister’s politer sayings ‘pushing shit uphill with a bent safety pin’ to make any inroads against the polls.
'You thinking' what I'm thinking', Cuddlepie?'

But The Magpie thinks that before the most recent disasters to befall her, she could have made some  headway but for one thing: her bloody policies. You would think that she, too, like Cuddlepie, is simply trying to antagonize an already leery electorate. Possibly she dreams of retiring to a lucrative poolside layabout sinecure in LA, like her oily predecessor did after handing her the poisoned chalice of leadership.  

For instance, we are offered some completely daft, preference-driven malarkey about a 100km-wide nature preserve running willy-nilly through the land of already benighted farmers and graziers. It would be a pointless corridor of red tape stretching from Queensland’s western border to the Pacific. Where the hell did that clamor come from, what group saw this as an imperative? Ah, was it those admirable and hard working nurses who haven’t been paid properly because the computer people were Greenies, distracted by the plight of the endangered Smelly-Bummed Cooper Creek vole?

All the while, Coal Seam Gas miners will still be allowed – nay encouraged in the name of irresponsible revenue raising – to jackboot their way on to, and destroy, bountiful agricultural land.

This corridor idea may be attractive to a few latte-sipping urban Greenies who are still pondering which end of a cow is which. (Clue: the end where your Green media releases emerge has a tail). So Anna has given up on a whole state-wide strip of seats where this risible corridor would run.

Her rural policies are so far from the target that – Mongrel again – ‘she couldn’t hit a bull in the arse with a dishful of wheat’.

Then there is the bestowing of a fistful of dollars on those of our acned 'yoof', - that is the ones who manage to spel cat and mat in their skool finals - so they can further their studies. The loot will supposedly be raised from the CSG miners. This transparent tripe is a political trade-off of the most cynical sort - trumpet an admirable but expensive 'motherhood' policy that will assist our young people further their education, all to be paid for by a less admirable policy of giving gas seam miners free rein to possibly poison water supplies for future generations and severely damage our agricultural capacity.

The Magpie reasonably suspects this airy-fairy plan to be yet another lie that would, if Blight gets in, wither in the face of some other ‘unforeseen’ reality, realities that for the average punter, stick out like prawns eyes. Like hospitals, crime fighting , the simple task of paying your health workers, and of course, the Bruce Highway.

And the latest largesse? $80million – you read it right, $80million – for swimming lessons for kids under four! Huh?   400,000 kids over the next three years will get 10 free swimming lessons. Ms Blight says they’ll be free. Like hell they will, we’ll all be paying for it.

Teaching kids to swim is an essential for Aussie nippers, but it is an intrinsic parental responsibility. It always has been.

But in this state – alas everywhere – parents are being encouraged more and more to allow their responsibilities to be taken over and mandated by the state. From costly pool fence inspections (already rorts central, and another Anna special) to skid lids for bike riders, parents and individuals are being hit with a barrage of nanny state rules which have swept away any notion of personal responsibility.

But then, so easy to allow to happen, given the modern hectic workday life cycle.

The ‘Pie won’t be a bit surprised if very soon, some social-engineering parliamentary clique votes to appoint an official State Impregnator, available for those blokes who are too tired from the hours in the modern workplace to jump the little woman themselves when they stagger home.  The poor dears.

(Expressions of interest for the position will be taken by the Impregnator-General’s office in Brisbane, but if you’re interested in an interview, don’t go to Brisbane, go to Rockhampton – that’s where the end of the queue will be.)

Enough now, it is away to Poseurs' Bar, to be-bubble and hopefully beguile a suitable companion into experiencing a curfew with The 'Pie, which will certainly involve staying in. All night.


  1. insulted of WulguruMarch 17, 2012 at 4:17 PM

    Can you believe that the Bulletin gave front page to absolute bullshit this morning?
    By what legislation does Jimmiesen think he can impose a curfew if elected mayor? What research did the reporter do for his “Exclusive” article? Obviously bugger all.
    How would he police it? He would have no power over police so 40-50 new council security force with AK47’s over their shoulder?? And also freeze rates??
    What a farce! The Bulletin obviously hasn’t changed and obviously supports Jimmiesen as does the lefty Bruce McDonald at the Sun.

  2. Will the Magpie soon come under the Fed's proposed new rules to control IT media, including blogs?

  3. Re new media rules: Certainly will, but is there a perceived problem? The Magpie only tells the truth, which you won't get anywhere else. The 'Pie reckons the folks in Ogden Street should more worried. But The Fink's proposed Fourth Reich rules won't be happening anytime soon, if at all.

  4. Informative as usual, thanks magpie

  5. Magpie, why would the Bully upload a silly political 'punch up' video? It mocks the political system and, it's a violent video game. I don't want to see Anna Bligh in a little skirt high kicking her opposition.