Saturday, December 28, 2013

Clive Palmer gets a judicial smack-down from a judge who didn’t mince her words in finding against him.

Also, nominations for the annual Townsville City Council Community Awards are now open – The ‘Pie makes his picks, and invites you to post yours.

… and word warriors unite! A campaign has started  to save some old and fading words that deserve to come back into vogue – this includes a ripper for Palmer, and several more for a few other notables.

All that and any other bric-a-brac still lying around in this, the final open nest for 2013, here at

Looking ahead to the coming year, The ‘Pie believes one of the more entertaining and terrifying prospects is Clive Palmer in Parliament (if he bothers to turn up).

The barrage balloon with eyes is set to join a long list of (mostly Queensland) sideshow grotesques which have inhabited the political landscape from time to time – like Katter, Tanti, Gair and (shudder) the singing (?) Craig Emerson to name but a few fruit loops. 
PLEASE ...stop the voices!!!

The old saying has it that those who we look up to as achievers ‘walk the walk and talk the talk’.

Unfortunately, in Clive Palmer’s case, it is becoming increasingly clear that he waddles the waddle and talks the twaddle.

It would be no surprise to anyone if one day he turns up to a media call wearing a tin-foil helmet with wire coat hanger aerials  ‘to stop the CIA voices in my head’. However, a barrage balloon buffoon he may be, but his over-weaning arrogance, contempt for established modes of public behavior, flouting the accepted wisdom of democratic principles and sheer insulting indifference to authority came to a screeching halt in the Supreme Court in Brisbane a week or so ago.

Palmer, trying to use his wealth as a thug uses a threatening cosh, had taken on the Gold Coast Bulletin for some alleged slight that he decided was a gross libel of his wonderful self. The paper had suggested that he had been ‘dishonorable’ in his dealings while acting for his-then soccer club Gold Coast United. He also complained that his front page photograph appeared above the unrelated headline ‘Jail For Love Rat’. (It is hard to see how anyone could mistake that the bulging buffoon in the photograph could possibly be a blokey boastful ‘love rat’.)

Taking on Rupert Murdoch in itself raises some questions about mental acumen.

In all his humility, Clive wanted about $10 million for the unwanted publicity from the paper, and another ten biggies from a bloke quoted in the article. The judge ultimately suggested that those amounts were never likely to be awarded under current legislation. So it was clear Palmer was trying it on, just to put the frighteners on the paper (ha!). He rejected a settlement offer before matters went to court, because the deal included everyone paying their own costs.

So began the complex series of court hearings necessary before such a civil defamation trial can start. But long story short, Palmer showed an arrogant contempt for the process, and in the end, failed to even turn up or notify the court of his (counsel’s) no show.

Then, what started in January 2012 ended (in a sense) in November this year when Palmer decided he wouldn’t proceed further. And then he had the chutzpah to seek to pay only part of the costs.

Talk about leading with his chin(s).

Justice Roslyn Atkinson
Justice Roslyn Atkinson was having no more of Palmer's time wasting arrogance (The ‘Pie summation, not hers), and in awarding ‘indemnity costs’ i.e the lot, she spelt out the reasons:

There were special or unusual circumstances
in this case which suggested that an award of indemnity costs against the plaintiff was the appropriate order. The first was the unexplained lengthy
delays in the litigation attributable to the plaintiff's inaction, the second was his
noncompliance with orders made by the court, the third was
that the plaintiff sought to abandon his claims altogether without explanation, the fourth was the plaintiff's attempt to have the hearing delisted without having consulted the defendants. This was particularly egregious given that
the defendants' application for costs was first made on 31 May 2013 and was
adjourned to allow the plaintiff to be heard.The blameworthy conduct of this
litigation makes an order for indemnity costs against the plaintiff the appropriate order.’

That word ‘egregious’ is the telling one, being the lofty legal term for outstandingly bad – shocking. Read Justice Atkinson’s full summary here.

Also noted in the legal rounds: Jarrrod Crackers McCracken has finally bowed to what many saw as the inevitable, and has just started the processs to declare himself bankrupt.

 During the week, The ‘Pie came across another little-used word that put one in mind of Palmer.  

Author Safia Shah
The ‘Pie read about the campaign by children’s author Safia Shah to save old-fashioned words being lost forever from the language. The one that brought Clive Palmer to mind - as well as Messagebank Walker, Simpo Templeton, Ewen 'Dumbo Jumbo' Jones and David ‘Lucky Starr’ Moyle - is the magnificent ‘blatteroon’ – a once popular term for a senseless boaster.

It is a truly wonderful word, because it possesses that quality which makes one wonder from which end the noise is emanating, always difficult with all the aforementioned. 

Mrs Shah has published a book called Around The World In 80 Years, in which she lists scores of words worthy of preservation. The ‘Pie’s favourites are the charming ... 
wink-a-peeps … eyes
snirtle ...  to laugh in snorts
·      begrumpled ... sad
·     fratchy ... irritable
·     ramfeezleed ... exhausted
·     kedge-belly ... a bulging stomach (are you still reading, Clive?)
·      jargogled ... to confuse or jumble (still with us, Lucky?)
·      slubberdegullion - a scoundrel (still here ... oh, the list's too long) 

Words all worthy of keeping around.

Bentley seems to be taking more of a begrumpled view of the coming year, concerned with the selling off of the farm by the Commonwealth and state governments. He wisely questions the financial acumen behind the policy, and wonders if  'the farm' will become literal.

Other doodleers are more concerned with proposals extending the age of the workforce.

Our Media Muddles corner this week has this from the Townsville Daily Astonisher classifieds …

That would be a square rigger?

… and this jargogled effort from WA …

Give him a job as a sub then.

And it was announced during the week nominations are now open for the Townsville Council's Annual Australia Day Awards. The ‘Pie will graciously decline all suggestions that he get the top gong, gotta give others a chance heh heh heh.

In all, there are eight categories, with The Magpie’s pick where applicable:

Citizen of the Year Award … modesty prevents The ‘Pie…

Young Citizen of the Year Award ... Lachlan 'Harry Potter' Heywood, the Daily Astonisher's Year 8 iditorial writer …

Community Event of the Year … the gala ratepayer-funded departure of Mayor Mullet and David Kippen for China on the same plane, leaving us in peace for a while. They will be unable to be double winners, since there is not section for Worst Community Event of the Year, which would go to them on the day they returned …

Junior Sports Award … Kid Crisafulli for his ducking, weaving and evasive run towards the Queensland premiership …

Sports Administrator Award … be interesting to see the noms ...

Cultural Award – Gracelyn Smallwood, for her divisive self-promotion of the self-defeating Invasion Day, inviting indigenous folk to further reject reality and prosperity …

Senior Sports Award … Deidre McFondel, who at 59, again showed on several occasions at Poseurs’ Bar this year what a good sport she still is …

and finally ... 

The Spirit of Townsville Award … this award, also known as the Townsville Whines Award, will be the most closely run, with leading contenders David Moyle and his hysterical (read that any way you like) Ratepayers Association, anything written by Anthony Simpleton, The Astonisher itself for Iditor Harry Potter's fine whingeing spirit and finger wagging on council matters and asbestos villains, and a group nom for the Text-The-Editor wrist slitters.  

Happy New Year, thanks for all the fun in ’13, and with your help, more and better snirtles about our slubberdeguillions to come in ’14.


  1. Mrs Palmer and her five daughtersDecember 28, 2013 at 5:21 PM

    Bloody brilliant, keep up the good work Pie. I expect kedge-belly Clive will take umbrage at your comments. I suggest you fund your own defence and claim costs. That'll make him fratchy.

  2. Actually Pie, this is one of your better columns for the year, I smiled from ear to ear for the entire read. Well done. BTW leave Lachlan alone, he deserves a break.

    1. Oh dear, a break? News doesn't stop for anyone, iditors should know that... Even dumb dumb ones..

      Happy New Year......

  3. Brilliant - Happy New Year Pie !

  4. What a great year Pie with lots of opportunities given there are so many nutters to choose from. I can see 2014 will be Clive's year but sadly not Townsville's. Perhaps you could instruct Bentley in Government 101 - Telstra was privatised years ago and the railways, ports, Ergon and Energex are all state owned - not Abbott owned. Or is that supposed to be Can Do Without in his speedos? Another look and nope that's Wing Nut alright! A Happy New Year to you and your and the other reader.

  5. Pie
    The photo of a bus in an ad for a boat is absolutely the norm for the Bulletin. Most weeks there are photos of boats in bike ads, bikes in car ads and the wrong car/bike/boat in an ad in any of the above categories.
    I feel sorry for the advertisers but ultimately it's par for the course.
    Happy New Year to you and yours

    1. advertisers should hang their product in the foyer and call it the 4 sale art.

    2. 2014 is nearing closer.Happy New Year.

  6. Clive .... How did he knock her up?

  7. I'm partial to the word acrospire..

  8. Stop is now a board member of a grant funded art gallery, I'd expect to see conflict of interest.
    Eg. Artwork gallery in the aston's office. 2. More coverage compared to other art galleries around town.Now I know, I would not purchase the artwork as I see the poison pen attaching itself ...

  9. I wouldn't expect channel 7 to have a permanent 'Ummmmmmmberella' gallery hanging in it's reception, regardless if someone is on the board...

    that seems really odd. no negative publicity hanging around that studio now....

    how much funding does ummmmberrrella receive? I bet Sylvia Stitchburn would love that free oportunity to hang work there too.


    1. In an ironic twist, unerellas website has the astonishers exhibition as their banner. Ahhh, business bonding.

  10. Yeah, she's trying to make the area artistic, nit that you want media photographs or need paintings to self promote your board status and power Hungary ego.....

  11. Pie, Lovely year-ending post. Let's hope you find many more slubberdegullions to write about in 2014. It seems Townsville has no shortage of them. May you and yours have a great New Year and many more to come. Cheers, Gonzo

  12. OK, you've got The 'Pie this time.

    What's all the hoo ha about the Umbrella Gallery and Ann Attila The Hen Roebuck? Searched around and can't kind any article or reference to it, but then, The Pie and computers is a match made in hell. Have some unpublished comments waiting that don't make sense to the old bird, so please enlighten him so you can have your say.

  13. "Ann Roebuck, Umbrella Board member and Bulletin managing editor suggested that Umbrella could grow their viewing audience by exhibiting in their busy and beautiful office space. "

    Umbrella board member? Since when has Atil have any artistic appreciation?

    Umbrella Studio artist members have a brand new venue (literally) to showcase their work. In appreciation of their support for local arts and their ongoing sponsorship, Umbrella will curate a series of annual exhibitions in the stunning new Townsville Bulletin building... sept.

    1. Channel 7 can hang the pleasure state range in their reception, who needs star shots?

    2. I hope they're spending big on advertising using their grant funding.

    3. OK, got that. Seems to have steamed up a few people.

      Attila the Hen would be only acting as the paper's rep in any talks, and if the paper is offering this sort of support, a seat on the board would be more or less mandatory. She doesn't have, to The Pie's knowledge, any art appreciation expertise of note, which if any would run to Pro Hart, Rolf Harris (Two Little Boys would be a favoorite) and Ginger Meggs, but so long as she's not curating the annual hoopla, can't see much problem ... so long as there's no bias in arts coverage, as one commenter fears.

      BUT whatever they do, just so long as someone from Umbrella writes and subs the annual catalogue ... otherwise, if the paper does it, we might be offered works by Van Cough, Rememberant, Brick Whitey and our own local star of the palette, Sillya Bitchburn.

    4. Err....? Grow.
      what kind of newspaper is this if the get free rent in their office?

      Why not try advertising or that doesn't work in the paper???

      real conflict.. Perc tuck. Would be annoyed...

    5. Ha ha Pie.....
      She needs to diet.


    I(nteresting... typo

  15. The astonished could exhibit Clive's dinosaurs in the ,'mai mai' foyer.

    There is a conflict. it's a newspaper not an business building art gallery. What next? Cars.

    1. As a share holder, I demand rental space from this advertising adventure.

  16. Subs are needed here.....

    People, grammar!

  17. Snirtled so hard my kedge-belly is still wobbling. Words really are wonderful and it's a shame some of the old ones are vanishing.
    It's some consolation that The Washington Post's annual Mensa Invitational is still asking readers to take any word from the dictionary and alter it by adding, subtracting or changing one letter,then supplying a new definition.
    Among the winners:
    Cashtration (n.): The act of buying a house,which renders the subject financially impotent for an indefinite period.

    Ignoranus (n.): A person who is both stupid and an arsehole.

    Intaxication (n.); Euphoria at getting a tax refund, which lasts only until you realise it was your money to start with.

    Osteopornosis (n.); A degenerate disease..

    Inoculatte (v.): To take coffee intravenously when you are running late.

    Glibido (n.): All talk and no action.

    Even funnier were the readers' suggestions of alternate meanings for common words, such as.......

    Flabbergasted (adj.): Appalled by discovering how much weight one has gained.

    Abdicate (v.): To give up all hope of ever having a flat stomach.

    Willy-nilly (adj.): Impotent.

    Balderdash (n.): A rapidly receding hairline.

    Rectitude (n.): The formal, dignified bearing adopted by proctologists.

    Pokemon (n.): A Rastafarian proctologist.... and....

    Circumvent (n.): An opening in the front of boxer shorts worn by Jewish men.

    Happy New Year,'Pie, and may you expose many more slubberdegullions in 2014 and beyond.

  18. Did not the Manager ? of the Umbrella Gallery stand for Council at the last election Her name escapes me...

    1. Yup, Vicki Salisbury is her name and she ran against Uncle Fester Veitch. One of the biggest dud wannabe's on the hopeless Team Hill (Hill is spelt L-A-B-O-R) but Jenny did a Judas and denied any such association.

      Good singer, it is said, but exactly the sort of arty farty person we didn't need on council. In the run-up to the election, Mayor Mullet gave us one of the belly laughs of her campaign when she said Vicki was an ideal candidate because she'd managed the rare and difficult task of running a not-for-profit organisation at a profit.

      Ummm, not hard to achieve, m'dear, when you've got the begging bowl out for public grants funding - and if she's managed that tricky feat, wouldn't it be reasonable to expect her and the Studio to stop sucking on the public tit and run the business as a independent business? Very much a typical female Labor candidate, who Veitch saw off comfortably - we're not all mugs, y'know.


      this episode..

    3. The Umbrella Studio is funded with taxpayers money, in the form of grants from Arts Queensland and the federal Arts Council.

      Therefore, why should the Astonisher promote for free Mumberella artwork when there's a dozen galleries around town. Good ones too.

      Why would Atil promote this business? Free gallery for Bully fots payback?

    4. If only she had a Hungary jacks in the joint...

  19. Media outlets like NoNewsLtd, are like mining companies. Both dig up the dirt and play dirty. Mm

  20. Now here's a little treat for you from the Daily Astonisher - and it's not often you hear that combination of words around this bend in the river.

    The 'Pie does not ask you to read this whole silly season perennial beat-up article by reporter David Sparkes, who must grit his teeth when tasked with junk assignments - no don't read the whole article, just the headline .... and then the very last line. If everyone had read the last line first, they wouldn't have wasted their time on what Mr Sparkes clearly admits is a warmed-over non-story.

    1. He must cringe and to get paid for this JCU style article?

  21. Greetings Dear Magpie,

    I lament that the word ‘squiffy’ seems to have been forgotten since the publication of my 4th edition 1969 Little Oxford Dictionary. A great word meaning slightly drunk. Usually I find squiffyness precedes falling asleep in front of the tele.

    1. Time for a new dikshunary Dave, it's in all the old birds (well, the three that were searched) as well as Merriam on-line.
      Nearby was a word not in general circulation - squidge - means a small opening or crack usually in a building.

      So get orf ya squidge and go buy a big book of words.

      Happy New Year, mate.

  22. I dunno pie, sounds like the Bully came to the party if the Defamation intially settled out of court with each party to cover own costs, must have been something in it?

    1. No it wasn't settled out of court, Palmer knocked back a News Ltd offer to square things away.

      Anyway, it is Palmer's behaviour towards the court that is the issue ... News Ltd always does its best to stay out of court, costs them less in the long run even if they win. Several people around this town have cottoned on to this News Ltd attitude and at least one slumbering politician and one blow-hard solicitor have cynically made money this way.

      But Palmer fell into the trap of unintended consequences by refusing the settlement and barging on in the court process, before his ego led him to fall foul of the rules all the rest of us have to follow. The judge found the delays and general buggerizing around caused unfair financial burdens on News Ltd, a company whose lawyers at least know how to conduct themselves with dignity and respect for the judicial system when a matter does get to court (that does NOT include certain News Ltd executives who lied through their teeth while under oath in the Bruce Guthrie dismissal matter). Have a read of Man Bites Murdoch by Guthrie ... very self-serving but still an interesting peek behind the power plays within the corporation.

      Also, while it looks like he might have taken a bit a bruise to his reputation (subsequent events and pronouncements by the Great Man leads one to believe everything written was true to his unerlying form, anyway) his ask of $20 million was simply fanciful ... and he knew it.

      If he didn't, then he really is a up-himself fool, owned by his money ... his own personal Ring my precious.

  23. Have a lovely New Year Pie.

  24. Oh, dear, the traps of Strine as she is spoke - and tweeted - for visitors. Tennis champ Caroline Wozniacki's, who like her beau insists her private life is exactly that, tweeted confirmation of her overnight engagement to golfer Rory McIlroy with the rather unfortunate news that

    'Rory and I started 2014 with a bang! ... I said YES!!!'

    No matter, m'dear, you share the tradition with many other couples in this neck of the woods ... and no doubt manyb have shouted YES to mark the occasion.

  25. Today's news..a "godless" thief...
    their we don't know if the thief is godless... Tbull article.

  26. pie, I read this as well.
    Who would write godless thief?

    They might be full of faith but poor
    Due to Xmas.

    1. No doubt full of something, Anonymous (by the by, are you related the Anonymouses of Nome or the Mous's of Aikenvale - the patriarch Anony is easily distinguished by missing tail?)

      But who would write such a thing, you ask? Easy ... some godless journalist.

      The old rule is still the rule in believable publications that adjectives are comment ... or redundant. Godless sits there with the slavering and unnecessary 'horrific' for road smashes, injuries and Bulletin editorials, and 'brave', which is particularly inane when talking about kids with incurable diseases, who are sometimes promoted from 'brave' to 'heroic' - some even score an 'inspirantional', all because they are simply still alive, being unversed in the art of dying more promptly ... until they cark it - 'succumbed' - , and then they become 'tragic' and 'a little angel' who lost his/her/its 'battle with (insert favorite terminal killer disease here). The 'it' points to the fact that this twaddle is also used for dumb animals which have been maltreated, like starved horses, injured dogs and readers of Kate Higgins column.

    2. A godless thief. Why not call the thief a robber?

  27. The Astonisher is a joke, but what about the "local" news being served up on Channel 7 lately.
    Apparently anywhere in Queensland now counts as "local".
    The New Year edition put even The Astonisher to shame with nothing stories from places more than 1000km from Townsville.
    And running stories about Mitchell Johnson's cricketing heroics because he used to live here years ago is surely drawing a long bow.
    Must have given the just-out-of-school youngsters they call journalists the day off to avoid paying penalty rates.

  28. Now we have a brazen thieves aarticle.

    Vietnam vets car dash......

    Id say dumb, but you're right pie, this adjective is not necessary and introduces the reporter 's point of view.

    By matt Dunn.

  29. Brazen theives.. Not, beef steak and stir fried thieves? sam

  30. These cricket conjectures via Gary Watkins, but The Pie takes great delight in publishbing because - with just a reversal of countries - they are the ones the bird was bombarded with last year when we were going belly-up in England.

    Enjoy the Cricket funnies.

    Q. What do you get if you cross the English cricket team with an OXO cube? A. A laughing stock.

    Q What's the height of optimism? A: English batsman putting on sunscreen.

    Q. What's the difference between an English batsman and a Formula 1 car? A. Nothing! If you blink
    you'll miss them both.

    Q. What do English batsmen and drug addicts have in common? A. Both spend most of their time
    wondering where their next score will come from.

    Q. What does an English batsman playing in The Ashes have in common with Michael Jackson? A. They
    both wore gloves for no apparent reason.

    Q. What is the difference between Cinderella and the Pommies? A. Cinderella knew when to leave the

    Q. What's the difference between the Pommies and a funeral director? A. A funeral director isn't going
    to lose the ashes.


    This has been happening all week, duplicate images on the page. Not enough writing. Or NO ADVERTISING>