Saturday, January 18, 2014

Boy, are those Pinnacles pushers about to to be pissed off – as will be the Townsville Bulletin which gets the appropriately-named Steggles Egg On Face Award.

Yup, the developer of the proposed Pinnacles satellite town has done a massive back-flip with tuck and pike, which gives the finger to all those shrill dollar-hungry locals who have backed the silly and irresponsible Bulletin campaign to get the project up.   

A tale of two surveys: how the Townsville Bulletin drops all pretence of objectivity and declares a vendetta against the Townsville Council majority - The Magpie takes a look at the effects of the global News Ltd culture on Townsville.

On the international scene, first the government wanted to burn their boats, now they want to give them boats … Bentley takes his sharp pen to the issue of Tony's latest cunning plan ...

... plus some funny and clever signs from the States, the greeting card that is causing double-take in newsagents,  and a really rude but side-splittingly funny pic which is not for the easily offended (no one 'round here like that anyway) all here in the nest at

To alter Rolf Harris’s line for British paints ‘Trust a developer …  (bongo roll) … sure CAN'T’.

The ‘Pie hears the Steggles crowd has lodged a new development application for their proposed Pinnacles project with the Townsville City Council. And the new application is bound to have some of those dollar-hungry and abusive local urgers crying into their wallets.
The initial dream - and was that all it ever was - a dream?
The initial ask was for a 5100 allotment satellite town, complete with all the civic bells and whistles, you-beaut roads, parks, commercial buildings and what not.

Council knocked it back because it was going to mean a hefty rate rise for ALL Townsville ratepayers and besides, it was outside the draft city plans for that sort of development. There are 30 years worth of land for that sort of development INSIDE the plan area.

But the new application asks that the area in question now be ruled ‘rural residential’ catering for about 1100 one-to-eight hectare allotments. 

And instead of building the promised seven or eight kilometres of roads into the place, the new application suggests instead a road of about 500 metres through a vacant block of land coming out on Kelso Drive. 

Interesting to note that The ‘Pie hears for all that that spinning spiv from Sydney racketed on in the Bulletin about it, all the time the company has known for years of the far cheaper 500m road alternative. The ‘Pie will bet his tail feathers that if the original application had been successful, somehow after the point of no return, the 500m option would be found to be financially necessary, otherwise the whole thing would fall over.

Be interesting to see what a few of the shriller protagonists wooed by the developer will have to say now, including a certain noisy former Thuringowa councillor who is nowadays unkindly known as the Bag Lady of the Northern Beaches, due to her attention-drawing disheveled appearances around shopping centres. 

But guess what? The council might not view this new application too fondly either … there is currently 60 years worth of stock available for this sort of development on the outer limits of the city.  Stayed tuned.  

Now, not something The ‘Pie does in the blog often, but hearty birthday wishes to the unsinkable Sally Elliott, who The 'Pie is told turned 60 yesterday.

Our Gal Sal ... wearin' well, mate.
Sally, one of the great Townsville boosters, is a gutsy personal and business survivor of remarkable bounce-back ability, demonstrated time and again over the 20-something years The ‘Pie has known her. Despite a badly broken leg and a number of other inconvenient health issues during the year, Sal has hung in there with her usual tenacity, and now even makes jokes about rumours of her business demise are now in their 11th year. 

Congrats to you, Sal, others in Townsville could often do with some of your outstanding qualities.

Sadly one a bit short in that department is Gavin Thompson, mentioned here last week. 

Seems Mr Thompson, who has a few financial questions to yet be answered, has stiffed the Crocs former owners, Barrier Reef Basketball, for a hefty unpaid amount, said to be probably in excess of $15,000. When fronted with the debt, he said his company would pay it off at a grand a week, but after just two payments, BRB was advised by solicitor's letter that his company was in receivership, and they could go whistle for the rest of the dough. Not quite the exact words, but that was the message. Still watching for developments.

Moving along.

The Canberra Circus seems to be having all sorts of contradictions in its Waterworld adventures off our northern shores.

First PM Wingnut wanted to burn people smugglers boats, now he appears to want to donate shiny new, very seaworthy ones to their cause. The idea of sending boat people back is one thing, but whacking them into new you-beaut taxpayer funded lifeboats to chug on back where they came from seems the height of  maritime madness. Resident doodler Bentley reckons he knows what comes next.

Other matters.

The Chinese have a saying ‘Never interrupt your enemy while he is making a mistake’, but if that were the rule, we’d never be able to talk about the Townsville Bulletin! 

Sometimes, the paper’s mistakes are an amusing mangling of grammar, as with Emma Channon’s otherwise OK story about the Townsville bikies remand hearing in magistrates court yesterday. As The ‘Pie reported in a comment earlier today:

The Astonisher's court reporter, the quite reliable Emma Channon, managed a bit of literary acrobatics in her report on the Townsville bikies remand hearing yesterday. She wrote:

'Muhling, who has tattoos on his neck, nodded his head in understanding while his 31-year-old co-accused Heang remained motionless as they were each led away to the watchhouse. '
Remaining motionless while being led away seems to make Heang a candidate to join Hugh Jackman's team for next The X Men film. And at least Muhling, obviously a deep thinker, showed no surprise when he learnt he had tattoos on his neck, simply nodding his understanding at the news.

A harmless slip worth a smile.

But some things are taking a darker turn in the pages of the Bulletin, with one main cancerous culprit.

It is now clear that Anthony Simpo Templeton is to ethical journalism what King Herod was to child care.

But this coming rant requires a little backgrounding.

The Pie recently read an excellent article about the rise and thrust of the ultra right wing Fox News in America. Rupert Murdoch declared a policy of ‘fair and balanced’ reporting, which turned out to be a balance against what he perceived as left-wing bias in the general media. He was going to balance that up to make everything fair. The tortured logic and further abasement of language doesn’t matter if you’re a billionaire media mogul. The Crikey article perceptively pointed out that Fox News isn’t a news organization, it is in fact an undeclared political party, carney barking for the likes of the deranged Sarah Palin and the unspeakable (if only) Tea Party Republicans.

That nutty notion of ‘fair and balanced’ has long been a feature of Murdoch’s British operations, and of course, they got the Messiah’s message in Holt Street, Sydney,  when the drunk, sink-pissing wife beater Col Allen was called back from NY to conduct the anti-Labor front page circus in the Daily Telegraph during the recent federal election.

What has this got to do with Murdoch’s backwater operation in (relatively) sleepy ‘ol Townsville? Well, it is clear that Murdoch at any level isn’t interested in objective reporting, and wants, along with rivers of our dollars, the power of a shot caller. Even here in the ‘Ville. A cynical but clever ploy if it is pulled off with skill and panache.

Trouble is, Sydney management staffed the upper echelons of North Queensland Newspapers with arse-kissing numbskulls like Peter Gleeson, the execrable Michael Wilkins, and the inoffensive but ineffective current incumbent iditor Lachlan Heywood. Ever wanting to play with the ‘big boys’, all Astonisher editors for the past decade have taken the new Murdoch ethos of trying to pick a winner ... choosing a side, an issue and taking an openly biased stance … then flogging the bejesus out of it on the front page with stories with all the substance of fairy floss.  

Just what our growing and vibrant community needs, negative newspaper naysayers about anything and everything, with some weird and notable exceptions. Backing Labor with a ‘my mother, drunk or sober’ attitude was a total misreading of the community and did enormous damage to whatever dwindling credibility the paper had.

And Anthony Simpleton is just the boyo for this sort of scenario.

He and Heywood have latched on to the clearly spurious agenda that the Townsville City Council is deeply divided and dysfunctional, with adjective-laden screaming headlines that send potential readers away in droves. 

Simpo recently even managed to make a negative out of the positive news that the Blakey’s Crossing project was going to cost $14 million instead of the state government’s estimated $24 million. Good news, yes? No, not to Simpo, who ‘revealed’ (ha!) that the long-awaited project ‘could’ve been done years earlier’ if only the council had done its sums right. (The council didn’t do the sums, the state government did, but never let facts fu?k up a story, as they say.)

But this week, the council was again reported to be in disarray – all based on an unscientific, easily and surely manipulated State of the North survey conducted by the paper. (Buy as many copies as you like, and return all the surveys with your pet peeve on all of them.) 

Using these absolutely meaningless figures, Simpleton then went on to draw his usual long bow, suggesting that two thirds of the 1138 respondents (in reality, probably only about 400 individuals) rating the council’s performance as ‘poor or average’. Using such a silly unrepresentative sample means you're not a serious newspaper - or reporter.

But hang on a sec.

Here’s how our ace revealer put his stats together, quote:

The Bulletin's State of the North survey found 47.4 per cent of respondents found the council's performance as average, a further 16.1 per cent rated it as poor, while 32 per cent believed the council was doing a good job and only 4.5 per gave the council an excellent rating. The question ­received 1138 responses.           

He reached his two thirds conclusion by adding the ‘average’ 47.4% to the 16.1% ‘poor’ figure. But surely in this context average means OK ‘not too bad, just what is expected’ … not the modern derogatory use of average meaning ‘pretty ordinary - shabby’. So perhaps what Anthony Einstein could’ve more realistically done was add the 36.5% which said the council was doing a good or excellent job to the 47.4% 'average' -  but golly no way, he cried, that would mean – gasp – 83.9% were happy with the council. And to think after all he’d done to sow discontent and negativity, the ungrateful bastards couldn’t even give him the pat on the back he so desperately craves. Read the drivel for yourself here.

That story wasn’t the end of it, the very next day we copped this front page screamer …

… which laughably knocked down it’s own importance with an advisory:  ‘continued on  page 11’. Page 11!! … appropriately just before the comics. 

Note to subs/iditor or anyone down there who  cares – EDICT means ‘an official order or proclamation issued by a person in authority.’ Sterling chap that he is, in this instance, Mr Tapiolas is NOT a person in authority, he can’t order anything, and anything he has to say in this matter is not official. About the only person who could issue the council with an edict would be LG Minister Kid Crisafulli.

This story is here.

Developer Peter Tapiolas
Now, Peter Tapiolas is a highly motivated business achiever and a solid citizen – but he is also a developer. His knowledge of council ‘brawling’ probably only comes from what the Bulletin has told him. His lament was more with the processes of local government, which Simpo managed to morph into his council bashing agenda. 

But the idea of a developer– even an upstanding one as in this case – telling the council how to operate it’s development procedures is a bit like the fox telling the farmer the best way to build his chook-house  (‘now don’t forget to leave a big hole in the corner of the fence so the rooster can get out for pee in the night.’ ‘Duh, yeah, good idea, that,  yuk.’) 

A subdued Mayor Mullet, who seems suddenly to be getting and listening to good PR advice, still managed to give us a couple of laughs in the story.

While being careful not to outright agree with the ‘divided council’ line (which would be a bad look for a mayor which ever way you cut it), she said things were working pretty smoothly, ‘despite a several political stunts dominating the term’. Umm, yeah, Mullet m'dear; among those would be your whining to the CMC about Ray Burton allegedly withholding a report from you (which the CMC quickly called for the bullshit it was) and your claim that you brought the city budget back into surplus, a barefaced lie you knew was a lie but you also knew it would go into Simpo’s PR story unchallenged. And when it was challenged, your toy boy reporter suddenly had the council ‘brawling’ over the matter.

Calling it for what it is, The 'Pie posits that Anthony Simpo Templeton is a cancerous canker in this society, where he doesn't particularly want to be anyway, and the sooner he achieves his dream of political reporting for the Courier Mail the bloody better all round - except for co-workers at the Courier Mail.  

Fair dinkum, you wouldn’t be dead for quids – although The Magpie had better be circumspect about making such claims, heh heh heh.

Always best to wind up with a real laugh or two.

It is not always the words themselves that cause havoc. The Pie well remembers the VP50 programme advertising Flicks of the Forties, but the chosen font and imperfect printing made the 'flicks' looks like something else - with the l and the i blurring together to make a u . So when you see at the card below, look carefully before you start thinking unwarranted severe thoughts about a ribald Magpie.

And the best bit of graffiti of the week comes from a billboard in the States …

… as does one of the more thoughtful commentaries on taxation...

And a rather practical one from the American boondocks ...

One hopes that will make enough dough to keep cellmate Big Bubba off his back.

And finally, a fair warning to those of you who a) don't like cute cat pix, and b) are easily offended by inadvertent protruding body parts.  DO NOT scroll down. It really is RUDE … but The ‘Pie and all his mates of both sexes, haven’t stop laughing ever since it arrived. It is about a guy whose kindy nap is about to end.



  1. It's about time you published a raunchy male picture for female readers, unlike the astonished who prefers hooter pictures to please the eyes.

    A lovely week with so much to read. Your best


  2. Pie,

    Indo is a uniqu place. id hate to follow their cultures.

    We voted the current stop them. I don't want men fondling women in pools..... And then say, they thought it was ok. I don't want bangi males.. Ewwe

    1. Ketut will be sooo upset, Rhonda obviously didn't mind a bit of a touch up in the spa. Picky, picky.

  3. Good blog 'Pie! That idiotic headline on Thursday with the "story" on page 11, was followed up on Friday with no front page headline and comment on page 9 from the deputy mayor and the president of the Townsville Chamber of Commerce who rebutted the Tapiolas story, but of course gained no headline on page 1! Simpleton is a disgrace to Journalism a job where the saying is "Journalistic Ethics is the great Oxymoron"

  4. Well the merry band of abusers across the Bohle may now have to vent their spleen on the "slick spinner spinak from the south". He promised so much and looks like delivering sweet .#u@.k all. Funny how greed brings out the true you :)

  5. I want a free boat.
    Funny cartoon, Bentley.

  6. Conan the GrammarianJanuary 18, 2014 at 9:35 PM

    Loved the greeting card. It brought back special memories of a former boss of mine, in another incarnation South of The Border eleven years ago. He was retiring, and moving to his rural retreat in the back country near Dungog. He stated, in his farewell speech, that he was to become 'a Country Gentleman'.

    Hilarity all around (other than from him) when I told him he's used four syllables too many....

  7. today Astonisher online "Have we learnt nothing from the GST?" I think they meant GFC, pretty sloppy all-round.

  8. A very entertaining week.

  9. Still laughing - great blog this week Pie. Simpo's "stories" on council being divided are a real stretch of the imagination. There will always be different and divided opinions but that's called democracy which he fails to understand. And as for Tapiolas' spray at council- huh ? And the reason? We'll never know because there's nothing given in the story. And today's page one story about the death of the soldier in the US - desperate for a strong lead story the paper makes a tenuous link to say or suggest he was from Townsville. He wasn't. He might have worked here for a while but he was from Adelaide and worked in reported repeatedly by other media web sites includes News Limited. Go figure!.

  10. If proven TRUE, it will be very disappointing for Rolf fans.

    I loved the wobble board.

  11. Pie,
    Another good weekly round up of the week that was.

    Miss Lou.

  12. Thanks 'Pie; you should market yourself as a new aid to dieting... Truly, that pic of the guy with his b*llocks hanging out, well, I have to tell you, it completely put me off my organic muesli...

  13. I thought The Cat and Testicles would be a great name for an English pub, can you just imagine that pic on the board outside?????

    Maybe the caption should have been "cure your cat of fur balls" ?????

  14. Paul Anderson of PimlicoJanuary 19, 2014 at 3:02 PM

    I’d quite like to take the Astonisher to task for their ‘coverage’ last week of the monsoon trough waaay out in the Coral Sea that by ALL reputable accounts was never going to threaten (let alone molest) the Queensland coast, but they nevertheless couldn't resist trying to whip up anxiety (no doubt under the ‘better-safe-than-sorry’ (or even worse – ‘one-day-we’ll-cry-wolf-and-actually-be-right’) excuse) about impending cyclonic doom. Don’t know if the photo in the print version matched that used online, but it was a satellite photo of…a fully formed cyclone…nothing at all like what was actually going on out there, but who cares, right? The region’s been starved of rain for so long that the first whiff of a possibility that we might get a shower or two and they’re going on as though the world’s about to end…which would be really alarming if there was anyone left who still takes them seriously. Still and all, there (truly) ought to be a law…

  15. I recall Scott Radford once submitted a chair in a pool during a cyclone.

    page 1 stuff.

  16. Pastor from Abbott StreetJanuary 19, 2014 at 6:44 PM

    Well my first time comment Magpie, but I must say that since Tony Raggatt has been brought forward in the paper to the first few pages, I have lost all respect I had for him. His page 4 item re an application by a company called Wingate sets him in the Simpleton class. for example, ""with residents suggesting it has already received the nod" ....Which residents??? Rasmussen residents?? They have secretly got the info from ?????? when the application would appear to be still before the council???

    Also first mentioned in the article is Raggat's hobby horse of late "the nearby Pinnacles development"... nearby to Rasmussen???? what crap! Then pitiless Paul from the Gumlow loonies says "they have possibly been given the green light"..... Nowhere in Raggatt's article did he mention that he contacted the council officers, or the mayor to see if the Residents and Paul had correct "inside knowledge". Raggatt has now turned out like the rest of them.

  17. So we have more changes at the Astonisher and Dumbo Jones' office it seems. Failed wannabe journo Amanda Gray - from that renowned column of drivel - Gray Matters - is moving on. Perhaps the axing of her say nothing L plate and factually incorrect column last year was the last straw? And Dumbo continues to live up to his name. His new electorate officer is none other than a cameraman from Channel Seven. No disrespect to the lad but going from behind a news camera to electorate officer for Federal MP?? Really???? Very much jobs for the LNP boys.

    1. This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

Interesting stuff, BB, and one wonders why the Astonisher decided to give someone who was not either a journalist, writer of any background or 'celebrity around town' - giggle) space in the paper. Indeed, while The 'Pie made merry of Ms Gray, since she was foisted upon an unsuspecting public, it was more a comment on the paper's editorial management. 

      Same goes for the cruel and delayed unnatural punishment meted out weekly to young Kate Higgins ... you may rest assured that in years to come, Kate will re-read some of the stuff she has written and suffer agonies of embarrassment and possibly anger at management letting her make such a dill of herself. But any guiding hands are not made available under the new management down there.


Columns need to be written by writers, and not all journalists are writers. For that matter, all writers are not trained journalists, as is the case with Shari Tagliabue, who writes a consistently entertaining column with clever turns of phrase that generally gives an original angle even to the most mundane subject (but then, Shazza has a few life experience miles clocked up, and that does make a difference).


But contrary to popular newsprint lore, news cameramen are also humans and citizens, and the reporter and the video editor shape the finished product, so any suggestion of bias is unfounded. So can't agree with the comment about the cameraman heading off to squeeze passed the Member for Herbert to enter his office as some sort of factotum.

      By the by, when was the last time you heard of a political party giving a job to one other than their own ... inviting the fox into the hen house is suicidal politics. Works for them all, so don't agree with that 'jobs for the boys' either.


First task in his new job might be fending off questions about his boss's offer of Commonwealth funds in the form of staff and office equipment to back the teeth-gnashing Pinnacles push. Dumbo offered those services to put their case, but hasn't replied to The 'Pie's quite reasonable question whether he would extend the same taxpayer genorosity to the majority of Townsville ratepayers opposed to the project, for which they will all ultimately have to pay.

      NOTE: the deleted comment was this one, but - as usual - poorly subbed. So all you legals out there, don't get too excited.

    3. makes sense. Cameraman knows the best angles. Literally. Left right.

  18. I know that bloke in the pic - his name is Claude Ball.
    The Elephant.

  19. Rassmussen is not my favourite suburb. What demographic are they wanting to buy there? Illegal refugees, Indonesian politicians, or baby boomers?

  20. Oh dear, what a norty John Nutting on the ABC state-wide program on Saturday. Townsville ouncillors are not happy with a comment he made during the programme that clearly suggested that the Townsville City Council formally endorsed the idea of Invasion Day.

    Norty on two fronts ... for making an untrue claim about the TCC, but for the unforgivable crime of getting , and believing unquestioningly, his information from the Townsville Bulletin. From Daniel 'Master' Bateman to boot in this story

    which is the usual half-baked, unreasearched hysterical shit stirring.

    The Pie's laid-back old chum Nutters was a little too lackadaisical when he interviewed some bod about the regressive and divisive Invasion Day 'celebrations' planned around Queensland during the week, as an indigenous counter-point to Australia Day. Airing both sides of this issue is - in a possibly inappropriate phrase - fair enough.

    He then talked with Kid Crisafulli, who believed it wasn't a good idea, as it just increased tensions and promoted unrealistivc expectations ('we are all Australians' quoth the good Kid) - not his exact words, but that was the message. Which again is fair enough.

    The trouble came when John at one stage prefaced a question with the suggestion that 'after all' the Townsville City Council supported the Invasion Day concept, with Clr Sue Blom making supportive comments, and that the gathering was to be held in rooms owned by the council.

    Clr Blom is entitled to her individual view, but she does not speak for the council.

    The council has made no such endorsement, in fact it took no vote on the matter one way or another on Invasion Day. Why would it, that sort of Big Brother moral judgement is way out of the remit of a council, surely?

    What has happened is that the council was approached by an indigenous group seeking the use of council rooms to have an Invasion Day meeting two days ahead of Australia Day. The council gets scores of requests from all sorts of groups for this amenity, which is almost always granted. When The Pie asked Deputyy Mayor Vern Veitch about the matter, he wasn't a happy chook that all of Queensland had been incorrectly told that the TCC backed this divisive and highly debatable concept.

    'At no time did the council hear a motion to the issue, let alone take a vote on it. Clr Blom's comments are her own. The council did vote to allow the group to have the space for the meeting, it is not up to us to judge whether a cause is worthy of censure or approval, all community groups are entitled to seek council space.'

    Clr Veitch said the rent for the space was waived, as it usually is, under the standing Community Service Obligation.

    Clr Tony Parsons told The 'Pie that what was voted on affirmatively was an amount of money - he couldn't recall how much - to go towards what he called 'reconciliation activities'.

    Although the ABC's Nutters was advised in plenty of time to correct his blooper on air, he chose for whatever reason not to do so, and thus led a large proportion of his state-wide audience to believe that the Townsville City Council officially backed what many see as a slur on Australia Day.

    That was really norty, Nutters.

  21. I read with interest a story written by Anthony The Simpleton ,regarding sprinklers on the Strand ,and the anguish it causes a Gentleman in a wheelchair who "Walks the strand every morning early".I too walk the strand early,with a group of four people most mornings,andh have been doing this for the last 13years and have not seen said gentleman.We leave the rock pool at 5 45am ,and yes we do have to avoid the sprinklersat various stages along the way,but it is no big deal.As far as slipping or tripping on something..that is BS. These mornings,we look foward to a bit of a cool down from the oppressive humidity. Ray Burton is down there most mornings ,so if something could be done ,i am sure it would be. Obviously nothing has happened in Walker st for the ace political reporter to be worried about this matter.

    1. You would therefore probably enjoy the shade from the high-rise buildings and CSG nodding donkeys that will soon profligate along The Strand...

  22. The latest in our occasional series Names To Conjure With.

    Over at Amsterdam University there is a professor of neurobiology who rejoices in the moniker Dr Dick Swabb.

    He has written a book titled We Are Our Brains, which leads to further contemplation, especially by those females who believe men often confuse that organ with another more centrally located one.

  23. for Bully Boy I believe that a former Channel 9 reporter in Townsville is a media officer (or was) for D Chrisafulle.a

  24. Does being Australian mean driving a Korean car to an Irish pub to drink Belgian beer - then picking up a curry on the way home - to sit on Swedish furniture and watch an American movie on a Chinese TV? As Australia Day approaches its appropriate to consider what it is that makes us Australian?

    Being Australian is being a confident contributor to the global community, being resilient in the face of overwhelming odds, creating opportunities out of challenges and being competitive. Being Australian makes you part of one the most respected nations on the planet.

    Being Australian means standing up for a fair go, mateship, having a larrikin sense of humour, irreverence for authority, an adventurous spirit, a disdain for pretence and snobbery and a willingness to pitch in to help others less fortunate. It means respecting the brave ANZACs who fought an unwinnable battle. As a nation and individuals we have a reputation as people who, when down, can pick ourselves back up and try again.

    Now, more than in any time in our history, we punch above our weight on the global stage. We are respected as educated, honest, brave, hardworking people who have contributed great movies, written great books, painted great works of art and encouraged some of the greatest musicians and bands to perform.

    Being Australian means being competitive but fair. We grow the best wool, beef, sugar, dairy and wine. We mine minerals that the world needs to support its population.

    As Australians, we'll have a go at any sport, take on the whole world and often win. Our identity means beating the British at cricket and rugby league, New Zealand at rugby and netball the Americans at swimming and sailing but most importantly, we’ll have a barbie at the end of it with our opponents.

    All Australians can stand tall, mate, 'cos we are members of the one of the most respected people on earth. Being Australian is bloody awesome mate.

    1. Huh?

      'We are respected as educated, honest, brave, hardworking people ...'
      Well, Col, those who make that judgement on us obviously don't read all the anonymous Texts To The Editor.

      By the way, at what level do you intend running for office ... council, state or federal?

    2. Fair suck of the saveloy, Col. You've recycled every jingoistic myth to the stage where it sounds like an Oz version of the Yanks' sickening catch-phrase, "The greatest country on God's earth."
      Whenever I see FIG JAM spread so heavily I always think of that old truism, "Patriotism is the last refuge of the scoundrel."
      In truth, Australians overseas are often seen as uncouth, drunken, loud-mouthed boors -- mostly due to the actions of people who have been fed this bullshit about our nation's superior qualities since they were in nappies.

    3. Don't forget the "externalities", Col.

    4. Good onya Col. Couldn't find the "Like" button.

    5. By Jingo! You going to set that to music, Col?

  25. Col, arsekissing will not fly here(excuse the pun). Next you'll be walking the strand kissing babies heads, don't get ya feet wet mate.

  26. Colin Dwyer for mayor at the next Council Election (sic)

  27. Pie, Great blog. One of your best, including the rude "cat got your ..." pix. Cheers, Gonzo.

  28. To The Pastor from Abbott an almost daily traveller along Beck Drive, I noticed the sudden - and very efficient - clearing of the Chonky Apple forest along the western side, down towards Allambie Lane.

    As the Defence Housing project is almost up to the eastern side of Beck Drive, it was only a matter of time before development spread across the road.

    I have also seen the allotment plans hanging off the fences. I have not stopped to read them, but from what I can see of the surveyors' pegs, it looks like the land will be chopped up into 5 or 10 acre blocks. With the river so close, this may be the only sound development option.

    I had not given the matter any thought, but, if asked, I would have guessed that, given the extent and progress of the works done, council approval would have been already obtained. If not, then maybe the developer is taking a punt on getting approval in the near future.

    So? I don't see what the big deal is. If the development is not approved, Wingate can't sell the allotments. I have not seen any "for sale" signs - yet. The only mild concern I had would be whether access to the blocks would be onto Beck Drive, which is an 80 kph zone at that point.

    I agree that the Becks Drive development - and Rasmussen itself - is a long way from The Pinnacles idiocracy. However, Pinnacles may impact upon Beck Drive and Rasmussen in an adverse way.

    The original roadworks plan for Pinnacles including a road linking up to the western end of Allambie Lane. From there, the 15,000-odd extra traffic movement per day would be fed into Allambie Lane which, in its current state, really is little more than a country lane. By the way, to all you Trogs out there - it is accepted town planning practice in a development such as Pinnacles and likely resident demographic to multiply the number of resident allotments by 2.5 to calculate MINIMUM total work- day traffic movements.

    From Allambie Lane, traffic will either flow through to Riverway Drive or turn off into Beck Drive and get to the Willows that way. Neither Riverway nor Beck Drive has anything like the capacity to handle such an increase in traffic.

    The alternative plan is just as bad, traffic-wise. An additional 3,000-odd movements funnelled into Kelso Drive. From there, vehicles will either turn right to join long-suffering Riverway Drive, or turn left and do a rat run Kelso Drive-Hammond Way-Shetland Place (already marked to be extended to Allambie Lane)-Beck Drive-Hervey Range Road. These roads are not designed for that type of traffic.

    The Pinnacles is a potential disaster and an exercise in poor planning and cowboy development. I find it difficult to believe TCC took them seriously in the first place. Any proponent of the development certainly doesn't plan to live there - or even within 3 suburbs of the joint.

    My one acre of paradise on route but is a lot closer to town - and we don't even have sewerage.

    There is absolutely no need for it. As "Pie points out, there is an abundance of land along established growth corridors and within a practical distance from existing infrastructure networks.

    Sorry about the length, 'Pie, but, when I complain about developments and town plans etc, I feel obliged to set out the basis of my complaints from a town planning perspective. (unlike some... Strand Fan et al?)

    1. Pastor from Abbott StreetJanuary 24, 2014 at 7:53 AM

      Grumpy I agree with you totally except for one point. I haven't seen the surveyor pegs on Wingate's Beck Drive land but maybe as the land was cleared they came into view after being covered for many years, Don't forget that land used to be in the city plan, but was removed because of flood problems. I think Santa may have pegged it out when he might have been the owner years ago. I think Wingate (according to our esteemed Daily newspaper) have proposed solutions to the flood problem and hence the application to be brought back in to the urban boundary.