Thursday, April 11, 2019

A Catfish Problem in Vic Liberal Party?

Read Michael Millard's answer to Would the Victorian Liberal Party tolerate a catfish in their executive? Why? on Quora

The person is now an executive of a major conservative political party in Australia. But when I had met them online, on Facebook at a place called Conservative Cafe, They were troubled, down and out and pursued by some awful people, dealing with lawfare. I ran a FB page and invited them over as an admin, to give them a defence against the abuse I could see them fielding. People warned me about the person I was protecting. I asked for details so I could verify what they had done, but all I got was a stream of abuse.
At first, in the desperation of the abusers to get to the person I protected, I documented some of what happened. This included leaders of a far right organisation calling itself the Australian Defence League (ADL), and later, the Australian Tea Party. They invited me to join them. I researched who they were, off shoots of the EDL. I declined. I was sent a parcel by a guy claiming to be a pedophile. I declined the parcel, not wanting to have anything to do with it. But the person I’d been protecting had got a parcel too, and it was a lawfare document threatening to sue them for posting on the person on the FB page, which I’d not done. I could not understand the hysteria the person generated. I asked about it and got vague answers about a silence clause on previous litigation.
For a few years, the drama played out. I got a secondary FB account to keep watch of what others were saying, but FB nixed that after I’d told the person I was shielding. I could not afford what others had, who had multiple accounts, so I brought on board a former student. That worked ok for a year. Things settled a little. But the person I was protecting had more issues. Their FB account was hacked while they were on holidays and everything was a drama to them. They shared accounts with others, but never me, I won’t do that.
After about three years, they attacked a Jewish friend of mine. My friend had posted a controversial piece and had taken an unpopular, but correct view. Typically, such things got attacked by anti semites, many of which were ADL. But the Person I’d protected sided with the anti semites against my Jewish friend. All would ave been ok, all I needed to do was to highlight what my Jewish friend had posted in direct contradiction of what his abusers were claiming, but the person I protected used their admin privileges to delete it and FB had made that irreversible in those days. Then they booted my friend. I spoke to my fellow admins how unhappy I was about the circumstance but they shrugged. So I walked away for a year.
During that year I was pushed by a cat fish I later realised was the person I'd protected. They begged me to come back. After a year, I was told by others that they wanted me back too. I was willing to work with the person whom I’d protected, to find out why they were a cat fish, but they walked, stole the page from my fellow admins they’d worked on for years and began gaslighting me. They created several fake pages on FB, copying the name of the page I ran.
Thing is, I had lost everything I ever owned and had to move cities. I went to Melbourne where the person I’d protected lived. I checked out shared accommodation for single people and came across the name of the confessed pedophile living in the same suburb as the person I’d protected. One of my fellow admins had been in a political party, and the person I’d protected had travelled across Melbourne to be in their branch. Then they gaslit my former admin, and became an executive in the party.
Years before, the ADL had bragged they had had a weapon which could not be controlled, but was launched. It was a person with a personality disorder who sowed dissent wherever they went. I believe it was the person I’d protected.

Image from public site

Read David Daniel Ball's answer to What personal experience taught you to never allow people to take advantage of your kindness? on Quora

I knew them as SnJ as they had had a joint account with their spouse, reasoning they'd never be accountable for anything they did because no one would know who ran the account at any time. 

I raised the issue with a senior party member prior to the Victorian Election 2018. I pulled out of my own campaign in Dandenong when I made the connection. I promised not to raise the issue before the state election. I kept my promise. 

Wednesday, April 03, 2019

Tammy is getting Married

I am very proud of my daughter. She is getting married on Saturday 6th April, 2019. Why Saturday, you ask? Because every anniversary that follows will be near or on the weekend daylight savings ends. Her husband may feel he is busy with work during anniversary celebrations, but Tammy has given him an extra hour to get his act together.

Getting married will be the happiest day of your life. Not because you never have joy again, you will. It will grow richer and deeper. Not having to fend for yourself alone lifts a tremendous burden. But today is a magical one. Things can be frustrating, but there is grace and forgiveness. And hope.

Tammy has a gift. It doesn't always work as she intends it, but it is a magical power. She brings people together. I noticed this on a trip I made from Sydney to Melbourne, scouting for a place to live. The only things that went right for me on that trip involved Tammy. We had dinner with friends at a Korean BBQ. And everyone that was there was there because Tammy was in Melbourne. Including me. And tonight everyone who is here is here because of Tammy and David.

I have three quotes for her and David
Ecclesiastes 4:9-12

John Dillet Freeman Blessings for a marriage

1 Corinthians 13

All three quotes are of love and marriage. The wisdom of Solomon is proverbial, yet he married four hundred times and had six hundred concubines as well. He died before he was sixty, aged before his time. Paul did not write of his family, but it would have been strange were he not to have married. He certainly knew something when he wrote to Corinth. James Dillet Freeman had a strange marriage, but his blessing is profound.
Ecclesiastes 4:9-12
Two are better than one,
    because they have a good return for their labor:
If either of them falls down,
    one can help the other up.
But pity anyone who falls
    and has no one to help them up.
Also, if two lie down together, they will keep warm.
    But how can one keep warm alone?
Though one may be overpowered,
    two can defend themselves.
A cord of three strands is not quickly broken.

1 Corinthians 13
If I speak in the tongues of men or of angels, but do not have love, I am only a resounding gong or a clanging cymbal. If I have the gift of prophecy and can fathom all mysteries and all knowledge, and if I have a faith that can move mountains, but do not have love, I am nothing.If I give all I possess to the poor and give over my body to hardship that I may boast, but do not have love, I gain nothing.
Love is patient, love is kind. It does not envy, it does not boast, it is not proud. It does not dishonor others, it is not self-seeking, it is not easily angered, it keeps no record of wrongs.Love does not delight in evil but rejoices with the truth. It always protects, always trusts, always hopes, always perseveres.
Love never fails. But where there are prophecies, they will cease; where there are tongues,they will be stilled; where there is knowledge, it will pass away. For we know in part and we prophesy in part, but when completeness comes, what is in part disappears. When I was a child, I talked like a child, I thought like a child, I reasoned like a child. When I became a man, I put the ways of childhood behind me. For now we see only a reflection as in a mirror; then we shall see face to face. Now I know in part; then I shall know fully, even as I am fully known.
And now these three remain: faith, hope and love. But the greatest of these is love.

John Dillet Freeman Blessings for a marriage
May your marriage bring you 
all the exquisite excitements a marriage should bring, 
and may life grant you also patience, 
tolerance, and understanding. 
May you always need one another - 
not so much to fill your emptiness 
as to help you to know your fullness. 
A mountain needs a valley to be complete; 
the valley does not make the mountain less, 
but more; and the valley is more a valley 
because it has a mountain towering over it. 
So let it be with you and you. 
May you need one another, but not out of weakness.
May you want one another, but not out of lack.
May you entice one another, but not compel one another.
May you embrace one another, but not encircle one another.
May you succeed in all important ways with one another,  
and not fail in the little graces.
May you look for things to praise, 
often say, "I love you!"
 and take no notice of small faults. 
If you have quarrels that push you apart, 
may both of you hope to have good sense enough 
to take the first step back. 
May you enter into the mystery 
which is the awareness of one another's presence - 
no more physical than spiritual, 
warm and near when you are side by side, 
and warm and near when you are in separate rooms 
or even distant cities. 
May you have happiness, 
and may you find it making one another happy. 
May you have love, 
and may you find it loving one another.

Thank you David and Tammy. This is the happiest day of my life too. 

Following the wedding 6th April

Things change. My daughter has married, and now I'm not needed to be what I was. I will always be a friend, and always have an ear and be available. But she now has a family she is going to grow with. They are her higher priority. Part of her day to day living. And that is what I want, and how it should be. I was nervous before they married. I had thought the event might be more .. desperate. Maybe I was hoping for a larger role, moving forward? But what I saw on the night gives me peace. The family she has joined are big, loving and good. I now have something in my life I had thought I had missed. But God is very good to me.

Medley for wedding pictures/video
Earth, stream and tree encircled by sea
Waves sweep the sand from my island.
My sunsets fade.
Field and glade wait only for rain
Grain after grain love erodes my
High weathered walls which fend off the tide
Cradle the wind
To my island.
Gaunt granite climbs where gulls wheel and glide
Mournfully glide o'er my island.
My dawn bride's veil, damp and pale,
Dissolves in the sun.
Love's web is spun, cats prowl, mice run
Wreathe snatch-hand briers where owls know my eyes
Violet skies
Touch my island,
Touch me.
Beneath the wind turned wave
Infinite peace
Islands join hands
'Neathe heaven's sea.
Dark harbor quays like fingers of stone
Hungrily reach from my island.
Clutch sailor's words, pearls and gourds
Are strewn on my shore.
Equal in love, bound in circles.
Earth, stream and tree return to the sea
Waves sweep sand from my island,
From me.
Who can turn the world on with her smile?
Who can take a nothing day, and suddenly make it all seem worthwhile?
Well it's you girl, and you should know it
With each glance and every little movement you show it

Love is all around, no need to waste it
You can never tell, why don't you take it
You're gonna make it after all
Somethin' in the wind has learned my name
And it's tellin' me that things are not the same
In the leaves on the trees and the touch of the breeze
There's a pleasin' sense of happiness for me
There is only one wish on my mind
When this day is through I hope that I will find
That tomorrow will be just the same for you and me
All I need will be mine if you are here
I'm on the top of the world lookin' down on creation
And the only explanation I can find
Is the love that I've found ever since you've been around
Your love's put me at the top of the world
My Jesus, my Saviour
Lord there is none like You
All of my days I want to praise
The wonders of Your mighty love
My comfort, my shelter
Tower of refuge and strength
Let every breath, all that I am
Never cease to worship You
Shout to the Lord all the Earth, let us sing
Power and majesty, praise to the King
Mountains bow down and the seas will roar
At the sound of Your name
I sing for joy at the work of Your hand
Forever I'll love You, forever I'll stand
Nothing compares to the promise I have
In You

Wednesday, February 27, 2019

Cardinal George Pell is innocent

Pell is innocent and the finding of guilt against him is suspect. It should be overturned on appeal, but should never have been before a jury to begin with. The public were told it was mere process that was being followed. But it was an abuse of process and following process is being abused to keep Pell from making his case of innocence.

Firstly, I must say I have no special knowledge of the case. I'm not even aware of everything said either for George Pell, or against him. But what I am aware of leads me to speak out against the travesty of justice.

Cardinal Pell is at the end of his working life, but he has been an effective leader. Pell was promoted by his champion Pope John Paul II to Archbishop of Melbourne in 1996, following an effective career since being ordained in '66 in which Pell had been an athlete, journalist, Principal, earned a PhD and a Masters of Education. Pell was a gifted administrator. He was instrumental in getting Pope John Paul II elected, as well as Benedict and Francis. Pell has fallen foul of Francis after Pell refused to accept AGW hysteria embraced by Francis. Wikipedia has the line "his views on the environment, and global warming in particular, are inconsistent with established Catholic teachings."

Pell has been accused and convicted of having twice abused two altar boys in the mid '90s. He is said to have forced them to give oral sex while wearing special robes in a particular area of the church the boys should not have had access to. It was claimed he achieved this in five minutes. Except it would have been hard for him to have done so with the robes which required help to put on. It is unlikely he would have been alone in that place, but as a senior official, would have been accompanied most places.

At the same time, Pell made the Melbourne Response to Pedophilia in the church, giving victims access to resources and compensation, the first cleric to organise such a thing in Australia. Subsequently, improvements were made to legislation as a result of the initiative. We are expected to believe that Pell, who was targeted as an enemy of pedophiles, helping their victims, assaulted two altar boys over a month without having been noted for such behaviour before or since.

It is understood that the boys had had knowledge of the place they accused Pell of assaulting them. There is a simple explanation for that. They were abused by someone there, but it wasn't Pell. Pell, by process, was forced to prove to a jury that he hadn't done what he had not done. The prosecution made the claim the jury had no choice to convict Pell if they thought he might have done it. The judge has claimed Pell has shown no remorse when Pell has found the thought of such a thing abhorrent.

In making a claim for bail, the defence claimed the activity for which Pell was convicted was of a minor order. Some have claimed that is a confession, when it was a legal argument and not an admission at all.

I have no knowledge of the particulars, only a broad overview. Pedophiles will feel relieved Pell is in jail. The Pope might view it as a minor victory against an effective administrator who was preventing corruption the Pope endorses. The Law in Victoria has been shown to be unsafe and practitioners have been shown to be either corrupt, incompetent or both.

There are also the two victims behind the trial. One suicided, having denied they were abused by Pell. The other is in need of help, having survived a lifetime of abuse, and drug abuse.
More media reports

Were Cardinal George Pell innocent what kind of case would he have presented? Would it have been different to the trial?

Was Cardinal George Pell sold down the river by the Vatican he was investigating?

Did this picture lead to an unsafe conviction, being appealed, of Cardinal George Pell?

Can the unsafe conviction of George Pell be overturned on appeal, given the hysterical reporting?

Tony Abbott has refused to say if he will still support friend George Pell if his appeal fails

George Pell guilty: Vatican responds to ‘painful’ sex abuse verdict

Melbourne Archbishop to visit ‘friend’ George Pell in jail

Beyond reasonable doubt: Was Pell convicted without fear and favour?

'Devastating': Tony Abbott called his 'friend' George Pell following release of guilty verdict

Richter was accused by anti Pell brigade of not giving sufficient evidence for Pell's innocence. However, Richter did *everything* to show Pell was innocent without impugning the character of the accused. Because that would have unleashed worse. Pell's innocence was demonstrated at trial, but hostile interests refused to accept it. Further, the judge allowed the prosecution to over play their hand and tell the jury, repeatedly, that if it was possible for Pell to have committed the act they had to convict him. That is not true.

Monday, February 18, 2019

Socialists like drowning economic migrants for compassion

Read Paul Clifford's answer to Now that ALP are shedding popularity, can it be admitted the medical evacuation bill was a mistake? on Quora

PC: Now that ALP are shedding popularity, can it be admitted the medical evacuation bill was a mistake?
No! The medical evacuation bill is common sense to anyone that has a semblance of Christianity or humanity in them. Morrison & Dutton scare mongering is attempting to encourage fear in the community to a situation that has solutions other than their head-up-the arse approach.
The :Liberals have had six years to promote their most unpopular non-solution, and I saw on the news tonight that they have all of a sudden produced an international campaign, aired on overseas on TV. Too little, too late.
What I find most amusing is that in one breathe the Liberals are saying they can win the next election, whilst meanwhile they are rushing policy in preparation for losing government (eg: reopening Christmas Island).
Never forget that it was a Labor government that introduced mandatory detention of anyone that enters Australian territory without a valid visa. Labor has basically the same intentions as the Liberals. The differenceof course is the methods employed.
Labor has always operated within the law and within Australia’s international obligations , which in most cases, Liberal governments obligated Australia.
Liberal policy is to evade the law, making it necessary for persons to take the matter to court. It is the typical dishones”t tie it up in the courts” that carpet baggers have always used = wait to someone litigates, then appeal until your adversary runs out of money to pay the lawyers & court fees
Give it a week or so before Morrison & Dutton run out of steam and their outrage is revealed as absolute fakery. Morrison was hated when he had Dutton’s job! The fool is just reminding people why they hated him.
DDB: ALP compassion has killed thousands, and will again.
PC: Prove it! ALP introduced the policy of mandatory detection. They set up Manus Island & Nauru. So if Labor’s compassion has killed thousands, the Liberal’s have killed thousands more, by avoiding the legal processes that past Liberal governments oblifgated Australia to in their signing international agreements.
The policies are the same, but the processes are different. bTo date the Liberal processes have cost the Australian tax payer millions in litigation, none of which the government has won. Spend a couple of years in one of the Liberal Party’s gulags get awarded a million or two for the inconvenience and go somewhere and live off the proceeds for the rest of your life. What more incentive could people want.
Before Keating (Labor) introduced mandatory detention, Indonesian fishermaen would transport people to Australia, so they could go for their first plane flight. Liberal policy was to fly them straight back to where they came from, which is what they wanted. Then Australia was stuck with dealing with the refugees. When the Hawke/Keating era ended and we got Johnny Howard, the solution was to build plastic boats, ship the refugees within reach of Indonesia and propel the boats from international waters. That cost millions and was a dismal failure. Much more sensible to supply Indonesia with equipment & training to patrol their borders to prevent piracy & people smuggling.
A sensible policy would be to issue restricted protection visa’s and prohibit refugees from going anywhere within 200ks of the coast. Regional towns in the outback are dying as their youth has moved to the cities. WA & Tas have assimilated refugees into remoter populations successfully.
We need an assimilation programme for refugees, and if they are kept out of the major centres then it discourages the economic refugees leaving room for the genuine refugees whom past Liberal party gaovernments have obligated Australia to accept. If this fact was admitted by Morrison & Dutton there might be some progress forward that won’t require the litigation that Liberal obstructionism encourages.
If you want to save refugees lives’, petition the USA to leave the middle east. They are there illegally (without UN sanction), and it is they that are causing the refugee crisis. It is also they who aided, financed and armed the Taliban, Maharajin & Daesh (Isis), to protect USA interests in the middle east - such is admitted by the USA media, and acknowledged by the military.
Australia had a chance under Turnbull’s Menziean projections, but Abbott et al has made the Liberal’s unelectable. It was only a few weeks ago that we read about the Liberal Party party needed to purge the Young Liberals because of the stacking of branches with ultra right wing extremists (Nazi & like).
It is 1942 again, where moderacy of government was dismissed in favour of extremist. Menzies was forced to resign, and he formed the Liberals. I suspect that Menzies, if he was still alive, would be in tears. Even Frazier decried the Liberal’s refugee policy as inhumane and futile.
The first ship suck in the middle east at the beginning of WW2 was by the British, shelling a ship chartered by Jewish refugees, and sinking it off the coast of Palestine. It is this event that set the background to the UNs refugee policy which a past Liberal government oblibated Australia, and the current Liberal government goes out of its way to evade. Why? Pure politics!
DDB: Possibly Australia's greatest immigration minister was Phillip Ruddock who had convinced Malcolm Fraser to accept Vietnamese refugees who were coming to Australia by boat, and dying en route. An estimated 50% dying en route after being preyed on by Vietnamese and Chinese based pirates who would kill them for their gold. Also, bad weather on seas killed more. Those landing in Malaysia were notably machine gunned on beaches. Ruddock was to be an executive on Amnesty International until activists got that organisation to back terrorists. But Ruddock did not have Malcolm Fraser's suspect racist views which corresponded with ALP Fraser would later embrace. The boat people tragedy Howard faced did not have the same death rate, as people smugglers had moved their operations. But still thousands were dying, drowning in bad seas. People smugglers were collecting life savings from families before setting off, piracy having entered the 21st century. $10k plus per person. The Pacific Solution stopped that. The boat trafficking stopped. In 2002, Gillard said she had a more compassionate way that kept people smuggling viable. Under Rudd, Gillard ended the Pacific Solution, but it took a few years to ramp up again. An estimated 1 in 30 drowned after special arrangements were made flying the economic migrants to Indonesia ad putting them on boats there. The ocean journey was shortened, but still claiming lives. Sri Lankans sailing from Sri Lanka were more at risk. Gillard tried punitive measures, but it took Tony Abbott's government, with Scott Morrison as Immigration Minister to stop the piracy. Shorten's recent success has meant the trade could begin again. The trade takes lives. ALP keep restarting it, claiming to be compassionate. You wrote about other irrelevant things that were argumentative I've not addressed here. 

PC: Liberal policy in the aftermath of the Vietnam war, was to supply the guns to shoot the refugees.
Never forget, it was Liberal governments in their arse licking of LBJ that conscripted Australia’s youth to face death in an unjustified war!
Liberal’s Vietnam policy is what obligated Australia to aid the Vietnamese refugees, instead they turned their backs on people that were allies during the war! All blood shed saturates the Liberals in their white supremist attitude.
At least Labor gave these desperate people refuge why they could.
It is noteworthy that in retirement that Frazier & Whitlam became friends through their mutual aim to combat the facism of the modern Liberal Party.
I’m old enough to have lived through the Vietnam era, and I remember the protest marches when the Crowd would shout “All the way to LBJ” referring to Long Bay Jail, where Liberals displaced people that defied the Liberal’s aims of implementing totalitarianism in Australia.
I should also mention that in in earl;y 1980s I was in the top income tax bracket, paying by decree of the Liberal’s 60% tax on every extra dollar I earnt if I hadn’t used the loopholes the Liberals implemented so wealthy people could legally evade income tax. Hawke/Keating eliminated most of the loop holes through the implementation of FBT, and doing so, enabled the Labor government to reduce income tax for everyone.
I voted for the Liberal’s for sometime on archiac ideological groungs. Hawke changed my mind. Howard, entrenched my thinking that the Liberal’ssince Menzies retirement are the worst governments Australia has experienced.
Remember, Liberal treasurers have never received internation recognition for their competence. Labor has had two treasurers who have been applauded by their international peers and received awards.
Don’t start me on the Liberal’s financial mismanagement, I could go on for pages…

ps: I am a self managed retiree, independent of government, and Labor’s Franking Credit correction will hurt me. The Liberal Party sanctions theft of public monies by the wealthy, I don’t, which is why I will never vote for the detritus that now populates that party. Mind you if the local Liberal candidate was a person of repute, I might consider voting for them if I thought they would attempt to represent my community in its entirety, but I would never again vote a Liberal Party ticket.

Socialists care about pride?

Read Gwydion Madawc Williams' answer to Is China frightened of a UK gunboat? on Quora

DDB: Thank you for a socialist viewpoint

Here is the socialist site .. note the anti zionism

How socialists argue re NASA and the Moon

Read George Gonzalez's answer to Is this a space vision Obama lacked? Going to the moon using competitive commercial interests? on Quora

DDB: So why are several businesses lined up to compete for contracts?

GG: Ha ha ha. Such contracts have a clause in them that companies just LOVE. It says something like “Fartknocker Industries shall make a “best effort” to do whatever limited thing is described below. Failure is an option. Government’s most extreme recourse if Fartknocker can’t fulfill even 1% of what is promised is that Government contract agents will have to wait 30 minutes before accepting lucrative jobs from Fartknocker Industries.”

Companies LOVE “best effort” contracts. They also try to add in “cost plus 5%”, then the more they inflate the costs, the more profit they make. Free cake for everyone!

So GG feels their reflexive dismissal which was not even true, is funny, when caught out

Sunday, February 17, 2019

Fat Shaming Trump

Media release fake news fat shaming Trump. I question it.

Read Jon Mixon's answer to Is this fake news aimed at fat shaming Trump? on Quora

JM's reply is deficient. I ask for detail

DDB: And yet he has achieved what every president since Reagan has said is impossible on several diverse areas. Is that accidental? Lucky? Or is your answer deficient?

JM: He’s deficient.

Not certain which sources of news you are reading, listening to or watching (I see. that you are not in the US) but it’s clear that Donald Trump is not only poor leader, he is one of the worst POTUS in our history. There’s ample evidence of that, even if you ignore the fact that he’ll likely face criminal indictment (at least at the state level) when he leaves office.

Your ability to to comprehend the myriad news sources which are stating that seems to be “deficient”, champ.

DDB: Aside from denying my citizenship, is there any substance you can point to? I hear your anger. However, he has cut taxes, cut spending and used bilateral relationships to improve foreign relations regionally when others had said it was impossible.

JM: Frankly, I didn’t ask for your opinion, so I’m under no obligation to provide you with citations which are readily available.

If you can provide a more accurate answer, then do so.

SH: Ummmm….. What are the things every president since Reagan has said were impossible? When and where did both Bushes, Clinton and Obama say these things were impossible?

DDB: Peace in the Middle East re Israel. Putting an embassy in Israel. Calling out Palestinian origin lies. Preventing Iran getting nuclear weapons. Negotiating with NK. Helping Venezuela. Cutting taxes. Cutting spending. Getting Americans back to work. Getting Democrats to announce their policies

Here is a good answer

This answer is emotive 

This answer reminds me MAGA is not racist, but triggers people who are

Sunday, February 10, 2019

Media posting adverts as articles

“When travelling overseas, it’s always a good idea to try and experience the local culture. And given recreational marijuana is legal in California, it would be rude of me not to try it.”
That was the pitch I made to my editor before my recent trip to Los Angeles, and she begrudgingly gave me her blessing.
There are plenty of cannabis stores in LA to choose from, but several Uber drivers told me the one to check out was MedMen. “It’s the Apple store of Cannabis stores,” they told me.
Now to all those reading I’d like to stress that I am not and never have been a pothead. I’d only tried it once before many years ago with my housemate while we watched the Hannah Montana movie. Halfway through the film we both swore we spotted our mate’s dad in the background of a scene (it wasn’t him) and we rolled around on the floor laughing for a good 20 minutes before our female housemate stormed into the room and told us to grow up. Clearly she wasn’t a Hannah Montana fan.
So I was understandably a little out of my depth as I entered the MedMen store in West Hollywood. After showing my driver’s license (you need to be over 21 and have photo ID with you to get in the store) I walked inside and boy, those Uber drivers weren’t lying.
A Melbourne “sugar baby” who has been paid $50,000 by a series of wealthy men with a “fetish” for spoiling young women says she wouldn’t have been able to afford her rent and university fees otherwise.
“Samantha”, originally from New Zealand, is currently studying teaching at Monash University while working full-time. The 26-year-old earns $60,000 a year and pays $1800 a month in rent, but says due to being an overseas student, she pays upfront fees of between $8500 to $10,000 per semester.
For the past couple of years she has used controversial “sugar dating” website Seeking Arrangement to connect with older men, who have lavished her with expensive meals and clothing, an allowance and even holidays.
“The most outrageous thing was a four-day weekend away in Bali, I was paid $8000 for that plus all expenses paid as well,” she said.
“Yes, you do have sex but it’s not expected of you. This is what people want to know. You don’t have to but you tend to find you develop these relationships, a lot are superficial but you still have a friendship connection.”

Backyard cricket is an Australian summer tradition going back generations — but this year, millennials have made one very crucial change: They’re doing it completely naked and documenting their exploits on Instagram.
On Australia Day, Get Naked Australia posted a photo of one such game, showing a guy — nude apart from his Akubra — being bowled LBW by a woman wearing nothing but an impressive tan line, as their naked mates fielded.

Before Valentina Marie was a social media star, she worked at a tanning salon in Rome, New York, making less than $US200 ($AU281) a week.
Now, the 27-year-old says, she rakes in more than $US1000 ($AU1405) a day selling explicit photos and videos via her Snapchat account, for which users pay a subscriber fee to see pornographic performances.
“Last night I did a show, and I have a collar that goes around your neck and is attached to nipple clamps, so I started off using that,” she tells The Post about a video she recorded for the 1000-plus followers of her private Snapchat channel.
“I do shows six to seven days a week. Sometimes it’s me in the shower. I have every sex toy you could ever think of.”
Valentina Marie is part of a new generation of “cam girls” using social media apps to hawk sexy snaps and videos in exchange for cash. The fast-growing trend is even taking a bite out of the porn industry.
“All of this is a shift away from the (movie) studio system to a system controlled by performers,” Mike Stabile, an adult film industry consultant, tells The Post. “These (personal accounts) have really exploded in the past year, and some performers are making a ton of money.”
Among them is Kira Lee Orsag, aka Dani Daniels, a top-rated performer on who has won several Adult Video News Awards (the Oscars of the porn world). She’s stopped filming porn for studios in favour of marketing herself on Snapchat — and she tells The Post that she makes more money now than she did working for production companies.
“Premium social media was a major factor in my decision to no longer shoot with production companies,” Orsag says. “Now, I own my own content and can monetise it for myself and not for anyone else.”
Valentina Marie, who has been doing this type of work for around a year, has never filmed a professional porno, nor does she plan to.
“I would never do Bang Bros or Pornhub or anything like that,” says the engaged mom of two. “The big difference is the control. I can control everything that gets put out. I don’t have anyone telling me what to do.”
She is the best-selling model on, a site that links to the social media profiles of more than 200 women selling explicit content. The site also acts as a middleman by handling subscriptions — Valentina Maria lands 10 to 15 new subscribers a day, according to a company spokeswoman — and user fees.
The cost is $US25 ($AU35) per month or $US100 ($AU140) for lifetime access to her private Snapchat channel, and Teddy’s Girls takes a 25 per cent cut.
Other women who don’t use an agency are paid directly by users, usually via Venmo or PayPal. The Post watched as someone used Venmo to send $US20 ($AU28) — in exchange for a topless photo — to a Los Angeles-based female comedian.
The comic, who declined to be interviewed, posts previews of her racy content on Snapchat and Instagram (on which she has some 126,000 followers), with emojis covering parts of her naked body. She is careful to avoid terminology, such as “sex” and “nude,” and images that could lead to her account being flagged or removed.
Snapchat states in its community guidelines, “We prohibit accounts that promote or distribute pornographic content.”
Instagram bars nudity with some exceptions. “Post-mastectomy scarring and women actively breastfeeding are allowed. Nudity in photos of paintings and sculptures is OK, too,” according to the company’s community guidelines.
Valentina Marie, who posts live sex shows to her NSFW Snapchat channel four to five times a day, plus teasers on her public profiles, says that: “I definitely make (the most money) from people who have already purchased subscriptions and are buying extras.”
For an average gratuity of about $US50 ($AU70), she’ll send customised videos and photos.
“For example, the customer will say, ‘I want to see you, with your man, wearing a red dress and doing this type of thing,’” she explains, adding that her fiance will sometimes join in as “a prop”.
She’s had phone-sex sessions with some big tippers, but never met a client in person. Still, Valentina Marie has had a few alarming situations with overzealous fans, including one who messaged her with, “I saw you shopping for ties at Macy’s.” Indeed, she had been at the mall hours earlier.
She uses a pseudonym for privacy, but isn’t too worried about her images being shared without her consent. Once, one of her Snapchat videos ended up on a XXX porn site, but it was promptly removed at her request.
Valentina Marie has never explicitly admitted to her family what she does for a living, but they’ve noticed the change in her lifestyle. “My mom has noticed a difference in her Christmas gifts,” she says.
She adds that, on social media, you can’t be too private when it’s all about promoting yourself.
“You can’t hide what you do and make money,” she says. “Everything is about the followers.”

You could, if you really wanted, put yourself on a six-month waiting list and pay the equivalent of a month’s rent to dine on some of the world’s most celebrated food. 
You could battle for a table at Heston Blumenthal’s The Fat Duck, or Noma, where the waiting list has stretched to three months, or Guy Savoy in Paris, where the set menu starts at a wince-inducing $700.
Or, you could add a day or two to your next stopover in Singapore and stroll into a hole-in-the-wall eatery serving the cheapest meal in the world that has a prestigious star from Michelin — and it’s the price of a takeaway coffee.
Hawker Chan, a small restaurant in Singapore’s Chinatown district, is on our list of surprising, and surprisingly good, places to eat and drink in a city already celebrated for its world-class cuisine.

It’s back — the Hawaii flight price that’s so ridiculously affordable we had to do a double take. 
Jetstar is offering flights to Honolulu from $199 from either Sydney or Melbourne as part of its Endless Beaches Sale — as cheap as we’ve ever seen for Hawaii flights.
Which is handy, because according to Jetstar’s global travel survey of almost 30,000 people, Hawaii rates as the No.1 destination travellers wanted to visit in 2019.
It’s also spruiking Bali fares from $179 from Brisbane, along with a stack of domestic destinations starting from $37 for Melbourne (Avalon) to Adelaide.
Going head to head with rival airline Tigerair’s latest domestic flight sale, Jetstar’s sale also includes Aussie hot spots such as the Whitsunday Coast, Ballina (Byron Bay), Cairns and the Gold Coast.

When two Aussie surfers made the decision to quit their jobs and tackle one of the biggest environmental problems facing the modern world, they never dreamt they would be in the position they are today.
Perth locals Pete Ceglinski and Andrew Turton were so sick of seeing a massive amount of rubbish floating around in the ocean they decided to dedicate their lives to help fix it.
In 2015 they came up with a prototype for the Seabin, which works by sucking rubbish from the water and catching it in a filter system.
“We came up with the idea with the very lateral thought of if we have rubbish bins on the land, why don’t we put them in the water. So we did that,” Mr Ceglinski, CEO and co-founder of the Seabin Project, told