Monday, December 28, 2009

Headlines Monday 28th December 2009


Cops searching for two men who gunned down Salvation Army major on Christmas Eve in front of his 3 kids.

Incredible Coincidence?
Sick Nigerian passenger on same flight terror suspect took in failed Christmas attack causes panic at airport; officials call it a 'non-event,' coincidence

Fierce Clashes in Tehran
Iranian security forces fire on anti-government protesters in Tehran, killing five — including opposition leader's nephew — in the fiercest clashes in months

Al Qaeda's New Playground
With stepped up presence of U.S. forces in Afghanistan, terror organization eyes Yemen for new home base


It's nearly New Year's Eve, just as we recover from all those Christmas parties. One charity says it's time for a break.

Wave of retirees could break the bank
A ‘DOUBLE whammy’ as baby boomers start claiming the pension and paying less tax.

Floods, fires in extreme weather watch
ONE end of the country is on flood alert, while the other side braces for catastrophic fire conditions.

Dad 'hit baby in head' while in car
WITNESS phones police after allegedly seeing a father hitting a baby in the head in a car.

Drunken brawl lands Sheen, wife in rehab
CHARLIE Sheen and wife to enter rehab after violent Christmas day brawl which involved a weapon.

Bush roads an easier route for P-plates
CITY learner drivers are sitting their tests in country towns with more chance of passing, with the top 62 places drivers get their P-plates in rural areas.
=== Comments ===
The riddle of Rudd’s incredible popularity
Piers Akerman
ONE of the year’s intriguing mysteries remains the source of Prime Minister Kevin Rudd’s popularity when there is no evidentiary reason for the continuing level of public support he enjoys. - They are not in trouble yet. Nor will they be until they have lost an election. William Connelly has smeared me on wiki a number of times. His latest effort was to remove a question I had asked, repeating the claims of another git. He replaced the question with the statement that he had removed personal abuse. A terrible smear. What his colleague had said was that climate gate was the product of fevered imaginations, and those supporting condemning the scientists involved were probably influenced by aliens, lasers and wore pot pans on their heads. I asked if that was going to be his argument, as he had contributed no other.
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I have also contributed articles to wikipedia and I know that it is very difficult if you don’t have the support of fellow editors. I have declared myself a christian and a conservative and whenever I post an article I face some outrageous accusations. I even posted one on my late father and another on his colleague both of whom held significant posts at universities and both of whom contributed much to knowledge. Yet within seconds of my posting them there were calls to cut them down, claiming they weren’t significant. For anyone to have authored 5000 articles suggests substantial editorial patronage.
Rudd benefits from similar media support. Channel 7 Today Tonight promised to support me if I chose to resign over the Hamidur Rahman issue, but following the NSW state election in 07, and prior to the federal election, they withdrew support after I had resigned. I think they did that in order to eliminate anything that might have hurt Rudd. Those same people are still defending Rudd from valid criticism and will do so until he loses .. but he won’t lose for lack of their support. - ed.
Linda
I wonder DD also how serious the media really are in the current supposed campaign to remove the NSW Government. I would have thought that a proper examination of how a NSW Government Minister accused of child sex crimes was tipped off and protected within parliament would have been sufficient to call for its dispatching, but the media are protecting Labor mates by keeping what could cause serious damage quiet. That includes ignoring the tabling just before the Christmas recess of a report from a committee which was supposed to be examining the evidence, but which fortuitously found advice that it had no jurisdiction to do so. It served well to keep the matter quiet for another 18 months though. There are enough pertinent questions in meeting transcripts to raise the alarm about whether the law is upheld in the very place where it is made! We are not well served by those we rely on to keep them honest!
DD Ball replied
Linda, I held off reporting the full facts of my story for as long as I could because there are stupid but largely innocent people involved. However, I have now been forced to default on my home loan and I am negotiating with my bank as to when I may have to sell, subject to an appeal to APRA to access my superannuation. I have initiated telling salient points here, and will continue to do so until I finally go under.
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As for how it was swept under the carpet, the answer is simple and obvious. I do not know the actual detail of your issue, but I know ALP Govt processes. Basically the independent bodies have been compromised so no investigation is done. Obfuscation is performed by ministers over the issue and they get away with it not so much because the press is partisan, which they are, but because junior people cover the issues which senior people want ignored. In a similar, sick kind of way, Hamidur Rahman may have died because a Dept of Ed. official wanted to know if peanut allergy was as serious as had been told to them and they wanted to force their will on a school boy with an independence streak. It wasn’t malice, it was stupidity.
Linda replied
DD - There is indeed a similarity with your issue in that an employee involved in reporting a crime has been prevented by a failure of so-called independent and investigative agencies, meant to protect the people and get to the truth, from disclosing what she knows. In a nutshell that it was known within parliament that a NSW Government Minister was under investigation for the kinds of crimes which out in the real world are subject to mandatory reporting requirements and nothing was done except remove an identified police witness from where she was endangering the Minister. Put whatever interpretation you like on that!

This is not my issue, I merely try to raise the alarm, but one I would have thought of grave public concern, the point of the article being the protection afforded to those of the same political persuasion as the majority of journalists. It is especially pertinent at a time when a supposed campaign to remove the NSW Government is being promoted in the media to question why such a serious matter is not being vigorously pursued.
===
POLITICIANS AT PLAY
Tim Blair
An oldtimer gets it on and gets thrown out:
The 86-year-old governor of a southern Indian state resigned Saturday, a day after a television news channel broadcast a tape allegedly showing him in bed with three women, an official said …

A statement issued on Friday by Aryendra Sharma, an aide to the governor, said ‘’the news channel report is fabricated, false and malicious to tarnish the image of the governor.’’
Such a terrible, terrible tarnishing. Meanwhile, consider the peaceful and virtually crime-free town of Taylor, Alabama:
Crime in Taylor (2008):

0 murders (0.0 per 100,000)
0 rapes (0.0 per 100,000)
0 robberies (0.0 per 100,000)
0 assaults (0.0 per 100,000)
2 burglaries (101.0 per 100,000)
4 thefts (202.0 per 100,000)
0 auto thefts (0.0 per 100,000)
So what explains the glumness of three-term Taylor mayor Joel H. Napier and his friend Cynthie Casper?

===
THE BIG SWITCH
Tim Blair
Seinfeld fans will remember The Switch:

JERRY: Can’t be done, huh?
GEORGE: The Switch?
JERRY: The Switch.
GEORGE: Can’t be done.
JERRY: I wonder.

They’re talking about the difficulty of ending a relationship with one woman and seamlessly beginning a relationship with her roommate. Granted, it couldn’t be easy, but there’s another move that makes The Switch seem almost as simple as breathing, or receiving a parking ticket in Sydney.

We’re talking here about The Switch of Federal Governments After a Single Term.
===
PRAYERS FOR MRS MAC
Tim Blair
Longtime reader and friend Richard McEnroe is dealing with a family crisis in NYC this Christmas. Please leave a supportive note at the link. Our thoughts are with you, mate.
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KEEP AUSTRALIA SAFE
Tim Blair
Border security as it should be:

UPDATE. Maybe Toyota should stick to rugged 4WDs. Sam Abuelsamid reports Prius braking issues:
The problem reportedly being experienced in the new Prius relates to an apparent loss of deceleration when the brakes transition from regen to friction braking. Having worked on the controls for similar braking systems in a previous life as an engineer, I can say from experience that this is not an uncommon problem. Typically, it occurs when the friction brakes are producing less torque than the model predicts.
Stupid models. When will they get their predictions right?
===
THINGS SCIENTISTS SAY II
Tim Blair
Another scientific tour through the NYT’s archives …

• 1902: “HOLY SHROUD TESTED; French Scientists Claim that It Possesses Photographic Properties—Their Conclusions Accepted.”

Thus the Shroud of Turin is vindicated by peer review.

• 1924: “CAT MAKES FEWER ERRORS THAN MAN, SAY SCIENTISTS."

The NYT should employ that cat as an editor.

• 1926: “The skull of a man declared to antedate any yet found in the Americas and which scientists claim supports the theory that a race of supermen once inhabited Cuba has been presented to the University of Havana.”
===
ANOTHER TITLE
Tim Blair
Peter Roebuck describes Australia as:
… the most uptight of Western countries.
No wonder Roebuck spends so much time here, then. His Royal Uptightness must feel right at home.
Certain people believe Cuba is still inhabited by supermen.
===
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