Friday, December 21, 2012

Fri 21st Dec Todays News

Happy birthday and many happy returns to William Rapley Powell Jr. and my cus Graeme W. If the world doesn't end today, it isn't the end of the world. Remember, birthdays are good for you. The more you have, the longer you live.


December 21December solstice (11:12 UTC, 2012); Yule and otherwinter solstice festivals (Northern Hemisphere, 2012)
The Rochdale Pioneers' first store





[edit]Holidays and observances



Tim Blair – Friday, December 21, 2012 (3:04pm)

Julia Gillard in conversation with David Speers prior to the last election: 
SPEERS: If you don’t get the budget back into surplus in three years, what happens? Do you sack the Treasurer, do you take personal responsibility?
PM: It’s happening, David. Failure is not an option.
SPEERS: If it doesn’t? If it doesn’t?
PM: Well, failure is not an option here and we won’t fail. 
Via the Realist, who notes: “Gillard was right. Failure is not an option. It’s standard operating procedure for Labor.” According to Joe Hockey, this might be the most promised promise since promising was invented: 
The government had said more than 200 times it would return the budget to surplus … 
The government’s budget site has now been re-written to abolish the s-word. Brilliantly, Wayne Swan blames a single $3.9 billion revenue slump – a sum equivalent to just 0.28 per cent of our entire economy – for the destruction of his surplus dream. It’s similar to Labor’s magical belief that an Australian carbon tax might change the planet’s climate.



Tim Blair – Friday, December 21, 2012 (2:54pm)

The wriggly beetle larvae known as mealworms could one day dominate supermarket shelves as a more sustainable alternative to chicken, beef, pork and milk, researchers in the Netherlands say …
“Since the population of our planet keeps growing, and the amount of land on this Earth is limited, a more efficient, and more sustainable system of food production is needed,” [researcher Dennis] Oonincx said in a statement.
“Now, for the first time it has been shown that mealworms, and possibly other edible insects can aid in achieving such a system.” 
Our bug-sucking Dutch pal has been talking up insect diets for some time: 
Oonincx says that mealworms are great in a quiche, but he prefers house crickets: “The structure and flavor are best.” 
(Via Simon G.)



Tim Blair – Friday, December 21, 2012 (4:08am)

Wayne Swan, May 2010
We now expect a surplus in three years, three years ahead of schedule. 
Julia Gillard, August 2010
The Budget will be back in surplus in 2013 if I’m re-elected. 
Wayne Swan, August 2010 
Well, we’re getting back into surplus in three years. Come hell or high water. 
Julia Gillard, August 2010
The Budget is coming back to surplus, no ifs no buts it will happen. 
Julia Gillard, November 2010
The budget will be back in the black, back in surplus in 2012-13 ... as promised. 
Wayne Swan, April 2011 
We see the surplus in 12-13 as being absolutely fundamental. 
Julia Gillard, April 2011
My commitment to a surplus in 2012-13 was a promise made and it will be honoured. 
Wayne Swan, May 2011
We’ll be back in the black by 2012/13, as promised. 
Julia Gillard, May 2011
We’ll bring the budget to surplus in 2012-13, exactly as promised. 
Wayne Swan, August 2011
I believe we will attain those forecasts, coming back to surplus in 2012/13. 
Wayne Swan, August 2011
The government remains absolutely committed to delivering our return to surplus as we planned.
Wayne Swan, February 2012
I am determined to produce a surplus in 2012-2013. We have got our colours nailed to the mast. 
Wayne Swan, March 2012
Despite the tough global conditions, we remain determined to return the budget to surplus in 2012/13, and we will get there. 
Julia Gillard, November 2012
We stand by the predictions, the entries in the Mid-Year Economic and Fiscal Outlook. We stand by the figures and we’re on track to deliver a budget surplus. 
Wayne Swan, December 2012
It’s appropriate that we return to surplus. 
Wayne Swan, December 2012
It’s unlikely that there will be a surplus in 2012/13. 


NSW ALP stonewalled on corruption .. public servants still working - ed
Whistleblower Allan Kessing 'vindicated' by airport Customs raidA WHISTLEBLOWER convicted of leaking reports about Customs operations at Sydney airport is questioning why it has taken years to act on security flaws.

Allan Kessing, who in 2007 was convicted of leaking reports about security at Sydney Airport to the Australian newspaper, told reporters on Friday that it was widely known the airport had problems with security.
"It is not possible, it is simply not credible to say that nobody knew there was this extent of corruption," he said.
"Anybody who has the slightest experience of this area knew there were problems.
"The fact that they haven't been acted on until now begs the question, why?"
Mr Kessing - a former Australian Customs officer - wrote two damning reports on Sydney airport security in 2003.
He was convicted four years later of having leaked the reports to media. He had faced a maximum two years jail but was instead handed a nine-month suspended sentence.

Speaking alongside Mr Kessing, Independent senator Nick Xenophon urged the federal government to release Mr Kessing's suppressed reports.
"The two reports prepared by Mr Kessing 10 years ago, nine years ago, need to be released as a matter of urgency," Senator Xenophon said.
"It's important that Justice James Woods is given access to those reports."
Mr Kessing said the reports advocated a range of measures to boost security, including stricter background checks for airport staff and more scrutiny of customs officers by their superiors.
It emerged on Thursday that two customs officers and five members of the public have been charged following a joint investigation by law enforcement agencies into corruption and drug smuggling at Sydney airport.
The investigation on Thursday prompted the establishment of a reform board, headed by Justice James Wood, to ensure customs is clean.

Somebody wanted to sue me for the rights to this !! - ed

I caught a train today too and from the city. It ran on time. Some people were filthy but the trains seemed clean. The driver announced each stop, and some in advance. The most unpleasant thing was a raucous party of toddlers and mums .. bogan in Islamic cultural dress. Well done SRA - ed


How the world ended - ed


Wyatt Roy asks a valid question ..

I have no problem with gun ownership. I just think assault rifles and hidden weapons aren't necessary for legal business - ed
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