Monday, April 15, 2013

Mon Apr 15th Todays News

Happy birthday and many happy returns Kiara Dyring andJen Jen Chung. Born on the same day, across the years. The day Samuel Johnson published the first English dictionary. He noted Oats were good for horses, but in Scotland they sustained the people. Remember, birthdays are good for you. If Johnson kept celebrating his, he would be 304.

Electorate wants Gillard Gonski - no more Conskis

Piers Akerman – Monday, April 15, 2013 (7:18am)

Labor is Gonski – its education policy is a Conski.
Prime Minister Julia Gillard has presented the states with absolute garbage, not education policy, as she heads toward Friday’s COAG meeting.
The big states, WA, Queensland, NSW and Victoria, are still struggling to balance their books after years of reckless Labor governments.
Now Gillard wants them to pay for her education policy.
Shadow Education Minister Christopher Pyne is correct. Labor’s education announcement is a con.
“The funding announcement isn’t part of a real education strategy it is part of a desperate Labor Government’s election strategy,” he said.

“This package delivers only about $600 million a year in “new education money” or one tenth of what was expected and even then, it looks like Labor will force the States to pay for this.
“Despite being promised in 2007, Labor finally announced that the Gonski funding will be $14.5 billion over the next six years – just over nine months before the next school year starts and six years after it was first promised.
“However, the Prime Minister will only commit the Commonwealth to paying 65 per cent of the $14.5 billion - which is $9.4 billion dollars over the next six years.
“Labor has announced cuts to universities and other programme changes, with funding delays and broken promises, which are worth at least $11 billion over the same period.
“This means that Labor has effectively announced a $1.6 billion cut to education funding over the next six years – they will save $11 billion and spend $9.4 billion.
“Federal Labor is using education to fill its black hole; it is actually cutting its share of education spending.” Pyne said.
In reality, the Gillard government should be Gonski before the Conski is ever implemented.
Today’s Fairfax-Nielsen poll shows only 29 per cent of voters back Labor, down 2 percentage points, while 49 per cent favour the Coalition for their first preference vote
This is Labor’s first primary vote result below 30 per cent since last June, before the carbon tax began and proved milder in impact than its critics warned. Its primary support had gone as low as 26 per cent the previous month.
After the distribution of preferences, the Coalition would easily have won an election held now with a 7 per cent nationwide swing.
Labor’s media cheer squad jumped up and down in their playpen last month when there was a blip in support of Gillard but pollster John Stirton has cautioned that the variations on last month’s poll were within the margin of error and showed that even on an optimistic reading, Labor’s support was not moving.
Opposition leader Tony Abbott now leads Ms Gillard as preferred prime minister by a solid 8 percentage points, 50 per cent to 42 per cent, entrenching the gain he made in February.
The premiers should tell Gillard to shove her so-called reforms at the end of this week.
The electorate wants her and her Labor rabble Gonski. It doesn’t want more Conskis.



Tim Blair – Monday, April 15, 2013 (3:25pm)

Anthony Albanese wasted a good 45 minutes of his life last week talking about something that shouldn’t be built, can’t be built and won’t be built.



Tim Blair – Monday, April 15, 2013 (3:18pm)

The Golden Globe Awards are judged by Hollywood’s foreign press contingent. If there were equivalent political prizes, Julia Gillard would be loaded with more statuettes than Meryl Streep.



Tim Blair – Monday, April 15, 2013 (6:02am)

The latest Nielsen poll shows Labor’s primary vote has slipped two percentage points to 29 per cent, Fairfax reports.


The government hasn’t been this unpopular since June last year – just before the carbon tax came into effect …
If an election was held now, the coalition would easily win with a national swing of seven per cent after preferences. 
On Antony Green’s ol’ electometer, that works out to a loss of 30 Labor seats. Fairfax’s Michael Gordon
Julia Gillard’s government is now trapped in a vortex of miserable morale, low expectations and sullied credibility – almost all of its own making and all neatly reflected in another shocker Age/Nielsen poll …
The numbers are so bad that they undermine any confidence that Labor will be around to implement the big picture policies it hopes will restore voter confidence and leave a lasting legacy … 
Not to worry. Voters won’t forget this government for decades.



Tim Blair – Monday, April 15, 2013 (5:34am)

The least-surprising opening line in the history of Adelaide journalism: 
I absolutely love serial killers. 



Tim Blair – Monday, April 15, 2013 (5:32am)

Life’s tough for journalism academics.



Tim Blair – Monday, April 15, 2013 (5:30am)

Cambodian charity commuter Tim Mathieson encounters a Canberra curb.



Tim Blair – Monday, April 15, 2013 (5:26am)

• Today, even more than most days, it would not be wise to provoke David Penberthy.
• Herbie the Hawthorn supporter emailed several vivid and atmospheric photographs from yesterday’s match at the MCG. I planned to publish these remarkable images, but sadly a software glitch deleted all of them at around the 20-minute mark of the final quarter. The same glitch also erased Herbie’s number from my phone and smashed my remote on the floor.
• A certain billabong occupant ventured the opinion three weeks ago that Footscray would return impressive September dividends. He may now be revising that opinion.
• For the first time since Google was founded, Richmond wins a season’s first three games. A win next week would equal their best start to a season since the invention of food.


Black kills black. Whites blamed

Andrew Bolt April 15 2013 (9:58am)

Is this really just a cause for shame for white Australians? Not a word to be said about Aboriginal culture or responsibility?

Veronica Hudson stabbed abusive partner Edward Heron to death on Boxing Day 2011 at a Bendigo caravan park…
Supreme Court Justice Betty King said ”White Australia should be hanging its head in shame” after details of Hudson’s life were read to the court.
“This is another tragic and potentially avoidable outcome of domestic violence between two Aboriginal people,” she said.
“Every time we have a case like this, it makes me cringe for us as a society.
“That we have a woman allowed to be in this position from the time she was a child,” she said.
The court heard Hudson, 42, started working as a prostitute in Kings Cross before embarking on a series of abusive relationships.
“She’s never been in anything other than an abusive relationship,” Justice King said.
“(She’s) hostage to a lifestyle.”
Justice King said the tragic circumstances of Hudson’s life had striking similarities to that of Aboriginal killer Melissa Anne Kulla Kulla, who she sentenced to a minimum three-year term in 2010.
In sentencing Kulla Kulla, Justice King said “as a country and a society, we should be thoroughly ashamed of ourselves that you have been neglected and abused in the manner that you have been.”
Are Aborigines mere puppets, without self-will? A good people made bad only by wicked whites?
There seems to me to be a racist underpinning to such an analysis. Yes, it’s the fashionable “good racism”, but racism nonetheless. 


Let me show the table while I can

Andrew Bolt April 15 2013 (9:44am)

Never before have my children seen Richmond so high on the AFL table. Question is, will they see this again this season?
Dare I dream?
RICHMOND coach Damien Hardwick says the Tigers are intent on delivering against Collingwood on Saturday.
The Tigers are 3-0 for the first time since 1995… But the Tigers know they will earn respect only by taking a scalp such as Collingwood at the MCG.


More boats, more deaths. Utter shambles

Andrew Bolt April 15 2013 (8:38am)

It’s hard to exaggerate the shambles the Gillard Government has made of border policy:
TWO more asylum-seeker boats have been intercepted in Australian waters amid confusion over the over the fate of almost 100 refugees on board up to two vessels that capsized last week
[One lost boat] boat was believed to be carrying 72 people, with about 14 rescued, at least five drowned and the other 53 missing.
A second boat sinking last Wednesday was unable to be confirmed by the Australian Maritime Safety Authority.
But local reports in Indonesia say at least one person was rescued on Thursday and said they were on a boat, thought to be carrying about 20 people, that sank on Wednesday.
The developments come as a a total of 21 boats have successfully made the journey to Australia in the first two weeks of the month in the latest wave of arrivals.
The government yesterday reported that a vessel carrying 75 people was given assistance by HMAS Albany east of Christmas Island on Saturday night.
Another boat carrying 25 people was also assisted by HMAS Maitland in the same area on Saturday.


Save Hird from the pack

Andrew Bolt April 15 2013 (8:14am)

The new morality
I’M a Tigers fan, but on Friday I prayed for Essendon to beat the Dockers. To win it for James Hird. I bet I had company.
I bet tens of thousands of football followers are just as sick at what’s been done to Hird, and were also hungry for his players to stick it to the slavering pack at his throat.
What a disgrace. Allegations without evidence. The publishing of Hird’s medical records. The leaking of his private emails. The vilification over his taking drugs that even his accusers admit are legal.
And now these farcical demands that he step down for “bringing the game into disrepute”.
Disrepute? That’s what Hird’s accusers have dragged the game into. Let them resign instead.
We know where the players’ hearts are on this. 


Simon Sheikh: the perfect face of the Greens Party

Andrew Bolt April 15 2013 (8:04am)

Troy Bramston nails the shifting stories of Simon Sheikh, the Greens candidate in the ACT:
Sheikh’s difficulties began last week when he denounced my story that his campaign had sent an email seeking to lure foreigners to staff his campaign for in-kind payments—flights, accommodation, food and incidentals—but not a wage…
Sheikh claimed via Twitter that the story was “incorrect”. The problem was that his campaign manager had confirmed the email was sent and I also had a copy of it…
But Sheikh’s second problem was that he is also a former Labor Party member… Sheikh conceded he “was a member of the Labor Party for a year” but insisted that “he quickly became disillusioned and left"…
Yet again, Sheikh’s problem was the facts told a different story. Labor Party membership records reveal he was a financial member for four years, from 2004 to 2008…
In dozens of interviews, Sheikh never revealed his Labor past. After joining the Greens he said, “I’ve spent my whole life standing up for communities against vested interests in big companies and big political parties.” Nobody should be surprised about such hypocrisy from somebody who headed GetUp! This is an organisation that has turned slipperiness into an art form. GetUp! claims it has 628,000 members. It has no such thing. What it does is have 628,000 phone numbers, email or postal addresses. Anybody who signs up to a campaign becomes a “member”.
I don’t consider Sheikh a man of any great integrity, to put it mildly. And that’s without even considering what he says about global warming. 


Gillard’s reward for a “good” week: Labor on 29 per cent

Andrew Bolt April 15 2013 (8:03am)

Labor’s vote just sunk again:
The latest Fairfax-Nielsen poll has revealed only 29 per cent of voters backed Labor, down 2 percentage points, while 49 per cent favoured the Coalition for their first preference vote…
Tony Abbott now leads Ms Gillard as preferred prime minister by a solid 8 percentage points, 50 per cent to 42 per cent...
The result - a 2PP split of Labor 43 per cent to the Coalition 57 - astonishes Fairfax writer Mark Kenny, who really thinks class war talk and another leadership dialogue are what wow the masses:

The bad news for Labor comes after Ms Gillard had one of her best weeks in many months before the survey period, securing a historic partnership agreement with Beijing, and announcing a populist-inspired soak-the-rich strategy to tax superannuation accounts worth more than $2 million.
Imagine what the poll results would be if Gillard had a bad week.
So I guess this is just more proof of the sexism of the Australian voter:

“From some of our shock jocks and all the rest of it, it is about lack of respect and lack of acknowledgment of my legitimacy as prime minister,” Gillard said when asked about references to her as “Julia.” She said that “until we get a time when parliaments are half-half, when women leaders are as common as male leaders, then I think women will have some extra interest and perhaps extra weight on their shoulders.”
Or put it this way:
I am not a man in a suit. I think that that has taken the nation some time to get used to. I think it’s probably still taking the nation a bit of time to get used to.
Peter Hartcher is right - Gillard’s politics of division simply don’t work:
The government thought it was onto a winner when it decided to pitch the old concept of ‘’soaking the rich’’. It turns out to be wrong.
In a striking finding in the latest Fairfax-Nielsen poll, most voters oppose the government’s proposal to increase the tax on superannuation earnings of the people the government called ‘’the very wealthiest’’.
The election will go to the politician who promises to bring Australians together, not deliberately set them at each other’s throat.
Just in case you were wondering who in Labor was still popular, this reminder was last night tweeted by one backbencher, who suddenly had very busy thumbs:
Even Labor’s stronghold - and Gillard’s home state - is now crumbling:

CONFIDENTIAL Liberal Party polling has exposed diving support for federal Labor in key Victorian seats with once unwinnable electorates for Tony Abbott turning against the ALP as voters reject Julia Gillard.
The polling shows the Liberal primary vote has surged to 48 per cent in the Melbourne seats of Chisholm and Bruce, with the two-party-preferred result in both seats at 56-44 per cent in favour of the Liberal Party.
Goodbye, then to Speaker Anna Burke, up against a very impressive Liberal candidate in John Nguyen.

Labor’s primary vote in Chisholm, held by Labor Speaker Anna Burke, has fallen to 29 per cent while in Bruce, held by Labor numbers man Alan Griffin, the ALP primary vote is down to 32 per cent.  The Australian understands the private Liberal polling shows a five percentage point turnaround in Chisholm - on the two-party-preferred result - in the past six months...The Australian revealed last month that the safe Labor electorate of McEwen (9.2 per cent) also was under threat after a redistribution shifted the seat into Melbourne’s northern suburbs.
The Liberals also have some hope of snatching Bendigo, where retiring member Steve Gibbons is busily trashing Labor’s brand.
(Thanks to reader Peter.) 


How to kill a schools package the day you announce it

Andrew Bolt April 15 2013 (7:39am)

Julia Gillard’s new plan for more spending on schools seems amazingly skewed to states with lots of Labor seats that need saving:

The NSW government would get $3.4 billion in federal funding if it provided $1.6 billion from its coffers… West Australian Premier Colin Barnett labelled it a “terrible deal” for WA, which would receive only $300 million in extra funding.
Or is the Government simply punishing the states which have done best at education?
More money for schools may be a good thing, if that money goes to things that really make a difference in teaching - rather than to building overpriced school halls.
But please explain why the Gillard Government yet again is promising other people’s money, immediately turning an initiative into a brawl with the states:

The Commonwealth will give $2 for every $1 the premiers agree to spend under the plan… Of the $14.5 billion, the Commonwealth would contribute $9.4 billion over six years.
Again the deadlines and take-it-or-leave-it arrogance that killed its disastrous media “reforms”:
Ms Gillard set a June 30 deadline for states to sign up to the deal, or schools stand to potentially lose $5.4bn nationally over the next six years...
And, of course, Gillard gets the predictable brawl - at a time when few people would ever take her side in anything:

Ahead of a meeting of the Council of Australian Governments this week to discuss a new funding model, the Queensland and West Australian premiers yesterday rejected the Prime Minister’s offer to pay $2 in federal money for every extra dollar invested by the states, while the Victorian government said it was being held to ransom.
It is believed the NSW government - which stands to reap an extra $3.2bn in commonwealth money - is close to reaching agreement on new funding arrangements.
More disastrous political management from the Gillard team. Utterly clueless.
So clueless, in fact, that even the guru of your package denounces it:

... the author of the landmark report driving the changes, David Gonski, made a rare public statement criticising the cuts to the higher education sector that will help fund the schools plan.
This is a just a farce on endless repeat. For God’s sake, call the election now.
Dennis Shanahan:
ONLY a few days before the federal-state summit, only a few weeks before the budget and only a few months before the election, the Gillard government has unveiled a huge structural policy and funding proposal with little likelihood of a final resolution before going to the polls.
The Opposition’s Chris Pyne exposes the con - and a good memory for numbers:

CHRISTOPHER PYNE: ...the Government has announced $11 billion worth of cuts and redirections to fund a $14.5 billion education package. That’s $600 million of new money each year. Now the Gonski report said that $6.5 billion would be needed each year, so in fact they’ve delivered one-tenth…
SIMON BENSON: You’ve said that the $6.5 billion was what was required under Gonski, which the Government support. You’re now saying that what has been delivered under this package is $600 million a year. How do you justify that number?
CHRISTOPHER PYNE: Well Simon, in the announcements that we’re reading today, we find out they’ve cut $2.8 billion from higher education, $3.9 million last year in MYEFO, $600 million in the laptops-in-schools program, $1.3 billion for the rewards for greater teachers, $1.2 billion for teacher quality programs, $550 million for the literacy and numeracy programs, $540 million for other national partnerships for low SES students, for example. In total, they’ve announced cuts or they’ve announced redirections of national partnerships totaling $11 billion over the next six years.
(Thanks to reader Peter.) 


Thatcher haters are as weak as water

Andrew Bolt April 15 2013 (7:32am)

Thatcher triumphs again over critics less popular than they believe, and too weak to even stand in rain:

DAMP weather rained on the Margaret Thatcher “death party of a lifetime” in central London’s Trafalgar Square, resulting in a largely subdued protest by 2000 miners, students and activists.
And what people they are, these protesters claiming Thatcher coarsened Britain:

Metropolitan Police officers made [16] arrests - mostly for drunk and disorderly conduct - in the early hours of Sunday as crowds revelled in Trafalgar Square, Whitehall and surrounding streets.
Imagine Britain being led by such Thatcher critics instead. 


No project, no money

Andrew Bolt April 15 2013 (7:21am)

It is not just unrealistic but immoral to treat corporations as ATMs for social welfare when they can’t actually earn the money:
WOODSIDE, its joint-venture partners and the Barnett government are “morally obliged” to pay out a $1.5 billion social benefits package attached to the aborted plan for a gas hub north of Broome.
Former head of the Kimberley Land Council Wayne Bergmann, who was central to the deal, has described the agreement that traditional owners signed for the James Price Point gas hub as a once-in-a-lifetime chance to move beyond welfare and create real jobs and opportunities for indigenous people.
No project, no money. That link must be insisted upon. Anything less infantilises people and encourages belief in unearned money just falling from the sky. 


Together, we bow our heads in memory of all those killed in defense of our state. Today, as we stand at memorial ceremonies and as we walk through cemeteries, we remember what we have lost and we imagine what could have been.

Some pictures are so powerful that they capture a piece of what it means to be Israeli in an instant...this one of them.

4 her

Through no fault of my own, I cannot get work in my profession of Math teaching. Through Linked In I got in touch with curriculum developers who will let me write for them .. in the UK. 6 years unemployed has been hard. I desperately tried to tell my story, running for government twice on social justice issues .. but no one in an ALP stronghold listens or cares about such matters - ed



4 her



I was just hoping to have a relaxing Sunday here in South Florida before catching a flight this evening back to LA, but my day took a turn after an outing at the shooting range, when I encountered the long arm of the law. Coming off the Florida turnpike at the PGA Blvd exit I pulled into the lane to pay my $1.10 charge. However, the fella had closed, so I looked in the rearview mirror and since I was the only one there, I backed up and shifted one lane over to pay my turnpike ticket. And then it happened, at 1:07pm, FHP Trooper M.A. Mickens flipped on his lights and pulled me over. He informed me what I did was illegal and I told him I just wanted to pay my ticket and there was no one else coming through any of the lanes. I figured this would be a warning since I did not see any danger presented, but to my surprise, he wrote me a citation for $166.00. I asked Trooper Mickens if I had placed anyone's life in danger and he responded "no, but you did something illegal." I asked him if he saw any other cars when I backed up, he responded, "no, but that was not the point." I explained to Trooper Mickens that I had served in the Army and this just did not seem like it passed a common sense test and why could I not be given a warning. He responded, "you have to get a citation and it explains your options." I am sure Trooper Mickens has served the Florida Highway Patrol with distinction in his 27 years, yeah, I asked. But this is what perplexes me, where has the ability to make a judgment call gone? Are we now just a nation of unthinking robots which cannot assess a situation in and of itself? I have a perfect driving record that will be tarnished because Trooper Mickens did not think I could make a decision on my own, which threatened no one. I have 30 days to pay the citation of $166.00 to the Clerk of the Court of Palm Beach County. Lastly, no, I never said who I was because I do not deserve any special treatment. This is obviously how we treat law-abiding citizens. Allan West

An all new episode of Vikings starts now on HISTORY. Click “LIKE” if you’ll be watching as Ragnar Lothbrok goes to eastern England looking for ransom in exchange for peace.

It's showtime today for Outback Steakhouse Aspley, ... Opening Night - 5pm! Thanks for your patience Brisbane, we've finally arrived!!



Banana and Blueberry Bread ~ I think I fancy this for morning tea today! Nice and hot from the oven with some butter - yummo!
May Wa Leng
Hello everyone! Thanks for all the encouraging feedback on my TMNT Threadless entries. Submissions coming to a close tomorrow, there is a heck of a lot of great stuff. 
There's a new HULK contest next, so I hope to get some stuff ready for that one too!


What is a personal service record and how to apply to get a copy?

Personal service records are files created for individuals during their military careers. The contents and detail of service records vary in quality and amount from conflict to conflict. For most servicemen and women, this will be the only official documentation for them as individuals.

Copies of personal service records can be requested via the National Archives of Australia's (NAA) Record Search database
Locate the details of the service record by searching the database using the individual's name and service number, and follow the grey request buttons.

Personal service records only provide basic events and dates. Unit histories and records provide the context of the individual’s service. Further information regarding unit histories are available via the Memorials website.


It’s a pretty amazing view from the infinity pool on top of the Marina Bay Sands hotel in Singapore. The 146m engineering marvel sits almost 200m up on top of the three towers.

The pool was built around four movement joints so as to withstand “the natural motion of the towers”. These joints give it an almost 50cm range of motion, so it and the towers can sway freely in the breeze.

As if having no edge wasn't bad enough – it also moves!



'United with Israel' pays tribute to Israel's Fallen Heroes

Thank you for your outpouring love since Matthew's tragic death. Join Pastor Rick, Kay and the Saddleback family in our effort to raise awareness and lower the stigma of mental illness. Sign the petition here: 
-Saddleback Church





Wise men make proverbs and fools repeat them
…despite all these things, overwhelming victory is ours through Christ, who loved us (Rom 8:37, NLT).
I will make you a great nation; I will bless you and make your name great; and you shall be a blessing.—Gen 12:2

When God called Abraham, He said to him, “...I will bless you...and you shall be a blessing.” We who are new covenant believers in Christ are called the seed of Abraham (Gal 3:29), and like Abraham, we are called to be a blessing.

Now, how can we be a blessing if we are not blessed in the first place? How can we be a blessing to others when we are always flat on our backs with sickness, living from hand to mouth, never having enough for our own family and always having to borrow from others?

No way, my friend. God wants you healthy and strong, and He wants you to have more than enough financially so that you can be generous with your relatives, friends, community or anyone who needs help. He wants to bless you so that you can, like Abraham, be a blessing to many!

This post is from today’s Meditate & Believe Right devotional. Click on the link to receive this complimentary series of inspiring devotionals in your mailbox each day!


April 15Father Damien Day in HawaiiYom Hazikaron in Israel (2013);Patriots' Day in Maine and Massachusetts (2013); Birthday of the Great Leader in North Korea
Samuel Johnson





[edit]Holidays and observances

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