Saturday, May 10, 2014

Sat May 10th Todays News

Today is the birthday (1810) of Brewer, who wrote one of my favourite books, a dictionary on phrase and fable. It is also the birthday of Rick Santorum, 1958, a year after Sid Vicious. 28 BC, some Han dynasty observers contribute to modern AGW research through their notes on sunspots. 70 AD, the son of Ceaser Vespasian, Titus, begins a siege of Jerusalem, attacking the third wall,to the North West. 1655, England annexes Jamaica from Spain .. they didn't ask nicely. Great Britain passed the Tea Act on this day in 1773. 1824, the National Gallery opens the first time in London. 1872, Victoria Woodhull became the first woman nominated to be the President of the US, forever denying Obama that singular honour. 1893, the Supreme Court of the US applied all her collective wit to define Tomato as a vegetable. In 1933, they partied in Germany by burning books. Seven years later, as Churchill was appointed UK PM, Germany was bombing herself at Freiburg. One year later, Rudolph Hess parachuted into Scotland to negotiate peace. 

I believe history will smile on the Presidency of George W Bush. He warned of what would happen if the economy was ignored regarding housing in his inauguration speech, and he was right. Early on in his presidency, the US was attacked, and thanks to his actions, the US was not successfully attacked on her own soil again. Because of the viciousness of Saddam, Iraq was made by Bush to become a democracy, and it was up to Obama to salvage a loss by giving Iraq to Iran. But, on this day, in 2005, a hand grenade was lobbed at Bush in Georgia and would probably have killed him, had it not malfunctioned. The GOP President has to fight to live his life each day in ways that Democrats don't.  ===
 For twenty two years I have been responsibly addressing an issue, and I cannot carry on. I am petitioning the Australian Prime Minister Tony Abbott to remedy my distress. I leave it up to him if he chooses to address the issue. Regardless of your opinion of conservative government, the issue is pressing. Please sign my petition at

Happy birthday and many happy returns Christine ChandraChristine Giorgio and Jason Trenkler. You were born on the same date as Christopher Columbus visiting the Cayman Islands and discovering turtles there had good taste 1503. Victoria Woodhull became the first woman to nominate for President of the USA 1872. Shackleton completed one of history's greatest small boat journeys in 1916. J Edgar Hoover became what was later to be known as FBI chief in 1924. And in 1981, François Mitterrand became the first socialist president elected to the French Fifth Republic. So you don't have to do those tasks .. I wish you well with yours.


How Tony Abbott froze Kevin Rudd with fear

Andrew Bolt May 10 2014 (1:15pm)

A new book by Philip Chubb describes a Prime Minister Kevin Rudd frozen by panic under the onslaught of Tony Abbott:
Sometimes Rudd’s behaviour in meetings was genuinely worrying. Several sources describe independently how he sometimes physically froze and was unable to continue. He took trips around the garden to help regain his composure.
Valentine’s Day in 2010 saw a particularly serious instance of this behaviour. Abbott had already sparked fear in Rudd. Then, with an acute political judgment that Australians would see much more of in coming years, he drove Rudd to a “meltdown”, as observers have described it. In a relatively insignificant stunt designed to irritate the prime minister, Abbott glided into the hospitals issue. He visited Sydney’s St Vincent’s to pledge that a Coalition government would install local boards to fix public hospitals within six months of winning power. Since the election, he said, “all we’ve had [from the Rudd government] is waffle and committees”.

The result of this small intervention was chaos. A hospitals meeting was scheduled to be held at the Lodge that day, involving senior ministers and relevant staff. Rudd was in a spin, so the meeting started late. He then wanted to keep the group small, so he could be free to be himself. Some staff were forced outside and spent the day on the lawn playing handball. They were not allowed in but not allowed to go home. As if that was not weird enough, things soon became totally bizarre.

“Rudd had this absolute meltdown. He was completely spooked that Abbott would beat him to taking over the hospital system,” said a witness. “We were brainstorming different ways of fulfilling his ambitious commitment of 2007 about taking over the hospital system one way or another. People were very nervous about doing that, which is a whole other issue, and he just couldn’t face it. We were in his dining room in the Lodge working on health stuff and he just couldn’t keep it together.”

Rudd hyperventilated and froze so seriously that his chief of staff, Alister Jordan, helped him to his feet and took him for a walk. It seemed he had suffered a debilitating panic attack. Everyone was shocked and embarrassed for him. The only thing that broke the mood was the dog scratching at the door. 
Again, how did this man become prime minister? How can the public know whether their prime minister is actually cracking up? 

Q&A lets itself be hijacked

Andrew Bolt May 10 2014 (11:31am)

Gerard Henderson on his Media Watch Dog blog calls out the ABC:
If Q&A executive producer Peter McEvoy had only read this humble blog, he could have expected that last Monday’s Q&A would be invaded by a soviet of university radical leftists intent on censoring Education Minister Christopher Pyne.
As MWD has explained on numerous occasions, the political allegiance of the audience which Q&A depicts at the beginning of each program is wilfully misleading…
As MWD has documented, political identification is by way of self-identification. Since Q&A is filmed in the ABC’s inner-city studio in Sydney’s Ultimo, it tends to be stacked by members of the Green Left who hang out nearby and from the neighbouring University of Technology, Sydney (UTS) and the University of Sydney.
So the best way for a follower of Vladimir Lenin or Leon Trotsky to obtain admission to Q&A is to take off his/her sandals and Che Guevara tee-shirt, put on sensible shoes and a shirt – and present themselves as Tony Abbott supporters. Then it’s “Welcome” in order to seemingly make up a representative audience.
Last Monday, Peter McEvoy and the Q&A team depicted the audience as follows: Coalition 47 per cent, Labor Party 38 per cent, Greens 9 per cent and Not Specified 6 per cent. In reality, the audience was stacked with young Green Left/Socialist Alternative types who tried to stop Christopher Pyne from talking and then closed down the program for some minutes by chanting.. .
After the event, the ABC issued the following comment:

Q&A already identifies all audience members and puts together a representative audience based on voting intention but as we saw it only takes a small group to disrupt the discussion.
Everything is true about this statement – except the facts. The truth is that the Q&A audience last Monday was nowhere near representative and the ABC is easily hood-winked about its audience members’ voting intentions.
Here we go again:
(Thanks to readers Peter of Bellevue Hill and Julian.)  

Pardon? ABC likens border control to invading China

Andrew Bolt May 10 2014 (10:30am)

An ABC reporter interviewing pediatrician John Yu makes a bizarre analogy, likening Japan’s invasion of China to Australia’s border policy:
WILL OCKENDEN: You escaped China as the Japanese invaded. What do you make of the increasing military aspect to immigration policy?

A reminder why the budget is a mess

Andrew Bolt May 10 2014 (10:27am)

Another Labor disaster just got worse:

NEW figures show Labor’s mining tax is costing more than it is raising as the government has been forced to repay more than $230 million in overpaid tax…
Finance Minister Mathias Cormann said the figures ... showed that the Australian Taxation Office had refunded another $175m in previously overpaid Minerals Resource Rent Tax instalments in March. A further $10.6m in MRRT prepayments had been refunded in April....
“This brings total mining tax refunds so far to more than $237m, when the final budget outcome for 2012-13 showed that only $200m in net revenue had been raised from quarterly MRRT prepayments,’’ Senator Cormann said.
He said the mining tax had cost the tax office more than $50m to administer.
“When Julia Gillard and Wayne Swan first announced the MRRT they said it would raise $4 billion in the first year,’’ Senator Cormann said. He said Labor had also pledged spending commitments on the back of money that had yet to be raised by the tax. 

Clive James on the warming disconnect

Andrew Bolt May 10 2014 (10:13am)

The great Clive James on the global warming disconnect - how not even the spruikers seem to take their apocalyptic claims seriously:
[The BBC’s] Simon [Reeve] was talking to a man in charge of a South Australian wine factory which covered thousands of acres with its enormous shining silver vats and bins. The factory produces a zillion bottles of wine per year, and uses, in the process, a gazillion gallons of water.
The water is drawn from the Murray-Darling river system. If it occurred to you to wonder what would happen to the output of wine if the input of water were to be restricted, it occurred to Reeve too. So did he ask the professionally knowledgeable bloke in charge of the wine whether he anticipated any restrictions in the water supply?
No, he asked a climate change expert. In Australia, climate change experts are not hard to find. Indeed it is very hard to keep them out of your car: unless you wind the window all the way up, one of them will climb in. This climate change expert was called Tim. Armed with his ability to read the future, Tim predicted that any dry area of the Murray-Darling system was “an indication of what’s coming”, and that “what Australia is experiencing here now” would eventually be experienced by “hundreds of millions of people around the world”.
Simon nodded his moustache sagely but didn’t once ask whether the flourishing wine industry was not part of what Australia is experiencing here now. Nor did he ask whether, in view of climate change, the wine industry was doomed. It was then that the big idea hit me. Why hadn’t he asked the wine grower? It would have been easy to frame the question, perhaps along the lines of: “In view of what is happening to the planet, have you any plans for selling all this colossal acreage of silver metal for scrap?”
The documentary here.
(Thanks to reader Brendan.) 

Mother barred from moving because of “race” of her sons

Andrew Bolt May 10 2014 (10:09am)

Free speech

Our new racial identity fetish is being imposed by courts so that people not only lose their freedom to reject the new racism but even their freedom to move:
A WOMAN barred by a landmark Federal Court decision from leaving Warrnambool district and moving to Western Australia with two of her sons because of their Aboriginal heritage has described the ruling as reverse racism.
The court last week ordered that the boys, aged under 10, must remain close to their Aboriginal father in their cultural homeland and live with their mother.
She must keep their principal place of residence in the “Warrnambool shire” unless both parents consent otherwise.
The mother is of European heritage and had planned to move to Western Australia to live with her partner, a Maori man, who is the father of another of her children, a five-year-old son not covered by the court order. “This is reverse racism and a restriction on my freedom of movement,” the mother told The Standard yesterday.
“Why is one ethnic group more important than another?"…
The two boys’ father, who has not had a full-time carer’s role in their lives for several years, had opposed the relocation saying it would cut connection to their Aboriginal heritage and traditional community which he fostered with the children during access visits…
In his ruling Federal Circuit Court judge Terry McGuire said: “It would not be an exaggeration to suggest that the focus of their education and cultural learning is through this Aboriginal community”.
“I am satisfied the specific peculiarities of these children’s community cannot be substituted by involvement in another community in Western Australia,” he said.
Why must the children be deemed Aboriginal? Why can’t they just be boys, race irrelevant?
Two of my articles challenging this kind of thing have been banned by the Federal Court.
Another Family Court brawl between divorced parents over whether their son is getting enough Aboriginal culture

Where’s this Indonesian crisis Plibersek keeps claiming?

Andrew Bolt May 10 2014 (9:49am)

The Opposition’s foreign affairs spokesman, Tanya Plibersek keeps claiming our relationship with Indonesia is broken:
TANYA PILBERSEK:  I think overall our relationship is a strong one, but it is absolutely off-track at the moment, and Labor wants to see it back on track.
We still don’t have an Indonesian ambassador here in Australia. It’s been more than 100 days since the Australian government said that they would sign a document with the Indonesians that would set out some terms around our relationship that would get it back on track. That means cooperation suspended in a number of very critical areas.
That’s not good for Australia’s long term relationship with Indonesia...
In fact, today:
Indonesia is sending its ambassador back to Canberra as part of its efforts to normalise relations between the two countries.
A presidential office spokesman says Najib Riphat Kesoema will return to Australia within the month, a decision made by president Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono after speaking with Prime Minister Tony Abbott by phone earlier in the week.
And the Indonesian President’s media statement this week suggested nothing but warmth and progress:
BALI, 6 MAY 2014

Denpasar, 6 Mei 2014 –President Susilo Bambang Yudhoyonoon 6 May 2014 at 14.00 WITA received a telephone call from the Prime Minister of Australia Tony Abbott.
The issues discussed by the heads of government were as follows:
1. PM Abbott expressed his regret for being unable to attend the Open Government Partnership Asia - Pacific Regional Conference at the President’s invitation. President SBY expressed his understanding about the reasons of PM Abbott’s absence in Bali, in relation to the budget discussion at parliament.
2. Welcomed the progress in the discussion of the Code of Conduct between the two Foreign Ministers. The two heads of governments expect the agreement to be completed so that bilateral relations between the two countries may soon recover and be able to enter a new phase. The President reiterated his hope that the Code of Conduct could be agreed at the latest in August 2014.
3. PM Abbott said he hoped to visit Indonesia and meet the President in the series of his trip abroad in June 2014. President Yudhoyono welcomed that wish. Therefore, both the Foreign Minister and the Ambassadors of each country make various preparations for the visit of Prime Minister Abbott to Indonesia.
4. PM Abbott explained about the planned establishment of the Indonesia-Australia Studies Centre in Melbourne, and hoped the President would visit the center, either before or after his term of office as President. This represents Australia’s deep appreciation for the sense of friendship shown by the President in the bilateral relationship between Indonesia and Australia.
Dr. Teuku Faizasyah
Presidential Special Staff International Relations
(Thanks to reader Ancient Marriner.) 

Rich Australians are paying their share

Andrew Bolt May 10 2014 (9:36am)

Hit the rich? Make the rich pay their share to end our entitlement culture?
The rich are actually doing their bit already:
Recent economic modelling has revealed almost half of Australian families pay no net tax.
Carried out by the University of Canberra’s National Centre for Social and Economic Modelling, the work shows that on average, Australian families will make a net contribution of $3424 to the public purse — paying $12,935 in tax, receiving $9515 in benefits…
Peter Whiteford, director of the Social Policy Institute at the Australian National University’s Crawford School of Policy, says Australia’s welfare system is the most targeted in the world, a direct result of means-testing most benefits. In terms of social payments, it is therefore one of, if not the, most efficient in the world.
As a result “we pay about 12 times more to the poorest 20 per cent than we do the richest 20 per cent. The poorest 20 per cent receives nearly 42 per cent of all the money spent on social security; the richest 20 per cent receives only around 3 per cent”.
How dependent are Australians really? Maybe more than Peter Frayn suggests in this analysis:
Public social spending, aka the welfare state, is running at about 33 per cent of gross domestic product in France, 25 per cent across the EU and 20 per cent in the US, according to OECD data.
In Australia it is running at 19 per cent, up from 16 per cent in 2006-07 when Howard ruled…
In 1993, about 23 per cent of population over 16, about 3.1 million people, were receiving one of the big four benefits: aged pension, single parent payments, disability support and the dole. Twenty years later the ratio is virtually unchanged.
In fact, unemployment in 1993 reached 10.9 per cent - nearly double today’s 5.8 per cent. True, our population has since aged, but I’d have have thought we’re have had a fall in the ratio of people on benefits.
John Roskam:
The parallel with Tony Abbott’s deficit tax on high-income earners is not Julia Gillard and her broken promise on the carbon tax – it’s George Bush snr and his “Read my lips: no new taxes” pledge.
Gillard broke an election promise so a centre-left government could implement a centre-left policy. Abbott is at risk of breaking an election promise so his conservative government can implement a centre-left policy, which is exactly what Bush did…
At least Gillard was breaking a promise to achieve something she’d always wanted. Abbott is breaking his promise of new taxes so Australia can have among the world’s highest marginal tax rates.
The pity is that if Abbott is going to spend his political capital breaking promises, he should at least break those he should never have promised in the first place – like his promise not to make any changes to the industrial relations system before the next election.
What the deficit tax reveals is that when the budgetary going gets tough, the Coalition is just as willing as Labor to soak the rich… The wealthiest 2.3 per cent of taxpayers paid 26.2 per cent of all income tax. It would be interesting to know how much more of the tax burden Coalition MPs think these people should bear.
Professor Sinclair Davidson explains:
For several years I have been collecting data from the ATO and graphing the share of the net income tax paid by the top 25% on net income tax payers, the middle 50% and the bottom 25%. The latest ATO data came out last week. The graph is below – as can be seen the top 25% of income earners (those taxpayers with an income above $75,650) paid 67.4% of all net income tax in the 2011-12 financial year. Mind you, it isn’t all bad news, the top 25% share is down from 67.9% the year before.
An important piece by Greg Sheridan on the Europeanisation of Australia - and it’s not a compliment:
Last year, free market think tank the Centre for Independent Studies compiled figures on who works directly for government, or receives their main income directly from government.
Its figures are from 2010 but won’t have changed much. Some 13.5 per cent of voters were employed directly in the public service. Some 16.5 per cent of voters receive a full or part aged pension, 6 per cent the disability support pension and 3 per cent the Newstart allowance. Altogether, about 35 per cent of voters get government payments. Somewhere between 40 per cent and 50 per cent of voters receive income directly from government.
(Thanks to reader Peter of Bellevue Hill.) 

On the Bolt Report tomorrow

Andrew Bolt May 10 2014 (8:59am)

On the show tomorrow – Network 10 at 10am and 4pm....

Our guest: Immigration Minister Scott Morrison.
Our panel: Janet Albrechtsen of The Australian and former Labor campaign guru Bruce Hawker.
On NewsWatch, Roger Scruton, the world’s leading conservative philosopher, analyses the socialist protesters who stopped Q&A.
And more, including a hypocrisy check on Chris Lilley’s new ABC comedy show.
The videos of the shows appear here.

Joe Hockey must now eat baked beans and wear rags

Andrew Bolt May 10 2014 (7:39am)

Twitter - and the media - is in uproar. Apparently Treasurers who cut Government spending should not smoke cigars:
Memo to Joe Hockey
In the following weeks you will also not be allowed to:
Raise a glass
Drink champagne
Eat at a good restaurant
Wear a tux
Be seen with a billionaire
Fly in a private plane
Be driven anywhere in a limo
Good - and good spin, too:
BUSINESSMAN Dick Honan heads Manildra, the company producing most of the ethanol that goes into Australia’s petrol. He is also a mate of Joe Hockey, a neighbour, a donor to Coalition coffers and a member of the North Sydney Forum — a Liberal Party fundraising body in the Treasurer’s electorate.
Hockey, accompanied by Deputy Prime Minister and National Party leader Warren Truss, met Honan recently to tell him the Government’s ethanol subsidy worth about $100 million a year to Manildra will be scrapped in next Tuesday’s federal Budget.
Looking his mate in the eye, the Treasurer said: “There is no way on God’s earth I am going to ask pensioners to have a lesser increase in their pension while I’m giving your business $600,000 per employee. Forget it. It’s over.”
More to come, although cuts of “hundreds of millions” in assistance of $10.5 billion do not strike me as savage:
CORPORATE welfare will be slashed ...  The savings in the budget amount to hundreds of millions of dollars as part of a longer-term plan to reduce the reliance on corporate welfare…

Corporate Australia receives $10.5bn in annual industry assistance from Canberra, according to the latest analysis from the Productivity Commission. Tariff protection makes up about one-tenth of the total. Direct budget outlays are worth more than $5bn a year and there is another $4bn in tax concessions claimed by business…

Car industry programs will take cuts… More fees will be applied to environmental services… Austrade ...  will charge more for its services.  

What did the founder of the Palmer United Party do with that Chinese cash?

Andrew Bolt May 10 2014 (7:27am)

Hedley Thomas goes through documents in the court case waged against Clive Palmer, head of the Palmer United Party, and his Chinese partner, Citic Pacific:

The document, one in more than 1200 bundles of material that form part of a Federal Court case in which Mr Palmer’s company has been accused by the Chin­ese of wrongfully spending very large sums of cash, shows $13,471,392 hit Mineralogy’s Corporate Cheque Account, “Port Palmer Operations’’, that day....
The company that released the money was Citic Pac­ific, the Chinese-controlled financial powerhouse vitally important to China’s international investment objectives....
Over the ensuing weeks and months, according to documents and affidavits reviewed by The Weekend Australian, the account was steadily drained....

The accusations and inferences raised in the Federal Court by affidavits, financial documents and by leading commercial silk Andrew Bell SC for Citic Pacific, are that Mineralogy has helped itself to a large pot of cash for purposes expressly not permitted.
The documents ....  show that some of the larger lumps of cash from the corporate cheque account went to lawyers acting for Palmer and Mineralogy.
It is of particular interest to Citic that its money appears to have been used by Mineralogy to pay for top-shelf lawyers to ­oppose Citic in costly litigation…

Two major withdrawals — of $10m on August 8 last year and $2,167,065 three weeks later, shortly before the September 7 federal election — are cloaked in intrigue. The Chinese want to know if their money underwrote much of the Palmer United Party’s election campaign when Palmer’s main business, a nickel refinery in Townsville, was losing tens of millions of dollars.
“In respect of (those) amounts drawn on the bank account, Mineralogy has not disclosed a remittance advice or invoice, nor has it disclosed the recipient of the payments,’’ Bruce Wacker — a solicitor for Allens, which is acting for Citic — swore in an affidavit in Brisbane on April 24 this year. “These payments are both described in the payment ledger and the bank register as being for purported ‘Port Management Services’....”

Under a legal arrangement known as the Facilities Deed, Mineralogy could establish a fund “for limited purposes, including to pay administration costs in the day-to-day expenses of operating, maintaining and repairing approved facilities at Cape Preston’’ — the site of the port through which iron ore, extracted by the Chinese from Palmer’s ­Pilbara tenements, would be shipped on its way to mills in China.
The problem is that Mineralogy has not been operating the port — and, according to Citic, should not have incurred such costs.  
















=== Posts from last year ===
4 her, so she can see how  see her


I don't give up on people because God never gave up on me. When it comes to problems I don't know how to deal with I go with the saying let go and let God... Holly


As children bring their broken toys
With tears for us to mend,
I brought my broken dreams to God
Because He was my friend.

But then instead of leaving Him
In peace to work alone,
I hung around and tried to help
With ways that were my own.

At last I snatched them back and cried,
"How could you be so slow"
"My child," He said, "What could I do?
You never did let go."




HISTORY IN THE HEADLINES: An Arizona chemist has solved a historical mystery by determining the color of the railroad car that transported Abraham Lincoln's body almost 150 years ago.






John Gorton as Prime Minister rode roughshod over Ministers and senior officials to lead the Independence push for P-NG, according to Gorton’s account of events released by the National Library in 2010.

I recall in 1975 Whitlam bathing in the pomp and ceremony of Independence celebrations but I recall more clearly the hard work of John Gorton in the late sixties.

He copped plenty of resistance from expats and colonialists with investments at stake.

Bob Wurth, a journo in Wewak in the early seventies explained the expat anger: “I spat in the bastard’s soup and mixed it in!” proclaimed the fat Aussie chef as he maliciously wiped his hands on his greasy apron.

The fat chef wasn’t talking about Gorton. The recipient of his spit was the then Opposition leader, Gough Whitlam.

P-NG became self-governing in 1973. Independence was proclaimed in 1975 and it was Gough Whitlam who nearly stuffed it.

He strutted around ignorant of the internal native politics that Gorton had nurtured.

Not many people knew of Gorton’s ground work. He had not even informed his Cabinet, but that was the way Jolly John Gorton got things done.

PN-G was a savage place beset with warring head-hunting tribes.

David Hay was the Administrator and Warwick Smith Departmental Head, Smith hadn’t the stomach for Independence... to suggest he was obstructionist was a gross understatement.

In a series of clever personnel manoeuvres, Gorton negated Smith, leaving the path clear to home rule.

“Now”, said Gorton to the Jifs (Chiefs), “tell me you blokes want independence and you can have it next week!”

In his account of events Gorton claimed Whitlam had made a blue in P-NG. “He was talking Independence to the Mataungans in New Britain and promising all sorts of shit to them, but they were mainly Tolai people from Rabaul and were much more advanced than the ordinary natives, they took things on face value.”

Gorton claimed Whitlam was addressing the wrong crowd and, “bloody hell did we have trouble with them later”, he moaned.

Whitlam’s only P-NG legacy was that his stupid actions reversed Gorton’s good work. Gorton knew the sensitivity of tribal politics intimately.

“The Mataungans wanted the land and would not allow other New Guineans on New Britain to have any”, said Gorton.

“Many of the Tolai people in New Britain in the late sixties had formed the Mataungan Association, led by Oscar Tammur. The Association used violence to attain their ends, nearly upsetting self rule completely.”

Jolly John had done the hard yards to repair the botching of Whitlam who had merely fronted for the pageantry.

History ain’t always what we’re told and 25 years after Gorton gave this account, the National Library was able to release details of what actually happened.

The soon to be late Gough Whitlam was the grandstander and the late Jolly John was the grand planner.





An absolute stunning photo of St Michaels Mount,Cornwall, UK by Michael Saunders - Please 'Share' 
Click Here to join our page..

Ring of Fire

Perfect annular eclipse, from a ridge somewhere west of Plutonic Gold Mine, near the south/sunrise limit, approx 200 km from Newman.

The horizon was perfectly clear, what an amazing sight seeing the squished Sun in annular eclipse. Full sequence of photos to follow - have to lug 40 kg of gear down a mountain, walk it 1 km to my car, and drive back to pick up remotely deployed cameras elsewhere in the eclipse path.

Stay tuned!

Canon 5D Mark III, 500 mm, 1/1000 s @ f/8, ISO 100


Listen to My words,
Let them embrace your soul;
The truth will set you free,
Yea, it will make you whole.

Child, why do you wander?
Why do you look for hope?
Seek Me and My word
For freedom eternal in scope.

Nothing this world can offer
Can make you truly free;
Freedom is found in truth,
Freedom is found in Me.

Do you hear the wind now,
As it rustles through the trees?
So it is with those of Spirit,
Those who follow as I please.

Whither it goes, whence it comes,
Surely one cannot know;
So too with those of Spirit,
For the Way of God they go.

So come, My child, and follow,
Follow Me and the words I say;
I am Your eternal Guide,
I am the Truth, I am the Way.

I will set you free
In ways you knew not before;
I will make you fly,
Like an eagle you will soar.

Let the truth transform you,
Let it warm your very heart;
Lo, I am with you always,
Trust we will never part.

Listen to My words,
Let Me embrace your soul;
The truth has set you free,
Yea, I have made you whole.
Community Channel's inspiration, eh Don Kramer?
I can't wait till the day come where I can stay in bed all day and watch how I met your mother and big bang theory.







Tim Blair – Friday, May 10, 2013 (11:36am)

The perfect symbol of our capital city – a bloated, gaseous, multi-breasted monster feeding those who dwell in its poisonous shadow while leeching off the rest of us:


Good Lord. The ghastly beast takes flight next week: 
Skywhale, a 23m-high, 34m-wide hot air balloon resembling a whale-like creature, will be unveiled in Canberra tomorrow as the headline commission for the Centenary of Canberra celebrations. The balloon will be tethered to the National Gallery of Australia to coincide with a sculpture symposium before making its first flight over the capital on Monday …
The work, a “relative bargain for public art” at $172,000, will be hard to miss. Bristol balloon-makers Camerons made Skywhale from 3.5km of fabric. 
So they’ve celebrated Canberra’s centenary by sending money to England. Brilliant!
UPDATE. Oh, the huge mammaries!
UPDATE II. Skywhale’s Canberra symbolism is now complete
ACT taxpayers are paying at least $100,000 more than the territory government has indicated for the controversial Skywhale hot air balloon.
Official documents reveal the balloon is costing at least $334,000, not the $170,000 figure quoted by ACT Government officials. 
UPDATE III. They paid for it but don’t own it
Canberrans don’t own the Skywhale hot air balloon, despite spending $170,000 on the controversial piece of art.
Centenary of Canberra creative director Robyn Archer confirmed that the 23 metre tall creation is not owned by the ACT Government, but the company that operates the balloon. 
Makes sense. Further from Archer: 
She also defended its relation to Canberra and the city’s centenary, saying the “connection couldn’t be plainer” …
“The connection with the centenary is ‘look at how many amazing people Canberra has produced over these years’.” 
Nothing says “‘look at how many amazing people Canberra has produced” quite like a hideous airborne turtle with ten tits.
May 10Mother's Day in El Salvador, Guatemala and Mexico
J. Edgar Hoover in 1961




Holidays and observances[edit]

“Therefore, there is now no condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus, because through Christ Jesus the law of the Spirit who gives life has set you free from the law of sin and death.” - Romans 8:1-2
Morning and Evening by Charles Spurgeon


"Who hath blessed us with all spiritual blessings."
Ephesians 1:3
All the goodness of the past, the present, and the future, Christ bestows upon his people. In the mysterious ages of the past the Lord Jesus was his Father's first elect, and in his election he gave us an interest, for we were chosen in him from before the foundation of the world. He had from all eternity the prerogatives of Sonship, as his Father's only-begotten and well-beloved Son, and he has, in the riches of his grace, by adoption and regeneration, elevated us to sonship also, so that to us he has given "power to become the sons of God." The eternal covenant, based upon suretiship and confirmed by oath, is ours, for our strong consolation and security. In the everlasting settlements of predestinating wisdom and omnipotent decree, the eye of the Lord Jesus was ever fixed on us; and we may rest assured that in the whole roll of destiny there is not a line which militates against the interests of his redeemed. The great betrothal of the Prince of Glory is ours, for it is to us that he is affianced, as the sacred nuptials shall ere long declare to an assembled universe. The marvellous incarnation of the God of heaven, with all the amazing condescension and humiliation which attended it, is ours. The bloody sweat, the scourge, the cross, are ours forever. Whatever blissful consequences flow from perfect obedience, finished atonement, resurrection, ascension, or intercession, all are ours by his own gift. Upon his breastplate he is now bearing our names; and in his authoritative pleadings at the throne he remembers our persons and pleads our cause. His dominion over principalities and powers, and his absolute majesty in heaven, he employs for the benefit of them who trust in him. His high estate is as much at our service as was his condition of abasement. He who gave himself for us in the depths of woe and death, doth not withdraw the grant now that he is enthroned in the highest heavens.


"Come, my beloved, let us go forth into the field ... let us see if the vine flourish."
Song of Solomon 7:11-12
The church was about to engage in earnest labour, and desired her Lord's company in it. She does not say, "I will go," but "let us go." It is blessed working when Jesus is at our side! It is the business of God's people to be trimmers of God's vines. Like our first parents, we are put into the garden of the Lord for usefulness; let us therefore go forth into the field. Observe that the church, when she is in her right mind, in all her many labours desires to enjoy communion with Christ. Some imagine that they cannot serve Christ actively, and yet have fellowship with him: they are mistaken. Doubtless it is very easy to fritter away our inward life in outward exercises, and come to complain with the spouse, "They made me keeper of the vineyards; but mine own vineyard have I not kept;" but there is no reason why this should be the case except our own folly and neglect. Certain is it that a professor may do nothing, and yet grow quite as lifeless in spiritual things as those who are most busy. Mary was not praised for sitting still; but for her sitting at Jesus' feet. Even so, Christians are not to be praised for neglecting duties under the pretence of having secret fellowship with Jesus: it is not sitting, but sitting at Jesus' feet which is commendable. Do not think that activity is in itself an evil: it is a great blessing, and a means of grace to us. Paul called it a grace given to him to be allowed to preach; and every form of Christian service may become a personal blessing to those engaged in it. Those who have most fellowship with Christ are not recluses or hermits, who have much time to spare, but indefatigable labourers who are toiling for Jesus, and who, in their toil, have him side by side with them, so that they are workers together with God. Let us remember then, in anything we have to do for Jesus, that we can do it, and should do it in close communion with him.
Scripture Reference: 2 Timothy 1:5
Name Meaning: Agreeable or desirable
While there are numerous grandmothers mentioned in the Bible, as these cameos show, the term "grandmother" itself is only used once in the Bible, and that is in connection with Lois, the mother of Eunice, and grandmother of Timothy. Lois preserves in her name an old Greek word and corresponds to Naamah and Naomi, both of which carry a similar significance. We can imagine how the nature of Lois corresponded to the implication of her name.

Lois was a devout Jewess who had instructed her beloved daughter and grandson in Old Testament Scriptures. The family lived at Lystra, and it is possible that Paul, during his visit there, had the joy of leading Lois, Eunice, and Timothy to Christ (Acts 14:6, 7; 16:1), and then wrote of the "unfeigned faith" that dwelt in all three. We have no record of Timothy's father apart from the fact that he was a Gentile. Fausset observes, "One godly parent may counteract the bad influence of the ungodly, and win the child to Christ" (1 Corinthians 7:14;2 Timothy 3:15). Paul dwells upon the faith of the mother and grandmother alone in the spiritual instruction of Timothy who became his son in the faith.
Abia, Abiah

[Ăbī'ă, Ăbī'ah] - jehovah is father.
  1. The second son of Samuel the prophet and judge of Israel, Abia, with his brother Joel or Vashni, judged so unworthily as to force Israel to desire a king (1 Sam. 8:2; 1 Chron. 6:28).
  2. A son of Rehoboam (1 Chron. 3:10; Matt. 1:7). Called Abijam in 1 Kings 14:31; 15:6-8.
  3. The seventh son of Becher the son of Benjamin (1 Chron 7:8).
  4. A priest in the days of David, appointed to service in the Tabernacle (Luke 1:5). Also the name of the wife of Hezron, grandson of Judah by Pharez (1 Chron. 2:24). Our study of Bible men will bring out the fact that the same name is often borne by both men and women.

Today's reading: 2 Kings 7-9, John 1:1-28 (NIV)

View today's reading on Bible Gateway

Today's Old Testament reading: 2 Kings 7-9

Elisha replied, "Hear the word of the LORD. This is what the LORD says: About this time tomorrow, a seah of the finest flour will sell for a shekel and two seahs of barley for a shekel at the gate of Samaria."
2 The officer on whose arm the king was leaning said to the man of God, "Look, even if the LORD should open the floodgates of the heavens, could this happen?"
"You will see it with your own eyes," answered Elisha, "but you will not eat any of it!"

Today's New Testament reading: John 1:1-28

The Word Became Flesh
1 In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. 2 He was with God in the beginning. Through him all things were made; without him nothing was made that has been made. 4 In him was life, and that life was the light of all mankind. 5 The light shines in the darkness, and the darkness has not overcome it.
6 There was a man sent from God whose name was John. 7He came as a witness to testify concerning that light, so that through him all might believe. 8 He himself was not the light; he came only as a witness to the light....

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