Anyone up for another Great Tax Adventure?

The Australian, 16 August 2010

Apparently the guys in the expensive suits reckon the election campaign’s been a bit light on for tax reform so far, the gist being that they’d quite like to pay less of it.

Fair enough, there’s nothing like a bit of tax reform to capture the public’s imagination, but if tax reform thinks it’s been a bit dudded for detailed policy attention in the past few weeks then it can bloody well take a number and join the queue like pretty much everything else. It’s also possible that Kevin’s head stuffed and mounted on the wall of the Mining Billionaires’ Club has put Julia and Tony off a little bit.

There was also a bit of suspiciously WorkChoicey talk (between puffs of cigar smoke) that a touch more flexibility in Industrial Relations wouldn’t go astray. Bizarrely that too hasn’t had a big run so far, though John Howard’s head on a spike outside ACTU headquarters may provide a clue. Oh well, there are still a few days to go….

Cap’n Abbott

The Hobart Mercury, 16 August 2010

You’re watching The Expendables at Warringah Mall and during a really emotional bit someone’s bloody phone goes off (the ringtone’s probably Ride Of The Valkyries).

“Hello? Uh – a boat? Fair – er – dinkum?……Well how should – uhhh – I know? I’m not – errrr – really a -uh -boathead…. What -er – uh – do you reckon?…..Splice the – errrrr – mainjib?”

Tony has decided to personally apply his vast nautical knowledge and experience to the vexed question of whether Turning The Boats Around will play well in Western Sydney at whatever point it is in the daily news cycle. Whenever there’s a life and death decision to be made out on the ocean wave, get Tony on the blower.

No doubt later today Julia will counter with a proposal to set up a call centre in East Timor to handle the situation. Personally I favour a live-action reality TV program like So You Think You Can Turn The Boats Around. Now that’s democratainment.

Five fingers of fury

We can now safely say that in a fight between a inflamed pancreas and a diseased gallbladder, the pancreas will totally kick the gallbladder’s, er, arse. Mark Latham has successfully distracted Australia from being distracted by Kevin Rudd and taken the mantle of Australia’s Angriest Ex-Leader. Say what you like about the bloke (he would about you), I’ll be watching 60 Minutes this week for the first time in years.

The Australian 13 August 2010

It’ll never catch on

If you’re reading this, then you most likely think the Coalition’s rather low tech broadband plan involving a pair of scissors is pretty crap. I make this assumption simply on the grounds that you are currently using the internet, which is probably quite presumptuous of me, so sorry. Perhaps you are perfectly happy with whatever megagigawebabits you’re getting right now and can’t imagine what you could possibly do with 100 megabits per second, much less a gigabit.

I remember being pretty bloody excited about my 100 megabyte hard drive back in the nineties. I now have a terabyte drive in my computer and it’s getting a bit chokkas. While it falls somewhat short of being a comprehensive cost-benefit analysis, the answer to the question “what could we possibly do with all that bandwidth?” is “heaps of cool stuff” and I’m quite looking forward to finding out.

The Australian 11 August 2010