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Bondi and Bean

[NOTE: Click image to visit original image and story in SMH.]
IT WAS a sight that had scores of tourists and swimmers reaching for their camera phones.
On a rickety pushbike, Mr Bean came to Bondi Beach yesterday.
The much-loved comic creation of Rowan Atkinson took to the sand - dumping his familiar teddy and towel to meet the lifesavers.
"It's very nice here," he mumbled. "The weather's hot, but the water's very cold."

Posted by Ozguru at 07:00 AM

Promotion by Merit?


Apparently the federal education minister is indulging in a little heresy when she suggests Families get say in teachers' pay rises...

If you give pay rises and promotions to teachers who perform well, you run the extreme risk of improving the education system. We cannot allow that. We luddites members of the Communist Union of Naive Teachers Teachers Federation stand totally behind promotion by seniority. We feel that anyone prepared to stick it out for a considerable length of time should be amply rewarded for the effort. Forget about merit. No-one has any innovation after the first couple of years and so you would just cause discontent by promoting newbie teachers who would then want to make changes to the system. They might even try to improve things which every sane (senior, promoted) person knows cannot work (unless you are talking about the evil non-public system). Besides, if you start promoting teachers by merit, all the parents will want their kids to go to the schools with good teachers who would then be overworked and stressed while the incompetent more senior teachers would be at schools with no students.

I tell you it won't work. There is no point in improving education. After all if you teach the little buggers children to think, there is no way they will grow up to become members of the Union who always vote for the Communist Green Democrat Labor party.


[NOTE: My children do not participate in public education.]

Posted by Ozguru at 08:00 PM

More Aussie Politics

[Aside for US Readers: Yesterday and today we have posts about the NSW state election. There are two main parties and a host of minor after-work-drinks (too small to be a party): Labor (socialist, left-wing, like Democrats), Liberal/National (business, right-wing, like Republicans). Currently the state is run by Labor (12 years) and the federal government is Liberal/National. It is extremely unlikely that Labor will loose this election due to their majority in the parliament.]

The more I read It's more time: a jingle that jangles, the more I like it. In particular the comment:

Labor's focus groups are telling the party that people in NSW are still very angry at the 10 years of inaction during the Carr regime, when the key measures on services such as public transport and health went backwards and not forwards.
The trains ran later and later until they reached crisis point. The hospital waiting lists remained entrenched and emergency wards were often full, prompting ambulances to be sent between hospitals in search of beds on the weekends.
But, at the same time, it's now clear the Government took its eye off the ball when it came to ensuring that the public's other major interfaces with state government - transport, utilities and hospitals - were up to scratch.
So Iemma's big challenge is to convince you, the voter, that he has the recipe to fix the problems left by the other bloke. (It must have been another Iemma in cabinet.)
The first message is to tell you that Iemma is new and different and he's only been in the job for 18 months. Step two is to tell you he's a hard worker with a plan, and step three is to tell you that he needs more time.

The bottom line is that things are worse now, not better and Iemma has been part of the problem (i.e. he has been there during the decline - even if he was only the leader for the last little while). Given that, what can the average voter do? Is there any alternative waiting in the wings? Nope. There are the minor parties (after-work-drinks) who are a best a nuisance and at worst a complete hinderance to reasonable governance. What about the main opposition party? Headed by whats-his-name. You know the fellow. Wasn't he on tele last week? What IS his name?

Tune in on the 3rd weekend in March to see if the voters prefer the incompetant or the unknown.

Posted by Ozguru at 07:00 AM

Gone to pot?

Cannabis goes to pot in young people's eyes:

ONE in three young people find cannabis use unacceptable, according to research suggesting the drug is now seen as addictive and linked to health and social problems.
A new survey by the National Drug and Alcohol Research Centre found marijuana use has become socially unfashionable, with three-quarters of the 1500 adults surveyed believing it is dangerous or very dangerous.
Nearly half believed cannabis can cause schizophrenia, depression and anxiety disorder to a moderate or large degree.

A quick visit to Nimbin to repeat the survey failed because those surveyed were depressed, anxious or just plain stoned.

Posted by Ozguru at 08:00 AM | Comments (1)

More to do, but heading in the right direction

That assumes of course that the "right direction" is a downward death spiral.

After 12 years of Labor, what do we have? Is the education system better than 12 years ago (measured by results not money spent)? Is the hospital system bettter than 12 years ago (think every increasing waiting lists for "elective" surgery)? Is the amount of crime comparable to 12 years ago? Are the roads and infrastructure as good as 12 years ago? Are essential utilities (water, electricty) in the same (or better) position than 12 months ago? Is public investment (i.e. assets held by the government on behalf of the voters) as significant as 12 years ago (or have they privatised everything to pay off the ever-increasing debt)?

Basically, they would have been better off saying "look we stuffed everything up but we want to try and set things right" - at least that would have been honest....

Pity that we have a one party state system....

Links: Iemma recycles $2b pledges, It's more time: a jingle that jangles.

Posted by Ozguru at 06:00 AM | Comments (0)


My wife is doing a TAFE course this year and one of her instructors is pushing his personal political opinions in class. Of course, if she challenges him then she will not pass. The instructor is a pro-Labor (actually pro-Communist) and he is using class time to promote the current state premier (Labor) and denigrate the current Prime Minister (Liberal). Note that both state and federal governments face re-election this year.

[Quick aside for Americans: Labor is closer to Democrats and Liberal is closer to Republican - not an exact match but close enough to follow the discussion. In Australian politics, Labor is left of centre, Liberal is right of centre. Further left are the Greens and Communists, further right is the National Party.]

In particular this bozo hammered the Liberals (who hold federal power) for the failings of: education, health, police and water shortages. All four key items are actually state managed (the Labor party hold control of the state government). So the four big issues he is whinging about are actually failings resulting from his favourite party....

I am happy that not everyone holds the same political views that I do but I do require you to have thought carefully and logically about your political position before you can spout off about it. This idiot has absolutely no clue and it makes you wonder if he has any intelligence in other areas - such as his teaching....

Posted by Ozguru at 12:00 PM | Comments (0)

Fletcher to coach England in cup

According to the SMH:

DAVID Morgan, chairman of the England and Wales Cricket Board, has given a categorical assurance that Duncan Fletcher will coach England in the World Cup despite the depression hanging over the team in Australia.
Although John Carr, the ECB's director of cricket, will arrive in Australia this week to conduct an "audit" of the disastrous Ashes tour, only a shock Fletcher resignation would prevent him leading England in the Caribbean.

This would be the same Fletcher that was earlier commenting on the performance of the English team:

England coach Duncan Fletcher has apologised for his team's dismal nine-wicket loss to Australia in Adelaide on Friday.
Australia romped to victory with more than 25 overs to spare after England collapsed for just 110 in their tri-series one-day international. Fletcher has defended his team throughout their disastrous tour of Australia but could deliver only apologies for the defeat.
"We have to offer an apology, we just didn't play any good cricket," Fletcher told the BBC.
"The boys are very disappointed. We have to make sure we keep them going - there's still a lot of purpose there."
England captain Andrew Flintoff was at a loss to explain his team's continued failure. England have lost all nine matches against Australia on the tour and Friday's defeat came just three days after New Zealand hammered them by 90 runs.

I think that England has a clean sweep - they appear to have lost every single game this time. Maybe we need to organize a schoolboys team.... Hmmmmm. Maybe we had better make that a primary school team....

Posted by Ozguru at 07:00 AM | Comments (1)

Some b*st*rd cut my garden hose....

Let me explain. In the front yard (small as it is), we have a leaky old tap. So as to not waste any water, there is an old bit of hose connected to the tap which runs up and over the former carport (which is now a frame with no roof) and sort of hangs into a garden bed on the other side of the driveway.

The hose is long enough that you could cut four feet off the garden-bed end without materially affecting the usefulness of the hose.

The b*st*rd cut only a foot off but he (or she) cut it off at the tap end. That's right. They left the rest of the now-completely-useless hose entwined with the carport frame and cut the foot of hose closest to the tap. Sort of guarantees that it can't be repaired or replaced.

If someone had knocked on the door and asked for some hose to fix their car, I would have given them some (I have spare short pieces in the shed) but to cut off the tap end of my hose - that is just being a b*st*rd.

Maybe I should get the hose dusted for fingerprints...

Posted by Ozguru at 06:30 AM | Comments (1)

King Kernaghan

It looks like Lee Kernaghan is the new King of Country music with four golden guitars at the Tamworth awards last night. Funny thing was that I was listening to 'Missing Slim' (Lee Kernaghan and Colin Buchanan) as I read the story.

There are ten of his albums in the Aussie iTunes music store - you might want to try 'The Outback Club' especially the first track 'Boys from the Bush'....

Posted by Ozguru at 09:00 AM


Sheik Taj El-Din Al Hilaly must be the most misunderstood man in Australia. First people misunderstood him when he compared uncovered women (i.e. not wearing the hijab)to uncovered meat (i.e. it was acceptable to assult or rape them). Then they misunderstood him claiming the immigrants who paid to come here (like him) should have more rights than those forced to come here (i.e. convicts). Next they misunderstood his threat to run for parliament and took it as a challenge. Then to add insult to injury he wasn't allowed to preach becacause he was being too political.

On the other hand, maybe he cancelled the sermon because he wasn't made Australian of the year...

The sheik is doing nothing to help those of his faith adapt to their life in Australia. This is not an Islamic country, it does have Sharia Law and the controversial nature of his remarks should have been dealt with uner the banner of racial and religious vilification. Unfortunately it seems that the anti-discrimination laws here were designed to stop the silent majority from stating their point of view while allowing (and encouraging) fringe lunatics to have their say...

Posted by Ozguru at 12:00 PM | Comments (0)

Advertise on Google?

Today, being Australia Day, lots of people were out and about enjoying themselves. Some of those were actually trying to generate free advertisements on google. You see Google decided to fly over Sydney and take lots of arial photos to use in Google Earth.

One couple took the chance to advertise a dating service, another fellow tried to save his marriage.

What would you have done, given the chance?

Posted by Ozguru at 12:00 PM

Blog Status

I have finally caught up with the blog updates (at long last). In particular, the categories have been simplified:

  • Laugh Out Loud - Peskie's Jokes - one every day since 1/2/2004

  • Tips and Trivia - Ozguru's technical tips and miscellaneous junk

  • Aussie - both of us

The blog no longer accepts trackbacks. Even with spam filters I was getting about 100 spambacks every single day. I still send trackbacks but I ignore incoming...

Any questions, please send them to Peskie or Ozguru at good old gmail dot com.

Posted by Ozguru at 06:00 PM



Posted by Ozguru at 06:00 PM

What did you do on Australia Day?

I have no idea why we still celebrate the 26th of January as Australia Day. Australia became a nation on the 1st of January 2001 1901 (thanks for the correction). The only thing that happened on 26th of January is that the first fleet landed for the second* time and stuck a flag in the ground....
Still it is a public holiday in thye middle of summer, so we should probably all go down to the beach...


[* The first fleet landed in Botany Bay on the 20th of January but didn't like it. They relocated to Sydney Harbour on the 26th of January. See Wikipedia for more details.]

Posted by Ozguru at 06:00 PM | Comments (2)

Happy Hogmanay

A guid New Year to ane an` a` and mony may ye see!

Posted by Ozguru at 06:00 AM

Merry Christmas


I know that some of the readers may not be Christian and may prefer some other greeting but too bad. I happen to be Christian and I want to wish everyone a wonderful Christmas and a happy New Year. If that worries you, just jump to the next blog on your list and come back in a week or so when this greeting falls to the bottom of the page :-)

Posted by Ozguru at 06:00 PM

Aussie Carols (Part VII)

This one happens to be a personal favourite...

The North Wind

The north wind is tossing the leaves
the red dust is over the town
The sparrows are under the eaves
And the grass in the paddock is brown
As we lift up our voices and sing
To the Christ child the heavenly king.

The tree ferns in green gullies sway
the cool stream flows silently by
the joy bells are greeting the day
And the chimes are adrift in the sky
As we lift up our voices and sing
To the Christ child the heavenly king.

© Bill James (WG) and John Wheeler 1948

Posted by Ozguru at 06:00 PM

Aussie Carols (Part VI)

The Three Drovers

Across the plains one Christmas night
Three drovers riding blithe and gay,
Looked up and saw a starry light
More radiant than the Milky Way;
And on their hearts such wonder fell,
They sang with joy. 'Noel! Noel! Noel! Noel! Noel!'

The air was dry with summer heat,
And smoke was on the yellow moon;
But from the heavens, faint and sweet,
Came floating down a wond'rous turn;
And as they heard, they sang full well
Those drovers three. 'Noel! Noel! Noel! Noel! Noel!'

The black swans flew across the sky,
The wild dog called across the plain,
The starry lustre blazed on high,
Still echoed on the heavenly strain;
And still they sang, 'Noel! Noel!'
Those drovers three. 'Noel! Noel! Noel! Noel! Noel!'

Words by John Wheeler.
Music by William G.James.

This site has a midi file of the music (scroll to the bottom of the page)...

Posted by Ozguru at 06:00 PM

Aussie Carols (Part V)

As the front page is getting far too long, I am only going to supply the last verse for the 'Aussie 12 Days of Christmas'...

On the twelfth day of Christmas, my true love sent to me
Twelve parrots prattling,
Eleven numbats nagging,
Ten lizards leaping,
Nine wombats working,
Eight dingoes digging,
Seven possums playing,
Six brolgas dancing,
Five kangaroos,
Four koalas cuddling,
Three kookaburras laughing,
Two pink galahs,
And an emu up a gum tree!

[Tomorrow and Christmas day, I have more serious Aussie carols :-)]

Posted by Ozguru at 06:00 PM | Comments (1)

Aussie Carols (Part IV)

[Lyrics deciphered from a 702 CD....]

Deck The Shed With Bits of Wattle
[Sung to the tune of "Deck the Hall"...]

Deck the shed with bits of wattle
Fa La La La La - La La La La
Whack some gumleaves in a bottle
Fa La La La La - La La La La
All the shops are open sundies
Fa La La La La - La La La La
Buy you Dad some socks and undies
Fa La La La La - La La La La

Deck the shed with bits of gumtree...
Hang some deco's off the plum tree...
Plant some kisses on the missus...
Have a ripper Aussie Christmas...

Say G'day to friends and relies...
Wave them off with bulging bellies...
Kids and babies, youngies, oldies...
May your fridge be full of coldies...

Chop the wood and stoke the barbie...
Ring the folks in Abu-dabi...
Pop the stuffing in the turkey...
Little Mary's feeling ercky!...

Rally Rally round the table...
Fill your belly while your able...
While Joyce and Joanie, Dave and Daryl...
sing an Aussie Christmas Carol...

Posted by Ozguru at 06:00 PM | Comments (2)

Aussie Carols (Part III)

Aussie Carols (Part II)

Aussie Carols (Part I)

R.I.P. Harry Boyle

Puddle fun

Pest Toast